Chapter 179 – Last Battle (2)
「Haa… I cannot calm down.」
「I’d like it if she remained still.」
Was it because her Ego became stronger? Louise’s emotions were fluctuating more.
「It seems like it will be like that until we get rid of them.」
Hyun raised his head and looked around.
Every time the opponents looked into his eyes, they flinched.
It was the effect of the ‘Blessing of Darkness.’ Just by looking into his eyes, those that belonged to the Heavens trembled in fear. It made them subconsciously back off.
“What’s up… With these feelings…”
It was an energy similar to the one named bosses emitted.
Everyone hesitated before someone shouted and tried to make everyone return to their senses.
“Everyone, wake up! If we become afraid like this, we’ll end up losing!”
The swordsman that had put Ain into a difficult situation leaped forward.
“Be careful! We don’t know what that skill is, so—”
Before the ally could finish the warning, «Efreet’s Claws» appeared on both of Ain’s hands.
«Powerless Wave» and «Impact Amplification» were activated, and her stats had increased thanks to the «Assimilation» bonus.
«Angel’s Sword Art» activated.
There was a short exclamation.
Half of the swordsman’s body vanished.
Ssss- The rest of the body also turned to particles of light and scattered away.
“Just now… Did anyone see what happened?”
His partners just stood still while looking in disbelief.
Even though they’d gained a lot of experience throughout the years, they couldn’t understand what was going on.
“Before Tass was hit, he used a defensive skill… but how did…? Ah, wait!”
Someone noticed the patterns on the floor.
There was a wave expanding from Ain’s feet.
“It’s a skill that debuffs defenses!”
There was no time to talk.
Ain, covered in buffs, began moving.
“Everyone, check your current Defense values!”
“How could something like this…?!”
Everyone that was touched by the «Powerless Wave» exclaimed in disbelief.
“My Defense is 0!”
“What? Is this an ultimate attack?”
“So there was a reason why Tass was killed with one attack. He used a Defensive buff despite it having become 0…!”
While everyone was confused, Ain appeared in front of a Magician.
The guild leader sensed the danger and quickly shouted.
“Put on a defensive shield on Kai!”
Clack. A half-transparent shield appeared around the Magician.
It was the Priest’s ultimate attack, «Magical Power Armor»!
It protected a user from up to a million points of damage for a minute, so it basically provided a minute of immortality.
—But everyone’s beliefs were crushed instantly.
Ssss. The pitch-black Ain suddenly disappeared.
‘That skill that turns you invisible. I think I’ve seen it before.’
‘Wait… is it that?!’
It was Salon’s skill.
They weren’t sure how he’d obtained that skill, but everyone had seen and remembered Iluna’s quest highlights.
Even the scary Reaper had screamed in pain from that skill…
‘If Ain obtained that same skill…’
Their knowledge of the past was the Returner’s Guild’s strongest point, but it was also the reason why they were making such big mistakes at the moment.
They thought they knew everything, so they only focused on analyzing new things.
They’d never imagined that there was a user like Hyun that used a new kind of skill like «Assimilation».
Unlike Salon, they didn’t think of analyzing the users that had the effect of «Powerless Wave».
What was happening to them was the result of their carelessness.
The protective shield was crushed on its own.
Polygonal pieces scattered away.
As Ain swung her claws, the Magician turned into black dust and then scattered away into light.
[You’ve recovered your movement speed!]
Hyun and Ain felt their bodies becoming lighter at the same time.
As the caster died, the debuff disappeared.
「Hyun… You look scary today.」 Ain mumbled.
Hyun replied after thinking about it.
「I’m sorry, it’s just that I can’t calm down.」
Louise’s anger… As long as he, her Shadow, didn’t resolve it, she wouldn’t calm down.
「No. I said it in a good sense…?! Y-you don’t need to worry!」
「Really…? Then I’m going to focus for a while.」
[Remaining time before Darkness recovers part of her Ego: 4 minutes 21 seconds]
The time was almost over.
A strong fog that made it hard to approach was pouring from the altar, so as long as he resisted, the quest wouldn’t end in failure.
Still, Hyun didn’t want to remain still and wait until it was over.
Haa… He took a deep breath while clenching and unclenching his hands.
«Spirit Run», «Illusion».
Hyun began moving once a picture was completed in his head.
Two shadows similar to Ain launched forward in a V-shaped formation.
They were launched simultaneously, so they looked like one skill.
Was it because they’d gone through a lot in Asra? The Returner’s Guild members reacted fast.
They all had high agility and movement skills, so they weren’t touched by the shadows that came out of nowhere, but due to how they dodged, they all became concentrated toward the middle. That was what Hyun was after.
The third shadow leaped forward to the middle of the V shape.
As «Biorhythm Acceleration» was added on top of that, Ain’s figure extended as if it were a shadow at dusk.
Unlike the two before, that was the real body.
Instead of «Efreet’s Claws», Ain held a massive sword that was over 10 meters long.
‘If this is their first time seeing this…’
Everyone’s expressions passed through Hyun’s eyes as if things were in slow motion.
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He swung the sword after taking every enemy’s position into account.
‘They will inevitably die.’
Hyun didn’t take the enemies lightly.
Things could get troublesome if many different ultimate attacks began being poured down on him.
He’d probably be able to resist until the quest was over, but after that, there was a chance he’d die.
The technique he was using would allow him to eliminate all those possibilities with one hit.
«Sword of Darkness»!
He didn’t have Louise’s skill, so he couldn’t cut them as quickly.
Hyun began to cut down the enemies one by one with exact precision.
«Biorhythm Acceleration» lasted only for three seconds, but it was enough time to eliminate all of the enemies.
He flicked like a shadow that they couldn’t put up any resistance toward.
Those with slow reactions were bisected or decapitated, and those that barely managed to react lost their arms or legs to the first attack, but lost other parts of their bodies to the follow-up attacks.
After the corpses scattered away into light, there was only silence left at the altar.
When Ain’s movements stopped, only two members of the Returner’s Guild were alive.
‘Did he resist this?’
One Priest was alive because Hyun had reached the conclusion he wasn’t dangerous, but that wasn’t the case for the other one.
‘It still doesn’t matter.’
The Returner’s Guild’s leader, ‘Annihilation.’
It was the ID of a user that used his charisma and leadership to lead the biggest guild in Asra Online.
He had a tanker job and a passive skill that reduced the damage received by a certain percentage. Thanks to that, he was able to survive until the end.
Mayday couldn’t believe what had just happened in an instant.
“Was that… The real ultimate attack?”
Hyun didn’t reply because there wasn’t a need to.
It didn’t matter if it was an ultimate attack or not. The fight was over.
Although he had survived, his HP had almost plummeted.
As a guild leader, ‘Annihilation’ thought that everyone had grown faster compared to before.
He was sure that, with those 10 people, they’d be able to beat both Hyun and Ain.
Even after all that, they had all lost to just a single one of them. They also hadn’t lost to Hyun, but Ain… Unless it was a one-on-one battle, fighting Hyun would be more troublesome than Ain.
Then had nothing changed compared to before? All their efforts had turned into dust…
After seeing the eyes looking down on him, ‘Annihilation’ felt a sense of incongruity.
They’d used all their Demonic Energy, so he was able to see Ain’s eyes.
Her burning eyes had turned to a cold, frosty gaze.
It was as if she were another person.
It was something that didn’t make sense… Even if he knew that, ‘Annihilation’ couldn’t help but ask a question.
Even though he was asking, he was almost sure of the answer.
“Are you… Hyun?”
The Ain from his memories was someone who always accepted the fight up front, she was a berserker, someone who moved based on her instincts. By definition, a beast.
Still, those movements were Hyun’s techniques. They were movements with very high precision. He’d lost against such movements in Asra numerous times.
“I can’t think you’re Ain. You’re definitely—”
‘Annihilation’ couldn’t finish his sentence.
Hyun cut the two survivors down before ‘Annihilation’ could finish speaking.
As expected, Louise was able to calm down after all of the danger was eliminated.
His heart, which was beating really fast because of Empathy, had finally calmed down.
After the ceremony for Louise was almost over, Ain carefully spoke.
「That’s bad, right?」
「He just found out about «Assimilation», right?」
Ain was worried because Hyun always seemed to want to hide «Assimilation» and his other skills, but Hyun answered with a laugh.
「Don’t worry. They were going to figure it out when they analyzed the fight anyway.」
If they analyzed what happened carefully, they would easily figure out that Ain had acted differently from usual.
「Firstly, our fighting styles are too different.」
「Not only that, but I can’t imitate you.」
He’d hidden the Support’s skills in preparation for the first battle. Hyun was satisfied with just having been able to win once easily.
「Also, we can use the fact that they know «Assimilation» against them.」
For example, they’d probably feel pressured even if he didn’t show up because they would wonder if he was using «Assimilation».
The warier they were, the less they could move. On the other hand, what Ain and Hyun could do increased.
「The value of information depends on how you use it.」
「It’s going to be more comfortable with them thinking that they’ve figured out «Assimilation».」
「Hmm, how complex.」
Ain shook her head after thinking about it for a while.
Hyun’s thoughts were always unpredictable, so once again, there was no need to try to understand it.
The countdown ended while they were talking
At that moment, the sun shone over Darkness’s land.
Huh…? Both of them were stunned after looking around.
「That’s the real sun!」
It wasn’t the black sun. They weren’t in the Symmetrical World anymore!
Hyun turned to Louise after he realized where they were.
Louise was looking at the clouds with a calm expression.
‘Is she okay…?’
Louise was calmly receiving the sunlight. He could feel her emotions through Empathy.
The real sun that she was seeing for the first time… She believed it to be a blander view than she expected.
‘It seems like she’s okay…’
During Iluna’s Quest, when she was touched by the sun, she suffered in pain like she was about to die, but she seemed okay at the moment.
After a while…
A huge amount of system messages appeared in front of Hyun.
[‘Main Quest: In Search of Dark’ has ended!]
Darkness, who was trembling alone in fear, found her shadow and was able to germinate the first seed, but she only barely managed to stand on the surface… So there’s still a long way to go. For the moment, Darkness will require some time to get used to the surface.
[You’ve obtained the title ‘Darkness’s Shadow’!]
– Increase the resistance to Darkness-type attacks by 20%.
– Now, even while you have Demonic Energy, the skills don’t lose their colors. (On/Off possible)
[Your tendency had gotten even closer to the Abyss! (Currently: -85)]
[You’ve canceled the main event, ‘Army of Light’!]
[You’ve activated the main event, ‘Light’s Choice’!]
[You’ve activated the hidden event, ‘Unconscious Path’!]
[You’ve strongly interfered in the world’s affairs!]
[Level Up!] x 14
[All your stats have increased by +26!]
[Your skill points have increased by +18!]
「It’s finally over.」
「What? Show me a clear message!」
「Ah, wait. There’s something more!」
The message had ended, but immediately after that, there was an announcement.
Slide! There was a cheerful sound, and letters began appearing in the air.