After silencing Violet Night, Ronin turned back to face Nie Yan. He reached into his bag and pulled out an ashen, parchment scroll. The edges were heavily worn, and judging from the overall condition of the scroll, it was quite old.
Ronin spread out the scroll on a large stone, revealing a simple map.
Nie Yan narrowed his eyes. This was a treasure map!
The area represented on the map was the Orc King Mountain Range.
“We’ve been researching this map for over a month. We’ve basically confirmed all the important locations. Now we just need a skilled Thief,” Ronin explained. If he didn’t show Nie Yan this map, it would be impossible to complete their objective since several important stages of the quest could only be cleared by a Thief.
“Why pick me? Why not another skilled Thief you know and trust?” Nie Yan asked. After all, he was just a stranger to them.
“Call it a gut feeling. I can confidently say you’re the strongest Thief I’ve ever come across,” Ronin earnestly said. You didn’t necessarily need to look at the stats or equipment to determine whether a Thief was strong. You could tell just by their actions and how they carried themselves.
Additionally, Ronin got a strange feeling from Nie Yan. It was almost as if he didn’t exist.
Ronin was confident in his Awareness. But despite standing right in front of him, he couldn’t sense Nie Yan’s presence at all! Just how high of a Cloaking stat was required for this!?
To confirm his suspicions, Ronin had asked Suyo in a private whisper to use Enhance Perception. Even with her Awareness buffed to 600, she still easily lost track of Nie Yan. This was hard to fathom.
After Suyo reported her discoveries to Ronin, he became all the more convinced Nie Yan was someone extraordinary.
Real experts like Suyo and Ronin had keen insight, unlike Violet Night. It was no wonder those two didn’t give him the time of day.
When Ronin spread out the map, he carefully observed Nie Yan’s expression. Ordinary players’ eyes would burn with greed after seeing a complete treasure map like this, but Nie Yan merely raised an eyebrow in interest. This reaction all but confirmed Ronin’s guess.
“This treasure map is related to Paternoster’s Warhammer, a Divine weapon. There are also three Legendary-grade weapons. The X is the treasure trove of the dark elves,” Ronin hurriedly added. He hoped to pique Nie Yan’s interest enough for him to lend them his services.
Nie Yan chuckled. “I’m only interested in Paternoster’s Warhammer. If we get to the treasure trove, I want the hammer. You guys can split the rest among yourselves.”
The group was at a loss for words. Nie Yan demanded the best item right off the bat. How greedy!
“Fuck you! Who do you think you are? Why the hell should we give you Paternoster’s Warhammer!?” Violet Night cursed. He already didn’t like Nie Yan very much in the first place. He was just a lowly human Thief, and his skills were a complete mystery. Now he was even making this kind of ridiculous demand!
“Why? Watch and see.” Nie Yan’s eyes flashed with killing intent. He suddenly vanished, and in the next instant, he was right behind Violet Night with a dagger to his throat.
Violet Night didn’t even get a chance to react. The sharp blade pressed against his throat told him that if Nie Yan wanted him dead, he would already be a cold corpse on the ground.
Nie Yan merely displayed a tiny fraction of his skill, but Ronin and Suyo felt waves of shock batter at their hearts. His movements were too quick, too precise. They hadn’t seen anything, yet he suddenly stood behind Violet Night. They felt a cold sweat on the back of their necks. If he were to take action against them, no one in their party would survive.
Violet Night never thought Nie Yan was so strong, to the extent that it was far beyond his comprehension. His eyes flickered with a trace of fear.
“How did you all end up recruiting a piece of trash like him? If you guys don’t mind, I’ll take care of him right now,” Nie Yan said in a cold and emotionless tone.
Violet Night suddenly felt like a fish on the chopping board. He had no doubt in his mind that Nie Yan would follow through with his words. He started shivering in fear.
“Please let him off this once,” Ronin mediated. He didn’t want to see Violet Night killed. After all, they had been teammates for so long.
Nie Yan released Violet Night.
Suyo’s eyes lit up. Her interest in Nie Yan’s identity was piqued even more. In the entire Viridian Empire, the number of Thieves who could display this kind of ability definitely didn’t exceed 10. She closely examined his face. Hmm… he doesn’t look like Nirvana Flame.
“Well, we didn’t have high hopes of obtaining Paternoster’s Warhammer in the first place. The monsters guarding the treasure trove are too strong. We’ve already wiped quite a few times trying to get past them. If you can help us reach the treasure, the warhammer is all yours,” Ronin said. He was fairly reasonable. Although Paternoster’s Warhammer was a Divine item, whether or not they were qualified to keep it was another matter. He had an inkling it was a quest item. If they could get to keep the remaining three Legendary items, he would be more than satisfied. After all, they didn’t even have a single piece of Legendary equipment on them. Three pieces was something they could normally only dream about.
Violet Night was still dissatisfied, but he didn’t voice it out. Nie Yan had scared him into submission.
“Sorry. I came here today solely for Paternoster’s Warhammer. It’s related to my quest,” Nie Yan explained.
Ronin nodded. Besides, it was better to clear up any potential disagreements before they set off.
Suyo also nodded. So, this was the reason why Nie Yan demanded Paternoster’s Warhammer. She couldn’t help but become curious about his quest. It definitely couldn’t be a simple one.
Nie Yan had his own thoughts. Since Ronin’s party had already spent a month on this quest, they had likely collected ample data. Cooperating with them would be much faster than going at it alone. After all, he was a stranger in this place. It would take him at least a week to sufficiently explore this map.
“Let’s set out,” Ronin said.
Nie Yan nodded.
The party headed deeper into the forest.
On the way, the group exchanged banter. Nie Yan hid his identity. So, he changed the topic to hunting monsters, levelling, and running dungeons. His knowledge benefited all of them.
Suyo was especially chatty. Nie Yan only chimed in here and there.
Violet Night venomously glared at Nie Yan’s back. Ever since Nie Yan appeared, he’d been ignored and pushed off to the side. Even more infuriatingly, Suyo, who was normally cold and indifferent to him, was treating Nie Yan in such a friendly and cordial manner.
About 20 minutes later, the group arrived at another clearing. They spotted a Twin-Headed Ogre roaming around up ahead. Standing over three meters tall with a hulking body of muscle and fat, it carried a large, spiked wooden club fashioned out of a tree trunk and wolf teeth.
“That Twin-Headed Ogre is a servant of the dark elves. It’s a Level 180 Elite with 12,000,000 health. It drops a key fragment upon death. If you don’t use the key fragment within five hours, it’ll disappear, and the Twin-Headed Ogre will respawn. So, we’ll have to be quick,” Ronin explained.
“You’ve killed it before?” Nie Yan asked.
“Yeah, this’ll be the 16th time. Our best time was 15 minutes. There’s more steps after that, though. We’ll be pretty tight on time. This quest is really difficult. Over the past month, even though we’ve made some progress, we’re still far away from completing it,” Suyo explained. She was quite confident in her party, believing even if they joined a large guild, they would firmly rank among the top players.
Nie Yan had to give it to them. For a party of level 110–120 players to kill a Level 180 Elite like this Twin-Headed Ogre in the span of 15 minutes was quite impressive.
However, Nie Yan stood on a different plane. Common sense didn’t apply to him. He was basically as overpowered as you could get.
Nie Yan had long since stopped putting Level 180 Elites like these in his eyes.
“Sky Origin, let me teach you a trick. Lure the ogre to this choke point over here,” Ronin pointed out. They had discovered this spot on their fifth attempt.
Nie Yan surveyed the surroundings. There was indeed a choke point hidden in the topography, though it wasn’t easy to discover. However, harder than finding it, was luring it there. This task was far too tedious and time consuming for him!
“This is usually my job. But since you’re new here, we need to test out your skills. If you can’t do it, you can leave it to me,” Violet Night said, glancing at Nie Yan with a cold smile. This was one of the things he was proud of. With his combination of long ranged attacks and blinks, he was confident no one in this party could do this job better than him.
“I’m not specialized in luring and trapping monsters, but there’s no need to go through that kind of trouble for a monster like this,” Nie Yan said indifferently. He then started walking towards the Twin-Headed Ogre.
“What’s he doing?” a teammate asked.
“I don’t know. He’s probably tired of living.” Violet Night coldly chuckled.
Ronin and Suyo stared at Nie Yan’s back, then glanced at each other. He likely wasn’t so foolish as to get himself killed. They were curious to see what he was planning to do.
Nie Yan leisurely walked out of the undergrowth.
The Twin-Headed Ogre looked around. Its two heads gave it a wide vision range. One of the heads quickly discovered Nie Yan, soon followed by the other head. Two pairs of eyes locked onto him.”GROARG!” It brandished its spiked club, knocking down a nearby tree.
The Twin-Headed Ogre charged over, the earth quaking with each step.
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