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106 The Banquet Pt 2

 After all the guests were seated, it was then that the banquet could be said to have officially started. Xinya who was conversing with his friends could hear the dull roar of people voices all around him. The snippets of conversations flitted through one ear and out the other, but the cheeriness that the crowd exuded stayed with him.

Suddenly there was the clicking of glass, that quieted the whole hall. Turning around, Xinya saw that it was the Mayor hitting a wine glass with a fork to get everyone's attention. Once the mayor was sure that he had the attention of the entire room, only then did he speak.

"My dear townspeople, I would like to express my gratitude to you all for coming to another of my monthly banquets." The Mayor stated while looking around the room at the different faces in the crowd. "I see many new faces in the crowd tonight, for those of you that don't know me I'm Ian Kingsley, the Mayor of this wonderful town."

There was scattered applause from the crowd, that came from the players that got to attend the banquet, including Xinya and his group. The Mayor gave a big grin, before continuing with his speech.

"It's good to have new blood joining this town. You will be able to witness the changes that I plan for this town, and what lovely changes they will be. I hope everyone..." The Mayor continued talking, everyone was aptly listening, well everyone but Xinya.

Xinya felt like slapping himself, he couldn't believe that he was such an idiot. As soon as the Mayor mention changes it was like something clicked in his brain. He couldn't believe he forgot all about what happened to Errinisworth. All he could think about was how he could be so stupid and forget something important like that.

Thinking about it, he knew that in his defense it wasn't something he was interested in back then when he first read about it on the forum. To be completely honest it wasn't something that he was interested in now either.

From what he remembered, before the potion and cooking update, there were two mini updates. One had been inputted into the game secretly and needed to be activated, while the other would be announced.

The one that was inputted into the game secretly, wasn't activated until one year after the potion and cooking update. To activate the mini update, the Devs (Video game developers) created an event. In each region of Haven, they picked a random town and had a monster corrupt it.

Xinya knew, as well as anyone who did their research on the game, that there are intelligent monsters in Haven Online. Some are smarter than most players in the game. From the lore, it was these monsters who orchestrated the whole monster war, once upon a time.

They were said to have all died, but from what he read, Xinya knew that some of them survived. The Devs in all their brilliance, put the low-level monsters of that type, to use for this event. Those types of monsters are extremely sneaky and smart and can destroy a town before anyone noticed it.

An in Xinya's future, that's exactly what they did. By the time the mini update was activated, Errinisworth was completely overrun. It was still accessible to players but there was an evil in the town, that all players felt. Players would be killed by the NPCs constantly. They would report it, only to be told that it was a monster that killed them not an NPC.

It got to the point where players would bypass the town of Errinisworth. It stayed like that until one guild decided to find the cause. They were one of the top guilds in the future and only came to Errinisworth because they thought it would be a challenge.

That's when they discovered that the people of Errinisworth were taken over by the Tall man and his minions. The tall man is a dark type monster made of shadows. It uses shadow type tentacles to latch on to a person's body after it does that it would be able to mimic the person entirely.

The way they look, act, and speak, the tall man would be able to mimic it all. Although they would need to keep the host body alive somewhere to keep up their ruse. Xinya finally understood what that string-like thing he saw earlier when he was looking at the so-called Mayor was.

Xinya also knew that since only the Mayor was affected that the event was still in the early stages. He had a dilemma, if he does something that sets off the mini update early, he could save a lot of people from dying later. If he doesn't, then he won't be calling any attention to himself, it was already bad enough with the Baldahurh Forest.

Weighing the two options in his head, he thought about it. He could either find a way to trigger the quest or ignore everything. Looking around the table at his friends, his eyes strayed to Melting Snow who was listening attentively to the fake Mayor's speech, he decided. He did owe the boy an adventure after all.

Once the fake Mayor, finished his speech, everyone in the banquet hall applauded. Before sitting down the fake Mayor waved his hand and the whole entire banquet hall filled with music, making the atmosphere more festive.

As all the guests in the banquet hall turned back around in their seats and begin talking once again, Xinya just continued to stare at the fake Mayor, trying to see if he could catch a glimpse of that smokey string like tentacle once more. Sadly, no matter how hard he looked he couldn't see it.

"Drifting Cloud!" A voice from behind startled him from his concentration. Turning around in his seat he saw that it was Wei calling him. "What are you looking so hard at?"

As soon as Wei asked that, Melting Snow and Wandering Sound stopped talking to each other and focused their attention on him. He really didn't really know what to tell them, he certainly couldn't say that the Mayor was now a pod person.

He could say he saw a weird thing connected to the Mayor, but that could just be written off as a trick of the light. He would need to wait until he saw it once again, but that doesn't mean he can't make them wary about the Mayor. This way they would be ready to spring into action if something happens.

"The Mayor. For some reason, I'm getting dangerous vibes off the man."

Cocking his head to the side in a cute manner, Melting Snow said, "Really? He seems so nice and looks a little like Santa clause. Not that I believe in him or anything."

The three of them just looked at Melting Snow as if saying 'Right.' Wandering Sound and Wei than turned to look at the Mayor once more. This time really studying him.

"I still don't see it," Wei said while staring hard at the Mayor for a while before turning back to look at Xinya.

"I think, I do." Wandering Sound said seriously. "I don't know what the man next to him said, but for a split second, the Mayor's eyes changed color. If I wasn't staring at him, I would never have noticed."

Melting Snow was really intrigued now, every time he was with Drifting Cloud something fun always happens, "What do you think it means?"

"It means, if we play this right, something exciting will happen tonight," Xinya said, turning his attention back to the Mayor.

Melting Snow gleefully smiled as he thought, 'Adventure here I come.'