Chapter 213 The Search For Bella (Part 2)
“I want to take a nap.” Andrei was telling the truth. As the saying goes, “a full tummy leads to lethargy”, when a person was at ease and has eaten and drank to his or her heart’s content, the urge to fall asleep came easily. Andrei was in such a situation, “Why don’t you let me have a nap, and we’ll head back to the hideout later?”
Ye Ci frowned at Andrei. She had no time to waste on waiting for this NPC to have a nap! The only thing she wanted to do was to escort Andrei safely back to the bandit hideout and proceed to the next stage of her Epic-tier quest. She was not in the mood and did not have patience for anything else.
However, Ye Ci could not afford to reject Andrei’s request directly. She immediately thought of a good idea. She sat on the rock that Andrei was leaning against and said to the man who was already drifting into sleep, “We’re in the Silvery Tin Vein, am I right?”
“Yup! This is the Silvery Tin Vein! The sunlight here is the best!” there was a smile of content on Andrei’s face. His face was full of tranquility as he leaned against the rock, as he was a normal middle-aged man instead of the leader of a group of bandits.
“But… We’re still in Red Lake City’s territory.”
“Heh! So what? I don’t care!” Andrei’s eyes remained shut as he snorted. It was apparent that he did not care about Red Lake City.
“So… You’re telling me that you’re sleeping here?” Ye Ci narrowed her eyes at Andrei, at his content expression. She felt the urge to beat him up, but she was able to hold herself back.
“No matter what?”
“Hell yeah!” Andrei was very irritated that his sleep was disturbed by Ye Ci, “What are you trying to say, Elf? Stop beating around the bush! You’re disturbing Andrei’s sleep! I’m very tired now! Do you know that I’ve never had a decent sleep ever since I was captured, and was tortured by that damn Fa’tar every single day? Don’t you think it’s quite unkind for you to disrupt my sleep?”
“Of course, I’m not trying to disturb your sleep, but I want to remind you that I rescued you from the prison when Fa’tar was having his afternoon nap.” Ye Ci smiled at Andrei.
Andrei open an eye and looked at Ye Ci, “What are you trying to say?”
“What I’m trying to say is… It’s been quite some times since we escaped from the Red Lake City prison. Fa’tar has probably woken up from his nap by now.” Ye Ci’s smile remained on her face. She was certain that Andrei hated Fa’tar and was very wary of him.
As expected, Andrei stared at Ye Ci with both eyes opened, “Fa’tar is awake?”
“I’m sure it’s more than that. If he knows that Andrei has escaped from prison, he will be very angry.” Ye Ci continued smiling at Andrei, as if it had nothing to do with her.
Andrei immediately sat up, “What? Fa’tar is angry?”
“It’s not the worst of your worries. Think about it, if you’re Fa’tar, and a very important prisoner has escaped from you, do you think you’ll let the prisoner escape just like that?”
“Of course not!”
“Then what do you think Fa’tar will do?” Ye Ci stared at Andrei with the smile still on her face, “According to my knowledge of Fa’tar, he will stop at nothing to capture you. He might even be sending soldiers out to search for you right at this moment…”
Before Ye Ci could finish her sentence, Andrei stood up abruptly and let out a cry, “Oh my God! You’re so smart, Elf! You’re such a good friend of mine! I would’ve fallen asleep if not for you! Do you know that I was captured by Fa’tar last time because I fell asleep after a lot of drinking and was reported by those damned farmers? If I got captured again, it’ll be the end of me!”
“Let’s go, Elf! We’re going back to the hideout” shouted Andrei as he started running.
“The sunlight is so warm here. Are you sure you’re not going to take a nap?” asked Ye Ci, and Andrei immediately blushed, “No no no, let’s leave this place, my friend! I think it’s a good idea to get back to the hideout!”
With her goal achieved, Ye Ci wasted no time springing into action. She scattered the fire in the firepit, disposed of the horse meat and bones, and followed after Andrei.
The bandits were looking forward to Andrei’s return. They erupted into cheers as Andrei showed up at the hideout with Ye Ci. The entire bandit hideout was bustling with celebration that was grander than even the grandest party in Red Lake City.
Of course, Ye Ci was not the focus of attention in this party. The only thing she wanted was to receive her reward for completing the quest and proceed to the next stage of the Epic-tier quest. However, Millard had no time for Ye Ci. The bandits were all immersed in their celebration of Andrei’s return.
Despite his excitement, Andrei was still a loyal friend. He introduced Ye Ci to his comrades after the welcoming ceremony, “This Elf saved my life. Although she did it at Millard’s request, you have to know that the Red Lake City prison was a dangerous and scary place. This Elf was able to rescue me from that living hell with her kindness and wisdom. She is a friend of mine, and is also the friend of the Doran Thieves Guild.”
It was apparent that Andrei held more authority than Millard. His simples words were able to boost Ye Ci’s Prestige with the Doran Thieves Guild from “Friendly” to “Intimate”. Even someone who had been through a lot like Ye Ci was shocked. Doing the right thing at the right time was indeed way better than blindly pouring in effort in completing a task. She was able to gain a huge amount of Prestige points after currying favors with one of the key figures in the Doran Thieves Guild.
Because of that, Ye Ci no longer mind the time she wasted. After all, it was a delightful experience to be treated like a VIP by the bandits and be served the best of food and wine.
The celebration lasted for a long time. Ye Ci logged off from the game halfway through and had her meal and a good night’s sleep. The celebration finally ended when she logged into the game on the next day. Ye Ci stood in the house where she first met Millard, but the person in the house was none other than Andrei who she was sent to rescue.
“My dearest friend, I’ve heard about your circumstances, and I thank you for your act of kindness and everything that you did for me. I, Andrei, guarantees that you and I will always be friend, and the Doran Thieves Guild will always be your friend!” spoke Andrei in a respectful tone. The man had a change of clothes and his hair was well-kempt. He was the complete opposite of the (ragged look?) he had when he was first rescued by Ye Ci.
“It’s nothing. I only did what must be done.” Ye Ci did not skip her conversation with Andrei, and instead paid close attention to every single word spoken by Andrei.
Ye Ci had her own reasons for doing so. The length and difficulty of an Epic-tier quest was not the only important aspect of a high tiered quest.. The stage reward offered by the quest was also very important.
Ye Ci first accepted the quest in Red Lake City, and was led to Dark Clay City by the quest. She completed a large amount of missions in Dark Clay City, and was able to complete the first stage of the quest. Ye Ci was awarded a Purple quality tanning knife upon completing the stage. The knife was not useful in combat, but was very good when it came to slicing and dicing the meat and skin off the carcasses of dead monsters. It could raise the speed of Ye Ci as she was harvesting a carcass, and would increased the drop rate of higher quality meat and other items. In short, although the knife was lacking in combat capabilities, it was very useful for Hunters.
Some of the cracasses of rarer monsters might produce a lot of rare materials which were essential for the enchantment or refinement of items and equipment. However, such rare materials had a very low drop rate. The demand of such materials was way higher than its supply.
Ye Ci was finally able to complete the second stage of the mission after much hardships. What will be her reward? The rewards offered by the quest could be affected by the conversation between a player and the NPC related to the quest. Ye Ci was cautious as she spoke to Andrei, as the words she spoke might affect the quality of the reward.
“My friend, you’re always so loyal and courteous. How should I thank you?” tears welled in Andrei’s eyes when he spoke out the words. After a moment of sadness, Andrei handed a letter to Ye Ci, “This is a letter for Lord Moore of Dark Clay City. Hand it to him, and he’ll let you know what to do next.”
The third stage of Ye Ci’s quest was activated. She accepted the letter from Andrei with respect. It was so light yet so heavy as Ye Ci held it in her hands. She did not know what difficulties await her in her path ahead.
“My dearest friend, we’re about to part ways. Although you’re always welcome here to see me, but I think you’ll be very busy in the near future. You might not be able to pay me visits.” Andrei began to tear up once again. Ye Ci could hardly bear with such a display of emotion by Andrei. He was a man, a fearsome leader of the bandits, but he was almost crying like a little girl. Which developer designed this character?
It was okay if he looked good when he cried. However, Andrei’s face was hideous as he began sobbing. How could someone stand such a thing? Although Ye Ci was showing a sad face, she was having goosebumps all over her body.
It was just too disgusting.
After a short moment of sobbing, Andrei handed a strange piece of metal with strange carvings to Ye Ci, “My dear friend, can you do something for me before you leave?”
“What is it?” Ye Ci was momentarily stunned by the sudden request. According to her prediction, it was almost time for Andrei to hand her the reward for completing the second stage of the quest. She had no idea what sort of reward she would receive, as Andrei had his own thoughts and behavior.
“Take this badge with you to the northern side of the Mausoleum of Blades and meet with someone called Bella. She’ll tell you what to do.” When Ye Ci initiated a conversation with Andrei after that, he would only respond with a nod and a smile as he said, “Ah, my old friend! It’s good to see you again!”
This meant that Ye Ci could only unlock more dialogue from Andrei by completing the quest handed to her.
Ye Ci was irritated when she was still unable to receive rewards for all her hard work, and was instead made to run an errand. However, she did not show her dissatisfaction to Andrei. After bowing to him respectfully, Ye Ci left the bandit hideout.
The Mausoleum of Blades.
It was a place that Ye Ci was very familiar with. The map was a good spot for leveling up, and was also the place she met up with NightAndDay a month ago. This was also the spot Ye Ci flew from to Champion City when the Western Continent attacked. After looking and the time and confirming that there was still time left before Upwards Ho!’s afternoon dungeon clearing session, Ye Ci teleported to the Mausoleum of Blades.
The player population in the map was still very low even after a month. Not many were willing to traverse through the treacherous terrain of Mausoleum of Blades. There was only one thing Ye Ci could think of when she arrived at the Mausoleum of Blades.
The place was just too cold. The strong winds could chill someone to the bones.
The place was also very quiet.
The waypoint in the Mausoleum of Blades was located in a camp in the western side of the maps. There were many merchant NPCs in the camp that different types of consumables to players visiting the map, and several quest giving NPCs whose quests were already long completed by Ye Ci. To Ye Ci, the NPCs were the only reason the camp was not entirely a ghost town.
There was not a single player in the camp other than Ye Ci.
Ye Ci rubbed her arms for warmth and walked into one of the shops, where she bought some Wind Resistant Pills. It was a consumable unique only to the Mausoleum of Blades designed to resist the chilly winds that ravaged the map. Players would be able to travel in the windy map without any harm or risk of receiving damage from the chilly winds.
Ye Ci summoned Ol’ Four, and fed it a Wind Resistant Pill after consuming one herself. She then mounted Ol’ Four and headed north.
The NPCs in Fate would never provide players with clear details when it came to giving directions. When Ye Ci’s was told that Bella was in the northern area of Mausoleum of Blades, she could be in the north eastern side of the map, or could even be in the northwest part of the map. The NPC would also never provide players with any landmarks that might help them locate their quest target. That was why players in Fate had the habit of familiarizing themselves with the map and memorize its key landmarks to help them finish their quests in the near possible future.
Ye Ci had an advantage when it came to such a matter. She had completed her exploration of the maps in Fate in her last life. It was basically impossible for her to make mistakes when it came to navigating in a map, as she was like a living GPS of Fate in her past life. However, it did not meant that Ye Ci was immune to making mistakes. Her current situation was the perfect example, and was a cause for her distress. No matter how hard she tried, she could not remember an NPC named Bella in the northern parts of the Mausoleum of Blades.
The sense of distress followed Ye Ci everywhere as she scoured the northern part of Mausoleum of Blades. After a long and tedious exploration, she finally found Bella at the foot of a mountain in a very secluded corner.
However, Ye Ci was puzzled when she made her discovery. She finally understood why she could not remember an NPC named Bella. Bella was not even alive. The only trace of Bella that Ye Ci could find was a tombstone with the name “Bella”.
A myriad of f*ck yous soared across Ye Ci’s mind. This quest is so rigged! Why was she required to look for a grave? Is the system playing a game on her?
This Andrei… Ye Ci gritted her teeth. She suddenly had a feeling that Andrei was either an idiot or was actually very cunning. If that was not the case, how could he come up with such a quest?
However, Ye Ci’s quest was not completed by simply locating Bella. She needed to hand the weird looking badge to Bella as well. But the Bella in front of here was nothing but a corpse buried 6 feet under tombstone with her name written on it. Ye Ci was very much alive! How could she hand something to someone who was already dead?
Can someone help me out here?
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