Chapter 744: Chapter 744 – Forced out of the City
Translator: Exodus Tales Editor: Exodus Tales
Everyone was dumbfounded, staring with their mouths agape, and this included the 80 Priests and the squad of five damage dealers. It was at that point when they realized that everything had just been an elaborate guise. This whole plan of ‘using the Priests to form a Great Wall of HP and kill the guards inside’ was nothing but a facade. Thousand Miles Drunk’s real goal had been to entice the enemy into making such an overwhelming attack, which was why he had asked for them to spread their damage out across all four NPC guards.
“So that’s what he had planned. Seems like this guy isn’t just a brute who only knows violence!” Aural Valley Wind sighed with approval. He had come over to watch the spectacle for the fun of it, originally believing that Thousand Miles Drunk’s plan had already failed, but what just happened had really turned the tide, and even he found himself being somewhat excited by it.
The city assaulters were all cursing, but there was nothing that they could do to stop the attacks they had already unleashed. The four guards immediately found themselves enveloped in the sea of flames, with the arrows all finding purchase in their bodies; death was but a guarantee by this point. At the same time, the sound from the system that rang like a death toll could be heard once more: [No.4 Encampment is under attack. The defense of this encampment will be successful if the invader is dealt with in the next 5 minutes.]
That was when the city assaulters realized that it was not yet over, and they still had 5 minutes to salvage the situation. However… Where was their target? The 80 Priests no longer had their faces covered presently, and nobody could identify their targets. Countless players started to curse the high heavens, throwing out expletives over how they still needed to recognize the faces or emblems to find their perpetrator in such a head-to-head scenario.
All the Priests prodded at their emblems fiercely as they tried to convince all the other players that they were friendly, not to accidentally kill them, and this included the 80 Priests that Gu Fei had employed. However, at such a critical moment, the city assaulters no longer took any chances and each began to use their Appraisal skill on each of the Priests. This immediately weeded out the fake emblems from the real deal and people got together to slay these imposters, only for the Priests to respawn in a different point of the encampment, and their faces forgotten, which meant everybody had to Appraise anew.
Gu Fei had already changed his outfit, and he had intentionally equipped himself with a Thief’s cloak, wielding a dagger, nimbly flitting about the place, acting like he was a huntsman, searching for prey. He had brought the four guards into the attack range of the mob while Blinking himself away to escape from the incoming spells and arrows. His plan right now was to somehow hang around and last through the 5 minutes timer.
Priests who got identified through Appraisal were all being cruelly killed off, as Aural Valley Wind sent a message out to Gu Fei, “The time that these Priests actually need to delay is the 5 minutes you face now, right?”
“Nope,” Gu Fei answered.
“But the city assaulters have all concentrated their firepower on them,” Aural Valley Wind pointed out.
“That’s just them being silly. The Priests have all spawned back in the encampment already, so that clearly shows they are all either the neutral third party players or someone on their side. Those on the city defender’s side would not respawn here in this encampment,” Gu Fei retorted.
Aural Valley Wind was stunned. “Then where else would they respawn?”
“Back in the city,” Gu Fei replied.
Aural Valley Wind laughed bitterly, “Only someone like you, who had entered the city and died outside the city before, would know of this particular design. I’m afraid the players who have been playing around outside the city this whole time would not be aware of this at all.”
“Someone ought to know this,” Gu Fei said.
What Gu Fei had said was true; there were indeed players who knew about this and finally came to the realization, “Stop killing the Priests indiscriminately! Players who respawn back in this encampment cannot be the invader!!!”
In this messy assortment of guilds, this information had to be passed on one after another; who knew how long it would take for this information to spread to everyone? The person who was speaking did not even bother to explain, immediately coming up with an idea, “Everyone belonging to a guild, retreat from the encampment!! Quickly!!!”
Everyone swiftly agreed to this idea once they learned of it, and anyone who belonged to a guild very deftly cleared out from the encampment, while the 80 Priests and the 5-man damage dealer squad took this chance to flee as well. By now, nobody was really paying any attention to them any longer, so all the players who had left the encampment kept their eyes peeled inside the encampment. Since the warning from the system had not stopped, that meant that the invader was still inside. Now that everyone had also left, where else could this man hide himself?
Almost instantly, there was plenty of space in the encampment. There were occasional flashes of white light, and they were the players who respawned having died from the battle before, and it was apparent that none of them could be the invader. The players outside the encampment looked in, and all they saw were about a dozen or so tents that stood out. There was no doubt that the invader must have hidden himself inside them.
“We don’t have any more time, everyone, quick!!!” Nobody knew who shouted this, but the players surrounding the encampment began to surge into the place, all of them sprinting right for the tents.
“No one here either!”
As the voices reported in one by one, the system’s countdown had already begun, and the city assaulters were all in such a state of hurry that sweat was flowing freely.
“It’s empty in this one too!”
“We see nothing here too!”
“No one’s here either!”
“D*mm*t, how is this possible? How is he nowhere to be found?”
Everyone was flabbergasted. There was nobody inside any of the dozen or so tents erected inside the encampment, yet the system warning was still sounding with much clarity. In the time everybody was standing around being stumped and dumbfounded by everything, the countdown had swiftly entered into the final 10 seconds: 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…
The heartless, meaningless and unreasonably troublesome system had made its announcement: [Encampment no. 4 for the rebel army assaulting the city had fallen to enemy occupation. The camp is now dismantled. The area still maintains its function for logging in and logging out purposes, but it would no longer be a spawn point for the players.]
“F*CK!!” A curse suddenly rang out in unison from beyond Yunduan City’s walls, with all the city assaulters receiving the same system message. They simply could not understand just how the over 800 guilds that belonged to the city assaulter’s side experienced such a great disaster, even if they were pitted against players who were on the side of the city’s defense which no other city had experienced. Having lost an encampment before, Yunduan City had already become the laughingstock of all the other cities in Parallel World. It was a world record too since no other city’s city assaulting force had become so troubled to such a degree. In the end, they had broken their own record; Yunduan City had lost another encampment barely a day after the first loss.
“What do those people even eat??”
The various guild channels were filled with insensitive messages. After the system had prompted that Encampment no. 4 was under attack, all the guild leaders pretty much sent men to lend a hand, none of them had expected such an outcome seeing that the encampment this time round was nothing like what happened with Encampment no.3, as there were still 4 NPC guards to help the players pinpoint the target. But it was already too late to say anything by now.
Aural Valley Wind was also wondering by this time as well. With the encampment completely surrounded in all directions, there were only those tents that obstructed the view. Meanwhile, the city assaulters had all dashed in to search the tents, yet they found nothing either. Just where did Thousand Miles Drunk hide himself?
Aural Valley Wind let his curiosity get the better of him and immediately sent a message to ask Gu Fei about it.
“It was very simple. In the very beginning, I had already taken a teleportation scroll out and wrote down a set of coordinates in it. When everyone was retreating afterward, I had indeed entered a tent, but I very quickly left after that, except I did not walk out, but used the teleportation scroll to teleport myself away. Get it?” Gu Fei replied.
“So that’s how you did it!” Aural Valley Wind immediately understood what happened. It seemed like Gu Fei had very boldly teleported in front of them despite everyone searching for traces of him in the spawn point, except everyone had mistakenly treated anyone who suddenly appeared to be a comrade who had died from the battle before. Gu Fei was actually more cunning than they had given him credit for.
“I don’t think any of your men have died 25 times yet, right?” Gu Fei asked Aural Valley Wind.
“Nope,” Aural Valley Wind answered very honestly. In actuality, the battle here had ended very quickly, so it was not really that easy to die 25 times.
“In that case, until the next time we meet!” Aural Valley Wind received the final reply from Gu Fei, and crooked his neck out in hopes of locating any traces of the man in the crowd. In the end, how could he have spotted Gu Fei? The city assaulters around him were all irritated and howling in rage, looking with every intention to kick everyone they come across. With Aural Valley Wind’s ‘safety first’ mentality, he departed from the place in a hurry.
Gu Fei was presently very busy, as he was not simply just fleeing. With Encampment no. 4 abandoned, a city-wide announcement was made, except to the city defenders, it was a different statement that was made: [The heroic city defender’s guild Amethyst Rebirth has captured the rebel army’s encampment no. 4. The area still maintains its function for logging in and logging out purposes, but it will no longer be a spawn point for the players.]
Everybody was dumbfounded. Quite a few of them had messaged Gu Fei when the Priests were teleported into the city, but Gu Fei had not made his return. The man merely replied with a “just taking a walk”, and none of them had expected that this little walk would end up in such a huge display. Everyone in the know who received the latest system prompt each sent their message of congratulations to Gu Fei, leaving him with no peace as he made his way back.
“It’s nothing. I happened to have hired a bit more manpower on the way, and managed to conquer that encampment,” Gu Fei gave a simplified summary of what he had done, which naturally drew another round of praise and commendation.
“How are things in the city?” Gu Fei asked after fielding all the questions.
“Heh, now that our Priests are here, how could victory not be close at hand?”
The 40 Priests had arrived at the scene in the nick of time. At that time, Young Master Han, who had been leading the members of Colored Clouds, had discovered a portion of the members from Amethyst Rebirth and Extremely Heaven Defying, hunting them down to the point they were cornered right by the mailbox by the city gates. Both sides clashed there and then when the 40 Priests descended from the heavens. The players from Extremely Heaven Defying and Amethyst Rebirth had the upper hand in terms of their numbers, so even though the average standard of their players were uneven, Colored Clouds’ troops in the city lacked the presence of strong elites like Drifting, Svelte Dancer, Slyris, Sword Demon, Southern Lone Blade and the others.
No matter how amazingly Young Master Han commanded the men, there was simply no way that he was able to restrain all of them together. Besides, Sword Demon, Southern Lone Blade and even Cirrus were all considered to be decent commanders worth their salt. As such, Young Master Han’s advantage on this front was not particularly huge when facing against this bunch. Were it not have been because the members of Extremely Heaven Defying and Amethyst Rebirth truly had too many no-names and unfamiliar faces, they would have been capable of completely pressuring their enemy by now.
“I’m coming right over!” Gu Fei was no longer dressed in his Thief attire by now and was sprinting out on the battlefield. There was already a pack of anguished players in the now-defunct Encampment no. 4, all intent on getting rid of this intruder.
Young Master Han already knew that they were at the stage of paucity, where they were at their wits’ end. The moment the battle began, and 40 Priests suddenly joined in, Young Master Han already knew that there was no way that his side could emerge victorious. While it appeared as if the two sides were locked in a stalemate, that actually leveraged on the unfamiliarity between their enemies. Furthermore, their strongest trump card in the form of Thousand Miles Drunk had yet to show himself…
Young Master Han patiently commanded his troops, and it did not take long for Extremely Heaven Defying and Amethyst Rebirth to execute the battle tactics that Drifting had wanted to do before: With Warriors providing cover, the Mages would advance onward with their AoE bombardment.
This was essentially a grander scale of Southern Lone Blade and Flame Singed Clothes’ collaboration. Southern Lone Blade led several Guardians with him as they positioned themselves right at the forefront of the rest. They did not need to attack at all but simply provided cover and defense. Meanwhile, the 40 Priests would all be in charge of ensuring their HP remained topped up. However, there was not just the 40 Priests standing behind them, but there was also Drifting, Slyris and all the other elite Mages that were formed into a Mage Squad.
Colored Clouds no longer had any Mages, so there was no way for them to replicate this sort of AoE bombardment. All Young Master Han could do was to order his Archers to fire a volley of arrows in retaliation and get everyone to withdraw, so as to buy time.
Had they been a group that was solely made up of Archers, they would naturally be able to easily distance themselves, but because the troops from Colored Clouds also had Warriors, Priests in tow…
There was no way that they could kite the enemy, much less turn around and focus on escaping. This was all because the enemy had no lack of Thieves, Archers and other job classes that had heavily invested into Agility. They would simply become contribution scores for these job classes if they try to run away now.
There was no way to attain victory, yet safely withdrawing from the fight was not an easy task either.
Young Master Han was busy taking command of the battle in the guild channel, seemingly not letting go any particular detail as he laid out each and every order all in the channel without missing a beat.
Similarly, the guild channel of Extremely Heaven Defying was also filled with the rows after rows of orders from Sword Demon. He did not let anything pass him, much less when it came to information regarding the adjustments that the enemy was making. These two old friends knew each other so well that they could only rely on frequently re-arranging their instructions in order to get an edge on the battlefield in order to keep things unpredictable for the other party.
The members of either two sides were all thrown into a frenzy, turning irascible as a result.
The orders were given out too fast that it left everyone confused and dazed. Everybody really wished they could cry out “We’re not machines; We’re not going to immediately move in accordance if you make the corresponding input. Quickly pushing out all the inputs does not mean we’re going to unleash some combo move or whatever either…”
In comparison, it was still Sword Demon who was just half a beat slower, but he was not the reason for this tardiness. Simply put, his men were not a well oiled team to begin with.
Despite the case, Sword Demon’s orders were still able to contain Young Master Han’s intentions, more or less. Whatever the man had planned to do, Sword Demon made it so much more laborious for Young Master Han to get his way at the end of the day. Sword Demon became the impedance to his plans that nobody was able to overcome. Meanwhile, on Sword Demon’s side, Southern Lone Blade had seized onto this opportunity that Sword Demon had managed to earn and marshaled his Warrior X Mage collaboration team to completely unleash their spell array.
The flames from the Mages’ spells sputtered to life and it looked as if the entire street was engulfed in the conflagration.
Colored Clouds was ultimately unable to withstand this assault, and white light kept shining from amidst their ranks as players left and right ended up dying to the flames.
Young Master Han had already sent a new order over the channel: Retreat.
It was just the one word. Retreat.
Respawning from the various designated spawn points all over the city, the players from Colored Clouds were all scattered and no longer rejoined the battle after being revived. Instead, they each made a break for the nearest city gates.
Nobody was lying in wait to ambush them in the various spawn points, Young Master Han had already determined that their enemy would not have enough manpower to set up any sort of trap in the different spawn points, seeing as both parties barely had much of a numerical discrepancy to begin with. This sort of strategy could only be deployed when there was a distinct numerical superiority from one party to another.
“Perhaps we’ll meet again soon,” Young Master Han said to Sword Demon after he got assassinated.
Sword Demon chuckled, “Very soon indeed.”
Back over in the Priest Academy’s spawn point, Young Master Han and a few companions of his own set off together, quickly heading for the nearest city gate in the east.
“There are people over by the east gate!!!” Young Master Han had not expected to receive this update from the players that had arrived at the east gates before he did.
“What?” Young Master Han was surprised.
“There’s not many of them there, but…”
Young Master Han knew what this person was afraid of, however. They were all Priests. They did not have any combat strength to speak of, so even though there were not many enemies present, there must have been a sufficient number that could potentially block the Priests from escaping.
“How about the west gate? How are things on that end?” Young Master Han had discovered that his plan to split up might not have been as foolproof as he had first thought.
“We’re running… but it seems like there are people behind, hot on our heels already…” The players that were headed toward the west gate sounded like they wanted to cry. Thieves, Archers and other job classes with a significant amount of Agility had all came running toward them. Sword Demon and Svelte Dancer, the black and red pair that made up the most frightening two Thieves in Parallel World were just right in front of them, and they were all very keenly aware of this.
The south gate was off limits as well. Young Master Han had already reminded everybody about this because the location where they had begun this skirmish was the south gate’s mailbox. Making their way over at this time was no better than a suicide mission.
How about the north gate?
“We’re about to make our escape!” The players that were at the north gate excitedly declared.
“CRAP!!!” It was apparent that they soon ran into something that they were unable to get excited.
“Thousand Miles Drunk, it’s Thousand Miles Drunk!!! He’s guarding the north gate!” someone yelled out.
“He’s not guarding the north gate, the man had just so happened to return from his excursion outside of the city…” Young Master Han monotonously rectified. Their enemy had chosen not to camp out the various spawn points, but had set their sights on the city gates instead, using the position and unique attributes of each job class spawn point in the city to come up with an ingenious deployment of his troops.
If I was in his shoes, I would have probably done the same, yeah? Young Master Han thought to himself.
“What do we do?” The channel was bubbling like a pot of porridge
“Go up the city walls,” Young Master Han said.
“Are we gonna jump?” Everybody was shocked.
“We’ll die from the fall.”
“You’ll all respawn after dying,” Young Master Han told the person that responded.
“Would we not just be sent back into the city?”
“Leave the guild before you take the plunge out of the city. You won’t be spawned back inside the city anymore,” Young Master Han said.
While this was what he had come up with, giving up the identity of being a city defender was not the solution he hoped for in the end. If they could retain this identity, there would still be plenty of things he could do, but it was unfortunate how reality panned out. Keeping their current identity meant there would be no way for them to get out of the city, and they would most likely end up being killed repeatedly by the players from Amethyst Rebirth and Extremely Heaven Defying until they were all sent to the 15th district.
They had no other options. The players from Colored Clouds each began to correct their paths and sought to climb up the city walls. Those who did not join Ray’s Bar in the first place did not even hesitate a second and jumped off the city wall. Meanwhile, those who did join the guild still had the tiniest shred of regret, “What’s going to happen to Ray’s Bar?”
“The arrangements have been made. Just jump off the wall!” Young Master Han replied.
Plenty of players withdrew by leaping off the city walls.
The moment somebody started to do just that, the others did not hesitate any longer and each began to carry out their escape.
“Any problems on your end?” Young Master Han sent a message to Ray.
“No problem. However, I’ll need to trouble you with something. Please contact Sword Demon and tell him that Ray’s Bar will no longer be affiliated with Colored Clouds, and would soon revert back to its identity as a Trade Association.” Ray said.
“Sure, but I cannot guarantee how those guys will see things,” Young Master Han warned.
“Don’t worry about that. Miles and Sword Demon are still very reasonable people,” Ray was smiling.
Thus, Sword Demon received a message from Young Master Han, “We’re leaving. Those who remain will truly be members of Ray’s Bar.”
“What does that mean?” Sword Demon replied, confused. However, the message was quickly cut short. Sword Demon looked over, seemingly seeing a stream of people up on to the battlements and constantly making the leap to their deaths from the city walls.
“It’s over…” Sword Demon said in the channel.
“What happened?” plenty of voices came with that one question.
“They dispersed,” Sword Demon summarized their enemy’s plight very succinctly.
“How is that possible? We’ve sealed off all four city gates.”
“They’re leaping off from the battlements,” Sword Demon said.
“Would they not just respawn back in the city?”
“They wouldn’t if they leave the guild in the first place,” Sword Demon.
“Has Ray’s Bar been disbanded?”
“That does not appear to be the case…” Sword Demon recalled Young Master Han’s parting words.