Chapter 32 – Count’s Quest (4)
Ain’s claws smashed Bear Shield and went through his body, which resulted in him melting down. Her claws got stuck on the ground.
Tss- The sound of the rock melting mixed with the smoke that came from the burned ground.
[Critical Hit! You’ve dealt 7831 damage!]
The afterimage of the flame that rose with the attack even swallowed the death light effect.
Bear Shield, who should have been where Ain’s claws were, couldn’t be seen anywhere.
Members of the Darkness Guild froze.
They couldn’t believe that Bear Shield, who boasted about having extreme tanking power, couldn’t resist even a single hit.
Not only that, but he had received some of the best defensive buffs.
And yet, he was killed with one hit?
They couldn’t believe what had happened.
But the nightmare wasn’t over yet.
Ain had just started using her ultimate attack.
“Don’t get close to her!”
Even without that warning, the guild members were extremely cautious.
They felt as if they were facing a monster.
—Especially those claws she had on both arms, they looked as if they belonged to a mythological creature.
“This is too much…”
A few had already lost their fighting spirit and were groaning.
The toughest member of the guild, Bear Shield, had died without even being able to counter-attack.
That meant that a simple touch would be enough to kill Magicians or Priests.
“This… Is a little unexpected.”
XL also dripped in a cold sweat.
He thought they had a 50% chance to win based on her fight against the Myth Guild.
But the opponent in front of them at that moment was on a whole other level.
‘It seems like she hadn’t shown all her strength back then.’
It was as if she had been playing against the Myth Guild—how she fought and moved was completely different from before.
To make things worse, there was the new skill she had shown them.
Suddenly, her body had been covered in fire, and the damage she dealt went up to a ridiculous number.
He didn’t understand what she’d done, but without warning, claws grew up on her hands, and her attack range increased a lot.
‘We… Won’t be able to dodge that.’
It was just as XL guessed.
Every time the opponent moved her claws, a trace of fire was created in a three-meter radius.
Guild members that were brushed by the fire were killed before they could think of a way to counter it.
“Don’t get close! Attack her from a distance!”
Vice-commander Reina, who still hadn’t given up, tried her best to lead the fight.
Magic spells, arrows, daggers—they poured a lot of different kinds of attacks on her.
But they soon discovered that their efforts were useless.
The giant flame claws blocked all the long-range attacks, and the projectiles bounced back ineffectually.
A few ice spells melted down the moment they reached Ain.
Ain’s teeth showed a little bit.
It was Hyun’s smile showing up because of «Assimilation».
Hyun and Ain had done a lot of research about «Efret’s Claw».
‘It also works great as a defensive skill.’
The claws, unlike the fire, were made of a material that resembled metal.
Hyun remembered very clearly the fights during the awakening quests.
The shadows had used the claws to cover themselves from attacks or had stuck them into the ground to resist knockbacks, and from that, he had guessed something.
‘Could it be that the claws have a physical body?’
Hyun’s guess was right.
He had concluded that after doing several experiments. He didn’t receive any damage from weak attacks.
It was the same principle as having a new weapon, like a sword, equipped.
Thanks to the skill evolving, the defensive options had increased.
Ain traversed on the side of the canyon from side to side and then jumped.
The altitude allowed them to see the opponent’s entire formation.
They could see several Magicians gathered in the back and casting.
Because there were a lot of reinforcing magic circles drawn on the ground, they could easily see where the Magicians were standing.
Because she had jumped, a lot of spells flew in her direction.
It seemed like they thought that she wouldn’t be able to change directions while in the air. The sight of multiple attacks launched simultaneously resembled a barrage of bullets.
As she swung her claws, all magics flying toward her disappeared just as if she had used an eraser.
Ain slid along the cliff.
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As Ain approached where the Magicians were standing, she used the flexibility of her waist and smashed them with the claws.
“Damn!” The Magicians who were being targeted cursed.
They had figured out that they wouldn’t be able to escape.
And they were right. To begin with, the difference between their speed was too much.
“Everyone, gather under me!” A Magician shouted while raising his wand.
Crack- A giant ice wall appeared in the sky.
It was a defensive ultimate skill.
It should have been able to block almost all attacks, but at that moment, that wasn’t the case.
The attack approaching them was the ultimate attack of the Close Range Magician that had the highest damage output.
On top of that, there was the assistance of the hidden Support job.
Both awakening skills crashed into each other.
Ain’s ultimate attack was stronger.
The claws made of lava tore down the ice shield piece by piece.
The Magicians that were under it weren’t safe anymore.
The four of them burned down and disappeared.
「How dare you!」
Hyun twisted her waist.
At that moment, the flames shone while drawing a half-moon!
Ain’s claws changed direction and attacked the two thieves trying to launch a surprise attack.
Even though the tips of the claws just brushed them, they still couldn’t resist the incoming damage.
Both became ashes and scattered away.
Ain’s movements were faster than the thieves’, whose main stat was Agility.
The trail of flames stirred the battlefield!
Translator – Daniel Shin
Proofreader – ilafy
* * *
Because Ain moved very fast in zigzag patterns, the Darkness Guild wasn’t able to land attacks on her.
「Woah, be careful…!」
Even if they got the direction right, Hyun was able to react.
Crash- A sharp metal pillar rose from underneath them, but it missed Ain by a narrow margin.
The attack coming from the ground could stun the opponent.
If Hyun hadn’t been able to react, they could’ve been in a dangerous situation.
Ain opened her mouth in surprise.
“How did you see that?”
Hyun had managed to dodge the attack, but he was surprised by the opponent.
Was it because the opponent was a ranker? Their ability to adapt based on the situation was really fast.
The claws couldn’t block attacks that rose from underneath.
As time went on, the opponents started to discover their weaknesses.
‘Who was it? Someone in that direction?’
Hyun pointed to somewhere with his finger.
Ain started to move to where her finger was pointing.
「She’s probably the one who launched the attack.」
That was where Mayday, the person with the highest level among Darkness members, was standing.
Mayday, the 2nd ranking player, was one of the first members of Darkness and the strongest Magician.
After Ain suddenly pointed toward her with a creepy smile on her face, Mayday’s heart sank.
She wondered if the grim reaper would look like that.
Mayday felt that Ain was trying to tell her that she would take her life.
How had she managed to discover her attack?
She shouldn’t have used magic—it had led to Ain discovering her position.
Lots of different thoughts went through Mayday’s head, but she was also a ranker.
The average user would probably be in a panic state and would die without being able to do anything.
«Thorns of Death»!
With Mayday’s gesture, tens of metal pieces flooded towards Ain.
She casted one more spell.
The two spells flew at the same time.
The combo of Thorns of Death and Metal Edge was one Ain had frequently used.
If you looked at the magic coming straight towards you, you would end up being hit by the one coming from below.
If it were the first time seeing that combo, even a ranker would have problems dealing with it.
A smile appeared on Ain’s mouth.
Thanks to the casting effect, she knew what attacks were coming in her direction.
She easily brushed off the incoming metal pieces with the claws.
Flap- As she increased her speed, the metal piece rising from the ground also missed her.
When Mayday grasped the situation, she felt something hot near her head.
Smash-! The beast’s giant claws melted Mayday’s body.
The Darkness Guild’s strongest Magician and number 2 ranking player of the world, Mayday, had died.
And with that, the quest clearly leaned toward one side.
* * *
The Gamez, thanks to the contract they had with NFM, could analyze the situation from a wide variety of angles.
As soon as the Darkness Guild and the quest’s boss began fighting against each other, commentator Im SeongJun started to talk as if he was rapping.
Kim SooYong also added an explanation whenever something important happened.
“It’s a very tight fight! The Darkness Guild is handling the situation well!”
“Something interesting is that people from the Darkness Guild have sent only one damage dealer to the front. The rest are supporting him from a distance.”
“Oh, co-commentator Kim SooYong, is that a good strategy?”
“Yes, it is indeed. The reason is that the entrance is very narrow, so if there are a lot of damage dealers or tankers, rather than helping, they could become an obstacle.”
“Oh, I see!”
“The only weakness of this strategy is that if the damage dealer has worse specs than the opponent, they will be killed very easily, but I think they’ve overcome that weakness thanks to all the buffs they applied on him. As expected from Darkness.”
The battle that followed the explanation had everyone silent, including the commentators.
—Pias’s amazing spear techniques.
—All the supporting skills from the other members of the Darkness Guild.
—And the fire that danced in the shadow priest’s hands!
The users that were used to the grinding aspect of RPG games couldn’t hide their surprise because of the high-level fighting.
—Especially the close-range battle between Ain and Pias, which had pro gamers groaning in surprise.
JaeHoon couldn’t help but admire what was happening while watching the broadcast alone in his house.
JaeHoon, who had officially become a member of Stardust, was also very interested in the Count’s quest.
That was why JaeHoon, who had decided to concentrate on the incoming mid-term exams, was up late watching the internet broadcast.
After hearing SeoHyun’s words, he had decided to give up on the quest, but he couldn’t help but think that he had lost a great opportunity.
“It wasn’t for no reason that Hyun told me to give up on the quest…”
It didn’t take long for JaeHoon to change his opinion.
He was glad he had decided to listen to Hyun’s warning.
If Stardust had fought against that boss, the best outcome would have been to escape alive.
Even Darkness, who had some of the best rankers, were struggling, so the outcome would be obvious even if they’d gathered a party to do the quest.
“There’s a lot I can learn from this.”
JaeHoon was trapped by the screen of his smartphone.
But his attention wasn’t focused on the global ranking 9th player Pias—he was more interested in the quest boss, who everyone thought was a dark priest.
His, no. Probably her…?
He felt that her movements were superior to Pias’s.
At first glance, the fight seemed even, but JaeHoon, with his sharp eyes, made a correct analysis of the situation.
“She’s not only fighting the opponent in front of her, but she’s also deflecting the arrows coming from a distance. How is she able to do that…?”
Even while fighting, she wasn’t letting any long-range attacks come in her direction.
Could she do that because she was an artificial intelligence?
That would probably be plausible, but JaeHoon thought that wasn’t the case.
There were a lot of strategies she used that were aimed at affecting the opponent’s psychology.
That attitude was the opposite of artificial intelligence, which always tried to minimize the variables.
JaeHoon even began thinking something like this:
‘Is she really an artificial intelligence? To me, she looks like a human.’