The enemies were probably very confident due to yesterday’s victory and were slowly advancing, expecting to win easily.
“Is their speed reduced because they are escorting the an offspring of the World’s Roots? Gnoss, it’s perhaps just as you expected, they are transplanting a young bud and want to use the nectar here to provide for it.”
‘Although it isn’t certain, there are very few explanations as to why a dragon would choose to march so slowly. They may indeed be escorting the World Root’s offspring to the Pit.
The entire Elves army was advancing steadily with the Elder dragon in tow. All their actions screamed of them trying to protect something precious. My next move was going to be completely crazy, but hopefully one that they wouldn’t expect. I had no choice to send my minions away and to try this risky gambit of mine. Even if I were to die I could resurrect, but the same wasn’t true for my subordinates. From now on I will be the invisible arrow which strikes the enemy’s heart.
‘Time to begin my counter attack!’
I hid myself perfectly before the enemy commenced their assault.
I quickly passed the through the Elves and dragons, but no one noticed my presence. I had arrived just behind Noradriana and found a colorful carriage, slowly and ceremoniously advancing.
‘Is that it?’
If activated, Noradriana’s spell could nullify all magic, but it wasn’t possible for her to stop me from physically interfering. The carriage wasn’t as well guarded as I had expected. Perhaps no one considered that anyone would be crazy enough to attack it under the Elder dragon’s watch. With a combination of Levitation and Invisibility, I approached the carriage soundlessly. Although I had yet to have been noticed, the danger of being spotted increased the longer I stayed here.
‘Gnoss, can you confirm that it’s an offspring of the World’s Root?’
‘Yea, that’s right.’
The buds before me were tiny in size, their names flashing in rainbow colours. I carefully reached out to grab them.
Noradriana had sensed something and stopped advancing. Likewise, all the elves turned around to stare at the carriage.
Without giving the green Elder dragon a chance to sing her magic nullifying spell, I hightailed it out of their as quickly as possible, taking the buds with me. She was closing in on my position. Although I was invisible, I couldn’t hide the green light emitted by the seeds.
Koo Woo Woo!
The Elves and dragons were left behind in the dust, only Noradriana could barely keep up with my teleporting speed, but she didn’t dare to use her Dragon’s Breath for fear of harming the young roots.
“Ha ha ha, continue to chase me!”
I was moving very fast with a series of quick and short teleport jumps. The sounds of the Elven troops could no longer be heard, so I looked back to see what was going on. My pursuers all moved at different speeds forming what appeared like a pyramid heading my way.
‘As expected, Kikiki’
I also noticed that Noradriana was struggling to catch up to me. It appears that through successive teleports I was slightly faster than the speed of sound.
‘Gnoss, how much time until Noradriana reaches my position?’
‘She’s about six kilometers out, so in about 30 seconds.’
‘Great, plenty of time.’
‘Allow me to give you the right incantation….’
‘In a second, I’m almost done there.’
I had travelled a significant distance, about 20 km away from my Pit. and was looking back at the dragons closing in on my position.
‘Ready! Use this spell!’
This had been my plan from the beginning, planting the buds away from my pit, and sealing them so they couldn’t be moved. That way Noradriana had no choice but to stay here and defend them.
I quickly used my Creation magic and followed Gnoss’ instructions.
[You have learned Special Sword Sealing Lv1]
I planted the the young offspring and pulled out a black sword. It was the same sword Nabe had used to seal me.
‘You just say ‘Seal’, it’s the trigger word to begin the spell.
I brutally stabbed the young roots with sword and a sort of darkness spread to the plant, as it hung to the side looking half dead.
‘Did I inadvertently kill it?’
‘No, the Sealing skill is quite cruel in the sense that you can trap a target indefinitely without it ever dying. Later, if it’s unsealed there is a chance of it dying, but we can’t allow that to happen now because then we wouldn’t be able to control Noradriana’s movements. Perhaps she would be punished for her failure, but that’s still uncertain and not something we can count on.’
‘Is there a chance that Lorina could come and retrieve it?
‘Maybe, but if they were to unseal the root, it is sure to die. I made some small modifications to the spell.’
‘Gnoss, do you perchance have a bad personality?’
‘Well…I have also suffered at their hands.’
Huu Woong Huooong
The green Elder dragon finally arrived to the scene of the crime.
“Ha ha ha, I’ve sealed the young plant here, so you have no choice but to stay here and protect it now!”
She looked at me without approaching too close, hatred pouring out of her eyes.
“King of the Undead, to you really think you have won with this little stunt of yours?”
I saw the four dragons approaching in the distance.
“Why? Are you curious what my intention is? The young offsprings are just a bit sick but they won’t die as long as they are sealed. That means that you are also forever bound to guard them here, just don’t try to pull out the sword or they might die! Ha ha ha, sorry I need to go back now and greet some unwelcome guest! Teleport! Teleport!….”
I was heading back to the Pit, while Noradriana tried to hit me with a lucky Breath. Of course I had expected her to attack as soon a I was no longer near her precious plants, so I was randomizing my teleports so as to not create a pattern.
“You bad guys, don’t you know it’s polite to knock when you enter another’s house?”
The Elves’ ground troops had suffered losses due to the numerous traps and pitfalls, whereas their airborne division had run in the almost invisible spider webs placed by the High-Arachnids and had been poisoned.
It was time to wrap up my plan, having successfully separated the dragons from the troops. I could finally collect all these free experience points and rush towards my next evolution.
“Meteor! Fireball! Volcano!….”
Spamming my wide array of spells, I proceeded to decimate their number, earning boundless experience.
[+3741 experience points]
[+7482 experience points]
[+14964 experience points]
[Level increased 664 ➢ 666]
[Level has reached Max]
[Evolution is now possible]
It was a beautiful message which I hadn’t seen for a very long time. I quickly opened up my Status page to look at my options despite being embroiled in battle with several angry Elves.
✧ Evolution Choice
[Demi-Lich] [Golden Dragon] [Golden Slime]
‘Gnoss, what’s a Demi-Lich?’
I asked telepathically while continuing to teleport and rain death upon them.
‘Is that truly the one that you want? It is a class filled with darkness and you become a foul monster. Although powerful, you will become evil incarnate and will be drawn to the dark side.’
‘What about it’s rank?’
‘It usually starts up at around B+, but it could go up to A depending on the levels. Still, try to ignore the rank…you would be the representation of death itself.
‘Is it certain that I’d fall to darkness?’
‘Johra, are you truly set on picking it?’
‘Do I have a choice? Would the Golden Dragon or Slime be helpful in this situation?’
‘Okay, but just promise me one thing.’
“Fireball! Meteor! Teleport!”
‘What is it? Haven’t I already made an oath to you?’
I was conversing with Gnoss while trying to kill as many Elves as possible. They were so numerous that despite their countless deaths, they had already advanced to the palace grounds.
‘Promise me that you will not succumb to the darkness. That you won’t become a envoy for evil and reign destruction upon the land.’
‘Why should I make this promise?’
‘Actually I had been holding on to some Divine Grace, if I were to give it to you it would give you some measure of resistance towards the darkness of a Demi-Lich. However, once I do hand it all over to you, I would become nothing more than an empty shell. That’s why I require your word on this.
‘Are you truly worried I’d fall to darkness?’
‘The sole existential purpose of a Demi-Lich is to bring about destruction. You will naturally harm all the living near you, and this bit of Divine Grace is the only way to prevent that from happening.
‘Fine, If you want it so much, I promise to not want to destroy the world.’
‘Great, and also don’t try to kill Noradriana. If you do Gaia will descend to this plane and take avenge her, and she isn’t an existence you can contend with. So keep that in mind and always be rational. Please repeat after me. Oakasa Mana Amata Pita San Manatama Room Nama Hase Tamara Samraya Avechi … ‘
I was fixed in place as Gnoss completed his complicated spell. Deep blue tendrils of lights were slowly seeping into my body. I was happy when the chanting finished, as I could finally take my revenge on the pesky Elves who had taken this opportunity to land several attacks on me.
[Acquired ｟Title: Protection from Darkness｠]
‘Is it over now Gnoss?’
There was no answer, the emerald green jewel had lost its lustre. The battle continued however, as I couldn’t wait for him to answer and was expecting the four dragons to arrive momentarily. I sprinkled the last nectar that I was carrying around on my belt and proceed with the Evolution on on my Status page.
[Evolution is complete]
[You have learned Aura of Terror Lv7]
[You have learned Greater Magic Dispel Lv1]
[You have learned Harm Lv1]
[You have learned Paralysis Stare Lv1]
[You have learned Energy Drain Lv1]
[You have learned Magic Immunity Lv1]
[You have learned Soul Seal Lv1]
[You have learned Turn Undead Lv1]
[You have learned Flight Lv1]
[You have learned Of Death Lv1]
[You have learned Astral Projection Lv1]
[You have learned Death God’s View Lv1]
[You have learned Frozen Immunity LvMax]
[You have learned Electric Immunity LvMax]
[You have learned Magic Jewel Creation Lv1]
[You have learned Undead Creation Lv1]
With a flash my golden body gained a pinkish hue, as I became a Demi-Lich. Immediately my visions changed dramatically, I was able to clearly separate living and nonliving forms due to being able to see their life force.
I locked eyes with a Elf nearby and reached out to touch him. Paralyzed by our eye contact, he was unable to escape and as soon as my hand reached him, he instantly turned to ashes. I did the same to all the Elves nearby and absorbed all their lifeforce.
[Harm level 3 ➢ 4]
“It’s a walking disaster!”
“He’s a Death God!”
“We can’t fight him, run away!”
The Elves who just moments ago had been rushing towards me, were now fleeing for their lives. It was a instinctual fear due to my Aura of Terror, as well as seeing their comrades turning to ashes with but a simple touch which caused them to flee in panic.
I continued to pursue them as I would paralyze them with but a single fleeting glance and then turn them to ashes. Perhaps this kind of death would even prevent them from being Resurrected.
They had soon escaped from the palace and climbed the cliff walls to return to the plains. Having lost all thoughts about attacking me, they were only focused on preserving their lives and no magic spells came my way. Still, even if they had tried to damage me, I could easily gain all the HP back through my Lifesteal.
Watching them escape I realized that it wouldn’t be interesting to chase them anymore.
‘They are just puny bugs to me now, I don’t even receive any experience points for killing them.’’
I could see the 4 dragons approaching me while Noradriana stayed behind to protect the young plant. There were no longer any elves in sight as they had either all died or run away. Their reserve armies were no longer approaching as they probably learned about my terrifying existence.
I willed myself to take to the air and my body rose naturally.
[Flight level 1 ➢ 2]
I was able to soar through the skies, unlike levitation which only allowed for me to hover.
“Cursed undead, you have truly become a wicked being!”
The dragons had arrived and kept about 100 meters distance from me while cursing my existence. They were perhaps wary of my newfound power and were taking the time to evaluate my abilities.
“Foolish dragons, you are digging your own graves!”
Without the presence of Noradiana, these four dragons were nothing but experience points in my eyes. I could simply reach out and grab the source of their life force which would prove fatal to them. As long as they didn’t attack me first I wasn’t even considering attacking them.
Since the moment I had become a Demi-Lich, my life felt very bland and filled with boredom.
“Hoooh Although I’m not confident if we can win, we have no choice but to go all out! If we don’t put an end to him now, he will be a plague upon this world!”
The red dragon roared to his sibling, I pondered on the fear I sensed in his voice. He wasn’t attacking me out of pride or arrogance, but for fear of his own life and I didn’t wish to kill someone that was simply acting out in self-defense. This was despite knowing that he would gladly end me if given the chance.
“Go, I will spare you but don’t make me regret it. You can gather the Elves’ bodies and take them to Noradriana to be resurrected, I don’t like them littering my lands.”
In end I was able to restrain my desire to kill, because of Gnoss’ last will which was for me not to fall into darkness. I sensed that if I were to kill the dragons right here and now, I would continue down a never ending path of slaughter.
“What are your intentions?”
The pale blue dragon asked suspiciously.
“I simply changed my mind, you can thank a kind friend of mine for your lives.”
Turning my back to them, I flew back to my observatory and looked down at my territory that had become a tomb for countless lives.
“I beautiful portrait of death, I shouldn’t have asked the dragons to remove the bodies.”
My only driver was the desire and love for death, and only the Title bestowed on me by Gnoss had allowed me to somewhat reign in the need for mass slaughter.
I were were to ignore the title and list it as inactive, I had no doubt that I would become a calamity for all living beings on the planet, just as Gnoss had feared. It was a temptation for pure power that was always lingering in my mind, but at least for the moment I still had some measure of free will.
The dragons were now removing the last of the dead bodies and I continued to stare at the battlefield well into the night.
The next day, the Elves who had survived as well as their reinforcements officially retreated.
The four dragons continued to monitor my movements from afar, staying in caves which were close by Noradriana’s position.
‘Is everything ok Johra? I was worried about you and wanted to know what’s going on but I didn’t want to interrupt you at a critical moment.’
‘Nothing to worry about Ian, the battle has been won, so you can tell the others they can return now.’
When I heard Ian’s cheerful response, I realised that despite winning the battle, it came at the price of my human emotions and wasn’t sure I liked the tradeoff.
“The reason Demi-Liches resort to violence and fall to darkness must be due to excessive boredom. Still, I feel like even if I were to destroy this world it wouldn’t cure my apathy.”
I stood in the midday sun, looking out into the fields and muttering to myself in a bored voice.
“Is there even any fun left?”
I felt a loss as to how to proceed until I thought about Lorina. I was able to motivate myself by thinking of all the terrible things I would do to hurt her as much as possible.