Chapter 126: A Terrifying Existence in Grea City
The flow of psychic power that was slowly coming from Cross could be seen even with the naked eyes. It was very powerful yet disgusting, causing Sila who was nearby to feel dizzy and nauseous.
Sila had to increase his Tiger Dragon Qi just to resist the flow of psychic power itself.
The sword sinking in the building shook and was pulled out by an invisible hand, wielding it in the air.
"The person responsible for ruining my life is you! You need to die first, then that red-hair bastard, then Montra. All of you need to die!" roared Cross.
Sila could spot many openings. He wasn't sure whether if it was because he had become stronger or if Cross had become weaker. He quickly fired a hidden weapon.
The kunai precisely stabbed Cross' forehead.
Cross stumbled two steps backward but the power he was emitting didn't weaken even a little bit.
Sila couldn't help but frown as he witnessed his kunai flying out of Cross' head on its own and hovering around him like it was being controlled.
"Undead race?" Sila muttered. This was the first answer he could come up with, though he was certain he had once heard that Cross hadn't selected a race.
Almost reflectively, Cross replied. It was like a beast's howl.
"I have thrown away my dignity and humanity! All for revenge, even if I have to become uglier!"
The reason why the undead race wasn't popular was because all of their racial skills were passive skills. Thus, they are not as appealing as the racial skills of other races. Moreover, members of the race will become 50% uglier as a penalty.
The three racial skills of the undead race are as follows. Firstly, Soulless Body, a passive skill that prevents the user from losing Rank, Level, and experience points upon dying. Secondly, Walking Corpse, a passive skill that removes all vital spots from user's body. The last one is Revengeful Living Corpse, a passive skill that will double all stats for a week after dying (the skill has a 30 day cooldown time between each use). When the skill is in effect, the user will not get any experience points from killing enemies.
The current Cross was currently affected by Revengeful Living Corpse. It was his own deliberation to be killed by monsters and respawn back in the city. Lately, his power had become stronger by experiencing being hunted by several of his enemies. As he had less time to eat and sleep, his animal instinct had sharpened and it apparently affected his psychic power.
After the Royal Armament Guild had collapsed, Cross didn't flee to anywhere but decided to stay in Grea City as it was the city that he knew better than anyone.
He knew every corner, every road, every trap, and every secret passage in the city. It was the reason he could stay alive for a month despite being chased by several groups of players. He also used this chance to ambush those who came for him but had a bounty on their heads themselves to gain some cash.
Meanwhile, Sila was thinking something entirely unimportant. He just discovered that selecting the undead race will cause you to become uglier. Nevertheless, except Cross whose appearance had obviously changed, what about Lomyok and Sebastian's? Even their current appearances, which should be after having become uglier, were still better than his. The world is truly unfair.
Sila couldn't let his mind wander for a long time as he sensed that Cross was about to take action.
If attacking vital spots wasn't a good option, he would have to continue attacking until Cross' health points were depleted.
The problem was, Cross had played this game for a very long time. Sila couldn't guess how much damage he needed to deal to take his life.
The walls of the buildings around them began to crack from the pressure of Cross' Rhythm of the Imperial Graveyard, which enhanced the nature of his psychic power, Armament Psychic.
The nature of Armament Psychic was the ability to control his hundreds of weapons and enhance their performance. Cross' Rhythm further heightened these aspects and allowed Cross to control every weapon that came into contact with him. For the record, he didn't need to directly touch them; just coming into contact with his weapon was enough for him to have full control over the weapons.
Under the influence of his Rhythm, everyone would fall, even the emperors.
The floating sword and kunai quickly flew to Sila. Presently, Sila had become stronger and had more confidence in his ability. Instead of defending or evading, he chose to charge at Cross. His hands swept both weapons away from his body and he accumulated the power of Genesis Punch into his right fist, planning to defeat Cross in one strike.
Cross didn't panic but showed a scornful smile. He didn't take a defensive stance nor try to evade but jumped to clash with Sila. The sword in his hand was thrown at Sila's foot, which surprised Sila, but couldn't hit him as Sila twisted his body to evade the attack just in time.
The passing sword turned red and exploded with Cross' skill, Psychic Boost. The explosion wasn't as powerful as the one he had used against Zero at the port, because this sword was a real object rather than a sword made of psychic power. However, the debris of the exploded sword dangerously scattered around.
Sila was blown away by the explosion. Luckily, he had reinforced his body with qi so he only got small wounds.
Tapping his feet on the ground, Cross appeared next to Sila who was revolving in the air.
Sila's body was currently upside down. Nevertheless, he could see that Cross was approaching him, slashing forward with a metal sword in his hand.
The metal sword seemed ordinary but Sila didn't dare to underestimate it. Although he didn't know what kind of a skill Rhythm was, he wasn't so naive as to be ignorant of Cross' attack.
Sila's foot tapped on the air with Cloud Stepping and speedily descended. He fired a shuriken from each hand at Cross.
He then used qi to control his body and somersault in midair.
As his feet were about to touch the ground, he found that his first kunai and Cross' sword were waiting for him on the ground, flashing red as if they could blow up at any second.
The sound of the explosion echoed as his shurikens sunk into Cross' right hand and arm.
Cross stood on the roof of a building while staring at the remains of the explosion. Meanwhile, both shurikens flew out of his wounds and were hovering around Cross.
Sila disappeared. Fighting in a narrow alley forced him to be vulnerable to Cross' Psychic Boost, which Cross used to ignite the explosion.
As he escaped from the alley, Sila endured the pain and used his qi to pull the sword shards out of his arms.
He felt that Cross had become a lot stronger. The same skill being used in a different way led to Sila having a difficult time coping.
Cross' ability to control weapons in the air had been terrifying from the beginning, which was why he was hailed as the Sword Emperor. Formerly, he had focused on using Killing Psychic Sword to create high-grade psychic swords and exploding them with Psychic Boost. But now, he switched to use Psychic Boost on an ordinary sword. Even though the damage had decreased, the debris of the sword that scattered around when the explosion occurred made it harder for his opponents to defend.
Cross followed Sila from the sky as if he was a great eagle hunting a wild rabbit.
He no longer underestimated Sila. Just now, he had planned to clash against Sila and command the sword to explode upon contact, which should've resulted in Sila taking heavy damage, even if Cross had to be injured as well. However, Sila could dodge his sword in midair, causing his calculation to be off the mark.
Qi-type players possess qinggong, which allows them to move relatively quicker than the other types, but their shortcoming was lacking the ability to change direction in midair. On the other hand, magic-type players possess a spell for levitation while psychic-type players could move freely in midair.
Although there are some qi-type skills like Cloud Stepping and Sky Staircase that fix this weakness, these kind of skills are very hard to obtain.
It was the reason Cross had planned to kill Sila in midair. However, his plan apparently failed.
Since Sila could move in the air, Cross abandoned his prepared strategies. He was in an advantageous position so he should ride this momentum to further oppress Sila without letting him reverse the situation.
Cross followed Sila who was running toward the city's plaza. No matter where Sila went, Cross was confident that Sila wouldn't be able to escape from him within this city that was like his own backyard.
Grea City's central plaza was located near the main crossroad of the city, although not many players hung around this place as there weren't any important buildings nearby.
Based on Sila's experience, the players living on the Main Continent tended to not get involved with the business of others. And like he had predicted, once he brought his injured body to this area, many players immediately fled from the spot and decided to keep their distance from him.
Sila turned his back to focus on Cross who was floating in the air. Cross tightened another sword in his hand while ordering both shurikens to shoot at Sila.
Sila was very calm as he could finally see Cross' weak points. Both shurikens flew at him directly without spinning, which contradicted their usual spinning-and-curving throwing method, resulting in them becoming less threatening.
Sila's hands moved slowly but with great precision, grabbing both shurikens with the Stop technique of Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws.
The shurikens were emitting red light as they were about to explode. The weak point of Cross' Psychic Boost that Sila could spot was the fact that there was a two second delay before the weapon could explode, which was probably the result of using the skill on real weapons rather than on psychic weapons.
In the hands of a hidden weapons expert like Sila, two seconds were considered too long. Both shurikens spun out of his hands and returned to Cross with tremendous speed.
Cross tried to command the shurikens to stop mid-flight, but he failed as Sila had reinforced his qi into them. It was another weakness of Rhythm of the Imperial Graveyard; even though Cross could control almost every object, he couldn't control an object that was infused with or strengthened by someone else's power.
Of course, Sila wasn't aware of this fact. He just reinforced his hidden weapons out of habit.
Once the switch of the bomb had been set off, there was nothing that could be done except letting it detonate.
For hidden weapon users, there were some prerequisites that they must master before they could call themselves an expert. Those prerequisites were the abilities to gauge timing and distance.
Although Sila wasn't as skilled as Sangdao or Wu Ming, he was by no means an ametuer. Both shurikens stabbed Cross at the exact moment that the explosion occurred.
Both explosions triggered simultaneously and their sounds came out as one.
Sila was aware that Cross hadn't died yet. The flow of the battle was coming his way and he needed to ride on it. He extended the radius of Galaxy Eclipse and fired two qi-strengthened metal balls toward Cross who was still in the smoke from the explosions.
He limited the number of his hidden weapons to two as it was the number that he could fire back at Cross within two seconds.
Cross was injured from the blast but he wasn't close to dying yet. Both metal balls hit his flank as he coughed out blood. Even if he no longer had vital spots, the pain was still there to be felt.
He gritted his teeth as he activated Infinite Sword Tomb and numerous cheap weapons poured down from the sky.
Sila frowned and was ready to run away from this minefield. However, Cross charged at him using Psychic Impact to prevent Sila from fleeing.
Sila took one step backward and noticed that the metal sword behind him was about to explode, forcing him to change his mind and take a step forward to clash against Cross.
Even though he could move freely in the air, Sila realized he would be no match for Cross who had more experience in aerial combat. Thus, his feet were placed firmly on the stone floor.
The sword behind him exploded at the same moment Cross closed the distance between them. Shapeless Qi strengthened Tiger Dragon Qi and helped form an invisible wall to protect Sila's body from the debris of the exploded sword.
Sila urgently needed a defensive move. Even though he wasn't as good as Kawin, he possessed Tiger Dragon Qi and Formless Soldier which could compensate for what he lacked.
His body became as hard as steel while his qi softened. The sword Cross slashed at him had its speed reduced like it was moving through water.
Cross was surprised but didn't let it show on his face. He used another sword in his other hand to hit the first sword and cause it to accelerate.
However, Sila was very calm like he was a different person compared to last time. He lifted his left arm to block the attack while throwing Genesis Punch at Cross' body.
In the moment of crisis, Cross tried to move backward but his body had a difficult time moving like he was underwater.
The fact was, Sila had adapted to using Galaxy Eclipse together with the softness attribute of Tiger Dragon Qi. As a result, the sphere that covered both Sila and Cross had reduced their speed.
Despite Cross possessing a tremendous amount of psychic power that helped him lessen the 'slow' effect, just a slight reduction in speed still proved to be fatal as he could clearly see that Sila's fist was about to hit him.
In the moment that would bring victory to Sila, both of the swords in Cross' hands instantly flashed red and exploded without any delay.
Sila wasn't prepared for the explosion at all, so the impact easily blew him away.
The left half of his body was covered with wounds. Most of his power had been put into his right fist so Sila's body was gravely damaged, forcing him to circulate Immortal Qi to tend to the wounds and pull the sword debris out.
Cross stood up like a rising corpse. The right half of his body was also significantly damaged like Sila's left half, but the wounds were shallower.
An evil grin appeared on his face.
Sila realized at that time that he had underestimated Cross again.
The fact that Genesis Punch missed its target twice let Sila understand that the power to defeat the opponent in one strike would easily become useless if he couldn't make it connect with its target. In actual battles, being able to successfully land a direct punch on a skilled opponent was something difficult to achieve. In times like this, he could utilize Nine Sun-Melting-Fists rather than Genesis Punch.
In addition, there was another mistake on his part. He had miscalculated how long the delay was before Cross' explosion on the weapon could go off.
In fact, Sila had already guessed correctly. Two seconds was the right answer. However, that only applied to normal cases. If the weapons were in Cross' hand, he could choose to explode them instantly.
Just this single mistake had turned the tables and now Sila was in a tight spot.
His teacher once told him to be wary of an opponent who was prepared to die. Mora said that this kind of opponent was the most terrifying existence.
Sila had never encountered an opponent like that in his life so he had no idea what his teacher meant, but now he thought he understood.
The logic of martial artists regarding fighting is to inflict the most damage to the opponent while allowing the least damage to oneself. He had never expected Cross to heavily injure himself just for the sake of bringing him harm.
Cross was prepared to suffer if it meant bringing Sila closer to death.
Sila needed some time to heal his injuries but Cross was different. Even though he had a hard time moving his body, just his psychic power alone was enough to control the weapons.
Hundreds of swords flew at Sila from all directions.
With great difficulty, Sila depended on Twelve Celestial-Traveling-Steps to evade each sword by a hair's breadth.
The left side of his body couldn't move very well so he suffered more injuries. Although he protected himself with qi reinforcement, it wasn't enough to nullify the damage from Cross' swords while Rhythm of the Imperial Graveyard was still active.
Sila kept evading for a moment and realized that something wasn't right.
Why didn't Cross order even a single one of the swords to explode? Could it be that Cross was so injured that he couldn't activate the skill?
Sila dodged another sword while shifting his gaze to search for Cross.
"Die!" Cross' voice came from above.
Sila belatedly realized that Cross had flown over him to block his escape route. As for the swords that were scattered on the ground, they had clustered around him.
Hundreds of swords gave off a red, dangerous light as if they were about to act as Sila's graveyard. The sound of explosions echoed as Grea City shook.