When I awoke from dreamland, it was already dark outside.
I looked outside the window and enjoyed the scenery for a moment. Nighttime tended to arrive very early during the summer, and dusk had painted the city in beautiful scarlet. The neon lights were starting to come to life as well.
After getting up from my bed and washing myself for a moment, I entered the living room and saw a couple of empty food boxes on the table. Apparently, Du Thirteen and Gui Guzi had finished their meal and gone online already. My stomach growled and demanded dinner.
“Dammit, Thirteen should’ve bought one for me as well,” I grumbled to myself and walked into the kitchen.
I boiled water and cooked a pack of instant noodles. Hmph, this bit of trouble is nothing to me!
Ten minutes later, a wonderful bowl of instant noodles had entered the battlefield. I sprinkled some chopped onion, added an egg and gave it a sniff. It smells so good! Hmph hmph, so what if my brothers haven’t bought me a meal? There are other delicacies at the same level!
My phone chose this exact moment to ring. The name shown on the screen was “Wind Fantasy”!
Oh, it’s a phone call from Lin Yixin!
Still holding onto the cooking pot with my instant noodles, I accepted the call and asked, “Hello, you looking for me, Beauty Yi?”
Lin Yixin asked, “Have you eaten dinner already? If not, I can treat you. Wanna join me?”
I flipped the pot over and dumped all of its content into the basin. “No I haven’t. Where are you?”
“Let’s meet at Silver Fir Cafe.”
I headed out and went to Silver Fir Cafe. Lin Yixin was sitting at table 2, close to the side of the cafe as usual.
“I thought you said dinner? Are we supposed to drink tea until we’re full?” I asked.
“There are snacks too, you know.” Lin Yixin smiled.
I spent a moment to check her out. Lin Yixin had put on a purple lattice blouse and a pair of black hot pants tonight. Her long, exposed legs looked extremely attractive.
“Snacks aren’t enough either since I’ll get hungry during the night. Well, I can’t compete with a day grinder like you.” I spread my arms and smiled. “How about this: we head to Happy House and enjoy some Hunan cuisine. My treat.”
But Lin Yixin shook her head and said, “If we’re heading there then I want to be the one who foots the bill!”
“Oh?” I was surprised. “Not taking advantage of a good offer? That’s not like you!”
Lin Yixin burst into laughter. “Am I that bad normally? I’m a good girl who helps the needy, fights for justice, and supports the weak, you know, unlike a certain someone.”
“Hmph hmph! You mean you need my help, right?” I smiled at her.
Lin Yixin responded with a nod and small smile of her own. “Mn.”
“Alright, I’ll hear you out, and we’ll eat after that.”
Lin Yixin straightened herself and got serious, unaware of the great pressure her demeanor was exerting on my bearing. While I was sneaking involuntary glances at her firm breasts, Lin Yixin snorted and said, “Did you know, Lu Chen? I heard that Mad Dragon’s about to do something big during the day. Something real big!”
“They’re planning to invade the royal palace of Floating Ice City and kill the NPC king?” I asked.
Lin Yixin laughed, exasperated. “Don’t interrupt and listen to me!”
“So. Roaming Dragon has been spending the last few days politicking instead of leveling, and after spending huge wads of cash he finally managed to gather enough players to form a party that’s one thousand strong. I heard he’s planning to kill a Giant Cave Monster at Violet Camp, and since this boss is Level 70, the chance of it dropping a Hero’s Token is pretty high. So I thought…”
Lin Yixin looked at me and smiled beautifully. I understood her intentions completely.
I frowned a little and asked, “How many people do you have?”
“I can gather around 100 people or so.” Lin Yixin pursed her lips and said, “We have pros like Qingqing, Zi Chuanyu, and Lifetaking Sword, but the rest are mostly students from our university. There aren’t many high-level players who joined me of their own accord…”
“Frankly, that isn’t even nearly enough manpower to threaten Mad Dragon’s thousand-man party,” I pointed out.
Lin Yixin nodded with a smile. “Correct. That’s why I wanted to work together with the Bloody Mercenaries. How many people do you have?”
Upon seeing the dumbfounded expression on Lin Yixin’s face, I smiled. “Quality is more important than quantity. I dare say that our Gui Guzi alone is worth a thousand players!”
“That I’m aware of. It’s one of the main reasons I sought you out.”
Lin Yixin sipped her red tea a little before continuing, “How about this. You and Gui Guzi join my party temporarily for this one job. If we manage to steal Hero’s Token from the Mad Dragon guild, I’ll pay you a share of the profits. What do you think?”
I waved her down and said, “I don’t need that percentage. All I want is the Hero’s Token!”
Lin Yixin glared at me furiously. “Seriously?! There’s literally only three people in your workshop! What can you even do with the Hero’s Token? It’s a complete waste of a good item!”
I mulled over her counterargument for a moment and had to concede that she was right. For now, Bloody Mercenaries didn’t have enough players to meet the minimum requirement, so even if we got the Hero’s Token there was nothing it could do except accumulate dust. Moreover, Ancient Sword Dreaming Souls hadn’t yet formed a core of players to make full use of the Hero’s Token. And finally, the last guild I wanted to have the Hero’s Token was Mad Dragon.
So, I gave Lin Yixin a nod and said, “Fine. But before that, how much do we get if you acquire a Hero’s Token?”
Lin Yixin raised a finger and smiled. “I’ll give you this much~”
“Fuck! You think you can order me around with 1 gold?” I slapped the table and rose to my feet.
Lin Yixin fumed in anger at my reaction. “Go to hell! Do I look that stingy? It’s 1000 gold, not 1 gold! Think over it, will you?”
“1000 gold?” I was a bit caught off-guard to be honest. “You have that much gold?”
“Mn.” Lin Yixin nodded. Then, she bit her lips and moved closer toward me, smiling. “I had to sell all my family property and even my dowry to gather this much. Don’t you think I’ve sacrificed too much already?”
My heart skipped a beat as I stared at her face. I need to avoid eye contact or I’ll be seduced by this temptress before I know it!
I extended my hand for a handshake, and Lin Yixin spent several seconds thinking about something before accepting it. The soft, smooth feeling of her hand was so enchanting that I only managed to separate my palm from hers after around five seconds or so. I could see that Lin Yixin’s cheeks were rosy despite the dim lightning around us.
“Come on, it’s time for dinner. You said you’d treat me!” she exclaimed.
“If I remember correctly, you’re the one who called me and asked me out…”
“I don’t care, you promised to treat me, and a man’s word is unbreakable, right?”
“Aiya, it’s such a beautiful night. Why don’t we eat at a food stall and enjoy the scenery?”
We went to Happy House for dinner. After sending Lin Yixin off with 300 RMB, I returned to the workshop around 10 pm. It was almost time to carry out our plan.
I logged into the game and contacted Gui Guzi and Du Thirteen immediately. When I told them in brief what we were about to do tonight, their excitement immediately rose by many degrees. I knew that we were a bunch of robbers at heart!
Violet Forest was the place I had been grinding the night before. However, the mobs in that area were of such high levels that even I didn’t dare to venture deeper. If Level 50 Violet Undead Knights could appear at the outer edge of the forest, then I wouldn’t be surprised if there were Level 70 or even Level 80 monsters deeper inside. In retrospect, it wasn’t surprising that the boss the Mad Dragon guild was planning to kill was Level 70.
For all his flaws, I had to admit that Roaming Dragon had guts. The first failed boss raid didn’t affect him in the slightest and he had even organized a new party almost immediately to challenge another boss. Still, wasn’t it a bit too much for him and his people to challenge a Level 70 boss? Compared to his attempt to kill the Level 60 Hill Protector God, this one looked even more suicidal.
Well, who cares. I’ll head over and take a look first. If we can take on the boss then all is well. Even if we can’t, we should be able to do considerable damage to the Mad Dragon guild.
When I arrived at Frost Mound, I saw that Gui Guzi and Du Thirteen were already waiting for me.
“Boss, you’re here.”
I looked at the distant, swaying forest and said, “Lin Yixin and her forces will show up in about half an hour or so. The payment for our services is very high this time. If a Hero’s Token drops as expected, our commission will be 1000 gold!”
“Ah? Isn’t that too high?” Du Thirteen exclaimed in astonishment.
Gui Guzi frowned. “But this is a Hero’s Token we’re talking about, the first in Floating Ice City, the China server or maybe even the entire world. Frankly, I feel like we’re not getting paid enough for our service. This Hero’s Token has to be worth at least ten thousand gold.”
I nodded approvingly at his analysis. “I know, but that’s the most money Lin Yixin can afford to pay us.”
Du Thirteen immediately grinned and said, “You see that? Our Lu Chen is starting to care for Lin Yixin…”
“Go to hell, I am not!”
“Your whole face is red, stop denying the truth already…”
“Get lost! My face is not red…”
While we were arguing with each other, a group of players suddenly emerged from the forest trail. The person leading at the forefront of the group was none other than the beautiful female warrior, Lin Yixin!
“You’re here.” I walked up to meet her.
Lin Yixin nodded. “Bring up your party screen. I’ll add you and Gui Guzi into the main party!”
“Oh? What about our Amazing Expert?” I pointed at Du Thirteen behind me.
Lin Yixin said, “Eh, I guess he can enter the substitute party. Who is he anyway? I thought I counted everyone…”
Du Thirteen vomited blood on the spot.
After joining the party, I noticed that it was made up of some pretty amazing players!
Party Leader: Wind Fantasy LV-47
Party Members: Broken Halberd Sinks into Sand LV-46, Clear Perfume LV-43, Gui Guzi LV-43, Zi Chuanyu LV-41
Four out of five of our party members were players in the Heavenly Ranking. The Domination Clan was probably the only other group who could assemble such a line-up.
I glanced sideways and checked out Zi Chuanyu. As a magic knight, both his metal armor and his spear looked extremely well-made. He looked at me and Gui Guzi with deep eyes, but there was neither excessive arrogance nor humility in his gaze. I had to admit that he was the real deal.
It was impressive of Lin Yixin to recruit someone like him as her subordinate!
Clear Perfume, an archer, was wearing a full set of stat-boosting equipment herself. The leather armor she was wearing accentuated her petite figure well and made people feel like spoiling her. Gripping her bow and smiling at me, she greeted, “Hi, Lu Chen.”
“Hi, Qingqing…” I returned the smile.
Gui Guzi was shocked. “The boss is too familiar with them. Something is wrong!”
Clear Perfume checked the time and smiled. “It’s 11:24 pm. We will set out from the east side of Violet Forest where the Violet Trail is. It’s a bit of a long journey, but we should reach the center of Violet Forest around midnight or so. That’s where the Level 70 boss, Giant Cave Monster, is hidden. Barring any surprises, the Mad Dragon guild will begin their raid midnight sharp. There’s no harm arriving sooner than later.”
I said, “They have a thousand players. Not even a Level 70 boss can deal with numbers like that. At most, the battle will be over in 30 minutes, so I suggest we make haste immediately!”
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