The cave was still and silent.
Viktor remained immersed in the task of checking his documents in the library. He completely ignored the matter of the intruders.
There were so many documents for him to deal with, each one concerning huge amounts of money, so he had to pay close attention.
Oh, the Broughwell Manor's rent is overdue for two weeks? It's time to teach them a harsh lesson then! And Princess Annie's entourage will pass through River Cove next month? Better tell my brothers to keep their swords then, we wouldn't want to vex her royal highness, after all. Ever since the disaster in Gladstone happened, so many people are moving south now, hehe, what an opportunity for me to earn some gold coins.
Viktor was so immersed that he dealt with each document swiftly and efficiently. He liked the feeling of power he got by holding the fate of others in his hands; he didn't find any of it dull or uninteresting.
He didn't know how much time had passed when suddenly he heard a sound from outside his study. It was the sound of hurried footsteps.
The footsteps are unstable, they must be terrified, Viktor deduced from the sound of the footsteps.
From outside, the voice of his second-in-command Collins was heard, "Leader, we have a problem!"
Viktor was startled, he couldn't make a response. The realization dawned on him as he was able to put two and two together. He linked the problem Collins just mentioned with the intrusion into the cove earlier.
How could those few people ever be a threat to him? Unless, if it were a Level-6 Warrior. But what would a Level-6 Warrior have to do with a small fry like him?
"Speak," Viktor finally managed to say.
Viktor swiftly put down his documents and opened a drawer in the room. In it was a pure black, lightweight, leather armor, the quality of which was very special. Its surface was shrouded in a black fog. As long as he remained in the dark, he could completely disappear into his surroundings and never be found.
This was Catskin Armor, a magical gear from his lordship who gave it to him as a gift.
Viktor quickly took off the normal clothes he had on and began to put on the powerful Catskin Armor. Collins walked into the room and said in a flurry, "There are four of them coming in from the cove. No one was left from the cove to give any message or information. Even in the cave the bodyguards dropped one by one, none of them returned alive."
"Grinth is... he's dead. There's a Magician amid the intruders," Collins's voice was shaky as he spoke.
The intruders were just too quick, in fact, they were so quick that no one survived to even warn the others. Even the message Collins received was a bit vague.
"What? A Magician?" Viktor was surprised. For the first time in his life, he thought of escaping rather than staying to fight. Magicians were too mysterious; he wouldn't dare face such an opponent.
He didn't know why a Magician would bother him, he had always been careful with them. He never bothered the lands belonging to the East Cove Higher Magic Academy, so how did things come to this?
He had no idea, but he knew that the one thing he should do now is to escape and save his skin.
Putting on the headgear of the Catskin Armor, Viktor hurriedly packed up the documents on his table. There were too many of them, he couldn't take them all with him, so he chose a few important ones.
He put the documents into a knapsack and carried it on his back. Then he grabbed the crystal that the special guest previously had thrust upon him. This would go with him too.
That important guest was a Magician too. He would never dare keep that Magician waiting.
Apart from the precious gemstones and most of his possessions, Viktor also packed up a dagger that emanated a black aura. It was another piece of magic equipment of his, a special weapon that was a gift from Grinth who had spent a lot of money on it.
He slid the dagger into a pocket of the leather armor on his leg, then turned to Collins and said, "Let's go, we're getting out of here."
"What about our brothers?" Collins repeatedly, gulping anxiously.
"There's nothing I can do about them, it's too late."
They were just rogues and bandits anyway, with money, he could easily hire new ones. And money was not a problem for him!
Collins nodded and silently followed Viktor's footsteps.
But the two had underestimated the intruders' speed. No more than 10 seconds passed since they got out of the study, and as they walked by a long and narrow passageway in the cave Viktor had no choice but to halt.
In front of them, a giant brute whose whole body was covered in a glowing reflective aura was blocking their way. Behind the brute were four others: one was a swordswoman, one an Archer, and the other two were a pair of identical twins that looked like thin and frail young men. One was Link and the other his avatar, though Viktor did not figure this out yet.
Damn it! They can't have been this quick! Viktor creased his brows.
The intruders were all standing there right in front of him.
The Archer Gildern couldn't hold in his laughter when he saw Viktor, "Would you look at that, aren't we lucky to get here before the little mouse burrows his way out again?"
Viktor and Collins were both carrying knapsacks on their backs, and their footsteps were distressed. Anyone who saw them could tell that they were trying to escape.
Collins stuttered out, "Leader, what should we do now?"
Viktor said nothing. He wasn't even sure how to save his own skin, let alone try to save other people.
Viktor's eyes stared fixedly at the intruders' movements, he took a couple steps backward until he reached a pitch-dark corner. In the thick of the darkness, the effects of Catskin Armor worked, and his body completely blended into it as if disappearing into thin air.
Collins, realizing that his leader had just vanished, immediately understood that he was abandoned. As he saw the intruders slowly closing in, he dropped to his knees, and begged, "Please don't kill me! Please! I don't want to die!"
"How pathetic," Lucy said with disgust.
Gildern drew his bow and prepared to shoot the little coward, but Link stayed his hand and said, "Let him live. We'll dig Viktor's secrets from him."
At first, Link thought he should keep Viktor alive, but now, he seemed too dangerous alive. It's best to just kill him on the spot!
The mercenaries' eyes shone. Yes, of course, this coward looked like he could be Viktor's second-in-command, he must know all the secret spots this cunning fox hid his treasures.
Jacker walked up to Collins, and with one hand he hit Collins neck. The bandit immediately fainted.
"Viktor's gone." Lucy's brows furrowed.
"There was something strange about the black leather armor he wore, I'm sure he must be hiding in the dark. Be careful, everyone. This Viktor is a dangerous Assassin," Link cautioned everyone.
Jacker immediately ducked down and walked a few paces backward, until he reached Link.
"Protect Mr. Link," he urged in a low voice. As a mercenary, he knew how big a threat an Assassin was to a Magician's safety.
Lucy and Gildern surrounded Link and his avatar.
In the pitch-black darkness.
Viktor slowly paced around, his eyes were fixed intently on the intruders under the dim candlelight, especially the pair of Magicians surrounded in the middle.
These people had average skills, except that one brute who was a bit more powerful. They must've relied on the two Magicians' power to break into my lair so quickly. They don't seem to have any protective gear on, now's my chance!
Viktor had been cornered into a dead end. He had no way to escape, the only way was to fight to the death.
If I could only kill the Magicians, these three stupid mercenaries wouldn't be able to keep up with me. I'm sure I can escape from them. And once I'm out, I'll definitely remember them!
The moment he escaped, he would put a price on the heads of those three. He was sure that in no time they would be brought to him.
As Viktor was scheming he turned around quickly and looked out for an opening to attack.
But he underestimated the Magician's power. To put it more accurately, he underestimated Link, who was not as weak as he seemed.
Link might have an appearance of a thin, frail young man, but that was only his camouflage.
Once he discovered that Viktor had escaped in darkness, Link spent one Omni Point on a new spell.
Effects: Creates a light orb as bright as five candles. Lasts for an hour.
A Level-0 spell costs two Mana points and each spell was enough to light the passageway as bright as five candles. The Mana left in Link's body wasn't much, but he still had a bottle of Mana potion that he brought with him.
Decisively, he drank the potion, replenished his Mana and learned the spell of Illumination at the same time. Then he started to cast the spell.
The spell was the default version. The casting speed was 0.1 seconds. Link cast ten times without hesitation, and on the passageway, he would place one light orb every six feet. In dark corners, he would place two light orbs.
In an instant, the dark passageway was brightly lit by Illumination.
Darkness was an Assassin's safe lair. Once that darkness was eliminated, the Assassin then lost his biggest strength and advantage.
In a dark corner, now lit by Illumination, Viktor who was clad in black leather armor lurked. As the light hit him, he stood there motionless, completely bewildered.
How could an Assassin fight if he wasn't able to sneak up on his opponents?
In that moment, Viktor was like a maiden being snatched out of her clothes in the middle of a busy market. He was shocked and had no idea what step to take next.
"Haha, a tiny mouse under the sunlight!" Gildern laughed. He nocked an arrow and shot it towards Viktor.
Jacker sprang into motion towards Viktor, but Lucy cautiously stood by Link, just in case.
Ding! Clang! Bang! "Ahhh!"
Chaos ensued, and facing Jacker and Gildern's joint attack, Viktor struggled to counter two blows. His body was hit by Jacker's iron shield, Lucy grabbed the opportunity and stabbed Viktor's heart with her sword.
In his cries of agony, Viktor floundered around like a kite without its tail, stumbling and coughing up blood simultaneously. He managed to flee for about twenty feet, then with a thud he hit the passageways' stone wall, and fell to the ground like a bag of bones.
He was no longer breathing.
Assassins simply were no match for Warriors. If nothing else, the weapons they used were of different levels. One used lightweight daggers, while the other used heavy and sturdy war hammers and iron shields. What's more, it was two against one. The fact that Viktor could delay his death after the joint attack was very impressive.
Link had noticed the Mission Complete notification in the interface, and he had received the Omni Points rewards. He now had 13 Omni points.
"That's it? It's over?" The Flamingo Band of Mercenaries couldn't believe it. The whole process of the mission had gone so smoothly and easily that compared to the other missions that they'd undertaken, this one was like a vacation.
"No! It's not over yet!"
Link had thought that the mission was over too, but he saw a black crystal roll out from Viktor's bag. The black crystal was in a pool of Viktor's blood; thick black clouds were emanating from it.
The moment this black cloud appeared, the temperature in the cave passageway plummeted immediately, Link's Illumination light orb dimmed significantly too, just like a flickering candlelight.
What's more terrifying was how life-like this black cloud seemed. It flowed into Viktor's nostrils, and Viktor's body began to shake slightly.
"What the hell is that?" Gildern cried out in terror.
A dead man had started to move again, it seemed things were taking a turn for the worst!
Just in that moment, Link received a notification for a new mission.
Mission Activated: Eliminate the Occult!
Mission Details: Kill the Occult Viktor.
Mission Rewards: 30 Omni Points.
The higher the Omni Point reward, the more difficult the mission would be. If killing just one target could get him 30 Omni Points, Link shuddered to think of how powerful this Occult Viktor actually was.
Even Link was considerably shaken!
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