The last time I checked was just before entering the Dwarf Village. I remember that it was barely at level 5, 10 percent at that point.
But now it was at 86 percent.
How did it get so high in such a short amount of time?
I suddenly remembered something. When I received the Flame Fairy’s Breath, it said that my friendliness with the fairies will permanently go up by 20 points.
The core of Jewel Alchemy was raising the ability to communicate with the fairies within the five-colored jewels. That must be why it suddenly went up.
But it would not have raised that much with just that.
‘There has to be something else.’
I suddenly remembered that something else.
I was kissed by the Peria Souls at the Peria Oasis. My magic went up by 1 point with every kiss.
Maybe those kisses also raised my friendliness with the fairies as well.
‘That makes sense! When you get involved in fairy-related issues, your friendliness must go up as well.’
Then you’ll be able to communicate well with the fairy energy inside the jewels. This explains why my skill level suddenly shot up.
Once I thought that far, I remembered the quest I received from the Peria Souls. I had to gather more Fairy’s Tears to release 100 Peria Souls. If can do that, I will receive a Guardian Spirit as a reward.
If I succeed, wouldn’t my friendliness with fairies rise even more? Then Jewel Alchemy may instantly jump up past intermediate level 7.
Jewel Alchemy Intermediate Level 7.
That means that I would be able to use the Jewels of Fortification as I please. Which means that I can strengthen all of my equipment by one level.
That alone will raise my abilities a minimum of 5 percent.
The dwarves should have a lot of Jewels of Fortification in storage. Even though it is more expensive than the Jewel of Luck, if I make the right deal, I should be able to get them for free.
My heart was already beating really fast.
‘No matter what, I must successfully complete the Guardian Spirit quest.’
I also need to put even more effort into combining jewels. More effort will make the skill level go up even faster.
I opened my eyes.
It was already dark. The light that came in from the top of the path was not visible anymore.
I was so tired after finishing my jewel combinations that even though I thought I closed my eyes for a moment, I must have fallen asleep.
‘I hope I didn’t sleep too long.’
I climbed up the wall again.
The outside of the path was also dark.
Fortunately, it was not too dark. It seemed to be just around the time when darkness begins to spread. I woke up at the perfect time. My condition was also very good thanks to that nap.
I put away Goonto’s Twin Blades and picked up a pickaxe instead.
Now I just needed to find and gather the Herbs of Immortality.
I heard that Titans do not have much activity at night.
Furthermore, this place was deep in the Immortal Mountain Range. It is almost impossible for an intruder like me to get in here to while avoiding the eyes of the Titans.
So there should be less Titan patrols over here.
In other words, I can search in peace until the morning.
‘Where could it be?’
I started to wander through the forest in search of the Herbs of Immortality.
I already memorized enough of the information. What terrain it grew in and what shape it would be around this time of year.
The shape of the leaves were extremely unique, and, right now, it should have red fruits, making it easy to find.
‘Oh, I found one. Another one over there. Oh! They’re forming a community!’
It felt like a farm that was growing Herbs of Immortality. Over 100 Herbs of Immortality with red fruits were growing in a narrow area.
Of course, it was not a field. I heard that Herbs of Immortality were impossible to grow, and I have never heard that Titans grow crops.
It was just that this place was so deep in the Immortal Mountain Range that there were no outside intruders for thousands of years, thus the Herbs of Immortality have grown large enough to become such a colony.
I still have a conscience. I left the small ones alone.
The number of branches that are outstretched can be used to roughly estimate the age of a Herb of Immortality. The ones with many branches are said to be over 3,000 years old. Of course, those guys were not common.
‘Woah, how many branches does that one have?’
Six branches were shooting out from the base. Each of the six branches were then each divided into three branches.
With that many branches, it was easily over 1,000 years old.
‘That one is the same, and that one as well……’
There were at least ten Herbs of Immortality that were at least 1,000 years old located here.
I picked up the pickaxe and started to dig. I tried my utmost to make sure I did not hurt a single root.
How much would Herbs of Immortality over 1,000 years old be worth?
Most of the Herbs of Immortality on the market are around 500 years old. Even those are so precious that they can cost 500 million won per root.
Then these guys will be at least over a billion won. No, it would be up to the bidder. Since nobody has seen a 1,000+ year old Herb of Immortality before, if it meets the right owner, would two billion be a problem?
If you think about it that way, it’s like I instantly earned close to 20 billion won.
In addition, there were a plethora of Herb of Immortality colonies here. Just moving a little bit would lead me to a new group of Herbs of Immortality.
Naturally, I was excited. I forgot about the time as I continued to swing my pickaxe.
Before I knew it, it was starting to become light again.
‘Has it already been that long?’
Since I was deep in the mountains, it will quickly get dark and quickly get bright. That means that the Titans will start their patrol soon.
It is disappointing, but I need to stop here.
I quickly started to move.
‘Where was the path I came from? Oh, over there. ‘
After being lost for a moment, I finally found the path that led to the underground cave.
At that moment, I heard some movement above as well as someone speaking in a deep voice.
“What is this?”
“Someone gathered up the Herbs of Immortality. Ah! Over there as well!”
“Oh. My. God. They dug up the whole mountain. It is an intruder! And there must be a number of them.”
“Quickly, ring the alarm! Dispatch the Titans to search the area.”
It would have been really bad if I was even just a bit slower. I quickly jumped into the path and ran through the cave.
“Did you finish your business?”
It was the voice of the Magma Giant.
“Thanks to you.”
“I can smell the scent of the Herb of Immortality. Did you dig up some Herbs of Immortality?”
It was actually not just a little. I managed to gather over 200 roots overnight. And all of them were over 1,000 years old.
I knew there would be a lot of them, but I never expected there to be that many Herbs of Immortality.
“The Titans treasure the Herbs of Immortality as much as they treasure their own lives. All of the Titans are my friends. If you come back with the intention to dig up more Herbs of Immortality in the future, I cannot allow that.”
It is just an herb that is good for your body. The Titans just do all of this because they want to monopolize them.
The fact that I took 200 roots would not have any impact on the Titans.
I also had no intentions of coming back here for more Herbs of Immortality. My goal this time was Chubach’s Solar Blade, the Herbs of Immortality were just extra.
The Titans will also be on their guard much more next time anyways. I had no reason to put my life on the line for something like this.
“I will remember your words. But which path leads to the outside? I fell in through a pit in the desert on my way in, but it will probably be difficult to go back up that way.”
I gently waved as I started to run toward the direction the Magma Giant pointed toward.
I could see the magma warriors around the area as well. They were happy to provide directions whenever I was confused. Thanks to them, I was able to get out of there pretty quickly.
It still took me about two full days. It was because the cave was long and had a lot of twists and turns.
Outside the cave was the Immortal Desert. Thankfully, there seemed to be less than 2 kilometers to the plains.
I started to swing Goonto’s Twin Blades once more to take care of the Sand Warriors as I ran out of the desert. I had placed all of the Herbs of Immortality in a magic bag and then placed that magic bag in the magic cabinet, so there were no issues with my movements at all.
The Sand Warrior’s Voice.
As the name indicates, it just lets out a noise. All it can do is gather the interest of low leveled monsters.
It is a pretty useless item.
But that wasn’t a reason to just throw it away, so I just gathered them inside my magic bag.
“Phew, all done now!”
The Herb of Immortality appraiser dropped his jaws. His eyes were opened so wide that his eyeballs might fall out.
It was not a bad sign. I just showed him the best Herb of Immortality that I had on me. He’s probably so excited that he is speechless.
“What do you think?”
I asked with a face full of expectation.
Even Humbley and Kaldera next to me were full of expectation.
“A-Amazing. I have inspected many Herbs of Immortality as I traveled throughout the continent, but I have never seen such high quality Herb of Immortality in my life.”
The appraiser’s voice was shaking. He was full of admiration.
“How old do you think it is?”
“How much do you think it could sell for?”
Humbley and Kaldera started to ask questions at the same time. Extremely old Herbs of Immortality were hard to purchase even if you had billions of won.
Which means, it was more useful for lobbying purposes rather than selling it for money.
“In my opinion, it is definitely over 2,000 years. I believe it is close to 3,000 years old.”
My jaws dropped unintentionally. I knew it would be over 1,000 years old, but I never expected it to be close to 3,000 years old. It was amazing that Herbs of Immortality could even live for that long.
“I wouldn’t dare to put a price on it. Something like this would not ever come out to the market. With the right buyer, even 10 billion won would be considered cheap.”
‘Wow, 10 billion won!’
I almost said that out loud.
But it was not that unreasonable if you thought about it.
Even I had hundreds of billions of won on me. It would not be hard to spend 10 billion won to get a rare item like these Herbs of Immortality.
It is probably even better for a successful merchant like Humbley. He could probably make 10 billion won in a day.
On the other hand, a Herb of Immortality like this could not be bought for even 100 billion won.
“You will naturally keep this a secret?”
“How could I not? If my mouth was light, I would not have managed to survive until now.”
“Thank you very much.”
The appraiser received his appraisal fee and left.
Once the appraiser was gone, Humbley finally asked the difficult question.
“Where did you find such a precious item?”
He wouldn’t believe me even if I told him. It wasn’t that important right now anyways.
I pretended not to hear Humbley’s question and brought up the more important question.
“I have quite a lot of these types of Herbs of Immortality. Will you be able to take care of them?”
“When you say a lot, just how many……?”
I was planning on slowly getting rid of them.
However, Humbley is many levels higher than me when it comes to business. It wasn’t like I couldn’t trust Humbley.
So I decided to leave it all to Humbley at once.
Well, not all of it. I have my own plans for a couple of the oldest roots.
So I decided to leave it all at once.
Of course, not all. I am the best person in the world, and I have plans to write a few roots apart.
“It’s roughly two hundred roots.”
Humbley and Kaldera both instantly seemed to blank out.
“How many roots did you say?”
“Two hundred roots. Of course, it is not urgent. But I think it would be better to dispose of it before the Jeppi enter the continent. ”
“Kang Hwi Ram-nim, just what ……?”
Huh? Why is he looking at me like I am a monster?
* * *
I arrived at the Volcanus Temple in the Dwarf Village.
Goonto ran over as soon as he heard that I was back.
“Oh oh! human! You’re back! ”
It was not just Goonto. The Great Patriarch Bangart, as well as many dwarves flocked to the temple. The temple was quickly full of dwarves.
People would be surprised to see the dwarves welcoming a human like this.
Of course, they were not welcoming me. Fitting the hasty nature of the dwarves, the Great Patriarch Bangart quickly got to the point.
“What happened with Chubach-nim’s Solar Blade?”
I responded with my action. I took Chubach’s Solar Blade out of the magic cabinet and handed it to Bangart.
Bangart carefully received the Solar Blade as if he was receiving a gift from the gods.
“Oh, it really is Chubach-nim’s Solar Blade. Unbelievable.”
“Is it really? A human managed to complete that difficult task? Something even us dwarves could not complete?”
“Amazing. I knew he was amazing since he took care of the Golden Alligator.”
“It is a day to be recorded in the dwarven history.”
All of the dwarves were amazed and started to chatter.
But Goonto could not say anything. The Solar Blade was much more special to Goonto than the other dwarves.
Goonto was a Best Blacksmith who was aiming to become a Legendary Blacksmith. Right now, he was at the level of almost reaching the peak of Sword Mastery.
The Solar Blade held the key for him to succeed.
That was why I had also taken a good look at Chubach’s Solar Blade. I wanted to see if I could find the key to achieving Sword Mastery.
But it was impossible for me. I was just a blacksmith specializing in Jewel Alchemy. Only a dwarf who specialized in metalsmithing could read that key.
Of course, it wasn’t like there was no chance for me at all. The story can change in the future when I can use the Jewels of Fortification.
But it is impossible for now.
“Great Patriarch-nim. May I touch it?”
Goonto asked in a shaking voice that did not fit his persona.
Bangart had no reason to reject him. Wasn’t this an opportunity for his son to get one step closer to becoming a legendary blacksmith?
That would be a blessing to all dwarves.
Bangart quickly handed the Solar Blade to Goonto.
“Be very careful with it.”
“Yes, Great Patriarch-nim.”
Goonto received the Solar Blade even more carefully than Bangart.
I was flabbergasted while looking at them. It was a strong sword that would not have a single scratch even after even slamming it down on a boulder. Was there a reason to be so careful with it?
Either way, what happens next did not matter to me. I just needed to take what I earned.
I looked toward Bangart.
“I successfully completed the quest, right?”
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Translator : Miraclerifle
Proofreader :Borderline Masochist