301 Settling In

    "Look how big my paw is."  Morti held his gigantic paws in front of Scarlett's face.  He was sitting on his overly broad butt while his mother sat comfortably in front of him, her head leaning against his stomach. His other paw was circled around her, holding her close to him.

    Scarlett held up her own hand next to it in comparison. "Very big, Morti."

    "You smell nice, Mom."  Morti's big black nose sniffed her hair, making her laugh. "Where did Poppa go?"

    "He has a lot of responsibilities, Morti; he is the War Leader of Titania."

    "Am I interrupting?" Nix approached them for the first time since he summoned Morti.

    Scarlett shook her head.  "Morti was telling me about Haven and the Sea-World."

    "Going to head out, Morti."

    Morti remained on his butt.  "Okay, Nix.  Can I come to see the turtle house tomorrow?"

    Nix moved closer and placed a metal helmet on Morti's head, he secured it carefully and stepped away.  "Whenever you like, your Mom can bring you there."

    Morti nodded. "Thanks for bringing my helmet.  Summon me if you get in trouble."

    Nix smiled at the pair and waved.  "I will."


    "Bit early for you, isn't it Nix?"  Jun Li and Alpha Team were eating breakfast at the kitchen island.

    Nix stood in the doorway to his bedroom and stretched before taking leaning against the counter. "Where's everyone else?"

    Jun Li could tell his memory from the evening events were hazy. "Mina took Ronnie and Fajii back to Haven for supplies and personel."

    After coming back to Ionova, Nix had given everyone the tour, and then they spent the rest of the night celebrating properly.

    "Shae went back to pick up a fresh supply of peppers." Semmi fished a piece of bacon off Pon's plate.  "I bet Ronnie comes back with Bali."

    Nix nodded. "You know she will."

    They held an Officer meeting before the party started.  It had been decided that Nix should limit his actions to Everspire for now.  They needed a squad of rangers to patrol their territory and get rid of potential dangers.

    Jun Li glanced through the front door window. "Four Dire Wolves are running in front of your house Nix."

    "It's Una and the Trams.  Those three are going to be my Wolf team."  Nix sat on the only empty bench.  "We should discuss things properly, now that only players are present."

    Semmi nodded in agreement; she had made sure that Fajii and Mina would both be gone.  "We can't move too fast, Nix.  Killing Khione before the Expansion went live got us nerfed."

    "Tell me about it.  My Breach Commander abilities are locked down."

    Jun Li brought up her hud and showed the map that Gil had given her.  It was the most detailed map of Everspire she'd seen so far.  "They aren't going to be much happier if we take her down after a week, either."

    Nix studied the map.  "The quests, mobs, and raids increase in difficulty as your progress North.  We need to do these raids and quest."

    Jun Li brought out a token and slid it across the counter to Nix.  "No more soloing high-end content Nix."

    "I wasn't soloing; there were twelve us in the Menial raid."  Nix continued to stare at the map; they had divided it into three manageable sections; North, South, and Middle.

    Pon snorted loudly.  "She's talking about the Oblivion Spider, that's a Northern section boss, which means it's Everspire's high-end content."

    Jun Li adjusted her hud to bring the middle section of the map into focus.  "Since we're on the coast, it's relatively easy to hit the mid-level targets in the Great Desert."

    Nix picked up the token that Jun Li slid to him.

    Nether Breaker Armor token. [King's Set]

    "Give me that armor Punk Bastard!  I can't believe you haven't opened that yet!"  Pon's old face was wrinkled with disgust.

    Nix grinned. "I will.  So... What's our timeline to take down Khione?"

    Semmi was reading the forums through her hud. "After five days, players are just now leaving the beginning area."

    Jun Li nodded in agreement.  "We moved through because we had gear.  The rest of the player population is scrounging, crafting, and stealing gear. Given this rate, our timeline for finishing Everspire is one year."

    Pon nodded and stood up. "As long as Nix doesn't kill the next Expansion boss, we'll be fine."

    "Funny."  Nix activated the armor token.

    Nether Armor  [King's set.]

    +200 to all basic stats.

    +5000 to AC

    Immune to Control Effects.

    Damage from Critical hits is halved.

    [Special Effect: Nether Walker]

    Travel from your current location to

    anyplace in the Nether that you have visited

    and back again.

    [Special Effect: Obscurity]

    Armor has the appearance of regular clothes

    Nix slid the armor on.   Obscurity made it appear as if he were wearing black leather breeches and a black work shirt.  "I like it."

    Wind whistled.  "Going to be traveling to the Nether?"

    Jun Li closed the map. "As long as we follow the normal progression, the developers won't nerf us."

    Nix didn't feel it was worth mentioning that he arrived in the hardest section of Everspire with nothing but basic gear, and he'd been fine.

    Jun Li ran her hand over the smooth counter.  "I gotta say Nix; the turtle house is really cool."

    Semmi nodded in agreement while Pon and Wind shook their heads.

    Nix lowered his voice when he saw Una talking to the Trams in front of the door.  "There are three fallen dragon cities in Everspire; I want to connect them with Inferno City."

    Nix accessed his inventory and pulled out a small wooden chest.  He set it down on the counter with a dull thunk.  "We'll wrap this us as soon as I open this."

    Pon leaned forward in his chair. "Did this drop off Menial?"

    Nix shook his head.  "Menial didn't drop anything. However, I did pick up the Master Key to Verynzai."

    "Seems like he should have."  Semmi grabbed the chest with both hands and slid it closer to her. "Why is it so ordinary?"

    Nix laughed at the expression on her face.  "Go ahead, Sem, don't cry if it's cursed though."

    "Sure, boss.  Since you insisted.."  Semmi opened the lid slowly. Her pretty blue eyes lit up, and she linked the items.


    A tool of war, meant for assaulting

    Mountain Fortresses. Limit 5000 Troops

    War    [Heavy Plated Armor: Diamond Rating]

    +10,000 to Armor Class

    +500 to all Basic Stats

    +20,000 Health.

    Immune to Critical Hits.

    Mitigates half of all incoming Damage.

    Mana Stone x 5

    One stone in your inventory doubles your mana.

    Limit one per person.

    Key of Eidengal [Opens the Door to Eidengal]

    /Alpha Team: Semmi: Holy crap Nix.  That's serious Tank Armor.

    /Alpha Team: Nix: Yep.  It has Sharl's name written all over it.

    /Alpha Team: Wind: An Escalator?  Remember the cutscene at the start of the Expansion?

    /Alpha Team: Pon: They show her retreating to a Mountain Fortress. This is our ticket in.

    Nix stowed one of the Mana Stones and tossed one to Pon.

    /Alpha Team: Nix: We'll save the other three for our clerics.

    /Alpha Team: Jun Li: I haven't seen Eidengal on any of the maps, but I'll start looking.

    /Alpha Team: Semmi: First missions?

    /Alpha Team: Jun Li: Scout out the Cabal locations for our three missing dragon cities and start exploring the Great Desert.

    /Alpha Team: Nix: I'm going to focus on Ionova for a few weeks and try to build it up a bit.

    /Alpha Team: Jun Li: I'll take a team and start scouting targets in the Great Desert.

    /Alpha Team: Nix: That's it for now. Ronnie's back.
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