Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
“We’re forming the Spiders’ Lair expedition! Those with Short Swords, armor and shield, come forward! Those with three combat skills training sessions and were not harmed by the Spider, come forward! Those without experience will not be considered! Those who are going offline within twelve hours will be excluded!”
At the Dungeon Entrance, NotWearingPants shouted at the top of his voice. Arthur sat cross-legged on the ground while he sharpened his blade. At his side were BurningChestHair, Sakuranomiya Cat Demon and Sylvanas, who were the pioneer explorers. Besides the five of them, there were other gamers who made up the twenty Goblins in the contingent. They gathered and chatted in low voices about various strategies against the Spiders from the forum. They also double-checked their rations that they had bought from Simba.
With NotWearingPants’ hollering, more gamers gathered forward. NotWearingPants shouted for ten minutes as he was waiting for the gamers who were finishing their training.
Sherlock noticed the gamers’ behavior. As this was not the first exploration of the Spiders’ Lair, it was not a concern. Sherlock was just curious if the third exploration would be successful.
The gamers finished forming their expedition group. With NotWearingPants’ prompting and strict requirements, all the eligible gamers had reported in for the expedition. Arthur and the rest of the expedition group did not wait any further. The contingent of twenty Goblins set out towards the Spiders’ Lair.
Sherlock was at the Dungeon Core Main Hall observing the expedition group via the Dungeon Core. They followed the Dungeon’s tunnel towards the Spiders’ Lair. Sherlock had published the area map on the official website so they would not get lost. Moreover, there was only a single way to the lair. After walking for an hour, they had almost arrived at the Spiders’ Lair.
The gamers had been trained several times by Moroes. They were not very experienced in combat, but they were no longer novices. Most of them had participated in the second expedition that had ended in bloodshed. This time around, they were full of confidence.
Once the gamers arrived at the Spiders’ Lair entrance, they did not rush in like their second expedition. Instead, they fanned out and stayed hidden. NotWearingPants went out with his shield and Short Sword. He stood at the entrance and shouted, “Waaaa!” The nearby Spiders were alarmed, and four Spiders came charging at NotWearingPants.
After baiting the Spiders, he hurried back to the gamers’ ambush area. When the Underground Spiders came within range, they hollered and charged out at the Spiders.
The Spiders’ intellect was low so they did not detect the ambush. Moreover, it was only Goblins. They were not afraid even if they were outnumbered. The Spiders charged at the gamers.
“Tank 1 ! Start pulling Aggro! Four Spiders are coming!” NotWearingPants ran back to the group while he shouted.
“Two Tanks, pull Aggro. The rest can retreat. Don’t go for damage. Spar for a while, then retreat!” Arthur also shouted. The gamer beside him held a shield and charged towards the nearest Spider. He slammed the Short Sword on his shield and shouted to attract the Spider’s attention. The Spider lifted its leg to pierce his heart.
As the Spider charged by, Arthur dashed out with lightning speed from the side while holding his shield and a Short Sword. While the Spider was distracted, he slashed the Spider’s stomach. Green blood spewed out all over his body. He jumped to one side to avoid more blood stains. The Spider twisted its head, but another gamer attracted its attention by banging his shield and waving his Short Sword menacingly. The Spider was not smart and only reacted to the nearest threat instead of the most dangerous one. The gamers made use of this to control the Spider’s aggro. This technique was taught by Moroes.
The gamers were allocated tasks based on their agility, speed, attack strength and constitution. The twenty gamers isolated the four Spiders. They took turns to attack the Spiders while using the shield for protection and the Short Sword to inflict damage. Before long, the Spiders could not bear the siege and wanted to escape. When the gamers saw that the Spiders were escaping, they tried all sorts of methods to stop them as they had spent many hours training just to kill a Spider!
The gamers’ attacks became more frenzied. They were almost hurt by the Spiders several times. Fortunately, with the shield’s protection, they were unharmed. A Spider fell to the ground, followed by a second and third Spider. The fourth Spider charged and sent a gamer who was trying to attract its aggro flying. Then, the Spider fled with its injuries.
Though a Spider escaped, the gamers were satisfied with the result. It was a tremendous improvement to go from being annihilated by the Spiders to besieging four Spiders and killing three. The Goblins’ constitutions were not as good as the Spiders’, but the Goblins were more agile and intelligent. As long as they controlled their fear and gained some experience and combat skills, with teamwork, it would not be hard for them to kill the Spiders.
Sherlock observed the gamers celebrating on the screen of the Dungeon Core. He had not expected the gamers to improve that fast. He had thought they would need at least a month of training to kill the Spiders. Their phenomenal performance was outside of Sherlock’s expectation.
The gamers surrounded the Spiders and started examining them. As Sherlock was going to take a closer look, Simba came in and started complaining about how the Goblins did not understand him. They were pestering him for equipment and did not give him time to rest. Even when he slept, the gamers would peep at him, leaving him unable to sleep.
Simba said, “This bunch of imbecile fools think only they need sleep. Don’t they realize that I need to sleep too? Instead, while I’m sleeping, they pull my sleeping bag. I wish I could smash open their thick skulls to see what’s inside!”
Simba had lots of grievances. He was extremely unhappy with the gamers and was almost on the verge of exploding. The other two “NPCs”, the Fairy and Moroes, were also harassed by the gamers, but they did not dare to complain. The Fairy was a slave, while Moroes was in awe of Sherlock. He treated the Goblins as close servants of Sherlock. Even when he was awakened in the middle of his sleep by the Goblins, he did not make a fuss.
Sherlock listened to Simba’s complaints while observing the dark rings underneath Simba’s eyes. He had to make arrangements for private Rest Chambers for both Simba and Moroes. The other gamers would have to wait longer for their own!
Sherlock placated Simba and arranged for the construction of two private Rest Chambers. However, he didn’t plan on constructing a private Rest Chamber for the little Fairy. He wasn’t so empathetic as to build one for the little Fairy when she was unwilling to work. In any case, to Sherlock, the little Fairy probably would feel more comfortable staying in the field instead of a private Rest Chamber.
Though the two Rest Chambers were not huge projects, they could not be completed in an instant. With the help of Bru, Sherlock selected a few gamers with good construction skills to create two Rest Chambers. Sherlock awarded more bronze coins and Reputation Points for these missions so that the construction would be completed in the shortest time.
The selected gamers were very happy. One of the gamers said as he constructed the chamber, “This Dungeon’s awesome. We can interact with the environment, and now even the Rest Chambers are built by us. Once the Blacksmith’s chamber is complete, I’ll try to enter through the windows. If the Blacksmith leaves things in the chamber, I might be able to get my hands on them!”
Simba threw his hammer at the gamer. However, the other gamers were all giving praises—The NPC interaction mechanism was awesome!
Time passed while Sherlock made housing arrangements for Simba and Moroes. As he was about to check on the expedition status, he heard a commotion coming from the entrance…