I borrow the inn’s backyard to do some light sword swings.

I’ve never handled a sword before, but strangely enough, I don’t feel uncomfortable and I can swing it pretty smoothly.

Is this the blessing of the skill?

I’ve learned a few more.

Acquired skills

(Appraisal Lv4) (Appraisal Obstruction Lv4)

(Sword Master Lv1) (Physical Strengthening Lv4) (Presence Detection Lv3)

(Magic Energy Control Lv3) (Basic Daily Life Magic Lv3)

Everything except for Appraisal Obstruction has been leveled up via proficiency.

I used skill points to level up Appraisal Obstruction because its proficiency wouldn’t increase no matter what I did.

I leveled up Appraisal Obstruction because I figured that since I learned Appraisal, other people can learn it too.

But even with my Appraisal skill at level three, I still can’t use it on people.

Maybe I was too quick to spend skill points on Appraisal Obstruction, but then again, there might be more items that have the Appraisal effect like that crystal.

I told myself that if I left it alone and others used it on me, I wouldn’t be able to take it back.

I guess I just need to walk more and earn back the skill points I spent.

As for Appraisal itself, I won’t know what happens unless I level it up a little more. I’ll just keep using it on things and wait patiently for it to level up by itself.

Sword Master is a skill that improves my handling of a sword. I tried to swing a sword without it at first, but it didn’t go well, so I learned it. I can level it up just by swinging a sword.

Physical Strengthening gains proficiency when I push my body to its limits, but if I go overboard, I’ll end up with bad muscular pain. I learned that lesson the hard way when I was testing how much weight I can lift.

Presence Detection is exactly what it sounds like, a skill to detect others’ presences around me. Leveling up increases its range, and makes it so I can sense things more deeply. At level one it was just a faint feeling, but I’m starting to feel more what kind of presence it is.

Magic Energy Control allows me to feel the magic energy on my body. This isn’t really that useful by itself, but it makes it so I don’t waste magic energy when I activate magic.

Basic Daily Life Magic includes different kinds of magic like Purification and Firestarter.

Apparently there are baths in this world, but in cheap inns all you get is a wet towel to scrub your body. It’s not an exaggeration to say I learned this one just to wash myself. Firestarter will also be useful when I start working outside of town.

I leave the city, and while I’m expecting to return before lunch, I’m a careful guy, so I don’t forget to bring preserved food with me.

It wasn’t good when I tried it before, so I’d rather not have to depend on it.

“I haven’t seen you before. Are you an adventurer?”

“I’m going outside for the first time, because I accepted a medicinal herb picking quest.”

“…I see. You shouldn’t say the contents of the quests you accepted. You never know who might be listening. Also, the forest in the outskirts should be fine, but monsters sometimes wander in, so be careful.”

I pass through the gate and follow the road for about thirty minutes, until I see a forest to my left and head that way. There’s a river flowing through the forest, and medicinal herbs grow near its banks.

I see there are others who come here to pick medicinal herbs, because there’s a trampled path that makes it easier to walk through the forest.

I walk carefully with presence detection active, but don’t feel any living beings around me.

I walk for another thirty minutes, and reach the medicinal herbs I’m here for.

I use Appraisal to only pick medicinal herbs in good condition, and pick magic energy herbs that are mixed in here too.

I can’t forget vitality and detoxing herbs too, but I heard that it’s common courtesy to leave some, because if I pick too much there won’t be any left.

Still, I think I got a good amount.

This is what Appraisal is all about. There are simple herbs mixed in here too, so it would be necessary to memorize the herbs’ shapes in order to not pick them by mistake.

Also, freshness is important, so withered and immature herbs get a bad evaluation. In some cases, they might not even count and be discarded altogether.

I put the herbs in a bag made specifically to preserve their freshness.

I get up, as I’m thinking it’s time to go back, and my Presence Detection picks up something.

Six presences coming this way, and moving very fast.

I hide while making sure to pay attention to the presences.

Just as I’m done hiding, I see six things jumping out, two people and four monsters. Are the monsters wolves? I read that they’re very agile and hard to take down, but if one can deal with that speed, they’re not much of a threat.

One of the two people steps forward with twin swords in hand, and the other is holding a staff, and steps back. The person holding the staff is breathing heavily.

A wolf jumps at the person with the twin swords, who skillfully evades it.

The twin swords owner is about to use that opportunity to strike, but another wolf gets in the way.

I thought the one holding the staff would support the other, but that person is still just trying to catch their breath.

I figured their opponents were just too fast, but apparently that’s not it. The one holding the staff is using it to support their body.

It takes me a second to think, and another one to act.

As a wolf is starting to jump, I throw my knife used to take monsters apart.

The wolf can’t dodge in mid-air, and the knife pierces it. It’s just luck.

After I got lucky with my sneak attack, I swing my sword at another one, whose movements have been dulled.

It feels like I got it, and after checking that it’s not moving, I look for my next prey.

But what I see are three wolves lying on the ground, and the twin swords user standing tall.

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