Chapter 91 Elf’s Keepsake (1).
Chapter 91 - Elf’s Keepsake (1)
- Hahoe Mask! What the hell are you doing?
The voice rang in his ear, but Hyrkan ignored it. He was focused solely on one thing. He concentrated on the being with pointy ears, who was running away with great agility.
- Hahoe Mask!
As if he was trying to interfere with Hyrkan, Pelato kept yelling out his name. In the end, Hyrkan spoke in a low voice as if he was mumbling.
“Hey, you aren't in a position to yell at me. Just clean up the situation over there for now.”
- What? What are you talking about?
Hyrkan's words were short on explanation. Pelato had a very natural reaction.
However, Hyrkan didn't have the time to give a long explanation. Moreover, there was no reason to. He wasn't required to do so.
“If you don't like that option, I can reveal how you tried to fuck me over after being hired by the Apollo guild. Why don't you think about what would occur if that happens?”
Pelato finally closed his mouth. Silence finally descended upon Hyrkan, and he once again put in all his effort to chase after the Elf.
The Elf was much slower than he thought it would be. The really swift Elves were impossible for users to follow in the forest. Hyrkan had prior experience in chasing after Elves, so he was well aware of this fact.
Hyrkan had a hunch.
‘It wants to be caught.’
Warlord was cooperating with him, so he could smoothly progress in his Quest. It was very rare to receive cooperation from the game, since Warlord was usually an inhospitable game.
Of course, Hyrkan wasn't going to refuse the help. This kind of cooperation from the game was rare. If he refused such help here, a chance like this would never present itself to him again.
Still, it wasn't an easy task to catch the Elf. An average user would never be able to catch it. The speed wasn't the problem. The problem was the location. When one ran full force inside a forest, it was like running an obstacle course with a blindfold on.
‘All right. I'll catch you.’
Hyrkan was experienced in running away from various people for his survival, so this wasn't a problem for him.
The distance between the two was steadily getting narrower.
Of course, the Elf realized this fact, and it suddenly turned its head. This was the first time Hyrkan had seen this Elf's face.
‘I knew it.’
The escaping elf's face was different from the faces of Elves he had seen before. There was a black tattoo on his face…… No, it looked more like a scar than a wound, and there was something black within it. The sense of beauty one felt when seeing an Elf couldn't be felt from this one.
Still, the Elf's eyes were striking. The Elves usually had emerald colored eyes, but its eyes were dyed black now. The contrast was too stark.
He knew the definition of the word, but this sight made him clearly feel what the word, Corrupted, meant.
It also meant he had gotten close enough to be able to confirm the color of its eyes.
If things progressed along this line, Hyrkan would catch the Elf. This was Hyrkan's intention and choice.
Now it was up to the Elf to make its own choice.
Will it just let itself be caught? Or will it fight?
The Elf made a decision.
Suicide. This was the decision made by the Corrupted Elf. The Elf showed the intention of taking the truth to the grave. It wasn't going to tell anyone about his master's secrets.
The result of its choice became immediately apparent. The Elf threw up blood, and it fell like a puppet with its string cut. Its momentum made him roll couple dozen times across the ground, and his body was in rough shape.
Hyrkan bit his lips when he saw the sight.
It was an unpleasant sight. Moreover, he didn't like what he had to do now. He took out a pouch from his bosom. He had carried it around like a treasure.
The Elf glared at Hyrkan when he approached it. Hyrkan avoided the Elf's gaze. The Elf was sprawled out like a corpse, and Hyrkan poured the silver liquid on the Elf's head.
When the silver liquid touched the Elf's head, it took shape to fit around the Elf's head.
The Circlet of Purification!
The item started purifying the power of Corruption that had been dominating the Elf's nature and intellect.
There must have been a recoil. The corpse-like body of the Elf started to shake as if there was an earthquake.
The Elf suddenly threw up black liquid. Then it closed its eyes tight, and it let out a moan.
Eventually, the Elf opened its eyes again, and its emerald eyes were revealed. The power of Corruption that had been controlling the Elf was gone. This was the surest evidence that proved the Elf had regained its sanity.
The Elf's eyes looked at Hyrkan. Hyrkan didn't say anything. He waited for the Elf to speak.
However, the Elf couldn't speak. It opened its mouth, but the sound of its voice never made it past its throat.
At that moment, it was as if the Elf had suddenly remembered something. The Elf squeezed out the last strength it had left to tap its left chest region with its hand.
That was it. After performing the minor movement with his hand, the Elf closed its eyes, and its body slumped. Its body immediately started to shrivel up like an old tree.
Hyrkan laughed bitterly as he saw this sight.
‘The game is quite romanticized. It really is a romanticized game.’
After letting out his bitter laugh, Hyrkan took out a note and map from the Elf's pocket.
After ending the conversation with Hyrkan, Pelato looked around his surrounding. The nearby party members were staring at him. They were requesting for an answer from Pelato.
Pelato couldn't come up with anything.
‘What's should I say?’
The current situation was a mess.
An arrow had suddenly killed the Cockatrice when the group was about to kill it. Moreover, when the arrow flew in, Hyrkan had immediately chased after the being, who had shot the arrow.
In this situation, the rest of the party could only look on.
Moreover, wasn't Hyrkan the one who had been commanding the party up until now?
‘What does he want me to do?’
Anyways, the ball was in Pelato's court now. He was the one, who had planned this Raid. If there was a problem, he had to take the responsibility.
Moreover, he was in a bad spot. Hyrkan knew his weak point. If this business became known to the Golden Brothers, Pelato would be unconditionally kicked out from the guild.
If it ended at an expulsion, he would be quite fortunate.
However, if he was involved in a scandal, no guild would take him in. He would basically have to give up on this game. Without the help of a large guild, one couldn't progress in this world. This was the reality of Warlord these days.
At the very least, he had to bark when Hyrkan said for him to bark. Hyrkan said Pelato had to take care of this matter, so he had to take care of this matter.
“Didn't everyone get their EXP?”
At Pelato's words, everyone checked whether they gained their EXP or not.
“We got it.”
“Isn't this much more than expected? I received a considerable amount.”
Their EXP had increased. It basically meant everyone there had a claim to the monster.
“Since we gained the EXP, the monster's corpse is owned by us.”
The rights to the Cockatrice's corpse was reserved for the Raid party.
They received EXP and the Items. They hadn't lost either one of them.
Pelato reinforced this point. There were some hiccups along the way, but the benefit they had targeted had been earned.
“What about the Hahoe Mask?”
Of course, he had to answer for the sudden disappearance of Hyrkan. The people gathered here weren't common users. Hyrkan had immediately responded to the situation. It meant Hyrkan had expected this to happen.
In other words, the party members wanted to know why they hadn't been told about the situation if Hyrkan knew events would turn out like this.
They wanted an explanation.
“He has a Quest.”
After a brief brainstorm, Pelato came up with a short answer.
“Hahoe Mask joined the raid in the first place, because it was part of his Quest. He is currently progressing in the Quest right now.”
The answer was plausible. After hearing the explanation, all the users nodded their head, and it seemed they had accepted it.
‘Now that I think about it the Hahoe Mask is quite far along the Main Scenario Quest.’
‘Wait a moment. Does this mean this monster was related to the Main Scenario Quest? It is a Corrupted monster, so the possibility is high.’
‘If I chase after the Hahoe Mask right now, will I be able to join his Main Scenario Quest? Should I chase after him?’
The party members started to think about how they could interject themselves into the current scenario. The commotion within the group lessened.
Pelato, who had been looking at the party members, swallowed the sigh that was about to come out.
‘This is all tangled up.’
He had given the obvious answer, but the answer he had given wasn't advantageous to Pelato.
He had made another mess. Pelato had implied there was a prior agreement with Hyrkan, yet that wasn't true. If Hyrkan disputed his words, Pelato would be labeled a liar.
‘Now I'm at the mercy of the Hahoe Mask no matter what.’
A equals B.
Their relationship crystallized at that moment.
When Hyrkan returned, the Cockatrice's body had been dismantled, and it had already melted away.
Hyrkan immediately held a conversation with Pelato at an isolated location.
“You received consumable items from the Apollo guild. How much do you have left?”
“Quite a lot.”
“Since you tried to fuck me over, you should give that to me as a repayment.”
Pelato let out a sigh inside as he heard Hyrkan's words. There were a lot of consumable items left, because Hyrkan had directed the Raid. If one put a price on those items, it was quite a lot. Yet Hyrkan wanted it all?
It was a waste, but he had no choice.
“All right. I'll agree to that.”
Currently, Hyrkan was holding Pelato's life line. Pelato fervently wished Hyrkan wouldn't ask for anything bigger.
However, Hyrkan wasn't done speaking. Pelato bit his lips before he even heard what Hyrkan was going to say.
“You can keep all the merits regarding this Raid, Pelato.”
At that moment Pelato couldn't believe what he had just heard.
“Are you saying you will allow me to take credit for the result of today's Raid? Is that what you mean?”
Hyrkan nodded his head.
This was most definitely to his advantage, yet Pelato started asking questions in suspicion instead of thanking Hyrkan.
He expected to be beat, yet a sweet piece of chocolate had been put into his mouth. In some aspect, his reaction was to be expected.
“I have no reason to ruin everything for you. I'll summarize it for you. You tried to kill me at the request of the Apollo guild, and I found out about it mid-raid. During the raid, you did nothing, and I commanded the Raid. Now that I have your weak-point I don't have a reason to blab about it.”
From Pelato's perspective, the arrangement wasn't that ideal. However, Pelato didn't frown.
Hyrkan added more to the explanation.
“As you probably know by know, I have a lot of enemies. In such a situation, what would I gain by embarassing a skilled user from the Golden Brothers?”
“I...I guess so.”
“Moreover, it isn't as if I'll make any money from embarrassing you. It'll just created a rift between the Golden Brothers and me.”
Pelato quickly nodded his head.
At that moment...
“All right. You can keep the footage of this raid.”
Hyrkan had given him a big present.
Pelato forgot about the mess he was in, and he had a surprised expression on his face. He looked ridiculous from an outside point of view.
This demonstrated how big of a present he had been given by Hyrkan.
No matter how you looked at it the Boss Monster Raid footage had a lot of value. Most footage brought in small amount of money, but it one was lucky, it could net a lot of money. Moreover, the Corrupted Gray Cockatrice that had appeared at the Red Lake was an attractive Boss monster.
Also, this footage could be put into his resume. This Raid wasn't done with the experienced members of a large guild. This was an attack party made out of random volunteers. He had formed the party, and he had shown off his ability to lead such a party. This could be a feather in Pelato’s cap.
Of course, the latter half of the Raid was commanded by Hyrkan.
If Hyrkan asked for the rights to the footage, Pelato would have handed it over. It was a given.
Yet Hyrkan was willing to just give him the rights?
“Really? I can put the footage of this Raid on my page.”
“Of course. However, it isn't for free.”
“What do you want?”
“You made a wise decision.”
Hyrkan answered in a vague manner. However, Pelato was able to see through to the meaning behind Hyrkan's words.
“Of course. From this day forward, I won't participate in any ventures that would cause you harm. I promise on my character.”
It seemed Hyrkan was satisfied with the answer. He nodded his head. Pelato also had a satisfied smile as he looked at Hyrkan.
At that moment, it seemed Hyrkan had remembered something. He immediately handed over a note to Pelato.
“This is the list of candies I had to eat, because of the magic thrown by your magician. It is quite a lot.”
Pelato's face stiffened when he received the note. The consumable items listed were very expensive. These consumable items had great effect, and not even members of the raid teams of large guilds used it readily.
“Of course, you should be willing to shoulder the burden. Right?”
Pelato put on an awkward smile.
This was how the Corrupted Gray Cockatrice Raid came to an end.
‘You son of a bitch, Apollo. If you aren't going to use the knife yourself, then you should just fuck off. Why are you causing me so much trouble?’
The man was skin and bones. He had sunken eyes, and there were dark circles under them.
His entire body screamed out the fact that he was someone addicted to a game. The item essential to a game addict, caffeine, was in front of Ahn-jaehyun. He was drowned within his thoughts.
‘Apollo is greedy, and he is an ill-tempered pig. Still, he isn't dumb enough to put in this much effort and capital to catch me.’
This thoughts centered around Apollo.
Before he returned to the past, he had been deeply involved with Apollo. At the time, Apollo had frothed at the mouth to catch Ahn-jaehyun, but he could understand the reasoning behind it.
However, that was before he returned to the past. Currently, he didn't have a good relationship with the Apollo guild, but he hadn't thought it was this bad.
It was true that Ahn-jaehyun had fucked over the guild members of the Apollo guild. However, it should have been minor damage from the perspective of Apollo.
Of course, if one considered Apollo's dirty personality, one could see why he was pursuing his revenge. Still, Apollo was spending a lot of money. It was money worth the annual salary of a new employee. Ahn-jaehyun couldn't understand it.
‘Still, where did that pig get all those decent Unique items?
What especially vexed Ahn-jaehyun was the part where the Apollo guild had loaned out the Unique Items.
At first, when he heard about Pelato loaning out the Unique items, he thought Golden Brother or an affiliated guild was loaning the items out.
Only a guild of that size had the capacity to do it.
‘He said Apollo guild had directly loaned those Items out. That's impossible.’
It basically meant Apollo guild wasn't at a level where they could pull this off.
Apollo guild wasn't small. They also had financial backing. If one looked at the users affiliated with the guild, their level were on the high side compared to the entire population of Warlord.
However, they weren't a guild with enough in-game supply to be able to loan Items out to others.
In the end, it meant there was someone else that had loaned out the Items to the Apollo guild.
‘What a troublesome bastard.’
Ahn-jaehyun stopped worrying at this point.
In truth, he couldn't find out what the Apollo guild had done unless he could capture and torture Apollo for answers.
Ahn-jaehyun could only do one thing. He could prepare.
‘The Big Smile bastards were also like this. I haven't done anything big yet, but they are already messing with me. Do I have honey rubbed all over my body?’
Slowly, the larger guilds were trying to keep Ahn-jaehyun in check.
Ahn-jaehyun's goal was to fight them by himself.
‘All right. Just wait for me a little bit. Even if you guys don't want to, I'll fight you guys.’
However, it would be impossible for him to fight them right now. Until he could grow his strength, he needed forces that would help him.
He had won over Red Bulls and Pelato to his side. If it was the Golden Brothers, it was big enough that the Apollo guild wouldn't mess with them. Unexpectedly, Pelato might turn into a decent shield.
Of course, his main intention was to grow his strength.
Ahn-jaehyun thought about the Elf's keepsake.
There had been a map, and a note. He couldn't decipher the content. He probably had to visit Ahimbree, Chieftain Drah or Maeung to find out more about it.
However, he could guess at the identity of the map even if he couldn't verify it right now.
‘There is a great chance that this is a Dungeon Map.’
The map would lead him to something. Of course, he had no idea if this something was a monster or a treasure.
“If something big appears this time.... If something like a Corrupted Destroyer's Necklace drops, I would go to the streets of Myeongdong, and dance in my underwear. Will this lead to something big?”
The only thing he wished for was a treasure.