Rainer stared down at the two masses of Arcane energy in his palms. The bolts truly felt different than in the past. All the Arcane magic he had learned since he came here combined with regaining [Mana Manipulation] and leveling [Arcane Energy Manipulation] formed a new strength.
The energy had become but an extension of himself. It cost him a fraction of the mana it should have. He continued to draw more and more Arcane Energy into the bolts as a large fist slammed into the desk that blocked the tunnel.
Rainer brought his hands together merging the two torrents of arcane energy. All became calm as time seemed to slow. The desk shattered, wooden splinters floating in the air, as a large fist traveled forward. The original chaotic energy of the bolts formed into a single controlled [Arcane Bolt], vibrating with a hidden power.
[Orc, Male, Martial Artist Lvl 14]
A hideous looking head ducked into the doorway, its single arm reached the now collapsed desk and its other pushed against the part of the entrance that had been still boarded up. Thick and leathery brown skin covered the monster. Red eyes stared out into the room. Large tusks protruded from its lower jaw, its hulking figure crouching in the now-cleared doorway.
And so was unleashed an unstoppable force of Arcane. The [Arcane Bolt] flew from Rainer’s hand whistling like an arrow, yet far deadlier. The bolt blasted past the Orc’s outstretched arm, resounding with a sharp bone cracking sound, and slammed into his chest, thrusting him through the air back from whence he came.
The goblins that had flowed in the moment the Orc broke through the barricade had yet to even realize what had occurred. They blindly charged forward. They lacked the intelligence of a goblin who had been touched by mana.
Rainer fired two more [Arcane Bolts], each finding their target in the first two goblins who had rushed through. Their chests caved in and their hearts beat no more as they were sent in varying directions. Rainer jumped back before he unleashed two of his armed [Arcane Bolts] unto the remaining goblins. They both fell, unable to even comprehend how they failed with an Orc by their side.
Several messages that indicated experience gained flashed in Rainer’s view. It did not take long for him to realize the orc was still alive, having only gained a total of 2%. Immediately he ran back toward the locked door that was blocked by the shelf, Luna holding on tightly to his hair.
As fast as he could manage he moved the shelf and opened the door before turning around. He slammed the door shut and, having heard the angry cries of the Orc, made his preparations.
While the bolt he fired earlier had certainly cost less mana than Rainer thought it would that didn’t mean it was cheap. He had roughly 4 mana remaining and 2 [Arcane Bolt]s still armed, a spell that had previously leveled up. It had cost 2 mana for the extra 2 bolts he fired and 7 mana for the powerful [Arcane Bolt].
[Arcane Bolt Armament has leveled up to Lvl 2]
[6% Experience Gained]
He flinched a bit at how little the experience was. Sure 6% wasn’t bad for a few hours of work, but that was 6% at level 3. He could only hope the experience increased enough as the spell leveled up further to offset the experience required at higher levels.
[Tier One: Arcane Bolt lvl 10/10, Arcane Bolt Armament lvl 2/10]
[Tier Two: Arcane Blade lvl 1/15]
Shaking himself out of his distraction he focused on his next goal. This thick door was the best place to make his stand. In the moment it would take for the Orc to break through, he would strike.
Placing one palm on top of another in front of him Rainer began using [Arcane Energy Manipulation] once more, instead this time to form a different spell, [Arcane Blade].
He could feel the blade’s massive power when it had penetrated through the goblin fire mage’s numerous shields. Rainer couldn’t help but think that the spell had to be powerful enough, it gave him a title, it would work.
Losing focus for a moment he remembered the ring in Luna’s possession.
“Hey Luna, how fast can you use the Ring?”
“Luna tried to tell Rainer earlier but it takes at least 10 minutes.”
His face paled a bit, shelving the question on how she had a concept of 10 minutes for later. Rainer looked down at his palms; he had been struggling to form the loose arcane energy into a blade. It was different than simply calling on the spell and forming it from within. Far more difficult than drawing the energy into an [Arcane Bolt]. A tier 2 spell the blade truly was. But his newfound lack of an easy escape brought him to a laser-like focus as the pounding of feet and roar of an injured Orc entered his ears.
He crouched down and slowly spread his palms apart to opposite directions. The arcane energy stretched and formed between his fingers and with a quick flash of his left a longer and super-charged [Arcane Blade] had formed extending from Rainer’s right hand. He gripped his right arm with his left and knelt, waiting for the Orc to burst through the door.
But the footsteps slowed…
Rainer immediately canceled the spell and sprinted away with all he had. His instinct had proven correct as a large piece of the desk smashed through and rumbled past where he had been kneeling. Moments later Rainer heard the Orc barrelling through.
“You better run boy, I like my meals on an empty stomach,” the orc growled out as he looked down the tunnel towards a running away Rainer. The Orc at full height stood a few feet higher than Rainer, and doubled his 200-pound frame.
Rainer heard the Orc getting closer. It would be seconds before he was caught. He prepared a last-ditch effort to form an [Arcane Blade] and simply hope it would stab through before he died. Just as he was ready to turn around and attack Rainer finally heard the quiet chanting that was happening on his head. It ended with a surge of mana and a voice that entered his very being. He felt a strange feeling coming over him.
“Gift of the Wind!”
[Buff Received: Gift of the Wind: Running Speed increased by 62%]
[Gift of the Wind has Arcane Energy Infused within. Compatible with buff recipient. Gift of the Wind speed increase changed to 147%]
Feeling the magical and arcane energy surge around him Rainer ran at a speed over twice as fast as before, outpacing the Orc completely. Still being chased he exited the tunnel system and was met with the true face of the mine. On top of the scaffolding, he could look down and see hundreds of an assorted goblin and human workforce mining under the careful watch of overseers.
Rainer, however, held amazement for only a brief moment as he continued running forward. He came up to a minor fork in the scaffolding, one path leading down and the other continuing along the same level. Choosing the high road, he was soon met with a significant problem. The platform ended in a few hundred feet and all that would be left was a large gap between the scaffold and an open cave several feet lower.
Looking down to his right, the scaffolding had to be at least 6 stories high.
“Nowhere to run pretty human, I think I’ll take my time eating you,” the Orc said as he viciously laughed behind Rainer. His speed as a level 14 Martial Artist surpassed Rainer’s expectations. Even now there was only so much distance between them, too little to go back and head downwards instead.
“Luna!” Rainer said amidst his labored breath, “You wouldn’t happen to be able to make me fly as well?”
“Nope,” she said with a carefree tone.
Putting one point into [Long Jumping] to raise it to Level 2, Rainer increased his speed to the maximum and with the boost he received from Luna he truly reached a blazing pace. Just as he reached the end of the scaffold he jumped straight towards the cave on the other side; the wooden platform creaked beneath his feet. Yet he could tell right away he wouldn’t make it.
Spinning mid-air Rainer unleashed the last of his mana into an [Arcane Bolt] and stopped the portion of the magical formula that protected him from the force of his own magic.
The small boost was just enough as Rainer managed to make a jump over 30 feet in distance and land, hard, right in the open cave. The Orc did not stop. He could only watch in shock as the massive Orc followed his jumping maneuver yet the scaffolding beneath his feet had completely broken. It had been already damaged from Rainer’s jump. The Orc plummeted down below.
He used his still-healthy left arm to stunt his fall as he continued slamming into the wooden support beams before he landed heavily on the ground. His constitution was truly massive, explaining how he survived Rainer’s first attack, though it did injure the Orc’s arm.
Rainer just stared at the still living Orc in amazement. Was this the effect of whatever the Orc’s race bonus was? The difference between Rainer and this inhuman monster was huge.
Contrary to expectations the Orc was no longer enraged, or perhaps it had been a ruse all along? He simply looked up towards Rainer and spoke loudly.
“Have fun in the caves little mage, you won't be waiting for me long. Gognar I am, you have earned my name. You may scream it as you beg for mercy.” The Orc laughed to himself as he stood, popped his shoulder back in place, and walked away calling out at what seemed to be his subordinates. What he said was out of earshot for Rainer.
Lying down he breathed heavily before calling out to Luna, “Luna...water...I...need...water.”
Luna fluttered straight over his mouth and he was frightened for a moment. Luckily, his fears were unfounded as after a short chant a floating orb of water, a little larger than the size of his fist, appeared above his head.
Having slightly gotten up it was oddly easy to drink from it. Finished with his drink, he couldn’t help but wince as he felt pain in his feet. He could handle being unclothed, at least before that Orc had been gazing at him, but the lack of shoes was killing him. Before he could complain, Luna had already flown over and began using her violet fire on his damaged feet. The comfort was immense and for a brief moment of bliss, Rainer had shelved the situation he was in.
Talking while the ethereal violet flames healed Rainer’s feet Luna gave him some good news.
“It turns out Luna can make clothes for Rainer. Luna noticed that since Luna got stronger Luna can do it.”
Excited to be able to wear some clean clothes, Rainer’s face visibly brightened up as if he wasn’t currently endangered by a ferocious Orc, in more ways than one…
“Luna you are absolutely amazing!” he said after he hugged her to his face. She pretended to try and struggle out.
“Yes Luna is the best, but don’t squeeze Luna so much.”
“So what exactly are you going to make?”
“Luna will make them like the first hero! Ah but Luna can’t make armor, so don’t be mad at Luna.”
“I won’t,” he replied while sincerely hoping it would at the very least not be uncomfortable.
Luna flew back down to his feet and soon, following her flame, socks began forming around Rainer’s feet covered by dark brown leather boots. From there a blackish gray cotton-like material crawled up his leg and to his waist. He noticed Luna blushing for a moment before something similar to a pair of boxers formed underneath those pants.
Rainer was completely amazed at how well everything fit. A black tunic soon appeared on his torso wrapped around by a dark brown belt and finally a black overcoat burned into existence by violet flames, gently floating down to his sides.
Looking down at his hands it took but a moment before black leather-like gloves covered that as well.
A little strange but damn...I’ve never worn something so comfortable in my life.
“Well, are you impressed by the great Luna?” She asked it as a question but she certainly didn't feel like there was any possibility of Rainer being unhappy.
Standing up, 2 [Arcane Bolt]s still armed to his left and right, Rainer ecstatically thanked Luna.
“I am beyond impressed, I’ve never worn something that felt so fantastic in my life.”
“Good, then it’s nap time for Luna,” she stated before she flew straight inside his coat and into a prebuilt pouch within it. An overly exaggerated yawn could be heard before she nestled in.
He let out a pretty loud laugh before the moment was interrupted by the sounds of yelling and stomping of feet. Rainer looked back out into the mine and saw a major problem along with a burst of hope. First, a group of goblins with bows and ragged humans carrying bundles of wood climbed up the ramps of the scaffolding.
And directly below him, Gognar ordered goblins and orcs to build something likely intended as either support or another route.
And so came hope. Not from the fact he could stop them - the archers prevented that - but from seeing they had to build at all to reach him. It simply meant they had or knew no other way into this cave.
While it was a possibility that the cave was a dead end, or that the other entrance had such danger it wasn't an option, Rainer wasn't worried. Worse case scenario, he'd wake up Luna and have them start running long before the goblins were even close. Certainly, long before whatever they were constructing was able to support a massive Orc’s weight.
Rainer looked a moment at all the human slaves currently in the mine. Rather than feeling pity, he only determined that a settlement may be nearby.
When I reach the peak of this Arcanist Class I’ll come back…
Rainer's thoughts focused on vengeance more than anything else.
He only decided to save Luna because of his soft spot for small animals. He didn’t have any misgivings, though. Even without her abilities, he thought of her as a pleasant companion.
She’s my familiar now. If I ever find whoever captured and tortured her…
Looking out into the seemingly endless cave, Rainer opened up his Status screen before arming another [Arcane Bolt], bringing the total to three and his recently regenerated mana to 0.
[Primary Classes: Arcanist Lvl 3/25]
[Titles: Arcane Scholar, Fae Contractor]
[Skills: Sleep Learning lvl 9/10, Appraisal lvl 2/10, Goblin Anatomy lvl 1/10, Fae Anatomy lvl 4/10, Long Jumping lvl 2/10, Sprinting lvl 1/10, Bare-Fist Fighting lvl 1/10, Muknar Language 3/10, Faaran Runic Language lvl 3/10, Fae Language lvl 1/10, Mana Manipulation lvl 2/10, Arcane Energy Manipulation lvl 4/10]
[Skill Points: 1]
[Talents: Excellent Arcane Affinity, Human Growth, Gift of the Fae(Luna)]
[Stamina Regen: .1% per second]
[Mana Regen: .0022 per second]
Looking over it while he walked deeper into the cave, only his armed [Arcane Bolts] lighting the way, he noticed something he never had before.
Primary classes...Does that mean I can have more than one? Maybe I should just ask Luna about how classes work and just avoid doing anything with it till I can confirm the information.
And what exactly happens when Arcanist reaches Lvl 25? Does it get an upgrade? Do I get something above the class of Arcanist? Or do I have to switch to a new class? Where’s my manual on this…
He opened up the left side of his overcoat and looked into the large and decadent pocket that was Luna’s new bed. Seeing her sleeping peacefully he decided to leave it alone for now. It wasn’t as if he planned on changing his Arcanist Class any time before Lvl 25.
And having more than one Primary Class was likely not a simple affair as Rainer noticed neither Gognar nor the goblin fire mage had a second Primary Class. The same with Luna, who with her connection to the World Tree, Rainer thought was the most likely among them to have a second Primary Class.
Looking at the cave walls around him and the long pathway ahead, he noticed that this place certainly wasn’t a part of the mine. Even with his bolts illuminating down the cave he couldn’t see anything to suggest otherwise.
With a small tweak to his bolts, the light brightened and he could see far down the cave, nothing to suggest a dead-end. He walked on as the pounding of nails and the shouting of orders slowly faded into the background.