I loosely clenched my fist without any clear form and drained the strain from my body.
In front of this gigantic beast, I took the Shijima style’s offensive stance, Surging Waves.
Even though I’m more proficient in Flowing Water rather than Surging Waves, Flowing Water is a stance one should only consider using against people even among the techniques from the anti-person combat focused Shijima style.
Hitting, throwing and grappling. Among these three basic elements of martial arts, Flowing Water consists out of “throwing” and “grappling” movements which are tailored to deal with humanoid bodies and aren’t supposed to be used on such a non-standard opponent.
Simply put, it doesn’t make any sense to use throwing or grappling techniques on such a bulky opponent.
Nevertheless, it’s defensive and counter capabilities stay unchanged — in the end, they go hand in hand. Being up against that bulky body a drawn-out battle seems unfavourable as I don’t know how much damage it will do to the vicinity.
──Therefore, I took the Surging Waves stance.
If it’s this posture with hitting as its main aspect I won’t have to change anything even if my opponent has a huge body.
Though the way of fighting might demand a little change, but that is within expectations.
Looking at me who now took a clear fighting posture Tarisberg raised a groan.
Its expression was stained with anger so that even I, who is of a different species, could immediately understand it.
Something along the lines of, that dwarfish creature is too cocky, huh? They certainly were feelings of killing, not suited for a match.
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The dark magical power surrounding Tarisberg swelled and its groan changed into a roar.
Tarisberg kicked the land supporting its big body scooping it out and ran towards me.
Behind its behaviour was only its intent to kill, but that charge with its overwhelming mass was stubbornly straightforward and rather monotonous.
That speed, however, was spectacular. This great mass and enormous magical power followed by that speed.
Everything was so straightforward, but all it made me think about was a simple death more than anything.
If Magic and Sorcery don’t work stopping this would certainly be troublesome. Just this intense charge alone must have slaughtered many elves.
It’s as though it could only see me. Tarisberg didn’t pay the trees any heed and just went through them as if it was out to conquer the wilderness.
It’s different from the boar I fought the other day. As expected, it’s troublesome to take that head-on.
It’s not impossible now if I activate “Cherry Blossoms Prototype” — but if I take that power head on I can’t avoid receiving damage. It’s not a wise choice to use this now that I have yet to uncover all of the enemy’s cards.
Therefore I kicked the ground and flew high into the sky.
It’s higher than Tarisberg’s body height so it looked somewhat shrunken.
Needless to say, I’m out of the range of its charge. Tarisberg lost sight of my body again.
However, this leap’s purpose wasn’t just to dodge the charge.
When Tarisberg’s running body was right under me — I turned my legs towards the sky and folded them.
As soon as I took a breath I released magical power from my feet. No, rather than release it should be called expansion, shouldn’t it?
I made a scaffold with plain magical power something lesser than sorcery. Not to stand on, but to kick off from.
After I put some spirit behind that short breath I instantaneously put force into my feet.
As I leapt from the sky to the ground I swallowed the gravitational force and turned into a bullet.
I fixed my posture mid-air and headed straight for Tarisberg’s back.
I, who had a force far exceeding this small body’s weight behind him, landed feet first on Tarisberg’s back crushing its crystals.
While raising a sorrowful voice Tarisberg’s body stiffened.
With his forefoot raised, it stopped its charge and Tarisberg’s body stumbled.
Putting power in my feet I remained on Tarisberg’s back and observed it.
There were dark coloured crystals, which could be said to represent this creepy monster, growing on its back — Those who crumbled spew out magical power and disappeared as if they melted in the air.
It’s more or less as Monica said.
”Dark Coloured Crystals” are said to not be able to keep its form and disappear by releasing its magical power when they are crushed to small pieces.
I wanted to check it myself just to be sure, but the crystal growing on Tarisberg’s body are undoubtedly “Dark Coloured Crystals”.
If that’s the case, then how much magical power does that monster have when it’s covered in this many crystals — looks like I probably shouldn’t go for a battle of attrition.
And now another thing I wanted to try.
I used some power and lit fire magic around my fist.
“……As expected, huh?”
The fire magic after it was touched by the dark magical power emitted from the broken crystals disappeared and was neutralized as if it was blown out like a candle.
……looks like it’s true that Tarisberg is able to destroy magic.
Rather, should we say that it has the power to dissolve the connections of processed magical power?
Seeing as it didn’t interfere with Cherry Blossoms Prototype it won’t act on magical power used to strengthen one’s body. And — it doesn’t interfere with healing magic which is protected by a film of colourless magical power either.
Looking at the power of the fire magic and the moment it’s neutralized, it seems like the ability of Tarisberg’s magical power is to invalidate the attribute of processed magical power.
That characteristic doesn’t really concern me, but it certainly is the natural enemy of the elves. As soon as that magical power which springs forth endlessly is touched Magic and Sorcery simply get destroyed.
That means if it charges with that kind of magical power surrounding it like just now, ways to stop it are very limited.
Looks like I ought to do something here after all.
On Tarisberg’s back, I filled my open right hand with power. The bones gave off a dull sound as I clutched it properly, turning it into a weapon.
There shouldn’t be any way for it to counterattack in this situation in which I took Tarisberg’s back.
I put all my power into Cherry Blossoms Prototype and hammered my clenched fist down. This should determine it.
I’d like to fighting more if I could, but this body isn’t mine alone now, the fate of this beautiful city rests upon my shoulders.
Feeling bad for it is meaningless, huh? Even if it’s perhaps caused by the crystal fragments, this creature is like a lump of hatred. As long as it lives it has to curse every living being.
If it’s like that, I’ll resolutely attack it. It was at that moment that my fist held a clear intent to kill.
A voice filled with muffled resentment sounded and I covered my ears in the spur of the moment.
This couldn’t be compared to the pain filled voice it raised before — feeling like my whole body was engraved with its resentment I unintentionally frowned.
Even this roar is some kind of attack. As I thought about it, it created a dissonance appealing to the heart.
However, the true value of that monster showed from this point on.
I saw the crystals I just crushed by landing on them growing back from Tarisberg’s body again.
How the hell did they grow back out in such a short time — This question floated through my mind for merely an instant, but after that, I had an unpleasant premonition running through me.
If I stay here something bad will happen. I didn’t have any basis for that. Strictly put it’s an instinct born from having fought for so many years, so I kicked the big dragon’s back without hesitation.
Soon after having jumped up into the sky while feeling the intense burden of that excessive acceleration using “Cherry Blossoms Prototype” I knew my feeling was right.
Dark coloured crystals were protruding from the big dragon’s back. A huge crystal as big as a human child was heading my way who was in the sky
I unintentionally clicked my tongue faced with this unexpected action.
The newly grown crystals gave off a dry sound like flint stones hitting against each other while they filled the sky and started to approach me. One should call that quantity over quality.
It was a barrage of volcanic bomb like projectiles having huge mass and great speed. Clenching my teeth I enhanced the strength of Cherry Blossoms Prototype as the scenery drastically changed in an instant as if a disaster hit.
I raised my concentration while gritting my teeth from the acute pain running through me.
As the world slowed down I found a rather narrow open place inside that hail of bullets flooding towards me.
I formed a scaffold with magical power, jumped to that open space and turned around towards an imminent bullet.
If possible I wanted to get out of the attack’s range but that’s not possible inside this relentless sky.
Avoiding this crystal storm is as challenging as trying not to get wet in a rainstorm.
Therefore, I’ll just repel those that might become fatal and attack the others!
The fist clad in Cherry Blossoms Prototyp’s glow drew traces in the sky.
While hitting and sometimes repelling the bullets rushing towards me as I cut through the sky — I gradually approached the ground.
The time it took me to fall felt like an eternity.
I finally reached the ground accompanied by a sound that seemed like a chorus of screams similar to glass breaking.
Those large mass/ high-speed crystal bullets left scars everywhere on my body.
They were caused by shards of crystals I crushed, but the fist I used to destroy them was the most damaged.
Even though I was strengthened by “Cherry Blossoms Prototype” the bones still broke and my fingers were crushed.
Though I take pride in my high pain resistance, faced with this pain I still let out a slight sound.
I clasped my fist — or should I say it was locked in that form? I could hardly even open the fist changed into something that seemed like an unshapely mud ball due to the fracture and pain.
I, who received more damage than I anticipated by that unexpected attack, cancelled “Cherry Blossoms Prototype”.
My aim was to treat my broken fist.
While deploying “Cherry Blossoms Prototype”, one has to constantly mobilize healing magic, but as the body is destroyed at the same rate as it is healed it’s not possible for the healing magic to lean towards the positive.
Though one’s life isn’t endangered, it’s a huge problem as one’s offensive power declines.
Still, I won’t be able to land the blow to finish off that monster with this fist. I strengthened my body to the limit with body strengthening magic and deployed healing magic with emphasis on my right hand.
As I fixed my eyes upon it while cold sweat showed on my face, that huge beast neighed.
It was a heartless voice, I could feel more hatred in it than in the beginning.
──Earlier, Tarisberg let the crystals on its back grow and shot them the moment I emitted thirst for blood.
When I think about that groan of pain and that timing I don’t believe it’s a coincidence.
“It’s sensitive to a person’s malice…… or something like that?”
Hearing that sound I changed my speculation in desperation while clenching my teeth feeling the pain in my hanging arm.
In this state, it’s impossible for me to attack it until I finished my treatment. While dodging its attacks, I’ll prepare to counterattack. That’s it for now.
I opened both my eyes wide, appearing as if I’m prepared for whatever might come my way.
The time it takes for my fist to completely heal — should be about 2 minutes or so, huh? Until that time comes intense movements should be avoided.
The moment I thought that a scene I didn’t want to see for a while jumped into my eyes.
“Tch, what a pain……”
Red crystals filled the sky as far as I could see.
Are you telling me that those things not only grow on its back but can also be formed from nothing?
And it can also shoot them.
This is quite troublesome. I even said I hate long distance attacks.
However, even if I complain it won’t change anything.
In my present condition, I can’t fight that. I have to somehow deal with it though, huh.
The red splinters lined up in the sky.
Their arrangement was reminiscent of that dragon’s fangs.
In order to focus on the approaching threat I took a small breath — then, like a closing jaw, the lined up
crystals were released.