Gamers of the Underworld - Chapter 529 - 529 Internal Strife[Updated at: 2021-01-12 01:34:52]
529 Internal Strife
Black rocks were scattered throughout the dim tunnel. This was the route to the crossroad intersection outpost. To prevent the other gamers from attacking them, Arthur and his companions didn’t make use of a Beetlemon. Instead, they rode on Darting Birds and used desolate tunnels that were infested with monsters.
As Arthur was very careful, they didn’t encounter any enemies. They only met some Dire Wolves and Spiders that couldn’t harm the experienced fighters. They were only a few gamers, but they were the best of the best.
They also dispatched large numbers of gamers to scout the surrounding areas. They walked for a day before arriving at the route to the crossroad intersection outpost. If they walked behind, there wouldn’t be any forks. It was a direct tunnel to the Dark Portal.
Under normal circumstances, this tunnel would be very dangerous. After much consideration, they decided to disguise themselves.
“Put on your masks. I spent a huge sum of money to purchase them from Winterfell,” NotWearingPants said as he distributed the masks to everyone. The masks that were created using Mana could change the wearer’s appearance for a short period of time, like the disguise techniques of martial arts novels. It was more mystical than in the novels, though, as the masks even changed one’s body, odor, and other characteristics.
“Is my mask the Gnome version?” BurningChestHair asked NotWearingPants while holding a mask. He put the mask on his face and became a Gnome. His original Orc body was changed to a Gnome body.
Everyone put on their masks and became another creature. Even the Little Fairy was transformed into a tall Orc. It was hard to figure out that the Orc was actually a Fairy.
The changed body wasn’t virtual. It felt like soft flesh upon touch. The effects were created by Mana.
“The effects of the mask only last for an hour. We have to enter the Dark Portal before the effects wear off. Otherwise, we’ll be exposed.”
NotWearingPants had transformed into a Gnome. They were able to recognize him because of the green symbols above his head.
“Only an hour? It’s not enough!”
BurningChestHair commented, and Peasant said, “It’s possible if we take the train.”
“Train? What train?” the Little Fairy asked.
“It’s a Beetlemon that travels the route between the Dark Portal and the crossroad intersection outpost. The Beetlemon comes every ten minutes. If we take the Beetlemon, we can arrive at the Dark Portal in 30 minutes. It’s faster than walking,” Sylvanas said.
Frangipani, who was following the gamers, remained quiet. After leaving Eternal Kingdom, he didn’t say a word. After completing his mission, he had no intention to interact. It was the Little Fairy who was most inquisitive.
They had to carry out their plan. The disguised group proceeded towards the crossroad intersection outpost. Everyone wore a tall hat to cover the green symbols above their heads. In this way, they solved the problem of the Little Fairy and Frangipani not having the green symbols above their heads.
It looked strange when everyone wore a tall hat. However, they weren’t the only ones with strange costumes. Many gamers wanted to look good. If they didn’t have good looking clothing, they would use dyes to beautify their weapons.
The plan was perfect. They entered the crossroad intersection outpost without much attention, then arrived at the Beetlemon stop.
There were hundreds of fully-armed gamers at the Beetlemon stop. They watched the other gamers intensely, looking for suspicious characters with green symbols that indicated the Pioneer Alliance or its allied Guild names. They would question suspicious gamers, though they couldn’t attack other gamers. Once suspicious gamers were found, they would arrange for gamers to follow them up the Beetlemon.
A Beetlemon could be fully packed with opposing Guild members. The Beetlemon was a safe zone, so they waited for it to arrive at the Dark Portal before launching their attack. They didn’t care whether their targets were innocent or not, if their targets were eligible for the Strange Encounter Mission, they would be attacked.
This aggressive behavior incurred the wrath of other Guilds and unaffiliated gamers. Changan City and its allied Guilds never considered the feelings of other gamers. The chairmen behind these Guilds were rich gamers who disregarded other people’s feelings. They used a lot of money to recruit a large number of members in all online games.
The Pioneer Alliance didn’t have any countermeasures, as the Beetlemon was a safe zone. Most of the Pioneer Alliance members and allied Guild members were already at the Dark Portal to protect Arthur’s group.
Arthur leaned on a wall as he surveyed the Beetlemon stop. Then he turned around and said, “We have to split up. If we have a large number, we might be prevented from boarding the Beetlemon.”
Since each of them was wearing a tall hat, it would be conspicuous. The enemies at the Beetlemon stop would definitely question them. If they refused to show the green symbols that were above their heads, they would be tagged. Arthur didn’t have a lot of members here. If he called for reinforcements, his identity would be busted, and the enemies at the Dark Portal would be on high alert.
Arthur wished to avoid conflict at all costs. It was better to use stealth to enter the Dark Portal.
Arthur’s group split into two. Arthur, NotWearingPants, Peasant, Sylvanas, BurningChestHair, Raintea, Frangipani, and the Little Fairy would be taking the same Beetlemon.
The other gamers would take the first Beetlemon and distract their enemies by refusing to remove their tall hats and making a fuss. Then Arthur and his companions would face less pressure.
When the distraction group arrived at the Beetlemon stop, they attracted the hostile gamers’ attention and were immediately surrounded. They broke into a shouting match. As they were in the safe zone, they were unable to fight. Then, all of them boarded a Beetlemon and left.
The Beetlemon stop that was previously crowded became empty, and the hostile gamers from Changan City and other enemy Guilds diminished in strength. Arthur and his companions immediately came out to take the next Beetlemon.
The second Beetlemon wasn’t as crowded. Most of the gamers were preparing for battle at the Dark Portal. Hence, there weren’t many gamers at the crossroad intersection outpost.
There were less than 20 gamers on the Second Beetlemon, allowing Arthur to heave a sigh of relief.
The Beetlemon’s driver squinted his eyes. Above his head were the words “Changan City Guild member”.
At the Dark Portal.
“Will Arthur and his companions pass through here?”
“I’m excited. It’s going to be a big event with so many people. Can we pillage equipment during the fight?”
“Selling equipment, selling equipment with Reputation Level 10 and above requirement. Blue Superior Equipment. Come and take a look. For all races and body sizes. We accept custom orders!”
“Tiny Sunflower Goldsmith Workshop is officially open. Please look for the Tiny Sunflower brand. Our gold coins are produced by hand and not bound to any gamer!”
“Are you kidding? Are you creating a gold coin black market?”
“How much is a gold coin? What’s the price? Do you sell Magic Stones? I want Magic Stones!”
“Bro, do you want Magic Stones? How many do you want? I have ten here.”
The gamers gathered at the crossroad intersection outpost were making a din as they tried to do business or recruit members for challenging the Instance Dungeon.
This was a daily occurrence for the gamers.
There were other NPCs at the Dark Portal, such as observers from other Dungeons or volunteers from Winterfell.
Eternal Kingdom had garnered a good reputation from its previous battles. Besides observers from other Dungeons, there were volunteers who wanted to help Eternal Kingdom fight the Surface World monsters. These were the self-sacrificing warriors who wanted to contribute to the peace of the Underworld.
The gamers didn’t show these warriors respect, treating them as Strange Encounter Mission NPCs. Some missions were provided by these volunteers since they didn’t have necessities after arriving at the Dark Portal. Sherlock didn’t prepare food or water for these volunteers. These supplies were provided by the gamers in exchange for Magic Stones.
When the gamers received Magic Stones, they served the volunteers like emperors. The gamers even helped the volunteers build houses so that they would stay at the Dark Portal permanently. After the Dark Portal was controlled by gamers of Eternal Kingdom, the gamers of Victoria City were unable to enter the Underworld via the connected portals. The Victorians could only teleport to the crossroad intersection outpost and enter the Underworld from there.
The gamers of Eternal Kingdom were in full control of the Dark Portal after the second Faction War.
A lot of Pioneer Alliance Guild members and allied Guild members had gathered at the Dark Portal. The Changan City Guild members and other opposing Guild members were also stationed here. Both sides had a few skirmishes, but they were very restrained in their behavior. The main reason was that they hadn’t figured each other out. Moreover, Arthur and his companions hadn’t appeared. If there was a major battle, Arthur would make use of the chaotic situation to smuggle the Little Fairy and Frangipani into the Dark Portal.
The Changan City Guild members were shrewd. That was what made Arthur and his companions worried.
However, Arthur had the initiative since he could decide when to arrive at the Dark Portal. If the Pioneer Alliance Guild members could defeat the Changan City Guild members before Arthur arrived, it would make it easy for Arthur and his companions to slip into the Dark Portal.
The only condition was that Arthur’s movements must not be discovered by the Changan City Guild members.
When Arthur closed in on the Dark Portal, the Pioneer Alliance members were harassing and taunting the Changan City members. However, they were unaffected. They even gave up their occupied area to let the Pioneer Alliance members take control of the Dark Portal.
It was as though the Changan Guild members already figured out their plan.
“Is our plan exposed?” Sylvanas, who was aboard the Beetlemon, asked her companions softly.
Peasant shook his head. He didn’t know what happened. Only Arthur was deep in thought. Then Arthur knocked on the board that separated the driver and passengers. He discovered a sleeping gamer in the driver’s cubicle.
The sleeping gamer was actually offline, which indicated he was contacting other gamers. The words “Changan City” were above his head.
He was a Guild member of Changan City.
“We’re exposed. Inform our members to prepare for battle!” Arthur shouted to his companions behind him. The other gamers on the Beetlemon looked at each other curiously. Arthur removed his tall hat and revealed the green symbols above his head, and the gamers on the Beetlemon spoke excitedly.
“We’re here to watch the show. We didn’t expect the protagonists to be beside us!”
“During the battle later on, please don’t kill me. I won’t take your equipment. I’m only watching!”
“Arthur Bro, I’m your fan. I’ll support you!”
The gamers on the Beetlemon shouted. However, Arthur didn’t care. He discovered the driver was a Changan City member, so he went offline to inform the other Guild members to get ready for battle, saying that they had been exposed. The Changan City members would be getting ready for battle at the Dark Portal.
The Changan City members must have detected Arthur’s disguise and seen through his plan. How else could they explain two groups of gamers with tall hats leaving the crossroad intersection outpost?
A Pioneer Alliance commander at the Dark Portal gathered the Guild members after receiving Arthur’s message. The Pioneer Alliance members occupied the Beetlemon stop, and the Changan City members surrounded the Pioneer Alliance members without attacking. The Changan City members were waiting for the Beetlemon to arrive.
Time passed, and the observers at the Dark Portal noticed the strange and tense situation.
The NPCs asked the gamers what happened, and the gamers told them what they knew excitedly.
Arthur and his companions received a Strange Encounter Mission to escort the Little Fairy out of the Underworld, and there was an opposing force waiting to stop Arthur and his companions from leaving with the Little Fairy.
In other words, there was internal strife in Eternal Kingdom.