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The Gamers Guide to Freedom

Chapter 04: A Dummy's Guide to Dungeon Mastery

"You really think you'll be able to wake her up?" Rayna asks, the negotiations over with.

Aside from an alliance between my houses and the Phenex house, I'll be getting 5% of their considerable income for the next hundred years, a lifetime supply of Phenex Tears, two vials a week (with the condition that I don't sell them), and a favour from Lord Phenex to be called in whenever I want.

It seems like a lot, but even if Lalatina Phenex had fought against the current government in the civil war, she's a relic of a time long past and a lot of people would rather she never wakes up at all. Besides, my parents did most of the negotiations already, I just picked up where they left off.

"I can do it. It might take some time, the curse seems custom made so I won't find an easy way to lift it, but it just means I know where I have to focus my studies," I say calmly, looking over Lalatina.

She's been moved to a bedroom in my house, which is why Rayna is with me. Lord Phenex was hesitant to let me take her but acknowledged that my wards were adequate protection for her, especially since nobody even knows she's here.

"If you're right, it'll be a glorious day indeed, we've spent centuries trying to wake her up to no avail," Rayna admits as I chuckle.

"Oh? Maybe it'll even be a special occasion," I reply easily, making her blush slightly at the reminder of her earlier flirting, even if she was just trying to gauge my reaction to marrying Ravel.

She wants me to marry Ravel for some reason I'm not entirely clear about. Rakul isn't particularly bothered either way but he's implied that he'd accept easily if I wanted to marry her, but I've never even met the girl so I'm not eager to tie myself down, even if I could have three wives, and countless mistresses, without it drawing any attention.

"Perhaps it will, Lord Dantalion," Rayna agrees, not quite meeting my gaze. "I imagine that my family will be so happy to have our honoured ancestor back that you'd be able to get away with just about anything."

"Well then, that'll be an interesting day then, won't it?" I ask, my hand lifting her chin up as I make her look into my eyes.

I've always had a thing for older women. I lost my virginity to one of my friends' mothers, oddly enough we aren't friends anymore, and most of my dalliances in my past life were with older women, my teachers, lonely housewives, etc.

That doesn't mean I didn't have lovers my own age, or younger, just that most were older. I had a younger girl who I was tutoring as a regular partner, and her mother was more than happy to negotiate another method of payment for my time.

She wasn't happy when she realised her daughter spent most of her lessons on her knees, but her grades were rising so she couldn't argue with my methods.

"I… suppose it will, Lord Dantalion," Rayna agrees with a growing blush, yeah she's definitely a sub.

"Then you can be happy to know that your ancestor is in good hands, unless you'd rather experience just how good those hands are for yourself first…" I tease, wrapping my other arm around her waist and pulling her against me as she yelps in surprise.

"L-Lord Dantalion, I-" Rayna starts, going quiet as she feels my hands resting on her ass.

"Please, call me Kuro," I say calmly, watching her blush grow.

"Kuro, this is highly improper," Rayna says, blush darkening and not resisting in the slightest as I gently grope her backside.

"Is it? We're devils, and our families are going to be very close, but if I'm making you feel uncomfortable just say so and I'll stop," I say calmly, her breasts pressed against my chest as I continue to play with her ass, over the top of her dress. "But if this is improper, then don't you have yourself to blame? Teasing a younger devil with your body, tempting me like you did," I say accusingly, my smile playful as she blushes harder.

She could stop this at any moment, but even as her dress is slowly pulled up she just lets me do what I want, my hand moving under it to play with her ass directly.

"Should I apologise, Kuro? Y-you enjoyed it, didn't you?" Rayna retorts, even as my hand moves beneath her panties and plays with her bare ass. "Having a noble lady exposing herself for you, with her husband just a single room over."

"I did, but you shouldn't tease if you aren't willing to follow through," I warn, spinning her around and pulling her back against me, my hand slipping back under her panties as I tease her already wet slit, my other hand moving to her chest.

Again, she doesn't do anything to stop me, no matter how 'improper' this may be, even as I start to slip a finger inside her. And as her dress is pulled down, her tits bounce free, no bra in sight as I immediately grope them, squeezing her breasts and tweaking her nipples.

"W-who said I wouldn't follow through? Like you said, we are devils after all," Rayna replies, pushing her ass against my crotch. "M-Mhmm, good hands indeed," she moans while grinding her ass against my covered manhood.

Her breathing speeds up as I play with her body, but as she starts to pant, face flushed as she pushes her quim against my hand, I grin.

"We are devils, and do you know what is truly devilish?" I tease, and just as she's about to cum I pull back, grinning as she whimpers. "I can tease too, Lady Phenex."

"T-That's not fair~" Rayna mewls, making me grin as she turns around, face flushed as she gives me a pitiful glare.

"Neither was teasing me so I was distracted by your sexy body during the negotiations, so now we're even," I reply easily, I am definitely spiteful enough to blueball myself to get even.

Blushing again, she can't deny my words even as she whimpers slightly, rubbing her thighs together in a desperate attempt to reach her climax, but it's already gone.

"You are a cruel man, Kuro… what happened to not teasing if you aren't willing to follow through," Rayna asks with a strange look.

"Oh, I will. When I bring back your ancestor, you and I are going to have our own private celebration, and when we do I'm going to use you in any and every way I want," I say, making her blush. "And you're going to let me, aren't you?"

"I should go, Kuro," Rayna diverts, fixing her clothes as I smirk. "I would wish you luck in lifting our ancestors' curse, but I know she's in very good hands."

"Take care, Rayna, I'm sure I'll be seeing a lot more of you soon," I reply, watching her blush slightly as she curtsies.

"I'm sure you will, I look forward to getting better acquainted with you in the near future," Rayna responds flirtatiously, stepping back and making a magical circle.

Heh.

Rayna Phenex

Fuck.

Reappearing in her bedroom, she scowled to herself as she swore revenge against the little bastard.

That damn tease, he knew exactly what he was doing to her. She started it, but she may have bit off more than she could chew.

He wasn't wrong in that she wanted him a little distracted, and men found it hard to focus with an erection, but her main goal with Kuro was simple.

She wanted Ravel to become Lady Dantalion, or perhaps Gaap, not Leviathan though; it had too much history despite the respect the name was due.

Ravel was honestly wasted babysitting Riser, as much as she adored her son she could admit that. Riser had no real ambition, and while she was happy to let him spend his days indulging and relaxing, Ravel was a far more focused and intelligent girl, she had so much potential and it was going to waste just following Riser around.

The fact that it would solidify a powerful alliance between her family and a family that would rise quickly in the political ranks. She could see how the winds were blowing, the Dantalion Wards alone would make Kuro in high demand, but as the head of three houses and a considerable amount of political leverage, he was bound to end up as someone powerful, and Ravel deserved someone like that.

Aside from that, she'd realised something else about him, he was a dominant man who knew how to get what he wanted, she only flirted with him to check his reactions but she would have let him fuck her right next to her ancestor if he had pushed her, and he clearly knew it. He just did what he wanted with her, and that made her wetter than she had been in a long while.

If he'd abused her a little, she'd have let him do anything to her, a couple of spanks and some hair pulling and she'd have begged him to abuse her.

Family fetishes were a well-known phenomenon, and the Phenex's drew the short straw, being both submissive and masochistic, it was why her husband's Peerage had a sadist in it, or it did before some terrorist scum killed them.

Rakul hid it well, but the loss of his Queen and Rook hit him hard, as it did to them all, they'd both been in his Peerage for a great many years and were practically a part of the family.

They didn't take it to Gremory levels, but you couldn't share a house and a bed with someone for a century and not get attached to them.

Shaking off the sad thoughts, she went back to focusing on what mattered, the pleasure Kuro had denied her.

She'd get him back, she wasn't going to let some devil barely out of his teens outflirt her, it wasn't like Rakul would mind her having some fun on the side.

Riser's party, that's where she'd show the little brat that he couldn't outflirt an old minx like her. She'd be there to make sure Riser didn't cause too much trouble anyway.

But for now, she'd have to settle for her own touch. Quickly stripping naked she threw herself onto the bed, her hand moving between her legs as she gently started to stroke her slit, slipping a single finger in, as Kuro had done before.

Kuro Dantalion

As fun as messing with people is, I do have work to do and that's why I find myself in the cellar of my mansion, a ritual room already prepped and ready thanks to my mothers experiments.

With the body of one of my attackers laid in the centre of the ritual circle, I start the spell cautiously. I could cast speak with the dead whenever and wherever I want, but the problem with calling the spirits of the departed back to the land of the living is that they aren't always eager to leave again, and possession is a serious threat when you deal with these kinds of things.

As a Gaap I have a resistance to such things, but I'm far from immune to them, so I don't feel like taking any chances, especially dealing with the soul of a devil.

The ritual circle starts to glow a deep blue and the candles flicker faster before their flames also turn a shade of blue, the body starting to float as the spirit of the assassin rises from the body.

A more experienced necromancer wouldn't need a body, just a name or something linked to the spirit, but I'm still learning and as the spirit turns to me, I narrow my eyes.

"W-who… who are you? Where am I?!" he says, panic and fear in his tone, even as it wavers, echoing unnaturally.

"I'm the person whose family you tried to kill, you're in the cellar of the Dantalion family mansion, trapped in a ritual circle to stop you from wandering off, oh and you're dead," I add coldly, watching his eyes widen.

"W-what? Dantalion, I've barely even heard of your family, how would I even try to kill a Noble family, I'm a fucking store clerk!" he protests as I narrow my eyes.

"I should warn you, the Gaap family has our ways of extracting information out from spirits, don't think your death will spare you the pain of interrogation," I warn, watching his reaction carefully.

I don't see a reason to cause unnecessary suffering, but my enemies get no such mercy.

"I-I don't know what you want from me! I was just going to work then there was only darkness, and pain. I didn't attack your family, I swear it."

"Well, that's a little odd, considering I'm the one who killed you after you attacked me. See the burns on your body? That was my acidic spell that did that," I admit easily, watching his transparent eyes widen.

"But- I'm no fighter, I've never been able to do more than the weakest magic, I wouldn't attack some noble heir. It doesn't make sense…"

"That it doesn't, but I have my ways of getting to the bottom of this," I say, pulling out a glass flask and pulling off the stopper.

He doesn't get a chance to respond as I calmly roll it into the circle, watching as the soul is pulled towards the flask, even as he shrieks and tries to move away

As the soul is dragged into the flask, I smile and watch the stopper move back into place, the glass flask filled with a translucent blue liquid.

The candles flicker out, and the circle fades as I reach down and grab the Soulflask.

The Liber Animas holds more than spells and rituals, possessing the crafting plans for several magical items including Soulflasks.

It's just a regular glass flask, enchanted with spells and runes, and it can hold a soul in liquid form.

Moving the body aside, I start the process again, and again I get the same result.

A grocer, a librarian, a petty criminal.

Every soul has the same story, they don't remember attacking me or my family. Some haven't even heard of the Dantalion family, they all swear innocence, and yet I killed a few of them with my own hands.

But I believe them, as bizarre as it seems. Which leads me to another piece of evidence, the mastermind is capable of controlling the minds of other people.

But I have a theory of my own.

I 'woke up' just as I was given leave from the meeting, but Kuro Dantalion had been stuck in that meeting room for hours, and yet the attack happened within an hour of me leaving.

And the attackers who tried to kill me were frankly pathetic, even if I'm not a direct fighter the chance of a bunch of brainwashed weaklings taking me out were slim to none.

It's too convenient, the professionalism of the attack on my parents compared to the amateurish attack on me, the timing.

I think the mastermind wanted me to survive, while taking my parents out of the picture.

Why? Well, I'm less experienced than my parents, and the fact that I was attacked should make me worried about my own safety, so they might expect me to be more easily manipulated.

Which puts Katarea back on the prime suspects list, same with Serafall though she's lower on the list. Both hope to use me to serve their own ends, but I honestly don't think either are responsible.

That doesn't mean their factions aren't, but I also see why Serafall warned me not to trust that things are as they seem.

Almost every single 'assassin' was from Gremory territory, or to be more specific, they were from the Gaap territory that the Gremory currently have. One of the attackers was a member of Serafall's staff.

Someone wants me to suspect the Gremory's, or the Gremory's want me to think someone wants me to suspect them. Could be either, Devil's are sneaky like that.

Moving back upstairs, I place the Soulflasks inside a cabinet in my new bedroom, the master bedroom of course.

I've had the skeletons move all my parents' stuff into storage, and my stuff into their room and as I go to sit down I pause.

It's mostly clothes, a chessboard, books, and other diversions scattered around since they weren't smart enough to sort things, but sitting on the desk are two glowing bottles I don't recognise.

Or to be more precise, I don't recognise them from the memories I have of this world, but I do remember them from my original life, from the CYOA settings to be precise.

I took more than a few drawbacks and gave up on a lot of benefits to get these, I just figured I already had them, I just needed to work out how to use them.

I guess I was wrong.

Well, this is a bit awkward master… I placed them in your bedroom because your personality suggested that'd be the first place you'd go and then you just moved into the master bedroom instead, sorry.

Hmm? It's fine, Isis, it's not like I've needed them yet.

Walking over, I pick up the one filled with a deep purple liquid and look over it, the crystal bottle lacking any form of label.

But I know what it is, and as I remove the stopper and lift it to my lips, I just hope all the drawbacks and options I ignored are worth it.

As I drink the strangely tingly liquid, I can only best describe the taste as 'power', the feeling rushing through my body as my magic responds, coursing through my veins.

Essence of the Archmage

As the Archmage, you have the ability to use magic from any system, even if they do not use the same power type as you have access to (such as ki or chakra). You also have the ability to learn any magic, even unique ones, if you understand them. Additionally you possess an innate magical sense that allows you to feel the magic around you, allowing you to learn how to duplicate spells cast around you. You can teach others how to use magic, even if they previously lacked the capacity to use that system, or magic in general. You gain instant mastery of a specific branch of magic, of your choice.

It's times like this when I wish I could reach back and slap the past me sat fucking around in class, because this ability grants complete mastery of any branch of magic the chooser desires.

Anything from a Jutsu style from Naruto, to any kind of magic from any anime or game in existence, the list was truly immense and impressive.

I could have picked Time magic and have been almost unstoppable, I could have picked Reality magic and have warped the very fabrics of reality at my whims.

Hell, Toon magic and have been damn near unkillable thanks to Looney Toons style logic.

But no, I picked something very special indeed.

Eromancy - Master

I picked sex magic, because I think with my smaller head.

I'm sorry, Master! My creator wanted you to not know the significance of your choices until you'd already picked them.

No, it's fine Isis. Though the fact that you have a creator is useful information, I made these choices and even with the dumb magic choice this is still very useful.

I gained six new spells and a ritual, all based around the bedroom of course, but I suppose I'll find some uses for them regardless. If nothing else it'll be fun.

And I can duplicate any magic system, any unique magic, and this comes with a considerable boost to my already considerable magic reserves. I could learn to use the magic of Angel's or other races, steal the family magic of other devils, whatever I wish.

As I grab the second vial, I take the stopper off and drink the black liquid, there's no point complaining now and the fact that Isis has a creator means I have a patron, even if I don't know why they're doing this.

Essence of the Dungeon Master

As the Dungeon Master, you have the power to create and manipulate dungeons, with a natural proficiency in architecture, puzzle-making, trap-making and enchanting. You also have the ability to create monster races from scratch to populate and protect your dungeons, which will serve you with complete loyalty, and respawn eventually as long as the dungeon core is intact. Finally, you gain proficiency in two magical crafting arts of your choosing, and the means to progress in the arts, as every dungeon needs it's treasures.

Alchemy - Adept

Enchanting - Adept

Knowledge of a few potion recipes and runic enchantments floods my mind as I wince slightly, before shaking my head.

My idea for a 'build' was quite simple.

When I was looking over my options, there were a few choices of 'dungeons' but most of them would have had me fighting hordes of foes to gain power.

But this one was quite different, because instead of fighting through the dungeons like a cliche Rpg hero, I could make the dungeons myself and gain power from them instead.

It suited my lazy personality, and with crafting and necromancy I could just vibe in my dungeon, raising the dead, making monsters, and crafting powerful artefacts and potions.

It doesn't work out quite like that in reality of course, but it still could work out rather well, because as plans and traps fill my mind, I can only smile as the potential hits me.

I have work to do.

Venelana - Two Days Later

Time was running out, and at the worst possible time Kuro Dantalion had seemingly cut off all contact from the outside world once more.

She needed him to buy time so this damnable engagement wouldn't tear her family apart, but he hadn't answered any of her calls over the past two days and worse still… the Dantalion mansion had vanished.

She couldn't enter the lands, naturally, but if you flew above high in the sky on the border of his territory you could see the mansion before, now only grasslands remained, and she'd clearly seen the empty fields where once stood the infamous Dantalion Mansion.

Or she could before a thick fog covered the entire Dantalion lands, and only the Dantalion lands as it stopped at the ward boundary.

They'd all felt whatever magic he used to move his home, it was far from subtle and had the Underworld wondering what the hell Kuro was doing, and where he got the power to make his spells be felt throughout the Underworld.

But she wasn't interested in the magic used, she knew little about magic beyond her considerable talent with the Power of Destruction, and she knew when something was more complicated than she could understand. She was very specialised after all.

She cared that Kuro had single-handedly countered her plans simply by not answering his phone, but she did know he was coming back.

She knew the power of information, and with her ear to the ground she had heard of Riser's upcoming party and more importantly the guest list.

Aside from plenty of heirs, including Rias who couldn't afford to let Riser make allies while she played schoolgirl as much as she didn't want to go, she'd heard Riser boasting that his new best friend, kuro, who'd given him the same lake house the party would be held at, would be there.

Of course he also talked up how he'd heroically come to Kuro's rescue, while making sure to not make Kuro sound weak.

So, Kuro was planning on leaving his fortress, and it was entirely understandable that he'd been so busy lately, but the unintentional stonewalling was putting more and more pressure on her and her family.

Honestly this entire situation was stupid and could be solved with a single serious conversation, but her family were all stubborn in their own ways.

Zeoticus had a serious inferiority complex over how quickly Sirzechs surpassed him, and ruled their home with a firm hand because it made him feel like he was still in control of something despite his weakness compared to their son, and that meant he wouldn't listen to any family members once he made up his mind, not her, not Rias, and certainly not Sirzechs. He was rushing this entire engagement and exasperating the problem ten-fold because his inferiority complex was made worse by the land they were soon to lose, adding Kuro into the list of people he was comparing himself to.

The fact that he couldn't directly use the Gremory's luck magic only made it worse with Kuro having three different respected lineages and at least two of their powers.

Sirzechs could end this entire thing with a single order, and while it would be an abuse of power it could be explained away in a thousand ways, and nobody but Zeoticus and maybe Rakul would even really care, it wasn't like the Satan's didn't abuse their powers anyway.

Only a fool would think that Lord Sitri had actually broken off the engagement between little Sona and her would-be husband over a chess game, that was just him saving face after Serafall demanded he end it and let Sona find her own husband.

Seirillia told her that things had been tense between her husband and overly powerful daughter for a while, before they settled because Lord Sitri was more reasonable than her own husband.

So Sirzechs could end this, but he was stubbornly set on not breaking the rules he set for himself when he became a Satan, whether it was because of pride or just blockheadedness was up for debate.

It'd damage their family's relations of course, but she could probably repair things with enough time.

Of course Rias herself could just stop her childish games and marry the Phenex boy, there was no limit on when they had to have children and she could still have her own lover or lovers, political marriages were just a part of devil society, but Rias had filled her head with this modern human nonsense.

It wouldn't even be that bad, just drink a lot and pass out on the night of her wedding, wake up feeling a bit sore, take a shower and pretend it never happened, she could go back to playing schoolgirl, and only occasionally see Riser.

She'd even threatened to leave the family to try and get the marriage cancelled, but Rias couldn't leave, as far as devil laws went, she could be disowned but she was practically property legally. Of course, Zeoticus saw it as her challenging his position, and threatened to make Millicas the heir instead, and forcing her to marry Riser immediately, and Rias had folded immediately.

There were six days until the wedding, and while it could still be delayed she needed Kuro's help to stop this trainwreck.

Zeoticus had agreed to delay the wedding if she could convince Kuro to delay his reclamation of his territory. Every day she got Kuro to agree to put off retaking his lands was another day she had to try and untangle this entire mess.

The reason Zeoticus was panicking was simple: most of the Gremory's income happened to come from Gaap lands and when Kuro reclaimed those lands their income would be massively slashed.

The Gaap lands had many resources that were once mined by his undead slaves, ranging from magical ores and gems that could be used for anything from construction, weaponry to just jewellery and cosmetics, which was a big earner of course thanks to the vanity of devils.

It also held a massive source of influence, the familiar forest. Formerly the Gaap forest before Zeoticus renamed it to try and make people forget that they were charging entrance fees to a land that wasn't even rightfully theirs.

The familiars were Gaap creations of course, even if people tended to remember him by the mountain sized abominations that could crush cities.

The Gremory had a massive income, but equally massive expenses from all their different projects; from charity work to investments, and upkeep of their many, many buildings. And while they weren't in danger of going bankrupt if things remained as they were, if they lost the lands they would be spending more than they were earning, and face was important to Zeoticus so he didn't want to make it look like they were having money issues by stopping any of their many projects.

The Gremory vault could keep them going for a decade or two before the slashed income became a problem, but what was a couple of decades to a devil?

They needed time to prepare an alternate source of income, and she needed time to fix this stupid engagement before it tore her family apart.

…so what the hell was Kuro doing in there and what would it take to pry him out long enough for her to try and convince her to help her?

Kuro Dantalion

I went overboard, also I haven't slept for three days straight.

In hindsight, pulling my entire mansion into the deepest level of the dungeon was probably a mistake but I do like how it's turned out.

Right now my dungeon comes in two separate 'floors', but I went the Nazarick method and each floor is truly massive in scale.

On the bottom floor lies my mansion, the farms, and a massive amount of forests and grasslands, empty of any animals for now but I'll work on that later. It has an artificial skybox which provides my farms with the sunlight they need, and better yet I've managed to find which ward controls the weather (in a localised area).

I should have put the fog up first, then moved the house but I got overly excited. Eh, maybe nobody noticed?

…people definitely noticed, Riser sent me a message that basically could be shortened to 'are you still alive, also party if you are'.

I reassured him that I was just redecorating a bit, and that I'd come to his party. He didn't ask any other questions, and I like that about him.

I also got a bunch of calls from an unknown number, but as in my last life, fuck answering mystery callers. I've only given this number out to the Phenex's, Katerea and Serafall so I don't know who is trying to call me and they should have just texted me. They've left a bunch of voicemails but I haven't bothered listening to them, I'm too busy.

Also fuck voicemails, it's 20- something, just text me.

I had to ask Isis to make sure I wouldn't destroy the Wards by moving the mansions but if anything I've just made them more secure since the Wardstone is hiding in a demi-realm of sorts.

The Dungeon Core has joined the Wardstone inside the most protected part of the mansion, and it's already glowing with power because the Essence of the Archmage has boosted my own considerable mana pools and I've linked myself to the Core.

The Core feeds on conflict, on emotion, and on a great many other things including death should it come to that.

But it also offers incentives for people to fight inside it, empowering them as they fight the monsters inside it, and I can add treasure templates into it for the core to add to the treasure rooms, as rewards and as bait.

And when the core grows stronger, so do I. Everyone benefits as long as they survive, and I can tell the dungeon to not kill those within it, spitting them out bloodied and bruised even if that's worth less essence than slaying them.

Of course I have no monsters inside it yet, because I don't have the necessary materials to use my new Dungeon Master skill to create monsters, and the dungeon learns from what I know.

At least with an artificial skybox I can make the sky weird colours, right now I have a deep purple night sky just because I can.

The only other floor (for now) is the actual dungeon, a giant labyrinth, and when I say giant I mean it. It takes up miles and miles of space, with traps, puzzles, secret doors, the works aside from, well... the actual monsters.

It's also entirely unmappable because of something I'm unreasonably proud of, the walls shift when nobody is nearby, so if you split up with your group or try to back track, you'll find yourself lost and alone.

I needed to put my new alchemy knowledge to use to make poisons for use on some of my traps, but thankfully it meant that when it said I'd have the means to progress in my new skills and I managed to build a workshop in a new building on the same floor as my mansion, because when you're working with alchemy and magic there's always the chance of an explosion or two.

My new workshop is obviously in a wizards tower, with all that I could possibly need to practise my enchanting, alchemy and other magical arts, and while it's situated a fair distance from my home I can teleport so that's not really a problem either.

Enchanting is an interesting art, one I've found comes naturally to me from my experience in Wardcrafting as it follows the same principles of carving or drawing runes into objects to imbue them with power.

Only instead of Wardstones, it's weapons, armour, clothes, jewellery, or whatever else I wish to enchant.

For now, I've simply carved the rune for magic and regeneration, along with endurance and protection onto a ring I had lying around the mansion, because that's how enchanting works.

I know a bunch of runes and by combining them and imbuing them with power, I make an enchantment.

The runes on my ring mean magic and regeneration so it causes my magic to return faster, but if I knew a rune that meant vitality or health I could combine it with regeneration to make a healing ring. I've started with the knowledge of how to place two enchantments onto an item without them interfering with each other, which is how I managed to add a physical resistance enchantment onto the same ring.

It's not much, but it's useful enough.

I also know some aggressive combinations, such as the runes for fire, cold and lighting, and combining them with the rune for violence lets me make a weapon that is imbued with the element.

I don't learn new enchantments, I learn new runes which I then combine to try and make a new enchantment, so if I want to get better it's a case of trial and error.

I managed to make a new enchantment that didn't come with my initial burst of knowledge by playing around, combining the rune for Concealment with the rune for Cold onto a old winter cloak and it made an enchantment I'm originally naming Frost Cloak, which makes me very hard to spot in cold climates.

I made it snow heavily around my tower, then ordered my skeletons to find me, and they aren't exactly blind but if I remained still they couldn't see me at all.

I could probably make a cold, lightning and fire resistance enchantment, but I'll have more time to play around with them later on.

Alchemy works very much the same way, ingredients will represent one or several concepts, and by combining them into a single mixture I can make a magical potion with a matching effect.

A potion of healing is simply an ingredient representing vitality and one representing regeneration, but the quality of the ingredients and the skill of the alchemist makes all the difference.

A rare magical ingredient representing vitality would make the final result much more powerful than a simple mundane plant.

I've taken the ingredients the System provided and made a magical storeroom for them, and created a greenhouse near my tower to grow the mundane ones.

I have so much work to do, and it's becoming clear I need help.

I need servants to run the greenhouse, but while my skeletons can handle potatoes and grain that's about the limit, I need better minions so my skeletons can go and be spooky scary rattling bois in the labyrinth.

I've already bound them to the dungeon core so they can't be permanently destroyed without the core itself being destroyed, but they are shock troopers, not made for the more delicate works.

I also need apprentices that I can teach the art of alchemy so they can make the more simple potions and poisons without me needing to do it all myself.

I want to replace the skeletons working as cleaners with actual maids, for when I have guests and also because maids are sexy.

So, maids and a chef for my mansion, apprentices and servants for my tower and greenhouse, monsters for my labyrinth… what else am I missing?

Oh right, I want a Guardian of the Labyrinth, because Ainz was only something having a guardian on every floor, managing things so he didn't have to.

I need bodies, living and dead, human and animals to make monsters, undead, abominations and so forth.

Next Day

Across the world, there are a lot of confused farmers and morticians but frankly that's their problem not mine.

I'm still not exactly comfortable with grabbing random people up for my experiments, but animals are fair play and so are bodies.

Sure, some people are probably gonna be pretty distraught when they realise the bodies of their loved ones have disappeared but I need bodies and I can't afford to be picky.

Though if this taught me anything it's that everybody dies, young and old, men and women, fit and fat.

Because my… collection is varied indeed.

Thankfully the Liber Mortis possesses a spell that stops decay, so I can keep them all relatively fresh and ready.

Turning around, I ignore the promise of violence from the beast in the center of the room, eyes glowering at me.

"Oh stop it, you were going to be a steak anyway." I say as the paralysed bull glares at me.

He tried to gore me, twice, so he's going first as I move the body of a human man over to the ritual circle.

Creating monsters isn't that different from alchemy, you stick a bunch of ingredients into a circle and mash them together, with a little guidance from your magic, and see what comes out.

Once bound to the dungeon core, my monsters should serve me loyally, which is the main purpose of the ritual circle.

Sure, I could just do it without the preparation, but there's no guarantee the monsters would be loyal to me, and they wouldn't have the ability to 'respawn' like Dungeon monsters even if they did.

Between Fleshcrafting, Necromancy, my ability to create monstrous races and my crafting skills, I should be able to make a truly devilish dungeon.

In a bright fashion of purple night, the bull vanishes with a baleful moo and as the light dies down, the giant humanoid steps forwards, glowing red eyes stare down at me from the bovine face, two long curved horns aimed at me as he snorts.

Stepping in front of me, I have to strain my neck to look up at the giant Minotaur, easily nine-foot tall as he pauses for a moment before he goes down onto one knee, still at eye level.

"Master?" the gruff voice says as I look over the large body I've just made, brown fur covering the bulging muscles.

"Quick question, what's your opinion on farming?" I ask after a moment, watching him blink.

I need workers, and farm work is pretty physical right?

"Uhh."

"Good enough, welcome to the team."

'Saving' the Minotaur design so I can make more of them later, I rub my hands together with a smirk.

Let's see what else I can make.

'Make a Dragon, everything's better with a Dragon.'

I already made the dragons breath traps, plus I wouldn't even know where to begin. I could probably make a Wyvern though.

'Bah, your dragon's breath is barely a candle compared to the inferno I can make! And Wyverns are weak imposters.'

This is only the first floor, wouldn't a Dragon be more suited to a much deeper floor, maybe a mountain range?

'Hmm, you have a point there. It would be unfair to have one of my almighty species as the first encounter. This dungeon stuff is complicated.'

Sucker.

'You know I can still hear you right?'

Why are you even so interested in this?

'It gets pretty boring being stuck in here and I can only sleep so much, so I might as well lend you my expert advice.'

Your advice has just been 'add dragons' to literally everything I've done.

'I know, you're welcome.'

…you know, with Eromancy I have a few unusual options for traps and monsters since the dungeon core uses my knowledge to make them.

'Well, it's no Dragon but I'd pay good money to see Tiamat get caught up in it. She'd kill us both seconds later but it'd be damn worth it.'

I'm starting to see why you ended up with Issei.

'Look who's talking.'

Riser Phenex

"Wait what? Can you repeat that?" Riser asked, blinking in confusion as he looked at the phone.

"I said 'do you wanna do me a favour and throw some of your weaker peerage members into a dungeon filled with monsters, traps and treasure?'" Kuro replied easily.

"Okay, I thought I might have misheard you. Why exactly would I want to do that?" Riser asked, wondering what the hell Kuro was up to.

"Because if they do well they'll get more powerful, and if they do bad it'll be really funny. They can't actually get seriously hurt, it's like a PvE rating game." Kuro explained.

What the fuck was PvE?

"So they get more powerful or we get to watch and laugh at them?" Riser asked.

"Pretty much, yeah."

"Well shit, that's all you had to say. When should I come over?" Riser laughed, he had no idea what Kuro actually meant but it sounded fun.

Plus, if it could actually make the weaker members of his Peerage stronger then it was definitely worth it. Aside from him, Yubelluna and Ravel most of them were only slightly above average at best. Not that he minded that much, but a strong Peerage could get you a lot of respect in the Underworld.

"Whenever you're ready, I'll send you the coordinates to the entrance of my territory so I can key you in, also I made a bunch of hallucinogenic drugs, want some?"

"…what?"

And they were back to square one.

Bonus Scene - Sei Hyoudou

She'd been a fool to doubt Kuro for a second.

Watching as Murayama causally took off her Kendo outfit, she didn't even try to avert her gaze as she watched her teammate' strip down to her underwear, not even hesitating before she pulled her bra off and slid her panties down.

She'd joined the Kendo team, because Kuro had given her a very athletic body, and she'd made friends with the Kendo girls by warning them about the three ways the perverted duo had to look into their changing room.

She didn't feel bad about getting her old friends into trouble, they'd do the same to have unlimited access to paradise.

Of course, they were still friends but they'd demanded she make up for taking away their 'window into paradise' by showing them her boobs, but she'd just said she'd think about it.

"Sei, stop staring and come take a shower already, you stink of sweat," Katase shouted, making her turn and immediately stared at the naked body of the pink haired girl who'd hated her, just making her giggle. "Honestly, you're as bad as those two sometimes."

"Heh, I know," Sei said easily as she headed into the showers, a bevy of naked wet bodies around her. "Want a hand getting clean?" Sei said suggestively, with a tone that'd get her beaten half to death before.

"Ha, no thanks," Katase giggled as she started to clean herself. "I have places to be, and I have a feeling you'd be very thorough in cleaning these." Katase said, grabbing her breasts and squeezing them as Sei bit her lip, trying to force her reaction down. "You're such a perv, Sei, but you're our perv. Tell you what, if you beat me next time we spar, you can touch them. If I win, you owe me a favour," Katase offered, making Sei perk up.

"Deal," Sei agreed immediately.

She probably wasn't going to win, Katase was weaker than her but way more talented, but now she has all the motivation she needed to practice.

Life was pretty good for Sei Hyoudou, and she wasn't going to go back to the days of peeking as she started to clean her own body, her hands groping her chest.

New Spells/Abilities

Traditional

Gentle Repose

This spell prevents the corpse it is cast on from decay, and the other consequences of death, until the spell is dispelled by the caster the body will remain in its current state.

Spiritual

Create Soulflask

The Liber Animas contains the plans to create an enchanted glass flask capable of holding a single soul, those who die near an empty and open soul flask have their soul pulled into it, and once the cap is closed the spirit will be unable to escape, trapped in liquid form.

Essence of the Archmage

As the Archmage, you have the ability to use magic from any system, even if they do not use the same power type as you have access to (such as ki or chakra). You also have the ability to learn any magic, even unique ones, if you understand them. Additionally you possess an innate magical sense that allows you to feel the magic around you, allowing you to learn how to duplicate spells cast around you. You can teach others how to use magic, even if they previously lacked the capacity to use that system, or magic in general. You gain instant mastery of a specific branch of magic, of your choice.

Essence of the Dungeon Master

As the Dungeon Master, you have the power to create and manipulate dungeons, with a natural proficiency in architecture, puzzle-making, trap-making and enchanting. You also have the ability to create monster races from scratch to populate and protect your dungeons, which will serve you with complete loyalty, and respawn eventually as long as the dungeon core is intact. Finally, you gain proficiency in two magical crafting arts of your choosing, and the means to progress in the arts, as every dungeon needs it's treasures.

Create Monster

A ritual used by a Dungeon Master to create new monsters to serve them, often using materials as the base to assist the process. When creating the race, the Dungeon Master can expend dungeon essence from the Core to grant the race different abilities and they can also 'save' the race, allowing them to create more or edit the design to grant them more abilities later on.

Monsters

Minotaurs

Minotaurs are made to explore and defend the Labyrinth, with a perfect memory of the paths they have walked, enhanced senses and stamina, they can track down anyone who trespasses on their home floor. Also used for farming thanks to their stamina and innate connection to nature.

Alchemy - Adept

Recipes Known

Potions

Potion of Healing - Ingested

Ingredients - Vitality, Rebirth

Potion of Mana - Ingested

Ingredients - Magic, Rebirth

Potion of Stamina - Ingested

Ingredients - Fortitude, Rebirth

Trance of Recollection - Ingested

Ingredients - Memory, Hallucination

This potion allows those that ingest it to experience any past event with perfect clarity, by thinking about the event while the drunk it they will go into a trance where they will fully experience the event, with all their senses. It also alters the drinkers perception of time as events that lasted a day can pass in an hour.

Dionysus's Special Touch

Ingredients - Hedonism, Joy

This 'potion' is an incredibly strong alcoholic substance that can be used in crafting a variety of immensely powerful alcoholic beverages.

Poisons

Mage's Bane - Ingested

Ingredients - Magic, Suffering, Poison

This poison causes the magic inside the victim to revolt when they attempt to use it, disrupting spells and causing pain and internal damage when the Mage attempts to cast them.

Princess's Slumber - Ingested, Contact

Ingredients - Sleep, Immortality, Eternity

This poison places the victim into a deep magical slumber, placing them in a form of stasis until the antidote is applied.

Dreammist - Ingested, Inhaled

Ingredients - Hallucination, Hedonism or Suffering

This poison causes the victim to experience vivid hallucinations, either pleasant or horrific depending on the ingredients used. While under the influence the victim will be unable to tell reality from fiction, and in small doses this can be used as a recreational drug.

Podge's Peculiar Perplexing Potion of Perilous Puzzlement - Ingested, Contact, Inhaled

Ingredients - Confusion, Hallucination

This potion befuddles the victims mind, inflicting them with a supernatural confusion, leading them to act irrational, ranging from fleeing, attacking whoever is closest, laughing maniacally or any other behaviour.

Torturer's Brew

Ingredients- Suffering, Deceit

This poison has only one purpose, to cause pain to whoever drinks it, tasteless and traceless, this is often applied to the waters of prisoners to soften them up before their interrogation, if they last that long.

Oils

Incenses

Special Perks

Double, Double, Toil and Trouble

Learning how to make the most of your ingredients, you can make twice the number of potions with the same amount of ingredients.

Green Thumbed

Through studying any ingredient that can be grown, you learn the exact requirements needed to grow the ingredient.

Addiction is a sin

You've learnt how to avoid making your potions addictive, or to ensure they are if that is what you prefer.

Enchanting - Adept

Runes Known

Elemental

Fire

Lightning

Cold

Concepts

Violence

Protection

Endurance

Magic

Regeneration

Concealment

Silence

Enchantments Known

Weapons

Flames - Fire/Violence

Lightning - Lightning/Violence

Frost - Frost/Violence

Equipment

Silent Step (Shoes) - Concealment/Silence

Frost Cloak (Cloak/Robes) - Concealment/Cold

Physical Resistance - Protection/Endurance

Mana Regeneration - Magic/Regeneration

Special Perks

Twinned Enchantments

You've gained the ability to double up and place two enchantments on a single item, without reducing either enchantment's potency.

Scriviner

You've mastered the art of turning magic into material, and through careful study you've learnt to imbue parchment with your spells, turning them into scrolls that can be cast without using mana, and can be used by anyone.

Eromancy - Master

Phantom Hands

Summoning hands under the casters control, these spectral hands will grope and molest the target, bypassing their clothing and toying with their nude bodies, transferring the feeling back to the caster.

Flavourful Fluids

This spell allows the caster to alter the taste of the seed, breast milk or other fluids of themselves or their target, adjusting them to their whims.

Orgasmic Seal

Placing a seal on the lower stomach of the target, the caster cuts off the target's ability to reach climax, this seal can be visible or hidden, and can be set to fade under specific conditions such as after a set amount of time or after the target performs a specific action. It can either remove the climaxes entirely, prevent the target from climaxing while keeping the edge, or store them up to unleash when the seal fades.

Summon Tentacle

This spell creates multiple tentacles of the caster's design, which can be controlled mentally by the caster and transmit whatever they feel back to their creator.

Curse of Bimbofication

This curse can affect either the mind, the body, or both of the target. Once it sets in, the victim will start to lose their intelligence and their inhibitions, and their body grows more lewd to match their new mindset. Once removed, the mental changes will recede but the body will remain the same unless fixed.

Curse of Normality

This curse warps the victim's ability to notice anything out of the ordinary, causing their minds to see whatever happens to them or around them as entirely normal, meaning they will allow almost anything to be done to them without complaint, or do whatever they are asked as they won't see it as unusual.

The Ritual of Tantric Empowerment

Sex is power, you understand that better than anyone, and through a powerful ritual you can use the energies produced between you and your partner, or partners, to empower yourself, your partner or an item.

Author's Note: Every Kuro gets a different kind of dungeon it seems.