5 Chapter5-Mana Drainer

Gazing upon the powerful attributes of the Dragonfire Spell, for the first time, Howard felt a profound transformation.

He no longer perceived himself as an insignificant ant that the world could do without, but as an emerging force poised to ascend to unparalleled heights.

No matter how confident, resilient, or tenacious he had been in the past, his humble origins and the shadows of vulnerability and poverty clung to him.

Yet, the emergence of the Dragonfire Spell showcased the potency of the Supreme Synthesis—a talent capable of turning the mundane into the miraculous.

A mere F-level fireball, with the right application, had evolved into a formidable S-level skill. What did he now have to fear?

Nothing could deter him from taking the steps, one by one, towards his destined pinnacle.

"Proceed with the synthesis!" Howard's eyes gleamed as he initiated the Supreme Synthesis once more. Two Synthesis Interfaces materialized out of thin air, emanating a soft golden glow.

This time, Howard aimed to synthesize a plain staff.

[Decayed Oak Staff]

[Level: 1]

[Quality: Mediocre]

[Attribute Bonuses:]

[Mana +50]

[Spirit +3]

[Regenerate 2 mana per second]

[Special Effect: None]

Typically, equipment quality ranges from Iron, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, Diamond, Epic, Legendary, to Mythical—nine distinct tiers.

However, beyond these recognized tiers exists a realm of the 'Supreme Artifact'.

Below the initial tier is the lesser-known 'Mediocre' classification.

Clearly, this Decayed Oak Staff belonged to the Mediocre tier. Its subpar quality and meager attribute bonuses rendered it seemingly worthless.

But in Howard's hands, these mediocre staves held the potential for transformation—from the trivial to the terrific, perhaps even elevating to the status of a Supreme Artifact.

Two decayed oak staves were placed into the Synthesis Interface, which began to shake violently, emanating a thick golden light.

Then, amidst this radiant glow, the two merged into one.

[Ding! Synthesis successful. You've obtained the Iron Staff — Embrace of Ivy!]

[Embrace of Ivy]

[Level: 1]

[Quality: Iron]

[Attribute Bonuses:]

[Mana +300]

[Spirit +15]

[Regenerate 10 mana per second]

[Special Effect: Entangle Spell (Can release a vine to entwine a target. Enemies with a strength attribute less than 50 cannot break free; the vine lasts for 10 seconds.)]

After a brief glance at the new equipment's attributes, Howard nodded in approval, but his hands didn't stop.

One by one, oak staves were placed into the Synthesis Interface until they all transformed into Embrace of Ivy.

Finally, he placed two Embrace of Ivy staves into the Synthesis Interface.

A deep humming resonated from the Synthesis Interface, which vibrated incessantly.

Eventually, the two verdant Embrace of Ivy staves transformed into a shimmering silver staff, its tip adorned with a red gemstone.

[Ding! Synthesis successful. You've obtained the Bronze Staff — Hellstone Staff!]

[Hellstone Staff]

[Level: 1]

[Quality: Bronze]

[Attribute Bonuses:]

[Mana +500]

[Spirit +30]

[Receive a 20% cooldown reduction]

[Inflict an additional 10% magic damage]

[Special Effect: Earth Spike Spell (Can summon an earth spike in the targeted area, attacking enemies from below and dealing [300 + 2 * spirit] magic damage.)]

Once again, Howard nodded in acknowledgment.

Yet, he still felt unsatisfied.

After all, mere Bronze equipment was hardly befitting of someone with a supreme talent.

In a fervent pace, Howard seemed almost possessed.

He didn't even wait for the synthesis notifications or inspect the results.

Without a moment's hesitation, he continuously fed equipment into the Synthesis Interface. After each successful meld, he began the next round immediately.

[Ding! Synthesis successful. You've obtained the Silver Staff — Waltz of the Endless!]

[Ding! Synthesis successful. You've obtained the Gold Staff — Gaze of Truth!]

[Ding! Synthesis successful. You've obtained the Platinum Staff — Mana Drainer!]

System alerts rose and fell like fleeting whispers. Pieces of equipment materialized in Howard's hands only to vanish beneath the prowess of his synthesis talent, ultimately transmuting into a brand-new staff.

[Mana Drainer]

[Level: 1]

[Quality: Platinum]

[Attribute Bonuses:]

[Mana +1000]

[Spirit +100]

[Receive a 50% cooldown reduction]

[Receive a 50% consumption reduction]

[Inflict an additional 50% magic damage]

[Special Effects:]

[Mana Drain: Each attack with the Mana Drainer converts 1.5% of the damage dealt into mana, up to the user's mana capacity.]

[Energy Displacement: The Mana Drainer can interchange its holder's mana and HP, converting mana to HP or vice versa.]

[Mana Shield: The wielder of the Mana Drainer obtains a shield equivalent to their maximum mana. This shield can withstand both physical and magic damage.]

Gazing upon this magnificent piece of equipment, a surge of elation, bordering on exhilaration, welled up within Howard.

The Mana Drainer's five key attributes endowed him with a boost of a thousand mana and a hundred spirit points.

Beyond that, the 50% cooldown and mana consumption reductions enabled him to cast more spells in a given time frame, significantly elevating his offensive efficiency.

However, the true game-changer was the 50% additional magic damage. This bonus meant he could inflict half as much damage again, making his farming of monsters to level up dramatically more effective.

The equipment's special effect, Mana Drain, might seem meager at a mere 1.5% damage-to-mana conversion.

Yet, given his impressive damage output, this 1.5% translated to a substantial amount of mana.

At the very least, it ensured that Howard never found himself mana-depleted in crucial moments of battle.

Both Energy Displacement and Mana Shield were vital life-saving abilities, significantly enhancing Howard's survivability in combat.

Overall, he was utterly satisfied with this equipment.


By the next morning at the eastern gate of Saint City, the hustle and bustle of activity was palpable.

Countless awakened gathered, preparing to form teams to venture out and farm monsters for leveling up.

"Wolf Team's level 5 boost package! Not 998, not 888, but only 588 and we'll safely elevate you five levels! Limited slots, first come first serve, only 7 spots left!"

"War God Guild is taking on new members for free. C-level talents are welcome! Join the guild and level up for free. Three levels in one day, five in two days, and seven in three days!"

"Step right up, witness the skills of the top fighter, ensuring you level up!"


In this age of farming monsters for leveling, the awakened could freely form teams, with experience points distributed based on team contributions, damage output, and other metrics.

The greater the contribution and damage, the more experience one gained.

Even equipment dropped by monsters could be system-allocated, ensuring fairness.

Even if another member picked it up, it didn't necessarily end up in their inventory.

However, as with everything, there are loopholes.

For instance, one could avoid forming a team, and an awakened could wound a monster to near-death, allowing another to kill the defenseless creature and reap full experience points.

This paved the way for more powerful awakened individuals to start a lucrative business of boosting others, and it was proving to be quite a profitable venture.

As soon as Howard appeared at the city gate, his youthful face instantly caught the attention of several leveling groups, and they flocked around him.

"Young man, you're one of the freshly awakened talents, right? Need someone to level up for you?"

"Hey, lad, what's your talent rank? If you're C-level, you can join the War God Guild and level up to 5 for free!"

"How about the Wolf Team's leveling package? Interested?"

Howard politely declined everyone's offers, pushing his way through the crowd to finally join the leveling team from the Soulspark Academy waiting just outside the gates.

"What the? An F-level waste like him gets to join our training squad?"

"Teacher, won't Howard slow down our leveling pace?"

"Tch! A moocher. If not for Abby, would he even be allowed in our group?"

"I made it here with my B-level talent. How does an F-level like him get a backdoor entry?"

"Enough. This is the academy's arrangement. Besides, the one leading the squad is Teacher Cobham. An extra member means more effort for him. If he isn't complaining, why are we?"

From the moment Howard appeared, he was met with a slow brew of hostility.

Not a single member of the leveling team welcomed him.

Some observed him with cold indifference, others threw taunting remarks, while a few looked away in disgust.

In this awakened world, everyone's status, class, and circle were determined from the moment of their talent awakening.

Howard's arrival was naturally met with disdain from these self-proclaimed "elites".

In contrast, the squad's academy instructor, Alec Cobham, showed no signs of discontent with Howard's inclusion.

Even if an extra member meant exerting more effort on his part.

"Alright, now that everyone's here, let's move out!"

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