Virtual World Close Combat Mage Chapter 748: Chapter 748 - Character Clues
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"There's another name here. Angus!" Svelte Dancer had also made a discovery from the notes she got.
"Hmm, I think no one thinks that monster's a girl, right?" Xi Xiaotian asked.
Everyone shook their heads.
"It's pretty obvious that he's Angus, Guillermo's assistant, who was also his student at the same time. Meanwhile, this Courtney lady that had been mentioned was also a student of Guillermo's, and they should be a pair of lovers," Xi Xiaotian summarized all they had learned thus far.
"What? You can't learn all that through the notes!" Gu Fei exclaimed.
Xi Xiaotian took out from her pile and shoved it right in front of Gu Fei. Written on it was the words "I love you" and "I love you too", a pair of mawkish sentences exchanged that told volumes about their relationship.
"Students nowadays are really quite something," Gu Fei mused.
"This one, take a look at this note here," Royal God Call had made another discovery.
"Angus. This project doesn't sit right with me. Can you not continue it?"
"Haha, relax, teacher has already found the solution for us."
"Oh? What is it?"
"You're the only one I'm telling this secret to; it's magic. Can you believe it? It's such a wondrous thing."
"Magic? That makes me all the more uneasy."
"It's going to be fine. Trust me."
"So," Xi Xiaotian nodded her head after hearing all that. "The story here is becoming more coherent, isn't it? It's very likely that this project that Guillermo fellow had planned utilizes some kind of magic that should not be used, perhaps an accident had happened, or maybe Angus was supposed to be the sacrifice for his plan in the first place, which caused him to mutate into that gruesome monster that we saw him as."
"Look at this one… It's so sad," Svelte Dancer had picked out a note from her stack and handed it over for everyone to read.
"This part here doesn't seem to be using the same paper as all those we read before," Xi Xiaotian said.
"But the handwriting is all the same throughout. This isn't like the notes that were being exchanged between people like before," Royal God Call observed
"This is Angus' handwriting, but it looks to be a little different," Gu Fei was flipping through as well.
"I think it must have already mutated when writing this, so it was unable to go and find Courtney. All it could do was write all this to itself, to express its thoughts…" Svelte Dancer's voice trailed off.
"The words are getting messier and messier," Xi Xiaotian flipped through one by one and commented. "Looks like the mutation made it harder and harder for it to maintain human consciousness."
"That is so tragic! Even in its current state, it's still pinning after Courtney with such longing." Saying that, Svelte Dancer turned to regard Gu Fei, "you're a murderer."
"Hey! You're the one who started vomiting the moment you saw it," Gu Fei reminded Svelte Dancer.
"That does not affect what sympathy I feel for it," Svelte Dancer declared.
"Fine… Actually, nothing of what we found seems crucial. What's important should be the project that these notes mentioned before. Perhaps it's referring to that opening at the bottom of Yunjiao Lake. There must be some sort of secret to it." Gu Fei speculated.
"Murderer…" Svelte Dancer was still engrossed in the storyline.
"It was only lines of code!" Gu Fei was exasperated.
"I have no doubts that there must certainly be some story behind that underwater opening, and these notes had at most proved this very point. But there's not one clue in here that explains how it would serve to unravel any sort of secret. Perhaps we will have to head to the hole and take a look for ourselves?" Xi Xiaotian said.
"That's impossible," Gu Fei shook his head.
"Why is that?"
"Because it is underwater, and humans need to breathe air," Gu Fei told her.
"So this quest has you finding Guillermo, then Angus, perhaps it's all so you could obtain some sort of method to make your way into that hole," Xi Xiaotian said. "Perhaps we shouldn't have killed it…"
"I'm not the one who killed it," Gu Fei shrugged. "Those players did."
"Who knows, maybe it might drop some important clue or item after killing it."
"Well, it looks like we won't be getting that either," Gu Fei turned around and saw the crowd of players that had drowned Angus in their attacks. Even if it had dropped anything, those players would have surely picked it up by now. It would be insanely difficult for them to somehow find a way to take the item back from such a sea of people.
"However, we did learn of another possible clue from these notes," Xi Xiaotian pointed out.
"Did you mean this Courtney NPC?" Gu Fei asked.
"That's right. From the contents of the note where Angus misses Courtney, we can clearly deduce that Courtney isn't dead, and Angus did not dare to look for her precisely because of how he looked after his mutation. Guillermo, Angus, and Courtney all knew about this project, and Courtney might be the one who knows the least, but she is our only option. At least, that's where we stand at the moment," Xi Xiaotian said.
Gu Fei nodded as he began to flip through the notes in his hands as well, "But none of these tell us just where to look for her. Ugh, we're looking for an NPC again… I really hate looking for people."
"At least this is just an NPC. It's a lot easier than looking for a player," Xi Xiaotian encouraged.
"Hold up a minute," Gu Fei suddenly thought of something. "Just who lives in that empty log cabin by Yunjiao Lakeside? Who would go live there for no rhyme or reason? Of course, what I'm saying is, what if that location was not a backdrop that the system had randomly chosen, but it had been chosen similarly because there's a backstory to it?"
"In the chimney of the log cabin, we discovered the remnant ashes from an extinguished fire and discovered a piece of paper in our search of the place. This paper depicted the location of the opening under Yunjiao Lake, which meant that someone must have studied this project there. Just who was it?"
"Perhaps it was Guillermo's; since he was the one who had led the city assaulters who picked up his quest over to that location, perhaps that was the place where they had first studied this project. But it could also be Courtney; she could have been staying there before, doing her research for the project. Just what was she trying to do? From the contents of those previous notes, it seems like she did not join in on this project, and was only worrying for Angus' safety," Gu Fei said.
"From what you've just said, it seems like we must head on over to that place and take a look for ourselves," Xi Xiaotian said.
"That's probably not a good idea. That place… Young Master Han might have set up an ambush in that place again since he knows that it would be somewhere highly relevant to my quest," Gu Fei warned.
"Courtney… Just where can we find that NPC? All of you, look through all the notes and see if there are any clues left anywhere. I'll send Sword Demon and the others a message and get them to keep an eye out for an NPC going by that name."
"Okay…" The few of them nodded their heads and tended to their own stacks, but there really was no further information on Courtney when they looked through the notes. That was when Xi Xiaotian shifted her attention over to the necklace, examining it from all angles as she asked, "This necklace should be Courtney's, right?"
"Or perhaps it's a gift that Angus wanted to give, but did not manage to do so. It's really sad," Svelte Dancer said.
"Perhaps this would be key to finding Courtney," Xi Xiaotian handed that necklace to Gu Fei.
"Take this item and go ask your quest giver about it," Xi Xiaotian instructed.
"Oh, I should take it back and ask indeed," Gu Fei nodded.
"The three of us will make our way over to Yunjiao Lakeside and see if there are any sort of ambush," Xi Xiaotian said.
"What if we get caught?" Royal God Call knew just how scary it would be if they got caught in an ambush designed by Young Master Han.
"Then you'll die once. It's not a big deal," Xi Xiaotian said.
"Okay, let us split our ways and do what we got to do," Gu Fei said.
Over by the city assaulter's side, the guild leaders from the four large guilds were seated together with Ye Xiaowu, all ready to see just what could be the reason for this little Priest to be so inexplicably confident.
"To put it simply, the quest that Thousand Miles Drunk is currently taking part in has a huge chance of causing the city assaulters from Yunduan City to fail in their taking of the city," Ye Xiaowu began.
"What? That's so unfair. How could the single quest he's on cause all of us to fail?" The four guild leaders were all anxious to hear what he had to share.
"Both the city assaulters and city defenders would share this decisive quest. And this sort of quest is actually designed to be competitive, but there are no cities that have players that ended up as city defenders like you guys, much less any cities out there that would have city defenders that would have gained the upper hand with this decisive quest. Honestly speaking, can any of you believe it? A competitive quest that pits a single man against 200,000, yet it was the lone wolf that has the advantage," Ye Xiaowu continued.
"He's not alone," Oathless Sword interjected.
"I know, he had even managed to establish a guild now, right? That is why you guys should feel all the more pressured; If he were to succeed in this competitive quest…"
"Wait a minute, you just said this quest is decisive, and it's also competitive. Does that not mean that if we are able to defeat him on this quest, and proceed to complete it, we would be able to achieve victory for this City Wars event," Brave Surge suddenly blurted.
"Even if you fail to complete the quest, you would not be too far from total victory. Are you guys unaware? Your neighbor, Yueye City, has already completed their City War," Ye Xiaowu said.
"They had completed this very quest and in the battle for the city, obtaining the Werewolf Legion's aid. Yueye City has already won their assault on the city," Ye Xiaowu said. "Perhaps you guys should take a rest and check out the forums. There are plenty of cities whose City Wars are already nearing the end. Plenty of their experiences would be worth learning from."
"They don't have Thousand Miles Drunk making a mess of things, do they? By your words, we had also received such a quest ourselves, so were it not for the fact that Thousand Miles Drunk ended up being pitted against us, we would have already completed the quest and would have also won the City War, right?" Brave Surge said.
"That's the reason why I'm here. There should not have even been a Thousand Miles Drunk to create so much trouble for all you guys," Ye Xiaowu said.
The expressions on these four guild leaders changed when they heard this.
"What do you mean? Is Thousand Miles Drunk actually a BUG? Is he not human?"
"No wonder. I always felt that he is somewhat inhuman. So it turns out he was just a mistake that the system created?"
"Then what about those guys from Young Master's Elite? Are they the same?"
"How could that be? Have you not heard of Sword Demon, Royal God Call and the others? These guys must have discovered the BUG and fully utilized it for their maximum benefit. D*mm*t, how is that any different from hacking?"
Ye Xiaowu was dumbfounded. He had been deeply subdued by the imagination from these guild leaders from the four large guilds. He quickly regained his thoughts and interrupted their discussion, "Hold it. That is not what I meant. Thousand Miles Drunk is just a normal player, and he's not some error from the system or anything like that."
"Then… What do you mean by saying that he should not even be here?" Oathless Sword asked.
"What I meant to say was that he is obscenely strong. There should not be such a powerful character in this game at all, and his strength had utterly disrupted the game balance, and it's all because of how impossible it was to imagine that a normal player like him could reach such a realm of expertise," Ye Xiaowu said.
"A game that does not allow players to become overly powerful? Just what kind of rule is that? Wait a minute, just who the hell are you?" The four guild leaders were all frightened. Even though Thousand Miles Drunk had created plenty of trouble for them, and just mentioning his name would cause them all to be grinding their teeth, the truth remained that Thousand Miles Drunk was someone all these players hoped to be. There was no one out there who was not envious of Thousand Miles Drunk; every gamer would of course wish to be able to possess that level of strength that he had shown. However, now that there was someone who told them that the game would not accept such strength to exist in the game, that was as good as crushing everybody's dreams and goals! While any reasonable person would understand that they would never ever reach such heights, they would at least still have the unattainable dream to look forward to. Now that someone had told them outright that their dreams were unrealistic... Why would they not already know this? Nevertheless, to say it so plainly was just too cruel.
"No no no, that's not what I mean," Ye Xiaowu quickly explained himself. "What I mean to say is that Thousand Miles Drunk's strength is not based on the system's design. Do none of you know the truth? He is actually a real martial artist, and he is personally well versed in various fighting techniques; that is the reason why he always comes out on top when clashing with the average player. In fact, he is well capable of beating several people even without equipment or the skills or spells provided in-game. Such an existence is what I term as a strength that should not have even appeared."
"You haven't answered us yet, just who are you?" The four asked. "Are you someone from the game company?"
"No," Ye Xiaowu flatly denied this. "I simply just cannot stand seeing him possess such strength since I feel it upsets the balance."
"Uh, but what can you do? Everything you just said only highlights the fact that his strength is not something found within the system's design. Thus, aside from deleting his account, just who could be able to stop such a powerful existence like him?" Brave Surge asked.
"While I might not be able to stop him from being so strong, I could at least stop his strength from affecting all the other players. That is what I intend to do," Ye Xiaowu said.
"So in this instance, you're going to help us achieve the victory condition for this City War?" Brave Surge asked.
"No, I'm only stopping him from using his power to disrupt your quest," Ye Xiaowu was persistent till the end.
"With all due respect," Brave Surge said. "You're just a little Priest that has yet to complete your job advancement, decked out in normal equipment. Where did you find such confidence to go up against Thousand Miles Drunk?"
"If what he has is strength, what I have is perhaps knowledge. Game knowledge," Ye Xiaowu let on.
"You've already said that you're not a game company employee," Brave Surge said.
"That's right, I'm not—" Ye Xiaowu reiterated.
"Oh, I get it." Brave Surge was no fool. "You're a game company employee, but in some way or another, you're not one as well. Are you just playing with your words?"
"This issue isn't exactly important," Ye Xiaowu was evasive.
"You possess the knowledge, and you want to borrow our strength to stop Thousand Miles Drunk. That's how it is, right?" Brave Surge clarified.
"That is correct."
"Okay then. Let us begin!" Brave Surge was elated, demonstrating a level of enthusiasm well beyond the other three. The reason behind this was simple: He already understood what it meant when Ye Xiaowu said it was a competitive quest, and that quest just so happened to be in his guild's hands, with his fellow guildmate Beyond Thirty Miles. No matter how they end up stopping Thousand Miles Drunk, he was certain that they would be able to obtain some sort of breakthrough in their quest, and that would be hugely advantageous for Carouse.
If Brave Surge could think of this, the other three guilds could also come up with the same line of thought, and they were all rather unhappy deep down. They were all more than happy to kill Thousand Miles Drunk and disrupt his quest, but upon thinking that Brave Surge would be the only one who would end up profiting once everything was said and done, not a single one of them could feel good about it. When they were cooperating before, they had not thought that dealing with Thousand Miles Drunk would have such a huge benefit to be gained.
"Come on, use your knowledge and tell us what we should do," Brave Surge was obviously very excited right now.
"I'll need to at least know what stage your competitive quest had gotten to by now," Ye Xiaowu said.
The other three guild leaders turn to stare at Brave Surge.
"Ahem," Brave Surge coughed once, and gave them a general overview of the quest so far.
"How very complicated," Ye Xiaowu commented. "Look, this is a quest that is offered during the City Wars event, so the degree of freedom is high. There are actually multiple routes that could lead to the final ending, and while your quest log might not show that there's a quest, but if it could reach the corresponding conditions, it would also be considered as complete, and it would similarly trigger the next step of the questline."
"Oh, is that so?" The eyes of Oathless Sword and the others shone when they heard this.
"Oh is that so?" It was the same line, but when Brave Surge said this, he was coming from a different interpretation. He was feeling the regret that he was unable to exclusively own it.
"Currently, Guillermo has been killed, right?"
"Yes. He had previously told us to recover the item that we were supposed to find in the log cabin. What should we do about that?" Brave Surge asked.
"If Guillermo is dead… That means the content of Thousand Miles Drunk's quest would change as well. He most likely would be sent to find Angus," Ye Xiaowu was muttering to himself.
"Angus? Who's Angus?" The other three guild leaders were roused.
"Angus is Guillermo's assistant, and he's also one of the NPC clues for this quest," Ye Xiaowu explained.
"Wait. There has been a situation; Yunjiao Quarry has sighted Thousand Miles Drunk!" Foe-herder abruptly cried out.
"I have the same report as well. A player who Blinked. There's no doubt he's there," Oathless Sword said as well.
"Is he already there?" Ye Xiaowu said.
"Is that where Angus is as well?"
"That's right," Ye Xiaowu nodded.
"So what should we do now?" The four hurriedly asked.
"That would depend on how he handles things. Perhaps we should also hurry on over ourselves," Ye Xiaowu said.
"Quick, it's time to move out," The guild leaders began to pick their men and subsequent leaders for this operation. Brave Surge was dejected over his question before being ignored, so he took this chance to ask, "So regarding my side of the quest, just how should I proceed?"
"There's plenty of clues, so think about it further," Ye Xiaowu patted him on his back before following Oathless Sword and the other guild leaders to depart for the Quarry. However, they were all a bunch of babylegs, and the various guilds had already sent out their speedier job classes to go scope out the situation.
"Angus… If Thousand Miles Drunk chooses to engage in a firefight with it, that might be rather interesting. Perhaps we would be able to defeat him then and there," Ye Xiaowu mused.
"Oh, he's sure to fight it," Oathless Sword nodded. He had a bit of an understanding of Gu Fei, and he was positive that the man would definitely choose to battle if given the choice. Otherwise, why else would they call him inhuman?
In the end, as the whole bunch of baby legs hurried along their way, they got news from the frontlines, "Thousand Miles Drunk has escaped, and the weird disgusting creature has been slain by the players."
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