“I’ll fight him.”
“Eh?” Lucia looked at me with a baffled expression. “Are you sure, Durandal? He’s making my tail stiff, and we both know I’m stronger than you.”
…There’s no need to rub it in like that. “I’m going to fight him.”
“But if you die….”
“Then I’ll be back in a week; there’s no issue.” Really, there isn’t. As long as the core in mini-DalDal’s hilt remains untouched, I’ll be fine. The only reason I was out of commission for so long when Lucia was poisoned was due to me transferring the poison to my core.
“There’s a serious issue! How am I supposed to go without s** for a week?”
This girl. Why is she so lewd? “I’m sure you’ll manage. You’ve lasted decades without it.”
“That’s because I never had it before! But now that I know what it feels like, I—”
I kissed Lucia on the lips because that’s the quickest way to make her fall silent. Then I retrieved a sword from her interspacial ring. This wasn’t my normal sword that wasn’t augmented; it was a special sword that I picked up from the weapon shop, courtesy of Black Devil Shu. When it was reinforced with qi, special formations inside of the blade would amplify the qi. There’s also a function to command it from afar, but a real swordsman fights in close combat. Hmm? I said something about only using a normal sword to fight people with? Are you sure? I don’t recall. If Lucia can use this excuse to retract her statements, so can I.
“You’re not the one who sneak attacked my grandson.” The person who had challenged Lucia was standing on the bow of the boat. Lucia was behind me, inside of the boat’s uppermost cabin. Ilya was hiding behind Lucia, and Black Devil Shu was hiding behind Ilya. Why was Black Devil Shu hiding from his own sect member?
“I’m not, but I’ll be the one fighting you.” Since Lucia’s not frightened by any saint-realm experts, there’s a high possibility that this man is an earth-realm expert. He also looks extremely old, so there’s that too. Normally, the older someone is, the more likely they are to be weak, but given the nature of the Immortal Continent, the norms have been reversed.
The old man snorted. “Getting in my way? You’re courting death!” He raised his hand and slapped downwards even though he was standing ten feet away from me. A giant palm materialized in the air above his head in the sky, crashing towards the ship.
Though it’s true an earth-realm expert would have more qi than me, that doesn’t mean I can’t win. To condense something as large as that palm, the qi would be spread out equally. If I focus all of my qi into the tip of my sword, I should be able to cut through a small section of the palm. Like so!
Ilya and Lucia screamed while running away. Though I cut a small hole in the palm to prevent myself from getting hurt, the rest of the palm still crushed the ship. Well, it collided against the ship, but it didn’t cause the vehicle any harm. How strong was this thing? Right, now wasn’t the time to worry about that.
“Oh? You didn’t die? Then how about th—”
While the old man was busy chattering away, I focused all my qi into my feet and lunged forwards; then I shifted my qi into the edge of my sword and slashed at him. I cut straight through his chest, but there wasn’t any feedback. Did he disappear? A moment later, the man distorted and vanished, leaving behind a torn robe.
“How dare you sneak attack me!?”
He was behind me? I didn’t even see him move. No, he wasn’t behind. He was above!
“Rending Devil Claws!” The old man shouted from atop one of the boat’s crow’s nest. Five black lines appeared above me and screeched as they rushed towards my face, ripping apart the air in the way.
Did he think he was the only one that could disappear and reappear at will? Versatile Path of the Sword: Retreat into Mini-DalDal! Versatile Path of the Sword: Exit Mini-DalDal! And just like that, I avoided his attack. Is this cheating? That’s up to the winner to decide! I focused my qi into my feet and stepped against the boat’s mast. Then I charged vertically up. A Breaking Blade might have long range, but it’d be easily blocked. My attacks can only pierce through his defense if his qi is spread out.
“You’re an earth-realm expert? That can’t be! How did you disappear like that?”
Of course, I answered his question with a slash of my blade. The only time you should speak while fighting is never! Unless you’re Lucia, who likes shouting out the names of her abilities. Or if you’re a magician who needs to chant his spells. It seemed like the old man learned his lesson about my slash. He condensed a shield made of black worms like the one the sect leader had created to block Lucia. Unfortunately, my attacks aren’t as straightforward as hers! Versatile Path of the Sword: Curving Like a Whip! My blade traced the edge of his shield and curved towards his shoulder like a serpent, drawing blood.
I thought he’d learn by now to not speak so much. I stepped forward, placing my leg behind his and wrapped one arm around his waist. Then I leaned forward while kicking my free foot against the mast in the crow’s nest. Like that, both of us tumbled towards the deck of the ship. A fall from this height won’t harm either of us, but the most important part is removing his leverage. Versatile Path of the Sword: Biting Like a Beast!
“Grah! You’re biting my neck!?”
“How dare you bully Durandal! Unrelenting Path of Slaughter: Swing as Hard as I Can!”
A humongous force crashed into me and the old man from below. Like a fountain, spurts of blood shot out of the old man’s mouth and splashed over me. I didn’t feel much of it because I was soaring through the air and the wind was cutting my face. Since the distance I was from mini-DalDal grew too great, I was transported back inside it. I exited mini-DalDal just in time to see the old man create a small imprint amongst a faraway cloud. Perhaps there was a certain requirement to using his teleportation technique and flying through the air wasn’t it.
“Phew, that was scary. I freaked out when I saw you bleeding!”
But I wasn’t the one bleeding…. If anything, her attack was the one that injured me the most. I sighed and ruffled Lucia’s hair, making sure to rub behind her ears. “Thanks.” At least my master cares for me.
“Where’s Elder Forest!?” …Wasn’t the sect leader a little late? He did go bring away that poor harpooned disciple, so I guess he can be forgiven. “I heard he attacked the chosen?”
Lucia pointed at the cloud with the person-shaped hole inside of it. “I smacked him far, far away.”
The sect leader stared at the cloud. Then he looked at Lucia and me. “What happened while I was gone?”