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Chapter 25 - The Fighter Soul.



Race souls were usually special drops from monsters, the rarity of the drop depended on what type of monster it was, but the only things a player needed to earn one was patience and a little bit of luck.

Race souls were themed around the creature it was named after, and the types of bonuses they gave to the player varied.

Some of the bonuses race souls could give you were things such as raw stat bonuses, like strength or agility, or just bonuses in specific aspects, such as stealth or critical damage. Other possible bonuses could be racial traits, passive abilities or even active abilities.

Then there was also the possibility of some visual change, such as horns, elf ears, scales, or in the wild hare soul's case, rabbit ears.

The wild hare soul was generally regarded as a weak soul, but it was good at early levels for characters that focused on mobility, it gave bonuses to jumping and agility, as well as the visual aspect of rabbit ears.

A crowd formed around the girl, it looked like most were familiar with her but there were a couple outsiders who were just curious bystanders. While those who didn't approach her looked on in envy, some began killing the rabbits faster, hoping they'd get a soul to drop too.

Merlin walked away from the field, making his way back into the village's border. Without wasting any time wandering around the village, he ran directly towards the barracks. Upon arrival, he noticed that there was still a crowd around the doorway, although it was much smaller than when he left.

Merlin pushed his way through the crowd with little difficulty, due to his strength stat being higher than everyone in the crowd. Some attempted to push back but they were quickly overpowered.

When he finally entered the training grounds, the first thing he witnessed was an army of players swinging their wooden swords at the training dummies plotted around the field. Most of which had a furious expression, it seemed they had earned themselves the punishment quest.

General Perakeles was yelling at these players, various insults and obscenities flew out of his mouth, which only served to anger the players more. Within these barracks, respect was never given, only earned. The barracks were a tough challenge for those who believed they were inherently above others due to the fortunate circumstance they were born into.

"I see you were successful." As Merlin approached, General Perakeles turned to face him, his voice dropped the hostility it previously had towards the other players, although it was still somewhat overbearing. "Here are your rewards, as promised."

A couple notifications appeared within Merlin's vision.

「Congratulations, you are now level 1.」

「You have empty soul slots, would you like to absorb, "Class Soul: Fighter (Level 1)"?」

Merlin waved away the level up notification and then accepted the second notification box. An information box appeared, showcasing his new soul.

┌───────────────────

Class Soul: Fighter (Level 1)

Bonus Stats: +2 Strength, +1 Agility

Abilities: ⟪Heavy Strike⟫

Origin Soul Bonuses: +1 Strength, +2 Agility, ⟪Sucker-punch⟫

└───────────────────

After glancing at the information, a new notification window appeared.

「"Class Soul: Fighter (Level 1)" has been successfully absorbed. Your origin soul slot is still empty, would you like to set this as your origin soul?」

Most souls in New Genesis had additional abilities and bonuses that could only be accessed if the soul was set as the origin soul. Origin soul was just a fancy way of saying main soul, the soul that your character drew the most power from, while every other soul only granted the basic bonuses. No matter how many soul slots you opened, only one soul could be set as the origin soul.

If you only had one soul slot open, any soul you equip would automatically be set the the origin. If you had all seven slots open and filled each slot while refusing to set the souls as the origin, then the seventh soul you absorb would automatically be set to the origin.

You could swap the origin around or even remove all your souls at a soul forge if you wished. Any soul you removed would be added to your soul bank, and could be accessed again through the soul receptacle.


Merlin accepted the prompt, receiving a success notification in response, then he checked out his new abilities.

「"Class Soul: Fighter (Level 1)" has been successfully set as your origin soul.」

The first ability he checked was the core ability of the class, the ability he'd get regardless of the soul's origin status.

┌───────────────────

⟪Heavy Strike⟫

You enhance your attacks with the full weight of your body.

• Your next attack does an extra 5% damage, and has a 10% chance to trigger the stagger effect.

• 20 second cooldown.

• Can be used with any melee weapon and unarmed.

└───────────────────

It was a solid early ability, especially for those who played with support from the system. It grew more powerful as you levelled the soul up, and it was versatile, it benefited all melee fighters regardless of your weapon of choice.

┌───────────────────

⟪Sucker-punch⟫

A dishonourable attack that catches the opponent off guard.

• Your next unarmed attack has a 40% chance to trigger a stun effect for 3 seconds.

• 60 second cooldown.

• Cannot be used if previously used on the same target within the hour.

└───────────────────

This ability was also very good, although the chance was somewhat low to begin with, a stun ability was a valuable tool to have. Merlin swiped the windows away, facing back towards General Perakeles.

"Good work soldier. I have no further tasks for you yet, be well." General Perakeles complimented Merlin, only to turn to the players doing the punishment quest and throw obscenities at them the next moment, and all in one breath.

"I'll take my leave sir." Merlin said his farewell before walking away from the General.

Merlin forced his way through the crowd once more, one person purposefully stood in his way, only to get knocked over. Merlin had gained a fair amount of strength by getting the soul, he had a total of eleven strength, more than enough to completely overpower the man who tried to block him. He had ten more strength than a level zero player with no bonuses.

Making his way back to the cobblestone street, Merlin turned left and started making his way north, he needed to find the quests that required wild hare materials.

"Open stats." Merlin spoke a command, an information window appeared before him.

┌───────────────────


• Vitality = 3 (+2 Base, +1 Title, +0 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

• Constitution = 2 (+2 Base, +0 Title, +0 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

• Strength = 11 (+2 Base, +2 Title, +3 Soul, +0 Equip, +4 Bonus)

• Dexterity = 2 (+2 Base, +0 Title, +0 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

• Agility = 5 (+2 Base, +0 Title, +3 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

• Intelligence = 2 (+2 Base, +0 Title, +0 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

• Wisdom = 3 (+2 Base, +1 Title, +0 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

• Charisma = 2 (+2 Base, +0 Title, +0 Soul, +0 Equip, +0 Bonus)

└───────────────────

It was a good start, but Merlin wasn't satisfied yet, he intended to do the starter quests for all class archetypes as each gave four bonus points in their respective stat. The rangers guild, the thieves guild, the wizards college, the bards college, etc.

Merlin walked down the street, staring at the few players who walked by him. There weren't many he recognised, but of the ones he did recognise, there were two rankers. Typhoeus, his old guild-mate and friend, and Snowbunny, the girl who he saw earlier earn a wild hare soul.

Snowbunny was there farming wild hares with the sole intent of obtaining a rabbit themed soul. She did the same in the previous timeline, even dedicating some time to levelling up each rabbit themed soul to the max level. She was a very talented player, only being lower on the previous timeline's leaderboard due to her hobby.

Merlin eventually made his way to a worn down tailor shop on the northern side of the village. Upon entering the tailor store, a stale musty scent with hints of leather and damp wool flooded his nose. It was slightly unpleasant, but Merlin walked towards the counter.

An old man was sewing together what looked to be a leather tunic behind the counter, only noticing Merlin approach when he heard the loud creak of rotten wood floor underneath Merlin's feet.

"Can I help you sir?" The old man's voice was rather croaky.

"I heard you were in need of rabbit pelt, I'm wondering if that's still the case?" Merlin responded in such a way that the quest should pop up immediately, instead of having to go through the long winded dialogue he usually put players through.

"Oh! How fortune smiles upon me, it just so happens I have just run out of materials." The old man looked somewhat ecstatic. A quest window appeared before Merlin.

┌───────────────────

[Common Quest]

Bad Hare Day.

Old Man Louvel, the local tailor, requires more leather for his latest project. The pelt of wild hares found on the border of the village would work perfectly.

Rabbit pelt: 20/20

• Reward: 100 EXP

└───────────────────

"Oh, it seems you came prepared. Would you be willing to give me those materials?" The old man looked up at Merlin with an almost pleading smile.

Merlin handed over the items, getting his experience before quickly leaving the building.

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