Sword God in a World of Magic
Chapter 22 - The Enemy Is Complacency
Chapter 21 – Hegemon
The sound of something heavy being pulled along the ground resonated throughout the forest. Except for this sound, everything else was silent.
This was the sound of the Stalker ’s corpse being pulled through the forest.
White snowflakes fell down around Alex as he walked through the deep darkness.
Suddenly, Alex saw a slight golden light coming from the sky. If his eyes hadn ’t been strengthened, he wouldn ’t have noticed this little bit of light.
Above the layer of clouds was a golden shooting star, its light barely visible to him.
’A golden shooting star that ’s so bright that I can even see it through a thick layer of clouds? ’ Alex thought with furrowed brows. ’That ’s strange. However, this world is already strange enough. This is just one more oddity added to the pile. ’
Alex looked back down.
This golden shooting star didn ’t concern him.
After a while, Alex arrived at his clearing.
He hadn ’t seen another animal or creature all this time.
If it had been a month ago, Alex would have met at least one creature that had been drawn to him due to the sound, but Alex ’s position had changed.
He was no longer the vulnerable, new survivor.
Now, he was one of the hunters of the forest.
A normal animal would be frightened off by the Stalker ’s corpse, and a powerful creature would be able to feel Alex ’s power.
Stalkers weren ’t the most powerful creatures in the forest, but they also weren ’t weak.
Alex still remembered the two gigantic beasts he had seen when he had just arrived.
If Alex tried to attack them, he wouldn ’t even know how he had died.
He couldn ’t possibly fight against such behemoths with his current power.
Current was the keyword.
When Alex arrived at his clearing, he let go of the corpse and sat down beside it.
Alex took out his sword and started to skin the corpse.
In the silent, cold night, only the sound of cutting could be heard.
It was like Alex was the only being in this world as only darkness surrounded him.
After Alex was done with skinning the Stalker, he took the hide and put it near his hut.
Then, Alex grabbed some dried wood from his wood stock. Alex had gathered a ton of wood the past couple of days. After all, when the true winter arrived, the snow would make all the trees wet. Alex needed dry wood to create a fire, and he needed enough to get through the winter.
Just as Alex put down the first branches, his head turned to one of the edges of the clearing.
Alex knew these eyes.
It was the lizard that had stolen food from him more than once, the one that had shot the fireballs at the wolves.
However, the entire dynamic had changed.
When they had first met, the lizard had been overpowering. If it hadn ’t exhausted itself against the wolves, it could have killed Alex.
The second time they had met, they had been about equal.
Now, Alex was clearly the more powerful one of the two.
Alex had a lot of confidence in his ability to evade the fireballs, and even if he couldn ’t evade them, he could still use his sword or cloak to block them.
The lizard was dangerous but not nearly as dangerous as a Stalker.
Both of them knew that Alex was the more powerful one.
Alex scratched his chin in thought as he looked at the lizard from a distance.
Alex decided that he wanted to try something.
Alex grabbed the severed leg of the Stalker and threw it over to the lizard. The lizard jumped to the side and looked at Alex warily.
Alex didn ’t move and only looked at the lizard for a while.
Then, Alex went back to creating his fire.
The lizard was a bit confused for a while, but it couldn ’t resist its instincts. It carefully walked closer to the leg, constantly keeping an eye on Alex.
The lizard bit the leg and ran away at full speed.
Alex only smirked.
’Reptiles on earth are solitary creatures. It ’s nearly impossible to create any kind of connection with them, even when one has them as pets for years. ’
’However, this world is different from earth. The Stalker was also smart enough to notice that I was weaker without my weapon. I think creatures are more intelligent than animals.
pᴀɴdᴀ nᴏveʟ ’Who knows? Maybe if I work hard enough, I can build some kind of cooperation with that lizard. If its power increases, I might even be able to use it as a form of oven or dryer. That would make surviving the winter far easier. ’
’Actually, it ’s quite surprising to find reptiles in such a cold climate. Most reptiles are cold-blooded by nature, and they would freeze to death in these temperatures. I guess the fire the lizard can use keeps it warm in the winter. ’
’Anyway, that ’s for the future. Right now, I need to see if this will actually work, ’ Alex thought as he continued building his fire.
Alex had placed the fire over ten meters away from his hut for a specific reason.
After some minutes, quite a big fire roared in front of Alex.
Alex cut some parts off the Stalker and grilled them around the fire. However, he didn ’t dry the hide yet.
He had a reason for that.
Alex continued to build his hut for the next hour.
A distant sound of something heavy hitting the ground could be heard.
’It actually works. Should I be happy or scared? ’
The sound grew louder over the next two minutes until something appeared at the edge of the clearing.
It was absolutely enormous, and it had gigantic, green needles.
It was the hedgehog!
This was why Alex had built the fire so far away from his hut.
Alex assumed that the hedgehog had found him the last time due to the fire and smell of meat, and sure enough, the hedgehog had appeared once again.
Alex didn ’t hide but sat several meters away from the fire, leaving enough space for the hedgehog.
The hedgehog looked at Alex for a second and then focused on the fire.
Just like last time, the hedgehog warmed itself over the fire for several minutes. While warming itself, it ate the entire Stalker.
After some more minutes, the hedgehog walked away from the fire, not destroying it this time.
After some meters, it stopped as it shook its body again.
This time, it dropped far more fruits.
After shaking off the fruits, the hedgehog left the clearing again.
’Sacrifice flesh to the Forest God, and you shall be awarded with fruit, ’ Alex thought with a smirk.
Alex looked at the retreating hedgehog and saw hundreds of fruits growing on its needles.
How much would his power improve if he could eat all of those?
However, Alex would never attempt to steal these fruits.
This hedgehog was humongous, very noticeable, and incredibly slow. Alex knew that the Stalker wasn ’t the powerful creature in this forest, which meant that there had to be more powerful ones.
Yet, the hedgehog still walked around at a leisurely pace.
No beast could miss this hedgehog since they could hear it from hundreds of meters away.
This only meant that either nothing attempted to kill the hedgehog or that everything that attacked the hedgehog died.
This hedgehog couldn ’t be simple at all.
Even more, Alex remembered the gigantic lizard he had seen on the mountains on his first day. That lizard had only been on the mountains, even though it could enter the forest. The thing it had killed had also been in the forest, not in the mountains.
There was no reason for the gigantic lizard to not enter the forest. After all, there was much more food here.
Yet, it hadn ’t entered.
Alex assumed that this hedgehog was the very reason for that.
The gigantic lizard had to have seen the hedgehog, but it hadn ’t attacked.
With all of these clues combined, Alex concluded that the hedgehog was probably the most powerful being in the entire basin.
Just one of its hundreds of fruits already made Alex ’s body nearly explode with Mana.
This thing was a true monster, the true hegemon of this basin!
Alex still remembered that the God had said that he should only go to a different wilderness when this one no longer posed any danger. This probably meant that the wilderness surrounding the basin was far more dangerous.
So, why wasn ’t any creature from there entering this basin? The mountains couldn ’t possibly stop them since they weren ’t even that high.
This was the hedgehog ’s territory.
It probably even counted as a mighty creature on the outside.
However, another question was, did no creature dare to enter…
Or did every creature that entered die?
Alex wasn ’t sure, but his attention was quickly drawn to the fruits on the ground.
There were so many!
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