I confirmed the completion of the last 2 requests on the black board with a Guild staff, received my share of payment and left the building.
As usual, I spent a small amount of gold coins on giving out to the vagabonds. I owned a lot of gold even though I didn’t really use them, so might as well do some charity; it wasn’t a big deal, after all.
Leaving behind the city plaza, I made a turn and entered the back alleys. While I was looking for a good spot to transfer to The Center, a couple desperate robbers appeared and tried out their luck. But unlucky for them, my fame as a Hero in this country wasn’t bullshit; I simply knocked them out and handed them over to the knights then returned to the back alleys.
I cut into an empty corner of the street and immediately transferred to The Center.
“Hello. Today I’d like to try that out.”
“Oh, you want to go to The Realm?”
“Yes. The spawn rate of monsters around Anartia is too low so I figure I’ll try my luck with something else.”
“That’s true. There aren’t that many dungeons near Anartia, too.”
The Realm is a hunting area for people who are members of The Center. The way it works is pretty simple, you just need to pay the entrance fee, then get in there and start killing monsters. Sadly, you won’t be able to earn any EP just from killing them, that would be too benefitial for the hunters. However, the monsters will drop a special type of crystal that The Center is willing to buy from you. That would be your main source of income when you choose The Realm.
In addition, there are also dungeons and hidden quests lying around in there for you to challenge and earn ultra rare drops that The Center doesn’t sell. To sum it all up, The Realm is kind of like a typical MMORPG, but in real life.
I gave the golden credit card to Leah. When she confirmed it, a single door suddenly appeared right next to the reception counter.
“500 EP have been taken from your account as the entrance fee. We’ll buy the crytals from you for 100 EP each if you are willing to sell them. Do you wish to buy a map?”
“Yes, please. I’ll need it.”
After paying 50 EP for a map of The Realm, I opened the door and stepped into the space behind it. It was immediately a vast grassy plain with many strange looking creatures walking about. It was probably the first time I’ve ever seen that many monsters out in the wild; I’ve seen herds of them inside dungeons before, though.
When I closed the door, it disappeared so I guess I would have to use the golden credit card if I ever wanted to return to The Center.
“Now then, let’s hunt.”
Not wasting any time, I pulled the string on Dragonbow and fired a black arrow at one of those sheep-like monsters. The arrow did pierce it at where the heart usually would be, but the monster didn’t really falter and began to call its companions to launch a group attack on me.
I immediately took a few steps back and shot another arrow through its forehead, after a brief second of delay, the arrow exploded along with the monster’s head. Only then, the thing collapsed; its corpse disintegrated into nothingness, leaving behind one piece of transparent crystal. I quickly dashed forward with my empowered speed, grabbed the crystal, put it into my dimensional storage and took some distance from the herd of monsters.
The moment those monsters began running towards me, I shot an arrow towards the sky. It split into a couple tens of smaller arrows and rained down on the monster sheeps. Of course, just those tiny arrows wouldn’t hurt them, but they would when each arrow exploded upon collision with the monsters’ bodies.
Then when almost all of them have already gotten heavily injured, I leisurely pierced an arrow through each of them at the head.
“Wow . . . not one single crystal drop . . .”
That first crystal I picked up felt almost like a bait when the next 20 or so sheep-monsters I shot down only dropped wool after their real bodies have disintegrated.
Oh well, these are really high quality material, so I’ll pick them up and sell them at the Merchant Guild. Craftsmen would burn their pockets to get their hands on such first class wool. By the way, the sheep-monsters just now were probably all from around high B to low A rank, that’s why the materials I got from them were of high quality. With that same pattern, the higher ranking a monster is, the better loots you get from it.
By the time I was done with picking up all the wool, the monsters I killed already respawned and filled up the area again. That was probably the reason why drop rate was literally trash.
But in any case, I’ve never expected this to be easy, so I’d just need to mow through layers after layers of monsters until I can earn decent profit. With that kind of thought in mind, I repeatedly pulled the string of Dragonbow while slowly advancing through the grassy plain.
* * *
By the time I actually reached the border of that vast plain, where the edge of a dense forest was, the golden credit card began to glow brilliantly.
When I took it out from my pocket, a hologram of Leah the reception lady was projected from it.
“Just a reminder, the Sun is already setting in Sintra. If you need to go back, I think now is a pretty good time.”
“Oh, right! Thanks a lot for the reminder.”
“You are welcome. Let me take this chance and explain a little bit about time in The Realm——”
According to Leah, each area—or biome—in here is fixed at a different time frame. For example this grassy plain will always be daytime, the forest in front of me will always stay early noon, or another forest beyond these two areas will not ever change from being night time.
That’s why I should always pay attention to time. And Leah told me an efficient way of doing so which was how the back side of my golden credit card would turn into an indicator of time in my original world. If it was morning in Sintra, that side of the card would stay golden, but as time went, it’d slowly change into orange for noon, red for late noon and purple for night time.
I confirmed what she said by looking at the back side of my golden credit card, and it was indeed red-ish orange.
That said, I warped back to The Center and turned in the crystals I got from the monsters.
“Let’s see, you managed to collect 7 of them, which is 700 EP.”
“Ahh . . . that’s not good . . .”
That means I only got 200 EP of profit out of that. Next time I go to The Realm, I really need to speed things up and kill more monsters during the time I stay in there. Well, to be fair, I did wake up really late today and even went to do 2 requests from the black board. That’s why I only had a few hours of spare time to go to The Realm. Starting tomorrow, I should put everything back on track and not waste any more time.
“By the way, what these crystals for?”
“They’re all magic crystals that can absorb magical power from nature and nurture its host; it randomly appears inside some monsters.”
“Wait . . . does that mean . . .”
“Yes, it indeed can give princess Julianne a lot more time.”
“Then, do you sell products made from these crystals here?”
“We don’t, due to it being for private use. But.”
“You can always special order an item~”
According to Leah, if I gathered enough crystals and pay a certain amount of EP, I could special order The Center to create an item out of those crystals for me. And since these crystals could directly nurture the living body of its host, its effectiveness was well beyond what Julianne’s pendant could provide. However, it would still benefit her if she kept wearing the pendant with a good jewel on top of having this crystal; in fact, it would doubly add to her powers.
That said, I decided on a new plan for farming crystals in The Realm.
* * *
I returned to my room inside the royal castle and was greeted by my two princesses; they were sitting on my bed while silently reading a book.
When I said I was going to take a bath, they both wanted to bathe with me so I took them along.
Inside the spacious bathhouse, we were taking off our clothes.
“Guu . . . when I was taken to Rivell, our bras were of the same size and yet . . . look at how it turned out.”
“Oh . . . she’s one whole size bigger than you now, huh.”
I laughed upon hearing Julianne’s complaint after seeing her little sister’s naked body.
She kicked my leg with a sulking face.
“But Edward, didn’t you say Julia has nicer butt?”
This time it was Ilianne who pouted at me.
“Well, that’s true. Nobody can be 100% perfect, right?”
Saying so, I took both of them to entering the bath with me while groping them here and there. I loved that feeling of plumpness and a little bit of firmness when I sank my hand into Julianne’s butt, and of course I don’t even have to describe the greatness of Ilianne’s abundant asset that is her bust.
We soaked into hot bath; I held the girls in my arms, it was a fantastic sandwich position for me to be in.
“It seems like you’re getting your own mansion soon.”
From my right, Julianne notified me about some good news.
“Mhm, I heard it would be that enormous mansion near the outskirt of the capital.”
“It was grandpa’s personal vacation house, right?”
Ilianne made a pretty interesting question while leaning her head on my left shoulder.
“Yup, nobody uses that house anymore, so Dad’s giving it to mister Hero over here.”
“That’s good news.”
We continued chatting about that mansion a little bit more before I brought up a long forgotten topic.
“We should go on that sightseeing trip soon.”
“. . . oh! That? I didn’t think you’d remember.”
Ilianne obviously wasn’t aware of it, but Julianne knew what I was referring to.
I did promise to take both of them on a picnic to admire beautiful nature, but because of Julianne’s condition, I haven’t gotten enough time to put the plan to practice.
The conversation got much livelier when the girls began to discuss about where we should go. I was pleased to see them being happy so I also joined into the discussion.
We had fun flirting lots and lots in the bath, and it indirectly fueled the girls’ inner fire as they had no mercy on me that night. The three of us ended up doing our night affairs in my room since the bed was a lot bigger than Julianne’s bed.
But rather than tiring me out, the girls healed me from some mental fatigue that had piled up during my time in The Realm.