Her hands were drenched in blood. Tears left trails in the dirt and blood that covered her face ashes trembling hand reached for her mouth. A long tongue stretched out from a small mouth and licked the fresh blood and bits of meat off the long sharp nails protruding from her fingers.

A devilish smile crept on her face, but her eyes were disgusted with herself.

It was over. She had finally killed her sister and Edward, her sister ’s boyfriend. And now she could not stop herself from gorging on their bodies like a beast.

It all started with her attaining the Rakshasa class. She gained skills that improved her strength, agility, and endurance far beyond her level. She became even stronger in the darkness and there were other unbelievable skills like illusion magic and transformation skills.

She became also immune to diseases, poison, or curses. And to top it all, she got the ability to kill her enemies, the followers of Zarkon. Her new claws could inflict permanent wounds on their ever-regrowing flesh and take their lives once and for all.

But everything in the world came at a price. Like a vampire that needed human blood to survive, she needed to feast on human flesh. It was a terrible price, but one she was willing to take in exchange for the ability to exact revenge.

Their encounters with the Zarkists became a lot less dangerous. With her new class, she was immune to the curse. And the hateful enemies were her source of sustenance. At first, she hid it from her companions. She only told them about her gains, not the cost. She would smuggle away part of the bodies after their fight and eat them alone.

It was disgusting. Human flesh tasted bitter and the texture of raw bloody meat in her mouth and when it slid down her throat made her gag. In these moments she wanted nothing more than to vomit it out again. Without she might not have persisted.

Despite her disgust, the gains were obvious. She kept growing stronger and they did not need to fear the Zarkists. They even started hunting them.

It also helped that the main force of the Zarkic Cult was distracted fighting other enemies. Everything went well and they even manage to organize at first. She finally decided to open up to Stacy and Edward. They were shocked at first, but accepted her decision and supported her.

…It was her fault. No, it was their fault. Those despicable, repulsive vermin who dared to call themself human. Someone had eavesdropped on them. The next thing that happened was her group being ambushed by a huge number of Zarkists. They had been sold out.

No good deed goes unpunished. She had helped people and in exchange, she lost what little of her family was left. Her sister and Edward had turned into these disgusting monsters. It had taken ages to recover her strength and track them down. She could not let her family exist as such beasts.

She had ended their suffering with her own hands.

The tears subsided once her hunger was quenched. Once she had buried the two her head finally cleared up. Where was she even?

—————————-Y City

”And that ’s why I want to borrow a floor. ” Seth ended his pitch. Originally, he had thought of renting or buying a location in Y City, but he was unsure whether he would stay here. The system church owned a whole skyscraper, if he could borrow one of the floors his problems would be solved.

Simon looked to his counterpart. Samuel, this was the name of this branch ’s priest, nodded hesitantly.

”I could lend you a room for free, but a whole floor… ” he scratched his cheek.

”Even if many floors are empty right now, I can ’t just hand out stuff for free. You would have to pay rent. ”

”Deal, ” Seth answered happily.

A floor was big enough to use as a living space and workshop, without disturbing anyone. And just like that Seth and his entourage started to live in the church. This had an additional advantage. If someone tried to mess with him, they would first have to mess with the system church. Although they looked kind and amiable on the surface, they were not to be trifled with.

While the girls could enjoy their free time, Seth started to work on his equipment. He knew that the skill would not be as easy to level as it had been in the past, now that he reached the journeyman rank. That ’s why he did not hold back on the materials he wanted to use.

Seth started with some more common soul gear. He needed a huge pool of mana for what he planned to do so he used medium-sized souls to make generic armor pieces that each raised his mana by roughly 100.

With about 1000 bonus mana, he now had 1400 mana to work with. He had even consulted with Al to plan out the enchantments beforehand. She was not a blacksmith, but as an enchanter and former Lich with over 200 years of experience, she was a great help when it came to meshing together the several kinds of enchantment to gain the best possible effect.

While planning the most ambitious part of his new equipment, he had ordered special materials from the church. This was another thing the people of Urth didn ’t know or didn ’t want to do: the church acted as an interdimensional trader. Just like how Simon had bought weapons from Seth or how he sent goods through the church. As a lay member of the church, he could also order things at a discount.

What he got was a dark, crooked, and twisted branch the length and size of his arm.

< Dark Ghostwood, Crafting Material, Rare The wood of a tree that grew for over 300 years on a cursed or haunted ground. The resentment and regrets of the dead have seeped deep into the wood coloring it black through and through. A scarce wood often used in dark rituals and curses. >

It had taken Seth a long time to gain knowledge of this kind of material. During his time in Ora, he realized that there were only a few ores and minerals that had an affinity with souls. Organic materials like those from monsters did a lot better in housing a soul. It was then, that he realized, that he should not restrict himself to the materials a blacksmith would use.

Right, this was not a crafting material for a blacksmith, but it was normally used by caster classes as part of dark rituals or curses. It had cost him a hefty sum, 50 gold for this single piece of wood. Seth thought it was worth it since it would most likely have a high affinity with the vengeful soul.

The reason materials like this were not generally used in blacksmithing was that they varied too much. Any tree could produce this wood as long as it meets requirements but not all wood was fit to be used in a weapon. The price came from the fact that this branch was the wood of a 500-year-old ash that grew on a cursed battlefield. This technically made it fit to be used to make a bow.

Before he made the bow, there was something he wanted to test. He brought out a pauldron from the guy who had died in the forest. It was a cheap common item from a dungeon with an enchantment that raised defense slightly.

Next, he forged a similar pauldron from a small soul and carved a simple shield-circuit into it. This enchantment was able to create a shield with a strength proportional to the mana supplied. It had its limits though.

Seth wanted to test whether these enchantments would get in the way of each other if he infused a piece of enchanted soul equipment. He would be able to put double the number of enchantments he could put on an item like that. Four different enchantments were close to the realm of a master!

Seth infused the soul pauldron into the enchanted item and succeeded! At least nothing exploded, but there was no notification that he had finished an item…

As he looked at the item with he could see that the now two options looked corrupted. Looking at the pauldron he could see the shield circuit bleeding through, like a stain in the metal or a stigma.

Then he got a failure notification.

It didn ’t work. At least not completely. It had taken some time until it was determined a failed product. This meant that maybe in the future he would be able to find a way.

He was not too disappointed in this outcome; it just reinforced his desire for higher-rated souls. It was already proven that the inherent qualities of the souls did not get in the way of enchantments, while still giving and influencing the effects.

Seth was glad he had tested it on a cheap japtem instead of potentially ruining his new items.

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