Chapter 17: Power of Time

Two large leaves were seen moving across the desert. The desert was a wide, open land that stretched out endlessly with dunes rising and falling, making it impossible to see the distant terrain.

But despite this, Xandra was still a Tamer of Monster’s Edge. And as a woman, her initial training was that of the Scouting Tamers. And so, despite her previous panicked retreat to escape the Might Wolves who chased her deep into the Desert Lands, she still managed to take note of the terrain and knew the path that would lead them into the Craggy Rock Plains.

But the journey of the two tamers was very quiet. Flay knew that Xandra still blamed him for the death of her friend.

They continued to move, and Flay simply watched Xandra take the lead.

Finally, Flay spoke.

“Erm… I need to get something there. Desert Vultures are there, and my Slime has another ability.” Flay spoke and summarized, didn’t even wait for Xandra to answer, and went ahead in the Desert Vultures' direction.

“We need to hurry. We don’t have time for anything less than life-threateningly important.” Xandra answered.

“Aside from the fact that my Slime can absorb monster cores and give the energy to me to level me up, the dying monsters that the Desert Vultures would prey would have been headed to a source of water or shelter. Especially if the beast already knew the general layout of the land. Finding another oasis helps us quicken our travels as it would help up recover more of these moisture pills. We already ran out. And if we’re lucky, Kairo could even make that stamina pill I gave us earlier.” Flay went on a series of explanations and moved ahead.

“So much for my fantasies of making a good impression on her and turning an adventure into a date…” Flay sighed.

“Oh? Master had such fantasies? I never figured Master would be open such confession to me, his humble Slime servant.”

“Wait… I was…! Telepathically communicating with you?!”

“Oh, Master…” Kairo visibly shook its head.

“Still, she’s quite angry at you. Who is Elrik? She seems rather concerned.”

“Frankly speaking, Elrik’s the guy who had a chance with someone like Xandra. Strong, dashing, has a great tamed monster. He also bullied me and was one of the guys who made my life harder in the village. He was very vocal when he found out that I joined the hunt and managed to convince his father, an elite tamer, that I shouldn’t join. His father agreed at first but later changed his mind. So it’s quite sad that even the last memories I have of him are unpleasant. Even now, I can’t believe he's dead!” Flay sighed.

“Are you not even the slightest bit happy that he’s dead?”

“No! Kairo... This belief we have is engraved deeply in our hearts. Yes, that guy was a mother critching jerk of a man, but he was a good tamer! His support in the hunts and contributions were great!”

“Mother Critching?”

“You know, the Critcher trees? Those trees with great healing juices, but you need to beat them up to get the medicines to be very potent? It's an expression in our village. Well, a foul curse, to be precise.”

“Ah. A Crither tree! What an interesting expression. Anyway, you really value the importance that everyone in the village can give.”

“It’s not just me. Many of our villages have that mindset. That’s one of the reasons I was bullied. I was a dud, and more than that, I didn’t have Brute cultivation! I was useless! They bullied me so that I would enlist in the nearest town as a slave worker at the mines so at least I could help the village financially.”

“But it’s still impressive that you have this mindset of endurance. It’s one of the things that makes me doubt you are related to Pluton.”

“That’s also a village mindset. We’ve learned things the hard way. Our village has had a history of nearly being wiped out three times. One of which happened when I was seven years old. It was amazing how many of us survived back then…”

Flay finally saw the vultures and the nearby creatures.

“I can’t use my fire magic, right?”

“Master. Don’t impress her. If word that a mage among the Tamers appeared to spread in your village, and possibly in the kingdom, what will the person or group who cursed your tribe think? They will move in and hurt you all!”

“Ugh. Fine…” Flay cursed and ran towards the vultures.

“What are you going to do?! The Vultures will attack us if we steal their prey!”

“We won’t be stealing it. Watch.” Flay then allowed Kairo to move out.

The beast that was there was a deer-like creature. It was one of the fastest monsters that couldn’t be caught. Even the Might Wolves don’t wildly chase these.

Kairo moved into the small mouth of the deer. Kairo had turned from its sticky state to a rather slippery form that allowed it to move without even choking the deer.

“Kairo is going inside to get the Monster Core.”

Xandra was stunned and held her spear tightly. She was ready to fight the vultures when she heard Flay say this, and it was too late to order the slime to stop!

“You-!” Xandra wanted to shout but knew it would draw the vultures attention.

“You didn’t tell me you would steal the core right in front of their eyes!” She cursed.

Then Kairo came out.

She saw the slime move out with the monster core right inside it! Kairo casually moved towards Flay and reverted back to its sword form.

Flay went his merry way, and the stunned Xandra followed only after a few seconds.

“What… What happened?! Why didn’t they attack us?!” Xandra exclaimed when they were further away.

“Kairo moved in, grabbed the slime. He is coated in the same plant essence we are in. So the vultures couldn’t sense us walking away with it. Erm… You wouldn’t mind if I make Kairo absorb the Monster Core, right? I know we can sell them and get stuff from this, but you’ve seen Kairo’s water magic. It’ll be nice if he can cast more of it.” Flay asked.

“I… I guess so. We do need his water magic. But if you encounter any more, we should save some for the village.”

“Right!” Flay lied.

“What if he absorbs slime? I saw a small colony of slimes on the way here. They were staying in a deep pit at the edge of the Craggy Rock Plains.”

“You found a Slime Colony?!” Flay exclaimed.

“So you already thought about that…”

“Yeah. But those things are rare! Thank you, Xandra! You’re amazing!” Flay cheered.

Xandra was still angry, but she couldn’t bring herself to answer hatefully at Flay’s cheerful mood.

“The Slimes should be there. Although, I don’t think the Might Wolves hunt them…”

The pair continued to walk.

“Um… Xandra… I’m really sorry-”

“I know… I guess it’s wrong for me to accuse you. Besides, all I saw was the bloody scarf of Elrik. Although it's almost impossible, he could have gotten away from that Alpha…” Xandra answered.

“Then let’s hope for the best.” Flay nodded.

“You don’t hate him?”

“It would be a lie for me to say that. But you know what I mean. We’re tamers…” Flay answered.

“Yes, we are. Thank you for having that mindset. Congratulations, by the way. You’re no longer a dud.” Xandra smiled as she glanced back.

Flay nearly stumbled as his heart stopped, but Kairo helped him recover.

It was the first time that Xandra looked at him like that.

“Master! Pull yourself together!”

“Kairo… It looks like the Eos loves me! My chances are not yet completely gone!”

“What do you mean, Master?”

“I now have the chance of a lifetime! A chance with Xandra! We have to find a chance where I could use my sword to kill a beast that’s strong so that I can show her my true power!”

“Oh, Master…” Kairo sighed.

“This is my theory, Kairo! I believe in the power of time! Given enough time, a beggar can become a prince! Given enough time, the ugly can attract beauty! Given enough time, the coldhearted would treat her most hated enemy with love! Xandra and I never had the opportunity to be together! But I believe that if people were given a chance to spend more and more time with another person, the possibilities of romance would dramatically increase! I’ve always dreamed of being in dangerous scenarios with Xandra that force us to be together! If I have a month with her- No! Even just A week! If I have a week with her… then she would definitely like me! I must not mess this up! Finding the camp of the Tamers is important, but at most, we would have a few days, right? If the Tamers retreated back home, then we have more time!”

“Master… May I remind you that you and your village are in a very dangerous situation right now? The Pteranodon is still looking for us.”

“The Pteranodon! Of course! If she sees me evade that... But… No. It’s too dangerous for her…”

“Were you thinking of actually searching for the Pteranodon so you can show off your mad skills to her?”

“Well, I mean.. I wouldn’t say ‘searching for the Pteranodon’, but… if there is a way for her to see me fight and evade the Pteranodon and that her safety is a hundred percent assured, then I may just have a shot at impressing her.”

“Master, please stop involving me in your daydreams. Find the slime colony, let’s get stronger, and let's go save your village.”

“And… get the girl!”

“No… Please stop. Sometimes I wish you WERE Pluton!”

As Flay began to list out all his daydreams and heroic deeds that would only result in Xandra swooning over him, a dark beast had just entered the Desert Lands…

It was the Midnight Panther. Its soundless steps continued to occur as it leaped great distances in the Desert. It stopped and began to sniff on the ground.

Finally, it found it! The smell of the Slime! It had eaten a portion of the slime and had memorized its scent.

It turned around and rushed to report its findings. Its new master wouldn’t be able to cross the desert, and they had to wait for a time.

At the edge of the dense forest... A large monstrous dinosaur as large as a hill sat down and waited.

It was the Pteranodon! It was waiting for its minion to return and report the location of the slime.

“Roar…” The distant roar of the Midnight Panther could be heard, and the Pteranodon perched up.

Rapture Tales

Lets be honest fellas... you've had similar daydreams involving your crush. Heck if you were given a month in a deserted island with a celebrity, you'd have that shot of creating a romantic connection!

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