The forest, engulfed by the giant explosion, turned into a plain, leaving charred black marks. The land had collapsed immediately. It was pushed and piled against the edge of the barrier, turning the area into a basin.
I sent my thoughts to Tristan because the bisected ancient castle was among the things blown away by the explosion’s impact.
- Tristan, are you guys okay?
Then, I heard Tristan's startled thoughts come into my mind.
- Ah, is it Master? We’re okay over here. Moreover, what was that shaking just now? It was no joke.
- Don't worry. It's just a slight tremor from me trying to exorcise that weird queen.
- No, what kind of exorcism is that strong?! The Holy Queen is not dead, is she?
Tristan asked carefully, concerned about the safety of the last queen.
- She won’t die as long as the medium exists, so don't worry.
In fact, you should worry about me instead of the last queen. The Firefly’s Bright Annihilation was the result of combining the Dance of the Fireflies with magic. It had a minor reduction in power, but the rebound was significantly lowered. However, it did not completely remove the rebound. This spell didn’t leave me as close to death as the Dance of the Fireflies would have, but after this fight, I had to be prepared for the aftermath.
- What's the situation over there?
Tristan responded to my question in a dark voice.
- We are currently engaged in a battle with the gargoyles. We’re lucky that the lady brought by Master quickly found the medium’s mana, but it will take a little longer because more and more gargoyles appear as we approach it.
Tristan and Percival were fighting hard, and I could feel the mana being sucked away from the Miracle Crystal in my pocket space. I stroked the Holy Sword while examining the center of the explosion. Even if it had just been completely pulverized by the blast, the area would revive like the stone statues.
- Keuu! Master, I'm glad you brought that lady here. She just wiped out 100 gargoyles by herself with a single shot of the Holy Light!
At Tristan's admiration, I warned with a wry smile.
- Tell Hillis to save her mana as much as she can. If Hillis falters there, you guys won't be able to handle it.
Hillis's mana management was so important that it could be said that the party’s survival or total annihilation depends on her.
- All right, how's it going over there? I can hardly hear anything from outside.
- It's a lull now... No, we’re starting again.
Among the dust, I could start to see the last queen standing firmly with her clothes in tatters.
- I’m going back into battle, so I won’t be able to contact you.
Having said that, I unilaterally disconnected my thoughts from him. Then, I checked the remaining amount of mana I had.
"Hmm, it'll be a little close." I sighed and pulled out the Turtle Carrying a Mountain’s mana stone from my pocket space.
Thanks to the mana stone and the Miracle Crystal, my empty mana became almost full again. All right, this should be enough. I compacted and processed a mana stone the size of a child's upper body.
Kaduk! Kaduk! Kaduk!
The volume of the great demon’s mana stone became as small as a piece of candy, the noise of rocks grinding together sounding out.
"Ehew, it's a method I don't want to use because it puts my body under pressure, but what can I do?” I sighed and held the small compressed mana stone in my mouth.
I don't know how many months I would have to suffer if I swallowed it, so I just bit down and held onto it so I could spit it out at any time. And then I slowly began to suck the mana out of the great demon’s mana stone.
"Fusion Enlightenment, Mad Banquet."
I used the mana from the great demon’s mana stone to fill up my mana reservoir and promptly began casting magic. For comparison, if mana were electricity, then the mana stone would be the generator and the magic wand the transformer. Mana recovery potions were a much safer method, but immediate mana recovery was not possible, so I picked the next best option.
The last queen seemed exhausted from being beaten repeatedly as she cried out softly and supported herself by putting the greatsword into the ground.
"Now, let's start the second round." I put a lot of mana into the Holy Sword. Then, the Holy Sword produced a large blade.
The last queen and I rushed at each other. When I slashed at the last queen's throat, the last queen instinctively ducked and avoided it, unlike previously when she just ignored my attacks. The missed sword cut through the space behind the last queen.
While ducking down, the last queen had the greatsword swipe broadly towards my torso. I teleported above the last queen and slashed with the Holy Sword. The last queen used the momentum from swinging the greatsword to avoid the Holy Sword, and at the same time, she cut upwards at me while I was still airborne.
Is this also instinct? The swordsmanship that the last queen had acquired during her life seemed to appear instinctively.
The mana contained in the two swords created sparks as they collided. Even though the mana power in the collision was similar, I couldn't concentrate my power on the sword because I didn’t have a foothold, so I was pushed back in the struggle.
Being pushed away from the sword collision, I landed a small distance from the last queen, and I stomped my feet and rushed towards her. "Haap!"
Just before reaching the last queen, my shadows split from my body, and four phantoms distracted her sight. As the main body, I penetrated the last queen’s blind spot and stabbed the Holy Sword at the back, aiming for her heart.
The last queen, distracted by my phantoms, swung the greatsword and cut my phantoms in one fell swipe. However, as soon as the blade of the Holy Sword penetrated her back, I was able to see signs of despair on the last queen’s face, who had only shown instinctive reactions.
The last queen released a vast amount of mana from her whole body and blew me away. I clicked my tongue inwardly, brandished the Holy Sword, and sent a large stab to the last queen's back.
Blood spewed out from her back, and the last queen let out a painful scream. Yet, soon, the wound on her back healed.
Strange. As far as I knew, the Demon King had no blood. And above all, I couldn't see any glimmering black mana that was always there when the gargoyles were being restored. If the gargoyles regenerated by reversing time, the last queen’s healing method instead resembled Hillis’s divine power.
"What? She wasn’t completely taken over?"
Damn, if I were serious, she might have really died. For some reason, the angel-shaped gargoyles just took the hits no matter how much they were attacked, but the last queen seemed to block persistently.
"Hmm, so you can’t do complete restoration?" I spoke with a fresh smile, and the last queen seemed to shudder. I must have been mistaken because an animal that moves instinctively without reason couldn’t possibly understand me.
"Enlightenment, Cut the Clouds."
The last queen raised her greatsword to block my surprise kick, but I stepped on the greatsword instead. "Enlightenment, add weight!"
Then, I pressed down on the last queen. "Double gravity! Increase weight!"
The last queen knelt on one knee under the sudden massive increase in weight.
"Enlightenment, fall over!"
When my blow went over the greatsword, the last queen let out a bewildered voice. The last queen swung the greatsword widely and threw me off. Landing on the ground with a somersault, I poured mana into the flying chirps to use magic.
"Dube, Merik, Phecda! Three stars gather to block the front! Megrez, Alioth, Mizar! Six stars come together and embrace them! Alkaid! When the last star shines, the chain that connects the stars comes down and binds the darkness! Chain of Seven Stars!" Seven colors of light in the shape of chains poured out of the seven magic circles drawn in the sky, binding the last queen.
"...and God's punishment rings in the sky! The Spear of the Thunder God!"
"…to reach the end is to be destroyed for the sake of reincarnation! Constellation of Flames!"
"…and the dragon's breath burns up fiercely like the morning sun! Dragon Breath!"
The chirps moved quickly and created magic circles that filled the sky.
The last queen struggled to untie the chains that bound her, perhaps feeling the great magic that was about to befall her. However, as it was magic specifically made by Elder Mirpa to capture a great demon, it was ridiculously powerful. It even took my father ten minutes to break them, so there was no way a monster that couldn’t properly become a demon king could undo these durable chains.
I smiled and waved lightly. "Cheer up, don't die."
From the magic circles that filled the sky, the great magics that were fully realized without an incantation poured down toward the last queen.
The last queen screamed in pain, and the black mana was gradually cut away.
Oh wow, mana is really being sucked out!
If I had used this spell in my normal state, I would’ve become a mummy from lack of mana. It was really advantageous that I had the great demon’s mana stone. The Miracle Crystal, a relic of the Holy Tribe, contained so much mana that my body was not able to bear it even if strengthened with martial arts skills. The place where the great magic passed was sunken and blackened, and the last queen barely stood upright using the greatsword as a cane.
I called back the chirps and aimed the Holy Sword at her.
The queen cried low like a wounded animal.
"Yes, come! You beast who couldn’t become a demon king!"
At my cry, the last queen rushed at me. Now, I was slowly getting close to my limit. I responded to the queen's sword by infusing the Holy Sword with all the mana I had left.
The Holy Sword and the last queen’s greatsword collided, and a deafening boom rang out. The greatsword flew through the air, and the last queen collapsed slowly on her knees. The black mana surrounding the queen slowly faded, and her eyes became clear.
"…Ca, Caron…? I'm... sor...ry.…” The last queen fell, muttering something incomprehensible.
Considering that she came to her senses, it seemed the others succeeded in destroying the medium in the ancient castle.
"Ahh! It's over!"
The tension went away, and at the same time, I lost my strength. The Fireflies’ Bright Annihilation was released, and the golden mana that gently wrapped my whole body disappeared.
The aftereffects of the Fireflies’ Bright Annihilation scattered the mana from my whole body. In this state, it was appropriate to say that I was a perfectly ordinary person who could not use simple magic or sword aura.
Of course, it was temporary, and I would be restored in a week, so there was no need to worry. Considering that my Uncle Bloody used it for a very short time and almost lost his life, I almost felt sorry for the difference in the repercussions.
"If it's like this, it’ll be even hard to beat the Pushover.” As I sighed and began to approach the last queen to help her, the sky suddenly began to shake.
"What?! Why is the barrier about to collapse?"
Few people could make a barrier made by a great madosa like Aries shake like this. Eventually, the sky collapsed, and a familiar voice was heard. "You unsociable Curse Specialist bastard! How dare you put up a barrier in my courtyard! Where are you?!"
The main character behind the voice was the great elder of the Butterfly Tribe.
"Breaking it down like a brute! That's why people call you the Devil, you senile old man!"
And I heard a voice that I haven't heard in a while.
"Teacher-nim…?"Previous Chapter Next Chapter