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446 Coughing Up Blood!

 ...

Asgard had finally reached the gates of the magic capital city of Proximus. He originally intended to return to Amaharpe to visit the Guild Manager; however, he could not wait that long. In his excitement, he changed his course at full speed to the closer magic capital city.

However, Asgard had darkened facial expression and was currently in a bad mood. Why was this? It was because a wave of world announcements went off during his journey that caused his stomach to churn. Someone had actually beaten the Great Sea Palace raid! But, it was not this that bothered him the most. This group had done so on the Hardcore difficulty and set the first clear record under 30 minutes! How ridiculous was that?!

However, what truly disturbed him was the players whose names appeared on the world announcement as members of the raid group-two, in particular, Mariposa and Izroth. With the world announcement listed Mariposa as the leader of the raid party, this was sure to boost Sleeping Gardenia's fame and draw in numerous lucrative sponsorships.

As for the other players, who were not a part of Izroth's main group, for the most part, they were a bunch of nobodies! Asgard recognized a few names and knew that they were members of Sleeping Gardenia, but they were only elite players. There was not a single member of the Lotus Guard present among them! If that was the case, how could they overcome a hardcore raid so fast? A bug? Glitch? Whatever it was, he had to find out one way or another! This secret was too big for Sleeping Gardenia to keep to themselves.

"I don't know how they did it, but the other top guilds won't allow them to monopolize whatever method they used." Asgard said as he released a deep sigh. Today was one of mixed feelings and uncertainty. The acquiring of territory for his Blue Oasis had been delayed, he lost a valuable Captain, and his hope of ever becoming close to the Pill Emperor was now a mere dream after offending Izroth. However, despite all of this, there was one good thing that came out of all of it.

Asgard stared at the Guild Order in his hands. The rewards and benefits of being the first official guild in RML would not be any less than that of owning one's own territory. This would be a massive advantage over the other top guilds who would be late and still struggling to acquire an official status as a guild.

"Once my Blue Oasis becomes the first official guild in RML, there will be many doors of opportunity that appear before us. What is done is done and cannot be changed." Asgard did not regret the choices he made in the slightest. In the end, in addition to the Guild Order, his Blue Oasis obtained several rare-quality pieces of equipment, useful crafting materials, and even an epic-quality magic staff! The losses were great, but the overall gains remained in favor of his Blue Oasis.

After stepping through the gates of the magic capital city of Proximus, it did not take long for Asgard to find the Guild Administration Office building where the Guild Manager was located.

Asgard walked into the building with a broad smile on his face-his darkened facial expression had disappeared in this moment of happiness. The inside was incredibly spacious, and the decor looked refined, as well as expensive. Besides the NPCs, the Guild Administration Office was utterly empty. Of course, this was to be expected seeing as how there were no official guilds currently within RML. Asgard approached one of the female NPCs who stood behind a gorgeous wooden counter. She was a member of the Trephasia race, and as such, her beauty was well above average.

NPC Name: Teresia(Guild Manager)

NPC Level: 12

"Hello, young hero. Welcome to the Guild Administration Office. My name is Teresia-how many I assist you today?" Teresia spoke using a professional mannerism.

Asgard happily replied, "I would like to register a g-"

〈World Announcement: Congratulations to Player Mariposa for becoming the first player to register their guild «Sleeping Gardenia» officially! They have been rewarded for their efforts!〉

After the world announcement sounded, Asgard immediately fell silent. He must have just been hearing things... Yes, that was it. He was just hearing things! However, reality quickly set in as Asgard reviewed his system logs, as well as received a barrage of system messages from the Captains of his Blue Oasis.

"..." In that instant, Asgard's mind turned blank. How was this possible? How did Sleeping Gardenia obtain a Guild Order? From the raid? Absurd! Since when did Guild Orders drop so frequently?! A few seconds-if he were just a few seconds faster then...

"Sir?" Teresia was confused by Asgard's sudden silence mid-sentence. Out of pure anger, Asgard actually coughed up blood in the real world!

This had to be a bad dream, right? Losing Niflheim, a potential close ally, the chance to obtain a valuable territory, an alliance with Cross Haven-what was it all for? Nothing! It was all for nothing!

When those thoughts entered into Asgard's mind, it caused him to cough up blood once again! He actually had to logout in order to prevent the system from activating its emergency protocol and locking him out of the game for two weeks!

Asgard's plan to become the first guild in RML was ruined!

...

A few moments earlier...

"Brother, just how many lucky stars were you born under?" Halls asked.

Izroth only gave a carefree smile in return as he picked up a simple-looking scroll that had fallen in the loot pile.

Not too long after Izroth picked up the scroll, Mariposa made her way over. She wanted to thank Izroth for this accomplishment personally. Even if she were not listed as the raid party leader, this victory would still be a tremendous spike in popularity for her Sleeping Gardenia!

As for the loot, Mariposa had no intention demanding that Izroth divide it fairly. After all, although her Sleeping Gardenia helped out a bit, she knew that it could not begin to compare to Izroth's contribution. If she brought up contribution, then she would only be embarrassing herself.

Not to mention, the luck of her Sleeping Gardenia seemed to be at an all-time high today. Not one, not two-but, including herself, four members of her Sleeping Gardenia had all received an Epic Equipment Treasure Chest from completing the Final Phase!

This meant that her Sleeping Gardenia was now in possession of a total of five epic-quality pieces of equipment! This put Sleeping Gardenia leagues ahead of the other top guilds.

"Izroth-" However, before Mariposa could open her mouth to thank Izroth, something flew towards her and caused Mariposa to instinctively catch it in her hands.

"This is my gift to your Sleeping Gardenia for accompanying me." Izroth stated casually.

Mariposa kept a straight face; however, she inwardly frowned when she noticed what Izroth had tossed her. It was just a plain-looking scroll. From the looks alone, she could tell that it was a common item. Was this his way of mocking her Sleeping Gardenia? No, Mariposa knew that Izroth did not have that type of personality. After all, how would she be associate with someone who had such a foul character?

However, the instant Mariposa examined the item through the system interface, she frozen as her heart skipped a beat. Her hands shook slightly; however, it was not due to fear or nervousness-but shock and excitement. It was Guild Order! A real Guild Order!

This was the first-ever Guild Order to be discovered in RML-as far as Mariposa knew. What was going on today? This was not a dream, right? The luck of her Sleeping Gardenia did not seem to be slowing down today! Being the first to clear a Hardcore raid, acquiring four epic-quality items, and now, they had been gifted a Guild Order as if it were just a random scrap of paper.

But, Izroth did not stop there. In addition, he transferred the raid party leader position over to Mariposa as she was hit by a wave of system alerts asking her to confirm multiple things.

For the first time in a long time, Mariposa was rendered speechless. How would she pay Izroth back? In just one day, he had done so much for her Sleeping Gardenia, and yet, they had not given anything that came even close in return! Money? Izroth was the owner of the Mystical Realm Palace-his profit could probably already be compared to that of Sleeping Gardenia's annual budget. Power? What power did she have to give him in RML? Influence? He was the mysterious Pill Emperor that everyone wanted to meet and become close to!

That was when Mariposa remembered Izroth's words on that day.

"What I desire is something not easily given, but oftentimes become easily misplaced. I desire an ally I can trust. An ally whose word binds stronger than any contract." These were Izroth's exact words. At first, Mariposa was still somewhat skeptical; after all, who in this day of age went by one's word alone? But, the more she interacted with Izroth, the more she felt that he was being sincere at that time. Now, after today, if there was still even the smallest shred of doubt that existed, it had been thoroughly extinguished.

Even though her advisors thought she was crazy for doing so, on that day, Mariposa chose to trust her instinct and tore up the contract, agreeing to become Izroth's ally by word alone. However, who would have thought such a casual act of recklessness would result in the countless benefits her Sleeping Gardenia received by being associated with Izroth? It was as if good fortune was naturally drawn to him and those around him!

Mariposa was so taken aback and lost in her excitement that she had forgotten to thank Izroth and immediately did so. From his supply of pills to this Guild Order and handing over the raid party leader position to her-Izroth would forever be a great benefactor of her Sleeping Gardenia.

"This is the first Guild Order to appear in RML. Izroth, if you ever need anything from my Sleeping Gardenia, do not hesitate to ask. We will answer your call." Mariposa said in a grateful and earnest tone.

"The first? I am afraid you are mistaken-this is not the first Guild Order to be discovered. If I were you, I would hurry, Guild Leader Mariposa." Izroth stated with a carefree smile; however, his eyes had a certain look to them that caused Mariposa to connect some missing pieces instantly.

"Everyone, I'm heading teleporting back to Amaharpe immediately! Izroth is in-charge, and those who do not obey his orders will have to answer to me!" Mariposa said as she quickly left the raid group and transported out of the raid.