I really was grateful for Alexander Marsh’s memories since as I moved they gave me something to think about and sift through. It was something I had never really noticed before, but now it was a glaring fact I couldn’t ignore. Slimes don’t really move quickly. It makes sense, I mean we don’t really have any limbs or coils or propulsion to move with so obviously slimes would be pretty slow, but still when your only options are a slow crawling inchworm motion or hopping everywhere you go… I was really beginning to envy the dead man I had recently eaten for his two fast legs.
Hmm… Slimes… I’m pretty much screwed unless I can evolve huh? There wasn’t much information about my species in Alexander March’s memories, his memories were colored more by his puppetry abilities and his many resentments, but there was some useful general knowledge about monsters in there including some stuff on slimes like me. Apparently common slimes were weak and harmless unless they evolved into something more dangerous, to make matters worse the average slime was depressingly stupid. That was pretty much all Alexander Marsh had known about slimes besides a few stories of slimes throwing themselves off cliffs for no reason and doing other infamously stupid and suicidal actions, so I understand that my species was disregarded as useless by pretty much everyone. Even as I moved through the forest I noticed that other monsters or animals just sort of ignored me, something I was grateful for but also concerned by. If I was to survive I needed to be strong, very strong if Alexander Marsh’s memories were anything to judge by, and the way for me to get stronger was to kill, eat, and hopefully evolve.
I guess I’ll read about my abilities and stuff again… It’ll give me something to think about and memorize while I move at least… with a thought words appeared imposed on my vision, but instead of my normal status these words were basic descriptions of my race, classes, and abilities.
[Slime: Small Slime] The evolved form of a lesser slime or ooze. This slime, though small, has evolved the ability to better control the semi-liquid slime that makes up its body allowing its slime to constantly maintain a semi-solid state.
[Liberator: Level 0] The liberator is a seeker of freedom and justice. With the power to refute and cast off the shackles that bind them and others, liberators are seen as heroes to some and annoyances to others.
[Scavenger: Level 0] The scavenger is a master of survival. With the power to consume almost anything with little to no ill effects, the scavenger can survive practically anywhere on anything.
[Slime Body] Your body is composed of a core entirely surrounded by semi-solid slime made from various assimilated liquids and your inherent mana. Your core, made from super condensed slime, is the only solid part of your body and the only part of your body you require to survive. Due to the semi-solid nature of most of your body you are mostly immune to physical trauma or attacks, excluding your core, but your body is also incredibly vulnerable to freezing, burning, oversaturating, and magical assaults. Your core is also prone to drying out, leading to your death, when not surrounded by your slime or another suitable liquid substitute. This ability cannot be improved further.
[Faux Perception] You can perceive your surroundings by imitating the senses of sight and hearing by perceiving and processing vibrations and the ambient mana of your surroundings. This ability cannot be improved further.
[Predatory Absorption] With every creature you consume there is an incredibly small chance of your absorbing and gaining some of the abilities the creature had while alive. The fresher the prey the more likely you are to gain an ability from it, however you will gain no abilities from consuming prey that has already been dead for 24 hours.
[Regeneration] You naturally fully recover from physical damage at an accelerated rate that vastly surpasses normal recovery or healing, though the time needed for full recovery varies based on the injuries sustained and energy available. This regeneration, however, does not combat illness, poisoning, or nonphysical injuries.
[Greater Personal Status] You are able to view a representation of your current personal status in a more detailed, quantified and qualified, form then can be gleaned through other means. This ability cannot be improved further.
[Mana Puppetry] By implanting mana into a suitable puppet vessel you can manipulate and control the puppet vessel as you see fit, with active mana control lines your control over the puppet vessel can be heightened to a further degree. You can control as many puppet vessels as your personal mana pool will allow, but if you cannot maintain or meet the mana requirements to control a puppet vessel then the puppet will become inactive. This ability cannot be improved further.
[Puppet Crafting] You can create, shape, and repair a puppet vessel using various mana infused materials and compatible mana cores or stones. This is the only method to obtain a puppet vessel outside of subduing a suitable golem puppet.
[Lesser Mental shield] Your mind is protected from intrusion or influence by a shield composed of your mana and unconscious willpower. If the mental shield is breached it will cause you immense but momentary mental pain, and the shield will slowly work to repair itself to a flawless state.
Overall I was happy with the abilities, and although I had no idea what the liberator class was I felt that the scavenger subclass would be good for me. More than anything though I was excited about the puppetry abilities, I knew from Alexander Marsh’s memories how useful and powerful a weapon a puppet could be. I was also happy about the predatory absorption ability, but I doubted I’d have much chance to use it until I got stronger.
Moving slowly and carefully past a large bear covered in armored hide I kept thinking about what I should do with my new life and newly found freedom. Truth be told I wasn’t sure what I wanted or if I had any grand dreams for my future, really I only had one goal and that was survival. In a way things were easier as one of Queen Helva’s mindless drones, at least then I wasn’t concerned about lofty things like my future or what it was I wanted to do with my life. I guess that’s something I can work out over time… Maybe an answer will come to me after I’ve lived for a while… With that thought I let go of a weight I didn’t realize I had been carrying. I’m a slime after all, I don’t need some grand complicated future or dream…
Two days. It took me two days to find a lake. Over these two days I had traveled who knew how many miles at the slow speed of inchworming slime, but it had all been worth it to get to this lake. Well, I’d like to think it had all been worth it.
The area I was in now wasn’t exactly what I had imagined when I thought of my future home those past two days, but it wasn’t horrible either. I was in a fairly big clearing in the forest, in front of me was a large and what looked like a fairly deep lake surrounded by about a yard long bank of muddy ground. The rest of the clearing was flat ground covered by grasses and flowers, and there were even a few small trees and bushes growing closer to the tree line of the forest. It was better than the monotony of endless trees I had to deal with before, but it was also very exposed and just sort of plain looking. Not to mention there was no real place for me to hide or make a den here.
Well, I guess this is home for now… Moving beside the stream I had been following for the past half day I made my way towards the lake. Might as well get a drink now, then I guess I’ll try digging out a den under a tree nearby… Hah, this really isn’t working out like I thought it would… How am I supposed to dig as a slime anyway? Can I just eat the dirt? I’ve eaten grasses before, but I’ve never tried eating dirt… As I carefully moved part myself into the water I could feel the liquid begin to flow into and fill up my body. Large amounts of liquid were dangerous to the average slime as our bodies naturally soaked up liquid until it overfills our bodies and forcibly ejects out our core. Normally a slime that hasn’t developed or evolved a countermeasure to that nasty portion of slime biology would just avoid any large pools of liquid in general while pulling moisture from the air, but I figured the best way to evolve would be to take in lots of liquid as frequently as I could while killing and eating everything I could. I wasn’t sure if my idea would work, but I had figured it was worth a shot and went out searching for a lake anyway.
Pulling myself out of the water feeling almost uncomfortably full I began to look for a good spot to begin digging my den. Picking a spot under a dead looking tree I started moving towards what would be my new home. Ugh! Too much water… I feel all sloshy and bloated… Is my slime supposed to be such a light blue? And was it always so clear? Ugh… I guess I better get used to feeling like this…
As I got to the spot I picked out I began to consider how I was going to manage digging out a home for myself. My body wasn’t meant for digging, actually since I was just a round blob of opaque blue slime with a small core floating inside it I wasn’t sure what my body was meant for. Dissolving and eating things I guess, but other than that I couldn’t think of anything a body like this could be designed for. Huh… I guess I’ll just try to eat the ground then…
As I waited in the same place trying and failing to make myself dissolve the ground below me a pack of large wolf monsters showed up and began to drink at the lake. I ignored them and they thankfully ignored me in return and simply disappeared into the trees after drinking there fill. I had wanted to try hunting some of the things that showed up to the lake for a drink, but everything in me was screaming that those wolves were beyond my ability to hunt. I immediately decided that I would have to set my sights on small animal and very weak monsters, at least initially, so that I wouldn’t end up being the one dying at the end of one of my future hunts. That’s right… I’ll start small and work my way up to bigger and stronger prey… Queen Helva is strong enough to hunt and eat anything she wants, so hopefully someday I’ll get there too…
After another hour of having nothing happen I felt like sighing, interestingly my body rippled a little when I sighed making me wonder if I could talk or make noise. Well nothing’s happening so far, I might as well try this for a while to help kill time… Ok, let’s do it! I am slime, hear me roar!!! “Bokyon! Kyon bokyon…” I froze, I even stopped trying to eat the ground, the sound that just came from me didn’t sound anything like a roar. What was that!? That was like a cute gurgling yipping noise a baby fox or kitten would make! That’s not intimidating or fear invoking at all!!! What the hell is wrong with slimes for them to make a noise like that!?
In utter dejection I went back to my futile attempts and digging a hole in silence. I guess I’ll just have to get used to that sound, but still… I’d almost rather I just didn’t make any noises if this is all I have to work with…