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Chapter 386 - Earl Kelfield’s Worries

    Chapter 386 - Earl Kelfield's Worries

    Execution was a Warrior exclusive skill that could instantly kill a target once their health fell below a certain threshold. At the higher ranks it reached upwards of 10%. But the success rate was exceedingly low against Elites and Lords.

    The Blackett Grizzly dropped two pieces of Sub Legendary-grade equipment, Paddock's Blazing Sword and Langdon's Necklace of False Death.

    Paddock's Blazing Sword (Sub Legendary)

    Requirements: 630 Strength, 350 Dexterity

    Properties: Attack 830-936, Strength +50, Critical +20, 10% chance to deal 300% Critical Damage, Ignore Level +11

    Blazing Cleave: Deal 150% Fire Damage and inflict an additional 100 Burn Damage every second for 10 seconds. Cooldown: 20 minutes.

    Blazing Sword: Shroud your sword in flames, converting 50% of your attack damage to Fire Damage. Duration: 3 minutes. Cooldown: 1 day.

    Restrictions: Warriors; can only be equipped by members of the Righteous Faction.

    Nie Yan shared the stats of Paddock's Blazing Sword in chat. "Whoever wants this sword, start bidding."

    "50,000 merit points!"

    "90,000 merit points!"

    ...

    Edgeless snatched up Paddock's Blazing Sword in the end with a final bid of 610,0000 merit points, which was then evenly distributed among all the expedition members. Since there were more than 5,000 players, everyone received roughly 120 merit points.

    Nie Yan examined the other piece of Sub Legendary-grade equipment.

    Langdon's Necklace of Fake Death (Sub Legendary)

    Requirements: 50 Focus, 50 Willpower

    Description: Langdon was a legendary Thief who faced numerous godly existences. This was his necklace, with which he escaped from countless dangers.

    Properties: Defense 52-56, Night Vision +11, Dark Awareness +9, Cloaking +30, chance to nullify Mind Magic

    Fake Death: Reset all aggro by entering into a state of suspended animation. This skill is only effective against creatures with low intelligence.

    Restrictions: Thief; can only be equipped by a member of the Righteous Faction.

    Langdon's Necklace of Fake Death was definitely one of the better necklaces out there, granting Night Vision, Dark Awareness, and a useful skill.

    Nie Yan decided to keep the necklace for himself, then gave every expedition member 200 merit points.

    He unequipped his Necklace of Deception and stored it in his bag until he needed it. After which he equipped Langdon's Necklace of Fake Death.

    Even though the Blackett Grizzly only dropped two pieces of Sub Legendary-grade equipment, one less compared to the previous timeline, he was still satisfied with this outcome.

    Nie Yan had Bladelight, Smoke Stub, and the others begin distributing the merit points. Excluding the compensation for the fallen, every member received roughly 1,000 merit points.

    As the value of gold gradually depreciated, the value of merit points rose. Currently, 100 merit points was equal to 1 gold in Asskickers United. In a sense, every member had received 10 gold.

    The expedition team searched the remaining areas of the Cripps Stronghold and discovered a few more treasure chests.

    Nie Yan began restoring the various structures in the Cripps Stronghold, first by connecting its transfer point to the other strongholds and Calore. The more than 10-meter tall outer walls of the stronghold sprang back to life, and were reinforced with several dozen smaller walls. He placed the guild headquarters right next to the Magic Tower and also repaired a large number of the residential houses.

    The Cripps Stronghold was equivalent to a medium-sized city. With many decent levelling spots nearby, Nie Yan felt confident this place would only become more popular in the future. He designated a large stretch of land as the downtown area. He would have Bird and the others come over and start building the shops here.

    As for the real world business district, Nie Yan planned to leave it to the Dragonsoar Financial Group to develop.

    A guild provided salaries and other benefits to assist in their players' growth to create a force powerful enough to capture a stronghold. They would receive gold and credits by handing over the stronghold's real world business district to a large financial group. As the number of strongholds under their control increased, so too would their income. Thanks to the increased benefits they could offer, their players would grow stronger, allowing them to capture even more strongholds. This was a virtuous cycle.

    After selling the Cripps Stronghold's real world business district to the Dragonsoar Financial Group, the benefits of the players in Asskickers United would rise by yet another level.

    Nie Yan spent roughly 100,000 gold repairing the Cripps Stronghold to make it look at least somewhat presentable. It was no longer the run-down ruins of before.

    The players from Asskickers United started flowing into the Cripps Stronghold, instantly making the place a lot livelier.

    The Cripps Stronghold had yet to open shops. The residential area was also lacking. It still needed to be improved bit by bit. However, there was currently no one in Calore capable of posing a threat to Asskickers United, so Nie Yan could take his time developing the Cripps Stronghold.

    News of the Cripps Stronghold being successfully cleared spread like wildfire, along with the information of there being a Magic Tower, which greatly piqued the interest of every Mage. The Magic Tower in Calore was too lacking. The number of spells that could be learned there was low, and none of them were especially good.

    Membership in Asskickers United soon became the goal of every Mage. Every one of them wished they could enter the Magic Tower in the Cripps Stronghold after finishing their class advancement.

    Nie Yan placed restrictions on the Magic Tower, requiring non-guild members to pay a fee. Players from Holy Empire and Sapphire Shrine only needed to pay 300 gold while ordinary players needed to pay 3,000.

    As the number of class advanced Mages grew, the Magic Tower in the Cripps Stronghold would become an important source of income for Asskickers United.

    After settling all of his obligations in the Cripps Stronghold, Nie Yan took a stroll around the place. The wide streets, the rows upon rows of buildings and shops, although there weren't any business set up yet, he could envision the flourishing future of this place. The Magic Tower situated at the center of the stronghold became an ever present landmark. Aside from this, branches of the Starry Night Potion Shop, Starry Night General Shop, Starry Night Equipment Shop, and so on had already been built.

    As for the real-world business district, a representative from the Dragonsoar Financial Group had just arrived to handle the transaction.

    Asskickers United had profited immensely from capturing the Cripps Stronghold. The players in the guild were brimming with smiles. All of them understood the significance of an Intermediate Stronghold. They had just received an announcement that the guild was planning to raise the salaries of some 2,000 long-time members to 10,000 credits, while the other members also received an increase to their benefits. This bill was being footed by the Dragonsoar Financial Group. However, this was nothing compared to the profit they would earn from the Cripps Stronghold's real world business district.

    Nie Yan left the remainder of the matters related to the Cripps Stronghold to Guo Huai.

    Asskickers United's sucess made the other large guilds in the Viridian Empire turn green with envy. Alliance of Mages and Divine Protectors also started mobilizing troops to tackle the Intermediate Strongholds in the territories of their own respective cities. Asskickers United's quick clear of the Cripps Stronghold gave them the illusion that clearing an Intermediate Stronghold was a cakewalk, a mistake they would sorely pay for in the near future.

    Nie Yan checked the time. There were still two hours before the server shut down. He made plans with Xie Yao to celebrate her birthday today. She had invited many people over for her birthday party, and he naturally couldn't be absent. Given her background, the party would surely be grand.

    Nie Yan glanced at his quest log.

    Quest Progress: Talk to Earl Kelfield. He might have some information regarding the Tyrant Abak's Set.

    The time limit on the quest was quickly running out. He had to start it soon or it would disappear forever.

    "I'll leave the Cripps Stronghold to you guys. I need to go do a quest," Nie Yan said to Bladelight and the others. The important work related to the Cripps Stronghold was already handled by him personally. All that was left to do was to watch over things.

    "No problem. Don't worry. With us here, there'll be no trouble," Bladelight assured. Everything in the Cripps Stronghold was basically settled. There were only trivial matters still in need of attention.

    Nie Yan bid farewell to Bladelight and the others and teleported back to Calore to stock up on supplies.

    He rode out of Calore's northern entrance on his Faulkner Warhorse.

    About half an hour north of Calore was the Marcos Mountain. Situated at the base was an ancient castle built during the Era of Shared Governance. At some point, it was bought and renovated by Earl Kelfield, who planted a beautiful garden around the walls.

    Calore's Mercenary Association gave a quest related to Earl Kelfield called 'Earl Kelfield's Worries'.

    The description of the quest went roughly like this:

    Earl Kelfield hasn't been able to sleep peacefully for the past two months. Skeletons are frequently emerging in his garden, destroying the tranquility of his home. The earl has already lost three servants to these vile undead. Brave adventurer, are you willing to help the earl get rid of these damned skeletons?

    Skeletons: 0/30

    This was a fairly simple quest. However, the reward was quite generous. After completing it, the player would receive 1 gold. This was quite a lot to ordinary players.
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