Chapter 284 – Legendary Quest
“You’ve come.” Yao Yao revealed a brilliant smile. Her bright eyes resembled glittering gemstones.
Nie Yan fell into a daze. For an instant, Yao Yao’s appearance overlapped with Xie Yao’s in his mind. But he quickly shook his head in self-ridicule. How could there be such a coincidence in the world? He met Xie Yao long before Yao Yao in his past life. It wasn’t until after graduation that he started playing Conviction, where he eventually met Yao Yao. Interestingly enough, his meeting with her was purely coincidental. They had become acquainted through the girlfriend of one of Zhai Hao’s friends. Yao Yao was invited to play with their group, and they started running dungeons and levelling together.
At that time, Nie Yan was downtrodden with life and lonely. As he gradually got closer to Yao Yao, the two of them formed a special relationship. Her genuine concern for his well-being touched him deeply. It was a short-lived happiness, however. They took it a step too far in a secret chamber beneath Fenarte City, after which Yao Yao started avoiding him and their friendship slowly returned to being platonic. He felt remorseful toward Yao Yao. Back then, he had indeed been at fault for taking their relationship down that path. But Yao Yao never rejected him. So in a moment of weakness, he gave in to his carnal desires and committed a grave sin of the virtual world.
Nie Yan walked up to meet her on the stairs. “Come on, let’s go in.”
“Mhm.” Yao Yao nodded before following behind Nie Yan. Her lips curved into a crafty smile as she stared at his back. He behaved more seriously inside the game, a stark contrast from how exasperating he was with his constant teasing in reality.
The two arrived at the entrance of the Holy Shrine, where they were greeted by two large gates crafted from towering, ancient trees. They were mottled with cracks and exuded an archaic air.
Nie Yan slowly pushed them open, revealing a massive hallway.
Rows upon rows of candles lined the walls, their flames swaying ever so gently from the slight draft created by the opening of the gates. A crimson-red carpet lay spread out before them, with over 20 NPCs standing on either side in a line that stretched out to the far end of the hallway. Nie Yan recognized almost all of them by name. He settled his gaze on a certain individual among them.
This NPC wore ash-gray robes. His left sleeve was empty while the hand he held his staff with was missing a forefinger. This was the legendary Holy Mage, Karsi!
Karsi watched as the two walked over to him.
“It’s an honour to meet your Holiness,” Nie Yan greeted in a respectful matter.
“Sir Demon Hunter and Grand Scholar, greetings.” Karsi nodded.
Nie Yan’s current status was far from comparable to the other side’s, so he had to abide by noble etiquette.
Seeing Karsi address Nie Yan in such a manner, Yao Yao was slightly taken aback. But then she remembered just what kind of person Nie Yan was inside the game; someone who created a miracle wherever he went.
Nie Yan glanced at Yao Yao, then faced Karsi and respectfully asked, “I’m here to request permission to help this young lady with her quest. Your Holiness, are you willing?”
Karsi looked at Yao Yao. “She is as beautiful as the stars. I naturally see no problem in allowing you to help this little miss.”
“Thank you, your Holiness.”
A player was permitted to enlist the help of up to two others if they couldn’t finish a quest by themselves. However, the levels of the helpers couldn’t exceed their own by more than three.
Ever since dying to the Demonified Lord Sonia, Nie Yan still hadn’t gotten his level back up. Yao Yao was currently Level 31 while he was only Level 29. So he definitely fulfilled the requirements to be her helper.
Karsi’s gaze slightly trembled as he noticed the medal on Nie Yan’s left shoulder.
“Pardon me, Grand Scholar. Is that not the Medal of the Ten Holy Paladins?” Karsi asked as he stared at Nie Yan with an intense gaze. His right hand was slightly trembling. He was clearly agitated.
“Yes, your Holiness. This is indeed the Medal of the Ten Holy Paladins. May I ask if you know the history behind it?” Nie Yan curiously asked. He had to be very deliberate with his wording when trying to fish out a quest from such an important NPC.
A peculiar light flashed across Karsi’s tranquil gaze. He revealed a wistful expression and let out a deep sigh. “This is an ancient matter.”
Nie Yan inwardly celebrated after seeing Karsi’s reaction. He had successfully triggered the quest dialogue!
“I am retracing the events of that era because of a task entrusted to me. Your Holiness, could you recount some of what transpired back then?” Nie Yan asked. He still had a quest regarding the Legend of the Ten Holy Paladins that remained unfinished. It was to seek out the truth behind what happened to them.
“I’ve lived for almost a thousand years, so long that I don’t even remember exactly how old I am anymore. Humanity is destined to never overcome their desires. Everything is as fleeting as a cloud of smoke, while time passes in the blink of an eye. I know I’m not a great record keeper. But I’m confident that I’ve looked back on the path I’ve trodden more than anyone else. I reminisce, constantly, every waking day. I try to stand still, but the vicissitudes of time continually pushes me forward. The things I’ve witnessed over the years are as countless as the stars in the night sky. However, I still haven’t forgotten the events that took place during the time we now call the Dark Era. I followed Sir Kavana across the vast land of Glennin in his campaign against the dragon race. Swearing blood oaths, reading out the Will of Light…”
From the pledge of the Ten Holy Paladin to the betrayal of Brewin, Karsi narrated these events in chronological order.
“After the death of Sir Kavana, Brewin betrayed the Will of God. He imprisoned the other eight members inside the Roth Swamp and the hidden caverns of Laurent Mountains. They are guarded by the Hellhound, Cerberus. Brave Adventurer. If you save them, I, Karsi, am willing to become your servant and swear eternal loyalty to you!” Karsi declared emotionally.
Nie Yan was caught off-guard. He didn’t expect Karsi to have been the servant of Kavana. Karsi was an extremely influential figure in the Holy Shrine. His words held as much weight as the Cardinals’. With the seat of Supreme Pontiff currently vacant, Karsi’s support was crucial to the three Cardinals who wished to ascend to this position.
This was the backdrop of Conviction. Nie Yan naturally knew a bit about it.
It was rumoured only the person who collected all 36 chapters of the Book of Order was qualified to become the Supreme Pontiff of the Holy Shrine.
Karsi played such a crucial role back then, and even now. It was hard to imagine that this prominent figure could be obtained as a servant.
When a guild reached Level 8, the guild leader had a chance to obtain an NPC servant. This servant was often a hired NPC mercenary, but could also be any other kind of NPC.
As a legendary Holy Mage, a single cast of forbidden magic from Karsi could easily wipe out an entire stronghold!
However, Nie Yan also understood this quest wasn’t something he could handle at his current level. Leaving Brewin aside, just the Hellhound, Cerberus, was more than enough to wipe him out instantly. As a Level 300 Lord, it was terrifying beyond imagination. Only a 1,000-man team of Level 170+ players stood a chance against it.
Not only this, but there were some inconsistencies in Karsi’s description of the events. Brewin wasn’t the only one who betrayed the Ten Holy Paladins. There were many accomplices who aided him in capturing the other members. This was probably a clue leading to a branching quest.
There would probably be more events down the road. This quest line was only beginning to unravel.
Yao Yao was baffled as she listened to the conversation between Nie Yan and Karsi. Something about betrayal, the Ten Holy Paladins, and even a little girl from the dragon race was involved, all of it was too convoluted!
Nie Yan continued to chat with Karsi about matters related to the Legend of the Ten Holy Paladins. In the end, Karsi provided him with a single lead—seek out the Dragon Girl, Venita, in the Silent Gulf for more information!
“Did you understand any of that?” Nie Yan asked Yao Yao with a smile after finishing his conversation with Karsi.
“More or less, you received a Legendary quest?” Yao Yao asked. This was a bit frightening. Legendary quests didn’t simply fall from the sky, not to mention this one in particular involved the events of the Dark Era.
Nie Yan nodded. “I guess it could count as one. Too bad I need to be over Level 100 to carry it out. That’s why I’ll help you do Karsi’s Blessing first.”
Nie Yan turned back to Karsi. “Your Holiness, I’ll continue pursuing the truth. I won’t stop until I rescue the imprisoned eight members of the Ten Holy Paladins.”
Karsi showed a grateful expression. “You have my gratitude, Nirvana Flame. Just what I expected of a Demon Hunter and Grand Scholar!”
Nie Yan felt incredibly awkward every time Karsi called him a Demon Hunter and Grand Scholar. But it couldn’t be helped since it was something set by the system. Titles represented status!
Nie Yan had obtained plenty of useful information from his conversation with Karsi. He was more motivated than ever to see this quest through to the end. Let alone the other rewards, just obtaining Karsi as a servant would make Asskickers United practically invincible!
As as a matter of fact, after the release of the Buried History expansion, Level 100 wasn’t all that far away, probably 6 months at most. This was completely different from the previous timeline.
After bidding Karsi farewell, Nie Yan and Yao Yao walked out of the Holy Shrine.
“Let’s head to Sinful Gorge,” Nie Yan suggested. He had a very simple method to obtain the Black Sin Lotus. “Have you learned Divine Protection yet?”
“Rank 3, why?” Yao Yao asked curiously. Was Divine Protection required for this quest?
“Good, that’ll makes things a lot easier. Divine Protection is one of the most useful skills to have in Sinful Gorge since it’s perfect for repelling the miasma in the air,” Nie Yan explained. Aside from Divine Protection, a Featherfall Jewel was also required to employ his plan. But he already had one, so he didn’t bring it up.
After stocking up on some necessary consumables in Calore, the two headed toward the transfer area. Their destination was the depths of Sinful Gorge!
Ordinary players would only wander around the entrances of the caves in Sinful Gorge. Its depths were full of legends. Nie Yan and Yao Yao’s goal was one of the many mysterious items rumoured to be found in that place, the Black Sin Lotus!