The next day Kevin took Alex with him for the mission.
“Who is the sixth person.”
“Steve, he had heard about your bandit mission. He was eager to come along after hearing that you would be going too.”
They went to Steve’s room
“I want to see how you fight Alex. I think it would be a very good experience.”
“You can chat later, let’s go right now. Jenna and the others should be waiting for us.”
They went to the entrance of the residency. Jenna was dressed in red colored clothes which were very eye-catching. The other two girls Jennifer and Moanna were in plain clothes and didn’t stand out.
“These are the people you gathered for the mission. The coward and the mediocre Worten.”
Alex didn’t show anything but Steve retorted.
“Aren’t you still in the outer sect, the superior Stone, like me. You are not qualified to call him a coward until you can defeat a group of bandits all by yourself in 5 days.
Jenna looked furious after his comment
“Who knows if he got someone to complete the mission for him. If it weren’t for your Worten family messing I would have gotten an inner sect position too.”
“Calm down people, we still have to complete a mission together. Don’t just start fighting now.”
Kevin was playing the role of the mediator.
“He started it. I don’t even need you to come to the forest with me, you can just sign up for the mission and enjoy in your rooms.”
Jenna wasn’t ready to step back.
“Let’s go to the mission hall first.”
Alex said and went towards the mission hall. Steve shut up and followed him.
“How dare he lead the group?”
Kevin looked at Jenna with vexed eyes and left too.
Jenna cursed but she and the other girls followed them soon after.
When all of them got together in the mission hall, Kevin went up to the receptionist
“Senior sister Susie, Good Morning. We are here to apply for the Meizu forest mission.”
Susie looked at the group was surprised. Even she had heard of the tyrant like actions of Jenna Stone. She had seen many disciples checking out the mission but no-one came again for the same mission.
“Is this your group.”
“Take these mission tokens, you have 10 days to complete the mission. When you are done with the mission, you can contact a supervisor with the token. He will check the if the requirements have been fulfilled.”
The group took the tokens and went out of the mission hall.
“We will move tomorrow, you can go prepare for the mission. We would have to live in the forest for a couple of days. And Jenna, no extravagant things.”
“What do you mean by that?”
The group then parted ways. Kevin was worried about the future of the group. It was so chaotic, Jenna couldn’t listen to others. Steve didn’t like Jenna, Alex didn’t and wouldn’t state any opinions, Jennifer and Moanna would only follow Jenna.
Alex went inside his room. He wasn’t worried about the mission, he didn’t count on anybody, not even Alex.
“If the worst came, I will finish the entire mission by myself.”
Alex couldn’t let the mission fail, the reward was great. But at the same time, he didn’t and couldn’t trust others. He prepared for the mission.
Meizu forest was the biggest forest in the city. It was divided into the inner region and the outer region. The outer region was generally safe for low-level cultivators. The inner region was full of surprises and stronger beasts lurked there. One time a rank 4 beast comparable to core formation cultivators was spotted in the inner region. The forest was a great area for collecting herbs, the helpers in the various sects were assigned to collect herbs from the outer area. All the major sects had divided the area for collecting herbs among themselves. Recently due to a sudden influx of wild beasts in the forest, the weak helpers couldn’t do their job properly. They were attacked by the beasts and were injured. Hence this mission was issued by the sect itself. The main requirement of the mission was to drive out or kill the rank 1 beasts present in the outer side of the forest. The other requirement was to identify the reason for the outbreak of these beasts in the outer region. The cause wasn’t necessary for completing the mission, but if identified, gave another 12 clan points to the group.
The group gathered together outside the outer sect doors the next day. Jenna again wore a red colored dress albeit different from the previous one.
“You know that we are going for a mission in the wild, not for a ceremony right. Did you have to wear such flashy clothes.”
Steve said to Jenna.
“Why does it matter what I wear? Why should I change my dress for a mission.”
Kevin sighed and said
“You can argue later, first let’s go the forest.”
Alex was silent throughout and was the first to move again. The group went forward towards the forest. Alex could feel the gazes of the passerby’s as their group traveled. Jenna’s red dress could be spotted from far away. Her beauty combined with that dress looked eye-catching to others. There were a couple of hooligans wanting to pester her but Moanna quickly beat them up. They increased their pace once they got out of the market and reached the Meizu forest area taken by Moonrising sect.
There was a brawl happening outside the forest.
“You can’t stop us, we have the advantage in numbers. Back off and let us inside
“We can’t, this is the area of Moonrising sect. You can’t come inside. For your information, we are also suffering from the beasts.”
It looked like a group of cultivators believed that the area belonging to Moonrising sect was peaceful. They demanded to be let inside.
Jenna after hearing this got furious and yelled at them
“Are you challenging the authority of Moonrising sect. Were you planning to force your way inside.”
“Who are you?”
“We are the outer sect disciples of Moonrising sect. If you don’t want to get beaten up, go back to your own regions.”
The cultivators from other groups were intimidated by the sudden declaration. They had wanted to pressurize the helpers of the Moonrising sect with their superior numbers and strength. But now they were afraid if the outer sect disciples would take any action.
Kevin inquired them and quickly explained the reason why they wanted to enter the Moonrising sect’s area.
Besides the area divided by the major sects, there was also an area left for smaller sects and wandering cultivators. Their region was just beside the Moonrising sect’s region. Their region was the one most affected by the beasts. The number of beasts there was very high. A wandering cultivator got killed by a peak rank 1 beast. The cultivators in the region were afraid to enter the region and thought that the other regions are not affected.
Kevin sighed and let them go.
“Why did you let them go. We should’ve beaten them to uphold the reputation of our sect.”
Jenna said to Kevin.
“They were also forced by the circumstances. Let’s enter the forest.”
Alex entered the forest. Meizu forest was very different from the forest beside Sui river. The trees were so densely packed that no light was passing through. The forest seemed dark and gave one an uneasy feeling.
“The forest is gloomy and eerie.”
“The helpers aren’t coming inside due to the beasts. So the forest is even more deserted.”
“They are just grade one beasts. The helpers could work together like normal and run if they can’t face the beasts.”
“It's not so easy, beasts are not that dumb. They are unpredictable, some travel in packs, some are venomous.”
The group walked around the outer area for some time. Alex was at the back and it looked like he was searching for something.
"Did you hear that, there is something in the bush."
Steve said. Then suddenly a hare jumped out of the bushes. It was quite large for a hare. It had red eyes and its body was pitch black.
“Careful, that’s a Wuke hare. They are quite agile and always travel in pairs. The second one must be near us. Be cautious of their nails, it is generally very sharp.”
Kevin shouted. Everyone took out their weapons. The one closest to the hare was Moanna. The hare pounced on Moanna, she had brought a spear with her. She blocked the paws of the hare with the spear. The hare immediately bounced back towards Steve. Steve was ready and struck at the incoming hare, but his strike missed as the hare was very fast. The nails of the hare struck the side of his arm.
“Damn, these nails are too sharp.”
Jenna also tried to hit the hare but he dodged her clumsy attack easily and attacked her. The armor of Jenna ensured that she didn’t get any injuries. Kevin took advantage of the moment the hare attacked Jenna and injured it with his sword. The hare jumped back and looked at its back. It squealed and fled deep inside the forest.
“Why did you let it leave? Why didn't that Alex help in the fight?”
"Why are you the one screaming when you were the most useless."
Kevin frowned but looking around he didn’t find Alex.
“I knew he was a coward, he ran away that bastard.”
Jenna said. She was furious.
Kevin didn’t say anything but he also wondered why and where had Alex went to.