The Skeleton General rushed to the front of the human defensive line and swept its sword sideways towards the Warriors in front of it. The wind itself seemed to be cut by the powerful strike, the first Warrior to receive its attack would inevitably get blown away.
As the sword swept towards the unfortunate Warrior, Liu Hau appeared in front of her.
“Boom!” The collision was so loud Liu Hau’s eardrums nearly ruptured.
The Damage Reduction attribute didn’t just negate damage but also the force behind it allowing Liu Hau to barely resist falling over support from the Warrior behind him. Even reduced, the Skeleton General’s strength was twice that of Liu Hau.
However, the Skeleton General’s title wasn’t just for show. Without pausing the it recovered and sent its sword snaking towards Liu Hau heart from a tricky angle. It defied logic as it snaked through the gap in his armor near his armpit.
The Skeleton General might look clumsy but it was the animated remains of a sword master. Its dexterity was on another level so as an amateur, Liu Hau could only obediently let his heart be pierced.
At the same time, three Magic Missiles slammed against the Skeleton General. Without it’s shield it was just another mob. No matter who it was in life, it was just one skeleton. Together with the last Skeleton Warrior, it was returned to the grave.
“Koko, nice block!” Cheng Yang cheered.
Indeed, if not for Liu Hau stopping the Skeleton General from knocking away the first Warrior it would have been able to directly enter the back lines. The results of that can only be imagined.
“Heh, it was a group effort.” Liu Hau said with an embarrassed smile.
They laughed but their hands weren’t idle. After killing the high level enemies, all that was left was to continue attacking.
The two sides were stuck in a lethal game of tug of war. The Warriors were stronger than the skeletons and their shields could block most of the damage but there were just too many skeletons, they couldn’t block them all. As time passed, the Warriors began to tire out.
The Summoners played a vital role in this fight. Their wolves acted as meatshields, taking attacks for the Warriors while the Summoners themselves would attack any skeleton that tried to break through the formation. Even though Summoner’s couldn’t damage enemies with their staves, their strength was enough to push them back.
The number of skeletons continuously dropped but the group wasn’t made up of trained soldiers. Even with Pang Sun’s healing and the help of potions, the mental stress of such high intensity combat introduced mistakes into their rhythm.
Unable to adjust his stance in time, a Warrior was knocked off balance by the endless wave of attacks. If he were to fall now, the undead hordes would ensure he never had the chance to get back up.
At the last moment Cheng Yang dived forwards and pulled the soldier out of the way, taking his place. As Cheng Yang hit the ground, a dozen skeleton’s stabbed downwards. Cheng Yang now had more than eighty Health so the damage done was negligible thanks to his high Physical Defense. The soldier he saved swiftly returned to his position while Cheng Yang retreated behind him.
Using his highly honed combat sense Cheng Yang was able to use his body as a shield every time a Warrior made a mistake. Even if they only dealt one damage, with attacks continuously hitting Cheng Yang he needed to take a Health Recovery Potion every ten seconds or less.
After a few dozen seconds, the battle finally ended, the dead were laid to their final rest.
None of the Phoenix Village soldiers had died but right now the Warriors didn’t look much better than beggars. Their clothes had been reduced to rags and they were covered in blood.
Fortunately, their actual condition was better than their appearance. As long as the meditated or had Pang Sun heal them, even Liu Hau’s pierced heart would heal. The real loss was any damage done to their equipment. Right now Phoenix Village didn’t have any NPC’s capable of repairing equipment so each point of durability lost was one they couldn’t get back.
Since the canyon floor was finally still, the instance had been cleared.
Cheng Yang quickly started cleaning the battlefield while the others were meditating to recover.
The skeleton armies had spawned far too quickly so Cheng Yang hadn’t had a chance to collect the loot yet. In this instance, every single high level skeleton was guaranteed to drop an item and even normal ones had a decent chance so there was plenty of loot to be found. In addition, this was the first clear of the Forgotten Grave so Cheng Yang had high expectations.
Sure enough, Cheng Yang found six pieces of Black Iron equipment, ten pieces of Green Bronze equipment and a scroll.
Cheng Yang wasn’t interest in the equipment since none of them were better than his current set. Throwing the equipment towards the soldiers to fight over, Cheng Yang opened the scroll.
At this point it seemed liked god was deliberately teasing him. He had found yet another rare scroll but instead of the architectural blueprints he wanted, it was a skill scroll.
“I am the emperor’s shield! You’ll have to break my unyielding spirit first you filthy necromancer!” – Sword Saint Cao Fu
Grade: Black Iron
Cool Down: 5 minutes
Duration: 3 minutes
Effect: Absorb a set amount of damage equal to five times Mana times the skills level
Effect: Increase Damage Reduction by five per skill level
Effect: Mana is proportionally reduced when damage is taken.
Even if it wasn’t a blue print the skill itself was very practical so Cheng Yang was satisfied. The Sacrificial Blood Cloud was overpowered because Cheng Yang’s level was so high but Spirit Shield was quite decent as well, a Purple Silver skill that grew with user.
Cheng Yang let out a sigh. Sadly only Warriors could learn this skill.
Cheng Yang decided to let Liu Hau learn this skill. After all, among the top ranks of Phoenix Village only him and Old Lee were Warriors. Although Old Lee’s Innate Ability was strong it was geared towards territory management so his combat potential was far lower than Liu Hau’s. Additionally, only Liu Hau participated in clearing this instance dungeon so it was only fair for him to be able to get the first choice of loot.
Then, before the instance ended, Cheng Yang rushed deeper into the canyon to find the final loot. Although the others wanted to follow him, since the instance had been cleared he refused to let them.
The soldiers didn’t insist since they needed to spend a few minutes recovering. Although Pang Sun was there, when she ran out of Mana she would have to Meditate to recover it since potions were to valuable to use in this situation.
Cheng Yang only needed to walk two hundred meters to find what he was looking for. At the end of the canyon there was a pillar made of bones and at its base was a chest. The entire area was wreathed in a blue light and covered in a layer of frost.
“Thank god its here!” Cheng Yang exclaimed.
In his last life first clear of this instance had been conducted by a Russian team that immediately began bragging about their find. The final reward for clearing the instance was a jewel that contained a raging blizzard.
Cheng Yang opened the chest and pulled out the fist sized jewel.
The Spirit of Ice and Snow
Giving this jewel to a Mage class change statue grants access to the unique subclass Cryomancer
The system pane for the jewel as very basic, but one of the words was incredibly important: unique.
There was no doubt that in this world, if something was described as unique it would be infinitely better than normal items. For example, the Sacrificial Blood Cloud skill. It played a strong role in this instance and had an amazing growth potential.
Regardless of the class, once a Professional reached a high enough level you would need to choose a subclass. For Mages there were four ordinary subclasses: Geomancer, Pyromancer, Hydromancer and Anemancer.
The name “unique subclass” was a bit of a misnomer. It wasn’t that only one existed in the world but that only one could be created per territory. For example, when Cheng Yang gives the Spirit of Ice and Snow to the Mage class change statue it will open up a single slot for a Cryomancer, a number that will never increase. Once someone performs the Cryomancer class change ceremony, unless that person they would be Phoenix Village’s only Cryomancer.
Although the Cryomancer was a unique subclass it would be more accurate to say it was just an upgraded version of the Hydromancer since you would need to be a Hydromancer before you could become a Cryomancer. However, that restriction doesn’t apply to Mage’s without a subclass.
Whether it was losing the Priest Idol from the Blood Soaked Church or the Spirit of Ice and Snow from the Forgotten Grave, mentioning it to any of the high level officials from Cloud City in Cheng Yang past life would get you beaten. After all, Cloud City had access to both of those instance dungeons but didn’t manage to obtain either of the first clear rewards. Having let those two treasures slip through their fingers, how could they possibly feel good if someone mentioned it?