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Setsuko Arthoren

I am the Gray Knight... Beta Tester... Leave these people alone or prepare to lose.

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a character in “Sword Art Online: No Escape”, as played by MegaCheeseyMonkey

Description

Setsuko Arthoren





[size=250]❝I am the Gray Knight... Beta Tester... Leave these people alone or prepare to lose.❞





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[size=200]The Inside

| Nickname(s) |

Set, Gray Knight, Aegis


| Gender |

Male


| Age |

17
| Sexuality |

Hetero Sexual


| Weapon(s) |

A sword and a shield, typical no?

| Abilities |

High Endurance, High Stamina, Moves faster then what his armor looks like




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| Likes |
* Food
* Protecting
* Fighting
* Surviving (Duh)


| Dislikes |
* Seeing somebody die
* Noobs
* Being uselles
* Failing his job of protector





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| Personality |

Setsuko is an open book. He is honest, kind, and blurts his mind... well, that does do him alot more trouble then good. He loves RPGs and being in the beta of SAO was an amazing experience for him. Now, he seeks to fight the for the good of all players, to finally get out of SAO and back into the real world. He'd rather strike fear with his armor then his sword... to escape as much conflict as possible with other living players. The NPC though? They're all dead as soon as he sees them... he might not seem like it, but this has really pissed him off....




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| Bio |

Another beta tester, Setsuko has put tears and blood into getting to the highest point of SAO while it was still in Beta. He is a huge RPG fan, your typical nerd. He has great grades, games for 7 hours a night, is a goody two shoes and a know it all. Yet theres a side of him that awakes in SAO. A will to survive, to be the best. Broken are all the bullies. He was the Gray Knight, a bane to monsters... or so he thought.

As soon as the game released, all the blood and tears put down were wasted. He saw this as a new challenge, to rebuild his honor. As soon as he logged into the game, he ran to the nearest shop and got broke off of buying the armor he knew would be there. This was his level 1 armor (see image 3.) He had his name to regain... the Gray Knight had to be out in public.

Then, the incident happened, his looks were made revealed to everybody... but his armor still on him. With this, he had sworn to himself to get out of there at all costs, as fast as possible... He had grades to regain afterall!




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| Other |

I will have a level-armor system. It will go like this.
Image 1 = Level 46-60
Image 3 = Level 1-19
Image 4 = 40-45
Image 5 = 60- Max Level
Image 6 = Level 20-40
So the armors will go from 3, 6, 4, 1, 5. Soooo... depending on what level we -can- start at, this will differ. I don't expect it to be over the top, but it's just to let you know of the armor progression I've established myself.



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So begins...

Setsuko Arthoren's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Amber Coals Character Portrait: Akira Yuuto

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November 6th, 2022
Floor 1: Horunka


The news had just been announced. "I... can't believe it..." The Grey Knight said, as he looked around seeing other players panic. "I need to go quickly...." He called to himself, walking off in his newbie armor. "Need to get better gear before the mobs come in..." He kep telling himself.

This was his tale, a tale of legends... the tale of the Grey knight needing to be told. His quest was just started as he started taking on the first dungeon himself, always stopping when he heard the clatters and commotions of the groups. He went back to town and ventured off each hour, mapping the whole of the dungeon. He needed to map it, needed to know if anything had changed.

Sword and shield in hand, the fighter was unkillable to the npcs. He walked around for hours getting loot to sell it back to the merchant to get some better armor. "I swear...." He said to himself. "It really is boring doing this alone." He said walking around... "I can't believe I get stuck in an rpg I really like and don't spend any time enoying it! Plus, with my face revealed, my helmet is the only thing I can keep on to stop anybody from seeing my identity." He said, after he slew another boar.

'LEVEL UP'

The text appeared. "Hmmmm... Level 10 no? Meh..." He said shrugging... then it happened.

"HELP ME!" Came a scream, Setsuko turned around, as he saw a player running away from killers... other players killing players for loot... this had to stop, he told himself.

Shield in hand, he ran as his sword lighted up from the charging energy. "GET BACK AWAY FROM HIM YOU BASTARDS!" He yelled, jumping on them, three versus one.

The blade already charged, he launched his attack, striking one down to his knees in the blow as the sword protruded from his chest. Setsuko kicked the guy off his sword, expertly flipped in back in his hand as he raised his shield, the guy falling over with barely enough HP to stand. "Who's next?" The knight asked as he grinned behind his helmet. "Who the hell are -you-!?" Screamed one of the attackers. "Just the defender... you can call me the Grey Knight." He said in a suave tone. "Oh yea? Well you're about to be the -DEAD- knight!" His opponent exclaimed.

Then, for no apperent reason, 'Tsuko slid down... and on closer look you could see a sword slashing up above his head. He expertly jumped over the guy, shield bashing him in the face and using it as a small boost to his backflip. "I swear, you guys need to start hiding your ping on the minimap." He said, slashing the guy behind his knees while he was still blacked out from the bash, the thuig falling down to his knees. He looked to the leader. "Are you the last one?" He asked, clearly amusing himself.

"H-H-How did you!?" He asked watching his buddy's health go down from the wound. "I'm not stupid, I was a beta tester and know alot of stuff about this game. Now I ask the game, are you the last?" He asked, a bit more threateningly. "I give you one chance to surrender a-" Before he could finish his sentence, the man was on him, sword slashing. He stopped the blade easily. "Sheesh, do you know how rude that is?" He asked, as the blade came back the other way around. Tsuko just deflected it, came in with his shield and bashed him upside the head, making him fall backwards. "Take your men and leave before I decide to kick your ass." He said, as he blocked another blow, this time deciding to stab the leader of the thugs through the knee.

He jumped back as he howled in pain, falling over. "I'm not a killer like you." He said, looking back to the man that was first
attacked. "Just follow the road back east you'll find the town there." He said, the man too bewildered to speak just shook his head and ran. Setsuko sighed, sheathing his sword and looting the bastards. "Oh, nice little sword you have here." He said, equipping it. He walked back to town that he said, the second town... he hoped all would be well there.






November 7th, 2022
Floor 1: Horunka
Setsuko Arthoren, level 15.


He walked through the bazaar, sighing. He caught glimpse of a Black haired girl walk past, but nothing more interesting then that. He had kept himself up and not rested for the whole knight, keeping onto his grinding of experience. "I can't believe nobody actually said thanks..." He said sighing. He had participated in the Front Lines and helped clear out most of the first dungeon, having finished mapping the things needed.

Then, he had seen the unthinkable. An orange player actually walking into the town... and being attacked. He had sighed, watching the fight go on and was very peculiar seeing a little red haired girl... the same that he saw earlier, defend the man. "What... are..." He asked, jumping down from his rooftop perch.

Then, he saw an even more unthinkable thing. The girl had actually gotten rid of the guards for the boy. "WHAT!?" He yelled out. He ran to the group, but before he could reach, the two had already gone. He growled, trying to keep onto them. He then decided to go by roof, easily keeping up with the black haired girl that had her hair turn red.... still not knowing what trickery that was. He jumped down as soon as they reached the inn. He saw them split apart, the girl getting in her own room. He bashed on the door. "Excuse me, Miss! We need to talk!" He called from the other side of the room.

He then looked at himself. "Fantastic... I look like a fucking guard right now..." He said, mumbling it under his breath as he kept bashing on the door.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Amber Coals Character Portrait: Akira Yuuto

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#, as written by Miyer
Amber jumped as she heard the bashing on her door. She had just been about to fall asleep, the first signs showing as her breathing slowed and her whole body began to relax into the comfortable bed, probably her last bed if she couldn't get that cloak working for Akira.

Crawling out of the bed and groaning at the loss of warmth from the thick covers, amber grabbed her sword and stumbled her way towards the door, swaying slightly from exhaustion. Once she arrived before the door, she gave her head a firm shake to wake herself up and to be alert incase the person at the door wasnt friendly.

Pulling the door open, Amber found akira standing on the otherside, though she found herself surprised it was better than having some NPC knocking on her door. Sending him a sleepy smile she walked back into her room, gesturing for akira to follow. Placing her sword down again, she took a seat on the bed and had to force herself not to just lay back down and go to sleep.

"Hay akira, its a little late so what do you need?" She was slightly curious about why akira had been knocking on her door but also felt the exhaustion from the day starting to creep up on her, making her less interested in the words coming out of akiras mouth and more interested in the soft, fluffy pillow a little way from her head.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Amber Coals Character Portrait: Akira Yuuto

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Akira looked up at Amber for an answer to his question, a meaningless question really as he already knew the answer. But it was always good to be on the safe side, especially with a girl like Amber. After a slight awkward silence Amber smiled gently towards him and continued to patch up his wound. "Like I could leave you, did you just see what happened! And anyway, I said I would help you and if anything, I am someone who keeps her word. Now, let's head to the inn. I got some rooms for us and we can head out before those NPCs respawn."

Knowing Amber was loyal was good to know as loyalty is a great trait, especially when life and death are imminent. However, loyalty like as many other things in life eventually fades away so two more questions came to mind...How far would she go for Akira, and how long before the loyalty dispersed into nothing? Akira shoved the thought in the far back of his head so he could pick at it later, perfect timing with that as Amber began speaking once more.

"I guess we will just have to leave in the morning and you will have to avoid towns, I can get us stuff we need but I guess we won't be using inns anymore, so best enjoy your last chance at a comfortable bed."

On their walk back to the inn Amber's eyes gazed off onto a black cloak, a [Level 5] Set-Piece item to be exact but the price was much too steep, especially for such a low level item.

"I might be able to hack a cloak that will hide you from NPCs, but I won't cover up your curser as that would be to obvious, it would just overwrite an NPCs code to kill you."

He cared little for the girl's idle chit-chat, she may as well have been talking to herself. While Amber figured a way to get herself killed through tampering with the game Akira drifted through his head looking for a layout of all the good dungeon runs that could be done for gear.

"No more hacking." He mumbled under his breath before he went back to thinking about their current situation.

Eventually they finally made it to the inn, which was a relief for Akira. Having died nearly once was an experience he wished he never had to relieve, but knowing his play-style death would be knocking on his door one more time, whether physically or metaphorically would be left up for debate. He followed Amber upstairs to where into their rooms lay on separate sides of each other, literally just a knock away.

"And this is where I leave you, I will see you in the morning, try not to die this time." and with that Amber left for the comfort of her room. Akira then entered his room and collapsed on the bed, it's not like he had any armor to unequip anyway. He wore slacks and a Zip-Up Hoodie as his casual attire and laid in the bed, merely staring up at the ceiling; His heart still racing form his encounter with death.

He opened up his inventory and viewed his items, many of them useless to someone with a play-style like Akira. He had a full [Level 3] Armor set made of copper, some newbie would pay top dollar for that. He decided it would be best to go on a quest, or a quest-line. He needed equipment and dungeon runs wasn't going to cut it. He hopped out his bed and exited his room. He then proceeded to knock on Amber's door, not extremely loud but just loud enough so that if she was sleeping it would wake her up.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Kaede Araki Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren

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Misai Kotoba and Junpei Fujimoto

Misai sits on a rock and sobs quietly. Her usual upbeat personality was seemingly gone. The initial shock of the news had hit her pretty hard and she just didn't know how to deal with it. Her shoulders moved quickly up and down with her cries and she held her face in her hands, hiding her tear-stained face. Junpei, being the young man he is, goes to her side and kneels in front of her. He gently puts his hands on her shoulders. Misai does not protest, even though she feels the desire to shake any human contact off of her. However, she knows she truly needs comfort at this moment and will not turn it away. Junpei was her best friend. He had seen her at her worst, so she knew he didn't truly mind.

Junpei gently shakes her shoulders and sighs as he looks up at her from the grass.
"Misai...everything will be alright. Trust me, okay?"
Through her cries, Misai speaks, "How could someone do this?! What kind of monster would create a game like this!? If you die here, you die in real life! How could he?! How could anyone!? I don't understand Junpei-kun! I don't understand!"
Junpei sighs. He pauses for a few moments before he speaks again, choosing his words carefully, "I don't know, Misa-chan. I don't understand either. But we have to get through this. We'll do it together, okay?"
"You know I'm no good at this Junpei! I've never played a game like this before. I just thought it would be fun! Why did you talk me into this?!"
"I didn't talk you into anything! I told you about the game and that I played it and that made you want it!"
"You're right...I'm sorry Junpei...It's just, I'm so scared! What if I die? What if you die? What if we both die?! I'll never see my mom again...or my friends! And what if they pull our helmets off?!"
"They won't, okay? The GM already said that the news channels have put it out there that the helmets can't be removed. It will all be okay, Misai! I promise. I'll get us out of here. I will protect you. Neither one of us is going to die, you hear me? I swear to you." With that, Misai throws her arms around his neck and hugs him. He puts his arms around her back and pulls her in.
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________
Kaede Araki

Kaede smiled for the first time in what seemed like forever. She fell onto the grass and felt it beneath her with her fingers. She stared at the sky above her, a sight she had not seen in years. Tears of happiness brimmed in her eyes, though she quickly shook them away. Slowly she stood, taking in everything around her. The sights, the smells, the feelings. This was a dream come true! Never again would she have to go back to the real world. Never again would she see the home where there was so much loss, never again would she have to live in darkness. It was a miracle, just for her. How could anyone want to leave a place like this anyway? She thought, maybe, they had families and friends to return to. How foolish, she thought. Everyone leaves you at one point or another, so why even try to make nice. Why even try for companions?

The blonde girl continued to walk the grassy plains and look around, when she noticed a couple sitting by a rock, embracing. She could hear the sobs of the girl and the consoling words of the boy. She kept her distance, not wanting to associate with the drivel. Obviously, the two wanted to leave, and Kaede had no time for people like that. She was here to stay; whether she lives here or dies here. It didn't much matter to her which side she took. As long as she could escape the world she left behind, everything was wonderful. Once she got far away from the "lovebirds," she began to walk backward, viewing everything there was to see. Eventually she made it to an Inn. Taking interest in this, as she had never been inside one, she walked in, turning as she took in the interior. Suddenly, she bumped into something, no, someone. A silver-haired man in very heavy armor. Instinctively, her walls went up.
"Watch it!" she snapped.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Kaede Araki Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren

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November 7th, 2022.
Floor 1: City of Beginnings
Level: 18

He looked at the small girl screaming at him, his hand going, non-chalantly, to his sword as he stared down on her. "What do you want?" He asked looking at her. "You're the one that ran into me! You little ungrateful piece of...." He mumbled the rest as he picked her up by the collar, lifting her up. "Now listen to me here little girl, back off before I decide to duel you for your belongings." He said his eyes narrowing behind his helmet... as he hadn't removed the helmet since the time he got it. He let go of the girl. "If you want to get to the second town I'm blasting through it with some new players to help them out atleast -get out- of the first town." He said, walking down the hall way and outside of the tavern.

He walked outside, then immediatly saw the girl crying with the guy in his arms. He walked over to the two, sighed as he grabbed both and seperated each of them. He mumbled to himself about him hating god damn noobs. "He looked to the two. Alright, so I'm blasting through to the next to with new players. I'll help people get to the second town since it's much nicer then the first. I'm inviting you both to join. No smoochy-smoochy though. Not in the mood for a couple of doves screwing around in the back rear." He said sighing. "Meet me here in ten minutes if you want to go." He said, walking back into town and yelling the same sentence over and over.

After a while, he came back with a rather large body of people, all noobs with no idea what they were doing. "Alright, chat and make sure you have a partner with you. They will be your spotter. A spotter's job is to make sure their partner isn't missing." He said, then looked at the brightly colored one. "I'ma spot you. Make sure you're not in the back. After we reach the second town I don't care what you do." He said with a sigh.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Hisui Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Amber Coals Character Portrait: Akira Yuuto Character Portrait: Yamamoto Ryuunosuke

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November 7th, 2022
First floor; 04:36 AM

“Hah… Finally made it….” Merche said as he took his first, unsteady step into Horunka.
A prompt popped up in his vision, notifying him that he had entered this town, and on queue,
a tune started playing.(youtu.be/S-Xm7s9eGxU)

Planting the tip of his spear into the ground, Merche stretches his body, briefly scratching his mud-caked hair with his gloved hands. He wiped the mud on his now decimated pants, rested his body against his spear. After continuing on his way along the path to Horunka, he went along the long path which led him through a forest, instead of the short one he had initially planned to take, thinking he might find some interesting materials there. He didn’t.

Instead, he ran into a large group of mobs he tried to pick off one by one, but didn’t work out as planned. It had him running through the forest, falling in the mud a few times. At one point, he even fell out of a tree while adjusting his trousers. He had ripped off the fabric of his left trouser leg, and made adjustments to the other leg so that they would match. Hearing an explosion going off in the distance, startled Merche, who subsequently fell down the branch he stood on. Some more trekking through the forest, and an unlucky run in with some plant monsters, finally got him to Horunka, in more or less one piece. His equipment however, wasn’t so lucky. Besides the aforementioned pants, his sword broke during his first fight in the forest, prompting his escape. 4 spears left behind in the forest, since he had no time to retrieve them. A rag that used to resemble a shirt, and a near broken shield. The shield had intercepted most of the attacks from both groups, and the shirt turned out the way it was due to the Nepent’s Acidic Spit that did manage to hit him.

“There is no use to wearing it if it’s like this, now is there?” He thought. After all, what was left of it didn’t do good job at all in covering his chest. Pulling of the rag with relative ease, he used it to clean up his hair a bit. After some intensive rubbing, his hair looked a bit more representable.
“Guess this’ll have to do.” Merche said as he tossed the rag on the floor. Hoisting the spear out of the ground and letting the spear rest against his shoulder, he made his way into the town looking for the inn. Finding it not long after, he opens the door to the establishment and sets foot in a well lit room. In it he saw plenty of tables and chairs, all unoccupied accept two other players, and a desk, with a female npc behind it. Having noticed Merche’s entrance, one of the players spoke up. “Woah, you’re… Tarzan right? So…. where’s Jane?” The now clearly inebriated player said.
Next to him another player with too much alcohol in his body glared at Merche and also spoke.
“What’s up with that fucking get up, huh? This is Sword Art Online, not Caveman Online, you faggot.””Don’t listen to that guy, Tarzan….! he’s just like that because his girl ran off with some other players.””Why’d you tell em that, huh? Fight me! Not here, and see what happens, asshole!” Deciding to ignore the two players, he made his way to the NPC, and rented himself a room. After that, he made his way upstairs to get a well earned shower. Noticing he had truly become tired, not long after that shower, he took a long nap. It wasn’t until 3 PM that he came out of bed and had breakfast. It was during his hearty meal that he noticed something. while combing through his hair, he noticed that the hair at the back of his head reached lower than it used to.”Crap! i also lost my hairband. Guess i’ll also have to add that to the shopping list…” He sighed, as he continued eating his meal.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Hisui Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Amber Coals Character Portrait: Akira Yuuto Character Portrait: Yamamoto Ryuunosuke

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Starting on his second plate of food, Merche started browsing through his menu while he continued shoveling food in his mouth. He had noticed a few changes. First, He noticed that he reached level four. Quickly, looked at his skills tab and saw that his overall proficiency with the spear was quite a lot higher than his sword proficiency, but his shield skill took the cake, being the highest, but still within reason for someone who’s level four. Another thing he noticed was that his Battle Healing now healed 2.7 HP per second, instead of 2.1. He was about to check on his other skills until he noticed that his fork wasn’t bringing food to his mouth anymore. looking down at his plate, he saw that it was completely empty.

Trying to find the waitress, he spotted her taking the order from a brown haired kid with green eyes, and headed towards the kitchen. As Merche was about to haul over the waitress, but stopped when he heard a lot of clamoring from where the kid was seated. Looking in that direction, he saw a lot of people surrounding the table the kid sat at, screaming and shouting for him to trade his sword. Merche tried to appraise the sword from where he sat, but the other players constantly blocked his few. A few seconds later, the kid sprung up from his chair, and dashed to and up the stairs, presumably to his room. Not long after that, the players that had surrounded him dispersed, just as suddenly as they came.

Well that *was* something.” Merche said to no one in particular. He briefly imagined what it would be like if he’d be in a situation like this, trying to sell his own crafted wares, until the waitress came walking in again, with a plate of food held in both hands. She laid it upon the table the kid had sat at earlier, but which was now obviously vacant. He eyed the plate of food before deciding to grab the plate. “It would get cold if it’s not eaten soon, it’d be waste.” He rationalized.
Quickly scurrying over towards the table, grabbing the plate, and scurrying back to his own table.
Oh man, these scrambled eggs are delightful! Waitress, another plate of this please!” He yelled, eating his food with gusto. After emptying the contents of the plate into his maw, he started eating the third plate while looking at his stats and skills again. He seemingly learned new skills.
High Streamer” A spear skill that did much the same as “Sonic Leap”, only ending in a thrust instead of a slash, and “Extender” a skill that elongated his spear temporarily for 20 seconds, but reducing damage done with that same weapon by 50%. He also assigned his stats, dividing them in the following proportions: Dexterity>vitality=agility>strength.

It was around half way Merche’s fourth plate that the kid(Whom he finally recognised as a girl due to her skirt, or at least hoped was a girl) entered the room again, eyes red, presumably from crying, and sat down at a table near one of the corners of the room. She hailed the waitress and ordered some dish which he couldn’t make out. Merche felt a pang of guilt, having eaten her food and seeing how solemn she looked at the moment. Deciding to at least repay her for her food, he hailed over the waitress and said; “Hey, could you get me an apple pie for that girl? Oh, and one more plate of eggs please.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Kaede Araki Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Devan Howard - Blade Slizer Character Portrait: Medley Takamine

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Kaede Araki

Kaede looks around the inn for a while. She touches the wooden floors beneath her feet. Some people give her strange looks, but her harsh glare disperses their attention. After taking in everything she can inside the building she exits and walks down the streets of a marketplace. She grabs an apple, giving coin to the man and taking a bite. Surprised, she lets out a "huh" as she did not know one could taste in-game. As she continues walking, she spots a young man ahead of her. He is quite good-looking, not that it matters to her, with brown, spiky hair and blue eyes. Kaede stops next to the young man, seeing his user name is "Blade Slizer", and begins looking through the items at the stand.
________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Misai Kotoba and Junpei Fujimoto

The two were separated by a large man. When he muttered about "noobs" Misai quickly jumped to Junpei's defense.
"Hey! Junpei's been playing this since it was in Beta...if anyone's a newbie, it's me!" Misai never liked when people were rude, and if he was trying to help, he was going to need to ditch the attitude.
The man spoke, "Alright, so I'm blasting through to the next to with new players. I'll help people get to the second town since it's much nicer then the first. I'm inviting you both to join. No smoochy-smoochy though. Not in the mood for a couple of doves screwing around in the back rear."
"We're not a couple, man..." Junpei said.
"Yeah! I've known Junpei for years! I was upset because this is my first time playing and...under the circumstances...well, he was just being a good friend and helping me out. Cheering me up and consoling me, you know?" Misai blushes slightly. She had never had a boyfriend before, nor did she think of Junpei as anyone but her best friend, so it was awkward.
"Anyway, we could use the help. Thanks a lot."
The man spoke again, "Meet me here in ten minutes if you want to go. And with that, he turned to leave.

After he leaves, another person approaches them.
"Hey! Are you guys partying with each other? We should all party together! I'm Guardian. My real name is Medley, but you can call me either. Please, trust me, I'll get you to the other town in no time! Besides, the grinding is great, the place that I'm going! You can't go alone at my level though. So, what do you guys say?" The girl seemed very eager to team up and get going. Misai and Junpei looked at each other, then back to Medley. Misai nodded with a smile.
"Sounds good!" She said warmly. Junpei nodded to Medley.
"Actually, we were waiting for this guy. He said he's coming back and he'll help us get to the next town. If you want to join us, I'm sure it wouldn't be a problem. Junpei's attention went behind her, "Oh, here he comes now!"

The man returned, with a fairly large group of people. It was clear that none of them knew what they were doing. It was also clear how uncomfortable the man seemed to be herding all of them like a sheepdog does his flock. When they made it to Misai, Junpei, and the newly joined Medley, he stopped and spoke.
"Alright, chat and make sure you have a partner with you. They will be your spotter. A spotter's job is to make sure their partner isn't missing." He looked to Misai, "I'ma spot you. Make sure you're not in the back. After we reach the second town I don't care what you do."
"I guess I'll spot Medley then. She just arrived. I didn't think you would mind one more player." Junpei said to the silver-haired man. Misai looked at the man as well after he said he would spot her.
"My name is Kotoba Misai. You can call me Misai if you want to, or Misa, I really don't mind." She smiles with her words.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Medley Takamine

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Medley Takamine



"Actually, we were waiting for this guy. He said he's coming back and he'll help us get to the next town. If you want to join us, I'm sure it wouldn't be a problem." Junpei's attention went behind her, "Oh, here he comes now!" Medley turned around to see a tall man, concealed by heavy armor that covered his whole body. Behind him was a large group. Is this his army? No, it can't be. They are simply too weak to be on an army with him. I guess they're just coming along with us. Medley thought to herself as she gave the man with an army a glare...

But, to Medley, he looked familliar. She didn't realize it until now... She gasped. That was a Beta-Tester! She recognise that armor, and how it completely hid his body. She actually managed to get a higher level than him in the beta testing... She didn't want to be rude, so she quickly hid her emotions, and continued to listen to what he said. "Alright, chat and make sure you have a partner with you. They will be your spotter. A spotter's job is to make sure their partner isn't missing." He looked to Misai, "I'ma spot you. Make sure you're not in the back. After we reach the second town I don't care what you do."

"I guess I'll spot Medley then. She just arrived. I didn't think you would mind one more player." Medley perkily grinned at Junpei as he said that. "I love your enthusiasm to spot me," she giggled to herself, and then added "but shouldn't you be spotting your girlfriend?" He was confused. He didn't really know what Medley was implying! "Uhm, you know... Misa? She is your girlfriend, right?" He was shocked to think that Medley thought that Misa was his girlfriend, but immediately shut it off. "I'm sorry! I didn't know that you guys weren't-" She cut herself off, only to remember something. "Oh right, I forgot!" She quickly went into her menu, and requested Misai and Junpei to be her friend, and for Junpei to be on her party. "This friend system is really great! We can track eachother, message eachother and even see each others levels! But it only gets much better from there, I don't know much about it because I don't have any friends online at the moment- well, they're dead, but it's OK because who can blame their parents for not knowing about the Nerve Gear?" She said that with pain, but she still manage to sound optimistic at the same time, but everybody could tell that she wanted to cry.

"W-we should get going soon, afterall, we do need to go before the sun sets! Mobs get stronger at night, so it's best not to night-grind unless you are at a higher level. But first, have you eaten yet? We should all go to the Inn to eat first. Nobody has a high enough cooking skill, so I guess we can't cook our own food yet. But I have enough money to pay for all three of us. The food is very cheap here, but their rabbit is a mighty meal! Oh, and their lamb chops are too good to be true! You barely notice that it's virtual food! And to think the food gets better and better every floor!" She dozed off into her own little world about food for a moment, until she went into realization. She quickly added to her long talk about food. "It's a long journey anyway, what do you guys think?" She looked away and pointed in the direction of the other town. You can barely see the bell tower that ringed on the hour. She turned back to them, looking to them with an innocent eye.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Kaede Araki Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Devan Howard - Blade Slizer Character Portrait: Medley Takamine

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Kaede Araki

Kaede shifted through the items on the <a class="ktg6us78hf8vdu7" href="javascript:void(0)">cart</a>. She could hear how nervous the boy next to her was. Internally, it made her laugh. She would never show that outwardly, but she felt it, nonetheless. Kaede knew how intimidating she was to most people. Not so much in the real-world because of her "disability" but here she looked like quite the badass. Or at least, that's the general consensus. She could hear him clearing his throat and preparing to speak.
"Uh..." he gulped a bit. It was clear he was not used to talking to women. Kaede rolled her eyes. Well, he would have been cute...
"H-Hi..." he muttered. Kaede looked at him, raising an eyebrow. She frowned, though her blue eyes had a slight sparkle to them in the sun.
"You got a stutter?" she snapped slightly.
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Junpei Fujimoto

"I love your enthusiasm to spot me," Medley giggled to herself, and then added "but shouldn't you be spotting your girlfriend?" Junpei was confused. Medley continued,
"Uhm, you know... Misa? She is your girlfriend, right?"
"No! No! Not at all. I've known Misai since middle <a class="ktg6us78hf8vdu7" href="javascript:void(0)">school</a>. We're really close friends, but she's not my girlfriend!"
"I'm sorry! I didn't know that you guys weren't-" Medley stopped herself, then continued, "Oh right, I forgot!" She quickly went into her menu, and requested Misai and Junpei to be her friend, and for Junpei to be on her party. "This friend system is really great! We can track each other, message each other and even see each others levels! But it only gets much better from there, I don't know much about it because I don't have any friends online at the moment- well, they're dead, but it's OK because who can blame their parents for not knowing about the Nerve Gear?"

Junpei could see that Medley was upset. He puts a hand on her shoulder consolingly.
"Everything will be fine. We will get through this." he nods.
"W-we should get going soon, afterall, we do need to go before the sun sets! Mobs get stronger at night, so it's best not to night-grind unless you are at a higher level. But first, have you eaten yet? We should all go to the Inn to eat first. Nobody has a high enough cooking skill, so I guess we can't cook our own food yet. But I have enough <a class="ktg6us78hf8vdu7" href="javascript:void(0)">money</a> to pay for all three of us. The food is very cheap here, but their rabbit is a mighty meal! Oh, and their lamb chops are too good to be true! You barely notice that it's virtual food! And to <a class="ktg6us78hf8vdu7" href="javascript:void(0)">think</a> the food gets better and better every floor." Medley trailed off, then continued, "It's a long journey anyway, what do you guys think?"
"Once we get to the next town, that sounds like a good <a class="ktg6us78hf8vdu7" href="javascript:void(0)">idea</a>." Junpei said with a smile.
"I like that idea too!" Misai agreed.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Medley Takamine

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Novemer 7th, 2022
Floor 1: City of Beginnings, Horunka Forest.
Level: 18

He looked at his back, saw the Medley come with them and chuckled, instantly realizing who she was. He looked at everybody, counting their heads. "Alright. Twenty players... This an even pair... nice. So! Here is what we're gonna do." He said, expertly opening his map, sharing it to everybody. "We have to get to the second town before night fall, if not... well, i'm hoping twenty won't be reduced in half." He said, then he heard mumbling inside the ranks, some people getting scared for their lives. He sighed, waving his hands in the air to calm them down. "I'm twice the level these guys should be, so fighting won't be a problem." He said as the talking calmed down. He jumped down from the rock he was on.

"My name is Kotoba Misai. You can call me Misai if you want to, or Misa, I really don't mind." She smiles with her words. He looked at her. "Arthoren Setsuko, Grey Knight. Call me Tsuko for short." He said, his armor still blocking his appearance, typical. He kept walking, hearing the shuffle of feet behind him. He looked at her. "Sorry for having pissed you off earlier, I have an attitude and I know. Can I work on it? Not quite..." He said with a chuckle, keeping the pace. "Your friend a beta tester? Well, he doesn't seem like it. The girl that he's with though, I know her... Fun little girl. I think she was in my guild at one point..." He shrugged. "Strong fighter. By the way she looked at me, she recognized me." He said grinning behind his helmet.

Then, not far from the town... it all went to hell.

Orange players dropped all over the place... they all had a guild in common.... 'The Dark Crusade'. And it really didn't take long before chaos broke out. "AMBUSH!" He heard scream before a they all caved in. He grabbed Misai, without even thinking and ran off, throwing her behind a tree. "STAY HERE!" He ordered, running back into the chaos.

The pixels of players flew everywhere.... most of them being from the Noobs he was helping. He growled. "BASTARDS!" He yelled, jumping into the fight, his shield and sword glowing... and then he slashed. His power was obviously higher then theirs, as his sword just cleaved through their sword arms... their legs, a circle just clearing around him as people kept going at him. The Crusaders looked at him in despair, as he turned around, looking like a devil... the wings on his helmet looking like horns. Some people even cried "Hacker!" He looked around, his eyes seeming to glow red... but that was just the sun's rays getting reflected on his helmet. He battle cried, intimidating all but a few. "I am the Grey Knight!" He yelled. "Fear me!" He yelled, the groups just looked at each other.

The onslaught continued.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Misai Kotoba Character Portrait: Junpei Fujimoto Character Portrait: Setsuko Arthoren Character Portrait: Medley Takamine

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| Medley Takamine |

"Everything will be fine. We will get through this." he nods. Medley look at him tearfully, and then smiles. He has pretty eyes... Wait- no. We only just met! I have to break the silence... She went red in the face, and looked away to look at the entrance.
"W-we should get going soon, afterall, we do need to go before the sun sets! Mobs get stronger at night, so it's best not to night-grind unless you are at a higher level. But first, have you eaten yet? We should all go to the Inn to eat first. Nobody has a high enough cooking skill, so I guess we can't cook our own food yet. But I have enough money to pay for all three of us. The food is very cheap here, but their rabbit is a mighty meal! Oh, and their lamb chops are too good to be true! You barely notice that it's virtual food! And to think the food gets better and better every floor!" Medley trailed off, then continued, "It's a long journey anyway, what do you guys think?"
"Once we get to the next town, that sounds like a good idea." Junpei said with a smile.
"I like that idea too!" Misai agreed.

Medley posed heroically, then smiled and put her thumb up. "Well then that settles it! Misai, you should catch up to Setsuko now!" She made a shooing action, and turned over to Junpei. "And as for you, we need to go now. We wouldn't want to be the last ones at the town! You know what a switch is, right? Your confidence in the game is actually astonishing, so you have to know was a switch is. Besides, you're a beta tester, like me!" Knowing him, he would probably ask how I knew, and he did. Medley stopped in mid-sentence. "We were in the same boss battle, except you weren't in a party, so I didn't think you knew how to switch... But, we can easily fix that if you don't!" Medley grinned, and cheekily added. "We should get going now. Race you to the mob's spawn point!" Medley and Junpei quickly caught up to the noobs and was shocked at the pixels. "I am the Grey Knight!" He yelled. "Fear me!" "Setsuko! What happened?!" Medley heard his name before... She only knew it as a username until now. He also a guild member... "Setsuko. Switch. Now. I want to give these players a piece of my mind." She cracked her knuckles. Let's just say, she was eager to meet them.

To be continued...