Annelotte was pushed to the ground by Leguna. Her mind blurred once more as she raised the dagger in her right hand and sent it piercing down at him.
The sound of metal clashing rang out. Annelotte's dagger rammed into his impetus armor.
He was no fool. While he had protected her, he could tell that something was off with her, so he had been wary of her movements. He formed the piece of armor to defend himself when he saw her raise her hand.
While shadow impetus armor wouldn't serve as absolute defense against warriors, it would be enough to take the attack from someone on the level of a low-order warrior like her.
He flipped back up to a standing position and spun her around. When she snapped out of it, she was around a meter behind him.
He acted right after he stabilized himself, drawing Lighteater from his dimensional pocket and using Gahrona's help with Shadowedge to form a shadow cage for Annelotte in two short seconds.
"Deal with your problem first! I'll protect you in the meantime!" he said as he looked around alertly.
The cage he made for her was actually protection. The both of them knew that something was off with her and he didn't dare to approach her to be attacked all of a sudden from time to time. So, he restrained her with the cage in hopes that she would solve her problem herself.
The wound he suffered on his shoulders was also proof that there was someone else apart of the two of them there. That cage would be able to take some hits to protect her. However, her safety was still mostly in his hands.
When she understood his intentions, she didn't waste a single second and sat down cross-legged to begin her meditation. Based on how her mind blurred in those two instances, it seemed like her diatagi had been affected. It was a mind-control-type spell, but its effect was so bad that she was surprised by it. If she had time to prepare, she could use three or four methods to control a powerful high-order magus with similar enthymema to hers. Yet, all the assailant was able to do was to make her temporarily confused. It was clear that he wasn't adept at the method of control yet.
Annelotte decided that meditating to shake the control off would be the best thing to do. She could also use her powerful enthymema to investigate her diatagi. As long as she located the problem, she would be able to stop her mind from being interrupted.
"Teacher, since you didn't get your way, why don't you come out to meet me openly?" Leguna asked. He pressed his right hand on the wound on his left shoulder. While he couldn't use Shadowedge to form a whip-like Gahrona could, he could still use it to make a few fine lines to seal his wound.
The assailant didn't speak as if he didn't exist at all. Nothing but the sounds of distant birds could be heard in the silent forest.
"Since you're doing so, you must be underestimating me." He tossed out a shadow dagger and caused something in the distance to move. "I'm a shadow dancer. The darkness is like a part of my body."
The moment he spoke, eight Wave Blades shot at Annelotte from all directions silently. While they didn't make the slightest sound, he didn't doubt their lethality.
When he found out that the target of the attacks was Annelotte, a savage look flashed across his eyes. His body vaporized into thick black smoke and a short 0.2 seconds later, his figure appeared blurrily in the forest for eight times, one for each Wave Blade he managed to block.
When he reappeared, his face was covered with dark lines looking like spider webs. It appeared that he had used Host of Darkness to the eighth stage to block that attack. Giving his body to the shadows temporarily afforded him the power just slightly shy of a saint. His eyes were entirely black from the boost granted by the shadow and he could see everything in the darkness. He slashed and sent out a wave with Lighteater. "Don't hide pointlessly any longer!"
A figure stepped out from the shadows and easily avoided the ranged slash. He didn't play any tricks either and merely stood there relaxedly. The pale moonlight shone through the gaps in the leaves and illuminated Wayerliss's beautiful, but garishly scarred face. Unlike before, however, he appeared to only have his right arm.
"Long time no see, Ley." He smiled, but there was a look of doubt in his eyes.
"Who are you?" He wasn't the slightest bit moved by his friendliness. He now held Ebony in his left hand and got into full battle preparations, standing between Wayerliss and Annelotte.
"I'm your teacher. Have you forgotten my aura after not meeting me for so long? That was only a minor test. Why are you so nervous?" he said with a casual shrug. It was true that he did attack Leguna, but the attacks did seem to be mere tests, though there were a few instances where he almost died.
"Are you testing Annie too?" Leguna asked, lowering his guard.
"Of course. I've discussed this with Annie beforehand. That's why I got her to ask you to come," he said, putting his weapons away and approaching him.
"Teacher, did you know?" Leguna said with furrowed brows, "Sometimes, your tests can be a little…"
A killing glare flashed across Wayerliss's eyes.
"Sinister!" Leguna swung his sword as he mouthed the last word, tensing his relaxed body up in an instant. If Marolyt had to face it without putting up his guard, he would've fallen for it. But Wayerliss obviously came prepared. He put some distance between himself and his pupil the moment he felt the sudden killing intent.
"Aren't you pretty sinister yourself, Ley?" Wayerliss began to blur, but he didn't disappear completely.
"Tch!" He clicked his tongue in disappointment. "Stop pretending. I knew about your goals long ago."
"Oh?" His figure appeared clear once more. "Let's hear it."
"Gifts," he said with a voice of disgust. It was true that his gift had given him much power and status. He and Annelotte were the targets of countless people's envy. Even the imperial prince, Alissanda, got antagonized by his own elder brother because of his gift.
It was a power that wasn't chosen, but chose others. It was both a blessing and a curse.
"The reason you trained me and forced me to realize my potential in desperate situations wasn't because you wanted a successor."
"Why would you think so?"
"One obvious thing: you're an elf and I'm human, not to mention, you're already in the saint realm. Your body has undergone a fundamental change and you'll definitely outlive me. That's why--." He raised his hand and formed a cross with Shadowedge in his palm. "--This power is what you want, right?"
"Is that all?" Wayerliss didn't acknowledge or deny what he said.
"Tea-- Wayerliss… I admit that I'm far from being your match when it comes to scheming. But I'm no fool that only gets pushed around. That's why, I began investigating you after taking over the bureau."
"So? What did you find out?" he asked nonchalantly.
"I found out about many interesting things… such as… how your mother is a half elf and your father is Elder Eiron from the elven settlement in Nightsong Forest."Previous Chapter Next Chapter