At this moment, the sun was in full blast. It's light and heat so aggressive that the tips of many grass stems gave rise to an impression of steam blowing from its top. And under this blazing sun was Key traveling northeast.
As he traveled, he easily stuck to the method the Hill tribe had used by staying close to the stems of grass. During his first night, he wasted no time making as much distance as he could.
With his swift movements, he was already on his second day of heading to the great tribe located outside the Queen's reach.
The scholars of the tribes had told him that the Queen's city was to the west and her territory was all of Green Grass Field. There was even a group of her men that was stationed at the edge of her lands to guard against intrusion and to keep rebels from escaping which was located to the east.
It was farther explained that the group was a rowdy bunch that liked to make noises where ever they went. When told these details, he didn't quite recognize the description as there was a lot of insects and animals that made sounds, especially with their size now being large.
The insect that stood out the most to him was crickets, but that was only because it was the very first dangerous thing he had seen. Even then, given the Queen's hostile approach to specks, he had his doubts that one of her soldiers would spare them as the cricket they first saw did.
After all, if he was to regard the giant wolf spider's words, it had made it plain clear that the Queen didn't mind them being killed altogether or slowly as tributes. If he took a group, he was sure they would have been noticed and slaughtered.
"Gray Stone Boundary." Key said as he spoke lightly to himself. The place was a rocky land that was the border between the Queen's territory and another's. Just crossing it would guarantee that no man of the Queen's would be able to summon the courage to pursue him farther.
Reaching midday, Key took a small break to keep himself in top shape.
This sound was
Really? He had already become aware of the terror that kept the people underground. He also knew that the smell of the dirt or grass wouldn't deter the insect, but he still didn't think it would come to him so fast after leaving the protection of the Divine Door.
With a zip, he got to see the full image of the flying insect in the air.
A four-star fly!
It was one of the bugs known to agitate people the most when something foul was near or when fruits were left in the opening and on display. The features that greeted him was also the same ones he had expected. A rainbowish blue and green color that was almost twice the size of his body.
What made it a nightmare to the specks on the surface was that it didn't chew its prey and it loved the odor that people couldn't help but have because of the water shortage. Instead, it preferred to use it's body fluids to turn the victim to a more liquid-like form so it could swallow them.
He could only guess with its evolved state, it no longer cared if the meal was dead first. Still, in his eyes, it was a bug he had no problem killing in great numbers. One had even almost gone into his mouth when he was talking in the past that brought about his great dislike for them.
Glaring at the bug, he grabbed one of the weapons he brought along on the trip. It was the very first bow he made with Steele. It had a hard coating of torn grass stem that had been applied with the Water of Stone to act as the handle area, and a twined bowstring from strips of a grass stem as well.
What surprised him was that because of its thinness, and when the Water of Stone was added, the bowstring didn't become an unbendable material. It became more like something similar to having steel wires.
With his eyes trained on the bug, he notched the bow with a wooden arrow that had its tip harden and the end attached with a crudely shaded wind tail to make its flight steady. If one looked at the stance he took subconsciously; they would think he was an expert at using the bow.
However, he had never used a bow in his life.
After having a little stare off, the giant fly zipped its way toward Key in a zigzag motion. The speed of its movement was outrageously fast and only allowing Key to catch images of its shadow.
With a strong pull on the bowstring, the arrow flew like a bullet through the air. As for the fly, its course never changed as it closed the distance between the two.
Despite the fly's frontal assault, the arrow hit the ground a long distance away. It had been nowhere close to hitting the fly as the aim was so bad. Key on the other hand sweatdropped. Was his bow skills that bad?
Not having the time to muse over it, he grabbed the second weapon he took on his trip. It was a bone from the leg of the giant bear he killed that had been sharpened and straighten as much as possible. In the end, the short blade still had a curve to its edge.
He gave a loud 'hah' as he swung forward with his full weight behind the strike. In a maneuver of showing its air supremacy, its body movement allowed the fly to twirl around Key's arm and blade as it hurled fluids at him.
Seeing the liquid heading for his face, Key rapidly followed his forward motion while ducking down to avoid the dangerous stuff. In no time, they both crossed paths with their backs facing each either. A four-star insect's strength was completely on another level compared to the failed three-star beast.
Turning around to give another strike, Key saw that the fly was once again high in the air staring his way. As if it had noticed something, it did not close the distance again.
Wondering its next move, it wasn't long before Key caught its actions.
Pain wracked his body as he stumbled back a little. It seemed it wanted to use the distance ability that came with being a four-star insect. An invisible strike of external ambition force.
Refusing to stand idle and be a sitting duck, the bow was once again notched with an arrow to take aim. Unfortunately, his skills with the bow were really too bad. The arrow did come closer, but the distance made it seem irrelevant.
As he dodged and got hit now and then, Key grew more annoyed. If the fly was a land-based insect, he was sure that he would have killed the bug already. But his situation now was that he had no way to fight back.
Letting his emotions go to keep from getting distracted, he aimed his fifth arrow at the bug in the sky while steady dodging the blasts of ambition force.
With the arrow released this time, the fly attempted to dodge as its aim was dead center and going for its head.
The moment it just avoided the arrow, another came not too far from the last.
Key watched as the bug hit the ground as he tried to catch his breath. The arrow had nailed it between its large eyes, going from one eye to the other. But Key did not celebrate. This was only one fly, from what the scholars had said, there was usually a group of them.
The question now, where had they gone? Were they close? Not having plans to tempt it, Key decided to make his way farther ahead. Once he got a decent distance from the insect, he would take a break.
"Your Highness, we can't be on this side of the border. It's too dangerous for someone at your stage." Cried out a man with a submissive attitude. "Nonsense! If you keep bugging me, I will tell father that you tried to put your hands on me." A hot-tempered replied came back.
There before the two figures on the ground laid a large group of dead flies killed with brunt marks covering their bodies. Following that, the heads were missing from each one.
"Your Highness, please be reasonable, I heard a disturbance a small distance from here. If we run into the Queen's patrol, it could cause unavoidable consequences for your father. Please let us return at once. Your Highness! Where are you going?" The man panicked.
"You said somebody was close? I want to play with them. I refuse to be cooped up again. This freshness is true freedom. There are many to play with!"
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