The trio's wagon was a bit gloomy during the journey on the dirty road. The other wagon, however, was quite noisy. The warrior apprentices were joking around and caused quite a raucous.
The reason for the silence in the trio's wagon was that the brother was still afraid of the warrior's oppressive aura, the sister was fascinated by the sight of the vanishing city and Foo was busily thinking about how bad the city was.
Every wake hour had he been insulted by the system and the populace. Although he did not expect to leave the city so soon, this was a welcome fresh start. During his time at the academy he should so his best to be low-key.
As the system was constantly trying to find ways to insult him, he had to make sure to never let his guard down. For example, if he accidentally stepped on an ant, the system might pin a [Bully of innocent animals] title on him, or even worse.
After finally waving goodbye to the city disappearing in the distance, the little girl started to curiously look around at the forest that they just entered. This was her first time outside of the city, so everything was a new experience for her.
When the night began to fall, the other wagon stopped at an opening in the forest, while the brother followed with their wagon as well.
After stopping, the warrior apprentices dispersed to chop some wood, while the warrior approached the trio. With a disdainful look, the spoke to the brother: "I bet you guys have not prepared anything sufficient to eat? Judging from how poor you look, you will probably almost starve to death by the time we reach the academy. To honor the past sentiments of the academy, we strong warriors should help you weak and poor wizards, as you can barely survive on your own. As such we will magnanimously offer you some of the meat we are going to hunt tonight."
The brother was a bit speechless. He was going to reject the offer, as he did not want them to look down on them, but when he turned his head back to look at the few crates with tasteless almost-food he felt a pin in his heart. How could he let his sister eat such things when there is an offering of a proper meal? Although he would have to swallow his pride, he would still do it for his sister.
And then there was also the matter with the extra person. Now with Foo added to the party, the supplies he prepared was not enough. The departure was too hectic for him to have a spare thought about the extra mouth to feed, not that his tight finances could do much to improve the situation anyway.
He could only grit his teeth and say: "We would be grateful for your help." To which the warrior just smirked and turned back to their camp.
Before long, the warrior apprentices had put together a fire, and went to hunt some dinner. The warrior was siting in a chair, enjoying a good mug of alcohol, while inspecting the traces of the hunt present on the games that the apprentices brought back.
The alluring fragrance of roasted meat was soon filling the clearing. After some time, an apprentice came over to the trio with some meat. Contrary to the other apprentices, this one had a rather friendly feeling when looking at the trio. The other apprentices shared the same disdain as the warrior leader, but this one was actually approachable.
Another thing that did differ with the other apprentices was that he seemed less muscular and a bit younger than the others, around the age of the brother. It also seemed that he held the lowest status of the group, as they seemed to look down on him. The task of feeding the freeloaders was thus given to him.
With a moderately sized roasted boar in one hand, the apprentice used the other to greet the brother with a hand shake: "Nice to meet you! My name is Abner."
Excited that he was treated so friendly, the brother stuttered to answer: "T-t-t-the pleasure is mine! And the name Yorick is also mine." Feeling a bit awkward at the wording that came out wrongly.
But luckily, this Abner fellow just smiled gently and turned to the little girl. Yorick took the hint, and introduced her as well: "This is my sister, Odelia" While thinking how nice this Abner was. In the academy Yorick was often bullied by the other apprentice wizards, and not to speak of the warrior apprentices, which was even worse. But now he had met someone that he might be able to be friends with.
They both turned to Foo, and Yorick noticed that he still did not know his name. But he was sure he had heard it before. Furiously racking his brain, as he did not want to shame himself in front of this potential friend, Yorick hurriedly recalled how the other party had introduced himself at their house: "This is someone I kidnapped for money..."
Then there was an awkward silence. Due to being too excited and in a rush, the wording came out even worse this time. Although that was his introduction in the house, it had nothing to do with his name.
To save this awkward situation, Foo sheepishly said: "Ah, yes, I am Foo. Kidnapped for the referral award."
Realizing the situation, Abner laughed and said: "Ah, so that is how it is? Yorick here realized that you had some potential, and thus decided to help you join the academy?"
Trying to laugh away the situation, Yorick then tried to turn the attention to another topic: "Ah, we are really grateful that you are willing to share some food with us. To be honest we are a bit lacking, and what we have is... barely eatable..."
Jumping on this new topic, as to not embarrass him any more, Abner reassured: "Ah, no worries. It is way too much for me to eat alone anyway. As we are having somewhat of a survival training on the way to the academy, we have to make sure that we can hunt and cook food on our own. To be able to provide for others too is just a honorable matter."
Turning to Odelia, who had been staring at the meat in his hand while drooling, he then said: "Well, talk can wait. Now lets eat!"
You were not expecting that, right?
Oh dear, how should you be able to keep all these names in your head?
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