The first day of the war event was the day on which everyone made preparations . Players were excited about the event that was held only once per year, and about the many developments that were to come . However, it could be said that this was one of the days with the most developments, both obvious and behind the scenes .
The four assassins relied on their unique methods to sneak into their assigned areas responsibly . Naturally, it wasn’t an easy task . The Victorious Wolves Sect was the home of martial artists . There were always players who excelled in the God’s Cathedral qi technique, expanding their senses to detect any approaching abnormalities .
Tsunji stood in the air, far above the ground level . His pair of eyes cast downward, calmly watching any movements as if he were a great eagle watching its prey . Seeing it all from a bird’s eyes view, he could locate all of the guards from outside their detection range . He waited silently and calmly while memorizing the patterns of their movements and work shifts .
As for Elso, although his current outward appearance looked like a cloud of smoke, it was still merely a disguise . His body could still be detected by qi . Hence, once he approached the clan, he switched to disguising himself as one of the clanmates .
Out of the four assassins, Asava was clearly the most superior regarding the art of stealthiness . Utilizing Stealth Disaster, which focused on infiltration, he could practically roam free inside the clan, with not a single person noticing him . His dark art allowed him to release some kind of faint profound wave, making people fail to recognize him . Even when they did see him, they would only think that he was simply a roadside rock that they saw every day . As long as they didn’t know what they were looking for, they wouldn’t be able to detect Asava’s presence .
Sila was the last to arrive . He brought his small and gelatinous body to the top of the wall by crawling . He took a moment to observe the area, but could not see even the shadow of Lone Wolf .
In fact, searching for Lone Wolf was exceptionally easy . Sun God Qi was a unique qi with an outstandingly radiant aura . All Sila had to do was expand his senses, and he could spot the Qi Emperor in practically no time .
However, doing so would mean exposing himself . There had been a time when Sila expanded his senses to probe Paiyuan’s strength using Galaxy Eclipse, and the latter noticed his detection instantly . It implied that if the opponent was skilled, they could counter-sense him . Lone Wolf was the Qi Emperor, so Sila was more than sure that he would end up being detected first before he could locate Lone Wolf if he released his qi .
The Victorious Wolves Sect’s members were mostly wuxia players . They relied on their profound sense more than their vision . That made them fail to notice Sila, who perfectly concealed his qi while crawling slowly in his transparent slime form .
With some difficulty, Sila managed to crawl into the space underneath the headquarters . He began to envy Himeko’s Goddess’ Resonance . With that dark art, she could rely on just sound to pinpoint a target or determine the shape of a room through echolocation . It was as if she was a living map and also a compass .
Now that he thought of it, Sila realized he could mimic her to some degree . Even if he couldn’t do exactly what she did, just heightening his senses could be doable .
Sila hid behind one of the wooden pillars supporting the building . He internally circulated qi while covering his skin with Divine Raiment, which was the art derived from Goddess’ Resonance by Viola . Supposedly, it was the best detection art available for Sila right now .
Sila’s five senses were heightened temporarily . Still, that was far from what he needed to pinpoint Lone Wolf’s location . It was mainly because Sila needed specific skills or experience with heightened hearing to distinguish the sounds he heard . In the end, he chose to gamble on following the faintest footsteps, hoping they would belong to Lone Wolf .
The Victorious Wolves Sect’s main building was a three-story wooden house with wings on the left and right sides, making it look like a horseshoe building from a bird’s eye view . There was a yard in the middle and a small porch connecting it to the building . Upon reaching here, Sila decided to transform back into his original human form in order to optimize mobility .
He reached a corner of the building, where the staircases leading to the second floor were located nearby, and stopped . The footsteps he had heard came from this exact spot .
Sila activated Moon Reflecting Mirror on the tip of his finger, making it become a substance similar to a mirror . He stayed low and moved his finger away, watching a reflection from the other side of the corner .
‘Sigh . It’s a miss . ’
Looking at the reflection, Sila was disappointed . The other side of the corner was not Lone Wolf, but a handsome young man in a scholar uniform . He seemed neat, but not physically fragile like Lomyok . Actually, he seemed very strong and confident .
“How is Lone Wolf?” the man seemed to be conversing with someone else .
“Let’s talk in Hermit’s room, Hong Tong . I have something to discuss with Hermit as well . ” The reply belonged to Ratri .
“Fine . ”
The two of them walked toward where Sila was standing, so he quickly but quietly went upstairs and slid the door panel next to him open and jumped inside . He then leaped up to a ceiling beam and hid to the best of his ability .
Hong Tong and Ratri soon entered the room . Taking a look at the room, Sila found that it was a middle-sized room with a bookshelf in one corner and several rows of pots, ranging from small to large ones, at the other end of the room . There was also a desk in another corner .
He simply wanted to avoid being found . However, it turned out that he had entered Hermit’s room .
“Hermit is not here . Maybe he is with Lone Wolf?”
Hong Tong looked around the room . “Please wait for a moment . ”
Hong Tong spread his perception to where Sila was hiding . Fortunately, it seemed Sila’s concealment ability was higher than Hong Tong’s detection ability, so nothing happened .
“Nothing . I just checked the room . I noticed that the door wasn’t tightly closed . ”
“Hermit might have been in a rush . By the way, what was it?” asked Ratri .
“The installation of the Dimension-Rending Bomb was successful . Cross also destroyed the invitation cards without checking that one card was missing . He must have subconsciously believed that Lone Wolf would return all of them . Once the switch is pressed, all people in the dimension will die . Presently, no one among them has seen it coming . ”
“Good job . Now that there is a conflict between us and Cross, Lone Wolf’s life is in danger . Sila is also dangerous, so we should avoid direct confrontation . Sometimes we have to strike first to secure our safety . ”
“Personally, I don’t like this method at all . However, for the sake of the community at large, I will overlook it . ”
“Sila, Cross, and Beluga . These three’s lives can be traded for the peace of the public . For us, the righteous side, this is something we ought to do . We have to prioritize the great cause over a personal conscience . Once we can ensure that all three of them are in the mansion together, we’ll detonate it . ”
After staying in the room for a while, Hermit still hadn’t come back . Hence, the two went outside . Sila waited for more time to pass, until he was quite sure that they wouldn’t come back, before sighing and landing himself on the floor .
Sila secretly broke into a cold sweat . It seemed he had totally underestimated the Victorious Wolves Sect far too much . If Lone Wolf was warm sunlight, Ratri would be the sun’s shadow . She carried out missions that she believed would benefit the sect from the darkness without Lone Wolf finding out . Sila was clueless regarding what a Dimension-Rending Bomb was, including what it could do . However, just based on the name, it didn’t sound like a good thing .
Sila opened his system window and brought up a search bar, inputting ‘Dimension-Rending Bomb’ as the keywords .
The words you have searched for: “Dimension-Rending Bomb . ”
Dimension-Rending Bombs are S-grade psychic-type items with complicated usages . They are unpopular and uncommon in Monster Soul due to their difficult installation methods . However, if they are successfully installed and activated, they are incredibly dangerous .
Dimension-Rending Bombs will completely erase a dimension that belongs to a player, removing it from existence . All items and facilities within the dimension will be destroyed, and all living creatures will die .
During the installation, the Dimension-Rending Bomb will expand into a cube that is at least a hundred cubic meters large . It takes a week for the installation to be completed . The detonation switch is made out of an invitation card, which has to be obtained directly from the dimension’s owner .
To think that this kind of thing was in the Mansion of Secrets without Sila’s awareness . . . The Wicked Union’s most important headquarters was currently sitting on a giant bomb that could explode at any moment according to Ratri’s will .
Sila felt that hearing about this was a stroke of good luck . Otherwise, he and his comrades would die like fools . The bomb might explode at the last moment when they were about to secure a victory, turning them into losers by surprise .
This topic immediately became the most urgent . Through his system window, Sila sent everyone a signal to withdraw . The signal was of the highest priority . The receivers had to follow the instructions, no questions asked . As all of them were masters of concealment, Sila was sure that just escaping would be easier than entering .
Although their original mission was a failure, they instead got their hands on important intel . Sila believed his decision was correct .
The sound of approaching footsteps entered Sila’s ears . Assessing that he couldn’t exit the room in time, Sila had no choice but to return to the ceiling beam . He felt a bit regretful that he had spent time using his system window instead of fleeing .
The ones entering the room turned out to be Lone Wolf and Hermit . Sila didn’t know if he should be happy or not that he came across the main target after having already decided to retreat .
Lone Wolf spoke up, “As I said, Hermit . What do you think?”
Hermit showed signs of feeling burdened about the conversation . “Why don’t you go and ask Ratri directly, Leader? Why did you come to ask me?”
“There is no way Ratri will give me an honest answer . I want to hear your opinion regarding this decision of mine, Hermit . ”
“My take is that each of you have your own reasons . You better discuss it among yourselves before coming to consult me . ”
Out of nowhere, an object or structure, probably a wooden one, made a harsh, high-pitched sound . Maybe something was moved, or maybe the wood shrunk due to the change in temperature . Perhaps someone on the upper floor applied too much weight while walking, or maybe it was simply Sila’s misfortune . Whatever the cause, the sound prompted the two to look up at the ceiling . Given Lone Wolf’s ability, if he locked his focus onto one particular spot, even Sila wouldn’t be able to escape his perception .
Lone Wolf was familiar with Sila’s qi, so he didn’t even have to guess . He simply smiled, “Sila, it’s you . Why don’t you come down so that we can have a proper—”
All of the attention was directed at Sila on the ceiling beam . Lone Wolf knew Sila’s personality, so he lowered his guard a bit, while Hermit was still startled to hear that someone was hiding in the room . It was at this exact moment that an unexpected development occurred .
One of the upside-down large pots hanging on a shelf shattered . A black silhouette leaped to Lone Wolf with incredible speed . The figure tapped his right hand on Lone Wolf’s shoulder, which caused the latter’s qi reinforcement to weaken, before using a dagger in the left hand to stab through Lone Wolf’s chest . The blade of the dagger exploded shortly after, severely injuring the Qi Emperor further .
Lone Wolf brandished his hand, but the mysterious assassin dodged it with ease while also kicking Hermit, sending the latter to crash against the wall and fall unconscious .
Even Sila couldn’t make heads nor tails about what was happening . In any case, he decided to descend and rush to Lone Wolf . Meanwhile, the assassin took out many swords, tossed them to the wall, and commanded them to explode .
“Intruders!!” The assassin shouted, making Sila frown . What kind of an intruder would shout to inform the house owners that there were intruders?
However, Sila soon realized the assassin’s intention as soon as the man removed his black cloak . He wore the Victorious Wolves Sect uniform . The ‘intruder’ that the assassin mentioned just now was none other than Sila .
“Zazae, right?” Only one person came to Sila’s mind . Zazae, the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s best assassin who had never revealed his true face . According to the intel, Zazae could use psychic power like Cross and utilize qi like Lone Wolf .
How long had Zazae been hiding in the room? He must have arrived before Sila . Sila believed it was likely that Zazae had been waiting inside Hermit’s room for quite a while, maybe even before the war event started . Zazae must have predicted that Lone Wolf would come to this room sooner or later during the event . Now Sila was aware that assassination was a delicate job not to be taken lightly . He might be superior to Zazae regarding fighting ability . However, when it comes to assassinations, he was a mere amateur .
“Consider this a gift from Sir Montra . ”
Zazae strengthened his fist with Sun God Qi and threw a punch at Sila, causing a blazing trail . Sila evaded the punch and counterattacked by materializing a blade out of qi, shooting toward Zazae .
Strangely enough, Zazae took the blade head-on even though he should have been able to dodge it . He increased his defense with Dragon Scales, weakening the power in the qi blade . It still left a wound on his chest though . Relying on the Worlds Crossing Bridge qi technique, Zazae redirected the rest of the attack power toward Lone Wolf while he himself jumped back, following the impact .
The door slid open, and the Victorious Wolves Sect’s members rushed in . Among them, Hong Tong and Ratri quickly approached Lone Wolf and inspected the state he was in .
Zazae spoke up, “They came to assassinate Lone Wolf! They also injured Hermit! His comrades already left through that hole!”
Sila swept his gaze over the room . Zazae’s Sun God Qi—which was identical to Lone Wolf’s—had destroyed half of the room while sword debris—which resembled Cross’ fighting style—scattered around, especially near the big hole . Everything in the room could be easily interpreted as Lone Wolf was fighting him a moment ago, then Cross had shown up, injured Lone Wolf, and fled .
Hong Tong stared at the hole on the wall . “It was done by Cross’ Psychic Boost . ”
Zazae smirked while standing in a way so that no one other than Sila could see his expression . “He is Sila! Hermit can confirm it! Lone Wolf said he is Sila!!”
Of course Hermit would verify Zazae’s claim when he woke up . In fact, either simply removing his mask or showing his strength, and it would be none other than Sila himself who proved it to others that he was Sila .
Sila was racking his brain out . It seemed both the Wicked Union and the Heavenly Dragon Guild wanted Lone Wolf to die . However, neither of them wanted to be held responsible . Montra had the same idea as Asava, using Zazae to frame Cross for Lone Wolf’s murder .
Montra wouldn’t have predicted Sila would come . Zazae’s duty was supposed to be assassinating Lone Wolf and blaming the Wicked Union for it . However, the fact that Sila was here turned out to be a nice bonus .
Sila no longer waited . He flicked his wrists, firing bullets made of qi toward Zazae . He might as well take this chance to at least take down the Three Stars Warlord in order to reduce one of the Heavenly Dragon Guild’s powerhouses .
Hong Tong took a similar action, firing yizichan from his fingers . The power in his yizichan was inferior to Sila’s, but he relied on fine control to redirect the path of Sila’s qi bullets, causing them to miss their target . In any case, if someone looked closely, they would have noticed that Zazae had moved from his original position .
“He intended to shut the man up! Kill him!” One of the players shouted .
Sila didn’t have many options to choose from . Now that it had come to this, he wouldn’t be able to come clean no matter how many rivers he jumped into . Among everyone here, Ratri was the one with the highest chance of holding onto the detonation switch . If she kept it in her system window, it was necessary for Sila to eliminate her to make it disappear . Otherwise, the longer he waited, the riskier the situation became for everyone residing in his mansion .
Ratri was right . Sometimes people have to strike first to secure their safety .
Coming up with a goal, Sila no longer held back as he unleashed his killing intent . Such intent naturally stimulated Dark Self . This time, the voice was so clear, as if Dark Self was speaking right next to his ears even though he hadn’t activated Moon Reflecting Mirror yet .
“Finally we agree on something, Sila . Let’s secure our safety . . . Let’s go at it until there’s nothing left!”