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190 Arkala

 The journey to Arkala would have been a long and hard one alone, but with his friends at his side cheerfully chattering away, time seemed to just fly by quickly. So quickly, that Xinya barely noticed the sun setting and rising again.

This displacement of time wasn't only due to his friends but the journey itself. Using the map as his guide, he tried his best to avoid the nearby monsters. To accomplish this the group had to traverse through dense trees and other troublesome places.

Such as muddy bogs, swamps, and floral covered valleys. Xinya knew that most people wouldn't see the problem with the last one, but if there was one thing that he learned during his time playing this game it was flowers can be deadly.

He was right to be cautious, the valley was filled with Ahaetulla Nasuta also known as the rose vine snakes. These monsters were as beautiful as they were deadly. They are said to be in the same species as the Floret Buns. However, no one knows why besides the fact that they both had the earth element, but then again a lot of monsters did.

Like the Floret Buns they would also drag a player off to be devoured, but unlike the Floret Buns they don't drag their victims underground, they instead spit a toxic poison unto the player which paralyzes them.

Once the player is paralyzed they will come out from plain sight where they were hiding and slither over to the prone person. They will then coil their bodies around their victims and force their way into their mouths.

When they are inside of the player body they will eat them from the inside out. However since that would be a traumatizing experience, the game developers decided to allow the player to be considered dead as soon as the monster enter's their mouth.

Xinya shivered at the prospect of one of those flower snakes even getting that far. He made extra sure that everyone didn't come in five feet of one of those things. Because not only were they a higher level than they were, he had no way to counter their poison yet.

Although right now, they had already passed the valley of venomous flower snakes and were following a rocky path up a small mountain. They had been trekking up the steep incline for a while now, and their stamina was lowering with every step, but they didn't care.

They didn't mind using up their supply of stamina potions if it meant getting to their destination faster. Even when they all knew that stopping and setting up camp would be the better idea and an easier way to restore their stats.

They didn't want to though knowing that would only slow them down. Their anticipation was too high and it was exactly that which was keeping them going.

However, this determination of theirs did pay off. When the sun was high in the sky the group reached the top of the mountain and finally caught their first glimpse of Arkala.

A startled gasp escaped all of their lips as they took in the beautiful view that was in front of them. There is was, right in front of them, the place that they journeyed so far to get to, and as they looked at the town they knew it was worth it.

Even from this distance, they could already see that it was a wonderful place. Without a word between them, the four friends just stood there quietly taking it in the view of the town.

The town of Arkala was located inside of a large gorge, with mountains surrounding it on all sides. Strategically, the town was in a great position, for it would be very hard for other players to raid. This was one of the reasons why Xinya chose it to make it his home base.

One of the other reasons why he chose it was because it was close to water. Looking down at the town he could see that there was a large river that ran around and through the town. Even with how far away the group was they could still see ships sailing to and fro from the multiple ports that were around Arkala.

The town itself looked as though it was taken from a picture of ancient China, and even though it shouldn't have surprised them it did. It seemed that they had become too used to the victorian styled towns that they traveled through previously.

Now looking at wooden buildings with their arched roofs with clay tiles and knowing that their ancestors once lived like this, gave them a visceral feeling. Especially Xinya, as he looked at the lush farmland that was separated from the main city by a large stone covered bridge.

He couldn't wait to purchase a house and start getting his hands dirty. He had always wondered how his ancestors did it, building their farms up without the help of machines. However, he knew he wouldn't have to wonder for long, because he would soon find out.

"There it is!" exclaimed Melting Snow, staring at the sight of the town in awe.

"Yes, there it is," muttered Xinya, still taking in the town where he was going to make all his plans come into fruition. "There it is indeed."

Wei just smiled as she looked down at the bustling town below. She could swear that even from where she was standing she could hear laughter and noises from the town's trade area that probably never cease. She couldn't wait to go inside and look around at all the shops and sights. "What are you all doing just standing here, let's go!"

The others could only watch as Wei took off running towards the city, leaving them all behind. Gobsmacked at her sudden action, the men just stared at her retreating back for a couple of seconds before coming to their senses.

"Come on, Drifting Cloud and Wandering Sound! We can't let her enter the town alone!" Melting Snow exclaimed before using his sonic run skill, trying to catch up with Wei.

Laughing humorously at the childishness of it all, Wandering Sound and Xinya decided to also let go and begin racing each other towards the town. The light sounds of laughter and playful shouting could be heard as the group made their way to the town's entrance gate.

End of Arc 5