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189 Walking & Talking

 As the group began their trek through the woods, they could see that the sky had begun to lighten and the sun was starting to rise. It was like this day was reflecting their mood because from what they could see, it was going to be another bright and sunny day in the world of Haven.

The group was still basking in the afterglow of their recent victory and the atmosphere around them was a very happy one. With Melting Snow doing a play by play of the fight as the rest listened, smiling fondly at the enthusiastic boy.

However, even though they were successful in defeating a transformed boss creature they didn't let it go to their head. They were still very much on the alert. These woods were very dangerous, this was made clear when they heard the different noises that echoed all around them.

From the scampering sounds of woodland creatures that had awakened from their night's slumber to the growls of the different monsters that were out hunting for their prey. They made sure to keep their guard up, they had learned from past experiences that danger can pop up anywhere.

However, even knowing that wasn't enough to deter them or dampen their mood. They also had a lot of faith that Xinya would be able to bypass any threats to their safety and was 90% sure that their journey would be clear of any problems. The 10% left was because they all knew of the green-haired man perchance for finding trouble.

~

Staring at the transparent map that was in front of him, Xinya grinned. The monster had been defeated, the rewards had been gained, the only thing that was left to do was head to Arkala.

Xinya smiled happily at that thought, soon he would be able to start the second phase of his plan. Although he would miss wandering around like this getting into all kinds of crazy adventures.

'Well not that much.' Xinya chuckled to himself as he thought back to the wild couple of days he had.

Listening to the chatter of his friends, Xinya could hear that they were also reminiscing on the past adventures they had together. From the snippets of conversation he heard, Wei was telling Melting Snow about their battle with Wyatt.

"You should have been there, snow boy. It was crazy, Wyatt was so powerful, I'm still kind of amazed that we were able to beat him." Wei said, telling the boy the blow by blow of what went down as he looked at her with glistening wide eyes.

Xinya just shook his head when he thought of that battle. Out of all the battles he had so far that was the one that stood out the most to him. Clicking on his friend list, he found Christopher's name under the NPC list.

Biting his lip as he looked at the name, Xinya sighed inwardly. He had meant to stay in touch with the NPC, but he never had time to do so. He wondered if Christopher ever made it to his hometown and found his family.

As soon as he made it to Arkala, Xinya decided to make getting in touch with the man his priority. Hopefully, if everything goes well he could get the man to visit him and increase their friendship.

Although he didn't want to get emotionally attached to NPC's in case something happened and he wasn't able to play this game anymore, Christopher was an exception. He felt as though he could relate to that NPC, and wanted to get to know him more.

"Right, Drifting Cloud?" Melting Snow asked, snapping Xinya out of his thoughts.

Xinya who wasn't really paying attention to the conversation that was going on behind him said, "I'm sorry Melting Snow, I was thinking about something so I didn't hear your question."

"That's alright, I'll just ask it again," replied Melting Snow with a chipper tone. "I said, didn't we come a long way from where the four of us started."

Xinya could only assume that the boy was speaking metaphorically and not literally. Although he could be, both were possible. "What do you mean by that?"

"You know! Look at how much better the team is. If you look back on when we fought the tall man until now, the difference is clear." Melting Snow explained earnestly.

Laughing at the boy's serious face, Wei poked him on his cheek. "Why do you sound like an old pro gamer that is judging our skill?"

"But I'm right aren't I?" Melting Snow stated, rolling his eyes at Roaming Wind.

Xinya felt the same as Melting Snow did, looking back on all of their previous battles the group had grown exponentially from what it was like before. Thinking back to their battle with the Tall Man, the craziness that was the Mormantul Lordului Nebun dungeon, fighting that Diamondback Armored Ctenophore, and finally the most recent Convert Atranoch, Xinya could see everyone's growth.

"You are right," Xinya told the boy with a smile. "We all have come a long way."

Wei didn't know why, but after hearing Xinya agree with Melting Snow, it made her feel really happy. She knew that she was probably the weakest link in the group, but she had been trying to better herself, and she likes to think that she has.

She had learned her lessons clearly and she promises herself that in the future she will be someone that doesn't hold others back. 'This was just beginning,' She thought, feeling proud of her development so far.

"Although I agree with you both, I think we still have a long way to go." Wandering Sound said. He knows that he has improved a lot, but when he thinks back to the battle on the boat, he feels like he could be better.

Shrugging his shoulders at Wandering Sound's words, Melting Snow says, "Well as long as we go there together it doesn't matter."

"Well aren't you profound," Laughing Wei slung her arm around the boy's shoulder pulling him close.

"Eww, girl germs," Melting Snow screeched half-heartedly trying to getaway. "Drifting Cloud, save me!"

Xinya and the others just laughed at the boy's antics as they continued walking to their destination.