Warmth of the Heart
On June 24, 2024 at Lindas on 48th floor, Asuna visits her friend the blacksmith Lisbeth or "Liz" at her smith shop before going adventuring, and Liz suspects she's going with a boy she likes. Later, Kirito arrives at Liz's shop as he's looking for a custom-made sword to buy. Much to Liz's shock, Kirito's sword Elucidator easily breaks her strongest sword. Angry and her pride hurt, Liz convinces Kirirto to let her join him to the Western Mountain on the 55th floor to get a rare mineral from a dragon that eats crystals so she can use the mineral to make a stronger sword. As they arrive at the Western Mountain, Kirito advises Liz to hide as he fights the dragon. However, she ignores his advice when she comes out when she thinks the dragon is almost defeated. The dragon blows her into a deep pit and Kirito jumps in to save her. While they both survive, they can't get out of the pit and are forced to sleep there for the night. Liz asks Kirito to hold her hand while they sleep, which brings her to realize that she can feel another person's warmth even though they are just data. She also realizes that she has feelings for him. The next morning, Kirito discovers that the mineral they are seeking, a Crystallite Ingot, is under the snow as the hole is the dragon's nest. The dragon returns and Kirito grabs Liz with him as he stabs the dragon's back, forcing it to carry them out of the hole before jumping out. Now safe with the mineral, Liz manages to create a new sword for Kirito, Dark Repulsor. As she asks Kirito to use her as his exclusive smith and is about to confess to him, a worried Asuna arrives. Realizing Kirito is the boy Asuna likes, Liz excuses herself from them. As Liz cries over her heartbreak, Kirito finds her and tries to comfort her. Accepting her predicament, Liz promises to help Kirito as his smith if he promises to win the game and free them all.