The Strange Adventure of a Broke Mercenary - Chapter 118
Ch. 118: Stuck During Battle
Since he had decided to do it, there was no delay in Loren’s actions.
The speed that Loren leaped forward surprised Lapis and Dia, even though they knew he was going to run forward.
But Stoos was still way more powerful than Loren in every way.
The blade of the great sword, which was swung with such force that it made a ripping sound in the air, whizzed through empty air, as Stoos leaned backwards, and even when he swung the sword back for another blow, she was already outside of his range.
“That’s an interesting weapon you have. A great sword made of magic steel? Where did you find such an antique?”
Loren activated the self enhancement spell for a split second and instantly closed the distance between them and attacked again, but again, he couldn’t hit her.
He returned the blade and tried to go for another, but before he could, he was surprised by the face of a smiling red-haired woman in front of his, which caused him to jump back greatly.
“Your decision-making speed seems okay.”
Stoos, who had been closing the distance between attacks to an extend that Loren could feel her breathing, didn’t chase Loren, who had backed off again, and just stood and pointed her finger at him.
Loren blocked the fireballs that had erupted from the fingertip without any chanting or declaring the name of the spell with the flat of his sword.
Although he was blown backwards by the explosion and impact, he didn’t let go of it.
“I’m just getting started, you know?”
More fireballs continued to fly towards Loren.
As he continued to block them with his sword, he stood firmly and braced against the explosions.
“Play with me as well, won’t you?”
While Stoos’ attention was on Loren, Lapis quickly dove under her nose.
Stoos just glanced at Lapis’ fist, which was thrown at her stomach, as it was stopped by an invisible wall of some sort, not reaching her.
“Are you a monk or something? I guess you can’t judge a book by its cover.”
As she said so, she kneed Lapis in the ribs, the hem of her dress flapping.
Lapis barely managed to block it with her elbow, but couldn’t kill the impact, so her light body was blown away and hit the ground, bouncing a few times.
Using the momentum to get far away from Stoos, Lapis stood up immediately, her white clothes covered in dirt and dust, but before she could regain her footing, she saw Stoos pointing at her, and jumped further back.
Immediately after, a few arrows made of lighting penetrated the place where she had been standing.
Not even looking to see if her attack hit, Stoos, glanced at Dia, who still wasn’t moving, raised her hand, and caught the blade that Loren swung down on her, without even looking at him.
“Oh? As expected of magic steel. I can’t just crush it with my hand.”
Loren tried to pull his sword back, not even having any time to be surprised that Stoos had caught it with her bare hand, but even with his strength, it didn’t move from her clutch, as if it was stuck there.
The kick that he made in desperation was, like Lapis’ punch, deflected off an invisible wall, and didn’t even make a scratch.
“You’ve got a bad foot habit. Kicking a woman is just rude.”
As she said so, Stoos swung the great sword to the side.
With just that movement, Loren was plucked from the ground and flung sideways as well, and when she let go of the sword, throwing it, he flew away as well.
“I’ll give it to you that you held onto your sword. But that’s it.”
Loren didn’t take his eyes off Stoos, even as he was flung away and was rolling in the dirt, but when he saw her take a step towards him, he started rolling faster away.
As if chasing him, Stoos stomped the ground where he was, and with the force of the impact blowing up sand and dirt, Loren continued to roll away.
A white light erupted from beneath Stoos’ feet as she tried to chase Loren further.
Lapis had used .
Stoos had taken the full hit, but when the light disappeared, she stood there, same as before, with a small smile on her face.
“That tickled. A somewhat faithful follower, I’m guessing?”
“I am a model as well as ideal priestess of the Knowledge god!”
“You aren’t a monk…?”
When Stoos said so, along with a roar, the blade of a great sword was slammed into her neck.
But it was again blocked by the invisible wall, right before it could hit.
Loren had dashed within range in one jump and tried to land a blow, but seeing that it was blocked yet again, he moved away from the spot immediately.
Stoos didn’t chase, but instead lightly caressed her neck, then smiled at him, as he readied his great sword again.
“You’re an excellent swordsman I’ll give you that.”
“I’m overjoyed at the praise. I’m going to make that cool face of yours pale up, so you’d better be ready.”
“You’re eloquent as well. But you should say things you can’t do, you know?”
Loren grinded his teeth as Stoos laughed.
It was true that there was a hopeless difference between the two of them.
With the weight of Loren himself added to the weight of his great sword, it was quite the heaviness, but Stoos had the strength to swing them around with one arm, as well as use spells without chanting them.
She was resistant to Lapis’ , along with an invisible wall that blocked any sort of physical attack.
With no idea how to defeat her, let alone hit a blow, it was apparent that Loren and Lapis couldn’t do anything.
“That doesn’t mean we can just back out!”
Loren activated the spell of self enhancement again.
He kicked off the ground and launched a fierce attack at Stoos.
Stoos was about to take it with her palm again, but she noticed a phosphorescent light emitting from the blade, and instead of her palm, she swung her arm to counterattack.
Sparks flew when the blade and arm came into contact, with a noise that didn’t sound like a sword hitting flesh, and this time both Loren and Stoos were pushed back from the impact.
“That’s really an interesting weapon. What did you just do?”
Stoos said as she glanced at her right arm that blocked the attack, after firing a fireball at Lapis to keep her in check.
There were no visible wounds on her white skin, but the part where Loren had hit her had turned red, like a bruise mark.
Loren, on the other hand, was breathing heavily, as he plunged the tip of the great sword into the ground, using it like a staff, but at Stoos’ question, he exhaled deeply and replied.
“Think for yourself, Elder.”
“Stingy, I see. Well, whatever.”
Stoos guessed that she hadn’t blocked the attack completely.
Judging from the state of her arm, she had blocked the sundering blow itself, but hadn’t been able to kill the impact.
She surprised that a human, a normal swordsman on top of that, could deal such an attack, but to her, it was just that.
It was more than enough for her healing factor to kick in, and even if she was hit with a hundred of them, it wouldn’t be close to fatal.
And judging from Loren’s state after the blow, it was easy to guess he was using some sort of energy or ability.
She wasn’t sure if it was mana or life energy, but she knew that it took a great toll.
She guessed that he couldn’t use it in succession but seeing him barging at her again after catching his breath, she realized she was wrong.
“You can do it again?”
Loren’s second strike was faster than the first.
Stoos blocked it, putting a bit of strength in her arm, frowning as she felt a slight quiver of pain, and looked at it, ignoring Loren, who was flung back again.
The blade still hadn’t reached her skin, but the damage was increased than before, with the red hue being larger, and she turned her eyes to Loren, who was getting up, with slight surprise.
Meanwhile Loren, enduring the fatigue in his whole body, stood up using his great sword as support, thinking that he was lucky that Stoos still thought of him as a lesser being, which kept her from following up with an attack of her own.
He didn’t know what he was doing either, but he guessed that the sword carried a few mechanics to it.
In any case, when he dashed forward, activating self enhancement, he also imagined putting all his strength into his sword when he swung it, and when he did, he noticed that the strike was more powerful than usual.
Although it wasn’t enough to get past the Stoos’ defenses, it seemed that he was doing a bit of damage, and a smile appeared on his face as he knew that it wasn’t completely neutralized.
But the price was very high.
Every attack, he was attacked by a feeling of all his strength leaving him, and if Stoos seriously wanted to kill him, if he had used such an attack just before, he couldn’t dodge or parry everything she threw at him.
‘Onii-san, are you alright? Should I give you some more?’
Under normal circumstances, Loren shouldn’t be able to perform the attack more than once.
The reason why he could do so in rapid succession was thanks to Shayna, who was lending him power from the inside.
‘As expected of an Elder. My energy drain isn’t that effective. But it’s working nonetheless, so there’s no problem with supplying you with more energy.’
(Thanks. I know it’s difficult but lend me a bit more of your strength.)
When he replied to Shayna in his mind, he immediately felt a surge of strength.
The immediate replenishment of strength was possible due to Shayna using energy drain every time Loren attacked Stoos.
Shayna had been transferring the drained energy to Loren.
‘It’ll be impossible to drain her completely. She’s recovering as well, probably since she’s on the draining side.’
Elders, who had enormous amounts of mana and life energy, seemed to have incredible recovery as well, as even with Shayna’s energy drain, it was impossible to defeat her.
But because of it, he was able to regain his strength to continue attacking, so he thanked Shayna quietly.
“<>! <>! <>! A short break, and another <>!”
“Damn you! So annoying! You know it’s not working! It doesn’t hurt, but it tickles!”
“<>! Annoying you is good enough! <>!”
While Loren was catching his breath, Lapis used <> in rapid succession to keep Stoos’ attention on her and keep her from attacking him.
Even though it didn’t do any damage, it seemed to cause discomfort, as Stoos waved her arm, blowing up dirt and sand, and tried to attack Lapis, but with her own powerful abilities, she continually dodged Stoos’ attacks, using <> at every chance she found.
“One more, coming up!”
Loren kicked the ground, putting in even more strength than before, and swung at Stoos.
Since her attention was turned completely towards Lapis, she couldn’t even dodge the attack, and could do nothing but raise her arm again.
This third attack, same with the previous two, didn’t reach her body, but this time Loren wasn’t flung back, but instead the great sword and her arm were suspended at the point of collision.
“It got stronger again!? What in the world are you…?”
“I’m just an adventurer!”
As Loren roared and tried to push the blade into Stoos’ arm, she kicked him away.
With all his strength used up in the attack, Loren couldn’t dodge it and took the full brunt of it, but even as he flew back and rolled on the ground, he didn’t let go of his great sword.
“An impressive attack, but even with a hundred or two hundred of those, it won’t reach me.”
Stoos declared, fixing the hem of her dress and rubbing the arm that blocked Loren’s attack.
“If you’re expecting help from Dia, you should stop right now. As long as I have her True Name, she won’t be able to move.”
Ever since the fight started, Dia hadn’t moved a step.
It was because she understood that if she wasn’t careful, Stoos would use her True Name and make matters worse.
Although it was possible for Stoos to tie her up with her True Name even though she wasn’t moving, but with Loren and Lapis attacking, it didn’t seem like she was going to use it anytime soon.
“I’m not done yet. <<Turn…”
“For the last time, you’re annoying.”
When Lapis tried to use her ability again, Stoos waved her arm.
With just that, the ground under Lapis’ feet exploded, and as she was trying to attack, she couldn’t dodge it and was blown backwards by the blast and fell to the ground.
“I-I’m fine. I’m quite tough.”
After coughing violently and wiping his mouth with the back of his hand as he stood up, Loren shouted out to Lapis, but she immediately got up and waved at him that she was fine.
“I thought I knew what to expect, but you’re pretty ridiculous, Elder.”
“Then that means you didn’t know what to expect, so give up now, human.”
Loren couldn’t help but say so as he readied his great sword again.
As Stoos looked down on him as she replied, Loren couldn’t find any words to say