ACT 5 Along the Path of Stars
[TL Notes: In the last chapter, there was an information window which was about the colours of the moulds. The last colour was purple in the raw but that was the only time it was mentioned so I thought it was a mistake by the author and changed it to red. However, purple is mentioned in the chapter but it is a little confusing because it seems to be the same as the red mould. So I’ve changed information in the previous chapter to purple and just kinda thought of red and purple moulds as the same thing]
Awooo, Awoooo! Buksil and Baekgu jumped around while yelling.
“Noisy, please do it quietly. Dark Blade!”
“But we’re bored because there is nothing to do.”
“Bored? You dare say such a thing in front of me? Riposte!”
Ark rotated his sword and pushed back 10 Mould Zombies.
“Ark-nim, the Mould Zombie on that side is about to explode!”
Buksil exclaimed while filming the battle with the eyeball. When he turned around, the Mould Zombie who had lost all its health was swelling up like a balloon. The Mould Zombie was about to use its worse attack, Spore Scattering. Ark had been having a hard time against the Mould Zombies because of this attack. In fact, the slow moving zombies weren’t a big threat to Ark. However, he became defenceless while avoiding the spore attacks. The location was also in a poisonous swamp. The places where he could run away were limited. If he tried to avoid the mould attacked then he would be attacked by the other Mould Zombies.
‘However, having my health decreased is better than being poisoned by the mould.’
If he was affected by the mould’s abnormal states then the situation would become even worse. Furthermore, the zombie that was swelling up had a red aura around it. The red mould was the most dangerous one. Once inhaled, the poison would give him the symptoms of a ‘zombie’ and there was a 100% chance that he would die. However, now Ark just smiled.
‘Before I would do everything to avoid it, even if I had to plunge into the swamp.’
The Mould Zombie finally exploded and red powder was scattered everywhere. Then the message window that appeared in front of him wasn’t red which indicated a crisis, but was instead blue.
|-The ‘Red Mould’ of the Mould Zombies has encroached into the interior of your body.
However, the toxin has died thanks to the powerful immune components before it could spread.
“Hahaha! Look at this you damn zombies! This is the power of medicine!”
Ark gave an elated laugh and looked at the Mould Zombies. Yes, this was what Ark had spent the last couple of days and nights studying! Although he had managed to protect himself thanks to the saint’s tombstone, Ark had been in a gloomy mood. He hadn’t figured out a way to deal with the spore attack. Fortunately, the saint’s tombstone was a safety zone so he would somehow be able to handle the Mould Zombies. However, Ark’s purpose wasn’t hunting. It was to reach the City of the Dead through the swamp.
‘I can’t be driven into such a situation again in a place with no safe zones.’
No, it was still dangerous even with the safe zone. If it was other moulds then he could avoid it using the saint’s tombstone. But it was the end if he was poisoned by the red mould.
‘It doesn’t depend on level or ability. If my stamina and mental strength is high, my resistance to the other states would increase. But that doesn’t matter if I’m affected by the red mould. Even if I manage to get away from here, if the mould is found elsewhere then there is no way I can pass. But the mould can’t be cured using general treatment pills the way a common illness or poison can……’
Ark was contemplating this when he recalled a similar situation. An illness which general remedies and even Holy magic couldn’t cure! Yes, he remembered the Galgin clan who received mass food poisoning in the Forest of Life and had been on the verge of death. And hadn’t Ark been the one to settle the problem?
‘Can I possibly solve it like that incident?’
Even poisonous pills were legal depending on the way it was used. Thus couldn’t even dog poo be used as medicine? Oh, was that a bit different? Anyway, Ark had learned the method to cure the Galgin’s food poisoning. Thanks to his <Food Worshipper>, he was able to determine the hidden effects of ingredients. So Ark then began his earnest study of moulds.
‘There are many experimental ingredients around.’
Ark started to hunt the Mould Zombies close to the tombstones. At this point, Ark still didn’t know what kind of mould would appear after the zombie exploded. Whether it was grey, white or red, Ark took measures to ensure his safety. After reducing the zombie’s health to 90%, Ark would withdraw and finish them off with arrows. Of course, The Mould Zombies couldn’t approach the tombstone so the safest way would be to just shoot arrows at them. However, Ark was still a beginner in archery. It would take forever to kill a level 300 monster. In addition, the arrows were for emergencies so he didn’t carry a lot around with him. But he got what he needed.
|-Brown Mould Spores Pocket (Poisonous Herb)
The only place where the mould is able to propagate. Usually in dead animals or the undead, the parasites would develop within the thin pockets. If the pocket receives an impact when the undead dies then it would break and the spores would scatter. Mould spores are extremely dangerous to living things, but the mould would die very quickly without pockets like these.
* Advanced Ingredient Identification Additional Information: A processing method can extract ingredients with immunity against the moulds.
Ark’s eyes lit up at the sight of the information window. Thanks to his advanced ingredient identification, he knew there was a possibility of creating a treatment against the moulds. So Ark spent one day finding the Mould Spore Pockets. In the past, he had used various methods of extracting ingredients to create the treatment for the Galgin. However, medicine wasn’t that superficial.
“Let’s try drying it…..ugh!”
The spore pocket was similar to a directionless germ weapon. If he touched it or dropped it onto the ground a little bit too hard then it would explode! So Ark had to kill countless numbers of Mould Zombies over and over. Ark used trial and error and gradually figured out the method of dealing with the spore pockets.
‘Hmm, the spore pockets won’t explode when soaked in water. They are dangerous ingredients so I should soak everything and keep it in water for the moment.’
Ark experimented on the spore pockets using various methods and recorded everything meticulously. But his mould research ran into a wall on his 2nd day. He had tried steaming, boiling, drying, soaking and other methods but he still couldn’t extract the required material. Ark felt the same feeling of frustration as scientists who failed in their research.
“Surely they has to be a way to create a medicine against moulds?”
It happened when Ark was engulfed with disappointment and despair. A lot of amazing discoveries in science or medicine were found by coincidence. Nitro-glycerine was accidentally stabilized when the boat shook and a researcher created dynamite by accidentally mixing together a few chemicals. The miracle that occurred was also a similar coincidence.
“Yawn, can you really make a remedy? The methods you’re trying…..eh?”
Buksil had been yawning because he stayed up all night as the assistance but he suddenly became startled. While in a half asleep state, he had mixed different experimental ingredients together.
“What are you doing? Don’t you know we only have a few left?”
“I’m sorry. I……”
“Eh? Wait, bring that over here.”
Ark checked the bottle that Buksil was holding in his hands and felt a sudden flash. The mixed liquid that Buksil prepared had dissolved the white and purple mould. But when the two liquids mixed together, the purple lightened and became indigo. Well, it was obvious when considering the normal colour associations. The problem was that the toxic element also changed colour.
‘There is also the method of mixing the moulds to change their nature!’
The accident had showed Ark other areas of study. Thus Ark concentrated on mixing the liquidized moulds.
‘Oh my god, it is so easy to separate them…….’
He spent so long searching for answers and it was right in front of his eyes. In fact, the answer was there when he saw the information window for the first time. He could make a final colour using purple, green and white. Mixing purple and white was indigo, green and white was teal and mixing teal with indigo made blue…….and the colours of immune messages was blue. Yes, the correct answer was blue. When Ark mixed the teal and indigo liquid together, an information window instantly appeared.
|-You have made the blue mould disinfectant.
By combining the ingredients and extracting it, you have successfully created something to kill the mould. When this disinfectant is sprayed, you can stop the propagation of mould. If you take the medicine then the mould can’t occupy your body for a certain period of time. However, the toxin isn’t neutralized so if you take a large dose in a short period of time it can be fatal.
<Immunity to moulds +100% for 1 hour, the medicine can’t be taken more than three times a day>
A new information window also appeared after he made the mould disinfectant.
|-You have learnt the Food Worshipper’s skill ‘Knowledge of Poison.’
Knowledge of Poison (Beginner, Passive): In ancient times, the most effective method of curing poison was to use other poison. In addition, the snake’s venom is also used as an antidote when bitten by a snake. You have studied the moulds and produced a disinfectant using this knowledge.
<The probability of obtaining a venom pouch from a monster has increased. By refining the poison within the pouch, it is possible to produce an antidote or immunity medicine. The success rate depends on the skill level, and there is a 30% chance of being poisoned if the refining of poison fails>
‘A new Food Worshipper skill!’
Ark’s mouth dropped at the sight of the information window. In fact, being poisoned was one of the most troublesome things for users like Ark who wandered around without settling down. In New World, there wasn’t just one type of poison. The antidotes sold in stores could easily get rid of beginner’s venom. But when the poison reaches intermediate or advanced level, users would have to try hundreds of different antidotes depending on the monster or area. That’s why most users investigated what poison antidote was needed before they went to a new area. If there were a lot of poisonous monsters in the area then sometimes the users would abandon the new area. Antidotes were relatively cheap, but if they drank it like water than the cost would pile on. The only profession that could solve the problem without wasting a lot of money were thieves. Since they also had poison skills, they obtained an antidote manufacturing skill at the beginning. Although thieves were sometimes unpopular, they were one of the first targets when composing a party. And now Ark could create antidotes thanks to his ‘Knowledge of Poisons’ skill.
‘But it isn’t that easy to make antidotes using Knowledge of Poisons.’
The medicines only made him immune to the poison for a certain period of time. He also had to obtain the poison pouches from the monsters so mass production wasn’t easy. But wasn’t there a chance of turning it into a lucrative business?
After he succeeded in creating the mould disinfectant, the situation went through a 180 degree change. The combat strength of the Mould Zombies was very low compared to their level. There was no reason to be afraid of them without the moulds. No, he was actually rather thankful.
“Ark-nim, another four have appeared behind you!”
When he turned around, he saw that some more Mould Zombies had crawled out from the swamp. He only discovered this later, but a fixed number of Mould Zombies would appear after a certain amount of time passed. If he couldn’t deal with them in the time limit then the number of Mould Zombies would increase. They were constantly respawning zombies. Even though it was just like a fearful scene in a zombie movie, Ark only saw the zombies as experience.
“Hmm, they are easy to deal with but it will become more difficult if the numbers keep on increasing. Buksil, how many zombies are there now?”
“50 zombies have appeared this time.”
Buksil examined the zombies with his floating eyeballs and replied.
“The number has increased quite a bit. Shall I reduce it?”
Ark avoided the Mould Zombies and shouted.
“Racard, lure them all to one place.”
“This way~ this way~ you stupid stiff zombies!”
Racard gathered the Mould Zombies together like a dog herding sheep. Once all the zombies were in one place, Ark held his sword tightly.
“Demonic Opening, Elemental sword fire attribute!”
Gwisal’s sword vibrated intensely and flames appeared around it. Ark lifted his sword, leaned his body at an angle and shouted.
“Okay, Jump! Dark blade!”
Ark’s inner thigh muscles seemed to expand a few times before he was propelled forwards. Ark literally tore through the zombies as he used Dark Blade. Ark had developed a new method of dealing with the zombies.
In fact, it would’ve been better to use Flash when they were all gathered but this place was a swamp. It wasn’t the type of terrain that he could carelessly flash around 20 metres. Even if he had an antidote for the poison, the skill would be cancelled if he fell into the swamp. So he came up with combining the skills Jump and Dark Blade. Although it was difficult when he first used Jump, through trial and error he had discovered the correct method. Jump was a skill that would move Ark 10 metres. It was his posture that determined which way the skill would send him. If he lowered his body then he would jump vertically.
Ark expanded on his previous attack of jumping upwards and swinging down. Thanks to the tremendous speed and height, his power increased enormously. And the probability of Drastic Measures also increased by a lot. Once he didn’t have to worry about the moulds, Ark swept through the Mould Zombies and experience came pouring out.
“Huhuhu, how is it? This is the ‘Adol’ technique!”
Thanks to the absurd attack which increased the chance of Drastic Measures, the amount of experience and items he was able to obtain would increase even more! Unfortunately, Jump was a skill attached to an item so he couldn’t register it as a chain skill with Drastic Measures. However, the effect was so wonderful that Ark called it ‘Adol.’ Apart from Flash, it was the birth of his second ranged attack skill. Ark was different from before and wiped out almost all the Mould Zombies. But Ark’s attacks had a time limit.
|-There is 59 seconds left for the effect of the Mould Disinfectant.|
‘Sheesh, only this much?’
“Racard, I’ll have to clean up the situation. Gather them again.”
“Okay. Hey, why are you so stupid? Come over here!”
Racard lured all the Mould Zombies who followed with a stupid expression. Ark used his remaining mana to continuously use ‘Adol’ and sliced the remaining Mould Zombies to pieces. All the dead bodies exploded and scattered moulds of various colours everywhere, but it seemed more like a congratulatory fireworks of spores. If he killed all the Mould Zombies then more wouldn’t respawn for a while.
|-Your level has risen.|
After killing almost 100 zombies during the 1 hour, he had risen 1 level. Ark returned to the tombstone and confirmed the outcome of his battles.
“Character information window!”
|Fame||11,725 (+ 500)||Level||334|
|Title||Cat Knight, Caretaker of the World Tree, Jackson’s Hero, Great Adventurer, Magic Institute Member, Seutandal’s Hero|
|Spiritual Power||200||Strength||652 (+28)|
|Agility||829 (+55)||Stamina||1,002 (+20)|
|Art of Communication||66||Affection||62 (+10)|
|Special stat: Knowledge of Ancient Relics||153|
|* Equipment item effects|
|Guardian Armour of the Merpeople: Water Attribute Resistance +100%, Penalty based on water is nullified.
Cat Paws (Gloves): Attack Speed +10%, Agility +15, Critical Hit +10%
Raccoons Pith (Helmet): Agility + 10, Wisdom + 10
*<Animal King> Set effect: Strength + 20, Agility + 20, Stamina +20, Defense +40
Warrior’s Transcripts (Shoulder Blades): Strength + 3
Wolf’s Feet (Shoes): Agility + 40, Movement Speed +40%, Attack Speed +10%, ‘Jump’ is available
Galgashi’s Fur (Mantle): Cold resistance +100%, Agility +20, When health is less than 50%, ‘Magic Protection’ automatically activates.
Adelaine’s Necklace (Necklace): Defense + 40, Affection +10, ‘Blessing of the Sea’ available
Resurrecting Spirit (Ring): Strength + 5, Mana recovery + 5%
Ark’s Ring (Ring): Strength + 5, Agility + 5, Stamina + 5, Wisdom + 5, Intelligence + 5, ‘Sudden Increase in Power’ available
Amulet of Vitality (Bracelet): Health + 50, Health recovers by 5 every 20 seconds
Gladiator’s Honour (Bracelet): Strength, Agility, Stamina +10, Fame +500, Sword-based Skill Growth +5%
|* All abilities will increase by 50% in the dark
* You have the ability to hide in the darkness (30 minutes duration. Cancelled when you get into combat)
* Resistance to Fear, Darkness, Blind, and Seduction spells is increased by 50%.
* You can bring out the true abilities from all types of tools.
* Shock absorption is increased by 20%.
* Poison resistance has increased by 50%.
* 10% increased attack and defense
“The hunting ground is not that bad……”
Ark looked at the information window and sighed. After developing the disinfectant, he had spent 10 days hunting at the saint’s tombstone. He was level 325 when he entered the swamp and he had gained 9 levels by the 10th day.
“If I could use the disinfectant continuously……”
That was why Ark felt regret. The poison disinfectant could only be used 3 times a day. Since the disinfectant only lasted one hour, that was 3 hours in total. There were 8 hours in a day so he would be defenceless for the remaining 5 hours. It was actually amazing that he managed to gain 9 levels in 10 days. Once he started hunting, he managed to eliminate all of the Mould Zombies. But without the disinfectant he would’ve managed to gain 20, no 30 levels.
“Isn’t it impossible to grind more levels as long as there is mould here?”
When considering the amount of experience earned per hour, it was a viable hunting ground. However, that value fell when he took into account the fact that he had to take the disinfectant. In addition, the items that the zombies dropped were also bad. In other words, the experience and items wasn’t worth the level. Yet there was a reason Ark had stayed there for 10 days.
“Buksil, you collect the items with Radun while Baekgu will collect the corpses of the zombies.”
Ssak ssak, ssak ssak ssak!
While hunting against a time limit, Ark had no room to pay attention to items. So he left the gathering of items to Buksil and Radun. Buksil would collect the items on the plains while Radun looked for the ones in the swamp. Ark lifted one of the Mould Zombie’s corpses from Baekgu’s back and took out his dismantling knife. Baekgu’s body trembled and he hurriedly avoided the place. The ensuring scene was the reason his back became chilled. Ark used his knife to peel off the flesh from the zombie’s corpse.
|-You have succeeded in gathering ‘Skin of the Dead’ using Leather Extraction.|
|-You have succeeded in gathering ‘Heart of the Dead’ using Butchery.|
This was the reason why Ark stayed at the saint’s tombstone. It was in order to extract the items from the undead! They were necessary ingredients he needed to complete his Necromancer’s Immortality Pill recipe. But the areas where the undead appeared in Seutandal and the continent were limited. Then he had completely forgotten about it during the Nakujuk’s invasion.
‘This is one of the best places to obtain the necessary ingredients for the Necromancer’s Immortality Pill.’
That was Ark’s first thought when he saw the zombies. Of course, it wasn’t that easy to collect the ingredients even with a lot of zombies. His Leather Extraction and Butchery skill was still low so he could only get one item for every three or four he killed. Ark had to collect 2000 of the skin and heart, so gathering 4,000 items in total meant he had to kill approximately 12,000 zombies.
‘It sounds like a joke after calculating the numbers. But I can’t give up the chance to make a grade A recipe. I have to complete it even if it takes a lot of time. I can’t miss this chance since I don’t know where else I can encounter a large number of undead.’
Thus Ark spent 10 days in the gloomy swamp thanks to this resolution. But now it had reached the limit.
“Ark-nim, it has already been 10 days. Are long are we going to be stuck here?”
Buksil said with a sigh. Racard and Baekgu also made pained faces and complained.
“All I can see is swamp and zombies.”
“This bad smell……my nose is so numb and my head hurts.”
“Same with me Master. This damp humidity is really difficult to handle.”
Ssak ssak? Ssak ssak ssak ssak?
Radun looked like he couldn’t understand the words coming from Buksil’s mouth. But Ark also felt the same. Normally he roamed around everywhere or was in a dungeon. But Ark had spent the last 10 days hunting at the saint’s tombstone. Although it ensured a safe haven, his breath clogged up every time he logged into the game to see the same scenery.
‘I’ve gathered 1,200 skins and 1,300 hearts……I’ve finally collected more than half. But this is the entrance of the swamp. Won’t I have to continue hunting zombies while passing through the swamp? In addition, I can always stop and come back. It’s not necessary to stay here much longer. I’ve also stocked up on many antidotes and disinfectants so I should leave soon.’
Ark checked his bag with a nod before standing up.
“Okay, the re-application time of the disinfectant has also ended so let’s leave.”
“Huh? We’re leaving now?”
Buksil happily got up. Ark’s party finally left the saint’s tombstone they spent 10 days resting at and continued into the swamp.
“Let’s keep an even pace. I’ll go to the front.”
Buksil hummed at the thought of leaving the swamp after 10 days. Naturally the Mould Zombies sometimes appeared and interrupted the party. However, Ark had already mastered the battle techniques against them and they just submerged into the swamp again. He discovered that the moulds wouldn’t spread if the Mould Zombies sunk into the swamp after dying. In fact, that was the reason Ark finally left the saint’s tombstone. The duration of the disinfectant was 1 hour. If he ate it continuously than 3 hours was the limit. Then he would be defenceless for the remaining 5 hours! But considering the sheer size of the swamp, it would take more than 3 hours to find the City of the Dead. So after various experiments, he had figured out a way to kill the Mould Zombies without making them spread their spores. However, he wasn’t 100% confident when applying this method. So he had to move forward before the number of zombies in the swamp increased and overwhelmed him. But when had things ever progressed as planned? Sometimes there were circumstances when the mould ended up spreading and he was forced to use the disinfectant.
‘Damn, I thought it wouldn’t be a problem but it’s harder than I thought. I’ve already used two disinfectants. There’s still 3 hours left until morning so I’ll be defenceless for 2 hours if I eat one more.’
It was only possible to use one more disinfectant in the 3 hours! Ark started to feel uneasy. They’ve been wandering in the swamp for 5 hours and he still hadn’t found the City of the Dead. In a situation like this, Buksil also started to feel some misgivings.
“Ark-nim, what will we do if we can’t find the City of the Dead before you have to use the disinfectant again?”
“It can’t be helped. We’ll just have to exit the game and return when the time is over if that happens.”
That was the last method Ark thought of. In a situation where he couldn’t use the disinfectants, he couldn’t take the risk. However, this plan had a fatal problem.
“T-then what about Baekgu?”
He could cancel Racard’s summons but Baekgu would be left in the swamp by himself.
“…….If we die then the results will still be the same. I just have to find a way before that happens.”
Ark sighed and replied. Then Baekgu looked at Buksil and spoke in a tearful voice.
“M-Master! I hate moulds and I don’t want to be left alone.”
“Don’t worry. If he can’t find a way then I won’t leave you alone! Ohhhhh, search Eyeballs! Baekgu, you use your sense of smell to search as well!”
Buksil shouted with a desperate expression and used his eyeballs. Ark looked at Buksil and Baekgu and had a thought.
‘It’s strange, didn’t the swamp seem smaller when I looked at it on the map? If I moved in a straight line from the tombstones then we should’ve already exited the swamp and reached the City of the Dead.’
“Ah, Ark-nim! There’s another glowing tombstone in front of me!”
Buksil exclaimed after scouting the area with his eyeballs. When he moved in the area Buksil indicated, a saint’s tombstone soon appeared.
“Another saint’s tombstone? Then there is one saint’s tombstone at every fixed distance? Anyway, it’s lucky. We can rest here until morning and then move on.”
“I’m glad Baekgu.”
“Yes, Master. Huk, it really is fortunate.”
Baekgu replied in a tearful tone and ran to the saint’s tombstone. However, Baekgu tilted his head to the side with a puzzled expression when he arrived.
“Eh? This is……?”
“Eh? What’s this? Fire and stripped down japtem? Who was camping here? Has someone else come here?”
Buksil muttered while exploring. However, Baekgu shook his head.
“No, our smell is the one left behind.”
“What? Hik, come to think of it……?”
Buksil touched the tombstone with surprise. A graffiti that said ‘Buksil was here’ was recorded on the tombstone. Although it was shameful writing on a tombstone…… That concept wasn’t a problem for Buksil.
Anyway, the situation became clearer thanks to Buksil’s scribble.
“Get out of the way!”
Ark arrived after Buksil and checked the tombstone.
-The saint ‘Betelgeuse’ lies here.
‘Betelgeuse…..it’s definitely the previous tombstone. What on earth is going on?’
Ark opened the map with a puzzled expression. Ark’s group had headed straight to the east after leaving the tombstone. He had checked the map while walking yet they had ended up in a circle. After checking the map again, the unconfirmed area was still obscured. Then somehow they had got their directions mixed up and was walking backwards?
“Ark-nim, what is going on?”
“Well…..damn, I want to ask that too……”
Ark worried about it for a while before standing up again.
“Racard, fly as high as possible and pay attention. If something changes then tell me immediately.”
This time Ark ran across the swamp in the opposite direction. After running for 4 hours, the tombstone once again appeared in front of them.
“Again! Betelgeuse’s tombstone. Racard!”
“I don’t know, there were no changes. The direction also didn’t seem to change.”
Ark’s face became even more serious at Racard’s answer. He moved in two different directions yet ended up at the same spot. This couldn’t be a coincidence.
‘We’re stuck in the swamp. Oh my god, I only became aware of it after ten days……’
The swamp located in the Land of the Dead was one giant labyrinth. Now the Mould Zombies wasn’t the problem. He was stuck in a labyrinth without any markers or clues. The only way to escape this place was to die and resurrect in another location.
‘Wait? Markers or clues?’
Ark considered something and looked at the tombstone. It was the only glowing tombstone in a dark swamp. And he always ended up back here despite the direction he moved in. Then wasn’t the tombstone itself a clue for escaping? No, it definitely was. In fact, Ark had been doubtful from the moment he saw the tombstone. He wandered why there were tombstones in a swamp. But if somebody made this tombstone as a marker to escape the swamp?
‘There’s no doubt about it. This tombstone is the only thing without an explanation. Obviously this tombstone is a reference point. The problem is what the reference point means…….’
Ark went over the tombstone carefully. However, he couldn’t find anything no matter how hard he looked. Ark had thought it was strange so he checked the tombstone when he first found it. But he never found a secret passage or item.
‘Damn, does that mean I can’t reach the City of the Dead if I don’t solve the tombstone’s secret? The key to entering the City of the Dead is the tombstone……. But what type of hint is it? This ridiculous trap appearing out of nowhere…… Huh? Wait…..hint?’
Something flashed through Ark’s head.
-Heaven and earth, life and death, find the place where they are reversed and follow the hero’s star path.
It was one of the phrases he heard when he received his class change quest. And the place to complete the quest was the City of the Dead. Then wouldn’t this phrase be a clue to reach the city? A big problem could be solved if he thought carefully. The place where life and death is reversed was clearly about people changing to the undead.
‘Yes, then I have to follow the hero’s star path to escape from this place…….’
The hero’s star path? Did that mean follow the constellation? But he couldn’t even see the sky while in the gloomy swamp. Thanks to that, his dark attribute bonus was applied even in the daytime.
“Heaven and earth is reversed……hero’s star……what does that mean? Wait? D-don’t tell me…..?’
Ark had a flash of inspiration after thinking for a while.
“Buksil, do you know anything about constellations?”
“Huh? Ah, no……”
“Sheesh, do some studying!”
Ark declared coldly and exited the game unit. Then he sat down in front of his computer and accessed the internet.
‘There’s no doubt about it. Saint Betelgeuse, I heard about it when I was a child. If I remember correctly…..’
Ark searched the internet for the name Betelgeuse. He confirmed that his guess was correct when he saw the information.
-Betelgeuse (α Orionis) a red variable star that can be easily seen.
Yes, Betelgeuse was the name of a star in the Orion constellation. All of Ark’s questions were answered with that information.
‘That’s it. The saint’s tombstone contains the name of an Orion star. Then the meaning of the rest of the phrase is automatically solved.
The hero mentioned in the class change profession quest was Orion, son of Poseidon and the one who drove the monster away from Chios Island. If he swapped the sky and earth around, then the tombstone would act like a star on the ground and the mystery would be solved. Now the only thing left was following the hero’s star path. However, that was also solved after reading the rest of the information on Betelgeuse. The first tombstone that Ark had found in the swamp was Betelgeuse’s. Then that was the starting point. And Betelgeuse was the brightest star in the Orion constellation. If so, then the next saint’s tombstone Ark had to find was…….
‘The other bright β Orionis star, Rigel.’
Ark immediately searched for information on Rigel. Rigel was located in Orion’s left foot. If he applied Orion’s constellation to the swamp using Betelgeuse as a marker, he would have to head in the direction of Rigel.
“That’s it, I found it! Hero Maban’s puzzle has been solved!”
At first, he had been quite puzzled but now he felt a sense of accomplishment. This was the reason why people enjoyed brain puzzle games.
“Hyun-woo, have you finished for today?”
While Ark was skipping around his room, his mother’s voice could be heard outside the door. His mother was living with him so he couldn’t lie to her anymore about making money from the game. Well, luckily his mother seemed to have received a hint from Gwon Hwa-rang so she didn’t protest. She was just worried when he played the game for an excessively long time. Ark opened the door quickly and grinned at his mother.
“Not yet. I need to go back to do something important. But it will take quite a bit of time.”
“Please don’t go overboard.”
“Yes, don’t worry. I’ll still exercise every morning.”
Ark replied before entering the game unit again.
“Huhuhu, Hero Maban, you can’t catch me with this degree of riddle. I’ll solve the rest of your puzzle and seize your legacy!”
Ark’s eyes brightened as he entered New World. The person who entered the unit wasn’t Hyun-woo but Ark.