Translator: AtlasStudios Editor: AtlasStudios
Kavos and his brothers moved fast . On the morning of the third day, they brought their subordinates to register in the stronghold . After everyone signed the contract, Rhode arranged their rooms . Although their numbers still weren’t considered a lot, they still had about 25 people . It took an entire day for him to resolve everything . Unlike before, Rhode completely separated their rooms . The original stronghold was an upside down T-shape . There was a three-story old building in front of it . In the center, the straight main building extended backward . Rhode had also made some adjustments according to its shape . On the first floor, most of the rooms were public facilities, such as weapon rooms, halls, and lounges . It was the common standard for a stronghold . Even those mercenaries were surprised when they actually saw a small blacksmith’s workshop . According to what Rhode had said, as members of this mercenary group, they could use this room freely to maintain and repair their own weapons and equipment . This was naturally good for them .
About the rooms, Rhode also had made some adjustments . Rhode arranged it according to their sex . The male mercenaries were assigned to the first and second floor on the left side of the main building and the female mercenaries were assigned on the second and third floor on the right side of the main building . Although their numbers were quite a lot, because this estate was originally owned by a large family—not to mention the servant rooms—it could still fit about thirty to forty people in .
None of this was a problem, but Kavos and the others’ positions were a little bit awkward for Rhode .
In theory, they were all his subordinates . However, their position was a little bit hard to say because Kavos and his brothers had subordinates of decent strength, threatening Shauna’s position . She knew that her subordinates’ strength was mediocre, not to mention Randolf and others (they needed to be trained for quite some time) . At first, they thought if they kept going on like this, there wouldn’t be any problem for them to keep staying here . But suddenly, a lot of veterans suddenly came . Shauna couldn’t help but felt uneasy . She knew that she couldn’t compare her strength to them, but she wasn’t willing to let them walk over her pride . After all, mercenary groups arranged wages according to position; of course, the one who joined first was in higher position . But it still depended on their reputation, position, and strength . Starlight was a newly established mercenary group, so no one was familiar with each other . The most trusted and influential people here would be Lize, Marlene, and Anne . Lize could already be considered a real veteran; her time in this mercenary group was even longer than Rhode’s . The next one was Marlene; even though she came later, her position as a mage and her identity could guarantee her position in this mercenary group . Lastly, Anne, as a shield warrior, was the most concerned and supportive person in the group since she played the role of a life saver .
That’s why the Starlight mercenary group structure was quite weird . Rhode was on the top, while below him was Lize, Marlene, and Anne . Although Shauna and Old Walker joined the mercenary group for not to long, they gained Rhode’s trust, so they’re placed in third . As for Randolf and the others, as newcomers, they’re placed last .
However, unlike other mercenary groups, Lize and Anne didn’t seem to care about their authority . And although Marlene issued an order in Rhode’s stead, it was only temporary because she didn’t really care about it . That’s why Shauna lived very well in Starlight . The second-in-command ladies didn’t have their own subordinates while she led the rest of the Starlight mercenaries . On the surface, her role was important in Starlight .
But now facing Kavos, Obertan, and Derick’s existence, she needed to work hard so she wouldn’t fall to the fourth level . If that happened, her life wouldn’t be as good as it had been before .
Of course, as a woman, Shauna also knew others method to help her maintain her position, but she didn’t plan to do so . Firstly, it was because she had a very high pride as a female mercenary; else, she wouldn’t have chosen to create her own mercenary group independently in the first place . Secondly, she didn’t think that kind of method would work on Rhode, since he already had enough beautiful women around him . In addition, he was also very beautiful . Yes, in this area, Shauna didn’t have any advantage .
In Shauna’s opinion, a mercenary group authority was just like a pyramid, but in Rhode’s opinion, it was more like concentric circles with him at the center . The people who were nearest to the center were more trustworthy to him .
That was why, from his point of view, Shauna was definitely more trustworthy than Kavos . Indeed, they were stronger, but sometimes stronger meant more demand . They might be not satisfied with their current position and wanted . From the previous conversation with Kavos, Rhode was aware that they wanted more .
However, Rhode absolutely wouldn’t allow anyone to ask for more when he didn’t want it .
In online games, the power struggle in a player guild was also very troubling . Some people had the ability, but were not interested in management . Some people have the ability, and demand high status and power . And some people have no ability, but still intend to look for trouble to achieve a status…
The reason Rhode could turn Starlight from small guild into an invincible top guild, gain achievements, and defeat bosses for so many years was because he had a lot of talented subordinates . Otherwise, he definitely wouldn’t be able to do it alone . However, when selecting his members, Rhode had his personal considerations . As for other things, he could let others take care of them . But in some things, he had to do it on his own, and this showed his demeanor as a leader . This couldn’t be achieved by only strength and equipment .
As for Shauna’s doubts, he quickly gave an answer . Shauna would still be in charge of leading her subordinates and staying at the stronghold, but Rhode would also add several people from the newly recruited mercenaries to enhance her strength . They couldn’t stop guarding the stronghold just because of a shortage of manpower . Just like before when they went to High Cliff Village, Rhode only left Old Walker and Lapis to guard the stronghold . Fortunately, the Jade Tears mercenary group had been destroyed by them, or else he would have worried that they would send some bullies to make trouble . What they did already made enough trouble for him .
Now they had enough members, Rhode didn’t want to bring people who were responsible to guard the stronghold to complete the mission . He wanted Shauna to focus on her own work . As for Kavos and others, they would follow him to complete missions . Through this, Rhode would be able to judge whether they were trustworthy or not and trustworthy to what extent .
After getting Rhode’s reply, Shauna was finally relieved . She turned around and walked away to continue her job . She wasn’t stupid; of course, she understood what Rhode had meant . Those newly appointed mercenaries would be assessed by her . Since they were old veterans from other mercenary groups, they might have their own small circle . The reason Rhode gave this job to her was to see whether she could solve this problem by herself . If she could do it, naturally she would be able to keep her position .
If she couldn’t…
Shauna, of course, understood what would happen, but she was willing to take on this challenge because she thought that she had the strength to do so,
On the other hand, Rhode had also made a change to the structure . He chose someone to be his vice leader . Of course, the vice leader wasn’t responsible for scheming behind the scenes, but dealt with trivial matters and relaying his younger brother’s orders . Although this position looked unimportant, it was absolutely optional . Even if mercenary groups weren’t as strict as the military, when battling, they still needed someone who would relay the order .
Rhode’s decision was very interesting . He appointed Randolf to be his vice leader .
This meant that when the mercenary group started battling, whether it was Kavos or those people who were once a leader or those veterans, everyone had to receive orders from a newbie who had only been a mercenary for two years .
Rhode used this to remind them who the boss was here .
After he finished managing all of this, Rhode finally had the leisure to see the current mercenary group situation .
While the mercenaries were busy adapting to the new environment, Rhode sat in the study room and dozed off while reading the book in front of him .
It wasn’t an adventure book or a secret manual, but to Rhode, this book was very important because it had a very important function . It could investigate the information of his subordinates to a certain extent .
Previously, Rhode didn’t really care about its functions, but facing the upcoming Midsummer Festival in two months, he needed to understand his subordinates’ current situation .
The current stronghold was level 1, which was why everyone’s information wasn’t complete . Rhode could only see their race, talent, special characteristic, and state of health; as for the rest, everything was hidden . Followed by the stronghold level upgrade, Rhode would be able to see their normal information and even their hidden talent and such . At that time, Rhode would be able to assign a regime for them based on their hidden talent so they would improve significantly .
Now, what appeared on the book was Lize’s information .
Race: Mixed Race (God)
Talent Reward: Excellent physique, learning talent
Talent Penalty: Attribute reduction in evil territory
Hidden Attribute: ??
Divine Knowledge: LV4
Other Job: Pharmacist
Physical Condition: Healthy
Although this information looked simple, it was still quite useful . He was already familiar with Lize’s attributes in the first place, which was why he didn’t feel strange when he read her information . Thinking until here, Rhode thought for a moment and flipped to the next page . More information appeared before him, displaying the information of the person on his mind .
Talent Reward: Learning talent, high affinity with element
Talent Penalty: Low resistance toward illness and poison
Hidden Attribute: Five Elements, ??
Magic Level: 6th Layer Middle Circle
Other Job: Alchemist
Physical Condition: Healthy
Seeing this, Rhode was quite surprised . He had noticed that Marlene had improved, but he only just realized that her improvement was really quite fast . Of course, it was still according to an NPC speed . For players, it could only be considered average, but taking into account that Marlene wasn’t a player and was unable to distribute skill points to level up, yet the fact she could still reach player level standard, meant she could be considered a genius .
Having seen this, Rhode frowned . In his opinion, Marlene was very powerful . Should he train her like a player? But from the previous battle, Rhode had noticed that the NPCs in the game had two weaknesses; they had too few skills and too few offensive moves, which was the same in reality . Marlene had enough talent and her leveling speed was also fast, but if she could learn more offensive skills, it would be a lot better for her .
After all, what she mostly learned theory from the professors in the Magic Academy, while on the other hand, players were exploring mostly pure, practical skills . Although the players commonly thought that Palm Ice Sword + Lightning Chain was a mage’s most powerful combo, they also wouldn’t mind using three continuous fireballs . As long as the situation was right, they could use any of them . However, Marlene was too focused on academic theories; her bad habits as a top student were exposed here . Delicate and stable combat skill, but lack of flexibility because she pursued a perfect performance . It was nothing but a regime . During the battle with the mercenary group, the moves that Marlene used were just those several moves . Even though Rhode had reminded her to be more flexible, she only made some changes on surface and not in depth changes .
Rhode knew that it wasn’t that Marlene didn’t want to change, but that she had no idea how to change . It was no wonder; thousands of players had to discuss on the web for several years to finally get fighting techniques . It would be too monstrous if she could think about it alone .
However, Rhode felt that Marlene could work harder because he hoped she could use her skills to lead the team, but the only problem was that he couldn’t bet everything on her . Although he didn’t say it, but he was very clear that Marlene wouldn’t stay in Starlight forever .
Thinking until here, Rhode shrugged his shoulder and tossed aside the troubles . After that, he reached out his hand to flip another page .
At this time, he suddenly heard a sound, and a system prompt immediately appeared before him .
[System Prompt: Your mercenary group has reached the requirement to level up . Do you wish to accept the leveling-up quest?]