Chapter 279 – Starting from Zero (3)

◈ Episode 279. Starting from Zero (3)


Tomoyo, now a guild member of the Great Alliance, held the staff tightly.

Now that they had entered the Rat Hole Cave and set up their base camp.

There was no place to retreat.


Tomoyo took a deep breath to steady herself.

Aside from Master Hisagi and Commander Lee Hoyeol,…….

The expressions of the other guild members were no different from her own.

A whopping level 850.

“It won’t be easy as usual. Right, Tomo?”


Tomoyo just laughed at the man’s words.

She doesn’t even have the energy to joke around.

Tomoyo’s class is [Battle Mage]. Being a mage class and having to fight in close combat, there was no small amount of pressure on Tomoyo.

“Are you okay?”


“Don’t push yourself too hard.”

Nickname for a Battle Mage?

A typical example is a low-class character, which has the opposite meaning of an noble character.

Compared to being treated as a lowlife, the nickname “glass cannon” is a blessing.

It’s a nickname that makes sense.

The man continues.

“Can I be honest? Battle Mage’s attack power? It’s significant. Because it can accurately hit magic skills that are second to none in terms of destructive power at close range. But think about the gap in levels.”

Tomoyo is level 475.

Tomoyo’s offense is unparalleled for a player of her level.

Can she land a hit on a level 800+ giant rat?

Or can she even get close to them?

“I don’t think you’ll be able to do much damage even if you hit it with an orthodox skill, but what about the opposite? How many attacks do you think you can withstand without losing your composure?”

At this point, Tomoyo looked at her equipment. The mage cloth armor to supplement her [Magic] stat and [Magic Regeneration] was thin and flimsy.

“Well, if I’m lucky, I’ll get two……?”

Just as the man said, the moment of hit, a fatal wound.

Perhaps it wouldn’t be strange if she closed her eyes on the first hit.

Tomoyo spoke coolly.

“Your advice, I’ll keep it in mind.”

She said it, but she knew it.

In this moment.

In this place.

There was no one who hadn’t risked their lives.

“Damn, if only I could have gotten new equipment.”

“Uh-huh, a skilled person doesn’t blame the equipment.”

“No, that’s not an excuse!”

No one is without excuses.

It’s a battlefield where people stand up for each other.

She wasn’t going to back down, even if it was to avoid harming others.

‘After all, it’s the path I chose.’

Does she ever regret her class choice?

‘Not really, honestly…….’

Every time she entered a rift and faced a monster, she regretted it. She used to beat herself up every day about how melee wasn’t her aptitude, but looking back, it only got her to where she is now.

Someone says like a man.

“I think I’ve done well enough so far, Tomoyo, to reach that level with a class called Battle Mage. I truly admire your talent.”

Tomoyo doesn’t answer.

A tremendous talent.

To admit it would be to deny her struggles.

“Actually, if it weren’t for the Battle Mage class. Tomoyo, you must have been…….”

At the same time, she was denying her own choice.


Each time, Tomoyo tightened her grip on the staff.

Even with regret.

To avoid regret, she moved forward.


“Damn it……!!!”

For the first time, that stubbornness seemed to break.

[Sentinel Rat Guarding the Sanctuary: Lv.800]

Rats three or four times the size of a human were coming from all directions.

A whopping 800 levels.

Even if they were normal monsters.

How many people would it take to defeat one?

She couldn’t even guess.

Tons of fur.

Hides as thick as its size.

The moment she saw it, her suspicions were confirmed.

Would a monster like that even flinch at my skills?

In the midst of her confusion, a voice called out.


Captain Hisagi commands.

It’s the melee players who execute the order.

They must draw aggro from the vanguard and carve a path through him.

‘……We must follow him.’

Tomoyo was about to say.


The man grabbed Tomoyo’s wrist and shook his head.

“It’s dangerous.”

“I know, but…….”

“You’re special, Tomoyo.”


She wasn’t wrong.

Thanks to the rare class of Battle Mage, Tomoyo could play both front and back row.

She was free to play either role, depending on the situation.

“Think calmly.”

Being able to act based on your own judgment rather than orders.

‘I’m cool enough without words.’

The Battle Mage is an ambiguous class.

In a good way, it’s special.

She’s been treated like an ambiguous person in the front row and the back row.

And because of that, whatever choices she makes, she’s bound to regret them.


Even if it’s unfair, she won’t break her stubbornness.

“Why don’t you join me in the back row…….”

“Thanks, but no thanks.”


“I’m already used to regretting things.”

Tomoyo ran to the front row.

Her hands were shaking even as she ran.

As always, her mind was filled with regrets.

But she didn’t want to admit it.

If the Cataclysm were to negate the choices she’d made in the past.

There was nothing left of my pre-cataclysmic life.

Some would call it reckless stubbornness.

“We’ll make way together, Master Hisagi.”

“Welcome to hell, Tomoyo.”

“……You’ve changed your tone, haven’t you?”

“Thank you for the compliment.”

“……Is this a compliment?”

But at the same time.

Knowing the sorrow of the low class.

The other “someone” will say.

That is the pride that deserves to be responded to.

A response.

There is no being in the world who can respond to the human struggle. Who but God can recognize it and respond? It’s the perfect word for sarcasm.

It’s true.


Tomoyo was looking at God.

A former vow echoed in her head.

A phrase she’d recited without much thought.


There is no place on the Arcana continent that is beyond the Goddess’s gaze, even if it is a rat’s hole or hell, she will not turn away those who ask.


I opened my mouth, wondering if I was dreaming.

“……Master Hisagi, do you see that?”


Hisagi nods.

She still don’t believe it, so she asks again.

“Are you sure I’m not seeing things because I’m under extreme stress?”


Only after Hisagi nods repeatedly does she admit it. That her eyes weren’t wrong. Tomoyo stared in disbelief at the giant goddess that had appeared out of thin air.


So big that even the giant rats were frightened.

Tomoyo couldn’t see her face or other details.

But even without looking, she could feel it.

A warmth.

A warmth that could only come from a goddess.

It was so gentle that only a goddess could emit it.

At the same time, it was omnipotent.

What could be more proof than words?

Yes, because that wasn’t the end of it.

A message flashed before her eyes.

[The blessing of the First World Tree fills the area].

[Vitality regeneration is greatly increased.]

[Mana regeneration is greatly increased].

The word “greatly” means a lot in the Arcana system.

It’s enough to bring a look of surprise to a player’s face.

“What kind of buff is this all of a sudden?”

“No way……. Doesn’t it work better than a mid-level potion?!”

“Master Hisagi, if it’s a buff like this……!!!”

Hisagi nodded.

“I’ll revoke the order to break through one point. From now on, everyone.”


“We will engage in individual combat.”

A whopping 800 levels.

An effect that would give them a fighting chance against a horde of monsters.

The reasoning was clear.

“Until the Goddess watches over us!”

[Blessing of the First World Tree].

The effect of the fraudulent buff would last until the goddess disappeared.

There was a warmth in the air.

Tomoyo’s limbs no longer trembled.

Instead, she had a question.

‘Why now……?’

This was not the first time she had faced adversity.

So why did the Goddess show up at this moment?

It didn’t take her long to come to a conclusion.

Only one thing had changed.

“……No way.”

The Commander.

There was only Hoyeol’s presence.

Tomoyo’s gaze turned to Hoyeol.

It wasn’t a look of surprise or panic.

Not the slightest bit intimidated by the presence of a great Goddess.

Just a steady look.

Tomoyo swallowed hard.

……You’re really related to the Goddess?!!


Why, I declared that I would go back to the begining.

Hiel, you even came forward.

Isn’t there a need to pursue my original intention?

‘……Please say something.’

In my honest opinion.

It’s no wonder players mistake her for a Goddess. Even as a minor spirit, she was mistaken for a spirit king because of her flowing outfit.

‘Why is your halo so bright?’

It’s not only huge, it’s self-luminous.

It looked so holy.

Even the elegant action that took out Granfell to the point of splendor.

‘……Well, what can I say?’

Parents are the mirror of their children.

I have no choice but to just say it’s all my fault and ignore it.

The voice of Hiel echoed in my head.

-“It is shameful for you to dare look down on your lord. If no harm comes to my lord… … . I feel like I want to raise my voice and offer my formal greetings to my lord right away.”

Hiel’s presence in the rat’s den was significant.

‘I’ll never know why you weren’t affected.’

Maybe it’s because she’s a {native spirit} that’s more than just a contract spirit. Or maybe she’s unknowingly become something that can’t be contained in a cave.

I have no way of knowing.

“There is no need for that.”

I’d appreciate it if you’d refrain from such an overbearing greeting this time, especially now that you’ve added to the illusion that you’re a Goddess.

[The blessings of the First World Tree are all around you].

By the way, the buffs are working.


The players of the Great Alliance faced the giant rat.

‘I guarantee the effect.’

It won’t be as good as the original, but the health and mana regen buffs will be better than most potions. It will allow me to focus on the fight without worrying about death or injury.

“You can wake up on your own.”

How to catch the damn thing.

When Arcana was just a game.

Players were able to complete raids and quests that seemed impossible for a simple reason. They could die and respawn. They could take on challenges without fear of death.

‘Even if not as much as before.’

Slowly, players were realizing this.

“What about level 800? The pattern is obvious!”

“Critical hit? That means you don’t get hit.”

“Okay, one!”

I looked at Grandfell like he was the real commander in chief..

He was looking at me with satisfaction.


‘That’s a big title.’

But a source of dark history.

Since even the Claudi family is recognized, what does the position of commander-in-chief matter?

Above all, it’s a responsibility.

I know better than anyone that I can’t do it half-assed.

So, like I promised myself.

Let’s be clear. Do it right.


Unlike the other players, who were all focused on the battle in front of them.

I was relaxed.

I was able to recognize the change in airflow.

I opened my mouth in the direction where I felt a presence.

“It’s a shame.”

Judging by the momentum it exudes, this is a Named Monster that’s barely past level 800. As I said, even if it makes a grand entrance, I can’t afford to give it the time of day.

“Watching allies grow is part of the role of a commander-in-chief. So I can’t let you run amok, you little beasts of the mountains.”

Those monsters are so skinny.

For a moment, I was stunned by the Grandfell style of speech.

I raise my magic power.

[Magic: 585]

Considering the level of the cave, this may be a meager amount.

However, even 『Transcendant』 is not enough for me, and I have entered the realm of 『Anomaly』.

The magic stat was just a number, just like Grandfell said.

I opened my mouth.

“However, if I disturbed your sleep, I will compensate you accordingly.”


Formality and dignity that would embarrass a rat.

“You may choose your reward.”

And with a choice steeped in dark history.

“Eternal Night or the Discipline of Sleep.”

You really have regained your original intention……!!!