System Change

Chapter 38: In the Dungeon

he finally was able to return to his senses. He surveyed the room. Both of his weapons were on the ground beside him, and Derek was leaning against the door with a frown on his face. That was when he noticed that he was in the room they first spawned in.

Embarrassed at his performance, but more concerned about his arm, Thomas grabbed at his injury. The armor on his forearm was coated in a greenish brown liquid, which confused Thomas. Still, he grabbed at the armor and loosened it, only to see a monstrously swollen forearm. He touched it and whimpered.

Derek was looking at the boy whimpering over his broken arm. He had expected an injury like this to happen sooner or later, but the speed at which Thomas accomplished it was mind blowing. In fact, he did not know where to begin when thinking about thefight. On a scale ofA toF, I would have to give the kid anF. And thats only because the scale doesnt go any lower.

The boy chose the lone ant as his first opponent. This was the only good decision that he had made. The reason Derek was shaking his head as soon as the boy began his approach was because he had not even thought to activate his Stealth skill. If he would have done so, even with his clumsy lunge, there was a chance that Stealth would have reduced the vibration coming from him, and he still would have landed a blow.

Then, he thought about the placement of the blow, which was on the abdomen of the ant. Sure, the dagger was big enough to deal serious damage if he would have hit, but Derek did not believe that it would have been instantly fatal, Derek knew that some ants could live on for hours, even days after losing their abdomen. The ant still would have been able to turn and attack, unless Thomas got lucky and pinned the creature. Thomas should have gone for one of the connecting points of the ant.

If he would have aimed between the thorax and head, it would have died instantly if he connected. But none of that mattered, because the boy missed.

Thomas was so sure of his hit that he put everything he had into it. This was a fatal mistake which caused him to fall and allowed the ant a counterattack. Then, Thomas took too long on the ground and ended up being attacked in the head, by an ant that was not even 20 centimeters long. Derek just shook his head at this.

If the falling was not enough to get him killed, then the scream he released because of his injury was. What Thomas obviously did not see was the attention he attracted because of it. While the boy was stabbing away at the ants corpse, a dozen more ants, and even a few beetles, had begun gathering around him. That was when Derek finally decided to step in and save the boy.

The boy was still whimpering and holding his arm. A broken arm which barely caused him any damage to his overall health, it only crippled him a bit for the battle. Derek figured this had gone on long enough. “Stop crying.” He said. Then, he cast Rejuvenation on the kid and the bone healed right away. With Thomass current Vitality, it would have only taken 10 or so more minutes before it healed naturally, anyway.

The pain must have stopped, because the boy started moving his arm and stopped sobbing. He looked up at Derek. “Now, we are going to go over that spectacular performance you just gave. Really, it was to notch.”

Thomas furrowed his brows, but before he could say anything, Derek spoke again.

“What do you think is the first thing you did wrong?”

“Uhm… I put too much into my swing?” Thomas answered.

“Are you asking me or telling me?”

“T-telling you. Yes, I put too much in my swing which left me off balance when I missed.”

“You are wrong.” Replied Derek. “You were wrong before you even got to the ant. You have the Stealth skill, yes?” Derek waited for Thomass nod. “Then fucking use it. Thats what skills are for. You were approaching a single enemy from behind. There is no better opportunity to use the skill, but you just dove right in.”

Thomass jaw dropped. “I-I forgot I had it.”

“You forgot about the only real skill you have? From the class you chose against my suggestion? Are you serious?” Derek was indeed flabbergasted.

Thomas did not say anything, he just looked at the ground.

Derek shook his head and continued. “Well, you wont forget about it again, will you? But yes, the other thing wrong was your swing and choice of attack. The ants abdomen is vital, but they can survive for a very long time without it, they can survive without a lot of things, so, with a sneak attack, you really need to make sure you go for the right place.”

“Finally, after you started screaming, do you know what happened?” Derek asked.

“No, I was just trying to get my arm back.” Thomas replied.

“Oh, then you didnt see the dozen other insects coming to kill you then? Good vigilance, kid. Top marks.” Derek said sarcastically. “Okay, good review. Time to go again.”

Thomas paled.

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