Chapter 169: I Come Alone
Sila, wearing a mysterious black hood, stood on a tree branch at night, awaiting the arrival of Zeref. If he was asked to explain why he was here, he would have to go back a few hours. He closed his eyes and flashed back to the events of that evening.
After everyone went their separate ways, Sila and Julia returned to the mansion. Upon arriving, Julia summoned a broom and excused herself to clean the entire mansion as well as outside. Meanwhile, Sila entered the treasure room and selected a few swords to take with him, before heading to the dojo.
“Release Lookhin.” A light flashed from the ring, and Lookhin flew around the dojo.
“It has been a while since you were free, Lookhin. How about flying around to your heart’s content?”
Lookhin didn’t even wait for him to finish speaking, as it flew outside and left him alone in the dojo.
Sila took his father’s book on Heaven’s Decree out and flipped to the section which consisted of Pumin’s life experiences.
“Which page is it? I remember reading it in this part somewhere.” Sila continued to flip pages, searching for a particular entry.
“Found it.” Finally, he stumbled on it. Sila carefully read everything written before him.
Sila was aware that if he personally went and requested that Zeref produce the Sila Sword right after he had asked Orpheus, it would inevitably give away that he was related to Pumin. However, he had no other choice but to try, since Zeref might be the sole person who could produce it.
Nevertheless, it wasn’t necessary for him to request it using his real identity.
Sila only needed to manipulate the contents of the rumor. Since this matter was one of his secrets, Sila decided to consult no one, not even Burapha or Bluebird, and instead acted alone.
The part Sila was reading was about when his father got his hands on the Sila Sword for the first time. The first time Sila read it, he didn’t think much of it, so some of the details slipped past him. Well, that’s to be expected since Pumin only wrote about things that interested him.
Neither Orpheus nor Zeref’s names ever appeared in the book. The book only mentioned the master weaponsmith and two of his disciples.
Now that Sila was aware that those two disciples must have been Orpheus and Zeref, he read it again, this time attentively.
Sila tried to envision the situation described in the book as if he himself was there, substituting for the missing parts with his own imagination. He had to be so immersed in his role as Pumin in order to not let Zeref see through his disguise.
Spinning the sword in a circular motion, Sila recalled the sword art which Pumin relied on before he invented Heaven’s Decree Sword Art. Actually, Pumin’s previous sword art had no fixed style. At least, it was never mentioned. Pumin only described what moves he used for specific types of opponents. Very little aside from that could be found about the art.
The movement that Sila was trying to mimic right now was the motion after Pumin picked up the Sila Sword for the first time. Afterward, his opponents would appear before him intending to steal the Sila Sword. However, his father ended up defeating them with his new sword.
If Sila had to learn the entire sword art in a short period of time, he wouldn’t be able to do it. However, if he only had to remember just one motion and one move without adapting anything, it wouldn’t be too much to ask of him.
Sila repeated the motion ten times until he believed he had the hang of it. He only intended to show the movement, so only visible actions mattered. The power clad within wouldn’t be important.
“Better safe than sorry.”
Sila called out for Julia and Lookhin, summoning them, and they arrived quickly.
“How can I serve you, Master?” asked Julia.
Sila began to explain his plan. One of them was his AI and the other was his pet that couldn’t talk, so he didn’t have to worry about the secret being leaked.
“Julia and Lookhin, can you hide your presences?”
Lookhin replied to him with action. Its body became semi-transparent, almost invisible. Meanwhile, Julia shook her head. “My identity is an item, so my presence is non-existent from the beginning. However, I can’t hide my body like Lookhin. May I ask why?”
“The thing is... I want you two to help me fight some bad guys. But, I have to disguise myself and am supposed to go there alone.”
“In that case, how about I help from a distance?”
“How can you help me from a distance?”
“Please allow me to try.” Julia summoned Trickstar in her hand. She then injected her life force into the gun.
Trickstar trembled and gave a silent roar like it was a living being. Its appearance soon transformed into a white rifle.
“Is this fine, Master?”
“That should be helpful. Thanks, Julia. I will bring you to a place where you’ll have a clear shot.”
“How about we invite Mister Head Butler to join our team? It should increase the success rate of our operation.”
“You raise a good point. More is better than less. I can’t afford to make a mistake, so it’s better that we go together.” Thinking this way, Sila decided to summon Sebastian. Ten seconds later, the butler appeared before him.
“How can I serve you, sir?” Sebastian greeted him politely. Then, Sila explained his plan for the second time.
When he finished speaking, Sebastian asked to leave for a moment. He said he was going to make preparations and would return soon.
Five minutes later, Sebastian came back with Asura and Franz. Both were smiling from ear to ear.
“Both of them will join our mission, sir,” said Sebastian.
“Eh? Won’t that bother you two? It’s my personal matter, so I don’t want to...”
Asura quickly said, “No, it’s not a bother at all. It’s way better than having to detach my bones in that smelly room. In addition, this seems fun.”
Franz also said, “Sebastian promised us that our workload will decrease if we help you succeed.”
Sila naively thought that these two monsters were Sebastian’s close friends and that they came to help the butler, who was the most prudent monster among the three, start a business together, splitting the profits evenly as business partners. Little did he know that this duo worked their asses off as slaves without receiving anything in return.
“Well, that’s good. More people will help guarantee success.”
Meanwhile, Julia unfolded the map of Zhongsuyuan City, on which Sebastian marked Zeref’s weapon shop.
“This is Mister Sila’s target. Lookhin should hide in the tree, and Miss Head Maid should stand on the rooftop of the building ten blocks away. May I ask if you can shoot from that distance?”
“In that case, I will drop Miss Head Maid off at this place,” Sebastian marked another location on the map. “Then, the three of us will hide our presences around this area, surrounding the shop from three directions.”
Sila interrupted. “Please watch out for Bluebird’s tailorbirds as well. They’re his eyes and ears everywhere.”
Sebastian nodded. “I see. In that case, we will have to avoid being detected by all the tailorbirds, which shouldn’t be too much to ask, given our abilities. Next is the bait. I recommend those people we encountered in the restaurant. All we need to do is spread a rumor saying that the masked man they met today is hiding in Zeref’s shop, and I assure you that they will form a large party to invade the place.”
“How can we spread the rumor though?”
“You don’t have to worry, sir. I have many loose-lipped customers. All I need to do is pretend to make a slip of the tongue and ask them to keep it a secret. In no time, this rumor will scatter throughout the city, entering those guys’ ears. When they arrive at the shop, Mister Sila can proceed with your plan. By the way, do you plan to go with this outfit, sir?”
Sila shook his head and closed his eyes, concentrating his mind on the word ‘change’. Change was part of evolution. With the power of the Eternal Onyx, changing the appearance of the armor shouldn’t be too much to ask.
The gears on his back spun and his armor began to change into a long black coat with a hood attached. Sila pulled the hood to cover his hair and wore a mask, then adjusted his vocal cords with qi.
“How’s this?” Sila said, his voice sounding hoarse and like that of an old man’s
“This should be fine, sir. Now, about your actions. If you want this operation to be realistic, your actions have to be overbearing, scaring everyone, leaving no room of skepticism in their hearts.”
Asura asked, “Do you mean we don’t have to hold back?”
Sebastian shook his head. “That’s not exactly the case. Our roles are to help Mister Sila fight without giving away that we are helping him. We don’t need to hold back, but we must be sneaky, only taking actions that match Mister Sila’s motions.”
“That should conclude it. I will go back to my shop first. Mister Sila can go ahead and wait near the target location. The plan will start when a group of people invading into Zeref’s shop.”
The flashback ended, and that was how Sila ended up waiting on the branch near Zeref’s shop disguised as a mysterious masked man wearing a black coat.
Time flew, and at long last, what he had been waiting for happened.
A group of more than a hundred players ran toward Zeref’s weapon shop. All of them wore faces brimming with ambition, running with weapons in their hand. Their march caused the people passing by to back away and start gossiping with each other.
“What a useless brat you are! To think that you lost against a small group.” A tall man with a mustache turned back and scolded the young man behind him.
“They were really strong, sir,” The young man weakly said. He was the leader of the group of players who fought against Sila in the restaurant. Fortunately for him, Monster Soul was just a game. This meant he could log out and receive a grave penalty instead of suffering for days as Franz intended.
The fact that the usually arrogant young man like him acted so humble before the mustache man indicated that the latter was his superior.
“Stop with your excuses! I wouldn’t even be here if it weren’t for your pathetic mistake.”
The young man argued in his mind that one wouldn’t know what he felt unless experiencing it firsthand, though he couldn’t say it out loud. Honestly speaking, he didn’t even want to encounter those cruel people again.
“But, sir... if we do this with this many players, won’t it affect the main plan?”
“No worries. All we are about to do is stopping by some trivial place to crush some ants.”
The group of people surrounded Zeref’s shop. All the events were unfolding in front of Sila while he was still patiently waiting. He planned to wait until Zeref made an appearance before taking any actions.
There was no hesitation shown in the mustache man’s expression. He slammed his foot into the door and snapped its hinges, sending it flying inside the shop.
“You filthy rats! Obediently come on out and accept your deaths!!”
Soon, two men ran out of the shop. Sila noticed that one of them was Tee Noi, so he figured the middle-aged man next to him must be Zeref.
“Who are you people? For what reason are you invading my shop?” asked Zeref.
“We know you hide people inside. Bring them out! Otherwise, we will barge in and kill everyone.”
“Hide people? Who? We are not hiding anybody. Who exactly are you people?” Zeref wondered.
For the record, Zeref dedicated his life to weaponsmithing, so his combat ability was subpar and far below Orpheus’. Still, he was the legendary weaponsmith, so everyone respected him and didn’t dare to cause trouble. Someone trying to invade his shop was unprecedented.
“We are we. Stop your useless barking! We will only give you ten seconds!”
These people were members of the Wulin Masters Association. Naturally, they were aware of Zeref’s reputation and influence. After all, he was a living legend even in real life. However, they had entered this game and changed their appearances. As long as they didn’t spell out the name of their dojo, no one would be able to track down their real identities. For them, Monster Soul was just a game. No more, no less. They could do whatever they wanted without thinking of the consequences.
Tee Noi stood and trembled behind his teacher. In the meantime, Zeref also felt anxious. He didn’t know what action he should take since this was the first time his shop had been threatened. He could only hope that someone had already informed the Victorious Wolves Sect. However, even if someone actually informed them, the next morning was the big gathering party, so Zeref doubted whether the help could come in time.
“Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four...”
The mustache man was counting down together with his subordinates. They were all stomping their feet on the street, and their killing intent reached the peak.
“Kill! Kill! Kill!”
With this many people standing around looking like they’re ready to start a fight, the atmosphere got worse and it was questionable if even their leader could calm their thirst for battle. Their eyes were filled with bloodlust. They wouldn’t care if the ones at the other end of their blades were enemies or innocent civilians. What they wanted right now was to break someone or something.
“...three, two, one, zero. Time’s up! Everyone, advance! Kill every living creature you find! Let’s start with this fat ass and this senile bastard!”
Tee Noi trembled in fear, while Zeref showed a stiffened, worried expression.
At such a critical moment, suddenly, there was the sound of an explosion from behind the invasion team. Everybody stopped their movements and looked back.
A man in a long black coat, wearing a mask and a hood, with a seemingly ordinary sword at his waist, made an appearance and approached them. As for the explosion sound, it came from the unlucky player who died without knowing how, leaving behind only a charred corpse.
“Who are you to dare mess with us?” The mustache man yelled.
“I only want a single sword, and you guys are getting in my way.” The mysterious man’s voice was hoarse like the devil’s.
This particular man gave off a dangerous vibe, but the group of people couldn’t tell exactly why. Their bodies shivered and they hurriedly drew their weapons.
Everyone looked left and right to estimate the number of their opponents. However, no matter how many times they tried, they could only spot the man alone.
“Haha. Fool! Coming alone? You are seeking death!”
“True, I come alone. But, if you all still insist on getting in my way, not even one of you will remain after this.”
The man in the black coat didn’t shout, but his sound reverberated. His voice expressed his nonchalant attitude, though overbearing at the same time. It was as if he was a grim reaper who casually decided who lived and died.
Wait MSO 2 is a thing. Well, something to look forward to I guess. how long is MSO chapter wise?
Wait MSO 2 is a thing. Well, something to look forward to I guess. how long is MSO chapter wise?
The prequel has 474 chapters.
Chapter 170: Upheaval in the Pine Tree Garden
In the dim light of the stars in the dark night, the pine trees could be seen swaying softly as a gentle wind blew past. Sila looked up into the sky, taking in the sights, as if the current situation had nothing to do with him. He was trying to pull himself out of the atmosphere so that he wouldn’t make any noticeable mistakes. After all, he wasn’t supposed to be Sila right now.
“Who are you?! Coming alone, huh? Do you think you are cool or something?”
Sila’s eyes gleamed with qi, mysteriously illuminating within the darkness of his hood. He replied curtly, “I don’t care about pieces of trash like you. Get out of my sight while you still breathe.”
From the opposing side’s point of view, even though this man looked prideful and scary, he was still alone.
Spotting an opening, a man behind Sila started taking action.
“Die, you arrogant fool!”
Sila didn’t even bother glancing behind him. He placed his full trust in the ones assisting him from the shadows.
Suddenly, the man collapsed and his body was engulfed in flames. A coin-sized hole could be seen in his chest.
“What?! What is happening?” the leader of the team exclaimed.
“This is my last warning... If you have no attachment to your lives anymore, then come, all of you,” Sila said softly.
One of the men expressed their suspicions. “Was it Yizichan?”
Everybody in their team thought the same. However, the most bizarre thing was the fact that the man in the black coat didn’t move even the tip of his finger. Could he display such power without them realizing anything? If that was the case, this man would be too scary.
“Everyone, be careful. This man is skilled in one way or another. Use Auror Formation!” The leader shouted, and his men obeyed by surrounding Sila. It was the same formation used against him in the restaurant. However, with the higher number of people, breaking out of the encirclement would be harder.
In addition, the players hit their weapons together, trying to disturb his concentration by creating loud noises. The sound couldn’t distract Sila’s attention in the slightest, though, since he wasn’t the one attacking. Instead of his opponents, most of his focus was put into observing Zeref, who was observing Sila in return.
The amount of psychic power radiating in the area was pressuring Sila more than the last time he faced these players. Under the mask, Sila knitted his brows. The combined power being emitted from this group was equivalent to a dragon. It seemed Montra’s secret task force was more exceptional than he had thought. More importantly, this was just one out of an unknown number of groups that Montra had taken under his wings.
Materialized swords hurtled toward Sila from all directions, putting him in the center of a storm of sharp blades. If he did nothing, he would obviously end up being cut into pieces.
Sila unsheathed the sword hanging at his waist and leisurely lifted it up.
Many players laughed. They had trained with swords for almost their entire lives, so they could easily notice that not only was this pathetic use of the sword powerless, but also slow and too easy to read, like a child swinging a sword.
However, their expressions changed as soon as the land shook, and pillars of flames burst up from the ground. The flames pierced through many players and instantly ended their lives.
Looking at the display of power, Sila believed that this was Lookhin’s doing.
“W-What? Where are they coming from?! Easy, guys! Continue with the formation!” The leader ordered, full of anxiety.
Meanwhile, Sila slowly swung the sword to his left.
Witnessing the sight, Zeref showed a slightly shocked expression and put more focus onto following Sila’s movements. He was certain he had witnessed such a seemingly simple sword movement before.
The flame pillars broke and scattered as numerous tiny swords, flying randomly, causing the formation to be broken. All of the players ended up in a state of chaos just trying their best to defend against the flying blades.
“He is alone! Just do whatever you can to attack him!!” The leader yelled, before parrying a pillar fragment and charging at Sila.
Sila calmly stepped forward as if he didn’t see any obstacles blocking his way. As for the sword that he had brandished just now, he planned to return it to the sheath. However, since he attempted that without looking and he wasn’t that familiar with sheathing a sword, he missed and the sword instead stabbed into the ground.
‘D-Damn. I messed it up.’ Sila panicked but he couldn’t afford to let it show on his face. How could the renowned Sword Prodigy screw up something simple like sheathing a sword?
“He already put his sword down! Kill him!!”
The mistake had already been made, so Sila had to improvise instead of following the script in his head. He started using Stellar Wheel, relying on the pulling force to miraculously spin the sword around his wrist. In addition, the rotating force created wind around him, scattering the pine leaves on the ground.
In such a chaotic battlefield, some of the players were hit by unseen needles. These were poisonous needles hidden under Franz’s scales on top of her skin. Under the storm of pine leaves at night, they couldn’t see the needles at all. As soon as a needle pierced skin, it would explode. Though no players died, many of them fell victim to the needles and received injuries all over.
Sebastian and his monster friends needed to act secretly, so they couldn’t exert their full power. As the opponents were Marquis Rank, if their attacks didn’t hit the vital spots, none of them would die.
In fact, it was decided beforehand that the Sword Prodigy wasn't supposed to use poison nor hidden weapons, so Franz had a difficult time supporting Sila. If there wasn’t such a limitation placed on her, she would have already killed them all.
Nevertheless, Franz didn’t completely play along with Sila and Sebastian’s requests. As a gambler, she had a motto: it's not cheating if you don't get caught. Thus, she allowed herself to use poison as long as she didn’t get caught.
Soon, the players began to notice that drinking potions didn’t restore their health points. More importantly, their wounds that should have easily closed with the help of energy reinforcement refused to close up and instead continued to bleed. At this rate, their bodies would rapidly weaken and die.
Confirming that the storm of leaves had covered Zeref’s vision, Sila attempted to sheathe his sword yet again. This time, though, he secretly used pulling power to prevent the same blunder.
As the sound of his sword being sheathed echoed throughout the area, all of the enemy players fell to the ground at the same time. They were still conscious, but their bodies refused to move, as if bound by chains.
For the record, it was Sebastian’s doing. By using a spell, Soul-Eroding Blood Fog, he turned blood into mist and injected it back into the opponents’ bodies through their wounds and the air they breathed. Even though this spell wasn’t lethal, it was useful for torturing victims.
Everyone fell on top of either their friends’ bodies or pools of blood. Only Zeref and Tee Noi were safe, despite being within range of the battlefield. This demonstrated delicate control over the energy being unleashed, which was the Sword Prodigy’s prominent point.
Tee Noi’s body was still shaking behind his teacher, while Zeref fixed his eyes on Sila as if he wanted to see through the mask.
Sila stopped his feet in front of Zeref. His eyes gleamed with a powerful glow.
“Who are you?” Zeref stated a question.
“Who do you think I am?” Sila asked back. He wanted Zeref to come up with the answer on his own rather than listening to his revelation.
Human psychology was tricky. If one came up with the answer oneself, one would firmly believe that it was true. However, if the same answer was given by others, the human’s mind could hesitate before accepting it or even doubt that it is true.
Sila wanted Zeref to believe wholeheartedly in what he made him see.
“At first, I wasn't confident. Your swordplay differed a bit from what I had seen before, and your voice is not the same. However, by looking at your eyes, I’m now sure. You are the Sword Prodigy who went missing twenty or so years ago,” replied Zeref.
In his mind, Sila let out an imaginary sigh of relief. He mimicked Pumin’s old sword style from the texts inside the book without illustrations, so he wasn’t confident about it. However, in Zeref’s perspective, it was perfectly normal that the same sword style could result in different motions depending on the situation.
As for the voice, Sila had never heard Pumin before so it was impossible for him to mimic that. Nevertheless, it had been twenty-three years, so Sila was quite certain that there would be no way Zeref could remember Pumin’s voice. Even if he did remember, it shouldn’t be too weird that Pumin’s voice changed considering the passage of time. That was the reason why Sila deliberately used a mature, hoarse voice.
Unexpectedly, the deciding factor was his eyes. It seemed he inherited this pair of eyes from Pumin. This was the deciding factor in Zeref believing the deception. Pumin’s eyes were unique and charming. Everyone who had a chance to look directly into them could never forget such a pair of eyes.
‘Later, I will have to avoid eye contact with Zeref when I meet him out of disguise.’ Sila engraved this into his memory. If he were to meet Zeref, he would have to come up with a plan.
“I heard that your teacher has died?” Sila continued the conversation with Zeref.
“After my teacher produced his last masterpiece, which is your sword, he died three years later. He told me that he wouldn’t ever produce a better weapon than that sword. One part of him was glad, yet another part of him felt regret.”
Zeref intentionally omitted the name of the sword. Even though he was confident that the man he was talking to was the Sword Prodigy, he still had some doubt as to why such a person made an appearance after so long.
Sila could read Zeref’s doubt, so he deliberately mentioned the name. “About the Sila Sword, I have taken good care of it. Twenty-three years have already passed since that time, huh? Many people are all playing games now.”
Zeref was relieved. The only ones who knew the name of the sword were his teacher, he himself, Orpheus, and Pumin. Of course, it was entirely possible that Pumin told someone later. However, based on the Sword Prodigy’s personality, Zeref believed that Pumin wasn’t someone who liked to brag.
“Technology is advancing with each day that goes past. In this world, even normal people can become supreme martial artists. When fighting, even if you make a mistake and die, you still have a chance to try again over and over.”
“I know. I realized that once I tried the game myself. It’s a suitable place to become my stage. Unfortunately, I regret that I can’t seem to find a sword worthy of being wielded by me... That’s the reason I’m here today.”
“I witnessed your battle just now and don’t think you need such a thing. At your level, any sword should be fine. There is no need for you to have a special sword at all.”
Sila slowly unsheathed his sword and injected his power into it. Soon, the sword broke and its shards fell to the ground.
“There is no sword that can handle my power. At most, I can use only about thirty percent of my full strength. That’s why I want a sword produced by you.”
The conversation between Sila and Zeref was heard by all of the players on the ground, except for the important parts like the name of the Sila Sword, which he deliberately blocked out.
Just realizing that the man in front of them was the Sword Prodigy, the legendary sword master whose name was mentioned repeatedly in all sword dojos, they seemed to be breathless. Moreover, just now, the man even said that the marvelous strength he had just shown was only thirty percent of his full power. They couldn’t help but shiver with fear.
“As far as I see it, your thirty percent is already peerless. Not many can stand a chance against you. Why do you still need a sword?”
“Because my thirty percent is not enough to fight against Mora’s full strength. I trained in seclusion for twenty years just for the sake of getting revenge against Mora. My Heaven’s Decree Sword Art must be the best of the martial world.”
This story was a lie that Sila and Sebastian made up. Normal people speculated that Mora was a part of the reason why Pumin went missing, and since Mora didn’t deny such a rumor, many martial artists in the underground world had always thought that there should have been some truth to this. The tricky part of this lie was the fact that Mora was fully aware that Pumin had died. Therefore, even if the new rumor leaked out and someone went to ask him, Mora would know that it was Sila’s doing. Since that was the case, Mora wouldn’t say anything to contradict his story. As a result, Sila’s made-up story would sound plausible.
“If such is your goal, you will surely be disappointed. As far as I know, Mora already quit playing this game.”
“I know. But I heard that his main disciple is still playing. If his disciple is put into grave danger, he will come back. He is that kind of a guy.”
This, too, was another reasonable excuse that Sila and Sebastian had come up with. Sebastian told him that if he decided to trick someone, he had to trick the others all the way to the core without leaving any details. Otherwise, people would wonder why the Sword Prodigy entered Monster Soul.
“But... that child is unrelated...” said Zeref.
“I didn’t mean I will kill him. I just need to threaten to put his precious disciple in grave danger, and he will come fight me in this world.”
Zeref looked straight into Sila’s eyes, but he still couldn’t read Sila’s real intentions.
Sebastian had told Sila that the art of lying was to mix the truth with a lie. Thus, Sila had been speaking in the manner of ‘True Is False, False Is True.’ Even he himself was close to thinking that what he said was the truth.
“I... can’t produce a sword for you, sir,” Zeref revealed his inner thoughts.
Sila felt greatly disappointed. Both Orpheus and Zeref couldn’t produce a sword similar to the Sila Sword for him. He didn’t expect it to be such a difficult task. Now what? Does he have no choice but to use another sword as a replacement?
“Is that so? You too...” Sila muttered.
Zeref sighed. “That’s not it. You are mistaken, sir... Thinking about it, this is what he intended... Mora is too scary.”
Sila got his hopes up, but, at the same time, he frowned. “What do you mean? How is Mora related?”
Zeref continued to explain, “When the game had just launched, Mora came to request that I make him a sword. At that time, I wondered why he, who didn’t practise any sword art, would want a sword. Seeing that the sword Mora requested was similar to the last sword my teacher produced, I guessed that Mora might have seen this sword when he fought against you. A year later, after I finished crafting it and was about to deliver it to him, I asked him why he wanted this sword. Mora’s reply at that time was he must have it in order to wait for someone. Now, I finally understand. He let me produce the sword in preparation for the duel against you.”
Sila shut his mouth. He noticed that Mora also had his own agenda, and it wasn’t a short-sighted plan like the one he had. Mora even placed a request for the sword one year in advance. Looking back, he was too naive. Even if his plan today ended in success, he would still need to wait a year before he could get his hands on the sword, and it would be too late.
Zeref added, “There is an in-game restriction among us craftsmen that prevents us from making copies of unique items, so I can’t produce one for you. I didn’t expect Mora to be aware of this restriction and request one ahead of you. With this, you won’t have a replica of the Sila Sword. Mora is indeed sly. Only he knows where the sword is, so I’m at my wit’s end about giving you a suitable sword.”
Sila thought about it for a while before bursting into laughter. “Hahaha. I see, I see. I think I know where he hid it.”
“You know?” Zeref was surprised.
“Yes, I know. Anyway, thanks. State the price of that sword, I will pay it.”
“About that... Mora already paid for the sword. You don’t have to pay me anything, sir.”
“In that case, I will take my leave.”
As expected of Pumin, he came and went as he pleased. Sila jumped once, sending himself onto the roof, before disappearing without any trace.
Zeref and Tee Noi looked up to find the man, but they couldn’t see him at all. What a terrifying speed, they thought.
Though, actually, Sila only jumped down to the other side of the building while changing his black long coat into his usual armor. He walked along and blended in with the crowd. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw members of the Victorious Wolves Sect arriving in front of the weapon shop. It seemed he made it out just in time.
Lookhin came flying and landed on Sila’s shoulder, and he slowly walked with the crowd. He had already moved on to thinking about his next destination. He remembered well what Mora told him right before he had logged back in.
“In Monster Soul, there is a special dimension that is more special than other dimensions. The flow of time in that dimension will be several times slower than usual, and there is something in that dimension that you need to find. It’s a gift that I left for you and also the reason why I accepted the position of Independent NPC.”
It turned out that the gift was, in fact, a sword.
Chapter 171: The Calm Before the Storm
The next morning came. Sila had only slept for less than two hours, but that was all he needed. He hadn’t been sleeping much lately. One of the benefits of selecting qi type was that they could cultivate instead of sleep. Nevertheless, many argued that it wasn’t a proper rest, and Sila was no different. That’s why he still chose to sleep some nights.
Way of the Hermit, the skill he got right after the eight qi techniques fused into his body, was quite helpful in that regard.
This skill didn’t possess any combat capabilities. It helped to temper the body, allowing one to elevate from their mortal flesh to become a true hermit. Just a single meal was enough to fill their belly for an entire week, and an hour of sleep would be equivalent to five hours. Therefore, Sila sleeping two hours was like he had slept for ten hours, which was more than enough. Furthermore, this skill didn’t only affect eating and sleeping. It also reduced the rate at which fatigue built up. Sila personally thought that this skill was meant to extend the user’s practice time.
The gathering party would start in less than an hour. Today, the Victorious Wolves Sect strictly administered the city. They banned masks and enforced that violence was unacceptable. Lone Wolf staked his name and reputation on the line that he would severely punish anyone who caused trouble.
Sila stored his mask in his system window and walked toward Sebastian’s shop with Lookhin perched on his shoulder and Julia by his side.
Along the way, people always turned their heads at Sila. It seemed his face was finally as recognizable as his reputation. It was natural considering he was the most wanted player and also the sole slime-raced player, who could, in one way or another, help people step into the realm of Lord Rank upon being killed. Many sent menacing glares or pressured him with oppressive energies, though Sila didn’t care. It seemed that as long as he was inside the city ruled by the Victorious Wolves Sect, no one would dare to initiate a fight.
All of the shops in Zhongsuyuan City were out of service today. Only restaurants were open and provided free meals to everyone at the expense of the Victorious Wolves Sect. Obviously, Sebastian’s shop was closed as well. Sebastian, Franz, and Asura joined Sila at the designated place.
“Sorry for making you wait,” Sila said as he greeted them.
“We just arrived as well, sir. Let’s get going. We’re Lone Wolf’s acquaintances. It will be improper if we are late to the party,” replied Sebastian.
Sila and his colleagues traveled from roof to roof at an astonishing speed. Before long, they arrived at the front gate of the Victorious Wolves Sect’s headquarters, where there was a crowd that continued to grow larger.
A voice came from somewhere, giving directions. “Since there are so many participants for this party, it will be held in our sect’s backyard. Please walk in a line.”
“God damn it. Why are there so many people? How can I find that brat?” Franz complained while locking her eyes on the crowd.
“Don’t worry, Franz. Everyone in town has gathered here. That Venom you are looking for should be here as well,” said Sebastian.
“That better be the truth,” replied Franz before she advanced in line while avoiding the crowd.
Once they entered the backyard, they could see that the venue was well prepared. There was a large stage and several round tables scattered around the field. They could estimate that the place should be able to hold at least ten thousand people.
Sila’s jaw dropped. It was his first time participating in such a large-scale party. For him, a banquet with fifty people was already considered luxurious.
Sebastian looked at such a sight with a smile. In fact, he didn’t have to be here with Sila today. However, he chose to come with a hidden agenda.
‘Such a big party. Well, well. It seems I will make a lot today.’
A woman wearing a cheongsam came to greet them. “Welcome to the Heavenly Dragon Resistance gathering party. We are honored to have you here, Mister Sila, Mister Sebastian, and companions.”
T/N: In case you have forgotten, “Cheongsam” is a straight, close-fitting silk dress with a high neck, short sleeves, and a slit skirt, worn traditionally by Chinese and Indonesian women.
“Ah, yes. Hello... Miss...?” Sila replied politely, though he was a bit startled.
“My name is Rin, a member of the Victorious Wolves Sect. You don’t need to wonder how I know your name, sir. It’s my duty to remember the face of every important figure in Monster Soul, including Mister Sebastian, who is operating a potion shop in Zhongsuyuan City. May I ask who is accompanying you?”
“This is Julia, my maid. The other two are Asura and Franz, Sebastian’s friends.”
“Friends?” Rin was confused. Based on her information, Sebastian was Sila’s high-rank pet. The fact that these two next to him were his friends meant there was a high probability that they were high-rank monsters as well.
Regardless, a second later, Rin’s expression returned to normal. “Our sect master has prepared a table for Mister Sila and your companions. Please come this way, everyone.”
She assigned the group a guide, whom they followed to their table, where they saw something incredulous. There sat Bluebird, who was gobbling down food non-stop even though the party had yet to properly start. He was sitting next to Burapha, and White Swan was on Burapha’s other side, looking fed up.
“Oh, Sila! You have arrived. This smoked barbecued suckling pig is pure bliss! The sauce is also heavenly. Let’s eat!”
“Eating again? Aren’t you afraid of getting fat?” Sila said jokingly while taking his seat.
“This is a game, Sila. We won’t get fat no matter how much we eat. The taste is also realistic. In the outside world, I can’t possibly afford to eat something as luxurious as this.”
“Geez. Even in the game, you also can’t afford it. You are only good at eating food other people prepare,” satirized White Swan.
“You are free to scold me all you want. Life is short. Just living a life that our future self won’t be ashamed of is enough,” Bluebird replied with philosophy.
“Hah. You are not ashamed because your face is just too damn thick.”
Bluebird ignored her words. He placed a piece of flatbread on his palm, upon which he placed a sliced cucumber piece, diced onions, and a piece of crispy pig skin. After topping it with a brown sauce and wrapping it, he placed the entire thing in his mouth with ease and chewed with an ecstatic expression.
Everyone sitting at the table passed time by relaxing and making small talk, until a member of the Victorious Wolves Sect came over.
“Mister Sila and Miss White Swan, may I ask you two to join us at the main table in front of the stage? The party will begin shortly.”
Sila wondered. “Can’t I just sit here?”
“You may, sir, if you would like to. It’s just that, at the main table, we have invited several leaders of various guilds and powerful players, and we were hoping Mister Sila would join the discussion.”
Bluebird replied before Sila could. “Why is it that Swan is invited, but not me?”
White Swan stood up, her face was brimming with superiority. “That’s because I’m the official representative of the Blue Pigeon Guild. On the other hand, you are just a mere guest.”
However, Bluebird didn’t care. “Why are you bragging? The food they serve is the same, don’t you know?”
White Swan became mad and yelled, “Not everyone is a glutton like you!!” She departed without giving more attention to Bluebird.
Burapha sighed. “Big Brother Blue, why do you like to tease her? She is usually a sweet woman, you know?”
“Huh? I did nothing wrong. I’m just being myself. That woman just has a short temper.”
“In that case, please try your best to not be yourself, will you? I’m fine either way, but I’m afraid you will end up angering someone you shouldn’t one day.”
The conversation about Bluebird being himself continued. Meanwhile, Sila was pondering whether he should go to the main table. To be honest, he thought he was fine with sitting anywhere. However, if he didn’t go, it might seem rude.
“Then, pardon me. I will go and say hello to Lone Wolf. I will be back later.”
Sila left, followed by Lookhin, while the rest continued conversing.
Sebastian turned to Julia. “Miss Head Maid, did you bring what we discussed last night?”
Julia nodded. “My body is connected to Master’s treasury room, so I can summon those items anytime. However, the party seems peaceful. I don’t see any reason why we would have to prepare such things.”
“Um... I’m sure that this peacefulness is just the calm before the storm. I anticipate that something big will happen at this party.”
Knowing that Julia was connected to the treasury room, Sebastian thought that her existence was extremely convenient. Usually, even when he went hunting monsters to acquire raw materials, he would have to carry stuff with magic all the way. However, with Julia, he would have an easier time bringing items with him.
“And what if nothing happens?” Julia asked.
“Believe me. Something will surely happen,” Sebastian replied with confidence. His plan to make a large profit today totally depended on whether ‘something big’ happened or not. Therefore, even if something didn’t happen, he would make it happen himself.
Sila followed a guide and walked past many tables. It seemed that the tables were divided into three classes. The first was the main table, which Sila was currently moving toward. The second was for honorable guests, like the one where Sebastian and his friends were sitting. Lastly, the third was common tables for the rest of the participants. Though, aside from the fact that they were different colours— red, blue, and white—the only distinguishing factor between them was simply how far they were from the stage.
The main table was just a large red table in the shape of a circle. There were already many people sitting around it. However, Sila only knew a handful of them. Those were Ratri, White Swan, Sangdao, and Varee.
Sila was shocked to see Sangdao and Varee. It was even more shocking for him to see both of them at the same time. He quickly circulated qi to calm his mind, before approaching the table without changing expression.
“Hello, everyone. My name is Sila. It’s nice to see you,” Sila greeted them politely.
Then, a muscular man with a large physique turned his gaze to Sila and looked at him from head to toe.
The man stuck his thumb up. “Splendid. You are more than the rumors said. Nice to meet you. My name is Beluga. I’m the boss of a small bandit gang.”
Sila observed this man. It was rare to see someone proudly declare themselves as a bandit. Even though the man said he was a bandit, Sila found him likable. The man seemed to have an open-minded and honest personality. He gave off the same vibe as Lone Wolf.
“Boss, please don’t joke around. Mister Sila, we are from the guild called Mountain Thieves League. My name is Nednapha, and the person on the Boss’s left is Elso. We are both vice-leaders of the guild. It’s an honor to meet you.” Nednapha bowed, but that caused her pair of glasses to slip off, so she pushed it back into place.
Elso nodded at Sila once. His eyes were wandering around. Sila guessed that he was constantly watching out for danger.
“It’s good to see you again, Miss Nednapha,” replied Sila, to which Nednapha shot a meaningful gaze at him before immediately acting normal. This caused Sila to know that she wasn’t so simple.
Ratri stood up and began an introduction. “Sila, you might not have seen him yet so let me introduce you. This man here is Hermit, our guild’s important strategist.”
She gestured toward a man with a long white beard. Sila couldn’t help but wonder how old Hermit was, since he looked even older than Teacher Mora.
“I’m glad to meet you, sir.” Sila put his palms together to salute him.
“Me too, me too. I have been hearing about you for a while, so it’s good to finally meet you. Please take your seat first,” said Hermit before ordering one of the guild members to pull out a seat, inviting Sila to sit.
Sila didn’t know whether he should laugh or cry, as the seat prepared for him happened to be exactly between Sangdao and Varee. At this point declining to sit seemed rude, so he had no choice but to sit down without saying anything.
“Long time no see, Sila. Dao wondered whether you had already forgotten about Dao since you didn’t contact me even once,” Sangdao greeted him with her usual warm and gentle smile.
“About that, I didn’t have time. The task... that the Elders entrusted me with is incredibly important, so I have been very busy lately.”
“If my father sees that you are this dedicated, he will surely feel delighted. He often complained to me whenever you pay him visits, you come frequently, but when you don’t, you just vanish for a long time.”
“Is that so? In that case, I will find some free time to drop by,” Sila replied softly.
Being fully aware that matters regarding the Wulin Masters Association were a secret, Sila avoided mentioning anything about it and kept his voice down when talking with Sangdao.
He turned to look at Varee and found that she didn’t show an angry face nor a smile. He didn’t know why, but he felt like something bad was going to befall him.
“Hello, Varee. How is Big Sister Vata? Is everyone in the house feeling well?”
Varee sipped her tea without looking at Sila. “Everyone is perfectly healthy, though we are all curious why Sila just disappeared without saying anything. You only told us that you would go to visit the dojo. When someone came to our house to pack your belongings, my dad was shocked. It wasn’t until Uncle Mora contacted us that we finally learned that you already moved in with him.”
‘T-This is bad. I completely forgot about them.’ Sila was panicking inwardly. In fact, he didn’t know he would be using a special capsule to extend his playing time, so he didn’t tell anyone that he would be moving out. Who would have thought that Mora had already prepared everything for him.
“It’s sudden for me too. Anyway, why didn’t you just ask me in the game? You can find me anytime you want, can’t you?”
Varee slowly placed her cup on the table. “I tried, but I couldn’t reach you. The ring didn’t work. Contacting you through the system window also told me you were in a special location where contacting people on the outside was prohibited. I even went to the mansion and couldn’t find anyone.”
‘Ow, I forgot that I sealed it. She must have contacted me when I was in the Slime Kingdom. Julia wasn’t at the mansion during that time too.’
While Sila was breaking into a cold sweat and thinking that he was in grave trouble, Lookhin flew away from his shoulder and perched on Varee’s teacup. It tilted its head, looking at Varee.
Varee revealed a faint smile and no longer minded Sila. “How about you, Lookhin? We haven’t met for a while but you are still as adorable as ever.”
Once Varee turned her attention to Lookhin, Sila got a chance to release a sigh of relief. He promised to himself that he would reward Lookhin later.
Their conversations were overheard by others, and the misunderstanding surrounding Sila’s relationships with the women only deepened. Beluga turned his head to look at his sides before muttering to himself.
“Sigh, heaven is truly unfair. While others are blessed with beauties at their sides, all I got is a strict and nerdy woman on my right and a man with a sharp stare on my left. This sucks.”
Inevitably, Sila had to constantly turn left and right to keep conversing with the two females. On one side, she was Teacher Wu Ming’s daughter. On the other side, she was Uncle Rashane’s daughter. He was indebted to both their parents. Others might be looking at him with green eyes, but for Sila, he felt like he was in between two blazing fires, and either could reduce him to ashes if he wasn’t careful.
Chapter 172: The Heavenly Dragon Resistance Gathering Party
The background noise gradually died down, and Sila’s burdensome task of maintaining two conversations came to an end. When he looked for the source, he realised that the one who organized this party had arrived.
Lone Wolf stepped up onto the stage, wearing brown wuxia clothing with embroidered gold lines. At long last, the gathering party that everyone had been waiting for was about to start.
Lone Wolf swept his gaze across the attendants, before looking at the script Hermit and Ratri prepared for him. However, he shook his head and crumpled it.
“Welcome, everyone, to the Heavenly Dragon Resistance gathering party. It’s not in my nature to drag matters on, so I will just get to the point. The reason why we are here today is clear. The Heavenly Dragon Guild is expanding its influence and bullying people. Alone, we are weak, but together, there will be nothing that we can’t do. So, let’s join forces and oppose the Heavenly Dragon Guild, oppose Montra!”
Naturally, everybody already knew the purpose of this gathering party. However, they didn’t expect Lone Wolf to suddenly cut to the chase without trying to set the mood.
Below the stage, a man dressed like a scholar raised his hand and stood up. “My name is Pachee. I’m just an ordinary player. Regarding what you said, may I ask you a question?”
“Brother Pachee, your question is welcomed. Please feel free to ask.”
“In my opinion, the Heavenly Dragon Guild is an almighty guild. Even if we join forces, there is no guarantee that we can win against them. May I ask what makes you, Sir Lone Wolf, confident that you will win? The Heavenly Dragon Guild’s chance of winning is higher and submitting to them will yield us more monetary benefits. On what basis do you think we should join your Victorious Wolves Sect rather than their guild?”
“First things first, Brother. You need to understand that we are not asking you to join the Victorious Wolves Sect. What we are going to do is form an alliance. All of us will still have the freedom to do anything we see fit. Only, we will direct our weapons at our common enemy–the Heavenly Dragon Guild.”
“Oh, so it’s my misunderstanding. However, Sir Lone Wolf, you still didn’t tell us what is it that can ensure our victory if we were to form an alliance.”
“I can just tell you in one word. The thing we have that makes us superior to the Heavenly Dragon Guild is Virtue!”
Lone Wolf declared it without hesitation, and Beluga slammed his palm on the table in a good mood. As for everyone else, they had started gossiping among themselves.
Another man stood up and raised his point. “We want a more concrete basis! Virtue is intangible! And it isn’t helpful in battles.”
There were many voices agreeing with the man’s statement. If Lone Wolf replied with the wrong words, the party might just end here and now.
Lone Wolf swept his eyes across the yard and waited until silence fell once more. Then, he replied with his resounding voice.
“Who told you that virtue is not useful? Even Sun Tzu’s ‘The Art of War’ states that the most important factor in war is virtue! One should treat people with benevolence, justice, and righteousness! The Heavenly Dragon Guild lacks this very core element. No matter how almighty they are, they will, one day, perish!”
Listening to such words, Asura couldn’t help but become interested. He turned to ask for Sebastian’s opinion, who was the smartest among them.
“Virtue is necessary for battles? Really? This is the first time I have heard this. Did you already know this, Sebastian?”
“Although people say virtue is important, in reality, there is no such thing in wartime. Wars are a matter of brutality and cruelty. Kill or be killed. A clash of opinions. Virtue is, in fact, only something that pushes soldiers forward. You can say that it’s a sort of goal. If soldiers fight while thinking that what they are doing is for a noble cause, they think they are heroes. On the other hand, without it, they would only be mere bandits. There is a difference in morale and pride between having and not having a noble goal, and that greatly affects the amount of work you put into achieving the goal. Ultimately, in battles, the so-called virtue is a deciding factor that drives people to strive for victory.”
“Oh, I see,” replied Asura.
Yet, below the stage, another man yelled, “We still need something more tangible!”
Lone Wolf replied, “That’s the reason we are all here today. True, virtue without strength may be useless. But, with all of our forces combined under the same virtue, even the Heavenly Dragon Guild can’t stand a chance against us all.”
Pachee argued again, “The Heavenly Dragon Guild has the Magic Emperor Montra, the Two Monarchs that are on par with the Four Emperors, and the sublime Five Dragon Warlords. I even heard a rumor that the Shadow Emperor Zero has joined them. How can we possibly stand up to them?”
“First of all, about Zero, I can confirm that rumor. He indeed has become a member of the Heavenly Dragon Guild. The Blue Pigeon Guild researched it and assures us of its validity.”
The rumor of Zero joining the Heavenly Dragon Guild wasn’t a secret. However, given their past conflicts, people couldn’t bring themselves to believe such a rumor. However, that changed with Lone Wolf’s words. With both the Blue Pigeon Guild and Lone Wolf’s confirmation, it was revealed that the unbelievable rumor was, in fact, the truth.
Pachee continued, “That’s worse for us! How can we fight the Heavenly Dragon Guild at this rate? They also have a large-scale army under them, ready to mobilize.”
“The answer is simple. There is no need for strategies. The countermeasure is our unity! We will join forces, share information, collaborate, train with each other, and compensate for what others lack. Just one month is enough for us to become stronger!”
Beluga stood up. “Excellent! After hearing Lone Wolf, we, the Mountain Thieves League decide to fight with you!”
Beluga’s declaration echoed throughout the party.
Nednapha pushed her guild leader down and whispered, “You spoke too soon, Boss. At the very least, we should wait and see what benefits our guild will get from forming an alliance.”
Beluga shook his head. “If we only focus on the benefits, how are we any different from the Heavenly Dragon Guild? Even if this deal nets us a loss, we are still in. Having a chance to do something virtuous is already a fortune.”
Beluga shared his thoughts without lowering his voice. As a result, everybody could hear him clearly. Sila felt that this person was direct and blunt, yet sincere.
Hearing that kind of reasoning, Nednapha stopped arguing. With Beluga’s words, if she still insisted, wouldn’t that imply that she was an unjust, selfish person who disregarded virtue?
Nevertheless, what everyone was seeking wasn’t some vague concept like a virtue. Indeed, everyone here disliked the Heavenly Dragon Guild in some way. However, they also wanted a chance for victory. There would be no point in joining the losing side of the battle.
“We still need more concrete proof that we can win, or at least a plan.”
“In that case, I can honestly tell you that, aside for virtue, we also possess what the Heavenly Dragon Guild has. Regarding funds, we got a lot from our trading. About strategies, we have many skilled people in our team. And if we all form an alliance, we will not have to worry about their army. Our combined forces can easily surpass the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s. Even better, our alliance’s members will be everywhere, thus, we will have an advantage regarding flexibility when maneuvering.”
The people down below him turned to discuss this with each other, and Lone Wolf remained silent so they didn’t feel pressured.
“You can decide for yourselves. Join us if you want, but we won’t ever force you. Today, we, the Victorious Wolves Sect, will just treat you all to a meal. Please consider my words while enjoying it. Even if you decide not to join us, your belly will at least be full,” Lone Wolf said jokingly before going to the main table.
Ratri and Hermit immediately approached him.
“Leader, why didn’t you stick to the script? That script was a persuasive speech that Ratri and I tried hard to come up with. It mentions the benefits that we can share with them within our tolerance level,” asked Hermit.
“True, by giving them benefits, a lot of groups might join us. But that doesn’t prevent them from abandoning us when the opposite side agrees to give them more. This is way better. I want people to join us because of their virtue.”
Beluga interrupted. “Don’t worry, guys. Even if our alliance only consists of the Victorious Wolves Sect and the Mountain Thieves League, we can still win against the Heavenly Dragon Guild.”
Despite Beluga stating this with confidence, everyone knew that he, too, should feel restless inside.
Sila stood up. “Hello, Mister Lone Wolf. It’s been a while.”
“Hey, Sila. You have gotten a lot stronger since the last time we spoke, it seems.”
“You can tell?” Sila wondered. As an internal utilizer, most of his power was kept within him. Others shouldn’t be able to gauge his strength easily.
“Nope. I just see that you’re brimming with confidence. Moreover, as I trained under Mister Poluk, I can tell that Sila must have been through a lot of training as well. Since Mister Poluk alone is already that strong, you, who have been training under the other two Slime Guardians as well as Mister Poluk, are undoubtedly getting stronger.”
Sila nodded at Lone Wolf’s words, though he didn’t think he should explain to Lone Wolf that, among the three Guardians and the King of the Slime Kingdom, Poluk was the kindest. Among those four, some taught him directly, some taught him by having him overcome trials, and some didn’t teach him anything and instead gave pointers. Regardless, all of their words and actions were extremely useful for Sila’s growth. When he thought that these four people weren’t members of the Wulin Masters Association, Sila was reminded that they lived in a vast world.
Everybody turned their heads to Sila. No one could tell how strong Sila was, and they were naturally curious, including Sila himself. He wanted to test how strong he had become.
“Mn. I can tell that you are quite strong, but since Lone Wolf said so, you must be extraordinarily strong. Let’s have a spar some other time,” Beluga smiled at Sila.
“Sure, Mister Beluga.”
Nednapha looked at Sila and tried to evaluate him. She had seen him display his strength once, so she was comparing the current Sila to the one she saw before. In her opinion, she didn’t think he had gotten much stronger, especially when considering how little time had passed.
In fact, it was normal for people to be unable to recognize Sila’s current strength. Sila was an internal utilizer and he had mastered his version of Divine Raiment, thus achieving perfect energy concealment. Only supreme figures at the level of the Slime Guardians or the Slime King would be able to see through his strength. While not to the same extent, Lone Wolf and Beluga could tell that Sila had gotten stronger with their intuition and experience.
“Sila, from now on, when you go anywhere, you will need to be more careful. It’s likely that players will attack you even more.”
Lone Wolf gave Sila a warning.
“They have been trying to do that for a long time, haven’t they? What has changed?”
“It is different now, because of this thing.”
Lone Wolf placed an octagonal ring on the table. Everyone recognized it with a single glance; everyone except Sila. Even though he was the one most affected by it.
“What is this ring?”
“Cloudy Dragon Ring, an S-grade item. It is now the most popular item from the Heavenly Dragon Guild. The wearer can break through to Marquis Rank easily, and when they kill a slime-race player, they will have the qualification to promote to Lord Rank once their level reaches 1,000.”
“A slime-race player?”
Sila frowned. The condition was oddly specific.
“You understand now, right? Montra intends to use other players to hunt you down, so you have to be careful. Our problem at hand is figuring out how Montra managed to craft this kind of item. It’s an S-grade item, but he can somehow mass-produce it. Our people are investigating right now but there is still no progress.”
Nednapha also said, “Our people, too, are investigating this matter, but, likewise, we have yet to make any discoveries. It’s an S-grade item that doesn’t show a downside, so we still don’t dare to equip it. However, based on our speculation, more than fifteen percent of all players are already wearing this ring, and the number is steadily increasing.”
“Cloudy Dragon Ring... Cloudy Dragon…? The Cloudy Pearl that dropped from the dragon...?”
As Sila muttered to himself, Varee called out to him.
“What are you saying?”
Sila hit the table. Everyone turned to him.
“I see! It’s the work of the Cloudy Pearl. Since it’s one of the Gems of Catastrophe, this kind of thing should be possible.”
Hermit came closer to him and asked, “Mister Sila, do you know something about it?”
Sila was considered to be Montra’s number one enemy. Even the rings directly targeted Sila. Everyone didn’t know what kind of enmity existed between the two, but they all knew one thing for sure: Sila possessed something that made Montra wary.
“I don’t think I can describe it well enough. Please let me just go and call the specialists.”
Sila was about to leave, but Hermit gestured him to stop.
“The party is large and you may lose your way. Mister Sila, if you want to call someone, please tell us the names, and I will order our people to go get them.”
“Is that so? In that case, please go to my previous table and invite Julia and Bluebird to join us.”
Both exclamations rang out simultaneously. The first belonged to Varee, who was wondering how Julia got out from the mansion, while the second one belonged to White Swan, who didn’t understand how Bluebird was related to this matter.
Hermit called one of the Victorious Wolves Sect’s members to get those two. Meanwhile, Varee poked Sila.
“Sila, how can Julia go outside? And how is she related to the ring?”
“Julia is Sila’s AI maid at the mansion, right? Isn’t it impossible for her to leave the attached residence?”
Ratri remembered Julia, so she was curious as well.
“I speculate the reasons that Julia can leave the mansion and Montra can mass-produce S-grade items are the same. Has anyone here heard of the Gems of Catastrophe?”
Sila asked, but, to his surprise, everyone shook their heads, including White Swan; even though her guild leader, Yardpirun, possessed one of them.
“How is Blue related though?” White Swan asked.
“Bluebird possesses Information Analysis, a high-tier inspection skill, so I think he should be able to help us inspect this ring. Moreover, he also knows about the Gems of Catastrophe.”
White Swan felt as if her dignity was damaged. Bluebird, who was always only eating and sleeping, turned out to possess information she didn’t. Even worse, he even had a high-tier inspection skill.
Soon, Julia and Bluebird arrived at the table. Bluebird even came holding a bowl of noodles in one hand and a pair of chopsticks in the other. Watching one of the vice-leaders of the Blue Pigeon Guild acting gluttonous in front of other important figures, White Swan felt ashamed and hopeless.
Julia greeted everyone, including Varee.
“Greetings, Madam. It’s been a while.”
“It is. Julia, it’s good that you have a body. You look very cute.”
“Thank you for your compliment, Madam. By the way, may I ask for what reason Master summoned Mister Bluebird and I to this place? How can we help you?”
Bluebird slurped some noodles before replying. “Oi, Sila. I’m not your henchman, you know? If I do not hurry and go back, Burapha might take all the food for himself.”
White Swan was annoyed and stood up. “Burapha won’t do anything shameless like that! Don’t compare yourself to him! Even though you are not his henchman, how much of his money do you think you have spent? Don’t complain over every little thing!”
Bluebird showed a bewildered expression. “Why did you have to shout? You have no manners, you know? All I ever did with Sila’s money was eating. It’s something trivial and no one would ever keep track of that.”
Hearing such words, White Swan snapped. However, Julia, who had been listening to their conversation, suddenly spoke.
“Regarding the bookkeeping, the total amount of money spent on Mister Bluebird’s food is 12,196 gold and 692,450 silver, sir. For the record, this amount only covers food costs, not including overhead ones. As for the labor cost, my cooking, I’m happy to inform you that it’s completely free, sir.”
Bluebird almost choked on the noodles in his mouth. Julia was a system AI so there was no way her calculation was wrong. Meanwhile, the others wondered how in the world a single person could manage to be prodigal to that extent.
Bluebird sent a melancholic gaze at Julia, but she seemed to be confused about why Bluebird looked at her, since all she did was answer his question.
Next, Bluebird took a side glance at White Swan, to which she immediately replied:
“That’s your personal problem! The guild is not responsible for your debts.”
Bluebird gulped down the noodles and turned to Sila.
“What can I do for you, Master...?”
Chapter 173: The Clash of Opinions
Bluebird was clearly in low spirits. An empty bowl was in front of him on the table. It took him a while before his eyes regained their liveliness and shone with energy. He puffed out his chest, exuding the aura of a professional newshawk. The vibe he gave off was completely different from before.
To be honest, Sila had only seen Bluebird in this state once; it was when he met him for the first time. Since then, he had never seen this side of him.
“Blue, I want you to tell everyone what we know regarding the Gems of Catastrophe.”
“Sila, are you sure? It’s one thing to tell you information regarding Montra since this information is included in the deal. However, the same doesn’t apply to everyone else. Sure, it’s your right to share the information with anyone you want, but let me warn you that if this information is shared, it will bring you more harm than good.” Bluebird stopped and said to everyone else, “Sorry but I need to bring this up first, so please understand.”
Sila was confused. “It will cause me more harm than good? What do you mean?”
Bluebird opened his system window and sent a message to Sila for him to read alone.
Realizing that it was a secret, everyone waited patiently and didn’t mind Bluebird’s action, though they were more curious about the gems.
Bluebird’s message was: “Yes, you will. That’s because only three players have the Gems of Catastrophe in their possession at the moment. The first is Montra, next is Boss, and the last one is you. For the former two, people can’t easily offend them. However, you are an individual player. If this information gets out, people will realise the grand value of the gems and they will stop at nothing to hunt you down.”
Sila sent a message back. It said, “How will that change anything for me now?”
“It will be different. Currently, only enemies and some of the neutral parties are targeting you. However, when it comes to sublime power and great benefits, people will do whatever it takes to obtain them. Even your friend might become your enemy. Killing you is one thing; you’ll only lose some levels, or maybe a rank. However, for them to obtain the item you possess, they need to force you to personally hand it to them. Naturally, they will use dirty means. In the worst case, they will target not only you but everyone you hold dear.”
Sila was shocked to see the message Bluebird sent back to him. However, once he turned his head back and looked at the people waiting for him, he made a decision.
“I don’t know about others, but I trust everyone here.”
Lone Wolf objected. “If it will put you in a bad spot, we don’t need to hear it.”
Beluga agreed. “Sure, I don’t know what kind of items these Gems of Catastrophe are, but even if we don’t know about them, I’m sure we can come up with a countermeasure anyway.”
Their intentions were clear; they didn’t want to cause trouble for Sila. As such, Sila had an easier time deciding.
“I have decided. Blue, please share the information regarding the Gems of Catastrophe with them.”
Bluebird nodded and started to explain. “The Gems of Catastrophe are speculated to be ultimate-tier items and the top secret of Monster Soul. As far as I know, the number of players who are aware of their existence at this time is less than ten. This number already includes Sila, Boss, Montra, and myself.
“There are twelve gems in total. Each of the gems possesses tremendous power that can’t be measured. Even our guild, the Blue Pigeon Guild, has only come this far thanks to one of the gems in Boss’ possession.”
This was the first time White Swan ever heard of this. Meanwhile, the others still doubted the power of the gems.
Nednapha asked, “Could you please tell us how much power they hold? And, what can they do?”
Bluebird answered with a professional look, “Extremely tremendous. The extent of their powers covers almost anything you can possibly think of. Each of their powers is seemingly bottomless. I know that you are finding what I said hard to comprehend, so let me put it this way. Do you all know about Orichalcum?”
Hermit replied, “We know. Orichalcum is a mysterious, legendary mineral. No one knows how to get it aside from accomplishing the system’s quests. At present, the only holders of it are Montra and Miss Varee. Oh, I heard that Mister Sila also has it now as well. This mineral can be used to create a powerful, or rather, an ultimate weapon. It is the highest-grade item discovered to date. Are you telling us that the Gems of Catastrophe are on par with it?”
Although everyone had yet to know what the gems could do, they were starting to feel concerned. If there were as many as twelve items that were comparable to Orichalcum and Montra got a hold of some of them, it was clear that they would be in an extremely disadvantageous position. However, Bluebird’s next statement caused an upheaval.
“Not on par. Far from it. If I were to compare Orichalcum to the Gems of Catastrophe, the power that the single gem holds is enough to make Orichalcum not be any different from the cheapest health potion.”
“I-Impossible...” Ratri gaped. However, looking at Bluebird’s expression, everyone knew that he wasn’t joking around.
“Tell us. What exactly can these gems do?” asked Beluga.
“That depends on each gem. Each of the gems holds a different power, though identically almighty. Its power is a conceptual ability that can be put into a single word, yet have many interpretations. For example, Presence, or Life.”
Life was referring to Julia’s Ocean Heart Aquamarine. As for Presence, Sila guessed that it must be the ability of the gem that Yardpirun possessed. It enabled her to completely merge her presence with her surroundings. If she got serious, no one would be able to detect her. It was as if her presence never existed to begin with.
Sila explained, “It may be hard to understand. Please take the gem I have for the example. The gem that I have is the Ocean Heart Aquamarine. Its conceptual ability is Life. This ability can grant life to inanimate beings, including an AI like Julia.”
Julia added, “This ability can be used in diverse ways without limits. Only, it depends on the user’s interpretation of the word ‘Life.’ As for me, for now, based off my thoughts I can use it to grant, revive, and sacrifice life.”
She picked up a spoon on the table and a blue aura enveloped it. Soon, the spoon began to jump around and dance as if it was a living being.
Ratri was shocked. “T-This is absurd. Such a short word can be interpreted in several ways. To think that it can even be used without limits...”
Everybody agreed with her. They thought that such an overpowered item shouldn’t even exist in the game. Just one of them could easily break the game’s balance beyond repair. Right now, everyone was thinking the same thing: that the name ‘Gems of Catastrophe’ was truly suitable.
Hermit asked, “And am I right to assume that Montra has one of them? If that is the case, we will have to hurry and assemble people to search for the gems. At the very least, we have to prevent him from getting more of them.”
Bluebird shook his head. “It’s already too late. We have confirmed that eight of the Gems of Catastrophe are already in Montra’s possession. Two belong to Sila, and one is with Boss. Only the last one is missing.”
“Eight gems?!! Montra has eight of this kind of overpowered item? This is too fraudulent!”
Ratri was shouting while Beluga, Hermit, Nednapha, and Lone Wolf showed worried expressions. Lone Wolf turned to Sila and asked a question.
“Sila, may I ask how you found two of them?”
Everyone was also curious, so they attentively waited for the answer. Sila recalled the events of acquiring two gems and explained.
“I got both of them by mere chance. I got the first one from killing Leviathan above the ocean. Bluebird and Burapha were with me. The gem I got from it was the Ocean Heart Aquamarine. For the record, it was once an event item in the event ‘Seeking for the Town of Beginnings’ Best Couple,’ though Varee and I had to give it back to the host at that time. As for the second gem, it was attached to a ring that I purchased from a shop in Grea City for 500,000 gold. After that, I had to unseal the ring with the help of the Transcendent Unsealer in the Town of Beginnings in order to obtain the gem. Actually, I should have another one, which is the Cloudy Pearl, from killing Pythia. However, Montra snatched it from me in the Town of Beginnings.”
“Wait, you just conveniently purchased a single item worth 500,000 gold?” asked Ratri.
“I know that it was expensive, but it couldn’t be helped. It’s a ring for keeping Lookhin inside.” Sila showed a black ring on his finger.
“So you got them by chance,” Lone Wolf turned his head to Bluebird. “What about your boss?”
“Boss didn’t explain the details, but it wasn’t different from Sila’s case. It was by pure coincidence.”
Lone Wolf wondered. “In that case, how did Montra find the gems?”
“He probably got them by chance as well, no?” asked Ratri.
Hermit shook his head. “No way. Just one or two might be the work of chance, but eight of them is too many to simply be luck. Moreover, if we consider that Montra could manage to snatch one of them from Mister Sila, it means...”
“Montra possesses the knowledge of how to acquire the Gems of Catastrophe?!” Ratri exclaimed.
Sila strongly nodded. “That should be the case. At that time, Montra explicitly threatened me to give him the gem that I got from the Wind Dragon. It is clear that he was fully aware that Pythia would drop one of the gems.”
“So, let’s find out how Montra came to know such information,” said Ratri.
However, Nednapha shook her head. “No, I don’t think that will be the best course of action. That information is no longer important. Montra already has eight of them, so it won’t make a difference if he gets one more. We will be wasting our time trying to find out how he knows about them. I think we better come up with countermeasures instead.”
“I’m thinking the same thing as Miss Nednapha; we should focus on the problem in front of us. First, about this ring. Mister Bluebird, I heard from Mister Sila that you might be able to inspect this ring in greater detail.”
Hermit handed the ring to Bluebird, to which Bluebird used his Information Analysis on it.
“Cloudy Baby Dragon Ring, an S-grade item. The wearer will get twice as much money and experience points from killing monsters when wearing this ring. The wearer can breakthrough to Marquis Rank without experiencing a bottleneck. However, the wearer can’t possibly breakthrough to Lord Rank by any means, except successfully killing a slime-race player. One percent of experience points and money the wearer earns while wearing the ring will be transferred to the person who wears the Cloudy Mother Dragon Ring. Furthermore, the wearer will die instantly if the ring is unequipped...”
“Oh, it really has hidden options. Well, we should be fine as long as we don’t unequip the ring. One percent seems negligible anyway,” said Ratri.
Hermit showed his concern. “Even though it’s just one percent, if it comes from thousands of players, it will be quite huge.”
Bluebird interrupted. “I haven’t finished yet. There is one more option, and that’s that the wearer of the Cloudy Mother Dragon Ring can forcefully remove any Cloudy Baby Dragon Rings in their line of sight.”
“W-What did you just say?!” exclaimed everybody.
“What a brutal move. If we were to wear this kind of ring and encounter the Mother Ring, we will die instantly,” said Hermit.
Beluga laughed. “What a sly move, that damn Montra. It’s good that we discovered his plan beforehand. Otherwise, we will lose the war event as soon as it starts.”
“Why? It’s just dying once, isn’t it?” asked Sila.
“The next war event will be your first one, right, Sila? You should know that you will have only a single life during the war event. As soon as you die, you will be removed from the event and be forced to wait until the war event ends. Wearing this ring spells instant death to us,” explained Beluga.
Hermit pondered. “Mn. In that case, we need to tell everyone and have them remove it. Dying now is better than dying during the war event.”
Beluga smirked. “I don’t think so. Rather, to efficiently utilize this ring, we can wear it for the time being to farm money and grind experience points. Then, we will remove it just before the war event starts, and wear replicants that we make, but without the options. We can fool Montra into believing that we have fallen into his trap this way.”
Lone Wolf agreed, “True, this plan sounds better.”
Everyone wanted to continue the conversation. However, killing intent was suddenly aimed at them. Thus, they stopped talking and looked at a group of players coming to their table.
Lone Wolf was the host of the party, so he stood up and greeted the incoming group.
“Excuse me. May I ask for your names, and what business do you have with me?”
A bear-like, muscular man in wuxia clothing with a giant axe strapped to his back stepped forward and put his palms together to salute.
“We are merely a group of no-name players who happen to have a question to ask.”
“Don’t hesitate, Brother. This gathering party was organized so that we can collaborate with each other, so all questions are welcome.”
The man cleared his throat and said, “Among the group at this table, we are not doubting the strengths of Lone Wolf, Beluga, or some of the others. We know that everyone at this table is an important figure and all of you are the keys to making the alliance advance in the right direction. However, we’re sorry to say that we’re doubting the ability of this man, Sila. How does he have the right to sit together with you?
“Sila is my guest. Moreover, he is well qualified to sit at this table among us leaders.”
“If that’s really your answer, Lone Wolf, then we are totally disappointed in you and are sad to inform you that we will have to reject your invitation to join the alliance. It’s clearly wrong to choose people based on intimacy rather than true skills. No matter how big or how great the organization is, with such discrimination, we will have no way to win against Montra. If that is the case, we better take our chances and fight alone instead of following you.”
The man said with a loud voice with the intention of letting everyone else in the gathering party hear the conversation. As such, people began to gossip and there was clearly signs of opinions clashing. Some even stood up and prepared to leave.
“I don’t judge people with intimacy. Rather, Sila is truly qualified to discuss the direction of the alliance with us. He is armed with virtue, strength, allies, and wealth.”
“These words of yours, anyone can say them. However, who can ensure that they aren’t hollow and fabricated? For this kind of matter, we should decide it by putting it on a show.”
“What do you mean?”
“Honestly, we don’t care about wealth, virtue, allies, or that kind of stuff. The key factor that can lead us to victory is nothing but true strength! And that’s the only thing we will believe in. So, I propose that he will have to show his strength to us through a match!!”
“We have all gathered here today in a peaceful manner. Moreover, Sila is a guest like all of you. I’m afraid that it won’t be appropriate to...”
“No problem, Mister Lone Wolf, I accept his proposal...”
Sila interrupted Lone Wolf and stepped forward.
“That’s right. By accepting the challenge, I admit that you are more manly than I thought.”
The man complimented him, while Lone Wolf sent a sound transmission to warn Sila.
“Sila, this can be hectic. We still don’t know his purpose. He might explicitly mean what he said, or maybe he is the enemy’s spy trying to cause a ruckus. To be safe, we shouldn’t start a conflict in the party.”
Using qi, Sila sent a sound transmission back.
“I understand. But, instead of avoiding the challenge, we might as well show them that we aren’t afraid of them. This way, not only will we stop them from proceeding with further actions, but we will increase the morale of the players in the party and put a stop to those who are still hesitant to join us.”
The man jumped and soared to the stage. Sila waited for a moment to impart some words to Julia before following the man, landing on the opposite side of the stage.
Everyone sitting at the main table locked their gazes on the stage. Meanwhile, Julia asked them to sit with a gesture before imparting the message Sila left her.
“Master said that he knows you all might still be unable to understand what kind of power the Gems of Catastrophe hold, so he will use himself to demonstrate it to all of you, in commemoration of us all deciding to join forces and oppose the Heavenly Dragon Guild.”
Julia spoke with an innocent smile and gestured toward the stage, as if this development was simply the exhibition of a new product.
Chapter 174: Lurkers
The atmosphere started getting lively when two people appeared on the stage. One of the two was Sila, whose face was being recognized by more people with every day that passed. The most eye-catching part of his appearance was the armor made of fabric that gave off a futuristic vibe. As for the other one, he was a man with a bear-like physique, wearing wuxia clothing made of leather with a giant axe on his back. Though he was a no-name player, people couldn’t easily underestimate his strength. Recently, with the help of a single ring, even a common player could become an expert in no time at all.
Sila deliberately showed his face to the masses so that he could get a proper look at the people below the stage. As he had expected, some players hurriedly concealed their powers upon seeing him. Unfortunately for them, since they were rushed the process, Sila had an easier time noticing them. He quickly swept his gaze over the crowd, his eyes lingering on each one he noticed.
He first directed his gaze toward the table at the back, where three people he was familiar with were currently sitting. One of the three was Fargo, who was sitting with his back straight. While the other two were wearing hoods, Sila could still tell that they were Cross and Shueria.
It seemed that, although they had parted ways at some point, when the guild they founded together collapsed, the three of them got together again like old times.
The other table that Sila spotted was one of the tables for honorable guests. The members of Tiger Team were all sitting happily around the table. It seemed they had safely arrived in Zhongsuyuan City, and all of them seemed stronger than the last time he saw them.
Still, Sila wondered why the person hurriedly hiding her presence turned out to be Jundtrathep. She even bowed her head down, refusing to have eye contact with him, instead of waving at him like the rest of the group.
He didn’t know anyone from the other tables. Well, that was to be expected. The number of players playing this game was in the millions. There was no way he would know every one of them.
Sila returned his attention to the man he was about to fight. Judging from the man’s outfit, weapon, and physique, Sila guessed the man should be the type of player that heavily relied on attack power; the so-called damage dealer. Sila also spotted the Cloudy Baby Dragon Ring on the man’s finger, so he assumed that the man’s rank was Marquis.
In a direct fight, Sila was confident that he could win against this man. However, the problem was: should he kill him? Wearing the ring didn’t mean the man was a member of the Heavenly Dragon Guild, lurking in the gathering party with bad intentions. Every player, regardless of their affiliations, could purchase the Cloudy Baby Dragon Ring for themselves.
‘Well, it won’t matter anyway. Even if he isn’t a spy, when he joins the alliance, he will have to remove the ring at the appropriate time and die. His level will drop regardless of what I choose. I will just fight without caring for his safety.’
Sila stood with both of his hands behind his back. His sharp eyes were fixated on the man in front of him.
“My name is Sila. May I know your name?”
The bulky man put his palms together to show respect as a fighter. “My name is Brown Bear, though people mostly call me Crazy Bear.”
‘Oh, his name really suits his physique,’ Sila thought while returning the salute.
His opponent stared at him, scanning his body. “I won’t hurt an unarmed person. Just bring out your favorite weapon. This way, you won’t have any excuses when you lose.”
“My specialty is bare-hand combat. As such, even though I seem like an unarmed person to you, in fact, I’m never without a weapon. If I were to bring out a proper weapon, that would put myself at a disadvantage.”
“Heh. You only recently became famous and here you are imitating Lone Wolf and Beluga by using your bare hands. Such a disappointment. Are you even aware that only a handful of people can successfully play qi type without using a weapon?”
“Imitating? I don’t think so. I have been practicing bare-handed my entire life. I believe that my efforts will not disappoint.”
“Good. We shall see if that is true soon.”
Crazy Bear firmly grabbed his axe with both hands and lifted it up. At the same time, he started emitting qi, enveloping his body and weapon with a red aura. Looking at such a sight, Sila smiled with a nostalgic feeling.
“You are indeed skilled. To think that you possess the Qi of Little Tiger.”
Some of the spectators began to gossip. Qi of Little Tiger was one of the Qi of Little Divine Beings. It was one of the milestones for qi type players, who aimed to acquire one of the Ten Supreme Qi. Just possessing one was considered a fortune; it meant the player had taken the first step into the realm of experts.
It was a regrettable fact that each of the Qi of Little Divine Beings could only be obtained once per year. Since Monster Soul had launched, nine years had passed in the game. Therefore, theoretically, there should be nine scrolls for each of the four qi, totaling in thirty-six users of Qi of Little Divine Beings.
However, in fact, less than twenty players possessed such qi. That’s because some players possessed more than one of them, like Lone Wolf who possessed all four, or Zero and Beluga, who both possessed two. Moreover, there were some years that players failed to kill the Four Divine Beings, preventing anyone from getting the scrolls.
As such, there was only a handful of players who got their hands on the Qi of Little Divine Beings. This was without mentioning the number of players who obtained one of the Ten Supreme Qi. They could be counted with two hands.
For Crazy Bear, whenever he displayed this qi, people would usually be in awe or scared of him. However, Sila instead gave him a smile.
Thinking that he was being mocked, Crazy Bear’s started to get angry. His black axe turned reddish-orange as he infused it with qi. Its attack power increased enormously and the axe gave off an overbearing feeling.
Under normal circumstances, not to mention Sila, any players would have already acted. Leaving the opponent unchecked when he was clearly preparing a strong attack was undoubtedly a foolish move, especially when the opponent was a qi-type player. Everyone knew that qi type was capable of temporarily but exponentially reinforcing their stats without limit using qi reinforcement.
Sensing the accumulation of power within the axe, it would be a lie if Sila said he wasn’t anxious. Well, he had already made his move. While Crazy Bear was increasing his attack power in his axe using Qi of Little Tiger, Sila was similarly gathering Yin Yang Energy to increase the Mechanical God’s Protection’s defense. Since Sila’s front was facing the people below the stage, no one was able to see the spinning gears behind his armor. They were spinning so fast that they didn’t look like they were moving.
Crazy Bear wasn’t in a rush to attack. He planned to kill Sila in a single blow. Likewise, Sila didn’t plan to seize the perfect opportunity to strike his opponent. The energy being infused into the Mechanical God’s Protection increased by leaps and bounds with Yin Yang Energy and Shapeless Qi.
“Hey, such a big opening. Why doesn’t that guy Sila make his move yet?”
“Surely... he isn’t senseless enough to try and take that axe head on, right?”
The two fighters could clearly hear the voices of the spectators below. The more he listened, the more Crazy Bear felt he was being humiliated. He gnashed his teeth and jumped, before swinging his axe downward.
The axe cleaved the sky, generating a reverberating roar like thunder that accompanies lightning being sent from the heavens. It was a strike that, for many of the people there, was the most powerful they had ever seen. While some of the stronger players, such as Lone Wolf, had seen stronger attacks, this was still one that even they would not feel confident about taking head-on.
Sila was still motionless. Everyone showed a panicked expression and the tension grew, some of them even got up from their seats. Nevertheless, among them, Lone Wolf, Beluga, and Elso could tell that Sila should be able to dodge the attack at the last second, so they remained calm.
Right before the axe was about to hit Sila, he tilted his head. As a result, the axe smashed down into his shoulder. Even Lone Wolf and the rest were shocked that Sila didn’t choose to dodge. However, it was already too late for them to help.
Unlike people’s expectations, instead of Sila’s shoulder being cleaved into two, his body stood tall and firm. Rather, it was Crazy Bear who, upon his axe connecting to Sila’s shoulder, found the impact unbearable. He felt like what he struck was a mountain instead of a person. The rebounding power sent him flying backward, falling from the stage and crashing into the tables below. Both of his hands were twisted, the bones crushed, and blood spilled out of wounds all over them.
Crazy Bear’s cry woke people up from their dream-like states. Everyone alternated between looking at Crazy Bear and looking at Sila like this development was an illusion.
“This should be enough, right?” Sila said nonchalantly.
He intended to demonstrate the power of the gem used to create the Mechanical God’s Protection, so he wasted a lot of his power. Therefore, he quickly circulated qi to regenerate it. Originally, he wasn’t a tank, so welcoming the attack head-on was a new experience for him. If it wasn’t necessary, he wouldn’t do it again.
Beluga stood up and clapped his hands. “Excellent. What an eye-opener. I am now fully aware of Sila’s brilliance.”
Though, the meaning behind his words was: he was now fully aware of the frightening power hidden within the Gems of Catastrophe.
Sila returned to the table and sat down like nothing worth mentioning happened. Now, the group of players planning to pick a fight with him came to an abrupt stop. The confidence they had built up had instantly evaporated as if they never had it.
The lurkers within the gathering party secretly exchanged signals. They judged that they couldn’t wait any longer. They needed to act now before their team’s morale dropped any further.
Burapha felt uncomfortable being the sole human among the table of three Lord Rank monsters. It was fine when the carefree Bluebird and the innocent Julia were with him, but he felt abandoned now that he was left alone. He considered summoning Lala to alleviate his loneliness, but he decided against it, afraid that people would discover that he had a partner.
What made him feel the most restless was the trio monsters acted in an entirely different manner from when Sila was around.
“Oh, your master is quite decent, Sebastian. To think he could block that kind of attack directly without dying,” said Franz.
“Sure enough. Mister Sila possesses many qualities which he has yet to display to you two.”
Asura asked, “Franz, you are qi type as well, aren’t you? If it was you instead of the kid, do you think you could block the previous attack?”
“Humph! I’m a poison user, not a frontliner. Anyway, I wouldn’t be stupid enough to expose myself and wait for my opponent to gather their power for an entire minute. If I really were to replace the kid, that bear man would die the moment his finger touched his axe.”
“I guess Mister Sila had some kind of a plan. Maybe he is trying to show off in order to gather funds from people.”
Asura snorted in response. “Heh. If he can actually do that, I will be very appreciative. It bores me to keep on working. I wonder why he alone could manage to spend a ton of money. Looking back, he only purchased some necessities, did he not? He wasn’t like that blue tailorbird who threw money away like trash.”
“Actually, it was Mister Bluebird’s fault—” Sebastian was about to explain when Franz lifted her hand up with a serious expression.
“They have started,” she spoke plainly, and the other two quieted down. Burapha could tell somehow that Asura was enhancing his sensing ability through psychic power.
“Can you find them?” asked Sebastian.
Franz shook her head. “The poison isn’t being released from a single source. There are at least twenty spots throughout the party, and the smell of the herbs within this place disturbs me.”
Sebastian gave Franz a disdainful look. “And you are calling yourself the Venomous Snake Queen? To fail at such a simple task... tch, what a letdown.”
Franz’s eyes changed into those of a reptile and scales started to cover her skin.
“Don’t test my patience, Sebastian. True, we are afraid to kill you, but I know several ways of defeating you without letting you die. I just can’t do that in human form. In human form, our powers are limited so that we can control them easier. It’s a good thing for you since your power is hard to control. However, for me and Asura who have been good at controlling our powers from the beginning, staying in human form is no different from being sealed. We got our powers restricted without gaining any benefits.”
“Franz is right. It’s your choice to take a liking to human form. You only have yourself to blame for your inability to control your power in monster form. I don’t like being insulted as well. If Franz takes action, I will do the same. You can’t stand a chance against us when we both use our true forms.”
Asura’s hollowed eyes looked straight at Sebastian.
Burapha broke into a cold sweat. Even though all three of them didn’t emit any killing intent nor unleash their powers, the previous friendly atmosphere was already nowhere to be seen.
“C-Could someone tell me what is happening now?” Burapha took the risk and asked.
Sebastian’s expression changed into a smile. “I was just kidding. Anyway, let’s review what we’ve discovered so far.”
The trio monsters still ignored Burapha as Franz began to explain. “It’s Energy-Dissolving Poison. No color, no odor. It won’t show any effect upon being inhaled. However, when the victim uses their power, they will suffer a backlash and won’t be able to move. This kind of poison is easy to brew, but the ingredients for making it are rare and it takes a long time to create. For them to release this poison from twenty-four spots in this open area, the mastermind of this operation should be quite generous. They should have spent a fortune putting this plan into motion.”
Asura added, “No one is taking offensive action yet. Maybe they are waiting for the poison to spread throughout the party. By the way, there is an army of five thousand humans hidden in the rear forest far from this place. To be able to conceal their presence to this extent, they must be quite decent. With this level of preparation and this many troops, they might be able to defeat even a Lord Rank monster. What a surprise. How have humans attained this level of strength within such a short time?”
Asura’s last sentence was thrown randomly without hoping someone would answer.
Sebastian used his finger to carve the surface of the table, drawing a map of the party. Once he was done, Franz waved her hand once, and twenty-four needles were suddenly sticking out of the table, indicating the locations of the poison sources. Lastly, Asura broke the corner of the table as if he was breaking bread and placed it on the table, with the number ‘5,000’ engraved on it.
“How much time left?” Sebastian asked as curtly as always.
Meanwhile, Burapha wasn’t a fool, so he could guess what was happening from the conversation. He quickly took out a small bottle containing the Cleanse Antidote, which he purchased from Sebastian’s shop, and drank it in one gulp. (For the record, even though he was Sila’s close friend, Sebastian still sold it to him at the standard price.)
“Energy-Dissolving Poison doesn’t work well in an open-air space. It will take ten minutes before everyone is affected by it. You still have enough time to warn your master in the front since the poison is concentrated in the rear.”
“That won’t be necessary. Mister Sila will be alright even if we don’t give him a hand, and I don’t care about others. What about the antidote? Do you have any that work against this poison?”
Burapha panicked and was going to stand up and shout to give everyone a warning. However, Asura, who was sitting next to him, pointed a sword at his flank. “Sebastian told us not to startle the snake by hitting the grass around it.”
T/N: “Don’t startle the snake by hitting the grass around it” is a proverb meaning “Don’t give away the plan by acting obviously and suspiciously.”
“Energy-Dissolving Poison requires a specific antidote. Since it wasn’t a common type of poison, I only have two bottles of the antidote. Just a bit of powder from the bottle on the tongue will neutralize any of the poison within the consumer’s system and grant a temporary immunity. Other than that, you can choose to drink three bottles of Cleanse Antidote to be immune to its effects for thirty minutes.”
Hearing that, Burapha immediately took out two more bottles of the Cleanse Antidote to drink. Now, he was more worried about others.
Franz put the two bottles of special antidote on the table, which Sebastian sent to Burapha’s hand.
“Mister Burapha, soon, you will have to bring these bottles to the main table. Sell one of them for a good price, as high as you can get, and give the other to Mister Sila for him to keep.”
Burapha wanted to argue that this wasn’t the right time to be concerned about money, but he didn’t say it since he knew it would just uselessly waste time.
Sebastian turned his head to Franz, asking, “What about Venom’s Heart? Can’t it cure the poison’s effect?”
“It can. In fact, Venom’s Heart can cure almost any kind of poison. However its value is astronomical, so it would be a waste to use it on such a weak poison. Just one pellet of Venom’s Heart can be turned into five thousand of Cleanse Antidotes. Even I don’t use it unless it is an emergency, so there is no way I will give it to a stranger.”
“Can I go now?” Burapha was dying to leave this place and inform the others about the poison.
Sebastian shook his head. “Let’s wait until everyone has inhaled the poison first. After that, our enemies will surely make their move, and it will save us from having to search for them.”
Asura stared at the map engraved on the table. He had already memorized all of the key locations and had finished calculating the distance. Once Sebastian gave him the signal, he would make his move to kill all twenty-four people releasing the poison in one go, in order to stop the spreading of the poison.
Finally, Sebastian urged Burapha, “Now, go. Please don’t act suspiciously. Walk normally like you just want to pay Mister Sila a visit.”
Burapha placed the two antidotes in his pocket and left. In the meantime, Sebastian turned his head to Franz and Asura.
“Get ready. If everything goes well, maybe all of your debt will be cleared at once.”
Franz disagreed. “I still can’t see how we can make that much profit from doing this. Indeed, we can exploit the situation and sell Cleanse Antidotes for a high price. However, it shouldn’t be enough.”
“The Cleanse Antidotes are just our first product. When the time is right, we will sell another one, which is what Julia and I made last night.”
Sebastian placed a candy wrapped in a white sheet of paper on the table, which Franz inspected with curiosity.
“What is this thing?” asked Asura.
“A Miracle Pellet.”
Franz furrowed her brows. “What? Isn’t it just a lump of sugar?”
“Yes, but we will sell a whole lot of them to everyone while calling them Miracle Pellets, an antidote for the Energy-Dissolving Poison.”
Franz was getting more confused. “What do you mean? Energy-Dissolving Poison will naturally lose its effect within three hours without the victim having to do anything. Moreover, if the victim drinks three bottles of Cleanse Antidotes, the poison will even be cured in twenty minutes.”
“Yeah, but none of the people here know that. We will just tell everyone that the Miracle Pellet can lessen the duration of the poison’s effect, and it can even help increase the efficiency of the Cleanse Antidote. We will sell only one for each person and urge them to eat it on the spot. It will be a special product that we only sell today. Even if anyone is suspicious later, the evidence will already be in their stomach.”
“Oh! It's not cheating if you don't get caught. I love this idea.”
“We will behave benevolently by selling Cleanse Antidotes at a discounted price while sky-rocketing the price of Miracle Pellets, claiming that we can’t afford to lower the price due to the ingredients being so expensive. With this, we will get both honor and money.”
“...We are like a group of villains,” Asura said to no one in particular.
Sebastian replied, “What are you talking about? We are obviously knights in shining armor who come to help everyone in the moment of crisis. It’s just that, the knights also need to make a living, so asking for a small donation should be fine. Everyone will understand.”
Although that was what Sebastian said, he was thinking, ‘It is fortunate that someone is actually causing trouble. Otherwise, I would have had no choice but to execute the backup plan: Grim Reaper First, Benevolent Knight Later.’
There was no one at the party who was acting suspiciously. Some discussed the battle they just saw with their friends, some visited other tables to greet their acquaintances, while some were busily typing messages in their system windows. Burapha managed to pass through and reach the space between the main table and the tables for special guests without attracting any attention.
He took a look at the two bottles in his hands. Opening the cap of one of them, the stench of the medicine entered his nose, causing him to cough. Burapha poured some of the powder onto his palm and used his tongue to lick it, and almost vomited from the taste.
The members of the Victorious Wolves Sect blocked him for advancing, but Burapha was in Lone Wolf’s line of sight, so the members were asked to step back and let Burapha pass.
Burapha walked past the guards and approached the table. He realized they were all discussing something important, as the atmosphere was tense. The topic must be quite serious since even Bluebird showed a stern expression.
“Oh, isn’t it Burapha? Come here. We are discussing some important matters right now,” Beluga greeted him.
“Hello, Mister Beluga. I still haven’t thanked you for helping me last time.”
“Haha. You don’t need to be so thankful for something so trivial. Well, actually, Elso also helped you. I can’t take all the credit.” Beluga introduced Elso to Burapha.
Burapha said his thanks to Elso before placing the two bottles on the table. Although he tried his best to show a poker face, everyone noticed that something must have happened.
“What happened, Brother Burapha?” asked Lone Wolf.
“We have a big problem. The thing is...”
Burapha calmly explained the situation that he got from Sebastian and the gang to others.
Listening to the story, everyone’s expressions changed. Nevertheless, all of them were smart enough not to behave strangely. They stealthily used energy reinforcement and found that they had indeed been poisoned.
“This bottle is for Big Brother Sila, and the other is for everyone.”
Burapha was worried about the situation, so he forgot about charging them for the other bottle as Sebastian instructed. Even Sila shared the bottle he got with others.
The amount of powder within the bottle was less than they had thought. After everyone at the table had consumed some, the amount left was less than half of a bottle. The remaining amount should only be enough for three or four more people.
“Ned, where is the enemy?” Beluga asked with a stiff expression.
“If I don’t know the direction, it will take some time...”
“The forest to the south. There should be around five thousand players,” said Burapha. He repeated what he was told.
Nednapha closed her eyes, and surprisingly, Sila did the same.
Out of the two, Sila spoke first. “It’s a red flag with the symbol of a lizard. Which guild does this army belong to?”
Nednapha opened her eyes and answered, “It’s not a lizard, but a kind of the dragon. It’s the symbol representing the Five Dragon Warlords. It seems the Heavenly Dragon Guild has started to take action.”
The reason that Sila could visualize the army far away from him was thanks to the third skill he picked from Lost Grea, Far Sight. Sila recalled the time where Nednapha shot arrows at Savage Killer during the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s march on Colossia City. At that time, Sila could sense the direction of the attack, but he couldn’t see Nednapha. Therefore, he had been interested in the skill she used on him.
Actually, Sila had been polishing his qi and, as he was now, he should be able to extend his senses outward and reach similar distances. However, sensing with qi was different from seeing with Far Sight. With Far Sight, he was able to see into the distance with his own eyes, witnessing all of the details such as color, shape, and size. It was a useful skill for spying and giving commands.
“Shall we prepare an army to fight back?” suggested Elso.
“Don’t. It will unnecessarily alarm the enemy and put them on guard. We still don’t know the location of the mastermind who is spreading the poison.”
Burapha interrupted again. “About that, Mister Sebastian and his friends said they will take care of those people when they take further action.”
“How about we mix the Cleanse Antidote within the drinks?” Hermit suggested, “I tested the Cleanse Antidote before and it still worked when mixed with other liquids. This way, the enemy won’t pick up on it.”
“But we don’t have that many Cleanse Antidotes.”
Julia stepped forward. “Excuse me. Mister Head Butler has prepared as many as 40,000 bottles of Cleanse Antidote. I can summon them from the treasure room at any time.”
“In that case, our guild will purchase all of them. Ratri, please make a transfer and bring Julia to the kitchen now.”
Ratri argued. “Wait. We can’t afford to buy all of them. Each of them costs 5 gold, that’s a lot...”
“The Mountain Thieves League will pay half of it. Ned, hurry up and transfer the money.”
As it was a race against time, Beluga made a quick decision and proceeded with the transaction.
Julia interrupted to deliver some good news. “With such a large order, Mister Head Butler allowed me to give you a twenty-percent discount. The total amount is 160,000 gold, dividing into only 80,000 each for both parties.”
Everyone felt better. Spending a lot of money before the war event was something they wanted to avoid at all costs. For inevitable expenses like this one, any discount was a blessing.
Both Ratri and Julia left to proceed with the plan, while the rest continued discussing countermeasures.
“If that’s really the flag of the Five Dragon Warlords, that means the Heavenly Dragon Guild wants to take this opportunity to eliminate us before the alliance is formed. If they succeed, our people will suffer from the loss of losing levels and our morale will drop to the bottom. Montra already holds too many advantages, yet he still wants to cripple our power before the war event starts.”
“Who are the Five Dragon Warlords?” asked Sila. In this game, he should be the only player who was still oblivious regarding this topic, even though he was one of the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s important enemies.
Bluebird frowned. “This information should already be included in the message we sent to you. Haven’t you read it yet?”
“There is too much information in that message. I was busy with other matters lately, so I haven’t had time to read it.”
Most of Sila’s time was spent studying Heaven’s Decree Sword Art. Even though he just started studying it, he had already engraved every letter within the book into his memory.
Lone Wolf began to explain.
“The Five Dragon Warlords are the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s vice-leaders. Within their guild, they should be stronger than all but Montra and the Two Monarchs. After the last war event, every one of them has stayed in seclusion and have only sent their subordinates to do their work.
“Firstly, there is the Black Star Warlord, Lost Ghost. This man is a psychic-type player who uses a black javelin made of psychic power as his weapon. Once his javelin has pierced something, it cannot be removed unless he wills it. He is strong at close and mid-range combat. His fighting style is quite brutal, similar to Cross’. He was only slightly inferior to Cross five years ago.
“The Star-Finishing Warlord, Cheris, is the sole female among the Five Dragon Warlords. She is a psychic type player as well. Her weapons are dual swords and her attack speed is frighteningly fast. If I have to compare, I would say that her swordsmanship is as quick as Varee’s, yet as imperceptible as Elso’s.
“The Sun-Extinguishing Warlord, Shuran, is a qi-type player. His attack range is comparable to Nednapha’s, though they have different fighting styles. While Nednapha is a tricky attacker who chips away at the enemy’s strength, Shuran is purely offensive. Most of the time he only fires one arrow in a battle, but it’s a powerful one that can change direction at any moment. If he targets us from a distance, we will have a difficult time opposing him.
“The Illusionist Warlord, Trick Master,is a magic-type player. He is a spellcaster who has aptitude in multiple elements. The scary thing about him isn’t his spell’s raw power but his technique. It seems he can cast two spells at the same time. When taking his proficiency at Magic Delay into account, he can cast spell after spell continuously. People even gave him another title, which is the King of Delayed Spells. I have to admit that he is one of the most formidable enemies.
“The last is the Three Stars Warlord, Zazae, another qi-type player. We have little information regarding this person. We only know a rumor about him, stating that he kills his target with no more than three moves, and has never failed. In the last war event, he only made an appearance at a later stage of the event and was the downfall of the Mountain Thieves League.
“They are the Five Dragon Warlords of the Heavenly Dragon Guild. They are all famous but don’t seem to have any important active duties within the guild. Their main contributions are recruiting people, training members, and taking action when called by Montra.”
Beluga added, “Heh. Only a rich guild like the Heavenly Dragon Guild can manage to let the vice-leaders enjoy lives without doing any work. In the case of our guild, all of us, be it the leader or the grunt, have to do even the most basic jobs.”
Sila did his best to memorize what Lone Wolf said. For the Black Star Warlord, he recalled that he had first heard about this person when he started the game. As for the Star-Finishing Warlord, she was actually Yardpirun, who was acting as a spy. About the Sun-Extinguishing Warlord, he believed he had heard this name twice. The first was when Sangdao mentioned his name as one of the best long-range sharpshooters in Monster Soul, and the second time was when Paiyuan was trying to figure out his real identity.
He was quite sure he had never heard of the Illusionist Warlord before, but it was kind of amazing to hear that someone could cast spells endlessly. When Sila thought about how to defeat him, all he could come up with was either ending the fight quickly or prolonging it so his opponent runs out of magic power.
As for the last person, the Three Stars Warlord, it was also his first time hearing about him. Nevertheless, for this person to be able to kill all of the enemies so far within three moves, this person should be terrifyingly strong. Even Sila wasn’t sure that he could accomplish such a feat every time even if his opponents were no-name players, especially if they were tankers.
“We should expect the worst case scenario to be that all of the Five Dragon Warlords will come at us. In this case, what should we do?” asked Hermit.
“It’s simple, isn’t it? We split up and either take them on by ourselves or with a partner,” Sila simply expressed his opinion.
The table fell into silence before bursts of laughter came from Lone Wolf and Beluga’s mouths. Even Elso, who always wore a solemn expression, showed a faint smile.
“Hahaha. It’s indeed as simple as that. You are very funny, you know, Sila? Look, even Elso, who is always trying to keep his cool, smiled at your suggestion.”
Begula heartily laughed and teased his subordinate, causing Elso to restore his poker face.
“Sila’s plan sounds good, but don’t forget that our opponents aren’t only these five. Aside from the five thousand players that will ambush us later, their people should have already snuck into the party.”
Lone Wolf showed his concern, and Beluga summarized their plan.
“For the main part, let’s stick with Sila’s idea. Most of us will engage in battles against the Five Dragon Warlords. That leaves Hermit, Ratri, and Nednapha to control our allies in the party to fight against the lurkers.”
“In that case, Varee and Sangdao can help. Both of them are skilled at fighting against groups,” proposed Sila.
Sangdao nodded, while Varee argued.
“How come you get to fight one of the Five Warlords, but I don’t? Do you think I will lose? I’ve been playing this game for longer than you.”
Lone Wolf tried to explain, “I believe Sila didn’t mean it that way. It’s just that the overall situation is more important. When we are keeping the Five Warlords in check, the skilled players on our side will have an equally difficult task to defeat the hidden enemies as soon as possible before their reinforcements arrive.”
Since Lone Wolf said so, Varee no longer opposed the idea. She was fully aware that the situation was urgent, and it would be foolish to have a dispute over what jobs they were assigned.
“Please let Lookhin help. Lookhin also shines in group battles,” Sila requested.
“Leave the Star-Finishing Warlord to me. I will handle her alone.”
Suddenly, Bluebird volunteered to fight a one-on-one battle against one of the Five Dragon Warlords. Everyone looked at him.
Hermit tried to oppose the idea. “You shouldn’t. At the very least, let someone accompany you. Cheris is a formidable opponent. I’m afraid that Mister Bluebird alone...”
Bluebird raised his hand up to stop Hermit’s argument. “I have one or two tricks up my sleeve. I assure you that I can take care of Cheris by myself.”
The others still hesitated to let Bluebird fight alone. At that time, Sila said, “I’m sure Bluebird alone is enough. We don’t need to worry.”
Consequently, everyone recalled that Bluebird was a vice-leader of one of the most important guilds. Even though he hadn’t shown his skills to the world so far, it might be possible that he was, in fact, a supreme powerhouse, something like the Blue Pigeon Guild’s secret weapon. With Sila’s words of confidence, they no longer opposed the decision and began to look at Bluebird with a gaze of admiration.
Though, in fact, Sila was just aware that Cheris’ real identity was Yardpirun. For this reason, there should be no danger for Bluebird in taking this role.
Actually, there was another person who was aware of the fact, and that was White Swan. She knew the fact behind Bluebird’s bravery but there was no way she could reveal the truth. All she could do was scold Bluebird in her mind: You damn cheater!
Beluga began to assign roles to the other members.
“It is unlikely that Shuran will show up at the party. He will be standing by from afar and shooting at us when we show any openings. The only one who can handle him will be you, Nednapha. You have to support everyone from behind the scenes. Keep yourself safe, find Shuran, and fire your arrows to help our teammates; these will be your tasks. Do your best to keep him occupied.”
Nednapha nodded. “What about the others?”
Beluga continued. “Lone Wolf, you will have to handle Zazae alone. As for me, I am a tanker, so I will cooperate with Elso to defeat Trick Master.”
Lone Wolf looked askance at Beluga. In his opinion, even Beluga alone should be enough to keep one of the Five Dragon Warlords in check.
Receiving the gaze, Beluga knew what Lone Wolf was wondering and gave an honest answer with a smile.
“Why raise the level of difficulty when we can set it at easy? With Elso and I working together, we will have a chance to defeat our opponents in quick succession and still have time left to spare.”
Burapha said, “In that case, Big Brother Sila and I will have to fight Lost Ghost, right?”
Sila shook his head. “No, I will handle Lost Ghost alone. As for you, Burapha, your task is...”
While Burapha was listening to Sila’s plan, the members of Victorious Wolves Sect began to serve drinks to all the guests in the party, along with a delicious dish. Naturally, people began to eat and drink, enjoying the party to the fullest. As a result, the previous tension that had built up was fading away.
If everything went according to the plan, it was certain that even the Five Dragon Warlords would undoubtedly lose. However, deep in everyone’s minds, they were pondering why Montra chose to invade them now of all times when all of the people hostile to the Heavenly Dragon Guild were present.
Fifteen minutes slowly passed, and finally, the decisive moment that everyone was waiting for had come at long last. A particular player stood up on the table, attracting the attention of everyone at the party. This person was wearing a hood, but his physique gave away that he was surely a man.
At the same time, killing intent was being emitted from several locations. Some of the power being unleashed could even threaten Sebastian. The butler frowned and exclaimed.
“Hey, hey. Is this for real? This is totally unexpected. It seems that this kid Montra spells more danger than I have ever imagined. He is even more disastrous than Mister Sila.”
Similarly, Asura and Franz could sense bizarre powers from five different spots. They were catastrophic powers at the realm humanity couldn’t have possibly attained.
The man standing on the table removed his hood. The face that he revealed was one most people recognized. He was Venom.
“Lone Wolf and all of you!! You all here are a bunch of people daring to become the enemies of the great Heavenly Dragon Guild. Such a group of insolent bastards who can’t even tell right from wrong! Today, I, Venom, as the representative of the Magic Emperor Montra, have volunteered to come and punish your preposterous gang of vile people!! Soon, the world will come to know what kind of fate awaits you fools who dare to resist the will of heaven!!”
As soon as people saw Venom’s face, the first word that popped into their minds was ‘poison.’ Everyone tried to unleash their powers but ended up in vain. Their bodies went limp and fell down. It seemed it would take some more time until the Cleanse Antidote could show its effect. Most players began to curse Venom, however, some of them stood up like nothing happened and unsheathed their weapons. They were a group of five hundred people from the Heavenly Dragon Guild who would soon deliver killing blows to all the ‘fools daring to resist the will of heaven.’
Lone Wolf jumped onto the stage. “Using poison to render people helpless before taking action, do you still have the courage to call yourself the righteous side?”
“Yes, we use poison, and what about it? Anything is acceptable during the war. History is written by the victor. Today, you will see a demonstration of our might!”
Everyone at the main table stood up and scattered. Venom could tell that not one of them was poisoned, so he snapped his fingers as a signal.
“It seems you fools can somehow resist my poison. However, that will only make your suffering worse. You can’t possibly stand a chance against the current Five Dragon Warlords.”
Four people stood up from their chairs. The powers being emitted from their bodies were incredibly intimidating. Sila and Lone Wolf could feel a strange, nostalgic power that they had almost forgotten.
“Watch out. There is something strange about them... Burapha, don’t forget what I told you,” said Sila.
The voices of the paralyzed players were filled with fear and resentment. The clock was ticking, so Beluga, Elso, Lone Wolf, Burapha, Sila, Sangdao, Varee, and Bluebird quickly soared toward their assigned opponents.
They thought everything would go according to the plan. With Sila and everyone’s strengths, even the Five Dragon Warlords wouldn’t be their match. However, an abrupt change soon occurred when all four of the warlords, excluding Shuran, extended their hands forward.
Four glass-like cards that looked extremely familiar appeared above their right hands. What came out from the warlords’ mouths were inhumane voices that sounded as if they came from the bottom of the abyss, signaling the start of a nightmare.
“Gluttony! / Lust! / Envy! / Sloth!”
Their voices echoed together like a symphony of hell, and the cards shattered into particles.
Now that all of the cards from the Seven Deadly Sins series were assembled and close to each other, the sun lost its light, and darkness began to cover the entire Main Continent.
It was the beginning of the great storm in Zhongsuyuan City. Sebastian had neither the time nor luxury to follow his original plan anymore. In this place, only he was well aware of the horrors of each of the cards.
Chapter 176: The Seven Deadly Sins
‘How could I have been so careless?!’ Sebastian inwardly blamed himself while making his move. He signalled Asura, telling him to kill the people releasing the poison.
Asura’s lifeless eyes glowed red. He waved his hand downward once, and all six of his short swords flew like arrows. They changed courses mid-flight like living beings, scattering throughout the party to kill all of the targets. It happened so fast that all twenty-four people didn’t even know how they died.
“Franz, Asura. We’re abandoning the previous plan. Both of you, go and kill the one with the Wrath Card! You should be able to sense it, right? Don’t hold back, and please be careful. The Wrath skill can deal continuous damage to everyone within a kilometer radius!” Sebastian shouted as he gave them their task.
“Don’t order me around. Do whatever you want, but this problem has nothing to do with me,” argued Franz.
“If you succeed, your debt will be cleared!!” Sebastian had no time to argue. Casting a spell while talking at the same time took more effort than usual.
The moment they heard that, Asura and Franz took off flying toward the west going as fast as they could, aiming for the wasteland near the Desert of Death.
Sebastian wanted to fix this problem as soon as possible. It was his fault that the Seven Deadly Sins cards were released to the outside world. Sure, he didn’t care if they caused problems for others. However, it turned out that his current master, Sila, was directly affected by their release. Not only did one person collect all of the remaining cards, but he was also Sila’s greatest enemy.
‘I should have been suspicious ever since I found out that Ramiel was serving him. Ramiel was with me when our master sealed those demons, so he should know both the weaknesses and the strengths of each card. Moreover, if he used his unsealed ability, the Power of Rebirth, the deadly sin demons wouldn’t be his match.’
For the record, Sebastian and Ramiel’s original master personally sealed all of the Seven Deadly Sins within their cards. Then, before he left the mansion, he left the cards in Ramiel and Sebastian’s care, along with granting them equal portions of his power.
Ramiel obtained an ability called “Power of Rebirth” while Sebastian got “Power of True Death.” These powers were sealed until the day came when they met the worthy person who could awaken their true strength.
Similarly to Sebastian’s Power of True Death, Ramiel’s Power of Rebirth had several limitations. It wasn’t a combat-oriented skill. Rather, it was a power that could forcefully revert any being into its sealed state.
In the case of the Seven Deadly Sins, no matter how strong they were, in the end, they were just cards. Montra didn’t even need to waste his army on his journey to acquire all five of them.
Though, this power wouldn’t work on the beings that were affected by the Power of True Death.
As for the Power of True Death, it was a dangerous ability that wasn’t inferior to the Power of Rebirth. Usually, the monsters in Monster Soul would respawn given enough time. However, if they died while being affected by the Power of True Death, they would disappear from the world permanently with no way to come back to life.
The only power that could negate this was the Power of Rebirth. It could be said that the two powers were balancing each other.
The first action Sebastian took was imprisoning Venom within a cage made of bone.
He was more concerned about the disaster that would befall the world when all seven cards were brought together.
“O, dear three great gods; Nyx, the Goddess of the Night, Erebus, the God of Darkness, and Hypnos, the God of Sleep. Your humble servant asks of thou, please grant us the night to cover the sky, the darkness to cover the earth. Every destination I reach shall be yours, and every wave of thou hand shall grant eternal sleep to my enemies. Twilight Dimension.”
Black magic particles were emitted from Sebastian’s palm and soon expanded, becoming four swirling vortexes that were drifting toward the battlefield. As soon as they got close, they started swallowing the main players.
The black holes changed their shapes and became dimensional doors, still hanging above the battlefield.
Sebastian levitated near the doors and explained the situation to those who were left behind. They were Burapha, Hermit, Nednapha, Ratri, Sangdao, Varee, and White Swan.
“I have to maintain the four gates simultaneously so my hands are already full. The ones who just disappeared have been separated into groups that give our side the advantage and placed within special dimensions. Please hurry up and kill the enemies outside so that you can join the ones inside. While you do that, I’ll be giving instructions to the others currently fighting within the dimensions.”
There was no time to waste. Sangdao and Varee began hunting while Nednapha helped them from the rear. As for Burapha, he followed Sila’s instructions and visited the table where Cross, Shueria, and Fargo were sitting. He took out the remaining antidote for the poison.
“Big Brother Sila said that you guys were here and he wanted to ask you three for help. He also said that he would like to wash away all the resentment between him and you, Mister Cross.”
Even though Cross hated Sila to the bones, who he hated the most was naturally Montra, who personally came to crush his guild and everything he had. Montra even went as far as using poison on him right now. Therefore, as Sila had proposed, Cross was willing to temporarily forget what had happened in the past with Sila, though he made no promises about what happened once the situation was handled.
“Fine. I still hold a grudge against both Sila and Montra, but today I will help deal with Montra’s lackeys. Tell Sila later that he and I still aren’t allies.”
“That should be plenty. As for Mister Fargo and Mister Shueria, Big Brother Sila said that you two aren’t his enemies. He hopes that you will join forces with us and help everyone get through this.”
Both men nodded, then Burapha sent the antidote powder into the mouths of all three.
The trio frowned at its bad taste and found that they were slowing regaining their strength. Now, the remaining amount of antidote powder in Burapha’s hand was only enough for a single person.
Burapha was about to store the bottle of antidote in his system window, but Sebastian shouted at him.
“Mister Burapha, please use the remaining antidote to cure the person to your left, three tables down the row! The man wearing the white wuxia clothing!”
Burapha obediently followed the instructions and dashed to the designated table. However, once he arrived, he frowned and looked back at Sebastian.
“Mister Sebastian, are you sure that you mean this guy?”
“Yes. There’s no time to explain. Cure him, and help us fight the enemies. The army at the forest is already approaching.”
“...Really? This guy? Lomyok?”
Burapha tapped the last gram of powder into Lomyok’s mouth before helping Varee, Sangdao, and Nednapha defeat the enemies in the gathering party.
As Fargo, Shueria, and Cross completely regained their strengths, Sebastian shouted instructions at them.
He had seen Fargo’s strength before and realized that Cross was a strong undead similar to him. Regarding Shueria, he didn’t know how this person came to possess his master’s heart. In any case, Shueria was considered the third person he had seen who had a part of his dear master.
“Mister Fargo and Mister Silver Knight, please go into the second gate, sirs. As for Mister Undead, please go into the last one. We are racing against time and have to defeat the enemies as fast as possible.”
“Shouldn’t we enter different gates?” asked Fargo.
“I don’t have time to tell you the details, but please believe my words for once, sirs.”
As such, Shueria and Fargo no longer asked further questions. They jumped into the second gate, which was the gate that swallowed Beluga and Elso.
As for Cross, he was looking at the last door.
“This is the gate that absorbed Lone Wolf, right? Even though I don’t want to admit it, there is no way Lone Wolf will lose in a one-on-one fight. Shouldn’t I go with the blue mage?”
Cross was referring to Bluebird. From the perspective of everyone who had been watching, among all the players who were swallowed by the black holes, Bluebird was the weakest.
Nevertheless, Sebastian could sense that a battle didn’t break out in the dimension where Bluebird was present. That was why he wanted Cross to go help Lone Wolf instead.
“Against Envy, Mister Lone Wolf can’t win by fighting alone, sir. Our side should have two people at least, though there can’t be too many. The best course of action will be sending our top two strongest people to fight.”
Sebastian guessed that Cross was the type who loved to be praised, so he cleverly used the word ‘strongest’ to urge him. As he had intended, Cross stopped hesitating and jumped into the last gate.
‘So far so good. Wrath is strong in a prolonged fight. With Asura and Franz working together, there shouldn’t be a problem. As for Envy, with more than one but less than three decently strong people from our side, we should have a chance to deal with it.
‘Mn. It’s correct that Mister Sila should fight against the user of Gluttony alone, and it’s fortunate that Mister Blue isn’t engaging in combat with the user of Lust. He will just die should that happen. Lastly, against Sloth, the more the better, especially since the user seems to be magic-type. With that many people from our side, it shouldn’t take long for us to defeat them.
‘With all five of them separated, they won’t be able to help each other. This way, our side will surely win. It will just be a matter of time. The only concern left is the approaching army.’
In fact, this was a very dangerous move prepared by Montra. If the Five Dragon Warlords fought together, the Victorious Wolves Sect and their puny alliance would be completely annihilated.
However, what Montra overlooked was Sebastian’s knowledge regarding the abilities of the Seven Deadly Sins and the existences of Asura and Franz.
Although Montra had prepared a backup plan, this miscalculation was simply too severe. From now on, only time could tell the result of this battle.
Meanwhile, the man in white wuxia clothing was finally able to move. He stood up and heard a voice in his ear.
“Excuse me, sir, are you the super famous Deity Lomyok?” asked Sebastian.
The man unfolded the fan in his hand. Lomyok was calm and unaffected by the battles, as if they weren’t even there.
“That’s right. I’m the Deity Lomyok. The most handsome, courageous, and coolest man in the universe.”
“I’m your fan, sir, and I have a trivial request to ask of you.”
“For a fan, Sir Lomyok can always grant a wish. Especially for you, since it is rare for me to have a male fan. The majority of them are always jealous of my handsomeness.”
“The thing is, I would like to ask Sir Lomyok to take care of the army of five thousand players who are approaching us as we speak. For this great task, only Sir Lomyok can handle it, I believe.”
“That’s only natural. Not to mention five thousand, even five million is fine by me. Where should I start?”
“I’m truly glad that you are on our side, Sir Lomyok. Now, I am going to cast a spell. Could you please help me by repeating what I say, sir?”
“Hmm? Why me? This handsome one can’t understand.” Lomyok combed his hair with the foldable fan in his hand.
“Ah, others are simply unable to do this task, Sir Lomyok. Only the most awesome, handsome, and elegant person can show the true power of this spell. That’s totally you and you alone. Really, please. Kindly empty your mind and recite my words.”
Even a whale dances when praised. Lomyok was fascinated by the praises. He unfolded his fan with a faint smile. “Well, that can’t be helped.”
Sebastian released a sigh of relief. The spell he was about to cast had a ridiculously difficult condition to use it. To cast the spell successfully, the spellcaster needed to be a member of the undead race, and, more importantly, had to be insanely stupid. That’s because the spellcaster had to become a sacrifice by willfully reciting the incantation of the spell themselves.
In the beginning, Sebastian planned to use Cross. However, after thinking about it again, he believed using Lomyok would be far easier.
Sila found himself in a dark and rectangular room similar to where he had trained in the Mansion of the Seven Deadly Sins. There was no furniture, only someone standing in front of him.
The man was wearing a metal executioner helmet, covering his entire face except for his eyes. The upper part of his body was naked, showing off his bulky muscles. In his hand, there was a black javelin made of psychic power, which Sila sensed somehow resembled his Dark Psychic Corrosion.
If memory served him right, he remembered this person was the one who activated Gluttony before they were both transported into this dark place.
Sebastian’s voice could be heard in Sila’s head, similar to how the system sound rang, causing Sila to understand that the mastermind who sent them into this separate dimension was none other than his butler.
“Mister Sila, this is me, Sebastian, speaking. This conversation is only one-way, so please just listen, sir. Gluttony has the ability to swallow without limit. When active, all damage that the user deals will increase the user’s health, qi, magic, psychic power, defense power, and attack power. Therefore, fighting him in a one-on-one match is our best bet. Please take care to not block or get hit by his attacks, sir.”
As soon as Sebastian finished speaking, the communication was suddenly cut off.
Sila became more vigilant. It was fortunate that Sebastian warned him first. Otherwise, if he didn’t know this information, he might be pulled into a brawl, exchanging attacks against the opponent until it was too late.
Meanwhile, Lost Ghost was confused about why he was here. Nevertheless, since his opponent was in front of him, he stopped thinking about something so trivial. Out of thin air, he summoned dozens of javelins and launched them at Sila, while Sila quickly used his footwork to evade.
Inside the second gate, there was complete chaos. In the beginning, it was a battle between Beluga, along with Elso, and Trick Master. Since it was a two-against-one, the battle should have easily ended in Beluga’s favor.
However, inconceivable to the two of the Mountain Thief League, Trick Master who was alone suddenly multiplied and turned the battle into a two-versus-two.
While Beluga and Elso were contemplating which one of the two Trick Masters was the real body, Fargo and Shueria suddenly appeared inside the dimension.
Elso showed a stern expression, preparing himself for a three-way battle. Nevertheless, Sebastian’s voice rang inside the four’s head.
“All four of you, please listen carefully, sirs. Your common enemy is the wizard who is the owner of the Sloth Card. Don’t waste your time figuring out which is the real body, since both of them are real. The Sloth skill enables the user to make a complete copy of oneself with the same will and personality as the user. There is no obvious countermeasure. Only, you should focus your attack on either of them. Furthermore, when the duration of the skill comes to an end, all of the accumulated damage will be transferred from the body that leaves to the body that remains. Therefore, you must defeat one or prolong the fight until thirty minutes pass.”
Sebastian’s voice cut off, leaving them in silence. Then, Beluga stared at Fargo and Shueria.
“The four of us fighting together like old times. Doesn’t this bring back memories?”
“Never in my wildest dreams did I think that we will have to cooperate one day,” said Fargo.
“I still don’t trust you guys,” said Elso.
“I don’t care about sides anymore. The only person I serve is myself. I decided to give you a hand this time simply because these guys picked a fight with me first,” Shueria said with indifference.
Beluga heartily laughed before sending a party invitation to Fargo and Shueria.
“Anyway, welcome to the Temporary Whale Team. When this mess comes to an end, let’s drink first before deciding to become enemies again or not.”
As they had expected from Beluga, the party’s name was lame. Both former vice-leaders of the Royal Armament Guild accepted the invitation before they all scattered, surrounding the two Trick Masters who were now casting four spells at the same time.
The third dimension seemed to be the most peaceful among the four. Bluebird stood dumbfoundedly with Cheris who was in a black kimono. She was holding a short Japanese sword in her left hand and a katana in her right. She took a look around the room and her psychic sense swept all over it.When she was certain that there was no one else, she asked, “Where is this place, Bluebird?”
“I don’t know either, Boss, but I guess it’s Sebastian’s work. By the way, how did you come here, Boss? You even have a card like the one Lone Wolf used.”
“This card? Montra gave them to us Warlords recently. It should be top secret so I didn’t tell anyone, including you. Montra said only we know about the cards’ existence. If this information was to leak, he would suspect that there is a spy among the Five Dragon Warlords.”
“At the very least, you should have warned me that you were going to raid the gathering party.”
“I didn’t know how many people were aware of the raid, so I decided to stay silent. Well, actually, I prepared the antidote with me, though I don’t think we need it anymore.”
At that time, Sebastian’s voice rang inside Bluebird’s head.
“Mister Blue, I don’t know what method you used, but good job stalling for time. The Lust skill can... umm... it will be useless even if you know. Anyway, please try your hardest to stay alive as long as possible, sir.”
Sebastian’s voice faded. Yardpirun noticed Bluebird making a tired face.
“Ah, nothing. I just feel like I’m being abandoned somehow...”
Both of them took their time to come up with future plans and exchanged news, including how to get out of this place without seeming suspicious.
In the last dimensional room, the atmosphere was greatly contrasted the peacefulness in the previous room. Lone Wolf stared at Zazae with great doubt, because this person was unexpectedly too strong.
After the first exchange of moves between them, Lone Wolf had to admit that he needed to use his full power in order to stand a chance against this man. He could feel the bottomless power dwelling under Zazae’s expressionless face.
Zazae was wearing a purple assassin garment. The hood attached to the clothing covered most of his facial features, but one could still tell that he was quite charming. On the clothing around his chest area, there were three stars embroidered. The weapon in his hand was a chain whip with a metal ball at the end.
Soon, Cross appeared within the room, causing both Lone Wolf and Zazae to feel suspicious. No one here could outright call someone else an ally, so they were on guard against a potential three-way battle.
“I will help you this time only, Lone Wolf. Any issues between us have to be settled in the future.”
With Cross’ statement, Zazae became more tense. Although he was confident in his ability, the two opponents in front of him were two of the Four Emperors, who were hailed as equals of his leader, Montra.
Lone Wolf gave a faint smile. “In the past, Zero and I joined forces against Montra and you. Now, it’s you and I sharing the same ambition to take down Montra, who has allied with Zero. Funny, isn’t it?”
“Huh! I told you this is only a one-time thing, not a permanent alliance. I still hold a grudge against Montra, Zero, Sila, and you.”
“Haha. You sure have a lot of enemies. Well, how about focusing on the opponent in front of us first? You can take them down one at a time.”
While they were talking, Sebastian’s voice rang inside Lone Wolf and Cross’ heads.
“Envy is quite tricky, sirs. Its ability allows its user to copy the power of the people they are fighting against. As Mister Lone Wolf is a qi type, which is the same as him, he will have an easier time using your power. Fortunately, Mister Undead is a psychic type. Even if he can copy your power, he will have a difficult time using it.
“Please be warned that he can use your skills without having to spend even a little of his own energy. As such, fighting him will be similar to fighting yourself plus the opponent. My only advice is that you should rely on your proficiency with your skills and exploiting the fact that he can only use one copied power at a time.”
Sebastian’s statement was verified by the heat radiating from Zazae. Both Lone Wolf and Cross were fully aware of this power.
“...Sun God Qi. You can even use my qi that easily? This battle will indeed be like me fighting against myself.”
Lone Wolf started circulating his Sun God Qi as well, and the temperature in the room soon became intensely hot thanks to the two suns, though Cross wasn’t affected too much since he had already unleashed his psychic power that was sharp and cold like blades. Both of the swords in his hands began to shake and let out silent roars.
“I will teach you that power alone is not enough. For you to wield it, you have to possess both virtue and proficiency. Even if you are using my power against me, I won’t fear,” said Lone Wolf, his eyes glowing orange.
In the meantime, Cross gave Zazae a gaze of contempt. “Heh. This is just perfect. Killing this guy will be like killing you. Beating him to death should serve as an appetizer before killing the real one, huh.”
Chapter 177: The Executioner
Despite his bulky physique, Lost Ghost could move extremely fast. His use of psychic power was also exceptional. He could jump from one place to another in mid-air with Psychic Impact at the same level of proficiency as Cross, making this fight difficult for Sila.
Out of all the moves in the Nine-Styles Weapon Subduing Art, the Middle Styles were most efficient in one-on-one fights against an opponent with similar strength. Among them, the style that Sila was best at was Stellar Wheel, the style which involved circulating the power inside his body, making it the eye of a storm while enveloping his skin with fierce winds. It could be used either offensively or defensively, and even got enhanced by Divine Raiment.
Nevertheless, this style originated from Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws. Thus, the foundation of this style was to defend using the body. Consequently, Sila couldn’t exert its full power against Lost Ghost who was under the effect of Gluttony, since all damage that Lost Ghost dealt would be swallowed and enhance Lost Ghost’s stats instead.
One of the key factors in battles was the flow. Sometimes, Sila would notice a chance to parry the attack, which would leave the opponent undefended and allow him to counterattack. However, he regrettably had to abandon such an opportunity thanks to Gluttony’s ability.
As a result, the battle became an extended one, since one person focused on attacking while the other focused on evading.
Sila wasn’t sure how long the duration of Gluttony was, but he thought it would take quite a while since Lost Ghost didn’t show any signs of being in a hurry. On the contrary, Lost Ghost even seemed to be studying his maneuvering.
In fact, deep down, Lost Ghost was anxious but he just didn’t let it show in his actions. Even when he deliberately threw an attack that was easier to block than evade, Sila still chose to dodge it. This implied that Sila was aware of the card’s ability.
“This game of cat and mouse ends here. I won’t hold back anymore... Rhythm of Subduing Earth!!”
Lost Ghost had finished testing Sila. The javelins hovering around him transformed into harpoons, then flew at Sila again.
Sila couldn’t tell how this attack was different from the previous ones. However, no matter what kind of attack they were, as long as he could avoid them, it wouldn’t matter.
Sila moved to the left with Armament Trampling and looked back at the harpoons that missed their target. Instead of disappearing like the previous attacks, they stayed pierced into the floor without showing any signs that they would disappear soon. Seeing this, Sila decided to be more cautious.
The floor around the harpoons started to turn into pools of darkness that kept expanding outward, like drops of black ink that landed on paper.
Sila didn’t dare to touch the black areas, so he stepped away. However, Lost Ghost continued to throw the harpoons to every corner of the room. Soon, the entire room was dyed black.
‘What kind of ability is this? Anyway, I shouldn’t touch them.’
While Sila was staying in the air with Cloud Stepping, he tried to probe the mysterious black ability by throwing a suntetsu at the floor. The suntetsu sank one inch into the ground, which was far weaker than what Sila had intended.
“Sticking ability, huh?” exclaimed Sila.
Although his ability was exposed, Lost Ghost’s expression didn’t change. It didn’t matter whether Sila was aware of his ability or not. Sila would eventually run out of power and have to descend to the floor. At that point, he would be affected by Lost Ghost’s Psychic Earth Attrition.
Psychic Earth Attrition was the nature of Lost Ghost’s psychic power. Upon coming into contact with it, they wouldn’t take damage, but instead they’ll be stuck to the power until they die or Lost Ghost cancels it.
During the previous war event, Lost Ghost could only apply this psychic power to his weapon, and that made his weapon stick to his opponent without letting them escape. Now, while his Rhythm was active, Psychic Earth Attrition would gain the ability to spread around his weapons.
When the opponent was glued to his psychic power, they would simply become a fixed target, waiting for Lost Ghost to enjoy giving them a beating.
Montra had given the Deadly Sin cards to each of the Five Dragon Warlords personally, unlike Lone Wolf and Sila who got the cards randomly. This meant that they had the cards most suitable for them due to Montra’s knowledge of their fighting styles.
For example, by obtaining Gluttony, Lost Ghost was like a tiger growing a pair of wings. Once his opponent was incapable of moving, they would helplessly fall victim to Gluttony’s energy-absorbing ability.
Each of the Seven Deadly Sins had their own unique power.
Sila’s Greed Card was the sole card among the seven that wasn’t combat-oriented. Its only purpose was to collect more rare items than others, representing Mammon’s hoarding nature, as well as his cheating.
As for Lone Wolf’s Pride Card, it was the most straightforward card out of the whole series. All it did was elevate the user’s raw power to the transcendent level, representing Lucifer’s pride in his pure strength and disdain for tricky techniques.
Psychic Earth Attrition didn’t stop at gluing Sila’s suntetsu but also spread to dye it with its ability.
Regardless, Sila was relieved to know that this ability only affected the things it touched.
“In that case, I will stop playing too. Defending is not my forte.”
Sila stopped using only Armament Trampling. He tapped the air with Cloud Stepping and dashed at Lost Ghost in a straight line. This marked the first moment in this battle where Sila become offensive.
Lost Ghost recalled Montra’s warnings about Sila having some skill or item that allowed him to move freely in the air, along with the ability to let him revive when facing death.
Actually, their plan centered around letting at least two of the Five Dragon Warlords besiege Sila just to be sure of his death. This was planned after taking the fact that all the opponents should have been poisoned into account. Therefore, the victory was supposed to belong to them, the warlords, without any problems.
Nevertheless, there were miscalculations. The first was that not everyone got poisoned, while the second was Sebastian splitting them all up.
The harpoons transformed into shields, surrounding Lost Ghost. Similar to Sila, Lost Ghost charged back at him. He was confident that his shields would block Sila’s incoming assault and put a stop to Sila’s future movement.
Sila powerfully struck his heel downward. The sound of his heel cleaving through the sky was like thunder.
Seeing the attack, Lost Ghost didn’t think the thin-layered shields could take on Sila’s kick. Thus, he combined all the shields into a thicker one and hovered it above his head.
When he did that, something bizarre happened. The frightening force behind Sila’s kick suddenly disappeared while Sila changed his direction in mid-air. His index fingers dipped into Lost Ghost’s ribs on both sides of his body.
Moon Perishing Yizichan showed its power. Lost Ghost’s body halted for a brief moment as his breathing became frantic.
For profound practitioners, it was common sense that the flow of breathing can directly affect the body’s movement.
As Lost Ghost lost his balance, Sila exhibited the power of Bone Claws once, before making yet another move; kicking Lost Ghost’s face with Armament Trampling to send him flying.
Since Lost Ghost’s control over his psychic power was interrupted, the black color on the floor faded away and the floor returned to the usual stone one like it was before.
Sila did a black flip in mid-air and landed gracefully.
The metal helmet covering Lost Ghost’s face shattered, showing his bleeding face. His black eyes stared at Sila in disbelief. It was simply beyond him to comprehend how Sila, who had played this game for less than a year, could become this strong. Sila truly deserved to be put in the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s blacklist. As expected of the man who the Magic Emperor was wary of and told them to kill as quickly as possible.
Lost Ghost stood up with a furious expression. However, he soon noticed something wrong with his body; he couldn’t breathe. Thinking that it was due to the damage he just received, he took out a high-grade health potion to drink.
Sila didn’t continue his attack as he wanted to observe Lost Ghost’s reaction as well as review his attacks.
Firstly, he had started his attack by using the third style of his personal art, Martial Formless. His seemingly almighty kick was, in fact, a feigned one. As a result, he could suddenly change his direction halfway. After that, he used his fingers to perform one of the martial moves of Moon Perishing Yizichan to disturb the opponent’s breathing. His fingers stabbed at the acupuncture points related to the lungs. If the recipient of the attack used a qi art that heavily relied on a breathing technique, such an attack could even be life-threatening.
Then Sila drew on his experiences of several deaths under the Cliff of Heroes and the creativity he learned from that. Bone Claws was derived from Divine’s Death Bridge. Even with Sila’s Strengthened Bones, Divine could easily manage to remove his bones like child's play. After being killed by Divine countless times, Sila made some useful observations regarding Death Bridge.
One of which was that the dislocation of joints or bones couldn’t be cured by taking potions. He suspected that it was due to the fact that no damage was done to the body, so the potion didn’t know what to heal.
What Sila did was dislocate Lost Ghost’s bone to obstruct the flow of air entering the lungs, which Divine had done to him once. The dislocated bones hindered the lungs. Because of this, Lone Ghost was having a difficult time breathing and became tired much easier.
Sila mercilessly performed the move right after disturbing the opponent’s breathing with Moon Perishing Yizichan. As a result, Lost Ghost became unable to breathe. He was about to die from suffocation even though he still had a lot of health points remaining.
One couldn’t simply blame Lost Ghost for falling victim to Sila’s actions. If something had to be blamed, it would be the dreadfulness of Sila’s art.
His actions consisted of both the art directly inherited from Mora, the strongest Elder of the Wulin Masters Association, and the art which belonged to Divine, who was once renowned as the Gentlemanly Satan, the name that, when heard, silenced children in an instant and caused grown men to shake like trees in a storm.
‘Earlier, I believed that Nine-Styles Weapon Subduing Art was more like the nine different arts rather than a single art consisting of nine parts that were harmonious. However, it seems I was wrong. If I try harder, all the styles might work well together one day... I have to continue practicing, and continue to come up with ways to use them.’
Even Sila himself didn’t know how to survive if he was put into Lost Ghost’s current predicament, so he calmly and silently looked at his opponent.
Nevertheless, as expected of one of the Five Dragon Warlords, Lost Ghost smashed his elbow against his ribs, causing a cracking sound as he broke them, before gasping for air.
“I see. Breaking your own bones in order to free yourself from the obstruction. Violent, but effective. I didn’t foresee that.”
Sila gave a compliment while thinking to himself that, when Divine did this to him, he couldn’t use the same method to break free since his bones were as sturdy as Orichalcum. It seemed the seemingly useful Strengthened Bones could be a double-edged sword in some situations.
Lost Ghost took another high-grade health potion out, but the bottle was broken before he could drink thanks to Sila’s suntetsu. Furthermore, five more suntetsu pierced his chest. Sila exploited the opening created when Lost Ghost was trying to heal himself to attack.
“You bastard...” Lost Ghost said with a hoarse voice.
“Do I look like a kind person who would allow the enemy to take their sweet time healing during combat? I didn’t attack you previously only because I was curious about what you would do. Why make something difficult when I can set it at easy? Moreover, if I were in your shoes, you wouldn’t let me recover either.”
By saying he was setting it at easy, Sila was mimicking Beluga.
Lost Ghost’s health bar hadn’t even dropped to three quarters, so it wasn’t a problem for him. The more troubling factor was his broken ribs. It brought him pain every time he moved. If he was a qi type player, he would have a way to lessen his pain. Sadly, he was a psychic one.
“Psychic Earth Attrition.”
Lost Ghost’s body suddenly dyed black, like the body of a devil. He utilized his psychic power to fixate his bones and internal organs in their usual spots. As such, he could move with reduced pain.
The harpoons were forming in the sky above him again. This time, a giant axe appeared in Lost Ghost’s hand as well. He gave off the vibe of a demonic executioner who was ready to decapitate people.
Blood continued to drip from the corner of Lost Ghost mouth, and his power was surging with no sign of stopping. Lost Ghost wondered why. He looked at Sila who must be the reason behind the weird changes in his body.
“If they were ordinary hidden weapons, I wouldn’t be able to do it. However, suntetsu can pierce deeply into acupoints.” Strangely enough, Sila took his time to explain.
Lost Ghost looked at the five black sticks in his chest and shouted at Sila with doubt.
“Why did you grant me more power?!”
“Those five acupoints are life-perishing points. I used my hidden weapons to break the walls obstructing the flow of the five elements in your body. Your power will continue to surge as it can flow better. I looked into this but didn’t dare to try it on myself since I’m not sure how long people can maintain this state.”
Even though his power was increased, the name sounded like bad news. Lost Ghost wondered what they meant.
“Your power will continue to rise, reaching around two times the usual, I think. But, there is a time limit. When your power is depleted, you will die.”
Sila nonchalantly declared that, but Lost Ghost was extremely shocked. He immediately pulled all the suntetsu out of his body, but his power still continued to shoot up, to the point where his skin was beginning to tear apart from within. It seemed those suntetsu had already served their purpose from the moment they pierced his chest.
The first time Sila read about the life-perishing points in Mora’s book, he thought it was fanciful. Mora had written in the book that the human body possessed more power than we can normally display. What limited a human from spending all of the power was their natural defense mechanisms, such as feeling tired, pain, falling unconscious, and so on.
There were certain acupuncture points that, when all were pushed, served as a double-edged sword. Although one could access the reserved life energy and unleash it, once it ran out, the user would undoubtedly die. This was especially the case for those who didn’t have proper control over their power. The increase of power was like the engine of an old car being replaced by one from a Formula 1 racing car; one mistake when tapping the accelerator and you could be sent slamming into a pole.
Sila dashed at Lost Ghost like an arrow. He was pressuring Lost Ghost to use his unruly power instead of taking his time to take control of it.
Lost Ghost decided to make sure of his rampant power and summoned numerous black axes to fill the air above them.
Using One Above All through his two feet, Sila accelerated his speed, leaving behind an afterimage.
Once he got close to Lost Ghost, his feet miraculously stopped thanks to him using another part of his power to pull them to the floor.
Although Lost Ghost was shocked at Sila’s extreme speed, he was still confident in his body that was enveloped by Psychic Earth Attrition, especially when his power was currently rising like mad.
Even if Sila punched him, the speed would be reduced and the fist would be glued to the surface of his psychic power. In the worst case scenario, even if the fist put him on the verge of death, Lost Ghost would still be able to take advantage of Gluttony’s ability to recover his health points by hitting Sila who would be glued to him.
Since that was the case, Lost Ghost gladly welcomed Sila’s attack. He even wished for the fist to come at him faster.
And that would soon prove to be his biggest mistake. Even Lone Wolf or Montra wouldn’t dare to take Sila’s full-power attack head-on without trying to dodge.
Sila just muttered a word, but to Lost Ghost, it sounded like a whisper from the grim reaper. Sila’s right arm transformed into metal, and it wasn’t an ordinary mineral but the strongest one, Orichalcum.
One Above All, Sila’s killing move, was used again. Unlike before when he used it on a weaker opponent, this time, Sila exerted its full power.
The fist was thrown at Lost Ghost at a ridiculously slow speed, causing him to feel dumbfounded.
Sila was trying to combine Stellar Wheel with One Above All by throwing the power of One Above All with the rotation of Stellar Wheel. Although his fist was slow, each rotation of power within his arm increased the strength of the fist at an astonishingly fast rate.
Once the fist touched Lost Ghost, he didn’t feel like he was punched at all. Rather, Sila’s fist felt like a drill to him. His skin was penetrated as if his body was merely a clay doll. This was even after his Psychic Earth Attrition had already reduced the significant portion of power in Sila’s fist.
Lost Ghost’s body flew away and crashed into the wall behind him. There was a giant hole in the center of his chest. Lost Ghost coughed out blood and looked at Sila with vacant eyes.
Completely lost... He lost even though he had already done his best.
Although he had a lot of techniques at his disposal, he died before he had a chance to utilize most of them. He lost despite it being a one-on-one match. At this moment, Lost Ghost felt both resentment and fear toward the executioner in front of him.
Looking at his sleeve, Sila found that it had torn slightly. He focused his mind on the Mechanical God's Protection for a moment and the sleeve was restored.
‘Was the punch so severe that it could damage armor made from Orichalcum and the Eternal Onyx? Was it because I used the power through the Right Arm of the Sealed One? Will it still be this lethal if I use my normal arm? But, if I really do that, won’t my arm get crushed instead?’
The quality of Sila’s power was now significantly higher than other players. As a result, when he exerted his full power, the power he could unleash was so strong that even his flesh couldn’t take the burden.
Sila slowly walked to Lost Ghost’s corpse, but it soon dispersed as light along with a system notification ringing in his head.
You have achieved a certain condition: Defeating the user of the Gluttony Card when the Gluttony ability is active. You have obtained (S) Gluttony Card - Level 1.
You have achieved a certain condition. Your level has risen to 325.
Sila looked at the card that had an illustration of a black-haired man with his lower body made of countless flies.
He wanted to know what it could do, but he was more concerned about the others. Sila threw the card into his system window after giving it a quick glance, then went through the exit that appeared when Lost Ghost died.
Chapter 178: Not Normal, Not the Right Way, Not the Right Time
Sebastian was maintaining all four dimensions with great concentration. As a result, although he could still converse like normal, he couldn’t move from his current spot.
The enemies who had snuck into the gathering party clearly saw four of the Five Dragon Warlords being swallowed into the gates. The obvious action they took immediately was attacking Sebastian, who was floating in the sky in the middle of the party. It was apparent to them that this butler was the spellcaster behind their leaders' disappearance.
Sebastian’s body was pierced by several arrows and bombarded by magic, turning him into a ragged hedgehog. His body became bloody but a smile was still hanging on his face.
The undead race had no vital spots. For them to kill Sebastian, they would have to keep attacking until his health points were depleted. As a Lord Rank monster, Sebastian’s health pool was considerably high. It would take at least half an hour to kill him.
Nevertheless, what the opposing players aimed for was breaking Sebastian’s focus. For most continuous spells, the caster had to constantly expend magic power in order to maintain them. If the spellcaster was injured during the process, there was a high chance that the spell would get canceled.
Unfortunately for the players, Sebastian had a secret side of him that only his close friends like Franz and Asura were aware of. Not only he was a sadist who liked torturing people and watching them writhe in pain, he was also a masochist who liked it when he himself felt pain inflicted by others.
Well, it wasn’t that all of the attacks were ineffective. Sebastian’s concentration almost broke due to the amusement he felt from the pain.
There were many opponents in the gathering party. Naturally, only Varee, Sangdao, and Nednapha couldn’t manage to keep them in check since they also had to protect the people who got poisoned. As for Burapha, he chose to act defensively in order to block the attacks aimed at Sebastian, though he could only block a third of all the attacks.
The other ones who had it rough were White Swan, Ratri, and Hermit. They did their best to pour the Cleanse Antidote into the mouths of those who didn’t drink enough.
Lookhin was floating in the sky, aiming its attacks at one group at a time. It was feeling upset. If it wasn’t for the fact that it had to control its strength in order to not damage the paralysed players, it would have already exerted its full power to sweep away all of the pests below.
Sila jumped out of the first gate, landing on the ground. He looked around and frowned when he found that the battles were still ongoing everywhere.
He fired several suntetsu at the enemies nearby. Some took a moment to glance in the direction of the attack, and were filled with confusion.
The dimensional gate behind Sila started to fade. He shouted, “Lost Ghost has died! There are only four warlords remaining!!”
Simultaneously, everyone took a look at the vanishing gate. Seeing that Sila was the only one exiting the gate with no sign of Lost Ghost, who had disappeared together with him, everyone felt shocked, though there were different kinds of shock.
Both Sila’s friends and foes were shocked to see Sila only took a short amount of time to defeat Lost Ghost in a one-on-one fight. Some enemies opened their system windows to check Lost Ghost’s status, and when they confirmed that Sila’s claim was real, their faces turned pale. For Sila’s friends, they were more surprised than shocked. Sure, they knew that Sila was strong, but they didn’t think he would be able to defeat Lost Ghost in just a few minutes. What he did was simply not normal. Moreover, there were no signs of fatigue nor injuries on Sila.
Sebastian smirked as he could guess that Lost Ghost had died while his card’s ability was still active.
“Did you get the card, sir?”
Sila took it out to show it to everyone. The card shone brightly, further backing his claim.
‘He was able to kill Lost Ghost while the card ability was still in effect? That’s a card from the same series as Lone Wolf’s, isn’t it? Wait... Sila has a card too. He might have been able to win thanks to that. Thinking about it, he has never shown his card’s ability to anyone. Is he planning something?’
Ratri wondered about many things in her head. She firmly believed that there shouldn’t be someone who was superior to her lover.
“Please keep it, sir. Although you can’t equip it, it’s better than losing it to others,” informed Sebastian.
“I can’t equip it?” asked Sila.
“Yes, sir. You can’t have more than one card from the Seven Deadly Sins series equipped at a time. Mister Sila already has the Greed Card on you, so you can’t equip another. However, thinking about it again, I think you shouldn’t keep it on yourself. Otherwise, if you die when using the Greed skill, you will lose both cards.”
“Oh, I see.”
Actually, Sila was curious since the Gluttony Card wasn’t forcibly equipped. He initially thought that the experience points he would gain in the future would be reduced to a mere 1%.
The system adhered to the concept of ‘in the possession.’ Although he could only use one card, if the remaining six were in his possession and he died while his equipped card was active, he would lose all seven of them. This was precisely why Montra gave one card to each of the Warlords.
As Sila had returned, Lookhin felt more enthusiastic. It hurriedly cut off two players’ heads using a flame blade and flew to cling onto Sila.
‘Umm, since I can’t use it anyway, should I give it to Lookhin?’
Sila extended the hand holding the card to Lookhin, who was looking at it with sparkling eyes.
“Will there be a problem if I let Lookhin eat it?” Sila asked Sebastian.
Sebastian slightly furrowed his brows. “I don’t know for certain, sir. It’s better than keeping it in your possession, that’s for sure. However, the cards of the Seven Deadly Sins are quite special, so I don’t know what will happen if Lookhin eats it.”
Lookhin offensively pressed its claws into Sila’s metal arm, though Sila didn’t feel it.
Lookhin tilted its head adorably. Sila wasn’t sure if Bluebird was the one who imitated Lookhin, or if it was the other way around. However, one thing for sure was that it was far cuter when Lookhin was the one doing it.
“Fine, fine. Just don’t blame me if your stomach gets upset.” Sila handed the card to Lookhin and said, “Star Swallow.”
While everyone was watching, the black card sprang out of Sila’s hand and the air in front of him cracked.
Sila stepped back with caution. Both the appearance and the nauseous sensation flowing from the crack reminded him of when he used the Greed skill, and how Mammon tried to break free.
An extremely large group of flies flew out from the crack, covering the entire sky above the gathering party like a black, living cloud. Lookhin flew following the flies in a daze, its eyes glowing with a green light. The same light enveloped all of the flies. Lookhin then opened its beak and the flies were sucked in at a terrifying speed.
“I... won’t... I, Beelzebub... the King of... Gluttony… one who devours, not the one to get devoured—!!”
A hoarse voice muttering its lack of consent came from the group of flies. The number of flies being swallowed by Lookhin was simply beyond its size. Sila couldn’t help but wonder where they all went.
Lookhin’s body glowed green before it spat out a black mist, which spread out and covered its body. The mist kept condensing until it resembled a black bowling ball, and continued to hover above the party.
The system sound rang out in Sila’s head.
Your pet, Lookhin, has achieved a certain condition. It is undergoing the process of evolution into Lord Rank.
You have gotten Lord-Rank Monster Egg 1 EA.
Sila was shocked at the unexpected development. He told Sebastian, “It seems Lookhin needs some time to evolve to Lord Rank.”
“That’s natural, sir. I heard that evolving to Lord Rank and Emperor Rank are often complicated processes.”
‘Why wasn’t there such a thing in Rex’s case?’ Sila argued in his mind.
Actually, in the case of Rex, Rex had attained Level 1000 Marquis Rank for a long time, so his power was very stable. The only thing he needed was something that stimulated his growth.
However, in Lookhin’s case, its rank started at Squire and unorthodoxly made a big leap to Marquis within a short period of time. Moreover, its skill pool was too diverse, and severely lacked balance. Therefore, upon reaching Lord Rank, it had to sleep in order to bring balance to all of its powers.
Burapha jumped at Sila. “Alas, Big Brother Sila. You should’ve done that after Lookhin finished helping us fight the approaching army first.”
“Ah, I did it the wrong way. I didn’t know this would happen. Well, I will handle them myself.”
Sebastian interrupted, “Please don’t worry, sir. As for that army, I have already prepared a countermeasure. Mister Sila should help the others instead.”
Without their leaders, it seemed the enemies didn’t dare to attempt attacking Sila. They took a roundabout way and aimed their attacks at Burapha or Sebastian, leaving Sila to take his time firing another batch of suntetsu at some of them while conversing with Sebastian.
“Over there, sir. That’s my trump card.”
Sebastian turned his head to Lomyok, who Sila easily recognized. Presently, Lomyok’s handsome face was marred by weird characters written all over. In addition, there was black smoke coming out of his body. His eyes were completely shut while he was muttering something inconceivable.
“Him?” Sila asked, feeling concerned. He had seen Lomyok’s strength before, and it was simply lacking.
“I’m with him, so it’s going to be alright, sir. You can be at ease and help others instead, Mister Sila.”
If Sebastian was backing Lomyok, there really shouldn’t be anything to worry about. He put the egg into his system window and took a look around.
Burapha was exceptional at defending, partially due to his lance art. He could block attacks by generating waves of energy with his lance. The only area in which he lacked was experience. If he fought with the art more, his application of it would only become more masterful.
With Twelve Celestial-Traveling-Steps, Sangdao could move freely in the limited battlefield as if she was just dancing around. Her Chinese sword was brilliantly stabbing one opponent after another. Sila could tell that the qi technique she displayed was Ray Assemble. Her blade stabbed only at the opponent’s vital spots without missing an inch, and her swordsmanship was extremely fast, leaving behind only shadows of the blade, fascinating to the eyes like shining stars.
By far, she was formidable, and the opponents were fully aware of how much of a threat she posed. Her only weakness seemed to be the fact that her swordsmanship only worked up close, which her opponents noticed and took advantage of by keeping their distance and bombarding her with long-range attacks. As a result, Sangdao wasted most of her time dodging and deflecting attacks.
Nevertheless, since she still had her hidden weapon art, Sila didn’t think he had to worry about her too much.
Nednapha was standing on the stage, sniping opponents down below. Her bow seemed to be a product from Lost Grea City. The bow, attached on her arm, could generate laser arrows. The arrows she fired were like flashes of light. Moreover, they could go straight, zig-zag, and even split into five smaller ones, causing the opponents to have a difficult time coping.
The most worrisome player turned out to be Varee. She excelled at fighting against a group so she had to take a risk by charging into the middle of the enemy group. Her swordsmanship was too quick for the naked eye to follow. If Sila’s eyes weren’t playing a trick on him, it seemed like Varee’s Shadow Moon could even cleave magic spells.
However, the problem was that Varee was a nimble attacker who could attack her enemies very quickly, but she lacked damage. With her opponents being Marquis Rank, meaning they possessed high health points and were able to strengthen the energy reinforcement enveloping their bodies even more. She had a difficult time killing them. Instead, she was the one taking damage and having her health points chipped away.
‘Her attacks are quick, but not lethal. If the opponents properly protect their vital points, she will have a hard time against them. I guess her psychic power is the type which can boost her speed but not her attack power.’
Sila decided to give Varee a hand. He jumped into the fray and circulated Yin Yang Energy. The power of Stellar Wheel was spinning around both his arms like arm guards.
“Come closer, and duck!!” Sila gave an order to Varee.
Veree slashed at the incoming lightning magic arrow and did as she was told. Then, both Sila’s arms drew curves, making a detour around Varee and spread out.
Amidst the confusion, an explosion occurred, generating fierce winds to blow away everything near Sila and Varee. All the opponents who had surrounded them got blasted away with the impact, receiving severe injuries if not killed altogether.
Out of nowhere, Sila shouted, and Julia ran out of the kitchen.
“How can I serve you, Master?”
“Umm... Where have you been?”
Ever since a moment ago, Sila had been looking for Julia. He even expanded his sense using Yin Yang Energy to do so. However, Julia was an item, meaning Sila couldn’t sense her easily.
“After collecting money, there were no further instructions, so I was in the kitchen, Master, tasting the dishes. I planned to prepare one or two more dishes before cleaning the kitchen.”
“E-Eh? Why didn’t you come out and help us fight, then?”
“That’s because Master wasn’t in danger, and I wasn’t ordered to do so. Master once said that I’m allowed to do anything I want.”
Sila scratched his head. If there was someone who had a worse grasp over common sense than he did, that person would be Julia. To be fair, she was a maid AI. To her, what would be more important than cleaning, making meals, and following her master’s instructions?
“Anyway, for the time being, please help Varee handle the enemies.”
“Yes, Master.” As soon as she finished talking, Julia summoned Trickstar in her hand.
People began to doubt whether guns were available in Monster Soul. Someone even thought it was just a model. Monster Soul’s technology focused more on the fantasy aspect rather than the military one. As such, there were laser weapons available in the game. However, they had never seen or heard of guns before.
Sila took a glance at the three remaining dimensional gates, contemplating which one he should enter.
Sebastian said, “All of them should be fine, sir. Instead, I’m more worried about Franz and Asura. Mister Sila should go help them.”
Sila frowned. At most, Shuran must be Marquis Rank. How could he handle two Lord Rank monsters?
Sebastian could tell what was going through Sila’s mind by reading his expression and began to explain.
“It’s due to the Wrath Card, sir. The Wrath skill constantly deals damage to all beings within the range of its effect. The duration of the skill is uncertain. In the beginning, the damage it deals is negligible, but as more time passes, the damage increases. I can sense the card’s location jumping all over the place. It seems we can’t afford to look down on our opponent; he is quite good at keeping his distance while running away, making sure that Franz and Asura are always within range of Wrath’s ability.”
Sila nodded as he understood and circulated Yin Yang Energy throughout his body before leaping to the west. He had to raise his speed to make up for lost time, since Franz and Asura had left ten minutes ago. He would think about what he should do to help them later while he was on the move.
‘According to Profound Qi Circulation Art’s knowledge regarding the Five Elements, the metal element is most related to speed.’
Sila accumulated Yin Yang Energy into his lungs, the organ of the metal element, and used the explosive speed to instantly disappear from everyone’s eyes.
The sound of two gunshots echoed, turning everyone’s attention back to the battlefield. They easily noticed two players squirming on the ground while screaming in pain. Their heads were burning with scorching fire.
Julia had just shot two bullets made of two bottles of Flame Liquid, one of the products sold in Sebastian’s shop.
For the record, last night, Sebastian had prepared almost twenty thousand bottles of them, reiterating to Julia that they were for emergency use when the plan went wrong, which she thought was now. Julia couldn’t help but admire him. ‘Mister Head Butler was indeed well prepared.’
On the other hand, Sebastian thought, ‘Ah? She can use them as bullets? And here I planned to use them to burn all the evidence that might point to me.’
Suddenly, it struck Julia that this was her first time using Trickstar in a large-scaled battle. She remembered how the Android King had asked her to help advertise his products so people visit Lost Grea City instead of Zeref’s weapon shop. He also suggested that the best way to promote a product was to use the ‘word-of-mouth’ strategy.
Another gunshot rang, and the bullet entered an unfortunate player’s mouth. He didn’t die yet but it seemed as if a volcano erupted from his mouth. If it wasn’t for the fact that he fell down and was rolling in pain, one would think that he could use some kind of fire-breathing skill.
While the rest of the enemies began to fear Julia, suddenly, she brought out a megaphone and started to speak.
“The most advanced weapons in Monster Soul can be purchased only in Lost Grea City, everyone. Please pay a visit if you have time.”
Everybody in the gathering party, both friends and foes alike, were stunned. They all thought the same thing: This isn’t the time to promote products!!
Julia fired another bullet, again aiming for someone’s mouth. Sadly, her opponent hid behind their shield just in time, although the shield became scorching hot, forcing him to throw it away later.Varee took the chance to come forward and behead him in one move.
‘Word of mouth is quite hard, I see.’
Julia thought to herself and continued firing bullets. Sebastian giggled at such an interesting development even though his body was covered in blood.
Player Status: Sila
Race: Grey Slime
Health Points: 3,500,000/3,500,000
Special Points: 550,000/550,000
Title Status: Nameless Elder's Main Disciple, Varee's Lover
Title: Weapon Subduing Fist
(S) Right Arm of the Sealed One - Third Stage
The right arm that originally belonged to the Sealed One. It was repaired by the Android King using esoteric technology. It can block any attack without receiving damage.
You have gained a special skill: Weapon Crush.You have gained a special skill: Strengthened Bones.
The Right Arm of the Sealed One cannot be unequipped under any circumstance.You cannot equip a main weapon.
(S) Mechanical God’s Protection [Orpheus]A special kind of protective armor that will always adapt itself to the user’s preferences and body condition.
*Produced from Orichalcum, but cannot collect experience points.+ Increases both physical attack and defense points by X (depending on user’s energy reinforcement surrounding the armor, there is no limit to how much it can increase by).+ You are immune to all poisons and curses.+ It will automatically promote your Rank once when you reach the maximum level. (The exception is promoting from Lord Rank to Emperor Rank.)+ Unbreakable- Cannot be sold or transferred.
(S) Couple’s Ring of Commitment
A set that comprises of two rings. Must be worn by both players.
When the wearers are fighting together, all abilities will be increased by 20%.
Each ring wearer can check the basic status and location of the other, and contact him/her at any time with no constraints.
Each ring wearer has the right to enter the other’s personal location as a place of his/her own except some places that have special restrictions.
(S) Dark Age Sealing Ring
Can be used to seal a single pet. Increases the ability to communicate with the pet by 100%. Increases the overall ability of the pet by 50%. When the pet is inside, it will recover three times faster. Increases the development speed of the Love Degree by 20%. Can keep 1,000 units of pet food inside.
The monster inside has received enlightenment regarding its main energy type [Fusion].
The monster inside will evolve when its body is ready for the evolution or when it encounters a special event. Other than that, it won’t evolve by normal means.
***Binds to a single pet. The user won’t be able to change the pet inside.
(S) Greed Card – Level 10 (Maximum)
Grants the user the item skill: (S) Greed.
Increases the minimum drop rate of all items to 40%.
Increases the minimum drop rate of cards to 60%.
Increases the minimum chance of coming across a special situation to 40%.
Increases the minimum chance of encountering a hidden boss to 30%.
Increases the minimum chance of benefiting from any randomness to 80%.
The user will earn twice as much money when defeating a monster.
Upon skill activation, there is a 65% chance to encounter Mammon – the Demon of Greed.
The chance of encountering Mammon will increase by 30% every time the user uses the Greed skill.
The chance of encountering Mammon will decrease by 1% every time the user gives 10,000 gold to Mammon.
You will earn only 10% of all experience points from now on.
(S) Black Grim Reaper Card
When the user is killed in battle, the user’s life will be prolonged for 15 minutes. All Health points and energy points will be restored. All wounds will be healed and all skill cooldowns will be reset.
(A) Cloudy Tiger Card
Increases the recovery rate of qi by 1.5 times.Grants the user the item skill: (A) Cloud Stepping.
A+ Grade System Window
Provides 600 slots for storing items.
Provides the function to inspect players, monsters, and items in great detail.
Provides several ringtones and wallpapers for you to choose.
Allows access to all low and mid-tier in-game information.
Invitation Card to the Bamboo Hut
A special item which cannot be sold or transferred. Upon paying 1,000 silver, you can teleport to the Bamboo Hut. When you exit, you will return to the last city you visited.
Invitation Card to the Slime Kingdom
A special item which cannot be sold or transferred. Upon paying 1,000 silver, you can teleport to the Slime Kingdom. When you exit, you will return to the last city you visited.
Invitation Card to the Mansion of Secrets
Upon activation, you can teleport to the Mansion of Secrets. When you exit, you will return to the last city you visited.
Can be used as a Black Platinum credit card.
Invitation Card to the Lost Android Kingdom - Palace
Upon paying 1,000 silver, you can teleport to the main palace in the Lost Android Kingdom. When you exit, you will return to the last city you visited.
Profound Arts (Not shown in system)
Profound Qi Circulation
Flaming Cloud Qi
Nine-Styles Weapon Subduing Art*
*Nine-Styles Weapon Subduing Art
First Three Styles
Middle Three Styles
Last Three Styles
Heaven’s Decree Sword Art
Triple Lightning Bolts
(E) Bare Hands Mastery - Level 100 (Maximum)
Increases attack power when not wielding a weapon. The granted attack power depends on the level of the skill.
(E) Hidden Weapon Mastery - Level 100 (Maximum)
Increases attack power when using small, throwable, hidden weapons such as needles, knives, darts, bombs, etc. The granted attack power depends on the level of the skill.
(F) Hidden Weapon Firing - Level 100 (Maximum)
Increases the speed of firing a hidden weapon and enables you to fire it directly from your system window. The granted speed depends on the level of the skill.
(A) Qi Reinforcement - Level 100 (Maximum)
You can strengthen a part of your body using qi. The speed and efficiency depend on the level of the skill.
(D) Qi Transmission - Level 1
You can transmit your qi to others. The speed and the efficiency depends on the level of the skill.
(A) Qi Advanced Circulation - Level 100 (Maximum)
The highest grade of the Qi Circulation skill. Greatly increases the speed of qi circulation and enables you to circulate qi while moving.
(S) Yin Yang Energy - Transcendent Rank
The merged power of your qi and psychic power. Possesses both the restorative and the hindering attributes, achieving the state of duality. Can be used in various ways due to its versatility.
(A) Unseal - Level 100 (Maximum)
Unseal, unlock, or identify an unidentified, locked, or sealed item.
(B) Seal - Level 100 (Maximum)
Seal or lock an object that can be sealed.
Slime-Race Skill: (A) Formless Soldier
Qi-type skill. An art of qi manipulation. Can be used to change a part of the body or its attached parts to become harder, softer, heavier, or lighter.
The power of its effect is dependent on the skill level of Qi Reinforcement.
Decreases an opponent’s qi-based attack power by 20%.
Slime-Race Skill: (S) Orbiting Cosmos
Magic-type skill. An art of magic manipulation. Can be used to change part of the body or its attached parts to become one with the elements.
Decreases an opponent’s magic-based attack power by 20%.
Prevents the user from being able to use any other magic-type skills.
Slime-Race Skill: (S) Moon Reflecting Mirror
Psychic-type skill. An art of psychic manipulation. Can be used to change part of the body or its attached parts to become mirror-like, becoming able to reflect power.
Decreases the efficiency of illusions by 50%.
Decreases an opponent’s psychic-based attack power by 20%.
Slime-Race Skill: (S) Way of Slime
You can change between your slime form and your human form.
You can use slime skills while in your human form.
Passive skill. You can activate qi-type skills without speaking the name of the skill.
(A) Qi Concealment
Passive skill. You can choose to not display the aura of qi surrounding your body.
(B) Way of the Hermit
Greatly decreases your need for food, water, air, and sleep. Fatigue takes longer to build up.
You have a relatively easier time staying alive when living in a harsh environment.
(A) Far Sight
Envision a scene in the far distance with great detail. You have to close your eyes while using this skill.
You can conceal a part of your information from being inspected by other players, though you cannot conceal it from NPCs or monsters.
(A) Weapon Crush
You can reinforce psychic power into your attack and get a boost in attack power. With this skill, your psychic power will have an easier time destroying weapons.
(A) Strengthened Bones
Your bones are enhanced and have the same durability as the mineral you used to unlock the third stage of the Right Arm of the Sealed One.
No resource is required to use this skill. You can only use this skill if the Greed Card is in your possession.
Cooldown time: 30 days.
Can repair, refill, and replicate an item.
Cannot be used on an item that is unique in the game, or personal items.
Cannot be used on an item that has had Greed cast on it before.
(A) Cloud Stepping
Consumes 1,000 qi points and creates an area of 30 square centimeters under the user’s foot. The area will disappear the moment the user lifts their foot.
Pet Status: SebastianLevel: 400
Race: Undead, Lord RankHealth Points: 1,500,000/1,500,000Magic Points: 575,000,000/575,000,000Satiety: 0/0Affection Level: 53%
(S) Grand Magic of Death - Level 100 (Maximum)
The nature of Sebastian’s magic power. Greatly increases the efficiency of all magic spells.
***Grants the recipient of Sebastian’s offensive spells the Bleeding, Intensified Pain, and Undying Corpse debuffs.
(A) Sea of Magic - Level 100 (Maximum)
The highest grade of magic control skill. Increases casting speed by 90%. Decreases magic power consumption by 30%. Decreases the cooldown times of all spells by 50%.
(A) Magic Power Reinforcement - Level 100 (Maximum)
Sebastian can strengthen a part of his body using magic power. The speed and the efficiency depend on the level of the skill.
(S) Exclusive Magic: Death Magic
Sebastian can use six hundred and sixty-six spells of death.
*Sebastian cannot use any spells of any other kind.
Pet Status: LookhinLevel: 1
Race: ???, (In the process of evolving to Lord Rank)Health Points: ???Special Points: ???Satiety: ???Affection Level: ???
Chapter 179: Blue-Colored Catastrophe
Bluebird closed his system window with a surprised expression, which prompted Cheris, or rather Yardpirun, to ask him a question.
“What happened, Bluebird? How is the situation outside?”
“Oh, Swan just sent me a message saying that Sila has already defeated Lost Ghost. He is now heading west, where Shuran is. Swan can’t contact you directly, so she asked me if you have any orders for us.”
White Swan decided to send a message to Bluebird since she knew that he was the only one with enough spare time to check his inbox.
For the record, Yardpirun was still wearing her Cheris disguise. She wondered aloud. “Sila defeated Lost Ghost in ten minutes when Lost Ghost was using Gluttony’s ability? Really?”
“Yes, Swan also told me that there is not a single wound on Sila’s body, and since he killed Lost Ghost while the card’s ability was active, the card fell into his hands.”
“Umm... I knew he was strong, but I didn’t expect him to be this strong. When he fought against Montra in the Town of Beginnings, his strength was still below the Warlords. If he really can win against Lost Ghost this fast, his ability should be on par with the Two Monarchs already.”
“W-Wah? Even with this, he is still below Montra?”
Yardpirun nodded her head. “Unfortunately, he is. If we are talking about the present Montra, Sila will undoubtedly have a chance to win. However, in one week, Montra’s Dragon Ritual will be completed and he will at least double in strength. Moreover, it seems Montra and the Two Monarchs are currently secluding themselves to undergo some secret training.”
“Boss means... Montra and the Two Monarchs will become even stronger? How is that possible? There should be a limit to how strong they can become,” Bluebird said in disbelief.
“You are underestimating Montra far too much, Bluebird. Think about it. How can a person who successfully collected eight gems and five of the Deadly Sins while commanding the largest guild be weak? Montra is strong, I warn you. He is insanely strong, a cut above the rest, in fact.”
“I always thought that Montra, Kawin, and Revin were equally strong. Am I wrong?”
“Not quite. Those two are Montra’s close friends. I think Montra didn’t want himself to be compared with his friends so he hid his real strength. However, the situation has changed. Montra will do anything, both directly and indirectly, to strengthen himself and his allies while weakening his enemies.”
“In any case, Sila is also getting stronger. At an astonishing rate at that. Maybe he can catch up to Montra soon.”
“You are right in that regard. But, don’t forget that Montra is different from Sila. He has an army while Sila is alone. He doesn’t even have to personally take action to win against Sila. Even I can come up with a method to make Sila lose in a war.”
“What do you mean, Boss? What method?”
Yardpirun sighed. “Bluebird... the war is not about individual strength. No matter how strong an individual becomes, it doesn’t mean a single person can win the war by himself, especially when that person is Sila...”
“That is why I’m asking you what do you mean, Boss. If we know what trick Montra will use beforehand, maybe Sila can prevent something from happening.”
“Sila alone can’t fix it, Bluebird. If I’m Montra, I will exploit Sila’s weakness that he isn’t the type to abandon his friends. I will separate him from his allies, then torture his friends one by one, making Sila travel across Monster Soul without resting, greatly weakening him. Finally, when he is weak enough, I will still not fight him alone but gang up on him, along with Revin and Kawin. If it’s three against one, no matter how extraordinary strong Sila becomes, he will lose, undoubtedly.”
Bluebird was silent as he was thinking about the solution. He understood what Boss meant. The problem wasn’t Sila, but his comrades, who were behind him in strength.
He thought for a brief moment before coming up with a solution.
“In that case, all of us should stay close to each other. When the war event starts, we will march together as one.”
“That will only make it easier for Montra. If we are in the same place, he will just use his larger army to conquer the cities surrounding us and completely encircle us. Once that is done, Montra can pressure us from every direction, chipping away our defenses. Sila won’t rest and instead constantly fight to protect his friends. Sooner or later, he will lose.”
“But, the number of our forces and Montra’s are equal, aren’t they?” Bluebird still disagreed.
“No, you are wrong. I’m absolutely sure that the mysterious forces appearing lately belong to Montra. Currently, he is superior to us in all aspects; be it the quality and quantity of forces, wealth, weapons, hidden forces, or even the number of powerhouses. This is not a war anymore but a one-sided slaughter.”
“Is there really no way for us to win?”
“There is a way... but it will be extremely difficult,” said Yardpirun.
Bluebird’s eyes filled with hope. “What is the way, Boss? As long as it’s possible, no matter how difficult it is, I think we can make it by working together.”
“The method I’m about to say is far, far easier said than done. First, since our side is too far behind in numerical advantage, we’d be better off forgetting that and focusing on improving our quality instead. We have to come up with a way for everyone on our side to become stronger than the players on Montra’s side, who will mostly be Marquis Rank. We have to compensate for having less fighters with skills and proficiency.
“Next, wealth. We will need to acquire an enormous amount of money by selling an item that is superior to the Cloudy Baby Dragon Ring. In this regard, Montra is indeed terrifying. By selling the rings, not only can he rake in profits and elevate the level of his troops, but the rings will also be harmful to his opponents. If we simply sell good items, Montra can just buy them. Although we get the money, Montra will get good items in return. The product that we’ll sell will have to meet these three criteria: good price, good quality, and useless to our enemies. The hardest part will be the last criteria, which Montra managed to achieve with the Cloudy Baby Dragon Ring.
“For weapons, this part looks the most promising since Sila conquered Lost Grea City. You should go and ask him to negotiate a discount with the Android King. It will be even better if we can hoard a large number of powerful weapons ourselves without selling them to others.
“As for hidden forces, I mean a secret group that Montra doesn't expect us to have. It will be a secret troop that moves independently in order to help up gain the upper hand in the war event. The important point about this troop should be secrecy. No one, especially Montra, should know that this force belongs to our side until the decisive moment comes.
“Lastly, the number of powerhouses... this will be quite hard. Compared to our side, Montra has more skilled players under his wings, and he is recruiting more. Two weeks from now, in Alkedia City, he will be holding a tournament to recruit more players into the upper positions of his guild. We should hinder the tournament if we can afford to, like what he is doing with us in this very assembling party. Meanwhile, we better recruit more skilled players. It can be difficult, but I suggest some of us go to Belacia City to invite the players there to join our side.”
Processing what Yardpirun just said, Bluebird totally understood what she meant. What she said made sense; they should just be doing everything to become superior to Montra. However, practically, it was close to impossible to accomplish all those things she said.
Furthermore, Bluebird was surprised at Yardpirun’s last suggestion.
“Belacia City? Should we really attempt that? The players in that city are all guildless. They don’t care about guilds or reputation, only striving to become stronger. I won’t even be surprised if there are two or three people at the same level as the Four Emperors living in the city. Everyone knows they hate associating themselves with any guilds or even groups.”
“Yes, as even the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s influence cannot reach there. There are sure to be many crouching tigers and hidden dragons. However, it’s up to our efforts as to whether we can convince them to join us.”
“Well, Boss, I will keep all of your advice in mind and pass them to Sila and the others. We may come up with a method to do all those things you said if we put our heads together.”
“That’s good. Anyway, now... it’s time for you to kill me, Bluebird,” Yardpirun said, startling Bluebird.
“What?! Me? It will be totally weird if I survive when facing against you, Boss. Rather, you should be the one to kill me.”
“No, this is for the best. If I win, I will have to go out and kill the players on our side.”
Bluebird had totally forgotten about this fact. Yardpirun’s current identity wasn’t his Boss, but Cheris, the Star-Finishing Warlord.
“But... no one will believe it. I’m not that strong...”
“Just lie, then. It will be even better. They will think that you are stronger than you look. Montra will have another person to be wary of.”
“But... if Boss dies, won’t Montra suspect you?”
“Under normal circumstances, it may be so, but not anymore. Lost Ghost also died. I won’t be the only one to fail him.”
Bluebird couldn’t make a decision. He wanted to decline, but his body suddenly refused to move. It seemed Yardpirun did something to him.
“Boss, what are you doing? I can’t move...”
Yardpirun changed back to her original appearance and calmly approached Bluebird.
“Others might see you as incompetent, but I see the real you. You are a sincere person with great ability. You just haven’t shown it yet. You are great and strong, this is a fact. Only, it’s a fact that will be proven in the future. I know I’ve picked the right man.”
She gently grabbed Bluebird’s palm and placed it on her heart. The rhythm of her heartbeat was loud but calm, and Bluebird clearly felt it through his hand. Seeing this, he blushed. He had always half-respected and half-feared Yardpirun. However, now, one more emotion was added.
Yardpirun materialized a dagger from her psychic power. Bluebird could tell what she intended to do and tried to resist. However, since Yardpirun was stronger than him by a great margin, he couldn’t do anything to prevent what was about to unfold. All he could do was shout at her.
“No, Boss! Not this method...!”
“Bluebird... Sometimes, we have to do things for the greater good instead of for ourselves. Anyway, dying by your hand won’t make me lose too many levels, don’t you agree? Since you are not that strong yet.” She tried to liven the mood by throwing a joke.
“How many levels you will lose doesn’t matter... I just don’t want to harm you, Boss.”
“This method is the best, Bluebird. If you feel like atoning, just work hard, okay, Vice-Leader?”
Without waiting for Bluebird to respond, Yardpirun used the dagger to stab her defenseless heart through Bluebird’s hand.
Yardpirun collapsed on the floor. Bluebird was released from the psychic power that had oppressed his movement and embraced her. However, three seconds was too short. Her body was enveloped by a white light before disappearing.
The system sound that went off when someone leveled up or obtained an item was normally welcomed by all players. However, the current Bluebird couldn’t hear any of it.
You have achieved a certain condition; Defeating the user of the Lust Card while the Lust ability is active. You have obtained (S) Lust Card - Level 1.
The Lust Card is cursed and therefore forces you to equip it, and it cannot be unequipped. You will earn only 10% of all experience points from now on.
You have achieved a certain condition. Your status and rank have been promoted to Lightning Tailorbird, Level 1 Marquis Rank.
Bluebird looked vacantly at the bleeding wound on his left palm. His blood flowed out from the wound to his elbow before dripping on the floor, though he didn’t care.
“Why am I so weak...? Just because I run and hide doesn’t mean I never have to fight. Boss needed to sacrifice herself because of me...”
Bluebird slowly moved toward the exit, one step at a time, like the entire world was waiting for him.
He stepped out of the gate and stood there, but no one had noticed him yet.
“I won’t let Boss down anymore... If I can’t avoid fighting, I will just plunge myself into it...”
White Swan was the first to notice Bluebird. She shouted at him.
“Bluebird?! Why you...? What about... Cheris?”
She wondered what happened to Boss. It was at that moment that most players turned their attention to Bluebird.
Bluebird’s reply was as quiet as a mosquito’s buzz. However, everybody heard it clearly. The opposing party’s morale dropped sharply. Not only had Sila killed Lost Ghost within a short time, but even someone they didn’t know could manage to kill Cheris in a one-on-one fight.
The panic was like a plague, spreading around quickly.
White Swan was shocked to hear that Boss had died. She was about to curse at Bluebird but noticed his abnormal state of mind, so she decided not to ask him about what happened yet.
Meanwhile, the opposing party began to search for information regarding Bluebird. How did a player of this caliber exist without them knowing?
Bluebird gnashed his teeth. “You... all of you will have to pay for it!!” he shouted, and his body released blue vapor with the shape of a naked, long-haired woman.
Sebastian frowned. ‘Asmodeus... How can she be there? Did Mister Bluebird use the card...? No, looking closely, that’s only her Psychic Body. It seems she found the gaps in Mister Bluebird’s heart and is trying to take control. She is that kind of demon.’
Sebastian didn’t hesitate to shout at Bluebird. “Mister Blue! Please focus on the enemies! Only the enemies!!”
Bluebird muttered to himself. “The enemies... Boss’ enemies are my enemies... Every single one from the Heavenly Dragon Guild has to die!!”
If what they saw wasn’t a hallucination or an illusion, then they didn’t know what to make of it. What was unfolding before their eyes was the vapor with the shape of a woman embracing Bluebird’s neck from behind, like a woman in love whispering the words of affection near his ear, for him to hear them alone.
—Give your power to me... Your enemies are my enemies. Release me more, and I will take revenge on your behalf. Entrust your skills to me, and I will use them for your sake. The skill that you are still scared to use, I will use it in your place. If it’s me, I will not miss the timing even by a millisecond.
Bluebird spread his arms and thousands of tailorbird flew out from his body, covering the sky. Everybody looked at the tailorbirds while feeling dumbfounded. They had never seen someone controlling them before.
Each of the birds spewed something similar to plasma before turning into feathers, dropping from the sky. The small globs of plasma started to merge together, forming one large piece, while the sky-blue feathers slowly drifted downward.
“What are you waiting for?! Attack the spellcaster!!” Someone shouted. Then, the people who had been attacking Sebastian changed their target to Bluebird. Arrows and long-ranged magic spells were flying toward him with no sign of stopping.
—Don’t be a hindrance when lovers are cuddling together~
The blue woman said as she smirked. She changed her shape back into vapor surrounding Bluebird. When the attacks came into contact with the blue vapor, they came to an abrupt stop and lost their momentum, the arrows dropping to the ground while the magic spells vanishing.
Bluebird’s eyes were shining with a blue glow. He seemed dazed as if he had already lost consciousness. The rain of feathers finally touched the ground. Now, only the giant and dazzling plasma remained in the sky like it was a blue sun hanging above Zhongsuyuan City.
The blue plasma shrunk and descended down from the sky. The pressure it exerted was so great that everyone felt everything would instantly be wiped out as soon as it touched the ground. Even Sebastian frowned but couldn’t think of a way to prevent it from happening.
It was at that moment when Bluebird jumped at the blue energy ball amidst everyone’s confusion. That transcendent magic spell was cast by himself, formed by himself, then jumped at by himself. No one could understand what Bluebird was thinking. Was he trying to commit suicide?
In the instant when Bluebird’s body was very close to touching the lightning energy, moments away from what surely would be disintegration, the blue vapor surrounding him changed its shape and became the woman again. Bluebird and her voice rang out simultaneously, coming out as a single sound which no one could hear, muttering the name of the skill.
“Psychic Nest-Returning Bird...”
A bright light engulfed the entire Zhongsuyuan City for a brief moment. The ones who didn’t manage to close their eyes in time were blinded temporarily. After, the enemies found that they were still alive and well, and that meant Bluebird had died in the previous flash of light.
“Huh. What did that stupid man do? Was he crazy? It seems—”
The man hadn’t finished speaking yet when his head was blown away and his body was struck down by a lightning strike.
Boom—! Boom—! Boom—! Boom—! Boom—! Boom—! Boom—! Boom—!
The sound of lightning strikes raining down continued, along with the sight of people collapsing down one by one under the rumbling lightning strikes. No one could see what was really happening. All they saw was the glimpse of a sky-blue flash.
Sebastian released a sigh of relief. ‘It seems the attacks are only striking the enemies as I suggested. This means Mister Bluebird still has some consciousness left.’
People started to realize that the lightning strikes were, in fact, Bluebird. Even Varee, Sangdao, and Nednapha couldn’t follow his movement speed at all. His current speed was comparable to Zero’s, no, it was even beyond that.
White Swan gaped. She didn’t know that Bluebird was capable of performing such a feat.
Suddenly, someone with their system window open in front of them shouted.
“I found his name! He is Bluebird, a vice-leader of the Blue Pigeon Guild. His title is... Blue-Colored Catastrophe!!”
Blue-Colored Catastrophe. Rumor had it that, everyone who got close to this man, be it friend or foe, would inevitably perish and meet with a catastrophic end.
There was a rumor that, once upon a time, one particular player had become his close acquaintance. However, that person soon became a freak who would scream every time he heard the name Blue-Colored Catastrophe. That person even deleted his avatar and quit the game forever in order to escape from the Blue-Colored Catastrophe’s clutch.
Prior to this moment, everyone always thought that the rumor was just a baseless story. However, now that they had personally witnessed Bluebird’s true might, they couldn’t help but all agree on one thing: that the title Blue-Colored Catastrophe was the most suitable title for him.
hahah, the ending was awesome. loving this arc. and i love how the writer of this story keeps getting better and better
Chapter 180: In A Crisis, A Hero is Born
A shining blue shadow was flashing all over the party. Lightning flashes, along with the lights of people dying, continuously went off. People were dizzy from Bluebird’s speed, which continued to rise with no signs of stopping.
“What is happening? What happened to Blue?” White Swan exclaimed, thinking that she was hallucinating.
Meanwhile, as Bluebird was taking action, Burapha found time to take a break. His chest heaved as he tried to breathe.
Compared to Sila, Burapha had a lot less fighting experience. He could fight well in short battles, but in prolonged ones he had trouble. The longer the battle, the longer a fighter had to concentrate and the more stamina they had to expend. It was difficult for Burapha, who had abandoned exercising for a long time and had only recently started once more, to keep up.
Burapha’s chest still heaved as he gasped for air. The potion to alleviate fatigue was rare, so he tried to control his breathing instead.
‘Could it be that the Eastern Sea Sailing Lance Art is not suited for extended battles? I will need to find an item that can help me in this regard,’ thought Burapha.
Burapha had this line of thought because he heard his father could mostly finish any fight in a single move. However, before his father reached that level of skill and was hailed as the One-Eyed Evil God, he had been through a mountain of training and practicing, overcoming numerous trials. For Burapha to think that he could catch up to his father in a short amount of time, it showed how naive he was.
Burapha lacked one thing that Sila had in abundance: passion.
For Sila, other matters could wait. His first priority was always practicing. He was fond of the moments when he grew stronger, even if it was only slightly. Thus, he was willing to push himself beyond the limit and train harder than others in order to become stronger.
Montra was somehow different. For Montra, his first priority was the goal he set. For him to reach his current goal, both power and influence were required. He was willing to train hard without complaining for the sake of him stepping closer to the goal, even if it was just for a single step.
Although their targets were different, the process they had been following was similar. They kept on practicing and practicing, endlessly.
In this sense, Burapha was far different from the two of them. The thing he loved the most was trading. For him, practicing was only a necessity. Therefore, he always sought a shortcut to become stronger in the shortest amount of time. As a result, his proficiency over his techniques improved, but he lacked raw strength.
If Sila’s way of thinking was gullible and harmful to him regarding socializing, Burapha’s way of thinking that always seeked a shortcut would be harmful to him regarding his martial growth. He would meet a dead end one day if he didn’t fix this bad habit.
There were no shortcuts to becoming strong, only a difficult path and a more difficult one.
“How is Big Brother Blue doing this? I should ask him later.”
Now, Sebastian only had to maintain two gates, so he regained his ability to move. He accelerated the speed of the spell he was using on Lomyok. At the same time his eyes followed Bluebird’s movement, and he felt glad that Bluebird still wasn’t fully under Asmodeus’ control.
“My, my, it was unexpected that Mister Blue was this strong. I always thought he was only good at playing around.”
The infiltrators were trying to defend against the blue flash, but all of their attempts were in vain. The rumbling thunder continued to echo, along with people repeatedly dying one after another.
Burapha, Varee, Sangdao, and Nednapha took the chance to catch their breath. They intended to reserve their strength in order to fight against the army of five thousand players that would arrive soon.
“Guys, let’s retreat! Let wait until our reinforcements arrive!” One of the enemies shouted. Only a few dozen players from the original group of infiltrators remained. As such, they began to retreat.
“Oi! Wait a minute! Help me get out of here first!”
Venom shouted from within the cage made of bones. His specialty wasn’t powerful magic and the cage seemed to weaken his power output, so he couldn’t get out by himself.
Sebastian looked at Venom. “You are not allowed to leave, my dear guest. Please obediently wait there until the end. I have a reward to give you when everything is over.”
The reward Sebastian mentioned was for helping him cause a ruckus in the gathering party, which allowed Sebastian to complete the first step of his scheme.
However, the word ‘reward’ didn’t sound pleasing to Venom’s ears at all, especially when the one who said it was someone smiling while soaked in blood.
The opponents retreated. Bluebird’s movements came to a stop and he collapsed on the ground. Everyone rushed over to him in case he needed help.
“Mister Bluebird, are you feeling okay?”
Varee supported him. Together they dragged the unconscious Bluebird and laid him down on a table. The people who had been poisoned began to regain their strength at this moment. Some of them came to Bluebird and cast healing spells on him.
“His magic power is depleted. The Lust Card forcefully exerted all the power he possessed. I don’t think he will recover in time before the enemy’s reinforcement arrives,” explained Sebastian.
“So, in conclusion, he was that strong thanks to the card’s ability?” asked White Swan.
“Partly, yes. However, Asmodeus can’t exert more power than the owner of the body has. Therefore, all of the power being displayed previously belonged to Mister Blue. All Asmodeus did was take control and use his skills for him.”
The prominent point of the Lust Card was how the demon inside, Asmodeus, could exert her influence even without the card being explicitly activated. However, she couldn’t exert 100% of her influence to control the target.
Asmodeus was one of the highest level psychic-type monsters. The nature of her psychic power was the power to control a living being. Even when she was sealed within the card, she could take full control of the card user like she was a puppeteer. Every time her ability was used, she would gradually strengthen her control over the user. How to most efficiently make use of the Lust Card was to make the most of Asmodeus’ knowledge of using skills while, at the same time, preventing oneself to be fully controlled by her.
“Blue is that strong? I can’t believe it,” White Swan disagreed.
“Well, he is the vice-leader, isn’t he?” Hermit approached the team after he finished administering Cleanse Antidotes to all of the attendees.
“He is, but... our guild is an information guild. The vice-leaders of our guild are mostly good at other aspects.”
Everyone nodded. Among all the guilds in Monster Soul, the Heavenly Dragon Guild must be the only one with vice-leaders who didn’t do work for the guild, focusing purely on honing their skills.
For the Mountain Thieves League, they didn’t have many members, so every single one of them had to work their asses off.
In the case of the Victorious Wolves Sect, there were six vice-leaders, clearly splitting the duties. Hermit, Ratri, and Rin were responsible for managing the guild, while the other three were combat-oriented, though they were busy with other missions at the moment. The last three didn’t take part in the gathering party as they figured it was safe due to Lone Wolf’s presence.
Lastly, the Blue Pigeon Guild had Yardpirun as both brains and brawn. Under her, there were four vice-leaders; Noppakorn, Bluebird, White Swan, and Rattana. All four of them weren’t good at combat, which wasn’t unusual considering their main duties were gathering information as a neutral party.
Result-wise, Bluebird had the lowest number of achievements among the four. Although he often discovered world-shocking information, it always came with great danger and Yardpirun often decided it was too dangerous to announce. As a result, the other members thought most of the funds invested in him were wasted.
For the record, Bluebird was the sole vice-leader who didn’t have even a single subordinate under him.
‘Did Boss see his true strength all along? Is this the reason she hasn’t fired him yet?’ thought White Swan.
She kept the doubt within and decided she would ask Boss the next time they met.
Sebastian turned his head to look in the direction of the forest and gave a warning with a serious expression.
“If possible, please be prepared, everyone. It seems our opponents will be here sooner than we expected.”
Burapha hurriedly shouted to everyone in the gathering party. “For those who have regained your strength, please get ready. The enemy’s reinforcements consisting of five thousand players are coming at us.”
However, the response wasn’t as great as he had expected. There was a commotion. Everyone came from various guilds and associations, so they wouldn’t easily unite under someone with few achievements like Burapha. If he was Lone Wolf or Beluga, the result would be better.
Regardless, Sebastian had long expected this result. Uniting people of different roots and opinions was naturally difficult. That was why he was preparing Lomyok to fight against the large group of enemies.
Some were filled with fear, trying to use the Return Scroll to escape, though it ended in failure as the system still considered them to be in the middle of battle. Some were discussing things with their friends. Some were indifferent. Only a handful of them were preparing for the battle.
One particular man stood up on a table amidst the confusion. He took a deep, long breathe before shouting.
“Everybody! Please remain calm!!”
Everyone turned to look at him, the tall man with a good physique wearing middle-tier armor with a large shield behind his back. They were confused as to who the man was. Even Ratri and Hermit didn’t know of him. Ratri called Rin over to ask. Rin possessed good memory so she could remember most people she had met, especially the ones she had personally talked to or had some reputation.
Rin looked at the man and replied to Ratri, “Er... I think he is Sila’s friend. His name is...?”
One of those who was in the gathering party shouted back at the man on the table. “Who are you? Are you a member of the Victorious Wolves Sect?”
Everyone wanted to know that too. They waited for a reply.
“I’m just a guildless player. My name is Tiger, an ordinary player with no reputation. The reason I exposed myself is that I want to ask for everyone’s cooperation in order to oppose the army that is approaching.”
Meanwhile, Aek tried to pull Tiger’s leg and whispered, “Bro, Bro, please come down.” However, Tiger didn’t care.
“Our opponent is an army of five thousand players. On the contrary, all the people here are, at most, four or five hundred. What is the basis behind your confidence that we can stand a chance against them? I vote for us to surrender. If no one resists, they might spare our lives.”
Most people agreed with this choice and began to further discuss among themselves. Nevertheless, Tiger shook his leg once to release himself from Aek, before shouting back.
“Our enemies used poison and more than a hundred of them had infiltrated into the party to slaughter us. It’s clear that the time for surrendering is long passed. This army of five thousand is their back up plan to annihilate us. The choice we made, be it surrendering or fighting back, doesn’t matter to them anymore.”
“And? Are you saying if we follow you, you can make us survive this crisis?”
“No, I can’t!” Tiger shouted clearly. Aek and Tod’s expressions suddenly went pale.
“So, what the hell are you showing yourself for?! Are you trying to get on our nerves?!”
Some players stared at Tiger while using mental oppression or exuding killing intent. Tiger’s level was significantly lower than most of the people present, so he needed to pour all of his power into resisting. Although it was hard, his face still wore a solemn expression.
Tiger continued, “I alone can’t make it, so I am asking for everyone’s help. Everybody here is a great player who has never yielded to the Heavenly Dragon Guild. If we join forces, even if the one leading the army coming at us now is Montra, I am confident that we can oppose him!”
Tiger said with a resolute voice, though, to be fair, if Montra were to come for real, he wouldn’t have even a fraction of confidence that he could stand a chance.
Regardless, to lead people, the leader had to show his confidence. He couldn’t afford to show weakness in front of his followers.
One of the players who regained their strength from the poison got up on the table in the same manner as Tiger and shouted.
“My name is Frenzy Sword, a guildless player. I have met the man named Tiger before. He was the one who gathered the remaining survivors to fend off the pack of Marquis Rank Werewolves in the Town of Beginnings. With his leadership, all of us could manage to survive the Werewolves’ last wave of attack. In times of crisis like this, I believe there is no one more suitable than him to lead us. I, for one, will follow his aid to fight back the Heavenly Dragon Guild!!”
Seven or eight of Frenzy Sword’s friends who shared the same experience also raised their hands and shouted to support Tiger. “Me too! / I’m in as well!”
Humans are, by nature, social animals. Previously, everyone was contemplating between resisting or surrendering. However, seeing such determination, they began to agree with the choice of fighting. Even the minority of them, who still couldn’t decide what they would do, were pressured by gazes from the rest and finally gave in to the majority.
In the end, almost everyone decided to work together.
Tiger looked at the army of close to five hundred players before his eyes. Their number was a tenth of the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s army, so Tiger had to come up with a way to compensate for the numerical disadvantage. He contemplated over which formation would work the best.
“We are running out of time. From now on, I will regroup you all into divisions. I know that most of you would like to fight alongside your comrades, but I need you to follow what I’m going to say. If you really want to fight alongside your comrades, just get to know the people next to you. They will be your comrades in this battle.
“For tankers, please go that way. For damage dealers, this way, please. For long-ranged attackers, come here. Lastly, the supporters, kindly stay there.”
People gradually moved, dividing into four major groups.
“All tankers, please reorganize and stand side by side in a single row at the front. Try to focus on defense rather than being offensive. As for close-ranged damage dealers, please line up after the front row, though some of you will have to be included in the front line. Your only role is to attack enemies. When your energy is close to depleting, you must step back and swap position with the ones in the second line.
“Long-ranged attackers, when I shout to give you a signal, please attack the enemies to weaken their march. All of you will have to split into those who are good at techniques and those who focus on raw power. The power-oriented types will aim your big moves at the enemies in the rear, and the technique-oriented types will look for the enemy’s spellcasters to disturb them from casting big spells. Lastly, the supporters. You will be in the third row, half of you will enhance the defense of people in the front row while the other half of you will be responsible for healing and regenerating.”
Seeing Tiger commanding the army in a confident manner, everyone somehow felt more relieved than before. At the very least, Tiger seemed to be the type of player who focuses on teamplay rather than his individual strength. The Werewolves event in the Town of Beginnings was huge news, so they were relieved to know that Tiger had some leadership quality, though they still wondered about something.
“I don’t want to demoralize us or anything, but... let me be honest, your strategy so far looks simple and predictable.”
Tiger nodded and admitted, “Yes, I know. But we will only stick to this fighting formation for only the first five minutes. After that, once I shout ‘Advance!’ I ask you all to completely abandon your defense and focus all your power to assault the enemies. Spend your entire power without reserve.”
“What? We will just die, then.”
“Don’t worry. I have a plan. When that time comes, if someone were to die, I will take full responsibility for every death.”
Everyone wondered to themselves did they heard wrongly? In a fight between armies, it was inevitable that there was going to be some casualties. How could Tiger be confident that not a single person would die?
“If you really mean it, it will remove a burden from my mind. But, don’t forget to take responsibility for what you said.”
“I, Tiger, have never gone back on my words.”
Ratri approached Burapha and asked, “Does he really mean it? With this many players, even we can’t compensate for all of the damages that may occur.”
Burapha shook his head. “I don’t know too.”
“Eh? Isn’t he Sila’s friend? Isn’t he your friend too?”
“I don’t know all of Big Brother Sila’s friends, you know? This is my first time seeing him as well.
White Swan also approached them. “Maybe we don’t have to worry. Boss said he and his group weren’t half bad. When the pack of Werewolves raided the Town of Beginnings, Boss was there as well.”
“If the leader of the information guild said so, maybe we can rely on him,” Hermit suggested. He was more skilled at a long-term plans than short ones, so he let someone else take command.
“In that case, we should follow his instructions too.”
Everyone followed Tiger’s instructions without discrimination. Sebastian also felt relieved that his burden was lessened.
Even Montra had once assigned Kawin to focus on Tiger first before minding Jundtrathep who possessed a fraudulent skill. In a large-scale battle or war, Montra deemed Tiger, who had exceptional leadership quality, to be a larger threat than skilled individuals like Jundtrathep or Sila.
As Sebastian was relieved, he closed his eyes and sped up the process of the spell he cast on Lomyok. The inauspicious characters began to seep into Lomyok’s skin at a quicker rate.
It was the prelude of the new legend.
Chapter 181: An Unforeseen Development
The ground shook from the marching of the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s army. They were a combination of forces from all of the Five Dragon Warlords. The full force would surpass ten thousand soldiers, but only five thousand had been dispatched today. All of the players in the army had been spending their time practicing and hunting monsters. They were eager to fight against human opponents, thinking of it as a rehearsal for the war event.
Once they were four hundred meters away from the gathering party, they came to a stop and rearranged their formation. The soldiers had already received the news that their commanders, the Five Dragon Warlords, were fighting separately in special dimensions, so they didn’t have a general to lead the army.
Regardless, their army was stronger and had a numerical advantage, so they didn’t care. Their opponents were players from all over who had temporarily teamed up. This battle was theirs even before it had started.
Meanwhile, Tiger was sending party invitations to everyone in the gathering party. Tiger’s party name was ‘Go Get ‘Em Tiger!”, which Tod had created long ago. He set it so that the members within the party could send the same party invitation to others.
Generally, players didn’t like joining a party with people they didn’t know since it would give away their personal information like level and rank. However, now wasn’t the proper time to nitpick. If they didn’t join forces now, their level would drop when they died under the hand of the Heavenly Dragon Guild.
“Everyone. Don’t focus on attacking too much, okay? Remember to charge only when I give you the signal,” Tiger shouted. He was among the players at the front since he was a tanker as well.
Tiger used the formation that he used against Sila in the mock battle, but with some modifications. Although the same weakness was still present, Tiger judged it should be fine this time since no opponent would come at the army from behind.
Normally, the general of the army was supposed to stay behind, or at least at the center of the army, to prevent themselves from dying and demoralizing the entire army. Nevertheless, there were some generals who liked to stay at the front in order to boost the morale of the army.
Tiger placed himself at the front not because he was brave. Rather, he was weak and currently putting himself at risk. However, this was his first time commanding such a large army. He judged he needed to be at the forefront in order to notice the subtle changes in the opposing army's movement. Moreover, the army under his command was formed suddenly and had never trained together nor formed signals. By being at the front and noticing the changes faster, Tiger would gain slightly more time to give suitable commands to others.
The army of the Five Dragon Warlords had finally arrived. They marched slowly but steadily. Since their main role was to wipe out the opposing players, most of them were damage dealers.
“Kill them all!!” The battle cry rang out, and the army of five thousand players aggressively charged at the hastily assembled forces. Lights from magic spells and skill activations flashed constantly.
“Open fire!!” shouted Tiger, and numerous arrows, magic spells, and area-of-effect spells were being fired without stopping.
However, their opponents had long predicted such a development. They had prepared using spells to enhance the entire army’s defensive power in advance.
Once both forces came near each other, the melee fights began. The opposing army relied on their numerical advantage to spread out, pressuring the people in the rear and forcing the combined forces to fight them head-on.
Everyone followed Tiger’s strategy, focusing on defense rather than offense. Even though their level was lower than the opponents, they depended on the terrain advantage and deployed two or three people to gang up on a single opponent. However, this wouldn’t last long. When the Five Dragons army successfully spread out, the numerical disadvantage of the combined forces would be exposed and they would inevitably die.
“Stick to each other!!” Tiger shouted as he noticed the combined forces being slowly spread out.
Even though there was no general among the enemy, their members weren’t stupid. They were trying to split the combined forces’ members from each other.
Tiger took a glance at Jundtrathep, who was waiting for his signal to use Land of Promises.
‘If Jund activates her skill now, we will gain the upper hand, but there is a great risk that comes with it.’ Even though Tiger wanted to let Jund use her skill, he couldn’t decide so easily.
As soon as the skill was activated, the opponents would undoubtedly pour their attacks on Jundtrathep. There was a big chance that they would succeed if the enemies were still close to each other and the concentrated attacks reached her. Tiger planned to use it when the enemy forces had spread out more.
“Damn it. I have no choice but to use it now. Aren’t there any miracles?” Tiger was concerned about the combined forces, which had already started showing signs of losing.
Heaven seemed to hear Tiger’s request. Well, it was more like a grim reaper heard him. Sebastian fiercely opened his eyes.
“I, Sebastian, the lowly slave under the great ruler of death, have nothing but a humble request to ask of the great thou, the child of complete darkness. Kindly descend down upon my lowly world and let it honor thy visit. Where thou reach shall be filled with regretful souls. Where thou stay shall become the deepest abyss. What thou stand on shall be the graves of arrogant heroes. Those who thou hast slain shall become a part of your flesh and blood...”
At the end of the incantation, Sebastian turned his head to Lomyok and whispered the last words into his ear.
Lomyok suddenly stood up. His skin had already returned to its usual pearly white tone.
“I, Lomyok, shall become the sacrifice! O, great Thanatos, please possess your loyal medium!! ...Hm? Did I just say ‘become the sacri—’?”
A mystifying phenomenon unfolded in Zhongsuyuan City. Freezing wind breezed through even though it was a tropical city and Lomyok’s body slowly floated up into the sky, releasing some kind of mysterious atmosphere. Even though his appearance stayed exactly the same, his eyes sent a chilling gaze and his signature flirtatious smile faded away, showing no expression as if he was an aesthetic ice sculpture.
“Huu... Just in time.” Sebastian released a sigh of relief.
Lomyok’s eyes fell on Sebastian as he voiced out his question. The voice still belonged to Lomyok’s, though it was now majestic and imposing.
“Did you call me over, Sebastian?”
Sebastian humbly replied, “Yes, my lord, I summoned you from the Monster Realm in order to help my master defeat his enemies.”
Thanatos in Lomyok’s body took a side glance at the two armies for a brief moment. Both teams were stunned and their battle had seemed to stop for a while.
“You must be kidding me, surely? Your master is the sovereign of the Monster Realm. Even the combined armies of God and the Demon Lord weren’t his match. How can these puny humans amount to anything?”
“I’m referring to my new master, my lord. As for my previous master, he has gone missing. Even I don’t know where he is.”
“Is that so? Forty or fifty years ago, I heard a rumor saying he was last seen in the Monster Realm before he disappeared. I have always thought he came here.”
Sebastian was surprised at the valuable information he got by chance. However, a moment later, he frowned distressingly. The Monster Realm wasn’t somewhere he could easily visit. Furthermore, at Sila’s current strength, he wouldn’t survive even an hour in the Monster Realm.
Thanatos no longer paid attention to Sebastian. “In short, you want me to wipe out these insignificant humans, right?”
“Not quite, my lord. Only those with the dragon symbol. The rest are my master’s comrades.”
Thanatos nodded. The power he emitted was so majestic that just a fraction of it could overthrow people’s sense of balance. It was the power of a monster that had reached Emperor Rank.
Nevertheless, a frown soon appeared on Lomyok’s handsome face.
“What’s wrong, my lord?” Sebastian asked.
“My host is too weak. I can only exert a wisp of my power. More than that and this body will disintegrate.”
“That shouldn’t be a problem, my lord. A wisp of your power should be more than enough to those humans.”
“You are right. Even if I can’t use any of my power, I still have a way. Only, I will be needing something to be the medium of my power.”
Thanatos took out the foldable fan hanging at Lomyok’s waist and looked at it with admiration.
“Oh, this kid has something good. His naming sense sucks, but it’s made of a mineral from the Monster Realm. It will be able to handle my power.”
Thanatos unfolded the fan, sending a portion of his power into it. Soon, the fan changed its shape and became a silver Chinese sword. Engraved along the blade was a beautiful illustration.
It was undoubtedly a weapon, but when held, it looked more like an aesthetic accessory, truly a work of art.
Players looked blankly while feeling stunned. A weapon that could transform itself. They knew only a single mineral that could achieve such a feat.
“Orichalcum!!” Someone shouted.
Everyone was shocked to know Lomyok’s foldable fan was made of Orichalcum.
The Gorgeous Female Fan, Lomyok’s signature weapon, was made of Orichalcum he had gotten from Lost Grea City. The reason Lomyok received Orichalcum from Orpheus was because he had completed a certain special mission Orpheus had included in the list of missions for gaining points to enter Lost Grea City.
The mission wasn’t all that difficult but required great bravery and courage. Even the Android King, who came up with the mission himself, didn’t dare to attempt it. Orpheus found Lomyok, who completed the mission without even showing the tiniest ounce of shame, amusing. Therefore, Orichalcum fell into Lomyok’s hands, which he later brought to Zeref so he could request a weapon.
The Gorgeous Female Fan could transform into two shapes. The first one was a foldable fan that increased the user’s defense stat and maximum health points when wielding. As he had no vital points due to being a part of the undead race, Lomyok became one of the hardest men to kill in Monster Soul.
The other form of his weapon was the Elegant Male Chinese Sword, which enhanced his attack stat and speed. With a single swing of the sword, it would send ten sword waves in the same direction at no cost to the user. It was as if the user instantly attacked ten more times after the initial swing.
It wasn’t like Lomyok was trying to hide his true ability. It was just that most players didn’t like fighting against him (since he was an annoying opponent), and any monsters that saw the weapon’s ability didn’t live to tell anyone. More importantly, Lomyok had a habit of shouting ‘The ultimate move!’ before actually transforming his weapon, and he had to strike a cool pose too. He had to achieve both conditions, otherwise, he would redo it. Obviously, this bad habit often led to him dying before he could show the Elegant Male Chinese Sword.
For example, when he fought against Sila in Colossia City’s battle tournament, if Lomyok had unleashed the power of the Elegant Male Chinese Sword, Sila at that time might not have stood a chance. Sadly, he was a carefree, eccentric person, preferring to show off his handsomeness more than his ability. In addition, he chose to play this game in order to have fun to the fullest, so he didn’t mind losing (though he did mind if he lost in ‘the most handsome man ranking’).
“All right, this medium can’t tolerate my power for too long, so I will need to make this quick,” Thanatos said before injecting his power into the Elegant Male Chinese Sword and swinging it.
Thanatos’ psychic power fused with Lomyok’s qi, flying through the Chinese Sword in his hand, sending ten sword energy waves forward.
Ten explosions rang out at the same time, and a huge crater appeared at the rear lines of the Five Dragons army, as if a giant meteor had just crashed down.
Hundreds of players died, signified by the flashing lights, while another group of sword waves was fired.
Ten explosions echoed simultaneously for a second time, sending around two hundred players from the Heavenly Dragon Guild to their graves.
“Scatter! Don’t stay close together. All the long-ranged attackers, aim your attacks at him. Do it quickly!!” Someone shouted, and the people scattered as they were told. They were rushing toward the combined forces in order to hinder Thanatos’ ability to launch attacks. The battlefield became even more chaotic.
As soon as Tiger saw a chance, he took it. As the opponents were scattering around like he had intended, he gave a signal to Jundtrathep, who was still surprised by the sudden turn of events. Once she regained her calm, she immediately activated her skill. Her body slightly floated up from the ground.
“Land of Promises.”
A white flash of light enveloped the bodies of the combined forces, before fading away.
“Advance!! Charge!! Now, everyone is blessed with the ability to revive instantly without any penalties when dying. Go purely offensive!” shouted Tiger.
Everybody listened to his words with disbelief. The skill sounded too fraudulent to be true. Nevertheless, the members of Tiger Team and Frenzy Sword and his comrades, who had experienced the power of the skill, immediately commenced an assault with no hesitation. They charged offensively, killing several opponents. Then, when they died from the counterattacks, their bodies glowed with soft golden light and they continued to attack as if nothing happened.
The rest hesitated at first, but gradually followed the lead.
The flow of battle totally changed. The soldiers from the Five Dragons army began to fall like leaves in autumn.
Upon seeing that the two sides were no longer separated, Thanatos stopped using big moves. He was one of the great beings who always stayed true to his words. Since he had promised he would only kill the enemies, his attacks were only aimed at them. Even if the ones on his side could revive after death, he still refused to kill them, as that would count as him going back on his words.
The Chinese sword in his hand exerted a different kind of offensive ability. Instead of using raw power, the sword waves scattered as if they were living beings and shot at opposing players one by one with precise accuracy like each of them had an eye.
Thanatos’ power resembled Orpheus’ punctilious attack, though it was natural since both of their ranks were similarly Emperor Rank.
Thanatos continued to kill opponents with complete ease, making it look as easy as picking up an orange from a box. Moreover, his movements were elegant and his appearance was handsome and overbearing, not spouting nonsense like usual. A lot of the female players were almost enchanted by his awesomeness.
When victory for the combined forces was almost assured, suddenly, the sound of an explosion echoed, even though there weren’t any explosions to be seen.
Sebastian spewed out a pool of blood, showing a pained expression for the first time. Soon, the two remaining gates began to dissolve.
“This power is...? Alas, to think that he appeared when his rate of emergence was the lowest... What horrible luck we have.”
Sebastian muttered as he fell on his knees. The level of a battle within the separated dimension was too much for him to contain. The power residing within was far beyond what anyone could achieve. There was only one being that possessed such a unique, transcendent qi.
The players inside the second gate reappeared simultaneously. All six of them were quite confused about why they suddenly got out of the separated dimension. Every one of them was heavily injured, especially one of the two Trick Masters who had a huge wound on his abdomen.
The other three players also got out from the last dissolving gate. Their bodies were bloody, showing fatal wounds. Zazae’s body was full of injuries. His clothing was tattered and his left hand was bent, completely broken. Cross had a hole in the middle of his chest, bleeding non-stop. Lastly, Lone Wolf’s body was full of burn marks. They all had patches of skin that were greenish purple, indicating bone fractures and internal injuries.
The three people’s eyes were fixated on the distorted gate, completely ignoring the battlefield.
Lone Wolf softly muttered, trying to crack a joke despite the situation, “...It’s just eight percent. What bad luck I have, haha.”
The gate completely dispersed, along with the emergence of a certain someone.
Sebastian and Thanatos in Lomyok’s body shot a look at the newcomer, as they felt great pressure coming from them. The one who was in front of them was absurdly strong. To think that this person made an appearance at such a bad timing...
A tall and handsome man who looked like an angel looked down on everyone present with contempt, as if those around him were nothing but trash. The upper half of his body was bare, showing his perfectly flawless muscles, the pinnacle of physique. The only clothing he wore was covering his lower body. His long hair was golden, and there were six black pairs of wings elegantly spread behind him.
The man absolutely refused to rely on any protective armor, weapons, or skills. His very existence symbolized pride, and no one would ever say that he was unworthy of such a description. The power he possessed was simply almighty and transcendent, to the point where even the other beings of the same Emperor Rank as him weren’t his match.
He was the absolute being who stood at the zenith of qi.
His glaring golden eyes glanced at Lomyok, before stopping at Sebastian.
“Thanatos... and Sebastian...”
“Lord Lucifer...” Sebastian muttered distressingly.
Sebastian quickly thought of a way to escape from the predicament. This development was unforeseen, even for him. Now, the large-scaled battle in front of him no longer important.
Because, if Lucifer decided to act, everyone in Zhongsuyuan City would instantly be obliterated, with no exceptions.