"This is nonsense!"
It was an obvious story, but Immortal had also watched the videos of the National Competition several times. From the opening ceremony to the closing ceremonies, there were enthusiasts who watched the rerun without missing a single game. They knew the existence of the instant skill Grid had used to take out Tarma.
However, they hadn't expected for the power of that skill to ruin Veradin. Why? Veradin was a person who had transcended the limits of a necromancer in the area of survival. Just look at back when the Overgeared Kingdom was invaded. At the time, Veradin had overpowered Faker. Veradin had even endured an assassin's onslaught, so it was hard to think he would die with just one blow. Furthermore...
'It was a wide-range skill?'
The moment the black flames exploded, dozens of necromancers within 10 meters of Veradin died as well. The Immortal members thought it was absurd. How could an instant skill boast such great power and an enormous range of influence?
'Is a legendary skill this different?'
The sound of nervous gulps could be heard everywhere. The one who broke the uneasy silence was the 2nd ranked necromancer, Bullet. "Scat... Scatter! Scatter everywhere!"
Then the 7th ranked Drew shouted, "Don't let that monster get away!"
A human's desire to survive overcame fear. The necromancers overwhelmed by Grid's firepower quickly recovered their minds. They summoned advanced undead such as skeleton knights and mages to keep Grid in check while they maximized the distance. However, there were some people who ran away without looking back.
They were Grid's first targets.
"Where are you trying to run away to?"
There was no salvation, only pest control. Grid needed to eradicate them completely. He knew this because he had met many types of people.
As Grid started a sword dance in the middle of the retreating necromancers, his neat black hair started to rise. The fragments of the ground, which couldn't endure the black flames explosion, rose into the air. It was the forerunner to Grid changing to ranged attacks.
Kwa kwa kwa kwa kwa kwa kwa kwa!
In his Blackened state, Grid reached his maximum speed. He was able to swing his sword six times per second, which meant he could fire six energy swords per second. Grid was a weapon rather than a human.
The necromancers, who had wanted to survive alone by escaping, fell as their backs were hit by the energy swords Grid fired. As ordinary necromancers, they had low defense and health. Therefore, most of them died after receiving a single blow from Grid. The people who had the fortune to survive were in a stunned state. It couldn't be helped since they had lost more than half their health with one blow.
"Lubaan!" Bullet's cry that was close to a scream echoed on the battlefield. Death Knight Lubaan responded to his will and struck toward Grid.
Lubaan was an orc fighter when still alive, and he used a halberd that was over two meters long as a weapon. While sniping at the fleeing necromancers, a gap in Grid's defense was exposed, causing him to fall from Lubaan's powerful slice.
'Very good.' Bullet's expectations of Lubaan rose sharply. Lubaan's attack power was the best. His attack power was even beyond that of Death Knight Kyleo, and Bullet thought that Grid wouldn't be able to avoid a critical hit. However...
The notification windows which rose as soon as Lubaan's halberd struck Grid's shoulder caused Bullet's face to harden.
[You have dealt 2,430 damage to the target!]
[Poisonous fog has popped up!]
[Death Knight Lubaan is now poisoned.]
"...Isn't this crazy?"
It was an armor which caused poison damage instead of having overwhelming defense?
'What is this?'
Bullet had already witnessed Grid exert a powerful attack against a dragon. However, like Kraugel, hadn't Grid died easily from the dragon's breath? Additionally, he had become ragged in his PvP match against Kraugel. Yes, Grid's items were excellent, but his defense seemed rather normal.
Bullet was the second strongest out of tens of thousands of necromancers. Like the National Competition rankers such as Kraugel, Bullet believed that he could threaten Grid. However, it was a terrible arrogance. No, it was a shameful mistake.
'I am a frog in a well.'
They were in entirely different classes. When Bullet realized the reality of the situation, he was stunned for a moment.
[Death Knight Lubaan has returned to the ground.]
Seeing that his death knight was unable to withstand Grid's onslaught and had died, Bullet shouted, "Corpse Explosion! There is no other answer!"
The necromancers, who were helpless while Grid wielded his sword without a break, instantly found hope. Corpse Explosion—it was a magic which inflicted damage proportional to the target's maximum health by self-exploding the summoned undead. A big disadvantage of this magic was that it took a considerably long amount of time to re-summon the destroyed undead. However, its power was outstanding.
The necromancers realized that a long battle with Grid was disadvantageous and started to used Corpse Explosion.
[You have suffered 4,900 damage.]
The moment that the undead approaching Grid exploded...
The necromancers cheered, "Good!"
This was because they saw Grid coughing up blood for the first time. Hundreds of undead that were now walking bombs approached Grid. This scene was no different from a horror movie.
"Grid! Pay the price for your arrogance!"
There was a limit to the power of an individual. Immortal looked down at Grid's foolishness for facing them alone. Dozens of ghouls closed the distance to Grid, and they exploded simultaneously.
Kwa kwa kwa kwang!
There was a powerful explosion! The explosion centered on Grid shook the empress' palace. However...
Grid was fine. It was because he absorbed the explosion with Kruger's Mysterious Cloth. He emerged unscathed from the dust.
Grid in his Blackened State chased the necromancers with an agility that they couldn't afford. The necromancers continued to die as he flashed about like Hong Gildong across the battlefield.
"W-What...? How can you be fine? Heok!" Drew shrieked as he summoned new undead to stop Grid. Then he saw two delicate skeletons. The undead he thought had been summoned by allies came up and stabbed him. These skeletons were different from normal skeletons. They had 'expressions.'
Bullet was confused when he saw the skeletons' '⌓ ⌓' eyes which seemed to laugh at him.
"W-What are these crazy skeletons?"
The unidentified skeletons were weak. Bullet only suffered 100 damage from their stabs. However, he felt a strangely ominous feeling. Undead with facial expressions? He had never heard of it before. Even the best undead, the lich didn't have expressions.
'Maybe these are...'
Super rare undead?
'Who is the summoner? Heok!!'
Bullet's gaze shifted to above the skeletons' heads. The names of the skeletons were Overgeared Skeleton One and Overgeared Skeleton Two. The naming sense clearly showed who their master was.
"G-Grid is the summoner?"
A blacksmith with undead? No, how could this be? The moment Bullet had this question...
He coughed up blood. While Bullet had been busy looking at the Overgeared Skeletons, Grid had come up behind him and stabbed his heart.
"W-Wait a minute..."
He was stabbed once and only had 10% health left. Stunned, Bullet barely managed to open his mouth, "S-Spare me... Please spare me...! I never invaded the Overgeared Kingdom! It was all Veradin's group! I'm a victim!"
Bullet was well aware that the human mind was surprisingly weak. He believed that if he told Grid the truth like this, he would hesitate. However, Grid's reaction was different from what Bullet had expected.
"You should've stopped it."
It was a dull reaction. Grid subsequently struck forth, and Bullet turned to gray. His terrible appearance made the few remaining necromancers despair. It was at this moment that they realized when to use the expression, 'intimidated enough to piss slightly.' This would continue until they left Immortal. No, maybe they couldn't get rid of Grid's revenge until they quit the game.
Grid scared all of them and immediately wore the Hooded Zip Up. Soldiers were rushing over after hearing the damn Corpse Explosions, so he couldn't delay.
'It is unfortunate that I missed Agnus.'
However, it would be terrible if his identity were to be discovered here. The angry empire would attack the Overgeared Kingdom if they discovered the truth.
'I have to escape.'
Grid planned to leave via the north gate. The vigilance there should be relatively weak since it was located opposite the collapsed southern wall.
In the north of Titan, there was a dwelling area filled with mansions and villas for the empire's nobles.
First Knight Mercedes' mansion was also located there.
"Who would dare go against the empire...?"
Mercedes was informed of the southern wall collapsing and immediately equipped her sword. She was about to wear the Red Armor, only to hesitate and leave her home in a one-piece outfit. Then she encountered a group of Red Knights. Mercedes looked confused. The knights gathered in the garden were Fourth Knight Gyuratan and his followers.
Gyuratan shrugged. "Breaking another imperial order... I guess the rumor must be true."
"What are you talking about?"
"Rumor has it that you have lost respect for the emperor and that you are trying to rebel."
"What is this unfounded accusation?"
"Anyone would think like me unless they are a fool. The wall collapsed as soon as there were rumors that His Majesty was going to deprive you of your qualifications. Isn't it something that the forces behind you committed?"
"No one is going to believe this."
"No, everyone will be led to believe it. Didn't you create this chaos to leave your mansion? I don't know what type of terrible punishment you will receive."
"...This conversation is meaningless," Mercedes said. Then she noticed something. "You are planning to frame me, just as you did to Piaro 12 years ago."
"Speaking the name of a traitor. It is clear evidence of your betrayal." The corners of Gyuratan's mouth curved upward. His mouth was too big, so his smile was bizarre as a clown's.
"First Knight Mercedes, I sentence you to death."
The Fourth Knight's punishment began. The moment Gyuratan gave the order, five Red Knights attacked Mercedes.
Mercedes spun around in her pure white clothing. She rotated while pulling out two swords, soundlessly cutting apart the flowers and trees in the beautiful garden. Blood splashed from the chest of the Red Knights.
Gyuratan clicked his tongue. "Knights in the 20s aren't enough."
These weak people were really of no help.
"They aren't that far from the squad of Red Knights that I killed." As Gyuratan spat out those shocking words, Mercedes flew toward him like a butterfly. Gyuratan saw Mercedes' exposed thighs, but there was no desire in his eyes. Sexual desire was something only lowly creatures like humans and animals felt.
Kwa kwa kwa kwa kwa!
Just before Mercedes' two swords reached Gyuratan...
Black magic power was released, and it hit Mercedes. The unexpected form of the counterattack caused Mercedes to panic and cross her swords.
However, it was impossible to defend against magic with just two swords. The absence of body armor was too big. Blood spurted out as Mercedes flew through the sky and hit the wall of her mansion. Gyuratan laughed while approaching her slowly. Covered in demonic energy, his skin was pale and his eyes were all black, without any whites.
"In the past 12 years, I have been irritated by your eyes. Your clear eyes seem to penetrate all hidden secrets like a curse. I wanted to rip them out every time I saw them. I wanted to see your pained appearance."
"Pant... Pant... You..."
"But Limit trusted you so much. I couldn't see any gaps to break through. Kukuk, the story changed after you were stupid enough to start digging into Limit." Gyuratan reached out a wrinkled hand. His long fingernails headed toward Mercedes' eyes. "Thank you for digging your grave yourself. Watch in limbo. Scream in pain and sorrow at the sight of the empire that you wanted to protect so much."
"Ugh...!" Her body wasn't listening. The deadly demonic energy, more poisonous than any poison, was strangling Mercedes' heart.
As she waited for death, unable to resist...
"That woman is mine," a male voice rang out.
A golden spear filled with divine power flew and pierced Gyuratan.
"Overgeared King...?" Gyuratan, who had barely overcome Rebecca's curse, cried out with astonishment while Mercedes recalled a fairy tale she had read as a child.