Clash of Ice and Fire
"Insolence!" roared Saron before he charged for Annelotte with a low growl.
There was a derisive smile on her face as she raised both her hands and made a few different sigils with lightning speed and recited a syllable. In fact, the spell's incantation had a few syllables but Annelotte dictated them so quickly that they sounded stacked together like one outlandish sound.
Saron felt his feet slip and himself trying to correct his posture out of habit. He smashed harshly into the ground. While that kind of damage was fine for him, it came as quite a psychological shock for him to blunder before the eyes of a thousand troops.
As expected… thought Annelotte with a nod. The spell she had dictated was an oil spell. It caused the surface of the ground to be covered in a layer of oil and Saron slipped because he failed to take note of it.
Strictly speaking, oil spells weren't often used in battles as fighters would have great balance and wouldn't slip and fall that easily. Saron, on the other hand, wasn't just a fighter. He was also a magus.
While training in two different disciplines sounded impressive, Annelotte didn't do so because she knew that unless she was a ridiculous prodigy, it was easy to train too much in one discipline and disrupt the balance. There was only so much a person could do, after all, and training in two different disciplines also took up a lot of time. Even though Saron was gifted in two aspects, Annelotte didn't think that even he could perfect training in both disciplines, and her bet paid off.
Actually, given Annelotte's own athletic physique, she could afford to become a warrior. She was the daughter of a saint-ranked swordsman, after all. Even if she couldn't match her father and become a swordsaint on her own, it wouldn't be difficult for her to make it to the high order. Yet, she hadn't developed much in the physical aspects as she didn't want to bite off more than she could chew.
After seeing Leguna's sorry state, she felt unbearable rage despite not showing it on her face. She had long resolved to not let the crimsonflame fiend go, but before she took him out, she wanted to make sure she was utterly humiliated to vent her frustrations.
And now, Saron felt the most shame he had ever experienced in his life. He wiped off the grime on his face and glared venomously. "You forced my hand!"
Saron no longer cared for how beautiful Annelotte was. Being humiliated caused him to lose all reason. There was only one thing on his mind right now: to tear the icy-blue-haired woman before him to shreds! Little chunks of flesh! He had to rend her to a million pieces to vent all the pent-up rage inside him.
He charged towards her once more and Annelotte used the same oil spell. But this time, he didn't fall for it. Another gust blew by and Saron's body blurred. In a blink of an eye, he appeared in front of her.
The crimsonflame demon's body burned brightly, and he launched a punch towards her abdomen, sending her flying through the air with sheer force.
That wasn't the end, however. Saron quickly began his dictation and shot out a crimson light towards Annelotte, still coursing through the air.
Thanks to the energy barrier she put up, she wasn't hurt too badly from the heavy strike. She saw the crimson beam and knew that the spell wouldn't be an easy one to deal with.
There was no time to dictate any spells. She forced herself to rotate her body in an attempt to avoid the spell, but Saron wouldn't be one-upped that easily. His eyes flashed as he placed an Air Barrier along the course of her evasion.
When she bumped into the barrier, a look of panic appeared on her face. But after some hesitation, she still didn't choose to waste mana to teleport away to avoid the spell, allowing the beam to hit her square in the chest.
"Ugh…" she groaned. The next second, flames burst out around her body and began to burn away at every square inch of her skin.
It was the level-five spell, Flame Burial. In terms of sheer power, it couldn't compare to a level-three fireball spell. However, it could continuously burn away at the target and cause quite a lot of psychological distress alongside actual harm.
To prevent the lasting effects of the spell, Annelotte dictated dispel to wipe out the flames around her, but that cost her the time to cast a flight spell. Saron's punch had sent her more than ten meters into the air and the fall would cause quite a bit of damage even if she rolled to increase the impact time.
"To think the likes of you would dare to mouth off like that. Hmph!" he yelled as he swaggered forward.
"Cough, cough…" The dust irritated her throat for a moment, before she said all of a sudden, "A windstorm spell."
A look of shock appeared on Saron's face.
She confirmed her suspicions with that reaction. "You dictated a windstorm spell and blew yourself to me."
Hints of panic began to form on his expression.
"Is that how you use your six gifts?" She continued her analysis coldly. "If my guess is right, your gift should be called something like Host of Gust. It can turn your body into a wind-aspect state and allow you to take on its properties, like nullification of physical attacks and evasion. Your gaseous body can also move with the wind."
The shock manifested fully on Saron's face. There wasn't the least bit mistaken in her theory. She even guessed the name of the gift word-for-word! With a hoarse voice, he asked, "How did you find out?"
"Did you think I was taking your hits for nothing?" she said with a sharp glare, "Now, it's your turn."
Before Saron could understand what she said, two beams of bluish light shot out of Annelotte's eyes. Her eyes widened and her expression seemed to suggest she was trying to show her true power.
She activated the advanced level of Glacial Domain, Absolute Frostscape!
It took only ten short seconds. When Saron snapped out of his stupor, he felt like a few months had passed. The surrounding temperature was negative seventy degrees Celsius. The moisture in the air had solidified into little crystal droplets and scattered all over like ash particles, covering the dry land in a thin layer of ice.
"Achoo!" Leguna couldn't help but sneeze. Thanks to that movement, his wounds were tugged and he gasped in pain. That caused him to breathe in even more cold air into his throat and lungs and resulted in even more coughing, starting an infinite loop that would only cease upon his death.
Annelotte furrowed her brow at the sight. She waved her hand and covered him in a cold-resistance barrier before ignoring him.
"Huff… puff…" He felt more relieved after the barrier was applied, but he wasn't in a mood to feel glad about it. Just like Saron, he felt indescribable terror.
He never would've dreamed that Annelotte's Glacial Domain could be used to such an extent. He looked around and realized with terror that the domain covered at least a radius of 500 meters all round. That kind of range with that kind of temperature… It was a mere gift, but that caused Leguna to think that Annelotte was even more of a monster than Saron was!
Saron breathed raggedly, unknown if it was out of excitement for a strong foe or terror for Annelotte's pressure. He activated Host of Flame to stave off the cold. "Is that it? What else do you got?"
"I'll make sure you get a good look today," Annelotte calmly said. She closed her eyes and the next instant, a dot of blue appeared between her brows. It spread out in a cross shape and gradually covered her whole body.
Within a few short seconds, her snow-white skin turned was covered by that layer of icy blue. From a distance, it seemed her body was dyed in a singular color. She gradually opened her eyes and glared at Saron as a predator would a pray.
That was her fourth gift, Host of Glacier!
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