Chapter 323 - The Number One Trap Expert
In their moment of peril, a majority of the players seemed to have forgotten that their reason for being in this location was because of a mission, and all they thought of was how to escape their current predicament. Young Master Han’s prediction about the unreliability of this army gathered at the last minute had now come true. Deserters, mostly Thieves, could be seen from the various mercenary groups. As long as these deserters moved carefully toward the jungle exit and avoided any set traps after activating Stealth and such, they should have no problem escaping....
And yet, the screams of these fleeing Thieves were soon heard coming from various directions. With their Stealth interrupted, they found it hard to maneuver about and were quickly ensnared by the enemies’ traps. The hidden enemy Mages took this chance to unleash Fire Affinity spells that killed off each of the deserters.
Not only did these players die, they also experienced great embarrassment upon their death. When they stepped on the traps, their intention to flee was made known to everyone watching. While the loss of a level upon death was temporary, the damage dealt on their reputation by their act of fleeing could be considered as permanent. Plenty of them were even informed by the system that they were kicked out from their respective mercenary groups as they respawned in Baishi City.
The leaders of the mercenary groups where those deserters had come from were utterly embarrassed by this, thinking that everyone must be looking at them with contempt right now. In actuality, they were all busy preserving their lives and no one really cared about anyone else’s actions. Under Youthful Reflection’s instructions, all the mercenaries as well as the Traversing Four Seas’ players hurriedly formed a huge circle facing outward; Warriors and Priests formed the outer circle. Surviving the enemy Mages’ assault was not difficult as long as these two job classes with the highest HP were assigned to tank their attacks.
Doing a quick headcount of the remaining players, Oathless Sword’s expression turned ghastly. Just that short moment of carnage that they had experienced actually lost them two hundred seventeen men, a hundred of which were players from Traversing Four Seas. This was perhaps the heaviest attack that they had come under ever since the start of their expedition. The remaining members of Traversing Four Seas now barely reached six hundred.
Once more, the jungle regained its stillness, as all the players monitored their respective front with bated breaths. Now that they had assumed a defensive formation, there was no way the enemies could find another opportunity to silently pick off their comrades.
The players from Yunduan City were not satisfied with just achieving this stalemate, though. What they currently wanted was to break out and properly escape from their predicament. However, without knowing their enemies’ hiding places, they could only stand their ground here.
“Who are you people?! Come out and show yourselves if you dare!” Oathless Sword was obviously driven to the wall by this point.
“He he he…” A soft chuckle came from within the trees in response to Oathless Sword’s declaration. All of them turned their heads in that direction even as Youthful Reflection quickly bellowed, “Don’t be negligent! Continue keeping an eye on your assigned direction.”
All swiftly retracted their heads; some even sprained their necks with how quick they had shifted their heads back. With the pressure mounting, even their muscles were tensed.
“Who are you?! Come out and speak face to face!” Oathless Sword yelled. Being a Warrior, he was among those standing in the outermost circle. Meanwhile, the corrupt ex-official Todd was at the very heart of their formation.
One player emerged from the jungle, stopping a short distance from everyone. The jungle was dim, so it was difficult to make out his face, yet his lips seemed to be curled up into a smile. This man raised his arms up, waved, and shouted, “Greetings, everyone! Linyin City welcomes you all.”
Everyone was speechless. Some of the players that were facing a different direction from the voice really wished to turn around to take a look at the man, but they were afraid that this was just a ruse to draw their attention away. No one dared to move. Vigilantly watching their front, they tried to hear the man speak from behind them – it was truly depressing.
“Who are you?!” Oathless Sword was in charge of this expedition, so it made sense for him to be the one to speak with the man. The person faced Oathless Sword and the two stared at each other from afar.
The man did not answer his question; instead, he posed a question to Oathless Sword, “How do you like the taste of my traps?”
Although the Mages’ and Thieves’ attacks dealt most damage to the players from Yunduan City, it was undeniable that the traps had controlled the entire situation. The existence of this web of traps caused everyone to move about gingerly, like fish trapped in a barrel.
“Hmph. It’s nothing much.” Oathless Sword only had utter resentment toward the traps, so in the moment before he could answer, the trap expert Sakurazaka Moony actually budged in and spoke in his place. However, his statement only made the people behind him feel sheepish as they glanced at one another. It was nothing much... yet they were completely entrapped by those. Was his statement not just a blatant lie?
Indeed, the man laughed at his words before asking, “And who might you be?”
Sakurazaka Moony was standing beside Oathless Sword when he leaped up to steal the latter’s thunder. Patting his chest, he answered, “The name’s Sakurazaka Moony, and I’m the number one trap expert in Yunduan City. Challenge me if you’ve got the moxie!”
Unfortunately, Sakurazaka Moony’s name sounded adorably whimsical and was far from being imposing. Although his words sounded arrogant, the manner in which he delivered his rebuttal made it sound as though he was simply boasting in front of a true expert. Even his bunch of skeevy friends from his mercenary group immediately ridiculed him, “Ha ha ha ha! Moony’s making a fool of himself again!”
The man joined in as well. “What’s so great about being number one in Yunduan City? I’m sorry, but yours truly is the number one trap expert across Parallel World!”
“And just who might you be?” Sakurazaka Moony demanded.
The crowd buzzed. This name was far from ordinary for it happened to be the IGN of one of the Five Unyielding Experts that were largely regarded as indomitable existences in Parallel World. Although plenty of players leveled up after the conclusion of Parallel World’s PvP event and level 41 was no longer exclusive to the Five Unyielding Experts, their position in the game’s experience leaderboards remained unshakably unchanged; the five of them were still the first five names ranked on the list.
Being among the top five of the overall leaderboard, he was naturally ranked first on the Archer experience leaderboard. If he advanced to a Hunter, his claim of being the number one trap expert in Parallel World would not be an exaggeration.
Sakurazaka Moony was clearly in an awkward spot, flippantly quipping, “Having a high level doesn’t mean your skills are good!” Although he said these words in a normal volume, his bunch of bad friends mercilessly mocked him still. “It’s over for you, Moony. Haven’t you heard of the saying, ‘There is always a taller mountain out there’? Next time, keep a low profile.”
“YOU F*CK*RS, SHUT THE HELL UP!” Sakurazaka Moony finally exploded, issuing a challenge to Deep Waters as a corollary. “Deep Waters, is it? Come and duel with me; let’s see who’s the real number one trap expert in Parallel World!”
“He he. I’ll acknowledge your claim of being the real top trap expert if you can make your way to me safely.” Deep Waters chuckled.
Deep Waters was about thirty meters away from Yunduan City’s players. This distance between the two sides was sure to be filled with traps, which was why he dared reveal himself thusly. Oathless Sword knew this as well; otherwise, he would have ordered several Thieves to assassinate Deep Waters already. However, Sakurazaka Moony’s skill with traps was not something to scoff at. Now that Deep Waters had thrown down the gauntlet, perhaps....
“That’s quite the brag!” Sakurazaka Moony said what Oathless Sword was thinking. “Guess I’ll have to take a shot.”
“Please do!” Deep Waters gestured invitingly.
“Alright, just you watch!” Sakurazaka Moony looked around him before finally breaking off a tree branch that was about two meters long. Holding it with both hands, Sakurazaka Moony declared, “I’m coming over now!”
Deep Waters only did the please-do gesture as he did before.
“YAAHHH!” Sakurazaka Moony roared as he lay on the ground with that branch in hand. Wiggling his butt in the air, he began to carefully prod his way to where Deep Waters was standing as he tried to uncover the traps along the way. Everyone collapsed. This was just too crude. Just from the air the two men were exuding, it was clear who deserved the title of being number one.
Sakurazaka Moony’s skill with traps was the real deal. In no time, he picked out three traps that were hidden beneath the jungle detritus and buried in the ground. Sakurazaka Moony felt quite pleased with himself; if this was all there was to the traps Deep Waters had set up, Sakurazaka Moony would have no difficulty reaching him.
With this thought in mind, Sakurazaka Moony deftly dug out the fifth trap. He tossed all five traps in a pile and prepared to properly embarrass Deep Waters when this was over.
Looking up, Sakurazaka Moony saw that he had only traveled for five meters. The first two meters did not have any traps, while all the five traps he had found thus far were buried in the following three meters. Considering that Sakurazaka Moony was traveling in a straight line, he reckoned that other traps must be buried on either side of him. These traps were not buried too close to one another, yet the sheer number would make one wonder just how many Hunters did Deep Waters bring over to set them up.
As Sakurazaka Moony poked and prodded his way forward, the Yunduan City’s players from behind him suddenly gasped, “Be careful!”
Sakurazaka Moony was puzzled by their warning. Turning his head over his shoulder, he spotted two Thieves slowly fade into view from behind him.
“F*ck! How despicable!” Sakurazaka Moony cursed.
“A ha ha ha ha! If you only consider the Hunting Trap as the only trap I have in place and not the Thieves ready and waiting, then how can you call yourself as the number one trap expert? Your knowledge of what constitutes a trap is really too simplistic! Let me teach you this lesson today, so you can properly contemplate over this when you return to your city!” Deep Waters laughed.
“That’s really low!” Since the players from Yunduan City did not expect Deep Waters to do such a thing, none of them was able to provide Sakurazaka Moony any timely assistance. And unless someone among them had the ability to move to his side instantly, no one could save him from impending death.
Fortunately, there was indeed such a person in Yunduan City, as the Translocation: Blink skill allowed its user instantaneous movement.
It just so happened that Sakurazaka Moony’s distance was also within the five-meter radius that this person could teleport himself using the skill.
Just as the two Thieves thought that they had this in the bag, a black figure suddenly materialized right behind them.
Now, it was Deep Waters’ turn to yell, “Be careful!” Following the flash of a huge V-shaped flaming trail, the two Thieves lost their lives together.
“Drunk bro…” Sakurazaka Moony was so moved that tears almost leaked out his lachrymal glands. This was what true brotherhood was. Looking at his so-called comrades, who were laughing hysterically as they relished the sight of him failing while casually pulling their bows with nocked arrows at their best capacity, Sakurazaka Moony could not help but feel anguish.
“Run back to safety now!” Gu Fei patted Sakurazaka Moony’s shoulder.
Sakurazaka Moony felt danger creep up to them as the ground beneath their feet began to heat up and the sky above their heads started glowing brightly – a clear indication that enemy Mages were at work. Sakurazaka Moony scampered to his feet and, after tossing the tree branch away, ran back toward their side. Before the branch fell to the ground, Gu Fei grabbed it from the air with a stretch of his hand.