Night Ranger Chapter 4
Pine Cone River’s banks were vast. Marvin was sure that he could avoid the Acheron gangsters’ chase if it was on the beach. Only the sparse trees of the grove would give him a chance.
"Was it a fluke?" The thief mumbled, not feeling anxious at all. He greeted the arriving gangsters and quickly gave chase.
He didn’t believe that they could fail to deal with a noble that didn’t even have a battle class. Especially because the grove terrain wasn’t that complex, he wouldn’t be able to escape.
When Marvin stepped in the grove, taking advantage of the darkness, he quickly moved toward a lush and tall tree.
‘Not even using stealth. Seems like they are quite confident.’
Marvin leaned against the tree behind him, paying attention to the approaching thief who was casually holding his dagger. He inwardly sneered. He still had the advantage.
After seeing these Acheron Gang members, Marvin was shocked and doubtful, but never lost his calm. That would be a joke. As a former Ruler of the Night, his battle experience was extremely rich. These pieces of trash were barely good enough to be considered as adventurers. Although the thief’s strength was higher than Marvin’s own value, sometimes experience was much more important.
Especially in difficult terrain!
When Marvin got his ranger class, he was very careful when equipping his ranger badge, keeping it hidden from sight. Therefore, those gangsters shouldn’t be able to react. Marvin had already gotten an adventurer class, just like them.
This was a huge advantage.
‘Want to kill me? Then don’t blame me.’
He silently took his dagger from his belt, showing a hint of killing intent. Since they wanted to take care of him, they should be ready to be killed in exchange.
Indeed, he had given up on fleeing the moment those Acheron gangsters appeared. He only wanted to know the truth behind this attack.
None of them would escape this place alive.
Thinking of this made his blood boil. He hadn’t had that kind of feeling for a while. The last time he was that excited was probably during the completion of his God Title quest. He had to fight the 10 Half-Gods chasing him.
The grove was actually quite small, so Marvin didn’t have a lot of space he could use.
He had to get rid of this one before the rest arrived. Marvin was convinced that this guy not using stealth was the only thief among the group of gangsters chasing him, and that he was also the greatest threat to him. A thief’s wisdom and perception were both quite high, making it easy to find his hiding spot.
As long as the thief was killed, Marvin would have plenty of ways to handle the others.
Considering all this, he curled a little closer to the pine tree.
The signature ranger skill was naturally amazing. With the help of the obscurity, it was like Marvin’s body fused with the pine tree. The thief was quickly coming toward him, unaware. Marvin tightened his grip on his curved dagger and held his breath.
41 points in [Hide] + 9 points from the sika deer badge was just enough to trigger the [Hide] skill’s additional effect [Night Blessing].
[Night Blessing]: +5% effect when using [Hide] during the night.
These 5% effects are often underestimated. A lot of times, even just a 1% increase would be enough to alter the course of a close battle.
Marvin, as a former PK expert, was not only a matchless thief, but also knew the other classes like the back of his hand. Therefore he immediately got 50 points in [Hide] for that additional effect.
(T/N: PK – Player Kill)
But he wasn’t expecting it to come in handy so soon.
The thief’s perception seemed to be even lower than Marvin’s expectations. He probably became a thief thanks to many years of helping the gang manage the streets and training; it was by no means because of talent.
Just as he carelessly walked past Marvin, a shout could be heard from the entrance of the grove.
"Jack! Where the fuck are you? And where is that noble?
Jack turned around impatiently and shouted at the entrance, "I, your father, am here! That young noble is nearby and he can’t escape!"
Marvin waited silently for him to finish his sentence and then sneaked behind him like a ghost. He immediately put his left hand over the thief’s mouth and the curved dagger in his right hand smoothly drew a red line on the thief’s throat.
In an instant, blood flew everywhere while the thief began to struggle with force.
However, Marvin was still covering the thief’s mouth, his face without a hint of emotion. The dying thief struggled fruitlessly, randomly trying to injure Marvin.
[Basic Attack Successful!]
[Critical Hit! Basic Attack upgraded to Critical Attack]
[Target eliminated! 18 Battle Exp received]
Ignoring the battle reports popping up, Marvin could feel the thief’s body gradually weakening. The guy was already dead.
"I’m way too slow." Marvin was shaking his head, unhappy.
Limited by his body and his class, he could not output much power. The technical moves he just used were the [Phantom Assassin] trademark combo [Shadow Steps] + [Cutthroat]. If completed correctly, the combo would result in extremely high damage. It was well-suited for quickly getting rid of an enemy.
Even though Marvin wasn’t a thief, he could still rely on his memories and his instincts to use these two technical moves, though he felt quite unhappy about his execution. The moves themselves weren’t considered skills and they didn’t have that high of an attack bonus, but his opponent wasn’t particularly strong either.
This careless thief was an obviously bad example for low level thieves. He probably thought that Marvin was powerless and didn’t expect that the target had suddenly turned into an expert assassin.
Marvin quickly searched the robber’s body and found a purse and some trap materials.
"Ah… Poor ghost…" There were only 5 silvers in the purse.
Contrary to his expectations, the materials were somewhat useful. Marvin took advantage of the fact that the others had not found them yet, hid thief’s body and then looked for a big tree to go back into hiding.
He raised his head and saw a black cloud floating in front of the moon; it would be hard to see anything.
Tonight was bound to be a night of slaughter.
There were 4 gangsters left, holding torches while rushing into the grove. Under the light of the fire, the originally sparse trees suddenly became bright.
Under the torchlight, Marvin’s [Hide] would certainly see its effect reduced. Even worse, they would discover the corpse of the thief pretty soon as he hadn’t had time to take care the body properly; he had merely covered it a little.
After that they would be more vigilant, knowing that Marvin wasn’t completely powerless. That would cause Marvin’s probability of success to drop precipitously.
"Damnit, that damn Jack, he let the young noble escape to the grove," one of the gangsters cursed in annoyance with his rough voice. "And now he’s ignoring us, what the fuck is that guy playing at?"
"Maybe the young noble is running fast and he is chasing after him."
"But he didn’t leave us many marks so trying to find them like this would be a huge waste of time. We have to make sure that boss’s order is carried out tonight; that young noble known as Marvin must die!"
With the flames showing the approach of the gangsters, Marvin leaned on the side, calmly listening to the enemies’ footsteps. He didn’t have a hearing skill so his perception became somewhat passive. But these people were as carefree as the little thief; they didn’t reduce the sound they made when walking, so he could still determine their path based on the sound of their footsteps.
Four people: two tall men, one fatty and one effeminate man.
He could find out this information without using his eyes.
The four men were approaching while arguing with each other. Marvin was already pleased with their quarreling, and then became overjoyed when they made their decision: splitting up!
It seemed that they were pretty confident in their strength. Clearly taking care of a young noble without a combat class would be as easy as reaching out and grabbing him.
The four scattered, with one searching nearby, and the others leaving in three different directions.
Marvin cleverly used the shadows to avoid the search perimeter of the other three – he had too much experience being hunted by skilled people in complex caves or in jungles. These good-for-nothings clearly weren’t trained for that as they wouldn’t be leaving so many blind spots for Marvin’s [Hide].
The fourth person was still searching the same area. Marvin was waiting for a good opportunity, and it arrived after less than half a minute.
And just like he did for the thief, he smoothly performed [Shadow Steps] followed by [Cutthroat].
[Basic Attack Successful!]
[Critical Hit! Basic Attack upgraded to Critical Attack]
[Target eliminated! 11 Battle Exp received]
This was a level 1 [Thug], commonly seen among the cities’ gangs. The Thug class had bonus attributes and abilities for street fighting, but they were quite at a disadvantage in the wilderness.
He was far less threatening to Marvin than the thief was. The only thing that made Marvin pleased was that this guy was a bit more wealthy, with 12 silvers in his pouch.
A faint smell of blood filled the grove as Marvin kept going and following the same pattern to get rid of another two gangsters.
The two men gave Marvin 26 silvers and a total of 30 battle exp. Unfortunately, because of the height of the last gangster, Marvin’s hand wasn’t able to keep him quiet during the kill. Although cutthroat was still as effective, he still managed to let out a shriek.
This immediately alerted the last gangster. He rushed over in a few seconds, still holding his torch.
There wasn’t enough time for Marvin to stay out of sight.
"We underestimated you." The tall man was looking at the corpse at Marvin’s feet, somewhat shocked.
He had a torch in one hand and was tightly gripping a machete in the other, showing a sinister expression. "But tonight, you are dead."
Marvin calmly launched an [Inspect].
[Inspect (35) cast...]
[Wisdom Check… ]
[Inspect Failed! You are unable to get any additional information]
This meant that the other side was at least a level 3 adventurer!
The tall man licked his lips and dashed toward Marvin, his machete high in the air, as if he wanted to cut Marvin to pieces.