Extra 01. The Confessions of an Assassin
I am KillerA. That’s my username.
My goal entering this game was simple. Train hard and earn money through assassination.
At first, I didn’t like showing my name. After all, having a grey name on the field so very problematic. It took 10 minutes just to re-hide one’s name. Once I killed anyone, my name would turn yellow, red, then black. Even if I hid my name, the spot where my name should’ve been would glow in the same colour as my nametag to remind surrounding players I was a murderer.
Using my excellent mind, I instantly knew how I could silently kill other people with the Assassin’s special Cloaking skill. (For more details on the skill, see Chapter 48.)
It was obvious the players of this game had yet to realise how evil this skill could be. Thus, many of them would be swarmed by a horde of monsters and given a free ride back to the city while still confused as to what was going on. My mission is to de-Cloak and pick up the items dropped by the victim when the monsters are too busy to notice me.
It’s a tried-and-tested method to assassinate others without exposing my name or actual face. While I’d be betting on the small chance for items to drop at death, but it proved to be a rather fruitful harvest after a few more tries.
Unfortunately, it was used too many times. Some of my fellow assassins started noticing and imitating it. More and more discussion forums popped up on the forums. For some time, the reputation of the Assassin job was very low. The moment an assassin was spotted, all players would skirt far away from them. Some of the foolish copycats didn’t even know to hide their faces. In the end, their victims took pictures of their faces and their names were eventually found and added to a blacklist. As soon as anyone on that list appeared out on the field, they’d be surrounded by a mob of players.
Naturally, with my careful nature, I wouldn’t be found out. However, this method can’t work now. Since I can’t assassinate people in secret, I’ll do it out in the open.
I started targeting players who had rather nice equipment but played badly. I’d pretend to be passing by behind them, then I’d nonchalantly ambush them from behind. With my special buff, a critical hit was enough to take off over half of their HP.
Then, my name would be exposed to the other players. Thankfully, the Assassin’s outfit also came with a face mask. In my efforts in being the best nobody I could be, I had tweaked my appearance to be as average as possible. My gears were all selected according to what most people wear. Beneath that facade though, every gear I had was refined and slotted with the best cards possible for additional attack damage. Overall, once I’m buried among the crowds of the city, no one can find me.
Time passed and the benefits of having exposed my name started showing up. Players started messaging me, asking me to help them murder other players.
Of course, to ensure the requests were true, I’d be paid before I did the deed. I encountered some difficulties at first. Several of my deals came to nothing. But soon, my reputation grew and someone would always be ready to send some business my way.
In spite of all that, I must’ve forgotten to check my horoscope this morning before I left my room. It’s a day bad for assassination. That’s not to say I didn’t succeed in my mission. My success rate is very high unless I forgot to scope my target out properly and stumble upon a secretly great player. After killing another player, my name would be exposed for 10 minutes. It was a bad time to be going back to the city so I thought to just bunker down during that time. To my surprise, I bumped into someone.
“So you’re KillerA,” spoke the male healer. He looked about the same level as I was and had roughly the same gears.
“…” My one rule is that I would never kill healers unless they are overly arrogant. I’m not afraid of the Healers Alliance. They’re just too weak. It would be too boring.
I turned around, thinking to leave, but then he kept bothering me.
“You’re a professional assassin, right? Are you interested in joining a guild?”
“…” He was really stubborn, but it wasn’t over the line. I had no need to argue so much with weaklings.
“I want to start a guild for assassins. Come help me,” he said.
“…!” Was something wrong with him? A person in the weakest Job in the game actually wanted to start up a guild for assassins. It’d be more likely to turn into a guild for being killed instead.
“Don’t believe me? How about this? If I can defeat you, you’ll help me. Okay?” he pushed.
“Do you want to die?” I shot back. Was this a joke? Even with Holy Light, the chant time was long enough for me to keep interrupting him. If he wanted to defeat me, he’d have to start over in another Job.
“I’m only asking for you to help me. Well? Want to bet on it?”
“Fine. Come.” Let’s see what he had to offer.
“Can you not move? I’ll punch you once. No magic.”
“…okay.” Without magic? Is he mad? With how weak healers were, I didn’t care.
“Wait. Let me get ready. Heh! Heerh!”
“…” I watched as he lowered himself into the horse stance, his palms pushing out against the air before him. Suddenly, I had an urge to get far away from him. Just what was wrong with me? Why was I fooling around with some delusional healer?
“I’m coming! Haarh!”
What the frick! Why am I flat out on the floor?
“As I expected, I defeated you. It was a bet. Join my guild,” the man said.
The dead can’t move or speak. All they can do was wait for a living player to save them or just return back to the city. But I can’t die without knowing what happened! I stared right at him. If I could move, I would’ve grabbed him by the collar, shook him and roared at him. What kind of healer are you?
“You even dropped some equipment. Let me see. This pair of boots is rather average. Who knew you’d actually they’d have such a high refinement? You even have two cards slotted in them.” As I had just killed a player, my luck hit rock bottom and it was very easy to drop any items at death. He picked up the boots I dropped and turned them around in his hands. He even criticised them.
Unfortunately, all I could do was just grit my teeth in anger.
“Join my guild. Oh, right. You can’t move now.” The healer then stuffed an Yggdrasil Leaf into my mouth.
Yggdrasil Leaf: It can revive fallen players and restore half of their HP and MP.
I dragged myself up from the floor and downed some potions to bring my HP and MP back to full.
“What kind of healer are you?” I shouted. I brought the fantasy I had just now into reality.
“If you join my guild, I’ll tell you,” the healer said, giving me the typical tiny grin that exposed eight pearly teeth.
“…” My fists itched to punch that smile off his face. But I had been the one underestimating his strength. Now, I didn’t dare to act rashly.
“Ah, right. Here are your boots.”
“…!” Perhaps he wasn’t as bad as I thought. What kind of player would return a killer’s dropped gear after they died?
“Ding. Player aStrangeFlower invited you to join the guild, Assassin Gods. Would you like to accept?” A system notification tab popped up before my eyes. I resisted the strong impulse to gripe about the names, but after some reconsideration, I decided to accept it. I had to uphold my reputation.
“Great. I’ve found my first guild member. I’ve got motivation to work now.”
I opened up the Guild tab and saw there I was really the only one in the guild other than the weird Guild Leader. Was it too late to quit?
“So just what kind of healer are you?” I barked at him. Even if he dumped his points in Strength, he can’t be so powerful as to kill me with his bare hands.
“Oh, I’m one of the hidden Jobs – a Monk. I specialise in Strength.” Healers should at least put some of their points in Intelligence, but this person just loved going against the common meta. All of his stat points went into his Strength and at the Second Job Change, he triggered a hidden Job’s quest.
“Crap…!” There was actually another person with a hidden Job after the Paladin and this person was him! Why wasn’t there a server-wide announcement?
I didn’t actually lose anything by joining the guild. At least I found another use for aStrangeFlower – he had a very widespread information network.
I just needed to mention my next target’s name and within a few hours, he could tell me where the other was. At one point, I had suspected he was a GM, but he just chuckled and kept silent.
Later on, a few more assassins joined the guild. It was only when I asked them did I realise all of them were lured in with the same lie. Slowly, the guild grew and we could accept slightly larger deals, like killing someone back until they were Level 1.
Of course, that was the most severe punishment available in the game. Strang would also lightly interrogate and repeatedly confirm it with the client before accepting the mission. Naturally, it paid the most.
Today, Strange accepted another mission to kill someone back to Level 1 again. To my surprise, it came from the Heretic Demons. I wonder which unlucky player made an enemy of them.
When Strange briefed us about the whole situation, quite a lot of the assassins were shocked. This target was trash. He actually used Taunt to torment a low-levelled healer for hours. Even if the healer did something wrong, the target shouldn’t have used that skill to get back at the other. Was he even a man? Oh, wait. I’ve already called him trash.
I really don’t know where Strange got his information from. He knew every single move of that trash. He could accurately predict from which city the target left, which gate he used and the exact minute he did so. This dramatically sped up our plans. Even if this trash was killed so many times that he was terrified enough to teleport to other cities, we could quickly follow suit.
“Why do you guys even want to kill me?” The trash finally burst out after having been killed for n-times and was about to be killed for the n+1th time.
“Properly think about what you did,” Strange said, walking out from behind a great tree. He cracked his joints while the rest of us simultaneously retreated.
“I didn’t do anything! Who sent you? I’ll pay you double. Go kill them for me!”
“Apologies. We have a reputation to uphold.”
“What kind of crappy reputation? Just how much were you paid? Tell me. I can afford it!”
“I wouldn’t dare to accept money from trash. Come, Xiao-A, grab him. I despise Agility-based players.” I had fought against that nickname for a long time but I eventually gave up.
“What are you doing?”
“Punching you.” Strange huffed out a breath at his fist and got into his stance. “Don’t worry. I’m not like you. I’ll definitely make it quick.”
Yes…the birth of another player dying in confusion. While I was the first sacrifice, the last was not in sight yet.
To be honest, I had been pondering for a long time about why Strange’s information could act so fast. Until, one day, I finally knew why. He was very close to NPCs. Every time a player talked to an NPC, they would get a little bit closer to them. Different NPCs had different amount of Friendliness a player could collect. However, most players would never reach the level Strange was at. That’s because every time he went anywhere, he would talk to every single NPC at the place three times or more. Thus, the NPCs were all happy to chat with him and they would tell him what time a certain player we were looking for would be passing by them. Of course, the NPCs were professional enough not to disclose certain private information about our targets. They would only tell him when they had passed by them. As for how Strange extrapolated the target’s possible location from there, I think even I could’ve done that. After all, there was a level limit to most areas.
My butt hurt for days just so I could unveil this secret. Ugh.
Oh, right. The leader of the Heretic Demons got married recently. His significant other was really the healer in that video on the forums. I wonder if the Heretic Demons were interested in purchasing a package for that idiotic and irrational wizard in the video. Since they’re an old client, Strange might even give them a discount.