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Chapter 477 - A New Lead

 Flowergazing in the Fog anxiously spent a whole night and day in a trance. Three Sighs of Flowing Maple made dozens of changes in their defense according to the company Gu Fei kept until he felt it was flawless. When Drifting announced that Gu Fei was now online, the entire guild acted as if their nemesis had arrived. Very focused, they raised their vigilance in the Government City Hall. Three Sighs of Flowing Maple was glad to have Drifting around at this time, as just informing them of the enemy coming online had saved them plenty of trouble.

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Meanwhile, Gu Fei got this feeling that a crowd of people was looking forward to him coming online. Brother Assist, in fact, sent him more than twenty messages despite knowing that he was offline, which only showed how much he was wishing for the man to log on a bit earlier. In the instant that he came online, Brother Assist sent him three consecutive messages:

"Diary!

"Send it over!

"Quick!"

He could tell how anxious Brother Assist was from his act of breaking one statement into three separate messages.

"Did you find it?" Gu Fei unhurriedly replied even as he strolled out of the designated log-off point.

"Yeah. We can't get the quest, as it requires a quest item to trigger," Brother Assist informed.

"Alright. I'm sending it over right now," Gu Fei replied.

"I'll be waiting by the mailbox," Brother Assist replied.

Ending the conversation with Brother Assist, Gu Fei proceeded to open the message Scissorhands had left for him: "The belt's done and I've mailed it to you. I'll alter it again if you're dissatisfied with the result."

The timing was perfect, as a single trip to the mailbox would resolve two issues at one go. Opening his friends list, he saw that Scissorhands was no longer online, so he left a message to express his thanks. Hurrying over to the mailbox, he sent out Andrew Su's Diary to Brother Assist first before he took the belt that Scissorhands had sent over and examined it. He realized that he had no reference to which to compare the look of the new belt to, as he did not have an impression of how the item looked in the first place. However, that sense of lewdness he had originally seen in the item was at least gone with this altered belt, so he was extremely satisfied with the work and made sure to send another message over to Scissorhands expressing his satisfaction.

Leaving the mailbox, Gu Fei once more ran off to pick up 'Bounty Mission'. Conducting any operation in the Government City Hall would be very inconvenient if he did not clear up the PK value he had accrued thus far. By the time he managed to cleanse himself of them, Gu Fei saw that it was late and felt that it was better to continue that quest at the Government City Hall when he had more time on his hands. With that, he decided to simply continue doing 'Bounty Mission' before he logged out. All the pitiful members of Flowergazing in the Fog had been guarding the courtyard like watchdogs the entire time Gu Fei was online, yet the man did not even show his face. When Drifting told them that Gu Fei had logged out, everyone felt as if they had been toyed with.

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Another day and night passed before Gu Fei logged in again. He first received the resentful complaints of Brother Assist; the man detailed how he had used Andrew Su's Diary before Gru for over two hours, stopping short of reading its contents out, yet the NPC remained unmoved. It regarded Brother Assist as placidly as he had before, which only proved one thing: even with the item in hand, there was no quest available.

The three men felt rather depressed when they realized that the trip had been for naught. Brother Assist felt that he had lost face now that the analysis he had been brimming with confidence in turned out to be wrong. The three men languished in Linyin City, all dispirited, not even mentioning if they would meet up with the rest back in Xiawu City.

On the flip side, Gu Fei was overflowing with fighting spirit. Having spent the entirety of yesterday clearing his PK value, he even got online a little earlier than usual today and was ready to head back to the Government City Hall to turn that place upside down once more. Listening to Brother Assist's nagging and consoling him with a few words after, Gu Fei immediately contacted Sword Demon and told him that there might be something meaningful they would be doing together, extending an invitation for his involvement.

Sword Demon agreed with alacrity. Rendezvousing at an agreed-on place, the two headed toward the Government City Hall together.

"Is the new skill any good?" Unless Gu Fei was compelled to, he was not really bothered to chat through messages. Today was the first time he had asked about this ever since Sword Demon and Eternal Dominion completed their transaction for that skill scroll from before.

Without even having to wait for Sword Demon to speak, Gu Fei already knew the answer from the look of excitement on Sword Demon's face.

"Did you discover anything new with your quest?" Sword Demon asked Gu Fei.

"The day before, I actually managed to break into the Government City Hall with a bunch of other players..." Gu Fei began to relate to Sword Demon the entire business with that group of nine he had joined. Sword Demon enjoyed it immensely, his eyes aglow with envy. It was apparent that the man was a little fed up with that mundane life of grinding for levels and questing for equipment. He was really looking forward to that sort of exciting and heterogeneous lifestyle that Gu Fei led.

"I never would've pegged Drifting to be the scheming sort." Sword Demon mused after hearing Gu Fei's story.

"Yeah. Are you well acquainted with him?" Gu Fei realized that he did not really know much about the man.

Sword Demon shook his head and answered, "Royal should probably be a lot more familiar with him..."

"Royal? Would he even consider Drifting to be a human being?" Gu Fei asked.

"Hmm, probably not..."

The two believed they would not learn anything meaningful from Royal God Call, considering how the man would immediately disparage and express his disdain whenever Drifting was mentioned.

"So, did you learn anything new throughout all this?" Sword Demon asked.

"Remember that person, Seven, that I spoke of?" Gu Fei asked back.

"The Assassin that's asleep in the backyard?" Sword Demon chuckled. Some of the deaths out of the nine were far more hilarious than tragic.

"Yup, it's about that Assassin he located," Gu Fei said.

"How so?"

"A piece of equipment that that Assassin has on it is very similar to that of the Shadowmist Assassin," Gu Fei informed.

"What's that?"

"It's something it has on here." Gu Fei patted his left arm. "There was something there that, if I'm not mistaken, contains the symbol of the League of Assassins, which is mentioned in the diary."

"Is there really such a thing?"

Gu Fei nodded. "I recall seeing it on Shadowmist Assassin's left arm as well. Furthermore, there's a doodle found in his diary that depicted that symbol."

"What you mean to say is that the sleeping Assassin belongs to the same organization as the Shadowmist Assassin, so there's a good chance that they were sent on the same mission?" Sword Demon asked.

Gu Fei nodded.

"Do you want to wake him up? Perhaps, find some sort of breakthrough from him?" Sword Demon.

"I think it's more useful if it remains asleep," replied Gu Fei.

"How so?"

"The Shadowmist Assassin once mentioned in his diary: 'When an Assassin falls asleep, their legs will always point to the location it needs to go,'" Gu Fei explained.

"I remember reading that!" Sword Demon exclaimed. "So even though this Assassin is asleep, that's perfect for us to find out where it wants to go?"

"That's right. I've already taken note of where he's pointing toward, and it's a lone firewood storage shed in the backyard. Perhaps, there may be a lead hidden there," Gu Fei said.

"Lead?"

"I've already fully grasped Giordano's daily routine in my head. Unfortunately, he never once has a moment where he is alone. Aside from the huge pack of NPC guards beside him, there are also players from Flowergazing in the Fog outside the city hall. That's why I'm thinking that there may be another special method if anyone is looking to assassinate this person. It's possible that the direction this sleeping Assassin is pointing to is where we can find such a method," Gu Fei surmised.

"That's a logical analysis." Sword Demon nodded his head subconsciously before he added with an air of severity. "If this is not a game."

"Eh?"

"As a game, it is very hard to imagine that someone else's quest target will be related to this assassination that you are doing," Sword Demon said.

"Most games might not, but I think it's plausible in Parallel World," Gu Fei said firmly.

"No matter the case, we gotta try it and find out. If this is true, then we must really change the way we approach this game," Sword Demon expressed thoughtfully.

"Let's first go pick up that diary from the mailbox." Gu Fei patted Sword Demon.

Retrieving the diary from Brother Assist's mail, Gu Fei quickly flipped to the doodle that the Shadowmist Assassin had drawn and nodded his head vigorously. "I'm right; that's the same symbol."

Sword Demon came over to take a look. He shook his head, indicating that he had absolutely no recollection of seeing this symbol on the Shadowmist Assassin.

"Now, we gotta go scale the walls," Gu Fei said. He was no fool; he had not forgotten that Drifting was the manipulator behind the group of nine he had joined, so he had no doubt that every member in Flowergazing in the Fog would be well aware of his quest to assassinate Giordano. Since he dared to target their quest-giver, he had no idea just how comprehensive those men had raised their defenses.

Gu Fei and Sword Demon would find this out really soon, though.

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Over by the courtyard of the Government City Hall, there were even guards stationed outside the walls. Hiding in the fog, the two realized that the situation was the same all around the compound. Sword Demon sighed. "Looks like they have been tormented quite badly by you the last round."

Gu Fei had no choice as well. "That's really too much. I can't even climb the walls like this!"

"Looks like we gotta kill one of them," Sword Demon said.

"They probably don't think they can stop me with just one player alone, right? Killing one will likely reveal my presence, and that's when their reinforcement will come to surround me," Gu Fei said.

"Well, in that case, we'll just have to kill several more to throw them into confusion," Sword Demon proposed.

"Oh, I like this sort of unrestrained method," Gu Fei commended.

Sword Demon, however, candidly criticized his own actions. "Actually, I'm just anxious to use my new skill in PvP..."

Gu Fei laughed bitterly. It seemed that the blood of PK violence flowed in everyone, and it was only kept in check by the moral values people held. Gu Fei constantly did 'Bounty Mission', while the only reason Sword Demon had thought to act so unrestrainedly this time was just to find himself a reasonable excuse to PK. In a sense, everyone was a hypocrite. However, this sort of hypocrisy was necessary. If they were to act as carefreely and unfettered like Cool Apple, even the system would be unable to stand by idly against such transgressions and would probably directly order a 'Daily Bounty Mission' in response.

Gu Fei had a hunch as to the punishment that man received: loss of level.

From what he had overheard yesterday, the Ten Great Adepts of the Thief job class had once more seen a change, as Cool Apple had disappeared from the leaderboard. This was quite a hot topic in Xiawu City; the citizens in the city had long been looking forward to and wishing for the day when this murderer that killed without batting an eyelid would actually get himself killed.

Even though the clash between Gu Fei and Cool Apple was part of a 'Bounty Mission', the latter still suffered the penalty for his PK points, and this incident had more or less reflected the difference between the 'Daily Bounty Mission' and the usual 'Bounty Mission'.