Chapter 144 - The Frozen Land (3)
An accident can happen in an instant.
“I accept the guild war!”
Natal was thinking hard to find out Hyrkan's hidden intent. The rest of the guild members felt nervous and threatened by Hyrkan's confidence, which bordered on being arrogant. Apollo didn't bother to think. He felt numb, and he immediately spat out the emotion he was feeling with his words.
He let out a shout of determination, but there was no substance behind it. Apollo's shout was met with a more colder reaction than the blizzard surrounding them. Apollo felt desolate, and this feeling of desolation lasted a quite a long time.
Apollo felt taken aback after he spoke those words. Of course, Apollo wasn't taken aback, because he realized he had a mistake.
‘Why aren't they moving?’
He had given an order, yet no one was doing anything. This was why he was taken aback.
“I accept the guild war.”
With those words, Hyrkan opened his arms wide.
‘Yes, Apollo. I put my trust in you.’
Hyrkan had opened his two arms wide, and he felt like giving a big hug to the the corpulent body of Apollo.
From the perspective of the Big Smiles’ guild members, they could see the armor beneath Hyrkan's white leather fur coat when he spread his arm wide.
Someone swallowed their spit.
It was the armor worn by the White-eyed Knight Argardo, who had terrorized everyone in the great battle. There was no way they could mistake it for some other armor. There was a black colored blot that moved atop the silver armor like a living carp. There was only one such armor in all of Warlord.
Of course, the sword sheath attached to the armor probably held Argardo's sword. It was probably the Crying Sword.
These facts in itself gave them a feeling of intense pressure. The Big Smiles guild members felt overwhelmed, and it started causing them to feel fear.
‘It brings up a bad memory.’
‘Shit. That Item setting is a cheat.’
The Big Smiles guild had also faced Argardo. Most of the members gathered here had participated in the battle with Argardo. None of them directly fought Argardo, but they had seen, felt and heard Argardo's imposing presence.
The Hahoe Mask was wearing Argardo's armor…….
‘I don't want to fight him.’
‘The first ones to attack him will all die.’
Hyrkan was a monster that was much more scarier than most large sized Boss Monsters. How many Users in Warlord would be able to attack Hyrkan unhesitatingly? Moreover, a sacrificial lamb was need in any action they took. No one wanted to volunteer themselves to become the sacrificial lamb.
If one wanted a sacrificial lamb to step forward, one needed leadership and charisma. The leader needed respect from his men. Apollo had none of these traits.
‘They won't attack me?’
At that moment, Hyrkan looked at the frozen Big Smiles guild members, and he turned his back on them.
This was the moment right before the start of a battle.
If this was a battlefield, where one used guns, someone would have already prematurely fired one's gun.
It was a time when the Hahoe Mask and the Big Smiles would exchange killing intent.
Yet Hyrkan chose to turn his back on them? Everyone blankly stared at Hyrkan's back. Hyrkan disappeared into the blizzard. They couldn't see the Skeleton Warriors either.
“What the hell are you guys doing! Get him!”
Apollo once again let out a shout.
“It is an order! Go get the Hahoe Mask! I'll give a penalty to any bastard, who doesn't follow my order!”
At this point, his shouts were more of a threat than an order. The Big Smiles guild members took their time as they moved towards the direction where the Hahoe Mask had disappeared.
Natal let out a bitter laugh when he saw this.
‘Did he plan this out too?’
“Go get his watch.”
At his words, a single User approached Sohank's corpse. The wristwatches of Sohank and Sinclair was untouched.
‘If he took the watches, we could have used it as a pretext.... However, there is no way he would show such a weak point...’
Hahoe Mask hadn't left behind the watches, because he was kind.
From one to ten, all of the Hahoe Mask's actions had a purpose and preparation behind it.
“Are we going to fight?”
They were still not used to this blizzard raging in this world. In such a world, Hyrkan had prepared leather clothes lined with white fur on the outside. The Hahoe Mask had come out of nowhere, but he was prepared to camouflage himself by wearing that color.
Who in their right mind would want to face such an opponent in a battle?
“We are giving up on the Northland exploration.”
Natal was confident that he strategize a win in a battle against the Hahoe Mask. However, he wasn't confident he could win in this particular battlefield.
“We don't have to add stupidity to our incompetence.”
As Natal said those words, he looked at Apollo, who was jumping up and down in anger near Sinclair's body.
‘He wasn't a genius tracker. He was a patsy that was very easy to use.’
Hyrkan didn't particularly like the snowfields. In the past, he had suffered numerous troubles on the snowfield by the Storm hunters.
However, it was a different story if there was a blizzard. The blizzard restricted one's vision, and it dulled one's senses. Moreover, there were various additional penalties when one stepped onto this harsh land...
How many Users in Warlord would able to differentiate Hyrkan’s tracks from the tracks of the Skeletons in such conditions?
Moreover, Hyrkan's Skeleton underlings weren't normal Skeletons. They weren’t just bones. They were Warriors equipped with expensive Items that most normal Users couldn’t even procure.
“Shit! Those are Skeleton Warriors!”
“Be mindful of your surrounding!”
The Strikers and Tankers was carefully following the tracks when they became frightened. It was the moment when their battle with the Skeleton Warriors had started.
“It is an ambush!”
The Skeleton Warriors had been on standby behind them, and they ambushed the Priests and Magicians.
This was the 7th battle that had been conducted abruptly. The score of this battle was 2 vs 10. Ten Skeleton Warriors were crushed, and two Big Smiles guild members suffered a Game Over.
If one went by numbers, it would be a clear victory for them. However, the Big Smiles guild members' faces were frozen like the snow-chilled wind.
“The Priests…… We have one left.”
“One Priest won't be able to cover for all the Users here.”
“We also have only 4 Magicians left.”
Hahoe Mask wasn't amongst any of the enemies they had killed. This fact wouldn't be changed through Magic or even if their Cool Time had been reset. It basically meant they had to fight this battle until their eventual death.
“This is ridiculous.”
A force of almost 30 people was facing off against a single User. This should be ridiculously easy.
However, when they started fighting the Hahoe Mask, they found out that they were the ones that was ridiculously to kill. It felt as if they were the weaker foe that was being dominated.
“What did officer Apollo say?”
“He ranted about catching the Hahoe Mask at all cost.”
“If he wants to catch the Hahoe Mask so bad, he should do it himself. We even had to leave behind a Striker and a Priest to guard....…….”
The weak could only complain when placed in a disadvantageous situation. However, this frozen land didn't even allow them the luxury to complain.
“I'm in Cool Time.”
“Cool Time? I'm about to receive the penalty for the Frostbite!”
“I'm in Cool Time. It is out of my hands!”
They were down to a single Priest. It basically meant the number of Users that could receive the Resistance skill had lessened.
The group had avoided any critical penalties thanks to the Buff Skills laid on them by the Priests. However, now they would have face the true character of this frosty land.
“We'll just freeze to death here.”
If they had a choice, they wanted to run away. However, they were scared of the guild penalties. They couldn't run away. In the end, the only thing they could do was to protect the Priest and Magicians. They moved the Priest and Magicians to the center, and they clustered around each other. That was all they did.
This wasn't a pursuit. They were just slowly meandering from one place to another.
However, the being that found them was far from being a blue bird. It was a Wyvern Fire Golem with flames surrounding it.
“This is crazy!”
“Shield! Use the Shield Magic!”
This was their first time experiencing such an attack, so they didn't know how to react to it.
The Wyvern Fire Golem dived towards the ground, and it immediately exploded. There was only a single Shield Magic active, and it acted as an umbrella that blocked the explosion.
However, the only ones that were able to benefit from the umbrella was 2 Magicians and a Priest.
Unexpectedly, there were no casualties. This was the Fire Golem's special skill. The Kamikaze Explosion skill was powerful, but everyone gathered here were over level 160. Moreover, they were a equipped with decent Item Settings.
However, the problem was their formation. It had crumbled. They had created a formation that would have protected the Magicians and Priest, but now they were all scattered.
“Are you guys ok?”
“I'm all right!”
“Did anyone die? Who's hurt?”
In the midst of the broken formation, the guild members asked each other if they were ok.
The Skeleton Warriors on standby used this moment to throw their Bone Spears with all their might.
“Those are Bone Spears!”
The Big Smiles guild members had been taken aback by the Kamikaze attack. Now they were in a state of panic as Bone Spears flew towards them.
An Ogre Golem, two Skeleton Knights and 15 Skeleton Warriors charged towards this scene of chaos.
This time the Hahoe Mask was in the middle of the group.
In the previous seven ambushes, Hyrkan hadn't appeared. However, he was here now, and it was the surest sign that heralded his victory.
“Why couldn't over twenty of them catch a single Users!”
He received the news of this ridiculous result through messages from his dead guild members. Apollo was was feeling all kinds of emotions. He was feeling rage, dejection, worry, irritation, etc. He was having a hard time maintaining a sane mind.
He was at a higher level than the time he ran a guild named after himself. He was here with a party consisting of almost 30 outstanding Users. He couldn't believe they were being trampled in such a shameful manner.
Moreover, it was done by the Hahoe Mask, who he hated the most. Apollo decided to avoid facing the reality.
“The 30 great guilds aren't that great. How can they get wiped out by one User?”
As he spat out his complaints, Apollo started to back away. A Striker and a Priest had been left behind to protect him. Cho-oohroong yelled out towards Apollo, who had been about to disappear by himself.
“Where are you going?”
“We failed, so why should I stay in this cold place! We are heading back!”
Apollo accepted this battle as a loss. He planned on just leaving this freezing land.
At that moment, Cho-oohroong was about to speak.
‘Isn't this a battle where it'll continue until one side is completely eradicated?’
Hahoe Mask was very clear in his words. This battle won't end until the other side was decimated.
There was no white flags in this. The only way one could signal defeat was through a Game Over.
Yet Apollo was trying to leave this stage right now?
He could try leaving this place. He wouldn't stop Apollo.
However, will the Hahoe Mask really allow Apollo and his guards to retreat so easily?
Cho-oohroong gritted his teeth. If this was the Hahoe Mask he knew, he wasn’t merciful. He hadn't heard a single instance where the Hahoe Mask had shown mercy.
Cho-oohroong's thoughts eventually became reality.
When a news was kept quiet, it usually stayed quiet. However, once a story starts to move, it spreads at an astonishing speed.
The news regarding the fight in the Northland was the same.
The first news to spread was about Hyrdra guild's Northland expedition.
- The Hydra guild is the first to send an expedition to Northland
- Northland? I thought no one could reach there?
- ㄴ They got there by crossing the Terube castle wall.
- ㄴ I guess everyone will be crossing the Terube castle wall now.
Previously, everyone had a lot of interest in the Northland, but they didn't know how to get there.
'As expected of the Hydra guild!'
This was the words spoke by others.
- The Big Smiles guild and the Hydra guild fought for the Northland, and the Big Smiles won.
The next bit of news was immediately released afterwards. This shocking news engulfed all conversations regarding Warlord.
The news of the Hydra and Big Smiles fighting for the rights for the Northland exploration was surprising in itself. However, the fact that the Big Smiles was the victor in the battle was more shocking.
- Sohank lost!
- My god. Who took down Sohank?
- The Big Smiles did it?
Moreover, Sohank was one of the strongest Strikers in Warlord. He was the Second Head of the Hydra guild, and he had lost in a 1on1 battle.
The Big Smiles was considered to be the doormat of the 30 great guilds. One of the critical weakness they had was the fact that they didn't have a powerful ace. The victory of the Big Smiles guild would surely bring big changes to the fate of the Big Smiles guild.
- Sinclair? Who the hell is that?
- It is another new face?
The Big Smiles guild's stock was steeply rising. Most people had guessed that the Northland exploration would be the starting point to the Main Scenario Quest, and the Big Smiles guild had gained the rights to this location.
Moreover, the User that had made this happen was Sinclair. His fame grew. Instead of praise, most Users were feeling nervous at the appearance of such a User.
However, an incident occurred that wiped away this one User's existence off the map.
- The Hahoe Mask fought a guild war with the Big Smiles guild. The Hahoe Mask gained the rights!
- What the hell are you talking about? What do you mean by a guild war?
- Was it a 1on1 battle? Sinclair vs Hahoe Mask?
- ㄴ No. It was 1 vs 30.
- ㄴ One vs 30? Hahoe Mask and 30 Skeletons took down Sinclair?
The Hahoe Mask had become the owner of the Northland.
The Skeleton Warrior holding a bag full of wrist watches, Ingredient Coins and Gems stopped walking.
It had come to a stop, because its owner had come to a stop.
Its owner raised his head, and he looked into the great darkness that could be seen inbetween the blizzard.
The darkness turned out to be a castle wall. It was as if the castle wall was cutting the world in half. It was hard to estimate how long it was. Even the fierce blizzard bowed its head against this castle wall. He raised his head to look up, and it was hard to see where the castle wall ended.
Hyrkan smiled as he saw the castle wall that boasted an overwhelming dignity.
In the end, Hyrkan started walking again.
[You have entered the border of the Frozen Kingdom.]
He heard the Announcements.
[You've earned the Title 'Visitor of the Frozen Kingdom'.]
[You've earned the Title 'Great Explorer of the Northland'.]
[You've earned the Title 'Pioneer of this Era.']
It had been 20 days since he had left the Terube castle wall. The Announcements notified him that he had reached his destination.Previous Chapter Next Chapter