Chapter 83: A Dark Brown Sparrowhawk
Francine shifted her gaze between the bird in the sky and the remains of her stone golem on the ground. Although it was true that stone golem had a fatal weakness, it was hidden under its sturdy body. However, this little bird was able to precisely pierce through its stone body like it was a foam board.
Well, Francine panicked only for a short while before regaining her cool. If there was a ranking of the players good at handling monsters in Monster Soul, her name would surely be among the top. Though, Francine was still curious about where Sila could find such an abnormal bird. If Sila really bought it from the pet shop as she first thought, how could he possibly train it to be so powerful in a short time? No, actually, even if she was given one year to train a bird from a pet shop, she would still be clueless of how to train it to be this strong.
Nevertheless, a bird is merely a bird. Francine flicked her left wrist and summoned several of her pets that were favorable against flying-type creatures.
"Release Sera, Frung, Nonolu." Three lights flashed on the bracelet on her left wrist.
Actually, Francine was able to release all fifteen pets she possessed to help her fight. However, as she was an expert at monster taming, she was fully aware that controlling multiple pets at the same time was as hard as writing using both hands simultaneously. Three monsters was her current limit to allow her to have complete control over them.
On the contrary, Sila didn't control Lookhin at all. In fact, he wasn't able to control it. Mind Connection was Lookhin's skill, not his.
Normally, the owner would be the one with Mind Connection, not a pet. The result of not possessing the skill caused Sila to be unable to control Lookhin. The most that he could do was send his thoughts to Lookhin. Whether Lookhin listened or not would depend on its loyalty and love toward Sila.
By the way, Francine was able to guess the above fact as she knew that Sila was a qi-type player, not a psychic-type one. Usually, players who weren't psychic-types avoided using a pet as they won't be able to completely control the monster.
'A monster controlled by its master is obviously better than a pet who acts freely.' That was Francine's belief.
Sera was a big poisonous snake. Its length was longer than twenty meters while its scales were very colorful. Frung was a big eagle with illuminant feathers. Its size was gigantic compared to Lookhin. Just its claw was bigger than the sparrowhawk. As for Nonolu, it was an old brown hairy spider. Its eight eyes were looking all over the place.
Francine flicked her right hand. The bracelet on her wrist then transformed into a whip. It was the 'Lion-Subduing Whip', an important weapon of Francine. It helped her have an easier time controlling her pets. Additionally, it also temporarily increased the power of any pets in her possession.
Francine smacked her whip against the ground. Instantly, all three of her pets made a move. The giant eagle ascended upward and stayed above Lookhin. Meanwhile, the spider continuously fired its webs to restrict Lookhin's mobility by reducing the space around it. As for the giant snake, it crawled to an upwind direction and released its poison to damage Lookhin.
Lookhin flew around, avoiding the spider webs. The poison in the air wasn't a problem for it at all. Lookhin's poison resistance was even greater than Sila's since it possessed both Hibernation and Qi of Little Turtle from the Great Millennium Turtle. This level of poison couldn't bring any harm to it. If it wanted, it would be able to fly around like this all day.
Nevertheless, Sila had only asked it to stall for ten minutes. Lookhin didn't get that many chances to fight seriously so it didn't want to waste time doing nothing.
That big bird above it was very annoying. The big bird was trying to catch Lookhin using its claws. If Lookhin was hit by qi-reinforced claws, it might have a harder time flying.
So, Lookhin decided to handle the big bird who was closest to it first. Once its body was reinforced by qi energy, its eyes shone a mysterious aura of qi, staring at the eagle. Not only was Lookhin's stare infused with qi energy, but Mental Oppression was also being used.
The eagle's body froze in fear in midair and descended from the sky, crashing to the floor.
Lookhin opened its beak and fired an almost invisible golden needle at the giant spider, causing it to stop moving. The spider web on the spider's bottom was still connected to the remaining webs all over the arena. Lookhin landed itself on one of the spider's web.
Lookhin's body started flashing a sky-blue light. Soon, freezing magic energy was released from its body and spread from the spider's web to the spider itself. The giant spider instantly froze.
Although Lookhin could use all three energy types - qi, psychic, and magic power - the cards that it had eaten were mostly magic-types. Thus, its most powerful energy was magic, followed by qi and psychic power, respectively.
Lookhin soared back into the air. It was flying toward Francine when the snake saw that its chance was coming. The snake opened its mouth and swallowed Lookhin whole. However, Lookhin pierced through it and froze it on the floor. Lookhin's green eyes were looking at Francine, causing her to be drenched in cold sweat.
Although all three of her pets hadn't died, not a single of them remained in proper condition.
"I-Impossible. What happened? How can this bird use all three energy types? How come I didn't know that there was such a monster in the game?" Francine stuttered.
Her words caused everybody to be startled, including Noppakorn who had prepared his mind so he wouldn't be surprised again. He also noticed that this bird seemed to use all three energy types but he wasn't sure. However, as Francine had stated so, Noppakorn became certain that his thoughts were indeed correct.
In the VIP room, the most surprised person was none other than Ratri. This was the first time that she had heard that there was a monster capable of utilizing all three types of energy.
"It can use qi, psychic, and magic power? What kind of bird is this?" Ratri asked a question without expecting an answer. However, the answer came from Bow.
"A sparrow kind~"
Varee couldn't help but show her a gentle smile. At first, she planned to purchase Lookhin for Sila to take care of it. Her aim was to lessen Sila's training time. However, in the end, it seemed that even Lookhin was being trained by Sila.
"Bow, do you know how Big Brother Sila trains Lookhin?" asked Burapha.
"Ah? Bow doesn't seem to see Lookhin being trained by Big Brother Sila at all. Lookhin is as strong as it is since the first time Bow sparred with it. Ah~ Bow remembers that Big Brother Sila fed Lookhin cards."
"Feed cards? What cards?" Burapha made a slip of the tongue wondering how a player can feed cards to a pet. However, Bow understood what Burapha was trying to say and began to answer.
"Bow can't remember their names. They seem to be a very old monkey, a very old turtle, a blue merperson king, the earth dragon, the water dragon, and the snow dragon."
"Wait, what? Do you mean the Great Millennium Ape Card, the Great Millennium Turtle Card, the Blue-Scaled Merman King Card, the Earth Dragon Python Card, the Water Dragon Leviathan Card, and the Snow Dragon Dorolia Card?" As Burapha was a merchant, he had collected this kind of information. So, using Bow's hints coupled with the story that Sila had once told him, Burapha was able to guess that they must be those cards.
"Yes, yes~ Exactly. Why is their name so hard to remember?"
"Why does that guy Sila feed those cards to a bird? Is he rich in real life?" Ratri asked in wonder.
"How can he be? He doesn't even have a home. He is currently staying at my place," Varee replied apathetically as she was looking at the arena while thinking about Lookhin.
However, as everyone else saw that Varee told them that fact as if it was the most normal thing to say, they understood in their mind that the relationship between Varee and Sila was very intimate.T/N: In Thailand, it's rare (especially so in 2011-2012 when this chapter was published) for a man and a woman to live together under the same roof before they get married. It is Thai culture.
"…Is that so? Then, he must be rich in the game," Ratri continued questioning to hide her embarrassment. She had been bad-mouthing Sila a lot so she didn't know whether Varee was mad at her.
Although there was news about Sila and Varee being a couple, no one had expected them to be this intimate. There were a lot of cases where couples in the game didn't know each other in real life.
"Big Brother Sila isn't rich, that's for sure. He even currently has a huge debt. The main reason why he is participating in this battle tournament is to find the money to pay off his debt," replied Burapha.
"Why doesn't he sell the cards, then?"
"I don't know too. If I knew that Big Brother Sila possessed those cards, I would have already recommended that he sell them. If he had sold all of them, he would have cleared his debt and even have some coins remaining."
"Francine noticed Lookhin's weakness." Poluk's statement broke the flow of the conversation. All eyes were shifted to the battle in the arena.
During the conversation in the commentator room and VIP room, Francine felt that there was something off about Lookhin.
"Release Knight, Winggy." Two lights flew out of her rings.
In front of her, there was a headless knight wielding a two-handed sword. It was one of the strongest pets Francine owned. Knight was a magical-being monster of Marquis Rank, level 500. As for her other released pet, it was a blue-feathered harpy of Knight Rank, level 1000. It ascended to the sky and began its attack.
Hundreds of harpy feathers were fired at Lookhin.
Lookhin flew past them with ease and charged its body at the headless knight.
The headless knight placed its left foot forward while readying its weapon. Then, it brandished its sword at the incoming Lookhin.
Lookhin flew to the left, barely avoiding the blade. However, the body of the headless knight released magic power. Afterward, its sword suddenly changed its direction and precisely slashed at Lookhin's body.
*Bang!* Despite Lookhin not dying from taking a direct hit due to the help of Dragon's Scale and Steel Body Qi, it was severely wounded.
Lookhin's flying speed was slower as it was injured. With that, the harpy had an easier time firing a small tornado at the wounded Lookhin. Lookhin took another hit and fell to the ground.
"Hehe, and here I thought you were something. In the end, you are just a little bird. You must have little combat experience," Francine said.
The fatal weakness that Sebastian mentioned was similar to Sila' previous weakness:
Basics of combat.
Lookhin was no different than the previous Sila. No, to be exact, Lookhin was worse than the past Sila. At least Sila had some basic muscle and combat training as he grew up. However, Lookhin before it had met Sila was only a little bird in the cage at the pet shop.
Sila's feeding cards to Lookhin to make it stronger was a double-edged sword. Firstly, Lookhin had obtained skills too easily. It also didn't have much experience using them against skilled opponents so it couldn't properly make use of its skills. Lookhin was like a human child who is able to jump but can't walk. It was like someone who could perform complex movements but couldn't throw a straight punch. Although it had sparred with Bow, if it fought with the same or a higher level opponent, there would be no other result except for it to be defeated.
Francine was calm, focusing her concentration on battling against Lookhin. She controlled the harpy to distract Lookhin's movement while letting Knight perform attacks once there was a chance.
Lookhin released a tremendous amount of magic power. Several stone spears pierced upward through the earth to the headless knight. The headless knight in an armor brandished its sword in a circle. Its sword was reinforced by magic power, cutting through the stone spears that aimed at itself and Francine.
Since the spears appeared too sudden, Francine had light injuries on her right thigh and her left arm.
'If things continue this way, even if I can defeat this bird, it will take a very long time,' thought Francine.
"Release Leica, Shuu, Gear, Jajamu, Parun, Torik, Thorn, Mulch." Eight flashes of light flew from several accessories on Francine.
Leica was a big yellow tiger with black lines. There was a horn on its forehead. Shuu was a terrifying black panther. Gear was a gigantic steel golem; its size was double that of her previous stone golem. Jajamu was a big insect which looked like a praying mantis. Parun was an earth-elemental fairy. Torik was a pterodactyl. Thorn was a living plant covered in vines. As for Mulch, it was a goblin holding a crossbow in its left hand.
"Go kill that Sila," Francine ordered eight of her pets.
Since it was a simple order, there was no need for her to control her pets. She, her knight, and her harpy only had to keep this little bird at bay and let the rest of her pets kill Sila to achieve victory.
Sila was still in a deep meditation state. He was particularly defenseless. It could even be said that she had already won the match.
Meanwhile, Sebastian stood grinning behind Sila. Francine was a smart woman. Her plan only had a single flaw. She didn't realize that Sila had another pet protecting him.
"I will try not to be so eye-catching," Sebastian whispered to Sila. Nevertheless, Sila was in a meditation state. He couldn't hear any of Sebastian words.
The size of the black shadow expanded from behind Sila's back. The grim reaper was about to make his move.
"Please be at ease, everyone, as death is always fair."
If someone were to see Sebastian at this time, he or she would witness his wicked smile and shudder in fear.