40. Having a Meal
When XiaoYu woke up the next day, he found himself lying in the bed of a hotel. He recalled that warm, safe embrace from yesterday and suddenly the world didn’t feel that bad after all.
There was a note pinned down on the table in the room.
Wait for me at Serica’s West Gate at 6 p.m. today.
P.S. Do not ever turn off private messaging again. Don’t munch on carrots either!
A soft laugh escaped XiaoYu’s lips. The note was just like the type his mother used to leave for him on the dining table just before she left the house. It had been a very long time since anyone cared so much about him.
XiaoYu scooped the tiny cat into his arms and snuggled with it for a while. He’d given himself an unproductive day off yesterday. He must get up, cheer up. He shouldn’t let others worry anymore.
Ask his friends to help take revenge? That’s not something XiaoYu would do. After yesterday’s PvP, he knew that if he kept a level mind and keep all his skill cooldowns in check, and if no accidents happened, that knight would never be able to kill him. So, XiaoYu needed to grind. Once he passed his second Job Change, he’ll have an attack spell with Holy Light. Even though its damage would be reduced and it’d be very hard to actively kill anyone, at least he wouldn’t be stuck without any chance of hitting back when attacked.
He dropped quite a lot of cash yesterday. His heart ached. He must remember not to bring that much cash with him when he’s out of the city. T-T
He lost his staff too. The mission at hand was to find a weapon. Acolytes can equip books, wands, hammers, low-levelled daggers etc. But most prefer wands and staff because these weapons have more magical attributes. He’ll take a walk around the market after he finished repairing his gear.
“Chief, Yue (Moon) is done investigating. It certainly was the swordsman who tormented LuckyCat last time. He’s now a Knight. Level 55. Dual-wielding Agility build,” Lin Qiong (Poor) said. He tilted his head to look back at Hei QiYao who was sitting at the backseat with his eyes closed. With the help of a sophisticated A.I., there were no problems with some slight multitasking when driving. In an emergency, the car will automatically hit the brakes.
“Deal with it according to the guild’s top grade ill-intent PvP rules.” XiaoYu might not be in the guild yet, but QiYao already thinks of XiaoYu as one of his own. New grudges, old vengeance. They’ll all be factored in equally. It’s not an unfair way of taking revenge.
“Gank him back to Level 1? He should count himself lucky. He’s the first player to enjoy such treatment.” Heretic Demons had all sorts of detailed internal rules and regulations. Thus, when conflicts arose, they could just hand out punishments or rewards accordingly. No one would be unjustly treated, and the guild wouldn’t accidentally go overboard. According to BattleOverlord’s mean-spirited actions towards LuckyCat – tormenting him for four hours straight and duelling a healer with absolutely no offensive powers – he should certainly die.
“6 p.m. West Gate of Serica.”
“Osiris in the Pyramids?” Qiong’s mind instantly jumped to the nearest region boss.
“Depends. Mainly to help XiaoYu get back his levels.”
“Hey, Chief, what’s LuckyCat’s full name?”
“I don’t know.”
“Huh? Aren’t you calling him Xiao-Yu already?” They’re already so affectionate with each other. How can QiYao not know the other’s full name? He wanted to call LuckyCat Xiao-Yu too. He’ll definitely discuss it out with LuckyCat tonight.
“Because his name is XiaoYu. I haven’t gotten his surname yet.”
“Then…why don’t we organise a meetup after we conquer Prole-3? The pack of brats in the guild have been going on and on about getting your autograph.” If they used Prole-3 as a reason for a real-life gathering, perhaps they’ll get some unexpected effects. It can even help LuckyCat blend into Heretic Demons faster.
“What is it?”
“Have you ever witnessed XiaoYu going offline?”
“…no.” Upon close scrutiny, every time Qiong looked at his Friends tab, LuckyCat’s icon was always lit up. Even if he didn’t look at it, the mountain-high pile of materials appearing before was proof that LuckyCat rarely, if ever, went offline.
“He doesn’t want to go offline.”
“You mean there’s something he doesn’t want to face in real life?”
“That’s a possibility.”
“Mn…Put a hold on the gathering idea. I’ll see what Lil Lucky thinks first.”
Since XiaoYu was now Level 49, which did not meet the Job Change quest’s level requirements, the Job Change quest was greyed out for him. It could not be completed. That meant even if XiaoYu went out and killed Zombies and Jiangshi now, the kill count for the quest will not change.
“There, there. We’ll get food once we find a restaurant.” XiaoYu knew that Yao’s not online now. There’s no way he could check whether XiaoYu ate carrots, but he was so concerned for XiaoYu. It’d feel rather rude if XiaoYu still crunched down on carrots. Furthermore, XiaoYu had a slight craving for cooked food.
YueYang Restaurant wasn’t hard to find, after asking a few NPCs who happily pointed the way out. It was lunch time. Crowds of players and NPCs flowed in and out the restaurant door. Standing at the doorway, XiaoYu hesitated.
“This way, sir. Just one?” Having spotted XiaoYu hovering at the doorway, a server NPC ran up and greeted him with a friendly smile.
“Downstairs is all full. Please follow me upstairs. Do watch your step.” The server swiftly led XiaoYu up to the third floor. In a single glance, it would seem as if the place was packed to the brim. There was only a lonely empty table in an isolated corner. However, it certainly wasn’t a good spot. There was no way one could look out at the streets from that table.
“We sincerely apologise. This is the only table we have left. If you’re not happy with that seat, I could ask around if anyone’s willing to share their table.”
“It’s fine. I don’t mind. Thanks.”
XiaoYu sat down and started reading through the menu the server handed to him. The prices for every dish was written down beside the name. XiaoYu secretly stuck his tongue out. At least it wasn’t too expensive. This place was so much more suited for the public mass than the place XiaoYu went to with I_Am_A_Poor_Man.
After ordering a few of his favourite dishes, not forgetting the specialty grilled fish for the tiny cat, XiaoYu considered which quest he should accept next while sipping on barley tea provided by the server.
“Little Acolyte, do you mind sharing tables?” A voice rang out above XiaoYu.
XiaoYu looked up and found a player dressed in the normal Assassin garb standing before him. As the Assassin outfit allowed the player to conceal their face, XiaoYu couldn’t tell what the other looked like at all. (Of course, the player could choose to not conceal their faces.)
When XiaoYu kept silent, LittleZhuGe pulled down the cloth concealing his face and asked once more, “Can I?”
“Yes. You can.” XiaoYu was an easy-going person. The hesitation from before was because he was examining LittleZhuGe’s mask. It was the first time he could take a close look at an Assassin with their face covered up. NonMeta, who was also an Assassin, disliked covering his face. So, he never used the cloth mask.
XiaoYu didn’t know that he’d actually met this person before. It’s understandable. On that day, LittleZhuGe was dressed in a top-tier Assassin’s outfit with his face covered up. Only those who knew LittleZhuGe well would be able to recognise him.
“What a cute kitty. Can I pet it?”
“Yes, if it doesn’t mind.”
“Here, kitty. Let me pet you. Please?” As LittleZhuGe said so, he slowly stretched a hand out for the small cat’s head. Upon receiving no objection, he began to stroke it.
“Meow~” Comfy. The tiny cat squinted its eyes in comfort as it enjoyed LittleZhuGe’s caress. It wasn’t afraid of this stranger at all, due to the scent of gold on him.
“Does it have a name?”
“What an interesting name. Ah, right. I forgot to introduce myself. My name is LittleZhuGe.”
“I’m LuckyCat.” The name ZhuGe sounded familiar but XiaoYu couldn’t not remember where he heard of it before.
I’m used to it. =_=
As the two chatted, XiaoYu’s dishes arrived. Thus, LittleZhuGe retracted his hand. As he drank his tea, he watched the battle between the two cats and the food before them.
“Sorry I’m late.”
Upon hearing an unfamiliar voice, XiaoYu and the tiny cat looked up at the same time. This face was rather familiar…XiaoYu definitely knew he’d seen this man before, but when and where?
GloryOfTheWorld looked down at the two cat faces which were daydreaming while staring at him. “Pardon me,” he said, “for disturbing you from your meal.”
“This is my friend, LuckyCat. We were going to eat together.”
“Oh, right. Please, sit.” XiaoYu shuffled his dishes to a corner until he felt like the space he cleared was enough for the two’s dishes later.
“Thank you. Hi. I’m GloryOfTheWorld,” he said as he sat down.
“I’m LuckyCat. Ah. You’re the Guild Leader of Wings.” Realisation dawned upon XiaoYu. This was the guy they bumped into two days ago. He remembered that red horse. It was rather handsome.
“Yes. We met two days ago,” Glory replied.
“Yes.” XiaoYu left the conversation there and continued burying his face in food.
When XiaoYu and the small cat were all done, Glory and ZhuGe were only halfway through. With a satisfied kitten in his arms, who let out a fulfilled burp, XiaoYu raised his hand to call for the bill.
“Let us pay. Think of it as thanks for sharing your table with us,” Glory said.
“It’s fine. It’s what I should do.” It was rather wasteful for XiaoYu to hoard an entire table to himself. XiaoYu paused. “Thanks for the offer.”
“Let’s add each other.” As the suggestion was being made, Glory and ZhuGe both offered their name cards.
“Okay.” XiaoYu handed his own name cards in return, paid for his meal, gave a polite farewell to the other two, and left.
“Hehe. What an interesting newbie,” Glory said. They had ordered a jug of alcohol and were slowly enjoying their meal with it.
“Thank goodness I followed him when I saw him in the city. It’s not a waste of your time, right?”
“But this seat is so bad.”
“I can’t do anything about that. Luckily, he’s not a picky one. Otherwise, we’d have no chance to meet him.”
“Are you really sure yesterday’s update was because of him?”
“It should be. I saw him hand a Peco Peco egg over to a group of Peco Pecos. Then, the game announcement immediately popped up. There was a Knight in their party who looked very happy as he looked up at the announcement in the air.
“I wonder what the rewards were.”
“It should be good. I heard HereticKing is already Level 102.”
“Really? Then I must work hard. I can’t let him overshoot me. Let’s go to the Ancient Ruins afterwards.” GloryOfTheWorld. Level 102. Tank build, one-handed spear-wielding Knight.
The conversation on this end then shifted from Bai XiaoYu to the monsters in the Ancient Ruins. On the other end, XiaoYu was completely dejected over the news that the chef in charge of teaching cooking skills was on a holiday back to his hometown.
1. Yue and Qiong: As some might have noticed, these characters’ in-game names are homonyms of their own names.
2. Jug of alcohol: There are times when alcohol is one of the worst terms to translate. Depending on the developers, this jug of alcohol could be a jug of beer or a pot of liquor (usually rice wine/bai jiu). The ancient Chinese used pots to store/age their alcohol as wooden barrels, thus jugs, weren’t really a thing for Chinese breweries.
3. Hei QiYao: If you were to MTL this name, it might give you Kurosaki Yao instead. This is because 黑崎 (Hei Qi) are the characters for Kurosaki from Bleach.