"Hmm, that's weird," Lone said aloud by mistake. He was busy rifling around in his pockets as he followed the Deerkin waiter, so he accidentally slipped into his old habit of thinking out loud.
"Is there a problem, Mr Immortus?" the Deerkin asked with concern after he stopped walking to look at Lone. Currently, he and Lone's group of four were walking up a very well decorated flight of stairs that had an occasional couple or group walking up and down it, passing Lone's bunch.
"No, it's nothing. Please, continue," Lone said as a confused look crossed his face.
"I see... well then," the waiter replied with an incredulous expression before he turned around and continued up the stairs.
'What happened?' Sophie asked Lone via their telepathy. She was currently cuddling the sleeping Kyuubi as she watched the screen that displayed lone's actions, so obviously, she had seen him pause and his confused face.
'Hmm? Soph? Ah, nothing. Some guy bumped into me and I was pretty sure he stole from me. I let him 'cause it was kinda interesting, but nothing's missing as far as I can tell so I'm a bit puzzled,' Lone replied.
'You're so weird. If this was a year ago, you'd have just killed him even though you're in such a huge place with so many people,' Sophie said with a giggle.
'Hey! That's rude. I got mugged before but I didn't kill the mugger, now did I? Geez, I only resort to violence so much because it's the easiest way to fix problems, for me at least,' Lone responded defensively.
'Huh? You got mugged before? When? I don't believe you,' came Sophie's reply. Lone could quite clearly imagine the girl sitting in the summoning room with her tongue sticking out as she made fun of Lone's somewhat barbaric personality.
'It was ages ago. Some little girl back when I first came to Milindo. She claimed I was her brother and I threatened her to get her to go away, but I gave her a silver coin, kinda. Anyway, point is, I didn't kill her, so shut it you, or I'll punish you tonight,' Lone said in a joking manner.
'Yes, Sir, please spare me,' Sophie replied in kind.
"Mr Immortus, we've arrived," the Deerkin waiter stated, breaking Lone's concentration and forcing him to look ahead of him. What he could see was a single hallway that stretched on for several hundred meters in both directions. And along this well lit and decorated hallway, there were several doors which presumably led to rooms that were spaced apart by roughly fifty or so meters.
"Now that I think about it, how is this all possible? I mean, we've underground, right? How did we go upstairs, not downstairs?" Lone asked as his wonder assaulted the Deerkin in full force.
"A very good question, Sir," the waiter said calmly, almost like Lone's question was one that he was more than accustomed to.
"The owner of this particular Tavern, a famous wizard and entrepreneur, Malcolm Deposit, employed the services of The Academy's most talented teacher of space magic, Alfus Rainheart, to create the possibility of this establishment," the Deerkin answered Lone's question before he approached a door that was clearly made from some sort of extremely ancient, yet well-preserved wood.
'I keep hearing that name, 'Malcolm Deposit', every time I come to a huge business. Does he own everything on Altros, or is this just a huge coincidence? I guess I'll just ask Gilbert when I next talk to him since apparently, he knows him,' Lone thought before he turned his attention to the door that the Deerkin waiter was now in front of.
He was flipping through the pages on his clipboard and he was writing something down. Before long, he placed a palm on the door, causing several runes to appear.
'Enchanting? Interesting. I thought that was super hard to learn, especially such high-level enchantments... they're nothing compared to what Eolande is capable of, but these enchantments are still a lot better than what I can make,' Lone thought as he watched with his intrigue undisguised.
A few seconds later, the Deerkin removed his hand and a key was now sitting in it. Apparently, he had pulled it out of the door. "This is the key to your first room, Mr Immortus," he said with a smile. He then handed the key to Lone before he turned around and did the exact same thing to the door opposite the previous one and another further down the hall.
After giving the key for the second and third rooms to Lone, the man thanked him again for the generous tip before he made his leave.
Lone, Breena and Swind quickly entered one of the three rooms and were stunned by the quality. The room was very open and instantly gave the three a warm feeling. The furniture was obviously expensive and of a different brand to any Lone had seen before, even when compared to Earth's standards. 'Made by Deerkin? Hmm, no, it looks imported. These fabric chairs are really something though,' Lone commented internally.
"Well, this is your room, Breena, Eolande. You two can stay here while me and Soph will have the one on the other side of the hallway while Swind's is the third one, so make yourselves comfy or just mess about? I dunno, anyway, I'll come by in an hour or so and we can all go downstairs to have some fun or something," Lone said with a carefree attitude.
"Sure thing, Master," Breena answered. She soon found herself enjoying the particular comfort that the very immaculate and somewhat dimly-lit corner gave her.
"As you say, Mr Immortus," was Swind's reply. His feet had made their way towards a nice cabinet. He was inspecting it, appraising it, even.
'Curious soul, huh?' With this thought directed at Swind, Lone left the room and immediately entered the other one.
Similar to the one he gave to Breena and Eolande, it was spacious and full of vibrant colours. Lone settled onto the lavish bed that lay in a corner of the room. Were one not to look carefully, the bed would probably blend into the warm atmosphere along with the rest of the furniture.
He proceeded to summon both Sophie and Kyuubi. The former, after hugging Lone and his tails for a moment, started using all of her concentration to float around the room on a barrier that she had created in the shape of a disk. The latter curled up on the bed and fell asleep.
Sophie's eyes were closed as she floated about. Doing so was taxing on her mana and mental focus, so she didn't do it very often, but it was enjoyable to her, gliding through the air with her own powers.
Sophie almost fell off of her barrier disk upon hearing Lone suddenly shout one word.
"FUCK!" Lone roared, clearly in frustration at something.
Sophie moved on her disk to be next to Lone and she looked at him in worry. "What's wrong, Lone?" she asked before she deactivated her barrier and cuddled up to Lone's side.
Lone was holding a small black card that had a golden trim to it and it seemed to be a business card of some sort. He smiled in defeat as he cuddled Sophie back and explained, "The guy who I thought mugged me, turns out he did. He got all of the gold in my dimension somehow."
"What? But that's impossible! Your dimension isn't linked to Altros in any way, right?" Sophie replied in shock.
"Right. It isn't. That guy must've been one of the people Clicker was talking about. Someone with special powers just like us... I mean just look at what this card says," Lone sighed before he handed the card to Sophie who read it in earnest.
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