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Chapter: 49

William laid his head on Ella's soft, and fluffy, belly as he read the two skills he had gained from acquiring the Dark Mage Job Class.

(20 Mana Points)

-- Disperses an Aura that weakens surrounding enemies.

-- All enemies within ten-square meters around the Dark Mage have their physical and magical resistances decreased by 30%

-- Increase the chances of inflicting status effects on enemies within the aura's range.

-- Skill Duration: 10 Minutes.

(20 Mana Points)

-- Deals continuous pulsing Dark Magic at the enemy for ten seconds.

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-- Damage dealt is equivalent to Intelligence x 2

-- Deals 6x additional damage to enemies for each status effect applied to them while Seed of Darkness is active.

-- Damage can be stacked up to 5x.

'These two skills are quite good,' William thought. 'Now let's check the other skills under the Dark Mage Job Class.'

William wasn't able to keep his excitement from appearing on his face as he opened the Dark Mage Skill Tree. Earlier, he didn't have time to check his skills because he was still in the presence of Celine and Owen.

Now that he was alone, nothing would be able to stop him from exploring the job class that almost wiped out his entire party.

(10 Mana Points)

-- Has a chance to remove a negative buff to a target depending on the user's skill level

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Deadly Venom

(10 Mana Points)

-- Fires an orb of concentrated poison at your enemy

-- Has a very high chance to poison enemies

(10 Mana Points)

-- Range Touch

-- The target contracts one of the following status effects at random: Blind, Poison, Paralysis, Fear, Weakened, and Deafened.

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(10 Mana Points)

-- Fires an arrow of darkness at the target that may cause blindness

(10 Mana Points )

-- Conjures a whip of Dark Energy.

-- Can be used to attack, defend, or let the user maneuver in the terrain.

-- No more than two Dark Whips can be created at a time

-- Damage dealt is equivalent to Intelligence x 2

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(20 Mana Points)

-- Fires a red beam of light to the target that may cause confusion.

-- Once the spell succeeds, the target will enter a berserk state. It will randomly attack anyone within its range.

(20 Mana Points)

(Requires 5 Skill Points to Unlock)

-- Range Touch

-- Prevents the target from regenerating.

-- Healing spells, potions, and other items with healing effects will be rendered ineffective while Unholy Touch is active

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-- Skill Duration: 20 seconds.

-- Summons a ghostly hand that moves as you desire, allowing you to deliver low-level, touch range spells at a distance.

-- The spectral hand is also able to use Dark Whip

(10 Mana Points )

-- Infuse weapon with Dark Element

-- Increases the chance of inflicting status spells to enemies by 10%

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-- Increases the damage of Dark Magic by 10%

-- This effect stacks with the Taint Skill.

(100 Mana Points)

-- Creates a shadow replica of the target.

-- The created shadow is able to manifest the target's power by 30%

-- The created shadow can use any skill or spell that the target possesses.

-- You can only order the shadow to attack or defend. It will not listen to any other orders.

-- Only one shadow can exist at a time.

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-- Increases your and your allies resistance to dark magic by 10%

-- Decrease the effect and duration of status ailments applied to you and your allies by 10%

William finally understood that Dark Magic is not like other elemental magics that dealt devastating damage. It focused more on the impairment of the target and using its moment of weakness to finish it off using Seed of Darkness.

Also, the Spectral Hand along with the Shadow Conjuration gives William plenty of alternatives to boost his curses to its limit.

Although Seed of Darkness might look like a weak skill, its deadliness would shine once the target was inflicted with one or more status ailments.

"It may even be stronger than my Glacial Lance at max level," William muttered. "No. It is definitely stronger. This Darkness Seed is quite sinister. It is definitely the strongest magic attack in my current arsenal, but the condition is that a status effect has to be applied to the target…"

What William didn't know, and Celine didn't tell him, was that the skill was a very rare skill. It was similar to the skill that could be acquired by using Celine's grimoire.

In the central continent, aside from William, there were only five people who were able to use this offensive skill that belonged to Dark Magicians. Celine was one of those five people. This just proved how rare this skill was.

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'So, which one should I get first?' William mused. 'Should I choose first in order to raise everyone's resistance to Dark Magic, or should I learn a status effect skill first like Void Arrow or Confuse Ray?'

William had seen how effective Void Arrow was because he experienced it first hand. As for Confuse Ray, it doesn't even need to be mentioned. Ella going berserk in the middle of her attack was a very scary sight to see.

Of course, if he wanted to be practical, he could just get the Dispel skill that could effectively remove negative buffs on a target instead of getting the skill.

In the end he decided to raise his Dark Mage Job Level to level 15 first before challenging the Hobgoblin Shaman. Due to Gavin's blessing, he would have a whopping 45 skill points available when he reached his target level.

That would be more than enough to get the skill set he required to have his revenge match with the Hobgoblin Shaman.

'One step at a time.' William smiled as he looked forward to visiting the Goblin Crypt tonight. Fortunately, I discovered Dark Magic early. If not, I might have grown conceited from having a smooth exploration inside the Goblin Crypt.'

After defeating the Millennial Beast, William's confidence had swelled exponentially. Only the latest incident against the Hobgoblin Shaman had managed to bring him down a peg.

While William was busy daydreaming of his eventual victory against the Hobgoblin Shaman, Leah appeared in the goat shed looking for him.

"Aren't you bored staying with goats all day long?" Leah asked as she looked at the lazy boy that was lying so snugly on his Mama's belly.

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"Big Sister, as long as I'm with Mama, I will never get bored," William replied with a smile.

"Meeeeeeh." Ella nodded her head in agreement.

"Hmmm…" Leah eyed William with a curious gaze. "You look very calm. It seems that nobody has told you the latest news regarding what is happening in our kingdom."

"Um? Is there something that I should know?" William asked. He was aware that his grandfather was keeping up to date with the latest news in the kingdom with the help of the messenger birds that were sent by his friends and acquaintances.

John and Blitz would also leave town for a day or two in order to see the current situation of the Beast Tide.

William had been unconscious for three days so he was not aware of the recent development in the kingdom. Since his cousin's "girlfriend" was looking for him, it seemed that something big had indeed happened while he was busy thinking of his own problems.

Leah sighed as she gave William the latest news that had just arrived from the frontline.

"Fort Windermere has been overrun by the Beast Tide," Leah said with a serious expression. "More than half of the defenders have died. Those who survived were rescued by the Gryphon Brigade and brought to Windkeep Citadel in order to solidify the second line of defense."

William frowned. If memory served him right, Windkeep Citadel was the Kingdom's second line of defense just in case Fort Windermere fell to the Beast Tide. During the past Beast Tides, the defenses of the Citadel had been reinforced due to the increasing strength of each attack on the kingdom.

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Even so, it was still significantly weaker compared to Windermere Fort.

"What does my Grandpa plan to do?" William inquired. "Is he currently planning to join the fray and earn merits for the kingdom?"

Leah shook her head. "I don't know what Grandpa is planning. However, once Windkeep Citadel has been breached, the Beast Tide will have open access to the inner territories of the Hellan Kingdom."

"Hmmm. I think you don't need to worry about this, Big Sister," William commented. "I'm sure that everyone in the kingdom, including the nobles, have finally realized how dire the situation is.

"I'm sure that our King had already sent out a decree to all the nobles that they must send their private armies to help defend Windkeep Citadel. Big Sister, the Hellan Kingdom isn't that weak. Without a doubt, all the masters in the King's disposal are now headed to the frontlines to deal with the current threat."

"... is that so?" Leah may be smart, but she was still a young girl at heart. She wasn't like William who had read many stories on Kingdom Building, and played many RPG games of the fantasy genre.

William grinned as a thought popped up inside his head. The young boy was sure that his grandfather would definitely not stand by idly. James would certainly join in the fun and earn some merits for Lont. That way, the King would turn a blind eye on the expansion plan that they had started under his nose.

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