Ultimate Level 1

Chapter 11: Goblin hunting
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Chapter 11: Goblin hunting

Max found himself grinning even though his hands were clammy as he scanned the job board in the adventurers guild house. Most of what he saw were either herb and mushroom collecting quests as well as some goblin quests.

The dungeons to the south continually spawned goblins in randomly sized groups within a certain distance of the entrance. The only time a dungeon would stop releasing them was when a party defeated the boss. From what the book stated only so many goblins could be created at a time. Each person could only defeat the boss one time. After that, they would not be allowed to enter that dungeon portal anymore.

His book had given him a little more knowledge about how all this worked but he really needed to find a party at some point that would teach him the ropes.

Always a difficult choice, a soft voice behind him called out.

Turning on his heels, Max saw an elf woman smiling as she motioned to the board. He noticed her shield and sword that she was wearing along with some studded leather armor.

Goblin quests are great for earning a little extra money. I always try to take multiple quests if I can.

Returning the smile that she was giving him, Max nodded as he held out his hand.

Seth. Seth Pendal.

Faylen Arathyra, she stated as she took his hand and gripped it tight. Looking at partying or going solo?

Holding the handshake, Max watched her yellow eyes as they sparkled.

For now Im going solo. Perhaps in a few days I would be open to grouping. You going to be around here?

Nodding, she let go of his hand and reached to the board, taking off two quests as she pulled her hand back.

I will be. Im staying at the Drunken Ogre on the east side of town. Just ask for me if you want and leave me a message. I know a few other party members who would be up for a run at the dungeon.

Trying to hide his surprise, Max nodded as he rubbed his chin, trying to keep his mouth from gaping open like a fool.

A dungeon team

Clearing his throat he glanced back at the board.

Ill let you know, he replied, trying to play it off as if that was no big deal.

He heard her departing and he felt like his whole head was on fire. He had no doubt his head was red and had given away his excitement.

A fricking dungeon team! That is so cool!

Taking a few deep breaths, he calmed himself, realizing his hands were sweating from the excitement and wiped them off on his leather pants.

Focusing on the paper before him, he took three quests. Two were for killing goblins, one for ten and the other for four. The third was for some mushrooms he had noticed on his trip to Windsor Wheel. Not realizing they would be a desired thing he had avoided them since none of them were cooking mushrooms.

Tearing the paper from the boards and folding them in half, Max tucked them into his small pouch on his hip and grabbed his spear that had been leaning against the wall.

Gods, I need to get a hat or something

Groaning, Max wiped the sweat off his face as it ran down his bald head. Even though the sun wasnt at its peak it was warm in his full leather suit of armor.

Im going to smell like a goblin by the time I get back.

Adventuring wasnt pretty by any stretch of the imagination. There was too much stuff he didnt know and now he realized he should have worn his old shirt under this leather armor to help with the sweat that was building up between his skin and the chest piece.

He spotted a few other people headed in the same direction. A few were returning, carrying full pouches and backpacks of what he assumed meant a successful trip. Most had waved or at least acknowledged him.

He had noticed a few wayward glances that seemed weird. Everyone always kept away from each other it seemed, not wanting to interfere with their quests.

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Leaving the open fields, Max reached the trees and started hunting. Taking slow steps and always listening, he knew there would be goblins in the woods as well as in the fields. Rumor had it there were at least two hundred goblins at a time outside the dungeon if no one had cleared it.

Another hour after searching the woods, Max spotted what he was hunting.

A rank stench was drifting along the wind and as he followed it he came upon three goblins bent over a rotting corpse, ripping handfuls from its carcass and stuffing their mouth with whatever they could.

A few pushes and grunts occasionally rang out as they fought over scraps but none of them seemed to notice him creeping up through the dense woods.

They were in a small section clear of trees, maybe only ten feet, near some bushes, eating something and all Max could think of was how he felt.

His heart was racing. This was the moment he had been waiting for. With their attention drawn away from him, he knew this was a huge chance to try out his new spear.

Slowly he lowered his backpack and set it on the ground, making sure it was as quiet as possible.

He noticed one of the usual spears on the ground near the goblins and guessed the other two must use something else he couldnt see right now.

Not knowing how much time he might have before they finished eating, he slinked along the edge of a tree, peering around the trunk.

When all three dipped down, snapping off a bone and tearing another bite free, Max took a breath and came darting from behind the four-foot-wide trunk he had been using as cover.

He covered three solid steps before the goblins heard his feet, pounding into the dirt.

They screeched and turned, each reaching for their weapon, but he was already upon them. His spear lunged forward and struck the goblin in its chest grabbing its spear.

Max almost stumbled as the head of the spear slid through its chest and out its back.

Yanking the shaft and trying to get his footing, he fought the goblin that had dropped its spear and was now gripping his weapon, howling in pain from the hole that ran from sternum to spine.

The other two stepped around, both holding daggers, eyes gleaming and teeth bared, with pieces of flesh stuck between their jagged teeth.

Howling they charged as Max gave one last tug, yanking his spear clear from the injured goblin and swinging it to the right, just in time to force back one of the two coming at him.

The one on his left slashed at him, causing Max to shift toward it, swinging the butt of his spear up as he slid his hands on the shaft. That move allowed him to deflect the goblin's weak attack.

The new speed he seemed to possess as well as the proficiency he felt with this spear made him smile.

He almost chuckled as he took the butt of the spear and slammed the weighted end into the side of the goblin he had dodged, listening to the crack and cry of a broken rib or two from his target. Max stepped back, letting the spear continue its swing and bringing the tip parallel to the ground to point at the third goblin.

It tried to stop its charge seeing the bloodied tip pointed at it. Max was ready and his spear extended, hands having repositioned on the shaft as he drove with his hips and arms, catching its abdomen, tearing it open and sending the goblin to the ground as it dropped its small blade and held its torn torso.

With no hesitation, Max took a step back, taking in the scene before him. There were two goblins both about to die and a third that was trying to rise, its hand holding its side where ribs were broken. The scowl it wore seemed nothing more than a kitten trying to scare a dog ten times its size.

Before it could react, Max sent the spear forward, piercing its throat, causing a gurgling sound as it thudded to the ground.

The sound of a goblin choking on its own blood filled the small area he stood in. Two more quick lunges ended the two he had first struck and the cold wave hit him only once as the three of them died almost at the same time.

[ 5 Stamina Consumed ]

Grunting, Max let out a sigh before forcing a gust of air through his lips, causing a raspberry to echo out through the woods.

Seriously

He wiped the blade and shaft of his spear on one of the nasty shirts on the goblins, using the backside of them to minimize the amount of filth that they seemed covered in. Glancing at the ground he saw they were eating some wild boar that had been decomposing for at least a few days.

Checking the corpses no coins or other goods worth taking were on them. He snatched both of the daggers and put them in his pack. Once done with that he took a deep breath and steeled himself, preparing to harvest ears again.

Dont be a pansy and throw up this time.

Nodding to himself, he opened his eyes after preparing himself, doing what needed to be done in order to earn points with the guild.

Having moved a mile away from where he had dispatched the first group, Max took out his water and food and had a snack.

Only two mushrooms there had been at least ten where I had come from.

As he chewed, he considered how much rarer the mushrooms were around here. He realized most of that was probably due to the number of adventurers in the area and how they were seeking them. Most probably didnt venture northeast since there would be fewer goblins up there.

Putting away his food, Max considered how far these packs of goblins must roam. They had goblins near Alundra but they usually came from a different dungeon to the north. There was even a wolf dungeon up there and occasionally they had to call in help from the adventurers guild for a few scouts and others to ease the gradual increase of wolves.

Lost in his thoughts, Max didnt notice the sound of what was coming toward him.

The sound of feet striking the soft dirt of the woods, with most the leaves still in the tree as the weather had not changed, left him unprepared for the attack.

Whirling at the last moment, Max felt two strikes against his side and back.

Two goblins with spears had charged him, striking together.

The armor he wore had slowed down their sticks, but the speed at which they had run allowed both of them to put more force into their strike as they drove him back, their sticks bending until they snapped, leaving pieces of wood sticking from him.

Max cried out from the pain as he stood up, feeling blood running inside his pants.

Wincing, he jerked the two shafts out quickly with one hand as he held his spear in the other, toward the goblins who were laughing and cackling at him.

As he regained his composure and prepared to attack he saw, behind them, another goblin coming out from the woods.

Goblin shite! Max exclaimed between gritted teeth.

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