Chapter 219: The Wait 1
"We were attacked by them as soon as we came ashore, and it looks like everyone who entered the island had been attacked. Poker Organization was definitely scheming something in secret. We were all here for the key, the Black Smoke Pot." Garen raised his voice, "I think everyone here wanted the Black Smoke Pot or witness its abilities. No matter what your intentions are, the ruins doesn’t seem to be opening yet, so we don’t really have conflict of interest here. Killing is unnecessary. I think, Clown King wants us to fight."
"It’s true, Clown King’s followers have the ability to disguise as other people, it’s easy for them to pick a fight as another person." Someone agreed.
Garen stood in the center with the others, surrounded by all the rest of the people.
These parties knew their power is not enough, so they only came to try their luck. Furthermore, these were the ones who managed to breakthrough Clown King’s trap through their willpower. Some of them were nameless people who powered on, some others were not necessarily unknown where they came from.
It didn’t matter who it was. Anyone who stood there have their own desire - the Black Smoke Pot.
It’s the same for the Three Major Generals. They were officially here to capture the Clown King, but in reality they were there for the Black Smoke Pot.
There were rumors of the Black Smoke Pot establishing the connection between this world and the Underworld.
The scene was in a slight confusion. No one party knows what the other parties think, so they were all being extra cautious at each other.
Most people were focusing on the three from White Peacocks in the center. Even if King of Nightmares was intimidating, who would really give up the opportunity to obtain the Black Smoke Pot, having come this far?
Those who were here had already made up their minds to breakthrough every single obstacle to get to it. If there were people who could settle for less, they already had and wouldn’t even make it to the island.
"What do you White Peacocks think?" The leader of the Three Major Generals, The Glorious Chancer spoke. "The Clown King had given up on the Black Smoke Pot and plead allegiance to the Immortal Palace. He’s here to get it for them. What about you?" He paused, "If I remembered correctly, the White Peacocks hadn’t been around for too long, but all of you seem to have unsettled business with the Immortal Palace?"
The three had already silently agreed for Garen to be the leader and the face for the group. Andrela had admitted to be inferior to Garen in fighting ability, King of Nightmares was not even considering to lead.
Garen stepped forward, staring at The Glorious Chancer.
"Black Smoke Pot is not our primary objective. Just as you said, our main focus is Immortal Palace."
The Glorious Chancer nodded. "What if we form an alliance with each other? Our mission was to capture Clown King, this aligns with your focus, I presume you and him also have a score to settle. Our other mission was for the Black Smoke Pot, that was our real mission."
"Alliance?" Garen didn’t think the Three Major Generals from Weisman would suggest such an idea, but seeing the sincerity on his face, Garen at least knew The Glorious Chancer really wants an alliance.
King of Nightmares muttered under his breath, "He was trying to soothe the sour relationship between you when Weisman sent the Killer Hunters Squad after you. I think they were even trying to recruit us."
Garen nodded subtly to indicate his understanding. The Red Sand Sword Gate saga wasn’t a huge thing now, but it was still something they had to settle.
"What’s in it for us in this alliance?" He hollered.
"If you help us get the Black Smoke Pot, and we’ll help you when you face off with the Immortal Palace. They are also the scourge to our organization." The Glorious Chancer proclaimed.
"How can I trust you?"
"I have been on this job for twenty five years. I have yet to make a promise I couldn’t keep." The Glorious Chancer stated calmly.
Between the back-and-forth of these two, some other teams around them started to shift. White Peacock and Weisman was already difficult by themselves, if they allied, no other teams would even be in the race to the prize anymore.
Some weaker groups started to leave the crowd. They were very aware of their abilities. Now that the situation had gone beyond their control. They might as well pull out before it was too late, after damages had been done.
The rest of the stronger groups which still had some confidence in themselves congregated, becoming larger temporary groups.
Garen and the Three Major Generals all noticed the behavior changes.
"The Northern Territory should be under Immortal Palace’s control, the King of the North Pole and God of the Spear have probably allied to resist the Immortal Palace," The Glorious Chancer continued, "If we join in the fight, Immortal Alliance will have no chance of succeeding."
He stared at Garen’s face. This young man is only twenty years of age, but the intelligence pointed out he’s a rising star who monopolized a whole province. He didn’t pay much attention before, but he didn’t realize the young man may be even stronger than what they had expected.
He immediately tried to recruit him.
"Weisman welcomes all talents and intellectuals. Top fighters like you three, you can get the best receptions and a position only second to us. Please give it some thought. Right now, the Confederation is not in a good spot, even normal citizen were able to see how bad the situation is. Three elites like you don’t need to waste your lives away on a dying tree, why not choose a bigger stage and a better environment?"
Garen and the other two didn’t reply directly. After King of Nightmares hypnotized the Queen clown, they already found out it was one of the clowns who originally disguised as the fighters from Weisman to attack them. Knowing that, their hatred for the Joker Squad deepened.
"Let’s not talk about this first. Our main objective here is still sussing out the Clown King." Garen steered the conversation away from recruitment. "I don’t know why the Clown King sent out so many cannon fodders to attack everyone. But since they’ve started the attack, they will need to face the consequences." He’s extremely upset with the Clown King for the loss of his Golden Sword Throne and Golden Seal. Since that was sorted out, vanquishing him is, of course, the main focus. With a pest chasing after them constantly will definitely be a discomfort.
The Glorious Chancer looked at his watch. "It is currently 7.35 in the evening, almost night time, but this blanket of mist is everywhere so we won’t notice the difference in our surrounding. If we want to exterminate the clowns, we still have 24 hours."
He looked around.
"I reckon the Clown King is among us."
"Do we need to clear the space?" Another Major General murmured. "With us and the White Peacocks, we’ve got the power to exterminate everyone else here."
"We’re not in a hurry." The Glorious Chancer shook his head.
Garen temporarily agreed to the alliance proposal, so he approached the Major Generals with Andrela and King of Nightmares. King of Nightmares was training the Queen clown absent-mindedly.
"Repeat after me, ‘I am a pig.’"
"I am a pig…" The clown was spaced out.
"‘I like to eat shit.’"
"I like to eat shit…"
"‘I love freshly baked ones.’"
"I love freshly baked ones..."
Garen and Andrela watched as King of Nightmares trained the clown and felt slightly sick. They know King of Nightmares enough to know they wouldn’t say something they were not going to do. They were preparing to really let the clown do the deed.
Si Lan also shuddered, but her priorities lie in finding Dale Quicksilver.
"Mr. Kelly, if you want to look for the Clown King, there’s a person who may be useful." She suppressed the urge to continue watching and managed to compose herself.
"You mean Detective Dale?" Garen had a slight frown.
"No need," King of Nightmares stood up, "I already found out the gist." They had a smirk on their face. "How dare he spring the bombs on us! And seeked refuge with the Immortal Palace!"
"We’ll still be here for the rest of our time, it may be beneficial to find Dale Quicksilver." Andrela have heard of his fame. "Even though we’re forming a temporary alliance with the Weisman’s, we’ll probably still need to fight them when we open the ruins’ entrance. Who wouldn’t want the Black Smoke Pot that can grant them breakthrough? The truce we’re having right now is temporary, it would be dangerous if they’ve gone all out in attacking us."
Garen nodded in agreement.
"Too bad we don’t know Palosa’s plan. If he’s here, we would have a bigger chance."
"The old guy had different persona at different time, none of us know what state he was in during this recluse. Don’t get careless…" Andrela spoke hushedly. "The Black Smoke Pot can only be used by one person, if we got to the end, I wouldn’t hold back even if it’s you I’m facing!"
"Let’s do our best." Garen smiled. A one-use item such as Black Smoke Pot that can communicate with the underworld, as well as help people ascend to higher peaks. Even if Andrela and him were best friends, it would be foolish to give up his path and dreams just because of that relationship.
They are partners, as well as rivals.
Even if he said he doesn’t want the Black Smoke Pot, but given the chance, he would not let that chance go either.
The truce they were having, was in fact the calm before the storm.
Garen looked around. "Let’s go look for Detective Dale." He took Si Lan in his arm, and stepped lightly on the ground, charging out without a sound.
Everyone else only saw a blur before Garen and Si Lan disappeared. Being reminded of the canyon between their abilities, more elites have almost given up.
The pillar jungle was full of thick stone pillars, each pillar was as tall as a tree with the bottom half carved straight up to the top half which was carved into statues of different poses.
Some of them sad, some happy, some in enjoyment, some in fury. All the statues were doing different actions than the others.
The stone pillars were placed far apart, about three to four meters. Between all the pillars, they formed a maze extending into every direction.