Chapter 518: Chapter 518 – The Fake Assassination Plan
Translator: Exodus Tales Editor: Exodus Tales
A day passed in the blink of an eye. Gu Fei contacted Sword Demon and the others once he got online, showing his concern for their progress in the matter.
Meeting them at Maple Leaf Tavern, Gu Fei saw Sword Demon and Coco were lifelessly sprawled on the table. He called to them and saw the two flutter their eyelids weakly. As if Coco had used the face paint to do it up for them, there were visible dark circles under their eyes.
“You’re here!” Sword Demon answered wearily.
“Are the two of you courting death?!” Gu Fei was rather blunt with his words; that was the only thought that crossed his mind when he saw the look these two shared at the moment.
“We haven’t slept for the whole day, and we just got back from grinding. We might very well be inches away from death,” Coco replied.
“What were the two of you busy with?” Gu Fei asked.
“What were we busy with? Farming for an item, bro! This should’ve been a job for a Mage!” Coco shouted at Gu Fei with what little strength she could muster.
“I can’t do that… I have a lot of self-control when it comes to gaming, and I was already pushing it when I stayed online longer than usual yesterday!” Gu Fei innocently defended himself, which only angered Coco further. She really wanted to beat him up. Of course, there was no need to ask what item the two were busy farming.
“Did you get it?” Gu Fei wanted to know the result.
The two nodded somberly.
After inquiring and verifying with various sources last night, Brother Assist finally came back online to relay what he had learned. Since Gu Fei was not around, he reached out to Sword Demon. The skill scroll for Memory Blackbox had a chance of dropping from level 50 humanoid monsters.
With that, the three went their separate ways; Xi Xiaotian headed to the market to see if she could purchase it and Sword Demon went along with Coco to the level 50 grinding map over in Linyin City.
Xi Xiaotian found nothing after spending the whole night window-shopping, while Sword Demon and Coco had an even tougher time. Level 50 monsters were 10 levels above theirs, and with Sword Demon’s skill, he could still efficiently grind when the monsters were around 5 levels above his, but 10 required much more effort on his part. They were not really a proper party if it was just Coco with him, so both really had quite a hard time taking on these monsters.
Later, some of the others from Young Master’s Elite heard what had happened and came over to lend a hand, treating it as part of their level grinding.
It was only natural for the situation to change drastically, now that they had these apex experts working together for the grind. However, the terrible terrain in Linyin City worked to limit proper execution. If that were not the case, why else would so many players migrate, leaving Linyin City to be filled with so many Hunters?
It could be said that they had grudgingly made it through this overnight grinding session. What made it worse was that, when the sun appeared high up in the sky, the rumored Memory Blackbox was still something they only had in their thoughts.
The habitual lifestyle practice of these experts had them heading to log off the moment the sun came up. Nonetheless, Sword Demon had trouble sleeping as he tossed and turned after going offline. This unresolved matter bothered him so much that it lingered in his mind. Thus, he struggled to get out of bed and into the game once more. It was also dawn in the game, and under the bright sunlight, Sword Demon saw Coco staring at him and showed a tired smile.
“I knew you would be back,” Coco said.
“Aren’t you the same as well.” Sword Demon chuckled. He felt really fortunate when he realized he had a companion to accompany him throughout this ordeal.
The two once more set forth to that map where the monsters were located, but without the assistance of those other experts, the two reverted to the careful and more strenuous state of grinding like before. They kept on killing until those experts that had gone offline to catch up on their sleep got online themselves and rejoined the party. They carried on in this manner until the sun began to set. It went so late that even Gu Fei had gotten online before a monster finally dropped that scroll of ‘Memory Blackbox’. It was as if the heavy burden those two were shouldering suddenly got lifted, as they instantly wished they could just collapse to the ground.
The others had enough sleep, so they immediately left for their various activities after they completed this task. Sword Demon and Coco were beyond exhausted, and they were almost in a drowsy trance as they made their journey back to the tavern.
“This… Pass this to Xiaotian when she’s here.” Coco handed over the spell scroll to Gu Fei.
“She’s not here?” Gu Fei pulled out his friends list, and sure enough, she was not online.
“It’s your responsibility now.” With that, the two struggled to get up from their stools like newly birthed foals; Coco even failed halfway as she called out to Sword Demon. “Quickly help me up. I can’t feel my legs anymore.”
“So dramatic,” Gu Fei muttered as he watched the two support each other as they shuffled their way toward the door.
“I really gotta get some sleep. I’ll come by once I’m awake again.” Sword Demon patted Gu Fei’s shoulder as he passed by him.
“When will that be?” Gu Fei hurried to ask. By the time the two had their fill of sleep, there was no way he would still be online, right? If they slept for only two or three hours, then they could still somewhat make it. When they got online again, they would most likely enact their plan, and Gu Fei did not wish to miss that good show.
“Oh, that’s right. We’ve yet to fill you in on the plan.” Coco seemed to have thought of something, but she quickly waved her hands dismissively. “You can ask Xiaotian when you hand the item over to her. We’re taking our leave first.”
The two Thieves departed just like that, leaving Gu Fei holding onto that spell scroll, contemplating a very important question: If Xi Xiaotian were to never get online, how long would he have to wait? They shouldn’t have given this scroll to me… Despite having such a thought, Gu Fei did not chase after the two players who were so tired that they could barely stand. Instead, he headed off to the mailbox to send it over to Xi Xiaotian. Even though he did not wish to miss the show, he figured it was better not to delay the business at hand since he was just a spectator to this debacle…
It was six in the morning.
Three figures sneakily appeared on a certain street in Linyin City. This was the time of the day when there would be the least number of players online – a break when the interchange of the gamers who played the game overnight and players who were about to begin their gaming sessions were due to log off early or log on late, respectively. This street was empty at the moment, and the mess of muddy footprints on the street had all been removed by the system’s routine refreshes.
The three walked down the east entrance of the street toward the west before walking from the west back to the east. Looking around for a moment, someone pointed to the rooftop at one side as another appear up on that rooftop instantly while another slowly disappeared into thin air.
Blink and Stealth.
These two were naturally Gu Fei and Sword Demon. Last night, Xi Xiaotian happened to log on just as Gu Fei was about to mail the scroll over to her. She proceeded to inform him of their plan before finally convincing him to go in accordance to their schedule. Thus, Gu Fei did not bother playing any longer last night. He had logged off early to rest up for the day so that he could get up earlier the next day, which led to this moment here in this quiet street.
“Hey!” Gu Fei, who had gotten on to the rooftop, poked his head out. “Are you certain he’s gonna walk this way? There won’t be any surprises, right?”
“There’s no guarantee, but this is the street closest to the designated log-off point. If he happens to have other business and doesn’t head straight to log off, then he may not take this path,” Coco was the one still on the street as she answered Gu Fei.
“Then, are you certain he would pass by before seven?” Gu Fei asked again.
“Hey. Of course, I’m not certain. That’s why we we’re here at the earlier time of 6,” Coco replied. According to the usual habits of the late-night gamers, most would log out at around 7, but Coco had taken the precaution to get everyone in place at the earlier time of 6 to cover their bases.
“I hope he would log off earlier,” Gu Fei mumbled as he retracted his head. He was now prone on the rooftop to reduce his visibility.
“Call me when he’s here!” Gu Fei shouted.
“Got it!” Sword Demon replied; he was soon gone from the naked eye.
“I’ll leave the two of you waiting here. I gotta go and get ready too,” Coco said as she turned to leave the street.
Lying prone on the rooftop was the most Gu Fei could do to hide himself, while Sword Demon down below, after having come into contact with someone like Gu Fei, knew very well now that Stealth was not entirely reliable. He spotted a stack of filled sacks in front of a random house, so he darted over behind it, only peeking half his head out from behind the cover from time to time to take note of any movement down the street.
Xi Xiaotian’s plan was far more complicated than what they had thought, and it was not as simple as her acting in place of another workshop, attempting to recruit Broken Water Arrow with the skill scroll in hand. Gu Fei originally thought that he had no business with this part of the operation, and the show he wanted to watch was Xi Xiaotian getting the record of the conversation and showing it to Deep Waters. He was utterly mistaken, for what was important was finding a way to get that conversation on record.
Trust. They first had to swindle Broken Water Arrow’s trust.
Broken Water Arrow would of course not reveal his scheme arbitrarily to a complete stranger whom he was suspicious with, so they must lower his guard down first in order to successfully extract this confession.
This was originally a rather thorny issue, but they were given a window of opportunity since both Sword Demon and Gu Fei had coincidentally made an attempt on his life and succeeded once. Right now, Broken Water Arrow was already aware that Sword Demon no longer cared for what Deep Waters think and had made the conscious decision to slay him until the end. If he struck once, there was bound to be a second time, and this second time became a part in this drama that Xi Xiaotian had concocted.
This second attempt was nothing but Sword Demon and Gu Fei play-acting. Xi Xiaotian would appear in a critical moment to save Broken Water Arrow.
“Clever. Too brilliant! This way, getting close to Broken Water Arrow will be a piece of cake!” Xi Xiaotian decided to go with the flow and use the situation to her advantage, using Sword Demon’s first assassination attempt to be the first act of this entire operation, which garnered the praise of Royal God Call and War Without Wounds. These two already dropped all pretense the moment they saw this pretty lady.
“It’s not that simple,” Xi Xiaotian said. “After all, I’m going to be talking business with him soon after, so he’ll immediately understand that my rescue attempt is not simply a chance meeting. However, having been on the receiving end of my kind assistance, he’s sure to soften to me, which itself is an opportunity to get him to let his guard down and let me in. There’re still plenty of things we will need to do after this, but that will be my job! You guys just need to act your part, and everything will turn out well.”
They did not have enough manpower to properly act out a good show, so they had no choice but to grab Royal God Call and War Without Wounds along as support, working together with Xi Xiaotian to act the part of the rescuers. After all, the strength that Sword Demon and Gu Fei possessed was undeniable, randomly getting any player to beat these two would be far too ridiculous.
In this time, everybody also considered that, given how powerful Gu Fei was, would it still be too unconvincing for him to lose just with the addition of two helpers? In the end, Gu Fei patted his chest and guaranteed that he would give a credible performance for the defeat. This was actually a skill in itself, and Gu Fei was no stranger to it. This was something he would often do when he sparred with others, especially with his elders. The lowest form of this act was to nakedly allow the opponent to win, which was far more painful of a reality than directly beating the opponent; a more skilled practitioner would be able to enact an exchange where both parties fighting would be aware of the skill disparity, but the audience would be left in the dark. The audience might see it as a tie, but the combatants themselves would know who was truly victorious. Meanwhile, the level that Gu Fei was currently at could be considered as the highest attainment: even the opponent he was facing would be unaware, allowing them to emerge victorious gleefully without even realizing that Gu Fei had secretly allowed for the win to happen.