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15 Digging Ones Own Grave

 This was actually the first ranged monster that Izroth had ran into since he started playing RML. Though, with his countless years of combat experience, it was not his first time fighting a ranged opponent. Since he himself had no ranged skills there was only one thing to do, and that was close the distance!

The hallway was no more than 30 meters long as the 'Goblin Archer' stood in front of an opening that seemed to lead directly into the main area of the large building. The monster started to nock its arrow onto the wooden bow it was holding. It was shouting in the goblin language and although Izroth had no idea what it was saying, from its actions alone Izroth had a feeling that it was telling him he was not welcome here.

Izroth shifted his right leg backward before moving his left leg forward a bit and slightly widening his stance. He held his left arm out in front of him while his right hand holding onto his 'Nameless Blade', hovered behind him.

Izroth propelled himself forward by pushing off of his right foot and rushing straight at the 'Goblin Archer'. They were around 28-30 meters apart from one another, but Izroth was swiftly closing the distance! The 'Goblin Archer' however, did not just stand there and wait for him to approach, it shot off a second arrow aimed at Izroth's head!

Swooooooosh!

The arrow flew across the hallway approaching Izroth. Everything seemed to slow down around Izroth as the arrow inched nearer and nearer. Just as it was about to pierce into his forehead, without hesitating in the slightest Izroth adjusted his position to some degree and tilted his head to the right.

Miss!

Izroth was successful in avoiding the second arrow! As he persisted onward, he heard a light clinking sound as if metals were scraping against one another. He hastily swung his sword in a sideward arc out in front of him as the arrow clashed against his 'Nameless Blade'!

Clink!

PARRIED!

-25 HP!

385/500 HP Remaining! (Izroth)

"It seems like this area is filled with traps... How troublesome" Izroth thought to himself, but he did not let that slow him down! He would just have to be more careful now that he was aware of that fact.

A frown appeared on Izroth's face, "What a strange place... Usually, traps are set up in places where there is no one there to stop someone from trespassing. There are obviously monsters guarding this area, so why are there traps here?" Izroth murmured to himself.

Creeeeeeeeek!

It wasn't too long until the 'Goblin Archer' released another arrow towards Izroth, though this arrow had a peculiar spin to it as though it was penetrating through the air. The 'Goblin Archer' had used the skill 'Piercing Arrow'! At the same time Izroth heard a soft clinking sound, he knew that a trap was targetting him at the same time as the 'Goblin Archer' arrow!

Izroth did not panic and kept calm under these unfavorable circumstances. As soon as he heard the sound of the trap beginning to activate he lightly pushed forward at an angle off of his left foot.

Swiiiiiiish! Swooooosh!

Just as both arrows were about to pierce through Izroth, his position suddenly shifted and the two arrows struck one another! The arrow that the 'Goblin Archer' fired off shattered the arrow shot out by the trap located within the side wall, but it was still affected and knocked off its course, missing its intended target, Izroth!

Miss!

Miss!

18 meters was the distance left between Izroth and the 'Goblin Archer'. Although Izroth was tempted to just use 'Flickering Steps' or 'Shadow Movement', he did not know what troubles he would run into once he arrived at the main area of the large building. He felt that the current situation did not necessarily require the use of them and instead kept the skills for lifesaving purposes. Plus this made his blood boil with excitement!

Ever since he arrived in this world, he never really had the chance to let loose. He felt as though he was slowly but surely regaining that feeling of power that came naturally to him. However, what really made Izroth ecstatic was the fact that he could feel his 'Heavenly Golden Body' physique progressing!

Cultivation was not just about sitting down and meditating all day. One needed their body to experience actual battles to further improve, especially when it came to cultivating physiques!

"I can feel my body getting closer to the second stage of the 'Heavenly Golden Body' physique... It seems that all the continuous fighting has sped up its advancement by leaps and bounds!" Izroth thought to himself while not getting too distracted.

As Izroth was growing closer and closer to the 'Goblin Archer', it shouted out in the goblin language as though it was angry that he had not yet died! It nocked its third arrow before firing it off at Izroth! Though Izroth had already gotten used to the attack speed of the 'Goblin Archer', so there was no way he would allow himself to be hit at this point!

Izroth ducked down and the arrow flew right over his head evading the attack!

Miss!

At the same time, he increased his speed and finally closed the remaining distance between him and the 'Goblin Archer'!

"Creeeeek?!" the 'Goblin Archer' was visibly shocked and had to quickly set aside its bow and take out a knife attached to a belt on its waist. It could not possibly use a bow at this distance as it would have no chance of firing it off!

As soon as he was within range, Izroth swung his 'Nameless Blade' towards the 'Goblin Archer', but something was strange about this attack. A phantom that seemed to be an exact replica of the sword itself followed closely behind it! When Izroth's 'Nameless Blade' finally slashed into the 'Goblin Archer' chest area, his body spun rapidly before a second cut appeared on the neck of the 'Goblin Archer'! Izroth had used the skill 'Phantom Strike'!

-85 HP!

Critical Hit!

-215 HP!

1,200/1,500 HP Remaining! (Goblin Archer)

But Izroth did not stop there! Around his 'Nameless Blade' a light blue milky aura formed along with an oppressive force behind it! Izroth had used his current strongest combination attack, 'Sword Force' paired with his 'First Baneful Sword: Destruction'!

The 'Goblin Archer' tried its best to put some distance between Izroth and itself so it could attack with its bow again! It was temporarily using the knife to defend itself, but alas, it was a fruitless effort. Now that Izroth had closed the distance between the two of them, how could he allow for it to grow once again?

Izroth's 'Nameless Blade' seemed to home in on the 'Goblin Archer' wherever it moved as though its movements were being predicted!

The 'Goblin Archer' could not avoid this attack and held out its knife to try and block it, but Izroth altered the course of the attack midswing by reading the actions of the 'Goblin Archer'!

Ziiiiiiiiing! Slash!

-735 HP!

465/1,500 HP Remaining! (Goblin Archer)

A cry of pain left the mouth of the 'Goblin Archer' as it stabbed with its knife at Izroth's neck area!

Miss!

Izroth took a quick step backward avoiding the knife with ease. At the same time, he was still within attack range and so swung his sword in an upward arc at the 'Goblin Archer' while it was still in the middle of its attack! It had to way of pulling back or defending against it!

-85 HP!

380/1,500 HP Remaining! (Goblin Archer)

It was already too late for this monster, it could not handle the onslaught brought about by Izroth. There was only one path for the 'Goblin Archer' at this point and that was death.

Izroth followed up with yet another attack, he was relentless with his assault! The 'Goblin Archer' HP was dropping rapidly!

295/1,500 HP Remaining (Goblin Archer)

210 HP...

125 HP...

0/1,500 HP Remaining! (Goblin Archer)

Izroth could finally relax when he heard the system alert go off in his head. He let out a deep breath before sheathing his 'Nameless Blade'.

Ding! Congratulations, you have defeated 'Goblin Archer'!

Ding! You have been awarded 700 EXP!

Loot Drop:

-1 silver coin

-x1 Goblin's Essence

-x1 Skull Key

Izroth was happy about the amount of EXP he received. It gave more than two times that of the 'Goblin Scout', how generous! He went on to pick up the loot and nothing really stood out, apart from one item called 'Skull Key'.

Item Name: Skull Key

Usage: Unlocks a certain room's door located within the main building of 'Goblin's Paradise'.

A key? It seemed to open a door somewhere within this building! Maybe it contained some type of treasure? Or may it was a trap... After all, an item with the name 'Skull Key' did not exactly scream treasure but rather danger. Izroth decided to set the key in his inventory and worry about it later. He already had two quests to complete, one had a time limit to it! So he would focus on that first and if he still had time left over, he would use it to search for a door's lock that the 'Skull Key' fit into.

"I should not consume too much time staying here. I have less than 2 hours to find this relic of power..." Izroth did not waste any more time and walked into the main area of the large building!

...

Back in 'Opal Town' Mick had told his entire side of the story and events to one of the seven captains of the 'Blue Oasis' guild known as Niflheim. Of course, he left out certain events and painted himself to be the victim and Izroth the villain!

Niflheim had an indifferent and cold expression on his face as he listened to Mick talk about what happened with the world boss as well as the events that occurred between him and Izroth.

Olohas, the player who brought Mick to meet his captain, had a frown on his face as he listened to Mick retelling the events. When he listened to the story for a second time, there were some inconsistencies with the story Mick told him at the moment when they first met! He was no fool or else he would not be a person the captain trusted! For some reason, he had a feeling that he would regret bringing this person here today.

"Foolish, truly foolish...!" Niflheim thought to himself as he observed Mick. On the surface, he was still calm and collected, but on the inside, he was fuming with rage! There was one thing that Niflheim could not tolerate and that was blatantly lying to his face! Who was he? He was one of the seven captains belonging to 'Blue Oasis', one of the top 10 guilds!

Niflheim was a veteran when it came to gaming and had to deal with thousands of people on a regular basis. He had dealt with situations like this in the past and could tell when someone was a snake. From Mick's body language down to his vague details of certain events, it was obvious what was truly going on in the eyes of Niflheim. In fact, when he first started making a name for himself in the gaming world, something similar happened to him which almost caused him to quit gaming for good! Luckily, he was saved by the guild leader of 'Blue Oasis' and became indebted to them. But how could Mick know about this?

Niflheim coldly glared at Olohas for a brief moment and Olohas felt a cold shiver run down his spine. He knew what that look meant! His captain was infuriated at the moment!

However Mick did not notice the intense atmosphere and kept going on and on, "Can you believe it respectable captain? How could that noob-"

"Alright, I've heard enough!" Niflheim held up his hand to stop him from talking and Mick did not dare to continue. Niflheim was quite intimidating and Mick did not want to offend a captain of one of the top guilds.

"I want to meet this Izroth" Niflheim had a cold look in his eyes as he stared at Mick.

Mick was overjoyed! He had misunderstood Niflheim's intentions and thought that he was finally going to have his revenge on that insufferable noob! "Hehehe, let's see how you deal with one of the top 10 guilds as your enemy!" Mick thought to himself. In fact, Mick was very satisfied with his ability to scheme at that moment!

Little did Mick know, his actions at that moment would be what sealed his fate in RML.