< 1 : Prologue >

The trigger was a mobile game.

I don’t remember the exact genre, but I think it was introduced as an idle game.

The game itself was nothing special.

There were tiny figures of people walking around, and all I did was watch their movements.

They had finely crafted AI, or so it seemed, as each character moved diligently and did their own tasks.

Sometimes they would do something unusual, breaking the rules.

It felt like raising ants in a transparent gel.

I also remembered the tiny sea monkeys I used to keep in an aquarium.

Sometimes I would touch the people with my finger, and their health would decrease while a -1 appeared above their heads.

If I tapped them more than a dozen times, the character would disappear, but my finger would hurt so I stopped.

The magic resource at the bottom of the screen kept decreasing, so I couldn’t endlessly tap the passing people.

Besides, it was healing to just watch the characters do their thing.

I spent about two or three hours a day watching the characters like that.

Until I came home drunk after a frustrating day.

“Why do they treat me like that——.”

One day, I came home intoxicated by alcohol because of human relationship problems.

I turned on the mobile game as usual, without any thought.

At first, I just wanted to look at the screen mindlessly.

But then, I got annoyed and looked for a target to vent my anger in the game.

What I found was a village in a secluded place.

I ignored the pain in my finger and tapped the screen until all the villagers disappeared.

I kept moving my finger busily until all my magic was consumed.

When I had recovered and spent all my magic again,

I had completely annihilated one village and found a message on my smartphone screen.

-Your karma has increased by 10.

-You have reached level 2.

It was the moment when I learned about a new feature of the game that I didn’t know.