* * *
Sellev was imprisoned, but attacking her was no easy feat. It was because of the demonic energy that spread all over the place. Her demonic energy persistently served as her shield, and no one could control the movements of the demonic energy, even if it was Cadel.
For that reason, the subjugation of Sellev went slower than expected and seemed to lead to a fight over time.
Van was put in, and the flow was completely reversed.
“Berserker? How the hell can he get an aura like that…….”
“Now is not the time to be admiring, is it? Let’s not get left behind and show them what the Knight Order is made of!”
Van jumped up on the chains wrapped around Sellev, delivering direct blows to her body. [Fire Chains]’s were all made of flames, but it didn’t matter much. It was because Cadel was partially reducing the firepower to match Van’s movements.
The aura containing demonic energy grew greedily and expanded its range. The amount was large enough to risk a rampage, but Van maintained a clearer mind than ever.
Aura was an energy that was easily influenced by demonic energy, but it was inherently different from demonic energy, so the two could never fuse, and the stronger would inevitably push the weaker away.
And now. Van’s aura was stronger still. The demonic energy that was supposed to protect Sellev was slowly being pushed aside by Van’s aura.
「Quest success rate : 80%」
Swirling sword energy and flooding auras, shining greatsword blade, and clear strikes that cut through the chains. With all of it, Cadel wiped the blood from the corner of his mouth with the back of his hand.
‘That leaves 20%. Only 20%. We have to hold on.’
Cadel held on for dear life, but eventually entered a state of mana depletion. Having already lost mana once and barely recovered, he didn’t know how this blow would affect his body.
But he couldn’t stop it. Van was fighting for himself, even with his horrific wounds, and Lydon had been knocked unconscious trying to protect him. There was only one way he could repay his subordinates for their sacrifice.
A triumphant victory.
The sense of purpose of completing quests, the realization that this was all part of the process of being promoted to Knight Order. It was all a blur. All that remained for Cadel now was the duty of a commander, and the determination to uphold the bare minimum.
And Cadel’s determination had spread to Sellev.
“Kkaargh! Damn you, damn you……!”
Her plan to break the chains while shielding herself with her demonic energy was thwarted by the arrival of an aura user. An aura so powerful that it pushed her own demonic energy away. Such aura would have driven a normal human to insanity, but the swordsman’s body didn’t seem to falter in the slightest.
Each blow was a gruesomely painful mortal wound, and the knights’ attacks began to penetrate the thinning demonic energy.
‘How did he raise his mana level in such a short time, that magician bastard?’
Annoying and unpleasant, but not beyond her, she decided. If that magician could bind her, she expected it to be for ten seconds at most, but the chains that wrapped around her body without warning felt like a flow of condensed mana that exceeded her expectations by several orders of magnitude.
Now she was in fear for her life. Those little humans were trying to kill her. Even though they were inferior members of a race that could be wiped out with a single kick, she was bound and unable to move.
‘Not this way. I can’t die here.’
For the first time since being summoned here, Sellev felt impatient. She couldn’t die here, couldn’t spoil the ‘beginning’.
‘I must escape. I need to get out of here, But first.…….’
Sellev’s venomous gaze fell on Cadel. He had to be killed. Letting him live would be a major setback to their plans.
“You arrogant bastards!”
She channeled as much energy as she could into the demonic energy that had spread around her, and the demonic energy that had been pushed away swarmed back in, darkening the area around her.
Panicked voices erupted here and there from the quickly blocked view. Sorin’s command quickly calmed them, but no more hasty attacks were launched.
The only things that move were Van and the flame of the chain that rode on Sellev’s body. Sellev felt the aura and mana that threatened her, and her eyes flashed.
Sensing that, Van instinctively threw his body and landed, and [Fire Chains] narrowed the area to tighten the rapidly shrinking body.
Sellev flew high into the air, avoiding the [Fire Chains] that was chasing her tail. The ground was covered in dark demonic energy, but her eyes saw everything clearly.
A raging chain of flames and Cadel at the start of it.
“Die for the Demon Realm.”
That magician had to be killed once and for all. A quick, accurate strike was all that was needed. With her sights set on her target, Sellev’s fist closed, the essence of demonic energy sizzling like fire.
‘I must do it before he notices my presence. There is no failure. Kill that magician, and for now, retreat to the…….’
But before she could finish her thought. The shape of the ground began to change strangely. Her vision twisted, turned, and swirled. The ground was curving and congealing in strange curves, like paint on water.
The clearly captured image of Cadel, as well as the other knights, was blurred to the point of being unrecognizable.
Suddenly, the question of why wasn’t necessary.
“That fairy bastard…….”
Illusion technique. An unquestionable illusion. How the hell could he still be alive? She had killed them all. They were all dead!
Sensing her movements, [Fire Chains] wrapped around her right ankle. The heat was unbearable, the pull too much for her to handle, and she screamed a vicious cry.
“Why! Why! Aaargh!”
And that was the last voice of Sellev that Cadel could hear.
「Quest success rate : 87%」
「The main quest ‘The Beginning of the Invasion’ is paused.」
「Analyzing recorded achievements. It will take ??? hours until the quest results are available.」
With the main quest out of the way, Cadel was left with only one thing to do.
“I didn’t know she would cut off her ankle and run away…….”
It was Sellev’s ankle that [Fire Chains] had grabbed. Cadel frowned at the feel of the cold flesh in his hand.
Was Sellev alive at the end of the quest in the game? Could it be that she survived because he did not meet 100% of the contribution?
‘……No. I do remember dealing with Sellev afterward. In the original quest, she probably escaped through the magic circle..……. Since I destroyed it, did I go a different route?’
Whatever it was, Sellev’s survival was predestined. When he was trying to think about the ambiguous number of ‘87% success rate’, swallowing hí regrets, Van, who had been separated, came running.
“Commander! There’s blood on your face…….”
Cadel smiled shyly at the worried gaze and wiped the nosebleed. Because of the phenomenon of mana depletion, it was hard to lie. At least, it was better than when he used [Soul Explosion], so he just didn’t show it.
Van narrowed his brow as if he knew Cadel’s foolishness. He hesitated, unable to easily touch Cadel’s body, then spoke firmly.
“Let’s go to the healers first. They’re all gathered beyond the gate, so we should be able to find them now.”
“Is Lydon there too?”
“When I woke up, he was nearby. He is probably still in the process of healing…….”
A glimpse was all it took, but it was gruesome. Twice as many healers tended to Van now surrounded Lydon, and Van knew he would not wake for days at least.
But Lydon was awake, and he was on his way across a battlefield where the heat of battle had barely cooled.
His limp wings fluttered with each staggering step. There was no strength in his tilting body, and his complexion was pale. Cadel, who had spotted Lydon late, rushed to his aid.
“Lydon! Why are you here? Are you okay? Are you sure you’re not still in a state of fainting…….”
Lydon grabbed Cadel’s cheeks with his weak hands and moved his head up, down, left and right, examining every nook and cranny of his face. There was an insistence in his half-open, dazed gaze that bordered on obsession, and after a long moment of assessing his condition, Lydon spoke.
“Are you okay……?”
It was an almost sleepy murmur. He wondered if Lydon was even sane. Cadel’s expression became profound at his incomprehensible condition. Lydon hadn’t smiled in a long time, and it worried him.
“I’m fine, we’re done here.”
But instinctively, it occurred to him that reassuring Cadel was the priority.
Lydon’s eyes softened at the soothing words. With a light smile, the hand that had been caressing Cadel’s cheek dropped, and his body leaned. Cadel was startled by the sudden weight and grabbed him by the shoulder.
“Ly, Lydon……? Lydon!”
“He passed out. So why did he come all the way here?”
Van snatched Lydon’s collapsing form from Cadel’s arm and slung him over his shoulder. As he haphazardly supported the completely unconscious body, he turned to Cadel, who had become contemplative.
“He’s not dead, so don’t worry, Commander. Let’s get to the gate.”