At Kierans question, the bitter expression on Hanses face got even sadder.
"I calculated the time before entering the vault, just before the Main Mission finishes, and the five-minute countdown! The guards noticed that something was off though, and they came after me. By the time they entered the vault, my time was up!"
"I thought Id accidentally gotten a huge reward out of it, but it was only an accident. There was no reward. My actions made my ratings jump up by three ranks and unlocked the Special Dungeon, but all the rewards Id brought back were missing! Id brought back an empty backpack instead!" Hanses said.
Kierans heart dropped at his words.
"Returning to the lobby is not safe. Given the circumstances, and the fact that the natives are blocking your way, your abrupt return was just a suspended deadline. You may even suffer some kind of punishment."
Kieran debated about using the word punishment, because of Hanses actions and the dungeon description, but thats what it struck him like.
He randomly recalled how he had gotten back from his own dungeon and how a fierce tiger like the [Devils Heart] had turned into a tame rabbit.
Although the two cases were not related in any way, the random thought nonetheless formed in his mind.
He let out a breath before collecting his thoughts.
"Your next mission is to go back into that dungeon?" Kieran asked.
"Yes!" Hanses nodded.
"How much is the reward?" Kieran asked straightforwardly.
Lawless had already laid it all down. It was a mercenary mission, so naturally there would be a reward. The higher the risk, the more valuable the reward would be.
A screenshot appeared in Kierans PM tab. It was an orange Skill Book.
Its name was [Blade Kick].
A Rare Skill Book?
Kieran looked at Hanses in astonishment. He never would have imagined that Hanses would offer a Rare Skill Book as a reward.
From what Kieran understood, a mercenarys fee was usually around 30,000 Points and 7 or 8 Skill Points.
The Rare Skill Book far exceeded that kind of reward.
"Dont look at me like that. I am one of the most adventurous players. I have successfully cleared six dungeons. Of course I have something good in my hands! Besides, this mission has its own risks. If I dont jack up the price, I dont think youll agree to it!" Hanses confessed.
Kieran was deep in thought, considering the gains and losses if he accepted the mission.
After another normal dungeon run, he would have to return to [The Shamans Partner II] universe, and if he wanted to get anything good out of it, he would need to be at least three times stronger than he currently was. Otherwise, he would not even qualify to enter the dungeon.
Kieran was not confident enough to achieve that after just a normal dungeon run, but if another Special Dungeon was thrown in the mix Then his confidence would be boosted.
Entering the Special Dungeon would consume one normal dungeon cooldown, which was not in the same category as a Special Dungeon.
As for the risk, Kieran always did his best to explore all Sub Missions and Title Missions, which were risky enough to begin with.
Besides, he would already have acquired a Rare Skill Book before even entering the dungeon, which was the kind of attacking skill that he lacked.
This was enough to convince him, yet before he could agree to it, there were still some questions that needed to be asked.
"All the loot from the dungeon will be mine, right?" he asked.
"Thats an unwritten rule among players. All the loot will be yours. All you need to do is fulfill your duties and keep me safe throughout the dungeon," Hanses confirmed.
"Deal!" Kieran extended his right hand to shake his.
"Rachel! Some wine here! We just struck a big deal, a celebration is due!"
Lawless, who had been quiet for quite a while, suddenly raised his voice in delight.
"Any drinks and food you and 2567 order will cost double!" Rachel said coldly.
"Double? Come on, Rachel! How can you be so cruel? This is not fair, darling! Come on, for old times sake! Please..." Lawless begged her like a puppy.
"This is for old times sake! You boys can still enter my inn. And you will pay me double interest on what you owe me as well!" Rachel told Lawless in an even colder tone.
"Oh, nooo!" Lawless ranted out loud before laying down on the table helplessly.
Kieran smiled over their little drama.
He felt nothing but gratitude towards Lawless, the only friend he had made in the game.
Even without Hanses reward, if Lawless had tried to persuade Kieran, there was a high chance that Kieran would still have agreed to enter the dungeon. Lawless had not tried to persuade him though.
Instead, he had let Kieran finish the deal with Hanses by himself.
Kieran felt another wave of fondness for Lawless, the way he conducted business, and the rules he abode by.
As for Lawless weak behaviour when it came to Rachel, only a blind man would not have been able to see that there was an awkward history between the two of them.
Kieran was sitting at the table drinking beer. The beers price had been doubled despite Lawless dramatic, childlike begging. The three of them continued their discussion and set up a time to enter the dungeon.
Since it was a team dungeon, they would need to enter it with team dungeon settings.
Kieran had just completed the [Prison on the Island] team dungeon two weeks ago, and it was still on cooldown, so he would need at least two more weeks to reset the cooldown if he wanted to enter another team dungeon. The same applied to Lawless as well.
This new plan did not clash with Kierans original plan though.
His mind was filled with all the things that he had to do in the next two weeks. He quickly finished his beer and left the Harvest Inn after saying goodbye to Hanses, Lawless and Rachel.
He boarded the train without delay and rushed back to his in-game home, 13th Wallway Street.
As Kieran approached the door, he picked up a sense of malicious intent.
"Who is it? Show yourself!" he shouted in the intents direction, which was one of the dark corners of his garage.
One of his hands gripped his [Python-W2] as a new speculation formed in his mind.
"Is it the Killer Organization?"
It was a simple, quick conclusion, as he did not have many acquaintances or grudges against anyone in the game. The only ones who had a grudge against Kieran and wanted to rip him apart were the members of the Killer Organization.
However, their impatience had exceeded Kierans expectations. Lawless and the other veterans were looking for them, yet they had boldly appeared before Kieran.
They probably wanted to make an example out of him.
The sudden thought made Kieran stare intensely at the dark corner, his ears open wide to listen to any movements around him.
He was afraid that he was not facing just one person.
If he had been one of them, he would have sent more men just to be on the safe side.
Blade Kick is life! Blade Kick is love!