|Author: Kobayashi Homare||Original Source: Syosetu||Word Count: 2808 characters|
|Translator: Nomad||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1225 words|
Behemoth charged ahead, and so did I while firmly gripping the demonic sword Xanthus.
The blade struck his remaining front leg. He turned around trying to protect himself, his tail coming like a whip which I dodged by tilting my head to the side, then took a step forward lifting the sword high up and swung down.
Behemoth cried in deep pain after I severed his tail from his body. But I was not done yet. Before he could stand up again, I jumped over him and threw fire magic directly at his terrifying face.
His throat was unable to produce an audible scream as the red hot flames scorched his face and made him recoil. As pain and heat overtook his senses, he blindly thrashed around, but I still managed to slip between his limbs and cut deep into his stomach. A torrent of blood spewed from the fresh wound, making him dematerialize to make some distance before appearing again. Being able to turn into a spirit was a useful ability to run away.
As Behemoth roared, the ground began to shake violently like an earthquake. I could only assume he was trying to throw me on the ground and invalidate my movements, but that was not going to affect me. I instantly took to the air and flew even faster than him to where he stood, slashing again with the demonic sword. He tried to protect himself with his remaining front leg, which I cut off, then swung back and made a deep gash into his shoulder.
“I knew Master could do it!”
Bandit and Luvias sounded impressed, watching what seemed like a one-sided battle. I felt glad hearing their praise, but I could not lower my guard at all. I had to remember I was fighting one of the Four Great Spirits. Showing an opening could be very dangerous. Behemoth dematerialized again to escape, and I decided to swing Xanthus to stop him. I was not sure how powerful the sword was, but a test swing would help me get an idea at least, and my expectations were surpassed.
A straight line was shot from the blade, composed of a powerful stream of water that pierced anything it touched, be it Behemoth or the rocks behind him. While I was in awe at the power of the sword, even though I had barely imbued it with any magic, Behemoth took the opportunity to materialize and glare at me, white bone sticking out of his open shoulder. Even with both front legs missing and struggling to stand upright, his attack only got harsher.
“What’s he trying to-”
The ground began to shake even more violently than before, at this point making me wonder how much could be felt up on the surface. There was a chance a lot of damage was being caused in the city, so I had to finish this quickly! Meanwhile, Behemoth was slowly changing into a brown color. Then cracks ran along his body until he looked like a clump of dirt. I was trying to understand what he was doing, when his entire body exploded into tiny shards.
The small pebbles flew through the air at a high velocity, easily piercing through the barrier I cast and hitting all over my body. I turned around to see how the others were doing, seeing Luvias and Bandit on the ground trying to protect themselves from the attack. The wounds were not life-threatening, but considering the bleeding caused by them, it could get ugly if I did not treat them soon enough. The rain of pebbles felt like a swarm of bugs, evading any counterattack and being overall annoying. I could see why Behemoth resorted to this, turning his body into small chunks that flew around slowly wearing down his enemies. Even if I managed to destroy a handful of pebbles it would not have much effect on him as a whole.
“That sounds like a very useful ability, though…”
If he used it from the start, this entire fight would have gone in his favor. There had to be a reason why he only used it now and could not earlier. Maybe it burned through his magic power too quickly or something similar…
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“Though I have no clues so no point in thinking about it.”
As I reaffirmed my grip on the sword, the rain of shards on my head grew more violent. They were flying faster than before, so he was probably attempting to take me down that way, but I would not stand still and watch that happen. I lifted into the air again and accelerated as fast as I could, going faster than the pebbles and flying beyond them.
“That’s so fast-!!”
I flew faster than anyone had seen before, literally leaving the split-into-pebbles Behemoth in the dust. Lightning began sparking on all my limbs, and then my body, as I charged magic to unleash onto the swarm.
The powerful lightning illuminated the entire cave white, traveling from pebble to small rock not leaving a single one untouching and charring them all until they were black. All of them seemed to lose their power, falling without resistance onto the ground.
“…Did we do it?”
“Yeah. I think so. Behemoth shouldn’t have any strength left to fight anymore.”
All the scorched pebbles began to crumble away, as if regaining their original shape and turned into a pile of sand. The eerie feeling Behemoth’s presence caused until then faded as well, and I heaved a deep sigh. He was strong, and it had been ages since the last time I used so much of my power, but that was expected from one of the Four Great Spirits. I sheathed the sword and began healing my friends. When that was done, I held the sword forward to return it to Bandit, but before he took it Diaria shouted loudly.
“Lapis! Behind you!”
I unsheathed the sword and turned around, seeing Behemoth’s translucent body standing there. Did he still have power left to fight? I was so sure I had left him half dead…
“Aren’t you a persistent one, but this time-”
Diaria jumped in front of me, arms outstretched, and stopped me from leaping forward. I put the sword away in a fluster.
“What are you doing Diaria?!”
“Just wait a moment! I don’t feel any enmity from Behemoth anymore! Or more like I think he just wants to talk!”
I looked at him more carefully and noticed she was right, the bloodlust I felt before was completely gone. His eyes also looked sane, filled with reason like when we first saw him. What could this mean..?
“…You have my gratitude, humans. You were able to fend me off until I had no strength left, you made the sacred vow break.”
Was he saying his deal with the founding king had been invalidated?
“Does that mean…you don’t have to take Queen Titis’ life anymore?!”
Bandit’s question ended almost in a shout, Behemoth nodding in momentary silence.
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“That’s indeed what it means. With the vow gone, I have no reason to take the queen’s life. I’ll never attempt to harm this country again.”
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