Monstrous Compendium – Concealed Cat

“It’s just that you act like-” smell like “-you expected something to happen. And it didn’t, and you’re… disappointed.” Which was scary. Sachi fought because her guild fought, but if they ever decided to stay in town, she’d never go looking for monsters on her own!

“Oh.” Kirito glanced away. “Heh. So much for learning patience.”

“You want the monster to come find you?” Sachi blurted out.

The swordsman turned red. “It’s not like that. Sometimes when I’m out in the woods I run into an encounter. That’s all.”

Sachi gave him a disbelieving look, and gripped her spear. “So what kind of monster is it?”

“He’s not a-” Kirito went even redder. “Have you ever heard of linked quest chains?”

Linked-? Sachi hugged herself, suddenly lost. “You’re in the middle of a quest right now? And you didn’t tell us?”

“No! It’s not like that. I haven’t seen Vincent since-” The swordsman closed his mouth on the answer.

“Since you met us?” Sachi whispered. She’d spent so much time with the rest of her computer club. It was hard to run up against the fact they were partying with someone they didn’t really know.

Kirito scratched at the back of his neck, uncomfortable. “He said he had something to look after, and that he might not be back for months. It hasn’t been two months yet.” He shrugged. “He’s an NPC ranger. He doesn’t like people much.”

“An NPC,” Sachi repeated. Not sure how to feel about that, either. Kirito cared about the guild, she could see that. But from the slight shifts in his scent she was beginning to decipher, he also cared about some NPCs. It was weird.

“His quests help with Survival Skill.” Kirito glanced around the clearing, automatically checking for danger. “A few of them have helped me get a toe into Herbalism.” He smiled at her. “Enough to recognize Orchil Irises, at least.”

Oh. That explained a lot. Though it left Sachi with even more questions. Herbalism did overlap with Potions; maybe Kirito had some magic after all….

They hit a nest of Swamp Dire Toads on the way back, and she was too busy to worry about it anymore.

Except.

In the middle of the fight, she could have sworn she’d seen a light like purple fire.

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20 thoughts on “Monstrous Compendium – Concealed Cat

  1. Sachi…for all that herdeath was MAJOR point-in some fanfics, her survival leads to uncomfortable situations as well-and sometimes its her fault…

    that aside-will Vincent and the gorgon seer get to talk (Gossip) about our black swordsman among themselves?

    Liked by 3 people

  2. And I see Kirito is hiding his skills/abilities as usual with the ‘Cats. That is something I never really understood, after all, in most MMOs you can see how high of a level someone else is in your party…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Depends on the MMO, but yeah. I don’t know SAO well enough to know if this was before or after Kirito showed he was a Beater or not, but if it’s after… I can see him hiding stuff because of that. Especially if it’s non-lethal stuff…

      And there’s a difference between hiding Skills and them being hidden behind enough sub-menus that most people don’t think to check…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Actually, wait a minute, I’ve been giving some bad year numbers.

        I’ve been misreading the timeline based on the assumption that the game started in Nov. of 2024, it was 2022.

        So, SAO started and the beater incident was 2022. This story happens in 2023. Canon the black cats die later in 2023. Canon the game ends Nov. of 2024.

        Mea culpa.

        spoilers but check this to get the precise years correct:
        http://swordartonline.wikia.com/wiki/Sword_Art_Online_Timeline

        Liked by 1 person

      1. One way (besides the NPCs like Vincent) to have Kirito uncovered would be Klein and his guild. It would be interesting if he found Klein drinking with the ‘Cats and telling them tales.

        Liked by 2 people

      1. >Sometimes he likes having a place to hide….>
        And during said “blah blah beaters blah blah justice blah blah get what they deserve” times Klein has to remind himself that tricking Kibaou and his posse into getting TPKed by Stheno is very wrong.

        He just needs to remember WHY it’s wrong (aside from Stheno and Kirito being very upset with him that is).

        Liked by 2 people

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