“Sigh . ”
The sound of a long sigh flowed along the wind . The source of such a depressing sigh was Thief555, who was sitting on a large rock while resting his chin on his hand . Surrounding him from afar were his lackeys, who were looking at him with concern .
“Boss has been sighing a lot lately . What’s wrong with him?”
“That’s worrisome . Even though we took out his favorite Portable Karaoke Box to enjoy the other day, Boss said he wasn’t in the mood and kept sighing . ”
“Let’s have someone among us go ask him what’s wrong . Thief555 will become the Sighing Thief at this rate . ”T/N: A small reminder . “5” in Thai is pronounced as “ha,” so the name “Thief555” is equivalent to “Thief Hahaha . ”
After some debate and dispute, a kick finally sent one of the henchmen out of the circle, flying to Thief555 . The victim turned around, trying to find out who kicked him, yet everyone systematically put up an innocent face .
The man braced himself as he took two steps forward . He muttered a sound, “Ermm . . . Boss . . . ”
“What?” Thief555 replied with a soulless attitude, his eyes looking off into the sky .
The victim turned his head back to his comrades, his expression showing that he wanted to run away . However, their return gazes locked onto him, forcing him to confront Thief555 again .
“ . . . The weather is nice today, no, Boss . . . ?”
“Sigh . . . The weather is always the same every day . ” Thief555 let out a sigh .
“Ouch!” A small magic arrow hit the man in the back of his head, almost knocking him down . He turned back to identify the shooter, wondering if they were the same person who kicked him . However, the only thing he could see was a collection of gazes that all told him to cut to the chase .
‘Oh, right! Robbery! One of the many things Boss loves to do!’ The man recalled that Thief555 always laughed after a good robbery .
“Boss, shall we go out and rob those players around Colossia City? Only a few days are left before the war event starts . Merchants must be hoarding a lot of merchandise . We can loot tons of gold from them!”
Thief555 stared into the distance and said in an absent-minded voice, “It’s gonna be boring . Sigh . ”
“Boring? How is that boring, Boss? It’s your true calling to perform evil acts! Especially when you scared the newbies, plundered the elders, and bullied the girls, you always laughed merrily . It’s the job of commoners and merchants to wipe their smiles off their faces once they hear your name . Where is my usual Boss who always did whatever he pleased?”
Thief555 opened his system window . “I feel like I have become weaker lately . . . ”
The underling made a confused expression . “We have never seen you grind levels even once . Just your face alone can already scare the shit out of people . Why are you worrying about that now?”
Thief555 raised his hand and knocked the man in the head . “ . . . I already know that, you bastard . You don’t need to remind me . What I mean is . . . while I have become weaker, our bandit group is instead rising higher in the unofficial rankings for bandit groups . Look . ”
The man stared at the ranking and spotted their bandit group, the White Dragon Thief Gang, ranked in the top ten . Usually, such a high rank only belonged to large bandit groups and was completely out of their reach . The man hurriedly beckoned his friends to see the same ranking .
“Oho! Second place? We are only below the Mountain Thieves League! Awesome, Boss!”
“Awesome your ass . I left the game for several days, and you lot did nothing, right? Out of nowhere, our ranking shot up . Do you know what this implies?”
One of the henchmen raised his hand . “I know! I know! I know, Boss!”
Thief555 knocked that man on the head . “This place is a bandit hideout, not a classroom . One of our rules is that you mustn’t show courtesy . Whatever is on your mind, just speak it!”
“I’m sorry . . . ” The man showed a sad face, looking pathetic .
“You also mustn’t apologize!! We are bandits, making mistakes is normal!” Thief555 scolded the man a second time . “Anyway, what did you want to say?”
The underling opened his system window and explained, “Recently, the Heavenly Dragon Guild has been serious about wiping out bandit gangs . Coincidentally, Boss has been offline for a long time . We had nothing to do, so we hunted monsters and grinded levels to kill time . As it turns out, we ended up finding this spot . It has good terrain but no one seemed to be using it . So, we invited you to seize it as our camp . Then, we heard that . . . ”
Thief555 interrupted, “Wait, wait . Did you just say you have been grinding levels?”
“Yes, Boss . We were afraid we will become hindrances for you in the future . Like that time in the Port City . . . we died too quick, missing the chance to see you bravely fight back that fiend Sila . ”
“Great . And what are your levels now?”
“We helped each other to push ourselves to the limits, so we have hit the cap at Level 1,000 Knight Rank already, Boss . ”
While Thief555 nodded in a reserved manner, his mind drifted, thinking, ‘Shit . . . These guys’ levels are even higher than mine . It seems I will have to grind in secret later . ’
“Continue . What happened later?”
“Yes, Boss . Due to the Heavenly Dragon Guild seriously eliminating bandit groups, it became difficult to live as thieves . Many former bandit gangs quit being bandits . On the other hand, we survived the purge, so our ranking rose . ”
Thief555 shook his head, stood up, and looked at the setting sun . However, realizing that looking into the sun hurt his eyes, he turned back, letting sunlight shine through him . He shook his head once to adjust his blurry vision before speaking his mind .
“You’re wrong, you fools . The actual reason why those weaklings quit being bandits is because they revered my grandeur . They placed their hope on me, wishing for me to change the world of Monster Soul . In conclusion, I’m bored because Monster Soul is not exciting for me anymore . Everything is predictable, thus my mind grows weak . ”
The underlings looked at each other . “That shouldn’t be the case, Boss . Our group is awfully weak . Even Beluga’s . . . ”
Before he could finish speaking, the man’s face was met by Thief555’s foot . The bandit leader declared loudly, “You don’t know a thing! What about Beluga? Our group isn’t weak . It’s just that two tigers can’t live in the same cave . Beluga doesn’t go robbing people even though he calls himself a bandit . How shameless!”
“We only target helpless citizens though . ”
“That is exactly because I am a virtuous thief . ”
“A virtuous thief? You? Boss?” The underlings looked at each other again . Every one of them blinked in bewilderment . The word virtue seemed to be the concept furthest away from defining their Boss .
“Why do you think I have always targeted the weak? Sometimes I left things with them, not completely robbing them . I just pulled a prank, took a little, and left . Do you understand my profound acts?”
“No, I don’t think I understand, Boss . Ouch!!” A naive-looking underling gave an answer then was hit on the head .
Another underling took a few steps back to be out of Boss’ reach before replying, “We robbed the weak because they couldn’t fight back, and the reason why we left after robbing only a few things was because Boss said the other items were difficult to find buyers for . ”
“That’s partly true, but not completely correct . Monster Soul is a cruel world . What I did was teach those gullible newbies a life lesson . For me to give those people such a precious lesson, it’s logical for me to collect tuition fees . Actually, they should be thanking me for it . ”
“Totally illogical . Why would they have to show someone their gratitude for robbing them?”
“Ouch!!” This time it was Thief555’s turn to let out a painful cry . He stroked his fist while shedding some tears . His fist became sore like he had just hit a rock with his bare hand . “Why did you have to clad your body with energy reinforcement?!”
“I would be hurt otherwise, Boss . ”
Thief555 rubbed the back of his fist, which began to swell up . “Now, now . What I’m saying is that Monster Soul is getting boring . Without bandits robbing them, people are living too comfortably . Just opening my system window and wandering my eyes aimlessly, I can already spot several fat goats in the game forums . ”
One of the underlings leaned far over to take a look at Boss’ system window . “Where? I can’t see a single goat . And what does the goat have to do with us?”
“You fool!!! Fat goats are a metaphor, meaning those careless rich people . Why would I open the system window to watch a goat?!! Use your brain for once!!”
“Boss, I’d prefer you didn’t come up with more weird metaphors . A lot of times, they never worked . What was it back then again? If you want to eat chicken, you have to find an egg?”
“You said we were going to be rich for sure, but we ended up in the slimes’ den, dying over and over again . Those cute-looking monsters were so sadistic,” another one added .
Thief555 unleashed his qi, prompting his underlings to jump backward . “You bastards! Now that I told you not to have manners, you are going overboard! How disrespectful! Watch your mouth, or I’ll slash you down one by one!”
Thief555 went back to sit on the rock and released another sigh . Seeing his behavior, the underlings looked at each other again and became speechless . Even when their Boss was in a bad mood, or shouted and directed his anger at them, it was still far better than him sitting lifelessly . However, for a long time, he still hadn’t laughed even once .
“Sigh . . . It’s too boring . . . ”
It was then . Another one of the group members rushed from the outside of their camp to the gang .
“Boss~! Some people with stupid faces have strayed into out territory!”
For the record, Skull Mountain Pass was located next to Colossia City . Formerly, the place had been seized by a large alliance of many bandit gangs . However, it seemed a mysterious and inexplicable misfortune befell them, causing them to abandon the pass .
The event of that day was still fresh in Thief555’s memory . Their bandit group had arrived at Skull Mountain Pass when things were becoming hectic . However, upon their arrival, the death domain suddenly vanished . Noticing that running away became an option, people began to make a desperate escape . He, too, was among the few survivors of that situation .
Many weeks had passed, then he was urged by his underlings to come back to Skull Mountain Pass so they could raid it . Arriving at the place, they found that it was neglected and unoccupied . Then, they decided to make a camp there . Time passed, and the White Dragon Thief Gang eventually and dumbfoundingly became the ruler of the place when the system introduced the territory feature . No one had come to snatch it from them even after that either .
“Are they fat goats?”
“Fat goats?” The one who brought the news wondered . “No, Boss . They’re people . Why would there be goats wandering around?”
Noticing another sigh from Thief555, the group of underlings realized that their Boss was going to lash out again instead of cheering up . Everyone rushed to kick the newcomer, once per person, and whispered next to his ear .
After hearing the explanation, the newcomer nodded while brushing off dirt, in the form of footprints, from his clothing .
“They’re fat goats, Boss! Three fat ones, and they’re the kinds that you like to bully!! One of them is a skinny baldy, seemingly weak-willed . Another one is a weak girl with a fragile figure . She walked cripplingly like she was about to fall all the time . The last one is a flower boy wearing a butler uniform . He seemed dandy, looking around admiring nature as he walked, completely defenseless . ”
“This time the prey are coming to our front door, Boss . The great Thief555 we know always laughs even when facing danger . Why don’t you stop thinking about anything for the time being and go out there, laughing with us to your heart’s content, Boss?”
“Yeah, let’s go, Boss! Laugh then commit a crime . Commit a crime then laugh . Only that way you are our great Thief555! Please! Boss!”
Looking at his many underlings trying to encourage him, Thief555 was moved . He wiped lingering tears in the corners of his eyes . “You guys . . . ”
“Laugh, Boss, let’s laugh . ”
“Exactly so . Thank you, everyone . Now, let’s give some life lessons to those fat goats . Let’s show them fear that they have never experienced before!”
“Everyone! Follow me! Hahahahaha!”
Thief555 laughed his heart out . His laughter was followed by more laughter from his underlings . They bravely went out of their camp, fully intending to educate those fools who were living too comfortably—to teach them that Monster Soul wasn’t a peaceful place like Heaven .
Since they, the scariest group of bandits in Monster Soul, were here!