The Earth became like artillery shells bombarding the hull of the airship in white. The beautiful body of the vessel that had been held in great admiration was now trembling and tilting under this merciless barrage.
“Hurry up and initiate Teleportation! Hurry!”
The Dimensional Magicians who gathered in a circular formation at the center of the airship began the incantations, but a large-scale teleportation was no easy feat. The rocks shook the airship aggressively as the outline of the magic formation was drawn, and the magicians had to stop their aria every time.
Two consecutive rocks critically struck the stern of the ship. The body of the ship that had already begun to tilt finally lost its balance and began to fall. The deck of the ship that had been made using marble began to crumble like dominoes, and the people on top of the deck were swept away as the riggings hung below the mast became terrifying murder weapons assaulting them.
Aquiroa who sat at the front of the sinking airship did not move in the slightest; only staring intently at Sungchul who was pouring attack after attack toward her.
‘A worthless Summoned like yourself dares…’
None of it had felt quite real yet. The reality that that human with no background was causing her to suffer so.
“Miss Aquiroa! We must retreat. The ship is falling!”
The captain came up behind her and spoke desperately. Aquiroa finally managed to snap back to her senses and nodded before turning back.
Chaos was unfolding upon the deck. What had struck Aquiroa the deepest was the final moments of the Dimensional Magicians. The Dimensional magicians who had gathered in a circle to chant their aria were killed as they were strung up like marionettes on the riggings that had turned deadly.
‘It looks like it’ll be difficult to salvage the ship. Since it’s come to this, I need to secure my own escape.’
She instantly teleported following a short aria. Being adept in magic, she immediately began casting another aria after her instantaneous movement, and she appeared as if she was walking in mid-air. There was no way that Sungchul would leave her to finish her plans. He predicted her actions and fired off a rock.
Aquira pulled out two staves and began to swing them violently. When she did, a powerful explosion burst out before her causing the flying rock to be obliterated into pieces. Thin fragments were flying around her vicinity, but the magic barrier that had been cast around her protected her from them.
Sungchul did not rush. He put down the rock in his hand and began to walk toward her direction. The slow walk turned into a run, and the run soon turned into a full-on sprint. He who had become a gust of wind pierced through thousands of Devils and ran toward the direction she was fleeing.
Aquira felt a chill from the back of her head and soon discovered that Sungchul was hot on her heels.
Two different magic were cast from each staff. One staff formed an ice wall to block Sungchul’s path, and the other borrowed the energy from the abundant power of lightning in her surroundings to strike down the target.
Following a flash of light, a single strand of lightning flew toward Sungchul’s direction. Sungchul lifted Fal Garaz as the lightning was about to strike him. The hammer forged from fragments of the sky absorbed the lightning and struck the ice wall in its path. A sound greater than thunder resounded before the ice wall was shattered to pieces, and Sungchul stepped through it like a leaping beast.
Aquiroa turned pale and quickly tried to formulate her next plan, but Sungchul’s hand had already gripped onto her collar.
“You’ve always looked down on me.”
“A-a mere Summoned…”
“Now it’s my turn to look down on you.”
Grasping her by the collar Sungchul threw her to the ground.
Aquiroa tried to form magic wings onto her back in order to resist, but the momentum building into her body was not something a rushed magic could dare withstand. She flew toward the place where the Devils were gathered like a comet and spun a bit like a wheel before coming to a stop.
A portion of her mask broke, and between the shattered pieces revealed a stubborn red pupil.
Sungchul sat beside her like an angel of death.
“Is this all?”
He subtly taunted her. Aquiroa gritted her teeth and poured every magic she knew toward Sungchul, but none of it managed to deal any significant damage to him. Sungchul only evaded her assault or smashed through it like a cat toying with its prey, negating all of her actions.
“Is this is all the almighty Executor capable of?”
Sungchul spoke without a single ragged breath nor damage to his clothing. His figure reflected in Aquiroa’s eyes appeared to be a massive, insurmountable wall. The shadow of despair began to finally loom over the eye peeking through the shattered portion of her mask.
Sungchul slowly lifted Fal Garaz.
“Now, let’s put an end to this boring villain act.”
“Wait! I still have something to say! I-I… am nothing more than a servant!”
“I am not really the one that has been planning all this. I am simply acting according to the orders of the King of Kromgard.”
“The Wandering King…?”
The image of the pallid and lethargic man suddenly appeared in Sungchul’s mind. Sungchul had no ill will toward the man. In fact, most of the generals in the anti-Rutheginea rebellion army had more or less a favorable impression of him. No one could know for sure the amount of blood that would have been spilled if the Wandering King had not voluntarily relinquished his crown. Not only that, but Sungchul had also had his life spared by the order of the Wandering King.
It was true that in the past Sungchul had been given a more lenient punishment despite the fact that the one giving the sentence had only done so begrudgingly due to being annoyed with someone’s persistent pleading.
“And nothing will change if you kill me anyways. Aquiroa is not an individual but many. There will be another Aquiroa to replace me from the Floating Archipelago. So, show a bit of mercy on this old woman.”
While Aquiroa continued to speak Sungchul lightly closed his eyes and appeared to be in thought. He then turned around.
“I will speak of this directly to the Wandering King.”
What Sungchul desired was very clear. Irrepressible anger and fear were revealed in Aquiroa’s eyes underneath her mask.
Sungchul left her where she stood and walked on. Aquira continued to hesitate until her eyes held unspeakable hostility. Magic formations began to appear all throughout her body.
‘How dare you utter those disrespectful words. I won’t let you live.’
She was invoking the most destructive magic known to her – Thunder Breaker. It was the final magic of the Seventh Circle in the School of Wind that no longer existed. Her effort to perform magic not belonging to her own Magical Fingerprint caused blue lines to streak across her unsightly face in geometric shapes. Artificial Magic Fingerprint. It was a long forgotten antiquated ancient technique, but all of Aquiroa’s actions were within Sungchul’s predictions.
“As expected, every hunting dog seems to act in the same way.”
Sungchul turned around while Aquiroa was completing her aria. He had seen Aquiroa’s Thunder Breaker in the past. Ironically, it had also been in front of the Castle of the Demon King. She had used the magic to display her might as the Second Champion of the Continent, but its current form after such a long time was simply full of weaknesses.
Aquiroa’s exposed face glowed brightly with blue vein-like Magic Fingerprint, and her eyes which were full of magic formations flew wide open. Sungchul drew closer.
“Once you threaten to inform their owners that they’ve shat on the ground, they always seem to react like this.”
“W-wait!” Aquiroa hurriedly tried to say something, but Sungchul was beyond forgiveness.
Fal Garaz slammed down onto the Executor that was now glowing brilliantly with magic. Her corpse was squashed with her body still wrapped around by magic formations.
“I’m a much scarier man than your master.”
He glared with an apathetic look at the corpse that was disfigured beyond recognition and let out a shallow sigh. A dark aura spread upwards from the corpse, and it forced Aquiroa, who had been turned to rags, to her feet. However, as her upper body had been reduced to a puddle of blood it could not be reborn, so this unknown dark aura could only maintain her clothing to the state it was when she was alive before flying away into the sky.
Sungchul could feel that this aura was similar to the one that Minamoto was reeking of.
‘Is it some different kind of strength than a Soul Contract?’
Unfortunately, this wasn’t the most urgent issue. Sungchul turned his head to look at the Royal Palace of the Demon King. There was an immeasurable amount of Devils guarding the front. He proceeded as he headed out alone.
The Devils let out a furious roar as they poured onto him like a tidal wave. Sungchul silently marched forth leaving behind mountains of corpses and rivers of blood in his way. Any Devil worth mentioning was steadily killed as he continued while the other Devils were now at the point where they turned tail to escape in a panic.
All that now stood in his path was the front gate of the Demon King’s Palace that had the form of a fearsome Devil. He had no key, and it didn’t appear like it would be opened for him, but the answer was somewhere nearby. The heavy steel gate was broken open.
The blood colored rug laid out between the colonnade carved directly from the rock wall wrapped in darkness continued on into the darkness. Sungchul silently walked forward.
The Devils continued to ambush him from between the pillars. A Devil that spat poison. A Devil that poured out curses. The types of Devils were diverse, but the results were the same. Every time the assassins leaped in, Sungchul’s hammer caused more casualties.
Soon the end of the carpet came to view.
At the end of the dull but decadent space with purple colored flames burning in lamps was a gigantic throne.
A massive corpse that was very familiar to Sungchul was sitting in a proud posture on the throne. It didn’t look much different since his death. Sungchul could see that several smaller minor Devils were busy scurrying about performing a form of embalming process around the corpse of the Demon King. The King of the Demons was watching its own corpse being embalmed in a pale form beside it.
“You’ve come for me again. Not only once, but twice. Well, should we say three times in total to be technical? It’s not only surprising, but it’s also almost endearing.”
Demon King Hesthnius Max didn’t appear all that surprised at seeing Sungchul here. Instead, he had a relatively leisurely smile as though he was greeting an old friend with both arms open to meet him.
“Have you familiarized yourself with some magic? Even if you were some genius in magic, isn’t it too brash to come so soon before even a year had passed? It’s not like you’re coming here to show off your strength.”
Hesthnius’ voice and pale face showed confidence. Confidence that was rooted in his assurance that Sungchul would never be able to harm him.
“But, you’re still quite a foolish human. You would stubbornly choose to rush in by yourself in order to resolve the Calamity despite all the hate you receive from the other humans. I am currently studying the recent colloquial speech of humans, and I have coincidentally learned the word ‘subsisting’, and your face came to mind.
Sungchul did not respond. Instead, he pulled out a single scroll. It was the Harmeggedon scroll he had received from Vestiare. Hesthunius’ eyes grew wide.
A powerful magician at the caliber of Hesthnius could recognize such a powerful spell at first glance. The destructive aura that eerily flowed around the unsettling scroll made the Demon King’s eyes dizzy.
‘Seventh Circle… No, is it a scroll containing an Eighth Circle spell? Where did he… This shouldn’t be possible with human techniques!’
All sign of leisure vanished from the Demon King’s face.
“Could it be… the Seven Heroes. Did those bastards coerce you with that?”
“How did you know that?” Sungchul spoke with a faint smile lingering on his lips.
“You can tell when one becomes a Calamity. Those bastards next in line are aching to be released in this world even a second faster. You know why?”
“It’s because we’re all tied together on a single string. According to the Divine Authority that is referred to as a Calamity, that is.”
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