Chapter 86: Hatching of the Griffin (1)
Editor: Hungry Panda
The imperial family’s knights were strong.
And amongst them, Hellaim’s active part definitely stood out.
‘Wow… How can a lv 136 Thunder Hawk disappear from one cut.’
Ian’s job during combat was practically acting as a support.
At first, he tried to do this and that in order to do something. However, it didn’t take him long to realize that it was more effective to buff even one more person within that time instead.
‘At least Ddukdae and Lake are quite active.’
Just the fact that Ddukdae’s Abyss Hole could tie down opponents was a big help, and since Lake’s Offensive Power was so strong, he was dealing quite a large amount of damage with his AoE.
Within that, Ly, who had learned a new skill, was also actively participating, but his damage was insignificant, and the only thing that Halli, who had just reached lv 50 now, could do was snoop around and avoid monsters.
Combining all the active roles of Ian and his Familiars was equivalent to the active role of about one or two royal guards.
Of course, Hellaim rated Ian highly from even just that.
“You, you were more of an exceptional Summoner than what I expected.”
“Haha, is that so?”
To Hellaim, it seemed as though he thought Ian, who was only lv 100, wouldn’t have been any help in combat.
And as the battles repeated, Ian was smiling from ear to ear.
‘Keu-heu-heu, this is how you truly get EXP without much effort!’
They had only been fighting for around 3 hours, but lv 100 Ian’s EXP was filled up to 25%, and Ly had reached lv 101, while Halli, who was lv 1…
- Familiar ‘Halli’ has leveled up. Halli has reached lv 57.
He was leveling up at a truly unbelievable speed.
‘Ever since he’s gone over lv 50, his leveling-up speed has slowly decreased, but he should be close to lv 80 by the end of this quest.’
Ian was in high spirits and shot out his Magic Spheres here and there.
However, shortly after, Hellaim lifted his hand and stopped the progress.
“We’ll take a moment to standby and have some maintenance time.”
Ian wore a slightly confused expression.
‘Hm…? They shouldn’t have received significant damage yet, so why are they suddenly going through maintenance?’
Ian’s question was obvious.
Since Hellaim’s knights had advanced as if they were almost slaughtering the monsters up until now.
And Hellaim resolved Ian’s question immediately.
“Once we go over that ridge, it’s Sky Desert. And starting from there, Monk Mummies that are over lv 150 will appear.”
Ian, who heard those words, became nervous as his heart fluttered.
‘A lv 150 monster… It’s at a level where I haven’t seen it as a screenshot either.’
It was definitely going to be an incredibly dangerous place.
However, along with that, the EXP would be even more savoury.
Hellaim requested once more.
“It won’t be an easy battle, so prepare yourself properly.”
* * *
“How much longer do we have left now on our base protection?”
At Fiolan’s question, Herz checked the base information window immediately.
And he scratched the back of his head.
“Wow, it seems that two months have already passed since we’ve obtained the base. We only have one month left on our base protection now.”
“Euh, we seriously don’t have much time left. A month from now and the northern continent will probably be a complete mess, right?”
Herz nodded his head.
“By the looks of it, it seems so.”
The point in which the Lotus Guild obtained their base was less than a week from when the northern continent’s update happened.
In other words, it meant that the point in which the other high-ranking guilds obtained their bases wouldn’t be far off from the date the Lotus Guild gained theirs.
The Titan Guild, who had gained their base the fastest, had gained it in 3 days of the update, so it could be predicted that, most likely, most base protections of the guilds would be released before and after the date the Lotus Guild’s base protection was released.
Fiolan wore an expression full of worry.
“If a giant guild decides to attack, it will be impossible to block them… This is worrying.”
However, surprisingly, Herz seemed relaxed.
“No, Fiolan. If we just raise the base rank to a Domain before the protection duration is over, we will be able to protect it as well.”
At Fiolan’s cross-question, Herz nodded his head.
“Yes. Right now, since it’s a Village-rank, we can’t train soldiers, but once it becomes a Domain-rank, we can train soldiers made up of NPCs. We can also make a decently thick bulwark.’
“Ah, I didn’t know about those.”
Herz’s words continued.
“I also heard that you can install facilities such as defensive towers as well.”
“Ah, I think I’ve seen a glimpse of that in the community. But I heard that the installation fee is unbelievably high…”
As that part was a fact that Herz also knew about, he responded immediately.
“That’s right. That’s why, once we reach a Domain-rank, we’ll most likely need to invest all our guild resources into the enhancement of our domain’s Defensive Power. Even if it’s a bit of a stretch, there’s nothing else we can do.”
Fiolan’s expression slightly darkened.
“Hm… Then in the case we fail in protecting our base, wouldn’t the damage be too big? Even if we can protect it once or twice, if we continuously get attacked, then it will be difficult….”
Herz shook his head.
“No. I think that if we can just last for a while, it will probably calm down again. If we can just endure until then, we will be able to settle in.”
By the looks of it, since Herz was the guild master, it seemed that he had done quite a lot of research for the base.
‘Even if it’s the top guilds contending for first and second place, they won’t be able to easily attack our base. That is if we can get to the level that I’m thinking of before then.’
The bigger the guild, the more there was that they needed to protect.
The top 10 guilds already had possession over two to three bases, and because there was the danger that they could lose their own territory instead if they hastily removed their troops and attacked a different territory, they wouldn’t be able to move thoughtlessly.
The high-ranking Lotus Guild just needed to properly prepare their Defensive Power enough so that the highest-ranking guilds wouldn’t be able to attempt to take over them.
Rather than having an awkward Defensive Power and barely protect the base, it was Herz’s intentions to invest in the defensive aspect completely and make it so that they can’t even consider attacking.
‘However, bases that haven’t been able to upgrade from a Village will indeed become good prey.’
Even just a week ago, Herz was in a quite nervous state.
This was because the requirements for the promotion of the base were almost completed, but he had absolutely no idea when Kroban’s aristocrat promotion would be possible.
However, he was able to relax once he heard a couple days ago that Ian was in the process of an Empire Quest.
‘I really hope that Jinsung quickly completes the quest safely. Since we’ll be able to have all the other requirements met by tomorrow or the day after.’
He had told the truth to Kroban as well, but he didn’t tell him to stop gathering Fame.
It was in the case that Ian failed his Empire Quest, but it was also because it was more advantageous for the guild if there were more users with the aristocrat title.
‘Since we’ll need even more guild members that have the aristocrat title in order to meet the next Great Domain promotion requirements, and above all, if Kroban hyung also gets the title, we’ll be able to handle knights belonging to the Domain immediately.’
Herz’s plan slowly proceeded.
Thanks to pouring in effort into developing the base without rest once they gained it, the guild’s rank had gone up much higher than before, so they were in the top 500.
‘We’ll protect the base no matter what.’
The more they developed the base, the more the content perfectly fit the modifier ‘The Golden Goose’.
Herz clenched his fist tightly.
* * *
It had been over a day since Ian and Hellaim’s expedition just entered the Wasteland.
As he wasn’t able to sleep properly for that duration, Ian’s two eyes were incredibly sunken.
‘Euh, it would have been alright for me to have slept 5 hours or so before logging back on… I was too timid.’
The NPCs also slept at night.
Because of that, Hellaim’s knights set up a camping ground as night came and went to bed.
Of course, Ian also logged off during that time and slept before coming back.
However, as he was nervous that he would be left behind in the middle of the Wasteland because he logged in late, the problem was that he had logged back on after sleeping only three hours.
Thanks to that, he needed to wait with his eyes wide open for four hours until the knights headed forward again.
‘Hoo, just be patient for a little longer. Since I can just go to sleep once the quest is over.’
To be honest, this rate of exhaustion was nothing compared to when he hunted like a cripple in order to hit lv 93.
Ian collected his heart again.
A fierce wind began to blow from everywhere.
Ian had a hunch that this place was the Sky Highlands that Hellaim spoke of.
‘Shall we check the map?’
And just as he thought, the name ‘Sky Highlands’ was printed onto the map.
Ian closed the map and it was the moment that he turned his attention forward again.
Hellaim stopped his horse.
As he did so, the party naturally stopped in order.
“We’ve finally arrived.”
Hellaim mumbled in a low voice and he turned the head of his horse towards the expedition.
“Sky Highlands is incredibly dangerous. Especially the monster Teranodon are incredibly powerful.”
At those words, Ian couldn’t hold back his curiosity and opened his mouth.
This was because in addition to this being the first time he had even heard the name of a monster called Teranodon, it was also the first time he saw Hellaim warn of a monster to this extent.
“What level is the Teranodon?”
After thinking for a moment, Hellaim opened his mouth.
“From what I remember, I think it was about lv. 190. You can think of it as a lizard the size of an elephant.”
Ian was at a loss for words.
He could die.
That was the first thought that came to mind.
As Ian had already come close to death after allowing two to three hits from the lv 150 Monks, a cold sweat broke out on his forehead.
Hellaim’s words continued again.
“This place is an incredibly dangerous place that could annihilate us all from one mistake even with our strength. Because of that, we will move differently from before.”
Everybody listened intently to Hellaim’s words.
“After going in for about 10 minutes, you’ll be able to see a towering altar in the centre of the sky.”
It seemed his throat was dry, as Hellaim swallowed before his words continued.
“We will fight the least amount of opponents possible and move to the front of the altar in the shortest distance. And Ian will go up the altar with the Griffin’s Egg.”
Hellaim’s attention turned towards Ian.
“While Ian is hatching the Griffin’s Egg on top of the altar, we will surround the altar and protect it by just facing the opponents that approach us. We will not succeed rashly. Understood?”
Hellaim looked more serious than ever before.
Ian felt through his skin the danger of Sky Highlands again and collected his heart.
‘I cannot afford to fail when we’ve come this far.’
Ian’s attention turned towards Sky Highlands.
And the expedition began to move again.
It was a movement that was different from before.
It was an advance that was slow and as careful as possible.