"You're the Practitioner that's supposed to complete our roster?" A rather handsome young man that looked to be in his twenties asked, two estocs strapped to his waist.
I nodded at the query, "Yes, pleasure working with you. This town has a lack of Practitioners so I'm all they have to send."
He turned back to look at the rest of his party, One was an extremely muscular guy that reminded me of the lolicon I saw back at the candy shop with Cai Hong and the other one was an elf with long flowing white hair.
The big guy had a giant shield strapped to his back with a mace clipped on his waist while the elf had an unstrung longbow resting inside a quiver full of arrows on her back.
No prizes to whoever guessed the big guy to be a tank and the elf to be an archer.
"This is a joke right? Are we really gonna take this little pipsqueak along?" The guy with the twin estocs asked, pointing a finger at me.
The big guy shrugged, "We just needed a Practitioner along to be able to accept this quest right? Just bring him along for the sake of it. It's just a recon Request after all."
The elf also nodded, "I'm sure he can at least help us with the Practitioner side of things. Worse comes to worse, he can just be a baggage carrier."
The estoc guy flailed his arms, "Whatever, but ain't now way I'm babysitting him! He's yours now Arza."
The elf crossed her arms, "Oh is he now, Lance? I'd thought as leader of this party you should be the one taking care of our new members?"
The Lance guy shook his head quickly, "Go to hell. I hate kids. Ain't no way I'm going to take care of him. You girls are supposed to be good with kids right?"
The tank guy bellowed in laughter, "Hahaha! And you wonder why you're still single, Lance!"
"Shut up Henry, nobody asked you."
"And I didn't ask to take care of a kid either," Arza called out.
Well, just a few minutes into meeting them and I'm already so looking forward to working with these lovely people.
I was being sarcastic by the way.
I faked a cough to get their attention, "I can take care of myself, thank you very much. Now, I only have half a day to track this dragon down and deal with it, so who's the tracker?"
Lance looked at me with narrowed eyes, "Big mouth for a small kid eh?"
Ignoring him, the elf stepped forward, "I am. But I will need to get in touch with my contact in the forest northwest of here to pick up this dragon's trail. Did you not read the mission details? This Request is estimated to take at least a week or two, maybe even more."
"He's a kid, what the hell does he know?" Lance scoffed.
"Hey, hey. I think he's cute at least," Henry commented.
I frowned, I do not have a week, much less two. And I definitely do not even want to spend a day more with how Henry is looking at me like that.
"Ok, that won't do. I have appointments to keep tonight, we're doing this in half a day whether you like it or not. Just tell me what you need to do and where you need to go."
The Lance dude huffed, "Listen here kid, this isn't a game you know? What do you take Adventurers for? If such a Request could be completed so easily, they wouldn't need to call in pro Adventurers like us."
Ignoring him, I pulled out a map from my storage ring and opened it to show the elf.
"Where do we need to go?"
She hesitated before pointing somewhere about fifty to sixty kilometers northwest of us, "My contact should be there, I'll have to track him down once we're there though."
I inspected the map closely, if we were to travel normally by the fastest route, it would bring us through a dense forest before passing through a valley. The valley would swerve towards the foot of the mountain before we have to follow a goat's path up the side to reach this plateau where our destination was located.
"Alright, stay close, I'll bring us there."
Lance stepped in front of me, "Did you not hear me you little kid? I'm the leader here, you listen to me you got that? This is why I hate kids."
Henry pulled him by his shoulder, "Hey, lighten up man He's just a kid, it's our duty to show him the ropes right? Just calm down."
Arza came up to us, "Alright, alright. I'll just grab the kid and we can go right? Let's just--"
I completed the circulation of the required quarks, waving my hand in the air and forming a circle of light on the ground.
Before those three could voice out their surprise at the light, we had already disappeared from the place and reappeared at where Arza had pointed out to me.
"What What just happened?" Henry asked, his shield and mace already equipped and ready.
Arza had a bow strung and an arrow nocked as well, her eyes scanning her surroundings silently.
"Kid! What did you do?!" Lance shouted, his estocs out by his side.
For them to react this fast to a sudden change in situation, I actually do have to applaud them for their quick decision making. Guess they weren't lying about them being top Adventurers.
Before I could answer Lance's question though, a male elf stepped out from the bushes, "Arza? Is that you? What are you doing here?"
"Dererei?" Arza gasped. "But How? Where Where are we?"
"The forest you pointed out to me," I explained. "Took awhile for me to find a person to teleport to but I guess I'm lucky he's the only humanoid person I can find around here."
Arza gaped at me, "Tel Teleportation? But That shouldn't be possible! The sheer difficulty of that alone There's a reason why so many people agree that teleportation is a near impossibility!"
I shrugged, what do these non-Practitioners know about Techniques anyway?
I waved my hand to dispel her incredulity, "Doesn't matter if it is or not, we're here now so just do what you need to do. Chop chop, I want to be out of here in the next five minutes."
Everyone was still gaping at me and not moving from their position.
I rolled my eyes, pointing a finger at the male elf, "You there! Derei-what's-it! Dragon, where?"
"D D Dragon? I Er That is I don't..."
I condensed my Pure Elemental Quarks before releasing it in a wave directed at the male elf. Learning from my past mistake all the way back when I first met Lian Li, I put in as little of my killing intent as I could. This should be enough to scare him into talking.
"I won't ask again, Dragon, where?"
The elf choked before promptly fainting, spasming on the ground with foam coming out of his mouth.
God damn it.