Chapter 247: Chapter 246: First Contact Part I
Once I entered Section 35 Center D Store, I passed by the weapon and skill shops and entered the general store first. Many people were already talking about it, but I had to see for it myself.
“Welcome to the general store of Section 35 Center D Store.”
“Show me your wares.”
I was then shown the general store’s Menu, listing everything from Bread to crafting materials. The items were exactly the same as the items sold back on Earth. Even the prices were the same. I scrolled down to see the controversial item.
==[Scroll of Item Unbind (No Rank)
This Scroll can unbind a bound item. 1 scroll is needed for 1 bound item.
500,000 golden rings.]==
I scoffed at it, but this wasn’t the item I was looking for. I kept scrolling down to see the item I had started to hear about. “What… it’s real!”
==[Stat Point (No Rank)
Buy this item to gain extra Stat points.
1 extra Stat point costs 1,000,000 golden rings.]==
The Store actually sold Stat points, and for a million golden rings each! That was stupidly expensive, but I had a lot of money. I brought five billion golden rings with me from Earth, and was awarded another five at the Don Gate. I had ten billion golden rings in all; I probably had the most out of all solo players!
“A million each…” I could buy ten thousand Stat points right now, but I decided to not jump the gun yet. There were more items to check out.
==[Skill EXP (No Rank)
Buy EXP for skills.
2,000,000 skill EXP for 1,000,000 golden rings.]==
The Store even sold skill EXP! So long as you had the money, you could easily max out the level of any skill you wanted! But it definitely wouldn’t be easy at that price…
I opened up my Stats Menu and looked at my STR. I needed exactly 3,018 Stat points to get it to 40,000. It was going to cost about three billion golden rings… “I’ll save it for later.” Death’s Harrier was soon going to be off its cooldown, and I still had other places to spend my money on. I left the general store and entered the weapon shop. I scrolled down the menu and stopped at an item.
==[Upgrade Weapon Rank (No Rank)
Upgrade a weapon’s Rank by 1 Rank. Upgrade cost depends on the Rank.
Rank 1 to Rank 2
30% chance of success
100,000,000 golden rings.
Rank 2 to Rank 3
25% chance of success
200,000,000 golden rings.
Rank 8 to Rank 9
3% chance of success
800,000,000 golden rings.
Rank 9 to Rank 10
1% chance of success
900,000,000 golden rings.]==
The Upgrade Item Rank treasure was similar to this, although I didn’t have it anymore after I used it. But that could upgrade all sorts of items, and at a 100% success rate. Conversely, the weapon shop’s version was very stingy with its success rate. The success rate for Rank 8 to Rank 9 was only 3%. The system practically wanted it to fail. The armor and accessory shops had their own versions with the same success rate, but slightly different prices. Still, spending all that money on such low odds was just not worth it.
“It’s… a real gamble, isn’t it?” It really was as the Judge said; golden rings were so damn important now. We were going to become slaves to golden rings. Our lives literally depended on money now. He had practically scared us to spend almost all of our golden rings by making all the Stores disappear one by one.
“I have to hand it to him; he’s one shrewd guy.” I clicked my tongue at the Judge’s cowardly tactics, but I had to admit, it was going to work out in my favor. Since many had pretty much flushed all of their golden rings down the drain, others like me that had decided to save their golden rings could now become noticeably stronger. Sure, it would be best if everyone got to grow stronger together since our fates were intertwined, but I wanted the Judge to take notice of me. That way, I could get all those rewards he had mentioned, the rewards that were immeasurably better than what we got at the Don Gate.
In other words, I was greedy!
“I never said I was going to be a hero,” I said to myself quietly.
I stared at the Upgrade Weapon Rank for a while as I thought about my Luck Boost. I wasn’t sure what to do. Golden rings were precious now, and if I ended up wasting 800 million golden rings on a 3% chance gamble, I would actually come to hate myself. But it was also a fair price to pay if it worked. I also couldn’t walk away from it, because of the Fated Crossroads.
“Ha… should I use it now?” I had no idea I would end up using it so early, but it was also the perfect time to use it.
“Okay. I’ll do it. Activate: Fated Crossroads!”
==[Fated Crossroads has been activated.
You are presented with two paths.
Path 1: You attempt to upgrade your Heart’s Blood Harrier to Rank 9.
Path 2: You decide to not upgrade your Heart’s Blood Harrier to save your golden rings.]==
==[Please select one of the two paths.]==
“Select first path.” A video appeared before me.
[Hahaha! I knew my Luck Boost would work!]
The video showed me cheering with a huge grin on my face. That was enough to tell me that I had succeeded in upgrading my spear to Rank 9.
==[Fated Crossroads has now deactivated.
Fated Crossroads will be on cooldown for the next 92 days.]==
That was a pretty long cooldown, but I wanted to deal with that later. “I’ll buy the Upgrade Weapon Rank.”
“Please select the weapon you wish to upgrade. The cost and success rate of the upgrade will depend on the weapon’s Rank.” As soon as the clerk finished talking, a window appeared before me, with a slot for me to place a weapon.
I took out my Harrier without hesitation and placed it in the slot.
==[You have selected a Rank 8 weapon.
Upgrading this weapon requires 800,000,000 golden rings and has a 3% chance of success. If the upgrade fails, you will lose the 800,000,000 golden rings. Are you sure you wish to proceed?]==
If I didn’t have Fated Crossroads, I probably wouldn’t be attempting this right now, even with my Luck Boost. It also wasn’t like my Harrier had ever let me down so far, so there really wasn’t a need to get it Rank 9. But the signs were good, so I wanted to at least try once. If it didn’t work, then it would be an expensive lesson to not rely on Fated Crossroads ever again.
“Proceed!” At my command, the Harrier was soon enveloped in countless beams of light. Not long after, the light disappeared and a very nonchalant message appeared before me.
==[The Rank 8 Heart’s Blood Harrier has successfully been upgraded to Rank 9.]==
“It worked!” I shouted. I knew that it would work, but I couldn’t help but feel nervous about it. I also wasn’t the only one to see my red spear come out of the slot.
“Did he gamble on Rank 7 to Rank 8?”
“Dude! It’s Lee Jiwon. I bet he started at Rank 8.”
“Oh, damn. So he just spent 800 million on a 3% gamble? And he succeeded?”
“Lucky bastard’s always lucky…”
“Dude, he’s right there.”
It was clear no one really liked that I had spent that much money on a high-stakes gamble and succeeded, not when people were having a hard time with their money. I couldn’t help but slowly lower my arms and placed my spear back into my inventory. There was no way I was going to go for Rank 10, not with Fated Crossroads on a 92-day cooldown. If I ever was going to attempt it, I needed some sort of reassurance that it would work. I couldn’t just rely on my Luck Boost on a 1% gamble, especially if it was going to cost me 900 million!
“Blink 2.” Once I left the Store, I Blinked away towards home.
Back at my home…
[Heart’s Blood Harrier (Rank 9)
A spear crafted not for practical use…
Successful attacks drain 10,000 HP from enemies. Absorbed HP is used to restore wielder’s lost HP. (If no HP is lost, absorbed HP disappears.)
AoE HP drain. (Absorb a small amount of HP from enemies within a 25-meter radius. Does not work against undead monsters.)
10% chance to ignore enemy DEF
Increase Penetration by 255
Increase CRIT chance by 5.7%, increase CRIT damage by 355%
Increase STR by 700
Increase VIT by 1,000
Increase HP by 1,000,000
ATT: 21,500, MATT: 1650]
It was definitely worth the 800 million golden rings. At first glance, the Harrier had gained a couple additional effects on top of its boosted effects; the AoE HP drain and the 10% chance to ignore enemy DEF.
“It almost reminds me of the Blood Prince.” The Blood Prince had an AoE debuff skill known as the Blood Curse. While it didn’t affect me, it had absorbed HP from others, causing considerable damage. Now, I had a similar debuff and coupled that with the King-Emperor’s Grand Dignity, I could cause my enemies a whole lot of grief.
I smiled. Now I really wanted to get it to Rank 10 once Fated Crossroads was off its cooldown. I was more than willing to wait the ninety-two days and spend 900 million.
I rested the rest of the day, watching my allies gather members to form the strongest assault team and set up Teleporters in three other Sections. I did have to attend meetings whenever they were called.
The day before the Empire was supposed to attack…
I returned to the Store’s general store. Tomorrow was the day we decided to attack the enemy. I was more than ready for the coming battle, but I wanted to get my STR to 40k first since I wasn’t that far away now. I wouldn’t have worried about it if there was no way to get more Stat points in the first place, but it was right there. I just needed to spend three billion golden rings!
“Fine, let’s do it! It’s better to have more Stat points, anyway! I know I can earn that all back soon, too…” I entered the general store, selected the Stat Point item, and chose to buy 3018 points.
“Your total comes out to 3,018,000,000 golden rings.”
“…” I flinched. I knew how much it cost, but it was still three billion. I still took out the money and handed it over to the clerk. Once I had the Stat points, I invested them all into STR and soon got the message telling me I was the first to reach 40k in STR. I was granted 2,000 more points in STR, and I lost my fear of spending three billion golden rings at once.
“I guess that finishes my preparation. All I need to do now is leave a good first impression…”