Chapter 132 – Chapter 23: Cross #2
“This is the dream setup stage. Are you sure you want to create a dream?”
Just like every time he levelled up, a woman’s voice was heard off-screen. It was a soft, warm voice, but after experimenting a few times, he came to the conclusion that a personality didn’t exist with it.
It was like the voice of an in-game NPC which repeated predefined words.
‘Well, it is understandable.’
If the voice had a personality, it would be like a woman was peeping into his dream. If there was a peeper, people wouldn’t want to dream.
Of course, the voice was only present in the dream, so it couldn’t go and tell others about the dream. However, it was still embarrassing.
He didn’t want to show his dream to others. It would be like revealing his secret desires to them.
In-gong calmed himself by taking a deep breath and looked straight ahead. Just like all the classic movies scenes he had seen in the past, the whole world was white. Furthermore, it was a wide space without walls, so there was no distinction between the sky and the earth.
It felt like a blank canvas which hadn’t been touched.
‘Okay, then the background.’
This wasn’t actually his first time using the Lucid Dream Pillow.
The first time had been while pursuing the barbarian king from the second base. Another feature of the Lucid Dream Pillow was giving a good night’s sleep, so he had used it during the repeated marches.
‘I only tried a few settings.’
The Lucid Dream Pillow was comparable to a game with a save slot. So, he set up a new game by leaving the first slot paused and opening a second slot.
“Please imagine the background you want in your mind.”
“The guide voice can be activated or deactivated at any time.”
The voice was heard in succession. In-gong closed his eyes and concentrated. Due to the nature of dreams, the first thing which came to mind was In-gong’s room.
It wasn’t his bedroom in his mansion at the Demon King’s Palace.
What he pictured was his room before he came to this world—the place where Joo In-gong, not Shutra, stayed. In-gong’s room had a bed, a closet and a bookcase. There was no need to retouch anything with his imagination. He was able to see it clearly like it had been taken with a photograph.
However, In-gong’s eyes didn’t open. He quickly erased the thoughts in his head. If he opened his eyes to see his room, it felt like something in In-gong’s mind would collapse. He had to forget those things in order to survive. So, he buried thoughts of the past in order to live in the current present.
In-gong took deep breaths. He emptied his head and thought of a new background, using his imagination to create the dream.
It was now a garden in the Demon King’s Palace, but it wasn’t exactly the same. It was much wider, and it wasn’t just his mansion that surrounded the garden. There was the mansion where Felicia and Silvan stayed as well as Caitlin’s and Chris’ mansion beside In-gong’s. There was also a blacksmith’s forge in the corner where Amita was playing around.
‘Amita is in the background.’
In-gong laughed as he glanced up at the sky. The sky… It was the lofty, blue sky that In-gong liked.
It was also possible to control the weather. He made it sunny and warm, but the cold wind made it feel refreshing.
‘I felt it last time, but I can understand why there are separate slots.’
Once he started making the settings, there was no limit. It was interesting to play around while setting up the dream.
It wasn’t just the background setting.
“The placement of people is the same as setting the background.”
“The characters are just figures in the dream. They aren’t the actual people. Therefore, both the personality and abilities are created by the owner. Please note this point.”
In-gong nodded while listening to the voice. It was impossible to create all the secrets and past histories of the people included in the dream. When he thought about it, In-gong didn’t have confidence to create them.
He should at least attempt it once. In-gong closed his eyes and imagined it:
The person who had always been with him since entering this world… A voice which spoke up every time In-gong was in danger.
In-gong opened his eyes. A woman with white hair stood before him. She was wearing white clothes reminiscent of clergy attire and had a gold crown on her head. She had one red eye and one blue eye. The light in her eyes were friendly but lonely.
This was still the setup stage, so she couldn’t speak yet. In-gong closed his eyes again and imagined another person.
This time, he thought about Watcher Ainkel. As soon as he opened his eyes, In-gong was overwhelmed.
A gigantic creature was looking down at In-gong from a very high place. Ainkel’s body was a huge green dragon; this was the appearance he had seen when he conquered her dragon heart on Enger Plains. In-gong quickly changed the setting. Then Ainkel, who was bigger than a mountain, became the smaller Green Wind.
Deer horns sprouted from amidst long green hair, and leaves and stems weaved together to form natural clothes. She was a sacred, elegant and noble existence, and her green eyes were full of mystery.
It was the Green Wind he had first seen on Enger Plains.
The next moment, another Green Wind appeared next to Ainkel. She was the cute and charming Green Wind.
Their faces were the same, but the atmosphere they gave off was different. Unlike Ainkel, who stood calmly, Green Wind seemed like she wanted to rush toward In-gong. He was forced to think of a puppy eager to follow her master’s command.
It was at that moment that a tail formed from between Green Wind’s hips, and a dog snack appeared in front of her.
In-gong tried to hold in his laughter. It was cute, but somehow, he felt sorry. The Green Wind before him was the way that In-gong thought of her. Still, wasn’t it quite an exaggeration?
‘Anyway, this is fun.’
This time, In-gong imagined Felicia. She was dressed in a woman’s suit and wearing black framed glasses, so she looked as good as expected. Although Felicia was the age of a high school student, In-gong’s image of Felicia was closer to a teacher or career woman.
Carack wore a black suit and sunglasses. It looked good since he had a great physique.
In-gong summoned Nayatra and looked around reflexively. Although he felt like the gazes of Conquest and Ainkel were somewhat judging, he changed Nayatra into a nurse outfit. Indeed, it worked well.
It was difficult to stop once he starting playing with them like dolls. Except for the white woman and Ainkel, In-gong erased the rest of the characters.
In the first place, the Lucid Dream Pillow was being used today in order to prepare for the fight against Vandal. In-gong imagined the barbarian king and Vandal, and the barbarian king and Vandal were now standing side by side.
‘Next is to limit their abilities.’
If he changed everything using his thoughts, it wouldn’t be proper training. In-gong added additional settings so their abilities matched his current stats.
‘Can I use this to preview my stats?’
This was a type of simulator, so it was possible to verify how he should distribute his remaining points in the most efficient way.
‘The more I look at it, the more this system seems like a scam.’
It would be no help in reality, but the value of the item wasn’t just how it could be utilized in battle. Like Felicia said, this was a tremendous item.
Now that he knew the true value of the item, he was once again thankful to Caitlin. Including Felicia, they were the two people he really wanted to protect.
‘Okay, then I shall begin.’
“You haven’t set up a situation and story yet.”
“Do you want to start the dream?”
“Once you start the dream, you won’t be able to wake up for eight hours unless something special happens.”
“Examples of extraordinary events includes a strong impact from the outside, a strong request from the user or damage to the Lucid Dream Pillow in real life.”
In-gong nodded. He had told Green Wind beforehand to wake him up if something happened.
In-gong was hoping for a fight with the barbarian king and Vandal, so no scenarios or settings were needed.
“Well, I’ll start the dream. I hope you have a good dream.”
The moment the elegant voice spoke, the world changed. Everything was intact, but In-gong could feel it.
Everything in his dream came to life.
In-gong turned to Conquest. As expected, she didn’t say anything. She looked at In-gong with lonely but affectionate eyes.
Why was she making that expression? She had said that In-gong was her only hope.
Famine and Death felt strong affection toward her. War was ambivalent, but was a bit different from Famine and Death. War still liked Conquest.
In-gong wanted to hear more stories from Conquest, but it seemed impossible.
In-gong then turned toward Ainkel. She faced him and laughed softly. Ainkel grabbed the wind and made an invisible chair, then she said joyfully,
“The Lucid Dream Pillow is an interesting item. I know who made this item, but I can’t tell you. You still don’t have enough knowledge.”
As the elegant voice had pointed out, In-gong hadn’t specified any instructions or stories. Nevertheless, Ainkel was acting like this. Moreover, the words she spoke weren’t things he knew.
She knew who made it but couldn’t tell him; this was knowledge unknown to In-gong.
“I’m not Ainkel. I am her remnant. I suppose I am the last piece. I am just the fragment of memory and personality that remains in the dragon heart. I am closer to your cute Green Wind than Ainkel.”
In-gong understood. It wasn’t just Conquest who dwelled in In-gong’s soul; there was also the fragment of Ainkel.
In-gong turned to Conquest again, but she was still the same.
“The Lucid Dream Pillow is versatile, but it is still a limited tool. This world is made by you and is for you. I am buried deep in your consciousness and can talk to you with the help of the Lucid Dream Pillow, but that is it. I am limited in helping you and giving you information related to knowledge that you already have.”
In-gong understood this. He then asked in a blunt manner,
“Ainkel, are Conquest, War, Famine and Death… involved in your death?”
“I guess so.”
It was the answer he had expected. In the end, there was no reliable reason to change In-gong’s thoughts.
Instead of becoming frustrated, In-gong changed the topic to something else.
“Ainkel, I want to go to a dragon’s grave to learn dragon magic. Can you tell me where a dragon’s grave is?”
“You know the place. However, there are many things in your memory, so it isn’t coming up. I will give you a good tip. Figure out how to take advantage of me. Yes, I can help you if this is the case.”
Obviously, he had seen it in the game, but he couldn’t remember it properly. Although Zephyr was a dragon humanoid, he felt no need to visit a dragon’s grave because he couldn’t learn dragon magic.
A dragon’s grave was a training ground for dragons. In Knight Saga, it was a place where a mighty dragon educated his children.
Ainkel summoned In-gong’s memory for him, and a map showing the approximate location of the dragon’s grave emerged in his head. It was the same as he had seen in a book.
As In-gong’s expression brightened, Ainkel smiled and said,
“I will leave it here for today. It is a short meeting, but I have been sleeping for too long. We can have a longer conversation next time.”
In-gong felt somewhat regretful, but he didn’t show this towards Ainkel.
“I will go back now. Conquest Knight, look after Green Wind well.”
With those words, Ainkel closed her eyes. She didn’t disappear into the wind like Green Wind, but In-gong could tell that the Ainkel in front of him now was just an empty shell.
In-gong sent Ainkel back. He would do the same to Conquest, but in the end, he didn’t. Perhaps she didn’t know that she could speak to In-gong through the Lucid Dream Pillow.
“Okay, then back to the main point.”
In-gong turned towards the barbarian king and Vandal. It was like they had suddenly gained life, and the barbarian king and Vandal stared at In-gong.
The world of the Lucid Dream Pillow was a dream. Thus, it was impossible to gain experience or raise his skill levels while inside the dream. Even so, he was able to experience it. He was able to understand his techniques more deeply and could find ways to utilize them.
In-gong exhaled, and when he raised his head, he had Earth Quaker, White Eagle, Night Watch and the Dragon Scales Greaves equipped.
“Let’s get started.”
The barbarian king raised Skull Crusher and approached.
Then eight hours later…
By the time Carack woke In-gong up, he had experienced 32 deaths.
“Shutra, did I appear in the dream?”