Guild Wars
Chapter 44: Dorian Purple

A carriage bobbed along on the slightly paved road that led to Farst City. Within that carriage sat a man in blue colored medium armor, his blood red eyes gleaming with a weird pulsation. It was bizarrely fascinating to look at from up close, but anyone who did would feel the weight of a million tons on their spirit. His black hair was curly and messy, following no particular order on his scalp.

His skin was surprisingly smooth and his lips were thin. His face was angular, tapering into a sharp point. All of this combined to define a very handsome individual who would get the blood pumping of anyone who was oriented towards him.

This was Draco, naturally.

Draco was on his way to report to the Duke of Farst in order to begin the Flora and Fauna quest officially. When he had chosen to start the unique quest, a few limitations had been placed on him by the AI.

「Flora and Fauna – Unique Quest

Description: There have been strange mutations in the environment around the Four Point Valley. Investigate and report to the Duke of Farst.

Note: Certain impositions have been placed on the execution of this quest;

1. All reputation, social relevance and title intimidation would be negated. Player would be regarded as a mercenary by default.

2. Large scale active spells are unavailable.

3. The Omega and Subservience effects of the Divine Eyes of Caelo are unavailable.

4. True Sight is limited to 'seeing'.

Rewards: 200 reputation with Sturgehaven Kingdom, 2000 reputation with the human race, 100,000 platinum, 2x Legendary Treasure chest」

As it could be seen, Draco had been 'nerfed' heavily. However, the AI couldn't make such decisions without a proper balance. After all, large scale spells, the Eyes of Caelo and his reputation were things he had earned fairly. They couldn't be considered as outside help. The AI could impose limitations on players, as was set in its code, but there had to be an equivalent reward for it.

If it hadn't made these limitations, Draco would've taken an hour to complete the quest, which would be meaningless to the AI. After all, it had to dedicate a huge amount of processing resources for every special unique quest.

Unique quests were a sort of independent scenario that occurred for a brief period and wasn't accessible by players or NPCs that weren't part of the event. It was sort of like an instance dungeon, but with a much bigger field of play. These quests boasted unique rewards and absurd difficulty that wasn't listed in the description.

Draco couldn't leave the boundary of the unique quest until he was done, so he had to power on in spite of the unfairness. Well, it wasn't technically unfair, as the provided rewards had jumped from some measly reputation, gold and one epic treasure chest to what was there currently. Honestly, the money and the legendary treasure chests were good, but it would never beat the 2000 reputation with the human race.

2000 reputation with the human race meant that Draco was eligible to become an emperor! He could build a minimum of five kingdoms and combine them to become an empire! Even the King of Sturgehaven kingdom would have to treat him like his grandfather.

Draco pulled out four books from his bag. He gazed at them calmly, crossing his legs as the carriage bumped along the road.

「Instant Healing – Active skill

Effect: Heal 30% or 15,000 HP, whichever is greater, instantly.

Cooldown: 2 minutes」

「Rain of Arrows – Active skill

Effect: Fire a flurry of arrows nonstop with no penalties to stamina in exchange for accuracy.

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Duration: 30 seconds

Cooldown: 1 minutes」

「Cooking – Basic Tradeskill

Effect: Learn how to prepare basic recipes for consumption. Food tastes 10% better than it's optimal sensation and may provide boosts to stats.」

「Taming – Advanced Tradeskill

Effect: Learn how to tame and domesticate various beasts. Also grants the knowledge on how to take care of tamed beasts.」

Draco wasted no time in learning them all. Instant Healing was something he had l.u.s.ted for in his past life. Since he didn't have the optimal trait then, his only option for self healing was either a third party, potions or the passives of the avenger class. It was a fact in most MMORPGS that every class, even the assassin class, had a self heal skill.

However, the usefulness of each skill varied greatly. Classes like the paladin, cleric, necromancer etc had extremely potent self healing skills. Classes like the swordsman, assassin and lancer had very weak self-heal skills.

The Avenger class' version was a passive that was like Guinevere's Necklace, only boosting HP regen by a healthy percentage. This was useful when trying to recover from battle, but not much during battle itself.

The Instant Healing skill was the self heal ability of the Holymancer class, a variation of the cleric class that had no attacking capabilities whatsoever, just healing, healing, healing!

Every Divine-tier guild had to have one core member that was a holymancer in order to survive at the top. This was how Draco even knew this skill existed.

Rain of Arrows was a skill he picked up because he wanted to train his archery. Draco was undoubtedly a combat genius, but he wasn't a jack of all trades. He had walked the path of the sword to the very end in his past life. While he could now utilize anything to fight, he never actively trained with other weapons.

However, the Phoenix Cry arrow was too powerful an item to be ignored. If Draco could match his shooting skill to the level of a professional, he would be unstoppable in ranged combat.

Rain of Arrows was a high-tier archery skill that required no mastery, just a bow and deep vault of arrows.

Speaking of a bow, Draco had agonized over looking for a bow to match the potency of the Phoenix Cry arrow, but couldn't find anything to fit that criteria. legendary bows weren't available and epic bows were too rare. They would also be able to bring out only 30% of the arrow's true power, which was a waste.

As such, he had to put aside Phoenix Cry and use a rare bow as well as rare arrows, which he didn't have to pay for at any Rank 1 or Rank 2 shop. He had practically filled 55% of his maximum expanded inventory with rare arrows, draining all the stocks from shops throughout Sturgehaven Kingdom. Any shop he entered had thrown the arrows at his feet while kowtowing to expedite his passing, hoping he didn't want anything else.

Draco had found the whole thing amusing.

Cooking was a Tradeskill that was largely ignored during the first update of Boundless, but would become extremely popular after update 1. Update 1 introduced the first changes to Boundless' playstyle, including the removal unlimited stamina out of battle, the need for sleep in-game, the need for consumption of food, introduction of excrement activities and technique boosting.

Draco only picked it up now because he wanted to be able to eat well during the quest. He certainly didn't need to do so, but what was a journey like without good food? Especially since he was a mercenary, it meant he would have to sleep under the stars.

He hadn't taken this Tradeskill in his past life for obvious reasons, so he couldn't magick anything above common rank at the moment.

The Taming Tradeskill was an advanced craft, known to belong to the best beast tamers around. How was one to get a mount in Boundless? Only by either being a tamer and struggling it out, or finding a tamer who had what you wanted and pay an absurd price. Occasionally, one could get them in drops, but those mounts would either be absolute shite or above epic, both of which required a certain amount of luck.

Of course, Draco knew where to get some good mounts, but he wasn't in a rush. The blink skill already satisfied a large majority of his needs as it were and he had to build a firm foundation as quickly as possible. That was why he had put off crafting a unique set for Eva, as well as trying his hands at a bow.

After learning all the skills, Draco took out the Drake's egg and analyzed it. With his nerfed divine eyes, he could only see the embryo inside that was balanced within the protein. Draco's taming skill kicked in and he instinctively knew that he had to provide the egg with a high level of heat.

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Since he had the skill, the screen for the Drace's egg changed.

「Drake – Combat Pet

Rank: Legendary

Description: This egg contains the offspring of a low rank fire Dragon and a Rank 7 Sea Serpent.


- Time left till hatching: 108 days

- Egg viability: 91%」

The egg was doing incredibly well. After all, the Fire of War burned perpetually within Draco, making his body the optimal level of warmth one could find. The egg shivered a bit when Draco lit the magic flame under it, as if a little worm wriggling with excitement.

"We dun reached m'lord."

The peasant carriage driver who looked around Draco's age, knocked on the top of the carriage to alert Draco. He probably assumed that Draco was asleep due to his total lack of activity the whole time.

Draco put away the egg and got down from the carriage. He paid out the fare of 20 silver, which was expensive in the eyes of a normal NPC or player, and activated Appearance Deception: 9 forms. Instead of wasting his limited slots - after all, each form was permanent after being designed - he decided to use the tried and true form of Drake.

The handsome rogue was born again, free to roam the world and trample on the hearts of innocent maidens.

Before him stood the gates to a mansion that was quite literally no less than Rank 4. It was almost the size of a castle, just barely falling short of one. The mansion was walled very simply, no real fortifications present. However, just like how Draco could see the mansion's level, he could tell that there was a myriad of building enchantments that were either defense, attack or traps.

Anyone below Rank 4 who tried to intrude here should be ready to meet their comrades in the otherworld.

Two guards in a purple livery, which were the colors of the Duke of Farst, came up to Draco with their spears in a relaxed position.

"Ho there fellow! What brings you to the mansion of Lord Duke?" The older one of the duo asked.

"I'm here to investigate the recent happenings in the Four Point Valley. His Excellency is expecting me." Draco answered with a friendly smile.

His demeanor made the guards like him, as they became much more amiable instantly. Draco made some small talk with them as he entered the mansion and gazed upon it's magnificent decoration.

It had almost the same layout as the manor in the Vita Settlement, but with almost four times the scale and a few other functional rooms.

Draco was led into the private parlor and asked to wait. A few servants brought in some beverages and scones for him to enjoy while he waited for the Duke of Farst to meet him.

Draco sorted out what he pilfered from the minds of the guards.

It seemed as if the issues were of a bizarre and parasitic nature. A few flowers that had been harmless pickings for some of the female maids had become monstrous entities that almost killed them if they hadn't been quite skilled themselves.

More than a few animals like rabbits, squirrels and even mice had gone from gentle and timid creatures to rabid animals that would rip and tear anything that had blood flowing through its veins.

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It was bizarre to the guards, who had no idea what the cause was. Most figured the Four Point Valley had been cursed. Draco would've agreed with them, but he suspected that it was possibly a new breed of parasite that caused all this. It was either a plant-like being or a creature with warm/cold blood.

He also gleaned the situation within the Four Point Valley itself. Within the Four Point Valley were four groups of people that lived together in forced harmony. Each of them occupied a corner, leaving them in each 90 degree section of the valley while remaining almost equidistant from each other.

The beings to the top right, situated in the rocky section of the Four Point Valley, were the Green Orcs, who were larger than common orcs. They were the most hated group in the Valley as they frequently raided the other three, capturing food, women and wealth. The only reason they hadn't been ganged up on was because the Duke of Farst promoted their actions, stating that it was survival of the fittest.

The group at the top left, within the savanna, were the Wood Elves, a fair race of men and women who lived off the land. They were physically attractive but extremely hardy unlike High Elves, favoring the art of hunting and sports. These Wood Elves weren't the type to shy away from meat or killing animals, as long as it was for nourishment only.

The group in the bottom left, smack dab in the middle of the forest, were the Dryads. They were the ones with the closest relationship to the Wood Elves, being entities that were born from trees and were bonded with them for life. Dryads were neutral towards everyone, even the Green Orcs. The Green Orcs also dared not attack the Dryads unnecessarily, as those forests belonged to them in every way possible. Each skirmish they'd launched towards them ended similar to Hitler's assault of Russia.

The final group, who lived in the plains to the bottom right, were the Gypsies. This group of dark skinned humans were similar to the indigenes of the Paradise Lands, but much more attractive and intelligent. Do not dare challenge a Gypsy in philosophy unless you were Socrates reincarnated. They mostly focused on dancing and music, being the most potent with illusion arts. Many of their men and women had been captured by the Green Orcs, making their enmity as high as the sky.

The political situation of the Four Point Valley was equivalent to a kettle that was reaching the boiling point, it would soon overflow and blow steam. With this new bizarre occurrence going on, an indiscriminate slaughter would've occurred had the Duke of Farst not suppressed everything.

Draco sighed after putting together all he knew. He hadn't even started the quest truly and he began feeling the onset of a headache. Dealing with those incompetent fools alone would require precious time he didn't have. Especially those Dryads. The easiest to deal with would be the Green Orcs. Wood Elves and Gypsies had the same difficulty in his eyes.

Soon enough, a tall middle aged man in spectacles entered the room with a casual smile. His eyes were the shape of crescents, seeming to be perpetually closed. His smile was so wide that it looked a bit bizarre. His hair was greenish-blue and his skin tone was a pallid color. He wore a simple overcoat with golden-black buttons and a reddish-brown color. His house logo was embroidered onto the side of his coat, denoting his origins and status.

Underneath, he wore a simple purple shirt that was buttoned up to his neck. The buttons on this one was plain white thankfully. His fitting pants looked like it was made of cotton, bearing a pitch black color. His loafers were also black, giving his attire's color scheme a bizarre combination.

"I hope I didn't make you wait too long, Mr…?"

"Drake. No last name." Draco replied with an outward smile, but inwardly, he was frowning.

"Aha, right. To make things more casual, you can call me by my first name, Dorian." He replied, plopping down casually onto a seat opposite Draco.

Dorian's eyes roamed about the room idly, before landing on Draco. "What would you like to know about the situation you're here to investigate?"

Getting straight to it, eh? That sounded just like Dorian Purple, Duke of Farst and the most hated Duke in the history of Boundless. Yep, as you might imagine, Draco knew Dorian very well. Not from this life, but his past one.

While Dorian might be treated well now, his name would be later smeared in the history books forever.

This Duke was a spy from the demons! At a critical moment, he had betrayed the human race and allowed the Demon race to infiltrate the defensive lines of the battleground through a waypoint in this very manor. That was why Draco and Eva had gone through extreme hell during the Great War in their timeline, having to defend over and over, dying so many times that the experience gained from killing demons balanced out the experience lost from death.

It was natural that he didn't like being around such a fellow. With his Omega blocked and the Duke of Farst's existence required to claim the rewards, he couldn't end the fellow right away. However, he planned to do so the minute the quest was completed.

"Please tell me everything you know, My Lord." Draco asked humbly.

Dorian began to explain everything Draco knew, but with much more detail. Draco made sure to act and react as if an ignorant person would, sharing his preliminary insights and suspicions with Dorian. Dorian himself seemed impressed with Draco's knowledge and skill. He probably expected a dunce who could only swing a weapon to show up.

"Thank you for all you've shared so far, my Lord. I'll be taking my leave in order to begin work immediately."

Draco stood up and began to leave the room. Dorian also stood up and replied to Draco with a smile. "Take care, Drake. The Four Point Valley is a dangerous place."

Draco nodded and left the room stately, the eyes of Dorian never leaving his back throughout.

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For a brief instant, the perpetually closed eyes of Dorian opened slightly as he hummed with interest.

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