ELEVEN

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Winning a thousand dollars was apparently quite the achievement and had triggered the curiosity of a bunch people about our clan, and my stream. During the trip back home, the view counter in the corner of my interface started rising more rapidly than normal, and when we reached the hills I was about to break my all-time record of sixty viewers.

"Alright, time to turn off your stream, Vera. We don't want to reveal the location to our base," Felix reminded me. I groaned in response, very unwilling to obey his command. I was finally increasing my audience again, and without Kitty's help no less.

But I was carrying a staff worth a thousand dollars, and I had to stay alive for the next five hours at least before I was able to turn it into cash and transfer it safely to my PayPal. I was an extra interesting target for pretty much any enemy player on this server now. Half of the viewers I had gained since we'd completed the tomb were probably watching me just to find out where I was hiding, so that they could kill me and take my loot.

Reluctantly, I pushed off my VR goggles to face the camera. "Alright guys, thank you so much for watching this stream! I hope you enjoyed me playing ROBINSON and look forward to more of this game in the future. Remember to follow and subscribe if you had fun watching me! Bye bye." I waved, smiled, and stopped the broadcast, trying my hardest to ignore the protests in the chat.

"Alright, so now I just have to stay alive and away from other players for the next five hours," I mumbled as we climbed the hill separating our meadow from the canyon. "Should I just stay inside the base?"

"That's probably the safest choice, yes," Jun agreed. "People can't get to you there unless they have the weapons to break down our door. I consider that chance quite small, especially since our base doesn't look very impressive. If I was an enemy clan, I'd save my resources for a bigger base."

"Man, it's going to be boring to stay inside the base for five hours though." I sighed. After raiding this tomb, I wanted to move on immediately to find the next one. My character's skills had leveled quite a bit just from completing the puzzles and beating the spider. I was only a few levels away from gaining a minimap.

"You could log off for a bit. I mean, your avatar will stay inside the game and the counter will keep on ticking, but you don't actually have to be here," Felix suggested. "I texted Milan about our win, he'll be coming back on in a sec and will probably work on expanding our base and improving our gear. He can keep watch and make sure no one raids us while you're offline."

We entered our base, and I unloaded all the metal I had mined earlier into our storage crates. "I guess I could do that," I mumbled, chewing on the inside of my cheek. It was probably better to log off for now, but five hours was a really long time and I wanted to do nothing but play more. I had to keep the money safe at all cost, though. "Alright, I'll see you guys in a couple of hours. Let's do another exploring session once I'm back and our money is safe?"

"Sounds good to me! See ya Vera." Felix made a few kissing noises through his mic. I chuckled, mumbled my goodbyes to Jun, and left the voice chat.

Exhaling deeply, I stared at my computer screen for a while, bored already even though I had just logged out of the game. It had been a while since I hadn't spent my late afternoon playing games. I could just start up another game, but my mind didn't feel like playing anything but ROBINSON.

I rolled my neck on my shoulders, threw my VR goggles and controller on my desk and stood up, knees cracking. Since I couldn't play now, I wanted to make sure Mom wouldn't interrupt my gaming session tonight. To do that, I'd have to put in some effort to show her I was still very much alive and capable of functioning outside my games.

I grabbed my jacket from my bed and plugged my headphones into my phone, blasting the soundtrack of Final Fantasy X as I jogged down the stairs and into the kitchen. Cooking was probably the only thing in life I remotely enjoyed doing aside from gaming. Making dinner for Mom would hopefully please her enough to leave me alone later tonight.

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