Chapter 13 - Breaking Out

Confused, the Imp just stared at Avalin while he was clothed in the cloak and currently had the red thing's hand pressed onto his head.

"You need to wear this to hide being a monster from other people. It might be a bit troublesome if others found out, after all." Avalin explained, and the Imp did somewhat understand. It was impossible to hide the fact that there was tension between monsters and these 'People'. The first time that the Imp met any of them, they had killed his brothers and were just about to kill him as well.

These people… Wait… "…People?" The Imp repeated, confused, and Avalin nodded her head as she looked around. "Yeah… people… You know, Humans, Elves, Dwarves…" She explained, and then looked at the Imp with a wry smile.

"Wait, you didn't know what we were until now?" Avalin asked him, and the Imp slowly nodded his head. "Holy fucking- Well… Thomas and I are Humans, and James is a Light Elf. That's what people are called that are half Elf and half Dark-Elf." She explained to the Imp, but he just tilted his head to the side, really not able to connect any of that to anything.

"Hahh… Well, I guess I can try to show you when we're in town…" The Red thing… no, the Red Human muttered to herself, and the Imp slowly nodded and just shrugged, really not interested in all of that. But at least he knew what the things were now, so that seemed like a good thing.

For now, the Imp simply tried to get used to this thing, this 'Cloak'. He didn't like it at all, but according to Avalin, it was important, so he figured he should keep wearing it. Avalin was smarter than the Imp, so she was probably right.

And a few minutes later, while the Imp had already moved on to looking at the notification that wouldn't disappear no matter what and was trying to figure out what the countdown was working toward, Thomas and James came out of the Building, and without them saying anything to Avalin and the Imp, the group continued on toward the large bridge leading to the floating speck of dirt in the distance.

It began getting a little tough the closer they got toward that bridge because the Imp was starting to feel like he was getting scared again, but with Avalin's help and support, he managed to fight through it. Soon enough, they then entered the large, broad structure and began to walk on it further into the distance. From this perspective, it seemed like it would continue on infinitely because it simply looked like it, but the Imp knew that it wasn't the case because he managed to see the island in the distance beforehand.

It was pretty full on the bridge, and because he had nothing else to do, the Imp resorted to just eating some of the rest of the meat in his bag while continuing to stare at the page of the book, and soon, they reached an area that was even larger and broader than the rest of the bridge, where a lot of people that were even coming from the other side seemed to be gathering.

"Finally, at the rest area… Walking on a light slope for so long is damn exhausting…" James complained as he approached an area where they seemed to be able to sit down, although he was staring at the Imp while they were walking there.

"And why the hell isn't that thing tired yet?" James asked annoyedly, and Avalin just smiled wryly. "Well, he has the exhaustion resistance skill, so I guess that's why? I did expect him to complain a little, though… Although he has the concentration skill as well and he was staring at the book the whole time… Maybe that helped?" Avalin suggested, and Thomas shrugged as he sat down on one of the benches and pulled his bag in front of him.

"Maybe. And even if it has a low Constitution stat and stat value, it's still a monster, so its base stamina is probably still pretty high." He replied, before biting into his food with a frown. "Actually, why did you give it your book? That's the Minor Arcana Fairytale one, right?"

"Well, he just had it when I woke up this morning… I took it away from him at first, but then I noticed that he was speaking a lot more, so I had him update the level of his Language Comprehension… And it rose like 20 levels last night… So I figured I should let him keep reading for a while… He's been treating him well, so… that's why?" Avalin replied somewhat nervously, seemingly once more trying to make sure that everything was really fine with it.

"Well, I guess…" Thomas said with a sigh, and for another while, they all just continued eating, while the Imp just stared down at the book some more. At least, until he suddenly felt a slight rush in his head, as if he was woozy for a moment but immediately recovered.

And when he looked up, he saw another notification that he hadn't seen before.

[Beginner Common Language Comprehension Leveled Up!]

[Beginner Common Language Comprehension hit Level 100 and became Apprentice Common Language Comprehension]

Confused, the Imp looked at the notifications before just slightly shrugging and returning to his book. He still didn't really understand anything, but at this point, something kind of felt different. He recognized some of the words more easily, and he was able to actually imagine what they sounded like. That didn't make it possible for him to actually find out what they meant, though; he just knew what they were said like. But at the very least, he was able to recognize some of the words he heard before written down like this!

Even then, the Imp had to just continue trying like this, and soon all the knowledge that this book was hiding from him would be unraveled, revealing the secrets to once and for all killing the notifications! But then, around the same time that the Imp thought that, some more annoying notifications appeared.

[You have broken out of the control of the Ownership Collar]

[You are no longer under the Ownership of Avalin Stinehearth]

The Imp felt slightly weird all of a sudden, similar to what happened yesterday night when he told Thomas and James that he didn't like them, but this time was slightly different. It was far more liberating! But there was something else that the Imp was trying to figure out.

He managed to recognize Avalin's name pretty quickly, but he was confused about the word behind that. It didn't really seem like other words to him, so he slowly turned to Avalin, the one who that word appeared with. "…Avalin." The Imp said in the clearest pronunciation it managed so far, so she turned toward him, surprised, and smiled, although she still had food in her mouth.

"Mhm?" She asked, so now that the Imp had her attention, he tilted his head to the side. "What… Stinehearth?" He asked her, and immediately Avalin ripped her eyes open and began to choke on her food.

The Imp was a bit worried at what was going on all of a sudden, but a few moments later, it seemed like Avalin was alright again. "Did… you just say 'Stinehearth'?" She asked, confused, so the Imp just nodded his head, before Avalin looked over toward Thomas and James.

"Did you mention my last name to him?" With confused expressions, the two of them shook their heads before Thomas replied. "Why would we? We never really knew you as a 'Stinehearth', just as Avalin, so saying your name has little meaning… And names aren't needed at the Inn, just our Adventurer's ID." Thomas pointed out, so Avalin turned around back toward the Imp.

"Erm… Where did you hear that name?" Avalin asked him, but the Imp quickly began to frown. "Not hear. Read." The Imp said as he pointed at the notification in front of him before Avalin looked at him surprised. "Were there any other big words in that notification?"

Slowly, the Imp turned back toward the notification and frowned, trying to see what it was, and then seemed to recognize another of the big words.

"Ownership." The Imp explained, so Avalin just sighed in relief. "Hah… I guess it was just some kind of Ownership info…" She sighed in relief, before leaning in toward the Imp confused.

"And you can read now?" Avalin asked, and the Imp nodded his head with a smug smile. "Imp can!" He exclaimed, and Avalin turned to the others with a grin, "Well, seems like his Language Comprehensions was upgraded." She told them, and Thomas, James, and Avalin then began to speak about some things that the Imp didn't really care about. Instead, he just wanted to return to reading the book now that he actually managed to figure out what they at least sounded like. Maybe soon, he would be able to understand the words as well!

Soon enough, the small group stood back up and continued on their way toward the island, while the Imp continued to try and read and was still bothered by the notifications all the time. It was pretty annoying actually, but in the end, the Imp managed to fight through that due to being happy about the fact that he slowly began to understand the words he was actually reading, although only if he looked at it really hard and then thought about the word over and over again in his head.

And after a little while, the Imp was stopped by Avalin, and when he looked around, he was suddenly back on proper ground instead of the wood of the bridge.

"Geh?" The Imp asked, confused, and tilted his head to the side, and Avalin looked at him with a light smile.

"We're here, so now you need to be more careful. Stop reading and just look around a bit." She told him, and the Imp nodded his head, closing the book like he was told to and pressing it back against his chest.

There were a looot of people here, though! Some were short and stumpy, and others were super tall and hunky, and some looked more like monsters with fur all over their bodies. And so, as promised, Avalin showed the Imp all kinds of different people and told him what kind of person they were. Through that, the Imp learned lots and lots of new words actually, and after a handful of failed tries, he was able to properly assign the right race to a person ever few attempts.

But then, some loud people interrupted the interesting lesson all of a sudden. "Anyone that can fight, come down to the southern bridge! There's a Monster Horde down there!" One yelled out, and immediately, Avalin, Thomas, and James looked at each other confused.

"A Monster Horde? From the south?" Thomas asked, surprised, and next, James spoke up. "Weren't those rumors fake?" James added, but Avalin immediately shook her head. "I-I thought so as well, but…" She said, confused with wide-open eyes before Thomas scratched the back of his neck.

"Well, there's a bunch of adventurers in this town, and if any place can defend against monsters, it's this one. So let's not worry, and instead make our way back like planned." While scratching the back of his neck, Thomas told this to the others, before looking up into the sky at the sun. "If we don't hurry, we'll not make it all the way down again. At the very least, we can't go all the way back down the south bridge." He said in a commanding tone, and the others slowly nodded their heads, although Avalin seemed rather reluctant about it.

"Fine… Let's get going then."

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