Chapter 106 - One after Another
Lie Lie’s arrival was just too ‘timely’! Never did Gu Fei expect that her level of nosiness would be this high. If he had known that asking publicly on Amethyst Rebirth’s guild channel for help would result into this, he would have been more discreet in his approach.
Only Lie Lie was present at this moment, yet there was no telling if a second or third lady would come to ‘join in on the fun’ as well. Gu Fei’s heart chilled when he recalled the rows upon rows of messages that he had seen on the Amethyst Rebirth’s guild channel.
Looking backward, he saw Lie Lie gazing at the opponent and his direction with a yearning-to-fight expression on her face. It was similar to the look on the faces of those players in Yueye City... To think that there was also a PvP fanatic in Yunduan City!
I definitely can’t let her join in! Gu Fei resolved in his mind. When he saw Lie Lie rushing over with that exact intention written all over her face, he quickly hollered, “Don’t join in! I want a one-on-one fight with him!”
“Oh?” Lie Lie immediately stopped upon hearing his request. It seemed like she was a PvP fanatic who still knew how to respect the solemnity of two people having a duel. Since she could not participate in the fight upon Gu Fei’s request, Lie Lie designated herself as a spectator instead and stood beside Ice Glaze calmly.
“How long has he been fighting?” Lie Lie asked Ice Glaze.
“About five minutes now!” Ice Glaze replied. Gu Fei had been ‘play-fighting’ for about five minutes already.
“Five minutes and the fight still can’t be concluded?” Lie Lie was dumbfounded. The PvP in online games was unlike the martial arts experts’ confrontation depicted in wuxia novels, where people could exchange three to five hundred blows without determining a victor. In online games, a victory was often decided in just a few moves. Therefore, it was uncommon for a fight to last for five minutes or more.
Lie Lie felt weird about the fight’s long duration, but she had gained some understanding after observing the fight a bit longer. The Mage Gu Fei had chosen to engage his opponent in a melee combat, even when Mages were known to not fare well in close-range fights. It even appeared that he was holding the upper hand in the fight, with how he was able to meet the opposing Thief’s every blade strike with his own sword strike. It could be said that his combat prowess was not bad based on the two’s exchanges alone. At the very least, he had not fallen to the opponent’s blade! All in all, it was quite acceptable for this scuffle to extend beyond five minutes since Gu Fei was matching his job class disadvantage to the opponent’s job class advantage.
“Why is he engaging that guy in melee?” Lie Lie asked Ice Glaze, thinking of a fact she was not privy of that would explain the current situation.
“Uhh… Maybe that top-grade sword of his has amazing melee features?” Ice Glaze shared her thoughts about the business at hand. Moonlit Nightfalls looked impressive no matter which angle one looked at it, after all.
Could he be that Close Combat Mage? was a question that popped into Lie Lie’s head. However, she very quickly dismissed the thought of the formidable Close Combat Mage and PK King 27149 being Gu Fei. Why would such a great man not settle this Thief in five minutes? What am I even thinking? To even consider Miles as my idol just because he’s a Mage engaging in melee is blasphemy! Plenty of Mages began to imitate the Close Combat Mage’s fighting style ever since he became famous on the game forums. A Mage engaging in melee no longer proved anything, so Lie Lie rejected her correct guess and continued watching the skirmish.
Gu Fei’s sword control and acting skills were truly praiseworthy, as they firmly convinced foes and friends alike that his struggle in the current fight was for real.
In fact, Lie Lie, who had always prided herself as a person with some knowledge in kung fu, could not tell that a real kung fu practitioner was fighting before her eyes. She even went as far as commenting on Gu Fei’s every ‘unsatisfactory’ strike: “Eh?! Why’re you slanting your sword again?!”, “Ahhhh! Your attack’s blocked, can’t you move a little faster?”, and so on... Visibly restraining herself, she stayed quiet… but only for two minutes. In the end, she could not hold herself back and began shouting once more, “Hey! You sure you can do this?! If you ain’t, let this big sis here show you how fighting should be done!”
“Lie Lie, keep it down,” coaxed Ice Glaze beside her.
“He’s hopeless!” Lie Lie moaned in exasperation.
Ice Glaze did not comment on this. She had been watching the skirmish on the sidelines from the very start. Although she could not tell for sure that Gu Fei was deliberately going easy on his current opponent, he was undeniably responsible for eliminating the two Mages, two Archers, and one Priest earlier. Gu Fei killing those five at once was not an easy task, even if her Descending Wheel of Flames had lowered their HP. Furthermore, the three kicks Gu Fei had planted on Nightmare of Death’s face were still etched deeply in her mind. If he’s able to land kicks thrice on the opponent’s face, how come he’s suddenly unable to strike correctly at his enemy with a sword right now? Ice Glaze was truly an intuitive lady as she was able to notice the minute details of the current situation.
One lady was trying to deduce Gu Fei’s intention, while another lady was busy shouting and disrupting his train of thoughts. Thankfully, neither of the ladies accidentally spoiled his plan.
Speaking of plan, Young Master Han and the rest seemed to be taking a much longer time than Gu Fei had expected.
Gu Fei was starting to lose his patience, especially when he saw figures flash by the city entrance. With the Archer Range in Yunduan City being relatively close to the north gate and the inherently high Agility of the Archer job class... the two Archer friends of Nightmare of Death that Gu Fei had killed off earlier had actually made their way back here before Young Master Han and the rest finished their preparations!
“Don’t worry about me! You guys eliminate the ladies over there; they’re all from the same group!” Nightmare of Death shouted. He was once again thankful that Gu Fei had insisted on fighting him one-on-one to the two ladies earlier; not only did it stop the two women from joining in, it also gave his comrades ample time to return here.
The two Archers had actually been in a daze while making their way over here. This was because the two viewed Gu Fei as a formidable foe. Not receiving a reply from Nightmare of Death to their messages, they assumed that he had been killed off as well. The two then hesitantly decided to head over at the north gate to make sure of everything. Strangely, they did not receive any report of Nightmare of Death respawning at the Thieves’ Union on their way to the north gate. Despite all this, the two never imagined that the sight that would greet them upon their arrival at the north gate was of an alive Nightmare of Death still fighting with Gu Fei! They suddenly felt great admiration toward Nightmare of Death and shouted praises at him, “You’re pretty good!”
“It’s no big deal!” Nightmare of Death proudly accepted their praises. Gu Fei’s seven-minute performance without wounding him had boosted Nightmare of Death’s self-confidence by seven folds.
Gu Fei felt annoyed upon hearing Nightmare of Death arrogantly reject his companions’ aid. Feeling spiteful, Gu Fei did not raise his sword as intended and instead hopped in the air, executing another roundhouse kick that brushed across Nightmare of Death’s lips. Gu Fei had left two foot imprints on Nightmare of Death’s forehead and right cheek, so he decided to leave his third foot imprint on the latter’s left cheek.
Gu Fei admiringly eyeballed his handiwork after landing that kick. The indentation on Nightmare of Death’s left cheek was lower than the one on his right cheek by half a centimeter. Gu Fei sighed. His kung fu training for his left and right legs seemed to not be in-sync by half a centimeter.
Witnessing Nightmare of Death suffer that kick from Gu Fei, the two Archers felt confused. As they aimed their arrows at Gu Fei, the two asked Nightmare of Death once more, “Are you sure you can manage?”
Nightmare of Death shook his head. Was everything before just a dream? Why’s this opponent unable to hit me with his sword but able to hit me with his foot? Just what’s going on here? Nightmare of Death was at a loss. Could it be that the move did not possess much damage, so the system deemed that dodging it was unnecessary? Nightmare of Death’s thinking slowly deviated from the norm as he considered everything from a gaming perspective.
Gu Fei was quite occupied with preventing Nightmare of Death from escaping, so he had no free hands left to deal with the two Archers by the side. Lie Lie fortunately rushed over, roaring, “Leave these two to me!”
The two Archers no longer bothered with Nightmare of Death and aimed their nocked arrows at Lie Lie, instead.
Unfortunately the two could no longer activate Snipe, the strongest Archer skill thus far, with their drop in level, so they could only unleash their next best Archer skill, the level 24 Double Shot. The skill’s Attack Power was not weak, but it had a slow activation time. This slow activation time was not designed by the game’s system, but something related to a player’s ability. Nocking two arrows properly on a bowstring was naturally more troublesome than nocking just one arrow. Without any form of practice beforehand, it was truly difficult for a player to nock two arrows as fast as nocking just one arrow.
Arrows that were not properly secured and nocked would of course have trouble hitting the right targets. This was a weapon handling issue that was exclusive to Archers, which required them to have superb control of their body movement as well as hand-eye coordination to handle the bow and arrow well.
Unfortunately, not many Archers would spend time practicing their nocking skills, given that they usually fired off arrows from a safe distance or put pressure to incoming opponents just by firing warning shots. This resulted into a majority of the Archers losing their dexterity and fumbling with their hands when faced with a situation requiring them to fire arrows on the fly.
The two Archers here were obviously part of the majority; their hands trembled from the pressure of an enemy rushing toward them, preventing them from nocking arrows properly.
The left Archer was a bit quick-witted. Seeing that the Warrior Lie Lie was about to close in on them, he decided to shoot one arrow instead of two to save himself, activating the beginner skill, Power Shot. The right Archer took inspiration from this and quickly fired off an arrow on Power Shot as well. The arrow each of them shot coincidentally formed an attack similar to Double Shot.
Lie Lie reacted properly to their attacks. Swaying her body, she evaded the first arrow completely and received the second arrow’s full force. She responded like this because she knew that one arrow on Power Shot would not be enough to insta-kill her or anyone for that matter. After pausing for a bit to regain her balance, Lie Lie bounded toward the two in large strides. The two Archers’ hands shook even harder when she arrived in front of them. Lie Lie’s ensuing bellow caused one Archer to drop his arrow in fright and to flee, not even feeling embarrassed by his cowardly act. From a battle standpoint, as long as he kept his distance and held speed superiority in this confrontation, he would be able to run and shoot. This was a technique called ‘kiting’, something that a job class like the Archer must be able to do.
Nevertheless, Lie Lie also had a lot of experience when it came to PvPing. Seeing the Archer run off, she swiftly activated the level 24 Fighter skill, Spurring Meteor, which boosted her speed. She sent a fist straight toward the running Archer’s waist and was fortunate enough to apply the Dizzy effect on him.
She proceeded to unhurriedly execute Heavy Punch, Uppercut Punch, and Thrusting Kick on him. Her target got hit by this trifecta combo and was hurtled upward. Lie Lie extended her hands and held on to his legs, slamming him straight to the ground. White light flashed as the Archer succumbed to death.
Her execution is faster than Coward’s Savior’s! Gu Fei thought to himself. While hounding Nightmare of Death, he occasionally checked Lie Lie’s way of fighting. He quickly deduced that that last slam of hers was Seismic Toss. Based on Coward’s Savior’s movement execution speed, he would not be able to follow-up Thrusting Kick with Seismic Toss. The two Fighters Gu Fei knew had clearly allocated their stat points differently.
The remaining Archer did not stay idle while all that was happening. He took that chance to prepare Double Shot and shoot Lie Lie with it.
While the Archer was preparing his attack, Ice Glaze, who had long abandoned her role as a bystander, moved to a range where she could hit him with her spells. Summoning the level 30 Repeating Fireball spell, she majestically unleashed it upon the remaining Archer.
She really does her chanting quietly. I couldn’t even hear her voice when she casted that spell this time, Gu Fei also assessed Ice Glaze’s ability following his evaluation of Lie Lie’s.
A Mage’s spell-casting was slower than an Archer’s arrow, so dodging an incoming spell was easier than dodging an incoming arrow. The Archer sidestepped to evade the spell, only suffering a slight AOE damage as Repeating Fireball missed.
“Let me handle this!” Lie Lie yelled, stopping Ice Glaze from casting another spell. Fighters were also a melee job class, so they had an advantage against Archers that were weak in melee. Lie Lie threw a punch at the Archer, handily sending him back to the Archer Range. She then raised her arms and congratulated herself, “Winner! Lie Lie!”
Ice Glaze chuckled. Clearly, this scene was not foreign to her.
Lie Lie used up quite a lot of her internal force while dealing with the two Archers. Naturally, this so-called internal force of Fighters was what the other job classes knew as mana. Internal force provided Fighters the energy to activate their skills, just like how mana allowed Priests to heal others. Lie Lie sat down as she munched an apple to recover her internal force while hollering to Gu Fei, “You’re too weak! Are you sure you can manage? Bring me in if you can’t!”
Gu Fei faced Lie Lie with an envious look, “Let me give this another shot, if not I’ll swap with you.”
Lie Lie happily nodded her head as she instructed Gu Fei, “It seems like you’ve learned quite a bit of martial arts. That roundhouse kick you did isn’t bad!”
“You jest,” Gu Fei humbly said.
However, Lie Lie immediately followed this up, “Let big sis here advise you; that sort of kick may look good, but you shan’t use it in an actual fight. It has too many flaws!”
Gu Fei did not know whether to laugh or cry, but he could not refute her words either. That roundhouse kick he had just used was indeed a fancy move that contained many flaws.
Ice Glaze patted Lie Lie on the arm and said, “Recover quickly. Two Mages might be coming our way.” The Mage Academy was quite far from the north gate and most Mages did not have high Agility, so the two Mage companions of Nightmare of Death would naturally take some time to reach this location, but it did not change the fact that they would be here eventually.
“Is that so?” Feeling enlivened, Lie Lie quickly ate the apple and took out a loaf of bread, “I’ll be done soon!” Fruit could help players recover their internal force, while other types of food could help them recover HP.
Just as she finished eating, Lie Lie spotted a head peeking out of a corner of a nearby alley. Obviously, the furtive act was done with ill intent.
“They’re here!” Lie Lie squealed in delight. She quickly got up and headed toward that direction. The head quickly ducked inside the alley once it saw her approaching.
“Lie Lie, don’t be so impulsive!” Ice Glaze anxiously called after her as she too hurried over. Lie Lie stopped as she waited for Ice Glaze to catch up. The two arrived at the alley and looked around it; unfortunately, they did not find the person who owned that head.
“He ran off!” Lie Lie said ruefully.
Unbeknown to the two ladies, the same person had circled around them with its bow drawn and arrow trained at their heads. It was an Archer.
Lie Lie and Ice Glaze were clueless to this fact. Gu Fei, at that moment, noticed the unusual expression on Nightmare of Death’s face as he looked at the ladies’ direction. Gu Fei looked at the ladies’ direction as well. Upon seeing what was happening, he hurriedly shouted, “Don’t shoot! They’re allies!”
“Ah!” A scream rang out. The arrow had already been shot.
The furtive head Lie Lie had spotted actually belonged to Royal God Call. With his grasp of the Archer job class’ appropriate combat style, it was apparent how brilliant of an Archer Royal God Call was compared to the two from before. He knew very well the advantage of the enemies remaining oblivious to an Archer’s whereabouts. Thus, once Royal God Call realized that he had been spotted, he very calmly changed his strategic position instead of frantically using Snipe.
That alley Royal God Call had peeked from was specifically chosen by him because it had various escape routes. With his high Agility, Royal God Call easily disappeared from inside the alley and went into an adjoining alley, having a clear view of Lie Lie and Ice Glaze from his new location.
The arrow whistled through the air with a sharp sound, clearly belonging to the Archer job class’ strongest skill thus far, Snipe.
An arrow on Snipe from Royal God Call could almost insta-kill Xiaoyu. As for Lie Lie and Ice Glaze… Gu Fei shut his eyes. His heart pounded loudly as he thought of ways to explain this misunderstanding to the two ladies.
“Ah!” The ladies heard Gu Fei’s shout and turned around in time to see an arrow heading toward them at mach speed. The projectile seemed to have enough force behind it to pierce through them. By the time they managed to scream, the arrow had already arrived before them. The Snipe’s speed was truly not something an average player could evade.
Unexpectedly, the Snipe did not puncture anyone as it slipped through the small gap between Lie Lie and Ice Glaze’s heads. The ensuing gust of wind that had trailed the arrow buffeted the ladies’ faces as they paled visibly.
“Phew! That was close!” Royal God Call sighed in relief.
Upon hearing his words, Gu Fei opened his eyes and saw that the two ladies were still alive. He happily asked, “You missed?”
“On purpose,” Royal God Call arrogantly said. Nobody knew if he was telling the truth or not.
“It’s a good miss!” Gu Fei complimented.
“No, you’re missing the whole point! I purposely shifted the trajectory of my arrow; it’s precisely because my shot’s so precise that neither of them died!” Royal God Call yelled.
The illogical statement left Gu Fei momentarily speechless.
At this moment, Royal God Call’s heart was trembling, Yet another two ladies. Is Miles really that talented at picking up women? Looks like I need to test out that method he’s shown me.
“Why’re you here?” Gu Fei asked as he recalled that his fellow mercenaries should be setting up an ambush by the Thieves’ Union. What was Royal God Call doing here by the north gate, then?
“I’m just passing by!” Royal God Call positioned himself behind Nightmare of Death while he answered Gu Fei’s question, sizing up the enemy Thief.
What’re they up to this time? Gu Fei wondered inside him. They must have discussed everything on the mercenary channel. Unfortunately, Gu Fei currently had no time or ability to take a look at their discussion.
“Hey, beautiful,” Royal God Call ignored Gu Fei and greeted the two ladies instead.
Lie Lie and Ice Glaze nodded their heads at him.
Lie Lie had initially looked down on the Archer job class. Dispatching the two Archers from before reinforced her unfavorable opinion about the Archers. And yet, Royal God Call’s timely display of what Archers were capable of made her reconsider her view and think that this expression had some merit: “There were no trash job classes, just trash players.”
The three stood by the side as they watched Gu Fei continue his performance.
“Are you his friend?” Lie Lie asked Royal God Call.
Royal God Call nodded his head.
“He’s hopeless, yet he’s not letting us help him!” Lie Lie lamented.
Royal God Call nodded his head once more, “We need to give these young ones a chance to train themselves. Otherwise, he’d never be able to accomplish anything. I’d settle that clown in two or three moves if I were to take Miles’ place, but that’d be pointless!”
You sh*tty brat! Gu Fei cursed in his mind upon hearing his words. Royal God Call was obviously using this opportunity to exact revenge on Gu Fei for disdaining him due to his young age.
“What is he practicing?” Ice Glaze curiously asked. She could somewhat feel that Gu Fei was experimenting with Nightmare of Death.
“Uhh. He’s practicing his swordsmanship,” Royal God Call casually replied. In his eyes, Gu Fei’s sword wielding was nothing short of crude.
Lie Lie immediately laughed uproariously, “Swordsmanship? What sort of swordsmanship is that?!”
Gu Fei felt upset when he heard them ridicule his kung fu due to his performance right now. Who’d imagine that this crappy style is something I’ve made up? Average people truly can’t fathom the brilliance of my style. Even if I explain the sophistry behind my action, I doubt they’ll comprehend it. I’ll just tolerate their jeering.
Royal God Call did not stop there. Wearing a mischievous expression, he seriously said to the two ladies, “I’m gonna tell you a secret: Miles knows kung fu!”
Lie Lie once more burst into peals of laughter. Even Ice Glaze could not help herself but titter.
Royal God Call once more adopted a serious tone, “Honestly.”
“Mhm-mhm, we believe you,” Lie Lie chortled as she applauded, “Yes, what an amazing swordsmanship! HA HA HA HA HA…” She continued to laugh uncontrollably.
“He he…” Royal God Call smiled darkly. My plot succeeded! Miles must seem like a huge buffoon in these ladies’ eyes now, right? Let’s see if Miles will dare to despise me again just because he’s older!
Gu Fei naturally felt miserable upon being ridiculed by the three. He had the sudden urge to strike Nightmare of Death on the mouth once more. But seeing that the latter was already sporting three separate imprints on his face and there was no room for another indentation, he decided not to do so.
As he was thinking of Royal God Call’s purpose for coming over, Gu Fei suddenly had an epiphany.
Gu Fei’s fellow mercenaries must have realized his inability to check his messages due to him stalling for time by waylaying Nightmare of Death here. That would leave him clueless regarding their preparations. Without any way to inform Gu Fei, they had sent their fastest member, Royal God Call, over here to signal him. Such an arrangement showed the care they had in their planning. Young Master Han doesn’t just have an effeminate face, he’s quite meticulous as well, Gu Fei thought to himself. If it were Gu Fei who was doing the planning, he would likely not give every aspect of it as much thought.
Just as he was thinking of this, Gu Fei suddenly heard a thunderous voice boomed from behind him, “Royal, you got here pretty fast.”
Isn’t that War Without Wounds’ voice? Gu Fei hurriedly looked behind him. War Without Wounds was not alone; he was accompanied by Brother Assist. The two were currently marching toward him. Gu Fei was becoming more and more confused as time ticked by, Just what’s going on?
Without him figuring things out, another voice traveled over, “Hmm? Everyone is here. I’m the slowest?”
Gu Fei turned his head and saw Young Master Han’s pretty face.
“Great, you’ve got him stuck here! Quickly hold him down. I’ll personally settle him!” Young Master Han instructed the people around him.
Ice Glaze quickly understood everything, It turns out Miles is dragging for time. He’s waiting for this person to have his chance to vent.
Nightmare of Death stared at Young Master Han in confusion, thinking, Who is this person? When did I offend him?
Gu Fei was still oblivious at what was happening. Arriving by Gu Fei’s side, Young Master Han waved his hand majestically, “Alright, don’t you have somewhere to be? Hurry up and log off already!”
War Without Wounds, Brother Assist, Young Master Han, and even Royal God Call – these players that had long-range job classes – came here and sandwiched Nightmare of Death in their midst.
Gu Fei stepped back. He looked bewilderedly as each of them stepped forward in succession. What’s really going on? Just as his shoulder bumped against Young Master Han, he received a private message, “Head over to the Thieves’ Union. Read the rest of your instructions on the mercenary channel!”