Everyone was frozen in place—the king on his throne, the soldiers at their posts, the magicians in the hall, and the 200-year-old advisor by the king.They were all overwhelmed, captivated, and terrified.
Golden hair tinged with a maroon hue at its ends, eyes that shone crimson like the setting sun, and a scarlet overcoat that hugged her perfectly proportioned body—she was so beautiful that the world turned just to look at her. Yet, poking out from the overcoat was the symbol of the flugel race—the large, jet black wings of taboo.
As if greeting the true sovereign of the nation, everyone hung their heads before her, trembling in fear. To raise their heads was impossible, to gaze upon her was unthinkable. The retainers could only continue to grovel before her as if to pay their respects.
Radiating an aura of domination and surrounded by prostrating figures, she truly took on the appearance of a ruler. What’s more, her every motion brimmed with an unbridled confidence.
And in the midst of this maelstrom.
Having forced the entirety of the castle into submission without a lifting a finger, the young girl silently smiled and thought to herself.
The hell? Why are all these strangers bowing their heads to me? What is this? Some kind of practical joke? What do they want from me? What just happened? Someone help!?
It was none other than the young girl herself whose mental state was in the most disorder.
Exactly how did things turn out this way? I guess I must first explain this in order. However, there is something I need to say before I explain. I’m actually a man. An exceedingly normal, healthy man. And with that in mind, I humbly request your audience.
Let’s see… I was playing games like any other day.
“X-gate online.” It was a game launched six years back, in the year 2027.The RPG, taking place in the world of Midgard, became popular enough to be adapted into an open-world TRPG. The original was an online game as well, but unfortunately, I didn’t have the proper game console to play it.
…well, I did consider buying it. The Dreamstation, I mean.
The Dreamstation was a console manufactured over 20 years ago, so it was pretty difficult to get your hands on. What’s more, we didn’t have a second-hand store in our neighborhood. Well, it is what it is. Without any major twists, the game created a friendly experience for beginners. Like most RPG’s, monsters, elves, fairies, and a great variety of races decorated the map.
Just as the game was released, I stumbled upon it as a high school student. I had no expectations, but free food is the best food, so I gave it a go.
The result—a complete addiction. I became the so-called ‘fanatic’.
I dedicated as much time my schedule could afford. Eventually, I obtained cash shop items, for which I even picked up a simple side job I could do from home.
Why work at home? …I wouldn’t be able to game if I left the house.
Even my time spent at school felt wasted. And Naturally, I was a faithful member of the go-home club. My happiness—and the happiness of the great majority of players was something decided by how soon we could see the login page again. As the number addicts increased, a law was passed to regulate the distribution of online games. Then, in accordance with the regulation, “X-gate Online” limited the daily playing time to ten hours. As a result, I was able to obtain the same login time as other players while commuting to school. This way, I was able to maintain my status as one of the highest ranked players.
I continued to nurture my in-game character, frantically leveling and alternating between various character classes.
One of the most appealing aspects of the game was the expansive character customization. There were… 8,687,500 different character customizations in total. The ability to freely combine those options allowed for an infinite variety of avatars. This further enabled your ability to foster your love for your own character.
Using this system, the character I created, Ruphas Mafahl, was a young girl of the flugel race. The flugel was one of the game’s many races. It was one capable of flight and possessed extraordinary basic abilities in exchange for being unable to learn all classes of magic. They were also nicknamed the “race of rulers” and were endowed with high charisma and the ability to tame monsters the moment they were born.
These abilities were reflected in the actual gameplay. Furthermore, the flugels had a skill that nullified attacks from opponents with a significant level difference to their own.
This skill was rendered ineffective during boss battles, though.
I trained and trained Ruphas. I armed her with cash shop equipment and participated in every in-game event possible. Before long, I established a nation, which would expand my character’s influence. It started off small, but steadily grew in size.
The game also included a feature that allowed you to wage “war”. Two countries would fight with all their might, and the losing nation would be absorbed into the winner’s realm of influence. Using this system, Ruphas reaped countless victories from hundreds of nations. Of course, although it’s called an “invasion”, both nations needed to give their consent. Attacking without an agreement would leave you shunned by the entire community.
There was one more unique feature in the game: the “novel system”. Made in collaboration with one of the largest online publishers, the system allows players to compile their actions into a “formal history” similar to a fiction novel.
“For this reason, I waged war.”
“We suffered through so many hardships to fulfill this request.”
If you sent these to the official website, the accepted narrations would actually appear on the homepage and be implemented into the game.
If you paid the money, even a small accomplishment could be written as a glorious tale. As a result, there were unique backstories wherever you went in “X-gate Online”, and all players served as protagonists of the story. In addition, if there was a major turning point in the game, the event would be recorded into “history” for