Chapter 33 - Yunjiao Lakeside
The lakeside by the city’s outskirt looked scenic and picturesque. It was definitely a great spot to have a romantic date. Although the players were all still stuck at level 30, they were making great strides in matters of the heart. Yunjiao Lakeside was definitely thriving with this sort of people. In fact, any players would have to watch their steps when they walked by the lakeside given the many couples lazing on the grassy areas.
Gu Fei would not put it past June’s Rain to step on a couple or two given that she was a natural airhead. Indeed, she had already stepped right between a couple not long after entering the region. “Watch where you’re going! Can’t you see there’re people lying here?!”
The two were startled and repeatedly apologized as they took a detour.
Gu Fei became extremely careful afterward. He even used the high-grade magic staff like a blind man’s walking aid, shifting it about the tall grass and bushes as he called out, “Is anyone there?!”
There were no longer any incidents after the lovebirds from before as the people within the tall grass and bushes changed locations upon hearing his call and seeing the stick he was wildly beating about. Gu Fei and June’s Rain finally made their way to the lake.
The lake calmly rippled with cerulean water, appearing pristine and well-maintained. There were rumors that some players had begun researching what crafting skills were necessary to enable shipbuilding. Good business opportunities would definitely become available once a small jetty was built by the lakeside and industrious players carved out some boats for rental purposes.
Just as Gu Fei was appreciating the view, June’s Rain beside him broke the tranquility as she hollered, “Ah! Treasure chest, where are you?!”
Treasure chest! Countless ears perked up within the tall grassy fields after hearing these words. Pairs of eyes flashed and stared at the two that had just arrived.
Gu Fei looked around. Since the quest was to retrieve a treasure chest, monsters would most likely be protecting it. A sparse number of monsters were still roaming in the vicinity of the lakeside. Considering that the place was akin to a lover’s district in-game, not many players went here to grind on monsters, thus leaving the NPCs largely untouched. Gu Fei’s eyes continued to travel around and found no traces of a spot where monsters particularly gathered.
“Let’s just go around and search!” Left with no choice, they could only forge their way ahead to what appeared to be a small group of monsters. Many others stealthily followed behind and kept watch on the two who had mentioned a treasure chest a while ago.
“Can’t find it here either!”
June’s Rain cleared the monsters while shouting in vexation as she went.
June’s Rain was a level 30 Warrior who focused on Strength, allowing her to make short work of the low-level monsters in the vicinity with just a few chops of her axe without Gu Fei’s assistance. Gu Fei concentrated on searching around nearby. Although he failed to find the treasure, he did manage to poke out two more couples from within the tall grass.
In no time, the two had already made their way halfway around the lake. Those players who were crawling behind them had mostly left since there were still no signs of the treasure chest after all this time. Gu Fei had long since felt disheartened by this whole process even though June’s Rain was still in high spirits. Her morale did not diminish even a single bit since they left the guild house. Gu Fei suddenly felt a kindred connection with this lady as her obsession with quests in online games was quite similar to his obsession with kung fu!
June’s Rain continued to search for the treasure chest, while conscientiously eliminating the monsters and ripping off the tall grass. Gu Fei had already begun to slack off, casually using his staff to probe the area around him while yawning from time to time. Laziness had taken root within him. It was similar to what regular players felt when they had spent a certain amount of time grinding on the same monsters in one spot.
Suddenly, June’s Rain shouted, “It’s over here!”
“Where?” Gu Fei’s interest was rekindled since finding the treasure chest would signal the end of the quest.
June’s Rain happily pointed toward the bushes halfway up the hill ahead. A treasure chest really sat on the sawn off stump of a great tree, yet there was not one monster in sight.
That’s it? Gu Fei wondered, Didn’t July mention something about notifying everyone to gather so that we could all snatch the treasure chest away? Is there even a need for that when one could carry it home just like what Xiaoyu is doing right now?
As she went ahead to grab the chest, the bushes behind her suddenly rustled as a few figures rushed toward the treasure chest as well.
“Crap! It’s an ambush! What cunning monsters!” June’s Rain shouted.
They were not monsters but rather players who had trailed behind them. Gu Fei was well aware of the bunch of players crawling behind him and June’s Rain. He had a fair grasp of their intentions as well. However, he assumed that since the treasure chest was their quest item then it could only be obtained after going through the quest. Never did he imagine that the chest would just sit on a tree stump, tempting everyone who saw it.
June’s Rain was the closest to the chest. However, she clearly had a difficult time rushing uphill with her suit of heavy armor. The others caught up to her just as she clanked away in those few steps. Gu Fei came forward and extended his magic staff with one hand and struck to his left and right in a practiced motion, smacking the two players with resounding slaps each.
Utilizing the magic staff in such a way could only cause a scant amount of damage, but it still managed to startle the two people that just got hit. Having crawled behind Gu Fei and June’s Rain all this time, they had used Appraisal on Gu Fei for more than one hundred and eighty times out of boredom and already determined his job class to be Mage. They were expecting something like burning flames from Gu Fei when he charged toward them, yet they were whacked on their heads with a magic staff instead.
As the two stood rooted on the spot in a muddle, another pair had used the opportunity to get past them. Although Gu Fei was a full-Agility Mage with a decent amount of speed, it was still nothing compared to the Thieves’ speed. Seeing that he had no way of catching up to them, he reached into his pocket, took out a meat carving knife, and threw it at a target. The person on the left was struck by the knife, screaming in pain. He reached for his back and plucked the knife out from his butt, just as he stood there stunned, Just what is this skill?
Right then, Gu Fei already retrieved a second knife and began to aim at the person on the right.
Just as this player was about to gleefully get past June’s Rain, her arm had unexpectedly shot out and reached toward the player’s collar. That Thief whirled his dagger instinctively to slash at June’s Rain, yet the attack did not even scratch her as she was wearing the heavy armor. She then lifted her arm and heaved, tossing the flailing Thief toward the lake with a splash.
Gu Fei broke out in cold sweat, thinking how scary the violent Warrior was. The strength in that arm had already surpassed any normal human standards, and yet she was only at level 30. If this continued on, her strength in the later levels would be unimaginable.
The two players who were smacked silly by Gu Fei with the magic staff had recovered and began to make their move. After confirming that they had not suffered any grievous injuries, they hastily continued to rush forward to the chest. Gu Fei shouted at June’s Rain, “I’ll block them. Go grab that treasure chest,” and then he wheeled around to engage the two players.
As the players realized that the magic staff in Gu Fei’s hand could not deal any significant damage on them, they did not even bother dodging it. In fact, they sought to take the blow head on and break through it.
Gu Fei, who was proficient in kung fu, readied to counter all the incoming attacks from the players. Yet, he had not expected to encounter such an ungraceful fighting style commonly seen in online games. Being alone and lacking the proper strength to endure the tackle from his two opponents, Gu Fei was knocked off the ground even as he swung his staff on one of them.
“You dumb*ss!” June’s Rain witnessed the whole thing and decided to assist Gu Fei instead of picking up the treasure chest.
Just as Gu Fei’s back was about to hit the ground, he bent his waist and twisted in the air. He extended the magic staff once more and executed a horizontal swipe, viciously striking the two’s feet in the process.
“OUCH! ARGHH!” Sharp screams were heard from the two as they were swept off their feet. The damage was not much so they prepared to get up, but Gu Fei flipped himself upright way faster than them. Gu Fei picked up the magic staff and performed a swift swipe on the two players, sweeping their feet off the ground once more, “What’re you two doing rushing all over the place and knocking people over? I especially despise people who fight without any expertise!”
Despite the weak physique Gu Fei possessed in-game, he had remained nimble and even emitted a fierce aura. Any movement he spotted was immediately met with a blow from the magic staff.
After a few quick strikes, the two players no longer dared to raise their heads. Gu Fei’s magic staff only stopped hitting them when they were essentially tamed and no longer moved, meekly lying on the ground. He looked back and could not find where June’s Rain threw the person Gu Fei had skewered with his carving knife before. She was happily bounding toward the chest right now.
Gu Fei suddenly noticed movement from the bush near the wooden stump and he immediately shouted out a warning, “Be careful, there’s still someone around!”
“Ah?” June’s Rain’s reaction was rather slow. Taking advantage of the momentary opening when she paused, a person from the bush dove straight toward the treasure chest.
Gu Fei felt irked. He should not have called out June’s Rain, as without that moment of distraction, she would have probably managed to grab the chest by now. The opening created by Gu Fei’s shout and the following pause of the silly girl made it possible for the person to grab the chest right in front of their eyes.
The situation they were now in made Gu Fei endlessly annoyed. At that same instant, the sound of rushing air swiftly came from afar and the person who had dived for the chest turned into a flash of white light.
“What’s going on?!” Gu Fei was shocked.
June’s Rain’s next reaction was actually incredibly quick as she immediately lay prone on the ground and hid behind the wooden stump, shouting toward Gu Fei, “Quickly crawl your way over here. It’s Snipe!”
Gu Fei nimbly lay on the ground and he crawled toward the previously subdued two players, as he muttered doubtfully, “Snipe?”
“It’s an Archer’s level 30 skill. While the damage isn’t as great as a Mage’s Repeating Fireball, Thief’s Backstab, or a Warrior’s Cyclone, its attack range is incredibly frightening. It’s essentially twice the attack range of a normal attack. You could only be shot at by the Archer, and it’s impossible to find out where the Archer is shooting from,” the person lying on the ground next to Gu Fei hurriedly explained.
“Can’t see him? Is that so?” Gu Fei smiled.