LC: Chapter 37

37. Chests Will Also Have Nice Things

To be fair, the game wasn’t just fooling around with CopperPlate. According to the game notifications that came later, that was a stack of items: 10 Frightening Chests.

Frightening Chest: Account-bound. Throw it out during battle at the enemies and they will be frozen with fear for 10 seconds. Agility -5 for 30 seconds. Cooldown time – 10 minutes.

When going against highly skilled players, even a second of hesitation could mean life or death. Within ten seconds, that player could be dead several times over. So, this was quite a nice item. If nothing else, it can be used when escaping a life-threatening situation.

“Okay, okay. It’s all right now. Who’ll go next?” As soon as I_Am_A_Poor_Man saw the tiny cat hopping around again, he was eager to see what would be revealed next. As expected, the game had the same tastes in pranks as he did.

“I’ll go,” Ice_For_Miles said. Everyone looked over to where the voice came from before discreetly and unanimously shifting far away from him. Who knew what kind of ridiculous items would be revealed next?

With steady hands, Ice_For_Miles took out his chest and opened it.

Nothing jumped out of the box this time. It was only when Ice_For_Miles held up the item that they saw it was a megaphone. According to the game notifications, it was a stack of items too: 10 Voice-Changing Megaphones.

Voice-Changing Megaphone: Account-bound. Use it to imitate an enemy’s voice and they’ll be charmed for 5 seconds. Critical rate decreased by 10% for 30 seconds. (Can only be used once per enemy.)

“Pffft…” The game did not disappoint. At the thought of Ice_For_Miles using that megaphone to change his voice, I_Am_A_Poor_Man clapped his hand over his mouth in an attempt to hold his laughter in.

Ice_For_Miles looked at the crowd trying hard to not laugh. Still, he put the item in his inventory with calm hands and said, “Next.”

Chrysanthemum was rewarded with a mysterious cucumber. It was very mysterious indeed because nothing was written in its description. The crowd thought and guessed it might be a quest item, but then Chrysanthemum started cackling and muttered, “Cucumber fits a chrysanthemum. Good. Good.” The party’s minds then prayed and hoped it was not an important quest at all. They don’t want to be a participant in that. =_=

NonMeta got three microphones. Using them will create a shrill shriek. Everyone in the area (except for those who’d blocked their ears beforehand) would be confused for 20 seconds. However, everyone in the room suspected it would never be used by NonMeta.

Below_The_Moon got something more normal – an Apothecary’s recipe. But upon reading what the recipe was for – Sleeping Potion – his mouth twitched. He forced himself to learn it either way.

Poor_Man was rewarded with a recipe as well, but this time it’s a cooking recipe – the Imperial Manchu Feast. After looking at the amount of luxurious ingredients needed, he was sure he’d never ever be so bored as to go collecting them.

“Chief, let’s get a poison recipe.” With two recipes out already, it was a sign. Poor_Man stared at the chest in HereticKing’s hands with starry eyes. It’d be great if it contained an XXX recipe. The kind that will kill anyone who even touches it.

“Mrrow!” The tiny cat was still playing in HereticKing’s arms. When it saw him take out the mean chest that scared it before, its claws scraped on it in rage.

Three large scratches were etched into the chest. As if it was alive, the chest shivered and sprung open with a clack.

(⊙o⊙). That can happen too?

A shimmering golden glow came from within the chest. It was the small cat’s favourite colour. Thus, its rage towards that dratted box reduced. It clambered on it, hoping to see with its wide eyes just what was glowing. In the end, it accidentally slipped and fell into the chest.

When HereticKing plucked the kitten from the box, they found a gold coin in its mouth.

“No way. It’s just a gold coin?” I_Am_A_Poor_Man’s beautiful dreams were crushed.

“Why’s there a cloth band on the coin? It’s not some crest or seal, is it?”

“It’s a gold coin.” HereticKing had heard the game’s notification. He shared the item’s description with the party.

Lucky Gold Coin: Businessmen’s favourite shiny gold coin. Every purchase by the owner from NPC shops will have a 20% discount. Every item sold to NPC shops will have a 20% increase in price. Pet accessory. Account-bound once equipped. (When equipping, the Intimacy level must be 100. When Intimacy is less than 100, it will automatically be unequipped and placed in the owner’s Inventory.)

Silence reigned.

“Are the RNG gods sleeping? They actually gave out something this valuable?” Buy low, sell high. So many players have tried bargaining with NPCs, and they’ve all been mercilessly rejected.

“But the conditions are quite strict. Who could be sure their Intimacy would be 100 at all times?”

That was true. Be it a bought pet or a captured pet, its Intimacy levels mostly never exceeded 20 at the start. It was only through feeding and care that it slowly rose. The pet getting hungry, dying, being sold off, or being kept in the Pet Space (except for when it had to return to the Pet Space due to the owner going offline. That didn’t count as it would automatically pop back out when the player logged on.) …actions like these were all deemed to be uncaring actions. It’d cause the Intimacy levels to drop depending on several factors. As with almost everything, it’s easy to lose Intimacy but so very hard to raise it back up again. However, since the players only know that when Intimacy reached -100 the pet would run away, no one knew what other use this stat had. Hence, no one would really maintain high Intimacy levels with their pet out of the blue.

“XiaoYu, here. For you.” HereticKing took out the Lucky Gold Coin in his inventory and stuffed it into XiaoYu’s hands. Along the way, he returned a certain greedy cat who’d been hanging off him for way too long back to its true owner.

“But…” This came out of HereticKing’s chest. How could he just give it to XiaoYu just like that?

“I don’t have any pets,” came HereticKing’s reply.

“…” XiaoYu was still thinking on what to say when a finger pressed over his lips.

“Shh. If you feel guilty, then if I ever need to buy anything in the future, I’ll come looking for you. Okay?” As if mesmerised the sight of HereticKing’s gentle eyes, XiaoYu nodded.

Time seemed to have stopped. Everything was silent.

“Ahem.” I_Am_A_Poor_Man’s cough awakened the group up. As expected, people who are too handsome can’t be so gentle either. Otherwise, who could escape that alluring draw. They touched their gently burning cheeks. They had nearly drowned in that gentle ocean.

Meanwhile, Poor_Man and Below_The_Moon unanimously turned their faces away with tears streaming down their cheeks. They had been with Chief for so many years, but they’ve never known he could be that gentle and kind. That voice, that expression…they were all so darned sexy. No wonder people kept falling for him and prostrating themselves before his suit pants. If Chief treated them like that every day, they’d do the same too.

“Lucky, can your cat equip it?” CopperPlate who had snapped back to reality tried his best to shift everyone’s attention away. His heart actually pounded and leaped around like a fawn frolicking. It’s so humiliating that everyone, especially NonMeta, saw just how lovestruck he could be.

“…Yes. Its Intimacy has always been 100,” XiaoYu hurriedly replied. He said it in a serious tone, but his flushing cheeks and ears betrayed their tiny owner’s pretence. XiaoYu didn’t know why his heart skipped either, but he didn’t hate that gentleness in HereticKing. It recalled the warmth he felt from his departed family.

“Quick. Put it on.”

XiaoYu equipped the Lucky Gold Coin on the tiny cat. The ribbon on the gold coin shrank and adjusted itself to suit the small cat’s neck. Shiny gold coin on dark, black fur. It’s a different but nice kind of aesthetic.

“Meow~” I’ve got a gold coin to wear now. So happy.

“Tch. It’s asking for a beating. It’s like it’s terrified the whole world doesn’t know it’s a greedy cat.”

“Why don’t we just change its name to GreedyCat instead?”

“Hahaha.”

Finally, XiaoYu opened up his own chest. 10 potions shimmering with a menacing and colourful glow.

Lucky Potion: Account-bound. Extra, extra bitter potion. Once used, it increases drop rate by 5% for 3 hours. Cooldown time: 48 hours. (P.S. It’s really, really bitter.)

This game and RNG are so freaking perverted.

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GC: Chapter 30

30. The Past

In order to pay back their bank debts, they had to sell off their mansion and all other family assets. The whole family moved into an ordinary apartment. One of the richest men became an average joe. The friends who once called themselves his bro left instantly. Feng Qun took off his disguised and revealed his true self. He stole all of YiHan’s tiny company’s money. Only then did YiHan know it was all a well-crafted set up and Feng Qun was the mastermind behind the Bai family downfall.

In rage and regret, YiHan had charged at Feng Qun in search of justice. All he ended up with were humiliation and laughter. He was even beaten up. He spiralled down into despair. He didn’t dare conceal the truth anymore. He confessed to his family what he’d done. They didn’t say anything, but he could tell they were disappointed in him.

After the Bai family’s fall, YiHan focused on trying to do something to right the wrongs he’d done. He tried his best to think up of ways to earn some cash so his brother could rise from the ashes. He didn’t dare spend a single cent more than he needed to. He saved up the meagre allowance his family gave and looked for work everywhere he could. However, he was a rich kid who wasn’t very active. He was a sickly child. His family was very lenient on him. He never even listened properly during classes. There was no way he could find a proper job. In the end, he only got a job as a pianist at a cafe he once frequented because he once learned piano on a whim. When Feng Qun knew of it, he would bring his friends and humiliate him nearly every single day. After everything, Bai YiHan was no longer that proud rich kid anymore. He learned to bite his tongue and bear with the shameful attitudes just so he could earn some money.

But Feng Qun wasn’t willing to let YiHan go just like that. Together with the bastards that were his friends, they drugged him and dragged him back into a hotel Feng Qun’s family owned. Then, they hired men to gang rape him. They took countless photos and videos of that incident, and spread them far and wide. YiHan’s reputation shattered.

When he finally woke up sober and realised what had happened, he almost broke down. Through all that pain, he only wished to be comforted by his family. But when he stumbled back into his home, all he saw were a floor full of indescribable photos and his family’s disappointed gaze. Due to the drug, no one could tell he was being raped in the photos. His family felt so very let down. He’d hidden the fact he was working from his family. They thought he was always gone from home because he was out playing. They were already disappointed enough by his carefree and ungrateful attitude. After looking at those photos and videos, all of that just turned to rage. The health of YiHan’s grandfather, who loved him more than anything, had turned bad ever since their family’s downfall. When he saw those things, he harshly slapped YiHan in the face. He was so furious that he collapsed out of rage. The doctors tried again and again to save him, but they still failed. YiHan’s grandfather passed away and the family descended into chaos. No one could be bothered to care about YiHan then. After personally witnessing his beloved grandfather dying because of him, YiHan’s fragile mind broke.

After the funeral, YiHan was too ashamed to go back home. Among all that fear, hate and confusion, YiHan went to his and JingYuan’s “secret base” from when they were kids. It was an abandoned warehouse. He curled up in the corner of the warehouse, trying to find the safety he once felt. If no one found him, he might have died there all alone. However, Feng Qun who’d been following him this entire time found him. That trash soon found two thugs and charged into the warehouse with them.

YiHan was a spoiled rich kid. He was still hurt and his body was still weak due to the incident a few days ago and his mental breakdown. He was no match for three big men. He was quickly overtaken and held down. His right leg was broken. They shattered his left hand and raped him once more. Everyone said even a rabbit would bite back if it’s backed into a corner. Being raped over and over again while sober? He went crazy. He used all his strength to grab a sharp steel bar with his perfect right hand and stabbed it through the head of the person on top of him. The others were petrified by the bloody scene before them. He gathered the last of his courage and struck out at the remaining two while they were still in shock. The other thug fell down dead. Feng Qun was frightened to death by him and scrambled to escape. But YiHan soon took him down and dragged him to the other two’s fate.


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LC: Chapter 36

36. Chests Will Always Have Surprises

“Phew. Everyone on the streets is talking about us.”

“Yes. Luckily, we can hide our party name. I wouldn’t be here alive otherwise.”

CopperPlate was sprawled out like a corpse on the thick and fluffy carpet of the President’s Suite. Once in a while, he’d roll around in playful, goofy joy. “It’s so soft. Just as expected, the President’s Suite is a special existence,” he said.

The tiny cat was staring at CopperPlate. He looked like he was having fun and the carpet was really comfortable. So, it mimicked CopperPlate and rolled around on the carpet. Hence, the first thing the new arrivals to the party gathering saw were a black ball of fur and a man with frazzled, scruffy red hair competing on just who could roll harder. Black lines descended down the onlookers’ faces.

“Everyone’s here. I now declare the first loot-splitting meeting open.” Pop. Crackle. Sizzle. I_Am_A_Poor_Man went to his Storage beforehand to organise it and grabbed a few of last year’s Christmas poppers along the way to perk up the atmosphere.

First were the equipment. Of course, the necklace XiaoYu was already wearing didn’t count. They sorted the equipment without additional stats out. The remaining equipment was then handed out according to jobs. Those with the same jobs will compare their current equipment. The person with the worse equipment got the first choice. After all that sorting, the last remaining item, a queen’s crown, laid before the crowd. Who should have it and why were all up for debate.

“Tsk. Just like that king’s crown. It’s pretty but its stats are just trash. It’s actually +2 Agility and +2 Intelligence.”

“Right. Didn’t you guys say you found a crown while grinding once? How did you split the loot then?” Below_The_Moon recalled hearing about it from CopperPlate when they were travelling through the desert.

“Oh. Chrysanthemum sold it, then we split the money,” CopperPlate replied.

“If all of you trust me, I can help you fetch the highest price possible for this crown,” Chrysanthemum smiled. The Healers Alliance mainly comprised of female players. This queen’s crown might be even more popular than a king’s crown.

“Sure. We’ll leave it in your hands.”

With all the important equipment handed out, the party’s attitude to the leftover knick-knacks and Profession materials turned more relaxed. If someone needed it for their Profession or missions, they can grab it themselves. The unwanted items were thrown into the same pile as the stat-less equipment. Once all loot was split, they’ll sell the whole pile and split the money.

The money dropped from mobs were the simplest to deal with. Evenly split after one glance at the number listed in the small cat’s Inventory.

At last, there were the Queen Ant card and a Desert Scorpion card (Poison Resistance +5%. Type: Wrist.). These were the most troublesome questions. The latter, average mob card wasn’t that hard. It’s just a matter of patience and time. It didn’t have good stats either. The former card was an extremely rare card with stats one could only wish for. It’d be a pity to sell it off, but it’s hard to say just who should have it.

“I don’t need it. Pass!” Chrysanthemum said with a wave. She was only there to tag along. It was already way beyond her expectations to have earned so much experience and crystal coins, and she was so very satisfied and fulfilled spiritually.

“We don’t need it either. We don’t have any good clothing for it,” CopperPlate waved his hand too. A boss card should be slotted into +10 equipment or higher. Only then would it not be wasted. It’d be blasphemy otherwise.

NonMeta silently nodded in agreement.

“Me too. I don’t want it either,” XiaoYu hurriedly followed up with a shake of his head. He felt guilty enough for taking that necklace.

“Then we’ll put it into our guild’s war supplies. I’ll push our elite smiths to make a Fur Coat about +11. What do you think, Chief?” I_Am_A_Poor_Man turned to look at HereticKing. (A Fur Coat were a rather rare equipment with good defences and didn’t have any job restrictions. Unfortunately, it can only be produced from the cunning foxes of the barren snowy mountains.)

“Mn,” HereticKing grunted in assent.

“Of course, you’re all welcome to borrow it whenever you need it. But you can’t have it for guild wars,” I_Am_A_Poor_Man waggled his finger. That line was said towards the non-Heretic Demons guild members. “I, Poor_Man, formally announce the end of the first loot-splitting meeting. It’s awesome that everyone’s so friendly and compromising. Yay~” As he said so, he threw flower petals up in the air.

Black lines descended down everyone’s faces once more. Just where did he get so many of these useless toys from? The petals he threw were the rose petals from the Valentine’s Day event everyone spent their time gathering.

Still, it was indeed an occasion for celebration, especially since there were rare items. Stories of how the awkward situation of having too many hands and not enough loot caused a somewhat cooperative group to turn on each other in a brawl were everywhere in the forums. Of course, this might be because half of the party members were from Heretic Demons. They’ve got a good reputation and their chief said nothing the entire time, except for a small grunt. Naturally, there was nothing for everyone to fight over. They’d already received quite a lot of good loot.

“Then…as celebration, we’ll now proceed with the next event – the heart-throbbing, face-blushing chest opening ceremony.”

“Right. We still have the chests the game rewarded us. I wonder what’s hiding in there.”

After the server-wide announcement, everyone received a message from the game’s system. To reward the brave players who forged and paved a new way forward, the game gave them each a chest of random items. The chests were directly placed in the players’ inventories, but they were busy rushing back to the capital then. If I_Am_A_Poor_Man hadn’t mentioned it, they’d have forgotten about it.

“Let’s go one by one. I’ll open first.” CopperPlate instantly perked up and dug out his mysterious and purple-glowing chest. He clasped his hands in a prayer, gathered his courage and threw the chest lid open.

“Boing~”

“Aaah!”

“Mrrrow!”

Crash! Clatter! Thonk.

“Mrrrr…”

The above happened within mere seconds. Let us look back at it in slow-motion. First, a ghastly face popped out of the box. It’s the usual kind found in prank boxes. CopperPlate was caught unawares and shouted in fright. He threw the box away from him. Of all the places that box could go to, it unfortunately went flying at the tiny cat. Frightened to the point of all turning into a frazzled ball, it started running around the room. Finally, it ended with a bump on a table corner. Its head was all swollen and bruised. It hurts. Sobs.

XiaoYu’s heart ached and he carefully gathered the kitten up in his arms for a tender and thorough petting. The tiny cat had no health indicators. He didn’t know how badly hurt it actually was. All he could do was offer it snacks in an attempt to cheer it up. But this time, the pain was too much for it to bear. It completely ignored its favourite fish. Its teary form looked so pitiful that everyone’s eyes bore right into CopperPlate.

“Oops. I didn’t mean to. Little cat. Tiny, tiny lucky. Precious baby. Don’t cry.” CopperPlate had just started recovering from shock when everyone started glaring at him. Under the numerous glares attempting to kill him, he ran over to coax and soothe the small cat. Unluckily for him, this precious little kitten ignored him.

“Give it to me,” HereticKing said as he held a hand out to XiaoYu. A crying cat with its paws covering its head was handed over.

“Meow~” Mister, it hurts~

Bling!

HereticKing didn’t say a single word. He just took out a shiny and shimmering gold coin and started waving it before the small cat.

“Meow! Mrrow!” A gold coin!

As if it had just been injected with a stimulant, the tiny paws abandoned the small bruise on its head and changed its target to the coin in HereticKing’s hand.

Everyone, including XiaoYu, bitterly looked away. They don’t recognise this greedy cat.

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GC: Chapter 29

29. Grudges From a Past Life

Upon seeing YiHan continued hiding from him, JingYuan’s gaze darkened and turned colder. He said a few congratulatory wishes to the old Mr Yan, coaxing a bright smile and laugh from him, before tactfully rejecting the old Mr Yan’s suggestion of pairing JingYuan up with his granddaughter. Only then did he excuse himself and walked over towards the Bai family.

Bai YiHan’s feet faltered and froze. He can’t run away. He has to get used to it one day, right? Everything in this lifetime was going well. It’s just JingYuan. He doesn’t like you anyway, so what’s there to sigh about? Don’t be so gluttonous. Greedy people will be punished one day. And he’d already experienced this punishment once. He absolutely did not want to go through it all again.

As JingYuan walked over, his eye bore right through him. Panic swelled inside him.

“Father, it’s a little stuffy in here. I’ll head out the balcony for some air,” YiHan smiled to FuRen.


“What is it? Are you sick? Do you need me to call the driver to send you home early?” FuRen replied with a worried look.

“It’s fine, Father. There’s no need. It just feels stuffy,” YiHan said as he forced himself to keep smiling.

“There are so many people in here. The air is a little hot. No wonder HanHan thinks it’s stuffy. Go, then. Get your brother to go with you,” Ma said.

“I’m fine. I can go alone,” YiHan insisted.

As he said so, he rushed away towards the sliding doors.

The tall sliding doors of the great hall were connected to a large balcony encased in glass. The night sky was calm and quiet, giving off a tranquil air. When YiHan arrived at the balcony, someone was already there. When the other heard footsteps coming from the doors, he turned around. The moment he saw it was YiHan, he instantly put on a surprised but happy smile and quickly walked over to greet YiHan.

And the moment YiHan saw the other’s face, he felt as if the world was crumbling around him. He instinctively wanted to turn and run away now!

This person was an infamous playboy in the city. Feng Qun was a second-generation rich kid. During YiHan’s last life, Feng Qun was an existence akin to his follower. After XueQing and JingYuan announced their engagement, YiHan’s temper became even more explosive than usual. He’d frequently get into fights over trivial matters when out of the house. This Feng Qun was a frequent victim of his fury and his head even bled once from YiHan’s punches. At that time, Feng Qun had just nodded and laughed it off. He said it was all okay, but he hated YiHan for it the entire time. Feng Qun would intentionally persuade him to head into unsavoury territories during YiHan’s bad moods. Once JingYuan found out what went on, he beat Feng Qun up and even broke two of his bones. Regretfully, YiHan didn’t realise just what kind of person Feng Qun was then. He just kept rebelling against JingYuan, and even fought with JingYuan over it. That incident caused JingYuan to be even more disappointed in YiHan.

Later on, JingYuan left the country. YiHan nearly had a breakdown. Feng Qun then told him a man must have his own career. Only then, would he not be looked down on. When YiHan heard that nonsense, he decided to start a company to make JingYuan look back at him. He got some money from his family and started up a company with Feng Qun. Unfortunately, he wasn’t the type of person who’s good at business at all. The whole way through, he lost money until the point where he was out of cash. Just when he was about to stop and withdraw, Feng Qun egged him on. He told YiHan to steal information on the Bai Corporations’ latest project and use some of the Bai Corporations’ business secrets for their company. Just like a fool, he believed in Feng Qun’s logic of “just putting what’s in the left pocket in the right pocket” and stole from his family.

Who knew it was all just a lie. A scam. Information on the Bai Corporations was leaked out and then sued for plagiarism. The stock prices fell to the ground and the company suffered major losses. Then, they were accused of crimes like tax evasion and falsifying their account books. Soon after, a few other companies allied themselves and attacked the Bai Corporations. The wall may sway due to rain and wind, but it collapses from the crowd pushing at it. YiHan’s father, brother and sister slaved away for two whole months, but they still had to declare bankruptcy.


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LC: Chapter 35

35. Retaking the Hometown

The party calculated how long it’d take for them to journey to the Peco Peco’s homeland and decided to head back to the city first. Their destination was much closer to Kemet than where they were at the moment. While Teleport would be locked during a special quest, the game didn’t stop players from using Return Scrolls.

There’s an old saying. Enemies always meet. Logically speaking, since the Wolf Clan ruled the Pyramids, it was normal if they met a few of Wolf Clan members. However, for them to encounter Wings members twice in a row? That’s strange.

But GloryOfTheWorld wasn’t around for their second encounter. Just LittleZhuGe and three players, probably Wings guild members, chatting near the portal. When LittleZhuGe saw the eight players who appeared out of nowhere, he merely paused for a brief moment in shock before nodding at HereticKing in greeting. Then, he went back to his conversation with the other three guild members.

As for the members of Heretic Demons, they didn’t make any big response either. Their mission now was to find the Scorpion King before the afternoon hurricanes start and kill it.

Just as the party left LittleZhuGe’s sights, a bright glow descended upon the portal once more. It was the missing GloryOfTheWorld. ZhuGe immediately whispered to him what happened. GloryOfTheWorld replied with a wave and ZhuGe, an assassin, vanished into stealth mode.

This time, XiaoYu had a mount. So, it only took them about an hour to arrive at the Peco Peco region. It had only been a day since he was last here, but the area has utterly transformed into something different. The sands were covered in scorpions, big and small.

“Seems like this is what’s truly happening in the Peco Peco region.” No one knew if there were any scorpions hiding underneath the sands once more. Thus, the party got off their mounts and readied themselves for a bloodbath.

“It probably only changed because we accepted that quest. If we fail, we’d have committed a grave sin. No newbies will be able to capture a Peco Peco as their mount in the future,” Below_The_Moon let out a whistle as he summoned his hawk to assist him in spotting enemies and attacking. Because they were stuck in a cave during the battle with the Queen, he couldn’t summon his hawk. Hence, he’d never bothered to summon it until now.

To the party whose levels average around 95, except for XiaoYu, these Level 60 to 70-plus scorpions were feeble. Plain and easy tiny bits of experience. And they really only give a tiny bit of experience. When a player was over 10 levels above the mob, the original amount of experience gained from killing it would be drastically reduced. When the level difference reaches above 20, the game would force the amount received to 1. Thus, it was always for the best that a player fought with monsters around the same level as they were.

XiaoYu was so well-protected right in the middle of the group that not even a fly could reach him. However, because the level gap between him and the rest of the party was way too high, none of his spells could be used to help clear out the scorpions. So, he couldn’t even receive that one measly experience point. Fortunately, they had completed two side quests beforehand. He was Level 39 now. Once this chain of quests was over, he would be Level 40 and be able to start a Profession.

As the group walked on, they met fewer and fewer scorpions. This meant they were getting closer to the boss. Suddenly, the earth rumbled and shook in a serious of violent tremors. An injury notification ranging from -30 to -150 popped up above everyone’s heads, except for XiaoYu who suffered no injuries due to having been kept under protection buffs constantly by the other two healers.

While XiaoYu wasn’t hurt, the trembling earth still made him loose his footing as he had low stats. XiaoYu wobbled and collapsed backwards. As expected, what welcomed XiaoYu was a familiar and warm embrace.

‘Aaah! They’re hugging again! Take a screenshot! Camera!’ Chrysanthemum’s fujoshi soul was ignited once more. As her heart raced in excitement, her face was as calm as usual. Her hands and staff steadily waved and refreshed the buffs on the party.

As the sands shivered and rumbled, the Scorpion King’s gigantic body slowly began to appear from beneath the sands. The entire process reminded everyone of a certain classic scene from a hundred-years-old show Ultraman where the monster would first appear on screen.

However, these players weren’t the foolish Ultraman. They didn’t wait for the monster to get ready to attack before acting. During the few short seconds the Scorpion King made his appearance, the group of experienced boss fighters swiftly got into formation. Those who were meant to stay back, stayed back. Those who were meant to attract the minions away, attracted the minions away. Those who should tank the boss, tanked it. By the time the Scorpion King and its tiny scorpions made their first retaliation, they were already suffering from numerous wounds.

As the scorpions were venomous, HereticKing’s special poison wasn’t that useful. The sounds of the -1 poison damage sounded more like a light scratch separated from skin via thick leather coverings. On the contrary, to the non-assassin players, the Scorpion King’s venom was an extra source of damage which could not be ignored at all.

Even though high-level poisons had a pitifully low chance of success, the two healers still threw out cures the moment someone was poisoned. Even if it had a miniscule chance of succeeding, there was still a chance. The earlier someone could be free from this pain, the better. Luckily, Below_The_Moon’s Profession was Apothecary. There was no lack of the average pill for poison relief. Thus, the poison damage beeps coming from the three close-quarters combat specialists near the Scorpion King would be under control within ten seconds and each second only brought under 300 damage.

Ah…XiaoYu sighed as he watched the busy bustling group from his spot far away. One. Two. Three…this was the fourth time he’d witnessed a boss killing. During the first encounter, he could be of some minor use. He helped in poison relief. For the other three times, he’d just been a carefree bystander.

“Meow~Mrrow~” The tiny cat had leapt straight up onto XiaoYu’s head in its excitement. It called its encouragements to the party. In its eyes, this huge yellow scorpion was more like a gleaming mountain of gold.

“Raaargh!” The Scorpion King flailed its two large pincers and a miniature sand hurricane started up around it. This was its AoE skill – Hurricane Attack. It wasn’t strong, but the sand flying everywhere could make a player lose their sense of sight for a short while. It would dramatically reduce critical rate.

XiaoYu just so happened to be standing outside the skill’s range, but he had no time to admire I_Am_A_Poor_Man’s accurate information on the boss. At that moment, he was clenching tight to the staff in his hands and doing his best to keep his eyes wide open. Just how were his friends doing? Unfortunately, the flying sands meant everyone appeared and vanished from his view within seconds. Was that real? Was that fake? It made XiaoYu feel so very worried, frustrated and helpless.

Contrary to how XiaoYu was feeling, after the brief blind experience, the party started to hit harder and faster because they knew that the use of this skill meant its health was below 50%. Harder. Faster. More. The reward was right in front of them.

“Boom–” The Scorpion King was still no match for this stampede of high-level players. Finally, it was chopped in half by HereticKing’s critical hit and fell to the ground. Dead, it transformed into a sprawling pile of loot.

The party put their weapons away. The tanks put away their shields. None of them even thought about picking up the loot on the ground. They knew that within five seconds, everything would be cleaned up by a certain professional sweeper cat.

“Hah. The tiny cat is way too fast. At least let me see everything that scorpion dropped,” CopperPlateKing said as he wiped his spear down and returned the Alloy Shield back to HereticKing.

“Meow~” With a few leaps, the tiny cat ran back to XiaoYu who had just ran over. It rubbed itself against XiaoYu’s boots. It levelled up again. So happy.

“Chief, anything good?” I_Am_A_Poor_Man was standing further away from the boss. Once the dust settled, nothing could be seen on the floor.

“There was a necklace.” HereticKing actually didn’t see everything either. But in his brief scan, there was a necklace that he might have seen that looked quite nice.

“It dropped an accessory? Lucky!”

The drop rate of accessories was so much lower than the average drop rate of equipment. Bosses usually don’t ever spit one out, let alone a normal monster. So head accessories, necklaces, rings etc. would fetch a high price as long as they look nice. If it had a great stat as well, the price would go rocket straight through the sky. The most important reason for it all was still accessories generally don’t have class or level limits. Everyone and anyone can equip them.

“Let’s look at its stats.”

XiaoYu hurriedly pulled up the description of the necklace and shared it with the party.

Necklace of the Scorpion King: Defence +20. Vitality +15. Poison Resistance +30. 1% chance of poisoning the opponent with scorpion venom when attacking.

I-It’s amazing. The base additional defence from accessories were not high to begin with. These 20 points were quite good. And with just the additional poison resistance, the user could resist nearly all of the high-tier poisons from the Assassin class. Not only that, there was a small chance of poisoning the opponent. The crowd’s minds were already flipping fast through the accessories they’ve seen before and compared their stats to this necklace’s in an attempt to gauge how much it’d sell for.

“Xiao-Yu, take the necklace out,” HereticKing abruptly said.

Everyone was confused. Weren’t they splitting the loot after everything?

XiaoYu was stunned too. But he quickly reacted. He pulled out the necklace from the small cat’s inventory and handed it over to HereticKing. He didn’t even use the Exchange tab. (Directly handing another player an item would count as a gift. A successful transaction.)

But when the necklace reached HereticKing’s hands, he didn’t put it in his inventory, nor did he equip it himself. Instead, he put it on XiaoYu’s neck.

“It’s got good stats and it increases Vitality. It’s just right for you,” HereticKing gently explained when he saw XiaoYu’s shock at his actions. He remembered XiaoYu mentioning he was aiming for a tanky healer before.

“But…” But it’s so very expensive. XiaoYu sort of knew the prices around Asgard Online. This necklace was clearly so much more precious compared to the other items in the tiny cat’s inventory.

“We finally dropped an equipment you can use. Good boy.” HereticKing’s bossy personality was exposed once more. The kid-coaxing tone he used had an air which said refused all refusals.

“Yes. Lucky, you have it. The other equipment have class and level limits. You can’t use any of them now.” The levels of the monsters they’d been fighting over the past two days were far higher than XiaoYu’s. Even if they found the rare equipment suited for healer classes, XiaoYu couldn’t use them for a while anyway.

“T-Thank you.” XiaoYu didn’t help at all, yet everyone was always concerned about me. It felt nice having friends.

“No need to be so polite. Look at my Wolf Teeth Necklace. It’s nice, right? So cool.” CopperPlate dug out his necklace and showed it to XiaoYu. “Right. Don’t forget to hide your necklace under your clothes. If a bad guy sees that, they might kill you for it.” As CopperPlate said so, he mimed a throat-slashing. With his exaggerated expressions, the party cheered up once more.

Plap, plap, plap, plap, plap…Steady marching sounding out from far away attracted the party’s attention. Weapons were taken out once more.

Once they saw who the newcomers really were, everyone let out a silent sigh of relief. It was a huge flock of Peco Pecos. The party had their approval. Peco Pecos were of no threat to them.

The Peco Pecos stopped before the party of players. They then opened up a path and allowed two Peco Pecos to walk through.

“Ark. Arrk. Waark…”

[Peco Peco Elder: A-Amazing. You are the heroes of the Peco Peco tribe!]

As it said so, the Peco Pecos all raised their right wings and saluted the players.

Pffft. So funny.

“Ding. Party Pilgrimage West has completed the mission: ’Retaking the Hometown’ of the quest Escort the brave Peco Peco egg back to its village. EXP +100,000. Crystal Coins +50.”

[Peco Peco Elder: Now, once our king appears, the Peco Peco tribe would be restored. The scent of our king seems to be coming from you…]

The Peco Peco Elder looked at XiaoYu. It wanted to walk right up to this human, but there were guards as thick as copper walls before him. It can’t clash with these heroes.

XiaoYu squeezed past the crowd. The party was too good at protecting him. He took out the egg from his bag and handed it to the Elder. “This is your king,” he said.

The Elder carefully held the egg up with its wings. Emotional tears flowed out from its tiny eyes.

“Ding. Party Pilgrimage West has completed the hidden S-rank quest: Escort the brave Peco Peco egg back to its village. EXP +300,000. Crystal Coins +100.”

With the game notification sound, this escort mission had finally come to an end.

“System Notice: Congratulations, Party Pilgrimage West, has completed a secret quest and opened the gates to a secret Boss. A 2-hour maintenance will commence at 12:00 tonight. Players do not need to log off, but please stay within city boundaries to prevent corrupted data. Asgard Online thanks all players for their cooperation.”

“System Notice: After this patch, new region bosses will appear. March on and challenge them all. There are still more secret quests in Asgard Online awaiting you. Take your weapons and charge! Become the heroes of Asgard Online!”

“Gods, it’s talking about us!” CopperPlate stared up at the sky with his head in hands and an awestruck face.

“Party names don’t have duplicates. That is us,” I_Am_A_Poor_Man said as he patted CopperPlate on the shoulder. The party name he inputted on a whim was announced to everyone in the server. Oh, yes!

“Let’s head back to the city. Meet up in the President’s Suite of Prole’s Hotel Steir,” HereticKing ordered. Since the quest was done, there was no need to dawdle in this desert. He usually didn’t care if other players realised they were the party the game just talked about, but he didn’t want XiaoYu to get dragged into everything. The complex human intentions would bring untold harm to XiaoYu.

The white lights signalling a Return Scroll’s use flash by and the herd of Peco Peco slowly dispersed, along with the Elder. Once the game’s refresh wipes away the footprints, it would appear as if no one was ever here.

The air nearby twisted and turned, and an assassin slowly appeared out of thin air. LittleZhuGe glanced at where the party was before they disappeared, then he glanced at the public announcement hanging up in the air. He let out a smile.

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GC: Chapter 28

28. Birthday Party Meeting

JingYuan nodded once more.

“Alright. I’ll look at the dates and help you choose one. Have you any thoughts on the venue? A hotel?” Ma said.

“Thanks for helping out. No matter how hard we think, we’ll never think of everything,” JingYuan replied.

Ma then remembered JingYuan parents are gone. No one will be helping him with his marriage. At that, her heart ached.

“Okay,” she said, “Count on me. You kids don’t need to worry too much about it.”

The Bai family only let JingYuan leave after he stayed for dinner. YiHan didn’t know he got through the night. His entire being was stiff. He didn’t even remember what he had for dinner. Luckily, everyone was too busy with the happy event to pay attention to how weird he was acting.

Only JingYuan was paying attention to him the whole time. But JingYuan thought it was all because YiHan was angry at him and didn’t want to talk to him. Bitterness swelled in JingYuan.

***

Three days later, the old Mr Yan of the great property shark of the city, the Yan family, had his 66th birthday celebration. The family head, Yan Cheng, hosted a grand ball at the Yan family manor. As it was a birthday party for the old Mr Yan, everyone who was anyone was invited. The Bai family was also invited. Not only were the parents invited, but Yan, XueQing and their youngest son, YiHan, were invited as well.

YiHan didn’t want to go at first, but a mother knows her son best. Ma’s sharp intuition sensed the sorrow hiding behind her young son’s smile lately. She felt that it must be because of the tense situation going on between him and JingYuan. The last time JingYuan was in their home, she forgot about it due to her daughter’s engagement. This was the perfect chance to let them meet again. Perhaps they can make up? After all, JingYuan’s going to be part of their family soon. Any grudges should be cleared up as soon as possible.

Even if that can’t be done, it could act as trip out for relaxation, right?

So, she did her best to prepare clothes for her youngest son and pushed him out the door.

Upper-class society gatherings are all the same. Ladies in extravagant gowns. Deals over wine and champagne. A genteel mask over everyone’s faces. Polite, respectful, lively and peaceful. The old Mr Yan’s face was red with happiness and smilingly accepted everyone’s blessings.

A crowd of men surround Bai FuRen. As one of the richest men in the city, there were plenty who wish to network with him. Everyone knew that the Bai family treasured their precious youngest son. They praised and flattered YiHan to no ends. All of the Bai family members were beaming so much they glowed like stars in the night.

YiHan stood beside his family with a slight smile on his face. Polite and humble. Upon noticing his understanding appearance, his family was prouder than ever. Even the ever-calm Yan couldn’t help chuckling.

Yan was young and capable. He was the confirmed heir to the Bai family. He had a good body and a good face. The classic golden bachelor. This was already enough to make all the girls’ hearts pound for him. Now, with this constant stream of pheromones being released, from what YiHan could see, the majority of the girls in tiny elegant dresses were already in love with his older brother.

YiHan sighed internally. Girls these days were just as fierce as tigers. However, he didn’t know that all these girls were currently fantasising about him in their hearts: He’s so cute! Just too cute! I really want to wrestle him into my arms and ruffle that hair of his!

Just then, a commotion arose at the doors. YiHan looked up. Ah, JingYuan’s arrived. He was also one of the hottest men in the city. He was on a higher tier than Yan. After all, Bai Yan was just the heir to the Bai family. Mu JingYuan had been the head of the Mu family for years.

JingYuan walked into the hall. He smiled and greeted the crowd before running straight for the old Mr Yan. When he passed by the Bai family, he looked long and hard into YiHan’s eyes. YiHan looked away and hid from JingYuan’s gaze out of reflex.

Translator’s Note:

Glowed like stars: The phrasing used here is “they grinned so much they were like blooming flowers”. There are many interpretations as to how this phrase came about. The common ones are a) it is linked to the idiom “flowers bloomed in frenzy”, which meant one was very happy, and b) a happy smile is like a blooming flower, radiant and eye-catching.


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LC: Chapter 34

34. Side Quest

If you had to mention something exciting about this generation other than its advanced technology, then the one thing that had everyone jealous was the flexible work and study hours. If there’s something that needs to be done, you did it. If not, you relax.

Thus, this beautiful Monday morning was not spent hurriedly rushing for the bus with a slice of bread in the mouth. A group of humans spent it continuing their carefree adventure.

They’d actually departed bright and early that morning. They were hoping to find somewhere to hide from the wind and sand before 8 am.

“The game must be bored to death to make us go through two rounds of hurricanes each day,” CopperPlate commented with a pout.

“It’s so you all know the importance of protecting the environment. It’s better than it being random.”

“True.” CopperPlate didn’t want to be buried in the sands in the middle of nowhere without any warning.

“Once we reach the rocky area, there’ll be caves galore for us to hide in. Haha.” Below_The_Moon gave the still-unhappy CopperPlate a pat.

As they chatted, the sands below their feet turned harder and harder. They were approaching the rocky and equally-barren region.

“The hint’s changed.” Ever since the first change to the mission’s description, I_Am_A_Poor_Man’s duties were analyse the map, hand out directions, plus an additional duty – paying attention to the mission’s description and hints. Hence, when the golden sands were all replaced by yellow mounds of rocks, the game stopped making the party despair. The quest’s hint finally changed.

[In a cave not far away to the west.]

“It went from farther off to not far away. Looks like victory’s right ahead of us.”

“Don’t celebrate just yet. It might not end with just that.” Chrysanthemum solemnly splashed a bucket of cold water over everyone. She didn’t think she’d be the jinx this time.

The party looked at the time. It’s nearly 8 am. Upon finding a large and rather secure-looking cave, the party settled in and prepared themselves for a break.

“Let’s all log off for breakfast. Deal with your personal issues. We’ll meet here before 10. Chief, you’re still in charge of protecting LuckyCat…Yup, that’s all,” I_Am_A_Poor_Man said.

As the other party members logged off one by one, XiaoYu took out his carrots. He was about to continue his career of imitating a rabbit crunching down on carrots, when a hand suddenly appeared before his eyes and pressed the hand with his carrot down.

“It’s not healthy just eating carrots all the time. Eat this.” It was the third time Mr HereticKing saw those carrots. He couldn’t resist stretching out the hand of justice. The other hand plucked the scorpion feast from yesterday out of his Inventory. (When Poor_Man observed Chief liking them, he cooked a few more to stock up.)

“No need. It’s all the same…”

“Behave. Put those carrots away.” XiaoYu was about to continue saying they’re just numbers. Nutrition and health weren’t involved at all. However, he was quickly interrupted by HereticKing. While the other sounded like he was coaxing a child, XiaoYu somehow felt an unseen vibe he couldn’t really put a name to.

“Okay.” In the end, XiaoYu decided to give in.

“Is it tasty?”

“Yes.”

“Aark?” The gentle and tranquil meal was interrupted by a jarring voice.

They looked up to find a Peco Peco standing at the cave’s entrance. While its feathers were being thrown about by the hurricane winds into a mess, it tilted its head and stared at XiaoYu…the scorpion dish in XiaoYu’s hands.

HereticKing swiftly took up his sword and moved XiaoYu behind him. While he stood before XiaoYu, protecting him, he was curious as to where this Peco Peco came from. It shouldn’t spawn here. The Peco Peco region was far away from them.

“Ark! Aark! Arrk! Ark…” The Peco Peco didn’t attack. All it did was flap its wings about and squawked nonstop at them.

[Peco Peco Guard Leader: Brave humans, you have taught those despicable scorpions a good lesson. The Peco Peco tribe thanks you for your help.]

A dialogue box appeared before XiaoYu and HereticKing. It was most likely a translation of the Peco Peco’s words.

“Ding. Congratulations, Players LuckyCat, HereticKing, for completing the mission ‘Teach the despicable scorpions a lesson’ from the quest Escort the brave Peco Peco egg back to its village. EXP +30,000. Crystal Coins +3.”

Right after the game notification rang out, the Level Up aura appeared several times on XiaoYu. The 30,000 experience points might just be a minor jump in the percentages, but to the low-levelled XiaoYu, it was levelling up after levelling up. His original Level 33 transformed into Level 36.

The two looked at each other. They completed a side quest just like that? Also…just where did this “mission” come from?

“Aark! Arrk! Ark!…”

[Peco Peco Guard Leader: Brave humans, you have obtained the Peco Peco tribe’s approval. The Elders wish to meet with you.]

“Ding. Players LuckyCat, HereticKing, do you accept the mission: ‘Meet the Elders’ of Escort the brave Peco Peco egg back to its village?

“Accept it.” While HereticKing didn’t know where this side quest came from, but it was certainly related to the main questline and the rewards are quite nice. He didn’t hesitate at all and selected “Accept”.

When the Peco Peco in the cave saw both humans accepted the mission, it squawked at them again before stumbling through the sand hurricanes.

“What now?” XiaoYu looked down at the half-eaten scorpion dish and looked back at HereticKing. It was obvious he’d yet to completely digest the sudden development.

“Continue eating.” There was no time limit anyway. They didn’t need to follow that Peco Peco away. The current session of hurricanes looked worse than the hurricanes in the sandy regions. The smart thing to do would be to not leave.

*******

“What? You guys completed a side quest just by eating a meal?” When the rest of the party logged on, everyone was curious as to why the game told them of a side quest being shared with them. Once they heard XiaoYu’s explanation, the shock they felt was greater.

“Aargh! How can you be so lucky? With a simple trip, you discover a S-rank quest. A simple meal and you’ve completed a side quest,” said CopperPlate as he knelt in a corner, depressed and drawing circles.

“Ah. What a pity we were offline. We didn’t get any of the quest’s rewards.”

“It shouldn’t affect the main questline. Alright. Everyone’s here. Let’s go.” Chrysanthemum gave the dejected CopperPlate a pat and buffed everyone.

“The description changed.” A mere five minutes after they left the cave, I_Am_A_Poor_Man spoke up, reminding everyone to look at their Quest tabs.

[In a nearby cave to the west.]

“Looks like we’re getting closer to our goal.” Even without I_Am_A_Poor_Man’s reminder, everyone could feel it. That’s because groups of Peco Peco began to appear within their sight.

“These should be the guards. Do we need to kill them?” Below_The_Moon prepared his bow and arrows, then turned to look at HereticKing for his opinion.

“No. We’ve got their approval. They shouldn’t attack us.” Even the Peco Peco Guard Leader didn’t attack them. These guards shouldn’t be hostile to them.

Reality proved that HereticKing’s deduction was correct. When the Peco Peco Guards first noticed the group of players, they were very aggressive. They fiercely flapped their wings and charged at them. However, when they were 20 meters away from them, they suddenly stopped, turned away and continued waddling by.

The gang continued on without any issues. The Peco Peco Guards even moved away and left them a path ahead. The party was even more certain that victory was right ahead.

At the entrance of a huge cave was a group of Peco Pecos who stopped the party in their tracks. The Peco Peco standing at the front of the formation took a few steps forward and started squawking at the humans.

[Peco Peco Guard Leader: Brave humans, we’ve been waiting for your arrival. Please come in.]

“Ding. Party Pilgrimage West has obtained the right to enter the Peco Peco Cave.”

“I’m guessing if Chief and Lucky hadn’t accidentally completed that side quest, this Guard Leader would likely make us to go back and teach those despicable scorpions to gain their approval,” slowly said I_Am_A_Poor_Man as he rubbed his chin in thought. Don’t be fooled by his usual tomfoolery. He’s very serious when it came to collecting and analysing information.

“Thank the heavens. We don’t need to walk any more for no reason. But if we didn’t complete that quest, can’t we just force our way through?” CopperPlate asked.

“Ice. Look at their stats.” An idea suddenly popped into HereticKing’s mind.

“Sense Monster.” This was a special analysing skill all Wizards have. Based on how proficient they were, this skill could help the caster understand the basic details of a monster like its level, health, experience and so on (it might not reveal everything), without the monster noticing. However, it cannot analyse monsters which have a higher level than the caster.

“Ding. Peco Peco Guard. Level 80. HP: 20,000. EXP: ???.”
“Ding. Peco Peco Guard Leader. Level 90 (Elite). HP: ???. EXP: ???.”

Two types of monsters were analysed in one go and two notifications popped up in every party member’s U.I. Except for XiaoYu wo didn’t really understand the average stats of the desert zone, everyone was shocked to say the least.

“Gods. Aren’t Peco Pecos usually Levels 35 to 45? It’s a Level 90 Elite. That’s the equivalent of a Level 100 mob.” CopperPlate was glad they didn’t force their way in. He might not be able to break through a Level 90 Elite’s defences.

“We were careless. They looked exactly like the Peco Pecos from before, but we didn’t think there’d be a huge level difference. No wonder this hidden quest’s requirements were so vague. It meant this quest could be easy or hard. If we were too lazy to run back and help them teach the scorpions a lesson, the one who’d be taught a lesson might be us,” I_Am_A_Poor_Man deducted.

“But I’d never heard of Peco Pecos being Level 80 or higher.” The curious kitty CopperPlate’s question time had arrived.

“All along this journey, we’ve disproven a lot of the information we had. First, there were the Mukas who’d pretend to be the average cacti. Then, the scorpions who’d bury themselves in sand and ambush players. A Peco Peco being above Level 80’s rather normal really.”

“Anyways, let’s head in first and see what’s going on.” HereticKing waited and listened before concluding everything at the appropriate time. The group of Peco Pecos before them had opened up a path for them some time now. If they didn’t go in, things might change.

No matter how much they discuss, nothing would really be concluded. Investigating and exploring all new and strange phenomenon was the specialty of Asgard Online.

It wasn’t a difficult or harsh path inside the cave. Just one path going straight down to the end. In the deepest cavern sat two Peco Pecos. These must be the Elders.

“Ding. Party Pilgrimage West has completed the mission: ‘Meet the Elders’ of Escort the brave Peco Peco egg back to its village. EXP +50,000. Crystal Coins +20.”

“Tsk-tsk. As expected of a S-rank. Even a side quest’s reward has crystal coins.” It must be known that most quest rewards only give out 1-digit amounts of gold coins. Only the server-wide Level 100 Quest gave out crystal coins. Even then, they were only in single digits.

“Aark. Arrk. Ark…Arrk! Ark. Aark…”

[Peco Peco Elder: Brave humans, we’ve waited a long time for you. Ever since our king passed away two years ago, the Peco Peco tribe has been on a downhill path…]

The Elder blabbed on for ten whole minutes about the history of the Peco Peco tribe. Only then did the humans realise there was a Boss Peco Peco, but their king died two years ago. The game had only been out for over a year, so players all didn’t know. Species without a king would have their status and power drastically reduced. Slowly, the scorpions snatched away all their territory and they were forced to move to this place where the winds were fiercer than before. The weak citizens could not survive in such horrendous situations, so the low-levelled Peco Pecos would roam about in the area players recognised as the Peco Peco region. The Peco Pecos there risk being stung to death time after time.

“No wonder. I always felt there were too few Peco Peco spawns. I thought it was because the game didn’t want players to obtain mounts so easily, so the developers tuned the spawns down.”

“But that’s very strange. No one’s ever seen a scorpion in the Peco Peco zone before.”

“Probably because the game never placed players between the two tribes’ war before. Think. The tiniest scorpion is already Level 60. Players aiming to catch Peco Pecos are all before their Second Job. If scorpions did spawn there, let’s all forget about trying to catch a mount.”

“That’s true.”

[Peco Peco Elder: …Now, our new king has returned. But we don’t have the strength to take back our territory. Humans, I have a favour to ask of you. Please help us kill the Scorpion King. The Peco Pecos would never forget the deeds you’ve done for us.]

“Ding. Party Pilgrimage West, do you accept the mission: ‘Retaking the Hometown’ of Escort the brave Peco Peco egg back to its village?”

“What else? We’re already here. Of course we’d accept.”

“Scorpion King. If I’m not wrong, that’s a Level 90 Boss. There are about 30 Level 60 tiny scorpions around it.” I_Am_A_Poor_Man understood all monsters, especially the bosses, as well as the back of his hand.

“This boss existed before. There shouldn’t be anything weird or strange going on with it.” Everyone felt like the constant subversion of previous experiences have reached an uncontrollable level.

“If there’s anything strange, it’s where we’d find it. I remember it being deep within the desert. It’s a few days’ journey away from the Peco Peco region. Now, the location we’re given is just north of the Peco Peco zone. It’s at the border between the Ant region and the Stone Giants.”

“I didn’t think this escort quest would be that complicated. But we’ve really just went through an entire chain of events. Then, there should just be the last Elite or Boss fight and it’ll end.”

“Let’s go.” Once the discussion was over, the party turned and prepared to leave the cave. Ice_For_Miles glanced at the two Peco Peco Elders who didn’t look any different from the Peco Pecos outside. After some hesitation, he decided to throw out a Sense at them.

“Ding. Peco Peco Elder. Level ???. HP: ???. EXP: ???.”

Everyone stumbled. Mommy, they’re monsters higher than Level 97. And they’re elites! No one can defeat them!


Translator’s Note:

Talking? Who’s talking?: The author has a bad habit of not writing down who’s replying most of the time. Sometimes, it can be deduced. Sometimes, it’s so generic it could be anyone else in the party. If you start wondering why it’s hard to follow some conversations closely, you know why.

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