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Chapter 199 - Return (2)
After the break ended, the party reunited within the southern border of Rulain.
From the perspective of the Plain of Darkness, it was reasonable to a.s.sume that Azell's party were moving to take out the waypoints near this region.
However, there were previous cases where Laura attacked a region on her own, and she had caused confusion as to where they would attack. They had to be more vigilant, so the Plain of Darkness gathered as many troops to the nearby waypoints.
However, Azell's party had a totally different aim.
"Currently, there are 180 waypoints of the Road of Darkness left."
Kairen updated his party on the current situation. While the party was reuniting, the members of the Guardian Shadows had destroyed two additional waypoints.
"We still have a long way to go."
"It would be great if we had overwhelming number of troops, so we can hit each waypoint at the same time."
"If we had such detailed information in the Dragon Demon war, the complexion of the war would have changed."
Azell let out a bitter laughter.
However, when he thought about it, the waypoints didn't have as much value during that time period. The Road of Emptiness was the lifeline of their current enemies, because they decided to reside at the end of the world. The place was called the Plain of Darkness. It was important, because it allowed the Plain of Darkness to carry out their activities around the continent as a secret organization. If they were fighting the whole world, the road would still be a treasure, but it wouldn't be a critical loss if it was destroyed.
"Anyways, as of today, one more location will be destroyed for sure."
Even if their goal was in a different location, this didn't mean they wouldn't use this situation to their advantage. While the enemies were concentrated in the nearby waypoints, Count Beorein Michael and the elite forces led by Dragon Demon Prince Seigar would hit a completely different location.
Azell asked Arrieta a question.
"Princess, how's your Dragon Soul coming along?"
"I'm not there yet. It feels as if I'm at the cusp. I heard from teacher and Leticia that they had that feeling before they awakened their Dragon Soul. In truth, I'm frustrated. It feels as if I'm of no help right now….."
Arrieta became despondent after rejoining the party.
It was to be expected. As the Dragon Demon princess, her martial abilities had been peerless. This was why she had been in charge of leading others. However, every one of her party members possessed terrifying abilities. So much so that she worried that she was being a burden to them.
"You have been of great help to us already. From our perspective, you are a truly a valuable addition to our party."
"Hmm. Your words does soothe my feelings, but if I look at it coldly, I know that I won't be of much help if I don't awaken my Dragon Soul. It might have been better if I was a magician."
She had such thoughts when she looked at Yuren.
It was true that Yuren was much inferior in terms of magical energy compared to his comrades. He had the hidden card where he could summon and fuse with a Demon, but this method carried a significant risk.
Still, as a high rank magician, Yure's abilities couldn't be compared to a Dragon Arts pract.i.tioner with similar magical energy. He was able to fight and support at the same time. This aspect of his abilities had wide utilization.
"It probably won't take you too much longer to awaken the Dragon Soul. Even when you learned from me, you were an exceptional student."
"I'm feeling better. Were you popular with women, because you possess a smooth tongue?"
"It wasn't really……."
"I heard about how you were like during the Dragon Demon war. I never expected you to have so many descendants. It was truly surprising."
Azell's smiling face froze in place. He discreetly glared at Kairen. Kairen had a devilish smile on his face.
"My teacher cautioned me about giving my heart to you. He put his heart and soul into making this entreaty. He argued the point by telling me the number of women you brought to tears….."
"I'm just telling her the truth. I respect the legendary hero Azell Karzark, but you are a lecher that made countless women cry. I want to prevent the possibility of my precious student's heart getting hurt. I want to stop the possibility at the root. Moreover, Arrieta became part of our party, so I believed she had the right to hear the truths about the Guardian Shadow."
When Kairen replied in a cheeky manner, Azell started to shake. The problem was the fact that he knew he couldn't say anything even if he had ten mouths.
Arrieta broke out into laughter.
"You don't have to be too worried, Sir Azell. I don't see you as a fast living playboy that throws caution to the winds."
"…your words are quite comforting."
Azell grumbled to himself.
The goal of Azell's party was to destroy the pillar of the Great Darkness.
Currently, they had destroyed three pillars.
Before the Nad.i.c.k empire fell, Carlos had defeated transcendent Dragon Demon Iksseru. She was the first to create the Dragon Demon weapon, and she was the first pillar to fall.
The King of Death Belrun had been sealed by Carlos, but when Azell killed him, the second pillar was destroyed.
Moreover, Azell and Laura had killed a being called the Metal King. He possessed the ability to changed anything into metal, and he believed that he could achieve eternal life through this ability.
"There are nine pillars left."
According to what Carlos had found out, the Great Darkness had 12 seals that acted as pillars.
However, this didn't mean Carlos knew all their location and true nature. He had been sure about five locations.
"We have four targets we have to destroy…. However, only three are realistic targets for us."
One of the four target was located in the bitter cold region in the north. Basically, it was located within the Plain of Darkness. At this point in time, it was a location they couldn't a.s.sault.
"Even without that one, the Great Darkness won't come out unscathed when we destroy half of the 12 pillars."
Even if half of the pillars were lost, the Great Darkness wouldn't collapse. It was too ma.s.sive and old for the magic system to fail.
However, it was possible to weaken its functionality. The proof was seen when Belrun died. The Guardian Shadows were no longer beings with eternal life.
"If I let my emotions dictate my actions, I want to immediately go to the Plain of Darkness. I want to destroy them right now."
"I understand your sentiments…. Please quell your anger."
Azell tried to soothe him.
The pillar within the Plain of Darkness had a deep connection with Kairen.
G.o.d of Pestilence Limas.
The Dragon Demon King wors.h.i.+ppers used this G.o.d's artifact to bring about the plague called the Great Darkness. Kairen grinded his teeth when it came to this being.
Suddenly, Arrieta spoke.
"I can' believe it's this place again…. It seems we have a close relations.h.i.+p with this land."
"I guess so."
Azell agreed with her.
The party was standing within the Balran forest, which was located in the western region of the Rulain Kingdom.
It was a vast demonic land where humans dared not tread. It was the perfect place for a pillar of the Great Darkness to exist. It made sense for it to exist in this place, but Azell and Arrieta truly had mixed feelings from their perspective.
Everything had started here when Azell woke up from his sleep, which spanned for 220 years.
He met Giles then Arrieta….. They had fought Dragon Demon king wors.h.i.+ppers, and their deeds were worthy of being made into stories.
As time pa.s.sed, Arrieta returned to this location for the second time, and she had stopped the 2nd Great Alliance of Darkness. Moreover, she went through the Dragon Slayer's Ritual for the first time in her life.
Still, both of them never expected to fight on this land again with their lives on the line.
Azell was the last to speak.
"Our last opponent, the Steel King, wasn't that terrifying However, one cannot look down upon the defensive measures prepared by Atein."
The members of his party nodded their heads. This was especially true for Laura, since she had felt the fear of Atein's defensive measure to her bones. She was clearly tense.
According to the information given to them by Carlos, the being sealed in this place was called the G.o.d of trees.
This being was able to accelerate the growth of trees by several thousandfold. He had tried to cover the whole world with trees that could move like animals. He was defeated by Atein and his comrades, and he had been sealed in this location.
It might also be the reason why the vast Balran forest had formed here.
Suddenly, Azell stopped walking.
"Is it here?"
They had no trouble reaching the location of the seal.
The Balran forest was called the Demonic land, but Azell's party was too powerful. They also used the Magic Eye to scout their surrounding, so they were able to avoid most fights. When a clash with monsters and demonic animals were inevitable, they dispatched them swiftly.
If the Western Border guard knew about this, they would have fainted. Azell's party were deep with the forest. Even those that were called experts of the Balran forest never came in this far.
Laura nodded her head.
At a glance, it was a wide open s.p.a.ce with nothing there. However, she was sure this was the place.
Within the magic tome given to her by Carlos, the method to find this Pillar of Darkness was written there. Laura had used this method to find this specific location.
"I'm stumped. I don't think I can use the method where I overturn the earth."
"Our options are quite limited."
"I guess we have no choice….."
Azell took one deep breath, and he started circulate his Dragon Demon magic.
A frightening wave of Dragon Demon magic was emitted from him, and their surrounding started to shake. Azell's party stopped breathing.
"Whenever I see it…. It is unbelievable."
Kairen mumbled his words.
In the past, he had never fallen behind others in terms of Dragon Demon magic. After he awakened his Dragon Soul, his power had been amplified significantly.
However, the amount of power being emitted by Azell was oppressive.
Could this really be power that a human possesses?
Azell's party wasn't the only one that reacted to Azell's display of power. The entire region went nuts.
The surprised birds flew into the air, and the beasts ran away. This was what Azell had been aiming for. He wanted to chase away any living beings before the fight started.
"Well….. I want everyone to take a step back."
He had finished Dual Banding his eight Rings of Life, and they were resonating. The magical energy generated from the rings were extremely close in nature as Dragon Demon magic. The magical energy filled his Energy Pulse, then it overflowed to wash over the surrounding.
In the middle of the sky, the Sky Splitter was streaking through the air in its light form.
The sky started splitting, and enormous branches of light stretched out into the sky. It was such an enormous phenomena that the Western Border guard, who were far away, could see it.
Still, he was able to complete his Sun Lightsaber without any impediment.
He didn't plan on steadily going towards the heart of the seal. He had done so last time, and he had experience an epic failure when he triggered the defensive measures left behind by Atein.
This time he'll blow it all away.
He'll pierce to the center before the magic devices protecting the seal could activate.
If one considered the target was deep within the ground, it was an illogical idea. However, it was possible if Laura's power was used in conjunction.
Laura was concentrating as she held the Vitan's Chalice. She spoke.
"I found it."
She found the seal, which existed deep within the ground.
Azell was ready to shoot the Sun Lightsaber at any moment. He spoke.
"Can you open a path to it?"
"I'm sorry. I can only reach half way."
Azell wanted her to use the Path of Tears to open a direct path to the seal.
However, Laura determined that it was impossible to do this. The defensive magic left behind by Atein was too strong. It was even cutting off the Dimensional Distortion created by the Vitan's Chalice.
"I'll have to apologize one more time."
"The defensive magic is starting to awaken. When the Dimensional Distortion came in contact with it…."
"We attack immediately."
Azell was unconcerned.
It wasn't as if he hadn't thought about this possibility. Laura had attempted to use her magic to search and a.n.a.lyze the being below, and of course, he hadn't expected Atein's barrier magic to be unresponsive to such a probe.
"The defensive magic is 270 meters deep."
It was so deep that it made one wonder how one was supposed to reach that place. Moreover, the seal was located deeper than the defensive magic.
Laura's expression hardened as she spoke.
"I can no longer locate the exact location of the seal."
"It doesn't matter. We have to bring down its defense. That part is more dangerous."
Laura nodded her head. As she retreated, the ground became distorted. She used the Dimensional Distortion to create a tunnel that led deep underground. Then….
The pure white light connected the sky to the ground as everything burned.