Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
When Serena was about to leave the tent, she suddenly thought of something. Turning back, she asked Aragon to come over. “Aragon, help me with something.”
“What is it?”
“Go and ask those people from the Bloody Horns about what happened on the Fire Plume Ridge. Use whatever methods necessary to get them to reveal everything. If they successfully hide anything… you know the consequences.”
“…” Aragon’s face darkened.
Isn’t she hinting me to extort a confession from them using tortures?
However, that was exactly what he wanted; he had something against Sandro.
“And you, Hank.” After giving Aragon instructions, Serena called Hank over. “You stay in the camp. If people from the Bloody Horns were to come, keep them here until I return.”
“Yes, Captain Serena.”
A few lines were all it took for Serena to finish giving her orders. Then, she left the camp with that piece of ore.
It was dusk when Hank saw Serena again after an hour.
The first thing she did was to call for Aragon.
“Aragon, did you manage to find out anything?”
“Yes, Captain Serena. They told me everything.”
“Continue,” Serena said as she nodded her head.
“It was actually a coincidence…” Aragon started to tell her what he’d learned in that hour.
It was like what he started off with. The entire matter was a coincidence.
If the people from the Bloody Horns had not told him, even Lin Li, who was on the Fire Plume Ridge, would also not have thought of how coincidental the timing of the matter was…
From the start, Sandro and his team were ordered to go to the Fire Plume Ridge as their first mission. However, when they passed by that forest, they accidentally discovered the mineral veins of the Abyss Fiendish Iron.
“This Sandro was a miner in the past,” Aragon added.
Of course, Sandro was not knowledgeable enough to decipher what type of mineral vein it was.
But the coincidence was that he had heard that there was a magical metal with a mineral vein that would turn the ore and the surrounding soil dark-red in color.
As an adventurer, the idea of a mineral vein of any magic metal was naturally a big temptation for Sandro because it meant huge fortune he could gain from it. With all that wealth, he would be able to retire from being an adventurer, and live a luxurious life peacefully.
On top of that…
Lin Li and Sean seemed so frail and weak previously.
“Actually, it was rather unfair for that dude. During the interrogation, he was so indignant when he complained to me. What he thought to be pushovers turned into two powerful opponents. It was as though he kicked iron plates instead of soft persimmons…” The mention of Sandro’s realization made Aragon feel like laughing.
Hank rolled his eyes beside him. What was there to be surprised about? Sandro was not the only hapless man he knew of that kicked these iron plates.
Not to mention the group of robbers from Blackhills Town that was killed by Sean, there was Thuzadin with the lousiest luck, who thought that he could send everyone in the inn to their deaths, but got shot dead by Mr. Felic. He probably still was not able to figure out why a crossbow could suddenly appear from the crowd…
Of course, Hank would not dare to tell them these. It was nothing for him to be reprimanded by Serena for keeping such secrets. The real trouble would start if he were to offend that man. If he knew that it was him who divulged the matter, how would Hank be able to escape the fate of being skewered by his Icicle?
Therefore, Hank only listened to their conversation at the side silently.
“Before I forget…” Aragon said as something came to his mind. He said hesitantly, “There’s a thing I feel we should take note of.”
“What is it?”
“Sandro said when Mr. Felic fought with his two teammates; instead of fighting them personally, he detonated some kind of firearm.”
“Detonation?” Serena froze in surprise, and said, “You meant… Explosive Mining?”
“I’m suspecting that…” The expression of Aragon showed amazement too.
Many people knew the existence of a skill like Explosive Mining, but few dared to use it. The reason was very simple—Explosive Mining was too difficult to master. It would only take a small mistake to destroy both the mine and lives. Even an Expert Miner would not want to risk attempting such a dangerous skill.
At that moment, the two people could not help but be in a daze.
Although they had been suspecting Mr. Felic to be an Expert Miner right from the start, when they related him to Explosive Mining, they were awestruck. That was really a crazy thing. In the whole of Felan Kingdom, the number of people who knew how to use Explosive Mining to mine would not exceed a hundred. Among them, at least 90 had been drawn over by large organizations.
The Marathon Family, which rose to its status back then due to their business in forging, was one such organization. It successfully gathered more than half of these people under its name.
Hence, there would be fewer than 10 Expert Miners who weren’t affiliated with any organization…
People with such a talent were highly sought-after ones.
Explosive Mining could increase the efficiency of any mining activity by one fold.
The Dwarf Kingdom, which was located at the North of the Sunset Mountains, only had a few hundreds of thousands people. However, it was able to form a country by itself in the chaotic world of Anril. That was thanks to their forte, which was forging, as well as mastery of mining techniques.
Among the different mining techniques, they were especially known for their Explosive Mining.
It was just because the Dwarf Kingdom had a goblin working for them.
Goblins had a flair in creating weapons. Their knowledge in explosive techniques peaked among the entire Anril. The weapons they produced were so powerful that they could be compared to the spells of magic shooters.
It was said that during the Dark Age, the goblins created a type of weapon that could easily penetrate the shields of archmages with fire from their metal tubes. Unfortunately, that skill set vanished after the era. Hence, the goblins could only seek refuge in the Dwarf Kingdom.
On top of the innate talent of the dwarfs in forging and mining, the Explosive Mining technique from the goblins made the Dwarf Kingdom a stronger entity. Although the population of the kingdom was rather small, they got to be protected in the world of Anril, and also reaped benefits from all the wars that happened. Gradually, they had grown to have the shadow of the descendants of the Titans.
Hence, it was obvious how an Expert Miner who had the knowledge of the Explosive Mining technique would be so high in demand…
Deep in thought, Serena nodded her head as she commented, “Seems that we are really not wrong. I’m afraid this Mr. Felic might really be an Expert Miner.” Then, she reached into her pocket for the Abyss Fiendish Iron and fiddled with it in her hands.
“Oh, right. Captain Serena, have you identified this ore?”
“Yes. This ore is called the Abyss Fiendish Iron. If it were to be added into a weapon, it would increase the weight of the weapon by multiple times. That old Al’Akir said that it is considered one of the rarest ores.”
“Even Mr. Al’Akir came?” Aragon froze when he heard the name. Al’Akir was the leader of Adventurers Guild—the person in charge of all the Adventurers in the entire Felan Kingdom! Apart from Aldwin, the leader of the Guild of Magic, no one would be comparable to him for his level-21 abilities.
As an adventurer himself, how would Aragon not hear of Al’Akir?
In reality, Al’Akir’s story was the inspiration for most people to take up this occupation in Felan Kingdom.
For almost all adventurers, Al’Akir had only been a legendary character that they’d heard of. However, now that this legendary man was so close to them, even Aragon could not help but show signs of excitement.
“But he is extremely lively too…” Serena muttered as she minced her lips. Then, she said in a serious tone, “That old man also said that he hopes to meet that fella if given the chance. So Aragon, we need to grab onto this opportunity… ”
“Understood,” replied Aragon as he nodded.
Serena’s words were more than clear.
It was not easy to meet any Expert Miner, especially one who knew about the Explosive Mining and who was not bound to any organization.
How would anyone reject a partnership with him? When Al’Akir expressed his hopes about wanting to meet Lin Li, his motive was clear…
To be honest, the Silver Hand had zero edge over the huge Adventurers Guild. Whether it was in terms of finances, resources, manpower, military might, intelligence, or emotional capacity… to want to win heart of the miner who had the Explosive Mining skills would be like a dream.
The only advantage the Silver Hand had was only the fact that they’d met Mr. Felic before the Adventurers Guild did…
And that was also their only chance.
If they could rope Mr. Felic into the Silver Hand before the Adventurers Guild, Al’Akir would not be able to snatch him away!
“Captain Serena, what should I do?”
“Very easy. You just need to give in to whatever request Mr. Felic makes starting from today. Remember, don’t question him.”
“Noted, Captain Serena.”
At the same time, Lin Li was still venturing into the cave. He was completely unaware that he had already shocked both a captain and a guild president by his casual act of bombing the mineral vein.
He’d had no choice, either.
Who asked him to have met mostly mages, and not miners in the few months since he’d entered the world of Anril? And how would he have known that Explosive Mining—an ancient and unsophisticated skill—would have such a high standing here?
Even if he knew, Explosive Mining was the technique that was the simplest and most straightforward to him. Why should he restrict himself from using such a technique just because he needed to take care of the feelings of one captain and one guild president?
It did not make sense for him to adopt the most primitive method of using a metal shovel to dig for ore…
If he were to know the truth, he would probably holler, “I’m a very busy man, and I have no time to care about your feelings!”
That was right, he was indeed busy.
Ever since he’d entered the cave, he had been very busy cursing. He had been cursing the people who’d created the map.
“Goddammit, this is outrageous…” Lin Li’s rage grew as he thought about it.Wasn’t the cave as complicated as a spider’s web? How can one simple green line on the map tell me how to navigate?
Lin Li had felt a sense of foreboding the moment he stepped into the cave. The wide network of pathways inside the cave was like a spider’s web. Just looking at all the pathways made Lin Li feel very dizzy. How could he even identify directions?
After bringing Sean to walk around for many rounds, Lin Li could not even remember where he came from. This made him really feel like crying.
He had already wasted a few hours inside of the cave. If that were to continue, it would be midnight if he was able to walk out of the cave.
They were at the Fire Plume Ridge, where all powerful magical beasts roamed freely. One already had to be extremely careful of them in broad daylight, not to mention in the night. If Lin Li were to meet beasts that they could not defeat, or miss a step and fall into a ravine like Sean, wouldn’t there be big trouble?
“I will think of a way…” Lin Li vowed angrily through his clenched teeth as they moved around the cave. They should not be getting themselves lost again!
“Mr. Felic…” After following Lin Li another round of the same place, Sean could not contain himself further. He reminded meekly, “I think we passed by here before…”
“…” Lin Li really felt like killing himself after hearing those words. He had been a hunter famous for his bad sense of direction in the Endless World. If not for his wealth that allowed him to purchase the Guide Light from the unscrupulous merchant, he would have died. How would he have the opportunity to acquire the Stars of Fury to kill the Dragon of Destruction?
Although he was in Anril, his sense of direction was still as poor as before. Without the Guide Light with him, how was he going to walk out of that horrible cave?
“Mr. Felic…” Just when Lin Li was filled with frustration, Sean called out to him…
“What is it again…?” Lin Li was still thinking of crashing into the wall. When he heard Sean’s voice, he immediately thought that something more terrible happened. While replying, his expression was uglier than crying.
“I think there’s someone…”
“Huh?” Lin Li exclaimed, and instantly became more alert.
“Yes, and he’s walking towards us…”
Then, Lin Li heard footsteps too. He immediately let out Warlock’s Eyes.
“Indeed…” Lin Li gasped. After all, he was a level-13 Magical Shooter. Hence, he was much clearer than Sean in terms of making out the movements in his surroundings.
Through the Warlock’s Eyes, Lin Li could clearly see there was really a figure walking towards them.
That person looked around 30 years old. He had a brand-new armor, and carried two axes on his back. In the dark and eerie cave, the weapons emitted a dull blue. Lin Li only need one glimpse to know they were quality magical weapons. From the delicate craftsmanship, Lin Li could tell that the creator had Master-Level qualifications…
This man had a distinct appearance too. He would not lose out to Sean in terms of his big and tall build. Due to his age, he even looked bolder than Sean. His messy golden hair and big beard that resembled steel needles on top of his hearty expression gave people an impression of a dignified and dauntless man.
Lin Li could not help but feel a little worried.
That man was too powerful. He was at least a level-15.
People at level-15 were no joke. During the few months Lin Li came to Anril, apart from the few old monsters like Macklin and Andoine, he rarely met people above level-15.
To someone like that warrior, 30 was a golden age. With such a long time to train his combat skills, he definitely had the opportunity to go beyond the Legendary Level.
Furthermore, with his two magical weapons, even Gerian might not be his match.
Frankly speaking, Lin Li was still very hesitant about whether he should ask the stranger for help.
His ability was too strong; it threatened Lin Li.
Who knew that the man noticed their presence when he was still hesitating.
“Who’s there? Stop hiding.” The six senses of the warrior of at least level-15 were too sharp. It only took Lin Li to draw a gentle breath to expose their hiding spot.
“Good evening, Mr. Warrior. Don’t worry, we don’t have evil intentions.” Since their whereabouts had been discovered, there was no point hiding anymore. If the man were to think that they had ulterior motives and attack, they would not be his match. Hence, why shouldn’t he make it clear first?
Lin Li came out of the darkness without hesitation with a smile on his face, and his arms were spread wide to show that he did not have any weapons.
“Good evening, you two.” The warrior nodded, maintaining a courteous attitude. After shifting his gaze from Lin Li to Sean, he became a little shocked. He knew Sean was a warrior, but was naturally surprised with his ability.
“Let me introduce myself. I’m Felic, from the Silver Hand Mercenary Corps. This is my buddy, Sean. How should I address you?”
“You are from Silver Hand?” The warrior had a startled look on his angular face. After sizing Lin Li up for a while, his attention stopped at the map in his hands. Then, his wariness transformed into astonishment instantly. He reached out a rough right hand and held Lin Li’s hand passionately. “I’m Andre, nice to meet you both.”
“You recognize this map?” Lin Li was sharp to notice the reason for the change in the warrior’s attitude.
“That’s right, I have one with me too.” Andre nodded, and reached into his pocket for a similar map. Then, he praised profusely, “I could navigate this area so efficiently these two days thanks to Silver Hand’s map!”
“Hehe…” Lin Li lifted the corner of his mouth, and laughed awkwardly.
Maybe it was the problem with appearance. While Lin Li and Sean got themselves trapped in the cave, the same map allowed Andre to avoid so many unnecessary pathways. If not for his looks, what could be the reason?
“Oh, yes. Brother Felic, isn’t Silver Hand at the base of the mountains? Why are you here?” Andre asked in a concerned tone while patting Lin Li’s shoulder. Since he knew their identity already, he did away with the formalities.
“Captain Serena gave us a mission.”
“Have you completed the mission? If not, I could give you some help. Speaking of Serena, it has been long since I’ve met that girl…”
“We’ve completed the mission”—Lin Li scratched his head awkwardly—”but we lost our way…”
“…” Andre almost coughed out a mouthful of saliva.
He would never have thought that someone could be so hilarious, getting lost with a map in his hands.
“If you want to laugh, go ahead. It’s not the first time, anyway…”
“No, Brother Felic, you have misunderstood. I did not want to laugh at you, but you are really…” Andre took a lot of effort to contain his laughter…
“…” Lin Li rolled his eyes. He knew what Andre was thinking.
“It’s alright, Brother Felic. You can follow me. I’m sure you’ll reach home by dinnertime,” Andre replied as he patted his chest as though trying to make up for his lack of composure.
“Then I shall thank you, Brother Andre.”
Andre was not blabbering. His sense of direction was much better than Lin Li’s. He brought the two men around the cave, and after a few turns, they saw a light shining from afar.
“Phew…” After seeing that spot of light, Lin Li heaved a sigh of relief. They were finally out of that terrible cave!
After leaving the cave, Lin Li’s mood got a lot better. Hence, he also had the mood to chat with Andre throughout the journey.
The topic of the conversation shifted to the two weapons Andre had with him.
“Haha… You have great interests, Brother Felic. These two double-handed axes are named Flash and Darkness Decimator—both created by yours truly. When I made them, my mentor was so proud of me…”