TL: Again, there’s no chapter 75, there’s one raws chapter that’s mislabeled and never corrected.
Chapter 77 – Night assault (3)
Brendel’s thought went to the quest’s walkthrough—
“…… During a certain midnight on the ‘Vanquish the lizardmen bandits’, the enemies took action for the first time.”
[This either points to the Tree Shepherds or the ‘Paper Cards’ as the vanguard, or perhaps they both acted together—]
“…… The sudden ambush assailed us to the point where everyone was thrown off their game. The attack had started from the northern hill, but everyone who escaped to the south was probably killed at least once. This was because that monsters’ (The Tree Shepherds) main forces were at the south. Fine, I’ll admit that TorrentialRain’s AI isn’t something to laugh at…..”
“…… Our strategy was to save the Grey Wolves Mercenaries from annhilation. The most important thing to note is how strong Makarov and Buga are. They are the rough equivalent of a player’s level 45 and 55 respectively. Ensuring that they live is the most important aspect of completing the quest.”
“…… But we did discuss our options and think that there’s another way we could about this. This was something that we had discovered in the east. Perhaps TorrentialRain considered the strength of the gamers and designed a Temple of Light in that region.”
“…… Our team discussed over solutions, but regardless of what it is, we believe that to achieve one hundred percent completion in the quest, you must rescue from the Grey Wolves Mercenaries’ complete demise—”
Brendel rubbed his forehead.
[As I had gone through so many times, this really isn’t a walkthrough but more of a lesson they learned from. This was a unique quest that was only open to the first team who discovered it, and they ultimately did not manage to complete the quest in its entirety, which was why the Grey Wolves Mercenaries were routed. The group’s adventure is actually quite exciting if one looks at it like a movie.]
Brendel loved quests that immersed him in the game’s world.
[But damn it, if you bothered to write a report about it, why didn’t you write down the timing, location and the characters properly? ‘During a certain midnight’ — exactly which day was it?! Honestly, pursuing a hundred percent completion rate in this world is silly. The rewards might be double in the game, but where would I get something like this here?]
The only option that was open to him was to rely on his own experience, and leave everything else to the gods. Brendel’s plan was straightforward. He was to leave the Grey Wolves Mercenaries before the Tree Shepherds attacked them and travel to the Temple of Light to activate the quest’s side branch.
Then he would finish off by killing the lizardmen bandits and get the Sage Slate and leave. The Grey Wolves Mercenaries’ fate was not of a big concern to him. Vaunte’s constant wars had seen many of these groups rise and fall regardless of their size. There was also the fact that he did not believe he had sufficient strength to help Makarov and Buga resolve their crisis, or recruit them as retainers and give them commands when the battle commenced.
What he wanted to do was to put effort into people like Amandina and Tamar, where they had great potential in the future. Since he had the knowledge of the future, then this investment was low risk with high rewards.
His plans looked perfect, but reality had suddenly turned against him quickly. The enemies had probably discovered his Wind Spirit Spiders, then the two people in front of him might discover their actions any time.
[Will that Redi brat finish quarreling already?!] Brendel was becoming increasingly annoyed.
Romaine finally could not bear it any longer too.
She raised her pretty brows as she poked his back, and used a voice that she thought was very small, which of course was purely her wishful thoughts.
Everyone near her jumped.
Romaine’s voice was actually not very loud and at most a little urgent, it stood out because the forest she was a female.
Brendel covered her mouth quickly and looked back at the two people. Redi had stopped talking and was looking alert.
Brendel imagined himself strangling Romaine while shaking her to and fro, but he certainly would not do that because he could not bear to do so.
Fortunately, Redi’s alert behavior only lasted temporarily, before he turned back to continue to talk with his companion. Brendel sighed with relief, before he recalled Romaine’s action, and glared at Romaine.
Romaine was still trying to shake his hand away with muffled noises, apparently quite unhappy with Brendel’s action. Brendel nearly got angry with her, but he suddenly felt something was wrong.
[Even though her head is sometimes lost in the clouds and acts like she doesn’t care, she’s much more cunning than she lets it show, otherwise she would have been taken advantage of many times already.]
Before he could ask her exactly what it was, the Nightsong Tiger came over and tapped his shoulder. It was an unusual sight since the mercenaries rarely acted on their own. He looked at him and saw that the Nightsong Tiger had a wary look on his face.
Brendel released his hand and Romaine stopped struggling.
It was not only them, Redi had stopped talking once again and was looking over at them.
The forest had suddenly turned quiet. It was not only the humans in the forest who had stopped moving, even the wind had stopped.
“Did you hear something?” Brendel whispered and asked. He knew that Romaine’s perception was even higher than his own. She glared at him with narrowed eyes before nodding.
Brendel’s nose suddenly caught something in the air. It was an odd smell that pierced through it; an acrid smell that seemed to occur when a sea volcano erupted.
Brendel pulled out his sword immediately without thinking.
[The Disciples of the Fucking Black Flames! That gamer who wrote the walkthrough didn’t mention this shit at all. If they are involved in this bloody mess, I wouldn’t even bother messing with this crap!]
Brendel finally knew what enemies he was facing. The Disciples of Black Flames were the direct forces of the ‘Wurm Leader’ Mayad. There was really nothing about wurms at all, but they worked with the forces in ‘The Sulfur River’—
In other words, they worked with demons from the underworld.
Brendel clenched his sword tightly. He scolded himself for not linking the southern region to the Disciples of Black Flames as their territory was located there. His focus had been on the Sage Slate and the Grey Wolves Mercenaries, and had forgotten this common knowledge for the past few days.
Brendel avoided them with a passion, not because of their prowess, but because of their crazed actions in battle that even surpassed a berserker. Each disciple had different demons that they chained up. Even though they fought together, the duo schemed against each other. While this should have affected their abilities to fight, but the demons had bizarre abilities that were hard to defend against.
At higher levels, the disciples were even able to absorb the demon’s power and become one with the demon. Recalling the gory scenes made Brendel feel nauseous.
[One or two demons are still fine, if there are more than my mental health is going to take a beating.]
Brendel wanted to flee immediately but there was an odd wind within the forest that seemed to buzz in and out. He shrank back as he was too familiar with the sounds. Black chains with two spiked balls flew out from within the dark forest.
“A Lord of Thorns.” Brendel saw the spiked balls smashed through the trees and landed near the two young men. Even though they did not receive damage from the attack, they were completely shocked.
Brendel felt a shiver within his body. A Lord of Thorns was a level 29 demon, and was one rank higher than the underworld helldog, Cerberus. Brendel had encountered them in the past with his level higher than the Lord of Thorns, but they had given him much pain and agony when he fought against them.
But there was no time to reminisce about it, Redi and the other youth started to run from it—
“Morons!” Brendel nearly jumped up from the frustration. The Lord of Thorns did not miss easily; this was apparently to sound out the enemies. But because of that, he was almost certain that the enemies consisted of a small scouting party.
The problem was because Redi’s retreat was most likely going to attract the main forces of the enemies. Brendel was not keen on helping him, but his men were also on the crossfire. He quickly growled a command to Nightsong Tiger:
“Catch that two bastards right now! Drag them back here if you must!”