Two Divine Items
Saron's body was instantly covered in flames instantly. He flared his impetus and sent his fist straight for the back of Annelotte's heart.
The protective barriers were instantly crushed, but Annelotte still had stoneskin. The punch caused it to crack audibly and the spell seemed to be at its breaking point.
Annelotte was sent flying from the force and crashed straight into a nearby boulder, beating up a cloud of dust.
"Annie!" Leguna cried. He struggled like he had been completely rejuvenated.
Move, move! Annelotte isn't Saron's match after all! If I don't do something, she'll die!
No, I have to do something! His memories of that rainy day against the Eye resurfaced. It was a truly ghastly thought that filled him with fear. He couldn't let history repeat itself!
"Cough, cough…" A clear sound of the girl coughing could be heard from the dust cloud. Not long after, she walked out of it.
She didn't seem to be in good condition. A trail of blood flowed out from the corner of her mouth and her clothes were torn up from the intense collision, exposing some parts of her skin alluringly.
She coughed a couple more times and took deep breaths. Ten seconds later, she got her breathing back in order. Turning to look at Leguna, she said something which greatly shocked him.
"You can't even beat someone of this level?"
"What?!" Leguna was stunned. He thought he was hearing things, or had Annelotte gone mad? But it appeared that he wasn't mistaken. Based on her tone, Annelotte seemed to be in a normal state of mind. She sounded calm and a little derisive.
But that didn't sound like something a sane person would say. He was Saron, the crimsonflame fiend! The twin gifted with six gifts who was also a high-order warrior and magus with insane close combat capabilities! He was even harder to deal with than Legg and had virtually no weaknesses apart from his slightly deranged mind! Annelotte herself seemed to be hurt from the blow, yet now she was looking at him like he was pathetic. Did she hit her head against the boulder?
Despite Leguna being at the brink of death, his mind still raced with pointless thoughts.
Annelotte wasn't expecting a response from him either and only looked at him with a pitiful, contemptuous glare before turning back to see the burning Saron.
"Initially, I didn't have a grudge against you," she said coldly.
"You are Annelotte, and I am Saron! We have to decide who's stronger!" The crimson flames around his body flared brighter and even people ten or so meters away could feel the stunning heat coming from him.
"I'm not interested in petty rankings." Annelotte didn't seem the least bit moved at the pumped man.
"It's not up to you!" His eyes flashed before he prepared himself to charge forwards.
"But!" Her sudden words stopped him. She looked up at Saron and an icy blue flame seemed to be radiating from her eyes. Her voice finally betrayed some emotion as she angrily said, "I won't let you hurt him! Since you touched on my baseline, I won't let you off no matter what!"
If Leguna could still move, he would definitely applaud. For some reason, hearing her said that made him more confident in her. In fact, his doubts were completely erased! Annelotte now looked as angry as she did when he tried to steal a peek or two.
And every time she showed that kind of look, certain things would inevitably happen. She would seethe with rage and he would get off light with a slap to the face, or… The alternative sent chills down his spine.
It wasn't that he had never tried to run. But even with Shadow Blink, he had ever been able to escape her wrath. After the years of experience with that, only one thought occurred to him when he saw that expression.
He was going to die.
The pain from those experiences etched deep in his subconscious mind the notion that an angered Annelotte was capable of anything.
That was why he felt terror at the sight of her expression and had a hunch that she might not be losing the battle today.
Though, that was only what he felt. Rationally speaking, Saron was one stratum above Annelotte in magic, not to mention his warrior skills and gifts. It just didn't seem possible for her to win.
But he had no choice. Tied there without the slightest bit of energy left in him, he couldn't even escape, to say no more about helping her in battle.
It wasn't an overstatement to say they were in a perilous predicament.
"Well someone here sounds confident!" Saron roared with anger and sent a spellmutated fireball towards her.
Annelotte was surrounded in flames instantly. The sight caused Leguna's heart to skip a beat, but recalling her expression just now made him feel that she wouldn't be taken down so easily.
As expected, a fierce gust of wind blew through and she stepped out of the flames once more. But unlike before, she now held a crimson staff in her hand and was dressed in a milk-white robe. Upon closer inspection, the robe gave off a bluish tint. More noteworthy perhaps, was the sapphire the size of an infant's fist on the chest part of the robe.
"Hmm, it's been one year since I saw her in that robe," Leguna muttered. That was the one she wore to the tournament. Ever since he became the head of the bureau, he began to know more about the equipment Geoffrey gifted her. He had to admit that the royal family truly was generous!
Bluestar of the Frozen Sea was the robe's name. It was said to have been fashioned by a myth-rank alchemist using the gem called the Heart of the Sea as its core. The robe could store large amounts of glacial essence and the formations on the robe itself increased the storage capacity by a third.
Based on the estimations of the court magi association's alchemists, the robe stored enough glacial essence for a magus to cast three additional level-nine ice-aspect spells!
Apart from that, the robe granted a good degree of ice resistance and improve the absorption of glacial essence of the wearer. The wearer could also activate an ice barrier once a day. It was truly divine for magi specializing in ice-aspect spells.
The staff in her hand was called Flamecharged. It was said to be made from the spine of a mature red dragon of legend and had only two crude effects. The first was greatly increased fire resistance and the other was increased efficacy of fire spells. It was the ideal staff for fire-aspect magi.
Those two weapons were treasures passed down in the Hocke family through centuries and even after Duke Mellin founded his own empire in the north, he kept the two treasures as imperial heirlooms. Yet, Larwin wasn't able to stop his son's brashness. Geoffrey picked the two treasures to gift to Annelotte after falling for her at first sight.
Initially, Larwin wanted to forbid that gift, but when he thought about how pleased Marolyt would be for it, he reluctantly agreed to his son's request.
Bluestar of the Frozen Sea was an incredibly useful robe for her, but Flamecharged was a little mismatched for her. Though, she felt it would be a waste to turn it down, so she accepted it, only to blatantly shoot down Geoffrey's request for a date. The fool was so shocked that he almost turned into a statue.
And now, Saron instantly knew what those items were when he saw them. A look of greed and excitement manifested on his face. Those were really fine items!
He had long heard about Flamecharged and had always wanted to get his hands on them, but was forced to give up on that notion when he heard that it was in the Hocke imperial family's private collection. He didn't expect that it would end up in the hands of Annelotte and now, it was practically being handed to him.
He licked his lips and resolved himself to get the staff no matter what, even if he had to kill her for it!
The staff fit him far too well. The fire-aspect boost was one thing, but the fire resistance it offered was also something he could use. That would prevent the equipment he wore from being burned off by his flames! In other words, he no longer had to fight while having his clothes burn up in shame!
He smiled wryly and said, "I didn't think you'd actually deliver it to me. I won't hold myself back then."
"I will return the pain and humiliation you dealt him fewfold. Since I happened to have these equipment with me, I'll use them to have some fun with you," she replied.
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Ryogawa and Prince