Chapter 19:

Vol. 1, Ch. 19: Touch the Sky

The Integrity of the Super Club [Beta version]

“Zombies from the northeast, R.”Bookmark here

“I’m on it, L.”Bookmark here

“Goblins are reaching the top of the cliff, too,” Adele added.Bookmark here

“Damn,” Rover grumbled, “what’s with all these fire-vulnerable enemies? Is this match rigged against me?”Bookmark here

“I think you’re doing pretty well,” Lumpy said. He’d found a lookout spot on top of a tattoo parlor, giving him a wide range of view to spot augmented reality enemies.Bookmark here

“Oh yeah?” Rover asked. “How do you know?”Bookmark here

Lumpy shrugged. “Hopeful speculation?”Bookmark here

“Your hopes have never helped my dreams,” Rover replied with a smug smirk. “What about you, Q?”Bookmark here

Quintegrity’s bubbly voice came through Rover’s earpiece. “Everything’s peachy, R! I know what I need to do now for this match to work in your favor.”Bookmark here

With a well-aimed Beam Grenade, Rover took out an entire swarm of Zombies before they could enter Captain Pretentious’ fiery range.Bookmark here

“And don’t worry,” Quintegrity added as Rover shot down some Goblin stragglers that had crossed the playing field barrier, “I won’t hurt anyone.”Bookmark here

“It’s bad that you feel the need to assure me of that.”Bookmark here

“Hee-hee…”Bookmark here

“Heads up, R,” Adele said, leaning over the fence by the ledge and watching the approaching threats. “There are stronger enemies climbing up the cliff: Raptor Mantises.”Bookmark here

“That’s perfect.” An excited, devious glimmer appeared in Rover’s eyes. “It’s about time some monsters appeared that are in my favor.”Bookmark here

“Yes,” Lumpy agreed, moving along the edge of the rooftop to get a different angle on the action through his phone. “The Raptor Mantises are stronger than these runts, true…but they’re fire-resistant. That means Captain Pretentious will lose the effectiveness of her fire attacks.”Bookmark here

“Not only that,” Rover said, quickly swapping out his character’s Glove Aliens. “The Raptor Mantises are weak against Cuddly Elemental attacks, and my Knitted Glove Aliens are perfect for that!”Bookmark here

His onscreen avatar’s hands were soon covered in fuzzy, multicolored yarn that hung from its entire body as if it had rolled around in a crafts store. Some of the spectators laughed at the ridiculous appearance, but they also knew that Rover’s tactic was smart and could potentially alter the tide of the match.Bookmark here

These new foes stood nearly one metre tall when scaled to the real world, taller than the players’ avatars. The first Raptor Mantis scaled the chain link fence and hopped onto the ground, hissing and snapping its claws on the tips of its mantis arms while showing its fangs.Bookmark here

Rover’s avatar quickly spun the multicolored yarn over its head, forming a spider web net, then fired it at the charging monster. The attack was slower than the Infantry Glove Aliens, but the stretchy, sticky web covered a wide area at mid-range.Bookmark here

Two Gull Hornets were also caught in the same wide attack, but they were not defeated because the strike was not powerful. The Raptor Mantis also survived, but considering it had much more HP than the other monsters, it had taken by far the most damage Rover had inflicted in a single hit since the start of the match.Bookmark here

One more strike of the same Cuddly Elemental attack killed all three monsters at once. Satisfied, Rover chuckled.Bookmark here

That chuckle was followed by an obnoxious laugh from Captain Pretentious.Bookmark here

“Oh-ho-ho-ho-ho! New enemies have arrived!” Her character stood at the center of a virtual conflagration that burned all of her surrounding enemies to nothingness. “And they’re weak to Cuddly Elemental damage!”Bookmark here

Rover scoffed, knowing something was brewing in the miniscule madam’s mind.Bookmark here

“Captain,” said a boy’s voice through her earpiece, “more Raptor Mantises approach from all sides. They’re mixed in with the same previous enemies, too.”Bookmark here

“So,” Captain Pretentious said, seeing the wave of incoming enemies through her tablet as a toothy grin stretched across her small face, “…this is where the battle gets really engaging…”Bookmark here

Rover alternated between his Infantry Glove Aliens and Knitted Glove Aliens, taking out as many fire-vulnerable enemies as possible at a distance before routinely casting out cozy nets to wipe out the Raptor Mantises.Bookmark here

Sweat covered his face; this method was intense, and a single slipup or change in enemy formation could destabilize its effectiveness.Bookmark here

Some enemy nails from their nail guns chipped away at Rover’s character’s HP. The next wave of monsters was nearly there.Bookmark here

With a swath of fireballs, Captain Pretentious eliminated most of the fire-vulnerable Goblins and Zombies as they encircled the playing field barrier. The other monsters took continual damage as they were ignited, charging in with agonized roars, swinging their weapons and claws wildly before the little woman’s character punched them out. All except for the large Raptor Mantises—they were immune to being caught on fire, and they charged closer.Bookmark here

“Heh.” Captain Pretentious chuckled under her breath, switching her Glove Aliens.Bookmark here

Everyone saw Captain Pretentious’ character covered in the same colorful yarn as Rover’s character, wrapped around the hands and lacing over the body in a messy tangle. The character’s new appearance now matched the murdered-rainbow color scheme of the person controlling it.Bookmark here

“She has the Knitted Glove Aliens, too,” Rover grunted.Bookmark here

Lumpy narrowed his eyes and clenched his jaw, leaning against a ventilation shaft on the rooftop, and he watched the match through his phone.Bookmark here

“So much for that new advantage you thought you had,” he said flatly.Bookmark here

When the current wave of enemies passed through the barrier, two large, spoked discs of spiraling energy appeared on both sides of Captain Pretentious’ character, resembling yarn spinning wheels. They linked to the character’s colorful strands, glowing and whirring as they spun faster.Bookmark here

“What is that?!” Rover saw the action through his phone, trying not to be distracted from the battle. “I don’t have that attack… Her Knitted Glove Aliens are more leveled up than mine!”Bookmark here

The opponent’s avatar spun in circles, swinging the glowing yarn spinning wheels around it at blinding speed. Extending farther out with each revolution, the wheels mowed down the crowd of surrounding monsters, taking them all down in a single hit, including the Raptor Mantises.Bookmark here

Seconds later, the wheels vanished when the attack ended. With a quick weapon swap, Captain Pretentious followed up with more flames and burned the next wall of fire-vulnerable enemies. Captain Pretentious repeated this pattern several times over the next minute.Bookmark here

“Damn!” Rover shouted when his character took a nasty bite from a flying Raptor Mantis. It wasn’t often the dino-bugs took flight, but when they did, it was always a short distance, and they were always very fast. “Her method is way better than mine!”Bookmark here

“Urrghh…” Adele groaned as she watched Captain Pretentious rack up kills at an accelerated rate while Rover’s character took hits. “You better think of something quick, R!”Bookmark here

During a brief lull in enemy attacks, Rover opened the onscreen menu to change his Glove Aliens.Bookmark here

He had a last resort, and there was no time to falter.Bookmark here

“Fine! Here we go!”Bookmark here

19!19@19#19$19%19^19&19*19(19)19_19+19Bookmark here

Seven blocks away, Quintegrity swapped her wig to the dreadlocks and top hat. Sneaking around, she located the inconspicuous entrance to an infrastructural command tower. A guard stood watch in front of the dark entrance, and most people wouldn’t have noticed him due to his uniform purposely camouflaged with the drab concrete walls and ground.Bookmark here

Quintegrity scampered up the tower’s wall, using any protrusion in the building to climb it. After listening to the urgent commentary regarding Rover’s game with Captain Pretentious, she had her reason to nab a peek at the ruckus.Bookmark here

Just above the surrounding buildings and trees, she took a gander at the parking lot where the AR match took place. The stiff breeze played with her wig dreadlocks.Bookmark here

Jagged pillars of virtual ice, visible from nearly a kilometre away, blasted upward to form a tomb of freezing graphic textures within a settling tempest of digital snow and frigid dust. The entire parking lot was encased along with every spectator, reaching up to the Thugforce Militia chopper hovering just above the icy peaks.Bookmark here

A tranquil smile found its way to Quintegrity’s mouth. “Backed into a corner, my dear?”Bookmark here

“Shut up,” Rover muttered through the earpiece. “I’m not capable of the crazy things you are, so don’t make fun of me.”Bookmark here

“I’m not making fun of you, silly!” Giggling, she added, “Don’t worry. The timing is tight, but still on track. You could even call it perfect.”Bookmark here

“I’ll just let you do your thing, then…”Bookmark here

“Yeah!”Bookmark here

Alerted by a sudden whooshing sound, Quintegrity scurried alongside the infrastructural command tower, using the minute protrusions, conduit pipes, and maintenance ladders. The sound shot past her.Bookmark here

She turned off her earpiece.Bookmark here

“They still haven’t found me!”Bookmark here

Rover hadn’t bothered asking Quintegrity what she was doing. Instead, he respected the pause—his pause—during the temporary, morose stillness caused by Winter’s Sepulcher demolishing every enemy in the playing field’s vicinity.Bookmark here

While the crowd broke out of their stupor with cheers and applause (and boos and accusations of cheating from Captain Pretentious’ fans), Quintegrity dropped off the tower from over four stories high, snuck past the guard by distracting him with the sound of throwing a cinder block against a metal panel around the corner, and she approached the infrastructural command tower entrance.Bookmark here

The fingerprint scanner recognized her to be authorized personnel in a facility responsible for upholding the mechanical stability within Coldshoulder Square and the other surrounding districts, letting her inside before the aggravated guard came back.Bookmark here

Simple mechanical security can’t withstand my destiny, she thought as the door slid shut behind her, nor withstand the funk of my soul!Bookmark here

A middle-aged man yawned as he monitored the feedback equipment in the control room on the top floor. From behind him, the swish of the automatic sliding door startled him, and he snapped around in his chair to face his visitor.Bookmark here

Standing in the doorway was a mustachioed girl with long dreadlocks and a top hat. She spoke up while the operator fumbled and jumbled his stumbling words.Bookmark here

“Good day, sir. I’m here on behalf of the Chloroform Broker Department.”Bookmark here

The man regained his sense of duty as the mysterious visitor advanced into the restricted area.Bookmark here

“No, you’re not,” he said, trying to sound firm, but his back was hunched and tense. “Uh, because th-the Chloroform Broker Department would never send someone dressed as an uncouth high schooler to do work. Who are you?”Bookmark here

Blushing, Quintegrity said, “Yes…I suppose you’re right. I apologize for this inconvenience.”Bookmark here

An explosion came from down the hallway, and the operator’s eyes nearly popped out of his face.Bookmark here

“Oh mercy!” he cried. “What was that?!”Bookmark here

“The chloroform closet,” she answered, upholding professional etiquettes and sagacious calmness armed with uncanny sickly-sweetness.Bookmark here

Aahhhh!!!”Bookmark here

The operator bolted from his station and out the door, Quintegrity hot on his heels down the hallway.Bookmark here

“Wait, mister!” The girl grabbed the man’s wrist, stopping him. “It’s dangerous!”Bookmark here

“Then what are we s-s-supposed t-to do???”Bookmark here

Despite the miniscule time required to blink, the man didn’t have that chance before the handkerchief covered his mouth and nose.Bookmark here

“Just breathe deep.”Bookmark here

The voice…the soft mulberry eyes…the hint of a prankster’s contentment in the curls of her smile; such were all the things the man took in and enjoyed as the overwhelming peacefulness pulled his eyelids down and latched them shut.Bookmark here

In no time, he was snoring.Bookmark here

“Sorry for the panic attack, mister,” she said as she hoisted the snoozing guy into her arms, carrying him while skipping to the beat in her head back to the control room. “There’s no real danger. I’m just good at making noise! Ha-ha!”Bookmark here

With the operator propped upright in the corner, Quintegrity looked over the tower’s control dashboards, her finger on her chin as she gawked. Childlike curiosity lit her eyes as the colors, lights, and funk-fueled interface won her over.Bookmark here

*Snap-ity! Clap! Snap-snap! Clap!*Bookmark here

*Snap-ity! Clap! Snap-snap! Stomp!*Bookmark here

The lights responded to her sounds, to her motions, and to the groove that fluxed and flowed through and out of her. Each panel, gauge, meter, and indicator surged and receded with her rhythm, turning the entire heads up display into a visual orchestra under her baton.Bookmark here

Oh, yes. The funk was strong here.Bookmark here

“I’ve never used a Disc Jockey User Interface before,” she snickered to herself, glancing back to the slumbering, mumbling man in the corner. “You’re quite the groovin’ dude to be using this every day. I salute you, groovin’ dude. And…now that I take a good look at you, those glasses aren’t normal prescription glasses. They have AR capabilities.”Bookmark here

Quintegrity turned back to the control console and sat in the gaming chair positioned at the helm. She pressed the funny-looking button that stood out, being huge and the color of pretty tropical fish and labeled “Manual Operation.”Bookmark here

Every shadow vanished as the room lit up with electronic splendor. Under manual operation, the augmented reality control panel revealed itself to the master of the chair, and the motion capture cameras watching from every direction mapped the master’s movements to the hologram coordinates—Quintegrity could “touch” the AR controls responsible for the heartbeat of one hundred square-kilometres of the Easterly Thugwood Prefecture.Bookmark here

Two AR turntables rimmed with bright lights were side-by-side in front of her. Beyond and around them, various sliders, buttons, and dials completed the interface, all feeding into equipment for recording, looping, and sampling.Bookmark here

This machine was made for her.Bookmark here

She placed her hands on the holograms. They shimmered and scintillated from her touch. The music began, and the city bowed to her beat.Bookmark here

On the far west end of Coldshoulder Square, a patch of traffic signals went dark. Honking motorcars clogged the streets as road rage and anarchy descended upon the motorists.Bookmark here

But there needed to be more.Bookmark here

Quintegrity put her entire body into feeling the flow, gracing the console’s every AR component with her fingers and palms, twisting her back to reach the farthest equalizers, extending her legs to stomp each floor pedal, transcribing the grooviness from inside her veins into the pulse of the city itself as she laid down the funkiest track in recent memory. There didn’t seem to be any speakers in the control room for her to hear this music, but the feedback to the master’s chair was audible in the soul, bypassing the ears and boogying straight into the brain. Furthermore, this music had always been clear to her, within her, because of her…and now the districts’ vitals were one with her music as her audience, her stage, her dance partner…Bookmark here

…And as her soul.Bookmark here

She cackled in euphoric delight, taking this soiree to the ballroom floor.Bookmark here

“Ya’ll ready to open up this mosh pit?!” she announced to nobody in particular, yet everybody all at once. Every tooth in her ear-to-ear smile glistened in the electric bonanza, and with both arms laid upon every slider at once, she pushed every setting up past eleven. “Here comes the breakdown!!!”Bookmark here

The water main bubbled and burped. The surveillance systems winked out and whimpered. The thuggoon servers crashed and crinkled. Sprinklers spritzed and spluttered. Automated paint immobilizers let the coatings run wet. Vending machines ran away. Streetlamps activated disco ball mode. As the city let its hair down and gave in to the commanding DJ, the west end of Coldshoulder Square transformed into a rave scene reflecting Quintegrity’s quintessential funk.Bookmark here

However, every citizen caught up in the commotion was terrified. Chaos ensued. They couldn’t handle the cosmic power of the funk.Bookmark here

19!19@19#19$19%19^19&19*19(19)19_19+19Bookmark here

Captain Pretentious howled in anger, stabbing her index finger at Rover. “You think this ice blast of yours is something special, don’t you?!”Bookmark here

“It holds its own place in my ice-cold heart,” Rover said, shrugging.Bookmark here

“I don’t know how the hell this isn’t cheating!” she hollered.Bookmark here

When the arctic attack finished its animation and slowly vanished to nothingness, the two competitors looked around through their AR devices. Rover could see more monsters approaching from the distance, and he equipped his Infantry Glove Aliens to prepare for more long-range attacking.Bookmark here

“Two minutes left,” Rover grunted, seeing the countdown timer on his screen as he waited for the monsters to enter his range. “And I have no idea how many kills she has.” He tugged on his shirt collar to release some of the heat, then wiped his sweaty forehead on his arm.Bookmark here

Captain Pretentious growled when she saw Rover’s avatar equip the Infantry Glove Aliens again. “He’s just messing with me, choosing not to go all-out. What a frickin’ brat.” She narrowed her eyes at him. “No doubt, he’ll make a name for himself. It was fate that we’d meet today.”Bookmark here

“I thought you didn’t believe in fate, Captain,” one of her boys replied through her earpiece.Bookmark here

She turned toward the incoming monsters. “I also don’t renounce it, either.”Bookmark here

“Maybe Rover feels guilty for abusing his special Glove Aliens,” another boy said.Bookmark here

“Doubtful,” she muttered.Bookmark here

Adele peered over the chain link fence she clung to—she had an unobscured view of the west end side of Coldshoulder Square at the bottom of the cliff. Catching her eye from the distance, the colorful lights in the town below were flashing and pumping to a beat she couldn’t hear, but could sense.Bookmark here

“What in the world…?” She zoomed in with her holoshades to check it out. “Is there a festival in town?”Bookmark here

“Everyone,” Quintegrity said through their earpieces, “let me know how Captain Pretentious reacts next.”Bookmark here

“Huh?” Rover fired full-auto energy bullets at the incoming Zombies, keeping them out of his opponent’s blaze. “Reacts next to what?”Bookmark here

“It’s coming!”Bookmark here

What’s coming?!”Bookmark here

Captain Pretentious smeared her fires around in front of her avatar, waiting for the enemies Rover couldn’t kill to run into her blaze. As she watched the horde grow closer, something at the top of her tablet’s screen grabbed her attention.Bookmark here

“What the…?” She focused on the object; it was airborne, dark as night, and moving quite fast, about to pass overhead not too far from the playing field.Bookmark here

More importantly, she couldn’t see it with her eyes. With a pang of excitement, she sneered at it.Bookmark here

“That’s it!” one of the boys broadcasted through their communicators. “That’s the helicopter I saw, Captain!”Bookmark here

“Is that a rare enemy?” Aiming her fireballs up, she unleashed a barrage at the incoming thing. “I’ll be taking that one, thank you!”Bookmark here

The spectators turned their devices toward the sky…but saw nothing, exchanging confused whispers and expressions. Even Rover, Lumpy, and Adele couldn’t find what Captain Pretentious was going on about.Bookmark here

Is this…what Quintegrity told me about?Bookmark here

“Q,” Rover said, taking out two Raptor Mantises with some well-timed knitted nets, “Captain Pretentious is saying she sees something…”Bookmark here

“Ooh…is it distracting her?”Bookmark here

He looked at the childish woman, seeing her frustration as she aimed her fireballs into the sky.Bookmark here

“Uh, yeah…”Bookmark here

“Splendid!” Quintegrity cheered. “That’s your opening!”Bookmark here

“Wh-What are you talking about???”Bookmark here

“Dammit, dammit, dammit!” Captain Pretentious hollered, her avatar being swarmed and damaged by enemies. She was forced to run around and switch to defensive maneuvers for a moment. “My attacks went right through that thing!”Bookmark here

“Maybe it was invulnerable to fire, Captain,” one of the boys told her.Bookmark here

“No, that wasn’t it…” She mowed down her surrounding enemies with her powerful yarn spinning wheel attack. “It would’ve showed there was no effect. Instead, the hits didn’t even register!”Bookmark here

She growled as the mysterious aircraft headed west over the cliff, which was followed by the Thugforce Militia helicopter. The boy on the walkway along the rock face watched them head in the same direction.Bookmark here

“Captain, it looks like they’re going to where all those lights and stuff are happening,” he said into the communication earpiece. “I still can’t see what’s happening down there.”Bookmark here

“Whatever!” Captain Pretentious spat. “It’s out of my attack range now. What a fine distraction that was!”Bookmark here

Amid the action of the AR match, Rover’s curiosity threatened to generate his own distraction.Bookmark here

“Q!” he said. “What did you do?”Bookmark here

“It ain’t over yet, R!”Bookmark here

“H-Hey! Answer me!”Bookmark here

“Not yet…”Bookmark here

In the epicenter of the infrastructural control tower, Quintegrity stood and shoved the gaming chair away with her butt. She cracked her knuckles, took a deep breath, and readied her finale.Bookmark here

Her arms and fingers blurred from the speed of her operations, mixing and looping the funky, bumping beats with the skill and complexity needed by three operators at once. The electric rave lights captured her afterimages, flowering and blossoming as Quintegrity moved the city’s lightshow from the west end of Coldshoulder Square to the east and beyond.Bookmark here

Maximum overload!” she called out as she forced the Disc Jockey User Interface to reach breaking capacity.Bookmark here

An earthquake came from the east. Rolling blackouts followed.Bookmark here

Rover and Captain Pretentious were brought to their knees. Adele fell from the fence, landing hard on the shaking ground. From the rooftop he was on, Lumpy wrapped his arms around a post to keep himself upright. People stumbled and collapsed. In an instant, the AR match flickered and lagged, but soon restored itself.Bookmark here

When the earth calmed down, the people did not. Scared shouts and nervous whispers blew through Coldshoulder Square and the surrounding districts.Bookmark here

Rover glanced around, not seeing any damage to the town.Bookmark here

However, there was still a game to be won.Bookmark here

“Nature can’t stop me!” Captain Pretentious yelled, getting back to her feet. “But it can stop with the distractions, please!”Bookmark here

She wiped out another group of enemies with her spinning wheels, then noticed the mysterious helicopter had changed its route, heading east toward the origin of the earthquake and rolling blackouts.Bookmark here

“There it is again!” Still, the fireballs did nothing. “What the hell?! I know I hit it!!!”Bookmark here

It was another opportunity for Rover to get kills while his opponent did not. He dropped his last Beam Grenade, slashed through several enemies with his sabre, and squelched plenty more Raptor Mantises with his Cuddly Elemental yarn.Bookmark here

Just as the match reached its climax, the clock ran out.Bookmark here

Rover’s breath stopped as he looked at his screen. Everyone held the collective silence, waiting for the results…Bookmark here

It was a tie.Bookmark here

The monsters vanished. The sudden death round began as both players had their characters reduced to one HP each.Bookmark here

Neither he nor Captain Pretentious vocalized anything. In fact, Rover didn’t even look to see where his opponent was—his Beelzebub Glove Aliens were equipped instinctively, and his finger was already in motion toward the button labeled Winter’s Sepulcher…Bookmark here

Frigid mayhem was all everyone’s screens could see.Bookmark here

Rover’s knees shook as his body lost its tension so quickly that he almost fell over. His character still stood as the icy tomb surrounded it.Bookmark here

Yet, the match didn’t end.Bookmark here

Captain Pretentious laughed an ear-piercing, skin-crawling, nail-biting laugh. Damn, did she look and sound evil at that moment.Bookmark here

“I know your finishing move, prick!” she jeered. “The Antifreeze Bracelet is only good for one hit, but it made me invincible against any ice attack you had!”Bookmark here

“Shit!” Rover couldn’t see the opposing character—there was too much ice blocking the view. Only the word “Nullified” was visible, indicating how much damage Captain Pretentious’ character had taken.Bookmark here

His slippery finger slid across his phone screen.Bookmark here

Swap out the Beelzebub Glove Aliens! Equip the Infantry ones!Bookmark here

He immediately deployed the Stationary Riot Shield, a protective barrier that blocked all attacks for a set time. The Infantry Glove Aliens could use it only once every five minutes, so this would probably be his only chance to deploy it this round.Bookmark here

Fireballs came through the frozen structures, hitting the Stationary Riot Shield as soon as it was up. Rover was spared.Bookmark here

The animation for Winter’s Sepulcher ended, and through the vanishing ice graphics, he watched Captain Pretentious’ avatar leap into the air with a signature sound effect:Bookmark here

*Sproing!*Bookmark here

The Froggy Glove Aliens… They let the character jump very high. They also have a lightning-quick, long-range attack with near-perfect accuracy because of its auto-target…The Tongue.Bookmark here

Time chugged to a crawl as the opposing avatar soared toward Rover. Hitting it with the Infantry Glove Aliens’ energy bullets would require too much accuracy. Hitting it with the Knitted Glove Aliens’ web would require too much time.Bookmark here

There was only one pair of Glove Aliens for the task.Bookmark here

He equipped the Beelzebub Glove Aliens. However, Winter’s Sepulcher wasn’t usable until after the animation completely vanished, but a split-second margin of error was all Rover had.Bookmark here

He tapped the onscreen button labeled “Infernal Rain.”Bookmark here

Everyone watched Rover’s character put both fists together, aim straight up, and launch an explosive blast high into the AR airspace. The huge projectile itself was nowhere close to touching the opponent, but the concussive force blew Captain Pretentious’ character backward, knocking it out of the air and killing it before it landed on the ground.Bookmark here

However, people were still focused on the shooting projectile, blazing like a meteor trying to escape the world and leave the atmosphere. They watched it through their devices, soaring higher than they thought the AR would allow.Bookmark here

Far, far above the real world, only visible through augmented reality cameras, Rover’s giant ball of burning wonder exploded, painting the AR sky with a supernova cloud more beautiful, impressive, and captivating than any real-life firework anyone had seen. Hundreds of smaller fireballs showered the digital environment, pouring flames over the entire AR battlefield and beyond.Bookmark here

19!19@19#19$19%19^19&19*19(19)19_19+19Bookmark here

Two kilometres away, atop a basic radio tower, hidden inside and between the rungs and bars, Quintegrity watched the apocalyptic inferno lay waste to the virtual land. She let out a soft vocal utterance, mesmerized by the sight.Bookmark here

“Wowww…”Bookmark here

Something fluttered in her heart, tickling her eyes and toying with her goosebumps.Bookmark here

“Rover…you and I are capable of many of the same things.” Holding her hand to her chest, she closed her eyes and smiled. “Even from the ground, you can touch the sky.”Bookmark here

She had already removed her earpiece and turned it off, so nobody heard her say that.Bookmark here

*******Bookmark here

<<<STATUS>>>Bookmark here

Rover… Lvl 888Bookmark here

All Money… {T}35,700Bookmark here

Allowance… {T}34,700Bookmark here

Fundraiser… {T}0Bookmark here

Food Slip… {T}1,000Bookmark here

<<<EXPENSE GOALS>>>Bookmark here

Benedict’s Payment… {T}100,000Bookmark here

Anti-Grav Skateboard… {T}499,999Bookmark here

<<<CURRENT EQUIPMENT>>>Bookmark here

Gloves… BeelzebubBookmark here

Armor… Jinnin TunicBookmark here

Acc. 1… Farm EquipmentBookmark here

Acc. 2… Yakuza ToolsBookmark here

<<<SPECIAL NUMBERS>>>Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.