Another two players? Though confused, Betta did not ask and simply followed Roland.
Roland walked in the city and found Hawk and Link in the cottage that they lived in previously.
Through the open window, Roland saw that they had new clothes and furniture. Hawk was resting on a new chair, and Link was cooking with a white apron.
The intriguing smell of grease escaped through the window. Betta was already swallowing.
Roland walked to the window and knocked on the frame. "Hey, look at the lovely couple here."
Hawk was happy to see Roland, but he grew angry after realizing what Roland meant. He snapped, "Get lost."
Roland burst into laughter.
Link turned his head and smiled, not bothered by Roland's teasing. "Please come in. The food is ready. Eat with us."
Roland led Betta into the cottage and sat down. He asked Hawk, "You didn't buy a house?"
"There was some trouble." Hawk sat straight.
"I expected no less." Roland smiled. "Otherwise, I wouldn't have come here to look for you."
Hawk asked curiously, "Do you know the reason?"
"Your previous actions were too influential," Roland explained. "Now, the nobles seem to be watching the Golden Sons. It may be not as hard for us, but I don't think you can buy a house anywhere."
"Why are you so sure?" Hawk was slightly confused.
Roland put his invitation on the table. "Betta and I just received invitations to a party of the upper nobles of this city."
To prove Roland's statement, Betta presented his invitation, too.
Hawk thought for a moment and smiled. "They dare not invite us. They're scared."
"Of course they are, but it's not as simple as that," Roland said. "They're trying to divide us."
Hawk and Link looked at each other. Then, Hawk asked in disbelief, "Is it possible? Why would they divide us?"
"Two level-zero Golden Sons caused the downfall of a small noble family," Roland said casually. "You can imagine your power if the two of us, levels three and four, join you and collaborate with you."
Hawk was the deputy president of a guild anyway, so he thought it through very quickly. His eyes widened and then narrowed. "Are the NPCs so smart?"
However, Link and Betta seemed more or less at a loss.
Roland had to explain to them: "Think about it. Betta and I can enjoy wealth and beautiful girls with the upper class, whereas Hawk and Link will hide in such a shabby house without enough clothes or food. What will they think of us as time goes by?
Betta finally realized it.
Link also sighed. "We might not hate you, but we would inevitably feel that you and we are not the same type of people."
"Exactly so." Roland opened his hands. "As long as we are divided, there will be a lot of things they can do."
Betta sweated hard. "Brother Roland, are you not overthinking it?"
"I do hope so," said Roland with a weird expression. "But before Falken went to paradise, he reminded me that the locals of this world might not be as knowledgeable as us, but it did not mean that they were not clever."
Hawk rubbed his face and said in amazement, "According to the official announcement, there are more than five billion NPCs in this world. If every one of ten thousand is clever, we'll have five hundred thousand cunning nobles, the same number of players. I have a bad feeling. Some players will definitely be tricked by NPCs later on!"
Foreseeing the same possibility, everybody was dazed.
Weird noises suddenly sounded. Link realized what was going on and hurried to tend to the food that was cooking. He said in the end, "Not bad. It can't taste too awful… Roland and… Betta, why don't you stay and have dinner with us?"
"Thanks." Roland did not refuse the offer. "I haven't had any regular food in this game yet."
After having dinner at Hawk's and exchanging intelligence with him, Roland and Betta left.
They returned to the square before the Magic Tower. It was already evening. At the door of the tower, a girl was standing quietly in the radiance of sunset like a statue.
She did not move back toward the Magic Tower until Roland was close.
Roland did not see this. He said to Betta, "You can buy a small house in the city for you and your little maid. We may have to spend a long time here."
Betta blushed. "She's not mine."
"Besides that, try to collect more information," Roland reminded him. "Also, don't talk too much with the nobles. You're a smart kid, but you're too unsophisticated compared to them."
Betta wouldn't have admitted his lack of experience previously, but after his talk with Roland that afternoon, he realized that he might really be a rookie who needed more social experience.
Still, he was rather angry. Roland was obviously teasing when he said "little maid."
I am as innocent as a spring and I will never take advantage of her…
He waved his hand at Roland and ran off.
Roland returned to the Magic Tower. He gathered the magic apprentices and said, "You must've read and tested the model during the afternoon. Whatever questions you may have, you can submit them now, and I'll tell you my understanding."
The magic apprentices were stunned… Generally speaking, their mentors were not so easy to talk to.
For the most part, they would introduce a method or concept and ask the apprentices to learn by themselves.
If the apprentices couldn't understand it, they would be too stupid to become Mages. After all, the mentors were very busy and did not have all the time in the world for them.
They had never seen anyone as friendly and responsible as Roland.
After a brief hesitation, the apprentices grew excited.
They knew too well how rare it was for them to encounter such an opportunity and such a person.
It seemed that they were quite lucky.
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