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37 Cyril’s Haunted House

 Name: Starlight

Size: Small

Leader: Rhode Alander

Members: 1

Stronghold: None

Level: 1

Reputation: Obscure

Room Facilities: Training Room (Unbuildable), Bedroom (Unbuildable), Hall (Unbuildable), Towers (Locked), Library (Locked), Alchemy Room (Locked), Smithing Room (Locked)...

Looking at the system prompt before him, Rhode felt helpless. It was much lower than the starting point back in the game. When a player formed a guild, the system would determine whether the players would have reached the qualification through the application request, and then gift a stronghold to them at the same time. However, the stronghold wasn't even mentioned here.

After thinking about it, naturally, it was because, in the game, the players were required to complete many tasks to be qualified to apply for a group. And right now, he only paid a small price in return for this mercenary group. To make himself feel better, Rhode recalled that in the original Dragon Soul Continent, NPC mercenary groups owned very few strongholds, so it wasn't too surprising...

But because it was urgent, Rhode needed to purchase a stronghold for his mercenary group as a base.

Of course, this meant that he needed money. But fortunately, this was not something entirely impossible for him.

A knocking sound rang from the door, and Lize walked into the room. After resting for a night with clean clothes, she felt more energized. Once her eyes locked with Rhode's, she greeted him with a sweet smile on her face.

"Mr. Rhode, I'm ready."

"Well okay then, let's go," Rhode said calmly, and he stood up, walking out of the door.

Lize stared at him, puzzled. Then she hurriedly followed behind him.

Lize could not understand Rhode's decision. Although she did not agree,

she did not object it either. Because before talking about

that problem

,

they still have one more thing to deal with Li Jie for the idea of Rod is completely ignorant, although she did not agree,

there is no objection. Because

before

the practical problems, there is a more practical problem to deal with, which was they lack money.

(To Winnie: Please check this paragraph above and change it when you go through the chapters. I have no idea who is Rod and Li Jie.)

After pooling the total amount of money acquired from the Fog Ruins and Matt's remuneration, they had at least a thousand gold coins. Furthermore, Rhode had her sell some gems and crystals to the shops in Deep Stone City for two thousand five hundred gold coins, but she knew that it was still not enough to buy a house in the noble district. Even the houses at the corners of the noble district had an astronomical price. Who could even earn that amount of money to buy it?

However, right now, Rhode was walking towards the noble districts with a confident expression. This piqued Lize's curiosity.

How can Rhode use this measly sum of coins to buy a house here in this district? It can't be that he is trying to rob right?

Recalling Rhode's past actions, this possibility didn't seem too far-fetched.

-

Top area, southwest corner.

Compared to the elegant, well-maintained villas along the way, the mansion in front of them was a total disaster. The bricks that formed the structure of the mansion were thoroughly corroded, and long, thick weeds crept along the outer walls. Apparently, this mansion had seen its better days. The once magnificent courtyard was now littered with garbage and feces of wild animals. Even the skies surrounding the mansion seemed rather gloomy.

And as if that wasn't enough, out of a sudden, a cold wind blew, accompanied by a complementary howl from wild dogs. Lize couldn't help but shiver at this scene.

The moment they entered the courtyard, she could sense the distinct change in atmosphere when compared to the exterior of the mansion. Just outside the mansion, the streets were clean and maintained, but the courtyard... was unnaturally cold, messy and dead. If one could measure the change of scenery in meters, then, perhaps it would be comparable to the distance from heaven to hell.

"Mr.. Mr. Rhode... are you really planning to buy t-this house?"

Lize subconsciously wrapped her arms around her body and stuttered in a low voice.

Rhode shook his head.

"It isn't a just plan."

"Because I have already bought it."

"..."

"..."

Suddenly, an awkward silence fell upon the duo as they stared at each other.

One second, two seconds, three seconds.

"What?!!"

Lize broke the silence. Her mind reeled in shock and her eyes snapped wide open as she subconsciously rejected what she heard. If it were any other person, she would've thought that they'd be joking. But this was Rhode, and she knew that she heard his words correctly.

"You... you said that you've already bought it?"

"Yes, they only asked me for 500 gold coins, it was really a good deal."

"500 gold coins!"

Hearing this insane deal, Lize paused for a moment, then, as though she understood something surprising, she immediately covered her mouth in shock.

"This is Cyril's Haunted House!?"

In Deep Stone City, the infamous Cyril's Haunted House was a name that almost no one would want to speak of. Everybody knew it, but no one wanted to speak of it.

The Cyril family used to be a third-rate noble family in Deep Stone City. Unlike other families, the Cyril family's humble beginning began from art sculptures. The family head was Martin Cyril. He had an unimaginable talent in sculpting, especially sculpting the human body. All of his artworks were all lifelike and vivid. And him being recognized as the master sculptor in Deep Stone City wasn't any myth.

But it all changed because of a mysterious rock.

When Martin was 29 years old, he acquired a piece of white rock that he discovered from Deep Stone City's mine. While the details were not known, the master sculptor brought back this rock to his house to create his newest masterpiece.

At first, the people didn't care much about it. After all, as a master sculptor, he had his own pursuits in life. However, after some time, nobles began to be curious about what kind of art he could create from that rock. In the beginning, Martin's work cycle wasn't anything odd, and he would often lock himself in the room for a week, busying himself with the rock. This was when people started becoming excited about his next masterpiece.

But then, from that point on, strange things started to happen.

Cyril family maids began to disappear one after another, and no one knew what happened As a noble family, the Cyril family could afford to send a lot of people to find the missing people, but surprisingly, those people too, disappeared.

As time passed, not only the maids disappeared, other nearby people started disappearing too. It caused the nobles to panic. And not long after, a huge, major event befell the Cyril family. Martin Cyril's wife and daughter disappeared.

At this point, the people forgot about the masterpiece that Martin was working on and burst into his workroom, hoping that he had a solution to this problem. But alas, a horrific scene greeted them. They saw broken limbs scattered everywhere, and Martin's wife and daughter weren't spared either. Their remains were hanging from the ceiling while the master sculptor sat in the middle of the room, stroking a sculpture of a woman beside him.

The next thing that happened was very simple.

Martin was promptly apprehended, and he admitted that he had killed all those missing women. But he believed that their death was justified because it was for the perfection of art. By sacrificing their lives, they had performed a noble act, and it was worthy of respect.

Any sane person wouldn't be satisfied with his explanation and Deep Stone City sentenced him to death. But what happened next was incredibly surprising. After receiving his sentence, he somehow escaped the prison and turned mad. In order to catch him, the Deep Stone City garrison, mercenary association, and some nobles sent people to hunt him down. However, they did not anticipate that the weak master sculptor could actually slaughter dozens of advanced warriors and hundreds of soldiers. In the end, Martin succumbed to death after overextending his stamina in his workroom.

This tragedy shocked the entire Deep Stone City. Many people believed that the rock contained magic and tempted the master sculptor into becoming a murderous devil. And that very rock, which was carefully guarded by the city guards, mysteriously disappeared on the second day of Martin's death.

For a period, the whole Deep Stone City became unstable. A large number of Cyril family sculptures were smashed and destroyed. After that, the matter was gradually forgotten as time passed. But it was a pity that even after his death, he still attracted the attention of others.

The first victim was a noble family that had a good relationship with the Cyril family, and they came to take care of the property. However, after a month, all of them were found dead in the dining room, and in front of the corpses were decaying food that hadn't been touched by anyone for a long time.

Two years later, a second victim was struck. A wealthy merchant moved out from the city and migrated here. To assimilate into the upper society in the quickest way possible, he disregarded advice from others and bought this property. His ending was no better than the people from before. Half a month later, the wealthy merchant and all of his servants were found dead, hanging themselves from the ceiling. It was just as though they were happy going to heaven together.

The connection between these two terrible events caused people to avoid this haunted house. Even the Deep Stone City was helpless about this. And because of that, they had put the lowest price for it. Needless to say, 500 gold coins for such a large house was a terrific bargain, so, some people still gathered the courage to purchase it.

This time, the house owner was smarter, not only did he spend money to refurbish the house, but he also spent money to hire a team of strong mercenaries to guard the house.

But this time, it was even more unfortunate. The house owner didn't even last until the second day. Not a glimpse of light shone out of the house ever since then.

Of course, no one was even going to confirm the result since it was already clear as day.

Naturally, Lize had heard this since she was a resident of Deep Stone City for many years. So now that Rhode actually bought this house, she couldn't help but shiver in fright.

"M-Mr. Rhode, do you know what this place is? This place is h-..."

"Of course I know." Rhode waved his hand and interrupted her.

Not only did he know what happened before, but he also knew what would happen after. This was a place where the hidden boss was located. Back in the game, Cyril's Haunted House was one of his first few hidden quests. Therefore, he could still remember the questline vividly. However, now, it was different from before as he had enough preparation to beat this hidden boss.

"Don't worry; it's just a house. Moreover... I have made enough preparations for what is to come."

Rhode and Lize walked through the disordered courtyard and reached the entrance of the house. Through the slits of the decaying door, the darkness inside could be seen clearly. Rhode stretched out his hand and placed it on the door, then he turned his head and looked at Lize who had a nervous expression on her face.

"Are you ready?"