Chapter 20 – Starting from Zero (3)
‘His HP… Is full?!’
In the hands of the shadow that used to be the Support, flames appeared.
The small flame soon grew and took the form of a claw made of lava.
Hyun knew what that was.
It was the evolved form of the basic skill of the Close Range Magician, the «Flame Claws».
It was a superior skill called «Efret’s Claw».
The beast’s claws flew toward him.
Hyun shouted while backing off. But at the same time, his heart sank.
The attack range had increased a lot.
If «Flame Claws» had an attack range of 2~30 centimeters, «Efret’s Claw» had one of 1~2 meters.
‘I can’t evade this…!’
Not only did the attack range increase, it was also incredibly fast.
Hyun wasn’t sure how much damage that attack could deal. What he knew was that he would have a hard time defending against it.
He was predicting his death when—
With a loud sound of air bursting, Hyun bounced back because of the shock.
[You’ve received 22 damage!]
He turned his head around and saw Ain with her hands on her chest.
She had used the basic wind skill to push Hyun.
Hyun rapidly rolled to the ground and got up. The dangerous situation wasn’t over yet.
From behind and the front…
The two Close Range Magicians had launched a joint attack.
‘I have to dodge both…?’
Except for «Shield», the rest of their skills still had cooldown time left.
Especially Ain’s «Execution Island» skill, which had eight seconds left before it could be used.
The only possible way out of that situation was using superhuman reflexes to avoid being hit.
The moment an attack reached him, it would be game over.
Hyun was talking to himself, but it also served as a warning for Ain.
Could he dodge both attacks?
No, he had to!
The claws in both hands…
Hyun stepped back in a diagonal line.
With one movement, he dodged both attacks.
He was able to find a safe point subconsciously.
But he began to feel uneasy.
The reason was that he had dodged the attack too easily.
‘Did they make a slow attack on purpose…?’
Hyun made that guess after that short exchange of blows.
He was right.
Immediately, a faster attack flew toward him.
A red half-moon flashed as if it was about to tear Hyun’s body down.
Hyun hit the floor with his feet and began running.
The flame brushed the back of his feet.
Even though he didn’t take any damage, he couldn’t relax since the shadow was running in his direction.
Just like a beast hunting down a herbivore animal, the shadow used both hands to try to smash him.
That sight made Hyun’s face turn pale.
As soon as he landed on the floor, he twisted his waist to the side.
The claws brushed past his back and nose.
Smash- The claws went through the floor that was made of metal.
If he hadn’t dodged the attack on time, he would’ve been smashed instead of the floor.
‘I’m running out of ways to avoid the attacks…!’
The shadow slammed his arms down and then began rotating the claws faster.
The shadow was trying to cut him in half, taking the opportunity that Hyun had lost his balance due to dodging consecutive attacks.
‘Damn, my body is moving too slow!’
Hyun clenched his teeth. At that moment—
With a loud sound, a system message appeared in front of him.
[Critical Hit! You’ve received 132 damage!]
[Because your HP has dropped to less than 20%, the effect of ‘The Blood Fairy’s Frenzy’ has activated!]
[Your speed has increased by 50%!]
He saw Ain’s figure passing by when he looked at his side.
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She had her arms extended and was using the wind to push him.
“Dodge it properly!”
Fwoosh- Before Ain could finish the sentence, the claws had already come closer to Hyun’s chest.
He tried to bend his waist but fell to the ground because he couldn’t balance himself.
Immediately, flames flashed past his field of vision.
‘One more attack is coming…!’
He stood up.
Because of the buff given by the item, Hyun was capable of doing things that were impossible for most people.
While on the ground, he used the strength of his ankles to rotate his body and run.
The claws scratched the ground and passed near him.
Of course, it also swept where Hyun was.
Whir- In front of Hyun, who had jumped into the air…
Suddenly, a translucent block appeared.
Why did Ain place it here?
For what purpose?
—He didn’t ask questions like that.
There must have been a reason.
Translator – Daniel Shin
Proofreader – ilafy
* * *
Hyun stepped on the wind barrier and leaped forward once more.
Right before Hyun used a double jump into the sky—
Swoop- Giant claws made of flame scratched the air beneath him.
The owner of those claws was the other Close Range Magician.
The one targeting Ain had suddenly changed direction and charged toward Hyun.
Ain put a Wind Barrier without any warnings because she probably didn’t have enough time to warn him.
“The skills have refreshed!”
“Use them immediately!”
Swish- Knives made of wind slashed Hyun’s skin and charged the «Vision Sword».
However, she couldn’t use «Execution Island» to the last stroke because it was canceled.
Hyun had moved before Ain could finish.
The reason why he did that was that claws were coming at them at an incredibly fast speed.
“Okay, this is more than enough…!”
Hyun dodged her claws by somersaulting, then he shouted.
[‘Hyun’ has invited you to a party. Will you accept?]
Two Close Range Magicians were coming at them from each side.
They looked like a pack of lions about to hunt prey.
Four fire claws were targeting both Hyun and Ain at the same time.
Would it be one second until the claws smashed them…?
No, sooner than that!
Hyun took out his «Vision Sword».
Spin- Hyun rotated in the air and slashed Ain and the shadows.
[‘Ain’ has joined your party!]
The timing of the party formation was perfect.
The «Vision Sword» slashed through Ain.
Crash-! A bright flash and burning fire collided.
The impact caused the shadows to bounce back in separate directions.
The impact also affected Hyun.
The huge reaction coming from both sides made it hard to breathe for a moment.
There was no physical pain or HP reduction, but he could feel the side-effects of the impact throughout his whole body.
That nonsensical thing happened because of the sensory synchronization.
He could only start relaxing after he stopped shaking.
“How did you dodge everything…?” Ain asked him with a surprised tone of voice.
‘I’m not sure.’
Hyun was also surprised by the fact that he had been able to support the combined attack of both Close Range Magicians.
If he knew how to edit videos, he would have probably uploaded this video to YouTube.
“I won’t be able to do it again.”
Only a superhuman would be able to resist for more than 10 seconds against the combined attacks of both shadows.
“Hyun, what should we do now? There are two Close Range Magicians.”
“What about that?”
“Strategy. Our original plan was to separate both shadows and eliminate the Support first! But now, there are two Close Range Magicians.”
“Nothing has changed.”
After thinking for a while, Hyun kept talking.
“We just need to send them both flying. It just changed from one to two.”
“What are you talking about?!”
Hyun smiled bitterly at Ain’s question.
“I don’t know if it’s going to work… But, we need to try it at least.”
[The party has disbanded!]
“First, hit me once again.”
Swish- While Ain’s wind knives cut Hyun’s body, his body got covered by a very bright silver light.
Once he took out the «Vision Sword», the light hit the claws.
Hyun felt the pressure increasing on his lungs, so he stopped breathing for a while.
A clash of strength.
Neither Hyun nor the shadow could withstand the effects of the impact, so they bounced back.
Ain had the magic ready before Hyun shouted.
Whir- Behind Hyun’s back, a stream of air formed. Then a wind barrier appeared and caught Hyun.
Two shadows were approaching him.
Hyun stepped on the wind barrier and rushed toward the other shadow.
‘Deactivate «Impact Amplification»!’
The moment he deactivated his passive skill, he smashed the opponent three consecutive times.
[You’ve dealt 13,245 damage!]
[Critical Hit! You’ve dealt 25,424 damage!]
[You’ve dealt 12,924 damage!]
Because of the increased attack speed thanks to the buff of the ‘Blood Fairy,’ the three consecutive attacks probably looked like lightning.
But it wasn’t over yet.
‘«Impact Amplification» Activate!’
The purpose of the last attack wasn’t to deal as much damage as possible.
—It was to clash weapons and gain as much distance as possible.
While being pushed back, Hyun had a smile on his face.
‘It’s going to take you some time to come back.’
During that time, he could gain some cooldown time for his skills.
Things were going as he planned.
The shadows kept trying to approach Hyun and Ain, but every time they did that, they were pushed back by the passive skill.
But then, suddenly.
Something unexpected happened.
Scratch- One of the shadows that was being pushed back by Hyun’s passive skill used its claws to scratch the floor.
A long vertical line was drawn on the floor, and the shadow was pushed back a few meters.
He definitely wasn’t imagining things when he saw the shadow lift her head and make a creepy smile.
‘Is she already broken…?’
Whir- Her hands began turning red.
He thought that the world was being painted with red color for a moment.
It was a strange illusion that made him feel like every color except red was being drawn into a single point resembling a black hole.
Hyun’s instincts sent him a warning.
It was a skill that the shadow hadn’t used before.
The skill’s cinematics made it look like it was about to devour everything.
While feeling anxious, Hyun opened her status window.
[«Vestige Explosion» Lv.3]
<Everything originates from a single point and permeates the universe, but in the end, everything returns to the point and turns into nothing. This is a technique that can erase existence. This power of making things go extinct resembles the power of a god.>
– Gather all the mana around that has been used and shoot it forward.
– Gather all mana used within a range of 30 meters within the last 10 minutes and deal [Mana] x [Magical Power/10] as damage.
– The larger the amount of mana you gather, the bigger the beam of light will be.
<Cooldown Time: 120 hours>
Just like a broken film reel, the Close Range Magician was suddenly in front of Hyun.
The sphere in her hands kept being compressed until it became the size of a marble.
The smaller it became, the more light was emitted.
‘What’s the attack range of this ultimate attack…?’
‘Is it possible to defend against it…?’
At that critical moment, numerous thoughts crossed Hyun’s mind, and he finally shouted.
“Ain, push me!”
[You’ve received 14 damage!]
Ain used the most basic wind skill from behind to push Hyun 10 meters.
Instead of stopping there, Ain ran towards Hyun and compressed wind to push him again.
Hyun’s body was pushed again as if it was hit by a wind combo.
[You’ve received 16 damage!]
When the sphere that had been reduced to the size of a rice grain exploded, the entire floor shook, and the debris floated up.
They flinched in agony because of the intense light.
The ultimate attack, from a distance, looked like a huge beam crossing the earth.
The beam that was about 10 meters wide was erasing everything on its path without leaving a trace.
—Even the floor of the stage!
‘What kind of skill has such incredible destructive power…?!’
He felt that the loud noise was about to destroy his eardrums, but he couldn’t hear it anymore once it reached a certain decibel.
「Hyun! Look to the side!」
After hearing Ain’s voice, he turned his head around and saw the other Close Range Magician approaching.
In her hands, there was also a white sphere shrinking in size.
The world began to turn red again.
It was the same technique he had just seen.
Hyun’s face turned pale.
‘Damn… Another ultimate attack?’
Hyun suddenly began wondering about something.
According to the skill explanation, the ultimate skill’s power increased when more leftovers of previously used magics were left.
Then, what would happen if it’s used again right after the first attack?
Hyun took a weapon from his robe and threw it on the ground.
It was the newbie’s dagger he had been carrying around since the beginning.
Smack- The dagger hit the upper part of the shadow’s wrist.
[You’ve dealt 2 damage!]
At first glimpse, the results of that attack may seem poor. But what the dagger did was more important than what it appeared.
He had changed the direction of her arms from horizontal to vertical.
It was something he had been able to do thanks to the passive skill, «Impact Amplification».
The wide laser came out of her hands when Hyun used the dagger to change the direction of the attack.
The light blinded them.
Because of the side-effect of releasing a massive amount of energy underneath where she was standing, the shadow soared to a very high place.
Both Ain and Hyun were overwhelmed by the sight of a 30-meter wide light beam falling perpendicularly to the ground.
The light beam erased everything without leaving any trace.