Distributing the loot was simple. He Yi got the Cyanlight Battle Armor and Cyanlight Helmet because she needed an upgrade. Technically, I could’ve gotten the Cyanlight Helmet for myself because it had a bit more Defense than the God Suppressing Helmet, but one, the God Suppressing Helmet was still a serviceable equipment, and two, He Yi was still wearing a 2-star Outstanding Spirit-grade helmet. She obviously needed the helmet more than I do, and I much preferred offensive equipment to defensive one anyway.
I also gave her the Necklace of Green Berserk. It increased critical hit rate by 9%, so it could improve her DPS by a lot.
Wild Cloak was Earth-grade cloth armor, so I gave it to Moonlight Stone. The 19% Magic Attack boost would be wasted on Murong Mingyue.
Finally, I gave the Aurora Dagger to Beiming Xue since neither He Yi nor I had a use for it, and an archer could switch to daggers when fighting at close range. Although archers were way less proficient with the weapon than an assassin as a matter of course, it gave them the ability to parry an incoming attack while searching for an opening to distance themselves from their opponent. It was a reliable tactic and a good complement to Beiming Xue’s skills.
A top-class archer would know not to constraint themselves to fighting from a distance only. Fate wouldn’t always be on your side, and if you had to fight on unfavorable terrain then it was up to you to create favorable fighting conditions for yourself. For example, there was one time Transient Smoke and Clouds dueled Warsky in the arena, and the archer had created some distance between himself and Warsky using a dagger parry right before the warrior was able to lock him down. A combo of Shock Arrow + Freezing Arrow later, he successfully claimed Warsky’s point for himself. The duel was showered with praises on the forums and even heralded as a textbook duel between an archer and a warrior.
We moved on. The chilling wind caused rustling sounds across the wilted forest.
"Look! I think that’s an NPC…" said Beiming Xue after discovering some activity at the edge of a mountain range. It was a simple camp with cooking smoke rising from the chimneys, so it definitely looked like there were NPCs in that place. This was good because it meant that there were quests to be received in Dragonlight Canyon.
I spurred the Armored Ice Qilin Horse forward, and as expected, I found a dozen or so shabby-looking NPCs sitting inside the camp. Their armors looked severely damaged, and even their swords were showing signs of rusting. Their eyes were dim and lifeless.
I walked up to them and started a conversation, "Hello. Which corps do you come from?"
The axe-wielding berserker sitting at the center of the group rose to his feet at my question. I could tell that he was a half-beastman because he had fur on his face and bulging muscles that looked extremely scary. Glaring at us suspiciously, he asked, "Who are you people, and how did you manage to enter Dragonlight Canyon?"
I answered, "We are adventurers from Sky City. We found this place when we were looking at a treasure map. What happened to you people?"
A dejected expression immediately overcame the half-beastman’s glare. "Sigh, another group of pitiful adventurers who entered this death trap by accident. I bet that you’ll all become the food of monsters in half a day or less."
"How can you say that?" He Yi raised her Blade of the Earthen Soul and said, "We’re pretty powerful, you know!"
Surprised at her retort, the half-beastman looked at us again, much more seriously this time. Whatever he saw must’ve satisfied him because he immediately said with a respectful demeanor, "Oh, you are high-level adventurers from Sky City! Well, you do seem very powerful, but to be honest with you I still think your chances of walking out of this place is pretty low. There are so many deadly threats in this canyon that our 3000-strong legion was reduced to a handful in just half a year’s time."
He let out a long sigh before continuing, "This was a forgotten area until it suddenly appeared in our borders some time ago. We had come to investigate and clear it under Princess Karinshan’s order, but we lost so many men that I doubt that we’ll be able to fulfill our duties any longer."
I unsheathed the Cyan Netherworld Sword and declared smilingly, "What is the creature that gave you so much trouble? From my understanding, an elite legion of Sky City should be able to deal with most Night Creatures…"
The half-beastman looked to the east with sorrow and anger. "It is those evil dragon girls who killed our warriors and strung their corpses on the walls. Dammit, I am well aware of all the atrocities they have committed, but they are just too powerful for me to stop…"
I was slightly caught off-guard by his reply. "Dragon girls?"
"Yes." The half-beastman nodded strongly. "They are a race born from the unnatural breeding between man and dragon. They are a hateful race that seek to take revenge on the world that abandoned them by hunting every traveler and adventurer that passes through this canyon. Hmph, they are so powerful that a human legion is powerless against them!"
I raised my sword and declared, "You don’t need to speak any longer. We will take them out for you!"
"Really?" A bit of hope peeked out of the half-beastman’s eyes. "If you can kill these dragon girls, my remaining warriors and I will be able to return to Sky City and report back to Princess Karinshan. Dragonlight Canyon is an evil place that serves the Night Creatures! Be on your way, young adventurers. If you can kill 2000 Dragon Girls and gather 200 Dragongirl Scales for me, you will receive a generous reward!"
Murong Mingyue looked the NPC up and down. Then, she sneered out loud and said, "Let’s do this. I’m curious to see where he’s going to conjure this ‘generous reward’ of his from when he’s almost naked!"
As usual, her comments were blood puke-inducing. At the same time, a system notification rang beside our ears—
System Notice: Your party has accepted the quest "Kill the Dragon Girls"! (Current Quest Rank: SSS-)
Description: Find the Dragon Girls’ settlement within the deeper areas of Dragonlight Canyon. Kill 2000 Dragon Girls and collect 200 Dragongirl Scales. Bring them to Guard Captain Dio for a generous reward! But beware, the Dragon Girls are extremely cunning, and countless human warriors have perished beneath their sharp claws. Be sure to prepare yourself to fight them at your absolute best!
"Alright, an SSS- Rank quest! I wasn’t expecting this quest to be ranked this highly. I’m sure it’ll be a rewarding quest!" I said to everyone.
"Yeah, let’s go! I want to see what the deal is with these ‘Dragon Girls’!" He Yi then added hopefully, "Who knows, we may even be able to capture these dragons as mounts and swap out our Cyan Tiger Cavalry! We’ll be much stronger than those disgusting Viper Dragoons of Candle Dragon then!"
Beiming Xue chuckled. "Only if it doesn’t look as disgusting as the Viper Dragoons, Sister Eve. Superior stats or not, disgusting is disgusting…"
"Yes, of course!" He Yi nodded with a smile.
I rode at the forefront with the Phantom Wolf King following beside me on land and a shadow following in the sky. It was, of course, Murong Mingyue’s Ironwing Dragon. The Ironwing Dragon was almost a full adult, and its meaty wings were as tough as steel. Unfortunately, it looked more like a gadfly and nowhere as powerful or elegant as a soaring frost dragon, a fire dragon, or a thunder dragon, and the like because it was just a low Rank dragon.
I made sure to ride the Armored Ice Qilin Horse slow because I had 3 ranged players to protect behind me. The mobs were apparently so powerful that they were able to devastate a 3000-strong human legion like it was nothing, so I wasn’t going to charge in mindlessly.
It didn’t take long before we arrived at a bamboo forest and heard a strange scream from the front. It almost sounded like a girl was crying sorrowfully.
"Huh? What’s that sound?" He Yi shot me a doubtful look.
I was just as confused as she was. "Is that another NPC?"
"I don’t know…"
Beiming Xue walked up to us and said, "Well, let’s go take a look, big bro!"
I spurred my mount and rode into the forest. The sky had turned dark by now, and the desolate land before us lit only by the moon was growing blurrier and blurrier.
Behind me, He Yi stayed close to the three girls to protect them.
"Big bro, over there!" Beiming Xue was a succubus and an archer, so she could see and sense much better than me. I looked at the direction she was pointing, and I saw a white figure wriggling atop a barren hill.
I immediately rode toward the figure, and I when I got closer I was shocked by what I saw—
It was a half-naked girl with the lower half of her body buried in the ground for some reason. She had glossy dark hair and a tear-stained but beautiful face. Although she wasn’t talking, the way she stretched her arms toward me and looked at me with begging eyes clearly indicated that she wanted us to help her. Also, since she wasn’t wearing any clothes at all, it was impossible to miss the naked body glistening under the moonlight and the bouncing mounds that sorely tested my patience.
"God damn, what kind of brute would…" Murong Mingyue looked speechless for a moment. "They raped her and buried half of her in the ground? How inhumane…"
"Who told you she was raped? Stop making assumptions..." Rolling my eyes, I got off my mount and walked up to her. Looks like another NPC quest. I grabbed the girl’s hand and asked, "Hold onto my hand and climb. I’ll pull you out of there. By the way, where is your house? This place seems completely desolate."
Instead of answering me, the girl grabbed my wristguards tightly with both arms. At the same time, a glint of cunning flashed across her dark pupils.
Behind me, He Yi said suddenly, "This is a plot that has been retold many times in Strange Stories, stupid Lu Chen…"
I shuddered suddenly. What were some of the more famous stories in Strange Stories? For example, there was this poor scholar who was reading in a countryside book store when he heard a girl crying for help. When he tried to save her, the girl pushed him to the ground, tore off his clothes, climbed on top of him and… sucked his life force dry, killing him on the spot!
At the same time, I felt a tremendous power around my arms as the girl slowly crawled out of the ground. Her hands and her breasts were digging deeply into my arms. That wasn’t the problem, however. The problem was that her face was growing uglier and uglier, and her buried lower body was a scaled, animalistic body! A pair of tentacles with scythe at the ends stretched out of her waist and slashed toward me mercilessly!
That wasn’t even the end of it. She suddenly opened her mouth and hissed at me with her bloody tongue!
I shouted. I finally understood why the girl hadn’t spoken a word from start until the end. It was because she wasn’t human!Previous Chapter Next Chapter