There was a mansion somewhere in Floria’s suburb. There was no other mansion like it due to the overwhelming amount of flowers in its garden.
In addition to its vast garden, the scenery there was even more beautiful than the scenery in Floria. Several NPC gardeners were also employed at that garden.
Saichou and Hanachou cried happily upon their return and immediately played their hearts out in the garden. Meanwhile, Rozen and Asuna sat down on a gazebo in the garden.
“Here’s your tea.”
Rozen poured tea into a white cup in front of Asuna.
Asuna was enjoying the beautiful scenery in the garden as she sipped the tea inattentively, and her response was out of this world.
“T… This is so good!”
Rozen then smiled.
“This tea is made of rare nectar and other rare materials. It’s called Fragrant Honey Tea. By the way, drinking it grants one permanent AGI, albeit only for the first consumption. Some Players even asked Argo to buy it from me for 1000k Cor.”
Hearing Rozen’s explanation, Asuna was dumbfounded.
Indeed, this Fragrant Honey Tea was worth 1 million Cor, which was enough to purchase a splendid house on the Lower Floor.
“This… You put something this expensive on the garden!?”
It couldn’t be helped if Asuna was confused by how lax Rozen was, even though he didn’t seem to make a big deal out of it.
“No one besides our guild members can freely enter this place anyway. Besides, those guys already drank it once, and if they want to drink it again, our guild funds will cover it, so putting it here won’t be a problem.”
A Player could freely configure the access restriction of any building they purchased after all. Red Wings’ base was access restriction was configured by Rozen, and he made sure that only guild members could enter and leave freely and non-guild members have to come along with a Red Wings’ member if they want to enter.
Since all Red Wings’ members have already gained the one permanent AGI from the Fragrant Honey Tea, there was no point in drinking it again, it’d be simply wasting 1,000,000 Col, and that was why Rozen just put it in the gazebo.
“Is it really okay for me to drink your guild expensive item?”
Asuna felt a little uneasy.
“No problem.” Rozen said jokingly: “If those guys know the famous Flash is the one who drank it, they wouldn’t mind wasting 5 million Cor, let alone 1 million Cor, especially since this is spring and all.”
“Spring…?” Asuna couldn’t comprehend the relation between wasting that much Cor and spring at all.
“Nah, don’t mind me,” Rozen said while smiling.
Although Asuna was somewhat dissatisfied with Rozen’s explanation, she did not ask any further.
“I never expect Red Wings’ base would actually look like this.” Asuna then murmured while enjoying the beautiful scenery: “Our guild headquarters is so dull.”
Well, considering Knights of the Blood’s headquarter was located at Granzam, the steel city, it couldn’t be helped if their base looked like a dull fortress.
Seeing such a difference compared to her guild headquarter, Asuna seemed somewhat touched.
As Rozen sipped his Fragrant Honey Tea while staring at Asuna’s pretty face, he casually asked.
“What’s wrong with your guild?”
Rozen asked casually.
Asuna was silent for a moment. She then sipped her tea and then said hesitantly.
“This may sound weird coming from me, but the guild’s atmosphere feels so tense and suffocating right now.”
Different guilds had different atmospheres.
Moonlit Black Cats was warm and caring since all of their members were close friends. Divine Dragon Alliance was selfish since they would use any means necessary to get their hands on what they wanted.
Red Wings was laid back and easygoing because of Rozen, not to mention other members were slowly influenced by Kirito, turning them into a bunch of weirdos. Last but not least, Knights of the Blood.
Rozen could easily guess simply by seeing Heathcliff’s machine-like logic and rationality plus Kuradeel’s paranoia that the atmosphere within Knights of the Blood was far from easygoing.
“The guild gradually become strange even though this wasn’t how it used to be. Now we only accept the Players who passed our minimum level requirement, while the members who fall behind will be kicked. Even people like Kuradeel can join our guild; it really is worrisome what will become of our guild from now on.”
Asuna seemed dejected.
“Of course, I’m aware that I’m partly to blame for this.”
Asuna, who prioritized clearing the game above anything else, used to urge everyone else to push themselves to the limit to clear the game as soon as possible.
It was one of the reasons why the atmosphere within Knights of the Blood was so tense.
“I know deep down that a major guild like ours will inevitably grow bigger and bigger and no longer able to keep that easygoing atmosphere since we need to make some rules to organize our members. Guilds like Fuurinkazan can keep things casual because they have no intention to recruit more members, and all of their guild members are acquainted with each other.”
Asuna then added as she looked toward Rozen.
“But Red Wings seems to be an exception.”
Rozen suddenly imagined what Red Wings’ members would say if they heard what Asuna just said.
“Our leader is so laid back, and there’s a dual blade user who keeps flirting around as if taunting us all day; you think we can become such a serious guild?”
Unfortunately, Rozen couldn’t say it out loud.
“Then, do you want to join Red Wings instead?”
Rozen asked without hesitation. As a result, Asuna’s eyes widened, and her face turned bright red as she lowered her head.
Rozen realized what he just did, but he couldn’t take it back, so he just awkwardly sipped his tea.
There was this awkward silence between them.
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