Chapter 132 – To Bully Intolerably
Calling Nie Yan fast was an understatement. In one fluid movement, he had thrown the Flash Powder and made his way behind Night Shadow.
Nie Yan knew, from his experience playing as a thief for so many years, exactly which factors would allow him to deal a fatal blow. The first was crowd control, incapacitating the enemy by either stunning, blinding, or doing anything to render them incapable of retaliating in general. The other was speed, speed so astonishingly fast the enemy would be unable to dodge.
After getting behind Night Shadow, Nie Yan stunned him by striking him on the back of the head with Concussive Blow.
Only then did he notice that this Thief actually belonged to Victorious Return. “Tch, it’s them again…” Judging from the style of the dark leather armour he wore, Nie Yan recognized it as the Blackwing Set, the best Battle Thief set currently in the game. “He’s probably ranked pretty highly in their guild.”
However, no matter how big their influence, how skilled they were in battle, or how experienced they were in other VRMMOs, they still wouldn’t be able to compete with him!
As for those who might try to mount a sneak attack against him, Nie Yan absolutely wouldn’t hold back. Though, before he could finish off Night Shadow, a black ball of fire suddenly emerged out of thin air and flew directly towards Nie Yan.
It’s an Arcane Flame Burst!
Shit, he has backup! Nie Yan’s mind rang out in alarm. If he continued attacking Night Shadow, then he would have to take a scorching explosion to the back. Since his opponent had teammates interfering, even if he hoped to kill Night Shadow right now, such a thing was now nothing more than wishful thinking. He rolled out of the way to avoid the Arcane Flame Burst. Then, in that same moment, he looked toward the source of the spell and saw a female Arcane Mage at the end of her casting animation. Suddenly, while still in mid-roll, he was hit by Demoralizing Shout.
After regaining his footing, he glanced at his status bar and noticed a new debuff: Attack -30%, 20 second duration. With his attack having been reduced to such an extent, he could no longer output enough burst damage to kill Night Shadow even if he wanted to.
This is bad!
Right now, his attack being crippled was the least of his worries. The Zombie King had broken free from its restraints and was charging him from the rear. Meanwhile, a Berserker wearing the Rock Solid Defense Set was rushing at him from another direction.
The Zombie King let out an angry roar as it closed in and slashed at Nie Yan with its bloody claws.
“Let’s see how you’ll get out of this!” Hidden Blade hollered. From his point of view, Nie Yan was already a dead man.
This situation, a three versus one, was quite troublesome for Nie Yan. Plus, from what he saw of their coordination earlier, they wouldn’t be easy opponents to deal with. Adding to that, the Zombie King was fully aggroed onto him. As long as they didn’t accidently attack it, its aggro would never shift.
He had effectively been cornered!
To make matters worse, the nearby Night Shadow had finally awoken from his dazed state.
“Don’t let him escape! He’s that Nirvana Flame the guild leader told us to hunt down!” Night Shadow exclaimed, still feeling traces of fear. If Tangerine and Hidden Blade hadn’t arrived in a timely manner, then he would have been a goner for sure.
In his last encounter with Victorious Return, Nie Yan had killed Violet Flame who held a high status in the guild as a member of the main dungeon running team. Since every member was quintessential, Violet Flame dropping a level had set back the entire team’s dungeon progression by a day. Not only had he been easily dealt with by a no-name player, but the culprit had also managed to escape! This was no different from the entire guild receiving a ruthless slap to the face! As such, Victorious Return’s guild leader, Heaven Breaker, became extremely aggravated and put a bounty on the culprit’s head. This was Heaven Breaker’s nature. He would follow his ruthless desires without any fear of repercussion and would allow no one to stand in the way of his plans.
“Gotcha! Don’t worry, there’s no way he can escape.” Hidden Blade charged forward with Vanguard Rush and swung his claymore at Nie Yan.
After suffering the enemy’s ambush, even though he didn’t want the Zombie King to be snatched away by them, he had no choice but to retreat for the time being. Preserving his life always came first; as long as he had his life, he could figure out what to do next later. He activated Shadow Dance and disappeared from their view. Thanks to the speed increase from Shadow Dance, he was able to safely retreat far away.
Hidden Blade never expected Nie Yan would suddenly disappear. By the time he swung his claymore, Nie Yan was already far gone, and so his attack hit nothing but air.
“Be careful, he entered stealth!”
“He’s too fast. I wasn’t able to stop him!” Night Shadow felt extremely nervous. Facing off against an expert like Nie Yan was exciting but dangerous at the same time.
After losing sight of its original target, the Zombie King’s aggro shifted and it charged at the nearest target with the lowest defense, which happened to be Night Shadow.
After pulling the Zombie King’s aggro, Hidden Blade activated Life Actuation. Immediately, his health increased by 300, his defense by 36, and his poison resistance by 13, making him durable enough to firmly hold off the Zombie King.
“Be careful. Don’t let yourself be ambushed,” Night Shadow warned.
“Relax, that Thief might’ve run off, but this Zombie King will definitely be ours!” Hidden Blade said in a tone full of confidence. In his current state, what sort of tricks could Nie Yan possibly pull?
Generally, a Thief would have no choice but to retreat whenever they came into conflict with a Warrior outside of the city. After all, there was nothing they could do. Warriors had much higher health and defense, so the damage a Thief could deal to them was limited. On the other hand, a Warrior’s attacks could easily pierce through a Thief’s weak leather armour.
This was also why Thieves usually targeted Mages, who only had cloth garments to protect themselves with.
After activating Life Actuation, Hidden Blade’s health, defense, etc., had risen to an all new level. If a Thief attempted to ambush him while he was in this state, they would basically be courting death. This was the privilege of the strong looking down on the weak! Even if he allowed that puny Thief to freely attack for the next fifteen seconds, he still wouldn’t be able to leave even a scratch.
In combat, many things could happen within the span of fifteen seconds. A single Tendon Break, for example, would lead to Nie Yan being completely crippled.
After witnessing Hidden Blade redirecting the aggro onto himself, Night Shadow jumped into the fray as well and aided him in taking down the Zombie King. However, he didn’t dare to be as unbridled as Hidden Blade, since even though Nie Yan disappeared without a trace, he might still be lingering around.
Meanwhile, Tangerine was in the rear bombarding the Zombie King with magic. Every spell she cast caused over a hundred damage, sending its health in a downward spiral.
Nie Yan knitted his brows. This Arcane Mage’s damage was quite terrifying!
“Drink an Antidote!”
“Give it your all! It’s almost dead!” Hidden Blade shouted out in excitement. They were quite lucky this time around since they would be able to reap the rewards of killing an Elite without having to put in much effort.
They were completely unscrupulous, planning to snatch away the Zombie King for themselves.
Nie Yan was infuriated as he watched this. The Zombie King he worked so painstakingly hard to wear down was about to be taken by someone else. He originally wanted to save some of his skills for a particularly hard quest, but now it couldn’t be helped since he had encountered something which absolutely couldn’t be tolerated!
After glancing at his skill bar, he gradually approached the Arcane Mage. He planned to take her out before doing anything else since her damage was simply too ferocious. Once she was out of the picture, dealing with Night Shadow and Hidden blade would be much easier.
“Tangerine, stay alert,” Night Shadow reminded her. He didn’t feel safe knowing that Nie Yan could be lingering around somewhere nearby. He was too strong, even moreso when compared to the several Thieves in their team.
“No need to panic, it’s just a Thief. This little lady might not have killed several hundreds of them, but she’s certainly killed several dozens!” Tangerine replied in a boastful manner.
Hearing her response, Night Shadow felt his worries subside as he realized they might have been unfounded. After all, Tangerine’s skill placed her in the top three of their entire guild. She also had a flawless game sense and the best Arcane Mage equipment currently in the game, which meant that there were very few players capable of rivalling her.
“Still, it’s best if we remain on guard. He has some really strange skills, so watch out. We can’t let a moment of carelessness lead to our downfall.”
“I get it already, stop worrying!” Tangerine activated Keen Perception and then glanced over her shoulder.
In that same moment, Nie Yan crushed a Web Scroll he had been holding in his hand, whereupon a giant net of webbing emerged out of thin air, entrapping her. Mages had high resistance against transformation magic such as Sheep Transformation, making it very likely for her to ignore the spell altogether, which was why he chose to use the Web Scroll instead.
Seeing the web had successfully entangled her, Nie Yan rushed up to her with his dagger raised.
He still had to keep in mind that although Web rooted a player in place, it wouldn’t prevent them from casting spells.
Nie Yan closed in, intending to use Concussive Blow which would render her incapable of escaping. If he were to succeed, then she would undoubtedly die!
Before he could close in, however, she waved her staff and cast Repel!
Following which Nie Yan suddenly found himself being pushed back by a powerful force as a protective screen was formed between them, preventing him from reaching her. After another wave of her staff, dazzling arcane energy began rapidly converging on her location. She was using Arcane Flame Burst!
The ball of black fire headed straight for Nie Yan, streaking through the air!
This woman actually had Repel! It was an uncommon skill that was a huge headache for many Thieves. It could prevent an opponent from approaching within ten meters of the caster for five seconds.
A Thief that was unable to get close wouldn’t be able to unleash their crucial attacking skills. Hence, they would become nothing more than target practice for the Mage.
Nie Yan rolled to the side and dodged her incoming Arcane Flame Burst.
“Tangerine, focus over here! Kill the Zombie King first, then we’ll deal with that guy together!” Hidden Blade called out in a tense manner. Since the Zombie King was nearing the end of its life, it entered an enraged state causing its attacks to become even more powerful. If they were able to kill the Zombie King, then Nie Yan would have no hope of turning the situation around. After all, Tangerine had plenty of methods to deal with Thieves, so toying with Nie Yan until he died would be a rather simple affair.
“Hmph!” Tangerine shot a disdainful glare at Nie Yan who had been pushed back ten meters, then returned to shooting spells at the Zombie King. For the time being, she completely disregarded his existence, showing nothing but blatant contempt.
If he wanted to close in on her, then he would have to wait several more seconds. This posed quite a problem since by that time, she would have plenty of crowd control spells ready to deal with him.
Nie Yan originally wanted to get rid of Tangerine first before proceeding to take care of Night Shadow and Hidden Blade, but now it seemed like there wouldn’t be enough time for that.
Most of Victorious Return’s resources were funnelled into their elite team, of which included Tangerine, Night Shadow, and Hidden Blade. Their equipment and skills were clear evidence of Victorious Return’s powerful and deep foundation.
Although the equipment Nie Yan wore was decent, the superiority of the Chapter of Courage and Chapter of Freedom would only begin to manifest itself in the later stages of the game. As for Sulgata’s Boots, even though they weren’t bad, they were still only a single piece of equipment. Therefore, if he were to compare his gear to theirs, stat for stat, he would find himself somewhat lacking.
Worst of all, it was a three versus one! With a skilled Arcane Mage glaring at his back like a tiger, it would be incredibly difficult for him to act freely.
If they were to truly go at it, then Nie Yan wasn’t afraid of Tangerine. The real problem was that he wouldn’t be able to deal with her in a short period of time. Moreover, at this moment, the Zombie King was already very close to dying.
From his perspective, if the Zombie King was stolen and the equipment went to them, then it would be tantamount to slapping him across the face. This was a matter of pride; such an outcome was absolutely intolerable!
Having been left with no other choice, Nie Yan crushed a Haste Scroll before dashing toward Hidden Blade. Closing the distance almost immediately, his dagger flashed with a cold ray of light. Dammit, I don’t care if you’re a Berserker! Just because you have some armour, you think I can’t deal with you!?