"Good work," Kang Oh said.
"We're finally done!" Sephiro cheered. Eder was smiling too.
Kang Oh's party had just finished another day of hunting.
"I'll see you tomorrow."
He needed to be someplace else, so he left first.
Kang Oh stood on Latnia City's magic circle and yelled, "Teyno's Nest!"
Bright light wrapped around him and the scenery changed. He was greeted by the sight of the riverside and a giant monster turtle.
"You're here, Master," Teynos said. If it could move, then it would've dragged its massive body over.
"How have you been doing?" Kang Oh approached it and stretched out his hand.
"Not much has happened, so I've been pretty bored." Teynos pushed its head forward, and Kang Oh rubbed its head.
'You're so cute.'
Is this what it felt like to come back to your dog after a long day's work?
Kang Oh pulled out a beautiful blue and yellow stone from his inventory.
"This is pretty, right?"
"Here, it's a present."
He'd gotten it from Ullevador, a crystal cave in the Goddess's Land.
"Thanks, Master." Teyno's shell split open, and the tentacles within grabbed the stone.
"If I find something better, then I'll bring it to you next time."
"You have something for me, right?" Kang Oh went straight to the point.
'Give me my monthly dungeon reward!'
"Of course. But Master."
"You've gathered enough repel points to expand the dungeon."
"I've accumulated repel points? Give me the soul stone."
Teynos pulled out the soul stone from its shell and handed it over.
"Dungeon Management!" Kang Oh yelled, and the Dungeon Management window popped up. "Oho?" Kang Oh's eyes gleamed.
As Teynos said, he'd accumulated quite a lot of repel points.
If the dungeon's guardians repelled invaders or the dungeon's traps dealt with them, then the soul dungeon would gain repel points. Repel points acted as currency that could pay for any of the soul dungeon's features. For example, changing its environment or topography, setting up traps, upgrading guardians, etc.
Only repel points could be used to expand a soul dungeon. Expanding the dungeon obviously increased its size, but it also increased its monthly payment.
"If you expand the dungeon using repel points, then your rewards will increase. Of course, you can use it on other things too," Teynos kindly explained.
Kang Oh nodded his head.
'But why have I accumulated so many repel points?'
Kang Oh clicked on 'Dungeon Log' and soon had his answer.
The Dungeon Log stated that his three guardians had killed anyone who'd gone in the water.
'My guardians were able to repel the Dungeon Hunters that were looking for a hidden dungeon.'
The monster shark, Sharkrai!
The young kraken, Monju!
The venomous sea snake, Skeld!
These three guardians had done their jobs well, allowing him to gather enough repel points to expand the dungeon.
"I obviously gotta use the repel points to expand the dungeon!" Kang Oh then clicked on 'Dungeon Expansion'.
[You have used 100 repel points to expand the dungeon.]
The ceiling and ground shook as if there were an earthquake, and the water began to violently slosh around.
It didn't shake for long.
"Is it finished expanding?"
Kang Oh used the Dungeon Management window to examine the dungeon's new form.
The dungeon had certainly gotten larger. The lake, which was the core of Moss Cave, was deeper and wider than before, and the passageway leading up to it had become longer and more complex.
[You can add another entrance to the dungeon.]
[The dungeon's monsters have become stronger. Applicable Monsters: Gnus, Stone Eater.]
[A new monster, Milok, will now spawn in the dungeon.]
[You may now collect a small quantity of southern sea salt.]
[You can now catch more species of fish from the lake.]
Dungeon Expansion didn't just increase the size of the dungeon. What was the best way to put it? It was as if the dungeon itself had leveled up.
'I wonder how much the reward has increased.'
Kang Oh clicked on Dungeon Reward.
[Dungeon Reward (Monthly Payment)]
200 Gnus Skin.
20 Stone Eater's Core.
10 Milok Whiskers. (New)
2 Potion of Explosive Growth.
Kang Oh couldn't contain his shock. All of his rewards had doubled! Moreover, he'd also gained another reward: the Milok Whiskers.
"What is it, Master?"
"Does expanding the dungeon normally increase the rewards this much?"
"Of course. Expanding the dungeon increases the rewards significantly. In exchange, the amount of repel points you need to expand it again goes up too."
Kang Oh checked how many repel points he'd need to expand it again. 1,000 repel points!
'It's quite a bit more.'
The first expansion only cost 100 repel points. However, the next expansion would cost 1,000 repel points. Would the expansion after that cost 10,000 points?
"And I have something to tell you, Master."
"What is it?"
"If you want to maintain the expansion, then you need to spend repel points."
"What!?" Kang Oh immediately clicked on Dungeon Information. Like Teynos said, there was now a maintenance cost for his dungeon.
Maintenance Cost: 100 repel points (Monthly payment).
"What happens if you can't pay the cost?" Kang Oh asked.
"Once you expand the dungeon, it doesn't return to its original state. However, the added monsters, materials, rewards, etc. return to what they were before."
If he didn't pay the maintenance cost, then the dungeon would gradually worsen. It was like a bag of chips filled with nitrogen gas.
"Mm. If I want to maintain the upgrades and expand the dungeon in the future, then I'll need more repel points."
Expanding the dungeon wasn't the end of things. The dungeon required continual maintenance. In other words, it was like managing a fief; you had to keep investing in the dungeon.
Kang Oh thought over the matter.
Was he going to give up on the additional rewards and keep it as is? That was the easy way. It didn't require him to draw in players. Obviously, it reduced the chance that he'd lose the soul dungeon too.
On the other hand, expanding it was difficult. He would have to manage several aspects of the dungeon, and he'd also have to get other players to come to his dungeon. Moreover, it increased the risk of him losing his dungeon.
In exchange, his rewards would increase significantly.
"Let's give it a shot."
Kang Oh made his decision. He decided to expand his dungeon as much as possible! To choose the easier path due to potential danger; that wasn't Kang Oh's style.
"Alright then. First..." Kang Oh sent Man Bok a message.
- Mr. Man Bok, I have something to talk to you about.
Teyno's Cave, or Moss Cave, was their source of southern fish. Part of the profits of selling southern fish went directly to Kang Oh. However, he'd heard that the business wasn't doing so well as of late.
As proof, the amount of gold he'd been receiving had been decreasing.
It was because there was another source of southern fish now. They could provide more fish than Man Bok could, and they had a much larger variety too.
They had lost their monopoly on southern fish.
'This is good.'
Kang Oh planned on ending the fish business.
* * *
Kang Oh and Man Bok would occasionally meet in the Viyoom Inn to discuss matters. This time was no different.
The two sat down at a corner table, exchanged pleasantries, and then went straight to business.
"What's the matter? Is it because of the dragon equipment business?"
"No. I have something to tell you regarding Moss Cave."
"You mentioned that the fish business isn't really working out."
"Business is always a hard venture." Man Bok smiled.
"That may be true, but I think it's time to end the fish business," Kang Oh said.
"Mm? That's a rash decision. Southern fish is valuable and still sells." In other words, it still made them some money.
"There's something I need to do there."
"Something you need to do?" Man Bok tilted his head.
Kang Oh explained how he'd expanded the dungeon, how the rewards had doubled, and how he'd decided to focus on expanding the dungeon from now on.
"Mm." Man Bok looked disappointed.
The southern fish business made Man Bok money too. However, expanding the dungeon was only beneficial to Kang Oh.
"In order to expand the dungeon, I need more people to know about it. I'm also going to tell people that you can catch southern fish there. By doing so, several players with the Fishing skill will begin coming to the dungeon," Kang Oh said.
"That'll lower the price of southern fish."
"Yes. That's why I want to end the southern fish business, and focus on our new venture."
Their new venture was the dragon equipment business.
"Understood." Man Bok nodded his head. "But how do you intend on expanding the dungeon? Do you have a concrete plan?"
"Yes, I have an idea."
"What is it?"
"I'm going to use my name." Kang Oh grinned.
* * *
The next day.
Kang Oh returned to Teyno's Nest.
'Let's get ready to welcome our guests.'
He was going to give the dungeon a facelift before he went public with it.
Kang Oh held the soul stone and yelled, "Dungeon Management!"
Once the Dungeon Management window popped up, Kang Oh changed a few of the dungeon's topographical features. He made the passageway that led to the lake, and by extension, his underwater guardians, easier to navigate through.
'Moss Cave's specialty will be underwater combat.'
By expanding the dungeon, a new monster spawned in the dungeon; this new monster, or Milok, was an underwater monster that looked like a catfish.
These new monsters, as well as his underwater guardians, would repel anyone who entered the lake.
'There has to be some sort of bait.'
Kang Oh created a wrecked ship at the bottom of the lake. He watched as the wrecked ship took shape through the Dungeon Management window.
[You have added a wrecked ship. 3,000 gold has been spent.]
'It's crazy expensive!'
In exchange, there was a treasure box inside the ship, and the dungeon master could place whatever they wanted inside.
Kang Oh placed a Potion of Explosive Growth inside.
The potion would increase experience and proficiency gained by 300% for a week! However, it stopped being effective once you hit level 300.
He didn't know how much it'd be worth. After all, he'd never sold it before.
What did he do with all the other potions? He gave them to Soo Ah. It was to help her level up as quickly as possible in hopes that he'd one day be able to hunt with her!
Anyhow, the dungeon had a lake inside, and a wrecked ship inside the lake. However, there were monsters guarding the wrecked ship. After just barely defeating the monsters, a player would find a treasure box inside the wreckage!
Man, he'd really painted a good picture here!
[You have placed a Potion of Explosive Growth inside the wrecked ship's treasure box.]
[Would you like to leave the key with one of your guardians?]
He was going to create some more guardians, so he decided to hold off on that for now.
[You have not left the key with anyone. In its current state, the treasure box is automatically open.]
"Alright, good. Next up is..." Kang Oh clicked the 'Add Guardians' tab, and he was met with a list of monsters and fish that lived in the dungeon.
"I wonder which one I should pick." Kang Oh's eyes gleamed.Previous Chapter Next Chapter