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Chapter 53 - Slayer!

 Chapter 53 - Slayer!

"Ah! Mr. King of Slayers, you're back! Please have a seat!" Royal God Call jumped up and offered his seat to Gu Fei.

Gu Fei ruffled his hair and laughed, "That's a good boy."

"Oh! That's quite the pile of coins you've got there!" As Gu Fei sat down, he finally noticed the pouches filled with in-game currency on the table.

"How do you think we should split these, Miles?" Young Master Han asked nonchalantly, yet the glint in his eyes betrayed his ulterior motive. All were relatively acquainted with one another by now. Everyone had felt awkward about Gu Fei's acquiescence to split evenly the reward for the last mission. Right now, however, they had no such qualms and would wholeheartedly accept it if Gu Fei suggested the same thing again. No one sitting in this room was a pushover - well, except for Sword Demon who occasionally displayed naiveté. Very aware of this fact, Young Master Han had been attempting to signal Sword Demon with his eyes of his intentions, yet Sword Demon neither showed any sign of comprehension nor even spoke a word.

"Oh? What do I think?" Under everyone's gaze, Gu Fei started to count with his raised fingers, "Our target was No Smile, whom we killed ten times. I killed him eight out of those ten times, and Sword Demon killed him twice. I suppose I should get eight out of the ten money pouches, while Sword Demon should get the last two!"

"Mmhmm, not bad. I support this!" Sword Demon nodded sagely.

"Support your mom's head!" Young Master Han spat.

"Using eye contact to conspire is so passé," Gu Fei mocked Young Master Han, "We used private chat instead."

"F*ck! You b*st*rds!" Young Master Han continued to curse at them.

"Alright, calm down. Let's just split these coins evenly. We've all had a long day," Gu Fei said generously.

"That's what I'm talking about!" Royal God Call pounced like a hungry tiger on its prey, snatching away two pouches of gold coins. The others followed suit as well. Gu Fei felt a great sense of accomplishment once more, as well as astounded by July and the ladies' affluence to afford such a large payout.

Considering the amount of RMB1 that players had to pay when purchasing goods at the Trade Exchange and the sum that they could earn from the items sold at the Auction House, the price for a single in-game gold coin was about 10 RMB. Since the game was still in the early stages, the amount of gold coins available on the market was relatively low.

It was not easy for pay-to-win players to save up on gold coins either. This was because players would usually sell high-grade equipment at the Trade Exchange. Therefore, players who bought these pieces of equipment with real-world currency would still have a hard time trading them for in-game gold coins due to their high prices.

Reaching 1000 gold coins in savings on such economic market conditions could already be considered as impressive. To do so, players would have to use real-world currency to purchase lower-grade items that others could afford and slowly sell those cheap items in exchange for the in-game gold coins; hence, an awful lot of perseverance was needed to accomplish all the necessary trades.

By the time Gu Fei's thoughts returned to the present, not one money pouch could be seen on the table.

"Hey, where's my share?!" Gu Fei slapped his hand on the table.

"That's weird. Where is it?" someone said.

Brother Assist, the self-proclaimed Information Expert, quipped, "There're six of us here, and there're only ten coin pouches-"

"Pour all out and split them evenly!" Gu Fei demanded.

"You can't completely divide one thousand by six!" Everyone showed an awkward expression. Gu Fei was just about to act when Young Master Han suddenly said, "Nope, everything's split correctly."

"Are you kidding me?! How did I end up with not a coin, then?!" Gu Fei demanded.

"Have you forgotten?" Young Master Han unhurriedly explained, "You spent 200 gold coins here drinking last night, which is coincidentally your share of today's payout. I've already footed the bill for you."

"200 gold coins? Miles, what the heck did you drink?" everyone asked in surprise.

"That's not right! Brother Assist and I drank four glasses of liquor yesterday. The cost should only be-eh? Where did Brother Assist go?" Gu Fei looked around for him.

"This matter must be settled properly. I'll go bring him back!" War Without Wounds stood up and left.

Yet nobody returned in the end. Royal God Call slapped his thigh and said, "Ahhhh! Those two sly foxes must have planned this from the beginning! I'll go and drag them back!"

When Royal God Call exited the room, Young Master Han got up as well, "You guys are far too churlish! Get back here immediately!" He stepped toward the door and was about to leave when a sudden wave of heat seared near his face. Young Master Han immediately dodged backward and saw Gu Fei's Flames of Baptism blocking the doorway.

"Nice sword!" Young Master Han chuckled.

"Today, I killed No Smile eight times," Gu Fei stared at his Chinese broadsword and said, "Using NBA terms, not only am I heating up, I'm practically at my peak condition."

"I don't believe you would dare kill me," Young Master Han said nervously.

"Of course, I wouldn't. But don't expect to leave today without handing over my portion!" Gu Fei said.

"Fine!" Young Master Han sat back down, "I'm not going anywhere. Do you think my nickname, Drinking Addict, is just for show? Ray, bring me a round!"

"The most expensive one! It's on Young Master Han's tab!" Gu Fei added.

"Come at me! Get me two bottles!" Young Master Han hollered.

Ray swiftly swooped by with two bottles of liquor. It was not often that he could get this sort of business.

Two bottles totaled to 240 gold coins at 120 gold coins each. Young Master Han tossed the money pouches and laughed uproariously, "Now I'm poor as well. Let's see you do something about that! Ha ha ha ha ha! Come, let us go head-to-head without backing down! We're both paupers now!"

Gu Fei smiled faintly, and reached out swiftly with his hands. The two bottles of liquor, which had just been served on the table, were now tucked close to his chest.

"What are you doing? Take them all for yourself? That's far too dishonest!" Young Master Han said.

Gu Fei flashed a beaming smile. Ray had already collected the payment and was about to leave when Gu Fei's hand stretched out to hold him back, "Hey, Ray. How about I sell you these two bottles for 200 gold coins?"

Ray was stunned, and so was Young Master Han.

"Won't you make such a lucrative deal?" Gu Fei said as he flashed Ray his pearly whites.

Ray smiled back as he dropped two money pouches on the table. Gu Fei deftly caught them and placed the two bottles into Ray's arms.

"I'm off!" Gu Fei saluted Young Master Han and fled at top speed.

"F*ck! F*ck! F*ck!" Young Master Han cried in anguish, as if he had just awoken from a nightmare. Players outside the room heard his moaning and asked, "Hey, Ray. When did your bar start providing sexual services?"

"Forget about it!" Sword Demon consoled Young Master Han, "Let me buy you a round."

"That's my pal!" Young Master Han patted Sword Demon on his shoulder, "Ray, get me your most-"

"Nope! Not the most expensive one!" Sword Demon stabbed his dagger on the table as he slowly said, "Two bottles cost 240 gold coins. I don't have that much."

"Get us two bottles of your second most expensive liquor instead!" Sword Demon shouted.

At night, Young Master Han, the legendary Drinking Addict, was alternating between weeping and drinking, as he lamented, "He's a real slayer, alright!"

Gu Fei went back to grinding levels after leaving the bar. Just like before, his rhythm was heavily affected by the Flames of Baptism's uncontrollable fire attack proc rate. Since the monsters were different from the people who had been ordered to capture him alive back then, he experienced many close encounters whenever the monsters mobbed him.

Gu Fei only had to change weapon to resolve this issue, yet he did not do so. For him, this was another chance to hone his kung fu further. He did not possess a well-trained body in the game like in reality. Gu Fei's reaction speed, Strength, and other factors were purely decided by the game's algorithm, so his training in Parallel World largely focused on the mind.

For instance, what was the ideal course of action when dealing with different fighting scenarios? Should he counter or dodge? If he countered, which opponent should he target? If he dodged, which direction should he go? All of these required Gu Fei to determine the correct path to take in a split second. When provided with a myriad of possibilities, how would he choose the best course of action? Some people would say that it depended on instinct. Although this answer was correct, it was only partly. This was because there were actually two kinds of instinct: innate and acquired.

In any case, Gu Fei would never dare consider himself as a consummate genius. A situation like this was hard to come by in reality as well, so the least he could do was to accumulate all these experiences diligently.

"Eyes on the hands, hands on the eyes."

The word 'eyes' actually referred to instantly perceiving, judging, and deciding the best course of action in a fight. This aspect could be trained in reality and in the game, yet Gu Fei never had many opportunities to experience actual combat in real life.

As for the 'hands' aspect, Gu Fei could only continue honing his body in reality. All was truly simpler in games, as everything depended on stat points and equipment.

Gu Fei's efficiency at killing monsters had dropped right now, so a slight negligence on his part could lead to his death. If this were another player, he or she would most likely stop grinding under such harsh conditions.

But Gu Fei was different. His reason for entering this VRMMO varied from the average gamer after all. For Gu Fei, the value of having high-intensity mental training was greater than leveling faster and acquiring more stat points.

The damage Gu Fei could deal right now was too unbalanced. Thankfully, his past monotonous fighting tempo was adapting little by little to Flames of Baptism's 30% fire attack proc rate, making his fighting seem more alive, fluid, and unpredictable.

Naturally, such evaluation was just from Gu Fei's perspective. Instead of continuing to dance with death like Gu Fei, any regular player would have simply chosen to fight the monsters one by one or changed equipment.

Gu Fei grinded like this for an hour or so before ending today's gaming session.

The legend that he had created lived on, however.

By the time Gu Fei ended his hunt of No Smile, the matter had already made its way to the game forums. Everything had been put onto the forums from the start of his hunt to his last kill. Everyone animatedly discussed the Masked Slayer's way of hunting his victim and ability to drop his target's level by ten in just a few hours. Many formed different opinions.

Those fervent PvP fanatics naturally approved of Gu Fei's actions; their judgment could be summarized into a word: COOL!

As for those worrywarts, they felt immense anxiety about this event. They saw the Masked Slayer as a terrorist that fostered violence, treating the entire game as a PvP field! They were distressing about matters that did not need distressing, such as how the event would cause the game company's turnover rate to drop.

Of course, a majority of the players were simply joining in on the fun and never truly thought deeply about it. All they knew was that today's hunt only ended after No Smile had gone offline. Thus, they were waiting with bated breath for the hunt to resume tomorrow.

At any rate, the players were very clear about two facts.

First, the Masked Slayer was immensely formidable. Rumors said that he was a Mage who had used close-combat techniques to kill a Thief - a legendary achievement, indeed.

Second, No Smile was really stupid. Everyone knew that No Smile was being hunted and that he was no match for the killer. But rather than hid offline, he had stubbornly faced the Masked Slayer, causing him to lose ten levels - truly the epitome of stupidity.

[1] RMB - is short for Ren Min Bi (), the official currency of China.