217 There’s no in Between

MMORPG: Rebirth as an Alchemist MiuNovels 2022/10/27 13:47:17

“I will get down to business,” Scar said as soon as he sat on the velvet cushion. “I’m not here to disturb your lunch. And as soon as I’m finished, I’m out of your way.”

“We’re all ears,” said Ren, flashing a lazy grin.

Leonel shut his mouth tight while he stiffened in his seat.

Saya couldn’t look straight at Ren and Leonel. Her anger at Mike radiated from her, and she pulled his arm away from her shoulder.

On the other hand, Mike was murdering Ren and Leonel with his glares.

“I’ll be straight to the point,” said Scar seriously at Ren. “I’ll offer you to join Black Lion with a blank contract. You can state your demands and fee. You can have a position as one of the core members with free exclusive room in the guilds, pool, gym, food, and all the perks that position includes.

“What’s more . . .” Scar briefly shot Leonel a gaze and continued, “Mike, Saya, Leonel, and even Roz will have a regular spot in the guild and all the perks that came along with it.”

“. . .” Ren was silent. He was holding his laughter at Scar’s constipated face. He must be really pissed that he had eaten all his words before.

And, of course, Ren took the opportunity to add salt to the injury. “So does this mean you acknowledge an Arcanist’s true might?”

Scar’s nostrils went big from the way he sharply inhaled air. He looked at Ren under the bridge of his nose, trying to retain some of his pride but failed miserably when Ren coyly grinned, waiting for his answer.

“Yes,” hissed Scar from his gnashing teeth.

Ren chuckled. “Well then . . . let bygone be bygones. However, I still won’t enter any guild.”

“Are you sure? I’m offering this contract one time only,” Scar said, forcing a smile.

Ren leaned a little closer. “I’m sure. However, you can contact me anytime. We have a mercenary group now called World Conqueror. If you need any help game-related, don’t hesitate to contact us.”

Ren offered a business card to Scar with a satisfied smirked. “We accept any job from dungeon exploring, Boss hunting, quest solving, and even the guild wars. For a price, of course.”

“. . .” Scar’s face couldn’t be painted while he accepted the card Ren handed to him.

“But you have to get in line,” Leonel added with a grin. “A lot of players are offering us jobs right now. Business is booming ever since we defeated you.”

Scar’s eyelid twitched and the veins on his neck were pounding hard. He stood to his feet and took a deep breath, eyes narrowing at Ren. “Is that so . . . then I guess I’ll see you in the game.”

To regain some face, Scar crumpled the card in his hands before tossing it on the table.

And before he left, he gave Ren a warning. “It only happened once. Make no mistake. I won’t let that happen twice.”

Ren knew that Scar meant his defeat against him. “We’ll see then.”

Scar didn’t retort and went out of Diamond Palace.

The moment that Scar left, Mike sneered, and words tumbled from his lips like cascading waters.

“So you two live at this place, huh? It looks like the game did you good.” Mike’s attempt to make everything light was already waning.

He tried to hide his real feelings behind his nonchalant voice but failed when his words contained nothing but envy. “But don’t think that you can be arrogant just because you two have money now. You, defeating brother Scar is only a stroke of luck. It would never happen again.”

Despite the rising tension in Mike’s voice, he snickered. “Your fame is only temporary, you’ll see. Black Lion has a lot of backing and tons of investors. While your little group consists of just a rag-tag bunch, who didn’t know what to do in life.”

Saya shifted uncomfortably in her seat. She tried to stop Mike by pinching his hand under the table, but the latter flung his hand away and pressed on.

Mike just simply exploded.

Being a probation member. Not even joining the guild war. And still on raids and doing miscellaneous stuff for the guild while Ren and Leonel achieved fame overnight a“ achieved what he always wanted . . . Mike just exploded. And no one couldn’t stop him.

Saya grasped her sweaty, nervous hands under the table while all she could do was stare at Mike in disbelief.

Ren only looked at Mike like he was a clown, and this angered Mike even more.

“Don’t be cocky, Ren. What you have now is only temporary. And don’t think that just because brother Scar offered you to join Black Lion doesn’t mean you’re strong. There are a lot of strong players in the guild than you’ll ever hope to compete.

“That Guild War is full bull! In the first place, it doesn’t make any sense! Black Lion will surely snag that championship prize if it’s a real war between guilds! You lot just got lucky that the game was idiotic! No wonder only idiotic players won in the end. That game is designed for you losers.”

A thick sound of splashing water stopped Mike from saying anymore while all eyes shifted in their direction.

“I think you should leave.” Holding a glass of wine in one hand, Leonel looked down at Mike with constricted pupils. His face was serious as his voice, and his happy-go-lucky smile was nowhere to be found.

On the side, the calm Ren was surprised that Leonel got mad. He even threw a wine on Mike’s expensive white polo shirt.

“Y-you!” Mike stood from his seat and was about to grab Leonel’s collar when the latter stood to his height.

Without the friendly smile, Leonel was intimidating as hell with how tall he was.

“Y-you!” Mike gritted his teeth, almost grinding them to dust. “Do you know how expensive this shirt is, huh?”

Leonel scoffed. “I have the money now, remember? But you . . . I think you should buy dignity first before asking as to lunch again.”

“Huh?! Who said that I still want to hang out with you losers?!” Mike spat. “If not for brother Scar I wouldn’t even contact you! You peasants from the slums. No matter how you tried to mask your smell with expensive perfumes, the stink attached to you from birth will never disappear!”

“. . . I think you should leave before I decide to paint your shirt with another bottle of wine.”

Mike caught his tongue. His unsettled eyes glanced around and tried to avoid catching other people’s glances at him. He felt embarrassed all of a sudden.

He then faced Leonel, glaring at him, and barked, “This is not over. I will make sure that you’ll pay what you did to me this day.”

Leonel’s serious face broke into a lazy grin. “Sure. Sure. Just make sure to bring the receipt.”

Irritated, Mike’s anger was directed at Saya. “Let’s go. We’re wasting time here!”

Mike turned and took a stepped out of the restaurant when he turned back and hollered, “Saya?”

Saya remained in her seat as she spoke in a stern but shaking breath, “I want to eat lunch with Ren and Leonel first.”

“. . .” Mike’s anger blew to the roof, and it took everything in his power not to lose control, or he’d only embarrass himself more in front of so many people.

Fists shaking, Mike spat, “Fine then.” Before he went out, stomping his feet.

When Mike was gone, Leonel sat on his set, and he grabbed his hair while he looked at Ren in dread. “R-Ren . . . how much do you think that polo cost? I have to treat you to lunch for one week, and I have to buy my sister a pod and that hella expensive bag that wouldn’t even fit a wallet. And I also have to pay for Mike’s shirt?”

Ren laughed. “You’re worried about that? I thought that you would mope about our ruined friendship with Mike.”

Leonel mess his hair and groaned. “To be honest, all I felt was regret about the wasted four years of friendship. Regret, but not disappointed. I somehow expected it in the back of my mind.”

Ren tapped Leonel’s shoulder. “Don’t worry about that guy. It’s his loss. Not ours.”

Leonel sighed and went silent for a solid thirty seconds. He then grinned at Ren. “Will you help me with the shirt then?”

Ren beamed. “Be a man and take responsibility for your actions.”

On the side, Saya suddenly felt left out. She then took a glass of water to calm her nerves while trying not to lose all her lipstick on the rim.

Ren’s long slender fingers ran through his short black hair, which shifted back into place once his hand had gone past it as he and Leonel laughed and chatted.

Saya swallowed hard at the scene, and she willed her bottom lip not to tremble. She then shifted her attention elsewhere as the two men talked like she wasn’t there.

After minutes, Leonel finally acknowledged her presence. “I’m glad that you at least remained. Though is it alright to leave your boyfriend like that?”

Saya tapped a napkin on her mouth and cleared the lump in her throat. “Honestly, I don’t know that he would bring Scar along. I thought that it was just going to be us. I’m sorry about that. I’ll talk to Mike as soon as his anger cool off.”

“But you do know that our friendship is over, right?” Ren said straight to the point, and Saya couldn’t react.

“Let’s not waste time here and play house, Saya. She’s your boyfriend. The fact that Mike and we are no longer friends will also affect your relationship with us. Mike will surely get mad at you if you hang out with us. It’s either him or us. There’s no in-between. So I’m asking right here, right now . . . do you still want to be friends with us knowing that it would affect your relationship with Mike?”