14 Putting a name to a face

    A/N: added a bit to the end of the previous chapter, just 200 words or so. starting from: "I think... I might have a better idea,"

    The map room, as one would expect from its name, was a room centred around the ship's navigation.

    Its walls were lined with various tools, too tarnished and rusted to operate, while the large table at the room's centre was covered in what could only be considered a mound of maps, most of which were too weathered to read.

    In fact, only one map in particular remained mostly undamaged, one which sat under all the others, and was slightly larger than the table on which it sat.

    Crystal however, paid no attention to it, instead focusing her attention on being which sat atop it.

    It was a plain looking skull, the first creature which she had ever summoned.

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    "Skully, how goes it, I'm glad you made it," Crystal said with a smile as she picked up the severed head with one hand, holding it upside down.

    The skull however, showed no reaction, other that slightly open and closing its skeletal mouth, letting out a slightly high pitched chomping sound as it did so.

    Neither of the two realized that she had actually already forgotten the skeleton's previous nickname altogether, instead remembering 'Skelly' as 'Skully,' an arguably more appropriate name for the unfortunate skeleton's current form.

    "I see you already lost the beautiful potato dress which i got especially for you, eh?" She complained sarcastically to the skull.

    Again it made almost no reaction.

    "Speaking of..." she began, as she, while still holding the skull, turned around and hopped onto the table's surface, facing the lich who had followed her to the map room, "what happened to Skully's body, shouldn't her head have been able to just be... you know... popped back on?"

    The lich, in response, hesitated somewhat as she avoided eye contact with the now eye-level Imp.

    "You see..." she began, "myself, and the other skeletons included, were all missing a few parts each... and then the monkeys arrived, which added a sense of urgency to the situation..."

    "So you and the other skeletons all teamed up to cannibalize her?" Crystal questioned as she tilted her head, "that's pretty hardcore..."

    The lich gave a brief, bashful look, at Crystal and the skeletal head before replying with a timid shrug.

    The timidness only due to Crystal's choice of words, not the act itself.

    The victim, informally known as Skully, hadn't yet even noticed the change it had undergone after all.

    "Well, whatever," Crystal said with a sigh, then proceeding to pump a bit of DP into the skull through the hand which held it.

    She then turned it upright as a new body, identical in shape to the one, suddenly emerged in a cloud of pink from the base of Skully's skull, the clothing it wore being the only difference from its previous appearance.

    The skeleton now wore a set of pirate clothing, just like the rest of the crew.

    However, unlike the rest of the crew, her clothes were now themed in a rather distinct colour.

    "Florescent orange?" questioned the lich, upon seeing said clothing.

    Crystal merely gave a shrug before hopping down from the table.

    "How else am I supposed to tell her apart from the rest?" She replied rhetorically, "she's my first minion ever, so I've got a bit of a sentimental attachment to her."

    "if you're that attached to it..." the lich spoke slowly as it thought, "then why not give it a name."

    "I'm pretty sure named monsters can be resummoned endlessly by dungeons," she continued, "they also receive some sort of boost depending on the name they're given."

    "Also nicknames like 'Skully' probably don't count," she then added, predicting one of Crystal's potential questions, "a name must be given in an official manner... or at least that's what I've been told by monster tamers."

    Crystal gave a slightly surprised look towards the lich, before immediately returning a question the lich didn't expect, "if that's the case, then what's your name?"

    The lich looked startled... well, as startled as a skeleton could look.

    "Mistress?" questioned the lich, "I do not have one. As you can see from my status my name is-."

    "I mean from before you became a lesser lich," elaborated Crystal.

    The lich lowered her head, both to avoid Crystal's inquiring look, as well as to make a serious request.

    "I... don't want to speak the name of such a foolish person," she quietly declared, "please, let my past die along with my previous self."

    Crystal, who was slightly taken aback by the lich's utter dismissal of her own identity, narrowed her eyes slightly towards the lich.

    'I'm sure it'll come back to bite me if I listen to her request,' pondered Crystal, 'and all sorts of dubious event flags will no doubt be triggered as well.'

    She referred of course, to the superstitious trope known as 'triggering a flag,' the action of tempting fate's hand through one's words or actions.

    Examples of some such triggers being, 'well, at least it's not raining,' 'what's the worst that could happen?' or ignoring obscure plot points... like the obviously tragic secret backstory of a side character.

    "Ugh..." Crystal groaned upon seeing that the lich was still earnestly bowing her head to her, "well... fine, what's the worst that c-."

    "Ahem! Um, I mean," she quickly corrected herself before giving an order to the lich, "raise your head, I have something to say."

    The lich nervously obeyed, and looked pleadingly upwards to Crystal.

    "Ever since I met you, you have seemingly always acted in my best interests," Crystal began.

    "However," she continued, causing the lich to flinch "I can't have a nameless captain for my ship, now can I?"

    The lich in question gave a faint sounding "...I suppose not," in reply.

    She looked sullen, dreading whatever question or command might come next.

    "And so, your name," Crystal began once more, "I would like you to choose a knew one, if that's alright with you?"

    The lich, shocked at the unexpected question, stared blankly at Crystal as she processed the words.

    "...In that case, please, pick one for me," she requested, still in disbelief.

    Crystal gave a small smile upon hearing the reply.

    "I was hoping you would say that," the dungeon core said brightly via her avatar, "I've actually already thought of one... you see, it's-."

    She however, was quickly interrupted by the lich.

    "Please, give it officially," said lich requested, "I'd prefer not to hear it beforehand."

    Crystal merely gave a raised eyebrow to that comment.

    'There's no way I'd let someone else choose my own name so one-sidedly!' She screamed internally to herself, '... not when people with my hippy parents' naming sense could be lurking around any corner.'

    "Alright, but don't blame me if you don't like it..." Crystal commented.

    "Your name," she said in the most serious sounding voice she could muster with her child-sized body, pointing at the lich as she did so, "will henceforth be Daisy Jones, captain of the Ashen Lady."

    Her word prompted the immediate appearance of a notification box.

    [Congratulations! You have achieved the milestone of naming a minion for the first time!

    You have been awarded 50xp!

    Xp: 4,032/4,194,304 remaining until level 23!

    Notice! 'Nameless lesser lich' has been granted the name of 'Daisy Jones!'

    Notice! The name 'Daisy Jones' has granted 'Daisy Jones' the title of 'The cursed captain,' the blessing, 'The cursed captain's blessing,' and curse, 'The blessed captain's curse!'

    The cursed captain's blessing: 'Daisy Jones' gains an additional +500% to all stats while within 1,000 metres of the ship 'The ashen maiden.'

    This blessing is replaced with 'The blessed captain's curse' upon leaving the blessing's designated range.

    The cursed captain's curse: 'Daisy Jones' stats are reduced by 80% while not within 1,000 metres of the ship 'The ashen maiden.'

    This curse is replaced with 'The cursed captain's blessing' upon entering the curse's designated range.]

    After reading the notification box displayed to her in its entirety, Crystal cringed.

    'That title is a bit...' she began, before pausing to look for the right words to describe it.

    '...passive aggressive?' She then added a moment later, 'it feels like I'm holding her captive with that curse.'

    'Wait, aren't I already doing that though?' She pondered.

    Crystal then peeked towards her minion, the one henceforth known as Daisy Jones.

    She appeared to be reading a notification box of her own, with an expression which was even more unreadable than usual.

    "Um, sorry if it's not what you wanted," Crystal began, somewhat apologetically, "but I did warn you..."

    Daisy then dismissed the box with a wave of her hand, turning instead to address Crystal.

    "...I love it," the lich said simply.

    "This name is perfect, unrivalled, beyond any compare...!" She announced, her voice gradually growing louder as she spoke.

    "Thank you, mistress," she declared as she dropped to one knee, "I'll forever serve you to the best of my ability!"

    At the lich's declaration, Crystal was, in truth, a little put off. She disliked being the centre of attention.

    "Ah, um... you're welcome," Crystal said, somewhat timidly, "but please be a little more informal when speaking with me from now on..."

    "Consider that an order," she added, upon seeing the lich was about to refuse.

    Crystal didn't really like people who were overly devoted to their superiors either, her thinking being that they could easily end up being total yes-men if influenced in the wrong way, which would be useless at best, and harmful at worst.

    'I'll have to find a way to whittle down her loyalty a bit,' Crystal thought jokingly, 'about halfway between her current loyalty and Skully's would be pretty good.'

    "Oh right, Skully" she began, turning to the skeleton in question, one which she had only just remembered the existence of, "your name will also officially be Skully from now on."

    Though it was said as a halfhearted afterthought, official still meant official, thus it too summoned a notification box.

    [Notice! 'Nameless pirate skeleton' has been granted the name of 'Skully!'

    Notice! The name 'Skully' has granted 'Skully' the title of 'Bone head!'

    Bone head: All stats increased by 2,000%. Only applies to the head.

    All stats reduced by 95%. Applies to all except for the head.]

    Following the appearance of that box, Skully's body was promptly crushed under the weight of its own head, mostly being reduced to a fine powder upon its additional impact with the floor beneath it.

    Both Crystal and Daisy were shocked.

    'Thank Scree that never happened to Daisy!' Thought Crystal.

    'Thank Crystal that never happened to me!' Thought Daisy.

    After a moment of stunned hesitation, Crystal calmly picked up the skull and placed it back on the table where it had previously been, stored away the pile of skeleton dust on the floor, and silently left the room alongside Daisy.

    "So, about those monkeys..." she began as if nothing had happened, "I was thinking of bribing them with fruit."

    "So, about those monkeys..." she began, speaking as if nothing had just gone horribly wrong.
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