Chapter 536: Chapter 536 – Online
Translator: Exodus Tales Editor: Exodus Tales
The losses Cool Apple incurred from this one death was indeed as regrettable as what everybody had expected. He had lost his Assassin Job Class Advancement, and the faction which he could join only after getting an advanced job class was gone as well. As a result, the Assassin skill, Shadowstep, that he had learned from joining the faction was also gone. Disappearing along with it was the condition skill ‘Assassin’s Acuity’ that he had learned upon becoming an Assassin; this skill raised his ability to fight. Furthermore, Cool Apple’s dagger had the Shadowstep skill in it, but the wielder had to be an Assassin for it to be usable. Now that he had devolved into being a mere Thief, it was no longer a skill he had access to…
Cool Apple needed not to account for these losses, for he was already certain of the cost that came with this one death. It was difficult for him not to feel a little disheartened as he trudged out of the spawn point. Now that he had lost that level, he knew that there was no way he would have a shred of chance in defeating an expert like Sword Demon. Very soon, the man found himself doing the same thing Sword Demon was currently doing. Striding off with great determination under the falling leaves, the man headed deep into the jungle surrounding Linyin City.
Questing and grinding.
These were the two most common methods to obtain experience. Comparing the two, most players would prefer the former as they would at least be involved with a variety of activities. It was completely different from the drab and boring act of withdrawing into some part of a grinding map and grinding on monsters.
However, to experts like Sword Demon and the others, they usually stuck to the grinding method. As players with the skill and equipment, their efficiency when it came to grinding monsters was a step above the masses. Quests? Those depended on what sorts of rewards were offered, or when they were truly put off by grinding on monsters and needed to do something different to get themselves adjusted.
Finally, evening came, and the chief culprit of everything that had happened today between the two opposing parties, the legendary game-breaker, Thousand Miles Drunk, got online. The system was fair, so this single news was sent to both parties online: [Your friend, Thousand Miles Drunk, is online.]
Having been away for the whole day, Gu Fei naturally had no idea of all the things that had happened in-game. His thoughts when he entered Parallel World were still about that mistake and awkwardness with Deep Waters, Broken Water Arrow, and the others, wondering just how he could deal with the matter. In the end, a torrential succession of messages came in rapid-fire the moment he stepped into the game.
Over the channel and private messages, everybody was all chattering at the same time.
“What happened?” Gu Fei asked.
Everyone was talking at once, so Gu Fei was only able to make sense of what had transpired after a fashion.
“Our preliminary conjecture is that even if this person isn’t a game employee, he should at least have connections to the company. He holds plenty of information about the game that most players don’t have access to, and that is his most powerful weapon. I’ve already relayed this matter to the GM online, and even the various avenues players can lodge complaints to, but I have yet to receive a reply from them about the matter.” Brother Assist concluded his report.
“Fleeting Smile?” Gu Fei asked.
“What?” Everybody was confused.
“That Priest you just mentioned. Is his name Fleeting Smile?” Gu Fei asked.
“Ah? You know the man?”
“Indeed, I do know someone who claims that he is a game employee, and he goes by the IGN ‘Fleeting Smile’. I believe his job class is a Priest,” Gu Fei recalled. It had been quite some time since he had last met Ye Xiaowu. Back then, Gu Fei’s level of expertise in gaming was nowhere near his current understanding of it, so the thought of using Appraisal did not even cross his mind, nor did he have any in-depth knowledge when it came to a player’s equipment. Recalling what he could with the aid of what he had learned about the game so far, Gu Fei reckoned that the gear Ye Xiaowu was wearing back then seemed to belong to the Priest job class.
“Wait a minute. That name sounds a little familiar.” Brother Assist suddenly had a vague impression of something and quickly began to flip through the recording book he had with him. Soon, he found the name. It was precisely the IGN of that player who had been ahead of Thousand Miles Drunk on the experience efficiency leaderboards a long time ago.
“No wonder!” Now that he was so familiar with Gu Fei, Brother Assist knew the latter was able to grind on monsters at a terrifying rate. Thus, for a player to top that, and a Priest to boot, Brother Assist only held great reverence for this person who had been etched in his mind all this while. It all made perfect sense now. Since that player turned out to be a game employee, it was only naturally for him to locate the fastest and most appropriate means of leveling given the extensive in-game knowledge he possessed.
“Hey. He’s online! Wait; let me ask the man himself!” Gu Fei suddenly said this. Everybody was flabbergasted. F*ck*ng hell. The two of them even have each other as friends?
“Haven’t heard from you in so long. What’s all that about?” Gu Fei was simple and direct. He greeted the man but also asked what he had on his mind.
“I reckon your friends have already filled you in on what’s happened. Your existence is game-breaking in this world, so I must stop you,” Ye Xiaowu replied.
“Then, just delete my account. What has this gotta do with Sword Demon and the others?” Gu Fei was of course informed of Sword Demon’s loss of level earlier that day.
It was this question of his that had undoubtedly hit Ye Xiaowu’s raw nerve. Had he been the one making the decisions, Gu Fei would have long since lost his account. Why would he have waited until he had lost his job before he took action? It was precisely because of this that Ye Xiaowu had become all the more resolute in his decision to eliminate Gu Fei – not even hesitating to give up on the scruples he was once so proud of.
It’s because I’m no longer a game employee. Ye Xiaowu said this to himself. He had chosen to resign from his job because he felt that his identity as a game employee would become an impedance to what he was about to do in-game. Giving up on that identity of his was akin to discarding a set of shackles that hindered him.
Ye Xiaowu had plenty of thoughts running through his mind momentarily, so he had actually forgotten to give a reply to Gu Fei’s question. The latter got impatient and fired off another message. Ye Xiaowu opened it and saw a string of numbers.
“What’re these?” Ye Xiaowu was a little perplexed.
“Those are my coordinates. Come and find me directly!” Gu Fei urged.
You g*dd*mn noob… Ye Xiaowu was annoyed. He needed a comma to separate the string of numbers that comprised his coordinates. Sending all the numbers without doing so made them seem like a contact number, instead.
“I know you’re very strong,” Ye Xiaowu replied. “In a one-versus-one duel, no one has the chance of beating you.”
“Doesn’t matter. Send 10 or 20 men over; I’m fine with it. The more the merrier!” Gu Fei declared.
Ye Xiaowu wanted to curse the man down the whole street. Look at how ridiculously outrageous this is! There’s no way for there to be balance with such a game-breaking entity. With that thought in mind, Ye Xiaowu firmly closed the conversation window with Gu Fei. He had his methods of rectifying the man, so what was the point of continuing this back and forth with him?
In truth, up against Sword Demon and the average players, Ye Xiaowu could leverage on his knowledge of this game to contend with them, but his ‘ability’ was no good against a player like Gu Fei. Gu Fei might also use spells and skills in-game, but the way he used them was very abnormal. His ingenious expertise had already transcended what the game designers had thought they could be used for. Take that Twin Incineration spell as an example; when it was used in tandem with Gu Fei’s revolving footwork, it ended up like a Cyclone… Ye Xiaowu had never once considered this possibility. Was he even able to see through the flaw in Gu Fei’s martial arts like how he could reveal the weakness of Sword Demon’s Shadowmist Assault?
The strength that Gu Fei possessed, the greatest advantage the man had, was all thanks to the kung fu he knew and nothing else.
Ye Xiaowu’s superiority lay in his in-depth knowledge of the game; he was utterly clueless when it came to kung fu itself.
That was why at this current stage, he did not dare to carelessly challenge Gu Fei in a one-versus-one PvP. It was as the saying went. Facing off against Gu Fei, he would have to outsmart the man and not attempt to overpower him.
Ye Xiaowu pondered on these questions as he ignored the few more messages Gu Fei had sent over. Right now, he was dealing with the bigger headache of Cool Apple losing his level. No one was more acquainted than Ye Xiaowu just how huge the gap between a level 39 and 40 was, and it seemed that Cool Apple had gone offline for the time being. While they had successfully dropped Sword Demon’s level by one, his party had also lost an important combat power.
Back over to Gu Fei, he tried firing a few more messages and saw that Ye Xiaowu was no longer replying. Thus, he glumly told the other members of Young Master’s Elite: “He’s ignoring me now.”
“You guys are… friends?” They were all shocked.
“We’ve met quite a few times before,” Gu Fei replied.
“Just what in the world is his background?”
“I previously heard him say that he’s a game employee,” Gu Fei stated.
“How can a game employee play this game?” Everyone simply could not make sense of it.
“Is Parallel World really so novel that, upon realizing how game-breaking Miles is, it has opted to send men to contest with him instead of deleting his account?” Royal God Call had begun to let his imagination run wild.
“D*mb*ss!” This time, it was not just Young Master Han, but everyone else joined in deriding him.
“The problem is that he should just stop the buck right at me; what’s the point of harassing you guys, too?” Gu Fei was far more irritated by this, especially since he had even implicated Sword Demon, who had always been the most upright among the lot. If Young Master Han had been the one to lose his level, everyone would have most likely secretly laughed at his misfortune.
“Didn’t he tell you? Because of how game-breaking you are, a chain reaction was generated and that resulted in us benefiting from your imbalance,” Young Master Han said.
“That’s nonsense,” Gu Fei said.
“In any case, you need to be careful. That guy seems to have set his eyes on you,” Brother Assist advised.
Gu Fei was quiet for the longest time before he finally asked, “Shouldn’t you guys be the ones that need to be cautious?”
The tears flowed freely when everyone heard his comment. This was usually the sort of truth that hurt the most. Even though the other party’s target was Gu Fei, he actually expressed his intentions to take on the rest of them as well. And given how their strengths were no match to the chief culprit himself, that meant that they were indeed in greater danger than him.
Brother Assist was starting to let his anxiety get to him. Very unconfident of his fighting skills, he quickly suggested, “Why don’t we try to engage in our online activities together these few days.”
“Logically speaking, it shouldn’t be that easy to locate a player given the size of the world map. Perhaps, those guys have some special tricks up their sleeves, just like how they previously managed to track down Sword Demon. I’m sure they are using a sort of method that we are currently unaware of, and that’s what we should be focusing on,” Young Master Han proposed.
“Is that the advantage that this Fleeting Smile person bring?” Brother Assist muttered.
“Sword Demon? Why aren’t you speaking?” Gu Fei asked. Sword Demon had not said a single word over the mercenary channel.
“He’s gone to grind his level, so he’s turned off all messaging,” Young Master Han replied.
Gu Fei tried to send a private message, and sure enough, he was met with the system prompt about the recipient having turned off messaging. Sword Demon was focusing on the grind; It appeared that he was preparing to be up and running again in the shortest time.
“Well. Now that we know that guy’s name, I’ll go and lodge a more detailed complaint about his actions once more,” Brother Assist said.
“I’m afraid that might not be of any use… That guy has probably thought of this, and that’s why he can act so openly. The man probably has nothing to fear,” Young Master Han said.
“Then, what do we do?” Brother Assist asked.
“You can continue to try it your way. We’ll be more than happy if you succeed, but if it doesn’t work, then we’ll just have to put in some effort and take them down one by one. Right now, we’ve already taken down Cool Apple, and we know his accomplice is that Broken Water Arrow,” Young Master Han said.
On the other end, Ye Xiaowu finally received Broken Water Arrow’s message. “Those people we wanted to get in contact with has finally reached out.”
“Okay. I’m good on my end, too,” Ye Xiaowu replied.