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Chapter 325 - The Night that Swallowed the Sun (1)

    Chapter 325 - The Night that Swallowed the Sun (1)

    As the leaders of both sides confronted each other, a terrible phenomenon was occurring on the border.

    A fraction of Nídhöggur's power was rising up!

    The power coming from the land of the dead wasn't enough to strengthen Jerem and the Four Horsemen, but it was sucked into the bodies of the undead army. It was poisonous mana to normal life, but there was no better energy for the undead.

    Animate Dead, the basic and ultimate spell for necromancers, was cast with the power of a dragon's breath.

    Kuoooooh!

    The shattered armor reformed, and the restored doom knights roared. The holes which the arrows had made in the bodies of the undead were filled up, and the lich that had turned to ashes were returned to their prime. Close to half of the undead that had been wiped out in the preemptive attack were resurrected, making it literally a nightmare.

    Dominance in the battle increasingly tilted to one side. The rocks thrown by the ents and the arrows from the archers lost their strength against the undead army.

    'I never imagined this. How should I respond?'

    A few kilometers behind the front lines, Titania observed the ghastly phenomenon through Geros' eyes. Should she use the Hurricane Bow to cut off that flow? No, it was pointless. There were only three uses remaining. It was impractical to waste it on ordinary undead.

    Titania calmed her confused mind as she looked at Theodore's back.

    "...Teacher."

    She didn't know why, but she couldn't help mumbling that as she recalled faded memories.

    Myrdal Herseim, a person in human form who wasn't a human-he was the sage who had rescued Titania during her childhood and given her unfathomable teachings before disappearing. The only thing of resemblance was the blue eyes, but Theodore reminded her of Myrdal. Titania felt a vague sense of trust in Theodore.

    At that moment, a thunderous voice rang out from the sky, [Don't be afraid!]

    Theodore was using magic to make his voice ring out through the battlefield.

    Realizing the effect Nídhöggur's presence was having in the battle, Theodore encouraged Elvenheim, [This evil dragon is an uninvited guest to this material world! He can only stay for a short time if he uses his power like this! Our resistance right now isn't futile!]

    Theodore had experienced war several times and knew, that putting aside the undead, fear alone could break down the power of an army. If their attacks didn't work and the enemy didn't fall, the lowered morale could become toxic. However, Theodore intervened in a timely fashion. The revival of the undead made the elves step back, but they were no longer afraid.

    "Pull your bowstrings! If it doesn't work with one arrow, fire ten arrows!"

    "Our benefactor is watching! Don't show an ugly side!"

    "Don't back down from the rotten bodies! We are the descendants of the Arv!"

    Silver arrows poured down, and the momentum of the rock showers crushed the undead after several attempts. The arrows Edwin fired and the spears Ellaim threw stopped the wave of dead bodies for a while. In addition to them, two other guardians made an effort to chop up the undead like fallen leaves.

    Lastly, Elvenheim had one more trump card.

    Kukukukukung...

    The earth rose. No, an enormous amount of earth moved, giving that impression. Hands? Feet? The earth built itself into a mass weapon that was several hundred tons. The earth shook as the mountain of dirt fell on top of the undead. Unlike the usual shocks, it was a blow that shattered their immortality!

    This was the earth elemental ruler, Nohengrin. Using the greatest power that the high elves could exert in the Great Forest, an elemental ruler was summoned. Titania was handling Geros, while four high elves were finishing the summoning of Hraesvelgr.

    There was only one high elf who could call Nohengrin.

    -Ellenoa, you...?

    -I was only recently successful, Titania, Ellenoa said embarrassedly after summoning the elemental ruler.

    It was with the aid of Ratatoskr and the world tree, but the result was still amazing. Summoning an elemental ruler after only being in Elvenheim for 10 years...? According to Titania's memories, none of the high elves had become accustomed to the world tree's power so fast.

    'Maybe the power of love really exists.'

    Titania laughed at the thought.

    "...It is time to start."

    As the two sides struggled on the ground, the atmosphere in the sky was changing. Red robes and black robes...

    Titania looked at the six shadows and gripped her bow more strongly. The wind moved around her tense body as she prepared to fire at any time.

    *     *     *

    "A last-ditch effort," Jerem dismissed his actions after the battlefield was re-energized by Theodore's cry.

    However, the discomfort on Jerem's face proved that Theodore's words weren't wrong. Nídhöggur's summoning was incomplete until the world tree was consumed. Therefore, his power shouldn't have been used in this way. Jerem needed to overcome this battlefield as soon as possible.

    "A last-ditch effort, doesn't that apply to you?" Theodore said with a cold laugh.

    "Cheeky fellow, feeling confident just because of one blow."

    "That isn't the case. Last I checked, isn't it two blows? Well, you probably don't have any brain cells left after dying."

    "...You." Darkness moved around Jerem's body. It was evident that Theodore's taunts were working properly.

    The Four Horsemen read their master's mood and came forward, while Veronica sent out an intense heat as she prepared for battle. It was an atmosphere where a fight could start at any time. There was nothing more suitable than the term 'flashpoint.'

    The two magicians talked through their contract.

    'I will play with Jerem.'

    'The other three are mine?'

    'Don't be careless. They aren't easy.'

    'I know that much.'

    At that moment...

    "Four Horsemen," Jerem gave a command in a furious voice, "Deal with that young man. Don't kill him. Bring his flesh before me."

    "As Your Majesty wills."

    Unlike Theodore, Jerem planned to use his subordinates to deal with Theodore. He didn't doubt that the two magicians would intervene in the decision, so Jerem stretched out both hands. It was clearly to cast a spell. As the two magicians reflexively responded, waves of darkness surged from all over the place.

    'This...?' Theodore's five senses disappeared. No, it was the distinctive dizziness of space magic.

    Theodore's eyes widened. 'Space disassembly!'

    It was different from space movement which moved to a desired location or spatial distortion that interfered with the existing space. This was a special magic which scattered the targets with no specific coordinates. A magician with great ability could interfere with it. However, it was a trick that Theodore hadn't thought about, and as such, he responded too late.

    As soon as the darkness was lifted, Theodore asked through Ratatoskr, 'Titania, can you still see me and Veronica?'

    -...Veronica and Leader are still in the same place. The other three moved with you. Titania was cold like a hunter.

    However, thanks to Titania's reply, Theodore could sort out the situation quickly and said, "Your master used you to grab my ankles."

    White Knight Hipatia, Red Knight Elohim and Black Knight Delos-three of the Four Horsemen faced Theodore. Theodore watched the three knights in front of him and grasped his position. He was 13 kilometers away from the battlefield.

    'I can use the lightning magic to rejoin them, but...'

    It would just return to the original situation. If the difference between enemies wasn't large, he couldn't win by pursuing safety. He had to know the enemy's intentions and use power to beat the trick. Thus, Theodore didn't run away and laughed instead. Each of the Four Horsemen was a top-grade undead, and only top-level masters were capable of going against them.

    "You and your master are too slow to grasp the situation."

    "What?" The three people surrounding him were convinced of their superiority, so they made ridiculing expressions.

    Nevertheless, the mocking on Theodore's face was still intact. "Don't you understand? The three of you can't block me."

    He took a step towards the undead. "I will go back after cleaning up all of you. I believe in Veronica's strength, but it is too much on her own."

    "...Speaking nonsense, human!" Finally, the red knight lost patience and aimed sharp claws at Theodore.

    The claws of a vampire could split apart even mithril.

    A vampire became stronger the more blood and magic power were consumed. After gaining power from the war in the north, the red knight had become several times more powerful than before. Following the fight with Invidia, he was now the most powerful among the Four Horsemen.

    Elder vampire-in some legends, it was the highest ranking undead that flew through the wall of sound.

    Peeeeeong!

    The red knight reached Theodore in just three steps, but Theodore wasn't too late to react to that amazing speed.

    Forward Facing Array-the perfectly restored version exerted its power after centuries. Based on the grimoire, 'Baopuzi,' the technique that drove out evil was unfolded in the hands of a master.

    "Keok?" The elder vampire came to an abrupt stop.

    Blood suddenly poured from Red Knight Elohim's mouth as he paused in midair. It was ridiculously powerful binding magic. His speed slowed down to 0, and the binding magic didn't allow his body to struggle at all. Theodore didn't miss this moment in which the red knight was wide open.

    Memorize.

    Three Slots Open.

    Trident of Keraunos.

    Three lightning spears were combined into one, forming a trident. The 7th circle magic that was compressed into one place evaporated the air around it. The brow, the neck, and the heart-the 150-foot-long thunder trident aimed for three of the weakest points on the red knight's body.

    Kwarururung!

    Magicians might not show any interest, but in the East Continent, it was long believed that lightning was God's judgment and had the power to destroy wickedness. Fighting for what was right against evil-it was the foundation of a few shamans, and that strength now lay in Theodore's thunder trident.

    "―――?! ――!!? ―――!?!" The red knight couldn't even scream. Elohim's vocal cords had already been burned away as he started to boil up, turning into a puddle of pure blood. If this continued, it would be the destruction of the highest ranking undead!

    Kieeeeeeek-! At this moment, White Knight Hipatia let out a scream that attacked Theodore's spirit. Of course, it didn't last long. However, this interference was enough for the red knight to escape from the thunder.

    During this half a second gap, dozens of black magic power strands emerged from the black knight's staff. It wasn't complete like Jerem, but this was the 8th circle dark lich, an incarnation of evil that could kill a thousand people with a single word.

    In an instant, eight curses bound Theodore-decay, erosion, poison, confusion, silence, darkness, binding, and pain. It was better to commit suicide than be cursed like this, but Theodore's cast magic power and strength from his left hand fought against it.

    Even so, a few seconds of paralysis was inevitable. Theodore's movements stopped for a moment, and Hipatia quickly moved in front of him.

    [I will help you become comfortable. You are the king.] It was a soft and kind voice, but Theodore wasn't deceived.

    Hipatia was the highest ranking ghost type, a terror wight that could destroy an estate with one scream. Furthermore, the scariest thing about undead ghost types was that they could directly interfere or injure the soul. Even if Theodore's magic power increased several times, he didn't have the ability to fight against it.

    "S-orry... but," Theodore barely managed to move his lips, "No, thanks."

    [Huh?] As Hipatia made a bemused expression, an eerie noise was heard.

    Puk!

    There was the smell of blood.

    [...E-h?] Hipatia's face distorted with pain.

    The man in Theodore's right hand wasn't affected by the black knight's curses, and Soul Calibre rose from Theodore's right hand, piercing Hipatia's heart. The great hero contained in Umbra, Reynolds Spencer, pitied the slender woman as he stabbed her and murmured in a profound voice, [Sleep well and atone, nameless lady.]

    Simultaneously, White Knight Hipatia shattered like glass.
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