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Chapter 219 – Gathering of Elites

    Chapter 219 - Gathering of Elites

    Sleepy Fox hesitated for some time. A 30% share of the stronghold was no insignificant sum. It was the same as asking him to carve out a large piece of his own flesh. However, Nie Yan wasn't the type of person who spoke carelessly. If he didn't have the confidence, he wouldn't speak such big words.

    「Can't you be a bit more generous? Do a friend a favour?」Sleepy Fox wryly smiled. Nie Yan was truly a ruthless negotiator. Holy Empire had put in all the painstaking effort of ranking up to a Level 5 guild in order to finally gain the qualifications to vye for the stronghold. It wasn't even Asskickers United's battle, yet they wanted to bite off almost a third of the profits in one fell swoop!

    「If you just asked for my personal help, I would've agreed, even for free. However, since you're requesting the aid of my guild, the interests of my guild brothers naturally takes precedence,」Nie Yan said in a sincere tone. As the guild leader, he couldn't concede the slightest inch in matters related to the guild's growth.

    「Hah, that much I understand.」Sleepy Fox deeply sighed. He was also a guild leader, so he understood the sentiment well. Sometimes, even if an action ran the risk of offending people, he would still force himself to go through with it for the sake of the numerous brothers in his guild. Nie Yan had already given his offer, and both sides didn't hold any apprehensions toward each other.

    「If you agree, I'll send 100 players over to you. If not, then so be it,」Nie Yan said. Even though 30% was a little excessive, he genuinely believed the brothers under his command were worth that price.

    「Let me give it some more thought. 30% isn't a small amount after all. Other than that, I want to further assess the strength of the people under you. Prove to me that they're worth what you're asking for,」Sleepy Fox replied. He couldn't simply take Nie Yan's words at face value, lest he be so foolish as to give away 30% of the profit for nothing. However, if the people under Nie Yan really were strong enough to help him seize the stronghold, then what harm was there in accepting the offer? The other 70% would still belong to him, and it was better than having nothing.

    「No problem. Wait for me to finish levelling, then I'll send them to the arena to show off their skills. You should bring a few people to watch,」Nie Yan replied. If they wanted to earn 30% of the profit, then it was only natural for his guild to bring out some real ability.

    「How much longer till you guys are done levelling?」

    「An hour at most.」

    「Alright, send me a whisper when you're done,」Sleepy Fox said. He wanted to see just how strong the players of Asskickers United were for Nie Yan to dare to boast that a hundred of them could ensure an 80% chance of successfully seizing the stronghold.

    「How goes the battle with Radiant Sacred Flame?」Nie Yan asked. The current scale of the conflict probably wasn't large enough for Holy Empire to receive any serious damage.

    「One word. Disastrous. We've already suffered over 50,000 casualties,」Sleepy Fox replied with a bitter smile. In order to secure the stronghold, both sides didn't hesitate to go all out, no matter the price they had to pay.

    「That much?」Nie Yan asked in shock.

    「We lost over 30,000 players in the previous battle, and another 20,000 or so from minor skirmishes that broke out in various places. However, Radiant Sacred Flame isn't fairing that much better either. They've lost at least 40,000 players,」 Sleepy Fox explained. Holy Empire had previously always held the advantage. The number of Radiant Sacred Flame players who died by their hands wasn't small. However, the crushing defeat they suffered caused the number of casualties on their side to soar and exceed that of Radiant Sacred Flame.

    「The difference in casualties between both sides actually isn't all that bad,」Nie Yan said. However, Holy Empire probably came out of the battle a little worse off. The loss in equipment definitely wasn't insignificant.

    「Not bad? It's a difference of over 10,000 players! I got to see some of the true strength of Radiant Sacred Flame in that battle. Those bastards really hid it well, like that thousand Berserker battalion. Those players were previously all members of Asura. However, the moment the battle started, all of them joined Radiant Sacred Flame! God knows if they still have any other branches in reserve.」Sleepy Fox said gloomily. This time, Radiant Sacred Flame had truly beaten him black and blue.

    Asura? Nie Yan recalled that Asura was currently a Level 2 guild with 20,000 members. Their strength wasn't bad. He wasn't all too familiar with many guilds in his past life. He didn't think he would reincarnate ten years into the past, let alone become the leader of one; otherwise, he would've researched this sort of behind the scenes information a bit more. He was much more knowledgeable on things like where to find the best grinding spots, but even then, he definitely didn't know everything.

    In the previous timeline, the fact that Holy Empire, Battle Crazed Alliance, and Sapphire Shrine couldn't do anything to Radiant Sacred Flame and Victorious Return wasn't without logic.

    Victorious Return and Radiant Sacred Flame were like the blade of a guillotine hanging over Nie Yan's neck. As soon as Cao Xu entered the playing field, the future would become very hard to predict. If Asskickers United was able to defeat Victorious Return and Radiant Sacred Flame, he would have a bright road ahead of him. However, if it went the other way around, the events of the previous timeline would very likely repeat themselves.

    I'll help Holy Empire seize the stronghold first, then decide what to do from there. Weakening Radiant Sacred Flame also benefits Asskickers United.

    「Let me focus on levelling for now. I'll whisper you when I return to Calore,」Nie Yan said after spotting Bladelight, Sun, and the others bringing in another wave of Mechanical Golems.

    「Alright,」Sleepy Fox said before hanging up the call.

    Nie Yan continued raining down Basic Magic Bombs on the square as Mechanical Golems collapsed to the ground in droves. Checking his bag, he counted over 80 Energized Crystal Fragments. Add those to the over 30 fragments in Tang Yao's possession, and they had enough for a Energized Crystal Core. The revival of Tang Yao's Arcane Fairy was also important in helping Holy Empire seize the stronghold. When Tang Yao would find out they could finally resurrect his Arcane Fairy, he was absolutely brimming with joy. Pair this to the fact that he had just recently obtained a Slaughter Fiend Medallion, and it could even be said that he was as pleased as punch.

    Nie Yan informed Guo Huai he would be needing the elites of the guild, the members who formed Asskickers United's core, and asked him to make a selection. He definitely couldn't allow Sleepy Fox to look down on them.

    The number of strong players in Asskickers United was as numerous as the trees in a forest. Almost 70% of all the top-notch elites in Calore belonged to them, so picking out a hundred was like searching for sand at the beach, it couldn't be any easier. Holy Empire and Radiant Sacred Flame were currently evenly matched, but the people Nie Yan planned to dispatch to the battle would definitely greatly tip the scale in Holy Empire's favour. However, the enemy still couldn't be underestimated. Radiant Sacred Flame would definitely be able to find many strong players as well.

    After clearing two more waves, Young Seven finally levelled up to Level 32, reaching their goal faster than originally expected.

    "We're returning to Calore. Holy Empire is waiting for us," Nie Yan said to the group members after they picked up all the drops from the ground.

    Everyone activated Return Scrolls and returned to Calore. When they arrived back at the guild headquarters, Nie Yan deposited their harvest from this trip into the treasury. With the sudden influx of new Level 40 equipment, the guild members were given another shock.

    "I've already sent the players. I kept everything under wraps by reserving the entire arena," Guo Huai said. The meeting of the two guilds absolutely couldn't be leaked.

    "How much was the reservation fee?"

    "Not much, only 5 gold," Guo Huai replied. In order to maintain secrecy, it was necessary to spend this sort of money.

    "Just send the bill over to Sleepy Fox. Let him pay for the reservation fee. If we can save a little, then why not?" Nie Yan said. There was no need to act polite by paying for the arena reservation fee. Besides, this exhibition between the two guilds was only happening because Sleepy Fox cast doubts on the strength of the players from Asskickers United.

    "..." Guo Huai had no words to describe Nie Yan at this moment. He didn't bat an eyelid when he spent 500 gold on levelling. However, in a major affair such as the experts of two powerhouses duelling, he wasn't even willing to fork up 5 gold, shamelessly wanting Sleepy Fox to shoulder the cost instead.

    "Alright, if you say so... I'll let him know."

    Guo Huai could imagine just what kind of expression Sleepy Fox would have on his face when he received the bill. He probably wouldn't know whether to laugh or cry. However, before long, he received 5 gold from Sleepy Fox through the mail without complaint. It seemed everything between Nie Yan and Sleepy Fox was pretty cut and dry.

    "If we don't owe the other side anything, then we shouldn't have to pay a single cent. Especially with the guild leaders from the large guilds, there's absolutely no need to be courteous to them. It's not like they're lacking in money anyway," Nie Yan laughed before patting Guo Huai's shoulders.

    Guo Huai learned a new lesson from Nie Yan.

    Nie Yan brought  Bladelight, Undying Scoundrel, Young Seven, and the others with him to the arena.

    Calore's arena was a round building that resembled a colosseum. It had a wide open space in the center encompassed by countless spectator seats. It was capable of accommodating several thousand players. When there were no events going on in the city, reserving the entire place cost 5 gold which wasn't too steep of a price.

    Nie Yan's group entered the arena. Close to a hundred players were already there waiting. They belonged to Asskickers United. Nie Yan saw several familiar faces: Tuoba Time, Very Forthright, Natural Fiend, One Strike Vow, and many others were all present. With their skills, they naturally ranked in the top hundred of the guild.

    When One Strike Vow spotted Bladelight among Nie Yan's group, she went over to greet them.

    One Strike Vow wore light blue leather armour which perfectly hugged the contours of her body. She was charming and elegant but didn't lack any sex appeal. In terms of looks, she wasn't any inferior to Yao Yao or Yu Lan. Add in her potential to become a Shadow Dancer, and it was no wonder she was worshipped by so many as a goddess in the previous timeline. Her gaze swept everyone in the group before finally falling on Bladelight. The two smiled at each other.

    An affair? When Undying Scoundrel and a few others watched this scene play out, they couldn't help but feel their hearts turn sour. This beautiful maiden only spared them a simple glance before focusing her attention on Bladelight. She even smiled at him, and it was the affectionate kind too! Even a fool could spot that she was in love!

    "Boss Bladelight, is she your girlfriend?" several members asked.

    One Strike Vow's face immediately blushed red, but she didn't offer up an explanation.

    Bladelight faintly smiled before shaking his head. "No, we're just really good friends."

    Disappointment flashed across One Strike Vow's face but only for the briefest instant before resuming her brilliant smile.

    "We're like brothers and sisters."

    Like brothers and sisters? Everyone showed confused expressions.

    Nie Yan could actually see through the type of relationship they had. It was a pity that Bladelight couldn't tell that One Strike Vow had feelings for him. However, these sorts of matters were best resolved by the two parties involved.

    "Boss, you guys finally arrived." Natural Fiend and many others came up to greet Nie Yan.

    "Hey, buddy! You're here!" Forthright's loud voice rang out, instantly drowning out the others in the crowd.

    Tuoba Time revealed a lazy smile.

    There were one hundred elite players!

    Nie Yan greeted all of them. As he looked over each of their faces, he felt a sense of heroic spirit bursting from his chest. This was a galaxy of talent! With so many elites gathered together, why would he worry about being defeated by Victorious Return and Radiant Sacred Flame?
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