23 A Terrifying Encounter
After Shesmu inspected the dagger, he looked at DepressedRyan and said, "Hey, Ryan. I think that you should be the one to take this dagger. That sword is clunky for you, isn't it?"
Ryan looked hesitant at first, but he eventually gave in to the temptation and sighed, "Thanks dude, I'll take you up the offer."
Shesmu then looked at Leo and said, "I'll take five energy pills, you take the rest. I already have a lot of HP potions. Hopefully next time a sword drops, that way everyone is equipped with Iron grade equipment."
Leo looked at the 10 Hp potions on Shesmu's hand before he laughed and said, "who cares about HP potions? Haha. I already have thirty or so of them, just split normally."
Shesmu felt guilty since his friend was the only one left out without a decent weapon. That was the reason that he offered Leo a larger part of the loot. But since his friend was so adamant on splitting evenly, Shesmu gave in and buried his guilt.
"Well, if you say so. In any case, next weapon will be yours, no matter its rarity," Shesmu concluded, leaving no room for discussion.
Leo wanted to protest against Shesmu's decision, but seeing the look on his friend's eyes, he swallowed his words.
The party then started looting the other goblins. They hovered their hands on the creatures' corpses, and items started appearing on their inventory. Most of the items were goblin fabric, but some rare items dropped.
DepressedRyan was looting a goblin corpse when he suddenly called out, "Hey guys. This goblin dropped something weird."
"What? Is it a weapon or something?" Leo asked as he and Shesmu came over.
Well, if normal mobs dropped something weird, then it must be magic stones, Shesmu thought as he walked towards DepressedRyan.
When the two reached Ryan, the latter opened his inventory and took out an item. It was a blue stone that was slightly larger than a pebble. It gave off a cold glint, but other than that, it appeared normal.
"Its description is really vague. It says that it's a magic stone and that it drops from monsters with the ability to evolve, but it doesn't say anything other than that." After inspecting the stone, Leo was left with more questions than answers.
Listening to his friend's confused words, Shesmu smiled and thought: Well, even in the past timeline, no one understood the use of these stones until much later. I guess that I should start buying them as soon as possible once the live game goes up.
"Yeah, that doesn't really say much," DepressedRyan added. After thinking for a bit, he continued, "Well, it doesn't really matter anyway. We can just save them up for now until we understand their use."
Shesmu debated whether he should tell them about the true value of magic stones and with that his identity as a time traveler. I could tell them now all of this, but what stops them from telling to someone else. And even if they don't say it, there are many ways to get this information from them, people do mistakes after all. I can't risk telling them anything, else the probability of mishaps happening increases exponentially. This is for my own safety, and most importantly, their safety.
After much internal debate, Shesmu settled on keeping quiet about the subject for now. Once he takes appropriate measures of security, he can then be more open about his secrets.
"In any case, we can check the forums later after we finish this dungeon. Let's continue with the looting first," Shesmu concluded.
After a few minutes, the party finished looting the goblins. Just as they were about to go out of the room and continue the exploration, Leo noticed that some of the goblins' bodies disappeared.
"Hey, I just saw some goblins disappear!" Leo exclaimed.
"Are you sure you aren't imagining things-," before DepressedRyan could even finish his words, another goblin turned into particles and disappeared.
"I guess that makes sense. If monsters were to be left alone after players kill them, everywhere would just reek of the smell of blood and death," Shesmu explained. "Well, enough of this. We need to finish this dungeon as fast as possible so that we can reach the tower fast. We don't want to miss out on those rewards now, do we?"
Leo then took out the torch from the handle, and the trio went out of the room. They continued walking on the main path of the cave.
"Hey, what do you think that room was?" Leo asked suddenly.
"Hmm, maybe it was a sleeping room or something? No matter what, I don't think that there are that many goblins left on this dungeon. I don't know how many we killed there, but it gotta be more than a hundred. I got to level 7 and more than halfway to 8 just from them," DepressedRyan answered.
"Lucky you guys, I just got to level 6 from the hob," Leo pouted.
Hearing him depressed, Shesmu couldn't help but intervene, "Don't worry Leo. In the road to the tower, I'll let you have the last hits until you reach our level. Consider that as an apology for not bringing you in."
When Leo listened to Shesmu's suggestion, he couldn't help but look and feel guilty, "you don't need to do that, man. I don't want to drag you guys down."
"You won't drag us down, don't worry. But you will drag us down if you don't get to our level by the time we reach the tower and there is some challenge there or something. It's better this way," Shesmu argued. Shesmu had a soft spot for Leo and he knew that. It was because of everyone that he met until now, Leo was the only friend he had had in his past life. In a sense, he reminded of him of that time, as if he was a testimony that the decade Shesmu spent in his past life was real.
"If you say so. Well, I'll be in your care," Leo concluded.
The party then continued its journey until, suddenly, they saw a source of light deep into the cave. As the trio kept moving, the light grew closer and more apparent. In this part of the cave, there were torches on both sides of the cave illuminating the road.
No longer needing another source of light, Leo turned off the torch and put it in his inventory. Moments after, Shesmu heard step sounds. Thinking it might be his own steps, he stopped and so did his teammates.
"What's going on, is there something in front of us?" asked Leo.
"I think I heard stepping sounds," Shesmu answered.
"I heard them too, 3 monsters are ahead of us," added DepressedRyan.
That's… an accurate judgment. Ryan, just what kinds of secrets are you hiding?
Shesmu didn't have the time to be lost on his thoughts, as the stepping sounds grew closer. The sound became clearer and louder until finally, the perpetrators showed themselves.
Three monsters appeared, and when the party inspected them, both Ryan and Leo were shocked.