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Chapter 459 - The Same Matter

 The six men of Young Master's Elite convened in the tavern once more. These MMO veterans simply could not approve of Gu Fei coming up with his very own quest when there was nothing listed on his quest log.

War Without Wounds and Royal God Call had strolled a big round in the city, but due to the heavy fog permeating the surroundings, they were unable to catch sight of any babes or even find any quest NPCs. They were not used to grinding monsters in such a setting as well, so they sincerely disliked this city and were already voicing out their wish to leave. At this time, Brother Assist was also all the more anxious to leave for Linyin City to find that log cabin in the oak forest, and War Without Wounds and Royal God Call felt that Brother Assist's analysis was far more reliable. The two men were actively trying to convince Gu Fei to be considerate and stop getting caught up in that fantastical storyline he had crafted for himself.

Hearing their attempts at persuasion, Gu Fei also showed a similar look of disapproval.

"To me," Gu Fei began, "levels, experience, and equipment are not the most important. I consider this game to be another life that I lead, and it is the best place for me to demonstrate what I've learned, so it doesn't really matter to me where I acquire my quests because the end result that I pursue isn't the same as the quest reward that you guys desire."

He glanced at the men before him for a moment before continuing, "It's apparent that this game is different from the other MMOs made in the past. The new technical aspects that come with this fully immersive environment means it can create new circumstances that haven't existed before. You'll have limited enjoyment in Parallel World if you guys continue to hold on to the same ideals you have from other games."

"F*ck!" The experts all lifted their middle fingers toward Gu Fei in unison; there was never a turn for this outsider to lecture them when it came to gaming.

"The name of this MMO is Parallel World; therein lies some truth to it. Ultimately, this world rests in the hands of all the players. It'll only remain as just a game if everybody continues to see and play it according to how people play kimchi games1. Change your mentality and this can very well be a true parallel world," Gu Fei insisted.

"Look at what progress he has made; he can even say such a term like 'kimchi games'." Royal God Call turned to look at the others.

Sword Demon was looking at Gu Fei thoughtfully after hearing his speech, and everybody could clearly tell from his eyes that he was really considering this earnestly. Sure enough, Sword Demon suddenly nodded. "What you said makes sense. I'd like to try this 'Assassinate Giordano' quest with you."

"Of course, you can." Gu Fei smiled.

"Fill me in on the current details," Sword Demon said.

"Look at this..." Gu Fei took out that diary and began to explain to him what he had observed on the wall as the two men buried their heads and discussed.

"Oh no... Sword Demon is learning bad things from Miles," War Without Wounds gazed at the other three mercenaries and muttered.

Royal God Call gave Gu Fei a sidelong glance as he pointed at that booklet of his and said, "Miles learned bad things from Brother Assist."

"F*ck off!" Brother Assist cursed, even though Gu Fei's present use of a booklet to explain the situation was indeed similar to how he operated.

"What about us? Are we still gonna head to Linyin City to take a look?" War Without Wounds asked.

"Well..." Brother Assist suddenly began to speak in a low whisper, keeping his mouth away from Gu Fei, "without Miles' Andrew Su's Diary, I'm afraid there's no way we can get the quest in the first place."

"Oh, you're right..." These men were still staunchly holding on to their conventional MMO mentality.

"I can't loan you this diary yet," Gu Fei said.

"F*ck me; this guy has really sharp ears!" The three men jumped in shock.

Gu Fei grimaced and shook his head before continuing, "There might be further clues in the contents of this diary, I still want to research into things a bit more."

"Why don't we head off to Linyin City first? If it's truly a necessary quest item, we'll get Miles to mail it over. I reckon Miles will be more or less done with his research by then," War Without Wounds suggested.

"Are you implying that you are not confident with the conclusion I came to from the information I gathered?" Brother Assist was discontented. He strongly believed that the quest would be found over by Linyin City.

"No, no, no," War Without Wounds hurriedly corrected himself. "I just mean that we can make our move first, and the diary can be sent over to us at a later time!"

"Much better!" Brother Assist nodded.

"Then, what about you?" The five men all looked toward the sixth man, Young Master Han. The rest had all decided what they would be doing, but he had yet to show any inclination toward either option.

"You're a bunch of idiots," Young Master Han said.

"Forget this m*th*rf*ck*r; he's really detestable!" everybody said one after another.

"Am I wrong?" Young Master Han retorted, "You guys heading off with Brother Assist is to follow the clues left behind in that diary and to pick up the quest that the Shadowmist Assassin failed to accomplish. Just what quest is this? Isn't it the same thing as what Miles is currently doing?"

The five were all left in a daze.

"Basically, even if you guys run all the way to Linyin City and manage to pick up the quest, you will still end up coming here to do the same thing as what Miles is doing, so what difference does it make? Yet here you guys are, disagreeing over minor details; what else can you all be but a bunch of idiots?!" Young Master Han said.

"Uhm... Perhaps, the situation will change after picking up the quest..." Brother Assist tried to reason. This was also a very logical assumption based off on conventional MMOs: completing the previous step might very well provide a solution to something that could not currently be done.

"No way; it can change?" Gu Fei was afraid of this. He had worked hard at jotting down everything he had observed in his booklet. Everything would go to waste once more if the situation changed when the quest was picked up on their end.

"It's just a speculation," Brother Assist hurriedly added.

"I think it's best if we follow what we've just agreed on. Brother Assist and you guys shall head over to Linyin City to see if the quest really exists. Miles and I will remain here and take note of the situation. If it's really a quest, we will wait for the others to return from picking up the quest, and we can all finish it together!" Sword Demon proposed.

"Oh... That works, too!" Gu Fei nodded his head in agreement. Doing it this way ensured everybody could do what they had all decided on. Brother Assist, War Without Wounds, and Royal God Call all got up and immediately departed for Linshui City.

"I'll bring you to check out the situation over there," Gu Fei said to Sword Demon.

As the two of them got up and prepared to leave, Gu Fei tossed that diary over to Young Master Han before he left, "You should take a look, too!" It was an undeniable fact that he was a smart man. It would simply be too much of a waste if his intellect were treated as a receptacle to contain liquor and were not properly utilize.

Young Master Han dragged the diary right before him and used it as a coaster. "If I'm bored."

Gu Fei and Sword Demon left the tavern and returned to the Government City Hall, but he chose another spot of the wall to climb this time. The previous spot Gu Fei had chosen was right in front of the Government City Hall. While that was a good position to observe what was happening right outside the entrance, the view of the back of the Government City Hall would be obstructed by the very building itself, so Gu Fei was currently unaware of anything there.

Giordano's patrolling did not include the area behind the building, but Gu Fei wanted to find out if any sort of opportunities existed there. There just might be a way to sneak into the building itself to assassinate the target if there was no way that they could do the deed in the courtyard. Since there was no need to consider entering through the main entrance, there might just be such a chance available from the back.

That was the conclusion that Gu Fei and Sword Demon arrived to from their discussion. After choosing a spot, Gu Fei tossed the hook up the wall and showed Sword Demon another eye-opener.

"Look; there's no fog in the courtyard." Gu Fei had already told this phenomenon to Sword Demon, and he was affirming this fact by showing it to the Thief.

"Yeah!" Sword Demon nodded.

The Government City Hall's architecture was definitely unlike that of modern skyscrapers but was, instead, similar to a castle in an ancient mountain village, which towered above the walls surrounding the courtyard, looking foreboding and ominous.

The area behind the Government City Hall was not as spacious as the courtyard in front of the building, but the design was far more refined. The manicured lawn had a cobblestone path, flowerbeds, and small crops of trees that tastefully dotted the area. There was even a small stream that ran through it, as both Gu Fei and Sword Demon could vividly hear the sound of flowing water. Evidently, the back of the Government City Hall was a place for peace and relaxation, similar to a household's backyard.

It was apparently far too unpleasant to station guards bearing fierce mugs and weapons in such a picturesque place, so Gu Fei was pleasantly surprised to find the lack of any form of protection and defense here. Never would he have thought that it would be so effortless; with this, he proceeded to search for the backdoor to the Government City Hall.

"Over here." Sword Demon found it first and stretched his hand out to indicate it to him.

The door was nowhere as grandiose as the one by the entrance, but there were nevertheless two guards flanking its sides respectively. Gu Fei fished out the spyglass for a closer look and saw that they looked no different from the common guards.

There was bound to be trouble wherever a guard was situated, so Gu Fei continued to observe with the spyglass when he suddenly asked Sword Demon a question, "What's the era setting for this game?"

"What?" Sword Demon was stunned by this question that came out of nowhere.

"It's nothing. I was just suddenly curious of the world we are in and wanted to know more about it," Gu Fei explained.

"This... I'm not too sure myself," Sword Demon said.

"Looking at the architecture of this place, I'm not sure what sort of style this is..." Gu Fei sighed.

"I don't know either..." Sword Demon suddenly felt somewhat guilty, for he had just realized that despite being a peak expert when it came to MMOs, his understanding toward any one game was very lopsided. In fact, there were many superficial aspects of the game that he was uncertain about. Equipment, skill, PvP techniques... Were that all there was to a game's nuance?

"This Government City Hall is designed in the style of Baroque architecture," someone suddenly quipped. Gu Fei and Sword Demon jumped in shock. Turning their heads back in a hurry, they found Yan Xiaozhu making funny faces at them, while Slyris was right beside her. Slyris resumed speaking about the matter as she looked at the building before them. "If I'm not mistaken, the interspersing curved facades and oval spaces are a common feature in Baroque architecture."

Slyris turned toward the two men after sharing this information and continued, "There's no way to definitively nail down the era this game is adopted from based on architecture alone, but just from the goods, such as glass optics, that appear in Parallel World, we can narrow down the era to be some time in the 18th century, as those products were first made in that period."

"Glass optics?" The two men had no idea why Slyris had suddenly raised this.

"Your spyglass..." Slyris pointed to the item Gu Fei was holding.

"You must be a scientist!" Gu Fei and Sword Demon did not wish to admit their lack of knowledge regarding such stuff.

"He he! I told you my big sis knows a lot of things!" Yan Xiaozhu bragged.

"I don't think this is the time to discuss this." Gu Fei recovered. "What are the both of you doing here?" There was no one else when Gu Fei and Sword Demon clambered up the wall, so these two ladies probably came right after and just made their way over to them.

"My big sis and I came over to take a look after discussing about your matter!" Yan Xiaozhu informed.