"Oww, my head!" Vanessa groaned.
"We drank a lot. WAY too much," Zoe agreed weakly.
Caitlin was still holding the bed sheet around herself and Zoe bustled around the room, searching it.
"What are you doing?"
"Looking for something to cover up with. My clothes are in the other room and I am NOT going back there just yet," Zoe said.
"Ah, here we are." She'd found the bathrobes in the closet. She put one on and tossed one to each of the girls.
"So what happened with you? I heard you yelling in the hallway," Vanessa asked.
"You wouldn't believe what that oaf, Ralph, did! I was completely out of it, sleeping off the drunk under the covers when I felt a burning stinging pain on... Well, anyway, the jerk smacked me. Hard! So hard, it left a mark and it STILL hurts. He was mumbling something about breakfast with bros. If I'd had my clothes on I would have kicked his ass. He CLAIMED he thought I was Dave," Zoe growled the last bit. Her face was red, her eyes glittering with fury.
"What happened last night. How did Ralph end up in my hotel room. And how did you two end up in Dave's? The plan was for the girls to sleep in the room I rented and the boys were going to stay in Dave's suite."
"I don't know, I just woke up and there he was in the bed with me. Then I saw Vanessa there too."
"Neither of you remember anything?" Vanessa asked. She'd thrown the bathrobe over her lingerie-model figure but hadn't bothered to fasten the belt.
"No, we were all so hammered, the last thing I remember was the Underground. Ohhhh, WAIT! HA HA! The expression on Jenny's face when she had to comp our bill for the night!"
The girls giggled together.
"I do remember Zoe saying she was going to get a room at the hotel and spend the night. But I passed out when we got in the elevator."
"Hmm, my head hurts, I can't think or remember shit. I say we order breakfast then sleep off the rest of this hangover. THIS time without any stupid men interrupting my beauty sleep," Caitlin growled.
"So nothing happened last night between you guys?" Zoe asked, looking back and forth at Vanessa and Caitlin.
Vanessa grinned, "Maybe, maybe not."
"Nothing happened! I think..." Caitlin's frowned in thought, trying to dredge up a reliable memory.
"But why were you naked?" Zoe asked.
"I sleep in the buff, not comfortable any other way," Caitlin shrugged.
"Girls, you know even if nothing happened, we can't let the boys think any of this okay. We have to make sure to remind them of their place in the grand scheme of things," Zoe looked at the other two women meaningfully with a very determined look on her face.
"Oh, don't worry about THAT.' Vanessa said, smiling evilly, "They WILL suffer the consequences of this little incident."
Dave led TNT through the forest on the fiend's back, surprisingly, no monsters spawned near them or even dared attack them the as fiend moved with them through the forests of the Wilds.
"I appreciate not being attacked or ambushed by high-level monsters, but didn't we come here to grind and get some exp?" Pussy Flanker said.
"Don't worry about EXP, for now, let's use this time to explore the wilds," Dave said.
Perfect Shot chipped in, "Stroke is right. Other players can't roam the wilds as safely as us, so we might discover something."
"What else are we going to find except more moldy trees and boulders." Flanker shrugged.
"Shut up and keep walking, you are just being spiteful because you can't ride the Fiend." Human fortress hit a string.
"Ugh, that's unfair man. Look at Stroke, the guy is riding a god damned level 550 monster! Why can't I ride it too?" Flanker whined.
"The next time we encounter another forest fiend you can try to tame and ride it," Dave grinned.
Flanker looked at the fiend and shook his head, "You tryna kill me bruh?"
Dave smiled and said, "Let's just keep going, hopefully, we will find something interesting, otherwise we will just have to stay with Spike until the friendly duration is over and fend for ourselves."
"Who's Spike?" Flanker asked.
Dave petted the Fiend's head "I named him Spike." Dave smiled.
The Forest Prong Fiend acknowledged the name you bestowed to it
Your Affinity with the fiend has increased.
The fiend is now more inclined to be friendly with your allies.
Ride timer increased by 1 hour
"Your naming sense is for shit...Death Stroke," said Flanker.
"You chose to call yourself Pussy Flanker dude, you don't get to comment on my naming sense."
"My name has a deeper meaning." Flanker said.
"Yeah? What deeper meaning?"
"I'd rather not talk about it."
Dave shook his head, "Anyway I think you guys can pet the fiend now," Dave said.
"Why would I want to pet that thing? It might bite my arm off," Flanker whined.
"Well, the intimacy level with the fiend increased when I named it. I think it can level up more if you pet it guys."
"Let me try," Human Fortress said. he slowly approached the Fiend. It grunted and took a step back.
"Don't worry, we're all friends here, Spike ole buddy ole pal. Who's the good boy with all the sharp prongs on his head, yeah it's you," Human Fortress crooned.
The heavily armored player stretched out a bare hand to be sniffed by the fiend. When it seemed to not be too angry or repulsed he ventured to pet its muzzle then started to scritch under it under the chin.
"Nice, wanna try Flanker?" Dave laughed..
Flanker approached timidly, ready to yank his hand back. Receiving only a wary eye from the fiend he screwed up his courage and finally stroked the fiend's silky fur.
"Soft fur," Flanker said. Perfect joined until all three of the TNT were grouped around the prong fiend's head petting and stroking it. The antlered monsters eyes were closed in bliss and it was making contented little grumbly whining sounds.
"Hm, the intimacy didn't increase any," Dave frowned.
"Well, just petting it won't work, you already got an increase for that," Human fortress said thoughtfully. He continued petting the monster, then "It's dirty, maybe we can do something with that. I have something that can help us."
Fortress brought out a Spartan style helmet form his inventory. The helmet was bronze with T shaped visors and had a bristly red brush crest on top.
"I bought this when I was at level 20, it's just for decoration, but we can use the crest as a brush."
Human Fortress used the helmet crest to brush away the dried mud and other unwanted accumulations from the fiend's tawny pelt. It took a while to brush the worst areas; its face, around the hooves and lower legs, the even softer white fur on its underbelly and chest.
Dave received another notification.
Your Affinity with Forest Prong Fiend has increased.
The fiend will now carry passengers while you are riding.
Ride timer increased by 1 hour
"Wow, it worked. Now we can all ride on it. You know your animals, Fortress," Dave said.
"We have a farm, it has horses on it and I like taking care of them. There are other things yo can try that might increase the Affinity level. You can feed it, maybe make a saddle for it if we are going to be riding long term. Maybe add some decoration or even armor if it decides to fight with us. Those could all help increase your Affinity with Spike," Human fortress said.
"I don't have any saddles, and what do we feed Spike?"
"I don't know, meat maybe? His teeth look too sharp for vegetables…" Flanker said.
Fortress pulled himself up onto the fiend and sat behind Dave. Perfect Shot sat behind them and Flanker was last.
"Hey why do I get the ass-seat?" Flanker complained.
"Go with what fits," Fortress snarked.
"Hey bro, not cool!"
"Well if you don't like it you could always walk," Perfect Shot smirked.
"Alright guys, let's get moving, we're still a long way from the tomb according to the map. Alright Spike, show us what you can do-"
"Show us the meaning of HASTE!" TNT chorused together.
The fiend let out a grumbling trumpet call, reared on its hind legs then burst forward, accelerating so quickly under the four players they felt like they were going to slide off of the racing fiend.
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