Episode 28/Chapter 4: Great Attack (4)
Bracky was smashed away like a ragdoll. Harabal roared and threw his harpoon as Bracky feebly swung his left arm to reduce the impact of Bress’ strike.
The atmosphere of the battlefield had started to change once again.
Precisely speaking, there were notable differences in the movements of each side’s forces.
The fomoires spread out instead of rallying beside their king. It seemed they were also aiming for the steel structures.
This was no exception for Korga and the other strong fomoires. About half of them worked to save themselves instead of protecting their king.
Bress wasn’t displeased, however, as the warriors of Valhalla also had to spread out to deal with the dispersed fomoires.
Kalliv Castle had been the fomoires’ hidden stronghold. Despite the fomoires having spread to several places throughout Midgard, the ones living here still numbered in the thousands.
Meanwhile, the surviving Valkyries provided new orders for the warriors. Those of inferior rank were sent to impede the other fomoires, while the intermediate-ranked warriors rallied to challenge Bress. Very soon, almost every intermediate rank, excluding the ones facing Korga and the other stronger fomoires, had gathered before the King of the Fomoires.
Reginleif was slung over the back of an unknown warrior like a sack of potatoes. She’d been gritting her teeth ever since escaping the reach of Bress.
Her last strategy to seal Bress’ power had been a failure. Many warriors and Valkyries had already died by his hand, and she realized now that they’d underestimated his strength.
Although he’d only become the strongest after the true monsters had died during the Great War against Erin, Bress the Tyrant was still abnormally powerful among all living fomoires.
Reginleif craned her neck to stare at the sky again. She hoped in vain for Thor’s thunder to resound once more, but her wish was not granted.
They had to claim victory with their current forces.
Reginleif took a breath as she was let down. She drank a potion she had prepared for true emergencies and recovered much of her spent magic power. A moment when she’d need the runes’ power on the magic sword would come again. As a Valkyrie, she couldn’t keep looking on as her warriors sweated blood.
The seals of the runes in Bress’s body were glowing with myriads of different colors. They had to finish him before the seal lost strength, or the result would be disastrous.
The ever-present battle cries of the warriors increased in ferocity, and the intermediate-ranked warriors bellowed as they tore across the ground towards Bress.
Siri grabbed Tae Ho mid-air and then landed on the ground. Tae Ho had several deep scratches across his body, and he had lost consciousness despite having been protected by Idun’s blessing.
“It’s because of Lugh’s spear. It was an attack capable of even annihilating the dragon the king was riding on. We should be thankful that he merely lost consciousness.”
Merlin spoke poignantly as Siri laid Tae Ho down unto the ground. Isolated skirmishes were happening all around them, so it was to no one’s surprise that several fomoires had dashed over with killing intent in their eyes.
Siri glanced around before yelling. Adenmaha wasn’t far away. She’d been running towards Tae Ho ever since they’d crashed.
The rock serpent snaked behind Adenmaha like a stalwart defender. The pair gave off an aura strong enough that the fomoires didn’t dare approach, so the one who approached them was obviously different.
Adenmaha didn’t waste time after reaching them. She gritted her teeth and checked Tae Ho’s situation. Meanwhile, Siri eyes grew wide, and she hurriedly stood to raise her weapon.
He had followed Adenmaha. Merlin let out a howl and released his formidable magic while Siri tried to attack him at close range to prevent him from approaching. She ran facing Mordred and pulled the trigger in consecution.
Adenmaha didn’t even glance at Siri and focused entirely on Tae Ho. She quickly recited a chant for recovery magic and at the same time checked Tae Ho’s chest. It was to find the piece of golden apple she had heard about from Heda.
[Saga: The Arrow of the Witch Never Misses its Target]
[Saga: The Arrow of the Witch is like a Curse]
Siri’s bolts emanated the reddish black aura of a curse as they launched towards Mordred like streaks of mist. Mordred simply laughed and charged at the enchanted bolts. Instead of dodging or blocking them, Mordred just crushed them with his own power.
He looked at Tae Ho and cackled once more. He’d noticed the absence of Caliburn’s light, and he felt Camelot’s glory could now be his. Such was his logic that’d he made an enemy of Tae Ho. Mordred’s mentality had completely fallen apart over the fifteen days since their last meet. Even Clarent, the blade which sustained him, had abandoned him.
Still, so long as his heart beat, he was forever a Knight of the Round Table. A part of his mind was still analyzing the situation.
Merlin was certainly a great magician. He was a living legend that had established Camelot alongside King Arthur.
But he wasn’t a combatant. Rather than a battle magician, he was more of a sage. Opposite to the Knight of the Sun, Gawain, he was someone that grew stronger the deeper the night became and weaker as the moon set and high noon approached.
Finally, he was ruthless, a truth that Mordred knew all too well.
Mordred’s body blurred. He moved at a speed that far surpassed Siri’s expectations and then closed their distance faster than an eyeblink. He didn’t allow to Siri draw her sword before he surrounded her with his domain.
He could then feel Merlin’s hesitation, and he laughed and swung his sword. Mordred’s attack power had greatly diminished after losing the Treasure Sword, Clarent, but he’d still retained his swordsmanship. Siri tried to block his attacks with her crossbow but it was a futile gesture.
As he danced, Mordred cut Siri’s body to a bloody pulp, and dozens of sword strikes were quickly gouged through her flesh.
Elsewhere, there was another battle far above Midgard. Loki, who hovered outside of the Great Barrier, didn’t bother turning to look at the ground.
Even for Loki, a magical genius, stopping the mighty Thor was difficult. He wouldn’t be able to delay him for long.
But it was important task nevertheless. An event that couldn’t be rewritten would happen in that short period of time.
Thor’s voice contained bitter resentment. Loki flashed a smile in response that contained frustration and sadness. He decided to recite a new chant instead of reveal some pathetic expression.
Each second was precious.
Each second, the situation changed.
Bracky twitched on the ground. He’d survived even after having been crushed by Bress’ attack, and he had his genius-like talent towards battle to thank for it.
Right before Bress’ hammer fell, Bracky had focused upon a God’s power which lay in his mind. It wasn’t done consciously. It was something that had surfaced instinctively.
He had saved his own life. Instead of his head being crushed, his injuries ended at the point of merely feeling pain.
Still, it was exhausting. His entire body felt heavy. He tried to stand, but his eyes had trouble focusing.
Bracky thought of Thor and called his name. No, he may have called out his name out loud.
Thor, the God of Thunder.
Bracky knew. He knew that Thor wasn’t his real father.
Even the devout worshippers of Elidi Lake had said as much.
They’d told him that he wasn’t the son of Thor. He’d never had any relation with his mother.
Thinking about it, it was an obvious notion.
Bracky was an illegitimate child with a prostitute for a mother.
He’d become certain of it after arriving at Valhalla. A hundred years since the Great War, and Thor had never gone down to Midgard since the formation of the Great Barrier. It was a clear truth that he couldn’t deny.
It wasn’t even something to tease him over.
He already knew it.
That day, Bracky had ended up crying. He was a big guy, big enough for even Rasgrid to feel intimidated, and he’d bawled his eyes out in despair.
Thor found Bracky that day. No–Rather than that, it was more appropriate to designate their meeting as coincidence. After all, Thor visited his own legion quite often, but he’d never seen such a large man cry with such sorrow.
Thor had heard of Bracky, for Bracky’s name as a warrior had already spread far across Midgard. Perhaps, he may have heard his nickname as the son of a God.
Maybe that was why he’d patted Bracky’s shoulder and said with a smile.
‘You are my son.’
Thor hadn’t meant any deep meaning with his words. Thor thought of all the warriors in his legion as his children and as brothers by extension.
It wouldn’t have been much different to the warriors of the Skald Knights calling each other brothers.
But Thor’s words were enough.
Bracky could smile again.
Bracky was a son of a God.
The son of the God of Thunder.
That was why he couldn’t be crumpled up in this place like trash.
He had to stand up and fight.
[Saga: The Son of a God Returns]
It was a saga he could use only once per day.
Bracky’s injuries recovered audibly. He stood up and then hefted a nearby sword instead of retrieving his broken hammer.
He took a deep breath. He stood up straight and glared at Bress who was mercilessly massacring the warriors of Valhalla.
He saw several times what Tae Ho did. That’s why he could also do it. He had to.
It was good even if it lasted for a moment. Bracky thought of Thor and then concentrated the power of a God.
[Legend-ranked saga: Son of a God]
For how long would he be able to maintain it? Repercussions? Why would he waste time wondering?.
The blood of a God pumping through his veins, Bracky roared and then rushed at Bress like a divine champion.
Siri’s vision was dimming. She had lost too much blood, and her state was the result of only having faced Mordred for a moment.
Mordred’s swordsmanship was borderline transcendent. She couldn’t even block properly, and it took all her energy to remain standing.
She couldn’t hear either. Was it because she had lost too much blood, or were her ears ruptured? She couldn’t know.
Had Tae Ho recovered? How much had passed? She ought to have surpassed the minimum time by now…right?
Mordred swung his sword again. She felt pain as if she had been badly burned. She’d already surpassed her limits and felt like she’d collapse at any second. His next attack would probably be her last.
Siri didn’t even know how she’d endured so long. She had confronted Mordred after yelling like a beast, but her consciousness was hazy and distant.
She…she had to protect him.
This time, she had to.
She thought of the face of her brother. Her brother who’d dangled from a tree after becoming a lifeless corpse. She saw her sister eaten alive by dogs.
Siri faintly watched Mordred’s sword as it approached her neck.
It was probably the last attack that she’d ever see.
It was the end now.
However, Siri didn’t close her eyes. She tried to move her body in the seemingly time-frozen world around her.
She had to stay alive. This time, she had to protect him!
A voice was heard. It was the voice she had only heard once since being born, but she clearly remembered it.
Ullr, the God of Hunting.
The God who Siri served and the God who’d never once betrayed her service.
Ullr was currently watching Siri’s fight. Even as he observed the giants on the front lines, he did not neglect his warriors. Siri was an important warrior for him, and thus, this battle was also one of importance.
Siri felt strength from Ullr, but she was inwardly surprised upon hearing his half joking words.
‘I won’t let Idun take you.’
Siri smiled and then realized-
She had also received classes from Ragnar and learned from Tae Ho several times now.
Mordred’s sword wasn’t allowed to touch Siri’s neck. She dodged it by the breadth of a hair.
Bewilderment appeared in Mordred’s eyes as Siri’s consciousness grew clear once more. She followed Ullr’s voice and released his godly power from within her.
[Legend-ranked Saga: Wolf Goddess]
Siri’s eyes became feral and yellow. She moved and disappeared from his vision the next instant.
Tae Ho opened his eyes.
He could see the face of Adenmaha.
“I was worried!”
He wanted to caress the tear-stained cheek of Adenmaha, but he didn’t have the leisure to do so. Tae Ho blinked once and then recalled the situation immediately. He’d been hit by a shining spear while charging towards Bress with the fake Heda.
The fake Heda had been utterly annihilated, but it was fine as he’d called her with his saga. The problem was the Dragon Wing Coat.
Tae Ho shook his head. He chewed the piece of golden apple he had in his mouth and after that he grabbed on Adenmaha’s hands to stand up and then blinked once more.
He could hear a battle. He felt the strong power of a God near him.
Siri fought against Mordred head on. Blood flew off her body with every movement, but weirdly enough, he still thought she looked exceptionally beautiful. Her golden fur shone like the sun, and a wolf’s tail had appeared above her rear.
She moved at an overwhelming speed against Mordred. Just from a casual glance, she was much, much faster than Tae Ho when he activated ‘Idun’s Warrior’.
Elsewhere, Bracky’s cries echoed across the battlefield. Backed by the entire army’s force of intermediate-ranked warriors, he faced down Bress with fire in his eyes.
Merlin spoke from off to the side. He was busy channeling his magic towards Siri and Mordred. His efforts were partly to thank for Siri’s ability to overwhelm Mordred. He increased Siri’s physical abilities and hindered Mordred’s movements simultaneously.
Tae Ho realized why he had told him to go instead of joining Siri.
Bress was growing stronger with each passing moment. It meant that the seal the Valkyries had set up was weakening. He had to finish him quickly before he regained all of his power.
Tae Ho nodded. As if she wanted to help him, Adenmaha bit her lips, but she decided to let him go.
Tae Ho stroked Adenmaha’s head and then turned to look at Bress before inhaling sharply. He inserted his strength towards Caliburn.
[Legend-ranked Saga: King of Camelot]
[Legend-ranked Saga: Idun’s Warrior]
His body suffered under the burden of activating two legend-ranked sagas back to back, but he had to do it. Tae Ho rapidly approached Bress’ battle ground.
Bress the Tyrant was currently enraged.
His cold visage had reached a new extreme as the battle had grown fiercer, but he couldn’t endure it anymore.
The warriors of Valhalla.
The terrible kinsmen that were more worried about how they would die instead of when!
The piles of corpses were growing larger. Dozens of inferior-ranked warriors and more than ten intermediate-ranked warriors had lost their lives in a short time.
Regardless of that, Bress was still tied up by his feet. The warriors of Valhalla ignored the threat of death and assaulted him with reckless abandon. Not one batted an eye when the heads of their comrades got crushed or when their bodies were split in two. They were like moths gathering before a fire.
Bress let out a howl and swung his dagger of the Tuatha De Danann. A blow containing his full strength could absolutely demolish the warriors of Valhalla, but he couldn’t use it.
Bracky, radiating the godly power of Thor, was blocking his attacks. It strained his body terribly, but he was still capable of doing it.
The biggest issue of Bress’ mobility was undoubtedly Bracky. As he blocked Bress, a few nearby Valkyries had pulled out the magic swords and tried to reseal the binding magic on him.
He had to hurry.
Bress didn’t save his strength. He released his full might to burn away the rune magic suppressing him.
Bress’s body grew even bigger, and at the same time, the rune magic that was covering his body started to fade.
Only a little bit more. If he endured for a bit more, he would be able to break it down completely. He would be able to sweep up the warriors of Valhalla in an instant and leave this terrible battlefield. The rainbow barrier appeared to have been weakened, perhaps because of the fomoires that were in other places. If he broke one or two more steel structures, then the barrier would undergo a complete collapse.
But right then-
Bress turned his head. He saw the most terrible existence.
It wasn’t only the power of Idun this time. Bress recognized the sword that Tae Ho was holding. He remembered the glory of Camelot that had one blazed brightly.
Just who the hell was this guy? He wasn’t this strong during the battle to possess Scathach. Back then, he was merely a normal intermediate-ranked warrior. Even if he could grow strong through Valhalla’s rune system, it also had a limit.
In addition, for him to have Caliburn, the glory of Camelot!
Caliburn clashed against the sword of the Tuatha De Danann. As Bress was much bigger than Tae Ho, it looked like the former meant to press the latter down like a nail.
But Tae Ho didn’t get pushed down that easily after activating ‘Idun’s Warrior’. He fended off Bress’ sword rather well.
Bress forced a smile that wasn’t a smile. He hadn’t felt true killing intent in a very long while. He forgot about escaping for the moment and focused on killing the existence in front of him.
Bang! Bang! Bang!
Loud explosions were heard in consecution. With each clash of their swords, a visible shockwave swept up their surroundings.
Even Bracky, who had previously been holding Bress back alone, couldn’t endure it anymore. He bounced backwards and disengaged.
The battle quickly reformed around the two combatants. It quickly became a ‘1v1’ duel.
The warriors held their breath and surrounded them. Reginleif and the Valkyries raised their magical swords again and added more strength to the seals and the intermediate-ranked warriors kept the surrounding fomoires at bay.
‘Endure it. You must endure it.’
Cuchulainn spoke. Bress was really powerful, but he, as a veteran warrior, grasped that Bress’s condition wasn’t normal. It was because he’d forcefully broken down the strong seals so a change occurred inside of him. Cichol’s body, of which Bress was proud of, was starting to show a negative reaction.
The efforts of Bracky and the other warriors of Valhalla weren’t wasteful. They’d driven Bress to a point quickly approaching exhaustion.
Idun’s power was supporting Tae Ho. Every time their swords clashed and his body splintered, Idun’s power restored him.
Bress was becoming stronger every second. He would keep growing stronger until he completely broke down from the strain.
Bress’s body became a bit bigger still, growing to a towering height of almost six meters. Instead of swinging the sword of the Tuatha De Danann, he used his own arm as his weapon. It wasn’t an exaggeration to say that it was a piece of flesh with no determined shape as that was the power which the body of Cichol contained.
Tae Ho concentrated and called out Idun’s name several times. He felt Idun’s power becoming stronger every time and sharpened his senses.
[Synchro rate: 47%]
Tae Ho suddenly recalled something back when he’d fought against Mordred.
That day, Tae Ho was beaten in swordsmanship. He couldn’t overcome the peerless swordsmanship of a fallen Knight of the Round Table.
But what about Kalsted?
What if it was Kalsted, the strongest swordsman of the Dark Age, that had fought in his stead?
[Synchro rate: 48%]
Tae Ho was a warrior of Valhalla. He was a warrior of Idun and King of Camelot.
But that wasn’t all. Kalsted had always been his root.
The swords clashed again.
Each one of the blows was staggeringly heavy, but he managed to block them nevertheless. Strangely, he felt that he’d soon be capable of enduring even heavier blows.
[Synchro rate: 49%]
The fierce battle stimulated his instincts and a force awoke inside of Tae Ho that not even he had been aware of.
A power that didn’t belong to Idun nor Camelot.
The strength of a dragon knight.
The power of the exalted Kalsted.
The swords clashed one more time, but their impact was vastly dissimilar to its predecessors. Caliburn fended off Bress’ sword, but Tae Ho didn’t stop there. The force caused Bress to stagger backwards.
And at that moment-
Tae Ho snarled, and the legendary roar of a dragon rocked the entire battlefield. Bress released his power to fend off the unpleasant, scary aura. He swung upwards with all his strength and Tae Ho was tossed a distance away.
However, Bress the Tyrant wasn’t pleased, and Bracky could feel it. Tae Ho hadn’t bounced off because of Bress. He had used that momentum to surge up to the sky.
How so? Why?
Bracky understood it instinctively. Precisely speaking, he remembered a scene from long in the past, and the same happened for Reginleif. Everyone from Black Fortress could remember.
The beautiful trajectory drawn in the sky.
That powerful attack.
Rolo and Tae Ho intersected as if they’d made plans beforehand. Rolo carried Tae Ho and started to fly higher with more strength.
Bress grimaced at Tae Ho’s receding figure. He didn’t turn towards everyone else but rather increased the size of his already enormous body even further. He opened up the eye of Balor in the middle of his forehead.
[Synchro rate: 50%]
The thing that only a dragon knight who contained a dragon’s blood in his veins could do.
Rolo wasn’t a normal gryphon anymore. He transformed into a real dragon at Tae Ho’s command.
The owner of the flames who had contracted with Kalsted, the Dragon Knight, for the first time. Red Dragon, Shooting Star.
The dragon that appeared amidst the flames arced through the sky. Tae Ho, who rode upon its back, then took out Gae Bolg.
He called out to her as a smile etched itself unto his face. The red dragon fell down towards the ground as burning lightning.
Balor’s evil eye gazed at Tae Ho, and a strong curse of death spread towards him. Tae Ho made no attempt to dodge it. He threw Gae Bolg and transmitted the power of Idun with the sentence of the Milesians. The power of life protected Tae Ho.
Roar of the Dragon – Draconic Ballista.
The red lightning passed through the air to explode just above the ground. The previously overbearing curse of death was pulverized under the colossal force.
Long ago, the one who’d defeated Demon King Balor had been Lugh, the God of Light. His spear had pierced through Balor’s evil eye and led the Tuatha De Danann to victory.
Today, history had seemingly repeated itself.
Gae Bolg pierced the evil eye of Balor. It pierced the head of Bress the Tyrant.
Today, a legendary part of Erin’s history had been reenacted.
The red dragon kicked the ground and displaced the air as it flew up once again.
Below, Bress’ body lay smouldering and unmoving.
< Episode 28 – Great Attack (4) > End
TL note: Thanks for reading~