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Chapter 404 - Occult Titan

Back in the Fallen Angel guild headquarters, the Undead Thief was reporting back to Plenty after reviving.

"Boss, I was walking up to greet him, but then he suddenly rushed up and killed me…" the Undead Thief tried to air his grievances. But after noticing Plenty's cold glare, he shut his mouth halfway.

"Did you follow my instructions and switch your alignment over to the Righteous Faction before approaching him?" Plenty asked in a solemn tone.

The Undead Thief lowered his head. He screwed up. Since he was only instructed to guide Nie Yan to the nearest village and nothing else, he didn't realize the importance of this matter. He took it as simply another trivial task!

"Leave all your equipment behind. You're out of the guild," Plenty coldly stated.

"Why!?" The Undead Thief stared at Plenty, unwillingness in eyes. Why was he being kicked out for such a small blunder?

"I don't care how skilled you are. I don't want subordinates who can't even follow simple instructions!" Plenty replied.

The Undead Thief's expression sank. He knew Plenty wouldn't change his mind on this matter.

Plenty attached a lot of importance to the trade agreement with Nie Yan, so much so that he didn't even disclose it to his closest friends. For every additional person in on it, the risk of danger increased exponentially. Aside from him, the only other person who knew about this deal was Proud Warlance. Since the two of them were busy, he had sent someone over to escort Nie Yan to the nearest village so he could personally complete the transaction there himself. But the Undead Thief's self-conceit had possibly put his partnership with Nie Yan in jeopardy!

「Nirvana Flame is already here in the Underworld. Come make a trip with me,」Plenty sent Warlance a message.

「Right now? I'm in the middle of...」Warlance hesitated. Right now, Fallen Angel was in a heated conflict with six other guilds. He was loaded with work.

「It's fine, I'll take care of it. Nirvana Flame takes priority. If the trade goes smoothly, it'll be of great help to us. Take 350,000 gold with you and get the equipment from him. We can take our time with the war.」

「Alright,」Warlance replied. He returned to the guild headquarters and took the necklace that allowed him to temporarily switch his faction alignment from Plenty.

Nie Yan continued to wait by the ruins of the stone tower. About 20 minutes later, a silhouette appeared in the distance.

Nie Yan approached the figure while in stealth and saw a familiar face, Proud Warlance.

Seeing that Warlance had already switched his alignment over to the Righteous Faction, Nie Yan emerged out of stealth.

"That player earlier, what was that all about?" Nie Yan asked with a frown. He felt Fallen Angel was behaving too carelessly.

"My apologies. A mishap occurred. The offender has already been expelled from the guild. No need to worry. Aside from the guild leader and me, no one else in Fallen Angel knows about this deal. That Undead Thief got careless in his ignorance," Warlance explained.

Nie Yan nodded, glad that Fallen Angel didn't take this trade agreement lightly. If he had learned that they failed to implement proper safeguards to keep their alliance a secret, he would've immediately abandoned them and looked for a new collaborative partner.

"Did you bring the equipment?"

"Of course."

Nie Yan requested a trade and placed all the equipment inside the window. 

Warlance discovered each piece of equipment was of fairly high quality, with an estimated total value in the excess of 1,000,000 gold. He placed 350,000 gold in the trade window. "Here's the 30% cut as per our agreement."

Nie Yan confirmed the trade. By his calculations, he could make at least 1,500,000 gold on this trip to the Underworld. This sort of of money-making speed was astonishing, and it was all thanks to the Dark Portal. Normally, carrying out such an operation at his current level was impossible.

"Follow me, I'll take you to the nearest village. We'll be meeting there next time."

"Alright." Nie Yan nodded.

Nie Yan was guided by Warlance to a nearby village. Thanks to this, he wouldn't have to waste several days bumbling around through the darkness like last time.

They travelled for about 20 minutes before arriving on a hilltop. Looking past the thickets, they saw a flat plain below, along with the glow of a lighthouse further off in the distance.

"That's Bessemer over there, the Ivory Village. You can hang around there for the next few days. We'll come find you after we've gathered the equipment," Warlance said. "If there's nothing else, I'll be taking my leave."

"Let's set a time and date," Nie Yan said. All he needed to know was the rough location of the village. He planned to level in nearby maps before their next meeting. After all, lingering inside an Evil Faction settlement was far too dangerous. 

"Three days later at 2100," Warlance said after thinking for a bit.

"Alright. I'll let you know in advance if I won't make it on time," Nie Yan said. In case he couldn't return because he was in the middle of a quest, he could only push back the date. In any case, he had Plenty's contact information in real life.

Nie Yan and Warlance discussed a few smaller details about the meeting before parting ways. Nie Yan went off to level, and Warlance returned to the Fallen Angel guild headquarters.

Warlance switched back to the Evil Faction before teleporting away with a Return Scroll. When he reappeared in the guild headquarters, he immediately ordered his subordinates to sell off most of the surface world equipment. The pieces that were kept would benefit them greatly in their current war.

With Fallen Angel swallowing up their rivals one after the other, the remaining guilds banded together and declared war on them, leading to their daily expenditures rising sharply. This equipment was equivalent to finding extra firewood when you were running low on a long and cold winter's night.

The appearance of the surface world equipment on the market sparked a buying frenzy spanning across the entire Undead Empire. All the while gold coins streamed into Fallen Angel's pockets. The initial investment of 350,000 gold was recuperated in the blink of an eye. By the time everything was sold, they would make an estimated profit of at least 850,000 gold!

It all went according to Nie Yan's predictions. Fallen Angel had helped him big time, so of course he would return the favour. Besides, their partnership would only stand to benefit from both of them doing well.

Nie Yan checked his quest window.

Quest Progress: Search for Empress Finas' Eye, Occult Item (1/3)

Nie Yan still had no clue what an Occult Item was. But judging from his previous experiences, he estimated this quest was at least S-grade with a reward matching its difficulty.

Nie Yan did a search for occult on the official website and discovered some shocking information. With a suitable intermediary and the combined power of several dozen Great Mages, Occult Items could summon Occult Titans—existences generally no weaker than a Level 70 Lord. Successfully summoning one was equivalent to obtaining an unrivalled war machine capable of trampling over an enemy's stronghold.

Nie Yan had never heard of an Occult Titan in his past life, probably because no ordinary player could hope completing this quest.

Nie Yan could only leave behind his desire to summon an Occult Titan in his daydreams for now. He would try his best to complete the quest, and it'd be great if he did. But if he didn't, so be it.

The previous timeline was far less interesting in comparison. It was only until after the release of the Buried History Expansion that things started getting exciting, with players waiting in anticipation to see how stronghold sieges would turn out.

Bennett's Soul flew out and went off toward the north.

Nie Yan summoned Lil' Gold before following behind. He quickly realized that Bennett's Soul was leading him back to the Lava Sea. That place was a region of lava, which was scarier than any monster. 

Nie Yan recalled he still had the Kiln Fire Heart which allowed him to survive in lava for a while.

The surface of the Atlanta Continent was littered with active volcanoes that spew out lava constantly, but the situation in the Underworld was several magnitudes worse. A Special Item to survive the lava was a necessity here.

As Nie Yan followed Bennet's Soul, he happened to pass through a graveyard, where large mallet wielding Level 60 Vampire Crushers spawned. He decided to do a bit of grinding for some easy experience and increased his mobbing speed even further by using Undead Rite. With the support of five Vampire Crushers and Lil' Gold, he swept through everything in his path, leaving a trail of corpses in his wake. Before long, a crisp jingle rang out as he reached Level 56.

The levelling speed here wasn't too bad. These Vampire Crushers gave ample experience.

After passing through a dark forest, Nie Yan arrived at the border of the Lava Sea. As he walked along the coast, an isle poking out above the lava's surface caught his eye. It was a large island in the middle of the lava sea. At the center was a large volcano that constantly belted out plumes of black smoke into the sky.

Nie Yan spotted black plants growing unkempt all over the island. Given how isolated it was from the rest of the world, it probably hadn't been visited by anyone before.

Nie Yan followed Bennett's Soul as it guided him along the duny beach full of coarse, volcanic sand and cracked calcareous rock.

As Nie Yan continued walking without seeing a soul insight, a group of players suddenly emerged from the thickets behind him. There were roughly 30 of them. When they saw him, they all froze in place.

The frightening appearance of Lil' Gold and the legend of the Slaughter God Nirvana Flame had already spread far and wide throughout the Undead Empire. He had killed so many Evil Faction players that people feared even he had lost count a long time ago.

Since there were no signs of Nie Yan for five days, everyone believed he had returned to the surface. This group never expected to see him again, and certainly not here of all places!

"Dammit, what kind of shit luck is this!?"

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