Quince wanted to curse his luck at running into that familiar face.
And it also had to happen at the worst possible time for him. Clove was running a small fever and her body was lacking her usual power.
Under normal circumstances, Clove should not be out there fighting the monsters. Quince was more than enough to take care of these monsters on his own.
But Clove had been stubborn and had wanted to clear this place out as soon as possible. She wanted to return to the tower and help the security team out.
And Quince did not want to disappoint her because Clove could get scary when she wanted to.
“Clove, you should rest for a bit. Rushing out like that is not good for your body.”
Quince could only advise his childhood friend as she slaughtered the low-level beasts like they were made up of butter.
She was having too much fun clearing out the mobs but Quince could tell that she was getting distracted as well.
Clove was dragging her fights out and her attack speed was slower than her usual one. It had not become a problem yet but he could not help but feel that it would come back to bite them soon.
“Dont worry about me. You focus on protecting the young girl who led us here. You did keep an eye on her, right?”
Clove asked and Quince felt his heart skip a beat.
“I thought I asked you to keep a look on her and take a step back? Dont tell me that you lost her?”
Quince questioned but he was awarded an angry look that made him calm down.
“I mean, I will find her right now. She could not have gone very far, right?”
Clove did not say anything but her attitude screamed her unhappiness. All Quince could do was swallow his unhappiness and back down from the fight.
It was not worth it to anger Clove any further.
“I can still feel her magic. Lets follow it and find that girl.”
Cloves voice sounded rougher than before. The physical work must be tiring her out and Quince wanted to ask her to take a rest.
But Clove was stubborn and she was not someone who liked to listen to him either.
So he had no choice but to follow behind her and protect her back. That was the only option he was left with since his father would not allow Clove to take a rest from the abyss exploration team.
He saw potential in Clove and he wanted to cultivate it at any cost.
“Quince, brace yourself. Guard your left side.”
Quince followed the command unconsciously as he picked up his spear. A heavy claw collided with his side and almost send him flying.
But Quince had cast his barrier at the right time to defend himself against the attack so he was only pushed back a little.
Once he got away from the attack, he finally paid attention to the beast that had been attacking him.
“Its a tiger-lord. An elite mob of the first abyss level. It is not something the people of Horax village would be able to take care of.”
Clove summed up the situation pretty quickly. And she was spot-on in her analysis of the villages condition.
The villagers had no protection and no magic to save themselves. Such an elite boss would kill them all in a single swoop.
But it was not a problem for Clove or Quince. They had already surpassed the first level of the abyss and were well past the second half as well.
Such a small elite boss should have been no problem under normal circumstances. But the conditions were far from favorable for the pair.
Clove was in a delicate situation and her body had no energy. Quince had been using his energy to protect her all this while so he lacked in the strength department as well.
Besides, for a mob to appear outside the abyss was a seldom phenomenon. This mob must be much more powerful than a normal soldier to be able to get past the abysss defense.
“We will need to deal with this first. Can you still fight Clove?”
Quince hated to put Clove in danger like this but she was the better fought out of the tow.
Initially, their party was supposed to have three people but the magician chosen for the party had run away.
Rita had abandoned them and no one else had the time or skill to join them. His father had tried to buy others but Clove had ultimately ended up rejecting most of the applications.
Cloves gaze often looked at the space on her right with a haunted look. It almost felt like she was looking at the ghost of someone who should be there.
But every time Quince tried to probe into that problem, he came up empty-handed.
So he had stopped trying to ask her that question and he had also accepted their party to forever be a 2 personal party.
And now that was coming back to bite him.
He did dodge the attack of the beast and tried to retaliate but the beast decided to change the targets.
It did not help that a familiar presence was standing on the edge of the forest and it was distracting Quince from the fight.
He looked at the periphery of the forest, only to see a familiar lady standing with their guide.
Quince wanted to say something but he forcefully shoved his attention back into his fight. And right in time to see Clove on the verge of her death.
The beast was right on top of her and Quince would not make it in-between them in time.
“Clove, dodge, or youll die.”
He tried to move but his speed was too slow.
Luckily for the pair, someone else managed to save Clove in time. The familiar blue hair mocked Quince in his incompetence and also made him glad to have the female on his team.
“Y-You! Why are you here?”
Quince knew he had no right to be angry at someone who had just saved Cloves life but he could not accept the females help.
There was something about her that disturbed him greatly.
With a single attack, the elite mob was dispatched and the female proceeded to ignore all his questions till it was time to head back.
She picked up Clove and Quince felt worried about something. He could not explain the feeling he had but he knew he could not allow Clove to see the female or something bad would happen.
“No need to do that. I can carry my party member. And if you are telling the truth, then carrying Clove will slow you down. Here, give her to me.
He asked the female to hand Clove over but he had a feeling the female would fight him on this.
He tensed up to fight the more powerful female but things did not come to that.
“Fine, you carry her. I have something much more important to do right now anyway.”
Clove had lost consciousness due to her fever so she was out of the count. And it stung Quince to let Aurora go like that.
But he had to prioritize Cloves health and welfare above anything else.
“I understand. We will be leaving this place in a week so you can come to claim your favor anytime. It is the second time youve saved our lives and our debt is too huge.”
Quince did not want to own this female anything. She was an enemy who was going against the tower and he had to be vigilant.
But it also did not feel right to not repay her for all she had done for them.
“I will tell you if I think of something. Now head back and make sure your partner stays alive.”
Her words were spoken softly. Quince knew that the female was speaking more for her partners well-being than his own but he could not help but be grateful to her.
He did not answer when he turned around to leave but he also felt like their party and this female were linked in some way.
But for now, he would keep this meeting to himself and wait a while to report to the tower with an omitted report.
Quince had a feeling that Horax villages problem with the beasts was about to be solved. And the tower would lose its ground to operate here.
But Quince did not want to make assumptions beforehand and he did not want to risk lives unnecessarily.
If Aurora did have a solution for Horaxs problem, she was more than welcome to work it out and save this village.
Quince would not become an obstacle for Aurora when she was trying to achieve the same thing he wanted.
“Clove, sleep for now. Things will be over once you recover.”
Quince hoped that things would be alright once Clove woke up and for some reason, he had faith in Aurora.
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