~ Chapter 70: Against Draejan ~
[Alkelios' point of view]
The moment I saw him charging at me through the air, I used Hell and Heaven to block his attack. Sparks flew as the three swords collided, and I was pushed back at a great force. His blow was heavier than that of all the previous dragons I fought against so far, forcing me to strain myself so I could resist it.
“HAAA!!!” Draejan shouted as he pushed all his magic into his sword.
A powerful shockwave was created at the contact point between his sword and mine, and I was sent crashing down into the ground below.
A cloud of dust rose up in the air, and a crater formed around me. My armor protected me from any danger, but I had to admit, I didn't expect this dragon to be so powerful.
It was ridiculous even.
“Hahaha!” he began to laugh as I coughed a few times and got up. “You see?! I'm far more powerful now than you! With this strength even killing the King will be a cinch!” he bragged.
Is he sane? Does he understand what he just declared? I wondered, but then again, he was the one who incited Embryger and Albeyater to war. Thinking that he was planing to kill the Royal Family shouldn't have been that much of a shock to me.
Flying up in the air, I maintained an altitude at the same level as him and kept my guard up. Considering the blow I received earlier, I had to admit that he was stronger than all those other Breakthrough-ers who faced me so far, but it really made me wonder if he could indeed defeat the King. It sounded no different than a beginner adventurer believing he could take down a Demon King just because he could defeat a Goblin King.
Even so, if Draejan would have used that attack against Kleo, Iolaus, or Seryanna, I doubted they could have survived without the help of my armor.
“Hmph! I have to admit, Alkelios, you are the only fool who managed to anger me in such a way, that's why I will take my time defeating you!” he said and then charged at me, but as I lifted my sword up to block his attack, he vanished.
What?! I thought in surprise, but then I felt a killing intent behind me. When I turned around, it was too late to block and Draejan's sword struck my chest armor, sending me crashing into the ground again.
His attack felt like I got slapped by one of those giant monsters in the Seculiar Forest or the Northern Desert. The only difference was that the latter were cuter...
As I got up from the crater and patted my chest, I was relieved to see I didn't receive a single scratch on it. My currently equipped items were forged with my Godlike Blacksmith skill, but this didn't guarantee a no-damage policy. They weren't indestructible items, it was just very very hard to put a dent on them.
His weapon has to be at least Beginner Legendary in order to have such a powerful effect... I thought and as I looked up at him, I activated my [Identificus Processus Juridicus] on his armor and sword.
(Armor of Legendary Sacrifice): Draconitium and Zaradin armor made by a Legendary Blacksmith. The other name it carries is that of (Armor of Blood). It dampens all Physical Attacks by up to 50% of the force. It can absorb 89% of the Magic Energy from a spell cast at the user. Burst Enchant: It consumes the accumulated Life Force inside the armor in order to exponentially increase the power of the user. Chance for Mental Instability as a result of this process: 56%. Strength, Speed, Endurance, and Magic Energy Damage receive a significant boost. Once all the Life Force stored in the crystals embedded in the armor is consumed, all of its enchants are disabled. Life Force remaining: 96%. Boost Set at 4000+ All Stats. Status: Activated.
(Two-handed Falcion of Corrosion): Dregaryum sword enhanced with Magic Crystals. A Dungeon Drop item which enhances the strength of the user proportionate to the amount of Life Force fed to it. Current Conversion Rate: 36% of total Strength at a rate 1.2% Life Force per Minute.
As a someone who made Godlike tier weapons and armors, I couldn't help but feel disgusted by what I was reading. Usually, the more powerful weapons were, the more savage the penalty it came with it. In this case, what was written there as Life Force meant more than what Seryanna once explained to me.
Back when I was still training in the Seculiar Forest, I came to the understanding that Level, Experience, and each Status point represented something in real life. Experience, in it's most simple form, it could be defined as an individual reflexes gained through combat and added to the increase of strength and speed. A level was gained only when the said individual surpassed his own limits and his body adjusted to the gained strength. By this definition, those like me who had skills and abilities which increased the speed at which we leveled up and gained strength could only be considered as abnormal monsters.
Meanwhile, what these items which used Life Force to enhance the body did was to temporarily enchant the user's body. After all, if items could be enchanted with Magic Energy, shouldn't it be possible to do the same with a flesh and blood body?
The truth was that it was quite possible to do so. The difference was that a living being's body consumed and released this energy at a much faster rate than an inanimate object. At the same time, one had to wonder: was Life Force really the same as Magic Energy?
The answer was simple: no.
Life Force was a complex construction of not only Magic Energy but matter and maybe soul energy as well. Some called Experience as Life Force, others their total Vitality, while others just the strength they gained from killing a monster. The truth was that it was all of the above, but when applied on an item, in order for Life Force to be written in its description and not Vitality, Strength, Speed, Experience, or the like, it had to do one of two things: either consume the user's flesh and body as a form of energy or use that of another living being.
As I flew up again, I asked this fool of a dragon “How many lives have you fed to that cursed armor?”
“Hooo? So what Kronius told me was correct. You do have some sort of appraisal skill? Did you gain it from that God-like?” he asked with a wild smile on his face and then laughed.
“Mental instability...” I said in a low volume.
In the description it did say that using the armor had a chance of doing this to the user, after all, when inserting the Life Force of another being in this manner, there was the chance you would absorb its last thoughts as well. This would result in the user either hearing or seeing things that weren't there. It was a temporary insanity, if I had to give it a name.
Still, I wasn't surprised by the fact that he knew of the God-like. The human he kept in his leash had probably told him everything he knew of Earth and the circumstances through which we were sent to this world. That being said, if that fellow also had gaming experience, then he certainly knew how to handle his status and skills as well. Although, only if he practiced them in actual combat situations could he master them and learn to use them wisely.
“Do you really want to know? Do you reeeally reeeally want to know?” he asked.
“Yes.” I replied narrowing my eyes at him.
Although this is a battlefield, no other soldier is taking advantage of this situation to attack me. From what I can see, I'm guessing that they are all trying to give us as much room as possible... No, they are making a circle around us. Draejan's men are making sure I don't get any reinforcements... Several of them are already tossing themselves in front of Seryanna's blade trying to stop her from advancing as well. I thought as I peeked from the corner of my eye at the countless battles that took place around us.
“I'll let you know, then! But first die!” he laughed and then cast a powerful light attack.
Hundreds of spears of light formed around him and then flew at me. I picked up Heaven and slashed at the area in front of me, sending a wave of light at them. Half of them exploded in front of me, but then Draejan appeared to my left side and tried to stab me. I dodged in the nick of time and used my tail to strike his exposed stomach.
The dragon coughed and flew up in the air before he vanished again.
I'm quite certain now that this isn't his skill. Is the human the one who is teleporting him around? I wondered as I tried searching the skies for him.
“Kuh! That was some strike... But you sure are a monster... Hehe.” Draejan said from somewhere in front of me and wiped his mouth with the back of his gauntlet.
Flying forward, he revealed himself with that strange sword covered in a green aura. His armor matched the color scheme, as it was a combination of dark-green and black.
“At this point, I can't tell if you have really achieved a Breakthrough or if you are just depending on your items.” I said.
At least he's not carrying around a hundred Health Potions... It's so frustrating when you end up encountering a Boss that keeps healing back to 100% after you reduced his HP to a pixel! I thought and then let out a sigh Even that's a strategy worth considering. Although, it's no different actually than the chinese novels where the heroes consume more pills than a national hospital during a health crisis! I thought.
At this point, I was certain he wasn't going to tell me how many he killed to fill up his armor's Life Force storage, and he definitely didn't care that his sword was literally eating up his body the more he used it.
I can only beat him up until his armor stops functioning and his sword shatters... I thought and then said to myself “Hell, Heaven, let's go have some fun!” I smirked and the two sword hummed.
Taking a pose, I shouted “HYOH!” and activated my [Constipated Grandpa] skill.
Magic Attacks were useless against this guy's armor, so I just had to hammer at it with physical attacks until it shattered into a thousand pieces.
With [Inner Warrior], I entered a combat trance and then activate [Unlimited Shadows] together with [King Grandpa Blade Runner], which allowed me to use some rather insane moves.
Thus, I began my assault against the traitor dragon who wished to bring down my home and family, the one who sought not prosperity but destruction.
His armor and weapon brought his speed and strength way past my base stats, but not total ones. Even if he had 12000 points in Strength, I had over 19000, and I knew how to use them all. Unlike me, Draejan also had an unstable state of mind given by the use of his items, for which he compensated with a combo attack together with the human hero with teleportation abilities.
The moment I flew towards him, my speed increase was clear, and I had yet to begin to use the enchants on my own armor and weapons. So far, it was only pure brute strength.
“What the...” he said, but by the time he was about to say the third word, I slashed at him.
Draejan was teleported away right in the nick of time, but I turned to my left and shot a fireball at a slow speed then an ice spear right at its center. The two spells collided and exploded, forming a cloud of steam. I rushed into it, using it as a cover, while Draejan, who as on the other side of it, had no idea where I was.
In the blink of an eye I moved to his side and then slashed my sword at him. The armor tried to resist the brute force attack, but the blade of my weapon was sturdier than his plate. The latter gave in and cracked, but it didn't let the cut go through. As a result, Draejan flew off into the horizon.
He tried to adjust his speed and cursed a few words, but I ignored him and rushed at him.
He vanished when I got close.
Above. I thought as I made a barrel roll and tossed Hell at him.
The blade struck his chest and made him tumble back while Hell flew back at me as if pulled by a string.
“This is impossible!” he shouted as he stabilized his flight.
“Not really, but it's funny you know?” I said with a smile as I was charging up Hell and Heaven with Magic Energy, enhancing their blades.
Draejan was glaring at me as he poured more of his Life Force into his sword and consumed what was stored in his armor to enhance it. The more he did this, the higher the penalty would be once he stopped. That weapon of his could easily pull him down from the Breakthrough-er level.
“You said you were going to defeat me and then defeat his Majesty, right? But did you know that I lost to the King?” I asked with a smirk.
“So what?” he glared at me.
“That means, if you can't defeat me...” I pointed Hell's blade at him “you don't stand a chance against him.” I then summoned the illusions from [Unlimited Shadows], in which I had been pouring Magic Energy since I began my assault.
The sky around Draejan was filled with illusions of me, and all acted independently like real life clones.
“You have no chance of winning Draejan!” my voice echoed around him. “Your army lacks the Supremes needed to defeat Albeyater's army. Your troops are being slaughtered all around us. There is no chance of winning for you. Declare your loss now, and maybe his Majesty will spare you!” I told him.
“Shut up! I don't care about my troops! I'll kill you, that rotten King, and everyone else! I don't need anyone! I can defeat you all!” he shouted.
His mental instability progressed because of the amount of Life Force he poured into his sword. This means I have to be careful not to be struck by it... I thought as I looked at the raging dragon.
Although he was in his half-beast form just like me, he was starting to look like a wild animal with those bloodshot eyes and constant growling. He was a bit unpredictable, but that was the cost of using one's own Life Force to fuel an enchanted item, among many other side effects.
It was quite clear that without the help of these dangerous items, Draejan didn't stand a chance at defeating me. Even if he achieved a Breakthrough, he was far too low on his own on the power scale. He was well aware of this fact, that was why this mad version of his was his trump card.
While I ordered the majority of my illusions to attack Draejan, the rest of them went to find the human who was helping him out. I had to keep him busy long enough for me to defeat this dragon.
“WHERE ARE YOU! SHOW YOURSELF!” he shouted as he kept destroying my illusions.
I flew among them and went from behind. My sword slashed at his back, but my aim wasn't his armor. Dragons in half-beast form had most of their wings exposed in order to use them for flight. Without armor or some magic spell to protect them, they were flesh and bone that could be cut with ease by a good sword.
One slash was all I needed to remove one wing. The moment it was separated from his body, Draejan screamed in pain. I took this moment to fly to his side and then used [Steel Cutter] aimed at his wrist, right where the armor plates were connected. The attack separated his hand from his arm, letting it fall to the ground together with the legendary sword that made him act like a madman. Flying down, I then moved in front of him and used [100 meters long Impale], which from this short range was devastating as a physical attack. The aim was at the center of his abdominal muscles. The attack went past the limits of his armor and the plates in that region shattered into a thousand pieces. The piercing attack cut through his flesh and damaged his innards, but it didn't go through the other side.
As I flew back, I watched as he was falling to the ground. In the end, he thought he had some sort of advantage against me, but I would have lost only and only if it was the old me, the one whom he easily defeated more than one year ago.
Looking up, I saw my illusions harassing a shadow in the sky. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't have had such a smooth victory. If I was facing a dragon with Draejan's buffed up stats but without the mental instability bit, I would have had a bit more trouble than now, and there was a chance I would need to depend on my armor's enchants with him constantly being teleported around like some pesky fly.
I don't think he died from this fall, but with his demise, this battle is now over... I thought.
There was no need to say that while I was fighting him, all of my friends managed to win their own battles, and they were now on their way to witness the final moments of Draejan. The enemy troops also found themselves at a stop when they saw their leader fall from their sky. His defeat signified the end of this battle.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
Seeing how things have been a bit hard for me lately, I will try and focus around posting only at the end of the week, during a Friday or Saturday(ish). I'm going to try the weekly chapter dump version of the schedule to see if this fits me better.
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