Chapter 273 - The Grand Meeting of Yunduan City’s Mercenaries
Ye Xiaowu was unhappy over the game company’s use of Gu Fei’s footage to promote Parallel World, but since this was under the Marketing Department’s jurisdiction, which he was not in charge of, he did not have much say about the matter. Whereas Ye Xiaowu felt uneasy over the video’s tremendous popularity, which was evident from its high ranking, the Marketing Department employees were beside themselves with joy, treating the video’s hype as them making the right choice as far as candidates went.
Gu Fei’s popularity essentially surged overnight, and many people outside Yunduan City were now eagerly inquiring about him to those residing in Yunduan City. Although the players in the city had nothing worthwhile to mention, that did not stop them from talking. This was even more so for those who felt it their responsibility to brag about Gu Fei just because they hailed from the same city as him.
“Oh! You know that Mage?”
“Of course! We even shared a drink last night.”
“Really? What’s his name?”
“Oh, well… That - That’s a little inconvenient to reveal….”
Most of the braggarts would feel stumped when this question was asked. Although the ‘Thousand Miles Drunk’ IGN was revealed, it was not to the point where the name was known throughout the streets. Nonetheless, due to the hype that the system had created, some players learned that they needed to brush up on their information regarding the Mage before promoting his IGN.
Besides this, the strength of the mercenary groups and guilds in various cities was reshuffled after Parallel World’s PvP event. Take Yunduan City as an example; Traversing Four Seas’ smooth journey to the finals cemented their position as the number one guild in the city. Beyond the rewards that the guild had received, the experience points its members had earned were a huge win for them.
For instance, level 41 was no longer something only the Five Unyielding Experts could attain. The guilds and mercenary groups that were in the tournaments’ top three spots had members that managed to ascend level 41 through the experience points that they had received. As for the original level 41 players, Drifting, Southern Lone Blade, Eternal Dominion, and Deep Waters remained where they were.
This clearly showed the difference in experience points earned by each of the Five Unyielding Experts. The top position across all job classes’ leaderboards had already been occupied by Svelte Dancer when she got to level 42 while the tournaments were still underway. Although she did not earn any reward from the mercenary PvP and guild versus guild tournaments, she still managed to stand at the peak, showing once more just how formidable a pay-to-win player could be.
The debate about whether Carouse should be the number one guild in Yunduan City instead of Traversing Four Seas was more or less settled by the experience points and fifty item rewards that Traversing Four Seas got for coming first in the guild versus guild tournament. Armor Guild on second place and The First Light on third place also greatly profited from the rewards that they had received; were it not for them being level 4 guilds with a two-hundred-fifty member difference to Carouse, both guilds might even surpass Carouse after such a wondrous haul.
On the mercenary groups’ side, Young Master's Elite remained as a six-man group. People found it inconceivable for it to be the top mercenary group despite Young Master’s Elite ranking first in the mercenary PvP tournament. Still, people would now never judge the strength of a mercenary group based on its number of members. The advantage mercenary groups could obtain from being in different levels was simply insignificant. If even a six-man group could defeat a hundred-man group, then this simply meant that the difference between an eighty-man mercenary group at level 4 and a one-hundred-man mercenary group at level 5 was difficult to discern through numbers alone. Thus, the top position for mercenary group was still being fiercely competed over in Yunduan City.
With the identities of Young Master's Elite’s members exposed, just hearing their IGNs could frighten anyone. When these six players logged on, they found countless invitations sent into their mailboxes. Besides Gu Fei, the other five were quickly reminded of their past glories. Although they turned a blind eye to these invites, they still felt a sense of contentment for being highly regarded by others.
Gu Fei received more letters than the rest of them every day. His newly acquired celebrity status was of course generated by the popular video of his mercenary PvP tournament’s performance. Gu Fei did not have the habit of checking the official forums, but once he heard about this matter from Brother Assist and the rest, he promptly checked the video, claiming loudly about how the footage was falsified. The reason for this stemmed from how the footage underwent heavy editing and only showed those instances where Gu Fei insta-killed his targets. His weaknesses, such as his low mana that required him to frequently consume fruit and the scenes where he had to awkwardly grind the enemies’ HP, were summarily edited out in the final product. In short, Gu Fei’s prowess was greatly magnified while his weaknesses were not even shown. Who would have expected the game company to be so considerate toward Gu Fei in this way?
At any rate, many people now wished to meet Gu Fei after seeing the video. Even players beyond Yunduan City’s borders sent their regards to him. He could do nothing about all this and could only do what his fellow mercenaries did: thoroughly ignore the mails. However, in just a few days, Gu Fei’s mailbox reached its limit of one thousand letters. From then onward, Gu Fei would be greeted with the system message [Your mailbox is full. Please read the letters as soon as possible.] instead of the usual [You have a new mail. Please take note to read them.] whenever he logged on. One thousand letters… Gu Fei did not even dare to read through each of them.
When he got online today, he promptly received Young Master Han’s message urging him to immediately head over to Ray’s Bar. Maybe it’s new business again… Gu Fei thought to himself as he rushed down the streets.
Young Master Han had once bragged about their business booming once they made a name for their mercenary group through Parallel World’s PvP event. True to his words, Young Master Han no longer needed to specifically visit the Hall of Mercenaries to acquire missions as players came to him in droves to ask for help in their quests, allowing Young Master's Elite to pick the missions they wished to complete and greatly improving the six members’ days.
When Gu Fei arrived at Ray’s Bar and pushed its door open, he was stunned by what he saw. Plenty of familiar faces were inside the bar, and they were all important figures in Yunduan City. Foe-herder, who was sitting by a table beside the door, was the first person Gu Fei spotted; his face wore a complex expression.
Walking in, he saw Carouse Guild Leader Brave Surge and his brothers-in-arms. When he neared their table, Brave Surge got up and exchanged pleasantries with him.
Walking a bit further inside, he saw Black Index Finger, Drifting, and several other members of The Black Hand. Black Index Finger’s face blanched when he also saw Gu Fei. Drifting, for his part, greeted Gu Fei warmly and asked him about the rewards he had gotten from the tournament.
Gu Fei beamingly lifted his middle finger to him, causing Drifting to be momentarily stunned. Gu Fei quickly realized what he had unintentionally done and used his other hand to indicate the ring on his finger, “This item right here.”
Drifting immediately understood and chuckled, “That’s the one?”
“Mhm-mhm! There’s something else, too. I’ll show it to you when the opportunity arises,” Gu Fei laughed.
Leaving the table on that note and a few steps forward, he felt a tug on his sleeves. Gu Fei looked down and saw Sakurazaka Moony, Fireball, and a few others of Forever in Flowers creepily huddling on the table. Fireball whispered to Gu Fei, “Drunk bro! Drunk bro!”
“So you guys are here, too. What’s up?” Gu Fei bent his body to speak to them.
“Help introduce us!” The men shiftily pointed toward the table beside them.
Gu Fei turned to look and saw Svelte Dancer, Luo Luo, July, June’s Rain… The whole table was occupied by the Amethyst Rebirth ladies. Gu Fei beamed at them. But before he could greet them, Svelte Dancer glared at him, “When are you paying up?!”
Gu Fei lowered his head in embarrassment. He hastily took a coin pouch from his dimensional pocket and tossed it over to her. Surprised, Svelte Dancer grabbed it from the air. However, she growled when she saw its meager content, “Why is it only 300 gold coins?!”
“Didn’t I say that I’ll pay you back in installment?” Gu Fei asked rhetorically. That sum was all he had managed to save from every match in the tournament, inclusive of the final prize money he received for his win and the coins he earned from doing missions.
“Introduce us!” Sakurazaka Moony and Fireball pleaded earnestly. Seeing how near they were to the girls, Gu Fei reckoned Sakurazaka Moony and his gang must have done their best to occupy a table as close as possible to the ladies. Gu Fei felt helpless; he was just about to help fulfill their plea when Svelte Dancer spat out, “What are you sneakily muttering about with the skeevy wretches of Forever in Flowers?”
Gu Fei turned to Sakurazaka Moony and shrugged his shoulders, “I don’t think there’s a need for introduction; they clearly recognize you guys.”
The men were very elated. Although she called them ‘skeevy wretches’, they were still glad that these babes had a deep impression of them.
“Didn’t you say you only have eyes for ‘the most outstanding tree’ in the forest?” Gu Fei asked Sakurazaka Moony.
Sakurazaka Moony did not miss a beat as he cast a sidelong glance over to Fireball and his guildmates, “It’s for them.”
Gu Fei chuckled, “What about you?”
Sakurazaka Moony shook his head forlornly, “Troublesome.”
“What?” Gu Fei asked, puzzled.
Sakurazaka Moony scratched his head and shared, “We originally came here together. But once we entered, she suddenly turned around and left.”
“Oh?” Gu Fei expressed his surprise. What he was surprised about was not Vast Lushness’s sudden departure but her willingness to mix with Sakurazaka Moony and his lot. As for why she had left, Gu Fei quickly found the cause of it with a quick glance around the room. Silver Moon was staring at him with steely eyes, but when Gu Fei looked at him as well, he hurriedly averted his gaze. Silver Moon seemed as if he wanted to vanish from sight.
Gu Fei was unfazed by this. Had he met him on the street, Gu Fei might have let Silver Moon have a taste of his sword. The veneer of politeness shared between Young Master's Elite and Silver Moon had long since peeled off. Since Gu Fei felt that a monumental reason was behind this gathering of Yunduan City’s many prominent figures at Ray’s Bar, he settled himself with staring the man down as he walked toward the opposite direction.
Young Master Han and the rest of Young Master’s Elite were occupying a table in the lounge. The mere fact that the five were not sitting inside their usual room already hinted to something afoot. They had already reserved a seat for Gu Fei, teasing him the moment he sat down, “Heh… It sure is different when one is famous.”
Gu Fei was greeted by many players the moment he entered the bar. Be it in hatred or love, not one person present took his or her eyes off of him.
“What’s going on?” Gu Fei ignored their teasing and directly asked the question he had in mind.
Since it was related to gathering information, Brother Assist was naturally the one who answered him, “Traversing Four Seas has invited everyone here today.”
“Yup. All the top mercenary groups in Yunduan City are here right now.”
“Oh…” Gu Fei swept his gaze over. Indeed, every table had a prominent leader seated. While he did not recognize some of them, Gu Fei could tell from their aura that they were no average players.
“What for?” Gu Fei asked.
“Heard it has something to do with the quest Traversing Four Seas received for placing first in the guild versus guild tournament,” Brother Assist replied.
“Royal, don’t you know anything about this?” Gu Fei asked Royal God Call.
As Royal God Call shook his head, War Without Wounds said while patting his head, “Looks like you’ve already been ostracized.”