“This is absurd…!”
Krono’s owner, Ian’s voice trembled.
He was the most powerful swordsman on the continent. Naturally, his concept of aura operation was also the best. Moreover, his ‘Sensory Awakening’ was the field in which Ian was the most confident.
Of course, he didn’t always use his five senses, but even so, his senses were different from that of others.
Moreover, since he had heard about the news of the Devil, he had been extremely vigilant since then.
‘It deceived my senses and created such a large field of magi?’
A being which could deceive his senses and fill the entire lake with such disgusting magi couldn’t be a demon, so it had to be a Devil.
He had never experienced it in his life, but from the experience he had accumulated till then, and from the history he had heard, it had instilled confidence in him.
What was incomprehensible for him, however, was that the appearance of such a being hadn’t been noticed until now.
He couldn’t understand it.
But it already happened.
Ian, feeling the sweat dripping from his hands, clenched his fist and moved.
He was thinking of approaching the veil of darkness and grasping the situation from there.
‘There is nothing wrong with my senses. I can feel everything else clearly.’
‘What the hell did it use? The chances of it being a demon were too low, so the fact that a Devil which was born in another dimension, has finally come out of its den… and I couldn’t feel it?’
‘I thought I would be fighting a devil sooner or later, but for it to happen right before the request from Avilius…’
‘Was my disciple’s party still in there?’
Numerous thoughts bombarded his mind.
That last thought shook his mind. Taking a moment to rest, he moved, still worried about his disciple.
‘No, I need to calm down. Nothing has been confirmed yet.’
As Ian caught his breath and kept telling himself to calm down, the optimal body condition was created, and all preparations were made to fight a devil.
Finding his calmness, he looked ahead.
At the veil, no, the barrier before him.
Ian raised his power the best he could.
A formidable amount of aura flowed through his body and through the sword’s blade.
The energy from his body and sword, soared to the sky, higher than when he was fighting with Khun, and then condensed itself into an Aura Blade of 2 meters.
A momentum that no one on the continent could block was flowing through Ian’s body.
There was no sound of something cutting through the air.
As if time itself had been cut, Ian, who slashed the sword down at a speed no one could comprehend, looked at the dark barrier.
A muffled groan from his mouth.
“We couldn’t do it either.”
He looked back.
It was Kirill and Lulu who were approaching him. He felt relieved for a moment but then turned stiff, realizing that only two of them could be seen and not Airn.
And he said,
“Explain the situation to me.”
“I can’t explain it for sure. It is the first time that Lulu and I have witnessed this phenomenon… however, from what we know… this is sorcery.”
“Yes. It is a barrier created by my brother… a world no one can enter nor break.”1
“… is it the same as the barrier which he created a few years ago?”
Ian asked with a serious expression.
Shaking her head, Kirill answered.
“It is not. As you can see…. This barrier isn’t made solely by sorcery, but there is also magi, that incredibly dark energy, mixed with it… I don’t know, but the ancient devil must have, huh huh, had this much power?”
Ian quickly approached Kirill, who was trembling, and used his aura to comfort her.
He used the spirit of fire from the Durkali tribe to drive away the fear inside her.
“Thank you. Oh, don’t worry about people near the lake. I’ve moved them to a distant place…”
“Right, that is great.”
“Anyway, the explanation for such a thing… It is perhaps because of my brother’s strong desire… But it seems that the devil intervened somewhere. And thus a bizarre space that is hard to consider as purely sorcery and hard to consider as something like a contract with the devil was created…”
“We think that this is what this veil is, both I and Lulu.”
“… you are remarkably calm. Ah, I didn’t mean to demean your emotions, so don’t get me wrong.”
Ian said right away.
This wasn’t a good situation, and he knew that this child in front of him knew it better than anyone. This was probably hurting her. For all he knew, this child would want some time to sit down and cry, yet she was enduring it.
Fortunately, Kirill seemed calm.
She shook her head and answered.
“It isn’t a big deal.”
“Then, I am glad, but….”
“Because my brother will not lose to something like a devil.”
Kirill said in a confident voice.
Although the time they spent together was short compared to the years that they had lived, she had seen her brother overcome many things.
He completely overcame the trauma of his childhood.
He stood proudly in front of those who ignored him. He performed better than anyone in the Demon Subjugation.
The terrible and powerful demons, which people had only heard of, were expelled by him.
And that wasn’t the end. Recently, he had shown her a reliable appearance that was too shocking for her.
Recalling that, she smiled and said.
“My brother will come. He will break out of it with his own powers as if nothing happened.”
“Of course, it isn’t like I can’t worry, but…”
He knew immediately what Kirill was talking about. He was worried about the time it would take Airn to break the barrier.
However, he wasn’t too scared. Unsurprisingly, there was a small part of his heart that believed in Airn completely.
After seeing Ian, Lulu soared high into the sky.
Lulu, who was now flying above the barrier, tried to look into it.
But she couldn’t see anything, and it was true darkness all around.
However, the black cat’s eyes were shining as if she could see inside.
“I feel it.”
“… you see Airn?”
“No, Airn can’t be seen, but I can feel it. To be precise…”
Lulu paused for a moment and said.
“I can feel the energy from the necklace Airn is wearing, the five spirits necklace.”
“Surprisingly, when I think about that necklace, I feel like there is nothing to worry about.”
A statement with no basis at all, and it was a statement that would infuriate someone if they heard such a thing.
But neither Kirill nor Ian said anything against it.
They believed it.
A strong desire was formed in the eyes of the three beings who looked at the dark place.
It was dark.
Airn, who had been meditating, stood up and looked around. And then he looked up.
It was dark everywhere, and not a single ray of light was coming in.
Feeling strange, he looked around with his heightened senses. But he still felt nothing.
Even his sister, who was near him not too long ago, couldn’t be felt. And Lulu, who was constantly close to him and trying to groom herself, was nowhere to be felt either.
Everyone had disappeared.
He thought something unusual had happened, and that was when raindrops fell from above.
The rain, which had just been a drizzle at the start, had now turned into a huge downpour.
Airn’s gaze reached down.
As if there was going to be a flood because of all the rain, the water in the lake slowly started increasing.
‘I can’t stay here any longer.’
His mind was feeling fuzzy.
Airn shook his head and ran.
For now, he had to get out of this place, but even after running for a long time, the darkness hadn’t changed. And it was the same with the rain.
Even more absurd was that he couldn’t get away from the lake no matter how much he traveled.
Airn summoned his great sword.
He closed his eyes and concentrated and then remembered the image of Ian cutting the water.
He felt that this was something that was harder to cut than anything else.
It was more difficult than rocks, steel, and even mountains; he pictured the figure of Ian trying to cut water!
Recalling that, he opened his eyes and lowered his sword.
The golden aura sword which suddenly appeared broke the surface of the water.
The water splashed upwards so high that it was difficult to know if it was the rain or the lake water. It was such amazing power.
But it was then…
Airn, who failed to cut it like he wanted, raised his sword again.
“It is okay. I will just keep doing it until I succeed.”
He remembered his past.
Airn had faced many adversities, trials, and difficulties so far, but in the end, he preserved.
He never gave up, and he always achieved what he wanted, and as a result, a stronger self was reborn.
It would be the same this time. Eventually, he would win.
Only if he could realize the sword of water;
And only if he could learn the swordsmanship which cuts water;
Could he get away from this strange, unpleasant space.
It was the moment when Airn Pareira, who understood this, was about to swing his sword again.
“Is that so? But will you be able to do it?”
It was a voice from behind.
Shocked, Airn turned back. How could he not feel someone this close to him?
He was on high alert, but it seemed like the constant rain was meant to interfere with his senses.
The doubt, of course, was answered as he turned to face the one who had appeared behind him.
There was no need to think anymore.
Seeing his opponent, he grunted.
“… the clown devil.”
“Haha, how did you know? My appearance is different from back then! Aww, is it because of the mask?”
The clown took off the mask and smiled.
It was a terrible face behind the mask. As the flesh had been torn off, the bones on the face could be seen, and there was blood and pus flowing down from the wounded face.
And the blood which flowed down soon mixed into the water on the ground and spread to where Airn was standing.
With a stiff expression, he widened the distance between them. However, he couldn’t avoid it.
It was the moment Airn was about to speak; he felt the malice energy spread throughout the space.
“Look here. Don’t put on such a grumpy face! I am here to help you out.”
“Ahh? Are you unable to believe me? It is fine, because it is actually a lie. But in the end, it is almost the same as helping you. As you know, to get out of this place, even your swordsmanship can’t help you. So…”
“… you know what you need to do. What you should be cutting down. It should be this thing… If you do that, then you can get out of this stinky, damp, and unpleasant space.”
And what if he couldn’t?
Could he search this place and do anything else?
The clown devil burst into laughter.
Inside Airn was a wave of emotions, which were surging.
Airn Pareira’s sword let out a long sound. As a result, a golden flame which burned the darkness covered the sword.
It was the very sword that made the great clown devil nervous.
No, that wasn’t it. It was the teachings from Ignet which made the sword seem stronger now.
However, even such a powerful aura sword couldn’t defeat the clown devil.
He slashed his swords downwards, to the surface of the water, and only the water splashed up.
And the devil was back in a perfect form.
He took off the mask and smiled again.
“No, you can’t do it, my friend. Sadly, you can’t kill me. At least here, no matter how powerful the flame you wield is, you can’t harm me. This is a betting place where your wishes and my malice meet. It’s definitely not a place where one side can unilaterally take over and press over the other.”
“A betting place?”
“Yes, you must be feeling it to some extent. No matter how great I am, I accept that I am not someone who can force a guy like you to listen to me, even to the end.”
“I want to kill you.”
The clown devil said.
The atmosphere was completely different from before.
With stern eyes and fierce malice, he continued to speak.
“I don’t want to just kill you. I want to savor doing it for a long time, and I want to see you die in pain, desperately, to see you suffering in agony, unable to get what you want. So, the bet that I made in this place is that you won’t get the swordsmanship you aim for. And my reward, as I said, is your painful death.”
‘Is that so? So I bet on the other side even without my knowledge?’
Airn nodded his head.
No, he understood. About why he had come here, and why he couldn’t hurt the clown devil.
That was because it wasn’t about betting.
But in order to put an end to him, he had to win this bet first. Only after fulfilling his desire to cut the water, could he move to the future.
Thinking that far, he frowned.
‘It seems a little unreasonable, but…’
If he could win the bet, he would get the sword that cuts through water.
But in order to win the bet, he would have to learn the sword.
What kind of nonsense was that?
But he had no way.
He didn’t like this situation, but in the end, he was involved in the bet.
There was no room for thinking except if it strengthened his aspirations.
Airn nodded towards the clown.
“I get it.”
“Great. Then try your best, my friend!”
After saluting, the clown turned into water and disappeared.
Airn exhaled as he looked at the water, which had turned more ominous than before.
‘It is fine. Let’s not worry about it.’
Just like he couldn’t harm the devil, the devil couldn’t harm him either. In other words, all he had to do was focus on his training.
And training was what Airn was the most confident in.
Slowly, closing his eyes, he concentrated his mind to cut the water again.
This "barrier" literally just withstood a full-out attack from the continent's most powerful swordsman. ↩️
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