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Chapter 788

At this point, massive bonfires had broken out on either side of me. The heat was immense, but I could barely feel it at that moment. The bandits had started to retreat, seeing that their attempt to get the sword was lost. Two men were dragging the body of the Bandit Hero as they left. As for me, I felt frustration and anger. I had lost all of my slaves in a single day with a single cut of my sword, and then the two slaves I had were taken away shortly after I found them.

What was the point of being a support character when there was no one around me to support? No matter how much I grew, I would never be quite as strong as the rest of them. My class was support. Even if I had their job, I’d never have their ability. I was out-classed.

There was a cracking sound as a house near me started to collapse to the ground. That finally snapped me out of my daze, causing me to look back toward the group of fleeing Bandits. I was a support character, but just because I fought using others, didn’t mean that the others needed to fight by choice. I was a Slave Master, a Monster Tamer, a Harem Master… these were all jobs that supported someone else, but it also controlled them.

Maybe I had been looking at it all wrong. I wasn’t supposed to be the hero, fighting and putting my life on the line to save everyone. I was supposed to be the master, pulling the strings. I felt like the Demon Lord Aberis had been pulling my strings for far too long. Ever since I came to the previous world, it was the country of Aberis I found myself in. His shadow had dictated my steps leading up to the point that he captured me. I was done being on his strings.

I started to move, rapidly approaching the bandits who were dragging their defeated Hero behind. They must have truly loved him. After all, they were bandits. They weren’t exactly the sentimental type. Remembering my previous encounters with bandits, they were often untrustworthy and would backstab each other in a heartbeat. Naturally, Salicia came to mind.

“You… what do you want?” One of the bandits demanded as I approached Roxford.

The man’s eyes were closed now, and if he wasn’t dead, he appeared to be very near death. Without hesitating, I grabbed his body and began to the pull the leaking black miasma out of him. The two that had been dragging him let out cries as they dropped him and pulled out their swords. They were too slow though. I consumed all of the miasma and integrated his karma. A moment, later, I began to use all of the Mimic skills.

I stood up. “What do the two of you think you’re doing?”

The two men looked at each other, then back at me. “Boss! You’re alive! We thought you were dead!”

“Do you think I’m that easy to kill? Come. We’re returning to the hideout. Calypso will answer for her betrayal. They all will.”

“Yes, Boss!” The two men nearly saluted, and then ran up to inform the bandits ahead of us.

They completely ignored the body of the true Roxford… or at least the Roxford who was true for this dungeon. His body turned to dust, and I was now the Bandit’s Leader.

{Mimic has increased to level 15.}

{You have unlocked the skill, Karmic Control.}

Chapter 789

The group of bandits ended up returning to the familiar looking cave. I counted how many forces we had. In the end, it was only about one hundred, and that included those who weren’t fighters. Although they were bandits, that didn’t mean in large enough numbers they wouldn’t need cooks, cleaners, and laborers. As a result, the fighting force of the bandits was only about seventy. Most of them had come with Roxford, with only a few staying behind to guard the cave.

I also checked on how much wealth Roxford had accumulated. It wasn’t very much. I supposed that his focus was the war effort. He wasn’t interested in just robbing people. He was interested in bringing down the Demon Lord. On the one hand, he was a bit admirable. The men with him, who were eating mostly slop and not being paid very much, must have had a lot of respect for him. It made it a little weird then to see them look at me with those same adoring eyes. On the other hand, it did explain why his numbers were so low. Any bandit who was just there for the money and comfort definitely wouldn’t remain with Roxford.

The next question was weapons and armor. I quickly found that these things were missing as well. The bandits were not equipped for war at all. Some had leather armor and beat up swords. I wanted to know why the conditions weren’t better, but I didn’t have to ask too many bandits before I had my answer. Calypso. The best food and money she reserved for herself. She convinced Roxford that he had to eat and dress better than his men or risk losing their respect.

As for the men, they were too scared of Calypso to say anything to her, and respected Roxford too much to give him a hard time. As a result, she had managed to waste all of their wealth. I’m not even sure what Calypso did with it, but the bandits were living worse off than the commoners at the previous village had been.

With a sigh, I returned to Roxford’s bedroom, demanded privacy, and then began sitting on the bed. I concentrated on my two girls. Carmine was still in the demon’s castle, but completely out of reach. My Portal still wouldn’t open there, and it would be difficult and dangerous to march right in. At that point, it’d be like walking right into the boss room.

As for Garnet, the pair had stopped moving and were somewhere in the north. I didn’t know what they were doing. I should be able to make a Portal to her. I wasn’t sure how bad the dungeon interference was. I might need to get closer to open it, but it was possible. I didn’t bother though. I didn’t see a point to it. Xin was at a level that if I tried to snatch Garnet, she could take her right back. Instead, Garnet should focus on making that dagger. Hopefully, at this distance, she still had my bonuses. I made sure to leave Slave Master equipped just for her.

I sat in the dark, considering my next plan. I wasn’t impulsive as I had once been, although I suppose I had been impulsive the last few days since traveling with Garnet. Maybe my soul hadn’t lost my impulsiveness, but it was something I did when I was around women. It was easier to make a decision when someone you cared about was depending on your actions or something like that.

Time passed, and the night fell into the next day. Nothing changed in the bandit camp. Their part in the narrative was over. They likely wouldn’t do anything, nor would they be molested, until the dungeon cycle repeated. That was unless I did something and got involved. I’d need to change the story myself. Although what took Xin 1000 cycles to accomplish, I’d need to do in less than one!

Chapter 790

I had six weeks until the wedding. That was when the demon prince would attempt to kill his father. Why six weeks? After all, Bernard had the sword and he has his bride. He could attack the Demon King tomorrow. No, I was certain that it would be in six weeks because that is what the narrative suggested. Bernard may think he was completely free of this dungeon, but I was certain that he wasn’t. He wasn’t a paladin like Carmine or a white mage and mimic like me. Although he managed to keep his mind sorted, he was being heavily influenced by the dungeon.

I reasoned out from the safe room’s murals I had already seen that it was the demon prince himself who had secured the special metal and ordered the creation of that sword. Creating the sword wasn’t something Xin had done, but something the demon prince had attempted and failed to accomplish. He had planned to betray his father since the beginning.

However, Bernard was not the demon prince, and so he didn’t know that the sword was something he had come for. The result was that he followed his father and burned the village to the ground. The dungeon allowed him to do this because it wouldn’t have seen the narrative changing much since the sword was always a failure. Except, this time, it wasn’t. It was no mistake that Bernard ended up with the sword.

In the end, I was fighting against three different factions battling over this dungeon. There was Xin, an external force that has been influencing and trying to leave the dungeon. There is the demon king, the master of the dungeon, who is trying to preserve it at any cost. Finally, there is the demon prince, the one who started the war by kidnapping the princess, then tried to assassinate his father, marry his woman, and become the ruler himself. Bernard was still playing that part perfectly, even if he had no clue he was doing it.

It was time to create a fourth faction. I had started it once, but after a single setback and I had convinced myself that I wasn’t qualified. It was easier to run around and play hero. My time with Garnet taught me something. I needed help. I couldn’t do this all on my own. With that thought, I stepped out of my room and then assembled all of the bandits.

I pulled out ingredients from my inventory and cooked a meal using my cook skill. It even went up a level after cooking for a hundred people. Their moods immediately improved as they ate. I still lacked a fondness for it since I had been in this dungeon, but I saw it as a tool I could use now. After everyone had their fill and were giving me their full attention, I stood up.

“Boss, what are we going to do?”

I looked over the crowd of eager men. In another situation, these would-be enemies. Even as a dungeon, these guys should be mobs attacking me, not allies who looked at me with respect.

“I need you to start gathering others. I want everything. Supplies. People. Monsters. Steal it all.”

“People? What are you going to do with people?” One of the men asked in surprise.

I raised my hand, looking curiously as miasma poured out of it. When my mimic ability had gone up, I had received a new ability. It was time that I tested it out.

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