Chapter 192 - Guardians
“Miles, even you couldn’t insta-kill Silver Moon back then, right?” These mercenaries vividly recalled their adventure in Yueye City, as it was their grandest affair in Parallel World thus far.
Gu Fei nodded his head, “Yup. I couldn’t.”
“So what do we do to prevent him from unleashing that powerful skill this time?” Royal God Call asked.
Gu Fei glanced at him, “We’ll just have to slash him a second time.”
Royal God Call had no words for his simplistic answer.
The system’s ten-second countdown ended, and the teleportation array began to glow in white light, enveloping all those who stood within and transporting them to their respective PvP arenas. There were only a total of sixteen players participating in the match between Young Master’s Elite mercenary group and Silver Moon mercenary group, so the map that they were given was relatively small.
“Let’s head toward a vantage point and scope out the situation.” Young Master Han employed his usual PvP maneuver.
As they climbed up a small hill near their group’s spawn point, they saw a few figures also heading up a hill on the other side of the map.
“How many men are there?” Young Master Han pointed the opposite hill with his liquor bottle to Royal God Call.
Royal God Call placed a hand to his forehead and peered, “Exactly ten men.” He then shouted to Sword Demon, “Points, please!”
Gu Fei found this quite strange. He could barely make out the people on the other hill from his position, and his eyesight had been pretty good since young. Was it possible that Royal God Call had better eyesight than him?
Inquiring about the matter, Gu Fei was told that Royal God Call could now use the level 40 passive skill, Eagle Eye, after the latter had advanced to a Sharpshooter. The skill allowed its user to possess eyesight on par with that of an eagle, so it was pretty popular to myopic Archers. Ever since they got Eagle Eye, their myopia became a thing of the past and they could even see objects from afar in-game. These myopic Archers with low self-esteem issues could now stand tall and walk proudly as they gazed on the horizon.
“Royal, keep your eyes on them. Observe their movement for us,” Young Master Han said.
Royal God Call voiced his assent as he proudly monitored the enemies from afar.
While waiting for the enemies to make a move, all of them were doing something on their own to ease the boredom. Royal God Call continued to strain his eyes to observe the movement of the enemies until he became teary eyed; Young Master Han opened a new bottle of liquor and threw it on the ground once he chugged it all down; Gu Fei managed to perform up to the fifth set of moves of a swordplay while he waited; War Without Wounds privately chatted up the eighth lady on his friends list; and Sword Demon and Brother Assist were meticulously discussing the things listed in the scoring booklet... Even after all that, the enemies had hardly made any movement atop the opposite hill.
Young Master Han put a hand inside his dimensional pocket to get another bottle of liquor, only to discover that he was out of it. He promptly stood up and cursed, “This sucks!” As everyone turned to look at him, he exclaimed indignantly, “Is this how they actually forced all their past opponents to engage them directly? By turning everyone restless through the long wait?!”
Everyone thought that sentiment made sense. With both sides fighting, surely one group would have to initiate the assault if the other group chose to not make a move.
“If both sides choose not to fight, what will be the system’s decision?” Royal God Call asked Brother Assist.
“Overtime will occur, and it will continue on until one side gains a point,” Brother Assist replied.
“Most players who participate in the mercenary PvP tournament usually have the guild versus guild tournament to participate into afterward. These guys seem to be taking advantage of that fact to force their previous opponents into attacking them first. Once their opponents realized that they were running late for the next match, they would of course take the initiative to attack, and this would of course lead to a head-on clash in the end,” Young Master Han broke down the matter at hand.
“Are you perhaps overthinking things again?” Sword Demon did not even lift his head from the booklet.
“Definitely overthinking,” Royal God Call nodded his head, “They have made a move.”
“Oh?” All stopped whatever they were doing to gaze once more on that distant hill.
When they saw no movement from the opposite hill, they instead focused their eyes on Royal God Call, who heaved a long sigh, “Looks like they got bored just like us after sitting for so long, so they stretched their bodies for a bit….”
Everyone became quiet for a moment. “Let’s just go to them!” These experts had long lost interest on passing the time by doing random stuff and decided to head straight to Silver Moon to conclude this match.
“Charge!” Young Master Han raised his hand.
“Seriously?” Everyone had actually thought that he would calmly weigh the odds and analyze their current situation.
“I’m outta booze,” Young Master Han explained. “Let’s end this quick so I can go buy some more.”
“You drinking addict!” The others exclaimed as they descended the hill and headed to the opposite side of the map. Royal God Call continued to keep an eye on the enemies along the way, but the opposite side still seemed to be doing nothing.
“Stop!” Young Master Han ordered when they were halfway there.
“What?” they asked.
“Miles, Royal, Sword Demon, get close to the enemies. Wounds, Assist, stay with me to bring up the rear,” Young Master Han said.
“What do you mean?” They all could not fathom Young Master Han’s thoughts, especially Royal God Call who was afraid of being sent on a suicide mission again.
“Once Silver Moon uses his skill, his party’s speed will likely increase. If things pan out that way, the three of us with slow movement speed will find it hard to get away,” Young Master Han explained.
Thus, the six acted according to Young Master Han’s orders. Young Master Han, War Without Wounds, and Brother Assist found somewhere to observe from afar, while Gu Fei, Royal God Call, and Sword Demon proceeded forward to close in on the enemies.
Even when they reached the foot of the hill, the ten men on top of it still remained motionless. Royal God Call suddenly exclaimed, “Eagle Eye is so cool! I can even see the inside of their noses. Can you guys do the same?” Royal God Call boasted to Sword Demon and Gu Fei.
“Shoot an arrow and see how they’ll react.” The enemies were still not making any movement despite them already entering the Archer Royal God Call’s attack range. Royal God Call nocked an arrow and drew his bowstring, readying himself to fire off an arrow.
That was when the ten men finally made a move. They suddenly gathered together and the three Warriors standing in front each took out a large shield that they held before them. The three men hunched their backs, and the entire Silver Moon mercenary group became protected by the shields.
“Those are Guardians…” Sword Demon said.
Guardian was the other job class that a Warrior could advance into, and choosing this route would grant a Warrior high HP and defense. At level 40, a Guardian could learn a new passive skill called Defense Mastery. This skill not only increased the player’s HP but also provided extra defense through the Shield Mastery skill.
Shields were also considered as weapons in Parallel World. While the Attack Power they provided was really low, they had the highest defensive properties. And even if the other job classes tried using shields as weapons, they would still have to fulfill the required Shield Aptitude before they could obtain the maximum defense provided by shields. When it came to the ability to fully utilize the prowess of a shield, Guardians from level 40 onward were the only ones capable of doing it through the Aptitude boost provided by their passive Defense Mastery skill.
Royal God Call fired off his arrow at this point, and it pierced through the air with the same force he had always been employing in his attacks. A loud clink was heard when the arrow made contact with the surface of a shield.
The arrow did not even move the shield an inch and just feebly dropped to the ground upon contact.
When Young Master Han saw this scene unfold from a distance, a slight smile formed on his lips, “Guardians… so that’s how it is. I have a hunch that they would have a method to prevent Archers from shooting them down from afar, and we have just found out exactly how it is possible! If that’s case, we can only send a Mage forward.” While Young Master Han was mumbling this, Gu Fei and his two companions were still trying various ways to attack their opponents.
Royal God Call swiftly headed to the other side of the hill to sneak in an attack on the enemies’ flank. The ten men seemed to have included this into their estimation, as they immediately adjusted their position in accordance to Royal God Call’s movement. No matter how fast his movement speed was, he would never be faster than people turning their bodies around. Royal God Call continued to see the three large shields no matter where he positioned himself, not even seeing a strand of stray hair.
“You’re only wasting your time,” Young Master Han snorted upon seeing Royal God Call’s action.
Royal God Call grew depressed at having wasted his effort. Returning to Gu Fei’s side, he patted him on the shoulder, “It’s your turn now.”
“You’re done? Can’t you do a volley shot like yesterday?” Gu Fei gestured with his hand and drew a curved line in the air. He and Svelte Dancer had personally experienced being peppered by the Archers volley of arrows during yesterday’s match with Traversing Four Seas, and he was certain that Royal God Call had shot out quite a few arrows like that as well.
“Well… None of my current skills can cover that kind of range, so firing an arrow like that is only possible through basic attacks. And I can’t do much damage to a Warrior by just firing a regular arrow. Besides, that kind of aerial assault is only effective when there are tons of Archers together like yesterday. Since I’m the only Archer here right now, that method can’t be used to deal with them,” Royal God Call explained himself.
“Just watch me, then!” Gu Fei took out his sword. Dashing a few steps forward, the three Warriors quickly entered his spell-casting range, “Descending Wheel of Flames! Descend!”
When the enemy Warriors heard Gu Fei’s command, they immediately raised the shields over their heads.
Gu Fei and gang were shocked.
“What are they doing?! Shields only have physical defense. There’s no way they can block a magic attack!” Sword Demon exclaimed, stunned.
Following Sword Demon’s exclamation, Gu Fei’s flame wheel ignited in the air and began its descent. The three watched this happen in real time. Just as the spell was about to land on the raised shields, a transparent glimmer shone on the surface of the shields and the flame wheel was easily extinguished. Despite the ten men under the shields remaining still, their expression showed surprise. Evidently, Gu Fei’s high Spell Damage had still managed to injure some of them.
“They’re not dead? Do their shields have magic defense?” The faraway Young Master Han expressed his surprise.
“That’s a new piece of vital information; I’ll head over to appraise those shields,” Brother Assist was about to make his way over after saying this, but Young Master Han pulled him back, “No, leave that to Sword Demon.”
“Equipment that has physical defense as well as magic defense is extremely rare. How frightening that these two traits could actually be found on shields... Shields are the equipment that possesses the highest amount of defense, after all,” Brother Assist began his analysis on those shields of their enemies.
“So this is the real reason why there are only ten of them!” Young Master Han realized, “I previously thought that since their tactic relies on direct and frontal assault, wouldn’t it be more effective for them to overcome us through numerical superiority by employing all forty members to camp atop that hill and wait for us to arrive? To think that it’s actually because of this other trump card that they have. They should have only three of those shields, and they can only cover ten players at most. Archers and Mages won’t be able to cause significant damage as long as those three Guardians are around. At this rate, we will surely be forced to engage them in close combat!”
“Well, if Miles and Royal perform their attacks from two different directions at the same time, those three Guardians will probably be forced into choosing just one side to defend against, leaving them defenseless on the other direction.” Just as Brother Assist was saying this, Gu Fei and Royal God Call had already proceeded to employ it.
The former let loose a spell while the latter fired off an arrow.
In the end, Royal God Call was left in tears. This was because the enemies had disregarded his arrow and chose to focus solely on defending against Gu Fei’s spell. Royal God Call’s pride as an expert was trampled on once more.
“No point in competing like this. You’ll only leave yourself angry over nothing,” Sword Demon consoled him.