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marybethgriggs > The Other Side of the Mask > 37 Chapter 37: Fun Town
I wake up to the bustling noise from downstairs. Mei and the villagers are up quite early.

"Oh, good morning, QiLing!" Mei greets me.

"Good morning!"

We chatter at breakfast.

"So what's the capital like?"

"Well, there's the white palace in the middle and arrays of buildings around it. It's quite lively."

"Haha, they must have better conditions than anywhere else in the kingdom."

"That's not true," I tell them seriously, "The southport town actually is quite adept and very like the capital."

"Oooh!"

The villagers look at me like excited kids. I play around a bit, dilly dallying, since I don't really have anything to do. I even played on a random piano. It is quite fun in this heartwarming village.

"Are you leaving now?" Mei asks me.

"Yeah, I'm going to go down to the southport to earn money," I tell her.

I carry my meager amount of belongings and head down south. I walk for the entire afternoon, even when my legs are numb. The only thing that fills my mind is what happened and all the precious people I'm leaving behind. I'll only cause more harm by being by them.

I finally smell the fresh, salty, sea air! Ah! I take an amazing deep breath as I look at my surroundings closely. The port town sure did liven up from last time. I walk around the markets with the hustling bustling people. They look better than ever!

"Oy! Young lady!" a familiar voice calls over.

I turn around to see the leader of the bandits from last time, or should I say, mayor of this city?!

"Hey! What's up?"

"Ah, thank you for last time. What brings you here?"

"Oh, I'm thinking of moving here from the capital."

"Ah, let me get you the stuff. We'll make sure to give you top quality, especially for the help you gave us last time."

"Thank you!"

I follow him to his office, as he introduces me to the people of the town. They all bow and thank me. I smile, happy that they are so lively and having fun. It cheers my mood up.

The mayor, ZhuWu, shows me to a super luxurious house.

"You didn't-"

"Haha, no one lives here anyways after the nobles cleared out. Everyone's happy with you being here."

I unpack and set out with ZhuWu to explore the town. He introduces me to some key people and businessmen. Finally, we arrive at the shore.

"Can I ride a ship?!" I ask, way too excited for my own good.

He looks at me weirdly, but accepts, "Sure!"

He calls a ship owner, "Hey, we're gonna borrow a ship for a stroll, k?"

"Ey, sure."

They gladly show us to one and send a crew to operate. I stand on the pier and look down at the beautiful ocean blue. The wind rustles my hair, and I stretch my arms out. Everyone talks cheerfully and enjoys the sunset.

At night, we visit a popular restaurant. ZhuWu books an entire hall and invites all the bandits from that night to join us. We dance and drink all night. The amazing seafood shocks me, as they introduce me to some weird food such as squid

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