*chirp chirp chirp*
“What a strange dream…”
Mumbling under his breath, Seiichi woke up to the melodious singing of the energetic birds and saw the bright blue sky outside his window. A pair of small birds were flying back and forth in front of his window chirping in happiness to each other. One bird was chasing after the other bird and occasionally tried to catch the other by the leg.
“Beautiful isn’t it. A couple showing affection for each other.”
Seiichi was suddenly startled by the appearance of someone’s voice right beside him. When he turned towards the direction of the voice, he saw an average height woman smiling at him. The woman was someone he was very familiar with as she had been by his side for many days already. She was his personal nurse and caretaker who helped him with his daily needs since he came to the hospital.
Kagura Hoshino, a skillful nurse intern who had already worked for 2 years of her nursing career under the care of Doctor Amano. She was not only gentle with her approach but also very quick with her job. There were many embarrassing moments in the beginning, but he quickly bonded with her.
“Hoshino-chan.” He spoke in a soft manner.
“Good morning, Seiichi-san. How are you feeling today?” Hoshino gave a bright smile as she came to his bedside.
“Ah, good… but a bit strange.”
“Strange? How so? Do you feel some discomfort somewhere?”
“No no, I just had a strange dream. A dream of when I first entered into the hospital.”
“Oh. That’s right, it had been over a year since you have been admitted into the hospital. Maybe, you will be discharged soon?”
Seiichi did say a word as he returned his gaze back to the window and stared at the wide blue sky. Time had flashed by so quickly before he had noticed it. It felt like he had just been admitted into the hospital not too long ago and here he was one year later still in the same hospital bed.
Hoshino reached out and pressed her hand against his neck for a bit. She moved her hand to his back afterwards before retracting her hand. She checked the watch on her wrist and thought for a bit.
“It’s a bit early, but it should be fine. You let out a bit of sweat, so let me help you get refreshed. I’ll be right back.”
Hoshino-san quickly pranced out of the hospital ward while giving him a wonderful view of her springy butt securely held by the hem of her nurse uniform. The nurse uniform was a pink short sleeved uniform with buttons going down the right side and reaches just barely midway down her thighs. The pink translucent stockings attached to the pink garter belt peeking out from under the uniform caused her overall appearance to seem sexier.
As she took a step out of the ward, Seiichi also swiftly opened her status.
[Kagura Hoshino (20)] ♀
Status: Healthy (Follicular Phase)
Seiichi wore a wry smile when he saw the points on each attribute which were many times higher than his. It put a dampener on his mood, but there was not much he could do about it right now. For the past year, his status hadn’t changed much from what it was from the first day. Although it did increase over time, the increase wasn’t much and was still much weaker than the nurse’s he had seen.
Instead of feeling down, he should be figuring out any other functions of this gift and deciding on how to utilize it to the best of his ability. He scanned the room for any item he could use for testing and found the only thing he had access to was the blanket covering his legs, the soft white pillow, and his medical gown. After a bit of contemplation, the best and easiest to access was the blanket and decided to check if the ability worked on items.
[Medical Blanket] (Used; Dirty)
Hyperthermic Insulation + 1
Hypothermic Insulation + 4
Comfort + 7
Durability: 7/ 10
“Seems like it works on non-living items as well. But the information given are quite descriptive almost like everything in the world can become game-esque.”
Almost like a game of collection, Seiichi began using his ability to examine everything that he could get his hands on. Besides examining his medical gown and the pillow, he also got the statistical information of the bed, the bed frame, the medical tubes, the medication rack, and the medical devices. There were a few interesting properties for each item, but they are generally properties correlated with what it is used for.
Seiichi was so preoccupied with exploring his ability he didn’t realize how much time had passed. He was surprised when he saw the darkness blanketing the whole sky outside his wide rectangular window. Had he spent so much time already that he didn’t realize so much time had passed? Glancing at the medical monitor, he saw that the time was just barely twelve in the afternoon.
Looking back at the sky outside the window, Seiichi felt very confused on why the sky was so dark when it should be bright and shiny. There was no way that the clock on the medical monitor was wrong because it was connected to the internet. That means, there is something wrong. He had no access to the news thus he could only hope that Hoshino would be back soon.
After waiting for about ten minutes, he started to wonder why it took her so long to return. It shouldn’t take that long to find and get a plastic basin and a clean towel to use. Also, Hoshino should not have any trouble getting the stuff since it was something that she had done almost every day for him. Just when he was thinking something was going on, he heard a *click* sound from the door and a gap at the door was made.
Whoever opened the door didn’t pull it all the way open and chose to only open it slightly. He stared sharply at the door waiting for the moment when the door would open and reveal who opened it. But before any of that could happen, a bunch of words and a loud voice emerged out of nowhere.
[Feeble Mortals of this Abandoned World!
Peace has brought about Weakness amongst All of You!
A Challenge Shall Be Wrought Upon You All!
Face Your Enemies to the Death!
Fight, Scheme, Steal, and Survive until the Bitter End!
For the Gates of Trials has opened!
Only Those who are Fortunate Shall be the Winner and Obtain the Ultimate Prize!
Those that Fall Shall be Forever Lost in the Sea of Rebirth!
Fight! Fight! Fight!
For Only those who Fight Shall Survive!]
Unknown bizarre markings suddenly materialized right in front of his eyes and solidified into intricately designed characters. These characters had a regal, majestic feeling to it that pressured Seiichi into bowing down. Each character released a golden aura that made it feel pure. He found it to be very strange when he felt like he could understand these characters and even feel what each one meant.
The strange occurrence in the sky and now this. There was definitely something odd going on and it isn’t going towards a direction that he liked. As an avid reader, Seiichi had read many light novels of both famous authors as well as personal original stories. If there is any scenario similar to this situation, it would have to be one of those apocalyptic survival stories.
With his crippled status, it would be a huge task to achieve anything and his location is just as bad. He is currently inside a hospital filled with many patients, doctors, nurses, and many more people. If this is a zombie apocalypse scenario, then this hospital would become a huge hot spot for death. Escaping from the hospital would be a hell fest on its own, let alone the crowded streets outside.
Seiichi hoped that this was all just his thoughts and not real, or it is going to be a huge headache to solve. He laid on the bed staring at the golden characters floating in front of him and tried to touch it with his hands out of curiosity. His hand only phased through the character without changing anything. The characters only remained in the air for a few minutes before disintegrated into specks of dust.
The dust then vanished as if it never existed in the first place. Seiichi thought that was the end of it all, but a sudden storm of information poured into his mind. It caused severe pain to overwhelm his mind like thousands of needles piercing into his brain. Squeezing his head with both hands, he clenched his teeth tightly as he tried to resist the urge to howl in pain.
The pain slowly descended from his brain down along his spine and slowly spread throughout his body. Like a wave of fire ants, tiny burning prickles kept resurfacing at the places where the pain first spread through. It was like slow pain that tormented his body and mind. He had long lost track of how much time had passed while this agony tortured him.
After what felt like hours of torture, Seiichi felt a powerful relieving sensation wash through his body once more starting from his head. Each place it washed through brought a sense of warmth and cooling that eased the tense nerves. After it spread to every part of his body, he underwent a rebirth of sort like a phoenix would and felt like his body was much different than before.
There seemed to be a large quantity of foreign information and memories placed into his mind as they popped up one after another. If it had to compared to something, it would be like a person logging into a new game for the first time and trying to figure out all the mechanics of the game. Instantly, Seiichi felt like he knew everything about the gift the elderly woman gave him.
His eyes shined with intelligence as he said, “What an interesting gift I was given… the Modification System. Well then, does the system have an AI or a spirit, I wonder…?”