For several days now, Sila’s treasury room had been arranged and used for rituals and alchemy . Surrounded by darkness was dim light that was being generated by flames underneath a small pot . The scent of the smoke and the smell of the boiling liquid made the room feel eerie . Runes were glowing very faintly across the entire room, forming arcane magic formulae . The sound of evil laughter echoed throughout the entire room, acting as background music .
“Kiekkiekkiek! Nearly finished! My ultimate masterpiece!”
Clute stood right beside Mamon, who continued to laugh . Personally, the boy didn’t like this kind of atmosphere . However, he was aware that alchemy was not his forte . Thus, he didn’t dare to interrupt the procedure .
Mamon’s silhouette in the dark looked like a devil who rose from the depth of the abyss . With each wave of his hands, the color of the liquid in the pot would change .
“Kiekkiekkiek! Great! This is great! Almost!”
A sound like a switch was flipped rang out, and the room soon brightened .
Julia entered the room and placed a plate of cookies on a short table . “Why do you like to stay in the dark? By the way, it’s snack time, you two . ”
The space for the plate was made by sweeping Sila’s items on the table to the edges . Seeing this, Mamon immediately stopped working on the potion .
Seeing Mamon show a strange reaction, Clute felt restless and asked, “What’s wrong? Did the ritual fail? Was it because of the light?”
Clute was aware that many rituals, including alchemy, were quite sensitive to external factors . Just a small change or error can lead to total failure . Julia’s interruption at the very last moment might make everything they had done become for naught .
Mamon tossed a cookie into his mouth . “No, light is unrelated . I just liked it more when the room was dark . ”
Clute was agape . He didn’t like dark places, but he had endured it for several days without a word of complaint . It turned out that the moody atmosphere was just Mamon’s preference .
“What is wrong with you, then, Mamon? You look . . . strange . ”
Mamon indeed behaved strangely . At the very least, he didn’t scold Julia for interrupting his work like he would normally .
“I’m in a good mood, that’s all . We’ll demonstrate the result of the alchemic process after we finish eating these snacks . ”
“Really, Mamon?!” Clute exclaimed, feeling elated . Noticing that there were still a lot of snacks left, he quickly stuffed them all into his mouth .
“Oou aey ar-art, Ar-aon . (You may start, Mamon . )”
Mamon, who had eaten only one piece of cookies, frowned . “You developed such a bad habit from that gluttonous bird . ”
Clute choked, and Julia quickly served him tea . Witnessing such a pathetic scene, Mamon shook his head once before opening his palm, showing a certain Soul Crystal . He called out to the soul residing in it .
“Seraphine . ”
“Yes, Lord Mammon, the great Devil Prince, the sliest and evilest in all—” Seraphine immediately recited the hailing script .
“That’s enough for today . Save the rest for later . From now on, I’ll try something on you . ”
Seraphine shut her mouth and simply stayed still in the crystal, obediently listening to Mamon . The Devil Prince used his analysis skill on her again, but the result was the same . He got nothing .
“Can you remember your appearance, power, race, or anything about yourself?”
“I cannot, my Lord . ”
“It will be difficult, then . Resurrecting someone without a body requires a strong image that resembles your actual identity . Well, if you really did die many thousands of years ago as you believe, the monsters in that primordial era must have been gods . ”
Mamon projected an image of a small goddess as a hologram . “It might not actually be your race . In any case, it’s believed that all monsters came from a similar origin . ”
Clute opened his mouth to ask, “But you don’t know that for sure, right, Mamon?”
“It’s just a theory and a guess . However, it’s the theory I believe is closest to the truth,” Mamon replied honestly .
For an ancient race to become extinct, Mamon had two theories . The first was that the race was too weak to continue existing in Monster Soul, and the second was that the race was too powerful or there were some special circumstances that caused the rest of the monsters to gang up on the race, eliminating them in order to ensure a degree of peace in the world .
In any case, what had happened to Seraphine didn’t matter to Mamon at all . He simply wanted a lab rat .
The Minotaurs residing in the Soul Crystals were both his friends and his most loyal subordinates . A revival was something Mamon had never done before, so he wasn’t confident about it . He would never risk his own people in such a procedure . In the worst-case scenario where the revival failed, the targeted soul might disappear forever .
“Do you have any last wishes?” asked Mamon . He decided not to tell Seraphine that if something went wrong, she might cease to exist even as a soul .
“No, my Lord . I don’t want anything in particular,” Seraphine replied innocently .
“Well, I shall start . Focus your mind on the previous image of a goddess . Close your eyes and imprint that image in your head . ”
“Yes, my Lord . ”
Mamon carefully scooped the liquid within the pot using his psychic power . He flicked his finger, and a drop of golden liquid flew onto Seraphine’s Soul Crystal, which broke apart the instant it was touched by the liquid .
The treasure room was ablaze with golden light, flashing non-stop . Mamon and Clute waited for the result with excitement . Once the golden light faded, sitting on the floor was the small figure of a young maiden .
Seraphine turned out to be a small angel the size of a fairy . The only features that set her apart from usual fairies were her white angelic wings, as fairies typically had wings resembling those of dragonflies .
“It’s a success!” Clute exclaimed delightfully .
Mamon grinned as he lifted Seraphine onto his palm . “Everything went well . As we have agreed on, we will split the rest of the liquid equally . Once you find the souls of your golem friends, all you need to do is drop a bit of the liquid on them . You have seen the whole procedure . ”
The liquid in the pot was shared among the two . Clute kept it attentively and guardedly . For him, this was just the beginning . He would have to travel to Hell in order to search for his friends’ souls . However, no matter how many hardships awaited him, he wouldn’t be afraid as there was a ray of hope at the end of his path .
Mamon quickly scanned Seraphine’s ability . He frowned at first but soon showed a smile once he realized what she could do . He unconsciously clenched his fist .
‘Kiekkiekkiek! I see! This woman’s ability is strange but splendid . I’ll put it to good use . ’
Suffocated, Seraphine cried out, “I-I c-can’t breathe, Lord Mammon . ”
Mamon loosened his grip . Seraphine was starting to become important to his great plan . Her level might be low currently, but that was hardly a problem . He could easily help her grind levels .
With this, he would be one step closer to punishing the bastards who had trampled on his subordinates after his disappearance .
At dawn of the first day of the second war event, unlike most small guilds out there who assembled people and strengthened their morale, the Wicked Union members did things differently . Sila and his comrades intended to launch their attack immediately . On the day people normally used to prepare their operations, Sila would launch a pre-emptive strike .
Lone Wolf was the Qi Emperor . Even if they were confident in their ability to take him down, Sila and his comrades wanted to avoid taking unnecessary risks . Both sides engaging in combat and suffering was what the Heavenly Dragon Guild desired .
Thus, an assassination became a viable choice .
Sila organized a small assassin group consisting of Asava, Elso, Tsunji, and himself . He selected only those who could conceal their presences well, optimizing their survival ability and success rate . He made a smaller team as he wanted to avoid drawing attention .
The four of them donned white masks, which were popular in Zhongsuyuan City . Everyone changed into black outfits . As for Sila, he simply had to command the Twin Souls Weaponized Protection to wrap him with another layer of black fabric . Meanwhile, Elso had a collection of black outfits for performing this kind of task, so he shared them with Asava and Tsunji .
At first glance the four of them were almost identical—four white-masked assassins in black suits .
Zhongsuyuan City in the morning was beginning to become hot . The heat reflected on the desert surface would cause people’s vision to blur . However, such a thing posed no problem to the four . They took a detour around the city and gathered on the west where the defense was weakest as no one would predict an ambush coming from the Desert of Death .
Sila was the first to voice his opinion, “We wear black clothing and even a white mask in the middle of the day . Isn’t it too eye-catching?”
“Black is the standard color for assassins, Sila . Hiding only works well in the dark . Trying to hide during the day will be counterproductive . In times like this, if someone decides to chase us, we can change the outfit to easily blend in with the crowd,” explained Asava .
Elso was clueless as to who Asava was . He only knew that the man was someone Sila trusted . He added, “Certainly . A black outfit is eye-catching . If we are chased, the pursuers will only remember that they are following a person in black . If we change clothes, we’ll shake them off easily . ”
Sila nodded while Asava spread out a detailed map of the Victorious Wolves Sect’s headquarters . “This is a blueprint drawn up by a reliable source . Its accuracy is one hundred percent guaranteed . Please memorize it well . We can’t afford to make a mistake . ”
The remaining three stared at the blueprint and made sure to remember everything . It would be very beneficial for them, both for sneaking in and for escaping .
“Remember that if someone chases us, we have to ‘accidentally’ drop this . ” Asava handed the three a few daggers .
“What are these daggers?” asked Tsunji .
“They belonged to Heavenly Dragon Guild’s members . I stole them some time ago . ”
“Won’t that be too obvious? It’ll be clear as day that we intend to frame them . ”
Asava shook his head . “No, it won’t be . These daggers are of a higher grade than traditional ones despite their appearances being the same . It’s a well-known fact that only the Heavenly Dragon Guild can produce this kind of item . Even if our pursuers don’t wholeheartedly believe our lies, they will at least consider this probability .
“Our main target is Lone Wolf . Don’t make unnecessary kills if possible, or the situation may become more of a mess otherwise . If you are caught, please swallow this pellet . Not only will you not be tortured, but no one will know who you are . ”
The remaining three took the daggers and pellets from Asava’s hands . Each of them kept both items hidden in their sleeves .
“Lastly, we currently don’t know where Lone Wolf is within his clan, so we’ll split up . Each of us will do it in our own way to eliminate the target . Keep in mind again that the main target is Lone Wolf while those vice-leaders are secondary . We may choose to kill them if doing so won’t expose ourselves . ”
The four of them divided the clan into four zones and each took an area for themselves .
Actually, Asava had voiced his opinion to Sila that assassinations were delicate jobs which oftentimes required more time to prepare and form strategies, including studying the target’s behaviors for at least a month . In any case, there were times when the jobs were urgent, so he didn’t put up much resistance . In fact, it was more like he just seized the opportunity to teach Sila about how assassinations worked .
The Hell’s Gate Islands were closed down by the Demon God Zenga, so no one dared to contact them, resulting in the deteriorated state of Kimon . There had been times when they greatly suffered due to having only expenses without any source of income . However, after the Demon God’s mysterious death, his order lost its full effect . Some groups started to secretly contact the Hell’s Gate Islands, providing them a leeway to survive with scraped out profits .
Even though it was just in the game, it had been so long since Asava got to enjoy doing his job . In the past couple of years, Kimon members had been spending their time watching the Elders’ movements, so they rarely got a chance to do real jobs .
Lone Wolf was an important figure in Monster Soul . If Asava managed to assassinate even the man in question, he might consider using Monster Soul as a base for nurturing and training new generations of assassins, then converting in-game currency into real cash and sending it back to support the family .
“Now, the Victorious Wolves Sect must be thinking that they are neutral and that no one would attack them on the very first day . This increases our odds of success . Let’s split up and go . ”
Tsunji jumped vertically . His jump was so high that it took no time at all for him to become just a small dot in the sky . Meanwhile, Elso mysteriously became a cloud of black smoke, spreading through sand and slowly disappearing . As for Asava, all he did was wave his hand, then he vanished, leaving Sila alone .
Sila scratched his head . Surrounding the Victorious Wolves Sect was a desert, so there weren’t many hiding spots . He pondered his choices for a bit, then transformed himself into a small slime, gradually and sneakily hopping forward while hoping that no one would spot him .