translator: Oyen editor: Ciel
Due to the generous rewards given to the first team who cleared the stage, it took Qin Mo several minutes to sort out the drops. The BOSS drop of Jianshen Valley Ruins was actually very generous; in addition to the rich experience, it also dropped ten pieces of purple equipment at one ago. Not coveting these things, Qin Mo divided the equipment directly by class profession.
Five sets of armour were dropped. The soft armour was given to the long-ranged players, Heavenly Quail, Fireworks Burning, and Mirage, while the hard armour was given to the melee professions Hiding a Dagger Behind a Smile, and Elegant Leaves. The three weapons dropped were a broadsword, gold needles, and a white umbrella, which were distributed to Northern Lights, Little Medicine Fairy, and Soundless respectively. The remaining two pairs of shoes were given to Qin Mo and Xiao Han.
This sort of distribution plan took care of the entire group, and everyone gained something from it. The battle earlier gave everyone a hard time, and they were naturally happy when receiving the equipment rewards.
Seeing the distribution plan, Xiao Han sent a private chat message to Qin Mo. “I did say that I wasn’t accepting anything from this dungeon, so why are you giving us a share?”
Qin Mo replied: “If I take it, I’ll just sell it for money anyway. If I give them the equipment, they can upgrade faster.”
Xiao Han: “Then, you can take all the materials.”
The BOSS dropped many materials. Most of them were purple, but there were also gold materials, including rare jadeite, and 100-year-old rosewood. “It’s too troublesome to divide the materials,” Qin Mo explained, placing all the materials into his own inventory. “I’ll keep them for the time being. Later on, when everyone is building their equipment, you can come to be for any materials you lack.”
“Alright!” No one had any comments, and the team happily proceeded onwards to the second stage.
A long canyon connected the first stage to the second stage, and the experience provided by the small monsters along the way was very rich. They cleaned up all the mobs along the way, and after half an hour, everyone’s avatars lit up, having upgraded to level 37.
Mirage was very excited. “Upgrading in a team dungeon is so fast, we’ve already gone up two levels!”
Elegant Leaves sighed. “In the past, we used to have to do tasks for an entire afternoon to rise from level 35 to level 37…”
—— Following the expert to eat meat; it was only today that they truly comprehended the meaning of this phrase.
In the blink of an eye, everyone arrived at the depths of Jianshen Valley, with a broken wooden door appearing before them. Qin Mo once again stepped forward to engage in dialogue with the NPC, opening the challenge of the second stage ‘Sword Altar’.
As the wooden door slowly opened, an altar suspended high in the air appeared before their eyes. There were many stones arranged in what resembled a messy ladder under the altar. Looking up from the ground, one could see that the shape of this altar was square. As for what was above the altar, it was still impossible to guess.
“Everyone wait here,” Qin Mo instructed. “I will go up with Ice to have a look.”
As soon as Qin Mo finished speaking, everyone saw two figures quickly jump onto the altar with qinggong, one dressed in black and the other dressed in white.
To Qin Mo’s surprise, when compared to the five-element sword array of the first stage, the altar of the second stage was very simple—— only a longsword stood in the middle of the altar.
The name of the sword was ‘Broken Ice’, with a blade as white as snow. There was nothing on the altar except the sword. Obviously, the sword was the BOSS of the second stage, but they still had to explore how to fight it.
“Try it once,” Qin Mo suggested.
Thousand Miles Ice: “En.”
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
Xiao Han’s dagger had just been thrown. A loud ‘bang’ echoed in their ears as the altar beneath Xiao Han quickly split into ten smaller suspended stones, and a thick layer of spikes appeared on the ground. The newcomers of Dragon Song responded quickly, immediately flying to the top of the ladder with their qinggong skills. However, the four members of Qin Mo’s team were not as fast, and were pierced until they resembled hedgehogs.
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The altar in the air was divided into ten suspended stones, which had no access to each other. Players could thus only use qinggong to make the jump. The distance between each of the the ten suspended stones and the BOSS in the middle was different, with the shortest distance being one meter, and the farthest being twenty metres.
Xiao Han and Qin Mo stood on the suspended stones without moving. Fifteen seconds later, a loud ‘bang’ was heard, and the ten suspended stones moved around the map randomly. Xiao Han, who was two meters away from the BOSS, was moved further away, while Qin Mo who was further away, was moved near the BOSS.
“You try to jump here,” Qin Mo suggested.
At this time, Thousand Miles Ice was on a suspended stone in the southeast corner, far away from Ink Mark. Hearing Qin Mo speak, Xiao Han used his qinggong skill immediately, jumping across the suspended stones a few times to reach Qin Mo. As a result, both people had stood together for barely three seconds when the Broken Ice sword in the middle glowed with a cold light. A white sword spirit immediately slammed right where they stood, smashing into the both of them!
Qin Mo: “……”
Xiao Han: “……”
The two men who were killed in an instant stared at each other, speechless.
“Haha, the both of you are too powerful together, the BOSS can’t stand it!” Mirage joked.
“That’s right, that’s right!” Hiding a Dagger Behind a Smile chimed in. “When the BOSS saw the two experts standing together, he got angry and directly killed them without saying anything…”
Helpless, Qin Mo resurrected at the entrance. “If two people stand together for more than three seconds, they will be killed by the BOSS,” he analysed carefully. “In other words, only one person can stand on a suspended stone.”
Xiao Han agreed. “En, this level should be aerial combat, which is very demanding of movement skills.”
The BOSS was a sword that stood in the middle all the time. This sort of BOSS had no fixed hatred, and only needed the players to output with full force. In fact, the difficulty lay in the suspended stones, which would change positions randomly. Moreover, each suspended stone could only support one person. The stones were scattered both close to and far away from the BOSS, thus, players wanting to attack the BOSS had to move quickly in the air, which tested the movement skills of the whole team.
Qin Mo thought for a moment, before marking ten positions on the altar. “Let’s try again. Everyone is to stand at the marked positions 1 to 10 according to the order on the team list, keeping a distance of more than five metres between each other. Adjust your positions according to my arrangements later. Be careful not to fall down… Ice, hit the sword after a three-second countdown.”
Thousand Miles Ice: “Understood.”
Three seconds later, Xiao Han threw the dagger in his hands at the Broken Ice sword. The second stage challenge had official begun!
Everyone tried their best to output. After fifteen seconds, the altar beneath their feet quickly split into ten pieces. On the ten pieces of suspended stone were the numbers 1 to 10 marked by Qin Mo. Obviously, he had calculated the approximate area of each suspended stone from the earlier fight, allowing everyone to keep a distance from each other, and to occupy just one stone each.
However, due to the movement of the suspended stones, the melee players were moved to a distance where the BOSS couldn’t be reached, while the long-ranged players were moved directly to the BOSS’ side.
Qin Mo gave instructions immediately. “Elegant Leaves and Fireworks Burning change positions. Hiding a Dagger Behind a Smile and Heavenly Quail change positions. No one else moves.”
With a clear voice ringing in their ears, the named people immediately began to change their positions with qinggong. This way, everyone could attack the BOSS again. Everyone worshipped Ink Mark’s commands—— in such a short time, he could calculate the distance between the whole team and the BOSS, and also take into account the attacking distance of all the main sects so as to adjust everyone’s position. It was really amazing!
Fifteen seconds later, the pumices under their feet moved again. Qin Mo glanced at everyone’s position and continued to make adjustments. “Ice to number 9, Northern Lights to number 5, Mirage and Little Medicine Fairy swap positions!”
They moved according to the instructions, smoothly pressing the BOSS’ blood volume to 80%. At this moment, ten bolts of purple lightning fell from the sky, aiming for the position where the ten players stood. Little Medicine Fairy and Hiding a Dagger Behind a Smile were unable to avoid it, and were killed in seconds. The blood volume of the other players who avoided it in time dropped to 50%, just as the ten scattered pumice gathered in the middle and merged into the original square altar.
Qin Mo calmly said: “Don’t worry, keep fighting.”
Fifteen seconds later, the pumice separated again. After the blood volume of the Broken Ice sword dropped to 70%, purple lightning flashed once more, killing everyone immediately.
Since the setting of the new dungeon was unknown, it was normal to be wiped out. The key was to learn from the destruction, and summarise a strategy to clear the stage.
Through the experimental try, Qin Mo analysed the settings for the splitting and merging of the pumice—— after calculating the time, the pumices changed every fifteen seconds, splitting twice and merging once, forming an infinite loop. However, the purple lighting was the BOSS’ big move, and would be triggered when the BOSS’ blood volume reached 80%, 70%, and 60%.
The purple lightning couldn’t be avoided, and if the player dodged, 50% of blood would still be lost, and players could only persist for two lightning attacks. The combination of the stones was to facilitate the healer adding blood to everyone. Basically, when hitting the BOSS, both the time and the blood volume had to be managed well. Sometimes, in order to wait for the stones to merge, everyone had to stop hitting the BOSS.
This required the commander to have a comprehensive judgement about many factors, including the time, the BOSS’ blood volume, and the output timing, making it much more difficult when compared to the first stage.
Of course, this difficulty was nothing to Qin Mo, who had once commanded professional league matches. What worried him the most was… with the forced 50% blood loss setting, could the healer keep up?
Everyone resurrected at the entrance of the checkpoint. “Everyone gather at the altar,” Qin Mo instructed. “I will remind everyone about the purple lightning later, so remember to dodge.”
This time, Qin Mo warned everyone in advance when the BOSS reached 80% of blood volume. Everyone moved sideways to dodge the purple lightning, but the settings made the big move impossible to dodge, and also inflicted blood loss of 50% on all players. Immediately afterwards, the ten pumices merged into a square altar. Little Medicine Fairy had to fill up everyone’s blood within fifteen seconds, otherwise the entire team would be wiped out in the next wave of purple lightning.
In fact, it was very difficult for the healer to add blood to the entire team without any group skills. Even if she used the fastest speed and concentrated on adding blood, fifteen seconds was only enough for her to fill up the blood of five people.
Fifteen seconds later, the pumice split again, and Little Medicine Fairy was moved to the far southeast corner, unable to add blood to the teammates sent far away. Shen Qi was very anxious and wanted to use a big move to fill up everyone’s blood, but she didn’t have such a skill. Left without a choice, Qin Mo instructed everyone to stop. “Wait for the pumice to merge again.”
Originally, they could continue to hit the BOSS, but because the healer couldn’t keep up, Qin Mo didn’t dare to press the BOSS to 70% blood for fear of the big move. In the end, they could only wait.
After fifteen seconds, the pumice randomly shifted, and after another fifteen seconds, the pumices merged together. Little Medicine Fairy immediately ran to give everyone blood, until all the blood was above 80%. Qin Mo immediately gave the instruction. “Hit!”
The BOSS’ blood volume was pressed to 70%. With a flash, the purple lightning appeared, and the team lost 50% of their health again.
Little Medicine Fairy simply wanted to cry. She couldn’t add blood at all, and her blue was almost gone…
Sure enough, due to the long waiting time, the BOSS went berserk and the whole team was wiped out again.
Little Medicine Fairy sent out a line of teary emoticons, prompting Mirage to comfort her. “It’s alright. Before level 40, there aren’t any skills to add blood to a group. It’s really stressful to heal ten people with only a single target skill…”
Hiding a Dagger Behind a Smile also chipped in. “That right, it’s not your fault alone.”
Although her teammates were comforting her, Shen Qi felt very uncomfortable. She was a newbie, but she understood the dungeon settings. If the healer was strong enough, and could fully heal everyone within fifteen seconds after the pumice merged, everyone would be free to hit the BOSS after the pumice split up in thirty seconds. The rhythm was very fast; the healer would continue adding blood during the next merge, but this way, everyone could output as much as possible. But because she failed to fill up everyone’s blood, the commander could only ask the team to wait for her, and after waiting for too long, the BOSS would go berserk.
—— that was to say, because she couldn’t add enough blood, clearing this stage became immensely difficult.
Qin Mo had long since been aware that Little Medicine Fairy simply couldn’t add blood to ten people. If they wanted to clear this stage, replacing her was the only solution. Still, Shen Qi was a girl. A substitution in the middle of the stage would be too hurtful for her self-esteem…
After thinking about it, a private chat message from Little Medicine Fairy suddenly popped up. “Ink Mark, I’m really sorry. I’m a newbie, and the aerial combat makes me dizzy. I can’t really see clearly, let alone add blood to everyone. If the healer can’t keep up, it’s very difficult to pass. How about this, I’ll ask my younger brother to substitute for me.”
Qin Mo was a little surprised. “Your younger brother?”
“Well, my younger brother is a veteran who has played the beta,” Shen Qi replied. “His level is much higher than mine. Give me a minute, I’ll ask him to help.”
Little Medicine Fairy’s avatar darkened, but lit up again a moment later. The others didn’t know what was going on, and only Qin Mo was aware—— the operator had changed.
“Shen Qi’s younger brother?” Qin Mo asked in private chat.
“En, I’m not a professional healer, I just helped her play for an hour or so when she went to have lunch with someone at noon. My sister asked me to help add blood. What’s going on? Does a lot of blood need to be added?”
He only played a healer for an hour? This younger brother didn’t look very reliable either. However, since Shen Qi said that her younger brother was much better than her, Qin Mo was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt this once. Immediately, he sent a private message: “Do you see the altar in front of you? After the challenge starts, the altar will divide into ten pumices, which will change positions every fifteen seconds. Your task is to quickly add blood to everyone after the pumice merges into one. Everyone needs to be fully healed within fifteen seconds.”
“Oh, blood can only be added when the stones merge?” Little Medicine Fairy looked up at the altar in the sky with widened eyes. “I’ll give it a shot.”
“Alright. Everyone get ready, we’ll go to the altar and start over.”
Following Qin Mo’s instructions, everyone immediately jumped onto the altar, smoothly pressing the BOSS’ blood volume to 80%. In that instant, purple lightning appeared, causing the entire party to lose half their health, which was followed up by the pumice merging. Then, they say an amazing scene—— the little girl in the light green dress with a pair of gold needles in her hands moved swiftly, darting around the group like a flexible fish. Everywhere she went, the blood volume of the players began to ride rapidly, and after she made one round clockwise, everyone was full of blood!
Mirage was dumbfounded. “Did the younger sister healer suddenly inject chicken blood?!”
“Why does it seem like the player has changed…?” Elegant Leaves wondered.
Little Medicine Fairy: “Hello everyone, I am Little Medicine Fairy’s younger brother o(n_n)o~”
Was it appropriate for a boy to use this kaomoji?
Looking at the scene of Little Medicine Fairy walking around and adding blood, Xiao Han immediately sent Qin Mo a private chat: “S-type sliding position, plus the blood buff and healer crit, his hand speed is at least 300apm.”
Qin Mo replied: “He really is a fast learner. He said that he isn’t a professional healer, and only helped his sister to play for an hour or so.”
“One hour?” Xiao Han was somewhat surprised. “It isn’t easy to learn how to play a healing profession in such a short time.”
Qin Mo had also discovered this, but the pumice would soon split again. For now, he had to put aside his doubts about Shen Qi’s younger brother. “Everyone prepare to hit the BOSS.”