As the night ended, the sun could be seen in the horizon, rising into the sky.
It was sunrise, and it was time for my daily training. Grasping my trusty, overused sword, I left my home. My sword wasn’t a flashy sword by any means. It was merely an easy to use, thick and heavy long sword. However, it was a magical sword which possesses a highly advanced magical enchantment, “Restoration”, possessing the ability to recover any damage sustained to the blade. It was my trusted sword which has kept me alive until this point. I prayed that it would never break and I would continue to wield it. It was the sword that I loved, and will continue to until the very end.
I began my training which became a daily routine for me every morning. I closed my eyes, pictured an imaginary enemy to battle with in my mind. Then I slowly traced the techniques and skills that were ingrained into my body during my adventuring days, slowly allowing my body to remember the sensations when I was risking my life fighting powerful enemies.
In this world, things such as “Levels” and “Stats” existed. It determined a person’s Attack power, Defense, Agility and Magic Power. However, a person’s strength did not come just from his stat parameters or his level. It also came in the form of a person’s spirit and their training. At the very least, in the most desperate of situations, only a heart of steel honed from vigorous training will a person be able to survive.
If an attack is unable to land, it doesn’t matter how high your attack parameters are. If a person’s defense is inadequate, it does not matter how high your defensive parameters are. If an attack misses or a defense is sloppy, then it is pointless. Hence a person’s status does not measure his full combat capabilities. However, with training and proper techniques, a person’s combat effectiveness could surpass the limit of their status. Techniques allowed one to utilize their whole body to add weight to their attacks as well as target vital points and defend against attacks beyond their defensive parameters.
I believed this. No, I had to believe it.
If a person’s combat effectiveness was determined by their status, then I would be the laughing stock of all warriors. An average person would have their stat parameters increase by 2 whenever they leveled up, but my stats was inferior to that. My stats had only increased by one. This went on as Youya approached the level cap of 50.
Even so, I desired to get stronger and realize my dream, refining my sword techniques and training my body everyday, refusing to give up. I believed that a person’s “Status” was just a strength that existed to compensate for the lack of training required to become stronger and training would be much more beneficial to becoming stronger and obtaining a heart as strong as steel.
[Phew. Feels like my body isn’t as old as I thought. I can still move pretty well.] (Yuuya)
Every-time I swung my sword, I could feel my body’s senses sharpen to their limits. It was as if my nerves were connected to the tip of the sword and my whole body moved as one, following the image in my head.
However, techniques wasn’t enough to fill the gaping hole in my status. At level 50, the difference in my stats and an average person was so large that no amount of training and swordsmanship would be capable of filling that gap. In order to overcome that gap, I had obtained a secret power. A power that no one was aware of, a power only I possessed.
I was always curious about the phenomenon known as “Status”. I wanted to know why and how a person became stronger as his level increases. However, curiosity killed the cat as I had found myself in a dangerous situation piqued by my curiosity. Thinking that my life was over, I closed his eyes assuming it was the end. Suddenly, I saw a door appear in front of him. When I tried to push it open, I understood that the door that signified the limit of my status. I understood the mysterious power that is the “Status” in the world and obtained a secret strength which no one has seen before.
A power which allowed me to obtain a status on par with others, a power given to me by the world.
A world, that was only for me.
After completing my morning training, I headed over to the guild.
I approached the reception lady to look for requests to complete. Fortunately, there wasn’t any request that required my attention. However as it was my last day, I wasn’t going to say it out loud as the guild staff approached me, giving me gifts and their words of thanks. Loneliness crept up into my heart, as I knew that I would miss everyone in the village.
After visiting the guild, I returned home to prepare my luggage. As I was preparing my luggage I came across a set of photographs that I placed faced down when I arrived. They were the photographs depicting my party before we decided to challenge the Tower of Trials.
One of the photos showed Youya’s party in one of the big cities starting their adventure, with another photo showing everyone in the party.
In the photos, there was a young verison of me, another young man, an Elven girl and a large Dragonoid man laughing together. It was a fairly young party who were aiming for the top and were challenging a super high difficulty dungeon at the moment. The young man and Elf were both my disciples. They were people who were brimming with talent and blessed with high statuses, surpassing me extremely quickly and becoming even stronger.
[Seriously. After living in this village all these years, I never expected someone to invite me to the Tower of Trials once more. Thanks you Ain, you helped me remember things that should not be forgotten.] (Yuuya)
Feeling nostalgic, I smiled towards the young man in the photograph, remembering the young man’s words as he hit level 50.
[Master let’s challenge the Tower of Trials together! If it is us, our party, we can definitely do it! And once we do, we will finally be real heroes!] (Young man)
At the time, I felt a wave of despair rush over my body. The tower was something that could only be cleared by forming a party composed of the best adventurers in the world. It was as difficult as it was rewarding. Clearing the tower would allow a person to go past level 50 as well as treasures that one could only wish for. However, that wasn’t all there was to it. Entering the tower would cause the party to be cursed, preventing any of them from leaving the tower. The only way to escape the tower was to clear the trials that appeared in the tower. The tower itself had a survival rate of 2%.
I refused the young man’s invitation and left the party knowing that with my incompetence, I would only be dragging the party down. I was too weak to utilize my hidden gift and that would ultimately lead to the party’s demise. Thus I found a substitute for myself and left the city.
After that, I threw away my dream of becoming the strongest. Time passed and I became an exclusive adventurer in a secluded village, challenging intermediate dungeons for my retirement savings while looking after the novice adventurers there.
However, just as I was about to enter retirement, one of my former disciples, Ain, asked me to challenge the Tower of Trials together with him, reminding me of my party mate, Leonard. The flames that were extinguished when I ran from the Tower, started burning once more. The passion that was distinguished, the urge to become stronger and the drive to move forward. The waves of emotions became stronger and stronger.
[Whats this? You left your talented disciples behind. The disciples who respected and believed in you because you were afraid of challenging the Tower. Why would you behave like this now? After all these years? No, you knew the answer from the start. You knew it all along.] (Youya)
As I reprimanded himself, I knew the answer in his heart was always there. I always wanted to become stronger. I always wanted to be the strongest, even with the setback of having a bad status, I wished to become stronger. It was the reason why I continued training everyday. It was impossible to maintain a person’s techniques and experience without practicing everyday. It was also the reason why I did not sell my powerful magic items despite being worth a fortune. It was a necessity for me to challenge a dungeon with these items. Realizing my own weakness, I thought I gave up on my dreams, but deep down I never did.
When I heard rumors about my first disciple, Leonard attempting to challenge the Tower of Trials with a new party, my feelings weren’t pride of having a disciple who cleared the tower, nor was it the relief of knowing my disciple survived the tower, but regret that I could not be there to challenge the trial with him.
I have always felt frustrated at my status, thinking that if only I did not have such a weak status, at the very least I wished to go back to level 1. I thought that if it meant getting a better status, I would not mind restarting over. In fact I would welcome it. However it was impossible. The only other way he could compensate for his weak status was with extremely powerful magic items.
At that moment, waves of emotions begun taking over my body. My hands felt hot and my head felt heavy. Unable to control the emotions, I stumbled and pushed my hands against the wall.
Suddenly, several sentences appeared into Yuuya’s mind
A person who has reached level 50 can have their level reset in a hidden room of a dungeon
When their level is reset, their stat parameters will rise and they will obtain skill points.
Although the way to reset a person’s level is limited, there are ways to raise a person’s status to its maximum potential
Based on research, the best way to increase a person’s stats would be a Magic Warrior
Magic Custom can create cheats and other magical numbers
Using magical equipment allows a person to exploit a bug in the status system
Do not challenge the Tower of Trials. The Tower is adjusted based on the assumption that the challengers are made of parties with the highest status.
[HAHAHHAA. That sounds ridiculous.](Yuuya)
[That is basically all I ever wanted isn’t it? Despite finishing with this shitty status. I can just reset my level to increase my status!? And add the skill points I gain to become even stronger??? That sounds so ridiculous.] (Yuuya)
I felt bitter. Ever since I considered the possibility that my stat increments could be fixed instead of random, I gave up. It was impossible to become the strongest. If someone was blessed with the best status in the world, obtained the strength that I took decades to obtain. The strength to compensate for my lack of status. That person would truly become the strongest.
Suddenly, the image of a hidden room in a dungeon appeared in my mind. It was like a dream come true, like a delusion. A passion that could not be thrown away, after many years, was showing me visions. Is it was possible to have something this convenient?
However, even so.
[There is no reason for me not to go. I should go even if theirs only a 0.001% chance.] (Yuuya)
I am definitely crazy. My brain is telling me that it is impossible for such a thing to exist but my heart and body are telling me otherwise. I am definitely bad at giving up. If I had truly given up adventuring then I would had stopped my daily training to maintain my body. I knew that it was futile to try and improve my status and merely accepted my bad luck as my fate.
Still remembering the actions, Youya prepared himself for traveling and left the city, heading towards the dungeon containing the hidden room, convinced that he would be able to start over.
Still remembering the image of the dungeon, I prepared myself to travel and left the city, heading towards the dungeon and trying to convince myself that I would get a second chance.