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1-43 Clarity

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Author: EnroItzal Original Source: Scribble Hub

Aedan waved his hand. A moment later, everything turned silent and the air turned warm. Erin could no longer hear the songs of the cicadas nor the gentle whispers of the cold breeze. The only sounds she could hear even with her heightened sense of hearing was her own breathing.

Erin knew a spell had been used. She tried to appraise it but the results came up null as she expected. It was magic beyond her comprehension.

“This is a subspace,” Aedan explained upon seeing her confused expression. “It’s a spell under Spatial Manipulation called Domain. No sound, smell, magic, absolutely nothing can be seen, heard, and felt by the other side of this subspace.”

Erin could only blink at Aedan’s explanation. Her mind was barely holding on to rationality, let alone comprehending a magic she knew absolutely nothing about.

“The subspace exist simultaneously with overworld, which is the normal plane of existence and— ah f̲u̲c̲k̲ this. You won’t understand it anyway. In simple words, the damages caused in this subspace will all be reverted back to its original form upon dispelling Domain. So to say, whatever happens here, no one will ever know except for you and I.”

There was much Erin had wanted to ask but with Lust Deviant overwhelming her very essence, she was no longer able to form any coherent words without strenuous efforts.

“Lust may be the only thing on your mind but I beg to differ. Quite evidently, my statement has been proven to be a fact. You still have your survival instinct. Your live still takes precedence over your lust. No matter what kind of influence a person is under, survival instincts would always kick in when the body comes under threat. Also, I don’t believe your lust is purely carnal.”

Erin didn’t understand his words fully. She couldn’t. Every shred of reasoning was slowly slipping off the grasp of her mind.

“If your lust is not exclusive to carnal, which I’m sure of, I have the perfect way to quell your desires.” Aedan grinned. He reverted back to his original form minus the Dragon features. In his splayed hand, a sword with dark reddish blade materialized into his grasp.

When Erin saw that sword, a smirk was instantly adorned on her lips. Her heartbeat rose in anticipation. She grabbed her own swords. She stood up, to her own surprise. What even surprised her more was how her body was moving without her consent and it was moving without difficulty. It was like her fading sane mind was just a passenger along for the ride in her body. Another dire concern arose, at the fact that she was completely naked. Yet, her body showed no shame to that matter. She made no attempts to cover herself up.

“At least put on the undergarments, damn it!” Erin screamed internally. Somehow, Aedan’s indifference to her bare body was even more vexing.

Aedan stifled a chuckle and made his first move. He threw himself forward, his sword lunging to kill.

“Fast!” Erin gasped in her mind. She was unprepared for it but somehow, her body reacted just in time. She deflected the blow that aimed for her head with the saber. The momentum of the strike caused her to stumble but she was quick to regain her bearings. She parried another blow and riposted with the broadsword in her other hand.

But Aedan did not meet her strike with his.

Instead, he evaded the blade by leaning his head away from the point where the blade would strike. Aedan proceeded to dodge all of her ripostes and countered but she also countered back. And so the repetition of such an exchange went on and on. They kept deflecting each others’ blows and evading strikes and Erin kept surprising herself. Even though Aedan was faster and stronger than he was yesterday, Erin had no trouble in keeping up with his speed and strength.

At her current level, such a feat was impossible but here she was, doing the impossible. It was a cause for celebration or that would be the case if she was the one actually doing it. She wasn’t. She was merely looking through the eyes of the body of Erinthea.

“Is this the result of being taken over by Lust Deviant?”

Even though she couldn’t see her own face, she could tell she was grinning the whole time she crossed blades with Aedan. The Dragon-kin on the other hand had the usual face of indifference, which made the vexations within her blossomed into a desire of wanting to wipe that passive expression off his face.

Her face curled into a grimace after her umpteenth strike missed its target.

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Her strikes began to focus on Aedan’s head but he gave a smirk in return, which further provoked her frustration. She felt her body heated up more and more as her speed rose in tandem.

Erin leaped into the air. She twirled and as she did so, she lashed out an attack which was easily blocked. When she landed, she spun with her saber. Aedan evaded the slash but he didn’t retaliate. Instead, he leaped back away from where he stood just as her tails grazed the empty air. As soon as Erin stopped spinning, she tossed her broadsword like a javelin at Aedan.

The Dragon-kin easily brushed the sword aside. The broadsword twirled in the air before landing in a lodge to the ground. Erin moved in without collecting her sword but Aedan knew there was more to this simple trick. Erin summoned blue flames into her hands. It was Essence Flare, fire that could only burn entities that were ethereal or magical, Aedan’s sword for example was one such item, a sword forged of his own magic. Still, the gap between their levels voided Erin of Essence Flare’s perks. With a simple swipe of his sword, Aedan had doused the blue flames. When the flames cleared, Erin was there, within range for her attacks to reach. She had closed their distance with a single leap. She was making full use of her agile and light body. In fact, she has been raising her speed and strength through the constant use of infusing Mana to her whole body.

Aedan deflected a thrust and evaded a slash. All the while defending against her attacks, his attention on the broadsword did not leave. And as he expected, during one of the clashes of their blades which ended up in a blade-lock, Erin flipped the broadsword into her grip with her tails. Left with no other choice, Aedan conjured another sword and guarded against her slash.

Aedan grimaced at the cheap trick and in response, Erin widened her grin. She was fully enjoying this. They pushed themselves off the blade-lock and once again traded blows after blows with each impact causing a ripple in the space between them. Even cracks were forming on the ground due to their exchange.

The longer it went on, the livelier Erin’s expression was becoming. Her breaths even quickened into pants.

Aedan inspected her eyes. He could tell he was neither a friend nor foe in her eyes at the moment. He was simply someone she wanted to fight. No prejudice or pity could be found in her gaze, unlike their duel yesterday.

In addition, Erin fought like a completely different person. There was no grace and precision in her form. Her attacks were wild and excessive, a stark contrast to her usual form. She was even making use of her lightweight to execute movements that were only possible for a nimble body. Overall, she was even better than yesterday. Due to her flexible form, she could avoid paying for her mistakes by simply giving a twirl or a twist of her body. Aedan lost count on how many times he thought his blow would land but ended up slicing the empty air. And at the times where her swords failed her, she resorted to her tails. They couldn’t move as precise as her limbs but they were still a tremendous edge to her. If it weren’t for her tails, she would have received a few scratches from Aedan’s sword.

But when even her tails failed her, Erin used her legs, astonishing Aedan further. Even in this insanity, she knew Aedan would not truly hurt her and she took advantage of that. She had intentionally left herself wide open at vital points but Aedan couldn’t strike them, not if he wanted her to live.

“You’re really holding nothing back, are ya?” Aedan asked.

His words were met with laughter. A laughter that didn’t possess a hint of rationality or femininity. It was the crude laughter of a near-mindless maniac. A very odd pairing for a pretty face like hers. As Erin laughed, she used Arcane Edge on her swords.

Aedan frowned in confusion. She wasn’t in range for any swing. Using Arcane Edge now was too telling for her opponent. “Is she perhaps…”

Before Aedan could voice out all of his thoughts, Erin swung her swords and threw the aura lacing her blades.

“Aura Shot?” Aedan blurted out his surprise.

Aura Shot was a skill under the Magic Art, Arcane Edge. It allows the user to throw the magic infused in the blade. Aura Shot was extremely advantageous for swordsmen who usually had nothing but close-range skills. At the same time, it wasn’t easy to learn. Arcane Edge itself was already a challenging Magic Art for anyone unacquainted with magic to learn and Aura Shot was even more so. Yet, Erin here, not even level twenty, was able to learn it by instincts.

“Truly a Sword Saint,” Aedan muttered in his heart. “So it ain’t all just airs.”

Nevertheless, the vast difference of their levels allowed Aedan to triumph over Erin’s talents and instincts. Aedan conjured up a transparent barrier that blocked both of the Aura Shots. When Erin saw her attacks failed, she launched a few more Aura Shots but the barrier stood strong against her barrage of Aura Shots. Gone was her smile then.

“Let’s just stick with blades, shall we?” Aedan suggested. “If we’re going down any other road, you wouldn’t last for even a minute.”

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Though battle lust was seemingly all that remained in her mind, her brows twitch in response to Aedan’s belittlement of her abilities. She was irked.

Erin screeched like an animal. She closed their distance with Fleet Foot and lashed out without any restraint.

Aedan groaned as he guarded a series of blows. It was beginning to feel like she was swinging axes to chop down a tree than swinging swords to trade blows. She no longer saw Aedan as a person but an obstacle in her path that she just couldn’t cut down.

Erin even tried to use Aura Shot at point blank but Aedan withstood the attack with the sheer difference of their level.

An hour had passed, Aedan guessed, and there was still no sign of Erin’s lust dissipating. He had no doubts regarding his chances at victory but holding back begged a different question. He needed to find the right amount of strength to use. Too little would result in him getting sliced and diced by the enraged Erin. Too much would render Erin crippled for possibly most of her life.

He started to think about ways to end this without hurting her too much and at the same time, to end the fight that was able to satisfy her lust.

“Hmm… what if I show her the real difference in our strength, will that discourage her to continue or would that make her all the more motivated?”

Aedan knew the latter would be much more likely. So he discarded that plan.

As he deflected a strike aimed for his genitals, which he chalked it up to coincidence, he sensed something had changed and he went for that change. To his bafflement but also expectation, his strike was able to graze her shoulder. Erin groaned and stumbled back while wincing in pain. Aedan struck again and Erin received his blow, stumbling further back.

Witnessing that, Aedan breathed a sigh of relief. Erin was slowing down and her strength was weakening, which only meant that her Lust Deviant skill was subsiding. Her breathing that was once sharp was turning ragged. He saw her eyes wavering from him, a sure sign of an unfocused vision. The broadsword fell from her hands. Instead of picking it back up, she wielded her saber with two hands.

“I guess this is the end,” Aedan remarked and dispelled one of his swords away.

With a final battle cry, Erin charged at Aedan with eyes that could almost sear through one’s soul. Despite her ferocity and resolve, her Magic Vigour was much too lacking to give strength to her resolution.

Aedan swung as Erin plunged into his reach. A sharp sound echoed into the air as her sword flew from her hands. Aedan followed up with a palm thrust at her chest that sent her tumbling back. It was a little awkward considering she was in her birthday suit for the whole fight and he just felt her supple and smooth skin for a brief second.

The persistence Erin stood back up. A furious gaze locked onto him. She foregone her swords and rushed at Aedan with her nails and tails.

Aedan sheathed his sword, figuratively speaking, and conjured up a transparent barrier before himself. Erin rammed into the barrier with all of her momentum. She bounced right off but it didn’t deter her.

She roared.

She clawed at the barrier, smashed it with her tails, but to no avail. Still, she had no intention to stop her senseless assault. She tried to get around it but Aedan wouldn’t let her. Soon, she exhausted herself of all of her strength.

Her tantrum stopped. She rasped for air. A hint of light returned to her eyes.

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Her gaze drooped to her hands, mangled and shaken. She looked back up at Aedan, who breathed a sigh of relief.

“Welcome back, milady. You’re a handful, you know that?”

“And you’re a twat,” she said and hit the ground on her back. Her consciousness left her body.

[Experience gained +20% – Level Progression: 25%]


Erin woke up not few minutes later. Her body shot up from the ground she was lying upon when the chill breeze sent shivers through her whole body. The subspace Aedan had created was no longer there. Songs of the cicadas and whispers of the gentle breeze once again flowed peacefully through the night. She was wide awake at that instance. Her wide-opened eyes met with Aedan’s impassive gaze.

“How are you feeling?” he asked.

“How long was I out?” she threw back a question.

“Minutes,” Aedan gave an extremely brief answer. “Barely ten,” he added.

Erin heaved a wave of relief. Her memories were quick to recollect themselves in her mind. Albeit blurry and vague, she remembered what had transpired. Aedan had offered her an alternative to shacking up with him. She remembered the duel. She remembered she had acted so differently. She remembered how she moved in their duel. She couldn’t remember exactly the copious details but she knew she was moving in a manner unlike her current self was capable of. Going by her barren Magic Vigour, she had used a lot of magic, most likely to assist her movements. She was still in disbelief of how she had fought but most of all, she was in disbelief of her intentional negligence.

Her eyes widened further as she gazed down at her own body. She was in her undergarments when she should have been naked. She had truly fought Aedan without a single piece of clothing.

“D-did you see…?” she asked without looking at him. She was referring to her bare body of course.

“I guess you’re fine then.”

“Did you see?”

Aedan raised an eyebrow. “Of course I did. How could I have not? I don’t have a cloak or a blanket to cover you up. Unless you preferred that I left you as it is?”

Erin tried to stand up so she could hit him but her legs gave out. Aedan swooped in and prevented her from hitting the ground.

“Easy now, lassie.”

Erin wanted to push him off but she could barely move her fingers. She realized just how exhausted her body is despite having a clear mind.

“Can you move?” he asked.

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Erin glared. “What do you think?”

He sighed and gently laid her on the ground.

“Forget everything you saw,” she said with a faltering voice.

“That’s not going to happen.”

“May I know why?” She sharpened her glare.

“I have been with countless women. Some of them are just simply unforgettable. They were absolutely stunning to an unbelievable degree. You are one of them.”

Erin could feel her face warming up. She turned away to avoid showing the red touching her cheeks.

Aedan chuckled dryly. “Well, anyways, at least we solved your problem.”

“Yeah… it worked, surprisingly. My lust is quelled.”

“It’s more like you’re depleted to the brink.” Aedan drew a finger across his neck. “You really fought until there was nothing left to fuel your lust.”

“You’re saying it’s different from quelling my lust.”

“Not notably, at least. Your Lust Deviant skill is essentially a form of magic. It requires energy and Mana to function. The battle merely exhausted you to a point that your body is forced to use the energy and Mana fueling your lust as replacement. Your survival took precedence in the end. Or at least that’s the theory I have.”

Erin didn’t fully understand his words but she got the gist of it. Her problem was solved, end of story. “T-thank you…” she forced herself to say. “I mean it.”

“Now now, don’t get all soft on me. I quite like your defiant side.”

Erin frowned. “Can’t you just accept gratitude like a normal person?”

“I’m a Dragon-kin in disguise as a Dwarrow, who had just fought a lust-crazed Fox-kin who was in full nude. I think that option has long departed.”

Erin sighed in exasperation. She was too tired to retort. She tried to move again but her body was not listening to her.

“Now this is a problem,” Aedan remarked. Erin was too exhausted to move. He had half a mind to carry her back but knowing Erin, she would probably refuse.

From one of the three small satchels he was carrying around his belt, he took out a small vial of transparent liquid. He added some dry herbs into the liquid before inducing a small drop of his own blood into it. He gave it a few shake before handing it to Erin.

“Drink this,” Aedan said.

Erin turned her head sluggishly. “What’s that?”

“…Stamina potion, I guess you can call it?”

“Did you just come up with that name?”

Aedn shrugged. “Well forgive me about that. I don’t name every potion that I have created.”

“You’re really an alchemist?”

“Problem?”

Erin tried to shake her head but in her current position, it was impossible to do so.

“When you have lived as long as I have, relatively speaking, you’ll adopt all sorts of hobbies to stave off boredom.”

“Well… that’s understandable but…” Erin groaned as she struggled to lift her arm. “As you can see, I don’t think I can drink it by myself.”

“Wow, we really went at it hard, didn’t we.”

Erin rolled her eyes. “Just shut up and help me drink this.”

“Alright alright,” Aedan obliged. He tipped her head and poured the contents into her mouth.

After swallowing the content of the vial, Erin stared blankly at Aedan.

“What?” Aedan asked.

“Nothing,” she said. “Just… surprised that you didn’t try anything funny.”

“I did thought of it but—”

The potion worked fast. Strength returned to her limbs. “But?” she asked, her hands curling into fists in anticipation.

“Nothing,” he answered. He then chuckled.

“Is this what thousands of years do to people? They start laughing without good reason?”

“Maybe,” Aedan shrugged. “Haven’t exactly talked to anyone else who has lived as long as I do. I spoke to elves but even the elders failed to surpass me.”

“I read in the books that the longest an Elf has lived to was around three thousand years… Just how old are you?”

“Older than three thousand years old.”

Erin sighed. “Why do I even bother?” she grumbled to herself.

Erin tidied up her undergarments and proceeded to put on her armor. She didn’t skip out on grooming her tail and hair as she didn’t want to give the ones back at the camp any implications.

“Are you done?” Aedan called out.

“Are you not worried?” Erin asked back.

“Regarding?”

“Us, damn it. The two of us alone together for so long, what do you think they will assume?”

“For Lyra, pretty much what you expect but for the other three, they will probably keep guessing. I’m a Dwarrow to the current extent of their knowledge and you are well-known for having an aversion for peckers. I’m sure us shacking up will be at the bottom of their assumptions.”

“Dwarrow with a Fox-kin… you’re telling me that’s unlikely?”

Aedan nodded. “It’s bordering the line of unbelievable.”

“Are the Faerie-kin that vain?”

“It’s not the matter of Fae being vain. It’s the general perception of Dwarrows. They are highly praised for their crafts but less so as a better-half.”

Erin frowned. “Why?”

Aedan shrugged. “It’s just how it always has been. You would get a different answer if you go around asking.”

“You don’t know?”

“I’m neither a scholar or a historian. Too tedious.”

“Isn’t this a little bit too unfair for the Dwarrows?”

Aedan smiled wryly. “Perhaps but they said nothing about this matter and who are we to speak in their place?”

“I suppose you’re right…” Erin said as she walked past Aedan. “Come on, let’s go. Even if they didn’t get any strange ideas, they would still be worried.”

“Right behind you, milady.” He followed a few feet away.

“Don’t call me that.”

“Then what do you propose?”

“Just Erin would do,” she answered after a brief silence.

“Well then, lead the way, Erin.”

“Just be quiet, Aedan.”

He chuckled.

Erinthea – Faerie-kin: Three-Tailed Fox-kin

Level: 11 | Status: Mild Exhaustion

Might: 19 | Arcane: 17 | Finesse: 17

Magic Arts – Spirit Magic Lv. 8 | Arcane Edge Lv. 2 | Arcane Armor Lv. 5

Combat Arts – Sword Art Lv. 6 | Fleet Foot Lv. 5 | Brawler Lv. 4

Innate Skills – Appraisal Lv. Ex | Night Vision Lv. Ex | Sixth Sense Lv. Ex | Toxin Resistance Lv. 1 | Lust Deviant Lv. Ex

Unique Talent – Mystic Blade Lv. Ex

Level Progression: 25%

Remaining Skill Points: 0

Remaining Ability Points: 0


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