Chapter 113: Single-Horned Dragon Forest - Last Part
The gigantic body was floating into the sky and its shadow was cast over half of the forest, turning daytime to night.
With its enormous size, Sila couldn't understand how it was able to stay up in the sky. Well, this wasn't the appropriate time for him to be overly curious.
If someone told Sila that Solaria was the largest dragon he had ever met, that position had been taken by the dragon in front of him. Rex's body was so gigantic that Sila didn't know what he could use as a comparison. From his estimate, it should be at least four or five times larger than Solaria. Sila's fist wouldn't be different than a toothpick trying to damage a battleship in its eyes. He figured that it wasn't a monster designed for players to raid alone. Not to mention that there were still hundreds of its underlings waiting for Sila down below.
The notification screen continued flashing. Sila took a glance at it and found that it was informing him about the increasing number of Single-Horned Dragons hunting him. The current number was six hundred and seventy-three and there were no signs of it slowing down. The dark green forest below had many orange glows mixed in.
Rex was a brown-colored dragon with tiger stripes on its skin. There was a spiral horn on its forehead which was flashing an orange light at the moment. Its massive wings covering the sky allowed it to miraculously stay in the air even without moving back and forth. Its red eyes were shining like big rubies. They would be far more fascinating if only they weren't fiercely staring at him.
This wasn't the time for Sila to be conceited. In front of this dragon, Sila couldn't picture himself winning at all. Just being near it caused him to feel crushed by it's pressure.
For him to encounter this grade of a monster, Sila had no choice but to rely on the expert he knew of. He focused his thoughts as Sebastian had told him. Well, he hadn't done this before so he didn't know whether it was working.
"Just focus your thoughts and imagine that I'm there with you, sir. It's one of the brooch's abilities."This was something Sebastian had once told Sila.
Sila evaded an incoming attack from one of the Single-Horned Dragons while striking the other one away. With that short exchange, Sila realized that his body couldn't move properly according to his will. It seemed that after Shapeless Qi resisted the previous pressure he felt, Rex had increased its qi to pressure Sila even more to the point that he could hardly resist.
"Mister Sebastian! Please come!!" Imagination might not be enough so Sila decided to shout it out loud.
A flash of a black shadow appeared next to Sila prior to transforming into a man in a black butler uniform with the signature scythe in his hand. He was smiling with a handsome face with a trail of blood on his cheek.
"Oh, my. Based on your personality, I didn't think there would be a day when Mister Sila called me to your aid."
While talking, Sebastian could feel the qi pressure from the above so he looked up to the sky and checked his surrounding.
"Is this place the Single-Horned Dragon Forest? No wonder you have called me. Well, running across the inner part of the forest is very reckless, even for you, sir."
Sila didn't mind what Sebastian said as he was more concerned about the trail of blood on Sebastian's cheek.
"Mister Sebastian, are you injured?"
Sebastian took out a handkerchief to wipe the blood from his cheek as he said, "Ah. It's not mine, sir. It's just that I was quite busy when you called me."
Witnessing their uncaring attitudes, the horde of Single-Horned Dragons charged at the two people. Sila used both of his hands to strike down two of them while Sebastian spun his scythe and gave a long wound to three of the dragons.
"Even though I love fighting against a formidable foe, fighting against multiple dragons in succession is too much even for me, sir. Fortunately, it isn't alone like last time."
Sebastian spun his scythe in a circle and a black symbol appeared in the air. The magic power was fused into it and the black symbol floated toward Rex.
"Symbol of the Betrayed King."
With Rex's massive size, it was unable to dodge the symbol that stamped into its body.
"Mister Sila, do not mind Rex and try to kill as many Single-Horned Dragons as you can, sir. It would be even better if you can kill each of them within five seconds."
"Soul Snatcher Scythe." The scythe in Sebastian's hand shook. It was a skill Sila had once witnessed in the Mansion of the Seven Deadly Sins. Once the scythe was swung forward, the Single-Horned Dragons in front of Sebastian turned into minced meat. Their corpses transformed into black orbs and slowly floated up into the sky.
Sila began to take action as well. However, he couldn't kill them as fast as Sebastian did so he spent more than five seconds to kill one of them. Looking at Sebastian's side, he found that Sebastian's killing speed was astonishing, sending several black orbs into the sky without stopping.
"Symbol of the Betrayed King is a spell for boss monsters, sir. Every time an underling dies, twenty percent of the damage from the final blow will be stored in an orb and the orbs will keep accumulating until I activate the spell or ten minutes have passed. If we can kill each of its underlings within five seconds, there will be bonus damage. Unfortunately, when this skill is used, we will not gain anything from the ones we killed, be it experience points, money, or items."
Sila nodded in understanding as this was indeed not the time to nitpick about items. It was a blessing in disguise that Rex could summon close to an unlimited number of Single-Horned Dragons. This ability would be an overwhelming advantage in normal situations, but it was like suicide when Sebastian's skill was active.
Once a great number of its underlings had died, Rex began to act by blowing its qi at both people. It was an intense yet invisible qi attack that brought Sila and Sebastian down to the ground despite them doing their best to resist.
Blood seeped out at the corners of the mouth of the two. Sebastian lost his chance to accumulate bonus damage further and had to start anew.
"Ahh... Mister Sila, I believe that continuing as we are would yield an ineffective result. Could you please act as a decoy? I will be responsible for accumulating the damage."
Sila nodded in agreement. He was aware that he was unable to kill the dragons within five seconds interval so he wasn't as useful for building up the damage.
"But, its qi is too strong for me to come near it," Sila presented a problem to Sebastian.
Opening the palm of his left hand, Sebastian revealed a small hourglass. He sighed with regret as he said, "I will just have to collect it again, then... With this amount, Mister Sila, you should be able to resist its qi for at least eight minutes."
Black magic power was unleashed from Sebastian's hand and the hourglass was broken. The golden sand piled on his palm as he chanted a spell.
"For thou brave heroes who have died in battle and now reside within Valhalla, my body shall be yours, my sword shall be yours, and my enemies shall be yours. Due to a contract from the ancient era, please grant my dear comrade your victorious songs. Marching Songs of the Deceased Heroes."
The pile of sand in Sebastian's palm flew to Sila and the golden particles of sand started flying around him like an aura. His ears could lightly hear the marching sounds of drums and the power within his body was surging. It was a phenomenon that Sila had never experienced. He could feel that his body became stronger and lighter.
"The time is precious and limited, so please be careful sir."
Sila didn't waste his time responding and instead shot himself into the air, approaching Rex. The pressure that had limited his movement was no longer there. Well, to be exact, the pressure was still there but Sila couldn't feel it at all.
The louder the drums, the braver Sila became.
The power of Genesis Punch was focused into his right fist and the golden particles flew and gathered there.
Sebastian who was looking at Sila furrowed his brows.
"I told you to act as a decoy, not telling you to fight it head-on, sir. If you act offensively, the Marching Songs will not last for five minutes... Ahh, truly, my new master is too impetuous. It seems I have to speed up."
Black magic power gathered around Sebastian and took the shape of a grim reaper. Sebastian's eyes turned red and the length of the scythe's blade extended by a meter. The skull on the scythe moved by itself as if it was a living thing.
The scythe could fly autonomously while all Sebastian had to do was wave his hand. In the blink of an eye, the area there became a sea of blood and black orbs were constantly flying up into the sky.
Soaring toward Rex, Sila could feel nothing but his power surging within himself. Aside from resisting the external force that affected him, the ability of the golden sand aura also boosted his strength.
Genesis Punch hit the gigantic torso of Rex, causing its skin and muscle fibers to tear apart and become a large wound.
The powerful force of qi instantly flew to Sila to counterattack. Nevertheless, the golden sand could resist the force just in time.
The large wound slowly healed by itself. As the situation was looking bad for him, Sila threw another Genesis Punch at the same spot to tear apart the previous wound further. However, the number of particles of sand around his body noticeably decreased and Sila was starting to feel the invisible pressure affecting him.
Well, actually, being this close to Rex, any players would already be crushed by the pressure.
'Could it be that... the more I depend on it, the sooner the effect of the sand wears off? ...This is bad.'
Three minutes had yet to pass but Sila had realized he was too hasty in acting. As the wound on Rex began to heal again, Sila changed his approach by throwing Fire Bombs at its wound. Although it wasn't as effective as before, the result was fine as they could keep the wound from healing.
Rex circulated qi and migrated the damage from one point of its body to another. The wound on its torso instantly disappeared while its tail was cut off as a substitute and fell down. Compared to the grave injury at its torso, severing its own tail was undoubtedly a smart choice.
It quit relying only on its qi and started to act. For the record, Rex possessed the mighty Tiger Dragon Qi which was as strong as the Qi of Little Beings. Its opponents, be humans or monsters, would be crushed to death with just the force from its qi.
Even so, as Sila had successfully approached and thrown a powerful blow at it, the power within it was unleashed to response to the danger by instinct.
The scales on its skin pointed away from the body as if they were spikes and its claws moved toward Sila. Luckily for him, Sila possessed Cloud Stepping so he had quite an easy time evading its attack.
From that point onward, Sila focused on dodging its attacks as he was aware that the advantageous position he was in was only temporary. The more time passed, the more Rex's qi affected him. The amount of golden sand circulating around him decreased as time passed.
Strangely enough, black clouds appeared and scattered around in the sky. Looking more closely, Sila noticed that they weren't clouds but ridiculously large amounts of black orbs floating in the sky.
"Mister Sila, if you see the chance, please attack it with your best move!"
Sebastian shouted from down below while commanding the scythe to slash many Single-Horned Dragons without stopping. The scenery before Sila's eyes was as if it was snowing, but the spectacular thing was that the orbs resembled black snow were floating upward instead of raining down.
The scythe spun in a circle once more and the same symbol that had been stamped on Rex appeared again. Sebastian commanded it to fly toward the previous mark.
Although Rex could sense danger and tried its best to dodge it, the symbol could move like it was a living thing and finally successfully stamped on the previous spot, not a millimeter off.
Once the symbols overlapped with each other, they vanished. At the same time, all the black orbs in the air transformed into numerous tiny blades and flew toward Rex simultaneously.
"Gahhh---!!" That was the first time Rex cried out in pain. It didn't even flinch when Sila dealt tremendous damage to its torso.
It was due to Sebastian's unique ability, Grand Magic of Death, which granted recipients of his attack spells the Bleeding, Intensified Pain, and Undying Corpse debuffs.
Rex's body was covered with several wounds. Its qi dispersed and its chest was split apart, allowing Sila to see its beating heart.
Sila was fully aware that this was a rare chance that wouldn't come a second time and threw Genesis Punch at its heart with his full power.
The heart ruptured and Rex's vitality fell to the bottom. Its massive body fell by the law of gravity and heavily slammed to the ground, causing a mini earthquake.
Out of nowhere, Sebastian had appeared next to Sila. There was the severed tail of Rex in his hand.
"Good grief, it is still alive even with all that damage. But, you don't need to worry, sir. I'm certain that it's already at death's door. Mister Sila only needs to attack it with ten or so of your normal punches and it will undoubtedly die. Anyway, please allow me to leave and keep this tail in the refrigerator first, sir. Otherwise, if it dies at this moment, we won't have a decent ingredient for tonight's dinner." Sebastian turned into a black light and teleported to the Mansion of Secrets once he finished speaking.
Sila looked at Rex lying on the ground. Its eyes were clouded and blurred while its breathing was harsh, indicating that it was suffering.
With Sila approaching, it closed its eyes, waiting for its end.
Nevertheless, Sila had never dealt a final blow to an enemy who couldn't fight back. So, he sighed.
"Well, it isn't my own victory so I don't have the right to kill you. Just let me pass through the forest. Is that okay?" Sila placed his hand on its head and transmitted his qi to heal its injuries.
Sila was aware that high-level monsters possessed great intelligence. Some of them could even converse with humans.
Rex seemed to understand Sila's intention. It calmly and slowly opened its eyes to look at Sila and hesitated for a moment.
The Single-Horned Dragons were mutated dragons so they weren't recognized by the rest of the dragon race from the start. So, it believed it wouldn't have regrets even if it made this kind of decision.
A system sound rang out, informing Sila of Rex's decision.
Rex, the King of the Single-Horned Dragon Forest, has respect for you and has decided to form a friendship with you and your race. From now on, the dragons in the Single-Horned Dragon Forest will be allies of the slime race.
***This promise is exclusively from Rex. It doesn't mean the slime race is allied with other species of the dragon race.
You have obtained the Secret Scroll of Tiger Dragon Qi from Rex as the token of friendship.
A dark brown scroll with tiger stripes appeared in front of Sila and the Single-Horned Dragons nearby seemed to be less fierce than usual. No, they even seemed to be docile, not as aggressive as they were when he first encountered them.
The scroll landed in Sila's palm and the Single-Horned Dragons made a pathway for him to move. Some of them were running around, catching each other like a family fooling around happily.
Looking at the sight, Sila felt a bit regretful that he had killed many of them.
Regardless of the race nor the species they were, they were just living their own life. Instead, it was his fault for invading into their home, forcing them to act to protect their precious place.
With that line of thought, Sila walked along with four Single-Horned Dragons that seemed to be trying to guide him to Madmen's Valley in a friendly manner. This time, he wasn't as hurried as before and instead took his time to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Single-Horned Dragon Forest that no players before him had ever had a chance to admire.