Chapter 82 – Mercurius of the Seven Luminaries Would Like To Battle!

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Author: Firehead Original Source: Syosetu
Translator: Hands of Vecna English Source: Hands of Vecna
Editor(s): TpstT, Keii

“Ugh!”

As Cruz’s barrier blocked the water flowing down, it creaked. The barrier covered only a small area, about a radius of five meters, but this was currently the only safe place within the cave.

Sei remembered the submarine tunnel that he had once visited during his holidays when he still lived in Japan. Inappropriately, he thought that such a scene would be possible if a tunnel was built under fast flowing water. It was not that he could afford to think such thoughts, but rather it was the opposite. His thought process was confused by the sudden crisis, so it was inevitable.

The torrent of water covered everything except where they were currently standing. If this area was flooded as well, they would be dashed against the rock walls and eventually drowned, resulting in the death of the entire hero’s party.

However, the flow of the water was very powerful, such that Cruz’s barrier was starting to distort and crack.

“Hey, what’s happening!? Didn’t you say that demons couldn’t come in here!?”

“It—it seems that Kaineko-san was mistaken…He has forcefully penetrated the barrier!”

Gants asked anxiously, while Cruz replied in a strained voice. This water was not natural. Clearly, someone—probably Mercurius—had used magic with an obviously hostile intent. In other words, Mercurius himself had already intruded into this place.

But fortunately, this turbid flow of water would not last indefinitely. If they could endure it for long enough, it would probably stop by itself. However, it was difficult to endure for an extended period of time. Cruz might be one of the elite divine magic users in the world, but there was still an insurmountable difference in level.

At Level 105, Cruz was arguably the highest level magic user among the humanoids. However, the opponent was a fearsome demon at around Level 300. He was not an opponent who could be overcome by acting alone.

Eventually, Cruz’s barrier broke, but at the same time, Virgo raised her hand.

“Vindemiatrix!”

At Virgo’s declaration, the turbid flow of water “vanished.” This was an advanced skill that dispersed the mana of a specified area. Since it could disperse mana, it was effective against all forms of arcane magic. It could even deal incurable damage to beings that maintained their bodies using mana. Not realizing that Cruz was staring at her blankly, Virgo erased all of the turbid water.

“Ju—Just now…Impossible. The mana was unquestionably erased! That technique is believed to be the world’s administrative power belonging only to the Goddess and those acknowledged by her!”

“Eh?”

“Vir—Virgo-san…Who exactly are you!?”

Virgo widened her eyes as she listened to Cruz’s words about unfamiliar topics. Virgo had neither awareness nor knowledge concerning the power of the Goddess. What she just used was a skill that she had learnt for self-defense when she was young. Her grandmother had told her, “This would be instant death for a demon.”

Although it might be a bit excessive for self-defense, Virgo regarded that skill only as something of such magnitude. However, the reality was actually different. There were a very limited number of people who could use that skill. At least, it was not something that was pervasive among the humanoids.

This was only natural. After all, this was a skill which was only taught to the clan that the Goddess had personally breathed life into and put in charge of managing mana…In other words, it was a divine skill taught to the direct descendants of the original human, Aeneas.

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There were only four individuals who could use this skill in the current world. Needless to say, one was the Goddess herself. The other was Parthenos, who had once served her. Another was Ruphas Mafahl, the master of Parthenos. And the last one was Virgo, the successor of Parthenos.

This skill could erase mana without question. In Midgard which was overflowing with mana, it was unmatched, deserving to be called a divine miracle. Since all arcane magic was composed of mana, they could be easily rendered ineffective with this skill.

If it was used on vehicles that utilized Megrez’s mana engines, the latter would stop functioning. If it was used on demons, it would deal a significant amount of damage. And for those that were composed of mana, the damage would be irrecoverable.

Level differences did not matter with this skill. It would definitely be effective even if it could not remove too much mana in one go. In other words, even if the target was a Level 1000 demon, it would definitely still be effective.

“Eh? Even if you ask me who…I’m just a normal flügel who has been living in a forest until recently?”

“Normal? Normal!? That’s impossible! As if a normal flügel could erase mana! Even the Sky King wouldn’t be able to do something like that!”

“Kyaa!?”

He must have felt that he was being made fun of by Virgo. Cruz screamed in distress and grabbed her shoulders. Apparently, he seemed to be the kind of person who was normally calm, but would panic when something beyond his understanding occurred. However, it seemed too immature for an adult elf with bloodshot eyes to be cornering a flügel girl. Feeling that this was in bad taste, Sei hurriedly pulled Cruz off and positioned himself in front of Virgo to protect her.

“What are you doing, Cruz-san? Now is not the time for such things! We don’t know when the next attack will come!”

“B—but—”

“There’s no but! What we need to do now is to decide whether to stop the person who is using this magic or to leave this mountain!”

Indeed, now was not the time to be questioning one’s allies. The original plan had fallen apart, along with its premise. They came here on the premise that the Seven Luminaries would not personally come to this mountain, yet Mercurius had beaten them to it.

In other words, even if they somehow survived the first attack, it would not be strange if the second attack came soon. Therefore, they had to choose—either to withdraw for now or to proceed despite the danger.

“The boy is right. Advance or retreat. We must decide quickly.”

“I agree with old man Gants. Let’s advance.”

“No. I think we should withdraw. In the current situation, the enemy can continuously attack us with magic without showing up. If we keep taking such attacks, we will be wiped out.”

Gants and Jean, who were experienced travelers in this party, agreed with Sei. As a mercenary and an adventurer respectively, they were used to such situations. However, their opinions differed. Jean wanted to advance, while Gants recommended withdrawing.

“I think Gants is right. We should withdraw.”

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“I think we should advance. If we retreat now, the elixir will be taken.”

Even the two adventurers with a weak sense of presence, Nick and Shu, had opposing opinions. It would be dangerous to proceed on, but if they retreated, the elixir would very likely be lost. In that case, even if they survived this place, this country would fall after losing its guardian dragon. However, it was simply too dangerous to proceed. Thus, both arguments reached a stalemate and the conversation was in vain.

“I’m fine with either way.”

Aries gave a vague response, but this was in fact the case since there was no problem for him either way. If the opponent was the Seven Luminaries, proceeding would not be a problem. However, the guardian dragon was an existence that did not matter to Aries. If this country fell because they lost the elixir, it would merely be the loss of a country founded by the hateful Seven Heroes. It might even be a desirable thing.

“Uh, I think it’s okay to proceed.”

“I think we should retreat…We are divided again.”

“I’m bad at thinking. I will just follow whatever everyone decided.”

Virgo and the Female Knight had opposing opinions, so things were divided evenly again. Ricardo had no intention to take a side, while Cruz was useless at the moment. As a result, the decision was entrusted to the last remaining person. Everyone cast their gazes towards the hero. Sei broke out in sweat from the pressure of responsibility, but he still spoke his mind in a clear tone.

“…Let’s advance. I think the reason he was making these long-range attacks without showing himself was in order to make us feel threatened and leave. Even if he forcefully penetrated the anti-mana barrier, he should still be affected to some degree. Perhaps, fighting here would be disadvantageous to him. Earlier, Cruz-san was able to defend against the attack most likely due to us being in this mountain. If the attack happened outside, the barrier would have been broken through right away.”

“Th—That’s true. You can think of it that way.”

“Therefore, I think we should move forward. He should be the one who is struggling right now.”

Unexpectedly impressed by Sei’s calm assessment of the situation, several people gasped softly. His power may still be undeveloped, but his ability to assess situations was quite good. Aries raised his evaluation of Sei slightly and was reminded of his master’s adventuring days.

“Everyone, get your recovery items! Let’s go!”

“Wait, Ruphas. There’s a trap…”

“Don’t worry. I’ve already triggered the traps!”

Ah, she was hopeless. Ignoring Megrez’s warning, she stepped into the trap. As she declared that they could just heal up after taking damage, she advanced relentlessly like a muscle-brain without worrying about the arrows shooting at her, the walls closing in on her, or the flames dousing her from above. Other than avoiding the instant death traps with her ranger skills, she advanced while stating that it would be faster to be attacked and heal up than to disarm the traps. It was terrible.

“Well, I’m not that smart, so I might be wrong.”

“No, it’s fine. …I’m the one who was wrong. Certainly, if we run away now, we would be doing exactly what the enemy wanted. Hey, I changed my mind. I also agree with advancing.”

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Inspired by Sei, Gants changed his opinion. As a result, there were five who voted to advance and two who voted to retreat, so the decision was made. Nick and the Female Knight simply shrugged and were convinced that they had to advance despite the dangers.

In that case, faster would be better. They had to move as quickly as possible and engage the demon in battle before the situation snowballed. The more they were attacked, the more exhausted they would be. Therefore, the number of times they were attacked before they reached the destination would be the key to victory.

“Alright, let’s go! Cruz, snap out of it!”

Gants grabbed Cruz by the head and ran ahead. Soon after, everyone started running, following the cave leading upwards. This Spiritual Peak had a peculiar shape. The mountain was hollow on the inside. It was a spiral slope that led upwards. It was said that the elixir was placed at the top. Therefore, it was impossible to get to the elixir by flying from the outside. This was a natural fortress.

The enemy was probably at the top! The water must have flowed down from there. Then he must have wanted them to retreat. After all, because of the structure of the mountain, there was only a single passage. If they did not retreat, they would definitely encounter the enemy. In other words, even if the enemy acquired the elixir, he could not leave unnoticed.

Sei was right. This Spiritual Peak that sealed mana was actually a dead end. Lured by the elixir, the enemy had basically cornered himself. Mercurius understood this as well. Currently, he was the one who was in trouble!

“Second wave incoming!”

A turbid stream of wave came towards Gants. He was indeed ahead! He must have thought that it would be checkmate the moment he got the elixir. However, his miscalculation was the presence of Virgo. Once again, she jumped forward and extended her palms.

“Vindemiatrix!”

The advanced water magic released by the demon vanished without a second thought. Magic was a way to collect mana and turn it into a phenomenon, and so long as it remained that way, this skill’s effectiveness would remain absolute. In the most appropriate sense, it was the natural enemy of a magic user. If there was a person with this skill on the other side, the magic user would be worthless. Seeing this, Jean whistled with a heartfelt admiration for Virgo’s fighting spirit.

“Amazing, girl-chan! You are unbelievably strong!”

“No, I’m not…”

“Don’t be modest. Have some confidence. You are really strong!”

The hero and his companions continued advancing like this and finally arrived at the top—the room where the elixir was placed. In front of the room, there were scattered debris consisting of broken parts of a golem, probably the guardian of the elixir. Originally, Sei and his companions would probably have to fight it.

It was obvious who the culprit responsible for this might be. The demon stood ahead, holding a small vial in his hand and glaring at them with a sharp look.

It seemed that they had managed to catch up.

Now, all they had to do was to defeat him. Brimming with enthusiasm, Sei and his companions readied their weapons.

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Image from Light Novel Volume 4



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