Final Reality

The first thing I remember was being dumped on a field. And not a peaceful, flowery field, either. This field had monsters--goblins, mutant plants, even a killer bee or two. Information--statistics, should I call them?--ran through my head, and before even the first goblin had leapt at me I was entirely sure of what I was doing there. I was Sol, sword-wielding warrior, of the first level and a complete lack of experience. I had allies, too--one considerably violent monk, one shy black mage, and a particularly frail white mage.

Though my strength was meager--Three? Four? Come to think of it, I never was sure what it was measured in--I immediately remembered the dagger in its sheath and swung it at the goblin. However, it only dodged, more agile than its appearance revealed. Just when I was about to swing a second time, there was a loud call of, "Fire!" and the goblin was instantly lit ablaze, having disintegrated before I even remembered the magic abilities of black mages.

Through my mysterious mind came the message that, despite the mage and I having been the only ones fighting, all four of our party had become more experienced. Somehow extra gold even worked its way into our packs. Brandishing my dagger, I was about to deal with another goblin when the white mage yelled, "Look! It's a castle!"

The monk knocked my previous target aside and walked up to stand beside me. "Right you are. Perhaps they have some information on this evil?"

Oh, right. We were questing to save the world. Couldn't forget that.

As we strode purposefully through the castle town, I could hear rumors snaking through the villagers as they watched us. One woman even jumped in front of our party, offering to dance for us. When she had finished and the four of us were wondering exactly what sort of value such a dance had, she grabbed me by the hand and whisked us into the tavern.

After a rest and a good dosage of potions ("Exactly what kind of potions do you mean?" queried the white mage. "Good ones," replied the vendor.) we learned the cause for concern in the kingdom--the king's daughter had been kidnapped! "Well, I'd say that's our quest for right now," commented the black mage, "Rescuing the princess. It usually is."

He was right, I realized, as an odd image of a large, mutated turtle laughing maniacally flashed through my mind. It was the official jobs of heroes to rescue princesses. "But... should we not find some more weapons first?" I interrupted. My small dagger was already beginning to seem meager. The monk let out a self-righteous "humph" in reply, and I glared. It wasn't my fault that he was the only one who could fight with his fists.

However, the other two agreed, and soon we were walking out of town with three shiny new weapons in hand: A short sword for myself, and two rods for the mages. "Is that finally everything?" grumbled the monk, still wearing his starting equipment.

"Of course. Quit complaining," retaliated the black mage, adjusting his hat. "With my spells, this kidnapper should be nothing!"

He spoke too soon. Something large jumped in front of us and its claws raked the black mage's side along the way. A flash of a "0 HP" shot through my mind and I knew immediately that he was out of commission. Unsheathing my sword, I pounced on our attacker, only to be brushed aside like a mosquito. It then turned on the white mage, who was busy trying to resurrect her comrade. One slash of its claws and our healer was gone. "N-No!" I growled.

The monk sent a fist the monster's way, but it was easily deflected and before long he was knocked out as well. My enemy turned its gleaming eyes my way. The last thing I was were its painfully sharp fangs.

And the last thing I thought was, Dammit, I forgot to save.

The End

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