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118 You Should Not Be Here, Izroth

 "Oh? Is there a reason behind your curiosity?" Izroth asked.

"It is just a question, nothing more. Feel free not to answer." Aegis replied.

Izroth saw no reason to refuse to answer the question. "The name Izroth means one who holds tranquil thoughts holds the heavens."

Izroth, however, found the name to be ironic when he thought back to the beginning of his cultivation days. He was many things, but someone who holds tranquil thoughts was definitely not a name that suited him in those days. In fact, the name itself a little audacious for someone of his unknown status back then.

Those were the days when Izroth acted purely based on his emotions and only thought about the consequences of his actions when they were before him.

Aegis nodded, "I see."

"This is not what you truly wished to talk about, is it?" Izroth knew that it was unlikely that Aegis wanted to speak with him just to ask the meaning of his name.

Aegis did not immediately respond, however, after a few seconds he spoke, "You are correct. There is something else I am more interested in. For example, where did you learn your skills?" From Aegis' understanding, Izroth's class was the Combat Master. It was a class with unlimited potential, however, it was not a class any player could play.

"I've had the luxury of training for many years." Izroth responded in a carefree manner.

"Where did you train?" Aegis asked.

"I have trained at numerous places. If I were to name them all, I am sure I would bore you to death." Izroth said as he waved his hand.

"I would like to visit a place capable of teaching such profound techniques. Where is it located?" Aegis pressed on with his questions.

Izroth glanced at Aegis for a brief moment before returning his gaze to its previous position.

'He seems to have his mind set on having me divulge more information about myself. However, his questions are a bit...'

"It's not any place that you'll be able to go. That place is closed off." Izroth responded.

Aegis appeared to be a bit agitated with Izroth's responses. "Based on the skills you've displayed... You should not be here, Izroth." Aegis said bluntly as he moved forward to speak with Mariposa to see if she had detected any spatial signatures. From the responses Izroth gave to him, Aegis knew that he would not obtain the answers he sought at the moment.

'I should not be here?'

Izroth set his gaze upon Aegis as he slightly narrowed his eyes.

'Interesting...'

He would not over speculate exactly what Aegis meant by that statement, because the implication behind such a thing was too huge to even consider it a potential possibility. But one thing was for sure, there was something more to Aegis than Izroth originally believed.

However, neither parties involved were willing to be the first one to fully lay out any sensitive details about themselves. In the end, Izroth nor Aegis knew one another well enough to take that tremendous risk.

After walking for around twenty minutes, Mariposa came to an abrupt stop.

"I've found something!" Mariposa said which immediately grabbed everyone's attention.

Izroth pushed the thoughts to the back of his mind for now before he approached Mariposa. "A spatial signature?"

"It's difficult to tell, but the concentration of black specks in this specific location is strong. If I'm not mistaken, there was definitely someone brought to this location by some type of spatial influence." Mariposa said.

"Can you tell who the spatial signature belongs to?" Aegis inquired.

Mariposa shook her head. "It's impossible for me to be that exact with my current level. But, I can tell you that this spatial signature appeared within this area approximately 35 to 40 minutes ago."

Aegis furrowed his brows, "That is around the time I was affected by the Chaotic Shift."

"In the case, there's a high chance that this spatial signature belongs to one of your party members." Mariposa then pointed eastward. "There is a faint level of spatial residue that leads from the spatial signature in that direction. I assume that is the way your party member headed in. I could give you a more precise reading if it were not for the spatial interference."

"You've done more than enough. You have my gratitude. I shall now take my leave." Aegis gave a slight nod to Mariposa.

"I should be the one expressing my gratitude. After all, if not for you then we may have all been wiped out. This small task is the least I could do." Mariposa said as a weary smile appeared on her face.

Aegis began to take his leave, however, just before doing so he stopped and looked in Izroth's direction. "Remember my words, Izroth. In the future, you should not concern yourself with what occurs. It will not be your place to do so." After those words, Aegis vanished from the spot he stood in. It was the same skill he had used to escape from Izroth in the Towering Oak Forest.

Izroth did not reply and simply pondered the words Aegis left behind. First, he told Izroth that he did not belong here and then he said that he should not concern himself with what occurs. It was as if Aegis was trying to dictate what he could and couldn't do. Obviously, regardless of Aegis' words, Izroth would follow his own path.

'Heaven's Law, is it? A daring name to have!'

Mariposa was curious as to what kind of conversation Izroth and Aegis had. While the conversation did not last that long, it seemed that the two were not on good terms from the way Aegis spoke, telling Izroth basically not to interfere.

"We should continue." Izroth said when he noticed that Mariposa's thoughts seemed to drift.

Mariposa snapped out of it. She was a little embarrassed about how she let herself get so lost in her own thoughts. She quickly proceeded forward and cleared the matter from her mind. Mariposa then turned her focus back on locating the spatial signatures. They were still currently headed in the direction of the tall tower in the distance.

...

"Izroth? Halls? Zi Yi?" Luna eventually called out everyone's name, however, she received no response. Right now, she was all alone inside of this dangerous realm. But, she did not panic and instead tried to assess her current situation.

"The last thing I remembered was Valentine speaking of black specks. After that, we were all struck by a bolt of dark lightning..." Luna muttered to herself. She then checked her logs and saw something called a Chaotic Shift had taken place.

"Chaotic Shift?" Luna had never heard of that effect before. Then again, she had never heard of a gravity pocket before entering inside of the Sea Palace Graveyard. Whatever it was, it definitely had something to do with her being transported to this place. She wandered around for quite some time in search of clues, however, she came up empty-handed.

She decided to activate the skill attached to her ring, Eye of the Wolf. Everything around her became much clearer and the range of her perception increased exponentially. Thankfully, the interference in this specific location was not that strong. The first thing she noticed was that the original distance to the tall tower was now further away than it was from her previous position.

The next thing she noticed was that a group of players was headed in her direction. From their movements, they appeared to be running away from something.

"It's them..." Luna recognized the group of players as the same party that spoke out against other teams participating in this quest. They were not a very friendly group of players. Luna decided that it was best that she avoided them and wait for the group to pass by. After all, she was a healer and her damage, as well as, mobility was limited.

If that group held bad intentions and discovered her, then there was not much she could do about it except fight for her own survival.

The group was only around thirty meters away and so she had to act quickly. She swiftly moved herself to hide behind one of the metallic-like trees. She stayed low and made sure that her body was completely hidden from view based on the direction the group moved in.

At the moment, Silent Step returned to his normal appearance as his transformation had already ended. Although he managed to create a considerable distance between himself and Aegis, he did not stop running. He had to make sure that they were not being followed.

There was a look of frustration on his face. "Heaven's Law, I thought their members were just a bunch of overhyped trash, but for one of them to actually be so strong, tch..." Silent Step said.

"Who would've thought that those exaggerated rumors were true? It's not your fault, boss. Besides, we were caught unprepared for that confrontation." One of Silent Step's party members said.

"Hmph, as an assassin-type class, I'm obviously at a disadvantage once my presence is known by my enemy beforehand. Just wait until next time, I'll make sure to return this humiliation!" Silent Step said as a look of determination flashed within his eyes. He had something special planned to deal with those members of Heaven's Law.

Silent Step and his party approached the location where Luna stood just moments ago. However, just as they were getting ready to speed by, one of the members came to a sudden halt.

"Hey, why did you stop running?!" Silent Step stopped as the rest of his party soon followed.

Luna's heart skipped a beat when she discovered that everyone had stopped moving near where she last stood. However, she continued to remain perfectly still and silent, being sure not to make so much as a peep.

"Boss, my Proximity skill went off as we were getting ready to pass this place." The member replied.

"Hm? Then someone was here within the last five minutes? If that's the case, they could not have gotten very far. It's likely they are by themselves after the Chaotic Shift. Heh, it's a good thing we were given a magic item by that person to protect us against anomalies. Find them!" Silent Step ordered.

Everyone followed Silent Step's orders and spread out to search for whoever was nearby. They had to eliminate everyone here in order to claim their reward, therefore, they could not let a single soul escape from this realm alive.

Countless thoughts began to form inside of Luna's head at that moment. Should I run? Should I fight? Should I call for help? What is it that they want?

Tap... Tap... Tap...

Luna heard a player's footsteps moving closer and closer to her. She gripped the magic staff in her hands tightly and just as she was about to take action, the player's footsteps stopped when Silent Step spoke and a group of different footsteps sounded from not too far away.

"What are you do-" Before Silent Step could finish speaking, he was interrupted by the person in front of the group.

"I saw what you did to the other team and your actions a few moments ago against the members of Sleeping Gardenia. I know that you're weakened after your fight with that member of Heaven's Law and fighting Sleeping Gardenia before that. I've simply decided to strike first." The player at the front of the group said which caused Silent Step to go silent.

That player had long hair that went all the way down to his ankles, however, it was tied up neatly. He possessed sharp crystal blue eyes and was incredibly handsome.

He was wearing something similar to that of a gofuku that was blue with black markings, except it was styled in a way that made it suitable to move around in while fighting. On his hands were a pair of black fingerless gloves with blue symbols embedded into them.

His name was Qi Jiguang and when it came to hand-to-hand combat, he was considered a prodigy of his time. However, within RML, he was not well known at all and had yet to make a name for himself.

When he saw the actions of Silent Step and his party, he predicted that eventually, he would run into one of their ambushes. Therefore, he decided to covertly follow them from a safe distance and face them when they least expected it.

Since Qi Jiguang was aware of the fact that one of Silent Step's party members had the Proximity skill, he made sure to stay far away enough to not be detected.

Qi Jiguang used Silent Step's other fights to understand what he was facing. After watching them fight a few times, he had a good understanding of their overall strength. There was a saying, if you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles!

Luna was relieved when someone else had appeared. If they were going to fight, then she could use the opportunity to escape. However, something Qi Jiguang said caught her attention. If she remembered correctly, Sleeping Gardenia was the same guild Zi Yi's elder sister Mariposa was in! It had come up in some small talk she had with Zi Yi.

Could it be that Mariposa's party got into a fight with Silent Step's party?

"Heh... Ahahaha! I see that's why we lost track of your movements!" Silent Step laughed out loud in a maniacal way. "However... Aren't you underestimating me a little too much?!" Silent Step's expression immediately darkened as he began to transform.

Qi Jiguang was startled. He should not be able to transform again so soon! But, he was still weakened from his fight earlier. Qi Jiguang was confident in defeating him, even with his transformation active.

Luna's eyes widened when she peeked around the tree and saw Silent Step's appearance. She was shocked, "That's... A Shadahi?" said silently to herself. How was this possible?