The earth under the sky was torn apart. A shockwave emerged from the space where the Unprecedented God-Sword had cut, and the ward protecting the castle shattered like thin glass. The same was true for the enemies lurking in the castle. A few managed to dodge a direct hit, but the numbers inside Cheonju Castle were reduced by nearly 80%. The monsters, which were hard to kill even with the right magic, died instantly in the aftermath of the incident. It was as if a violent earthquake had occurred as buildings collapsed and remnants of dead monsters flowed down.
One more swing could wipe out the remaining 20%, but Theodore didn’t do this. No, it was more correct to say that he couldn’t do it.
‘I somehow succeeded in combining the Heavenly Sword with the great magic, Abraxas...’
However, the fatigue that came immediately afterward was several times more than the ultimate magic.
Kukukung...! The earth shook below him as he staggered in the sky. The blade, which had soared to the stratosphere, fell vertically. It was no wonder that magma sprang up since the sword had penetrated a few kilometers below ground and thinly cut into the mantle.
The castle collapsed in two pieces with a loud sound. In the meantime, Theodore didn’t lose sight of the dwindling variants. There was one whose momentum became stronger rather than weaken.
“My aim was a little off. Even so, I didn’t think he could survive that attack.”
The aftermath alone caused changes in the earth. Looking at all the monsters that didn’t survive... Theodore himself would’ve avoided the attack if it had been coming for him. The god-sword, Heavenly Sword, and the great magic, Abraxas—the combination of these two was enough to shake the world.
Nevertheless, the variants that survived in the castle soared into the sky. With wings that resembled a bat’s and a body that resembled a tiger’s, the variants were monsters that couldn’t be called a species. Despite their broken bodies, they could fly hundreds of meters at a time. These monsters could treat wyverns as their prey if their physical condition were normal.
Theodore didn’t miss the monsters’ unguarded moment.
Ice Magic: Diamond Dust.
Compound Magic: Lightning Vortex.
No Attribute Magic: Force Cannon.
Three types of spells were cast in an instant. A snowstorm, a lightning storm, and bullets of pure energy poured out of the sky. The monsters were first frozen by the blizzard. Then they fell due to the lightning, and their bodies were turned into beehives. Of course, their breathing ceased.
“Their vitality is amazing, but I can’t acknowledge anything other than that.”
After a few deep breaths, Theodore slowly descended to the ground of Cheonju Castle. He cared about neither the corpses of monsters nor the variants that stepped back as he walked. They realized that the person before wasn’t prey and that the relationship between prey and predator had been reversed.
At that moment...
[How exciting. A foreign shaman! It isn’t enough to cut Cheonju Castle apart. You have to exercise magic powers to stir up trouble! I don’t know who the monster is!]
It was different from the other monsters. Theodore read the humanity mixed up in that laughing tone. In this situation, only one person came to mind.
[It isn’t possible for a visitor to come to this Cheonju Castle without knowing me. Maybe it is because my appearance is so different!]
“You use the imperial I/we.”
[That’s right. I am the feudal lord of this Cheonju Castle, King Zhouyan.]
Power could be felt from his exposed bones, and he had skin that looked like a rice paddy and scales that covered his face. However, the dignity in his body couldn’t be hidden. He was a person who received the worship of all people in the empire, who ruled 32 provinces on behalf of the emperor. King Zhouyan, one of the eight feudal lords, sat on the throne. Of course, Theodore’s god-sword had broken the throne, but he still looked quite imposing.
“You didn’t lose your sense of self.”
[Do you think that someone who carries of the name of a king will be someone else’s puppet…? I want to shout, but this is my limit.]
“Can you talk?”
[Before that, get rid of these wastes. I can’t concentrate when they are around me.]
The variants growled at the king’s words.
They looked quite impressive with their horribly distorted faces and muscular bodies that were holding onto knives and chains. These variants were different from those who didn’t know how to fight. Theodore realized the reason and spat out, “A yaksha? It is a shame that enforcement officers who judge evil have fallen to this state.”
If they were yaksha who were responsible for the punishment of sinners, their combat instincts would’ve awakened. Unlike the others who lacked rationality, their instincts were still alive as the yaksha looked around. They looked ugly, but they couldn’t be happy about becoming Lust’s minions.
‘I will kill them quickly.’
In order to avoid the god-sword, they had to be faster than the speed of sound. Moreover, they had powerful bodies that could even threaten a master class person. A sword master’s winning percentage would drop to half or less if they had to deal with more than a dozen of the yaksha, and they were difficult to defeat in one blow with a great magician’s firepower.
Therefore, Theodore stretched out both palms. He had never used it in practice before but now was as good as ever a time to use it.
Fire Magic: Inferno.
Ice Magic: Blizzard.
Wind Magic: Gust Tornado.
Ground Magic: Gravity Bound.
Four elemental spells emerged from both of his hands. A person would be called a great magician if they could cast just one of these spells, let alone four. It was an astonishing sight, but this was from the point of view of a magician who went by common sense. They were fools who didn’t understand the relationship between attributes.
‘It is time to transcend common sense.’
Just before the four spells burst against each other, Theodore’s Sorcery intervened.
Coexist in harmony—it was neither a harmony that enhanced the power nor a forced harmonization that forcibly combined conflicting attributes.
It was a waste to put these four elements together in the shape of Abraxas just to get rid of the yaksha. Therefore, Theodore came up with a different application—Elemental Cluster!
The yaksha were sucked into a vortex of four elemental spells. A heat wave, cold winds, a storm, and a gravity phenomenon occurred independently in one space.
The vortex burned, froze, tore things apart, and destroyed. It was absurd, like an iceberg floating on top of magma. This was a scene that never could’ve happened with the normal laws of physics.
Nevertheless, it pierced through.
The yaksha couldn’t stop the violence of nature itself. With half their limbs torn off, the monsters were turned to charcoal. Theodore had read this ending from the beginning.
Kakiing. With Soul Calibre in his right hand and the Heavenly Sword in his left, they crossed in an ‘X’ shape.
This was the end. The yaksha spasmed one last time before they finally stopped moving. They had been reborn as imperfect beings and died challenging a transcendent.
[Fantastic!] King Zhouyan clapped loudly. [The double sword is the romance of all men. In fact, it is actually weaker than one sword, but I don’t think that is the case with you.]
“In the end, it is about the user’s capabilities rather than the weapon.”
[Hahaha! You are absolutely right. Now, we are ready to talk. I don’t have a lot of time.] King Zhouyan laughed like the conversation with Theodore was interesting and got up from his seat. The throne was broken, but neither of them cared because there would be no further use for it in the future.
King Zhouyan wiped away all the laughter from his face and said, [I was born with great blood and tried my best to watch over thousands of people.]
His dry tone might be his way of hiding his true heart. [I killed my loyal servants and people with my own hands, making them the prey of monsters. I have tried to stop a few times, but I can’t do anything about this cursed body.]
“It isn’t your sin.”
[It doesn’t matter who holds responsibility. I carry the name of the king. Since I couldn’t prevent this tragedy, I became a deadly sinner.] Guilt, hatred, and a desire for revenge filled the eyes that were looking at Theodore.
The king had a tortoise’s shell and a dragon’s head. With such distinct characteristics, it was rare for humans not to recognize it. Thanks to Seimei, Theodore remembered the details of the top species on the East Continent. Spirit tortoise, one of the four axis beasts and a symbol of longevity—it was a higher species comparable to a divine creature.
[Please. End this life before I tell you everything,] the king said, putting down his pride.
Theodore responded to this request, “Yes.”
Shortly after that, the king who turned into a beast confronted the magician.
* * *
Kururung! A slight thunderous sound was heard.
However, it wasn’t magic. Instead, it was from the dark clouds that came to wash away this bloody earth. Theodore looked up at the sky where one or two raindrops had started to fall from, before looking in front of him again.
The tortoise’s shell, which was harder than a dragon’s scale, was shattered. The king knelt down while bleeding from the dragon’s mouth. At the end of his life, he finally regained the freedom of his body.
[Behind the imperial family... The monster, who is acting behind the scenes... in front of us, talked...] The hatred grew stronger as his voice faded. [...You. Great one… nutrients. Obediently serve him… die like a lowlife. And, you... a few words about you, too.]
[This… world, last transcendent. Perhaps you, being watched… from the moment I met you.]
Theodore knew it as well. There was a gaze licking at him from a distance that couldn’t be measured. It was surveillance that had started from the moment he attacked Cheonju Castle. Perhaps Lust had read his attack from behind the eight feudal lord’s eyes. Otherwise, the response wouldn’t have been so quick.
[Please… careful. You… Birth of evil… have to stop...] Until the end, King Zhouyan was concerned about his kingdom as his eyes stopped.
It was great that he could speak despite his heart being torn and his body burned. This was a feat only possible because he was a top species.
“...Rest easy. You have fulfilled your duty.”
It was a horrible-looking body, but Theodore didn’t turn away, watching the king to the very end. Then Theodore moved his fingers, and earth assembled around King Zhaoyan, creating a grave. He couldn’t give the king a proper funeral, but he didn’t want the body of King Zhouyan to be used for anything. Just as Theodore was about to fly back into the sky...
“Tch.” He felt dizzy, and his feet were shaking.
‘I consumed more power than I expected. I didn’t know that such an enormous presence would appear, and the fight took longer than expected because I didn’t want to kill him immediately.’
The other variants were unknown, but King Zhouyan was a species similar to a divine creature. Having used ultimate magic and then the god-sword, it was natural that Theodore couldn’t hide his fatigue. Among the Japanese troops, only Shuten-doji, Tsuchigumo, and Daitengu might be strong enough to win.
“It can’t be helped. I will take a short rest before going.”
Then he decided to have a conversation with Gluttony.
-I know what User wants to ask.
“Yes, King Zhouyan’s will. What does he mean by ‘birth’?”
It was a lightly spoken question. At the most, a strong mutant would be born. This was what Theodore thought. However, Gluttony didn’t answer for a while.
Theodore felt the weight of the silence and was about to ask one more time when the grimoire sighed.
-The advent of a demon—it is the starting point of the disaster.