A confusing din of voices was heard from the crowd as emotions ran high.
The sudden appearance of this player had left the members from Flowergazing in the Fog frightened, for it was far too bizarre and inconceivable. It was probably some sort of intricately laid out scheme, which was meant to take them by surprise! What did this man plan to do? Seeing that he was examining the Government City Hall so closely, could he be thinking of detonating the entire building?
Forget about blowing up this building, even if Gu Fei went forth and just knocked on the doors, they were still worried that the NPCs within would run out claiming he was disturbing their beauty sleep and deduct their progress.
Thus, in the blink of an eye, they all had this interloper surrounded, awaiting direct orders from their guild leader, Three Sighs of Flowing Maple, for the resolution of this matter. Players from the various job classes all dashed forth to gather here, and because Three Sighs of Flowing Maple was a Warrior, there was no way he would be able to take the lead and be the first to arrive, so all he could do was shout, “Quick! Protect the entrance!”
“Roger that!” Several Thieves heeded this order. They were usually Stealthed somewhere near the entrance; they deactivated their Stealth regardless what was happening and formed a line to block the entrance with their bodies instead of rushing toward Gu Fei.
The other players continued to dash onward as they shouted, with many wielding very eye-catching objects in their hands. Upon closer look, Gu Fei realized that they were torches. A good number of players were presently holding lit torches, shining as bright as day against the murky darkness that was the night in-game. A torch was a common item to the players in Xiawu City given the limited vision they would have due to the fog. When they were unable to locate their comrades, players would often light their torches and use them as beacons to let the others know their current location.
However, to an outsider like Gu Fei, this was a sight that he had never had the chance to experience. All he saw was several players closing in on him while roaring, and before he knew it, they had thrown their torches at him, as if they were grenades.
Countless flames sailed through the night sky in an arc and landed at where Gu Fei was standing. With the light from these flames, Gu Fei looked to have been illuminated by a powerful spotlight and became the center of attention.
Gu Fei remained calm despite the fact that he was about to be buried under a bonfire’s worth of torches. This assault of thrown torches was quite a scary sight to behold, yet it was nothing compared to Traversing Four Seas’ archer formation in terms of speed, accuracy, and coordination. He drew out his sword from his dimensional pocket and took a deep breath before proceeding to make his move.
Piercing, stabbing, slashing, and cutting in every direction, the light from the torches seemed to act as a stage light that shone upon his performance. Gu Fei danced like a hurricane of swords, altering the trajectory of the torches whenever his sword tip made contact. The torches all ended up knocking into one another as they spun, making it look as if all the torches had collided right into a wall as they suddenly began to rain down to the ground, forming a circle of fire around Gu Fei.
The players were all flabbergasted. It was not unexpected for their torches to miss the target, and plenty of other players had shown various methods of dealing with their concerted flaming torches, yet none had dealt it like this. To their knowledge, this sort of attack could only be dodged and not blocked, yet that was precisely what this man before them had achieved.
Gu Fei stood within that circle of fire, but because the glare from the flames were too concentrated and too bright to bear, everyone could barely make out how the interloper looked. Meanwhile, Gu Fei had rolled up his sleeves and was busy fanning himself with his hand, awkwardly muttering to himself, “I screwed up big time this time; it’s really hot in here!” Inside that circle of fire, Gu Fei felt as if his hair and eyebrows were about to catch on fire from the intense heat.
“I can’t go on like this,” Gu Fei reached his hand out and Blinked right out of the circle, instantly feeling a pleasant gust of cool air wash over him.
“AHHHHH!” screamed the people around him. The blurry figure that was illuminated within the circle had suddenly disappeared and materialized closer to them, causing plenty of the players in the crowd to believe that something paranormal had just occurred.
“A GHOST!” someone cried out in fright.
“F*ck, what’s so scary about ghosts?! We’ve even killed zombies before!” barked the self-proclaimed bravest player within Flowergazing in the Fog. This person usually enjoyed grinding his levels in the cemetery grinding map, which most players often found to be dreary and scary, and would often take on such non-human and truly gruesome creatures. Seeing how some of his fellow guildmates were panicking over this, he showed his disdain to the lot as he stepped forward fearlessly while the others had every intention to retreat. The man carefully looked Gu Fei over and burst into laughter. “He’s clearly just a Mage!”
“Mage?” Everybody was stunned even as they saw Gu Fei tidy his sleeves as he walked toward the crowd.
Some of them began to quietly raise their weapon and were prepared to strike when someone suddenly yelled, “Wait a minute! Don’t move!”
This yell came from somewhere behind this bulk of crowd. A path cracked through the mob, and everybody saw their guild leader step through with the newest guild member in tow. The person was one of the Five Unyielding Experts and the number one Mage in Parallel World, Drifting.
“Drifting.” Gu Fei waved to greet Drifting when he saw him approach.
“It’s you alright. And I was just wondering who else could have such ridiculous skill, but lo and behold.” Drifting sighed.
“Ha ha, yup, it’s me. Guild Leader Flowing Maple, how do you do? To think we’d meet each other again this soon,” Gu Fei and Three Sighs of Flowing Maple greeted each other.
However, the expression on Three Sighs of Flowing Maple’s face was grim at the moment, and he no longer had his earlier warmth and courteousness. That was entirely because he needed to find out the following: “What are you doing here?”
“Nothing much. I’m just strolling about,” Gu Fei said.
Three Sighs of Flowing Maple furrowed his brows, as they had no way of checking the completion progress of their guild quest at present. They could only find out information about this through the NPC Giordano. Therefore, there was no way of telling if Gu Fei had done something to compromise their guild quest. That was precisely why he had ordered some of his men to look around the courtyard for anything out of place. At the moment, the report from all these players were one and the same: they found none out of the ordinary.
“Miles, just directly come clean if you have something to confess. There’s no point in being all sneaky about things,” Drifting spoke. He refused to believe that Gu Fei was here to have a stroll. Had this been the case, he would have already done so with Yan Xiaozhu from before. This was highly suspicious, given the fact that it had not been too long since his last visit, and with how the man was able to suddenly appear right by the entrance of the Government City Hall without alerting anyone else of his presence. Drifting might not have any idea what method Gu Fei had used to do this, but he was certain that the man would not have done something as casual as taking a simple stroll as he had claimed.
Gu Fei shrugged. “Fine. Actually, I do have a quest here. I wonder if Guild Leader Flowing Maple will do me a favor on this?”
“So that’s how it is.” Three Sighs of Flowing Maple laughed before answering, “For Brother Miles to have done all this for your quest, it appears you are aware of the importance of our quest here, and that we won’t let strangers get anywhere near here. So… I think it’s best for Brother Miles to abandon his quest temporarily as a favor to us. Wait till we are done with our guild quest, and we will naturally allow anyone to come and go as they please here.”
Gu Fei was rather surprised, for he had never thought that Three Sighs of Flowing Maple would give him such an answer. It was a polite but firm refusal, which had easily placed the guild leader on the side of logic. If Gu Fei were to insist, he would instead be seen as the one being unreasonable. After all, there would usually not be any issues abandoning a quest, unless he were to say that his quest had a time limit attached to it. Gu Fei did not wish to lie over this, so he simply laughed it off. “In that case, I’ll just have to think of a solution again!”
“Thank you, Brother Miles,” Three Sighs of Flowing Maple said with a stiff upper lip. At the same time, he waved his hand to his men. “Everyone, please make way.”
Everybody shuffled to reveal a path, as Gu Fei waved toward the crowd. “Sorry for the intrusion, everyone.” With that, he strode off.
“Let me send you off!” Drifting stepped forward and placed his hand on Gu Fei’s shoulder, walking him out in a very conversational manner.
“Hey, what are you up to?” Drifting asked in a whisper.
“Quest!” Gu Fei answered.
“You really have a quest? Is it related to them?” Drifting asked.
“Them? Aren’t you one of them?” Gu Fei asked back.
“Eh, I’ve only recently joined. It’ll take a while to get used to it,” Drifting corrected.
Gu Fei laughed. “You’re always flitting about and joining different guilds. Do you have any specific goal in mind?”
“My IGN is Drifting!” he said. “My goal is obviously to leave my footsteps all over the world.”
“Oh, so that’s how it is. That’s truly terrific.”
“Don’t change the subject… What quest are you doing?” Drifting asked.
“Well, it may not be convenient to tell you,” Gu Fei replied.
“So that means that it’s indeed related to the quest Flowergazing in the Fog is doing?”
“Perhaps. I’m not too sure myself… Actually, I’m not even sure if this is really a quest.” Gu Fei laughed bitterly.
“What are you talking about? I don’t get it,” Drifting said.
“That just means that you haven’t drifted to enough places yet. Continue with it. It’s important to increase your experience.” Gu Fei patted him encouragingly.
“That’s not the point,” Drifting said. “If you are indeed here to cause trouble for the guild quest, that means we will have another opportunity to exchange blows.”
“That’s why if I were you, I wouldn’t be coming online over the next few days,” Gu Fei said.
Drifting stared at Gu Fei wordlessly.
Gu Fei started back at him, melancholia lingering in his eyes. “I’ve already slain two out of the original Five Unyielding Experts; do you wish to be the third?”
Drifting was quiet.
“Actually, you should be considered to be the first, except you got lucky as death during the PvP tournament would not result in losing a level,” Gu Fei continued.
Drifting was still reticent.
“That’s why it’s best if you stay offline in the following days. It’s for your good!” Gu Fei patted his shoulder yet again.
“I’m leaving.” Gu Fei waved as he departed.
“F*CK!” It was not until Gu Fei had disappeared into the mist that Drifting finally swore.
Returning to the Government City Hall, Drifting saw that Three Sighs of Flowing Maple had already convened several core members of the guild and was discussing tactics with them. They immediately fell silent when they saw Drifting walk over.
Drifting was already used to such a scene. He had just joined the guild today, so how would he be able to secure the trust of everyone? It was impossible despite him being one of the Five Unyielding Experts. This was especially the case since he was friends with a suspicious individual. Drifting had a feeling that Three Sighs of Flowing Maple might not want him participating this incident this time.
Who would have thought that, the moment he got near, Three Sighs of Flowing Maple would take the initiative to ask, “Drifting, that friend of yours… Do you think he’ll affect our guild quest?”
“Definitely.” Drifting nodded. “I’ve already participated in this sort of guild quest reward once, and there’re portions before when we got entangled with competitive quests. I believe that, while the content of this guild quest reward differs from that one, the difficulty is still the same. Competitive quests will surely be a part of your guild mission, and it may have only just begun.”