There were a total of eight paths in Anterava Forest.
Some paths were intricately intertwined like mazes, some paths had numerous obstacles, and some were narrow enough to only allow single file movement. Of course, there was also a wide road. They all had different appearances. The paths had different lengths and travel times, but they all had one thing in common.
They would eventually lead to the castle. Yes, no matter which route was chosen, they could reach the enemy castle.
‘This is the difficult part.’
How could they win by moving forward while defending against eight paths? There were too many variables. It was virtually impossible to produce definitive results. But Lauel believed. When the environmental and military conditions were equal, the most important factor in designing a strategy was the enemy’s tendencies.
Lauel was confident of victory because he perfectly understood Grid’s character.
The path through the center of Anterava Forest.
It was the path that took the shortest amount of time to reach the enemy castle, and was flat, so many people could move at the same time. The South Korean side made their way along it. It was meaningless to go against Lauel’s genius, so they judged it was better to concentrate their power in one place and play a quick game.
Of course, this was expected by Lauel.
The Korean army moving along the path were surprised and stopped. It was because the US team ambushed them from the forest on the left and right. The tankers immediately raised their shields, but...
The US archers had already fired their arrows and the magicians finished casting their spells, causing a great deal of damage to the Korean army. It was difficult to block arrows and magic that was suddenly fired. The Korean troops were confused because of the sudden ambush.
The US tankers and close damage dealers lead the way, assaulting the Korean army. Zibal was planning to trample on South Korea, but...
Did the NPCs have different levels? It was strange. The NPCs that the US and Korea received should be equal, but the Korean NPCs seemed better. It was difficult to overwhelm them, despite starting the battle with a perfect ambush.
Zibal was tied up by three NPCs. In the rear of the Korean formation, Yura was firing her magic bullets while the magicians cast spells to counterattack. There was a brief lull.
Lauel appeared as the Korean representatives were hurriedly organizing the troops.
“As expected from Grid. He properly took advantage of the Great Lord's Sword.”
‘Great Lord’s Sword?’
Zibal had heard of the Lord’s Sword, but it was the first time he heard of the Great Lord’s Sword.
‘Don’t tell me it’s a special sword only given to dukes?’
Zibal shook as he felt doubts.
“Lauel... How were you so certain of our route? What courage did you have to lay forces here for an ambush?”
“Prior to the beginning of the siege, I declared to Grid that I would show great strategies and tactics.”
He emphasized strategy.
“I wanted to plant a bias in Grid. The bias was that Lauel will use complicated maneuvers and strategies.”
As a result, this situation was created.
"Grid gave up on predicting my movements and decided to focus on moving quickly.”
In fact, it was impossible for Lauel to not know that pressing forward with force was Grid’s specialty. He spoke loudly, causing Peak Sword to look horrified.
"In other words, we used the route that you intended?”
At the same time as Lauel’s reply, the US archers once again shot their bows. But this time, the Korean rankers were prepared and blocked the arrows with their shields. The arrows blocked by the shields fell to the ground, trampled on by the swordsmen.
"Did you speak to make us uneasy? You guys, you are quite empty. Don’t you have 10 less troops than us?”
A smile spread across Peak Sword’s face.
“Maybe you were anxious that we wouldn’t use this route and deployed one or two defenders on the other paths?”
Lauel asked, “Is that so?”
"You’re all in trouble.”
Lauel made an interested expression.
“Why? Do you think you can break through this road just because there are more of you?”
Grid had redistributed the roles and items of the NPCs, making it possible for the Korean NPCs to be stronger than the US NPCs. But the level different between the two countries was too great. The US had many strong users such as Zibal, so there difference of 10 troops didn’t mean victory was guaranteed.
Peak Sword had faith. It was in Grid. Grid had separated from the main force alone. He selected another route and was moving down that way. Lauel had set aside plans for any situation, so he probably set one or two people on every path. As soon as they encountered Grid, they would be killed as soon as possible and Grid would advance to the US castle faster than anyone else.
‘Until then, we have to somehow endure.’
Grid would break through and Lauel’s plan would be in vain. They had to hang on. Under the leadership of Peak Sword, Korea maintained a thorough defense. Lauel looked at them and muttered.
“There’s one person missing.”
It was as expected. No other words were needed. They were members of the same guild, so he didn’t want to cruelly give them despair.
The road through the southernmost part of the Anterava Forest. It was very narrow, had many obstacles and was long. Of the eight paths through the forest, it was the route that took the most time to reach the enemy castle.
But Skull and eight NPCs were using this path. Their mission was to grab the feet of Grid, who would appear here. If Grid didn’t show up, they would move to occupy the Korean castle. But Lauel was convinced that Grid would appear here.
If you didn’t have the means to win, you had to bet. If this was a gamble where victory wasn’t assured, Lauel would bet it on a person’s psychology.
‘Grid has flying magic, so the complicated terrain won’t be a problem for him. Lauel said he would come this way, but...’
Skull was one of the people who appreciated Lauel. But this time, he couldn’t help feeling dubious. It was questionable if Grid would really appear here. What if he used a different route? The United States would only be able to rely on Panmir.
Skull and the group moved as slowly as possible while Magic Detection was used. Suddenly, he burst out laughing at his frustration and anxiety. It was because the symbol of Grid, his items, could be seen from far away. There was a helmet on his head so the ID couldn’t be seen, but who else could it be?
It was Grid!
Skull shouted at the group.
“The enemy! Hit him!”
The NPCs pulled out their weapons and jumped at Grid. The magicians only used basic attack magic, because they had to keep the magic spells in case of an accident. But that alone was enough.
As expected from third advancement classes. Grid couldn’t withstand the attacks of eight people and was forced on the defensive.
Skull saw an opportunity and aimed for Grid’s beck.
Nevertheless, he was overgeared. Grid’s defense was so strong that Skull couldn’t cause much damage, but he didn’t panic. Maybe it was because he lost composure from the plan going wrong, but Grid was moving terribly, unlike what he showed in the recent target processing match. He was so weak that eight NPCs weren’t needed.
‘I would’ve been enough by myself.’
After falling to the ground to avoid Grid’s counterattack, Skull kicked up and attacked. Grid was hit and stated to hurriedly run away. He was trying to survive and accomplish his purpose, running in the direction of the US castle.
Skull chased after Grid. He was now enjoying this hunt.
“Pant... Pant... They’re really solid.”
"This is the United States.”
The center of Anterava Forest. South Korea was on the defensive. They couldn’t move easily because their health and stamina were at the bottom. The United States had completely surrounded them, but couldn’t relax either. Most of their NPCs were hit hard by the South Korean NPCs. But what could they do when the US representatives like Zibal were more active than the Korean representatives? The Korean NPCs were 1-2 times stronger than the US NPCs, so it took too long to create this situation.
‘How did the Great Lord’s Sword create such a difference in the NPCs?’
The overgeared Grid. Zibal felt envious. He gave an order to everyone.
“Let’s end this.”
The US troops surrounding South Korea raised their weapons at once, causing the Korean representatives to feel frustration.
‘We couldn’t last.’
Despite the fact that Grid strengthened the NPCs, they couldn’t hold on before Grid occupied the castle. They couldn’t help being ashamed of their helplessness. The United States stepped forward to deal the final blow. At this moment, there was a noise.
The strange sound of hitting was heard from the Korean side. It was a very strange, yet light-hearted sound.
The US and Korean representatives were puzzled and turned their heads towards the sound. Then they became embarrassed. A crazy magician was striking someone on the same side?
Suddenly, Zibal felt a pained feeling and grabbed his forehead as he recalled the bad memories.
The knight being hit muttered. Unlike the other NPCs, he was a knight without a name because his head was wrapped in cloth.
The eyes of the Korean members’ widened. It was because the low health gauge of the faceless knight suddenly fully recovered. Their doubts deepened and an awkward atmosphere flowed.
"Do you know how bad I feel that while you are fighting fiercely, I alone am standing still and being hit repeatedly by a flail? It was awful. I really thought I was going to die.”
The US and Korean representatives stiffened at the same time. The complaining knight took off the cloth and the name that appeared above his head...
That’s right. It was Grid. Originally, he intended to go alone to capture the US castle, but he was caught by Lauel. Despite strengthening the NPCs with Character Observation, he determined that they couldn’t cope with the US forces. Thus, Grid relied solely on items.
The method was simple. Have Lucky continuously hit him with the Motley Flail. He would resist the debuffs and continue to be hit until the best buffs occurred. It was a dangerous plan that could end with the worst case situation of a ‘definite effect,’ such as health or mana falling to 1 point. However, he couldn’t win against the US using normal methods, so he had to take risks.
And now, finally.
[You have received a great blessing from the Motley Flail!]
[All resources will recover by 100%!]
[Your attack power and defense are doubled for 2 minutes!]
[Your accuracy is 100% for two minutes!]
[The next attack will be a critical hit!]
"I’m on a roll now.”
Rather than Triple Layers which he let Swan borrow for a while, Grid equipped the Holy Light set, Grid’s Boots, and Iyarugt. He immediately used Blackening, Blacksmith’s Rage, Quick Movements, and unfolded Pinnacle Kill. Zibal was in pain from being reminded of the farmer and allowed the blow.
[The Holy Light Gloves’s option effect is activated, causing the skill ‘5 Joint Attacks’ to be generated.]
Grid marvelled at the effect that appeared after a long time. Thanks to this, Zibal received another bad name. It was the bad name of ‘punching bag.’