ESP: Chapter 97 – Cursed Domain

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Chapter 97 – Cursed Domain (1)

 

[Hyrkan]

– Level : 122

– Class : Necromancer

– Title : 66

– Stats : Strength(1351)/Stamina(598)/Intelligence(789)/Magic Power(883)

 

He was checking his Stats through the Hologram Window, and one side of his lips started to droop.  He frowned as if he was upset.  At a glance, one could tell something had soured his mood.

Hyrkan walked towards a densely wooded area as he continued to frown.  Hyrkan started moving between the trunks of the trees when he suddenly disappeared.

It happened 10 seconds after Hyrkan disappeared.

“Uh? Where is he?”

“What? Wasn’t he here until a moment ago?  Why can’t we see him?”

“Search carefully! He was here a moment ago!”

The three Users started to look around the the location where Hyrkan had gone missing.  

Two of the Users was wearing armor, and one User was wearing a priest’s robe.  This was a party made out of two Swordsman and a Priest.

They weren’t wearing particularly expensive items.  It was a mixture of Rare and Normal Rank Items.  There wasn’t any uniformity in the Items they had on.  This was especially true for the armors.  The two users looked unsightly in their armors.

Hyrkan was looking down at the Users from atop a tree branch, and he still had an unpleasant smile on his face.  As he was smiling, Hyrkan took a handful of Skeleton Fragments out of his pocket, and he threw it towards the ground.

Too-too-toohk!

The Skeleton Fragments rained down like hail, and one of them hit a User’s helm.  

Toohng!

It lightly hit his helm.

“Huh?”

A dull sound rang out inside his helm, and the User lifted his head up in confusion.  When he looked up, he saw a large object falling from the sky.  That was all he saw.

Poohk!

A white sword pierced through the helm to lodge itself in between the User’s eyes.  Of course, he didn’t see the sword strike.

“Uh.  What the hell?”

It sounded as if the User had suffered an accident instead of being attacked. The words that slipped out the User’s mouth was something one would say when one suffered a mishap.

The person directly involved didn’t react properly. However, his two companions had the proper reaction.

“It’s the Hahoe Mask!”

“Shit!”

Accompanying the shouts, one of the two remaining party members swung his sword towards Hyrkan. Hyrkan had just landed on the floor and his sword was still stuck between the User’s eyes.

Shweek!  

Hyrkan easily avoided the horizontal sword strike.  The attack wasn’t that fast, and it was lacking in terms of technique. Moreover, he hadn’t used any Skills.  The attack was like child’s play to Hyrkan.

The sword, which had lost its target, immediately hit the other party member, who had been standing next to Hyrkan.

Ggahhng!

It was a joke of a sword, but the User, who had swung the sword, had a decent amount of Strength Stat.  The sword strike immediately put a dent in his comrade’s armor.

“Ooh-ahk!”

The blinded User finally reacted in a way befitting the situation.

“I…I’m sorry!”

“Sorry? Why the hell did you attack me?  What’s going on right now?”

“The Hahoe Mask was above our heads!”

“Really? Where is he right now?”

“He’s next to you!”

“What?”

The blinded user became frightened, and he started to show vigilance against his surrounding.  Of course, he had the Blind status, so he couldn’t see anything.

“Cure! Someone Cure me!”

“Yes.  All right!”

Hyrkan stared blankly at their antics as he stood several steps away.

The scene of the rag tag group struggling didn’t amuse Hyrkan.  It actually made him depressed.

The three of them took advantage of Hyrkan’s consideration.  They were afforded a brief respite, so the three of them got into formation.  Then they shouted towards Hyrkan.

“Hyrkan! We challenge you!”

Hyrkan didn’t answer their shouted words.  He didn’t even get into his fighting stance.

The Skeleton Warriors, who had already formed, moved instead of Hyrkan.

“Uh? Uh!”

The situation had already come to an end.  The five Skeleton Warriors wore the Poison Mink fur armor, and the monsters were too powerful for the half-assed 3 man party to handle.

Hyrkan didn’t even need to participate in the battle.  It wasn’t worth it, and the situation resolved itself in a dull manner.  Hyrkan cut off the wrist watch from the User’s corpses. He mumbled to himself in a brusque manner.

‘This is the tenth group.’

The view on his Waltz video had broke through the 70 million mark. The view count wasn’t showing any signs of slowing down.  The ripple effect caused by the video was currently getting larger.

A snowball was rolling down a snow-covered mountain.

The Waltz video was a big hit, and of course, it had been mentioned in the media. The media attention would once again focus the public’s interest on the video.  It basically started a feedback loop.

In this process, the Hahoe Mask’s worth naturally rose, and when his worth rose, the number of groups hunting for his head increased.

Of course, no one would give a reward for taking down Hyrkan.  Warlord didn’t have such a system.

Still, logic didn’t necessarily pass muster in this game.  Why were so many people trying to catch Hyrkan?  Currently, Hyrkan wasn’t suspicious of the situation. He just considered it to be an unwelcoming situation.

‘There really are a lot of weird bastards that want to pick a fight with me.’

In the past, he would have smiled at the watches that automatically dropped into his lap. He would have cut off the wrists of customers, and he would have considered their watches to be a donation.

Thank  you very much!

He would have thanked them.

However, the current Hyrkan wasn’t the past Hyrkan.

‘They think I’m fair game?  Is that what’s going on?’

Currently, Hyrkan couldn’t make a big profit by taking watches away from mediocre users. It would be more beneficial if he could kill one more monster than wasting his time on these Users.

Moreover, the fact that the mediocre Users were targeting Hyrkan was sure evidence that Hyrkan was being seen as an easy target.

Of course, it isn’t as if there weren’t any reasons for this to be true.  First, Hyrkan’s guild affiliation wasn’t formally known.  He was unaffiliated.

The fact that he was unaffiliated meant Users won’t have to worry about a possible backlash.

Even if Hyrkan was amazing, he was soloing this game.  For Warlord Users, a high head count was the ultimate trump card.  

There wasn’t anything that could beat sheer number of Users!

This was a law akin to law of gravity to Warlord Users.

In the Warlord User’s minds, Hyrkan was someone that could be killed if the numerical advantage could be pressed.

The bigger problem for Hykran was the fact that there was another faction, who thought along the same line as the normal Users.

Guilds!

Other groups were looking down on Hyrkan more so than the Users.

‘If I idle here, I’ll get swept up into a dog fight, and I might be put down like a dog.’

He was in danger

He could power through here, and he could create a stronghold for himself.  On the other hand, if he wasted his time here, he wouldn’t be able close the distance with the frontrunners.  He would be stuck without being able to improve on his standing.

Hyrkan was well aware of the danger, so this was why Hyrkan wasn’t in a good mood.

While Hyrkan had an ill-humored expression on his face, he took out a Gem.  He melted the Gem using Clay Play.  When the melted Gem reached the floor, it immediately transformed into a long-legged Lizard Golem.

Hyrkan rode on the back of the Lizard.  He spoke as he dug his heels into the side of Lizard.

“Drive Mode, destination Missandra’s Castle.”

After receiving its order, the Lizard Golem started to run quickly.  Hyrkan opened his Hologram Window, and he replayed a video.

– We are currently entering the second phase.  There hasn’t been any casualties yet.  There is a 98% chance that our plan will succeed.

It was the Stormhunter’s Boss Raid video.

Warlord Users watched successful Raid videos, so they could review and make preparation. It was impossible to learn everything through actual experience.

‘I have to study hard.’

Of course, he had to do more to become stronger.

‘If I progress in the Main Scenario Quest, I’ll be able to gain a lot of Chronicle Unique Items.’

If one wanted to get strong in Warlord, one needed Items with powerful Options.

‘I have to lay the foundation, so I can get up to the level of the Ranked Users.’

He had to lay down these foundations, so he could become truly powerful as he leveled up.

‘Just wait a little bit for me.  When I level  up into the Rankings, I’ll tie those, who dared to touch me, including the guilds.  I’ll cut all their hands and necks.’

Hyrkan knew better than anyone on how he could get over his current difficulties.

Hyrkan headed towards the Cursed Domain.

 

 

 

Apollo had a corpulent body that made one sympathize with the armor he wore.  A User wearing a robe approached him.

“The Hahoe Mask is said to be moving towards the southeast..”

“Is that so?”

“While he is moving, he has taken down a significant number of users.”

“Is that so?”

Apollo’s answer was very short. When he heard Apollo’s answer, the User named Jiang carefully brought up a question.

“So why do we have to pay so much attention to the Hahoe Mask?”

Jiang had become an officer of the Apollo guild, so he could receive the crumbs off of Apollo’s table.  In truth, he didn’t care what Apollo did if he continued to receive the crumbs off of Apollo’s table. The other officers didn’t question Apollo’s decisions.  They just did what he asked, then they did what they wanted behind his back.

However, it was hard to understand Apollo’s decision.  He couldn’t hold back his curiosity.  This was why Jiang had posed his question.  Moreover, Jiang was the first one to ask Apollo a question amongst the executive members of the Apollo guild.

Apollo opened his narrow eyes when he heard Jiang’s question.  If someone saw him right now, one would think he still had his eyes closed.

Jiang added more details to his words.

“To be truthful, the Hahoe Mask did kill our guild members.  However, it wasn’t an egregious enough offense to invest this much resource into the revenge?  This is especially true if we consider the amount of money we invested into the Red Lake incident….  It was a large sum of money, but what benefits did we gain?”

“Hoong.”

Apollo let out a loud snort at his words.  Accompanying the snort, Apollo spoke what was inside his mind.  This was the first time he had done so.

“I don’t care about bastards like the Hahoe Mask, who shine for a brief moment.”

Jiang’s eyes narrowed.

Apollo was a greedy and vindictive pig.  Still, his intelligence wasn’t on the level of a pig.

He was capable of using his head.  

No, he thought in shrewd ways when needed.  He had a lot of greed and obsessions.  It was akin to a starving pig with food in front of it.  The pig sometimes came up with ingenious ideas to get to the food.

It seemed this was the moment where Apollo had come up with an ingenious idea.

“Listen to me closely, Jiang.  Currently, we have a hold over Heh-bibin.”

Jiang nodded his head.

Apollo had contracted out the hunting of the Hahoe Mask to Heh-bibin, and Heh-bibin had failed.  The funny part was that Hahoe Mask didn’t know Heh-bibin and Big Smile had targeted him.  However, Apollo knew the truth.

Moreover, the weapons that was borrowed from Big Smiles was used in hunting the Hahoe Mask.  The Hahoe Mask also didn’t know about this.  Apollo was the only one, who knew about it.

This was Heh-bibin’s weak point.

“Moreover, the Big Smile isn’t in a good state right now.  Aren’t they?”

“That’s true.”

On top of that, the Big Smiles guild wasn’t on good standing amongst the 30 great guilds.  Recently, they got some breathing room, but it wasn’t as if they had made an official truce with the Triple Wing. There were plenty of reasons to believe that the war would continue sooner or later.

The Big Smiles had a stubborn problem.

They lacked killer contents.

The guilds that fought for the top spots amongst the 30 great guilds all had unique contents.  This was their strong point.

The guilds like Red Bulls and Stormhunters showed overwhelming skills in Raids.  The Hydra Guild showed the uncanny ability of progressing in the Main Scenario Quest, and any Quests related to it.  In the case of the Sweepers guild, they had a unique content called the Monster Sweep.

However, the Big Smiles guild was a bit different.  They were a large guild, yet they weren’t really good at anything.

To be blunt, if they weren’t a guild made out of mostly Chinese Users, they wouldn’t even be in the 30 great guilds.  The market called China had elevated them to their current status.

Basically, they couldn’t get out of this with their own efforts.  If they can’t get out of their troubles using their own efforts, then they could be influenced by outside forces.

“Perhaps?”

When he heard the story, Jiang had a thought.

“Yes. I’m not aiming for scraps like the Hahoe Mask.  I want an executive seat in the Big Smiles guild.  That is what I want.”

Apollo started to laugh.

“I’ve already finished my negotiations with Brooks. Brooks will look out for my back now.”

Apollo was aiming for an executive seat inside Big Smiles.  Moreover, he had won over one of Big Smile’s executives. If Apollo fulfilled certain conditions, Brooks was willing to bring in Apollo into the Big Smiles guild.  From Brooks’ perspective, there was no downside in having an amicable relationship with Apollo, who had a stout background.

The problem was Brooks’ accident had caused a war between Triple Wings and Big Smiles.  This in turn weakened Brooks, but on the other hand, it had elevated Heh-bibin’s influence.

In such a situation, what if one knew about Heh-bibin’s weak point?

Jiang was impressed.

‘His head works really well in certain situations.’

He had thought Apollo only cared about greed and money.  He never expected him to come up with such a plan.

At the same time, greed took hold inside Jiang.

‘It’s a good thing I asked him about it.  This opportunity is a jackpot.’

If Apollo could become an executive of the Big Smiles guild, the Apollo guild would be absorbed into the Big Smiles guild.  The executive members of the Apollo guild would be treated pretty well inside the Big Smile guild.

If one received preferential treatment from one of the 30 Great guilds, it was akin to making a transition from a civilian to noble status in the middle ages.

Jiang lowered his head.

“As expected of our guild master, the scale of the plot you think about is on a different level.  I thought you had been trying to catch a mouse like the Hahoe Mask.  You planned on using the mouse as bait to capture a whale.”

“Yes. A man like me should fish for a whale instead of a small fish. Isn’t it?”

“You are correct.”

He immediately spat out a flattery.

Apollo had a generous smile on his face as he listened to Jian’s flattery.

 

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19 thoughts on “ESP: Chapter 97 – Cursed Domain” - NO SPOILERS and NO CURSING

  1. Sir NaughtyOtter can I please request that you fixed the format of Magic power? Because in Mobile Version, It went beyond the line because its fitting all of the letters in one sentence… thanks!! And thanks for the chapter

  2. Never,NEVER underestimate an human.
    We are all pretty crazy.
    Looking down on others for no reason, given the other slapped you,is the summum of the stupidity.

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