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The Crafter’s Dilemma

A Dungeon Core Novel

Dungeon Crafting – Book 3

Jonathan Brooks

Cover Design: Yvonne Less, Art 4 Artists

Edited by: Celestian Rince

Copyright ©2020 Jonathan Brooks

All rights reserved.  No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

The following is a work of fiction.  Any names, characters, businesses, corporations, places, and events are products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner.  Any resemblance to any actual persons, places, or events is purely coincidental.

Cover Design Copyright ©2020 Yvonne Less, Art 4 Artists


I would like to thank all my friends and family who have supported me on my writer’s journey, as well as providing much-needed encouragement.  You’re the best!

In addition, this book wouldn’t as great as it is without the help of my Patrons on Patreon and my beta-readers!

Aaron Wiley

Alex Canavan

Brian O’Neil

Brian Oles

Drew Welcher

Emma Baker

Glen Shepard

Grant Harrell

John Debnam

Joshua Chausse

Kevin Caffrey

Kilsharion Deborah Land

Nate Martin

Paul S.

Rei S

Rickie Brown

Ricky Kukowski

Sean Hall

Steven Genskay

Tania Bay

Tom Davidson

Tyller James

Zack Devney

Table of Contents



Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Chapter 31

Chapter 32

Chapter 33

Chapter 34

Author’s Note

Books by Jonathan Brooks


Sandra was born a merchant and died a merchant – but that wasn’t the end of her existence.  She was born with crippled hands that prevented her from crafting all but the most basic materials; because of this – and the ability to see but not manipulate all of the elements – she spent most of her life learning as much as she could about anything associated with crafting.  After indulging in her hobby a little too much, she over-reached and ended up being sacrificed to fuel an enchantment from the very person she was hoping to learn it from.

Reborn as a Dungeon Core – centuries in the future – in a place uninhabited by Humans, Sandra was thrust into a small, hollowed-out underground space without a clue of what she was and why she was there.  With the help of a Dungeon Fairy named Winxa, however, she was able to learn how to create Monster Seeds, Dungeon Monsters, rooms, tunnels, and even traps.

After building her dungeon and practicing as much crafting as she could manage, a Half-Orc/Half-Dwarf appeared at her entrance chased by huge Bearlings.  Sandra managed to save Kelerim with her dungeon, and through a unique application of her Core abilities she was able to designate Kelerim as a “Visitor”.  Over time, she taught him the correct way to blacksmith, fixing and improving his meager skills so that he could go back and help the land of Orcrim against the pervasive attacks of the nearby “normal” dungeons.

Fate had other plans as Kelerim’s previously unknown half-brother Razochek Bloodskull – an Orcish Warband Leader – stumbled upon Sandra’s dungeon while hunting Bearlings near the Orc village of Grongbak.  Sandra – with Kelerim’s help – fought against Razochek, and the Half-Orc/Half-Dwarf killed him with some help from her unusual Dungeon Monster constructs.

Affected by the slaying of his own flesh and blood, Kelerim set off to find his father and to start his own smithy, bringing much-needed quality to the progressively poor work done by the existing Orcish blacksmiths.  As soon as he left, Sandra was able to finally concentrate on crafting – or so she thought.

In an effort to acquire additional crafting material – wood, specifically – her dungeon was inadvertently discovered by the nearby Elven village. When Echo – a relatively young Elf Ranger in Elven society – discovered that Sandra had multiple elements at her disposal, the Elven village of Avensglen called in an Elite dungeon-destroying team from the Elven capital.  With limited time until they arrived, Sandra used her resources to upgrade her Core Size, opening up additional avenues of defense – and accidentally causing problems at the same time elsewhere.

Because of her expanded Area of Influence, one of the local Dungeon Cores was able to exploit a loophole; by possessing an identical element and having a smaller Core Size, the reptile-based Core was able to use Sandra’s Area of Influence as if it was its own.  As a result, an army of reptiles assaulted the nearby Gnome village of Glimmerton, killing most of its residents in the process.  Sandra sent her constructs to save the Gnomes and destroy the reptiles, but unfortunately only managed to save a handful of them.

In order to heal one of the wounded Gnomes, Felbar Warmaster, Sandra needed to bond with him – which placed him in a temporary coma.  In the meantime, she also bonded with the others, before sending most of them back to Gnomeria – the land of the Gnomes – with a wagon full of raw materials; Violet – an Apprentice Enchanter – helped to enchant a Hauler with her specialized knowledge, as well as helping Sandra set up a Repository that helped preserve how enchantments were created.

Meanwhile, Echo – the Elf who first found Sandra’s dungeon and who was tasked to watch her – nearly died because of a snakebite and was only saved by a last-minute bond with Sandra and her Repair Drones. While Echo recovered in a bond-induced coma, Sandra upgraded her Core Size to 20, unlocking the Advancement System; using the Advancement Points she had accumulated, the crafty Dungeon Core upgraded her Classification and acquired an

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