“Oh? You just got here? In just a month, how fast . ” Bluebird’s voice, dripping with sarcasm, could be heard from within Sila’s tent . Today was the day they set off for Belacia City . Based on what Bluebird said, it seemed the person they were waiting for had finally arrived .
“How can you say that, Big Brother? That was the most rushed trip I’ve ever had! Your guild’s teleportation service shut down and I couldn’t find a Crystal of Connecting that would take me to Grea City . I had to travel by foot from Colossia City,” Burapha complained in response .
Sila exited his tent and found Bluebird and Burapha . As they noticed him, the trio shared greetings .
“Hello, Big Brother Sila . I heard you drove a dragon away from the city? Achieving yet another amazing feat like always . ”
Bluebird interrupted . “Oi, oi, I was the one who drove her away . You are talking to the current conqueror of Grea City, you know?”
“Erm . . . I think I know who really took her down,” Burapha replied .
Sila stopped the argument . “We both contributed to the result . If Blue hadn’t been there, we wouldn’t have been able to defeat Infernee . ”
“See? Sila also said it himself . ” Bluebird puffed up his chest .
Sila used the lull in the conversation to inspect Burapha, noticing he had changed his attire . Burapha was now wearing a long-sleeved shirt and ocean-colored pants . He also covered himself with a thick blue coat made of beast fur and a pair of leather gloves .
“Wow, I just noticed . You look rather cool today,” Sila complimented .
Bluebird expressed his opinion . “Heh . I bet you were spending your sweet time with Swan and forgot about your friends . ”
“That’s not it,” replied Burapha .
Bluebird’s brows curved up . “Hm? Didn’t you spend time shopping with Swan? Are you sure? I believe this kind of costume can be found in Zhongsuyuan City . The one you are wearing is also the type that is likely to match her taste . ”
Burapha’s face reddened for a brief moment . He wondered why Bluebird’s guess was so spot on . In fact, he really did purchase this costume with White Swan in Zhongsuyuan City .
“I mean . . . I made a mistake last time as I didn’t prepare enough . This time, however, I have prepared several sets of thick clothing, spare food cans, and even borrowed the Snow Bison from the Mountain Thieves League . ”
Bluebird was quite surprised . “Whoa? Beluga let you borrow the Snow Bison? You two must really get along . The Snow Bison is good at traveling in areas with low temperature . The Mountain Thieves League only has one of them so they aren’t able to open up a transportation business in snowy areas . ”
Burapha lifted up his right hand, showing off a white bracelet . “Correct . This way, we can rest in the middle of our journey . Even better, we can just ride on it all the way . ”
However, Bluebird didn’t react to Burapha’s boastful attitude . He simply smirked and thought to himself .
‘Kuhuhu . Thick clothing? Riding a monster? You will know your place soon, Little Burapha . ’
Seeing Burapha so well-prepared, Sila felt like he hadn’t prepared enough . All he did was ask Julia to prepare him a few bento boxes and food for Lookhin .
“Excuse me . I will go and prepare some more . I will also need more food for Lookhin and Mamon . ”
Bluebird caught Sila who was going to enter his tent . “Don’t worry, Sila . Your preparation is enough already . ”
“Hm? Really? More is better than less, I think . ”
“Trust me, pal . I have been to Belacia City before . You will get it when you travel with me . Let Burapha be the only one to carry a lot of things . ”
Burapha frowned . “It’s called being well prepared, Big Brother . How about you? What do you have?”
Bluebird said proudly, “Except for food, I’m not bringing anything with me . ”
“Ah~ What an amateur . If you want anything from me during our trip, I will sell them to you at a special price, then . A special expensive price, that’s it! Hahaha!”
Bluebird simply smiled . “You shall soon see who is the genuine amateur, Little Burapha~”
“Shall we get going now?” asked Sila .
Burapha nodded . “The sooner, the better, Big Brother Sila . If we depart now while it’s still morning, we can travel a long distance before nightfall . ”
“Morning? The sooner the better? Hahaha . ” Bluebird laughed, which caused the others to give him a strange look . Slightly embarrassed, Bluebird let out a dry cough and opened his system window to check the time . “Um . Let’s wait another hour and a half before leaving . We’ll meet up at the north gate . See ya . ”
Although he was told that, Sila had already finished up with everything he needed to do here . Well, there was still one more task left for him to do . It was a small task which he had been deliberately avoiding . He would rather fight Infernee again than deal with this . However, he knew that the problem would escalate if he left it unattended .
“The message was sent . I can only wait,” Sila said to himself .
The location where Sila was waiting was above the gate leading to the underground city—Lost Grea City . No one was interested in it and it wasn’t destroyed when Infernee came to the city . It was a suitable meeting place .
Sila opened his system window and read the information regarding Belacia City . Even though his eyes were staring at the text, none of it entered his head . He was too restless to comprehend the words . He felt like he was in danger of being attacked at any moment, and was awaiting a battle that wasn’t coming
“Sila? What’s wrong? I thought you left for the north already . ”
Finally, she had arrived . His most formidable opponent who was greater than even the eight dragons combined . The person whom Sila had no idea which skills he should use against or which element of Five-Attributed Cloud Qi could gain an edge over her .
“Nam . . . Err, the weather is nice today, isn’t it?” Sila turned to Varee .
Varee furrowed her brows . She looked up to the sky . “Today is too cold, and the clouds are too thick . The city is currently empty without buildings so the wind from the north is blowing in . If the city walls aren’t built soon, parts of Grea City will be buried under the snow . ”
“I-Is that so? Haha . ” Sila let out an awkward laugh .
“Is there something wrong? You are acting strange . Ah? Could it be that you are planning to do some risky things again? What is it this time?”
“Er, no . . . Well, it’s quite risky if I really think about it . The thing is . . . ”
“Could you please stop murmuring? Just tell me what you want to say . ”
“It’s about what you asked me last time,” Sila said in a soft voice .
Varee was thinking about something else, so she didn’t realize what Sila was talking about . “What I asked you last time? What was it?”
“Err . . . that time before I went into the Single-Horned Dragon Forest . ”
Finally understanding what Sila wanted to talk about, Varee’s cheek turned slightly pink . “Ah, about that . . . Erm . . . I thought you would take longer . . . since you asked me to give you time . ”
“I will have to go to Belacia City soon, and I think it will be a long trip . That’s why I want to tell you first . ”
“Um . . . I see . ” Varee nodded lightly . Usually, she tended to bug him a lot and that annoyed him . It was perplexing for Sila to see her being speechless like this .
“Varee? Are you okay?”
“I'm fine . By the way, you don’t need to be so rushed . Even if we are not facing each other, we can still keep in touch using our system windows . ”
“Oh, you’re right! The system window! I completely forgot about it . Well, let’s talk using the system window later, then . ” Sila hurriedly spoke and prepared to leave . However, Varee pulled his sleeve .
“Wait . Since you and I are here anyway, you should say what’s on your mind . ”
Sila turned back . “Are you sure? You may not like the answer though . ”
“Do you know what kind of answer I’m expecting? Aren’t you being too cheeky?”
“Eh? You were the one asking, so I think—” Sila scratched his head, feeling confused .
“Teehee . I’m just kidding . Just tell me honestly . ”
Sila took a deep breath and calmed his mind like a pond without any ripples . He slowly spoke with a firm voice .
“To be honest, I’m still not sure about my feelings . Actually, we barely know each other . The only thing I know is that being with you, I don’t have to be overly cautious and can do whatever I want . Well, it may seem self-centered in your perspective . I neither dislike nor hate you . Erm . . . I also don’t know if this kind of answer is too self-centered . ”
Varee fell silent for a few seconds before replying to Sila in a similar manner .
“Actually, I asked you that question because I felt the same way . Sila is childish and self-centered . You always do stuff without considering how worried the people around you will feel . I must admit that, in the beginning, I thought of you as a hindrance that my dad asked me to take care of . Considering how old you are, Sila should act more mature . Although you got better lately, you still never stop making me worried about your risky behavior . ”
“Why does it sound like I only have flaws . . . hey, wait, I’m not childish . ”
“How about following my line of thinking? Self-centered, unreasonable, inattentive, and always acting like you are alone in your own world . Do these traits make you childish?”
Sila couldn’t dispute any of what she said, so he kept his mouth shut .
Varee seemed to remember something . “Oh, right . Please unblock me from your contact list, otherwise I won’t be able to contact you . ”
“Do I still have you blocked?” Sila opened his system window and gave a dry smile . “Ah, that’s true . ”
“ . . . Inattentive,” Varee muttered .
Sila pressed his finger on his system window . “I know . I know . You don’t need to repeat that . . . You’re unblocked now . ”
Varee released a heavy sigh . “Like you just said, maybe we don’t know much about each other . Except what my dad told me about you, we only met a few times and seldom have good conversations . I think we should learn more about each other and let time decide where we go with this . ”
The problem was that Sila wasn’t sure he was ready to do that . Time was the thing he lacked the most . His mission regarding the Wulin Masters Association was too great for him to spare time for anything else .
“I don’t have time . The war event is coming but I still have tons of things to do . Furthermore, I will have to keep practicing to catch up to Montra . You should know how strong Montra is, and he will be even stronger the next time I meet him . ”
“Time is what we equally have, Sila, even more so in Monster Soul . You just make poor use of it . Isn’t it tiring to be constantly running? You should take some time to rest as well . I believe no one has told you not to . Nam always saw Sila either practicing or fighting . It’s like that’s all you have in your entire life . It’s sad . ”
Varee swept the floor next to the metal door on the ground . “When will you depart?”
Sila sat next to her . “Bluebird said in an hour and a half . ”
“That means we have a whole hour and a half . We have a lot of time . Nam will tell you my story, and you should tell me yours too . ”
“Anything you want to tell me . ”
Varee started telling a story about her when she entered the game . Sila listened to her, sometimes attentively and sometimes without focusing . Naturally Varee sulked every now and then because of it . Her emotions were always surging up and down like tides . Similarly, Sila was too quiet and inattentive like a stone .
When he was with Sangdao, Sila felt he became a talkative person while attentively listening to every word she said, afraid that he would miss even one sound . He thought deeply over her interpretations regarding a lot of things . He longed for the few words from her mouth and tried his best to make a precious memory out of his time together with her .
On the other hand, his time with Varee passed quickly . The two of them swapped their roles between speaker and listener constantly . The more they talked, the more they came to know each other . Their time together was neither romantic nor philosophical . In fact, there were some silly moments . Sila lost track of time and let the conversation dictate the flow of what they were talking without thinking ahead .
He didn’t know which was the right answer . In fact, there might have never been a correct answer since the beginning .
“So late . Where is Sila?” Bluebird complained as he waited for Sila . Although he delayed their departure, it seemed he became the most enthusiastic person before everyone knew it .
Burapha leaned against his large backpack . He used it to collect items in addition to his system window which had already reached its full capacity .
“It’s not yet the appointed time . Anyway, it doesn’t matter even if we depart a bit late . ”
Bluebird replied, “If we miss this period, I think we should depart tomorrow instead . I don’t want to take a detour . ”
“Why are you so serious? And what detour? The trip to Belacia City is straight to the north, isn’t it?”
Bluebird was still looking for Sila . He was contemplating whether he should send tailorbirds to get him when he saw Sila walking from afar .
“Sila, quickly . We are about to be late!” Bluebird shouted, which caused Sila to quickly close the remaining distance .
“What’s going on? Late for what?” asked Sila .
Bluebird smiled . “You will know soon . Are you sure you’re not forgetting anything?”
Burapha was about to open his backpack . “Let me check my items again . I’m not sure how many blankets I have with me—”
“Oi! Don’t bother! We will be late if we wait for you . Let’s hurry . Don’t blame me if you lose your way,” Bluebird said and clad his feet with magic power reinforcement before leaping forward .
“Let’s go . ” Sila used qinggong to quickly follow Bluebird, followed lastly by Burapha who had to run roughly with his large backpack behind him .