About a year ago, if anyone had told Haseo that he would have friends that he cared about and that these friends would care about him just as much, then, he would of called that person stupid. Yet, it's true, he has friends, lots of friends. Friends that he has admittedly cared for and they cared for him back. It was almost odd for him, yet, in the end he embraced it. He embraced and even, to a point, loved his friends.
From Gaspard, Silabus, and Atoli the three of them showing him that other people can openly enjoy 'The World' and the little things, to Yata and all the other epitaph users that just wanted to protect the world and their loved ones, and all of the other characters that Haseo met along the way, each and every one of them important to the rogue in their own way. Something, he would of never admitted a year ago.
Yes, he was glad he had these friends. The only problem he ever seemed to be having with his friends, is deciding on who to bring with him when it comes to parties. There are times when he wants to bring a certain person along, but can't because it'd be too dangerous, then there were times when he would not know who he'd want to bring and stand there by the Chaos gate for a good minute trying to decide on who to bring.
He was hoping that today wasn't going to be like that, as he screened through the forum posts concerning 'The world'. So far, nothing seemed to be popping out at him as he scrolled down the new posts for the day. He was about to leave the page when something interesting finally came up.
with his curiosity fully peeked, he clicked on the forum.
Me and my friends were all leveling up in this dungeon, everything seemed pretty normal until we realized that there were no monsters anywhere within this area. We made it to the beast statue pretty easily, as you could imagine, but, t he screen started twitching like crazy, so much so that none of us could see the beast statue or warp gate. We were stuck there for a minute or two as we tried to find the gate out, it was hard because not only was the screen twitching and twisting, but, there was this horrible lag that seemed to be going along with it as well, I don't know if the lag was from my own computer or not, but either way it was rather jarring. We finally got away when my friend, thankfully, found the warp gate out and warped us away.
Oh, before I forget, the area was unreasonably short as well, it was like one floor and then it was straight to the beast temple.
Though I don't recommend it, if you want to check the place out, here.
Sigma Alpha Wolf Gardening.
Bookmarking the word immediately, Haseo let out a soft hum, this was definitely interesting, and something he wanted to check out. Leaving the forums, he logged into 'The world'.
Once in, he immediately went to his party, this was just going to routine, he decided to bring Atoli and Kuhn along, seeing how those two seemed to be the only two available, everyone else was either offline or busy. It didn't take long for the two of them to warp in. Atoli beamed brightly at Haseo as she and Kuhn ran up to him.
"Alright, team Haseo, back in action, what are we doing today? Level up? Arena battle? Rescuing damsels" Kuhn asked, the last one made Haseo roll his eyes, not even a minute in and Kuhn was already talking about girls. Shaking his head, Haseo just smirked a bit.
"According to someone, this place has a few bugs by the beast temple, and there aren't any monsters around, something worth checking out." Haseo informed Kuhn as he made his way to the gate.
"Sounds like you're doing Yata's job, Haseo," Atoli giggled a bit. Haseo went to give her a slight glare in response, but, stopped when he realized, she was right. Normally something like this was Yata's job, oh well. Giving her a shrug in response, he went to the chaos gate and clicked on the words in his bookmarked section, soon the three of them where gone from the net slum and into a dungeon.
The dungeon was pretty straight forward, seeing how it was one of the spiral dungeons that all lead one way, up. Walking towards the first hallway, Haseo put one foot down on the hallway's curved floor, hearing the sound of the normal trap rocks falling, he took a couple of steps back, Atoli and Kuhn following him as he did so. Waiting for the rocks to roll down and vanish as normal, Haseo sighed, one of the things he really didn't care for about these types of areas were the obsessive amount of rock traps.
The moment the rocks vanished, Haseo started running along the hallway, up the slightly steep climb and into the first room. The room seem pretty standard, a couple of Chim Chim statues, a couple of chests, however, like mentioned in the forum, no monsters. Ignoring the chests and Chim Chim's, Haseo made his way up the next hallway, thankfully, no traps this time around. Getting to the next room, it was just the same as the last one. Only, no Chim Chim statues.
"No monsters..." Atoli breathed as the three of them looked around the room a bit. With a slight huff, Haseo put his hands on his hips and turned towards the next hallway.
"Let's keep going." Was all he could say, walking to the hallway, Haseo let out a bit of a growl when he saw the saw traps laid upon the floor for them. Timing it, he dashed across the traps, successfully avoiding all of them, the same could not be said for his teammates. Hearing them cry out, he turned around and watched as Atoli healed both herself and Kuhn.
Turning back around, he went forward and made his way into the next room. Nothing different about this place either.
"Hm, no monsters here either." Kuhn spoke up as they once again looked around the monsterless room. Not saying anything, Haseo walked up to one of the chests and gave it a swift kick. He got some sort of accessory from it.
"C'mon, we're nearing the end of this floor, lets just keep on going," Haseo grumbled and started towards the third and final hallway. As they walked, Atoli spoke up,
"Wait, we're already done with this floor? That doesn't see right," she mumbled.
"According to the player, this area was rather short, in fact, If I'm right, then the next floor is where the beast temple is," Haseo responded as they walked through the doorway to the next floor. Once at the next floor, Haseo put his hand on his hip and started towards the beast temple, Kuhn and Atoli followed.
"I don't trust this place, something differently isn't right," Kuhn admitted as he followed behind Haseo. The rouge went to respond back, but, was interrupted by a screen glitch. Seeing the statue just a head, Haseo continued to walk ahead, ignoring Kuhn for now. The closer to the statue he got, the worse the rifts and glitches became. Soon, it was just like what the player had described, it was impossible for Haseo to see what was in front of him. Atoli in Kuhn seemed to be letting out noises of slight discomfort as it happened to them as well.
Grunting darkly, Haseo brought his hand up and started area hacking, hoping that it might bring the rifts down a bit. It didn't seem to be working, the rifts were too strong, maybe if all three of them did it at once...
"GUYS! START AREA HACKING!" He called out to his friends. Whether they were doing it or not, Haseo couldn't tell, still, he kept on area hacking, doing it over and over, until finally, the screen stopped and all was still. Looking at his friends, they looked just as puzzled as he was. Breathing heavily, Haseo turned back around to the statue, he blinked when he saw the little ball from area hacking hanging above the chest.
"It's...a warp point?" Kuhn asked sounding completely dumbfounded.
Frowning, Haseo walked up to the warp point.
"It must be really strong, I mean, the rift it made in the system, I couldn't see a thing..." Atoli squeaked, the two of them staying away from the point. Haseo slowly reached out to the point.
Then, with no warning, he saw blue start to rise up below his feet, why was he warping? he didn't click to warp!
"HASEO!" Atoli and Kuhn yelled at the same time, running towards him with all their speed. However, by the time they reached him, he had already warped away and it was too late.
Haseo didn't really know what happened next, because, for some reason, he passed out.
Haseo let out a low groan as he slowly came to, his head pounding heavily, making him a bit nauseas and unable to focus on anything. Taking a deep breath, the rogue slowly opened his eyes and found himself face down on a dungeon floor. Lifting his head up, Haseo started to push himself off of the ground, his head still pounding viciously, making it hard for him to really think of anything at the moment. Getting to his feet, a bit dazed, he shut his eyes and put his hands to his throbbing head.
"Urg...Atoli? Kuhn? What happened?" He asked after a couple of seconds. After receiving no response, he opened his eyes, put his hands down, and looked around, he was alone in the beast temple. That wasn't right, where were Atoli and Kuhn? Shaking his head just a bit, Haseo went to rub the bridge of his nose, but, stopped when he got a good look at the glove on his hand. Bringing his other hand up, Haseo looked at that as well and then looked down at his body.
He was no longer in his X-form, his clothes now replaced with his final form, from the claw gloves to the spikey tail on the back. This really wasn't right. Forgetting about his pounding head for a moment, he went to his equipment to see if anything else had changed. It had, everything had changed. He no longer had his dual guns, which didn't seem surprise him, but, he didn't have any of his other equipped weapons either. All were replaced with generic weapons that you could buy at a shop. Swapping to his items, he put his hand to his mouth when he saw that the only items he had were just a couple of healing tonics, noble drops, and a hell raiser.
"What the hell is going on? Where the is all my stuff!? It's like I've been reverted back to level one again, only, I'm my same level as before...I need to message Yata or Pi about this, maybe they can help," Haseo said with a slight sigh, going to his friends list, Haseo felt his heart plummet to his stomach.
He still had friends on this list, but he didn't know anyone in this list. Where are his friends?! What the fuck was going on!? Leaving his party list, Haseo took a deep breath, maybe he should just log out-
Where was his MD2? His controller?
"No...I can't be..." He breathed out as his hands frantically ran around his head, searching for the MD2 that was no longer there, no, he was just grabbing tuft's of his own hair at this point.
"FUCK! THIS CAN'T BE HAPPENING!" Haseo screamed out, his eyes widening as he stood there shaking in both rage and fear. Breathing heavily, Haseo looked around the beast temple, empty, completely empty, except, for the lone blue warp gate. Taking several deep breaths to calm down, he walked towards the warp gate. He wasn't going to get any help here, that was a fact, no, he needed to get to a root town he'll get some help there.
Standing there for a few heartbeats, Haseo stared intensely at the warp gate. How exactly was this gonna work? He never warped before and there were no buttons for him to push in order to get back, there was nothing. Reaching out, he gently touched the blue orb, half expecting to receive a message asking him if he wanting to warp. He was met with disappointment as he stood there, awkwardly touching the gate.
"Dammit...how can I get back to the netslum if I have no way of transportation out of here?! Can you do it? Can you take me to the net slum!?" He yelled out in rage, throwing his hands up. Growling darkly, he then proceeded to give the warp gate a good kick in frustration. "C'mon! At least take me to Mac Anu or-"
He was cut off when two rings circled around him followed by an almost blinding blue color, shutting his eyes as tight as he could, Haseo let out a startled cry. What happened next could only be described as being on a rollercoaster, if that rollercoaster was on fire that is. Every part of him turned immensely hot to the point that he thought that his flesh was melting off, though hot, he could feel himself twist and turn in almost every which way imaginable, then all at once, it stopped and he was staring into the dome of Mac Anu.
Dropping to his knees, Haseo let out a loud strangled gasp, this, of course, caused some players to stop what they were doing and stare at the rogue. Breathing heavily, he slowly got to his feet and put his hand on his chest, that was a rather unpleasant experience, one that he didn't want to have again anytime soon.
Calming himself down, he started out of the dome, he ran towards the shopping district, if he was lucky, Gaspard would be at the shop and Haseo could ask him to contact Kuhn or Atoli for help. Sprinting down the stairs leading to the market place, he practically jumped towards were the shop was, only to be met with disappointment, and more confusion.
Gaspard wasn't there, then again, neither was the shop. There was no shop acorn, no little desk that Gaspard would stand behind and call out to people, there was nothing. Gulping a bit, Haseo licked his lips and just looked around the market place, where was the shop? Why is all this happening? where were all of his friends?
Slowly, he started to walk away from the market place, he needed to find someone he knew, this just wasn't right. Starting towards the docks, he noticed that the other players seem to be avoiding him like he was on his steam bike. When someone got within walking distance of the rogue, they seem to either steer off away from him, or, they speed up as quickly as they can trying to make sure that they don't even get noticed by him. He wanted to stop just see what the big fuss was with these players, but, he decided that the docks were more important at the moment.
Haseo was about halfway there when he felt something bump into the back of him, almost knocking him down. Crying out, he quickly regained his balance. Everybody that seemed to go to great lengths to avoid him, stopped what they were doing and stared, ignoring the people, he turned to see who had bumped into him, for some reason that seem to cause a loud murmur to spread across the crowd of players. Haseo's eyes widened happily when he saw Gaspard on the ground.
The pink beast was on his back, squirming his limbs about like a flipped over turtle.
"Gaspard! I am so glad to see you!" Haseo yelled and quickly helped his friend up, it was strange seeing Gaspard without Silabus, but, that didn't matter right. Something rather strange happened as he helping the beast, Gaspard actually snatched his arm out of Haseo's grip, catching the rogue of guard.
"Glad to see me?! Since when is the Terror of death glad to see anybody that isn't part of his little group?! Just screw off!" The beast yelled out and waddled away quickly, a couple of players put their hands to their mouths as they waited for Haseo's response. The only response they were getting was a dropped jaw. Did that really just happen? Standing there in shock and awe, Haseo realized that these people were still staring at him, sneering a bit at them, he decided that the best thing to do at the moment was to go back to Gaspard. Maybe the beast was just having an off day or something.
It wasn't too hard to make his way back to Gaspard, the beast was still a slow walker. Walking beside the beast, Haseo automatically put his hand on Gaspard's shoulder as he spoke,
"Gaspard! Hey! Look, you might be having an off day or something but could you just call Silabus or-"
With a violent shrug, his hand was practically thrown off of Gaspard's shoulder, the beast then gave Haseo a strange look.
"Why the hell do you want to talk to Silabus!?"
Hearing Gaspard cuss made Haseo cringe, what was with Gaspard today? That outburst was also enough to have a new set of players look at them and gasp out, rolling his eyes, Haseo said,
"Well, I don't really want to talk to Silabus, I need to talk to Kuhn-" Once again, he was cut off, not by Gaspard, but by the set of players, they let out yet another gasp and their eyes widened to the size of plates.
"I don't have time for this, just shove off will you?! I don't want to get involved in another petty dick battle between the three of you." Gaspard growled darkly, giving Haseo an equally dark sneer to match.
"Whoa, Whoa, 'Petty dick battle?' What the fuck has gotten into you? Gaspard, since when are you like this?" Haseo demanded as he got in front of Gaspard to look into the beast's green eyes. With an exasperated eye roll, the beast spoke up,
"Ok, Terror of death-"
"That's another thing! Why are you calling me the Terror of death?! I'm not the Terror of death anymore! You know that, Gaspard!"
"HA! Yeah fucking right. Either way, I'm not getting involved in this, if you want to talk to Silabus, then go do it yourself, jackass."
"I would if I knew where he was."
With a loud groan, Gaspard went to walk away, Haseo quickly grabbed his arm once again, earning a quick hand slap from the beast.
"He's where he always is," Gaspard grumbled darkly at Haseo.
"Ok, lets pretend for a minute that I don't know where that is. Tell me!"
What Gaspard said next, made Haseo's jaw drop once again.
"At Kestrel, probably with Kuhn, he is Kuhn right hand man after all, of course you outta know that, you pkk'd him enough times to get a big red target on your back from the two. Now, just leave me alone..." Gaspard started off, this time, Haseo did not give chase, he just stood there, feeling strangely numb, Haseo stood there for a long while, till finally, he could only muster four words.
"Silabus is a PK?"
A dead end, Haseo has hit a dead end. He couldn't talk to Kuhn and Silabus those two suddenly being PKers all of a sudden. Gaspard wasn't exactly helpful either, him being like a mini version of Haseo, bad mouthed and bad tempered. He wanted to see if he could find Yata, but, judging by things so far, he doubt he'd get any help from his friend.
Sitting down by the mechanic's shop, Haseo sighed deeply and shook his head. So far, it seemed everything was polar opposite from 'The world' he knew. There's gotta be a reason he was here, it just didn't make any sense to him. Looking out at the sea across from him, the rogue stared out at the never ending sunset.
'What am I going to do?'
Before he had anytime to linger on his thoughts, a loud and rather obnoxious voice rang out, destroying the silence of the docks.
"EY! HASEO! BUDDY!"
Looking over towards the voice, Haseo stared at a male player approaching him. Eyeing the player up and down, Haseo found himself cringing ever so slightly.
He had short light purple hair, the hair length being pretty similar to Atoli's, his main outfit being an almost blinding white color, all white leather shirt and pants, the two garments leaving a bit of space in this guy's midsection to where his belly button was visible. The only two things that not white on him were his gloves and shoes, those were the same purple color as his hair.
Once close enough, the player stopped in front of Haseo, and started to balance his weight from the balls of his feet to his toes, rocking back and forth happily like a child, swinging his arms back and forth as well. Smiling brightly at Haseo, the character seemed to want something from the rogue. As this guy stood there smiling, Haseo noticed that this guy had pink eyes, odd seeing how the color scheme seemed to be white and purple for this guy.
If Haseo wasn't stuck in the game, he could easily just put his mouse pointer over the guy's character to get a name, but, he was fact stuck and had no way of knowing who this guy was.
Noticing Haseo's uneasiness, the player tilted his head and stopped rocking. Clapping his hands together, the player spoke up again, his voice no longer loud, but still obnoxious.
"I was thinking, maybe you could invite me on one of you're adventures. I know you have lots of friends to choose from, but, I just really want to go with you!" The guy cheerily clapped, reminding him a bit of Atoli for some reason. Sighing deeply, Haseo stood up from his spot and rubbed the bridge of his nose, he really didn't want to deal with this guy right now.
"Maybe some other time, I'm not feeling up to any adventures today." Haseo breathed out with a headshake. He didn't know what he said, but, the guy looked confused about something. He was giving Haseo a strange look, his eyes narrowed slightly in suspicion. Not feeling like dealing with the guy, Haseo started walking away, when he walked passed the player, the other guy spoke up,
"Are you feeling ok?"
With a simple wave of his hand, Haseo responded,
"I'm fine, I just don't feel like doing much today."
This guy didn't let it go, walking up to Haseo, he tilted his head to the side, giving the familiar head tilt and narrowed eyes to the rogue. The two of them continued to walk side by side, neither of them speaking. Haseo looked at the stranger out of the corner of his eye, the guy was still staring at him.
'If he keeps it up, he's going to-'
Haseo almost laughed when the guy ran into a kiosk, almost completely toppling over, his legs dangling up in the air, kicking frantically trying to get back to the ground.
"N-Nyyyyaaahhh! H-Help, please!" He wailed out in disarray, still kicking away frantically.
"Alright, alright, hold still." Haseo ordered the player, leaning over, the rogue grabbed the other player's collar and hoisted him up, bringing his feet to the ground, once back on the ground, the guy managed to stand up straight. Letting go, Haseo patted his back. The player started to dust himself off, looking a bit disheveled by the whole thing. Yet, still in his state, he went back to staring at Haseo. Having enough of the stares, the rogue spoke up,
"What...You're not Haseo...I mean you are clearly...but, you're being nice..."
"Is that uncommon?"
"For you? Yes...There's something else different about you, I can't place it..."
"Look, I'm still the same guy."
With a simple headshake, the player just sighed softly, his purple hair swaying with his head movements. Figuring the guy was done, Haseo turned around and was about to walk off once again.
"What's my name?" The player asked, causing Haseo to stop.
"Hm?" The rogue hummed turning back to the player, who now had his hands on his hips, wanting an answer.
"My name. My username, what is it?" He challenged.
Feeling his lips twitch, Haseo just shook his head.
"I don't know."
"...Then, you aren't the same guy..."
"I guess not."
Turning around once more, Haseo stalked off, however, like before, he was stopped by the player speaking up,
"My username, it's Mika. I'm a harvest cleric. I should be in your friends list already, give me a call some time."
Without looking back, Haseo strutted away, he needed some time to himself to think. He needed a plan to get out of here, because, it would be a cold day in hell if he was going to stay in this backwards world.
Haseo rested on the bridge, leaning on the railing, watching the pond below. The bridge was surprisingly abandoned, normally it was flooded with players. Then again, the players could just be avoiding him. Seeing how a huddle of them were currently standing at the base of the bridge, not daring to move towards him. Haseo looked at the players out of the corner of his eye, but said nothing.
"Alright...I want to help." Came a voice from behind, turning around, Haseo stared at Mika, the harvest cleric had a strange determination in his eyes as he stared at Haseo, a small smirk playing on his lips.
Mika just smiled and leaned forward, his arms crossed, the determination in his eyes growing.
"I. Want. To. Help." He slowly spoke, speaking each word clearly slowly, making sure that the rogue heard what he was saying. That made Haseo frown just a bit, looking the player up and down, Haseo rubbed the back of his head. He didn't really know this guy, he's somebody that the rogue has never had any contact with in the other world. In short this guy was a complete stranger. Mika seemed nice enough, but, the last thing Haseo really needed was to be screwed over by someone, would the risk be worth it?
"I'm not too sure about anything right now, I know that it's way to complicated to get someone like you involved in." Haseo explained with a hand wave, Mika didn't look so impressed, the player put his hands on his hips and seemed to be chewing on his lip in thought, then, he shook his head.
"Nope, not buying it." Mika said finally, earing a slight glare from Haseo.
"Look-" Haseo started but was cut off by Mika.
"No, you look, you have two options, Let me help you and maybe, just maybe, we can figure out what the hell is going on. Or, do this by yourself with no real leads or help and just go through this whole thing confused. What will it be?"
Going quiet Haseo could only turn back around and look out at virtual pond. Should he trust this guy? Frowning again, Haseo put his hand to his head and sighed, this guy really did have a point, besides, as Atoli would put it 'Two heads are better than one.'
"I...I do need help, I won't lie about that, but, I don't know if you're the right person to help me..." Haseo admitted as he turned back around to face the cleric.
"I'm the only person willing to help you."
"...Good point...Alright, if you really want to...Ok," Haseo breathed as he looked Mika dead in the eyes. Mika straightened up and nodded, his eyes hard with determination once again.
"So, boss, where should we start?" Mika asked, a smirk on his face as he waited for order from Haseo. Pausing for a good second, Haseo thought,
'Yata might be able to help...but, he might also be twisted around like everyone else. What choice do I have though? It's something.'
"I want to find this guy, his name is Yata...Does that name mean anything?" The rogue asked looking back to Mika.
Mika tapped his chin in though, then he shook his head,
"Nope, never heard of him...Who is he?" Mika asked, leaning against the bridge next to Haseo, there was a soft silence before Haseo spoke,
"He can help, I hope..." Haseo told him as he leaned against the railing. Mika gave off a soft hum as he seemed to be thinking. Putting a finger to his chin and pursing his lips to the side, Mika hummed out again he then mumbled softly,
"Welp, I guess I can look around the boards, if I don't find anything, then I'll post something." Mika offered.
"Yeah, you're gonna have to do that, I can't get on the boards anyway."
"No, I can't." Haso said with a headshake, Mika pursed his lips once more then nodded in defeat.
"Alright, I can do that. Give me-" Mika started and looked like he was ready to log out, but, before he could do so, he was suddenly pushed into Haseo, catching the harvest cleric before he fell down. Breathing out, Haseo narrowed his eyes and looked past Mika to see who had pushed the player.
For a brief moment, Haseo almost felt a flutter of joy in his chest when he saw Silabus standing there, but, his joy was cut short when he saw the unnatural satisfied smirk playing on Silabus's face.
"Silabus..." Haseo breathed out almost reaching out to grab his friend's wrist, but stopped when he remembered that this was not his Silabus, not the happy to help player that Haseo knew. Silabus's golden eyes went from Mika to Haseo, and the smirk fell off his face and Silabus went tense.
"Terror of death. Its so rare to see you...Calm. What? Get your quota of Pkers early?" Silabus asked in a sarcastic matter his voice was almost scornful, it was almost like Haseo was talking to Sakaki. Not wanting to answer Silabus's question, Haseo grabbed on to Mika's arm and started to walk away with the other player, deciding that not talking to Silabus would be the best thing to do right now.
Unfortunately, Silabus didn't seem to think so.
"Hey! Terror of death! I'm talking to you! What you think you're so high off the ground that you can't even talk to us Pker's?" Silabus scoffed, Haseo paused in mid-step and ground at his teeth, it talk all of his patience to not turn around and scream at Silabus to just stop it, but he knew it wouldn't do anything.
"Just leave us alone, besides, why would he want to talk to a lowlife like yourself!?" Mika cut in storming up to Silabus's face and giving him a harsh poke in the chest.
"Mika!" Haseo snapped, he then sharply grabbed Mika's arm and yanked the harvest cleric back towards him. That seemed confuse both Silabus and Mika as the two boys just looked back at Haseo and gave him a muddled look. "Lets just go..." Haseo growled out in response. With his hand still tightly grasping Mika's upper arm, the rouge continued to drag Mika away, but, like before, he didn't get too far.
"So, that's your plan now? Running away? Wow, you suck even more than before, Terror of death-"
"That-" Haseo paused his sentence when he turned around and stormed up to Silabus, looking into this Silabus's eyes just made Haseo even angrier, this wasn't his friend Silabus and that was only a harsh reminder. His sudden anger seemed surprise the blade brandier, but, Silabus quickly regained himself, just as Haseo did. Calming down, the rouge finished his sentence in the most monotone voice he could muster up, "-Is not my name. Stop calling me that."
"You made it your name." Silabus sneered.
"Not anymore, tell the rest of your Pk buddies I said that...Oh, and tell Kuhnie, I said hi." Haseo finished turning around and finally strutting off.
Mika looked between Haseo, who was still walking away from the bridge and him, and Silabus who stood in his spot obviously brooding. Mika then proceeded to stick his tongue out at Silabus, making a childish 'nyah' sound as he did so. Silabus let out a low snarl and threatened to storm over to the weak harvest cleric. Yelping out, Mika jumped and ran after Haseo, not once looking back at the PKer.
Haseo stopped walking once he reached the familiar alleyway in Mac Anu, slowly he breathed out and rested his forehead against the pixelated brick wall.
"Kuhnie?" Mika questioned with a laugh as he nudged Haseo a bit, at first, Haseo didn't respond, there was a good five seconds of awkward silence, before Haseo lifted his head off the wall and talked.
"If Silabus is a Pker, along with Kuhn, and if Gaspard is foul mouthed and unfriendly. Then what about everyone else? What's become of Atoli? Endrance?...What am I going to do?" Haseo asked as he looked up at false sky.
"Hey...You can't give up-" Mika spoke up, only to get cut off by a bitter scoff.
"Who said anything about giving up? I'm just...at a loss right now."
"Well, I can still look on the boards for Yata, you still have one thing to look forward too."
"Yeah...I guess you're right..." Haseo admitted finishing with a sigh.
"Of course I'm right! Just give me ten minutes to search and type on the boards. Just wait here." Without another word, Mika logged out and vanished from Mac Anu. Haseo slowly sat down on the ground and looked up at the sky once again, then, he spoke up to the sky, hoping that who he was speaking too heard him.
"Aura, if you can hear me...Help me...I need it so bad."
Haseo let out a bitter sigh, where was Mika? it's been over an hour, well, it's felt like it's been over an hour, turns out after a while of being trapped in 'the world' you realize that you have no real concept of time seeing how the day stays the same in Mac Anu. So for all he knew, it could of only been five minutes since Mika left. Still, if that wasn't bad enough, Haseo was about ninety percent sure that Silabus was officially stalking him at this point.
Ever since Mika went offline, no matter where Haseo went, out of the corner of his eye, he could see his once friend just standing there, watching him. It wasn't the fact that it was Silabus clearly just following him, it was the fact that Silabus was following him with the clear intent of wanting nothing more than to kill Haseo, following him, watching him, probably trying to see why the great and mighty PKKer is acting differently. However, after a while the brandier just stopped, he either logged off or went back to kestrel to report this all to Kuhn, truthfully, Haseo was pretty sure it was the latter.
Aimlessly wondering into the market place, the rouge sighed and frowned at the nonexistent shop Acorn, after a couple of seconds, he growled he needed to find a way back towards his own world, back to his friends whom are probably worried about him, back to friends that he admittedly misses..
"There he is, hey! Haseo!"
Haseo knew that voice instantly,
"Matsu?!" He asked as the other rouge made his way toward Haseo, one other player with him. Well, this was something better, Matsu didn't seem to want to kill Haseo on the spot, so maybe they were actual friends in this backwards world?
"Dude, I've been sending you messages all day, why haven't you been answering me? What still pissed that I managed to PKK Silabus before you could?" Matsu asked, a smirk on his face, a smirk that Haseo honestly just wanted to slap.
'So, He's not a PK in this world, but a PKK like me? Well, its something, still, I need time to adjust to this all...'
Haseo rubbed the bridge of his nose, the player next to Matsu spoke, a dark chuckle leaving his mouth as he did so,
"I heard him and Silabus got into it again this morning."
"We didn't-" Haseo was cut off quickly by Matsu, his friend laughing just as darkly as the other player.
"You must really want that rematch with Kuhn. You keep going after his right hand man the way you are I'm sure he'll come out of hiding soon enough."
'Kuhn's in hiding? Hm, Now there's something I can use...'
"Hey! Haseo!" A familiar annoying voice yelled out, Haseo was instantly relieved to see Mika running towards him. Matsu, on the other hand, was not.
"It's that twerp again, what does he want? God, How many times do we have to kill him before he gets the hint?" Matsu sneered, Haseo's eyes widened and he turned towards Matsu.
"What do you mean by that? Are you saying that you actually PK him?" Haseo asked in disbelief, Matsu just laughed.
"No, I don't that's for sure, urg, anyway, I'm going to go, I don't feel like having a headache today, see you later. C'mon Avox" With that the two left, leaving Haseo standing there, wide eyed, Matsu's words slowly sinking into Haseo's mind.
"Haseo!" Mika yelled, grabbing on to Haseo's arm, snapping the rouge out of his state. Mika smiled widely as he looked over towards Matsu and Avox, but he quickly shook his head and just went on with what he wanted to tell Haseo. "I have news about Yata! There is a Yata out there and he even messaged me about you!" Mika smiled broadly, this made Haseo smile in response.
Maybe there was hope for him after all?
However, it didn't take long for Mika to frown a bit. This, naturally, made Haseo frown as well.
"What? What's the matter? What did Yata say?" Haseo demanded, his anger starting to rise. Mika quickly got scared and backed up a bit, he then rubbed his arm and looked down.
"He...He said he wanted nothing to do with you...I don't know what he means when he put this, but, he told me to tell you, 'You had your chance.' I'm sorry Haseo..."
Turning away from Mika and towards the shop Acorn, Haseo growled out.
Looking back towards Mika,
"Message him again. Tell him...I need him, and it's important." Haseo demanded his voice deadly, this made Mika gulp and nod quickly. Remembering what Matsu said about Kuhn, Haseo narrowed his eyes.
"Whatchu thinking so hard about?" Mika shakily asked, the cleric looked towards the shop that Haseo was looking at and then back to the rouge. Haseo just smirked a bit before responding,
"I think...I need to have a little talk with Silabus."
"Silabus will kill you!" Mika yelled out frantically, Haseo just waved him off.
"You should! He's gotten stronger since you two last fought!"
"I'm not planning on fighting him." Haseo told Mika as he made his way to the Chaos gate.
"Then what do you plan on doing?" Mika asked, placing his hands on Haseo's, stopping the rouge for a brief moment.
"Talk. Kuhn is not just hiding something, he's in hiding. Silabus has to know either what he's hiding, or where he's hiding." Haseo told Mika as he snatched his hands back.
"At least put me in your party, dude." Mika told him simply as he stood there one hand on his hip looking rather worried. It wasn't even a second later when a message popped in his face, telling him that Mika wanted to join him. With his own frown, Haseo accepted. Mika was a harvest cleric after all.
"Ok, now...to Kestrel."
Once he said Kestrel's area words out loud, the two of them warped away, once they were in Kestrel's area, Mika looked at him with a happy expression on his face.
"That was cool, I didn't know you could word active the warp gate!" Mika excitedly exclaimed practically jumping up and down.
"Right..." Haseo mumbled and rubbed his temples. They slowly approached Kestrel, the closer they got, the less excited Mika got, in fact, by the time they got to the door Mika seemed to be shaking just a bit. Haseo opened the door. Instantly several players that were there backed away from him and Mika. A part of him expected to be greeted by Gabi, still, it didn't really surprise him to see Silabus as the head of it all. Silabus gave him a sneer before stepping down.
"What are you doing here? Come to see if you can pick us off one by one?" Silabus bitterly asked.
"I want to talk." Haseo simply told him, Silabus rolled his eyes.
"Please. Save me the bullshit...Just go." Silabus snapped before adding, "You aren't welcome here." Silabus then turned, clearly going back to his spot before. Haseo spoke up quickly,
"I know about Kuhn."
Everyone around them started to whisper, Silabus turned back around, clearly on edge now.
"What are you talking about?"
"You know damn well what I'm talking about."
There was a silence between the two of them, every Pker stood around ridged, prepared for a fight between the two. Mika stood beside Haseo, holding his breath as he waited for Silabus to say something. Finally, the blade brandier spoke.
"Alright, Terror of death. How about a deal? Two on two in the demon palace, each get one person on their side, that is unless your so arrogant you think you can do without the help of one another. You win, I'll tell you were Kuhn is. I win...Oh well..." Silabus chuckled and spread his arms a bit before saying, "You leave 'the world'"
"Deal." Haseo agreed without even hesitating.
"DUDE!" Mika screamed in his ear in shock, Haseo just pushed him back and bright his hand out for a handshake.
"Two on two..."
Silabus took it and they shook their hands in a deal.
"See you there, Terror of death."
The warp back to Mac Anu was silent, the moment they made it back to the hub world, Mika turned to him.
"So, do we have a plan?"
"We?" Haseo asked as he relived Mika from his party.
Mika frowned and put his hands on his hips. "Well, yeah, he said he wanted it to be a two on two...We're two people. I'm the same level as you...I heal people for Christ sake!"
"Well...I wanted to ask if you could find another harvest cleric, her name should be Atoli. Please. I really need to know if she's here."
"Atoli...Atoli...I know that name from somewhere..." Mika told him as he put a finger on his chin in thought. Finally he shrugged with a sigh. "Fine, I'll look around. But, who are you going to bring with you on this?"
Haseo looked away from Mika and around the chaos gate, that was a good question, he thought about Matsu, or just scrolling through his friends list, which was just a bunch of Pkkers, then just at the main doors, he watched as a familiar pink beast waddled out of the room and Haseo smirked,
"I think...I'm going to try and reunite Canard..."
"No!" Gaspard yelled out to Haseo as he waddled away at a fast pace, but not fast enough as Haseo simply grabbed Gaspard by the back of his collar and gently pulled the beast back. The two of them were at the harbor were several other players could only watch with bewilderment.
"I need your help," Haseo put it straightforwardly in a lax voice as he moved his hand on to Gaspard's shoulder. Gaspard scrunched his face up in anger and jerked his shoulder away from Haseo hand and crossed his arms.
"I don't care, you never did anything for me!" Gaspard snapped.
'More than you know...' Haseo thought as he rolled his eyes. "Listen, Gaspard-"
"I don't care! I'm not fighting with Silabus! Get someone else to fucking do it!" Gaspard screamed out as he clenched his fist and squeezed his eyes shut.
People started to whisper hastily around them causing Haseo to roll his eyes in irritation once more, these people were starting to tick him off, no, everyone was starting to tick him off right now. Haseo ran his hand down his face as he fought the urge to yell back at Gaspard. However; a part of him paused as he rubbed his chin.
"Gaspard... Why won't you fight Silabus? If you hate him-"
"I never said I hated him!... I..." Gaspard looked away, clearly irate as he glared at the ground beneath his feet.
"You?" Haseo urged him, Gaspard's eyes narrowed as he kicked an imaginary pebble away from him.
"... We were friends once. Then Kuhn got his hands on Silabus and... Why am I telling you this!? Just forget it! and leave me alone!" Gaspard finally had enough, and in a bright blue light, he vanished as he warped away.
"Huh. So they were friends at one point and then Kuhn came into the picture... I have to get a second player," Haseo sighed as he stretched his arms above his head. How the hell was he going to do this now? Going into his friend's list, something Haseo should have checked earlier on, Haseo scrolled down. He didn't recognize a lot of the names, but he paused when he saw Shino's name on there.
"Is Shino the same?!" He questioned out loud, he then frowned and pulled back from asking her to join his party. "Or... Is it possible that she's a lost one? If everything is different, and I'm the 'terror of death' still then..." Haseo gulped and just started to scroll down his friends list some more. He stopped at Matsu's name. Should he bring Matsu along? It seemed like the best choice.
'Matsu can hold his own and seems like the best choice for this scenario. Plus I'm sure he's itching to PKK Silabus...'
... That was one of the weirdest sentences that Haseo ever thought of. Letting out a low breath he ran his fingers through his hair and lightly kicked the ground in irritation. 'Maybe I should just bring Mika along right now he's the only one willing to help me anyway.' Haseo rubbed his chin before sitting down on the ground. Looking at his friend's list he paused briefly before decided to hit on Shino's name for a party invite. He held his breath hoping and praying, but he didn't receive a reply back. He waited ten seconds, then twenty, thirty, forty, nothing.
"So... it seems she is a lost one after all... it makes since if I'm feared as the 'terror of death'," He sighed in defeat. He saw Ovan's name, but as to be expected, he was offline.
"Hase-ya!" With no warning Mika was literally at Haseo's feet as both of them were now on the ground. The poor cleric wasn't paying attention, per usual, and tripped over another sign.
"Hi, Mika," Haseo greeted him with a sigh. "Did you find anything on Atoli?"
"Oh!" Mika quickly rearranged himself so he was criss-cross in front of Haseo, it was almost like they were in grade school it seemed. "Good news! Atoli does play the game!"
The best damn news Haseo had heard all day. Perking up happily he looked at Mika with interest in his eyes. "And?" He asked.
"Bad news... Sakaki won't let me anywhere near her, he won't let anyone near her! He says she's too special to be around people like me!" He stuck his tongue out in a bitter fashion and made a face like he ate something bitter.
"S-Sakaki!? So she's part of Moontree then?" Haseo gasped out loudly, so not everyone was completely insane in this odd universe?
"Moontree? Never heard of it-"
Retracting that last statement, Haseo couldn't help but grind his teeth before putting his hands to the sides of his head. "This is just insane! Moontree doesn't exist! Silabus is a PK! Gaspard is foul-mouthed! Yata wants nothing to do with me! Shino is still a lost one! Kuhn is not only a PK, but the leader of Kestrel! Everything is just backwards!" He couldn't help but scream loudly causing a poor passerby to stop and stare at him. "What the fuck are you look at!?" He growled deeply. The girl yelped and ran away as fast as she could. Finally, Mika intervened by slapping Haseo upside his head.
"Calm down! Panicking isn't going to help anybody in this situation!... Just invite me to your party, Haseo, I can handle my own," Mika spoke slowly and clearly for Haseo. "I will help you fight Silabus."
Haseo took in a deep breath before inviting Mika into his party. "Okay, now we still have a little while until the battle..." Mika sat beside Haseo, both of them now resting their backs against a wall. "Tell me about 'The world' you're from, What is Moontree? and What is Silabus if he's not a PK?"
"..." Haseo crossed his arms as memories from his friends and his own 'world' came back to him. Silabus and Gaspard both hugging him after he got his second form. Atoli and Alkaid fighting along side him in the Holy palace tournament, Pi and Kuhn trying to train him how to use his avatar, Endrance joining his team, and of course, Shino meeting with him again. All somewhat good memories. Something he wanted to get back to. Yeah, they pissed him off at times, but now he needed that comfort from his friends, and in this world, the only comfort he was getting was from... a harvest cleric that he's PK'd and bullied in the past. "... Moontree is a guild that protects players from PKer's it's run by Zelkova..."
Before he knew it he was going in depth about Moontree, Atoli, Silabus, Gaspard, Kuhn, how important they were to him and how they were indeed his friends. Mika listened with great interest, his purple eyes wide as he watched Haseo explain the details of Canard, the guild that Kuhn made but had to leave for reasons, and how Silabus managed to somehow con him into being the guild master. Just stuff like that. Haseo figured Mika might laugh and call him crazy, but he didn't, it seemed Mika believed every single word.
"Wow..." Mika breathed out when Haseo finished. Mika then had a bit of a confused look on his face as he seemed to be thinking about something. "You say Silabus and Gaspard are close in your world?"
"Inseparable at times," Haseo could only shrug. "Why?"
"No reason, none at all," Mika gave a small hum of curiosity before changing the subject, "Back on the subject of Atoli for a moment, your world didn't have a Sakaki?"
"Oh, it did, and he sounds like the same jackass here as he was there, not letting anyone come near Atoli... I need to see her after this battle. In fact... New plan! Mika I need your help again!" Haseo jumped up quickly as the idea struck him. Mika stood up just as fast so he was face to face with Haseo. "I'll make Yata notice me! If that fork-tongued bastard doesn't want to see me then I'll do his job for him if that's the case!"
"It seems like your doing Yata's job for him," Kuhn's voice echoed around Haseo's head making Haseo narrow his red eyes in slight anger.
"Atoli, Endrance, Kuhn, Sakubo, and Pi. I need every single one of those players on my side with this one. Once we win the battle with Silabus we can talk to Kuhn, so that'll be easy, but the rest...I'll cross that bridge when I get to it," Haseo sighed out as he rubbed the back of his head.
"Why all of them? is there something about them?" Mika questioned with a slight shrug of his shoulders. Haseo actually had to stop himself from telling the truth to Mika.
'No, he can't know about the avatars.' His mind told him softly as he looked at Mika for a few seconds. "Yeah..." Was all Haseo revealed to Mika before turning his back to him.
"Oh, okay well I'll see what I can do, I mean finding four more people shouldn't be that hard. Hopefully," Mika seemed unsure of himself at that moment as he gently tugged at his own collar showing nervousness over the situation. Haseo realized just how much he's come to rely on Mika these past couple of... days? Hours? the passage of time was still very unclear to Haseo. Still, Haseo could only groan out before rubbing the bridge of his nose and sitting down at the pier and looking out at the moving digital ocean. Mika gave a sigh before sitting next to Haseo as well. Gently Mika patted Haseo's shoulder in comfort. "Found that second person yet?" Mika softly asked him. Haseo only shook his head.
"... I'll do it,"
"... I know you will-"
"Haseo!" Turning his head to the side, Haseo saw Matsu walking up to the two of them. Together both him and Mika stood up as the rogue approached the two. Matsu only gave Mika a bit of a sneer of disdain before placing his hands on his hips and turning to Haseo. "So, word around town is that you challenged Silabus to the arena?"
"Yeah, I have my reasons," Haseo put it simply for Matsu.
Matsu mocked hurt at that as he put his hand on his chest. "And you didn't invite me? C'mon I'll knock the teeth outta him!"
"That's..." Haseo had to stop himself for a second. 'I could use Matsu in this situation. I guess the question truly is... do I go with healing or straight offense?'
"What are you hesitating for, man? Me, you, and Avox! We'll-"
"It's two on two!" Mika spoke up quickly earning a flick to the forehead from Matsu.
"And? C'mon Haseo! You want to win, don't you? Just invite me and Avox, we all want to send a message to Kuhn, don't we? What better way than beating the daylights out of Silabus!"
"No." Haseo put it simply absolutely no room for argument in his voice as he crossed his arms in slight anger at Matsu's willingness to cheat like that.
"What's gotten into you? Normally you wouldn't hesitate to do this kind of thing."
"Things changed, Matsu. I'm not cheating on a two on two. I'll happily invite you along to join me in the fight, but we aren't adding a third player in this."
Matsu gave a bit of a huff in response to Haseo before finally rolling his eyes. "Fine. I guess I'll join you then, but I pick the field we level up in!" Matsu declared loudly.
"Fine, deal." Haseo simply let it go and Matsu nodded eagerly before rubbing his hands together.
"Good. I have a place I've been wanting to try out. You're perfect for the job, let's get going," Matsu told Haseo right off the bat. Haseo gave a sigh in response to Matsu before just shrugging.
"Alright, fine, Mika-"
"You want me to come?" Mika asked happily as he clasped his hands together in excitement. Haseo tsked his tongue lightly, however before Haseo could answer, Matsu did for him.
"Ah-ha, no. Trust the leveling up to the big boys, Mika why don't you... go and do something you normally do."
'Rude.' Was the only thought that entered Haseo's head when he saw Mika's deflated happiness. "I'll wait for you here, Mika when we get done, okay?"
"Yeah. Okay, bye Haseo," Mika warped away in a bit of a huff leaving Haseo with Matsu.
"Well, invite me into your party and lets get to leveling up," Matsu demanded with a bit of a huff in his voice. Haseo did as Matsu asked and invited him into his party. "Good, now the area I want to go is sigma efficient dancing moonlight." Haseo nodded and made a mental note of the area words as he could no longer bookmark them. Truthfully going to level up made him a little more at ease. It was going to take his mind off of things. Take his mind off of this crazy opposite world he was in. He needed to take his frustration off of some pixelated monsters.
Mika gave a bit of a sigh as he stood at the harbor waiting for Haseo to come back. He had some news on the character known as 'Pi' and very, very, little information on the one known as 'Endrance', but it seemed his friend was busy taking his sweet time with Matsu. "Typical." Mika could only scoff. Even if this Haseo was different from the normal PKKer Haseo, he was still Haseo and liked to blow him off it seemed. Standing there tapping his thumbs together Mika gave another bored sigh.
"Mika does this, Mika does that, Mika get me this-" Hearing Silabus's voice, Mika jumped a little as the green-clad man came sauntering over to him. Mika backed up until the invisible barrier of the game stopped him from going over the edge. "- Why do you put up with that... bully?" Silabus asked Mika before pinching Mika's cheek lightly.
"That's rich coming from a PKer!" Mika huffed before slapping Silabus's hand off of his cheek. "What do you want?"
"I have a... proposition for you."
"Oh yeah? and Just what would that be?" Mika crossed his arms as Silabus leaned in close to his ear and whispered into his ear.
"I don't know you put with Haseo. I mean, he PK's you, He betrays you every turn, and he's forcing you to do his dirty work of looking for people within the game on the forums. Why put up with that abuse?"
"Stop it!" Mika hissed as he gave Silabus a slight shove back. "You don't understand he's not the same-"
"Tut, tut, just like an abuse victim to go crawling back to the person who abused them to start with. Mika, Haseo has been lying to you. He's changed? He's not the Terror of Death anymore? Why all of a sudden? and if that were the case: Why would he go with Matsu?" Silabus cooed gently as he suddenly tugged on Mika's cheek again. "Face it, Mika, Haseo isn't a nice guy, he hasn't changed, and he's only using you. If he needed you, you'd be leveling up with him. Not Matsu. He's just trying to get you out of his hair, like he always has in the past."
Mika, once again, slapped Silabus's hand away from him as he scowled, his scowl then turned into a solid frown as he rubbed his cheek. "That's-" he paused. "I-" Another pause. Mika clenched his fists tightly. "It's not true, he told me about... his other world..."
"What?" Silabus questioned Mika with a raised eyebrow.
"Silabus... why don't you hang around Gaspard?"
"Gaspard? The beast? Why- What in the world are you talking about. Whatever Haseo has been telling you is all nothing but lies! Another world? C'mon there's no such thing, Mika. He's lying. He's a liar that's what they do. He's manipulating you, Mika. Now you see... I won't lie to you... not like he has. I truly need you," Silabus told him slowly. "I need you to help me take down Haseo. To make him pay for all the lies he told to you."
Mika stood there for few seconds, hoping that maybe Haseo would come around the corner and clear everything up, but he didn't come. Mika felt like an idiot yet he didn't want to believe Silabus either. "I don't think he was lying, Silabus..."
"Tell you what, Mika..." Silabus suddenly wrapped his arm around Mika's shoulder as he gave the harvest cleric a small smile. This time, Mika didn't push him off. "Come and explain to me everything Haseo has been telling you. I can guarantee he's been lying through his teeth about all of it, but I just want to hear what these stories consist of." Mika still felt hesitant as he fidgeted with his fingers a little. "We'll do some leveling up as well, don't worry, I'll protect you from any out of line Pkers. I promise."