Book 2 Chapter 30 - Fortress Defense (2)

After taking care of everything, Woohyuk went to the Library to delve into Nakron’s Grimoire. It was naturally a great place to read a book, since there were few people that visited, and absolute silence had to be maintained at all times.

He even took the time to recommend a few books to his party members. Surprisingly, not a single one of them had run off, apparently choosing to study their future path rather seriously.

If their will power was that weak, they wouldn’t have made it here to begin with

‘Incredible ability to focus.’

Woohyuk was amazed as he stared at Yoo Kayoung and Song Anna.

He had given them each a book on magic. For Yoo Kayoung, it was an Introduction to Magic by  The Great Sage, while Song Anna got an Introduction to Summoning by the Elementalist, Eleanor.

Although they were books for beginners, they wouldn’t be an easy read.

Still, neither of them had taken their eyes off their books in over an hour.

‘If they are able to survive, they will grow to be quite strong.’

As long as they faithfully followed him, he would nurture them well. A profitable investment.

In order to quickly ascend to the position of Lord, he would need competent subordinates.

‘It had taken me quite a while.’

It wasn’t easy to evaluate one’s character or intention on the Eeth continent, which had become a den of Demons.

There were even many classes that were aligned with the 72 Demon Kings, leading people to betray their own kind. That’s without even mentioning all the internal power struggles that were never ending.

A world where blood constantly flowed.

Woohyuk wanted to avoid getting tangled up in that mess as much as possible.

‘Right, I need to focus on reading this more quickly.’

Nakron’s Grimoire was among the highest difficulties for books. Despite having read 50 pages, he still hadn’t been able to learn much. He couldn’t skip any pages and so he couldn’t look ahead to see how many pages there were. Also Magic Books didn’t have any physical constraints like regular books, and could theoretically have limitless pages.

‘I’ll be able to finish it someday.”

Woohyuk took a short break to stabilize his mind, before diving back into the book in earnest.

Although he was a bit slow due to his low Intelligence, he never let it affect him as he kept his cool.

Crystal-clear mirror and calm water.

Unfamiliar characters on the water's quiet surface, twinkling like moonlight.

While he was focused on understanding the passage, A System message suddenly appeared before his eyes.

[Unique Magic: Learned Corpse Explosion.]

[Resistance to Death has increased by 1 Level.]

‘As expected, a bountiful reward.’

Depending on the situation, a spell like Corpse Explosion could be very useful.

It was a Hidden Skill which even Logan didn’t get. 

Resistance to Death was unfamiliar to him. It probably had a positive effect on his Necromancy, but there was no way to know without testing it himself.

Suddenly some noises were heard from outside, just as he was considering where to test out his new skill.

Maybe something’s happened.

Woohyuk put down Nakron’s Grimoire in his Pouch, and went out of the Monastery.

“Minions have come, please help!”

A man was running around the Fortress, screaming at the top of his lungs. He was a Bronze Crown Leader from the same attack path that Hong Yuri had taken.

After walking up to him, Woohyuk asked.

“Why weren’t you able to take care of the Minions?”

“The Blue Faction had upgraded their Barracks on our right side. The Minions are now much stronger, and their numbers have also increased.”

When one upgraded to a level 2 Barracks, a single wave would then consist of 24 Minions. Not to mention that 8 of those would be cavalry, which would be difficult to deal with for inexperienced Melee players.

“What are the casualties like?”

“Three dead, and five critically injured.”

The man went on to complain how they had taken so much damage because they had been in the middle of a Chimera hunt.

As he headed towards the Fortress' entrance, Woohyuk thought about why this might have occured.

‘We had thought that they had given up on the right side.’

After seeing him achieving First Blood, perhaps the enemy had mistakenly believed that the enemy faction had focused greatly on the center and neglected the sides.

Since their faction had captured two Guard Towers on the right. The players there became too lax due to the overwhelming advantage that appeared on the map.

[Wake up, there’s a situation.]

[...Yes?]

Being suddenly woken up by Woohyuk, Hong Yuri replied in a somewhat sleepy voice.

[An enemy raid is attacking your path.]

[Ugh… I’ll be right there]

[How many coins do you have right now?]

[Around 420..Gold?]

It would be more than enough to upgrade the Barracks. After giving her some instructions, Woohyuk summoned his undead near the Fortress’ entrance.

“Hi, Hiiic…”

The Bronze Crown leader gasped in surprise.

Woohyuk reassured the man that it was fine, and then waited for the Minions on the right path to arrive

‘It's actually good timing.’

As of yet he hadn’t had any chance to utilize his Necromancer skills. The only thing he had done so far was revive dead bodies.

In order to properly command the troops, he placed the Superior Undead towards the back.

“You guys take care of the defense.”

“Hiahak”

“Kuruaa!”

A total of 60 Undead, of various types.

As he wondered which of them he’d sacrifice to use Corpse Explosion, he heard Hong Yuri’s enticing voice.

“It’s been too long, babe ~ ❤ ”

“All ready on your end?”

“The upgrade has been done, and my troops are on standby.”

It was late in the evening, and the sun was about to set. Soon it would be the Vampires’ time to shine.

Although he didn’t really need the help, he wanted to see Hong Yuri’s leadership ability firsthand.

“When the sun sets, make sure to help out.”

“Of course, I can let you do all the hard work, right babe?”

Hong Yuri winked as she clung to him. Just then Lee Jaesung’s party arrived from behind.

“Boss, what’s going on?”

“What is happening with their Minions?”

Seeing everyone’s confusion, Woohyuk shrugged Hong Yuri off, and pointed towards the right path.

“The enemy has upgraded their Barracks on this side.”

Although their Barracks were now of the same level, it wouldn’t be enough because the enemy Barracks had spawned second tier Minions for longer, and had gathered into a larger wave. 

If left to their own devices, it was possible that they’d successfully invade and destroy many facilities within their Fortress.

“So all we need to do is block their Minions?”

“I will defend the right side over here, you go take a look at the left.”

Isaac was still stationed in the middle so it was probably fine, but he was a bit worried about the left side.

As Lee Jaesung led his party to the left side, the adventurers belonging to the right path had gathered.

“Monsters!”

“There are so many of them!”

When these new adventurers saw the undead for the first time, they freaked out.

To reassure them all, Hong Yuri stepped up.

“Don’t worry about them, they are completely safe since they’d been tamed. Look, you can even do this to them and they won’t even react.”

Hong Yuri flicked the forehead of the Skeleton Knight Captain, causing the players’ eyes to widen in surprise.

“For real?”

“How did you do that?”

Woohyuk’s undead also had a red tag above them to mark them, as they’d been recognized by the system to be allies of the same Faction. 

As the players were conversing among themselves, an army of Minions appeared in the distance.

At first glance, there seemed to be about 100 of them.

[Go engage them]

Woohyuk ordered them with his mind, as the undead moved out, making strange sounds

A battle between Undead and Ghost Minions. Although the latter had twice the numbers, the Undead employed better strategies.

Boom!

The two Mummies standing in the front suddenly exploded like some grenade, hitting their cavalry.

Corrupted flesh and sharp bones flying everywhere. Its damage was even higher than most magic spells.

‘I’ll need to be careful using it if there are allies nearby.’

It wasn’t a spell he could use willy nilly because of its large AoE.

Woohyuk then sent a message to Hong Yuri, as he watched the Minions being pulled down from their horses.

[Don’t let any of them through]

[Got it]

Hong Yuri had made a long line of defense behind the barricades. By placing all of her vampires in a straight line, since they were 99 players, the other adventurers couldn’t do anything but watch. 

Cang! Cang!

As soon as the two forces met, the clanging of metal rang out across the battlefield.

A very close fight.

Woohyuk then used Corpse Explosion to halt their momentum.

Boom! Boom!

Explosions would randomly appear in different areas, as the number of Minions began to dwindle.

As the battle was coming to an end, more reinforcements showed up. 

More or less 50 this time around.

Woohyuk then placed his Superior Undead towards the front.

[Kill them all.]

The fighting prowess of his Superior Undead was far above that of these second tier Minions. Most of them were elite monsters from high level hunting areas, so they had good stats and skills.

Sasashak!

Dark Arrows sent by the Undead Lee Shinwoo smacked into their cavalry. He had recognized that the cavalry was their greatest threat.

The Cyclops had thought the same, as it swung its large club towards them. It then released the sharp spikes from its club, stabbing deeply into their bodies.

Although they had taken a lot of damage from these two attacks, the Minions’ advance wasn’t halted.

They didn’t have any free will and would only react according to the System’s instructions.

“Chuiahak!”

“Kurrrru”

The Elder Lizardmen and the Skeleton Knight Captain who had been watching from the side, finally entered the fray along with their troops.

“Neeeigh!”

The Skeleton Knight Captain’s horse cried out as it charged through the Minions.  

At the same time, a volley of arrows from the Skeleton Archers was sent out.

Pusususuk

The frontline of Minions fell, the Elder Lizardman carved his way through their ranks, leading its Lizardmen to cleave through any Minion they encountered.

Before its unpredictable tail and its spear skills, the Minions were entirely helpless.

‘That fight went pretty well.’

Seeing his troops in action, Woohyuk was more than satisfied. That should be enough practice for now.

He had gotten to practice his new skill a bit, so there was no reason to drag out the battle any longer.

Woohyuk signaled her with his eyes, and Hong Yuri nodded back.

“I was getting bored.”

At night, Vampires would get the instinctive craving for blood, turning them into wild predators.

As Hong Yuri stepped forward, the Vampires quickly followed suit.

[Blood Queen]

For any vampire, her very existence was all that mattered.

A class that was basically a Lord unto itself.

“Do your best, let’s kill them all.”

It was a class in which blood was used for everything. The vampire race would consume its own blood energy in order to fight its enemies.

They had explosive speed and strength, but had to finish the fights quickly.

Shsuk

Their sharp nails slashed at the Minions’ necks.

When the battle was finally over, Woohyuk reverse summoned his Undead, and pulled out his Lost Lyre from his Pouch.

‘Nothing good will come out of them knowing this much about me.’

It wasn’t good for your enemies to know your abilities, but the same was also true to a certain extent for your allies.

As Woohyuk was in the middle of playing his Lyre, Lee Jaesung’s voice appeared.

[There aren’t any problems on this side, Boss.]

It seemed that the Barracks on the left hadn’t been upgraded. Maybe they couldn’t afford it right now, so they wanted to test the waters first.

[Good work, return to the Fortress.]

Their second tier Barracks had been operational for enough time now, so there was no need for them to constantly be stationed here.

Unless the enemy faction employed some special tactics that is.

Woohyuk then divided the loot with Hong Yuri.

The drops from the second tier Minions were quite plentiful. Coins, Mana Crystals, Repair Kits, all them littered the ground.

Isaac made an appearance just as Hong Yuri was smiling, staring at the pile of Coins in her hands.

“Have all the Minions been taken care of?”

“Yeah.”

Woohyuk grunted in reply, as he stared at Ranghilt that he was holding.

‘It’s a Magic Sword with Ice properties...’

The only place he could have obtained that in the Primordial Forest was in the Calm Sea. 

It looked like Isaac had benefited from some change in the timeline due to his actions of exploring the bottom of the sea.

“They nearly got us this time. Focusing their troops in the center while upgrading the Barracks on the right. They just might have a talented strategist on their side.”

Isaac was still worried about the center path. It was all working out well for Woohyuk, the longer he kept messing up, the longer he could drag out this Canyon Battle.

‘It seems he hasn’t been to the top of the mountain range yet.’

He had most likely decided on first amassing enough Coins. Climbing and exploring the rough mountainous terrain was after all very time consuming.

“You’ve done well, thanks for your hard work. Because of you we were able to limit the amount of damage.”

Although some players near the border had suffered from the initial attack, after that there hadn’t been any other casualties.

Upon receiving the Megaphone message from those that had come under attack, they had used a return stone to come help.

“I just did what I had to do.”

“I see, truly a positive attitude.”

“Was there anything else you wanted to add?”

As Isaac continued to compliment him, Woohyuk replied rather coldly.

Ahem!

“Actually, there was the contribution quota to collect as well. Of course you don’t have to pay it right now, but please do so as soon as you can.”

He must have forgotten to mention it earlier because he had too many things on his mind.

Woohyuk took out 5 Gold and 5 Silver Coins from his Pouch and handed them to Isaac.

“Is that enough?”

“Yes, that’s the correct amount.”

Ten Coins per person, per day.

It wasn’t a large sum, but wasn’t all that small either.

“Then I’ll see you tomorrow.”

Satisfied, Isaac returned to the Fortress.

As soon as he had left, Woohyuk summoned Triton.

“Are there any Magic Sword with the Ice attribute to be found in the Calm Sea?”

“...”

Triton’s expression was a bit awkward.

It took him a moment to overcome his inner conflict, before painfully speaking.

“You must have encountered someone wielding Ranghilt. It is a sword that my father hid within a separate dimension.”

After the intrusion of the Pirate King Drake, the Sea God had placed a countermeasure in case someone would manage to steal his treasure from the Temple.

That was the Frost Sword, Ranghilt.

It was designed to select the strongest successor it could find, and then manipulate its master’s consciousness in order to kill whoever was responsible for plundering the treasure. All so that they can be returned to their rightful place.

Since this was a Magic Sword, it was capable of anything. It was necessary not only for Woohyuk to be on guard against it, but his party members as well.

“So it’s also the work of the Sea God?”

Woohyuk nodded to himself as it was what he had expected.

“What should we do then? Isaac is on our side.”

Hong Yuri looked at Woohyuk, worry plastered across her face.

If a Silver Crown leader on their side were to be killed, it would be a severe blow to the entire Faction.

Woohyuk however was very determined.

“I won’t leave behind any loose ends.”

There was no advantage in letting an enemy that was bound to come after him in the future, live. It was a painful lesson he had learned of the course of the last 40 years.

Even if their alliance were to weaken somewhat, they were still strong enough to emerge victorious.

“Are you able to suppress Ranghilt?”

“Of course.”

Triton was of the Sea God’s Royal lineage, and so he would be able to seal Ranghilt.

After sending him away, Woohyuk turned to Hong Yuri.

“It’s time to start?”

“Start where?”

“The Witch’s Sanctuary.”

It was the third area on the right path. There was something there that he absolutely had to obtain.

“Are we partying up? That’s awesome!”

Hong Yuri’s eyes beamed as she clung tightly to Woohyuk’s arm.

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