Chapter 168 – Qualities of a Transcendent (2)
“NO, DON’T GET CLOSE…!”
Although his colleagues tried to save him, it was useless. Before they could get closer to him, an even bigger Demonic Energy typhoon constricted his whole body.
The Demonic Energy wind took the form of Ain’s «Efreet’s Claw».
As a dark hand that devoured all the light grabbed the Holy Knight, he scattered away into light without even being able to scream.
It looked as if the fog had devoured everything, even the death effect.
The battlefield remained silent for a while after that.
The Holy Magicians that were looking at the scene unfold felt as if they were suffocating.
“That’s… don’t tell me…!”
They realized the identity of the girl who they’d thought was a vampire.
There was only one being who could manipulate Demonic Energy in such ways.
Also, there was no way that ominous, pitch-black energy belonged to a normal devil.
After someone shouted, dozens of eyes looked at Louise.
The Knights had gone Underground while risking their lives to cut the seed of Darkness.
The Light had given an oracle that said if Darkness recovered her strength and went to the surface, the world would fall into chaos.
“Everyone, stay alert!”
“Don’t carelessly move. The opponent is Darkness. Even if she hasn’t regained her strength, she’s still a dangerous being!”
Had she recovered all of her strength, or did she have more to recover?
There was only one thing they were sure about: It didn’t matter what the cost was, they had to kill Darkness there!
‘The power of the skill is more than enough… but it consumes too much Demonic Energy!’
On the other hand, Hyun realized there was a problem.
The black wind had changed. Although its damage output had increased, the amount of Demonic Energy it devoured also increased.
[The party has disbanded!]
The «Shadow Shield» grew in size, and flames were added on top of that.
[Your Demonic Energy has reached the maximum amount!]
[The attack range of the next «Sword of Darkness» has increased a lot!
[You’re with Darkness! The Authority of Darkness has entered the sword!]
[‘Ain’ has joined your party!]
‘It would be better to maintain the Demonic Energy like this.’
Hyun was surprised as he recharged his Demonic Energy.
‘Wait… what was that?!’
Had he read wrong? He looked at the message window again.
When the Demonic Energy was recharged, new content that he hadn’t seen before appeared.
‘Darkness…? Sword of Darkness…? Authority? Are these somehow related?’
He hadn’t been able to find a connection, so Hyun thought it was just a name.
‘Damn! I’ll just have to use it!’
There was no time to think about it too deeply.
There were already many Holy Knights charging toward Louise.
Hyun took out the «Sword of Darkness» and started rotating it.
The Authority of Darkness that was within the sword…
The Holy Knights discovered its effect when the sword hit them.
While the hands holding the sword trembled, Hyun could see what was happening with his two eyes.
The darkness devoured the light.
No, it wasn’t just devouring the light. it also absorbed the Holy Knights’ hands, arms, and bodies.
When the sword finished rotating, Ain was the only one left near Louise.
The sword devoured everything, including the corpses and screams.
Because even part of the ground had disappeared, it looked as if Louise was standing on top of a tower made of soil.
After seeing their colleagues disappear without leaving a trace, the Holy Knights became confused.
But it wasn’t just the Holy Knights who were surprised.
「Wh-what was that…?!」
Even Ain’s eyes widened.
Hyun wondered what he was supposed to answer with.
[Power of Darkness: 252 seconds]
After checking the remaining duration of the buff, he shouted.
「I don’t know. Just fight!」
As they began moving, the Knights countered.
Lightning suddenly flew.
The empowered Louise would probably be able to withstand the attack, but Hyun subconsciously cut the attack with his sword.
The moment the electric magic touched the Sword of Darkness, it was devoured without leaving a trace.
He called one of TarrTarr’s skills «Black Hole», but wasn’t that the real «Black Hole»?
After all, it was a huge sword that absorbed all physical objects, light, sounds, and even the flow of mana.
‘It also absorbs magic…!’
Ain took that opportunity to smash an opponent.
Although the Holy Knight blocked the attack…
Stab! The «Sword of Darkness» went through Ain and pierced the soldier.
It was thanks to the party system.
As the sword went through Ain, cut his shield, and stabbed his chest, the Knight’s face became tainted with desperation.
Ain looked at the pierced Knight’s body being absorbed by the dark sword.
If Hyun did that to her… Would she even have such an opportunity? Ain was thinking about nonsensical things.
“Oh, my god…! If Darkness gets to the surface, it will be the end of the world!”
“Wait until the captain comes! If it’s the captain, he should be able to deal with the Darkness!”
Hyun realized something else while chasing the Holy Knights that were scattering away.
‘The sword isn’t disappearing… Why is that?’
According to what he remembered, the «Sword of Darkness» lasted for [Empathy/100] seconds.
Hyun opened his status window just in case.
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Although he’d spent most of his stat points in Empathy, he had already surpassed four seconds long ago.
‘If it isn’t the effect of the stat… this is probably influenced by the Authority.’
Hyun didn’t think for long. He decided to figure it out later.
The power of Darkness only lasted for five minutes, so he had to move before it disappeared.
The giant sword cut through the air.
It looked as if the darkness had opened its mouth with the goal of devouring the world.
“You said ‘Darkness’?”
Captain Shakron stopped the march midway down the road.
was the content of the oracle, so that was why the Knight Squadron was advancing, but according to the report, Darkness had appeared in another place besides the ruins.
On top of that, it was somewhere they’d already gone through.
“Are you sure?”
As the aide put some magical power in the crystal ball, the footage was displayed in the air.
The first thing that caught Shakron’s attention was Ain.
“Is she that vampire?”
But the moment the other girl got surrounded by a Demonic Energy wind and pulled out the «Sword of Darkness», Shakron’s eyes shone coldly.
“So she’s Darkness!”
A sword that absorbed light… There was only one being who had that cursed ability.
He wasn’t sure why she appeared in another place instead of the Ruins of Darkness.
“Although she’s wearing the skin of a vampire… she’s definitely Darkness!”
“Shouldn’t we ask for reinforcements?”
“I do not doubt Captain’s abilities… but there’s a chance it will get dangerous.”
Shakron stared at the crystal ball.
The Darkness that appeared in the video was definitely strong. Even though he was among the top five Knights of the Holy Kingdom, he felt chills.
According to the sacred texts, the Darkness had once waved her hand and destroyed an entire country. The current Darkness wasn’t as strong as that.
Shakron realized that he was stronger and faster than her.
That’s right, as long as he was careful of that ‘sword’… It wouldn’t be impossible for him to defeat Darkness.
“Darkness hasn’t recovered her strength yet. We don’t need support. It’s enough with just us.”
“The Priests are probably lacking Sacred Power. We don’t need to put more pressure on them.”
To be honest, that wasn’t why Shakron had said that.
What if he defeated Darkness alone? Wouldn’t his name be written in history?
He would be able to overcome the title of weakest among the top five Knights.
“It’s too dangerous!” the aide shouted after realizing the captain’s intentions.
He was someone who became quite cruel if it was to obtain achievement, but he never thought he would get greedy during such a moment.
“If Darkness manages to complete her goal, an irreversible tragedy will happen!
“That’s not going to happen… Look.”
Although Shakron was someone greedy, he wasn’t stupid. Rather, he was sly like a snake.
His ability to figure out the other’s weaknesses had made him a top five Knight of the Holy Kingdom, although he was weaker than others in terms of strength.
Shakron smiled because he’d realized something.
“Don’t you feel like Darkness is in a hurry?”
Shakron pointed at the crystal ball.
He was laughing while looking at Holy Knights being torn apart by Darkness.
“See? Even now, Darkness hasn’t killed the Knights that are on the side. She’s just running… Can’t you guess why?”
The aide couldn’t help but feel creeped out by the captain laughing while seeing his underlings get killed, but he decided to answer first.
“That’s… Probably because she can kill them at any time…”
“No. It’s the opposite.”
“She doesn’t have enough time to kill those that were left behind.”
Louise’s buff had a duration, so he had correctly guessed Hyun’s current situation.
Shakron had realized from Darknss’s behavior that she was in a hurry.
“Darkness is a demon—a Transcendent.”
Shakron’s explanation kept going on.
“We humans don’t have many restrictions when using our strength, but that isn’t the case for a Transcendent. If they use all of their strength, it takes them quite a lot of time to recover it… That time depends on the amount of strength used, but it can be a few weeks or even hundreds of years.”
Shakron’s smile deepened.
“You finally understand how to hunt Darkness, right? Our squadron consists of 300 members. Darkness will probably lose her strength before she can kill us all, and if it’s me, I’ll be able to kill a Darkness who has lost her strength.”
“You’re going to… sacrifice all of the Knights?”
“Yes. Your names will be written in history. It will be an honor for you all.”
Shakron was planning to sacrifice everyone. He was going to move once she lost all of her strength.
“But we could be killed before her strength runs out!”
“Don’t worry. If that happens, just like you’ve said, I’ll ask for reinforcements.”
Shakron’s words were full of contradictory things, but the aide didn’t say anything.
He knew what happened to those that challenged the captain, so the only thing that the aide could do was pray.
He prayed and asked the Heavens for them to be safe.
A horizontal line of void was drawn in the air.
The moment the «Sword of Darkness» cut the world in half, those near Louise were split in two.
—Those that were on the ground and those who jumped.
The first one faced a silent death, and the others shouted a bit late.
“Scatter away, don’t stay together! If we stick together, we’re all going to die!”
The clouds of fog that were in the sky flashed from time to time.
…But those that faced Darkness couldn’t see or hear anything because the «Sword of Darkness» absorbed all light and sounds.
The «Sword of Darkness» stirred the sky.
Those who had jumped were also split in two.
A Magician was screaming in pain because his lower half had disappeared, but he was lucky.
The Holy Knight that was in front of him had lost his upper half and didn’t even have time to scream.
A few seconds were enough to realize the gap between them.
The being in front of them was Darkness, the great demon who had, in the past, pushed the world into despair!
They’d lost their fighting spirit, so they just waited for their deaths without thinking about the possibility of escaping.
But there was one thing they hadn’t realized…
「Ain, I’m going to carry you!」
…Darkness was also in a tight situation.
Taking advantage of the Knights having lost their fighting spirit, Hyun grabbed Ain and began running.
He wanted to catch up to the Knights at the front before the buff ran out.