Chapter 243

Sungyoon took a couple of steps forward.

The ball of water existed in the air, but another existed on the ground too. The one on the ground looked like little drops of water that remained suspended to form a wall. The only difference was the size. The one in the air was incomprehensibly massive.

Chal-pahk!

When Sungyoon placed his hand on the wall of water, a ripple spread out with his hand at the center.

Ssssk!

He pushed his hand against the water, and it went inside. Water flowed in through the gaps in his armor, and the refreshing, cool sensation of the water hit him.

‘It's indeed water.’

Sungyoon had readied his healing spell just in case the liquid was something else. However, he had been worried for nothing. He extracted his arm.

Ssssk!

“Whoa?”

Not even a single drop of water remained on his armor, and surprisingly, the water that had entered into his armor was gone too. Sungyoon took off his gauntlet and saw a clean and dry hand.

“Are you ok?”

Emily had been looking at Sungyoon with a worried gaze, and she had also prepared her healing spell. When Sungyoon took off his gauntlet, Emily grabbed his arm and took a closer look at it. When she found nothing wrong with his arm, she felt reassured.

Afterward, Sungyoon pushed his arm deeper into the water, and subsequently, he put his entire body inside. The weight of his heavy armor prevented him from floating upward, but he could feel the buoyancy.

As Sunygoon walked around, the density and the pressure of the water slowed him down.

Chwhahk!

After moving around a bit, Sungyoon exited the wall of water. As expected, he didn’t have a drop of water on him.

“It doesn’t flow and just maintains its enormous shape. However, it's water.”

Sungyoon explained to his party members.

“Do you think that’ll fall on us all at once?”

Emily looked up at the water drops floating in the air. She had only glanced at it, yet she knew the amount of water up there was enormous. If all of it fell at once, they would be crushed. It would be an absurd way to die.

“We just have to trust that it’s not something that’ll happen in the Great Labyrinth. Let’s move.”

The party started moving after Tim’s words.

For now, the water didn’t show any abnormal behavior. Only, if someone accidentally crashed into it, it would impede their movements. Therefore, the party avoided the bodies of water. They felt like they were walking through a maze made out of walls of water. 

The party soon reached a narrow opening surrounded by two bodies of water. Only one person could move through the gap at a time. Grace stepped in and looked at the wall next to her with an amazed expression.

She lightly dragged her fingers across the wall of water and watched it create a ripple. It was fun to watch the distortion of her shadow reflected by the wall of water.

‘Huh?’

In a flash, Grace realized something was out of place.

‘Shadow?’

With the absence of any light source on the floor, there shouldn’t be any shadows, and even if there was one, the shadow wouldn’t have formed right next to her. Her eyes turned round as they headed toward the shadow that she kept catching a glimpse of. The shadow had an extremely muscular body, and its face was gaunt. Moreover, it had webbed hands and feet.

“Mer

Grace's shout was cut off.

Chwahk!

A hand with blue scales shot out of the water to grab Grace’s neck. In one motion, it pulled Grace into the water.

Splash!

The splashed water retired to the wall of water. Grace struggled as its hand squeezed around her neck. She hit her opponent’s arm, yet its powerful arm didn’t budge. Grace’s eyes turned round within the water and became filled with fear. She had seen a dozen shadows swimming within the water.

‘Mermen!’

Mermen were male aquatic monsters named after a creature from fictional stories. The Mermen in front of her let out ominous cries as they circled her. Their voice resembled that of crows.

Ggee-geek!

Ggee-geek!

The monsters were laughing. Their mouths were split open wide, and she could see their terrifying teeth when they laughed.

Grace felt a chill run up her back.

She struggled more fiercely. The water was giving her a hard time in moving around. She didn’t need to breathe, so she would not die from the lack of oxygen, but her blood was being constricted, and she was starting to lose consciousness.

The most dangerous part was that she felt her neck was about to break. The hands hitting the merman’s arm was getting weaker when it happened.

Puh-uhng!

A halberd came crashing inside the wall of water. It didn’t lose its strength through the water and severed the arm of the merman holding Grace’s neck.

Gyahhhhhhhk!

Red blood spread through the clear water. The merman grabbed its stump as it struggled.

Duhp-suhk!

Grace felt someone grab the scruff of her neck. The strong grasp frightened her as she thought another merman had grabbed her. However, the hand didn’t drag her deeper into the dark waters. It pulled her out of the water, and the fresh air caressed her body.

“Poo-ha!”

She became dry again. She didn’t need to breathe, but she had just escaped the waters that had been like an abyss to her. A deep breath unconsciously escaped her body.

“Are you ok?”

Sungyoon gently rubbed her back.

“M-Mr. Sungyoon! The merme

Grace didn’t have the time to finish her desperate warning.

Ggee-gee-gee-geek!

Ggee-gee! Ggee-gee-gee-gee!

It was a terrifying scene. An immense presence pressured the party through the large water wall. Numerous mermen pushed toward the surface of the water.

Kyahhhhhhk!

Splash!

When the upper body of a merman exited the surface of the water, it let out a bizarre scream. Then it fully exited the wall of water. More and more mermen swam closer toward Sungyoon’s party.

They brought up their hands, which looked like jagged rakes.

“Hoohp!”

Too-hwahk!

Sungyoon resummoned his halberd and threw it. The halberd flew straight toward a merman. The merman extended its hand toward the side and touched the surface of the water.

Shoohk!

Its body was sucked into the wall of water, and the halberd lost its target. The weapon just flew through the empty air. As soon as the halberd went past, the merman stuck its head out from the water.

Grin!

Its eyes were laughing, and it was mocking Sungyoon.

Sssssk!

Sungyoon unsummoned his halberd and looked at his surroundings.

Kahng!

Kah-kahng!

The mermen freely moved between each wall of water as they aimed for Tim and Emily.

The sharp claws kept attacking Tim’s shield. 

“Mr. Tim! Ms. Emily! We have to get out of this small alleyway!”

The environment was against them. Aside from the narrow road between the two bodies of water, the mermen could freely operate wherever there was water. Sungyoon’s party needed to reach an open space.

“Understood!”

Tim slowly retreated as he kept Emily close to him. Sungyoon summoned his sword, and the frightening lightning displayed its might. When Sungyoon was sure his party members weren’t in contact with the water, he stuck his sword into the body of water.

Pah-jee-jee-jee-jeek!

The lightning from the sword started to conduct through the water.

Kaa-ahhhhhhhhhhhk!

Ooh-ka-ka-kahk! Ka-ka-ka-kahk!

As expected of creatures living in water, the mermen were weak against lightning. Several mermen near the sword got shocked, and they ran away in fright. After pushing back the mermen from one body of water, Sungyoon planted his sword into the other.

Having seen the ability of the sword, the mermen dispersed into their surroundings in surprise.

“Let’s run!”

Sungyoon had chased them away, but he hadn’t seriously injured them. The party ran to find a larger space where it would be more advantageous for them. The mermen quickly swam after them.

Finally, the narrow road enclosed by the two bodies of water came to an end. As soon as the party secured the large open space, they immediately turned around. Fortunately, the mermen didn’t leave the water to chase after Sungyoon’s party.

The monsters stuck out their upper bodies to growl at Sungyoon’s party, and then, returned to the water. They soon disappeared into the bodies of water.

“Hoo-ooh!”

With the battle coming to an end, everyone let out a sigh.

Grace, who had been dragged into the water, sank to the ground.

“As expected, there are no easy places in the Great Labyrinth.”

Tim violently shook his head after taking off his helmet. He glared at the two bodies of water.

“I’m guessing all the bodies of water are under their domain?”

“Probably.”

Sungyoon answered Tim and looked toward where they had to go. The party followed his gaze.

The bodies of water were everywhere, and roads and open space lay between them. They also saw a lot of narrow roads like the one they just traveled.

“We have to brace ourselves.”

Sungyoon took a firmer grip of his sword.

***

Chum-buhng!

A merman reached out from the surface of the water to grab Emily, who was behind Tim. However, a large ax was brought down on its arm before the merman could touch Emily.

Kah-ahhhhhk!

The merman grabbed the stump of its arm as it ran away into the water. However, the poison had already spread through its wound. The monster struggled within the water, and it became still as the poison wreaked havoc inside it. It turned into a hideous corpse. 

However, this monster was one of the many mermen who had attacked the party.

Cheng! Cheng! Che-cheng!

Tim blocked the attacks directed at Grace. His shield was mainly being used to protect Grace, so more and more blows were landing on his armor. Despite their slim and weak appearance, they were strong, and their claws were very sharp.

More and more scratches appeared on Tim’s armor.

“I got it!”

These words were welcome news for Tim. Grace suddenly stood up and raised her staff high. A massive storm of electricity appeared around her staff.

“Get away from the left one!”

Ggwah-roo-roo-roong!

Grace immediately sent her lightning forward. The lightning drove the darkness away as it struck the water.

The lightning spread through the water. It was like throwing a toaster into a lake full of fishes. The mermen realized something was wrong, so they tried to run away; nonetheless, they were all electrocuted at the same time.

Kyahhhhhhhhhk!

Ggoo-ehhhhhhhhhk!

The scale of this attack was different compared to the lightning of Sungyoon’s sword.

In a flash, the eyes of all the nearby mermen flipped upward, and the large water body turned into a mass grave.

“Let’s get out of here!”

When the mermen stopped attacking the party ran forward. Sungyoon pulled up next to Grace.

“How many more lightning spells do you have left?”

“That was the fifth time I’ve used it.”

Realizing that she had only a few left, Sungyoon frowned. Grace’s lightning magic was the antithesis to the mermen, but it could only be used a limited number of times.

‘We have to get out of here now.’

The party once again pushed past a narrow road surrounded by two bodies of water.

“Ah, shit! This is so annoying! We can’t even recover the Gems and moonstones!”

Tim kicked the floor. The others felt the same way, but they just hadn’t spoken up about it.

“Thankfully, there are no other monsters than the mermen.”

Emily tried to comfort Tim.

“I’d rather face a huge monster than fight so many of these small ones!”

Tim pouted in discontent as he complained.

Ooooooooooooooooooh!

The party came to a stop. They had heard a cry that was enough to elicit fear from the core of their being. Their heads slowly moved up as if they were old, rusty machines.

At first, all four of them had thought they were seeing a dragon. The monster had a long body, and it emerged out of the enormous body of water and floated into the air.

It had the red eyes that were characteristic of monsters, and its enormous mouth was large enough to eat an elephant in one bite. The monster stared at Sungyoon’s party, and there was no way those eyes were friendly.

“… Leviathan.”

Sungyoon mumbled.

The monster floating in the air was a famous one.

“I-I told you to be careful about what you say. You always jinx us.”

Emily growled at Tim. Tim didn’t want to say anything to exacerbate the situation, so he could only shut up for now.

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