Chapter 9 – Wolf Girl

Author’s Note: I see I have made it to page 1 of the list of recommendations at bato.to thanks to Sensi’s comment. A warm welcome to all the new readers from bato.to! I actually tried to find that thread going from the forum home page for fun. I learnt that I am forum incompetent. ^.^’

-Lost-

Somehow, I am certain the person clinging onto my back is Fen. Yet, she should be a wolf. Since when could she transform into a human? Was it a new technique, like when she first began to use the ice attacks? Or has she always been able to?

Images of what the wolf look like in human form are flickering through my mind, trying to match up what little I could feel against my body to an image.

‘No. I should not think those things!’

Slamming my eyes shut I force all unnecessary thoughts out of my mind.

“You may not want to help Verde, Fen, but I do. We can’t just leave her there.”

“Yes… You can. Just pretend… She doesn’t exist.” Her icy voice sends shivers through my entire body with each word, but it isn’t exactly an unpleasant feeling.

“She is there because of me. Being responsible, I could not do that.”

“… Only… If you buy me clothes…”

A short silence passes over, neither one of us knowing exactly what to say next. I break the silence first by agreeing to buy her something to wear.

The embrace disappears from around me and when I turn around, she has already transformed back into a wolf.

Opening my inventory I go to get the scroll of shrinking, but, even after three full searches it was not there. I shake my head from side to side, refusing to admit that I have run out of the scrolls.

“Umm. Fen,” Looking up at the wolf as I speak, “it appears I may have, just potentially, run out of shrinking scrolls.” I try to play it off with a laugh but the sound that comes out is too dry to be called that.

The wolf gives me a furious look, stepping away from the passage entrance while reliving bad memories.

“I didn’t mean for this to happen! Honestly!” Raising my hands above my head, pleading innocent to the wolf, “And I’m not going to drag you through a tunnel again. You know, last time wasn’t pleasant for me either.”

I can’t help but say those last words with a considerable amount of bitterness.

“These paths are a great deal larger than the tunnels near where you were, so you should be able to walk down them easily enough.”

The only problem is going up floors. With her massive body she will not be able to climb the narrow ramps around the edges of the seemingly bottomless pits.

She begrudgingly follows behind me as we leave the area to go rescue Verde on the second floor. I was correct in saying the pathways were indeed larger. Fen can comfortably walk down them standing upright and there is a reasonable amount of room on either side of her. But, she would not be able to do any evasive manoeuvres if we were attacked.

I consider how odd it is that we fought the boss after collecting the dungeon loot. Normally it would be the other way around, you fight the boss, and then you gain the rewards after.

It was a nice trap to have the boss sneak up behind the player who was all excited about the chest, but it was just too different to any role playing game I have ever played before.

Lost in thought, we arrive at the ramp to climb to the second floor. Fen nervously shifts her gaze between the ramp and me, suspecting I may trick her again.

“Fen, I need you to do something for me,” the wolf takes a few steps back, a few ice bolts forming in the air, “Calm down! It’s not something like that! All I need you to do is transform into a person while we go up, then you can turn back into a wolf.”

The ice bolts shrink in size, but they did not completely disappear. They whittle down till they are about the thickness of a finger, before being launched at my eyes.

“Hey! Cut it out! I won’t look. You can just walk behind me!”

Dodging the attack, I turn around and stand at the base of the ramp, facing the other way. Before long, faint footsteps walk up behind me, stopping directly behind me.

“You… Peek, and I will… Your eyes…” It was menacing, yet I could feel the nervousness in her icy voice.

“You’ve already tried that. It failed.” I retorted a little more sarcastically than I planned to, but there was no changing it now.

A pair of arms sneak under mine, raising them up over my head as I am placed into a choke hold. Two small ice bolts with dagger tips form in the air, a hairs width away from my eyes.

“I will… Your eyes…” She repeats the words, this time having a slightly greater effect on me.

“Okay, okay. No peeking!” I wasn’t going to anyway, but the cold beads of sweat on my forehead tell me I have to make it perfectly clear to this wolf.

Fortunately, the arms release me and the ice bolts dissolve into dust in response to my words.

Two nervous hands grip onto the back of my cloak as I start walking along the wall. Slowly getting higher, we climb up the pit hole to the second floor.

Once we get to the top Fen let’s go of my cloak and whispers, “Sorry… For not showing you… Before…”

I turn around surprised, but she has already turned back into a wolf nearly three meters tall.

We encounter a few freshly spawned groups of goblins, but we easily take care of them, suffering next to no damage.

We approach near the pit connecting to the first floor and come across Verde. She is sitting against the wall near where she logged off. Something seems strange when she looks up to greet me, a slight happiness in her hazel eyes.

Her eyes! I can see her properly for the first time with her hood down!

The eyes I could see were entrancing. I almost lean closer just to stare into them. Verde’s hair is straight at the top, before flowing into loose curls that flow down onto her chest. Her fringe is swept to the side, held in place by two clips.

I still could not tell exactly what her size was thanks to the leather armour she wore, but it seemed to be considerable.

‘No, don’t look there! I still need to apologize! If she sees me looking there it will make things even worse!’

Shaking the thoughts loose from my head, I extend a hand to her.

“C-Can I help you up?” I stutter a little, embarrassed about the kiss. She gave a short nod and lent me her hand.

She did not say anything until I hoist her up onto her feet.

“Thank you for coming. Umm… Do you happen to have any potions? My health is still a bit, low.” Cheeks flushing red, her voice came out incredibly bashful.

“Sorry! I don’t, and I kind of need more water before I can make any more.” I did not realize her health was still the same as when she logged off, but I could not do anything without water. I also could not feed her any green medicinal herbs due to not having enough left to make any difference.

“Umm, would this help. I originally bought this when I started playing. I thought back then we had to have food and water to survive. Since then I have drunk water for the luxury.” She averts her face as she hands me the bottle.

“Hah, this should do.” Taking the bottle and my potion making equipment out I grind up two green medicinal herbs per vial and make a total of four health potions. This is all the herbs I can manage to spare at the moment.

I drink about half of what is leftover in the canteen and pass it back to Verde, along with the potions. I don’t consider drinking out of something that has been used by someone else to be dirty simply because this is a game, and germs are non-existent here.

Verde quickly drinks the potions and washes the flavour down with the rest of the water, letting out a small burp from her mouth. Quickly trying to cover up the unfeminine exhalation of air with a cough into her hand, it will still adorable the quick high pitched noise followed by an out of sync cough that did nothing for it.

I retrieve the empty potion flasks from her as she pulls the hood of her cloak back over her head.

It is only around the corner that the ramp to the first floor is. I ask Verde to log off for five minutes due to there being something she shouldn’t see.

Once again Fen’s hands are slightly quivering through my cloak. Half way up even I receive a massive fright when her foot slips, causing her to half fall off the ledge, only being saved by her holding onto my cloak.

With my heart racing, she quickly pulled herself closer to me, wrapping her arms around my chest. Lifting her legs up, they quickly held onto my waist as well.

‘She must be terrified of heights,’ Come to think of it, she did stick rather close when she was the miniature wolf, ‘I completely had no idea.’

She is a very slender wolf girl. I can feel a bit of fat on her, but not very much. The limbs wrapped around me reveal her skin to be completely pale, almost as if it has never seen the sun.

The most surprising aspect is her weight. I had a moment where I panicked about it when she threw her weight onto me. But she has lost all the weight as a wolf and is barely a hundred pounds now.

Placing my hands under her thighs, I support her weight as I carry her up to the first floor. The memory of her skin in my hands remains while I wait for Verde to log back in and join us.

The trip through the first floor was also extremely easy, minor goblins falling before they could even reach us. I had Verde repeat the same process of logging out when we climbed up to the surface. Fen didn’t climb on to me like last time, but she was definitely closer than when we originally started.

Above ground my eyes widen in surprise at all the goblins. We had been underground for quite some time, yet, there are none here.

From over one of the hills surrounding the encampment a group of ten players suddenly emerge, entering the encampment just as Verde climbs up out of the dungeon. Maybe it’s just me, but they seem to be heading directly towards us.

“Not good,” Verde whispers to me, “See that symbol on the back of their left hands, that is a guild symbol. They are from the Swords of Light.”

I had heard about the guild symbols. Each guild assigns a symbol to a part of the body that every member wears. It appears on the body, or clothing if that is specified, similar to the symbol that every player receives on the back of their right hand when they turn level fifty.

Surely enough, looking on the back of their left hand revealed a tattoo like symbol. Activating the ‘Hunter’s eyes’ aspect of my class skill, I get a clear picture of the tattoo. It is in the shape of a sword, with rays of light coming off of it.

Encountering other players temporarily overwrites my embarrassment to Verde, but who wouldn’t feel this daunting atmosphere that drowns everything else out.

“The Swords of Light?” I whisper back to her, “I haven’t heard of them before. What is so bad about them?”

“Not only have they been known to extort players for gold to hunt in grounds they claim to own, but all their members are over level one hundred. Most players can’t even do anything to stop them. Shh… They’re here!”

Hissing the last part at me, she turns around and faces the Swords of Light members in front of us. A man with short cropped blond hair, sticking straight up, steps forward from the rest of them. His armour gleams like silver, yet it has a stange texture to it showing it is some unknown metal that I do not know of.

“Well, well.” The man looks up and down us, determining our levels by our equipment. His gaze stops on Fen for a moment, but he continues speaking after giving an odd facial expression.

“It is relieving that you know who we are, it saves a lot of explanations. Oh, sorry, I heard everything you said before. I have a skill called ‘Sonar’ that enhances my hearing you see. I am Chronix, the leader of the Swords of Light, and these men behind me are our strongest members. All their levels are around one hundred and fifty.” He gives us a heart-warming smile as he introduces everyone. Surely he isn’t such a bad guy.

“But. It is what you are probably thinking. We came here today to take care of the boss that should have respawned since we killed it two weeks ago. After taking care of all the small fry outside, we happen to see some unknown players coming out of our dungeon. Players, in fact, that have not paid a fee to use our hunting grounds.”

He still maintains the perfect smile, almost like this fee is not extortion, but a fair price. I was definitely wrong, this guy is the worst!

“Judging by your equipment, I would say you did not even get past the first floor. But, just to be sure, we will say you made it onto the second floor. The price for two floors is two hundred gold, per person, per day. The fact that there were goblins around means you were in there overnight, making it two days. So, please pay eight hundred gold.”

I nervously look over the players standing behind him. They all have hands on their sword hilts, except for the two pointing their staves at me.

“Alternatively,” Chronix continued on, “You could always give me all the equipment you are wearing. Or that oversized pet wolf you have behind you. They appear to be of an appropriate value.”

Trying to take my equipment and even Fen! I want to wipe that smile right off his face with my fist, or better yet, a mace!

“Lost,” Verde whispers under her breath, “We need to run, if we log out they will simply leave new guild members to camp here and let them know when we come back.”

“Mmm. Okay,” I was a little uncertain, but I did in fact feel quite threatened by these high level players, “Should we split up?”

“No, I am a very fast player. So they will have trouble catching me. And I already know I have nothing to wo-”

“Eeexcuse me,” Chronix lazily interrupts, cleaning out one of his ears with a finger, “Remember, ‘Sonar’? Unfortunately I have heard your plan and it is quite unfortunate but it isn’t going to-”

“RUN!” Verde calls out as she sprints away from the Swords of Light guild members. Fen and I are stunned at the suddenness for a moment, but we quickly follow.

We keep up at Verde’s speed which is quite slow compared to what I am used to. In fact, it is slow enough that I feel like I am lightly jogging., and Fen appears to only be lightly trotting along as well.

Doing a large circle through the hills we enter the thicket of trees we need to pass through to get to Iceridge. It is only a minute before two of the players step out from behind some trees. They are two of the Swords of Light members I saw earlier.

“The boss said you would probably head this way. Unfortunately for you, we are level one fifty, and our skills are designed for speed. You had no hope of outrunning us in the first place. Now cough up the money.”

The one who was speaking arrogantly was some skinny looking kid. If this was real life I probably would sit on him.

“Sorry,” Verde spoke up, putting on that entrancing smile of hers, “but we are going to be passing through here, please move aside.”

The mousy haired kid visibly swallowed, completely captivated by her charms.

“Well, i-if you ask that nicely.”

He was just about to let us go! At least, until the bald man next to him frowned and hit him over the back of the head.

“ArrowHunter! You go sit on the sidelines, I will take care of these two.” Sending the now moping kid off to the side, he took up a menacing appearance in front of us.

I inwardly let out a sigh and figure talking our way out of this situation is probably no longer possible.

“Fen,” I look straight at the wolf, “I need you to take Verde back to Iceridge, wait for me there.”

The wolf completely ignores me, pretending like I didn’t say anything.

“If you do,” I speak in a low voice, “I will buy whichever clothes you want the most.”

Fen shows an immediate reaction with her tail swinging and ears perked up. A few ice bolts rain down at the bald man, startling him and giving the wolf enough time to wrap its jaws around to back of her cloak and run off. I didn’t see much, but I thought I saw Verde go completely pale when she was picked up in the wolf’s mouth.

The bald man, who I am thinking looks a lot like a monk if fancy leather armour, narrowly dodged the ice bolts and is still standing in front of me. Only, unlike a monk, there is a katana on his hip secured in a plain scabbard. I doubt the sword is as plain as the scabbard however.

“You can’t get away from me! I am the fas… Damn, that’s fast.” He was captivated by the speed of the wolf’s escape, but quickly turned his attention to me while clearing his throat.

“You have one extremely fast pet there, where exactly did you get it?”

“Why would I tell you that?”

“Shame, I would like to get myself some monstrous pet like that someday. How you did it at your level is also a mystery, I would say you are barely level fifty, but maybe you are only wearing weak equipment.”

He speaks like a businessman, each word coming out as if it was a matter of fact. But he seems to jump to his own conclusions too fast.

“I am the fastest member in the Swords of Light guild, possibly the fastest player in the game. My base agility is nearly a hundred and I gain another twenty four percent bonus from both my skills and equipment. Unfortunately, you have no way to escape.”

My original concern disappears as soon as he discloses his agility stats to me. I may have this cloak halving my speed, but I am still faster than this guy.

With my worries gone, I run at him at half strength, allowing him to assert speed much lower than it actually is. With a sigh he draws the katana from the scabbard, releasing a few arcs of lightning along the blade while he holds it.

If only he was more wary. As soon as I am in range he swings the blade down diagonally through my body, leaving a trail of sparks in its wake. Only my body turns into mist and disappears right in front of his face.

I had activated ‘Back Stab’, except with a small difference.

My skill places me behind the target facing them, ready to attack. So as soon as I appear behind the monk, I pivoted on one foot to turn the other way. Activating my actual speed, I disappear into the trees behind him.

***************************************************

I find Fen and Verde waiting outside of Iceridge, both ignoring each other.

“Well, now that that’s over, I feel relieved.” I try to sound cheerful, but failing the effect the dreary atmosphere bearing down between the two.

“Yes,” Verde’s lips draw a thin line under her hood, “but I doubt they will give up, they have been known to hold grudges.”

“That, does indeed sound like it could be a pain.” The thought of that egotistical man chasing me around is most certainly not pleasant.

“I would recommend leaving the Kingdom of Glace for a while. That should not be a problem now that you’re over level fifty.”

“What about you, will you be leaving?”

“There is no need, they did not hear my name so they cannot use any locate spells to find me.”

“Well, if we need to leave, why don’t you come with us?”

Verde stops moving for a minute and seems to be thinking about her answer. I have a feeling in my gut that it is her trying to work out the best way to turn my offer down.

‘Maybe she is still angry about the kiss…’

“Okay, I suppose I can do that.”

‘Huh, why would she say yes?’

“I’m glad. Although I have a few things I need to do first.”

After our partings, Fen waited while we all split up. I don’t know where Verde went, but I went directly to the magic shop and bought a scroll of shrinking for Fen.

With the wolf now in the town, we first have to secure her some clothing. I lead a happy Fen into what appears to be an ordinary clothier, but turns out to be top end clothing with massive price tags on them.

Fen ran off before I could get her out of the shop and into a less expensive one. She stops while looking at a particular dress hanging on the wall all by itself.

“I suppose I did promise to give you whatever you wanted.” Letting out a sigh, I took it down from the wall.

Exquisite Halter Dress (Red)
A stunning halter styled dress made by the famous designer
Paziosco. 
This short piece will expose enough of the thighs to cause
all the men to be entranced.
It is made from cotton.

Requirements
- Female

Defence: 1
Durability: 16/16

Abilities:
- Charm and Taming skills will gain a 20% bonus.
- Male pets: Loyalty + 50%

One look at the price tag causes me to tear up. There is not much to the dress, and the bonus effect isn’t even useful for Fen. But, I suppose clothing having any bonus effects dramatically increases the value.

Price: 39 gold

That is an enormous sum for a single simple dress. With such an expensive taste, could this wolf smell the price tag?

Purchasing the dress I lead the wolf outside the shop before it sees anything else it wants. In an alley behind the shop I leave Fen with the dress to transform change into. I was a little afraid at first she would transform into a human at one tenth the size thanks to the scroll, but that wasn’t the case.

From the alley, Fen walks out, revealing her human form to me for the very first time.

Her hair is as white has snow, cut just above her shoulders at the back, and flowing down past her collarbone at the front. Under her straight cut fringe I can see her crystal blue eyes, her narrow lips drawn in a straight line, and her cheeks that are tinged rose.

She gives me a nervous and bashful glance. The dress clings to her figure at the top, yet at the bottom it is much looser, a few layers of frills decorating the hem. Just under the bust a large white ribbon wrapps around her, tied into a bow on the back of the dress.

“You look fantastic Fen,” I sincerely mean it. Even with her pale skin, the dress looks stunning on her. Despite the low cut, it clung to her modest chest, revealing the shapes underneath.

After paying so much for it, at least I did not have to worry about the durability of the dress. The dress was classified as clothing and not armour, meaning that while it did have durability it would only drop with modifications. My cloak was technically classed as clothing as well.

I am completely at odds as to how I should define her. Do I call her a wolf, or a person? She is definitely a wolf, but right now she is a person. There aren’t even animal ears or a wolf tail to still be able to call her a wolf.

She looks at the ground, nervously playing with her bare feet at my words.

‘Now that I think of it… She probably still isn’t wearing any underwear!’ 

The thought completely sobers up my mind for a moment. One careless moment in the wind and everyone is going to get a grand view of Hail Mary.

Surely the game must have some sort of censoring, but Fen isn’t exactly your typical NPC or Player. Plus, if I recall, there is a requirement that players must be at least eighteen years old.

She is only my companion, but I still do not want others to see her like that. I would like to buy her some underwear, but I have no clue what I should get. I need to call in someone who would know.

“Verde, where are you now?”

“Oh, Lost. I am just buying some food for the journey. Have you finished with what you needed to do?”

“Mostly, there is just one thing I need your help with. Can you come to… Mmm, let me check what it’s called… Bernardo’s?”

“I know that place, that’s where I got my cloak from! I will be right there!”

She shortly arrives at where I am waiting. The instant she sees us however she stops dead in her tracks. Or should I say, the instant she sees Fen.

“T-Thank you for coming so quickly!” I stammer a little at the start, a little nervous now that she is in front of me.

“The th-thing is, Fen doesn’t currently have any underwear, and I am not very good with clothes shopping. I-I have actually never bought… Any of that stuff.” I indicate to the girl next to me.

Verde is still staring at Fen, her face completely pale. She does not even register my words.

“Verde…” Fen spoke up, showing a smile across her face, “Please… Help me buy some… Underwear…”

Verde still didn’t say anything, but she gave a few short nods of her head.

***************************************************
***************************************************

-Verde-

After the kiss, I had logged out and locked myself in my bedroom. My father had come knocking on the door quite often, bringing me food and demanding to know what was wrong.

If he knew the truth, I have no doubt he would find out where the boy lived and pay him a visit.

I wasn’t particularly angry or upset at him stealing a kiss. It is just that every time I recall it, I get these butterflies in my chest and my head feels dizzy.

I was afraid to log back on.

Afraid that he would kiss me again.

Afraid I would let him.

I could feel heat rising to my face. I try burying myself in my pillow, but nothing seems to be able to hide me.

***************************************************

A week passed and I had finally collected my thoughts to be able to think rationally. It had happened, and I should just forget about it.

When I logged on however I returned to the dungeon where I logged off. I thought of calling Sir Laurence for help, but something inside of me decided to call Lost instead.

Fortunately, he was nearby and got to me in no time at all. Yet when he faced me and offered me his hand, the turmoil inside of me started up again. I took his hand and, once I was standing up, did not want to let go of it again.

It did not take long for us to escape the dungeon. Lost asked me to log out while he moved the wolf up to the next floor for some reason he did not want me to know about. It was definitely suspicious, but I couldn’t find it inside of me to raise the question.

Outside of the dungeon we encountered the Swords of Light guild. They are absolutely terrifying.

I already knew the face of the leader Chronix, he was one of the players chasing after Gladox, trying to get to a higher level than him.

Speaking of which, during my week away I read that Gladox is already nearly level two hundred and fifty. Surely there must be some secret to how fast he gains levels.

Chronix was just into extortion, as it was well known to anyone who knew of him. The issue was he generally targeted players a lot lower levelled than he was, killing anyone who refused his demands or tried to escape.

Fortunately I was a player with a high agility stat, so I should be able to get away from him. I am a little worried I would hold Lost back, but we needed to run away from this spot.

The signal I gave to run may have been a bit sudden, but we all managed to get away from the Swords of Light guild. At least, until we entered the forest that is.

Two of the guild members were already there, people boasting speed much faster than mine. I started to feel hopelessness about escaping from them but Lost had Fen pick me up and escape with me.

The wolf was incredible. I could feel the wind pressure against my face as we flew through the trees. Only, did the wolf have to pick me up with its jaws? For some reason its breath was ice cold, causing me to feel frozen down to my bones.

The wolf dumped me face first in the ground as soon as we arrived at Iceridge.

I had previously come to the conclusion that the companion was lent to him by the person who murdered me in the inn a while back. It would make sense, especially if its affinity of ice originated from its owner. It was a frightening thought, but next time I would be the one doing the ambushing.

That all changed however when Lost called for me in a private message to come help him out with something. It turned out had no clue how to pick out underwear for a girl.

A girl standing right next to him he called Fen.

The same girl I remembered from the inn that night.

***************************************************

Walking through the shops, Fen was following closely behind me. Fortunately Lost had lent me an extra coin bag he had to buy the girl some underwear, as I have little money of my own.

Sweat trickles down the back of my neck, I can almost feel the eyes of this girls drilling holes into my back. She was all smiles at first, but ever since leaving Lost she has been giving off a freezing aura.

All of a sudden a hand grabs my elbow and pulls me into a gap between two buildings. I get spun around and two hands pin my shoulders against the wall.

With my heart feeling like it’s about to bounce right out of my chest. Fen is standing in front of me. Her eyes seem to pierce right through my body, spikes of ice form in the air around us.

“What… Do you think… You are doing…” It is the same voice from that night. A quiet voice, yet crystal clear.

I open and close my mouth a few times, but no words would come out.

“I warned… You… To stay away… You, will not be coming to the… Kingdom of… Forste.”

Her face is about two inches from mine, her words piercing through me like nails. If she is trying to be intimidating, she is succeeding.

The memory of the unnatural pain I felt last time is coming back to me, causing my chest to further constrict in fear.

“I am… All Lost needs… Don’t forget that…” The ice spikes embed themselves in the wall around me. I hurriedly nod my head to her, letting her know I understand.

‘I-I really wanted to travel with him more. B-but I guess there is no way.’

My thoughts reveal my feelings, but my fear of this wolf outweighs them. I can almost feel her hand stabbing into my chest again, it hurts so much.

“I can… Buy my own… Underwear… Go home…” I feel the coin bag Lost lent me being removed, but I could not do anything to stop it.

Fen then turns and walks away with the dignity of a prideful wolf. With her gone, my legs finally give way and I end up on the ground, shaking all over.

***************************************************
***************************************************

-Lost-

It is a relief for Verde to take Fen to find underwear. I honestly have neither experience nor confidence in dealing with such an issue.

First on my list is selling all of my loot. Racing around town, I manage to gain back the money I spent on Fen’s dress and the last scroll of shrinking to get her back into town. But I also accumulated another fifty points of infamy in the process

Next, however, is what I am especially interested in.

Travelling through the eastern side of Iceridge, I arrive at the Auction House, more commonly referred to as the AH.

The building looks like some gothic styled cathedral from the 1400’s. The architecture is amazing, I remember learning about them in my history class back when I was at school.

Inside, the walls have intricate bronze carvings reaching all the way up to the ceiling, which hangs colourful banners and candle lit chandeliers.

I find an incredibly friendly NPC at the information desk that happens to be more than happy to assist me.

“Good afternoon! What can I help you with today!” Seriously though, she seems like she is on a sugar high. Either she must love her job, or she seriously loathes it.

“I have two items I would like to put into the auction.”

“No problem! Here is the key to stall number thirty seven! Do you need an explanation on how it works!?”

“Mmm. Yes, please.”

“It’s really simple! Once in the stall, all you need to do is place the item on the table! Then you choose the starting bid and how long the auction goes for!”

“Items are listed not just in our catalogue! But also on the official End Online website! All auctions run across all servers too so you will never have a problem finding a buyer! If the item is good that is!”

“You can also use our stalls for placing bids! Any items you have bid on can also be viewed from your main menu! You can even place more bids!”

“Fine, fine. I got it. Thank you for the explanation.”

This person is similar to PeachStar in many ways, but mainly in the fact that she is giving me a headache. Could the developers of this game consider developing a volume control?

I did, however, feel a great relief come over me when I did not gain any extra infamy points. This place must be an exception to certain parts of the game

I leave the attendant behind me and walk down the hall. Turning a key on the door labelled ’37’.”

The stall is of a reasonable size, a small round table in the centre and six chairs circling it appear to be the only furniture in here.

‘Looks like I could bring in more people if I like. There are only six chairs but I’m sure more people could come in here, there isn’t a rule against it after all.’

Sitting down, a menu opens in front of me, asking if I am buying or selling. Selecting ‘Selling’, I am prompted to put the items on the table in front of me.

Extracting both the Old Bronyx Plate Armour and Meridium Boots of Haste, I place them on the plain table in front of me.

The menu splits into two windows, one for each item. Each window displays one of the items I am putting up for sale, along with the bidding information.

Playing around with the options, I set the time for both of them to be two weeks, plus a small starting bid of twenty dollars. There are also choices to choose the minimum bid increase, reserve price and such, but I leave them blank.

I confirm the auction and the items disappear with a flash of light. If I am to describe the whole process in one word, it would be, “Convenient.”

Returning the key to the noisy attendant at the entrance to the AH, I exit the building. Considering I will be leaving, there is only one place left to visit.

“Hiiiiii! Have you got anymorrre apples for meee?!” PeachStar seems to get more irritating every time I see her. Perhaps I should find another merchant to sell my apples.

“Hey, PeachStar. Sorry, but I don’t have any apples today.”

“Awwww! I reallllly wanted to eat some!”

“Well,” muffling a sigh, I lean in and whisper in her ear, “How about I tell you where to get all the apples from.”

“WHAAAT!! Whyyy would you do thaaat??” Her voice causes everyone to look over while I try to massage my temples, my headache increasing.

“I will tell you where they are, because I plan on leaving to the Kingdom of Forste shortly. I thought you may like to go collect them yourself and we will split the money in half between us.”

“I would loooove that! I could eat allll the apples I like!”

‘You know, that really isn’t the point here. But if it’s apples to eat you want…’

“I’m glad you accept,” A greedy smile lit my hidden face, thinking about earning money without doing anything. “Do you have a map that I can put the location down on?”

PeachStar pulls out a map and I indicate the location of the cave. There are only wolves on the way and inside so she should be capable of doing it herself. I do tell her not to speak to anyone else about the cave. I am quite protective of my secret little spot in the end.

Although, I am not entirely confident in PeachStar’s secret keeping. She is after all what I would call… A loudmouth.

I would like to say goodbye to Mouse before I leave, but he doesn’t appear to be operating his business today.

Leaving the bazaar, a pair of pale arms wrap around me from behind.

The person quickly releases me and skips around in front of me, delight filling their face.

It is Fen. She gives me a coin purse with some coins in it. It is clearly change from buying her undergarments, but why did she have it?

“It’s good to see you Fen. Did you get what you needed?”

“Yep!… I did.” With a few quick nods of her head, coupled with her perforating voice, most of the players were looking our way.

All the woman in the vicinity are giving surprised looks at Fen, while most of the men seem to be glaring at me.

“Umm. What about your shoes?”

“Don’t need them… They will only… Slow me down.” She is bouncing around full of energy, but her movements are incredible, it’s like she is simply gliding through the air.

“Okay, okay. Where is Verde?”

She bites her lip and looks away, mumbling that Verde left to go somewhere else. Interestingly she keeps looking away from me, avoiding meeting my gaze.

“I am going to call Verde, Fen. She is welcome to come with us if she wants.”

“NO!… I am… All you need…”

“Cut it out wolf!” Using my hand, I let my anger get the better of me and karate chop her on top of the head. It is mostly due to Fen raising her voice when I already have a headache, but I still get mad.

Fen looks down, a happy expression secretly showing on her face. I vaguely remember the last time I got angry at her, right after she left me to die via goblins. At that time, when I yelled at her, she had her tail wagging in a playful mood.

‘Don’t tell me she likes it when I get mad at her!?’

Come to think of it, I have no clue what she even likes and doesn’t. All I know about her is she really does not like being dragged through small tunnels.

“Verde, are you there. Are you coming to Forste?”

It takes her some time to reply, and she sounds extremely nervous when she does.

“Oh, umm… I terribly sorry. *hic* But I think I will stay here…” 

“If it’s about Fen, I’ve already had words with her. And also… I am the one who should be sorry!”

I finally did it! I gave her my apology for the kiss. I am feeling extremely anxious at what she will say back, but it feels relieving to get it off my chest.

“Sorry? Why are you apologizing to me? *hic*”

She seems to be hiccupping a fair bit, is she okay?

“The Kiss! I got caught up in the moment and… Well… That happened.”

“W-w-what are you t-talking about! *hic* P-please don’t mention such a t-thing! *hic*”

All of a sudden her voice becomes frantic. Did she simply want to pretend like it never happened?

“So, please come with me to Forste!”

I’m not entirely sure why, but such a simple request sounds like some kind of love confession. My heart is even beating against my chest and my hands feel like they are sweating just like it is one too.

“O-Okay, I will come. Shall w-we meet *hic* at the north gate?”

“Yes, I will be there shortly.”

“A-are *hic* you sure t-that Fen is okay with me being here?”

“Well… She is definitely, happy.”

I grab Fen by the arm and drag her along while she still seems intoxicated in her own world. I feel the hatred of all the male players around me increasing at such a scene.

We head directly to the north gate to meet up with Verde.

***************************************************
***************************************************

-Verde-

The wolf was terrifying. I wanted nothing to do with it, even if it meant running away. I got overly curious about the person from the night at the inn, and it turned out I was next to her the entire time!

After leaving her with the money Lost lent me, I went to one of the pubs and ordered a large quantity of alcohol. At five silvers each, I drank a total of four pints of ale before I felt the games effect of being ‘Drunk’ start to kick in.

The only alcohol I had ever drunk before End Online was small amounts of wine with dinner. I had never even considered drinking an alcohol such as ale, for the sake of drinking it nonetheless.

It tasted horrible at first, but the cheap wine that was served tasted even worse. A few nights and I gradually got a taste for it, even if I did not drink it very often afterwards.

Lost sent me a private message about going to Forste while I was sitting at the bar. I was a little unsure of what to do. Should I simply ignore it?

Only the alcohol seemed to also inhibit my decision making in the game. I replied to him and the conversation got easier from there. I even found out that he has had words with that wolf girl.

Then he brought up the kiss. With one hand on my neck for the private message I used the other to pull my hood down over my face, trying to hide.

I didn’t think he thought about it much, but I was wrong. He had clearly been thinking about it a lot.

After that he asked me to join him going to the Kingdom of Forste in such a way that I could not refuse him.

***************************************************

Blushing, I open a private channel to Sir Laurence.

“Sir Laurence, are you there? *hic*”

“My lady! Yes, I am just outside of Iceridge training my dexterity so I can block and parry attacks better. I won’t let you get hurt again!”

“Oh, *hic* that’s umm… Really nice *hic*. But I need you to come with me to Forste.”

“Are you okay? You have been drinking. Did you want to e-elope with me?”

There is a considerable amount of hope in his voice, but that seems to fade with the uncomfortable silence that follows.

“Sir Laurence… I need your *hic* protection on the journey. Mainly from Fen. *hic*”

“T-that wolf? Don’t worry! I will squash it for my lady should she desire!”

“Umm. Please coin-*hic*-cidentally run into us as we are leaving. I think it would be best if you just happen to run into us. *hic*”

“As you wish.”

I can imagine him bowing in front of me. The same way he does every time he speaks those words.

I pay my bill and walk out of the pub, a few more coins in my purse than when I walked in, thanks to a few unlucky customers.

Slightly staggering down the road, I walk towards the north gate.

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32 Comments

  1. What is strange though, is why Fen so embrassed of her nakedness? She is wolf, child of nature, it is natural for her to be naked, no?
    Also, it illogical that mc that should concentrate on farming, stats and item trade, wasting tens of times more money on unessential scrolls and dresses than on his equipment. Really now.

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    1. haha if I was a wolf, and I suddenly lost all my fur, I would feel quite naked and exposed lol.
      One of the aspects about this game is that there is no gold to $$ conversion. Of course you can buy items with them and then sell them. But if you were to compare the value, you would be looking at 1gold coin -> $1. Also, it adds a bit of character to the story ^.^ But those are just my opinions, everyone is different.

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      1. With gold he could buy much needed eqipment and supplies to go dungeon hunting or something else to get items..
        Im not saing that he shouldnt take care of Fen, but he really could do it more effectively in terms of money.

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  2. Arrrgh. I hope Verde dies soon (or something). I honestly do. Goddamn but this girl is lowering the story into a bad harem fic. My mental image of her is going: “Oh, I’m a lonely isolated princess, with lots of money and super duper good looks. But my father keeps me trapped and keeps me from seeing people, so I have to sneak out! I know this guy that’s as good looking as me, but he’s a horrible person for not being nice to other guys, only girls, so I don’t like him. This shows I have real character and am deeeep. Oh and I steal money from people for a living, but I’m still a good person because it’s virtual money even though a single gold is more valuable than a real dollar. And this strange man kissed me (because he absolutely had to, and there was no other option of course! It would be wrong otherwise, tee hee) and it was so wonderful, even when he was forcing horrible tasting potions into my mouth. Honestly he could throw up while kissing me and I’d bet it would taste like cotton candy and rainbows. And I saw his face, the face that he won’t let anyone else ever see. He looks so sad, and like a deep person (like me!). Even though literally every single other person that sees him says he looks like a delinquent, I don’t because I can look at him and instantly see his truuee personality, as only another deep person can. And now I’m falling in love with him after just one kiss and seeing his face, even though I stalked him earlier and was perfectly fine with abandoning him to die earlier. We’re just destined to be together, no matter how many bad plot devices it takes to make this happen!” That is really how I see her right now. I really enjoyed this story before she became a major character, and she’s making me strongly consider quitting it.

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    1. Just in case it wasn’t clear, I mean I hope she dies in real life. If it happens in the game, it would be worthless as she would just come back later I’m sure.

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      1. Haha I know what you are saying. But there is one thing you shouldn’t have to worry about, and that is the cliche harem situation ^.^ she has her part to play and place to end up, as they all do

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    2. Hahahahahaha i didn’t care for her to much because of Fen but after you put it that way i do think of her that way but i guess i don’t mind as much as you do, at least not to the point of quitting.

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