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69 Prelude of Trouble

 Due to the maintenance of the patch, all players of Alternate World are forced to log out. Since the maintenance will last until tomorrow in the afternoon, I have plenty of time to do things for my life.

After taking dinner, washing the plates, and having a shower, I returned to my room and boot up my computer. Although its already midnight, I still don't feel that sleepy and I am quite sure the people on the internet are all lively and chaotic.

Checking my mails for important things, I realized that the bills are piling up and since its about time for payments, the bills have sent their notice of bills and the amount we need to pay. If it was back then in the past timeline, I would have to work and grind hard in the game just to earn enough money to pay the bills. It looks like my job for tomorrow will be about paying bills.

Without much difference to the rest of the mails, I browsed the Alternate World's website and chat group forums. Seeing the thumbnails of videos posted on the website, it was quite clear that I caught the sight of every player. My wolf mask suddenly became too iconic to everyone.

I may be trying to be low key, but that doesn't mean I can avoid it. With my actions, I am quite sure that players are going to keep their eyes on me. But without knowing my real name due to the effect of the mask, it would take them a lot of time to know me fully. It is enough as long as my real identity in real life will not be revealed.

There were also the cases around the claims of Kazuki in the game's gossip corner. Due to him publicizing his actions and failing to do it, the players now look at him with doubts. The controversy around the failure of teamwork to the other guild members that were caught in the tape was also a very hot topic that I bet Kazuki is fuming in anger right now knowing his behavior.

Without anything new aside from the patch's notes for the update on the game, I turned off my computer and turn in for the day.

...

The next day, I was awoken by the sound of the ringing phone blaring loudly that the sound pierced to my room. I scratched my head as I hurry towards the phone and picked it up.

"Hello? Tsukasa Residence."

"Manato, it's me, your mother has now awakened from her coma! She is currently being checked by the doctor right now," Father's voice welcomed my ears as soon as I put my ear into the phone's receiver. I can tell from his voice his joy on Mother's awakening.

"Really? Is she in a stable state now?" I asked.

"I think so. The doctor has yet to give me any status yet but based on what I see, she is now recuperating."

"Can I speak to her?" I asked Father. Honestly, I haven't heard my mother's voice ever since I returned from the past. I missed my parents but since I talk with Father all the time, I don't feel the loneliness much. However, I still have no chance to talk to her and due to the accident, it stopped me from communicating with her.

"Today might not be a good idea, son. Your mother is still trying to regain her control in her body and she still can barely move so I think you can talk to her tomorrow once she is now able to recuperate a significant amount of rest," Father said.

"I understand that Father. Also, Father, don't hesitate to ask me for some money if you are in a tight spot. I still have a good amount left in my account after winning a few more Esports tournament."

"No, Manato, don't worry. The amount of money you sent is enough. That is your money and looking for money is my job. You should focus more on what you do and prepare for the school in the next 2 weeks. I suggest you only use your cash prize for your studies and fees for the school and some of your needs over there. There is no need for you to send any money. In fact, I should be the one sending money to you. But due to the situation of your mother, I can't afford to send you money to pay for school fees."

"I understand. Send my regards to mom. I hope I can talk to her tomorrow."

After the call, I put the phone back and sighed. Looks like Mother's situation is alright now. If only I can use Heal in the real world already then Mother doesn't need to keep herself on the bed.

Preparing myself for today, I have two agenda to do. One is hiring a private investigator to investigate about my mother's accident. I smell something wrong with that one event so I can't just ignore it.

The second one is the sibling mercenaries. I can't let them go stagnant with their talents so I have to cultivate them early. I can't also let Kazuki take them in the future. They will bolster his strength faster if that was the case.

Just as I thought this will be going to be a peaceful day, I received a call from someone on my phone. It was quite a trouble that seeing the name registered on the screen wants me to throw away the phone. But I refuse to do this since my phone is precious. I don't want it to be wasted from such trivial matters.

I hesitated at first but I have nothing much to do so I answered it.

"Hey there Manato, you still alive eh? How are you doing man?" the voice of the familiar young man's voice echoed in my ears.

"What do you want so early in the morning huh? I am still sleepy so be quick with your sh*t," I said.

"Damn, you got a savage tongue now arent you? You have grown some spine! Still, that is not what I came here for," he said.

I sighed. I don't think I will forget what they did to me in the past timeline. The guy who invited me to his guild, only to be used as a farmable player that once reaches a certain level, will immediately trim me back to level 0. It was them that started to ruin my life.

"Have you heard of the game Alternate World? I want you as part of my battle to dominate the rankings!"