Chapter 98 – The Road that Leads (1)
As Ain answered, Maria’s face brightened.
Maria soon extended her hands to the sky.
Spark- A transparent sword appeared in her hand with a flash.
Maria pointed the sword forward.
Vzzt- Vzzt- The sound of lightning kept getting louder.
As the amount of electricity increased, Hyun felt the sword was getting heavier.
And the moment the transparent sword was completely covered by lightning…
Maria’s sword flashed from side to side.
And with that, lightning shook the place.
The electricity gathered in the sword was all discharged at once, leaving a burning mark on the ground.
[You’ve witnessed the swordsmanship of a Heavenly Being!]
[Because you lack understanding of swords, you cannot learn this skill just by looking!]
[Because you have the title ‘Heavenly Being,’ the progression rate has gone up a lot!]
Hyun’s mouth fell open after looking at Maria’s sword.
It wasn’t because of its power.
—It was because he knew what that skill was.
“Did you see?”
“How much did you understand?”
“Well done. If you’re a Heavenly Being, it shouldn’t take you long to learn it. Although it may be hard to master it completely.”
After Maria finished talking, she shook her hands. Then the sword scattered away into the air and disappeared.
“To be honest, I also haven’t completely mastered this sword technique. I won’t be able to since… This was created by a Transcendent.”
‘I guess so.’
“But if it’s a user whose growth potential is endless… Maybe, one day, you’ll be able to do it.”
Maria grabbed Ain’s hands from behind.
Paf- She passed the transparent sword to Ain.
It meant that she, a Heavenly Being, would teach a skill to a user.
“Lightning hides its destructive power in silence. It’s more destructive and scarier if the opponent can’t easily move.”
[You’ve received the teachings of a Heavenly Being!]
[The progress rate increases even faster!]
Suddenly, a scarecrow appeared in front of them.
Following Maria’s hand gesture, Ain began hitting the scarecrow.
She attacked three consecutive times, but Maria shook her head.
“The lighting is quite sensitive, so the moment it touches a target, its strength discharges. Instead of hitting numerous times, do it just once.”
[You’ve received the teachings of a Heavenly Being!]
[The progress rate increases even faster!]
「Hyun, isn’t this… That?」
While receiving Maria’s teachings, Ain sent Hyun a message through a whisper.
「This is the skill you used before, right?」
「That’s great. You always wanted to use a sword.」
「That’s true… But I wonder how much I’ll be able to perfect this as a Support.」
“Lock the power of lightning in the air. Gathering it and making it explode at once is the point of this technique.”
Even while talking, the progress rate kept increasing.
Because Hyun was «Assimilating» to Ain, their progress rate increased at the same time.
‘I thought she was an NPC with no weight on history.’
Hyun had played Asra Online for eight years, but he only knew her name.
Maybe there was more information about her in the interloop, but he’d never thought of searching.
In the previous game, he never had a reason to go to Iluna so quickly. And he had never heard of a quest related to Maria.
It was also the first time he learned that she knew this sword technique.
Maria’s teachings kept going on for a few hours.
After time passed and the progress rate became 100%, a new item was added to both of their skill lists.
[«Angel’s Basic Sword Art» Lv.0]
– If you do not attack for 8 seconds, this attack will deal 130% damage.
[※ The level of this skill increases with proficiency rather than points!]
The moment light emerged from Ain’s body, Maria smiled.
But her teachings were not over yet.
“I’m going to teach you a little bit more.”
Maria had a varied way of teaching.
Sometimes they dueled, and she critiqued the way they wielded the sword.
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Thanks to the Heavenly Being’s teaching, Hyun and Ain’s proficiency rates increased significantly.
Because Ain’s level of tiredness had reached a limit, she changed her mode to rest. But Hyun, who was used to that kind of thing, kept learning without taking a break.
Hyun was so moved by Maria’s teachings that he decided that, if Maria asked him for something, he’d try his best to fulfill it.
Translator – Daniel Shin
Proofreader – ilafy
* * *
While Hyun and Ain were learning from Maria…
All countries that belonged to the Heavens were starting to get nervous.
—All because of Iluna!
Before the shuttle of the Holy Kingdom crashed, all countries that had sided with the Heavens had a sentiment that something was about to happen there.
Among those countries, the Holy Kingdom was especially worried.
“How could something like this…”
The hands of the Archbishop of the Holy Kingdom shook while looking at Iluna as it became visible.
Iluna was a place where Empathy resonated more easily than in Asra.
The main magic circle was like a sacred place for the Holy Kingdom.
The reason was that praying there made making contact with a Transcendent easier.
Officially, that was a neutral place for all the Heavens’ countries, but in reality, it was under the control of the Holy Kingdom.
The Holy Kingdom’s specialty was Holy Magic, so losing Iluna wasn’t too different from losing their capital city.
“Is that day about to repeat…?!”
Thousands of years ago, the Abyss had tried to invade the sky.
In the past, they’d barely been able to defend Iluna thanks to numerous sacrifices.
But now… If that day repeated, how would things end?
The Unexpected Event in Iluna was a hot issue among all other Heavens countries.
Because NPCs talked about Iluna the entire day, that news also got into the users’ ears.
The rumors among NPCs spread through the community boards via specialized game sites.
There was no way users, who were searching day and night for information about quests, would miss that news.
「Where’s Iluna? Is it a moon?」
「They say it’s a place that’s good for Priest-related jobs to grow. You can find more information in the main post.」
「It seems like we won’t be able to go there anyway. Doesn’t that mean that it shouldn’t matter to us?」
Many users didn’t know you could reach such a place inside the game.
While users were starting to get disappointed after learning that going to Iluna was hard, the biggest event in Asrian’s history was generated.
All Heaven’s users who had completed the job ascension received the same message.
[Heaven’s Alliance Quest: Iluna Support]
– The Pope says to the users: Iluna is currently in danger!
– Iluna isn’t just a simple moon, it’s a sacred place where lots of holy energies gather! We cannot lose it to the Abyss’s forces!
– More than half, no, most of you will probably die. However, since you’re free from death, would it be okay if I asked for your help?
– Around midnight, the Holy Kingdom will create a ‘Warp Portal’ that connects to Iluna. The names of those who join the fight will be recorded in the main temple forever.
[※ Only users over level 100 who have completed job ascension can join.]
: Will be distributed based on personal merit – <+Open>
The quest generated by the Holy Kingdom was called like that among users.
The reason why there wasn’t a lot of excitement despite the level requisite being high was that the reward wasn’t that impressive.
According to the calculations someone made, you had to be among the top 25% to make a profit for participating in the quest.
「Isn’t this a trap quest?」
「The rewards are kind of lackluster… Well, it isn’t like I can participate or anything, so it really doesn’t concern me.」
At that moment, about 1500 users from Heaven had completed the job ascension.
That meant that half of the users who fulfilled the pre-requisites were rankers.
People thought that rankers weren’t going to participate because of fear of wasting time.
—But the result was the opposite.
‘Just being among the top 10% will be enough. Magician-related jobs are very active in wars, so this is perfect for me!’
‘If my name is put on the walls of the main temple, my reputation will go up. Right?’
Although users only saw the rewards in front of them, rankers analyzed the quest from many points of view, and most of them concluded that it was better to participate.
Their decision had a huge effect.
People related to gaming shows were busy trying to scout rankers who were going to participate.
Korea’s biggest gaming channel, ‘The Gamez,’ also tried to schedule the broadcast.
On a few channels, regular shows were pushed off by specials related to Iluna.
It was the same on the community boards.
As time went on, conversations related to Iluna increased.
「News! Lattice is on Iluna right now!」
「What? Wasn’t Lattice an Abyss user?」
「There really seems to be something happening on Iluna!」
From a certain point, all community boards about Asrian worldwide became full of threads related to Iluna.
People were more excited than when the Count’s Quest happened, since the scale of the event was even bigger!
It was enough to grab the attention of users who were tired of hunting or doing quests.
As things were getting hotter, a peaking event happened.
One video shook all of the communities worldwide.
The one who had uploaded a video with that short title was Tarr Tarr!
Tarr Tarr had quickly edited the footage Hyun had sent to him.
Also, instead of using the channel TarrTarr, he created a new one called AIN.
The reason why he decided to upload the video as soon as possible, and the reason why he created a new channel, was that Tarr Tarr’s sense of judgment had gotten better.
The video began zooming out from the moment Ain started to fall from Iluna’s sky.
As soon as she landed, the fight against the forces of the Abyss began.
Users who clicked on the video couldn’t close their mouths for a while—they were surprised by the amazing production and how skillful Ain was.
Ain’s video quickly started to spread through the rest of the communities.
「Woah, she also started YouTube. I’m sure she’s going to earn lots of money, lol.」
「Ain and Lattice are on Iluna? How did they get there?」
The fight between Ain and the forces of the Abyss gave people lots of things to analyze.
The opponent’s skills or strategies were at a level users hadn’t yet experienced.
Ain’s ability to fight at a close range was as surprising as always.
Many people tried to guess Ain’s specs by looking at the effects of her skills.
「What skill is that? Is that also one of the Dark Priest’s skills?」
「I can’t imagine what level the enemies are.」
Because Tarr Tarr had hidden some parts of the interface, many numbers didn’t appear.
Users had to guess the level of the enemies through Ain’s previous data.
「The opponent seemed to be between level 100 to 150. Ain’s fire probably deals at least ten thousand damage.」
「Is doing ten thousand damage at around level 100 even possible? It’s not like she’s using an Ultimate Attack.」
「What? That doesn’t seem to be a skill of a Dark Priest.」
A few users with good eyes looked suspiciously at the unknown skill’s effects.
Although they weren’t able to guess precisely…
They had felt it before, but looking at Ain’s footage while fighting made their blood boil.
Most users watched the video from start to finish as if they’d been possessed.
The sense of reality that created the illusion that they were part of the fight made their hearts beat faster.
What everyone felt after looking at the video was the same:
‘Was Ain always this good…?’
She’d gotten famous thanks to PvP.
But most users thought that she lacked a little bit compared to Lattice.
—The reason was that PvP and real battles were different.
But after watching Ain fighting in a real battle, everyone’s opinions started to shake.
‘We don’t know who’ll win if they fight against each other!’
There was a piece of interesting information going around in the communities.
—Both of them were on Iluna at the moment.
On top of that, Ain belonged to the Heavens, and Lattice was part of the Abyss’s Forces.
Everyone couldn’t help but think of a certain possibility…
‘Could both of them end up fighting against each other?’
Of course, that would happen only if they ended up encountering each other, but only the thought of that battle taking place made them excited.
Users were waiting for the Asrian-related programs that would start at around midnight with high hopes.
—Hopes that the fight they were imagining would happen.