ASTRID and Reas were standing a few distance away in front of their house. Their heads were close together, talking in a low voice as if they were planning something secretly. Well, maybe that was indeed the case.
"Reas, don"t forget to bring Dad and Mom to the "place"," Astrid reminded his twin brother.
Reas looked at him with exasperation. "Aster, I know. You already reminded me a hundred of times already. Do I look that forgetful or something?"
Astrid only gave his brother a look that"s saying, "yes, you are, you still have the audacity to ask?". "It"s because I"m afraid you won"t be able to resist logging into the virtual world. Then you"d surely be too engrossed fighting in that Mecha Hall arena, totally forgetting all our plans. Which in turn would leave me waiting there in vain."
Reas couldn"t immediately refute what Astrid said. Because, in all honesty, there"s a high probability that he would do just that. He scratched the back of his head. "I know. I promise you I won"t touch my virtual pod for the rest of the afternoon."
Before Astrid could reply, they suddenly heard their mother"s voice. "What are you boys doing?"
The two quickly separated as if guilty of something. They looked back and saw that their mother was already standing near them. Because they didn"t expect the sudden appearance of their mother, they thought she was still at one of the farm"s greenhouses together with their father, their reaction just now was quite genuine. The one who reacted first and quickly returned to normal was Astrid.
"Nothing, Mom. Just some random stuff," he said with a gentle smile on his face.
Emmy looked at the two suspiciously. "Really? You two are not planning to do something mischievous, aren"t you?"
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Astrid gave her a helpless smile. "Mom, have I ever done something like that?"
Reas glanced at his brother. Looking at his smile and that expression as if they were really just talking about random things, he was reminded once again how good Astrid was at acting. Maybe going to a performing arts school was not so bad of an idea after all.
Well, Astrid had a point – Emmy thought. Even when he was a child, he had always been more mature than his age. Sometimes, there was even an illusion that he was a mature man already. So, she no longer asked the two what they were discussing and just glanced at the big backpack Astrid was wearing.
"Are you going somewhere?" she asked.
"Yes, I"m going biking."
When he was young, Astrid asked his father to make him a bike – the one that could be found in ancient Earth. He had to draw a design of it since a simple contraption like a bike couldn"t be found in this era. But since the design was pretty simple, his father easily made one for him. He"s good at tinkering things, his father. After seeing him rode the bike, Reas also asked their father to make one for him. So, since then, the two of them could be seen riding a bike together from time to time.
"Be careful then and make sure to come back before dinner," his mother reminded.
Astrid only smiled, looked at his brother – his eyes telling him that he better not forget what they just talked about, and then walked to where his bike was parked. He hopped on it and started pedaling.
The cool breeze blew on his face as he pedaled and he couldn"t stop the smile on his face. The road he was taking was something only for their family use. His parents made it so after he started going on bike rides. They"re probably worried that someone might just suddenly snatch him if this road was left to public use.
When he saw a fork in the road, he took a turn to the left. This direction would lead him to a beautiful lake hidden in the forest. That"s his current destination. He and Reas planned to give their parents a surprise dinner there. Maybe with the help of the ambiance and the food, their parents would be a bit softhearted and wouldn"t react too strongly once they told them what their plans for the future were.
Hopefully and fingers-crossed.
Since Reas was a lost cost when it came to anything kitchen related, he just asked him to bring his cooking utensils there early this morning. As well as some lights and chairs. There was a flat stone near the lake which could serve as their makeshift table. It would look presentable once it was covered by a blanket.
Astrid would be the one in-charge of cooking and setting up the place. Which he didn"t mind. Then he would send a message to his brother telling him when to bring their parents there.
Soon, he entered a forest path. It didn"t take long before he reached a clearing where the said lake was. Even though he had been here numerous times already, he was still amazed by the beautiful scenery. The crystal blue lake surrounded by wildflowers amidst the tall trees. Really, it was indeed a sight to behold.
He stopped the bike, got off, and parked it. Then he walked towards the flat rock he mentioned earlier and put his backpack there. He punched his shoulders a bit. Although his physical strength was A level, it was still just slightly stronger than the normal strength of a human living in the ancient Earth.
He saw the box where his cooking utensils were on the side. But he noticed that it was opened and some of his cookware were thrown arbitrarily around the ground. A crease immediately appeared on his forehead. Then he suddenly heard a splashing sound.
He sharply glanced back at the lake. The creased on his forehead became even deeper. He knew he shouldn"t, it"s probably best to run from here and call his brother. But he couldn"t help but step forward. Because he believed if there was really an intruder, he could subdue him. After all, there"s probably only a handful of people who could withstand the mental force coming from someone with an SSS level mental strength.
That kind of arrogant thought was probably where all things went wrong.
Because when he crouched down near the lake to see if there was someone beneath the water, a hand suddenly shot out and held his wrist. He was so startled, he wasn"t able to react fast enough. Until he was pulled hard and he plunged into the cold water of the lake.
When he tried to open his eyes, there was only one thing he saw.
A pair of golden eyes.
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