“Sorry I made you wait…”
Asuna removed her oven mitts after placing the soup on the table. She smiled towards Wu Yan who was sitting across the table.
“Eat up, I know it’s been a while since you ate my food…”
Wu Yan nodded, he grabbed a piece of sandwich and he gobbled them down.
“You’re the one who strong-armed me into making food for you every time you came here, lord knows it would harm you to bring some food when you visit each time.”
Asuna pursued her lips and she grumbled in a small tone.
“I wasn’t gunning for the food when I visited…”
“What was that?”
Asuna turned her head the other way while Wu Yan marveled at how women can experience such swift and fluid change of mood.
Wu Yan usually eats simple dishes for breakfast. Food like sandwiches and bread is the norm for him. It’s simple to make and Wu Yan’s skill made each slice an absolute delicacy. Asuna also practices similar approach at home. Since Wu Yan is a guest, Asuna decided to cook up a pot of soup to celebrate their special day together.
Asuna likes good food, her appearance belied her appetite although it’s not to the inhuman extent of girls like Astrea and Tohka. Those two are just bottomless pits plain and simple. They are happy as long as they can eat their fill. For a gourmet like Asuna, the quality of the food needs to be up to par. That’s why she spent a bit of time to make the perfect soup for this occasion.
They enjoyed their meal in silent bliss.
Picking up the dishes, Asuna went into the kitchen to clean up. Wu Yan sat on the sofa as he read the newest paper.
It’s been a day since 74th floor was cleared. The volume of information released today surpassed his expectations. There was a ton of information on monster levels, difficulties, the general layout of the town and such. There is even information on quests.
The good quests are kept as secrets so he’s not expecting to see them here. A player needs to spend a bit of money to get intel on the juicy quests.
The players were fast in this regard. Frontliners are already testing out their skills in the monster fields. Generic findings were reported by information brokers. This is the reason why players are advised to read the newspaper a day or two after a floor is cleared.
But, for Wu Yan, the information contained here isn’t enough for him. He completed less than 10 quests during the past two years in SAO. He always rushed for the labyrinth, normal quests don’t pay enough to justify the investment. Rare quests are also given up because he reckoned that they would waste a lot of time that he can better use clearing the labyrinth.
It’s boring but effective at bringing his levels up.
The frontliners’ movements are more interesting to Wu Yan. He wanted to know what they are up to just like other players in this world.
Asuna finished her cleaning duties and she sat next to Wu Yan. She peeked as she asked.
“What are you looking at?”
“Nothing, I just want to inform myself on the movements of frontliners like you…”
Wu Yan nonchalantly said. He didn’t turn away from the paper when he replied.
“The Black Cats, Fuurinkazan, Dragons, and the KoBs are all exploring the monster fields, however, the pace is slower than my estimates…”
Her tone turned grave.
“Every 25th floor presents a floor boss like no other bosses before it, one wrong move could lead to the deaths of many. The souped-up bosses are the reason why the Army bowed out after the 25th floor, it’s also the reason why we lost a lot of players on the 50th floor. Without the Guild Master to delay it for 10 minutes, the frontliners would have been wiped out then and there…”
“This is the 75th floor, I understand why they are taking this so gingerly. What will happen if there is another mass-wipe out among the frontliners?”
Wu Yan threw the paper in his hand away.
“I should have participated back then…”
Asuna thought about it. With his power, the battles would have gone down different routes had Wu Yan joined back then.
Alas, the frontliners got to the boss room before Wu Yan 2 out of 2 times.
If Wu Yan found the boss rooms first, would he have been able to take down the souped-up bosses on his own?
Asuna felt anxious and she grabbed Wu Yan’s arm.
“Yan, can you promise me something?”
Asuna looked a thin with a serious look.
“You must join us during the floor boss raid this time!”
Wu Yan felt bewildered. He saw her stern look and he immediately read her mind. He chuckled as he continued.
“You’re looking down on your husband, aren’t you?”
Wu Yan tickled her chin as her nose twitched in response.
“The 74th-floor boss got diced up in less that 5 minutes, what can the 75th-floor boss do even if it’s stronger than the 74th floor boss? I am confident I can take it down, don’t forget, I also have my Dual Blades to back me up…”
Asuna relaxed her expression but she still looks a bit worried. She puffed her cheeks and she turned her head the other way.
“I don’t know what husband you’re talking about, we are not married…”
“It’s easy to get hitched, is it not?”
Wu Yan teased her.
“We just have to go apply for it…”
Marriage inside SAO is relatively straightforward. With the two players’ consent, the players only need to buy a ring and then exchange the rings with each other to become married husband and wife in this game.
It’s not a feature to be trifled with. For instance, once married, the two married players will share the same inventory, the players can freely take out or put items inside. If one of the couples died, his/her items would go to the other party.
The trust needed to take this step is one that stopped a lot of players from going through with marriage. A partner might plot to kill the other spouse if the hostile spouse covets the asset. Dying like this would be a damn shame.
There are cases in SAO that went about like this, they served as cautionary tales for other players.
Wu Yan and Asuna knew each other very well. With the advances in their relationship, even Asuna couldn’t hold her heart back from fluttering when Wu Yan brings up marriage.
“Do you really want to marry me?”
Asuna’s eyes wavered.
Wu Yan’s asset would make anyone greedy. It’s not hard to imagine how it would twist someone’s mind into a ravenous state.
Wu Yan proposed first so that must mean he has absolute trust in her.
Asuna felt her heart throbbing when she realized the amount of trust Wu Yan had in her.
“I don’t want to see a shred of doubt from you…”
Wu Yan hugged her.
“You’re the most charming person in SAO, thousands of suitors would drool at the prospect of tying the knot with you. Nobody can turn your feelings down, including me…”
Wu Yan grinned.
“But, when we do get married, I don’t want a cheap paper marriage like the one in this game. We are going to have a grand wedding with Kirito, Liz, Sachi, and the others in attendance. It would be best if our union is witnessed by all the players…”
“Then, we are going to exchange rings…”
At this point, Asuna covered her mouth as her body trembled. Joyful tears streamed down the sides of her face and she immediately flew into Wu Yan’s embrace.
“Yan, I love you…”