Sila exited the room and regrouped with Lomyok . Taking a peek outside, he saw there were still many players wandering around . Sila recognized some faces . It seemed most of them were the Victorious Wolves Sect’s members . They were searching for surviving allies or possible enemies . In a far corner, Sila spotted people who he knew very well . Ratri was showing a delighted expression . Next to her was Hong Tong, acting as her bodyguard . The two of them were conversing with Anubis, or rather Pumin with his face behind a jackal mask .
“What are they talking about?” Sila wondered .
“Let’s go back in for now . ” A feminine voice rang out from below . Lowering his head, Sila saw a spotless white cat strolling inside the building he had just exited, prompting him to close the door behind her .
The white cat was bathed in a faint qi aura before slowly transforming into a blond-haired woman in a white dress .
“Greetings, Mister Sila . We meet again . As for Mister Lomyok, this must be our first time talking . Please allow me to introduce myself . My name is Irene . I’m Anubis’ soulmate . ”
“Oh? You’re a monster?” Lomyok observed Irene and commented, “Your dress is beautiful . ”
Irene showed a friendly smile . “Thank you . This dress was tailor-made by the Fairy Queen, just like your clothes . ”
Lomyok nodded . “I see . Having such fabulous taste, you must be a good monster . By the way, do you have business with this handsome one?”
Irene was a sociable person even when she was alive . Feeling how casual Lomyok was, she quickly took a liking to him . “I don’t have particular business with you . It’s just that there is something I would like to share with you two . ”
“What is it?” Sila asked . He suppressed the urge to call her Mom . It wouldn’t be appropriate now that there was another player nearby .
“Your competence and personalities caught Anubis’ eyes, so he sent me to warn you that the city will belong to the Victorious Wolves Sect by dawn . They plan to temporarily close down the city in order to stabilize the situation and begin repairs . As such, guildless players like Mister Lomyok and opposing players like Mister Sila will be in big trouble if you are still in the city by then . On the other hand, you can avoid conflicts by leaving the city before that time comes . ”
“Ho? Has the city fallen into Lone Wolf’s hands? Not bad, that guy,” Lomyok remarked .
Irene explained, “Mister Lomyok, you seem to have missed some news . Mister Lone Wolf died, so the city will be under the management of the guild deputy, or rather Miss Ratri . ”
“Really? He’s already dead? This year he died quite fast . ” It seemed Lomyok really had no clue about it .
Sila frowned . “Ratri will be the next city conqueror . . . ?”
“That really is the case . ” Irene could note the dissatisfaction in Sila’s voice . “Mister Sila, I understand you may find this result dissatisfying since it’s you who put in a lot of effort . At the time when Mister Burapha killed Mister Revin, he didn’t get the position of the city conqueror due to the passive ability of the Emperorship that prevented the city from changing hands . However, within a war event, there is a separate rule that overwrites said ability . Once the number of members of the city conqueror’s side in the city reaches zero and the situation has calmed down, the side that has the most members remaining in the city will automatically conquer the city . ”
Conquering the city had never been Sila’s objective . Originally, he intended to put the city into the same state as Grea City after the Royal Armament Guild’s fall, meaning there was no clear ruler, letting citizens live on their own . He just wanted Montra to lose one of his important bases and didn’t care about the aftermath . However, it turned out that the city would end up being run by the last person he’d wish to have it .
Lomyok smiled merrily . “The Victorious Wolves Sect is very familiar with how the city operates and Ratri has always been good at taking care of the guild . I guess the city will recover from this quickly . How fortunate~”
Lomyok wasn’t aware that his casual speech had just saved Zhongsuyuan City from a huge calamity . Sila, who had recovered all of his power, had the capability to hunt down every single injured player in the city . If he was the last man standing in the city, Zhongsuyuan City would become his . As he was contemplating this, Lomyok’s words made him realize something, leading to him abandoning this cruel idea .
Ratri was vicious toward him out of her fear of his power, thinking he was a potential threat to her guild, and decided to deliver a preemptive strike . The Victorious Wolves Sect was vicious to him alone but was virtuous to the townspeople . While he could justify killing her, claiming that it was his right to own the city, the citizens were innocent and didn’t deserve any of it . If he started the hunt, the cycle of vengeance would continue . Someone would try to take revenge for those he had killed, and if he killed them as well, more would come . The more people he killed, the higher the pile of corpses he stands upon would become, preventing him from getting down . Ultimately, he would be the one trapped in the everlasting cycle . By the time he realizes it, everyone in the world might have already become his enemies .
The hardest thing to let go of in this world is a grudge . One of the easiest things to give, yet one of the rarest ever given, is forgiveness .
Somehow freeing himself from mental impurities and attaining inner peace, Sila felt relief . It was as if a shackle had fallen from his body, reducing the burden carried on his shoulders . “You’re right . This is probably for the best . ”
Thanks to this decision, Zhongsuyuan City under the Victorious Wolves Sect’s management would flourish and be peaceful in the following years . Sila and Revin would be mentioned in the city’s history as the two powerful villains who clashed and eventually died altogether under the Victorious Wolves Sect’s army led by Ratri . They strategically marched into the city at the right time and successfully seized the city from Montra . Many truths would be distorted and eventually be lost to the passage of time . Still, Sila was content . What was important for everyone wasn’t the truth but peace .
Knowing that her son didn’t cling to a false sense of pride, Irene was glad . The desire to win is a feeling that the Wulin Lord ought to get rid of . The most important thing wasn’t oneself but the well-being of everyone in the association .
“Mister Lomyok also caught Anubis’ eyes . You have quick wits, managing to use a unique qi to save that puppy’s life . Anubis shares some bonds with the dog race, so he felt gratitude . He told me to give this item to you, hoping that it will be beneficial to you . ”
Irene extended her hand, showing an ornamental dog collar . However, Lomyok didn’t take it . He showed an uncomfortable expression as he lifted the puppy up to eye level .
“I . . . can’t take my hands off it . ”
“Ah, I see . Sorry for not noticing that . Please let me . ” Irene put the collar on the puppy . Its body flashed once, before the light faded to reveal the same appearance excluding the second head .
“Members of the soul race have the power to alter a monster’s species . This collar is the Dog God’s Collar, having the ability to transform the species of this particular puppy from a black wild dog to an Orthos, a two-headed dog . Its basic qi is also changed to magical qi . It’s a really good pet to keep . ”
“Arf-Arf!” The bark from the puppy’s two heads were adorably in harmony .
Lomyok showed an awkward expression . “How troublesome . Reject . Reject . I said reject! Reject . ”
Noticing that Lomyok was being weirder than usual, Sila asked, “What’s wrong?”
“I prefer cats over dogs . Dogs are too energetic for my taste . More importantly, I already have a few cats in the real world, so I don’t want to have pets in the game as well . I have rejected the system several times now . Why does it keep asking?”
Lomyok wouldn’t call himself an animal lover . However, he won’t just walk away if he sees an animal dying in front of him and knows he can help . Thus, when he saw a blood-soaked black puppy shivering in the dark, he couldn’t help but rescue it . The one who injured the puppy must be very heartless, for them to even create a domain to imprison it . Lomyok used his saber fan to destroy the magic domain and transmitted qi into the puppy to heal it .
As soon as his qi entered the puppy’s body, Lomyok instantly realized that he couldn’t save it . The puppy’s body had some strange power erupting on inside, tearing its veins apart . However, with his quick wits, he soon found a solution . He exerted the power of the zombie race’s Vast Sky Qi, which had the ability to consume energy, and started absorbing the surplus power inside the puppy into his body through his palms . With this method, not only did he manage to save its life, but the maximum value of his health points and special points also slowly increased . Although his rank was still Squire, his health points had already reached ten million while his special points had reached three million .
Still, the puppy was far from danger . There were too many souls running wild in its body . If Lomyok let go of it, it would suffer greatly . He also couldn’t absorb the power from it too fast since its body, which was acting as a bridge, couldn’t bear the speed . He had no choice but to gradually absorb its power, forcing him to continue holding it in his arms . The most troublesome part was that he didn’t know how long he had to continue doing this .
Lomyok’s level was higher than the puppy’s, so technically he could reject becoming its master . However, as he was holding and helping it all the time, even if he did reject it, the system would ask him again . It seemed the system would continue pestering him as long as he was saving its life .
Lomyok suddenly got a bright idea . “Oh, right! Sila, you are an animal lover, aren’t you? Let me give this little guy to you, then . ”
Sila pointed a finger at himself . “Me? An animal lover?”
“You have a lot of monsters that you play with . Adding one more won’t make a difference . Take it, please . I travel all the time . I can’t take care of it . I don’t even own a house in the game . This guy won’t survive if I bring it along with me to the Monster Realm . ”
Sila quickly refused, “It’s inconvenient for me to have it . I don’t have time to take care of it either . ”
Seeing her master in trouble, Julia immediately volunteered, “I can take care of the puppy in your place, Master . ”
Lomyok grinned . “Yes! Now the problem is solved . It finally found a caretaker . Ready? Take it . ”
Sila had yet to agree, but Lomyok had already lightly tossed the puppy his way . Sila received it using both hands . Once it landed, he immediately realized that it was gravely injured . Its small body squirmed in pain, letting out pitiful cries .
Sila transmitted his qi to the puppy, but it was useless, like how Lomyok had experienced . “Ah? What do I have to do? It can’t be healed with qi . ”
“You have to use this qi . ” Lomyok placed his palms on Sila’s back and started a session of qi transmission . “Follow my lead and try to remember the circulation pattern . ”
He exerted the power of Worlds Crossing Bridge, redirecting qi to go through Sila’s veins in a specific way . Apparently, it was Vast Sky Qi’s circulation pattern . Lomyok absorbed the puppy’s surplus energy by using Sila as a bridge . Meanwhile, Sila was surprised at how clearly he could sense the flow of qi and learn from it .
That was because Lomyok possessed the maximum level of Qi Transmission skill, making it easy for him to dictate the flow of qi . In addition, this wasn’t the first time someone transmitted qi directly to Sila . Regarding the experience of receiving qi directly from monsters, Lomyok had experienced it once from the Zombie King while Sila had done it twice, from Rex and Lucifer, so it could be said that Sila was more experienced .
Vast Sky Qi was a strange qi . Not only was it difficult to detect, but it also made his body feel empty when circulating it . In any case, thanks to his mastery, it took Sila only five minutes to get the hang of the qi’s characteristics . He believed he could do it now even without Lomyok’s aid .
“I see . It turns out that this qi emphasizes the power of Freezing Soul, Worlds Crossing Bridge, and Universe Momentum . ”
Lomyok nodded as he replied with a cheery tone . Not even the slightest amount of envy could be detected from his voice .
“That’s correct . It took me two days back then, but you only needed five minutes . It is probably because my qi foundation is inferior to yours . As expected of my rival . Well, try doing it on your own . ”
Lomyok removed his palms from Sila, allowing the latter to rely on his own proficiency to achieve the same result . It took a few tries before a system notification rang out in Sila’s head .
You have inherited (A) Vast Sky Qi - Level 1 .
Using Vast Sky Qi, Sila could feel that the overflowing power within the two-headed puppy streamed into him, increasing his maximum value of health points and special points, albeit at a snail’s pace . In any case, he would more or less come close to immortality if he kept doing this . As expected of the signature qi belonging to zombies .
“Oh! The Zombie King warned me that you have to be careful when using this qi since there is a speed limit for the absorption rate . If you are too greedy and consume too fast, you will suffer greatly . The incoming energy will counteract against you . It will be as if you are attacked without putting up a defense,” Lomyok quickly warned Sila .
Sila listened to the warning, though he already knew that much from what his body was telling him .
Lomyok had finally finished all of his business in the city . Without the puppy, he could leap to the Desert of Death . Even if someone spotted him, they wouldn’t be able to pursue him .
“I’ve taken care of everything now . I am going, then . Bye~ See you again . ”
“Wait a minute,” Sila called the man . “Receiving such a gift for free doesn’t sit well with me . Do you want anything in return?”
Sila meant Vast Sky Qi, obviously, but Lomyok thought Sila was referring to the puppy .
“Eh? For something like that, there is no need to compensate me at all,” Lomyok refused, but he later came up with an idea . “Oh? Do you happen to have Cosmetic Random Boxes?”
Naturally, Sila didn’t have that kind of item . He turned to ask Julia nevertheless, “Erm . . . Julia, do I have something like that?”
Julia shook her head . “You don’t, Master . You do have some cosmetic-related skill scriptures though . ”
Upon seeing Julia shaking her head, both Lomyok and Sila were disappointed . However, Lomyok’s expression quickly brightened once she finished her sentence and brought a small pile of scriptures out . He inspected some of them and almost couldn’t stop his tears of gratitude from falling .
“You even have the Dry Skin Prevention skill? As expected of my rival . Having this, both strong heat from deserts and the cold from snow can no longer harm my skin . Thank you very much, pal . ”
These skill scriptures were luxury items greatly desired by female players, so they were expensive despite being totally unhelpful in combat .
Lomyok handed one of the scriptures to Sila . “I already have this . You should use it . Your hair is so dry, man . ”
Inspecting the scripture, Sila found that it was ‘Special Skill: Damp Spa Hair’ and thought to himself, ‘What the heck? Is this a skill or a hair conditioner?’
“Erm . . . thanks, I guess?” Sila received the gift and passed it to Julia . Meanwhile, Lomyok poked his head out of the building, looked left and right, before dashing out .
Irene chuckled lightly . “Your friend is quite funny . ”
Sila sighed . “Actually, we aren’t friends, Mom . ”
“You two seemed to hit it off to me though . It’s been a long time since I saw a person like him—the kind of person who genuinely enjoys the game . Most people in Monster Soul seek money or power . It is rare to see someone earnestly seek adventures . ”
‘It seems I don’t have to worry anymore . As long as you can still show a smile like that and retain your sense of self even in this cruel world, I’m sure you can definitely overcome any obstacle coming your way, my son . ’
Even though Sila had missed the reward for conquering the city—the golden soul of gods— Irene was confident that her son had already obtained a valuable lesson from the raid . In a sense, it was a grand reward that even the system couldn’t bestow upon him .
Sila wasn’t aware how he had changed or what he had obtained . Still, he somehow knew something within him had changed for the better .
You have obtained the Two-Headed Orthos, Level 1 Squire Rank as a pet . Please submit your pet’s name .
“Doggy?” Sila tried .
Both heads of the puppy simultaneously bit Sila’s fingers . It didn’t hurt him, and Sila couldn’t help but find the fact that it clearly disliked the name hilarious .
“Hahaha! I put in so much effort and almost died, but what I get in the end is a single puppy? Well, it’s better than nothing . ”
Sila lifted the puppy up to the sky and laughed happily . Amidst the harsh war where he didn’t know what would happen tomorrow, Sila was satisfied with clinging to the small happy moments like this one .