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451 Clash of Groups: The Beginning

 Lima School, 1 August, 2 years ago

Kanae was standing in front of the school with complicated feeling. This was not the first time she came here, but the atmosphere today was very different than the one in the past. In addition, from her position, she clearly couldn't see any damages in the building. Everything seemed normal.

"It's amazing, isn't it?" Jason tapped her shoulder from behind. "For ordinary people, this place is no different than usual, but for those who know, we know that this is nothing but mirage."

"Their technology is that advance?"

"Not really advance, but they have people specialize in creating a defensive barrier using the talent that someone have," Jason shook his head. "With one person alone, it's extremely easy to cover things that they do behind this barrier."

"They're truly not simple," Kanae nodded her head.

Jason looked towards the young girl in front of him. "If you want to fight against them in the future to stop all of this nonsense, you may need to be more patience to learn more about them."

"I'll keep that in mind, Oro."

"Now, let's line up."

There were already numerous people around. They were all people who came because they were attracted to the mission posted on the Black Market. However, those who come here were all groups.

"I can't believe that I don't see anyone from clan or gang," Tommy remarked.

"Tom, you really should follow the news occasionally. The biggest clan is in turmoil because of instability caused by their young clan head. Souhon clan head is sick. Tamari Clan Head is too old to participate. Merion Clan is a bit too far from here. Lastly, Zone Clan is relatively newer compared with the other clans. They're not too powerful right now.

As for gangs, they won't get out from their territory in the Black Street because many of them have the identity of evicts. If they come out here, they won't be able to protect themselves because this is in the middle of a city. The only one who has the chance to come here is only groups."

Hearing Jason's explanation, Kanae realized one point that she missed before. It seemed this incident was totally targeted for those who were only part of the Black Street during their night time. If not for that, the one who come here should be those from the other organization too.

Finally, they reached the front of the line. A woman was the one standing at the very front, giving instruction here and there. Upon seeing them, she gave a businesslike smile.

"Welcome to the post for the Lima School Mission. Let me explain some things before you proceed further. Once you get inside, you won't be able to get out unless the 'monsters' are all dead. In addition, you have to remove a special vial in the very center tower building from its place.

Its only when these two requirements are fulfilled you will able to get out. Please sign here to show that we won't responsible nor guarantee your life, but as long as you agree, we'll give you the money and supplies you need before you get inside."

The woman was smiling as she put a paper in front of them, but Kanae could sense the situation was growing tense around her.

'They're ready for a battle.'

Seeing the explanation was clearly not giving any way out, Kanae stepped forward. She could guess that once someone disagreed and tried to run away, there will be a lot of people who stopped them. Just by coming to the forefront, she already sensed that several people were looking at them vigilantly.

"Where should I sign?" Kanae asked in a muffled voice because of the cloth she worn to cover her face.

The woman smiled. She pointed towards the line on the paper. Kanae looked towards it for a moment before signing it using their group name.

'Fiore Group'

"So it's Fiore Group, isn't it?" The woman smiled as she read it. She was secretly scorning these small groups because less than 1% of them would survive. Little did she know that in a few more days, she would never be able to forget this one name.

Kanae nodded her head. "Can we get our supplies?"

"Sure, just wait a moment," the woman turned around to instruct the men behind to take the necessary supplies for them. She sighed to herself thinking that it would be a waste of money giving these all for ordinary groups. However, her superior was the one instructed her, so she didn't say anything inappropriate.

When they were waiting, they heard a ruckus from behind them.

"Look, it's the Oval Group!"

"They come here too!"

"Wow, even those from the three strongest groups come here!"

Turning her body, Kanae saw a group of people were coming in. The name of the three strongest groups was not a secret for them. In the Black Street, they were the groups that dominated the highest difficulties missions to the point that there was barely anyone who could contend against them.

Some other groups did appear there occasionally, which earned them the rank of 4-10. However, their name was not as famous because their prowess compared with the top three was vastly different.

Even without them asking, the people already opened the way for them to reach the front. The woman on the lookout immediately put a sweet smile and greeted them enthusiastically.

"What a vast difference in treatment!" Tommy's jaw already opened wide when he saw the difference. He wanted to cry.

Jason patted Tommy's shoulder. "If you want them to look at you with respect, you should earn them with your prowess."

"I know," Tommy answered in a slightly higher tone. "The problem is, how can I reach their level?"

Towards that question, Jason clearly didn't know the answer. From the progress that Tommy showed so far, he could guess that Tommy was not very suitable for fight. It was only because he had lived on the street for a long time and engaged in numerous battles that his sense was honed to high level. However, there was little chance that this boy could reach the high level.

"Here are your supplies," a man delivered three bags for them. It was sturdy yet kind of worn out, clearly not that of the best quality.

"Let's go," Kanae picked the bag after nodding to the man as she led her friends out. On the way out, they head the Oval Group, the current third strongest group in this city haggled the price with the woman, which she agreed immediately.

Tommy felt his heart was crushed once again. "Captain, we should reach the top three."

Thwack!

Jason flicked the boy's forehead. "Stop daydream. You should just focus on strengthening your body. It's not going to be easy."

"I know," Tommy pouted as he caressed his forehead, trying to ease the pain.

On their side, Kanae was looking towards the barrier by their side. Because they already accepted the mission, they could stand near the barrier. From her keen sense, she could see that it was truly a sturdy and powerful barrier.

One could get in but not get out.

'What have I gotten myself into?' Kanae thought to herself as she stared at the barrier. She could only hope that she could survive this battle and grew stronger in the process.

At this time, she didn't know. The decision she made by following Master Rudy's advice would change her life forever.