System Change

Chapter 8: A Close Shave

had told him. “Also, the city is named after the lord and his family. Rydan Torith is the current city lord.”

Sounds like some adventurers didnt take this job very seriously. “If all the creatures turn undying, how will it affect the city?” Derek asked.

“It will affect all of the villages anywhere near the forest. Those people will probably journey to the city to look for help. There already isnt enough room in the city, so with all the people moving there, it should get worse.” Thomas said. “It will probably be bad on the city lords reputation if others find out what happened to a forest in his domain. He wouldnt care about the starving people in the city, but a hit to his reputation would anger him.”

“Do you know of how something like this happens?” Derek asked Thomas.

“I dont. Youll have to ask my grandpa or an elder from another village, they may know.” Thomas was not sure of a cause. He had only heard stories of undying creatures before, never thinking that he may have to experience it firsthand.

“Well, we cant do anything right now anyway, no use in worrying about it.” Derek put the undying creature out of his mind for now. “Well leave soon to look for a village, then we can get you home. But first.” Derek pulled a mirror out from his spacial bracelet.

“Holy shit!” Derek could not help to shout at the figure staring back at him through the mirror. “How are you even talking to me when I look like this? Why didnt you say anything?” He was a mess, literally. His hair went everywhere and his beard looked like a birds nest. He was still surprised that there were not any grey streaks in his hair though.

Derek looked at the kid. “First things first.” Derek summoned a small black device with an odd blade on the end. He used Identify to make sure it still worked.

Mana Clippers





An unknown magical weapon made by an unknown blacksmith.

Costs 5 mana per minute to use

“Kid, you got mana right?” Derek asked.

“Yeah, I have the base 10 wisdom that gives everyone 100 mana. Why, what is that?” Thomas replied.

“This is a magic weapon, it costs 5 mana per minute to use. You can use magic weapons as a level 0 right?” Derek answered and asked another question.

“Yeah, it should be no problem.” Thomas was confused again. It seems like Ive spent more time being confused with this man that I have the entire rest of my life.

“Good, catch.” Derek threw the Mana Clippers over to Thomas. “Now channel your mana into the weapon.”

Thomas did as told and the blade on the end started glowing blue and vibrating. Is he giving me this magic weapon to defend myself? Magic weapons cost so much, even the basic ones. Thomas could not help getting excited. He was holding a magic weapon, his grandparents had never even held a magic weapon before.

“Now, think about the guard on the back of the blade leaving about 8 millimeters.” Derek gave Thomas instructions.

Thomas focused on what Derek said and to his surprise, the odd attachment on the blade moved forward, covering the blade.

“Good, now come stand behind me.” Derek commanded.

Thomas did as told again.

“Alright, now, run the clippers through my hair and give me a haircut.” Derek finally told Thomas what he was doing.

Thomas stumbled, almost falling. “You said haircut?” He asked.

“Yes, those are hair clippers, I never leave home without them. Now, get cutting, move from front to back until my hair is all the same length.” Derek said.

Thomas gave in. All that excitement and expectation, and now Im just a glorified hairdresser. Thomas did not know whether he should laugh or cry. He ran the clippers through Dereks hair and the hair fell off smoothly, leaving all that remained the same length.

Although he thought doing this was rather demeaning, especially after the buildup, Thomas could not help but be fascinated at how the magical weapon worked. He was entranced seeing the guarded blade glide through the mans unkempt hair and leaving only a small but perfectly even amount of coal black hair on the mans head.

Thomas did not know how long had passed, but when next he looked down, he was finished. The mans hair was all 8 millimeters long.

“Good, now give me the clippers back.” Derek demanded.

Thomas reluctantly handed the magic weapon back to Derek. How amazing was that? That is so much easier than using a blade to cut hair. What else does this man have in that storage device? Thomas wondered.

Derek reactivated the clippers and handed Thomas the mirror. “Here, hold this in front of me and be still.” He said.

Thomas accepted the mirror and did as asked.

Cant trust the kid not to fuck up my beard, I got to do this myself. Derek took the clippers and cut his beard off, leaving a small amount covering his face. Then he changed the guard length and cut at it some more. I love having high Dexterity. Derek mused. Soon after, his face was shaven and only a stylish beard remained, Derek never being one for a mustache. “Alright kid, good job. Give me the mirror back.”

Thomas was spaced out, not hearing Derek. He was staring at a completely different person sitting in front of him. He just realized that Derek was young. Hes not even as old as my father would have been. Derek repeated himself and Thomas broke out of his trance. “Yes, here.” He stammered as he passed the mirror back to Derek.

“Thanks. Now I just need to find a river for a bath, then we can get you home.” Derek put everything back into his spacial bracelet, sleeping bag included. ”Come on, let ’s go. ”

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