Curiosity strikes me once again, I wonder if I can find any sort of secret chests at Alberto’s place. He does seem like the kind of guy to have them. Hell, I wouldn’t be surprised if he had an entire secret room.
As I exit the house with my inventory nearly full with everything that I’ve stolen, the sight of a baby zombie wearing a golden helmet catches my eye from outside of the window. Its entire body is rotten and its face makes me want to throw up. Its moans and groans are high-pitched, revealing that the child must’ve not been any more than five when it died.
I ready my weapon and open the door, slicing off the zombie’s head right before it managed to catch me. Now it may finally rest in peace. But just to be safe, I slice off every single one of its limbs. It’s molded flesh sticks limp to my sword, smelling rancid and vomit inducing. I use the wall to wipe off the flesh, then continue forward onto my way back to Little Japan. The sun beats down on my skin, making me wish I had brought a bottle of water with me. Though, Little Japan isn’t too far, so I should be able to make it without melting beforehand.
“Alberto, what’s with all of the fucking bamboo?” Rodrigo asks, shouting with astonishment.
“It looks good,” His voice speaks inside of my head, it’s deep, calm, and quietish, yet it’s also quite fast. “Hey, don’t break it!”
“Oh my god, he’s planting more,” Rodrigo groans, sounding annoyed yet happy as he complains.
The sight of the tall bamboo lining the lake leaks into my view as I run past the watery mountain and grow nearer to the lake. I notice Angel and Renato sprinting towards Rodrigo and Alberto, looking as though they’re ready to start some chaos. The appearance of Alberto becomes clearer as I reach the entrance of the lake. Freshly planted bamboo lines another layer of the grass, adding even more green to an already green wall of nature.
I stop just beside all of them and look Alberto up and down as they all yell at each other. He looks around six feet tall, and his skin is a light tan. He has short, curly, dark brown hair that seems to look more like an afro than just curls. His eyes are brown, squinted, and slightly curved. He has a sharp, strong jawline, a long, oval face, a small, strong nose, pink, heavy lower lips, and short, rounded eyebrows. His bright orange muscle shirt helps make him stand out from the rest, and his gray sweatpants have a bit of a stain on them, most likely from working so much. His white and gold basketball shoes look brand new, which is surprising since there’s expected to be a lot of mud around here.
“Well that’s what you get for breaking my bamboo,” He shouts back, holding an entire stalk in his hand and waving it around.
I try to speak but am immediately interrupted, “Stop planting so much fucking bamboo! You’re taking up so much space,” Rodrigo yells, gesturing to the layers of walls of bamboo.
“Dude, Alberto’s obsessed with bamboo,” Angel and Anthony say and laugh together.
“Um Alberto,” I try again.
“What?” He asks with an annoyed tone as he rolls his eyes at me.
“You might want to check out your shop,” I mumble, a little afraid of pissing everyone off a little further.
“Why? What happened this time,” His voice doesn’t change from annoyed as he sprints away from the group and heads towards his shop.
“Oh yeah,” Rodrigo grins, sounding amused. “West Nation most likely did that.”
“Did what?” He asks, and I start to chase after him towards the shop. “What did they do?”
“There’s a huge ho-”
I’m cut off once more when Alberto stops outside of his shop and notices the missing door and leaking water, he shouts with fury, “What the fuck happened to my shop?”
“Dude we already told you,” Rodrigo snorts, seeming to attempt to hold back his laughter.
“West Nation did it,” Renato reminds him. “Remember the war?”
“Oh yeah,” Alberto nods and makes his way inside, not even bothering to skip over the river of water making its way out of the building. He then immediately notices the large crater in the ceiling of the building, letting out fish and forcing them to die. “What the fuck?” He then takes some building supplies out of his backpack and starts climbing his way up to the top of the tank and attempts to repair it all. He’s doing pretty well for the most part, though he’s using stone to replace a glass tank, but I bet that it’s all just temporary.
Deciding to leave him on his own, I head over to the chests and start rummaging through them once more. Maybe I missed one beforehand that just so happened to hold a whole load of helpful supplies. As I go through the chests once again, footsteps begin to make their way over to me. Looking up, I see Alberto smiling at me. I glance behind him and notice that he hasn’t finished patching up the hole yet. He must’ve wanted to see what I was doing and make sure that I’m not stealing.
“Wassup?” I mutter, doing my best to hide my guilt.
“Whatcha doing?” He asks, raising an eyebrow at me, his smile still not fading.
“Just checking out the shop,” I lie, though I guess that it isn’t entirely a lie.
“Well, salmon is two iron bars, tropical fish are three, puffer fish is one,” He starts walking around the isles, checking the shelves. “Wait, where the fuck did all of my fish go?”
“West Nation,” Angel, Anthony, Rodrigo, Renato, and I all answer in unison.
“Can I kill them,” He asks, face turning cold and intimidating.
“No,” Renato answers.
“Go ahead,” Rodrigo approves. “We’re planning on going to war with them soon anyway.”
“Oh yeah that’s right,” Renato chuckles like he totally forgot that we’re planning on going to war with an entire nation.
“You forgot about an entire war?” I ask, my voice being overtaken by harsh laughter. Somehow, when Alberto wasn’t looking, I found a chest with a few pufferfish in it, these will be helpful for potion making. I carefully shut the chest and hide the pufferfish in my backpack just in time for Alberto to turn around and lock eyes with me once again. He looks confused, though that’s probably because my facial expression isn’t doing a very good job at proving my innocence.
“You doing okay?” He asks, his voice showing a suspicious tone.
“Yup, yup, yup,” I smile widely, doing a terrible job at proving that I am in fact good. Better than good even, I’m now even closer to being able to make potions, and once I’m finally able to brew potions, I’ll be able to give them to all of my allies and use them against my enemies in the war. “I am A-Okay.” My teeth show in my smile as I wait for him to say something.
His eyes linger for a moment, attempting to read me. He then steps towards the chest that I took the pufferfish from and opens it, looking through its empty contents. He then closes it and continues forward, “Alright then.” Luckily, he didn’t check it beforehand, he most likely just thought that it was empty to begin with. “So what do you think of my Cod Pro Shop?”
I snort from laughter, “Did you seriously call it ‘Cod Pro Shop?’”
He stops in his tracks, turns, and faces me, then with a serious nod, says, “Yes.”
With the same, loud snort as before I giggle and respond with, “Alright then.”
“So anyway, in this aisle you can find fresh salmon,” He says, gesturing to the empty shelves with wheat seeds. “It would have fresh salmon if fucking West Nation didn’t destroy my Cod Pro Shop!”
“Chill,” I laugh, holding my hands up in front of me. “We’ll be going to war with them soon.”
“I want to be the first to fucking kill them,” He growls, holding his diamond sword in front of him and gazing at it with a lust for bloodshed. For a moment, his eyes look as though he has lost his mind and is ready to go on a murdering spree with West Nation being his prime target.
“Woah calm down there,” I chuckle, lowering the sword back down to his side. His eyes go back to sanity and his lips curl to a grin as looks me in the eyes. “You’ll get your time, just be patient.”
“Fine,” He breathes, and his face lights up even further, showing that he’s calmed down and is willing to wait for payback. He then continues forward and moves into the next aisle, “And this is where there would be fishing rods if fucking West Nation didn’t raid my fucking Cod Pro Shop!”
“And you will get your time,” I laugh, reassuring him once more that the time will come.
“I know, I know,” He repeats himself, heading out of the shop and turning to face me as I follow him. “So, what do you think of my Cod Pro Shop?”
In a deep, closely spoken voice, almost like he was putting a microphone right in front of his mouth, Anthony says, “It’s trash.”
Everyone breaks into laughter, but he continues to stare at me, waiting for me to share my opinion. Once the laughter dies down, I smile and say, “It’s alright, it would probably be better if the building wasn’t broken and the shelves weren’t empty.”
He exhales a fierce breath and says, “Yeah I know, but if it were all intact.”
“Hm,” I breathe and we slowly walk together down the bridge. “I guess I like it, it’s certainly well designed and decorated. I like the huge fish tank in the back, that’s pretty dope.”
“I know right?” He grins widely and begins to run forward. I start to sprint as well, following him down the left bridge and through the main one. He stops just past the main bridge and continues to work on his layers of bamboo once again, no longer acknowledging my existence and focusing more on his personal projects once more.
I continue forward and back towards the house, expecting for the sun to be going past the horizon by the time I get home. It’s peaking just above the treeline right about now, allowing its heat to lower and allow the land to cool down through the night once again. My skin begins to freeze a bit as I grow closer to the village and the sun descends closer to the horizon.
“Fuck that’s so many potatoes,” Anthony mentions with shock in his tone. The others break into laughter, jumbling up their words in a large mixture of complete nonsense.
“Angel’s obsessed with potatoes, man,” Rodrigo jokes, though I question just how much of a joke that really is. If only I knew where they lived, I bet I’d be able to find chests and barrels full of potatoes, both baked and raw. I can’t imagine how large of a potato farm he must have, just having hundreds of kilometers of only potatoes. Though if that does end up being the case, then we should probably have an intervention.
“What?” Angel mumbles, sounding as though he really doesn’t see a problem with it all. “Potatoes are easy.”
“So are carrots!” Renato laughs and the others soon join in as well. Their friendship is uplifting, it makes me happy to hear them all laughing together. This is an amazing group of friends, and it fills me with joy to be around all of them.
The sun reaches the horizon, and the beasts of the night have already been rising out of the ground. Noises of their movements and existence flood the air, and my legs pick up speed as I sprint towards the door, not willing to lose my life to these monsters once more.
“Guys, go to sleep,” I order them in a bored tone as I slam the door behind me, the wood makes a cracking noise but no proof of any sort of damage is visible.
“No, fuck you,” Anthony fires back. “Just kidding, I’m sorry.”
“Shut up!” Anthony cuts me off and a few stray laughs linger in the air for a few seconds. “I’m sorry, you know that I’m joking.”
“Mhm,” I mumble, choosing to not say anything and go straight to raiding the chests once more. After waiting a few minutes, nobody comes home and judging by the fact that all of them continue to talk and discuss whatever they’re working on, we’re not going to sleep tonight, and I don’t feel too comfortable to go to sleep knowing the dangers of being unconscious with Bryson running around freely.
I’ll just lie down and stare at the ceiling, listening to them laugh and joke with each other. Waiting for the sun to rise once more.