72 The Steeled
Randolf is well aware. His power is insufficient to defeat the young man standing before him.
His employer, Bonats doesn't believe in this young man's [Power].
Nevertheless, he must fight. Getting the cold feet here would mean losing everything he has built upon. He's resolved himself. Still it's hard to believe.
The first strike he launched was the finest strike he ever unleashed in his life.
And yet it felt as if he just punched an illusion, there was no feedback, only helplessness remained.
His punch ended up hitting empty air even though it was aimed straight at the target in front of him.
His mind couldn't process it. A chill ran down his spine. Randolf immediately struck with his other fist. That cost him his balance, but Randolf couldn't afford to even care about that.
Yet that punch also hit empty air, as if there was nothing there.
Afterward, he kept punching in all directions. All of which hit empty air as well.
The giant boulder-like man is swinging around a barrage of huge rock-like fists. The force behind every strike is enough to blow away a grown man just from a graze.
And yet there is no sign it will ever hit the being standing in front of him.
This being has not moved a step from his spot, looking at Randolf with a calm face all the while.
Randolf has made his decision. He's gonna swing his fists for as long as his stamina lasts. Even if he's sure he's never landing a hit.
He will face this young man straight up without retreating. He continues with his barrage of strikes.
He's come to harbor awe and respect to this young man who's been keeping up with his assault.
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Honestly, it's never been my intention for things to end up this way.
I worked in business world in my past life, but I never tried to bulldoze my way through like this.
Doing that would either end any business talk prematurely or get myself fired. Or get arrested by cops at worst. None of which is preferable.
But after all the happenings involving [Power] and [Bulldozing] in the last two days, I've come to understand the [Way] of this world.
That doesn't mean I don't want to settle this in a peaceful manner if possible. Yet, I just kept getting dragged into mess.
(Can't we all just talk things through instead of doing this kinda stuff... Man it sure is stressful to be made forcefully comply with the other party's way.)
In fighting games, you defeat those who only rely on 'nonstop juggling' tactic by breaking their pace. I recalled the emptiness afterward. I'd have liked to move around freely, not something boring like that.
Even this past memory feels precious now.
I slowly and carefully dealt with the fists coming my way, timing when to adjust my power.
Randolf's assault still looks like a slow motion even while I'm having random thoughts.
After blocking so many strikes I lost count of it, the storm of fists stopped.
The boulder-like man instead curled himself up as if he was about to burst open.
(Something's coming. Gotta stay alert. Alright, preparation complete.)
The man took a stance akin to crouching start before liberating the pent up force and charged straight at me.
It's a ramming attack with his everything put behind it, his last resort.
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It was as if a giant rock was hurled at incredible speed.
Bonats was convinced. None of Randolf's strike managed to even graze the young man.
The young man would slowly move his arm then suddenly Randolf's fists got turned away like a breeze of wind.
Despite that, he didn't even budge from his spot.
Hence, he should have nowhere to run from this charge. There was no chance to.
He got blown away. The force was such that Bonats saw an illusion of that happening.
The impact was just that powerful. Or so it should have been.
Yet Bonats cannot comprehend the reality unfolding before his eyes.
The black haired young man hasn't moved a step from his standing spot. He merely gestured his arm like he was hanging a towel and that stopped Randolf's charge dead in its track.
That giant boulder-like man with all the force behind his full body charge surely hit him.
The young man didn't get blown away, neither did Randolf, both simply stopped moving altogether the instance they came into contact.
Bonats' face grew pale. Then comes a chill. Bonats recalled the report from his operative as unrelenting terror crept up.
(Eltros' underlings, his three strongest men got wrecked...)
That cannot be true, it must be a mistake, thus Bonats wanted to believe. Yet there's no reason for his operative to lie. And reality has now come banging on his door.
The young man is no match to Randolf, he so wanted that to be true. But reality is a cruel mistress. A frail voice broke the silence as well as that wish.
"It's my total defeat... Do as you like."
Thus the prided strongest force of the merchant association admitted his defeat.