Chapter 317 - The Death of Silver Moon
Gu Fei and Gu Xiaoshang dumbly watched the internal conflict that took hold of the seven men before them. Neither of them had expected for such a situation to occur, instantly making them feel really awkward, as though they were forcing these good men to do something incorrigible. The six Thieves were already exploding with anger as they bellowed, “You’ll be the first one to lose your level!” They then surrounded the traitor and six daggers flashed out in unison. White light shone from within the encirclement after – a clear indication to everyone present that the traitor had not met a good ending.
The six men proceeded to face Gu Fei and Gu Xiaoshang once more, their eyes shining in defiance, “Come and kill us if you can! The jury’s still out on who will be the one doing the dying!”
“Forget it. Just leave!” Gu Xiaoshang suddenly said.
The six men, including Gu Fei and her underlings, were all stunned.
“What do you mean?” Gu Fei asked Gu Xiaoshang.
“I was only looking to scare them a bit and yet they have shown to not be in the least bit afraid, we’ll just take it as our loss,” Gu Xiaoshang replied.
“Oh…” Gu Fei shrugged his shoulders and did not say anything else.
“Leave. Otherwise, it’ll be too late,” Gu Xiaoshang told the six Thieves.
The six of them showed hesitation on what they should do.
When Gu Fei saw their hesitation he could not help but wonder, You hesitate to answer our questions and also hesitate when we’re letting you off. Just what do we have to do for you to shake that skepticism off?! Gu Fei drew out two flaming arcs in the air, “Leave. Otherwise, I’ll make my move.”
The six men turned around doubtfully. Gu Xiaoshang clapped her hands and the three Thieves stepped aside to give them a way out. At the same time, a flurry of footsteps could be heard coming from behind Gu Fei and Gu Xiaoshang as their reinforcement appeared a good distance away. Gu Xiaoshang impatiently stamped her feet, “Hurry!”
The six men no longer hesitated and scrambled off as fast as they could.
Gu Fei turned to watch their reinforcement’s arrival. Youthful Reflection, who was taking the lead, brought along an assorted score of comrades, staring at the six Thieves making their heroic escape. He quickly asked, “How did they get away?”
“I told you guys to hurry. All of you were too slow, so we didn’t manage to stop them from escaping,” Gu Xiaoshang reasoned.
“Weren’t there only eight Thieves? Couldn’t you even block them for a little longer?” Youthful Reflection was suspicious.
“I didn’t manage to stop any of them and that’s all there is to it; why are you asking so many nonsensical questions?” Gu Xiaoshang was visibly annoyed by this.
Women! They were all natural-born actors. Gu Xiaoshang looked so calm even when she said all this! Youthful Reflection, would you ever suspect that she had intentionally let those men off? As Gu Fei thought this, Youthful Reflection unexpectedly changed target. “Miles bro, it’s just eight Thieves. Surely, you could’ve made an effort to stop them?”
Gu Fei froze up, as Gu Xiaoshang nervously glanced at him. Gu Fei gave this reply with arched eyebrows, “My stomach coincidentally ached at that moment, so I didn’t manage to stop them.”
Suddenly being the focus of everyone’s attention, Gu Fei was unable to conjure up any convincing excuse. It was obvious that he was lying, so Youthful Reflection glared at him hatefully. Youthful Reflection could not even give chase as he did not even manage to find any trace of the Thieves. He turned to ask Gu Xiaoshang, “So what did they plan to do?”
Gu Xiaoshang helplessly answered, “I don’t know. They didn’t reveal anything even when we beat them to death.”
Youthful Reflection heaved a sigh, feeling helpless at their situation. “Let’s hurry back, then!”
Youthful Reflection brought all his men to rejoin the rest of the battalion as fast as they could. They were all members of Traversing Four Seas, and being away from the rest of their fellow members made them feel uneasy. They felt as though the whole world was out to assassinate them, preventing them from completing their guild quest. At that moment, not one of them wanted to travel with Gu Fei and the rest of the mercenaries, and they seized this chance to chase after the expedition’s main body.
With Youthful Reflection’s departure, Gu Xiaoshang finally sighed in relief and faced Gu Fei, “Thanks a lot!”
“I’m thanking your stomach for hurting… Although that’s a really lousy excuse,” Gu Xiaoshang remarked.
“I’m not good at lying,” Gu Fei said, saying, “Anyway, aren’t you close with Traversing Four Seas? Why didn’t you tell them the truth?”
“Rules still have to be followed even when we are close… If I told them that I let the enemies escape, they might dock my commission; I gotta at least make sure my men could make a living with me, after all!” Gu Xiaoshang explained.
They all chatted while hurrying to catch up with the rest of the group, but since the Warrior Gu Xiaoshang was among them and they could not possibly abandon her, they had slight difficulties catching up. Thankfully, Oathless Sword, as the leader, was able to command the expedition to slow down the pace, all to take care of his beloved lady, which allowed Gu Fei and the others to slowly but surely make up for the distance between them and the main body.
Youthful Reflection had long since rejoined the battalion by now, and Oathless Sword came forward to ask him for an update. Silver Moon stood by the side without making another sound, yet his heart was actually beating in trepidation.
“They escaped,” Youthful Reflection reported, “Those guys already ran off by the time my men came to their aid.”
“How is that possible? Wasn’t there just eight Thieves? With Thousand Miles Drunk there, how did they escape?” Silver Moon was shocked.
“He said he had a stomach ache, then,” Youthful Reflection shrugged helplessly.
“And you guys believed that?” Silver Moon turned his gaze at everyone.
Obviously, no one believed that. This sort of lie was the most infuriating, though, as it was blatantly made up, yet they had no recourse to pursue it.
“I’m sure there’s more to this as to why Thousand Miles Drunk let them escape,” Silver Moon said. He was already convinced that those men were looking for him. Perhaps, Gu Fei had already betrayed Silver Moon’s position from that meeting alone. Could it be that they already had Sharpshooters hiding nearby waiting to perforate him with Snipes?
“You can question Gu Xiaoshang when she gets back,” Youthful Reflection said to Oathless Sword.
“I’ll do it right now.” Oathless Sword immediately sent Gu Xiaoshang a message.
Silver Moon had already started making himself as inconspicuous as possible as among the crowd. He really wished he could have his three Guardians with Bulwark of Imprisonment protect him, but they were unfortunately assigned to guard the NPC Todd by Traversing Four Seas right now. Oathless Sword and his men also feared that some Sharpshooters were hiding nearby and were looking to end their quest with a well-placed Snipe. As such, Silver Moon did not have even the slightest sense of security right now, and as Oathless Sword and Gu Xiaoshang conversed with each other, he did not stop thinking, To run or not to run? If I do run away, where should I go?
This was when Oathless Sword announced, “Xiaoshang said Thousand Miles Drunk is fine; he just had a stomach ache back then….”
“He’s faking it! He’s sure to be faking it!” Silver Moon insisted.
Oathless Sword neither confirmed nor denied this, not wanting to suspect his sweetheart of anything. Meanwhile, Gu Xiaoshang pointed at Gu Fei when her conversation with Oathless Sword ended. “Hey, those guys are really suspicious of you. Told you your excuse is really lousy! Be thankful that this informant here is on your side right now!”
“Woman, aren’t I carrying your guilt here?” Gu Fei asked, instead.
“Why so serious?! I’ll give you a cut of our commission when we get back,” Gu Xiaoshang said.
“Wouldn’t your men have thoughts about this?” Gu Fei turned his gaze over to the rest of the Thieves.
“Any thoughts?” Gu Xiaoshang turned to address them.
“Nope! None at all!” they hurriedly replied. Their reaction was quite a shock to Gu Fei. He considered himself to be someone that had seen all types of characters in this game, but Gu Xiaoshang was pretty much the only leader he knew that could exert such an aura as a boss. Oathless Sword, Brave Surge, Dusky Cloud, and even Silver Moon would never openly show condescension in front of their men like she had just done.
Back to the main body, Oathless Sword no longer cared to pursue the matter, which left Silver Moon at a loss on what to do next. One thing he was sure was that there was no way for a handful of Thieves to get past Gu Fei. That poor excuse of having a stomach ache was clearly to cover his act of going easy on those men, which meant that they knew one another. Undoubtedly, those men must be part of Dusky Cloud’s team. Having come face to face with him, Silver Moon was certain that his position had already been revealed to the enemies by now. There was even a good chance that a bunch of assassins was heading toward him right now. He had to run. He must run.
Silver Moon had already decided to slip away, and this battalion of men was perfect for him to do so. One player disappearing among this sea of men should not rouse any suspicion. This was his plan of escape. As for the next step… He would think about it after he extricated himself from this predicament!
With his mind firmly made up, Silver Moon began to take note of the surrounding terrain and the actions of the players around him. The troops ahead were just about to circle around a copse. This was a perfect chance for him to slip away, as everyone would be focusing on the road ahead.
Silver Moon slowed down his step when he neared the small copse of trees, acting as though nothing was out of the ordinary, and gradually detached himself from the mass of players. With that, he casually stood by the big tree he had his eye on for quite some time and began to pretend foraging for something at the base of the tree. This was a normal action that players did – as some players, who had chosen crafting professions, discovered that certain medicinal herbs and such could be easily gathered by doing this – so as long as he was not holding up the expedition, no one would question his action.
Silver Moon’s heart was beating wildly, and the footfalls of the players mimicked the thudding of his heart. He crooked his head left and right to look around. Only when he saw that no one was taking note of his action did Silver Moon stand up, turn around, and hide behind the tree.
This tree was enough to block anyone’s vision, so Silver Moon was extremely satisfied by his choice. He felt much at ease when his act of hiding behind the tree did not alert anyone. What he had to do now was to quietly wait for the entire battalion to pass before sneaking away. As for what he would do next? That was a problem he would have to carefully consider.
As Silver Moon pondered on, the stragglers of the entire battalion slowly passed him.
Looks like it’s time for me to slip away, Silver Moon thought to himself. He moved away from the tree and looked toward the main road that lay behind him for a moment, before turning back to head deeper into the woods….
He only took two steps forward when he felt a heavy blow connecting to the back of his head. Silver Moon instantly lost his ability to move or speak, and he mentally bemoaned this turn of event, Crap! Bludgeon!
“Who’s there?!” Silver Moon would have wanted to ask this, but he unfortunately would never know the answer as a combination of attacks directed at his back insta-killed him.
Dusky Cloud, who had been camping out by the Knights’ Barracks received a message: “Package delivered. Enjoy your killing. Send me however much you feel is appropriate.”