Volume 1 Chapter 4

Hmm… how should I put this… should I run?

Right now, in from of my very eyes… a battle of monsters is unfolding. A smaller, obviously carnivorous reptile is attacking the Triodon’s.

It moved too quick for me to get a good look at it… well that and the Triodon’s are just too huge! Down in front!

The Triodon’s are putting up a good fight but they seem rather disorganized. I wonder why? Could it be that they are a panicky beast that scares easily?

My rationality says I should run now while to goings good but my curiosity is winning out. I really want to see what the predators of this world are like!

So I hide and observe the Triodon’s as they fight back!

Go Herbivores!

I can’t lie, I have a soft spot for them now, seeing as I named them and they don’t seem all that aggressive when not agitated. However, the current situation is changing my opinion of them slightly.

One of the Triodon used its slightly curved horns to catapult something into the air! That’s some impressive neck strength! Scary!

Triodon use their size and horns as weapons, and damn are they ever formidable! The only reason they seem to be getting pushed back is… well they don’t seem too bright.

The living missile lands about ten meters away from my hiding spot and I finally get a good look at one.

It had a Raptor like head and a tail twice the size of its body, razor sharp teeth and muddy brown scales that blend in with the environment. It has powerful looking hind legs and long thin arms that end in claws.

Under the arms is a membrane like skin similar to what the Triodon have on their backs. It flailed around in pain for a while and tried to right itself. When it succeeded it ran back into the fray.

It moved along the taller weeds, which almost concealed it completely, but not quite… that’s not what got my attention though. As it moved its scales turned the same colour as the weeds! Camouflage!

I’m glad I saw that now, I should be more wary of the hedge like weeds in the future… never know what could be hiding in them. They move with practiced movements, they must hunt like this regularly.

These guys… lets call them Hedge Raptors, they seem to hunt in packs. A few will run around the prey confusing it while one or two will attack a blind spot!

[Confirmed: Hedge Raptor of the Reptileous Giganticus Clade has been named.]

[Congratulations! You have learned a new Skill: Identify!
For naming more than one new species you can now identify status abnormalities and names of a target! Note that this only works on named creatures.]

Oh, so I was right about having to name things huh? Though if I already know their names what’s the point of identifying them? What does it mean by status abnormalities?

Focusing on a Triodon that is currently slowing down considerably, its brethren leaving it to its fate and moving away from the predators (Such a noble sacrifice!). I use the skill Identify.

A red window appears above the struggling creature.

[Triodon: [Enraged] Status Effect: [Bleeding] [Severe Wounds] Anxiety Level: 87%]

Wow that could be useful, it shows a lot more than I thought it would. Anxiety Level is a godsend; I can see how they react to my presence now! If it goes beyond a certain level of anxiety will they become dangerous?

Anyway, the Triodon is down, its still alive but not for long. Poor thing, you fought well! Your herd survived another day due to your sacrifice!

I should leave now before I’m noticed…

Slowly I turn to the direction of my little oasis, I need some time to think on what I found out here.

Unfortunately…

Just as I turn around I come face to face with a Hedge Raptor! It seems to be studying me, not sure if I’m good to eat or not.

Damn!

I knew I should have run when I had the chance! Also this guy was as silent as death… how did he sneak up on me like that!?

I quickly use Identify on it, what else could I do?

[Hedge Raptor: [Aggressive] Status Effect: [Stalking Movement] Anxiety Level: 34%]

A stalker! I can’t run, with its powerful legs it will overtake me in an instant, right now it’s either playing with its food or interested in the new dish.

Maybe I can fight it? The other ones are currently preoccupied with the massive Triodon so maybe I can at least weaken it enough for me to have a chance at running away?

Yeah, looks like that’s my only option!

The Hedge Raptor seems to notice the change in my attitude and the Anxiety level goes up to 37%! Perceptive little shit isn’t he?

It narrows its red eyes and takes a cautious step forward. But I wont let it have the first attack!

I use Iron Scales; it’s my only real effective skill to be honest. I have Critical Bite, but it’s an Active skill that really only works when I get close enough.

Unfortunately I can only use Iron Scales on my upper body. It is a strong ability sure but it has one fatal drawback. It decreases movement speed.

I can still move, but I’m slower and my movements are more restricted than without. Therefore I decided to not activate it on my legs; I’ll be needing those free and fast.

Seeing my transformation (I looked at myself in the waters reflection, I’m pretty badass looking). It attacks! And damn is it ever fast!

I barely had enough time to dodge! I bet I could take the bite of one of these and only be a little hurt, but I don’t want to test it out. What can I say, I don’t like pain.

As an added bonus the Hedge Raptor went head first into the boulder I was hiding behind!

‘THUD!!’

Ouch! That’s got to hurt! His mouth was open too…

I don’t waste the chance, my strength is not very high, but my speed is rather formidable. I lunge forward, simultaneously activation Critical Bite and go for one of the hind legs.

It might have killed it had I went for the neck, however I’m not too keen on being so close to those teeth. If I had to guess, it has a stronger bite than me.

My teeth rip into the thigh and I tear out a nice chunk of flesh, the Hedge Raptor lets out a shrill screech! Unfortunately I mostly just tore off some scales; it was a lot tougher than the double-headed Eel from before.

One thing I hadn’t thought of though.

Suddenly the Hedge Raptor turns three sixty degrees and whips my with its tail, I went flying!

I landed hard on a slab like rock, and with blood leaking from my mouth I shakily stood up.

Was this the end?

I definitely couldn’t run in my current condition, and I hadn’t damaged the Hedge Raptor enough to run either way.

Also, it seems like the cry of the Hedge Raptor got the attention of its buddies…

This is not a good situation.

I take a step back, preparing to run, I can’t hope to win, I can only hope they lose interest.

Just as I take a step back I hear a sound…

‘Crrriick’

“Eh?”

That’s all I could say before the stone slab I was on suddenly collapsed and I fell. I tumbled down for god only knows how long; luckily my Iron Scaled body protected me somewhat as I descended down the slightly slanted shaft.

And thus I fell down a deep dark hole. Somewhere along the way I hit my head and was knocked unconscious.