Book 2, Chapter 80

Breath of Darkness(3)

Call of the Wild, Truesilver Ornament, Dark Sight, and finally Shadow Seal… These were all custom designs, and although they were only grade 1 they served to accent the user’s abilities. They weren’t normal runes that just enhanced a particular attribute. Technically, they would be classified as somewhere between grade 1 and grade 2, and moreover they had all been tailored to Waterflower’s abilities. Not only had Richard considered her combat style and special abilities, he’d also optimised the positioning of each rune to fuse them together perfectly with her. Nobody else could make use of them as well as she could.

However, that was not the end. He drew an additional dark purple rune on her solar plexus, pouring out all of his inspiration.

Counterguard would form the heart of Waterflower’s rune set. It was designed to increase her mental and spiritual defences, allowing her to more easily aid Richard in case of a soul attack. As the core of the set, it took him five days to craft it. Once done, all the magic patterns were ignited, the runes combining to form the complete set.

Once the runes joined, the set gained another ability: Breath of Darkness. When activated, Waterflower would perfectly meld into her surroundings, her attacks growing more lethal as the shadow damage of her attacks growing even more powerful. Once she activated this ability, she would truly become a nightmare for her opponents.

This was the first rune set he had ever crafted— the Breath of Darkness had been completed!

A short while later, he summoned Flowsand to Waterflower’s room. Explaining everything from Call of the Wild to Counterguard, he followed up, “Once the five runes combine, a new ability is formed. I’ve named the set after this, calling it the Breath of Darkness as well. This is only the start. The set was built to be extensible, developed and strengthened sometime in the future. The whole series will be called the Savagery of Darkness.”

Having said that, he allowed Waterflower some time to change before summoning Gangdor to the backyard. The two would test out the Breath of Darkness in real combat.

It was still late at night. The messy courtyard was Waterflower’s favourite kind of environment. However, the girl had placed a full set of knight’s armour on a wooden rack nearby, not telling anyone what it was for.

Hearing he would be fighting Waterflower, Gangdor roared with delight. The axe in his hands began to tremble— ever since his powers had been enhanced with a rune he hadn’t heartily engaged in combat. Moreover, both he and Waterflower were raised in the death training camp; they understood each other very well. In his heart, she was definitely one of his most dangerous opponents. With her recent advancement and the five tailor-made runes, how much more powerful had she become?

However, even if he was laughing boorishly, Gangdor had long since removed that ‘one of’ in his heart. She was definitely his greatest opponent!

The young lady was adorned in white, standing in front of him with a sense of majesty. She emitted an extremely unfamiliar aura in the night, as if she was only partly visible in the darkness. It made it difficult to grasp her position.

Out of habit, Gangdor let out a few hearty laughs. He rubbed his bald head and suddenly waved his axe, speaking seriously, “Waterflower! Let me say this in advance, you’re not allowed to use that steel spike!”

A coarse and rusty spike appeared in the girl’s hand, none the wiser as to where it had previously been hidden. The young girl threw it out lazily, and with a boom the spike was embedded into the yard’s wall. She then slowly drew the Shepherd of Eternal Rest, holding it with both hands. The blade was pointed at the floor and her heel was slightly raised as she stared at Gangdor with both eyes, her short hair lifting even in the absence of wind.

Gangdor put both hands on his own axe, growing silent. He bent both knees, bursting forth with a cold and imposing aura!

It was as though the aura pushed Waterflower’s hair up. However, her figure did not float up alongside it, instead slowly disappearing into the darkness.

Before she could vanish completely, Gangdor let out a strange cry. He swung his axe horizontally, bringing it beside his body.

A soft ding rang out, the Shepherd of Eternal Rest quietly appearing from within the darkness to strike the big axe. Waterflower’s silhouette appeared by Gangdor’s side, but it grew fuzzy again before he could even see her clearly.

*Ding! Ding!* Gangdor swung twice behind him, barely managing to block Waterflower’s next two blows. However, even before he could retrieve his axe her blade had appeared in front of him once more. This time, it was much faster!

Waterflower was as fast as lightning, scurrying between Gangdor’s front and back as she rained a torrent of blows upon Gangdor. She used Wind Walk to completely suppress him with her movement, leaving him without time even to block her hits. All he could do was force all the power out of his runes, hoping the increased strength could let him spin his axe faster. His only hope at this point was to become a windmill, but whether that would protect him all depended on luck.

His heart suddenly felt an unspeakable chill, and Gangdor was stunned for a moment as the icy, beautiful face of Waterflower appeared clearly before his eyes. However, that clarity only existed for a fleeting moment before the young lady flew past him like the wind, the Shepherd of Eternal Rest flashing in her hand.

Gangdor stood rooted in place, while Waterflower appeared a few metres away. She quietly stood tall despite being a little short of breath; her strength was almost completely used up, but the battle had long since come to a close.

Gangdor slowly turned around. Around two metres behind him was the set of full armour, in the same position Waterflower had originally placed it in. He’d thought she wanted to use the armour as an obstacle to give her an advantage in battle, but he realised now that it was not the case.

A slanted crack suddenly appeared on the armour, following which the bottom silently split off. The rest of the armour crashed down to the floor, the clamour extremely loud in the silent night. The hazy moonlight revealed a glimmering cut in the armour.

Gangdor’s throat suddenly trembled violently. He swallowed down a wad of saliva, his complexion growing extraordinarily unbearable. Had Waterflower targeted him with the blow instead of that armour, he knew clearly that he would have met the same fate.

At that moment, the young lady had become the ultimate opponent.

By Richard’s side, Flowsand suddenly let out a gentle sigh.

Richard paused for a while before asking, “What are you thinking about?”

The Breath of Darkness far surpassed even his own imagination. As long as it was in the night, Waterflower could even destroy Stormhammer at his peak with her current prowess!

Flowsand maintained her own dazzled expression for a while before speaking, “I was just thinking of a few hundred years ago, when runemaster Lugatti showed off the first-ever rune set. Ah, what a grand scene that must have been. That set was what brought rune knights to the mainstream!”

Richard let out a faint smile, “My only concern now is whether or not you’ll resist me in the future.”

Flowsand threw a glance back at him, speaking firmly and with determination, “I won’t let you get it easily!”

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Styles

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA