55 She calls those “Quests“?!
A faint rustle accompanied each of my wary strides. The ground under my paws was littered with colorful leaves, some of which were fresh and dry, thus making them the loudest, others were older and drenched instead, allowing for me to sneak through the underwood without pulling attention onto me.
Naturally, I choose to stay as covert as possible. There were too many monsters and animals far larger than me roaming through this forest. Each of them searched for a decent and easy to catch meal, which was likely the best description for a half-grown fox.
Even though this danger was surrounding me day and night, I couldn't help but feel confident now that Shiro had given me the means to defend against attacks. Before she went to sleep, or whatever she did that made her unable or unwilling to answer me, she had given me three last quests which probably were meant to both protect me and decide my next steps.
One of them was pretty straightforward. It was named 'Barks for Power' and demanded exactly that: I had to bark. Not like those silly 'kon kons' the transformation magic had forced me to do, but real barks like the ones that slipped my mouth whenever I tried to say something in my fox form.
By doing nothing but barking thrice, I had already accomplished the quest goal and thus had received a changed or rather improved version of the transformation magic. It now came with a lifeline: By barking thrice exactly like the quest had asked me to, I could now turn back to my human form whenever I felt like it, though that wasn't often.
Returning into my usual form was quite practical as it allowed me to make fires, eat and prepare food that was at least better than a roasted-as-whole bird. The big disadvantage was that it made it relatively easy to discover me between the bushes and scrubs that only reached up to my hips or breast. In a forest that housed goblins, that naturally spelled nothing but danger.
Aside of me now being able to cook and prepare a better hideout, I could access my item box, which proved to be even more precious with each time I opened it. Back then when I was still fighting those slimes and Ofris, I had finished a quest that had given me both new underwear and a 「Priestess' Robe」 that now proved to be worth more than its own weight in gold.
The underwear, the infamous 「Vixen's Secrets MK2」 simply gave me a slight bonus to my attributes like strength or vitality, the robe, however, was clearly made with being an adventurer in mind. It didn't give me any bonuses aside from it consuming a low amount of mana to either heat me up or cool down, depending on what was needed.
Naturally, I had slept well the last days. I had just placed the dress on the ground and, after forming a somewhat useable nest out of it, buried myself into it nose first until there was nothing but a small breathing-hole left. It was warm and comfortable, so comfortable in fact that I couldn't resist catching up on all the sleep I had missed lately.
The second quest was even plainer than the first one but almost as important to me, as it gave me something like an oversized lunchbox consisting solely of raw meat and fish. To receive it, I just had to burn half of my mana using fire spells and I did exactly that. Not only did I prepare a large campfire to warm me up even more, but I also used the same fire to cook my meal.
I had never really thought about what to eat until I was stranded in this nothingness. There had been fruits and berries that gave me stomach aches and worse, others, however, had been totally fine. In the end, meat worked best for my fox form, or at least I believed it to be the safest for now.
If it had only been for these two quests, I would certainly have believed the vixen had slipped and hit her head against a rock, suddenly turning her into a generous to a fault and praiseworthy goddess, but there was a third quest. It was as easy to understand and accomplish as the other ones, but that didn't mean I could just do it. I wasn't ready yet...
『Quest accepted: A Better Place
Description: Return to Ofris
⇒Skillset: Crafting (Fox Edition)
⇒Skillset: Domestic Magic (Fox Edition)
⇒Skillset: Summoning Magic (Fox Edition)
⇒Title: Loved Child (Passive effect: Increases all attributes by 45% and intelligence by an additional 15% when near Ofris. Purring threshold lowered by 50% when in close proximity.)
Replaces Title 'Maiden in Love'
Replaces Title: Loved Child (Old)
⇒Items: Prayer Bell, Figurine 'Shiro'』
A long sigh left my lips as I remembered the quest. «She still is not done trolling me...»
I shook my head and continued pushing forward, searching for the sole necessarity Shiro hadn't provided me with: water. After eating my fill off all that roasted meat and even a bit of the chocolate I had found in my itembox, my throat felt as dry as a desert. Luckily, I knew exactly where to look for a somewhat fresh drink.
Only a few lines of bright orange bushes and trees still separated me from there. I sniffed in the air, fearing there could be a wild animal or monster currently drinking at the pond, but there was nothing like that. If anything, it smelled like... him? My mind was playing me pranks. It couldn't be!
Just as I was about to brush it off as mere imagination, a green screen appeared right in front of my eyes.
『Quest completed: A Better Place
Gained Skillsets: Crafting (Fox Edition), Domestic Magic (Fox Edition), Summoning Magic (Fox Edition)
Gained Title: Loved Child
Gained Items: Prayer Bell, Figurine 'Shiro'』
⊱————- Extra ————-⊰
Sahria: She used Magic again!
Ofris: Magic? Where!
Sahria: It is gone...
Sahria: Oh! There it is again! I guess it is ... damn.
Ofris: Gone again?
Sahria: ... sorry.
Ofris: Just tell me when-
Sahria: There it is! ...oh
Rika: Damn it! This wood is too wet! Why won't it just burn?!
Rika: Screw it! 『Fireball!』
Rika: So much smoke!
Rika: It is dying again?!