“Oh no.” You said in a hollow tone, your heart sinking as you realized that thing was still at large… and pissed!
“Oh no is correct,” Migata replied with his index finger raised in agreement with your statement, “we need to get going, now!”
He grabbed you by the hand and headed for the teleport station, picking a smart pace through the snow.
You jogged slightly to keep up, occasionally glancing back over your shoulder whenever you heard the haunting scream of the Tezamøng behind you.
“Will it come for us?” You asked Migata as you jogged behind him, “it can’t get out of this level can it?”
“Usually they can’t get out but if there’s a glitch it might be a different story.” Migata said back over his shoulder to you as you both made it safely to the platform.
“He’s so calm about it?” You thought as you stepped up into the blue ring of the teleport station, still holding his hand as you came up beside him.
“Level 44!” Migata called.
The two of you were immediately transported to, what you assumed, was level 44. A level full of archipelago islands that hung in mid air.
You stepped off the platform and down onto soft green grass, looking around wide eyed at this breathtaking level.
The grounded part of the level was very similar- in look and feel -to a well maintained Chinese garden, exotically coloured plants and enlarged bonsai trees hugged the edges of a small river that meandered through the land while up above hung variously sized islands, suspended in mid air, the root systems of each island either hanging free or intertwining with nearby lands that made natural vine line bridges to make it easier to be able to navigate the level.
“This… this is amazing.” You breathed as you took it all in, “this is an extremely beautiful level.”
“I know!” Migata said cheerfully as he stepped down beside you, “this the level Butterfli3 and his in game wife; O/N, live on.”
“The number one player and another top player?” You queried.
“That’s them.” Migata replied with a smile, “I’m hoping they’re home so we can talk to them about Tezamøng, but if not, Butterfli3 did say that if I ever needed somewhere safe to stay I could come to his house; and I think now is a perfect reason to need a safe place to stay.” He said with a bright chuckle.
“I’m really sorry.” You said sadly, hanging your head in shame, “my brash actions caused the demise of your hous-.”
“I already told you, U/N, it’s not a problem at all, it just means I get to buy another house on a different level.” He said with a genuinely kind smile as he looked down at you.
“He’s so positive, not once has he told me off, which he should have, especially since I completely ruined his house.” You thought as you looked from him back down at the ground.
Migata started moving so you followed him as he headed for a vine ladder nearby.
“Stay in front,” Migata said as he looked back over his shoulder and smiled at you, stopping so you could pass him. “if you fall I need to be able to catch you.”
You nodded and stepped past him, reaching out for the ropey vine as you got to the base of the natural ladder and started climbing the structure with ease, following it up to one of the lower hanging islands.
“Do these islands ever fall?” You asked Migata, calling back to him over your shoulder.
“Not that I’ve seen but the smaller ones do tip to the side if something heavy lands on them.” He said with a chuckle, “a uh… someone I used to be close with was a beast tamer and she tamed one of the larger creatures on this level and discovered that if she made it land on a small floating island it would tip over.”
You cracked a smile as you climbed, imagining an island tipping over.
“She set herself a goal to tip as many small islands as possible.” Migata continued.
“What’s the point in doing that?” You thought as you shook your head, “I guess sometimes you just do things for fun and they don’t need to have any purpose?”
“Look to your left, U/N,” Migata called from behind you as you climbed up on top of the floating island.
“Oh!” You gasped when you looked across.
You had climbed quite high already and a new beautiful view revealed itself from where you stood.
The sun was just on the horizon, signaling the end of the day, and a light mist had started to settle across the vast landscape.
“I can’t get over how beautiful this place is.” You said again as you watched a flock of bird flying silently below you in the distance.
“Are there any monsters or anything on this level?” You asked Migata as he made his way up beside you.
“We’ve already defeated the boss of this level.” Migata said, “he was a glitch so he was harder to beat that usual but he’s been completely removed from the game so that’s good!”
“I see.” You said, “and monsters?”
“There are a few monsters that live on this level but they’ll only engage in a fight you if you make the first move.” He said. “There is an extremely large pterodactyl that lives near Butterfli3’s house that has a short fuse.” He added with a chuckle, “and none of us are game enough to take it on, so we’ve just left it.”
“Understandable.” You said with a laugh.
Migata smiled as he looked at you.
“She’s opening up little by little, she’s laughed openly a few times now.” He thought with a soft look on his face. “Well shall we continue?” He turned and pointed to the next lot of vine stairs.
You both continued to climb, making your way slowly up to Butterfli3 and O/N’s house.
Finally you made it, smiling when you saw the cute little cottage that was built into the side of the hanging island.
“How adorable.” You thought as you and Migata climbed the last of the terrain to reach it, picking your way up to the house through the wiry grass and chipped rock steps that made a rough path to the front door.
“Do you think they’re home?” You whispered to Migata.
“I’m not picking up their presence.” Migata commented, his maxed out mage stats allowing him to be able to tell if someone was nearby even if he couldn’t see them.