~ Chapter 137: The den of assassins (Part 2) ~
So they came... I thought and then listened to see what they were planning to do.
With my Magic Armor up and wearing the enchanted clothes Illsyore made for me, my opponent had to be someone of Over Supreme rank just to scratch me. Even then, it would have been doubtful if they could finish me off in one hit. Such opponents would attack me with everything they had and most likely annihilate this entire city in the process of doing so.
Thus, I waited patiently for my prey to sneak inside my room.
“Ssh! She's sleeping.” whispered one of the two who entered through the window.
Are they really part of Phantom Rage? They aren't even communicating through hand signs to keep everything as quiet as possible. I thought.
The door was unlocked from outside and with a low creak it was pushed open. Three individuals entered the room. They were looking at my bed.
“This is her. The new target that came in the city.” said one of them.
“What a foolish woman to come here alone.” another one snorted.
“So who is she?” someone asked.
“Who cares? Soon enough, she'll just be one of the many slaves of the Masaru Vasca.” the fifth one said.
A slave? Hm. I thought and then I opened my eyes.
The one closest to me noticed my change, but before he could say a word, I got up and grabbed him by the neck. I twisted my hand and a crack was heard. Upon releasing my grip, his body fell limp to the floor. In the blink of an eye, I then thrust my fist into the chest of the one on the left. The impact broke several of his ribs and caused inner bleeding, but I caught his body by the leg, stopping him from smashing into the wall. Jumping from my bed, I then landed with my toes on his neck, crushing it and stopping him from calling out for help.
My eyes then caught the remaining three. They reached out for their weapons, but in that split moment, I got in close and struck them with my fists right in the pit of their stomachs. The second strike was with my clenched fingers right in the apple of their necks. Before they felt the shock of my attacks, I moved towards the third one, who I assumed was the leader. I grabbed his hand and twisted it behind his back while pushing him face first into the floor.
The attack was so fast they didn't know what hit them. One of them was unconscious, probably dead. One of them was certainly dead, and two others were on the ground struggling with their crushed necks, gasping for air.
“Now then... How should I kill you?” I said as I pulled out my dagger and pressed the cold blade to his cheek.
“Hiii!” he screamed as a wave of cold sweat washed over him.
“Phantom Rage. Where are they?” I asked him.
“I-I can't tell you!” he said.
“Can't or won't?” I asked as I scratched his cheek, drawing a few drops of blood.
“Can't...” he replied trembling.
He's cursed. I thought.
“Then I'll let you keep your life.” I said and then I got up and let him go.
“Huh?” he blinked surprised when he saw me.
“Run back to your lair now. Run back to your boss, well... if you can make it that is.” I showed him the blade of my dagger in the light of the two moons Lunaris and Lunoria.
The latter, which had the color of blood gave off a very threatening feel.
“Hiii!” the man screamed in fear and quickly jumped out the window.
I looked out and then jumped after him. The other four didn't matter to me. The hunt had finally begun.
While he ran on the ground through the dark jumbled alleys of Damerka, I followed him from afar with the help of the [Tracker] skill. He could try to hide underground or behind a thick wall, but it was impossible for him to escape the eyes of this useful magic.
Every couple of turns, he would stop and look back, trying to see if I was still following him, but he wouldn't be able to detect me. Hiding from someone with his ability was far too easy for someone like me.
In the end, the man did as I had expected, he ran straight to the hideout of the Phantom Rage, which was located right behind the Blacksmith's shop. A black iron arched door was all that kept intruders outside. No guards or guard beasts to scare off curious onlookers, just one piece of bolted metal. If it was me, I would have tried to lead my would be tracker on a fake run, not go straight for the guild's hideout.
After he went inside, I jumped down on the ground and approached the entrance with a step that made no sound. From within the Storage Crystal I retrieved the dagger Illsy made for me. The easy to grip handle was covered in a unique material developed by him, which he called 'plastic'. The blade itself was pitch black in color and made out of several layers of thin plates inscribed on the inside with meticulous enchants. While a master blacksmith would question the durability of the design, it was a fact that this weapon was one meant to be used by Over Supremes, making it practically indestructible when used against anyone other than them.
Now then. I thought as I poured a drop of Magic Energy within the dagger and activated one of its enchants.
The edge of the blade was coated with a thin layer of plasma that glowed purple in color. While for a stealth fighter the scent and light it gave off weren't ideal, by the time the enemy took notice of it, their life would be forfeit.
I pointed the tip of the blade at the life sign behind the metal door and then pushed it forward. The plasma edge cut through the black iron like a knife through butter. A groan came from the other side and then I pushed the blade down and pulled it back. The next cut was on the lock.
After I heard the metal cling from the metal pieces that fell down on the other side, I pushed the door open and stepped inside. The man who was guarding it had fallen face first on the ground with a deep searing cut that went from the center of his back all the way down his spine to his pelvis. The bleeding had been stopped by the intense heat of my blade.
He must have been leaning with his back against the door. What a fool. I thought as I walked around him.
With steps that made no noise, I went down the tight corridor. The door was connected to a passage that went deep underground, and my ears could pick up the distinct sound of several individuals having a chat about their recent captures.
Slavers? I wondered as I carefully approached them without making even the smallest sound.
When they came in sight, I dashed towards them. The plasma edge was hot and my movements precise. In a single flowing motion, I decapitated both of them.
I didn't need to look back and check to see if I didn't miss by any chance, just hearing the two thumps when their heads rolled on the floor was enough.
These vermin had no idea what was coming to them.
Thus, I proceeded with my silent but deadly assassination of each and every individual roaming free within this den of criminals. I moved in like a shadow and my dagger cut faster than they could make a sound. Heads rolled on the floor and hearts were pierced in a blink of an eye. In each chamber I entered, I was like the wind, they merely saw the door opening for a moment and then they died.
Not even someone with the rank of Phantom could move and kill like I did, but I had to admit, this place was surprisingly big for something built underground. Since the moment I stepped through the entrance on the surface, I managed to kill about 50 people, several of them had the markings of Phantom Rage members.
In the end, I caught up with the man who sneaked up in my room. He was knocking at a big door in the deepest part of the den. At that time, I slit the throat of a nearby guard and pulled his body into the shadows.
“Master! Master! I have urgent news!” the man called out.
“What?” the door was opened and someone answered.
“Master Hermandez, the woman the lookout told us about, she...” the man was not able to finish his words as his head fell back and then rolled on the floor.
When I heard that the individual he was talking with was called Hermandez, I immediately assumed that he was my target. I moved in, killed the man standing in front of him and then kicked the one called Hermandez in the chest.
“Gah!” the man groaned as he was tossed back, slamming into his desk.
I deactivated the blade of my dagger and absorbed it within my Storage Crystal, then I entered the room, calmly stepping over the dead body of the man I had just killed.
“W-Who? Who are you?” Hermandez asked as he got up, holding a hand to his chest.
“Unimportant.” I said as I entered his room and looked around.
This place was filled with all sort of items that were probably worth a fortune each. There were maps hanging on the walls and coffers of gold lined up on display to my right. The most peculiar of things here was probably the mural on the ceiling which appeared to have been stolen from some temple. It had a giant coiling dragon in the form of a snake with long whiskers on its nose and holding a jade sphere. In front of him, standing on the peak of a mountain were three men with squinted eyes like Yung Mai's and wearing long exquisite robes. Unfortunately, the rest of the mural had been destroyed, and I couldn't make out the rest of the image or what message it was trying to relay.
“An interesting place you have here.” I said as I walked up to one of the maps.
On it, I could see the three continents Allasn, Thorya, and Sorone with a big circle surrounding them.
“Where did you get all of this?” I asked him.
“Why should I tell you?” he spat.
I looked back at him and then calmly shot a [Compressed Air Ball] at his right leg. His Magic Armor shattered from the impact and his bones broke with a nasty crack.
“AARGH!” he screamed in pain.
“Where did you get all of this?” I asked again.
“Ugh... I-I collected them from various targets of mine. If you want them, you can have them.”
“Hm? Since when does the Phantom Rage allow the plundering of the possessions of one's targets?” I asked as I turned my eyes back at the maps.
They weren't as good as the ones made by the cartographer Cairen Talcaea, but they would have been worth quite the pretty goldiette on the black market.
“H-How do you know that?” he asked.
“I was also a part of this infamous guild. Well, that's in the past now.” I replied in a calm tone of voice as I continued to look around, but there was nothing that caught my eye.
Maybe I'll just take everything before I go? I wondered.
“T-That's impossible. The curse... It wouldn't have allowed you to do so.” he retorted.
“That old thing? It's easy to take off if you know how.” I shrugged and then turned to look back at him.
“What?” he was showing me a surprised look on his face.
“Well, enough of that. Let's talk about your little hideout in Cordina Kingdom.” I showed him a smile.
He gulped as a wave of cold sweat washed over him. The pain in his leg didn't seem to be bothering him that much now.
“W-What h-hideout?” he asked.
“Don't make me repeat myself, mister Hermandez Vasca, or I will break that other leg of yours too. Now, if you don't answer my questions truthfully, I'm going to tip the Phantom Rage on its location, and you don't need me to tell you what they would do next now, do you?” I asked him.
“N-No.” he shook his head.
“It seems like we've come to an understanding. So, in exchange for me keeping this little secret of yours, I'm going to ask you to tell me the location of the den of your immediate superior.”
“What?” his eyes grew big in surprise.
“You heard me and yes, I understand that this would trigger your curse. Still, you are aware you would die either way, right?” I showed him a smile.
“Ugh... The location... something like that...” he said as he made a complicated expression.
“Come on now, mister Hermandez, I don't have time to play around with you. Either you tell me the location or I'm going to find it out some other way it's the same thing, the only difference is that if you tell me, your hideout remains a secret.” I told him.
“Ugh...” he contorted his face as he struggled with his decision.
I gave him a moment to think about it and then created a small fireball in my right hand.
“Well?” I asked.
“Risteza City State. There's a bakery in front of Tamulus' Inn. The entrance is behind a fake wall to the left of the oven in the back. I don't know the layout there very well, but it's a bigger place than mine... The boss there is called Robertian Barg. That's all I know, I swear!” he declared.
“That's good enough.” I said with a nod and then shot the fireball at his head.
The explosion killed him on the spot.
“Now then! Let's clean up this place!” I said with a smile as I started to loot the den of everything I thought could be of value, including the strange mural on the ceiling.
Once I was done, I left the same way I came in, but this time, I saw no reason in taking the carriage all the way to Risteza City State and pretending to be a normal citizen.
“It's been a while since I used my full speed.” I said as I jumped up on the rooftops and then started to run towards the gates of Damerka City.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
I know some of you are troubled by my typos and at times grammar mistakes. I do edit it to the best of my abilities before posting it, but some things just slip through for various reason (mostly because before editing it, the whole chapter is a mess). However, if you have fun looking for them, go ahead and let me know where they are. On my discord server, there's a special channel just for that: help_author_edit
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