Once more, she repelled the undead with her sword. Shauna then took a step back and breathed deeply. The wound on her shoulder began to numb; even her arms gradually lost feeling. However, the undead around them kept increasing which made her feel discouraged.
Will I die here?
She bit her lips which made her feel some pain, but it still could not drown her inner pressure and despair. She thought that she had already fully prepared for this mission, but when she led her group to enter this place, she found that she was too naive.
As a four Star-Ranked mission, the Pavel Cemetery was going to be anything but easy. They were just like a drop in the vast ocean of endless undead; it was a matter of time before their inevitable death. While she led her men to repel the undead's assault one after another, their losses were too just too great. Up till now, their group had lost about five to six members, and the rest were mostly injured. In this kind of situation, how long can they last?
It wasn't as though she didn't consider retreating, but in the end, she still chose to shoulder her losses and go on. Right now, she was already too far in and was unable to retreat. The only option they had was to press on and kill the necromancer.
However, Shauna knew that it was an impossible task. If they had so much trouble fighting against these regular undead, how were they supposed to defeat the necromancer?
Shauna wasn't the only one who thought that way; even her men had lost hope defeating these horrifying undead. The only thing keeping them from giving up was their will to survive.
But that was their limit.
A putrid stench suddenly raided her nostrils; then she felt an unexpected impact on her arm which caused her to lose her grip on her sword. The flame on the ground also dissipated. Taking advantage of her weakened state, an undead flung open its arms and launched itself towards her.
Her mind went blank.
At this moment, Shauna's heart sank. As a veteran, she certainly knew what the consequences of blanking out in the middle of a battle. Now she can only face the consequences of her carelessness — death.
Fortunately, the grim reaper passed by her.
The moment Shauna closed her eyes, a dazzling light appeared in the air above her. It slammed down onto the undead, and it fell to the floor as though a giant hammer had smashed into it.
Then, followed by another brilliant light, a tremendous explosion rocked the earth.
In a blink of an eye, the terrifying undead who plagued the mercenaries completely turned to ash. The mercenaries were shocked as they stared at the few people standing at the opposite tunnel.
"Sister Shauna, are you okay?!"
Sensing that the danger had been dispelled, Lize quickly ran towards the injured red-haired lady. Marlene, who had finished casting the spell, proudly flicked her illustrious long hair to the back. Then she smiled confidently at Rhode, apparently hinting him to praise her.
How's that? See? I've done a wonderful job, haven't I?
Facing Marlene's gesture, he was rendered quite speechless... As expected from the honor student who followed 5 Stresses, 4 Beauties, 3 Loves. I clearly meant to finish all of them... Ah, just forget about it. After all, when he issued the order, he did not consider the possibility of Lize recognizing these people. Right now, he felt somewhat lucky that Marlene had an 'honor student' mindset, and not of a players' or there would be problems...
"It's the Red Hawk..."
Looking at the red-haired female swordsman, Old Walker muttered to himself. He and Rhode glanced at each other and both of them have the same thoughts.
After barely escaping from death, Shauna did not have time to celebrate as she was shocked to see the person in front of her.
"Why are you in this place?"
"I came to complete a mission."
Lize answered as she lowered her body in front of Shauna. Then, she stretched out her hand and summoned a faint light. The wounds on the red-haired female swordsman quickly healed, even the poison from the undead completely disappeared.
That was the importance of Spirit Master in a party. Although some mercenaries did learn minor healing spells, it definitely couldn't be compared to a full-fledged Spirit Master. Mercenary groups would never slight the importance of protecting the Spirit Master in a party. Moreover, the number of Spirit Masters were low as many of them were not interested in being an adventurer. Which was why, other than the Spirit Masters who traveled with the church, there were only those Spirit Masters like Lize who chose to be an adventurer for no clear reason.
After treating Shauna's injury, Lize stood up and walked towards the others. In this battle, Shauna and her subordinates were all injured, some of them even were incapacitated. If their injuries were not treated in time, they might become the brothers and sisters of those things they had been fighting just now.
Shauna stopped looking at Lize and diverted her attention to Rhode and the others. She quickly stood up and smiled while reaching out her hand.
"Thank you for your help."
Holding Shauna's hand, Rhode indifferently replied in one sentence.
"It seems like this is the second time that I've thanked you."
Shauna put down her hand and studied Rhode with a surprised and curious expression. Even though she only saw him twice and was not very familiar with each other. She knew that he had saved Lize, and then he dueled against Sereck to pass the Mercenary Assessment. Indeed, he is strong, but it seems like... this man isn't that simple?
Shauna then looked at two people behind him. First, she spotted Marlene who was wearing a luxurious magic robe, which made Shauna gasp in shock for a moment. Mages were even rarer than Spirit Masters, how could one appear here? And... standing next to her, wasn't that Old Walker who loved to drink alcohol at the Mercenary Association every day?
How did these people associate themselves with one another?
Shauna couldn't help but turn around and look at Lize, then she turned back and squinted her eyes at Rhode.
"Excuse me, you guys are...?"
"We are here to complete the mission."
Rhode answered straightforwardly.
"Same goes for me."
"Only the four of you?"
If it was any other day, then Shauna might assume that Rhode was joking. Pavel Cemetery was a perilous place, a lot of mercenaries suffered losses here. If only the four of them survived, then it might sound about right. But that did not seem to be the case. After all, Rhode and the others didn't appear to be miserable and judging from their clothing, it did not look like they had been attacked.
Then is this man actually saying the truth?
Shauna blinked her eyes in surprise. In any case, she still could not believe it. They had only four people, yet they could enter the depths unharmed? And with such ease? How can this be? Is this young man really that strong?
When the red-haired female swordsman was busy scrutinizing Rhode, Lize, who had finished treating the injured, went back to Rhode's side and said something to Marlene in a low voice. The two of them seemed to be whispering about something. But Shauna no longer paid any attention to them, because at this time, Rhode broke the silence.
"What are you going to do next?"
When she heard Rhode's question, Shauna broke from her stupor. Finally, she was aware of the current situation.
They were in the middle of a mission.
And this young man was also on a mission.
Shauna immediately felt that things have become a bit tricky.
In general, an accident like this sometimes happens during a mission. Since there were a lot of missions available, and before it was completed, anybody could take it. So, a clash like this happened quite often. If encountered with such a situation, mercenary groups with a good relationship with each other would either choose to withdraw or propose a joint action. If the relationship was slightly worse, they would directly fight to determine the outcome.
So now, which one do we have to choose?
Shauna erased the thought of fighting with each other since the other side had rescued them. It also meant that they did not have malicious intent. However, if she were to withdraw, how could she answer to her dead comrades? She had taken so much effort to reach this point, so how could she retreat? But... Shauna knew that with their current strength, defeating the necromancer was just a fleeting dream.
"If you don't mind, I hope we can cooperate."
Eventually, Shauna bit her teeth and made this suggestion.
"We do not need points or rewards. In fact, we came here just for a sword. According to the report, it was in the necromancer's hands. We hope to join hands with you. As long as we can acquire the sword, then we can give up the rest of the rewards."
Rhode was faintly surprised.
He did not remember that there was a sword in the cemetery.
Did I forget something?
Or is there any other reason?
Rhode frowned and thought for a moment, but he still couldn't think of anything, so he decided to ask her directly.
"Miss Shauna, I don't remember that the association released this mission."
"We received a private commission."
Shauna shook her head and replied.
So... that was the case...
Hearing her answer, the Rhode's doubt was finally cleared. Thus, he did not say anything more and nodded his head.
"I can promise you, but I have a condition."
The red-haired female swordsman revealed a bright expression but still nervously asked.
"What is your condition?"
Rhode made a gesture.
"In the next battle, you must listen to my command."