Brown roots popped out of the ground beneath Kang Oh's feet. He quickly swung his sword and sliced through them.
However, they were tougher than he expected.
He couldn't cut through them entirely.
Two more roots shot out of the ground and came right for him. His Hyper Intuition had already warned him of danger, so avoiding them wasn't an issue. However, Kang Oh couldn't afford to be held up by these roots forever.
"Die!" Krishan's harsh voice rang out.
Kang Oh was overcast by a shadow. Krishan bent her upper body and swung her palm downwards.
He was forced to deal with both Krishan's main body and her roots. But neither his companions nor the Church of Death could help him right now. They were all busy fighting against the roots.
Kang Oh lowered his body to the ground and rushed forward. Both Krishan's hand and the roots struck where he'd just been.
Fortunately, Krishan's attacks were pretty slow in this form. Unfortunately, her flowers would release spores whenever she swung her arms.
'So annoying!' Kang Oh quickly closed the system messages, which indicated that the spores had either paralyzed or poisoned him.
"Eder, I need a cure for paralysis and poison!"
That was Eder's specialty!
"Here!" Eder smacked away a brown root, pulled out two balls from his bag, and threw them at Kang Oh. However, he didn't throw them nearly far enough.
The drugs rolled onto the snowy field!
"Hey!" Kang Oh yelled. 'Throw it properly!'
"I'm busy too!" Eder summoned a bone shield and whacked away a root.
"Tch!" Kang Oh avoided a surging root and rushed over. Then, he rolled into a standing position and grabbed both of the drugs.
"You rat! You sure are good at running!" Krishan threw a Spear of Arrogance at him.
"Hey, let me take my medicine!" Kang Oh yelled, and forcefully leapt into the air.
The Spear of Arrogance left a huge crater in the ground. Snow flew everywhere.
Kang Oh was caught in the resulting shockwave and fell to the floor. While he was on the ground, he swallowed both of the drugs.
He received two system messages; one drug cured his paralysis, while the other mitigated the effects of the poison. Kang Oh stood up.
Then, he finally heard some good news.
"The roots are weak to fire!" Sephiro yelled.
As proof, Waryong's flames were super effective against the roots.
'Fire, huh!?' Kang Oh immediately summoned a Fire Bomb and threw it at a root, which flew at him like a snake seeking its prey.
Unfortunately, the biting cold and the severe winds weakened the intensity of the flames. Despite that, the roots quickly caught on fire and burnt to cinders.
Kang Oh rushed at Krishan. There was another Fire Bomb in his hand.
Krishan swung her fist at him, but Kang Oh dodged it and then threw a Fire Bomb at her. He'd thrown the Fire Bomb at her lower body, or the thick, giant roots.
Krishan was unable to dodge it. She was rooted to the ground, so she was completely immobile.
The fire surged, and shards of light fell from her body. However, the size and color weren't what he'd been looking for.
'Her main body isn't weak to fire!'
If it was, then shards of red light would've fallen from her body. The size would've been larger too.
Was it because he'd come too close to her? The vines attached to her head came flying at him.
Kang Oh deflected the vines with Ubist, and dodged any of the ones that he couldn't.
"Grr!" Krishan's face contorted. 'I'm sure there's no rat as fast as you!'
With Waryong's help, the roots that had kept Kang Oh's allies at bay were beginning to disappear.
"Bray, cover Mr. Kang Oh! You have to protect him no matter what!" Muhawk yelled.
As the wielder of Demon Sword Ubist, Kang Oh was key to defeating Krishan. After all, he was the only one here that could overcome Krishan's immortality!
"Yes, sir!" Bray and five other paladins rushed towards Krishan.
"You pests!" Krishan raised both her hands straight up into the air, releasing spores that mixed together with the snow and flew everywhere.
"Protect yourselves with holy power!" Bray yelled.
Raising one's resistances with holy power was a fundamental skill amongst paladins. They immediately followed his orders.
Cyndia, the only priest they had, began to pray.
Her skill was such that she was able to simultaneously heal 90 people, which even included Kang Oh's party.
Krishan's right fist radiated green energy. She acted like she'd attack Kang Oh, but suddenly turned her body and aimed for the incoming paladins instead.
Hammer of Arrogance!
"Get out of the way!" Bray yelled urgently.
The paladins raised their shields and scattered. In the process, one paladin got hit by her attack.
He just barely survived, but he was on the brink of death. However, roots surged from the ground, wrapped around him, and dragged him underground.
"Luka!" one of his close friends yelled. However, Luka didn't return. Krishan was right in front of them, so they couldn't afford to rescue him.
Roots pierced Luka's body and drained all his life force. That life force travelled along the roots and into Krishan.
Kang Oh saw the golden energy travel along her roots.
Krishan absorbed life force, the paladin was dragged underground, and the golden energy travelled along her roots. He connected all the dots.
"If you get caught by her roots, she'll drain your life force!" Kang Oh yelled.
"Mm." Muhawk furrowed his brow.
Life force acted as fuel for her; fuel that would make her even stronger!
"Everyone, keep your guard up! Your death will only benefit her! I don't want a single one of you dying!" Muhawk yelled firmly.
"Ooooh!" The paladins roared, and were ready to fight more than ever. Then, they focused their attacks on the remaining roots.
Waryong kept burning the roots like a fish that'd just gotten into water.
Meanwhile, Kang Oh disappeared using Abyss Transfer, and then reappeared beside Krishan.
Whizz, whizz, whizz!
Her vine hair came flying at him like an automatic defense system.
"I'll blow it all away!" Kang Oh forcefully swung his sword.
A tiger, radiating golden light, ripped through the vines and slammed into Krishan's side.
"Grr!" Krishan extended both her arms and attempted to grab him. 'Just wait until I get you!'
However, she was much too late.
The paladins, who'd fixed their battle line and had room to breathe now, began focusing on her lower body.
"It's pointless!" Krishan swung her arm, as if she were swatting away flies. However, the paladins dodged her attack with ease.
A large, thick arrow came flying at her. Unfortunately, her vine hair deflected it.
"Tch." Sephiro clicked his tongue and prepped another arrow.
Eder summoned a lump of bone and threw it at Krishan. Krishan completely ignored it. She assumed it wouldn't do much damage to her. However, she should've paid closer attention to it.
Eder clenched his fist.
The lump of bone exploded, scattering countless bone fragments everywhere. Several of them either pierced her body or got stuck.
Krishan was pissed. She'd gotten hurt by a human besides Kang Oh!
"I'll kill you all!" Her voice was filled with killing intent, and the atmosphere around her became more threatening.
It wasn't just the atmosphere around her. Something completely unexpected happened.
Her lower body, which was embedded in the ground, popped out!
Her vines began slithering around like a snake, and she moved forward as if she were sliding. She was no longer a fixed target. But that wasn't everything, not by a long shot.
A familiar weapon appeared in her hand. It was a golden trident!
This was Mayanes Diabol's weapon. After Kang Oh had killed Diabol, Krishan had ambushed him and stolen the weapon.
That weapon was now in Krishan's hands.
'She's not doing what I think she is, is she?'
He recalled the most dangerous move Diabol had used against him.
"Everyone, be careful..." Before he could even finish, the golden trident unleashed a giant pillar of light.
Krishan was using Diabol's main technique.
* * *
Normally, Krishan would use a whip called 'Thorn of Arrogance'. It was supposed to be wrapped around her arm at all times.
But when Kang Oh had transformed into Ubist, biting her arm and wing off, he'd devoured the whip wrapped around her arm too. Thus, Krishan was forced to use the golden trident that she'd stolen from Kang Oh.
Anyhow, the golden trident's special ability, Flash, was much different from any of her other skills.
Befitting its name, Flash was an incredibly fast and powerful attack.
Several of the paladins hadn't been able to dodge it. Two of them had died, and eight of them had lost more than half of their HP.
"Hahahaha!" Krishan couldn't help but laugh at the sight of the paladins in pain.
"Shut up already!" Kang Oh swung Demon Sword Ubist, but Krishan swung her own weapon and deflected it.
Their clash confirmed that she'd gotten stronger.
'I've definitely gotten stronger!'
However, Kang Oh didn't look surprised at all. He'd fought countless monsters before, so he knew that Krishan didn't have any other tricks up her sleeve. In other words, the end was near.
Anyhow, Kang Oh's attack was blocked, so it was Krishan's turn now.
She swung her trident downwards, aiming for the crown of his head.
It was at least twice as fast as her arm when she was still immobile. Kang Oh realized that he couldn't block this. If he did, there was a chance that he'd get hurt, so he shielded himself with Ubist instead.
He blocked her attack, but his feet were slightly pushed into the ground. The spear was just that powerful.
"Protect Mr. Kang Oh!" Muhawk yelled.
"We'll help you!"
Bray and some of the paladins rushed over to help him out. They stood side-by-side in front of Kang Oh and raised their shields.
"Out of my way!" Krishan slightly raised her spear and forcefully swung it.
Clang, clang, clang, clang!
The spear shaft repeatedly struck their shields. The paladins gritted their teeth and endured, but the force made their legs shake.
But it was due to their efforts that Kang Oh was able to retreat and get back into position. Plus, Eder and Sephiro, as well as the rest of the paladins, began to attack her too.
Was it because she'd completely removed herself from the ground? Roots no longer shot out from the ground.
However, she did in fact have another trick up her sleeve.
"Come out, my children!" Krishan raised her trident into the air. Then, the ground began to rise and fall.
"What's going on?"
"They're coming again!"
Brown roots came out of the ground. However, they weren't the same roots they had fought before.
They fought rootlets before. These were rhizomes. They also had a name: Croot!
Croots possessed thick giant bodies. Although they didn't have eyes, several of their tentacles acted as a mouth.
They were incomparably stronger than the rootlets. Only by gritting their teeth and fighting them in groups of three or four could the paladins even hope to stand against them!
"We can do this!"
"For the goddess!"
The bloody battle raged on.Previous Chapter Next Chapter