SEVEN

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"Holy mother fucking shit, that thing is huge!" Felix exclaimed in a false whisper, his avatar quickly taking a few steps back into the cave tunnel again. "We can't beat that. Not at this level. Let's get out of here."

"But he's guarding a treasure. There's money, right there," I protested, pointing at the nest. "Can't you kite it away from the chest while one of us grabs the loot?"

"Hell no, we have no clue what that thing can do. It could have an area-of-effect move that kills us all in one shot, even if I lure it away. That room looks perfectly round to me, like the exact range of such an attack. This is a lost cause, Vera."

I cursed in frustration as I longingly stared at the glittering silver chest. There could be thousands of dollars in there, right in front of our noses. "Someone else is going to find it." I sighed. This cave wasn't hard to locate at all, and it was impossible to get lost since it was just a straight tunnel ahead. It wouldn't be long before some high level clan would beat the scorpion boss and take the treasure, way before we were ready to give it a try.

"We will find another one," Jun tried to reassure me. "Let's keep on exploring the canyon."

A bleep dinged through the call, announcing Milan's arrival. "Hey guys, what are you up to?" His cheerful voice was a stark contrast against the bitter disappointment pooling in my stomach.

"We're staring at a treasure, man. But we can't get to it. There's a gigantic scorpion in the way," Felix informed him. "We're in a cave in the canyon."

"What? Nooo!" Milan exclaimed, gone was his cheerfulness. In the server chat, a short notice announced his avatar had just logged in. "There's no way to get around the scorpion?"

"Nope, pretty sure we have to beat it in order to get the treasure," I grumbled. We started to walk back out of the cave, and I kept glancing over my shoulder, watching the treasure slowly fade out of viewing distance. "We can keep this location in mind for later, though I doubt the chest will still be there by then."

"Do you want to join us, Milan? We're not far from the base yet. Just over the hills," Jun asked. We made it back to the cave entrance, the sudden brightness of the canyon hurting my eyes.

I looked around, searching for a new place to explore that might look like us low level noobs would actually be able to survive it. My eyes fell on the river, which turned a corner and disappeared behind one of the higher plateaus in the distance. "Maybe we should follow the river, see where it goes," I suggested.

"Sure, I'll be right there," Milan said. "How are you guys on food and water? Do I need to bring any?"

"Nope, still good on everything. We haven't been out for long yet." Felix' avatar sat down on the rock floor in front of the cave and turned its head towards me. "Hey Vera, why don't you stream this? It'd be good content."

I checked the clock on my interface. It was still pretty early. Most Europeans wouldn't be home from school or work yet, and America was only just waking up. It was evening in Asia, but I didn't have many Asian subscribers.

On the other hand, not many people would be streaming right now, and the chance that my feed would make it to the front page would be bigger. "Alright, give me a moment to set it up. Should I add a delay?"

"I don't think that's necessary. Just make sure it doesn't show the name of the server. Chances are small people know which one we're playing on, especially since you're not super popular yet," Milan answered. "Alright, I'm on my way. Over the hills you said?"

"Yeah, you should be able to see us. We're sitting in front of a cave. I'm going to try to tame a few of those deer while we wait." Jun pointed towards the herd of flaming deer we had saved from the feline attack moments earlier and ran towards them, his taming flute in hand.

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