Chapter 1: Right Arm of the Sealed One"Hello. Welcome to the world of Monster Soul. I am a NPC (Non-Player Character) who responsible for assisting new player before they enter into an actual game."
The sweet voice could be heard in a black room. This sound wouldn't be thought as a computer sound no matter how hard one tries.
"How strange... Excuse me. Are you human?" asked Sila.
"Exactly, I am real person who acts as NPC. That's because the assisting NPC is very important. We have to talk, answer, and adapt to every unpredictable situations so the company use real person. By the way, NPC which is an AI (Artificial Intelligence) could be found in game. However, even if they are an AI, player will have a hard time separating them from an actual person. Our AI is considered the most advanced as of now."
"Then, what should I do here? Umm... I haven't played an online game before."
"I see. You are the newly unregistered user. First, let's give a name for your avatar."
"Avatar's name, hmm?"
If Montra used his real name for playing, then Sila didn't see any reason why he cannot.
"I will use my real name. My name is Sila."
"Roger. Do you confirm the name Sila?"
"Confirmation completed. Next, please adjust your avatar. You can adjust your avatar at the maximum of 30% of your real face and body."
The holographic of Sila's face, frontal body, side body, and back body were shown.
'30%? That's quite a lot. Well, that guy also uses his real face.'
With the same reason, Sila didn't want to confront Montra with someone else's face.
"Player Sila doesn't wish to change his face and body. Please kindly confirm this."
The system sound alarmed.
Player Sila has successfully created his avatar. Player has gotten Beginner Clothes 1 EA and Beginner Dagger 1 EA.
"Player Sila, would you like to listen to an explanation of the game?"
"Do I have to listen to all of them?"
Sila asked back. He was kind of a curious person.
"No, you don't have to. You can choose to listen to only the parts you interest in. And even if you want to listen to this kind of explanation later, you can still visit Beginner Building located at Beginning Island to listen to all of it."
"Then, please summarize only important parts to me. You can just explain them briefly. If I don't understand, I'll go ask the person in Beginner Building later."
"Roger. In this game, player will act as a role of player's avatar that travels in the world of Monster Soul, the world where monsters and humans coexist. The time ratio between this game and real life is 5:1. Playing system is mainly depended on training. The notable things that this game is different than other games are that; this game has no profession system, and the avatar's level is not affecting the fighting ability."
Sila frowned a bit. "Training is enough? So we don't have to fight monster? Then what is the point of avatar's level?"
"Avatar's level has benefits for receiving some quest, unlock skill, as well as unlock the ability to equip higher-tier weapon. For example, player can train oneself to fight with level 30 wolf, while cannot equip some kind of equipment."
Sila nodded as he understood, letting the female NPC explain further.
"System Window can be displayed with a voice or thought commands."
Sila decided to try it immediately, "System Window."
The sky blue screen then floated in front of Sila.
"That's the System Window. It contains Status Window, Skill Window, Equipment Window, Item Window, Quest Window, Friend Window, News Window, Card Window, and Option Window.
"Status Window displays player's name, title, rank, level, money, and general data.
"Skill Window displays two types of skills: active and passive skill; that player has.
"Equipment Window displays player's equipment such as weapon, armor, and accessories. Player can equip the equipment by saying "equip" or by thought command. But you need to open this window to perform such task.
"Item Window is used to collect all kind of items. In the beginning, you will only have 100 spaces, but you can upgrade it later. 1 space will be used to contain one equipment, but for normal item such as potion and loots, 1 space can contain 100 of them.
"Quest Window is used to keep track of player's ongoing quest, as well as previous finished quest log. You can receive normal quest at Quest Building located in every cities.
"Friend Window display registered friend, group, and guild. It will also be used to communicate.
"News Window is connected to real life website and forum. Player can set it to receive the message from mobile phone. But the actual conversation will not work as there is difference in time ratio.
"Card Window can contain 5 cards at first, but the slots will be increased by 1 for each next System Window's Grade. Card can be bought in Card Shop or found from monster, but drop rate is very low. For more explanation about card, player will have to ask NPC at Card Shop yourself.
"Option Window is used to change theme, system alarm's ringtone, and other options in System Window."
After listening to all of this, Sila then asked about the thing that his uncle mentioned.
"I heard that this game is very realistic. So, if our avatar feels pain, we will also be painful; if avatar dies, we will also die. Is that true?"
"That's not quite true. Allow me to explain; in this game, if player dies, avatar's level will be decreased by 10, equipment and item will randomly drop, and player will have to wait for 1 in-game hours. About painfulness, player will feel one-tenth of painfulness you received in game. Adjusting the painfulness level to higher degree is optional. Doing so will grant player a special reward from the system. The higher the painfulness level, the more valuable item you will get."
Sila confused, "it can be adjusted? Then there should be many people who get special reward from this, shouldn't there?"
"That's not it. Although this game is realistic, no one would want to receive a realistic pain. Also, the condition to get this painfulness adjustment option is not currently known of. The condition is; asking about painfulness during avatar creation process. By the way, once you decide on a certain painfulness degree, you cannot change it anymore. Of course, there are some other secret methods to change the painfulness level, but all of them are very complex, I can safely say that this condition is the easiest. Players usually go straight playing game immediately after creating their avatar. Not many waste times listening to my explanation as they know they can later listen to it anytime they want at Beginner Building. Actually, you are the second person who unlocks this condition."
"Hmm? Who is the first one? And what item did he get?"
"The first one is Player Montra. But as for his reward, I cannot tell you that since it's player's personal secret."
Sila's eyes changed as soon as he heard the name Montra.
"Which painfulness degree did he choose?" Sila's sound was full of coldness.
NPC fell silent shortly as she somehow sensed the change in Sila's feeling. She answered slowly, "Player Montra set his painfulness level at 10 out of 10, which is equal to real life pain."
"Then I ask for more than him 5 folds."
With the feeling that didn't want to be inferior to Montra, Sila told NPC that sentence.
NPC paused for a moment in shock. She had never seen a player like this.
"We are truly sorry, but 10 is the highest degree that player can choose. System do not allow for player to adjust painfulness level higher than that. Otherwise, it would be dangerous to player."
"In that case, 10 is fine."
"Painfulness level is at 10 degrees which is equal to the reality. Please confirm this."
A smile formed at the corner of Sila's mouth, 'equal to reality? Hmm! I am a hundred times more painful than this in reality.'
"As this system is harmful to body and brain of player. System would like to inform you that the pain caused in this game will affect your actual body. Despite the fact that there are no real injuries, if the brain perceives painful feeling, your actual body will likely be affected. The company will not responsible for any harm caused by virtual painfulness level 10. If player understand this condition, please accept the agreement and reaffirm."
"I accept and confirm."
The system voice rung again.
Players Sila has gotten Sealed Box 1 EA.
A ring-sized black box with silver chain covering it appeared and floated in front of Sila. He grabbed it and read the detail of the box immediately.
(S) Sealed Box
The sealed box that, upon opening, will randomly give out one of unique items in 'The Sealed One' set, which contains of 7 parts. Now only 6 parts remain. (If player receives this box after no part was remaining, the box will change itself to (S) Mysterious Box, which randomly gives out one S Grade's item instead.)
Sila tried to open it, but there was no such command. While he frowned and was about to ask, NPC girl then answered his question beforehand.
"In this place, all items will be unusable. Try opening it again after you are inside the game, sir."
Hearing this, Sila then threw the box into his System Window.
"Do Player Sila need any more information?"
"No. please sends me into the game."
"Roger. We suggest player to visit Beginner Building to receive starting items there. System will now send you to Beginning Island, starting on the outskirt. We wish you have fun playing our game, sir.
Sila made a little grin on his face, 'have fun, huh?' before he became a white light and then disappeared.
The light appeared at the suburb. This was a very common sight around Beginning Town; it's the sign of the beginning of a new player.
Sila emerged amid that light. He looked around and found that here was a wide grass field. On his right hand's side, he could see the forest area that trees were not too dense, while saw a city on his left hand's. The destination from here to the city should be around 2 kilometers.
While he was still deciding whether he should go straight to the city or not, the system alarmed.
Monster Pink Slime, Squire Rank, Level 1, has appeared.
Pink mucus being danced left and right around his feet. However, it had no sign of attacking him at all.
'Weird. It doesn't seem as though it will attack me anytime. Is it a non-aggressive monster?'
At first, Sila was going to try punching it since he specialized in bare hand combat. But he later felt somehow a bit disgusting toward this slime. So he decided to equip his Beginner Clothes and Dagger first.
(F) Beginner Clothes
Uniform designed for a new player. Increases physical defense by 3 points.
(F) Beginner Dagger
Increases physical attack by 3 points.
They're such an ordinary dagger and brown normal-looking clothes. But he didn't care. At least he felt safer holding a dagger than using his bare hand to attack slime.
He tried to stab this pink mucus one time.
After the attack, the Pink Slime then immediately but slowly attacked him back.
However, Sila could easily dodge its slow attack. He stabbed it again and again. Soon, the slime's body broke after getting stabbed three more times.
System sound alarmed.
Player Sila has defeated Pink Slime, Squire Rank, Level 1.
Player has received 5 experience points, gotten 3 silver coins and Pink Slime Card 1 EA.
Player Sila has learned a passive skill: Dagger Mastery - Level 1.
"Hmm? I got a card? Didn't Miss NPC tell me that monster cards are rare to drop? Why did I get it on my first time? Am I that lucky?"
Sila defeated many slimes around there afterward.
One hour had passed. Sila somehow got tired. He killed about a hundred nearby slimes, but his level was only at 2, these indicated that Pink Slime gives very few experience points even for a new player. Surprisingly, Sila got 67 cards from them. It appeared that Pink Slime Card's drop rate was very high. His Dagger Mastery skill level also rose to 15.
Sila opened his System Window to see his avatar's status.
Player Status: Sila
Health Point: 473 / 512
Magic Point: 50 / 50
'Is this high or low?' Sila wondered since he had never played game. His life had dedicated only for martial art training.
He looked over other Windows leisurely. He changed his Window's color to deep blue, connected game system to his mobile phone, and set his system sound to soft and girly voice. Strangely, there was a terrified and scary lady boy's voice available for him to choose. Sila thought this was a joke designed from a game designer.
He finally stumbled on Seal Box.
'I forgot that I have to open it in the game. Well, I better open it now.'
Sila held the small back box on his right hand, and said, "open."
The silver chain broke out with a bright silver sparkling. The system sound could be heard inside Sila's head.
Player Sila has gained an active skill: Unseal - Level 1.
'Oh? I even gained a skill. The item inside must be good.'
Player Sila has gotten (S) Right Arm of the Sealed One. It's a special item which cannot be sold or transferred, and Player is forced to equip it. The system now automatically equips it on you. (F) Beginner Dagger now is transferred to Item Window. Passive skill: Dagger Mastery - Level 15 is deleted.
Sila's right arm from below elbow suddenly turned into stone.
"What's this!? I can't move my hand! And did it just delete my skill?"
Sila felt shock. He hurriedly read the information of Right Arm of the Sealed One, but it was labeled with [Has not yet been unsealed] status.
"Unseal" Sila used his skill reflexively.
The level of Unseal skill has risen to level 2 … 3 ... 4 ... 15.
Now Sila's arm could move properly, but its appearance was not the same. Now he was like wearing a long armlet that looked antique and full of characters that Sila couldn't understand. However, he did not pay attention to its shape much. His focus was on its information.
(S) Right Arm of the Sealed One
The right arm of a certain man who was sealed in this world. Increases physical attack by 100 points. Cannot be unequipped under any circumstances. Player cannot equip main weapon. Player cannot use the unique skills that available only for human race.
Normal people would complain. But for Sila, his reliance and confident lied in his fists, and he did not intend to use any weapon from the start. His only worrisome was the fact that he couldn't use human race's unique skills. What does it mean? He is a human, right? Did this mean he cannot use any skills?
"I don't see how this is an S-grade item. I really can't understand the thought of this game's designer."