I didn’t know anything about dungeons in this world. I could guess they were places that contained traps, treasure, and monsters… but that was an assumption. Presumably they weren’t the kind that contained prisoners, as those wouldn’t be so relevant in an adventuring context. “What are dungeons?”
“Well, the one closest to your level has goblins. They’re a good place to start…” Sgar obviously saw the my pensive face and stopped there. “But, you weren’t asking what a good dungeon for you to explore was. You asked what a dungeon was.”
“How do you not know about dungeons?”
“I’m from… very far away.” Even as I said it, I didn’t believe my own lie. I’d heard believing your own lies was what made them convincing… but I wasn’t used to it, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to be.
“What place is so far away that it doesn’t have dungeons? As far as I know everywhere has some. Where are you from?”
“It’s a very… remote place. You wouldn’t have heard of it.”
“Perhaps not. What’s it called?”
“Uhh… California.” I couldn’t think of a good name for a country… so I just said the first thing that came to mind.
Sgar frowned. “You’re right, I haven’t heard of it. Can you point it out on a map?”
“Nope. I haven’t seen a world map or… any maps actually.” In the way I meant that, it wasn’t a lie. I hadn’t seen any maps since I came to this world. This world being… Earth, of course. The big ball of dirt that everyone lives on. Of course, the language wasn’t the same so if I listened really hard I could hear the word that was actually used. Tespara. Not that most people referred to the planet as a whole. They would mostly talk about the city or country they were in, or just say ‘the world’.
“You haven’t seen a map?”
“Well, alright. How did you get here.”
I pondered hard on how to answer that. I didn’t really even know. I maybe had a heart attack and died, then was in a white room, then a forest nearby… yeah, that didn’t seem like a worthy explanation. “I’m not really sure exactly. I got lost…” There wasn’t much more I could say there.
“And wandered all the way here from… wherever it was? What other countries did you pass through?”
I shrugged. “I don’t really remember.” I suppose if I didn’t want to give anything away, I should stop answering questions.
Sgar frowned, “Why did you leave?”
“Well… I didn’t really have any choice. It was… sudden.” That made it sound like I had to flee the country for some reason, and I wasn’t sure if I wanted that, but I said it anyway.
“They spoke common there though.” Sgar nodded seriously, “so it shouldn’t have been too obscure. Have you ever thought about going back?”
“Well, not that much… if I could, I’d like to see my parents again.” I hadn’t really thought about it, because I assumed I couldn’t. Really, though, I didn’t want to go back. Here, I was strong- and not sick. There, I’d had… my parents, mostly. In terms of what I could choose to do, I was better off here.
Sgar nodded. “Adventurers don’t think about their parents as much as they probably should. That said, if you see them again you should ask them why they didn’t teach you anything about the world.” Sgar scratched his chin, “So are you an otherworlder?”
“What?” I wasn’t expecting to be asked so directly… or at all for that matter.
“An otherworlder. A summoned person. Someone from a different world. I don’t know that much about them, but either you’re one of those or…” Sgar frowned in thought, “I suppose you could be from some tiny country where they don’t have maps, dungeons… mana… skills… classes… monsters, or adventurer’s guilds- yet speak common well. Then you somehow wandered your way here without learning about any of that, with just the clothes on your back.” Sgar shrugged, “Or you just found yourself popped out of the air here one day. That one makes more sense.”
“Suddenly appearing makes more sense?”
“Sure, why not? We’ve got magic here. That kind of thing happens.”
I tilted my head, “Is it really that common?”
“Well, I can’t say it’s common… but it’s not… uncommon.” Sgar frowned in concentration, “You hear about it, anyway. Over the years, some of them have gained impressive reputations. One of the sages is an otherworlder.”
“Really?” my eyes lit up. I wondered if they were the one who wrote the message… I had things I would like to ask them. When did they get taken from Earth? Did time pass at the same rates? Actually… did they come from Earth? I concentrated really hard, and the message seemed to have indicated that. The real question was- did we come from the same Earth? Why did it happen? Well, the message had indicated it ‘just happened’, but maybe they’d discovered something.
“I heard he was an otherworlder, anyway. They tend to be… special. I don’t want to pry too much, but it could help to know… are you an otherworlder?”
If I hadn’t known Sgar for months- my entire stay here- I would have been reluctant to answer him. Of course, that would have been the same for many of the previous questions. Now that I was asked directly, I couldn’t think of any reason not to tell the truth. “Oh yeah. I totally just appeared in that forest over there-” I appointed in approximately the right direction, “Maybe half a day’s travel from town? Not that I knew that. After that was a few weeks of wandering… and then we met.”
Sgar nodded seriously, “That explains a lot. Like how your attributes were very off from your level, but you didn’t really have any training. Is it true that otherworlders get bonus attributes? Ah… that’s pretty rude to ask. Don’t worry about it.”
I shrugged, “Is it rude? To me it just seems like numbers. Well, in the interest of keeping it somewhat vague for others who might care… We do get some. As for how much, I could say it wouldn’t be so noticable if I had distributed them differently.”
“But you put them all into Strength.”
“But I put them all into Strength.” I nodded seriously, “Which was good, because otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to walk.”