Chapter 172: Chapter 171: The Dark Caster Raid Part I
“We do have one… a supporter that it.”
“What do you mean?” Algred asked, looking at me as if I was crazy.
“Reveal Dignity and Altered Equality.” There was no reason to keep knowledge of the skills from the Shire Guild. They were bound to find out anyway, once they realized that they could kill the monsters in the dungeon easier than before. I could have also waited until they found out on their own, but they seemed uneasy about not having a supporter going in to the raid. It would be best for all of us if they could prepare knowing about those skills beforehand.
I had to do my best here. Not only was this dungeon extremely difficult, the Shire Guild had gifted me a Rank 9 item and were going to allow me to come back to hunt in this dungeon, if we succeeded.
==[The King Emperor’s Grand Dignity
All enemies within a 50m radius (monsters included) incur a debuff that lowers ATT, MATT, DEF and MDEF by 12%.
All enemies within a 50m radius (monsters included) incur a debuff that lowers STR, VIT, AGI, WIL and INT by 12%.
The user’s CRIT rate increases by 5%. The user’s CRIT damage increases by 200%
The user’s Stats are increased by 300 points while this buff is in effect.]==
Your opponent’s base Stat points, Stat points increased by skills and items and Stat points granted by specials will all be redistributed.
You will receive severe restrictions from using Altered Equality. (All Stat points received from Kiran will be set to 0.)
Cooldown: 24 hours.]==
I wasn’t a specialized supporter class deva. However, back when I was a Fire Mage, I had met several supporters during party hunts and knew to an extent what the effects of the average buffs and debuffs were. I also knew that the strongest supporters were trained by the largest guilds and only worked within their own guilds. Still, I knew that Altered Equality and Dignity had to be the strongest debuffs out there.
The entire room fell silent in shock as everyone read through the effects of the debuffs. Daniel finally broke the long silence.
“We could have recruited another Unrivaled tank. We could have even gone straight to the Sunbin Guild instead. The reason we came to you is because we knew about your uniquely high attack power.” Everyone, including me, shifted their attention to him. “Unrivaled devas make the best tanks, everyone knows that, but their attack power definitely falls behind, especially when they don’t have enough skill points to compensate. But we also knew that you were different from all of your recent activities.
“And yet, we still underestimated you.
“Time is the biggest factor in this upcoming raid. That’s why we gathered some of the best tanks and damage dealers, but to think that we also have the supporter role filled… I’m beginning to think that what we’ve given you isn’t close to enough.”
“We’ll have to wait and see, won’t we?” I hadn’t opened the Random Skill Chest yet. I hadn’t even done anything yet, so asking for more now would be considered a dick move. But… if we did clear the raid, then I might squeeze a little more out of them.
We continued our meeting after that. The only thing different now was that they were taking me more into account, asking my opinion on this tactic and that. I could tell that this fourth attempt was the Shire Guild’s last and they were putting everything they had in to make sure they would succeed.
“By the way, I don’t see the fifth Unrivaled here.” The nineteen other party members chosen to raid the dungeon were also gathered in the conference room, but we were missing the other foreign Unrivaled deva.
“That person decided to return to their homeland when our contact with you took longer than planned. We have already contacted them, so the latest they’ll arrive will be by tomorrow.”
“Travelling through the dungeon should be enough to establish the teamwork between the twenty party members. It’s going to take at least two weeks to get the boss room,” Algred said, finishing the planning part of the meeting.
Daniel Miller then stood up to address the room. “Once our remaining party member rejoins us, we will have a final supper together before heading out to the dungeon. We will begin the raid as soon as we can. We cannot fail. Fight tomorrow knowing that this is our last chance!”
“Yes sir!” the other party members shouted in response.
“We’re going to be relying on you tomorrow, Mr. Lee.”
“I’ll do my best.”
The next day, during the feast, I finally got to meet the last member of the party, who was quite familiar. Well, the person wasn’t familiar; the emblem on the deva’s left breast was. That emblem, in the shape of a square shield known as the Shield of Aleppo, meant that this deva was a mercenary recognized by Madun Yatekin, the Mercenary Lord. There were also two sabers crossed beneath the Shield of Aleppo, letting me know that he was under the employ of Yatekin.
When our eyes met, the mercenary came forward to greet me first.
“It’s good to finally meet you. I’ve heard a lot about you. I am Devram of the Karaviki Mercenary Corps.” As I had thought, he was a deva chosen by Yatekin himself. The Karaviki Mercenary Corp was under the direct command of Yatekin.
“It’s good to meet you too. I am Lee Jiwon,” I said, shaking his hand.
“At first, our commander, Madu Yatekin, turned down the Shire Guild.”
“What?” I asked at the sudden comment.
“From what we learned at first, there was no way the Shire Guild could ever succeed. And then, the Shire Guild had gathered three Unrivaled tanks, ten powerful DPS devas, five expert healers and you,” Devram said quietly, as if he was imparting a secret unto me.
“Well, if you put it like that, I guess I should give it my all as to not embarrass myself in front of so many people,” I said with a smile.
“I’m sure it’ll be enough to do as you normally do. I look forward to working with you.”
The next day…
Two thousand Shire Guild members were gathered in a large, empty space in the Shire’s base. I stood in the middle of them alongside the other party members.
“Let’s go! This time, we will absolutely make that dungeon ours! Move out!”
Daniel Miller then led us out towards the dungeon that was about five hundred kilometers away. However, for the Shire Guild, transporting two thousand people via plane was an easy task.
The Dark Caster dungeon was located on a mountain near Beaver Creek, Pennsylvania. I entered the dungeon easily, as if it were a low-grade dungeon. Once all two thousand devas were inside, Daniel Miller stepped to the front and addressed us.
“As per our negotiations with the damned Spencer Guild, we only have twenty days left to finish up here. It’ll take us about two weeks to reach the boss room. In the meantime, the party to face the boss will spend an hour or two a day working on teamwork.”
With that, we began to slowly move deeper into the dungeon. Many powerful undead monsters stood in our way, as expected of a high-grade dungeon, but they just didn’t stand a chance against such a huge army.
“Flourishing Incense of Cure!”
“Spirit of Water, bless my enemies with the power of Recovery!”
The undead monsters in front of us practically melted from all of the heal spells the Shire Guild cast.
“It’s weird. Those normally calm healers always get so excited when they go up against Undead-type monsters. I just don’t get it,” Devram said to me.
“They always put up with a lot, don’t you think? They must want to smash things every now and then.”
“Hah! Is that how it is?”
About six hours later, we came to a large opening on the dungeon floor and stopped.
“We’ll take a short break here. The twenty core party members, front and center, please.”
I and the other party members came forward. As we had planned a couple days before, we were split into five teams and each team had one tank, one healer, and two DPS. These teams would have to rely on each other and keep each other alive against the Dark Caster.
“Let’s do well, Mr. Lee.”
“You got it.”
My team consisted of Samuel, a Wind Mage; Jayden, an archer wielding a bow as tall as he was; and Jacob, our healer. We were the strongest out of the five teams, with the highest damage output together.
“Let’s give it our all. We’re supposed to be ace team, so if we fall behind the other teams, well, I don’t think I’ll ever leave my room if that happens,” Jacob joked.
Just then, Algred stepped forward and addressed the teams. “Team 5 will go first, then Team 4, then Team 3, Team 2, and then Team 1. Step forward, Team 5. Scout team, bring out the monsters we’ve prepared.”
Team 5 was left alone in the middle, and the rest of us moved back to give them room.
Building teamwork by fighting against normal monsters wouldn’t amount to much when we actually faced off against the boss monster, but it was better than nothing. Besides, we didn’t have enough time as it was.
Soon, the scouts lured in seventeen monsters, who charged straight for Team 5.
“Raging Flame of the Fire Demon!”
The tank stepped in front and used Iron Wall to block the monsters. The Fire Mages and the healer burned away whatever monsters the tank couldn’t stop.
“Remember, Heal attacks don’t work on the Dark Caster! Healers should not attack for the time being.”
The healer switched to casting recovery spells on his teammates to give them a bit more breathing room.
“Two o’clock! We’ll take them down one by one!”
About five minutes later, Team 5 finally cleared away the seventeen undead monsters. That was a pretty good record for a party of four. The others nodded, thinking the same.
“Team 4, you’re up.”
Team 4 replaced Team 5’s spot. Again, the scouts lured in seventeen monsters for Team 4 to fight. They took about five minutes as well.
Team 3 and Team 2 did take four minutes, but it wasn’t that big of a difference.
“Team 1, you’re up!”