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Chapter 186 – Holy Priest, Shadow Priest

    Chapter 186 - Holy Priest, Shadow Priest

    A certain problem weighed on Nie Yan's mind. He had never heard of a player called Black Hell before, not even in his past life. So he was in the dark regarding the opponent's strengths and weaknesses.

    Reportedly, the Chapter of Harmony was meant for Priests. It could substantially boost the effects of all healing skills, something which was particularly useful for Holy Priests. As for Shadow Priests, it could also enhance the effects of curses  It was originally hidden in the Level 25 map, Murky Quagmire.

    The Murky Quagmire was an extremely inhospitable map. It was the perfect breeding ground for Sludge Slimes-living beings made out of toxic goop, highly resistant to physical attacks, and reeked of an awful stench. It was also filled with poisonous gases, so players would take constant damage as soon as they entered. The only reliable method of preventing yourself from getting inflicted with the poisoned status was to regularly receive blessings from a Priests. Antidotes were also effective, but they had limited durations, not to mention the cost. As such, a party of five levelling here would generally consist of at least two Priests. Paladins could explore the map by themselves with some difficulty, but it was impossible for other classes.

    On top of all that, the Chapter of Harmony was said to be hidden in the heart of the Murky Quagmire. That was the region where the poisonous gases were the thickest. Even Nie Yan didn't know what lurked in there.

    This sort of place wasn't somewhere a group could explore, unless half of its members consisted of Priests. But if that was the case, who would deal the damage?

    Even if someone organized an expedition to explore the map, the group size couldn't exceed five players. At least two of the members had to be Priests while the stats requirements for everyone were very high.

    The person who retrieved the Chapter of Harmony ultimately belonged to one of the following classes: Holy Priest, Shadow Priest, and Paladin. Black Hell had a very low chance of being a Paladin. It was more likely that he played Holy Priest or Shadow Priest. After all, the Chapter of Harmony didn't have much of an effect on classes aside from the Priest, while only the Chapter of Justice corresponded to the Paladin class.

    With the scope narrowing down by a lot, Nie Yan tried hard to recall the properties of the Chapter of Harmony. Just in case it possessed some formidable abilities, he would be somewhat better prepared.

    The first skill of the Chapter of Harmony was called Circle of Healing. It could instantly replenish the health of all team members in a certain range. It was naturally extremely useful in team battles. The second skill was called Empower Status Magic. It would bolster the effects of all blessings, and all curses would transform into something much more terrifying.

    Therefore, the Chapter of Harmony was also known as the Trial Of Light and Darkness.

    The Chapter of Harmony was fully deserving of being one of the best items for Priests.

    Nie Yan remembered that the owner of the Chapter of Harmony in the previous time was a Priest called Black Heaven, one of the Seven Archbishops. He was said to have joined Sapphire Shrine later on, becoming their Chief Priest.

    Black Hell, Black Heaven...? These names are pretty close. Are they related to each other?

    It seemed the opposing side didn't consist of only a single person. The situation had become a lot more complicated. A powerful Priest could easily rope in a bunch of people. Those who were good at socializing would usually find themselves with many friends the moment they entered the game.

    Nie Yan rubbed his temples. The only reason he had put off retrieving the Chapter of Harmony for so long that he had no way of setting foot into the Murky Quagmire, nor had he ever been there in his past life. So he was completely unfamiliar with the map. Even if he wanted to go, he'd still have to bring a top-notch Priest like Leader Young Seven along with him. However, this undoubtedly entailed its own risks. A single Priest entering a Level 25, who knows what sort of trouble might pop up?

    Any Priest that could reach that rank of Archbishop was an extremely rare talent! In the stronghold sieges several years from now, an Archbishop would transform into a support machine of war. A single blessing could sharply increase the stats of a crowd of players. A single group heal could restore a crowd of low-health players back to full again. They grew even more perverse after learning the Divine Resurrection skill. It could revive a player without any restrictions or penalties!

    Although the normal Revive skill could also bring a fallen comrade back to life, it wasn't free from drawbacks. Some players would lose experience. Others would revive in a weakened state. However, Divine Resurrection could bring players back from the dead to full fighting strength! Of course, the skill also had its own limits such as a three-day cooldown for example. Even the fastest variations still need a full day to come off cooldown.

    At this point in the timeline, Black Heaven hadn't joined Sapphire Shrine yet. He should still be in the Dark Hero guild. If he could pull Black Heaven over to his side, it would be largely beneficial to Asskickers United. However, with the emergence of the Chapter of Harmony, both sides would have no choice but to stand at opposite ends.

    Nie Yan couldn't help but let out a dejected sigh. Ahh, an Archbishop... what a pitty!

    Out of the Seven Archbishops, Whispering and Leader Young Seven were already in Nie Yan's camp, and Black Haven might still join Sapphire Shrine later on. As for the four others, he heard that Guo Huai had been in talks with one, but he didn't know if they came to an agreement or not.

    In the previous timeline, one of the Seven Archbishops had joined Sapphire Shrine, another was in Bloodthirst Blades, and three more were in the game organization, Azure Falling Sky. The remaining two were solo players. Even Victorious Return and Holy Empire didn't have a single Archbishop. It was regrettable, but naturally, they had plenty of Bishops.

    If Asskickers United had one Archbishop in the future, then they would hold a significant advantage over others. But what if they had two...? Well, one could only imagine.

    In any case, Nie Yan could afford not to offend Black Heaven or Black Hell, then he would try as much as possible to do so. If he could take out something to trade-or purchase the Chapter of Harmony, then that would be the best outcome.

    Nie Yan sent Black Hell a message.

    The receiver has blocked all incoming messages outside of team or party chat.

    During specific moments when a player didn't want to be interrupted or to avoid harassment, they might close off their chat or create a blacklist, so they wouldn't receive messages from others.

    Black Hell had closed off his chat. It seemed Nie Yan's plan of negotiating with the opposition had gone up in smoke.

    If they ended up meeting in battle, then there was nothing he could do about it.

    ...

    Near the Link transport point. Here was the most flourishing town around Calore. Thanks to there being quite a few high-level maps in the vicinity of the town, many professional players opened up shops here.

    The land here wasn't expensive as it was in Calore. You only needed to spend 10 silver to purchase a small plot. Opening a shop didn't cost much money either. With a few people scrounging up some money together, it was still possible. A good deal of players set up their shops here, making the commerce in the town prosper in an unprecedented manner.

    The streets flowed with a steady stream of players. As two Priests-Black Heaven and Black Hell-strolled around the town, they were frequently approached by other players looking to form a party, but they would always bluntly refuse.

    Black Heaven was a Holy Priest with the somewhat immature appearance of a seventeen to eighteen-year-old boy. He wore a pure white robe with a golden falcon stitched to the side of his collar. This was the symbol of the Temple of Light. It signified that he had learned Templar Magic for his class. This sort of Priest was greatly sought after by the large guilds.

    As for Black Hell, he was a twenty-six to twenty-seven-year-old youth. He wore an ash-grey robe with the symbol of a viper embroidered to his cuffs using dark golden silk, clearly indicating his status as a Shadow Priest!

    Shadow Priests were the least played class in the Viridian Empire. They were proficient in curses and crowd control magic on top of being able to heal. However, a Shadow Priest's healing ability was noticeably lacklustre in comparison to their pure support-focused counterpart. In terms of outputting damage, they were decent, but they couldn't match up to a Mage's. Of course, skilled Shadow Priests were very powerful. Only, the difficulty of mastering this class was simply too high. On top of being good at casting curses, crowd control, and healing, they were also responsible for dealing damage. If the player didn't have over several dozen skills in their skill bar and couldn't use them smoothly and skillfully, they would find it very hard to contend against other classes. The Shadow Priest class Black Hell chose was just that kind of rarely picked class.

    "Big Brother, who do you think that Nirvana Flame is? He was actually able to get a hold of three chapters from the Book of Order..." Black Heaven asked. While the two of them were training in the Murky Quagmire, they had accidently stumbled into the centermost region. They were unable to use Return Scrolls there. Only after narrowly escaping death numerous times in a row were they able to retrieve the Chapter of Harmony. He had been instantly killed and sent back, while Black Hell was luckily able to get away because he had happened to obtain a Potion of Nothingness previously from running a dungeon on Specialist.

    Yet that Nirvana Flame was surprisingly in possession of three chapters!

    After obtaining the Chapter of Harmony, Black Hell suddenly found that three chapters from the Book of Order were actually on a Thief called Nirvana Flame! He had to admit that such a matter possessed an irresistible attraction. If he could kill Nirvana Flame, he would be able to get another three chapters at once!

    "From what I could dig up, he seems to be part of Asskickers United. He's pretty famous as well. He definitely also knows our location." Black Hell frowned. Although he could be considered a veteran in Dark Hero, the guild had already declined considerably. Even when organizing a team for dungeon runs, he was forced to recruit players from outside the guild. How could such a guild contend against the newly emerged powerhouse, Asskickers United? Whether they could even protect their own chapter was another problem to consider. In a one versus one, he feared absolutely no one. However, if Asskickers United sent a squadron of Thieves to surround and snatch the Chapter of Harmony from him, there was nothing he could really do to resist.

    "So he's one of the bosses of that guild? That's going to be a little troublesome..." Black Heaven said worriedly. If Nirvana Flame sent a group of Thieves to watch them every day, they would definitely collapse under the pressure. Against the might of a guild, they were undoubtedly vulnerable. "I hear they have a feud with Victorious Return?"

    "What about it? Are you suggesting we seek asylum from Victorious Return?" Black Hell raised his eyebrow. Although he had received invitations from multiple guilds, he had never once entertained the thought of leaving Dark Hero.

    Seeing Black Hell's sharp eyes gaze over at him, Black Heaven hurriedly lowered his head.

    "We absolutely cannot let anyone know that we have the Chapter of Harmony. Our only option is to find and kill him, then take away the three chapters from his corpse. That way he'll have no way of locating us anymore. If worst comes to worst, we'll pool together 2 gold and use it to run away to another city; then we'll figure out what to do from there," Black Hell said. If they could intercept Nirvana Flame in the wilderness, he had absolute confidence in taking him down in a one versus one situation.

    "But he's in the Light Monastery," Black Heaven said. That was a Level 30 area. Only large expedition groups would go to such a place.

    "We'll just have to wait until after he comes out," Black Hell replied. They could only patiently wait for an opportunity. Before then, they couldn't stay in the same spot for too long. Otherwise, they'd be surrounded by Asskicker United players.
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