16-47. Trial of Zaikuon (2)
※16-46 has been slightly revised. There is no problem even if you don't read it, but do have a look if you're curious.
<TLN: Previous Chapter has been updated with the revision. Search through the updated parts by searching '#update' keyword on your browser.>
Satou here. Games these days are designed with user friendliness in mind, but I feel that lots of games in the olden days didn't have good tutorials. It's fun to do trial and error, but it kinda feels like lots of those games simply couldn't be bothered to explain stuff.
In the white space where I was taken to by God Zaikuon, a halo around my circumference, and then it turned into a black line the moment it touched the ground.
It's a circle of around 500 meters in diameter.
Along with that, the white space has become dimly colored, it's possible to distinguish the ground and the ceiling now.
It still feels like I'm floating on clouds though.
"I guess that's my opponent?"
A small cube appeared about 100 meters away from me.
The cube transformed with click-clack sounds while turning bigger, and eventually formed a humanoid shape. Its height is about 3 meters.
My AR reading show that it's [UNKNOWN], probably an apostle of God Zaikuon.
『Fight with my apostle, reign victorious.』
A dignified voice came from behind me.
The rock miko is the owner of that voice.
But she seems a bit weird.
She has absolutely no expressions on her face, and seems lifeless as if she's a marionette.
According to AR reading, she's in [Divine Possession] state.
It seems to be the next stage of the trance state she was in during the ceremony.
『What would the winning conditions be?』
『Defeat apostle. Go out of circle not. Deliberately attack miko not.』
After saying that, the rock miko is wrapped in a light sphere that emits yellow phosphorescence, and floats away to outside the circle.
While my eyes were chasing her, my ear picked click-clack sound.
Apparently the sound was coming from a cube that separated away from the apostle's hand and transformed into a halberd-like shape.
This apostle prefers close quarter combats it seems.
I could have ended this instantly by instantaneously casting the space magic forbidden spell [Mythology Down] from my magic list, but since that would likely incur displeasures instead applauses, I held myself back.
"Item Box, <Open>."
I opened my Item Box with voice command, and took out a handmade sword made of orichalcum.
Similar with the magic sword Heim I gave to the [Weed] of Shiga Eight Swords, Heim, this sword is loaded with a magic circuit taken from holy sword Durandal that will restore the blade's sharpness by reciting the Command Word, [Eternal Blade].
This should be optimal against a foe with unknown methods of attack.
The rock miko announced the starting signal after I unsheathed the holy sword.
The apostle let out an ear-splitting sound.
At the same time, yellow ripples of light began to course through the apostle's body surface.
It looks exactly the same as the purple ripples that appears when Arisa uses her Unique Skill.
The apostle charged forward at a speed that rivaled Pochi.
I was a bit curious about the weight of a blow coming from its tall stature, but since I had a slightly bad feeling about it, I evaded the blow while slashing at the apostle's leg.
What a weird feedback.
There's no firm resistance, it's like I'm cutting water.
According to AR reading, the apostle's HP gauge has only been reduced by a tiny bit.
Checking on the details, apparently this apostle is in [Invincible Warrior (Champion)] State.
Looks like I could still see its State and gauges even though I couldn't see level and skills.
I jumped away to dodge a stab from behind.
A rapid thrust that made the halberd looked like it was multiplying occurred there.
Since the halberd could seemingly be dealt with by the holy sword, unlike the apostle itself, I was able to thoroughly parry it.
The halberd's speed rivals that of Liza and Pochi, while its thrusting speed toward my openings rivals that of Tama, it's relatively tough to handle.
This apostle is obviously stronger than the apostles that fought against the Weasel Empire's palace knights. The Unique Skill-like [Champion] State probably has boosted up this apostle's strength.
I thought my attacks would work when my opponent was in the middle of attacking, but they barely dealt any damage on the apostle.
From what I've seen in the Weasel Empire's fight, white swords and cannonballs coated in dragon fang powder were used to kill apostles, thus I decide to use a white sword from amongst the seized stuff stored in Storage.
"Item Box, <Open>."
I shifted the holy sword onto my left hand, and took out a white sword with my right.
I didn't replace the sword since the Weasel Empire-made white sword is fragile compared to the holy sword.
While I was parrying the apostle, that's attacking at a warp-like speed from left and right, with the holy sword, I tried hitting it once with the white sword at the right timing.
It's super effective.
One hit reduced the apostle's HP gauge by a third.
From what I could gather just now, this apostle is about equal as a level 60s demon.
With click-clack sounds, the apostle body transformed, its arms increased to six.
It also got itself new armaments; two halberds, two shields, and two curved blades
Well, it's just for show.
It may have more arms, but it's also showing more openings than ever now, probably due to its own arms and weapons hindering itself.
I jump below the apostle with Ground Shrink, and mow down the apostle's ankles with the white sword.
The apostle tried to dodge the slash by lifting up its legs, but my slash was faster.
The apostle who had lost its ankles tried to stab me with its halberd and squashed me down with its shield together, but I went around it and stopped at its blind spot with Ground Shrink, then I stab the apostle's knee with the white sword.
The apostle's HP gauge is almost zero, but I can't deal any more damage even after slashing it many more times.
The apostle shouted out loud, and then a yellow phosphorous flickered before its HP completely restored.
Well, I get that recovery is a specialty of holy magic, but this is still a bit annoying.
Most importantly, the white sword would broke if this kept up.
I'd prefer to preserve the dragon fang swords I have in my storage as much as possible.
I stare at the apostle.
Apparently, I've got to land a hit at the critical spot to beat this apostle.
I ponder the spots that would likely be the apostle's weakness while dodging its attacks.
Normally you'd have thought it should be its head or heart, but things can't be that simple considering it's a god's apostle.
There must be some kind of requirements like having to strike both at the same time or something.
"--Trial and error it is."
I used Sky Drive to balance out the disadvantages in height, and disarmed the apostle by relying on weapon destruction skill and weapon deprivation (Disarm) skill.
The defenseless chest of the apostle is exposed before me.
--Spiral Flash Thrust.
I rapidly unleashed the finisher move of Hero Hayato twice, drilling a hole on the defenseless apostle's head.
Then I get away from the apostle with Flash Drive, and observe its reaction.
"It'd be nice if this is the end--"
This much shouldn't be enough to finish off a God's Apostle, should it.
My worry turned out to be unfounded as the apostle crumbled into milky white powder.
A small yellow light floated out of the heap of powder on the ground, and rose up into heavens floatingly.
It's like the [God's Fragment] that comes out whenever you beat a demon lord.
I think it's probably God Zaikuon's fragment, although its unidentifiable as always with AR reading only showing [UNKNOWN], the chance of that is quite high.
The black circle line on the ground disappeared at the same time the yellow light did.
<TLN: If you're reading this novel at any other site than Sousetsuka .com you might be reading an unedited, uncorrected version of the novel.>
After the rock miko indifferently said that, a yellow ring of light appeared around me like before and drew a circle on the ground of about 20-meter long in diameter.
Apparently, there's no declaration of victor in the match earlier.
Is it going to be a boxing match this time?
"--Nah, doesn't seem so."
At a place about 500 meters away from me, another 20-meter circle was drawn, then a cube appeared there and transformed into an apostle with click-clack sounds.
『No changes in victory conditions.』
In other words, I've got to defeat this apostle with long-ranged attacks.
I put away the nearly destroyed white sword into the Item Box.
The apostle let out a high frequency noise after the starting signal.
At the same time, ripples of yellow light course through its body surface.
According to AR reading, this apostle has [Great Caster] and [Vanquish Archer] States.
As a test, I took out a Light Crystal Gun from Item Box and shot with it.
The laser that was shot out of the Light Crystal Gun penetrated the apostle's body, but it didn't deal any damage.
A shot from this gun has about the same firepower as one shot of my light magic [Laser], it appears ordinary magic can't hope to damage apostles.
As if returning the favor, the apostle shot out an arrow from its arm that had transformed into a bow.
Using the holy sword, I flick off the arrow that was flying at a speed invisible to the naked eyes.
That was quite a weighty blow.
"...Orichalcum arrows huh?"
Not to the point that would numb my hand, but it could chip the holy sword if I don't hit it at the right angle.
While dealing the second and third arrows with the sword, I took out an emerald green long wand--a wand made from World Tree Emerald Branch from Item Box.
I begin to chant a spell while parrying the rain of arrows the apostle rapidly shot out.
Though I don't think it was mimicking me, the apostle raised its wand-transformed arm high up, and began to draw a real dangerous looking magic circle.
Of course, it hasn't loosened up on the rain of arrows.
I'm not one to talk, but this guy sure is handy.
The magic circle is clad in flashes of yellow, which begins to gradually intensifies.
The apostle finished its chant far faster than me, and then the completed magic circle shot out a white beam.
--Fortress Defense (Fortress).
I make use of the defensive item, a standard equipment for Pendragon Team, reserved for emergency and block the beam.
Intense sparks scattered on the outer layer of the Fortress's defensive field.
The pseudo-material made from Force Magic turned cloudy, crumbling down at an awful rate.
Fortress is a defensive system made of multiple layers of defensive walls, so another defensive wall would reinforce it before the entire thing collapsed, it eventually managed to endure the apostle's magic attack.
The apostle added more arms, and created seven magic circles from its now seven wand arms.
Even Fortress wouldn't be able to withstand seven times of the attack earlier.
I pointed my long wand toward the apostle.
The apostle let out a high pitched noise like it was flustered, but it was too late.
"■■■ ■■ ■ White Flame of Purgatory <<White Inferno>>"
A flash of white filled the space.
The wide-area annihilation forbidden spell that tends to indiscriminately spread to the surroundings is pinned down only in the space where the apostle is at, mowing it down.
The thunderous booming sounds and heat followed after the flash, hitting my eardrum and skin.
My vision that quickly recovered thanks to Light-Intensity Adjustment skill showed black smoke and melted red-brownish ground that spread far and away.
No apostle is in sight. Looks like it was disintegrated by the forbidden spell.
Even the Log displays [Defeated Zaikuon Apostle], there's no doubt about it.
Of course the rock miko is safe.
"--Just as I thought."
Two yellow light orbs appeared slightly away from where the apostle was at, and disappeared floatingly toward heavens.
These yellow lights must really be [God Zaikuon's Fragments].
I just hope these apostles won't overuse their Unique Skill, get overloaded and turn into demon lord-like beings.
After the rock miko said that, the white space contracted and suddenly regained colors.
Disorderly noises reached my ears at the same time.
The sensation of floating in the clouds also changed into that of stepping on a solid ground.
This place seems to be the arena.
"And isn't that the Zaikuon Miko?"
I turned around toward the voices to see Rusus and Fifi.
Unconscious [Magic Warriors of Karion] are laying below them.
Looks like we've showed up at the conclusion of the tournament's final match.
Don't tell me I've got to beat these girls for the last fight?
※ Next update is planned for 2018/5/20