My Turn to Save
My tension took a nosedive immediately after rising to zenith from the prospect of me finally being able to use Skills.
Fufufu, I knew somewhere deep inside my heart that's an impossible dream for me. That's fine, I've got Mana Control and Lifeforce Control anyway... Dangit.
"Hikaru, you seem down after killing that slime, what's wrong?"
"Nah, it's nothing, don't worry 'bout it. I just had a mood whiplash."
Alma asked with a worried look.
It was all by my own doing, please worry not.
We kept going further inside and came across a swarm of bat magic beasts, but luck wasn't on their side for they were in a narrow passage.
Alma's Spirit Magic controlled the terrain on the ceiling and caved it in, flattening them all at once. No mercy.
Each one of them is low leveled, nevertheless getting your blood sucked by a swarm of these bats could spell serious danger. Yet this strategy ignores all that danger.
Really glad she got to learn Earth elemental Spirit Magic. In places like this cave where earth is all around us and our opponents, we're virtually invincible.
Grounds, walls, ceilings, all of them have turned into lethal weapons. It's quite terrifying when you think about it.
Even though we still got a lot of MP and stamina left, I was thinking of heading back ending our first excursion, but then I noticed some curious lifeforce reactions.
Mana and lifeforce reactions from magic beasts have this particular sharp sensation to them.
On the other hand, people's are like this soft round stuff. They can differ by person, like say, Alma's has this soothing, relieving feeling to it... Which kinda makes me sound like a pervert, so let's stop it.
I noticed reactions from one quite strong magic beast and around five people deeper inside.
If I had to guess, a group of adventurers are fighting that beast.
...Are they gonna be fine? If we go with the averages, these people's life and mana sizes are probably around a bit over level 15.
One of them has a super weak reaction even. This person is either level 1, or a kid who hasn't come of age yet. Why'd they bring them here.
Facing them is a magic beast that's way over level 20, or maybe even on a level 30s range. Honestly, I don't think this party stands a chance against that thing.
Ah, they're gradually getting away from the beast. Wise decision, but can they even outrun that beast considering the level difference? I mean that beast is magnitude faster than them.
Oy oy, the weak reaction is clearly getting left behind, isn't that bad? The distance between it and the party is quickly widening. It's only a matter of time before that weak reaction becomes the beast's feeder.
Ah, this must be it. Leaving the weak as bait while you run away. Cold-hearted, wait, don't tell me that was their goal taking the weak person all along...?
Now then, what do now. Ah, the fleeing party is approaching us. We're gonna run into them soon.
Footsteps by a group of people could be heard coming closer from deeper inside.
Then a group of four young men and women came into view in this dimly lit cave. All of them seem to be injured, but none is life threatening.
"Haa, haa, dammit! Just our luck coming across that thing so soon!"
"Wait! W-what's that!? Are they adventurers too!?"
"O-oy! Get away from here! A High Cave Bear is chasing us from deeper inside!"
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Looks like they noticed us too.
High Cave Bear? Is that the magic beast's name?
<<High Cave Bear: Over level 30 bear-type magic beasts that make caves into their habitat. Besides having a variety of Skills such as Quadrupedal Beasts, Claw Arts, and Fang Arts, they are powerful beasts with high attributes.>>
Never seen a magic beast over level 30 before. It's gonna be tough taking one head-on.
This thing's probably even stronger than the Jet Boar from last time.
"Thank you for the warning. May I ask you one thing?"
"What is it now! Don't you see we're in a hurry!"
"Are you guys all that's left in this cave? Or was there somebody else with you?"
When I asked that, the young man grimaced a bit as he replied.
"...There's this one slum kid we brought here as a porter."
"Hey!! Forget that, we have to keep running!!"
One of the women interrupted him and pulled the young man's arm, urging him to run with her to the exit.
The woman must have thought that it'd be bad for them if people found out they left someone behind. It's so obvious with the way she acted.
The young man had an apologetic look on his face and nodded a bit before running off.
Maybe the man was hesitant at the idea of abandoning that person but the other members urged him to.
Well whatever. We've got to hurry as well. No time to mind them.
"Alma, looks like there's someone left behind deeper inside. This person is currently under attack by a dangerous magic beast, they won't last much longer."
"We'll go save them. Let's hurry."
An immediate reply. There was no hint of hesitation on her face.
This straightforward kindness has saved me as well. I can't look the other way just because there's a strong magic beast now.
...to be honest I'm scared, but I'm going. If worse comes to worst, I can run away carrying Alma and that person using Ground Shrink.
I do have a plan that could be used to kill the beast, but on top of being cruel, there's no guarantee the method will work, so it's better if we don't have to rely on it.
I held Alma and went to where the lifeforce is with Ground Shrink.
Their lifeforce reaction implies they haven't suffered a grave injury but they're pretty close to the beast.
No telling when the beast is going on an offensive. Make it in time.
They finally came into sight.
The person is... Oh good, they're still alive.
I can't really tell from here, but they seem to be a teenage kid? No, looking from the stats, they're yet of age. Their clothes are raggy.
The guy earlier mentioned slum kid and all, that one must be it.
And the magic beast nearby is just as strong as I feared. It looks like a giant bear appearance-wise, must be four meter tall if it stands up.
Magic Beast: High Cave Bear
STR (Strength): 423
ATK (Attack): 423
DEF (Defense): 374
AGI (Agility): 273
INT (Intelligence): 98
DEX (Dexterity): 87
PER (Perception): 299
RES (Resistance): 87
LUK (Luck): 47
Magic Beast Level 4 - Quadrupedal Beast Level 5 - Martial Arts Level 5 - Claw Arts Level 5 - Fang Arts Level 4
Uwaa, strong. Ain't no way we coulda won in a frontal clash.
Its level and stats are clearly above Jet Boar. And you're telling me this cave is full of this thing? Truly the haunt.
Oh crap, the kid's running pace is too slow, the bear's gonna catch up. Heck, can't believe they managed to stay alive this long.
I put Alma down and charged at the bear with my leg at full throttle!
I hit the the beast with the soles of my feet like a drop kick, and activated Mana Pile Bunker the moment it connected!
Since I leaped from quite far away, the bear failed to defend against my attack.
It was a clean hit, sending the bear flying around 10 meter away.
The kid stared in amazement at the blown magic beast.
Can't blame them, anybody's gonna be surprised after that.
The beast suffered damage, but it was far from fatal.
Even a clean hit only got me this result huh. Figured a head-on battle's gonna be tough.
Now then, I've relayed the plan to Alma already, wonder how it'll roll?