Chapter 554 Contacted
After Izroth took his leave from Amaharpe's War Brigade camp situated near the Unsanctioned Zone, he made his way to the Rosentarus border. If Izroth wanted to reach the Demilitarization Belt, his best option was to cut directly through Rosentarus until he arrived.
As he walked in the direction of the Rosentarus border, Izroth decided to finally sort through the bulk of messages he received ever since he first escaped Zarolas' clutches. Most of them were from those close to him and the members of the Mystical Realm Palace.
The majority of messages sent involved the person expressing their congratulations and excitement for Izroth's achievements.
'Hm? Those two also messaged me? I suppose it's not too surprising considering their positions.'
〈System Alert: Player Mariposa has sent you a message, "Let me first start by congratulating you. When you have some time to spare, be sure to message me. I'd like to discuss a few things. ^_^"〉
〈System Alert: Player Ewan has sent you a message, "I don't suppose you are willing to disclose how you acquired such an abundance of contribution points in a short span of time? At the very least, I'd like to discuss how you managed to gain access to the Event Leaderboards. Rest assured, I have no intention of obtaining information without a fair price. Shall we talk about it further via voice chat?"〉
The guild leaders of Sleeping Gardenia and Cross Haven, two of the top ten guilds in RML, both messaged Izroth wanting to "discuss" things.
While Mariposa did not say it directly, Izroth had a good idea of what she wished to talk about. As for Ewan, he jumped straight to the point and even spoke of offering a fair price in exchange for information.
It was not uncommon for top guilds to tap the shoulder of others when it came to acquiring important information. This was even more so when it was related to something as crucial as the Event Leaderboard.
To other players, it was just a way to show off. But, to the top guilds, every single spot on the Event Leaderboard would be competed for fiercely. For them, it was a rare opportunity to show the world who truly stood at the peak of RML. The better their results, the more investors and advertisers would be ready to pour funds into their future.
'At a decent pace, it'll take me around half a day to reach the Demilitarization Belt. In the meantime, it wouldn't hurt to gain a few benefits along the way.'
Seeing as how they were officially allies, Izroth chose to call Mariposa first, who answered almost immediately.
[Voice Chat Has Started]
Mariposa, "And here I was beginning to think you'd never call."
Izroth, "An unexpected situation arose. I was out of contact with the world for quite some time."
Mariposa, "I see. I thought it was strange that my messages were failing to send even though it showed your status as online."
Izroth, "Indeed. Though, I'm sure you did not want me to call you just to express your concern about a few messages not getting through. You want to know how I acquired my points and about the leaderboard, right?"
Mariposa, "Hehe, you certainly do not waste any time. If I said it was for both reasons—would you believe me?"
Izroth, "Considering your sister is not with me at the moment—not at all."
Mariposa, "I'm quite hurt~ But, I will not take up too much of your time. Since you've called me knowing what I am after, I assume you are willing to part with the knowledge in your possession? Name your price."
Izroth, "I do not mistreat my allies. My price isn't too expensive. I'd like some information in return—an exchange, if you will."
Mariposa, "Information? What did you have in mind?"
Izroth, "The location of every major Headhunter Syndicate gathering point for this event."
Mariposa remained quiet for a few moments before she broke the silence and responded.
Mariposa, "You must be aware that they sided with Tempest. Their bases are no longer anywhere to be found within Amaharpe or Proximus. I can disclose the ones I know, but I can't guarantee they will be the only ones. After all, it's not exactly effortless to infiltrate enemy territory. However, I can promise to relay any future information my Sleeping Gardenia procures directly to you."
Izroth, "That's good enough. I'll have to thank you in advance."
Mariposa, "No thanks are necessary. This trade is in my favor. Nevertheless, I have to ask. What do you intend to do with the information? You're not thinking of doing something crazy, are you?"
Izroth, "That's a matter of perspective."
Mariposa, "You... Never mind. After what I saw during the raid, I doubt anyone in the Headhunter Syndicate is your match. The biggest issue is the massive number of members in their guild. Attack one, and they'll swarm at you like a hive. I'm curious, has the Headhunter Syndicate done something to offend you?"
Mariposa knew that the Headhunter Syndicate had a poor reputation in RML. They were well known for their forceful methods and scamming players out of their loot. It would not surprise her if someone from a guild like that did something to incur the vengeance of Izroth.
Izroth, "If I said that I was doing it for the justice of all those wronged at their hands—would you believe me?"
Mariposa lightly giggled, "Not at all."
After coming to an agreement, Izroth and Mariposa exchanged information with one another.
Mariposa was amazed when she learned of the way Izroth obtained his points. Destroying a city and killing thousands in the process—how was she supposed to mimic that?! She sighed in disappointment at that part; however, not everything was bad news. At least now, she knew the requirements for appearing on the Event Leaderboard was to reach 1,000 contribution points.
Mariposa kept her part of the bargain and sent Izroth a list of coordinates, all of which were places where the Headhunter Syndicate convened.
Mariposa, "My unit is preparing to depart, so it seems I'll have to cut the rest of our conversation short. Don't forget, my Sleeping Gardenia will always come to your aid. If you need any assistance, do not hesitate to reach out. If you call, we shall answer."
Izroth, "I'll take your words to heart. Safe journeys."
Mariposa, "And to you."
[Voice Chat Has Ended]
Once the voice chat ended, Izroth examined the coordinates sent to him by Mariposa. There were several of them, and one of them in particular perfectly coincided with the same coordinates given to him by Empyrean.
'According to these coordinates, they aren't too spread out from each other. At first glance, every point appears random, but in reality, they are all within reinforcements range of at least two different locations. Each spot is linked together without flaw. Is this her doing? It seems my warning has fallen on deaf ears.'
Menerva—Izroth was perhaps one of the few players who knew of this name outside of those at the top of the Headhunter Syndicate. The number of players Izroth could not read in this world could be counted on one hand. Menerva, the one secretly pulling the strings behind the scenes for the Headhunter Syndicate, was one such individual.
However, what Izroth failed to understand was how someone like Vault could draw in a person with that kind of gift. Or better yet, how someone like Menerva came to work for someone with that level of arrogance.
Izroth pushed those thoughts to the back of his mind as he reopened his voice chat. This time, he contacted the guild leader of Cross Haven, Ewan.
Just like Mariposa, Ewan was also interested in the information in Izroth's possession, and after a brief negotiation, the two came to an agreement. In exchange for two superior quality materials and ten rare quality materials, Izroth told Ewan what he wanted to know.
[Voice Chat] Ewan, "I will have someone deliver the materials to your Mystical Realm Palace before the day is out. I appreciate the Palace Master's candidness on this matter. Until we speak again."
After bidding farewell, Ewan terminated the voice chat. The entire conversation was strictly business and of mutual exchange as Ewan spent no time on small talk.
'Superior materials are still not easy to come by even for top guilds. Getting two, along with several rare materials, isn't too bad.'