The Will of the Common Folk
"Alfreid?! He's a… myth?" Leguna was completely floored at the levitating Alfreid. "Impossible! How could it be?! Myr said his diatagi had been completely wrecked! How could he still store any mana like that?!"
[If it really was wrecked, do you think he can still survive?] Nidhogg's voice rang, [During the experiment, his diatagi did indeed suffer heavy damage. However, it isn't completely destroyed like you said.]
[Why?] Leguna looked at Alfreid and began to feel despair and hopelessness all over again.
Nidhogg's mind was still fresh on the matter. After all, he had lost the love of his life then. [Actually, I only managed to investigate this later. The experiment back then… It actually succeeded. Alfreid did indeed receive her gift -- Photon Bomb.]
[Photon Bomb? What kind of gift was it?] Leguna asked. Even though it could be too late, he wanted to know every bit of information about the enemy.
[It can convert mana and store it in the form of sacred light as a projectile, which can be fired at a target to heal or harm them. The effect of that ability can be determined by the user,] Nidhogg described, before he sighed. [During that experiment, Nidhogg did manage to obtain that gift. The experiment even surprisingly caused some odd changes to occur in his diatagi. Ever since then, he was no longer able to obtain mana from meditation. However, his control of mana had increased fewfold. As such, nobody was able to detect the mana within him. However, he can use the latent mana in the surroundings through his expert control for spells. That's the biggest difference between him and other magi.]
[You know even that? What in the world are you planning?] Leguna didn't think Nidhogg would know so much about Alfreid. It was as if Annelotte's return as a myth-realm magus and Alfreid's trump card were within his predictions. What in the world could he be plotting?
[I want you to see this world for what it truly is.] That was the last thing he said before his voice ceased.
"Annie! Careful! Even though Alfreid doesn't have mana himself, he can use the mana in the surrounding environment for spells!" he gave a summarized description.
"Got it!" Annelotte herself was quite surprised at Alfreid's sudden appearance, but she remained calm. Leguna's explanation seemed to even relieve her. She could sense the mana in the surrounding environment, and through her calculations, she could tell that even if Alfreid could use more than 60 percent of the mana in the environment, he wouldn't be able to exceed the mana inside her own diatagi. Normally, it would already be rather impressive for a magus to be able to utilize up to 20 percent of the mana. Magic particles were rather sparse in the air and normal magi would find it hard to use them. Given the density of the magic particles, she could be certain that nobody would be able to completely use 60 percent of the mana, not even gods!
After making sure of that point, she ignored Alfreid and focused her attention on her calculations. She only needed five minutes to be able to come up with the solution to free Leguna.
The mana within the environment had been claimed by Alfreid for his own use. He used his gift to convert them all into several gigantic projectiles about a meter in length and 30 centimeters in diameter. They were lined up one after another neatly behind Alfreid, as if they were ready to fire at any moment.
"Go!" Alfreid pointed his finger and fired them like a machine gun. All the energy missiles shot towards her domain, causing it to glow with the light of destabilization.
"Cough!" Annelotte's face paled shockingly quickly as traces of blood flowed out from the corner of her mouth. The explosions of the energy bombs were terrifying. Had she nod immediately recovered the mana in her diatagi, her domain would've shattered from the shock.
"Annie!" Leguna cried at the sight.
"I'm fine." She calmly wiped her mouth. "I believe Alfreid can no longer use any spells. I'll be able to solve the formation soon and we can leave together."
Leguna looked up and saw that Alfreid was indeed not dictating any spells. Annelotte was right. The surrounding mana had been used up by Alfreid, and he was good as spent now. He breathed a sigh of relief and looked at her as she busied herself with her calculations. "Thank you, Annie."
"Is that still needed between us?" she replied, her eyes still on the numbers.
"Subjects of the empire, I need your help," Alfreid said just as Leguna let his guard down, still levitating in the air, "As you can see, our empire's warriors and magi aren't able to breach this witch's barrier. Now, we need to borrow your power."
"Lord Premier! We will support you and the empire, always! What do you need us to do?" some asked.
"I need you to give me the mana within your bodies. Even non-magi will have traces of mana in their bodies. While a single person's power isn't that impressive, when tens, hundreds, thousands and tens of thousands of insignificant bits of power band together, it will become an unstoppable force. Subjects of the empire, now, you are the true experts of this land, and I am in need of your aid. Let us show these two lofty devils who toy with your lives for fun see the will of the common folk! Focus your will and imagine the power in your bodies being drained by me! I will be able to sense it! I can use it! For the empire!" It seemed Alfreid's rhetorical skill didn't pale in comparison to Alissanda's at all.
"For the empire!" the commoners cried in unison.
"Not good! The mana in the air is being filled up again!" Annelotte finally panicked. It seemed that the situation was finally out of her control.
"Darn! Those foolish swine!" Leguna grit his teeth and tried to stand up. He could see the commoners raise both their hands in anger. Formless mana began to flow out of their body. Initially, the folk grew visibly weaker, but their expressions were filled with fervent hatred as they glared at Annelotte as if they couldn't bear to take a bite out of her flesh.
"This time, I'll see how you hold on." Alfreid once more utilized the mana in the air and formed an even larger bombs than before behind him. He stretched his finger out and the bombardment began anew.
"Darn it!" Leguna yelled. They were so close!
"Success!" Though pale, her eyes were filled with pure joy. She ignored her shuddering domain and bent down to infuse a trace of mana into the seals on the cuffs. "I found the solution. You'll be free in another minute!"
Crash! The moment she said so, her domain completely shattered. She vomited a large mouthful of blood.
"It's too bad you won't have that minute," Alfreid said as he stopped the explosions. There were four more bombs of light hovering behind him.Previous Chapter Next Chapter