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Chapter 81

“What now, Master?” Lydia asked.

“I don’t know…” I said, sniffling.

“Master is crying!”

“I was in the moment and trying to be a tough guy, but it was really scary!”

Lydia wrapped her arms around me and I sniffled in her chest for a while. I wasn’t crying. Those were man tears. I just got really angry seeing people attacking Miki and I acted impulsively. However, I had no plan ready, and worse, I had dragged these girls down this path with me.

I just needed a few moments to clear my mind, and after Lydia patted me a few times, my brain snapped back into action.

“It’s okay…” I responded, wiping my nose with the back of my hand. “I’m good now. Rather, my plan is pretty simple. Rather than plunge into the middle of town like before, we’re going to slowly clear things out. This city was abandoned in a single night and then sealed. That means that all of the town’s goodies are inside and should be sufficient to supply us. We take a home, clean it out, and then make it a base, and then we tackle one property at a time, wiping out block after block.”

“What about at night?” Lydia responded nervously as she watched the sun just starting to rise.

“My Holy Circle seems to be able to keep ghosts at bay. If I cast it around a house, we shouldn’t be bothered. I suppose we can take turns keeping watch to make sure. All of us have different advantages when it comes to ghosts. You can see them, I can resist them, and Miki can hurt-”

“Why are you doing this?” Miki’s weak voice came out.

We both looked down to see her collapsed on the floor, her legs having given out. She was looking up at the pair of us with tears in her eyes.

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“Why did you help me? Why did you abandon a city for me? Why are you talking so calmly like you just didn’t give up everything? I’m just your slave! I’m useless property! Even my own family gave me up when the town pressured them a little! You could just give me back to the slave trader and you’ll have no problems!”

I looked over at Lydia. Lydia was watching Miki, her tail swishing back and forth, with a slightly sad expression on her face. I kneeled down so that I was right in front of Miki. I put my hand out, and she flinched for a second, but then I put it on her head and patted her gently. Her eyes slowly closed and her ears straightened back out.

“Because… I believe you’re worth it.”

“I destroy everything I touch…” She said back.

“Do you see that town down there?” I pointed out, moving aside so Miki could look. “That town has already been destroyed. There is only one direction to go, and I think you’re the only girl who can make that dream a reality. Let’s build something new… together.”

I stood up and reached out my hand. Miki stared at it, her mouth slightly open, her eyes wide as if she wasn’t sure if she should take it.

“Isn’t that why you showed interest in Master in the first place?” Lydia suddenly spoke. “You saw he was a kind man and thought he wouldn’t stand to see a young girl die?”

“He didn’t know what a 9-tailed fox was. It didn’t matter what he thought of me after I was brought back. I just wanted to live… a little longer…” Miki said weakly. “That’s different. You might throw a beggar a few coins. You don’t take them home and call them family.”

“Well… that’s just the kind of Master that Master is.” Lydia smiled, holding her hand out too. “Will you help your family?”

“Family?” Miki looked at both of our hands in wonder.

Then her hands slowly came out and grabbed each of our arms. It was time to get to work.

Chapter 82

Heading down to the village, we kept a vigilant lookout and moved slowly. I was now wearing the leather armor that Lydia had picked up from the village just before we left. It was pure luck that she had grabbed my backpack last night when she chased after Miki. She had thought I might need my supplies during last night’s battle, and thus nothing of importance was left behind in the inn. Well, the bag was still stocked from our previous short-lived excursion. It was one of the reasons I thought I could be so bull-headed when I portaled away.

“The last time we were here, all I saw were a bunch of dolls. Is that what you saw?”

Lydia shook her head. “I saw many floating people. They had really scary faces and they were bloody and they went ‘woooo’.”

“That does sound exactly like a ghost,” I responded flatly.

In fact, it sounded too much like a ghost. What was with the voices?

“The wooo might have been the blood rushing to my head.” Lydia blushed, looking away.

“I’ve seen a map of this city before. If I recall correctly, there is an alchemist on the outside of town. That’s where I want to set up shop.”

“Why an alchemist?” Lydia asked.

“A couple of reasons. First, an alchemist probably has some reading materials, and I’d like to start learning to read.” I explained, thinking of the Adventurer’s guild near the center of town and shivering. “Second, I want to take advantage of all of our skills. Miki here is a level 9 alchemist, and I believe she might be able to make some useful stuff for us. Ideally, I’d like to find some kind of anti-ghost potion.”

“Actually, Master… I’m sorry, but I’m only a level 8 alchemist. The slave trader must have embellished a bit to get you to buy me.”

“Last night, you reached level 9 when we used that Spirit Fire.”

“Huh? How do you know that?” Miki seemed taken aback.

“That’s right!” Lydia spoke excitedly. “Master has the ability to look and change jobs, just like a Priest. Except he’s really fast, and he can even change his own job!”

“Re-really?” Miki’s eyes widened.

“Master is really amazing!”

“Ah… it’s nothing. Once we get going, I’m probably going to change your job to Spiritualist. I think-”

“Wait!” Miki stopped dead in her tracks. “I have the Spiritualist job?”

“Ah… that’s right?”



“Can you equip it immediately?”

“Really? I was worried that if you go from level 9 to level 1, it might hurt your constitution. It’s still only been a day since you were resurrected.”

“T-that’s true…” Miki responded, her expression growing pouty, “But Spiritualists can absorb spiritual energy around them and use it to strengthen their energy. I was told the only way I could ever survive having 9 tails was to become a Spiritualist, but as hard as I tried, my dream never came true!”

“So, you didn’t have it before when you were in the slave caravan?”

Miki shook her head, her forehead creased. “No, not at all!”

“Perhaps when you died and became a spirit, it unlocked for you.” I pondered and then shrugged. “Very well, I suppose it can’t hurt to try it for a short time. If you feel weak at all, I’ll immediately return it back.”

{Miki’s job has been changed to Spiritualist.}

Miki’s back seemed to straighten, and her complexion seemed to recover by several shades. Suddenly a glowing came from behind her, and when I looked, I gasped. Ever so faintly were eight additional tails, all glowing different colors, just like I saw when she was in her spirit form.

“Oh… they’re growing brighter!” Lydia said excitedly.

She could always see them, but under the Spiritualist job, they transcended her sensitivity and reached my own. I could also see the spiritual tails now. Although they were faint, Lydia had been right, they were beautiful.

“I feel it, Master. If I can use Spiritualist every day, I won’t remain sick and weak forever. There may be a day where I can be healthy again!”

Chapter 83

“Master, speaking of which, what level am I at now?” Lydia asked.

That was a good question. We hadn’t done much leveling since we defeated the last dungeon. I needed to start thinking about what was important for all of us.

{Name: Lydia

Class: Speed Combat

 Job: Swordsman – 15 (Slave)

Unlocked Jobs: Cook – 1, Commoner– 8, Thief – 8, Scout – 1

Race: Tigerkin}

So far, Lydia’s strength still centered around her high-level Swordsman ability. Since she couldn’t equip two jobs like I could, then Swordsman truly was the best ability to leave her at for now. I decided to check myself as well.

{Name: Deek

Class: Support

Job: Hero – 8, Slave Master – 1

Possible Jobs: Merchant – 2, Alchemist – 1, Cook – 4, Dungeon Diver – 1, True Dungeon Diver – 1, White Mage – 13

Race: Human}

When I didn’t have White Mage equipped, I truly looked miserable. I was hoping to work on Hero and Slave Master. I felt at the moment, those two had the greatest benefits when it came to helping the party.

“Your swordsman is up to level 15,” I explained to Lydia.

Miki almost tripped again. “Really? You can fight as a level 15 swordsman?”

Lydia nodded, her tail swishing excitedly and her ears almost wagging. Was a level 15 swordsman really that impressive? I mean, don’t get me wrong, Lydia was amazing, but that also had a lot to do with her unique race. Just as Miki had her high spiritual energy and her Spirit Fire, Lydia had her strength and speed. However, most of the adventurers were that level, and they spent their whole lives fighting to reach that level, so perhaps my view of leveling is a little skewed. Even now, the girls are benefiting from a 2X boost from my leveling.

I’d be jealous, but I got 2X leveling up from my dungeon points. I can equip two jobs at once, and my experience goes to both jobs, so it’s more like I have a 4X leveling up.

We finally made it to the alchemist’s shop without incident. The wooden sign with a flowery herb on it was swinging in the wind. Wait… I checked with my finger, there was wind this time. Compared to before, we were on the very outside of the town. The barrier to the town was only two houses away. It’d be difficult to surround us. The ghosts definitely wanted to lure us deeper into town by staying quiet, but I wouldn’t fall for it a second time.

The door creaked open and we stepped into a room rich with many smells. There was a layer of dust everywhere, and a few things have been knocked down over the years, but it looked relatively untouched.

“Holy Circle!” I declared, and a circle rose out and covered just the size of the house.

I learned I could control the size by how much mana I put into the circle. I put enough into this circle that we’d be safe. It’d also last for a few hours, and by then I’d have all the mana restored and then some. In other words, in a fight of attrition with these ghosts, I could keep going all day.

Lydia… went to the window and rested her head, looking very much like the species she’s mixed with, especially with her tail swishing back and forth. I knew she was just keeping watch, but she very much looked like a cat looking at a bird outside.

“Ah! Master, I found the books.” Miki said, walking over with almost a bounce in her step.

Since I set her Spiritualist job, she moved way easier now.

“What do they have?”

“All alchemy books. Bas-ics, In-ter-med-iate, Mas-ter… in-gred-ient guides, that’s all.”

I nodded. “Can’t be helped. Too much to expect some kind of jobs or skill guidebooks. Look through the books. Pull out recipes you think you can do. I want anything that looks useful. Healing. Mana. Spirit. And definitely, anything that could hurt a ghost.”

“M-m-master…” Lydia turned back, her face looking shaken.

“What is it?” I asked.

“A… puppet is outside.”

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