Chapter 325

Sungyoon swung his sword with all his might.

Kwahng!

Kevil swung its flame sword in response.

“Mmm!”

Kevil groaned.

‘This bastard!’

Sungyoon’s strength and speed were the same as before. However, Kevil felt that his attacks had become more powerful.

‘He got used to it?’

An increase in a person’s strength and speed didn’t mean that it would translate into a similar increase in their fighting power.

Above all else, a sudden boost in power threw off one's balance more often than not.

Of course, Sungyoon’s movements until now couldn’t be characterized as unbalanced.

However, he was clearly different now.

His movements still looked somewhat awkward, but he had a firm base when he swung his upper body. His arms and sword were moving more smoothly.

“You got used to it in such a short period!”

“Yes.”

Sungyoon swung his sword. Unlike his undisciplined movements from before, his attacks were precise.

Kevil was busy just blocking the attacks.

“My powers changed rapidly and unevenly over the years. That's why I’m used to such changes. Moreover, I’m a normal human when I don’t wear my Devices and Gems. I can quickly adapt to this situation.”

Sungyoon spoke the explanation in a matter-of-fact manner. If anyone not well versed in this topic were to hear him, they would think he was right and nod. Tim, Grace, and Emily heard Sungyoon’s words from a distance. Each of them had also experienced a considerable increase in their power, yet they thought differently.

“What do you think about Mr. Sungyoon’s claims? Can you both adjust as quickly as him?”

“No way.”

Tim was the first one to answer Grace. He had been holding his shield with both hands, and he took off one hand to wave in the negative. It was a blanket denial.

“I still can’t get used to the difference between my normal self and the version of myself that wears the Device. Whenever I return to the labyrinths, I always do some light training to get used to my powers once again. So how can I get used to a sudden boost in power? There’s no way I can do it.”

Tim had fought countless battles with his life on the line. Therefore, he was adaptable, but he was speaking in an exaggerated and hyperbolic manner.

Even if he hadn’t used a Gem for a long time, he would be able to use it as usual once he got into a fight within the labyrinth. It would feel a bit awkward, but he could do it.

However, he could not do the same if he were wielding a power he had just earned.

“It's the same for me. I won’t go as far as Tim in his answer, but I would feel awkward using it.”

This was the difference between a warrior and a magician. A warrior’s strength and physical attributes increased, but a magician’s body didn’t increase in strength compared to the growth in their combat power.

“I feel the same way as you, Ms. Emily. I’ll feel awkward, and it’ll show up in my actions. However, it must be different for Mr. Sungyoon.”

“Even if we put aside the fact that he can instantly activate his Gems, he fights by alternating between multiple weapons. It isn’t easy to accomplish.”

Tim spoke as he watched the fight.

Sungyoon kept alternating between his sword, ax, hammer, and halberd to put pressure on the injured Kevil. Tim could only speak in admiration.

“It's an innate talent.”

“I think so too.”

Emily nodded when she heard the exchange between Tim and Grace. As the trio conversed, the fierce battle went on.

Kwahng! Kwahng! Kwahng!

Like a fierce beast, Sungyoon swung his halberd, and Kevil responded by swinging its fire sword. 

However, Sungyoon was wielding his halberd with both hands. On the other hand, Kevil’s left shoulder was injured; it could only use one hand. It was having trouble blocking Sungyoon’s powerful blows.

Kevil gritted its teeth.

‘I just need this wound to heal!’

Due to the wound, it couldn't freely move its left arm, and this hindered it in fighting Sungyoon, who had become stronger. However, Kevil’s innate healing ability was amazing.

‘A wound of this caliber would've already healed on the Moon!”

No. Kevil wouldn’t have been wounded at all. Even though this place had a pool of magical energy, the amount wasn't enough for Kevil to regain most of its power. Moreover, the poison that had spread through its wound was also a problem.

The poison was delaying its recovery by a significant amount.

Still, Kevil just had to wait for the wound to heal, and it could fight better. Sungyoon wouldn't be able to push it back in a one-sided manner like this.

However, Sungyoon had gone through a lot of difficulties to get this advantage, and he had no plans of relinquishing it.

“Hoo-ahp!”

Sungyoon swung the ax he held in his left hand. Kevil desperately blocked the attack with the flame sword in its right hand.

This time, Sungyoon swung the hammer in his right hand.

“Koo-ooh-ook!”

Kevil groaned as it created a flame with its left hand. Ignoring the wound, it swung the fire sword, which had appeared in its left hand.

Sungyoon’s hammer clashed against Kevil’s fire sword.

Kwahhhhng!

An explosion occurred. Kevil’s left arm buckled as the flame sword landed on the ground. 

Its wound ripped open further, and yellow gas emanated out of it with the lava-like blood.

“You son of a biiiiiiiiiitch!”

Kevil flapped its wings as it retreated. After gaining some distance from Sungyoon, it opened his mouth. A heatwave started to roil within that mouth.

Kevil was planning to use the breath attack it had used before. However, Sungyoon had gripped his halberd as soon as Kevil had started retreating.

Ssaaaaaaeng!

The halberd flew through the air, and the tip of the spear blade shone as it entered Kevil’s mouth.

Puh-uh-ung!

The spear blade punched through the mouth and exited from the neck.

Sungyoon was worried that the flames within Kevil's mouth would explode, so he unsummoned his halberd. And, he was correct.

Kwahhhhhh!

Kevil lost control of the flames inside its mouth, and the flames exploded, engulfing everything around Kevil. The surroundings had turned very dangerous, but an uncontrolled fire like that couldn’t damage Sungyoon’s armor.

‘I’m glad I took off my armor to receive his attack. Thanks to that, my armor is undamaged.’

Sungyoon continued to run through the fire.

He soon found Kevil.

Kevil had survived through the injury and the explosion. However, it was unsteady on its feet, and its body emanated smoke. The sight clearly showed that Kevil had taken a significant amount of damage.

Sungyoon brought out his weapons again and attacked Kevil.

Puhk! Kwahng! Kwah-jeek! Suh-guhk! Koohng!

Kevil was close to losing consciousness, so all of Sungyoon’s fierce attacks landed. Kevil couldn't put up much of a fight. Its body was sliced, crushed, and pierced.

Fire and smoke engulfed it.

Koo-oong!

Kevil fell to the ground as yellow smoke kept emanating from the wounds on its body.

Its arm and leg had been ripped away, and many horrible wounds had crisscrossed its upper body.

The membrane of its wings had been ripped apart.

Since Kevil didn’t have the energy to keep the poison in check, the poison had started to spread toward the rest of its body.

“Koo--ooooooh!”

A very weak groan escaped from the mouth on that devilish face.

Sungyoon brought his foot down on Kevil’s chest.

“Kuhk!”

It let out a groan. Sungyoon coldly raised his halberd high in the air.

“You… You… You…!”

Kevil stumbled over its words. However, Sungyoon didn’t plan on conversing with it. He didn’t want to give Kevil the chance to recover from its injuries.

“You said I was here to buy some time? You were wrong. I promised I would kill you with my hands when the opportunity presents itself.”

Sungyoon had made that promise at the location where Kevil had carried out that horrifying ritual. He had seen the pale corpse of a child who had been around the same age as his daughter. He had looked into the empty eyes of the dead child as he had made that promise.

“Die!”

There was no need for a long speech. The spear blade of the halberd headed toward Kevil’s head.

He pierced the head in one fell swoop.

There was a great deal of resistance, but Sungyoon just pushed hard to overcome it.

Kwah-jeek!

Kevil’s scales broke apart, and the spear blade pierced its head.

“Ggooh-uhhhhhhhhhhhhhk!”

Kevil screamed. This scream was clearly different from the screams before; this scream was a scream that signaled the end of its life.

Kevil flopped on the ground like a fish out of water.

‘I…!’

Not a single word that expressed its grief came out of its mouth. Kevil was unable to speak. It felt the life force that the exalted one had given to it leaving its body.

Kevil had to accept its situation.

It had to accept death.

It could see Sungyoon’s face as its vision blurred.

Sungyoon was cold and expressionless. His eyes were like glass marbles as he checked that Kevil was indeed dying.

He acted as if he were confirming the death of a bug he had squashed down.

This really hurt Kevil’s pride.

‘Whatever! You won for now!'

The fight in Kevil’s eyes had never dissipated.

‘However, I won’t die peacefully!’

Kevil valued its master above its pride, so it had to do this. Moreover, this would also wipe that look off of Sungyoon’s detestable face.

Hoooooooooohng!

The remaining energy within Kevil’s body went berserk, then surged into the surroundings.

“What!”

Sungyoon, who was standing atop Kevil, retreated a step. However, he once again stepped forward and repeatedly stabbed Kevil’s body with his halberd. 

“It's useless.”

Kevil squeezed all the strength in its body to speak.

“You win this fight. I admit it. However, don’t think you've won the war. Soon, the exalted being will come down here himself!”

Kwahhhhng!

Sungyoon’s hammer struck Kevil’s face, resulting in a large explosion. Kevil’s head retained some of its shape, but Kevil's face had been smashed to pieces.

Puhhhhhhhng!

Turning into dust, Kevil dispersed into the air. Finally, everyone could be sure that Kevil had died for real.

However, Sungyoon didn’t put his guard down. He waited with his weapons to see if anything unexpected happened. His party members did the same with tense expressions.

One minute passed... Five minutes passed... Ten minutes had passed, but nothing had occurred.

Sungyoon lowered his weapons.

“Kevil's really dead.”

Sungyoon turned around and spoke to his comrades. The tension left their bodies in a flash, and cheers replaced it. An unbridled joy erupted within them as they ran toward Sungyoon.

Grace and Emily hugged Sungyoon, while Tim pounded his shoulder.

The monster that had been the greatest threat to Earth had fallen to Sungyoon's hands.

It was a reason for celebration. A smile on Sungyoon’s lips expressed his joy.

However...

‘What did its last words meant?’

Kevil had put some teeth into speaking those words. Or was it merely words Kevil uttered in desperation in its death throes?

The words stuck in Sungyoon's throat like a fishbone even as he felt joy.

***

Soon after Kevil’s death, the Connectors mobilized to help Sungyoon started arriving one by one. All of them were shocked by the news that the powerful Kevil was dead. However, their shock only lasted a moment before they started praising Sungyoon.

However, not all of them congratulated him.

“You did everything by yourself!”

Bruce grumbled. He looked miffed.

Russell, who had been praising Sungyoon with pride in his voice, turned to glare at Bruce.

“Act your age! Don’t get jealous because someone younger than you distinguished himself! Who cares who killed it! You know that we had to kill that monster as soon as possible! When will you finally grow up?”

“I wanted to kill this bastard!”

Bruce kicked the location where Kevil had died. Until now, Bruce had been speaking in a half-joking manner, but in a flash, he turned dead serious.

“I wanted to beat and rip apart the bastard that had carried out those horrible atrocities!”

His voice was full of killing intent.

This time, Russell didn’t comment. He felt the same way and could understand Bruce's emotions. However, this serious mood didn't take more than a second to go away.

“Well, we should stop airing our private complaints like this.”

Bruce’s killing intent instantly disappeared. He walked up to Sungyoon and raised his thumb.

“You did really good, Knight! You made your nickname proud with this deed!”

His hearty laughter rang out, and the tense atmosphere dissipated in a flash.

It didn’t matter what Kevil’s last words meant. It was a worry for another time. For now, Sungyoon decided to celebrate with the others.

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