Starting from Zero Chapter 159
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"So powerful!" The idiot who had tried to touch the Dragon crawled up without any sense of remorse.
I'm a more reserved person by nature and disliked the man's casual attitude, thus I no longer had any reservations towards them. "I'm the only Player here, these Riders are my Servants. And, you should know, [Zero]'s NPCs are all very intellectual, Servants conduct themselves with their own means and methods under any vague commands, as long as I state the goal, they will accomplish it. So, it'll be better off for you to not be too excited over other people's things, my last order given was as protection, if you try to do anything that might be mistaken as an attack, you're finished!"
"They are all your Servants? That's powerful!" The other party was not a fool, upon hearing my words, he knew that I was reminding him to maintain a distance since my words already contained an obvious hint of threat, he instinctively retreated a few steps.
"So why did you call me for? If there's nothing else, I'm leaving!"
"Wait, don't leave first! I truly have some matters!" The other party seemed to be unwilling to let me go. "Let me introduce myself first, my name is [Sword Saint], Level 552 Knight of the Light Faction, Guild Leader of the League of Qin."
"Aight! Got it, now onto business!" I replied extremely coldly to him, I had seen many Guild Leaders before and I myself was one. The only surprising thing was his level, a level 552 Player was definitely a high ranker. From my then current knowledge, I knew that in China's region, the highest level Player had not reached level 570, outside of China, the highest I saw was already Level 580, [Zero]'s leveling system had difficult thresholds at Level 200, 400, 600, 800 and 1000, where the EXP to reach these levels are extremely difficult. In between these thresholds, the difficulty in leveling would gradually increase, and majority of the Players who had reached level 600 would find it unprecedentedly difficult to level, so in the past month, I had heard of people attaining Level 560, but had not heard any that had reached Level 570 yet! For the guy in front of me to be at level 552 meant that he was definitely one of the top few Players.
The other party was surprised by my indifference. "You've never heard of me?"
"Am I supposed to?"
"Well, I'm the Guild Leader of second largest Guild in [Zero], the League of Qin!"
This information was shocking to me. "You're the Guild Leader of the Second Largest Guild? Then what is the Goddess Alliance considered now?"
"Oh!" Sword Saint answered without taking offense. "Although the Goddess Alliance and Righteous League are two different guilds, they are formed by the two siblings, so the majority of us treat them as one single Guild. Recently, the original third rank Guild, Heaven Secret Guild was destroyed by Goddess Alliance, thus my Guild can be considered the Third now, adding that Goddess Alliance and Righteous League should be considered as one, we are thus technically hailed as the Second rank guild!"
This guy definitely knew how to twist his words, somehow he had managed to call his guild the Second Rank Guild! "Alright, fine, I don't really care what Guild Leader you are, tell me what do you want, I don't have the time to chit-chat!"
"Alright! I actually wanted to do business with you."
"Business? What business can I possibly do?"
"There is!" Sword Saint pointed to the army of knights behind him. "We are about to siege a City. We hope to gain your help, and after we successfully siege the City, I will give you some Crystal Pieces and you can choose any of the mission reward equipment."
"I don't need any equipment, I doubt there will be anything better than what I currently have. How much of the Crystal Pieces are you talking about? My asking price is expensive!"
"A thousand Crystal Pieces!" Sword Saint laughed like some unscrupulous businessman.
"Are you trying to beg me?" I pulled on my reins and left with the Phantom Knights following me. The Heavy Armored Dragon's tail swept across the ground and narrowly struck Sword Saint and his two subordinates while turning.
"Brother, don't go! We can negotiate about it!" Sword Saint chased after me. "What about ten thousand Crystal Pieces!"
"Ok! Tell me about the mission!"
"The mission is simple, just help me siege the City!"
I looked over to his army of over ten thousand cavalries, it was no wonder why he had mobilized so many men, they wanted to siege a City! "Don't you have plenty of men? Why must you ask me?"
"Although I have the numbers, their potential for ATK is nothing great, we will definitely suffer from huge losses from the siege, so I hope you can help! When I saw your equipment and your Servants, I knew for sure that you're an extremely high-level Player, ten thousand Crystal Pieces is an amount we are willing to fork out to lessen our loss, if we truly fought, I believe our loss will still be more than ten thousand Crystal Pieces!"
"Really economical of you to think that way! Fine, tell me the City's name and location, I'll go and take a look first."
"The City is called Hovering Flower City, it's right in front, we can reach there in 3 hours on mounts!"
What, 3 hours? The World of [Zero] was truly too large, in usual instances, it would be fine, I would have simply used the Ring of Teleportation to teleport near the City and run over, but it could not be done in a Siege, the enemies would not be foolish enough to allow you to Teleport to their area and gather to attack them!
"Give me a 20% upfront first!"
Sword Saint instantly got his subordinate to hand over 2000 Crystal Pieces to me. "I'll hand over the rest when it's over!"
"You guys should pick up the pace, I'll go ahead first!" I pulled on the reins of Night Shade and headed towards the direction that Sword Saint had pointed towards. "I'm off!"
Our 11 Heavy Armored Dragons took off at the same time, I took the lead at the front with the Phantom Knights in two rows behind. The Heavy Armored Dragons were large and fast, the sound of the 11 of us running sounded like a large cavalry army marching, leaving Sword Saint and the rest coughing in our dust.
We had already left their vision by the time Sword Saint recovered from the coughing fit. He stood up straight, his previous attitude of a lowly person completely gone. "That F*cker, cough cough! Pei Pei*! He made me swallow sand! So what if your armor is good, you still got cheated by me!"
The subordinate behind spoke up: "Boss, didn't we give him 2000 Crystal Pieces? That was a huge loss!"
Sword Saint stared at him ferociously: "What do you know! We gave him 2000 Crystal Pieces for him to help us siege the City. Now that he has gone ahead, they will definitely assume that him is one of our men, and when he encounters their attacks, he will retaliate and attract the City's Magic Cannons, if he gets wiped out, at least we know how powerful their Cannons are, and if he locks in a stalemate with them, we can take that advantage to siege!"
"Boss is brilliant!"
"Hahahaha! But of course, otherwise, how can I be your boss!"
"But what if that brat comes back and asks for the rest of the money?"
"Are you a fool? Did we write that down? Do we have proof of that? If he comes killing his way back, so what, what can he do alone with his good armor, do you not know that a swarm of ants can kill an elephant?"
"Haha! Boss is still the brilliant one!"
While they were laughing over their evil schemes, they did not notice that just two meters away from them in the grass was a plant that had a green spherical eye staring at them. This plant was the size of an earthworm with the crystal eye attached to its end, this crystal eye looked like a sharp claw and was at that moment capturing their voices and image and sent over to another crystal over a kilometer away behind the forest, where I stood.
"Alright, Rosa, come back!" With my command, the sharp crystal in the grass suddenly released a cover and retracted quickly back over to my side. "To think they want to harm me! I knew they were up to no good, luckily I still have some tricks on hand!"
Borrowing Rosa's help, I jumped onto Night Shade's head. "Let's go, we will help the people defend their City!"
You want to use me as a tool, then I'll help your enemies and see who dies!
We rushed out of the forest at our fastest speeds, there was nothing much else I could say about the Heavy Armored Dragon's speed! Reptiles movements seem to be much better than mammals, and with their larger head size, there were no obstructions that could stop us. The Heavy Armored Dragon could step over a human-sized rock and come down on the other side, but on top of it, I had to suffer from the severe bounces!
After running for a distance, we found ourselves at the bank of a large river that was about 40 to 50 meters wide. The 11 Heavy Armored Dragons started to increase their speed and upon reaching the bank of the river, the 40 to 50-meter wide distance was easily leaped across, the distance where we landed was actually another 7 to 8 meters away on the other side! The power of the Heavy Armored Dragon's hind legs was that frightening! From their size, they should weigh more than a ton, but to easily jump across a distance of 40 to 50 meters without even opening their wings and purely with the force from their legs!
Although their jumping ability was powerful, their landing techniques were much inferior, with a bang, Night Shade plunged a meter deep into the ground. The soil near the bank of the river was already soft, with the force of a ton jumping over, imagine how deep the weight can plunge into! The ground could not handle the pressure and all of us that jumped over plunged deep into the ground. Luckily, the Heavy Armored Dragons were huge and their legs were powerful. We eventually managed to climb out of the pits.
After crossing the river, we could see the outline of the city and rushed ahead. Right when we were halfway to the city, a purple projectile shot towards us. I knew it was the shot from the Magic Crystal Cannon.
"DODGE!" We instantly retreated back a few steps, the projectile landed far ahead of us, aside from the strong burst of wind from the impact and a few stones hitting us, we were safe!
"Advance!" We continued to proceed ahead, a Magic Crystal Cannon could not be loaded within 30 seconds, we took that time to press on.
After the 30 seconds, the second shot was unleashed.
This time, the enemy did seem to have calculated their shot and just aimed ahead of us. We quickly dodged to the side. A Crystal Cannon would usually be used in sieges where the intruders were in large numbers, but against us, a small group of extremely mobile mounts, it was ineffective.
Even before the third round could be shot, we arrived at the City wall.
I summoned Epidemic to help me convey my intended message, my voice was too soft, the people on the wall could not possibly hear me!
Epidemic repeated my words. "Stop firing, we are here to help defend the City!"
Truly, the firing stopped, but a rain of arrows came down onto us. Without any instructions, the Phantom Knights blocked the arrows for me.
I got Epidemic to convey my message again: "I'm not lying, I'm really here to help you defend the city!"
This time, the arrows finally stopped. A Player who resembled a Warrior in red armor walked to the edge of the City wall.
"Why are you here to help us? We don't know you!" Her voice was loud, obviously some Mage had used a spell to amplify her words, furthermore, I could tell from her voice that she was female!
Although it was astonishing, I had met Red Moon and Hiko, and thus did not stumble from the surprise. "I chanced upon Sword Saint and his men on the way, they lied to me and said that you and him were going to war, I got angry, so I decided to help you beat them!"
"Who's Sword Saint?"
"Huh?" I almost fumbled off Night Shade from the question. "Isn't this Hovering Flower City?"
"Yes, it is!"
"Sword Saint is about to attack your city and you don't even know who your enemy is?"
"That….forget it, come in first! Open the gates!" The last order was for her own men. The City gates gradually opened up, the City was built exactly like the medieval European castles, the City wall was protected by a moat, the City Gates was built in accordance to a drawbridge.
I rode on Night Shade and stepped onto the drawbridge and entered the City, which instantly blurred me with the sight of it! It was exactly as when I met the Cherry Blossom Organization in Shiromizu! There was no sight of any Male Players, a 100% female player rate crowded the city walls and towers. All of their eyes were fixed on us, or should I say our equipment.
I watched as the warrior in red walked over. I quickly jumped down from Night Shade with the intention to greet her, it was impolite to talk while on a mount!
"Hi, nice to meet you, I'm Ziri!"
"Ziri? That demon?" The female warrior froze while extending her hand out for a handshake.
My explanation was interrupted. "It's nothing. I don't care what you did in the past, we are now allies! I'm Red Cloud, Guild Leader of the Hundred Flower Valley, glad to have your help!"
"Yeah! Yeah?" No matter how she had phrased it, it was bad! What about 'what I did in the past'!
"Your guild only consists of females?"
Red Cloud led me up a flight of stairs while explaining: "All of us here are lonely girls that don't like the protection of men, so we built our own Guild and only accept like minded female Players." She sighed then spoke again: "But my guild seems to be encountering problems due to this, and it isn't practical at all!"
"What do you mean?"
"Initially, we even mocked the Goddess Alliance for recruiting so many male Players although they said they were a female Guild, after upkeeping our Guild for so long, we realized that it isn't practical for there to be an all-female guild! Many girls want to be in the same guild as their boyfriends, but we don't accept male Players. Furthermore, due to the fact that we are an all female guild, we will frequently receive harassment from male Players saying they want to join the Guild. Most importantly, I realized that the proportion of professions in our guild is severely imbalanced! More than half of us are female elf archers, followed with a large number of Mages and Priests, we lack in warriors, thus unable to have enough Players to tank in the day to day training!"
"But wasn't this City built by you? And you're still saying you can't do it? There's only so many Player Cities in China region, isn't there?"
Red Cloud suddenly looked at me in a strange manner. "Have you been away from the game for a long time?"
"What do you mean?"
"You really don't know anything? The news is everywhere! Because the Nation Wars is around the corner, but in reality, there are still many countries that have no Player Cities, where even China, with such a mass of land, only has a few Player Cities, the Game Moderator thinks that the Nation Wars will not be able to bring out the true essence of warfare, and originally, there was supposed to be the Guild Power Battles before the Nation Wars. But as the game difficulty was designed to be extremely difficult, till now, there are only a few Player Cities, so the Guild Power Battles could not be conducted, and because of that, the System did a few changes."
"Firstly, the Guild Power Battles duration has been extended by half a year, and Nation Wars will be pushed back by half a year. At the same time, they lowered the criteria to build a City, and the monster siege that will happen after the construction of a City will not be as powerful. It is because of these reasons, that in a week, over a dozen of Player controlled Cities have sprung up all over China. This Hovering Flower City of ours has just completed 2 days ago, we managed to resist the monster siege, and now, the Player siege is onto us!"
"Such a thing happened? Seems like I was ignorant of all of it the entire time!"
"They're here!" Red Cloud suddenly pointed towards the river in the distance, the crowd of troops had already arrived at the opposite bank, but due to the distance, one could only see them with a buff or binoculars.
"Were there any bridges at the river?" I suddenly thought about it, it did not seem like there was a bridge to cross the river.
"There isn't!" Red Cloud answered: "We are a Player City, every aspect of construction was conducted and undergone by us, we had just completed the City and did not have the time to construct a drawbridge across the river!"
The troops on the opposite bank had stopped, they were obviously stopped by the river. Although they were on mounts and could attempt to rush across, the 40 to 50-meter wide river was not something their horses could leap across, much less the camels that the most of them were riding on!
But the problem was quickly resolved, the troops found a large tree and it was used as a support to cross the river. The long trunks were 3 to 4 meters thick, which allowed the cavalry to easily run across on, the only problem was that there were too many of them, and one bridge was clearly not enough!
Although they moved slowly, they were still able to cross the river over to our side. The cavalry formed perfect square formations and stood outside the range of the Crystal Cannons. Unexpectedly, they did not rush towards us but stopped in position.
"What are they doing?" I was confused watching their actions, in terms of morale for city sieges, one should always start attacking while the morale is high, by waiting, wouldn't the level of morale fall?
"They are waiting for their soldiers on foot!" Red Cloud guessed the enemy's intent.
That was possible since Players did not fight like NPCs, at the very least, they would not bring Mages that had Mass Teleport spells over to draw out the formations. I became curious as to how the Players would start singing. Could it be that they would bring aerial ladders and battering rams as well?
"Their troops are here!" One of the elves in the arrow tower shouted. In terms of races, the Elves had the best sight, thus scouting was usually most suited for them. Just, in this case, we did not even notice anything, but the Elf Archer had already caught sight of the enemy.
I activated [Star Gaze] and saw the marching troops running over. In comparison to the Cavalry, these foot soldiers resembled a bunch of rioting citizens! They were completely ill-disciplined with no formation whatsoever, just a large group of people running over to the river.
Maybe the soldiers were afraid of people drowning from the panic, but some of the cavalries actually initiated and kept order. There were more foot soldiers to cavalry, they were much slower, thus the progress of crossing over became extremely sluggish, to the point that I became impatient waiting for them.
"You guys wait for me, I'll head out for a moment!" I communicated to Red Cloud, jumped over the wall and summoned Lucky in midair, landing on his back.
I did not bring Night Shade or the Phantom Knights. Although the Heavy Armored Dragons could fly, I required a different ability. Lucky was instantly spotted the moment we left the city walls. Although the distance was great, as long as a person could see, they would not be able to ignore the large Dragon. When Lucky got close to the cavalry formations, we encountered the fervent arrow attacks but fortunately, we were too high above. The wounding capability of the arrows was diminished and unable to breakthrough Lucky's defense.
Arriving above the river, I instructed Lucky to dive down. Following the sudden drop, the power of the arrows increased exponentially, but the majority of the cavalry had already missed their first volley of arrows and were at that moment reloading, thus the attacks received were less. The target of our swoop down was the wooden makeshift bridge, but the enemy might have seen through my intent, the mages mixed within the foot soldiers had already started preparing for their spells, but Lucky was simply too fast. From a 45 degree angle, we struck the trunk. Lucky's flight control was too great, from an elevated height, we drew close to the bridge and the moment we reached it, Lucky used his powerful hind legs and grabbed onto the tree. His sharp dragon claws clawed deeply into the tree, and somehow, Lucky managed to lift the tree trunk up.
But Lucky's level was still not high enough, bringing along the trunk that was 4 to 5 meters wide and close to 50 meters tall prevented him from flying. But he did not bring it far out, and right after he left the river, I summoned Epidemic. Everyone watched in shock as Epidemic and Lucky carried the trunk to the skies, until we got into a distance when people finally woke from their daydream and tried to stop us.
We did not fly further with the tree, at a height, the two dragons let go of the tree simultaneously and allowed the tree to free fall down to the ground. Being smashed on the ground, the tree was broken into 8 different parts with countless of shattered pieces, regardless of anything, it could no longer be used as a bridge.
A sharp shriek suddenly sounded out, two unknown monsters were rushing from behind us. I miscalculated, I never considered that the enemy had aerial units! Considering the ten thousand large force, having a few hundred aerial units would not be a problem, but I never thought about that!
The one that rushed ahead was a large predatory bird, I only recognized Thunderhawks, Thunderbirds as well as Golden Eagles, the large predatory bird in front of me did not belong to them! It looked like a vulture at a much larger size, its bald head and neck extremely ugly. On the other hand, I did not know how to describe the monster rushing for Epidemic. It looked like a Canine monster that resembled a wolf greatly, but this monster had a pair of gigantic gray wings on its back. What should I have called it? A flying wolf?
The two monsters had already rushed towards us, and we had no time to think. Lucky lowered his head, the predatory bird had actually rushed straight at us, although a Dragon's size was huge, it's flight capabilities was second to none. The predatory bird that rushed over missed us and turned back, it was not stopping!
Lucky could not complete preparing his counterattack and could only retaliate momentarily, thus he prepared to dodge once more. Lucky lowered his head and swayed his tail in the air, avoiding the predatory bird's pounce. But this time, the bird had learned its lesson. On Lucky's back, I suddenly felt a force pulling me in the other direction, I knew that I had been captured by the bird.
A silver halo of light suddenly appeared in the sky which shot out lightning, its target, me.
(*) - Spitting
Starting from Zero Chapter 159
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Starting from Zero Chapter 159 summary
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