I had already made up my mind. Beiming Xue was a Dark Archer with amazing strength and beauty. She would be a great addition to Bloody Mercenaries, and it would be like someone had buffed us with Encourage, Forge, Valor, Homecoming, Iron Wall, and other skills!
Who were Gui Guzi and Du Thirteen? They were the kind of people whose attack power, hit rate, tenacity, willpower, and facial skin thickness would skyrocket if a beautiful girl were to join the workshop! To them, it would be like welcoming their second spring!
Man, I’m such a wise leader!
Practically speaking, our workshop had been in dire need of a powerful long-ranged player since a long time ago. We were especially in need of a young and mostly honest girl like Beiming Xue.
“P-please give me some time to prepare…” Beiming Xue’s cheeks were red as she said, “This will be the first time ever I leave my home!”
I asked, “We’re ready. What else do you need?”
“How many people are there in the Bloody Mercenaries?” Beiming Xue asked carefully.
“Are there girls in your workshop?”
“There will be once you join us.”
Beiming Xue immediately looked nervous. “I’m the only girl? What if someone bullies me?”
“Don’t worry, I’ll protect you!”
“What if you bully me?”
This time I didn’t know how to answer.
Suddenly, I felt something warm gripping my hand. Beiming Xue had finally accepted my hand with a smile. “I’m just joking. I’m not so young and inexperienced!”
I asked, “Alright. What is your name, and where do you live?”
“My name is the same as my ID, Beiming Xue. I live in the Xishan District, Wuxi.”
“Oh, that’s actually pretty close. You and Gui Guzi come from the same hometown. When are you coming over to Suzhou?”
“Give me half a month. As I said, I would need to prepare…”
“Alright. From today onward, you are an official member of the Bloody Mercenaries workshop!”
I was extremely excited by the good news, so I added Gui Guzi, Du Thirteen, and Beiming Xue into a party to introduce everyone to each other.
“Wow, Beiming Xue? Isn’t… isn’t she that amazing archer on the Heavenly Ranking?”
Du Thirteen shouted. He stared at Beiming Xue’s avatar on the party screen and smiled. “Hello, Beauty Beiming!”
Beiming Xue smiled back at him. “Hello!”
Gui Guzi asked, “Boss, do you know Beiming Xue?”
I replied with a smile, “I didn’t until just moments ago. I’ve successfully invited Beauty Beiming to join Bloody Mercenaries, so from today onward we’re all family. She’ll be meeting up with us in real life in half a month.”
Gui Guzi smiled in high spirits. “This is great news! Our workshop has always lacked a powerful long-ranged DPS, but now that is no longer an issue. Welcome to Bloody Mercenaries, Beiming Xue!”
Beiming Xue was a very polite girl. She greeted everyone with a smile on her face.
I said, “Since Beiming Xue just joined our workshop, why don’t we organize an event of sorts and deepen our relationship with each other?”
“Sure, I’m fine with anything!” Du Thirteen said. Of course he’s fine with anything, he could run through a hill of blades or swim in a sea of fire if it meant spending time with pretty girls.
Beiming Xue smiled. “What a coincidence, I just accepted a quest that can be shared with up to five people. Let’s do this quest together, shall we?”
A short while later, the system dinged to notify us that the quest was being shared. It was a quest to kill a Level 50, B Rank boss at Violet Forest. It was definitely a lucrative bounty quest!
After Beiming Xue had shared the quest with us, she stuck out her tongue and smiled at me. “To be honest, this wasn’t a quest that I could complete myself, but with you and Gui Guzi around that is no longer the case! Thank you, Broken Halberd Sinks Into Sand!”
I nodded and returned the smile. “Just call me Lu Chen in the future.”
“Oh? Is that your real name?”
“Alright, sure, hehe!”
Half an hour later, Gui Guzi and Du Thirteen both arrived at Violet Forest. After the official introductions were over, Du Thirteen started staring at Beiming Xue with shining eyes. Beiming Xue was naturally beautiful, and the leather armors of this game were designed to look sexy to begin with. Therefore, the combination was more than enough to unsettle Du Thirteen’s fickle determination.
Thus, I walked up to Du Thirteen and warned him in a low tone, “Thirteen, stop staring at her like that! I’ll annihilate you if you dare lift a finger against Beiming Xue when she comes to our workshop, you hear me!?”
Du Thirteen nodded repeatedly. “Rabbits don’t eat the grass around their nest. I understand that much!”
In front of us, Beiming Xue snorted as if she could hear our conversation. Oh right, I forgot that Archer has extraordinary senses and perception. It makes sense that her listening ability would be cream of the crop.
The four of us started venturing into the forest. The Bloody Mercenaries workshop was steadily growing, and excluding Du Thirteen we were now three ace-level players strong. Gui Guzi was an invincible tank, I was a powerful melee attacker, and Beiming Xue was a long-ranged killer. All we needed now was a priest, and our party would basically be complete.
Of course, I had no intentions of recruiting a token member into our group. Murong Mingyue was a good choice, but she was a busy woman and she belonged to He Yi. Therefore, I had to hunt for my priest somewhere else.
Violet Forest was a dying place where the dead was strong, and the wind was often mingled with ghastly wails. Hordes of Violet Undead Knights roamed the area ahead of us as we journeyed deeper and deeper into the forest. The knights further in were Level 57 and very powerful, but were nothing but a minor inconvenience for our elite party.
“I’ll be the tank!”
Gui Guzi gripped his Silver-grade shield and charged straight toward a Violet Undead Knight.
The skeletal knight thrust its spear toward Gui Guzi and hit his shield with great momentum. Sparks flew off as metal screeched against metal!
Beiming Xue was stunned by Gui Guzi’s performance. “Wow! Gui Guzi’s Defense is amazing!”
Gui Guzi was incredibly pleased by her compliment. Du Thirteen went to test out his own mettle, but all he got was a brush with death.
I charged forward and swung the Ghost Ice Soul, executing my infamous Pardon + Slayer Slash combo!
The incredible damage I dealt stunned everyone to silence as usual. Not to be outdone, Beiming Xue fired two consecutive arrows of her own toward the enemy!
Her attack power was as impressive as ever. It looked like the Dark Archer class was hiding some incredible offensive power!
So I asked, “Lil Beiming, does your class buff your attack power?”
Beiming Xue gave me a smile. “My innate talent boosts my dark-based attacks by 25%. However, this number is fixed and won’t change even if I level up. Also, why are you calling me Lil Beiming?”
“You are only eighteen, aren’t you?”
“Well, I suppose I can be considered ‘little’ when compared to three men who are approaching their thirties...”
The three of us laughed madly when we heard the comment, and Beiming Xue wondered if she had made a mistake.
A long time later, we finally cleared out all the skeletons in the area.
A golden beam of light surrounded me, and I finally returned to Level 50 once more. Grinding mobs at an even higher level made for truly fast leveling!
The way Beiming Xue was holding her bow made it look like she was gunning for the moon. She crouched slightly and darted into the forest like lightning. Then, she suddenly came to a pause beneath a huge tree and warned us, “Watch out, the boss is here!”
“Pull it and come back immediately!” I shouted.
Beiming Xue drew her bow and fired a powerful, unseeable arrow at the boss. Then, she ran all the way back until she was standing next to me. We stared into the forest together and waited for the boss to appear.
The tree she was standing beneath just a moment earlier abruptly broke into two as a boss surrounded in blood-red light emerged into view. It wore a pitch black cape and wielded a sword. It was also riding a skeletal warhorse. It was a leader-type boss of the Night Creatures!
Crimson Hell (Dark Steel Rank Boss)
Introduction: He used to be a royal bodyguard of the Violet Empire. After he was corrupted by the Night Creatures, Crimson Hell turned into a bonafide devil, his hands forever drenched in blood.
I thought for a moment before saying, “425 Attack is a bit weaker than I expected. Be careful, everyone. Lil Beiming, Thirteen, don’t try to fight the boss up close. Gui Guzi and I will take turns tanking the boss. Summon your pets and get ready for battle!”
My Dark Wasp was already buzzing in excitement. Gui Guzi and Du Thirteen were using Wasps too, except one had 24 and the other 17 BN. It was a pretty sorry sight to be honest.
On the bright side, Beiming Xue’s pet was a magic-type, offensive-oriented Level 47 Purple Butterfly. It was incredibly rare, and the only other person I vaguely recalled had the same pet was Clear Perfume!
The Dark Wasp, Gui Guzi, and I charged the boss at the same time!
The sword pierced the boss’s chest and shaved some HP off its health bar!
The boss didn’t overlevel me so much that it had a natural advantage over me, so the damage was impressive to say the least. It felt incredible to go through a boss monster’s defenses!
Again! Pardon + Slayer Slash!
While the boss was slowed by Ice Ray, everyone attacked the boss with all their might. Gui Guzi launched Death Combo the second he got close, three Wasps stung it repeatedly, and Beiming Xue fired arrow after arrow, each dealing massive damage to the boss.
The Purple Butterfly rose into the air and started glowing, as if illumined by magic. It then unleashed many fireballs at the boss, also dealing considerable damage. Our party’s DPS was so high it was borderline ridiculous, and the boss lost over 5000 HP, or one tenth of its total HP, in ten seconds’ time. This meant that the boss only had 50000 HP at most.
Cheeks red, Beiming Xue shouted excitedly, “Wow, we’re killing it so fast!”
The boss swung his sword and hit Gui Guzi in the head, but Gui Guzi gritted his teeth and endured it thanks to the effects of the Undying Shield. It would take only a few minutes to take out this boss, so this bit of damage was nothing.
“Damned humans, I will feed on your flesh until there’s nothing but bones!”
Crimson Hell roared angrily, his sword exuding red light. Here comes his killer move!
Gui Guzi took several steps back as blood spurted from his body. The attack clearly dealt a tremendous amount of damage!
What the hell happened? Shocked, I checked the combat logs and found an entry…
Combat Log: Crimson Hell used “Desperate Gambit V” and hit player “Gui Guzi”, dealing 987 damage!
“Little Gui, come back! I’ll tank him while you heal yourself!” I shouted.
Gui Guzi nodded.
It was at this moment Beiming Xue smiled somewhat embarrassedly. “Er… Lu Chen, Gui Guzi, I have a skill book here that’s also called ‘Desperate Gambit’. I got it from a boss I killed using a bug. Do you want it?”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
This marks the end of Volume 1 – Storm of Blood. Next chapter begins Volume 2 – The Oath.