Chapter 48: What Is This Smell…
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Ever since Slayer’s Heart resigned from the position of Field Commander in his Clan, he led a party without much strong competition. It was merely a regular party where a few acquaintances got together during their free time as they enjoyed slaying monsters. They went on quests as well as earned some gold coins to better their lives, and help out with their own family expenses. Occasionally, they would use some of the gold coins they earned to get better equipment. That was all.
Slayer’s Heart told Qin Ruo all that because he only wanted to reveal one important message to Qin Ruo.
He was weary of seeing the same sight in the game, where one was trying to cheat or outwit the other. He no longer had the will to walk down the same old path. He, Burning Rose, and the others just wanted to enjoy the game peacefully, not throw themselves into the game…
After he understood that, Qin Ruo remained silent.
Slayer’s Heart’s current decision was somewhat different from Qin Ruo’s previous perception. Among the people in the Seven Great Leagues, to think that there would still be such an ideal, it was… extremely rare.
All that time, Qin Ruo had mostly seen people who behaved like a “Brother Da” . In order to progress to higher levels, they would remain focused on the game all the time other than when they were working normally and having their meals. In order to acquire better equipment and status in the game, they would relentlessly challenge Bosses and Elite Monsters that were extremely powerful.
He never took Slayer’s Heart and his other party members to be the type of people who had such peace of mind… It was really surprising.
“I’m telling you this not because I want to reject you. You should know that we’ve been treating you as our friend. From that perspective, I want you to understand clearly… Your elemental control is extraordinary. You have quite the potential. If you put your back into it, you’ll definitely be able to achieve greatness and create a bright future! However, this party of ours is not going to be helpful in your future development. I don’t intend to recommend you to our League Master… Because you’re only in Tier 3 now. With your current status, I believe that a newly formed Clan can better provide you with the chance to develop better.”
The words from Slayer’s Heart were very sincere.
Qin Ruo nodded as he remained in silence. Indeed, Slayer’s Heart had thought ahead a lot more than he did… He thought of choosing a Clan or League to join in the future, because Qin Ruo could work his way up in H&G and make a name for himself one day… But it turned out that Qin Ruo was merely thinking about silently grinding at respawn points in Aricus Underground Ruins for items of great quality. Meanwhile, he could follow everyone in this party to earn some gold coins. From time to time, they could just slay a Boss. His main goal was to collect enough money for Xin Yu’s surgery as soon as he could… He never actually set his aims too high.
However, Slayer’s Heart’s words had Qin Ruo thinking for a moment. He continued to listen.
“Actually, I’ve told Burning Rose and the others the same thing before. You can leave anytime you want. Regardless of how you do in the future, as long as you feel tired, you’re still welcome to return to our party. You can always come and chat with us, or perhaps slay some monsters and grind with us… I’ll always welcome you back with open arms!”
Qin Ruo rubbed his nose and nodded silently. Suddenly…
“Are you done talking?”
Burning Rose suddenly interrupted and startled the two of them.
“Yes, we’re done talking… Let’s get to the lower third floor then.”
Slayer’s Heart felt a little awkward at that moment.
“Yeah, get to that huge head of yours!”
Burning Rose suddenly glared at Slayer’s Heart discontentedly. There was anger in her eyes.
“Why do you sound so sad when everything’s fine! It sounds like someone’s leaving! Don’t you dare scare Ruo Ruo away!”
“That’s right! Ignore him, Ruo Ruo! He’s always like that. He’s always overcautious and indecisive. Before getting one thing done, he’ll already tell you about something that’ll happen later. He’s a really boring guy,” Violet Orchid joined Burning Rose in flaming Slayer’s Heart. The two of them made Slayer’s Heart, who appeared sincere and honest to blush like a tomato as he stammered.
“I-I think it would be better to lay things out clearly from the start, right? Not to mention that—”
“Oh, please, captain. Bro, I beg of you… stop talking. If you keep this up, dawn will arrive soon… Just talk later if you have anything else to say. Let’s get over to the lower third floor right now.”
iLittle Arrow and Little Apple seemed to be losing their patience with at that moment.
In that instant, Slayer’s Heart no longer had the imposing demeanor of the party’s captain or a Field Commander. He helplessly shrugged at Qin Ruo as he smiled bitterly. He then inserted the metallic cross key into the stone pillar, which looked like a bamboo shoot…
The earth beneath their feet suddenly groaned, deep and ominous. A dark hole the size of an ordinary man was revealed in the ground by the corner.
That hole appeared to be shrouded with a gloomy and strange presence.
“Be mindful. The monsters on the third floor are more powerful than the Gorefiend Spiders.”
Qin Ruo nodded as he activated his barrier around him. He then followed Slayer’s Heart and Little Apple closely as they set foot on the gloomy ground, entering the lower third floor of Aricus Underground Ruins.
The lower third floor of Aricus Underground Ruins looked completely different from the stage designs and styles of the city on the first floor and the large-scale crypt on the lower second floor. The lower third floor seemed to be a bunch of large-scale crypts that were connected together by a series of different-sized caverns. In short, all of the crypts were interconnected. According to rumors, the place was formerly inhabited by a group of higher-order underground people called the Underearth race.
It was also rumored that, if anyone among the higher-order Underearth race in the crypt was picked to live on the surface of the earth, that person would be much wealthier than most, who had been living on the surface of the ground.
However, back in the years when the higher-order Underearth race was hiding in the Underground City, they purposely buried their treasure and wealth deep beneath a “small corner”. It was somewhere in the maze of crypts that were all interconnected…
Over many years, their treasure and wealth remained unfound… until the race of Gorefiend Spiders began to reveal themselves—the Gorefiend Spiders possessed an extremely sensitive sense of smell. That was the greatest “kryptonite”, a true danger to the existence of the treasure that was intended to be hidden away. Due to that, a huge portion of the treasure had been found, taken, and hidden away by the Gorefiend Spiders.
The way to find the treasure had fallen upon the Gorefiend Spiders just like that. Locating the treasure became possible because of those Gorefiend Spiders.
Qin Ruo had no idea how Alchemists managed to turn parts of the Gorefiend Spiders into Dimensional Portals, which could lead to the whereabouts of the treasure. However, since the method and means had been obtained, exploring this unknown wealth was only natural…
The Underearth beings were once prosperous and glorious. It was possible that they had hidden some precious Legendary Equipment or weapon, some magic potions that defied nature, some rare skill books or spell books. Who knew?
However, just as Qin Ruo got excited while he scanned every suspicious corner of the crypt, the various stone tables, chairs, and bed stools in the gentry’s crypts, iLittle Arrow who was walking right behind him interrupted his unrealistic dream with honest words.
“Stop looking around now. The people in the Underground City are all Bandits with at least Grandmaster-level Trap skills. Even if you can locate the hidden mechanisms they designed, you’re not capable of unlocking them. You’re not bringing anything back with you.”
After hearing her words, Qin Ruo closed his eyes straightaway as he gritted his teeth in frustration.
“… Grandmaster again.”
“Cheer up! Be vigilant! This place is different from the outside. The lowest level of monsters on the lower third floor is at least Level 45. It’s rumored that some people have even encountered the Gorefiend Spider Demon and Deathfiend Spider here. We mustn’t be negligent in any circumstance.”
Qin Ruo felt a tension building up in his chest. He panicked for a brief moment. There was a possibility that they would encounter the Gorefiend Spider Demon? If that was true, it would be an unpleasant inconvenience. It would be impossible for them to find another party to work with them. If the six of them were to encounter that thing for real, they would be in grave danger…
“Oh, yeah, what’s a Deathfiend Spider?” Qin Ruo asked as he stared at the other end of the crypt.
It was approximatelyfour hundred meters across the empty space around him. There was a door, which could lead them to another area…
“The Deathfiend Spider is also a Tier 4 Elite Miniboss. Its body is entirely rotten, and reeks of an unbearable poisonous stench. It’s even more troublesome to deal with than the Gorefiend Spider Demon.”
The person who answered Qin Ruo’s question was Violet Orchid.
“Rotten stench? How bad is it?”
“Really bad! Foul! It smells just like the stench of a corpse. It’s just disgusting. You could pick up the monster’s nasty smell even if it was a hundred meters away! That thing has a strong sense of smell too. It can pick up the scent of anyone within the radius of a hundred meters from it…”
While Violet Orchid was still doing some basic explaining on the Deathfiend Spider, Qin Ruo who had already walked more than ten meters forward, suddenly smelled something extremely putrid.
Urgh! What’s this smell…