TGL Volume 5, Chapter 21 (2)

Whew! I thought I was going to freeze to death there! That was really, really cold. I knew bad things were going to happen when that cow made of the stuff of nightmares appeared. I wanted to avoid it, but I was running way too fast! I think it’s been a while since I’ve ran at full speed; I haven’t done it since before my body was modified. Right, I’m going to blame the body-modification process. It has nothing to do with the fact I’ve been slacking on good-ol’-fashioned conditioning and physical exercises. What kind of warrior forgets to train, right? Certainly not this one. 

Anyways, I think I’ve gotten used to my strengthened body now. The ruler really does have a lot of random things with her. I didn’t think she could boost my strength by so much. It would be nicer if the pain could be turned down by just a bit—or completely off, that would work too. At least there’s a built-in function to reduce the pain, and that’s by moving my body while shouting a lot! Shouting loudly absolutely reduces pain; if it didn’t, people wouldn’t curse after stubbing their toes. Not that I stub my toes anymore. When I do, I break whatever stubbed it, so I curse for different reasons. Sophia’s a good child, but she really has to stop leaving stuff lying around on the ground. 

For some reason, I think the pill the ruler gave me is cooking my brain. The heat’s too high, and I’m sure some parts are burning because I can smell roasting meat. Is my nose connected to my brain? I never really checked. Probably, right? I’ve seen brains leak out of people’s noses and ears before. Ilya’s lab has a lot of weird stuff. …Why does Softie let Sophia go down there? That’s horrible parenting on her part. Ah! My brain’s roasting, so it’s hard to think straight. I, I think when the blue-robed guy froze me, it cooled down my brain for a bit, clearing my head, but everything’s getting blurry again. How did I break out of the ice when I was trapped? I don’t know, but even if I did, I’m not in any position to use that knowledge. 

Luckily for me, I’ve done so much training that my body can run on instinct. I barely have to think about where to go to chase these liquid-nightmare people down. It’s really easy to control them. If I rush at them, they retreat; all I have to do is rush at them in a way that makes them bump into each other. For some reason, they’re acting like there’s an invisible wall behind them. Hmm. Welp, that just means it’s easier for me! After they bump into each other, they clump up and scatter, and that’s the best time to catch a straggler, like this! 

Mm? What’s going on? I grabbed the girl, but she melted away like water! It’s an escape technique, isn’t it? Now that I think about it, shouldn’t I learn one of those? If I had an escape technique, I wouldn’t have been bullied so badly by those supervisors. Why the heck didn’t Durandal teach me any escape techniques? Shouldn’t those have been the first things he taught!? Hmph! If they want to escape, then let’s see how many of these disciples mastered their escape techniques! 

One. Two. Three. Four. Mm? Is this the same person as the first one? I can’t tell. My vision’s completely red and blurry. I can only see a vague outline of the person I’m trying to catch. Do all these disciples have the ability to turn into liquid? It’s very frustrating, but I think what I’m doing is working. Whenever I catch them, they dissolve and leave behind a cooling sensation. I really do think they’re turning into water to escape. The next one I catch, I’ll hold up over my head to help my brain cool down. Mm? Why am I catching them instead of smashing them with my hammer? It’s because of the heat. It’s messing with my thinking power. 

This hammer feels nice. It’s basically the perfect weight, and not only that but it gets heavier the more spiritual energy I put into it! I’m really good at using that sort of ability with a weapon. The ruler must’ve taken that into consideration when she gave me this hammer. When did she have it made anyway? Before or after I became her disciple? Well, it doesn’t matter. What matters is I have it now! “Flaming Hammer!” 

Eh, that didn’t come out sounding like I expected it to. I didn’t think slowing down my brain would slow down my speech as well. But still! Even if my voice is slowed down, why does it sound so much deeper than usual? Mm, it must be all the flames blocking my mouth. Hmm. Even with the hammer, these people are still able to escape. It’s too bad I can’t see exactly what’s happening thanks to my blurry vision. All I can see are outlines, and whenever I hit those outlines, they simply burst apart like water! Then, the outlines rapidly melt away like water too. There’s something strange though. It feels like there are less of them than before. This invisible barrier may not be completely effective since they’re still able to get out. 

Mm, well, that doesn’t matter. I’m going to catch at least one of them. The ruler prepared everything for me: the hammer she gave me breaks apart these ice and water statues with ease, and the burning pill helps me keep warm. I can’t disappoint her after all she’s done for me. Just one! As long as I catch one of them, I’ll be able to Soul Scour them for information about Atlantis. If I’m lucky, they’ll know the whole story, and I’ll complete my goal of obtaining a whole mountain. If I’m not lucky, maybe they’ll know something about void dragons instead, and if not about void dragons, random things Sophia might like to hear about for bedtime stories. There's no loss in Soul Scouring people!

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