Prologue

Mrs. Richards' flowery dress faded out of existence as she turned off her VR Headset. A good amount of her class and I waited till we knew she couldn't hear us any more. Though there had been people who started or left early most of us were content to just wait until she was completely off for the day. After those tense few seconds the ripple of relief sent people scrambling over to others' seats in a mad dash to meet with their friends. Trying not to waste any time in order to be the first there. I just sat at my desk knowing that there was someone who wanted to talk to me today. As I had planned it with him over text. As the tapping of my feet had intensified immensely. I saw him, my best friend Michael, in a printed t-shirt with a "I like chemistry jokes periodically." pun on it.

"Yo! Michael." I shouted from the back of the class with a three finger wave.

I shrank a little bit as I noticed the rest of the class looking at me before the class looked at who I was waving to before whispering to their friends. Michael Just looked at me and Gave me a smile that looked like the sun. Seeing that allowed me to smile if only just a little bit. Michael made his way over to me passing other people who he responded to and joked with before finding himself at my desk where he asked for a seat. Someone behind moved a seat towards him. He grabbed it, thanking that someone before sitting on the chair stomach to the back of the chair.

"Hey Alex, You're going to love this. Guess what?!" His eyes studied me for a reaction.

"You got a Job..." I responded, playing it off.

He looked at me in minor amusement. Before looking around. "Dude I made it, we can play this after noon."

"WHAT! Wait seriously?" My mouth was agape at the news.

"Yeah man…" He once again started looking around and noticed my exclamation caused many people to gaze over and whisper.

"Wait you really ha..." Still guffawing at his boldness, I started to say something before he placed his hand on my mouth.

"Dude we can talk later. We are in a cornfield, There's ears everywhere." He said winking at me and pointing at the people all around us still whispering before phasing out of the simulation.

I scoffed trying to hide the laugh as I too started phasing. "Ok mate."

My Dinner sat eaten but soon forgotten as my mind raced through the situation that happened at school. I tried to sit down but I noticed my Laptop beeped.

"Dude download this for your VR system it will allow you to be a part of the release patch allowing you to get the rare beta skin for your character." he texted when I got done sitting next to the VR module

[Downloadable content]

I clicked on the button and noticed that it seemed to take a little to start loading. I went over to my WIFI module and fiddled with the cable. And then it started.

[Downloading 0%]

"In order for me to get you in there though. I had to send you in as smaller data packets, Data packets mind you that are smaller than the data packet for a normal human mind would be. So I set it up that it would send you in two data packets, each with half of your mind."

"Isn't that Dangerous?" I looked at his previous text and read it a few more times before he got to the second text.

"It may hurt for a little bit and it will be freaking weird. But it was fine when I did it. You will be put together 10 minutes later and then it doesn't have the same problem again. "

"You also get to create two characters before merging either one. So either build one character twice or two characters for a random chance."

"Will my brain be ok after this?" I couldn't stop thinking of all the ways that this could go wrong.

"Should be fine."

"I'll just check it out to see if it makes me feel too uncomfortable. Then I'll maybe play." I was already planning what I would say to him when I quit because of game problems.

"OK man when it proves to be safe let's play together."

"Fine." I could at least try it right?

[Downloading 100%]

"It's done downloading, see you in 45 minutes."

I shut my laptop before getting into the VR system my family used. It put a jack into my head which still felt like getting shot. Before getting plugged in. A Red box popped into my vision giving a harsh red glow no matter where my head looked.

[Warning 3rd party program detected]

[want to start system security update]

[Y/N]

I thought about the N option before remembering to click it. The screen shook a bit when I tried to click it, requiring multipIe presses. But ultimately my VR set finally registered that I was in fact saying no. I saw the screen light up with a softer blue before another red box showed up.

[Warning using a sub standard pod will produce higher lag times.]

[Warning Low optic settings enabled.]

[Warning Low resolution mode enabled.}

I looked at the red lights before dismissing them like normal. I scoffed and thought about my school VR pod so sleek and shiny. I watched as the announcer started a spiel that I had heard many times in Youtube videos, and smiled.

"From the makers of Zeno VR Pod and pong VR. Planet Zero games presents: Zenith Realm Online. The premier VR MMORPG!"

The sound blasted my ears as the game's main menu popped up and it looked a little more blurry than I was expecting, but ok. I pressed the options button to turn down the sound before jumping into the character creation stage. And that is where everything went wrong and I realized my mind was cut in half as I was looking at two different characters on the character creation screen. I Screamed as that reality hit my mind causing so much pain. I was just about to quit until the pain simmered down to just enough to feel like a minorly painful headache. I looked at the characters and saw two really pretty women like two angels watching over my screaming personage. It was that that made me decide to play a woman.

I looked at the characters and looked at the stat sheet before trying to choose what to be. I decided to start with an overview of The character sheets

Name Level 0 [stat points (90/90)]

Race: Nothing

Class: Nothing [0/25 XP]

Subclass: Nothing

HP [50/50]

MANA [0/0]

STAMINA [50/50]

STR: 0 [-10 STR damage, 5 boxes]

DEX: 0 [-10 DEX damage]

AGI: 0 [50 max Stamina]

CON: 0 [50 HP, 0 Stamina regen per second]

INT: 0 [-10 INT damage, 0 MP]

WIS: 0 [0 Mana regen per second]

PER: 0 [+0% CRIT chance]

CHA: 0 [-10 CHA damage]

Abilities

None

I looked at the character sheet with some confusion. 'What are boxes' I decided that the best option would just be to tap and hold on all of the stats to bring up info boxes on all of them.

[Strength (STR) is a stat that determines your ability to carry things and do damage with strength weapons.]

I saw that there was more I could ask about.

[Carrying capacity is the number of boxes in your inventory to carry things.]

'Well 5 boxes is pretty low but let's see the rest.

[Dexterity (DEX) is a stat that determines nimbleness of fingers and the damage of dexterity weapons.]

[Agility (AGI) is a stat that determines character speed and max stamina.]

[Constitution (CON) is a stat that determines Max Hit points and Stamina Regen.]

[Intelligence (INT) is a stat that determines Intelligence weapon damage and max mana.]

[Wisdom (WIS) is a stat that determines Mana regen and your ability to make more wise decisions.]

[Perception (PER) is a stat that determines CRIT chance and the ability to perceive things faster.]

[Charisma (CHA) is a state that determines Charisma weapon damage and how things you said can be perceived by others.]

I looked at all of these and saw that a lot of them were more interesting than I would have thought. Agility increases movement speed, 'it would be so fun to max agility and go the speed of light. Wait, what does it mean to perceive things faster. Would they seriously give you lag if you choose a low perception.' And wisdom seemed very weird as well.

I touched the classes and found that the class 'store' was quite interesting. There were four tiers of classes but most costed points. 'Wait does it really cost money to have an interesting class? I didn't know this game was run by EA!' I held my finger to the points button on the shop.

[Points are given to you after killing players/creatures. It is used to buy things at a shop.]

Oh so that is what points are. Well that does not sound good it means that people will commonly choose the PVP option in order to get points. I finally found something that would normally be my style: Shielder it looked like a tank class. It focused on CON, STR, and PER. I looked at the shield Item and found that it sounded different from most games.

[ Name: Starter shield. Durability: 40/40 Rarity: Common

DAMAGE: 1-2 Defense: 6%

Description: A weak shield given for training.]

Wait what does the defense stat do for this. What does the percentage do?

[shields give a defense percentage which weakens damage done to you by that percentage.]

Oh so a flat percentage I wonder how much this is affected by armor. I clicked on this before setting my stats.

Name Level 0 [Points (0/90)]

Race: nothing

Class: Shielder [0/25 xp]

Subclass: Nothing

HP [75/75]

MANA [90/90]

STAMINA [210/210]

STR: 10 [3 STR damage, 10 boxes]

DEX: 8 [-2 DEX damage]

AGI: 20 [200 max Stamina]

CON: 15 [75 HP, 1.5 stamina regen per second]

INT: 9 [-1 INT damage, 90 MP]

WIS: 8 [0.16 Mana regen per second]

PER: 10 [+5% CRIT chance]

CHA: 10 [3 CHA damage]

I understood that this was meant to have a high strength but A high speed sounded great for being a great tank so I could run around protecting people. I then looked at races. It looked amazing how many there were: 41 pages worth of races. After scrolling super far through I only found one thing that I found interesting: The 'Nekomata.' I knew that Nekos were cat girls. And even though it made me look like a weeb to choose it, I saw that it was the best for me as it was one of the few good looking classes that focused on agility. And I wanted to have a high agility.

[Racial boon (Level 0): Cat reflexes= increase of 1 AGI every level starting at level 0, and 1 DEX every other level starting at lvl 1]

I noticed that it said level 0 on it so that either meant that the racial boon could level up or that you could get more boons the more you level. I filed that away for later. I tried to get a sub class but I found that all of those required prerequisite skills and points meaning you had to get those later after you had a few levels and points on your back. And it seemed anyway that the subclass just added bonuses for your skills or added on to them. So you could still take some alchemy even with smithing. I took a final look at this character sheet before going towards the done button.

Name Level 0 [Points (0/90)]

Race: The 'Nekomata'

Class: Shielder

Subclass: Nothing

HP [75/75]

MANA [90/90]

STAMINA [210/210]

STR: 10 [3 STR damage, 10 boxes]

DEX: 8 [-2 DEX damage]

AGI: 21 [210 Max stamina])

CON: 15 [75 HP, 1.5 stamina regen per second]

INT: 9 [-1 INT damage 90 MP]

WIS: 8 [0.16 mana regen per second]

PER: 10 [+5% CRIT chance]

CHA: 10 [3 CHA damage]

I clicked the done button and then got this notice

[Name Not Found]

I looked at it for a second before remembering I still have another person to make. I flipped over to the other character and once again chose a girl. I looked through the classes and found an idea that sounded fun. I chose a pyromancer for my class and set my stats to fit this wish. INT, WIS, and perception. INT and WIS because obviously and perception because of CRIT chance. 'if CRIT doubles damage, I could be a power house later. ' I then took a deep long look into the race section and found the 'clipped' race of angels that had their wings clipped by a 'god' apparently. I found that it served better as a wizard because of the high wisdom stat. It also had a spell that went with it

[Fire bolt [Active] [level: 1] = [Damage:5-6, Mana cost:10, 2 second cooldown]]

With my mana I could cast that almost 16 times, 80 damage, I could even kill my tank.

I then looked at my timer. "It Has Already Been 40 Minutes! If I don't hurry up I am not going to get in on time for the skin!"

I wanted to think of some clever names for the characters but I was already running late. So I decided to go with the most clever ones I could think of in the time crunch. Alexis and Alexandra both puns off of my name: Alex. I clicked the button for both of my characters and then waited for a while as it tried to load in whatever thing was required before it just went on to load the game and as I made it to the game. I was dropped in the middle of a large crowd of people as the final minute counted down.

"45, 44, 43, 42, 41, 40." every beta tester counted as they watched as the game would be released.

I looked around trying to find my friend as the time continued counting.

"30, 29, 28, 27, 26, 25." shouted the continued voices.

I once again found myself wincing as people got louder and more rambunctious.

"15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10."

I found myself wrapped up in it as well, this sounded like a group that would be less toxic than others. Everyone including the NPCs found themselves all united as we all started saying the last few numbers.

"5, 4, 3, 2, 1, ..."

We all started saying before hundreds were logged off and everyone left heard screaming. Including me until I realised that it was me screaming, both of me, as I felt my mind get ripped asunder. I was being celestially ripped in half from mind to body like when I first entered the character creator, but this was so much more painful than before. Both of me screamed for a few minutes before I blacked out.

I woke up to a girl shaking me. A girl that I knew so very well as I had created her just barely a few minutes ago. Alexis looked at me, her auburn hair drooped over her shoulders, her yellow irises watering.

She realized that I was finally awake. And waved in front of my eyes. "Hey are you okay?!"

Character sheets

ALEXIS Level 0 [points (0/90)]

Race: The 'Clipped'

Class: Pyromancer

Subclass: Nothing

HP[50/50]

MANA[160/160]

STAMINA[80/80]

STR: 7 [-3 STR damage, 8 boxes]

DEX: 10 [3 DEX damage]

AGI: 8 [80 max Stamina,]

CON: 10 [50 HP, 1 stamina regen per second]

INT: 15 [5 INT damage 150 MP]

WIS: 16 [0.32 Mana regen per second]

PER: 15 [+7.5% CRIT chance.]

CHA: 10 [3 CHA damage]

Abilities

Fire bolt [Active] [level: 1] = [Damage:5-6, Mana cost:10]

Alexandra Level 0 [Points (0/90)]

Race: The 'Nekomata'

Class: Shielder

Subclass: Nothing

HP [75/75]

MANA [90/90]

STAMINA [210/210]

STR: 10 [3 STR damage, 10 boxes]

DEX: 8 [-2 DEX damage]

AGI: 21 [210 Max stamina])

CON: 15 [75 HP, 1.5 stamina regen per second]

INT: 9 [-1 INT damage 90 MP]

WIS: 8 [0.16 mana regen per second]

PER: 10 [+5% CRIT chance]

CHA: 10 [3 CHA damage]

Abilities

None