The Immortal Phoenix was already at the peak of Rank 7 for over a month. In the hopes of helping it advance, Nie Yan had Guo Huai acquire all the Fire Life Cores he could. But despite it gobbling up the Life Cores like beans, it showed no signs of breaking through.
Nie Yan had learned from his own Darkwing Dragon that Life Cores alone weren’t enough for a Rank 7 flying mount to break through to Rank 8. Luck and the right opportunity mattered too.
It would be a great boon to the guild if Xie Yao’s phoenix became Rank 8. But with his efforts not giving the desired outcome, Nie Yan could only leave it up to fate.
Perhaps luck and opportunity had already come alongside each other, hidden behind an ambush and death. The phoenix had undergone a complete transformation after rebirthing from its ashes. It was far bigger than before, putting it in the same size category as the Darkwing Dragon. Its feathers were more vivid coloured too, and the white flames surrounding its body blazed with an even more dazzling radiance.
“SCREEH! SCREEH!” The phoenix flapped its wings and puffed up its chest. A truly majestic bird!
“Did your phoenix break through?” Nie Yan asked in surprise.
“Mhm! It advanced to Rank 8. But after going through rebirth, it still only has the strength of a Rank 7 right now. It will take about a month for it to mature to its full strength,” Xie Yao said.
In only a short month, Asskickers United would have another Rank 8 flying mount! This was news worth celebrating.
Nie Yan glanced at his pet space. The Darkwing Dragon’s corpse was resting inside there. Angel Corps believed it was dead, but he had a Resurrection Crystal that could bring it back to life.
Even though the revived Darkwing Dragon would be greatly weakened and unable to participate in battle until it recovered, when it did regain its full strength, it would retake the skies!
“What’s the cooldown on that Rebirth skill?” Nie Yan asked. This skill pretty much served as a second life for the phoenix. Phoenixes were generally considered to be weaker than dragons, but it was this skill that levelled the playing field.
“It’s 60 days,” Xie Yao replied.
“That’s not too bad,” Nie Yan said, mentally prepared. It would be strange for such a powerful skill not to have a long cooldown.
“Nie Yan, your Darkwing Dragon…” Xie Yao said with a sad look.
Nie Yan chuckled. “Don’t worry about it. The Darkwing Dragon isn’t gone.”
“Not gone? How do you mean. I saw...” Xie Yao said doubtfully.
“I have a Resurrection Crystal,” Nie Yan explained.
“No wonder you retrieved its corpse!” Xie Yao blurted in realization. Her mood immediately cleared up.
Nie Yan had taken a great risk to retrieve the Darkwing Dragon’s corpse. After all, in a perilous situation, even a second could mean the difference between life and death.
The process of reviving the Darkwing Dragon wasn’t as easy as shoving the Resurrection Crystal down its throat. Nie Yan would have to travel to Calore to consult a Beastmaster. With the battle going on in Okoron, there was no time to do that now. So, he could only push it aside for another time.
Angel Corps intensified their siege on Okoron. They used some sort of spell to summon more than 60 hulking giants onto the battlefield. They were five meters tall and covered in bulging muscles. Shielding the players from Angel Corps below, they assaulted the city’s walls.
「They’re climbing up the walls again!」
「Ready the catapults!」
「Ready the siege crossbows!」
Even though the situation on the wall appeared hectic, everyone was carrying out their respective roles in an orderly fashion.
Shells whizzed through the sky. Some crashed into the walls, sending players flying down the side.
「We have six corpses here. Have someone carry them down!」
Before long, the corpses on the walls were cleared away. Everything continued on as normal.
「The boss is here!」
Seeing Nie Yan and Xie Yao arrive, the players on the walls immediately erupted into cheering and shouting. Nie Yan’s presence alone was a huge boost to morale.
BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! The ground violently shook.
Nie Yan gazed down at the plains below and saw the giants charging towards the walls. They were carrying small trees in their hands, serving as battering rams.
A volley of shells rained down on these giants. They tried to dodge, but some were still hit and knocked back by the blasts.
Tens of thousands of players surged toward the walls like a raging tide.
Before long, the two sides clashed on the edge of the walls. Spells exploded in the sky like dazzling fireworks. A frightening number of players died every second, but neither side was willing to give an inch.
BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! The giants began ramming their battering rams into the city gates as it trembled and groaned.
「Boss! Angel Corps opened up a hole in our south wall!」
「Send our Warriors to plug it up! Don’t let the enemy inside the city!」Nie Yan shouted. Looking back, Xie Yao was chanting Forbidden Magic as the holy light around her grew brighter and brighter until she was as dazzling as the sun itself.
Even though the enemy had anti-magic domains, with the supporting fire from the siege crossbows, the Forbidden Magic of Xie Yao would wipe out at least 10,000 players from Angel Corps.
At this moment, Nie Yan noticed something off.
Eye of Truth!
Sweeping his gaze over the surroundings, Nie Yan spotted two silhouettes dashing towards Xie Yao.
Nie Yan coldly snorted. “Fools! You’re overestimating yourselves!”
Two enemy Shadow Dancers! Their target was Xie Yao.
Demon Flame and Ink Sun were their names. Both were professional players, but they had been recruited by Cao Xu. They had mixed themselves in among the ordinary players in Okoron, waiting for the perfect moment to take action.
「Nirvana Flame is over there!」Demon Flame cried out as he found two piercing red eyes glaring at him. His heart trembled.「We’ve been made!」
「Cover me! I’ll take out Yao Yao. Prepare to withdraw!」Ink Sun ordered. He activated Gale Step as he pounced toward Xie Yao.
「Got it!」Demon Flame said. Standing between Nie Yan and Xie Yao, he couldn’t help but lick his parched lips. So, he was to fight the Nirvana Flame. He would be lying if said he didn’t feel the pressure.
Ink Sun was only six meters from Xie Yao, about to reach her in the next moment.
A blur flashed by as Demon Flame lost track of Nie Yan. He activated his own ocular skill and looked around, but failed to find any trace of Nie Yan. It was as if he had vanished into thin air.
「Watch out! He’s probably coming for you!」Demon Flame warned.
Ink Sun had already raised his dagger, when he felt a chill at the back of his neck. He pushed his front foot into the ground, then forcefully moved his body around and put his weight behind the blade.
KLANG! Sparks flew as the two blades clashed.
Nie Yan raised an eyebrow. This guy had blocked his attack! He had some skill!
「Run! Get out of here! There’s no time!」Ink Sun shouted. He flicked his wrist and pulled out an Unknown Transfer Scroll.
Just as he was about to crush it, a jolt ran through his body as he coughed out a mouthful of blood. Nie Yan had stabbed him through the heart.
Ink Sun slumped to the ground, dead.
Watching his brother in arms die, Demon Flame didn’t dare to linger. He immediately escaped with an Unknown Transfer Scroll.
Nie Yan was surprised Ink Sun was able to block his first attack. He thought that fellow might actually have some ability, but it turned out to be just a fluke. After Master classes became more accessible, the number of players carrying the Shadow Dancer title ballooned. Only a fraction of them had some skill. As for those at the level of Sun, King of the World, Mistaken Smile, and One Strike Vow, who could exchange several moves with him, there were even fewer.
Despite both being Shadow Dancers, players like Ink Sun and Demon Flame could only be considered ordinary players. Or in the eyes of Nie Yan, trash.
After only a brief exchange, one Shadow Dancer was killed and the other fled for his life. There were several more Thieves in the vicinity looking ambush Xie Yao. But after witnessing this scene, they were scared witless and quietly retreated. With Nie Yan guarding her, they couldn’t stop Xie Yao from casting her Forbidden Magic anyway. They wouldn’t pointlessly throw their lives away.
Xie Yao finally chanted the last syllable of her Forbidden Magic. An enormous pillar of light descended from the sky, transforming the plains outside of Okoron into a world of white. Over 50 giants let out miserably cries as they were turned into ash.
Xie Yao lowered her staff and drank a potion to recover her mana.
“Let’s go,” Nie Yan said. The two rushed over to the southern wall.
「Bladelight, Smoke Stub, what’s the situation over on your side?」Nie Yan asked.
「We’re still flying back. Making a descent right now. We lost six Rank 6 flying mounts, but we also killed over 30 enemy flying mounts, a dozen of which were Rank 6. So, all in all, we came out ahead.」
Nie Yan breathed a sigh of relief. As long as they returned safely, it was fine.「Watch out for their Vermillion Garudas. They have powerful flame nets. Don’t get trapped.」
Nie Yan didn’t know a flying mount like the Vermillion Garuda existed until recently, which was why he fell for Angel Corps’ ambush. Now that he did know, he could take countermeasures against them. There was nothing to be worried about anymore. Not to mention their flame net skill probably had quite a long cooldown time, or else it would be too overpowered.
Nie Yan reached the breach in the wall. Several hundred Warriors from Asskickers United were preventing the players from Angel Corps from storming in. Even when the occasional shell landed blasted the defending Warriors away, more would replace them. With neither side willing to give in, the fight was extremely intense.
Nie Yan disappeared into stealth. He leaped into the air, soaring over the heads of the Warriors from Asskickers United, and landed in enemy ranks. With a flash of his blade, he instantly killed a player from Angel Corps.
No one could see Nie Yan. All they saw was a blur. PSHFT! PSHFT! PSHFT! Blood sprayed into the air as over a dozen Angel Corps players collapsed to the ground.
After these players died, they transformed into shadows and crawled back up to the ground.
These servants of darkness charged forward, turning their blades against their former comrades.Previous Chapter Next Chapter