Chapter 157 – Start of the War (6)
“Look, look. The sky and the clouds are orange.”
Maetel acted as if they were out on a picnic. She linked arms with Artpe, and she had a bright smile on her face. However, there was no way Artpe felt the same way.
“The blood shed by Demons leave behind traces of their curses. Demons fought and died here. Their blood evaporated, and the condensation rose into the sky. However, it isn’t something that is easily gotten rid of. It dyes the sky and clouds red. It seems the color is light, because there weren’t many battles here recently. If the fighting intensifies, it’ll get redder.”
“I see, so that’s why….”
At the unexpectedly heavy response, Maetel stopped talking. Artpe smirked as he stroked Maetel’s head.
“In some ways, the Demon race might be much more honest in that aspect. In many instances, the fights conducted by humans are larger in size and cruelty. However, the evidence of such fights between humans doesn’t remain in the sky like that.”
“To be alive is to fight?”
They had set foot on the Demon world with the intent of killing the Demon King before they died. They were heading towards the heart of Nirotacid, and a fight might be waiting for them. The level ups and the acquisition of skills was merely an extension of this fight.
“Didn’t I tell you before? The fight doesn’t end even if we kill the Demon King. However, we’ll be able incrementally change the shape of the fights.”
“Master, we will follow you.”
He was soothing Maetel when he heard a voice in his ears. When he turned around, he saw that Sherryl had stepped ashore. Two hundred thousand Genesis Mermaids started crawling out after her.
Their lower body had been in the form of a fish’s tail, but soon, their tails turned into slim legs. They were able to stand on land, and they started moving around as if they were practiced at moving on land. It was normal for merfolk to live on their two feet, while they were within the mermaid kingdom of Anaid.
“The army can move freely in the ocean, and they can move on land without much difficulty…… If an ability to fight in air can be added, they’ll be the strongest fighting force.”
“Sometime, Artpe-nim says the funniest jokes.”
Vadinet laughed, but his other party members knew Artpe wasn’t making a joke. He decided to think about that problem at a later date. Artpe turned around, and he waited for the 200 thousand merfolk to form columns. Then he led the army forward. Maetel stuck to one side, and Sienna held onto Artpe’s other arm. Sienna suddenly tilted her head in puzzlement as she asked Artpe a question.
“Oppa, isn’t the hero’s party supposed to work as a small elite force for stealth? Doesn’t this defeat that purpose a little bit?”
“I know you are worried, but Nirotacid is a bit different from the normal Demon realm. Look over there.”
Arpte raised his hand to point behind him. The sandy desert of Nirotacid was letting about a black red light. The normal territories of the Demon realm should be visible.
“What······ What the hell is that?”
“Big! It is incredibly big!”
“Wow. If we went in there, we’ll probably be ground to bits by the sand…..”
The party see the rest of the Demon realm. An enormous sandstorm was blowing, and it blocked out Nirotacid from all other territories.
It wasn’t just that. A storm of similar size was present in the middle of the ocean they had just exited. They hadn’t known about it, because they had approached Nirotacid from deep within the ocean. If they had approached that storm, it wouldn’t have mattered what level they were. They would have been swallowed up and swept away by the storm.
Nirotacid was a large region, and the location was surrounded by natural phenomenons. Storms kept appearing on land and ocean. Maetel wasn’t the only one. His other party members were struck dumb by it too.
“Why is that occurring······?”
“I’m not sure. At the very least, it has always been like this since the Demon realm started keeping history. No one in the human realm or the Demon world knows why those storms form.”
However, these stormes weren’t a curse for his party. They were a blessing. Nirotacid was filled with incredibly high level monsters that even a Four Heavenly King(Artpe) had been reluctant to face. The natural environment was so bad that it wasn’t inhabitable by living things. The Demon race and of course, the Demon King didn’t pay attention to Nirotacid. Almost no one entered this place, and that was the truth. It also meant no one had exited this place alive.
“That is why it doesn’t matter if we let merfolk tag along with us. The Demon realm wouldn’t even realize that a large army had formed in the Demon realm, so you can be at peace.”
“When I hear oppa’s explanation, it makes me worried in other ways! I really can’t be at peace!”
“Sienna, you are getting really good at undercutting my words.”
Even if the Demon King’s Army had someone with the same ability as Artpe on their side, they wouldn’t be able to move around Nirotacid in such an easygoing manner.
However, this wasn’t a problem. Artpe wasn’t on their side!
“My father came to such a dangerous location······?”
Maetel tilted her head in confusion.
“I think you dad might be incredibly strong.”
“He sired such a formidable daughter. It is harder to believe that your dad was a normal traveling merchant than him being incredibly strong.”
“It isn’t a compliment, so don’t like it so much.”
The party continued their friendly chat as they ran across the desert at considerable speed. At that moment, Roa suddenly let out a small cry. The Evil Heart in her mouth was vibrating hard enough that one had to wonder if it could cause a wave.
“Hey guys. They are coming.”
“Who’s coming······ Koohk!? Monsters!”
Sherryl had been well-mannered as she followed behind Artpe. As she was responding to Artpe, she let out a groan. Amongst the Genesis Mermaids, she possessed overwhelmingly high level, so her ability to sense Mana was also outstanding.
Her unrest was immediately conveyed to the 200 thousand merfolk, and they immediately raised their weapons. Artpe’s eyebrows twitched as he spoke.
“A lot of you will die.”
“We will attempt it. Please watch over us.”
“Do you know the level of your opponent?”
“Of course, master.”
“Mmm…. All right. Show me what you got.”
Artpe thought over it for a brief moment, but soon, he nodded his head. His reasoning was extremely simple. Even if monsters of Nirotacid were strong, Artpe’s party had leveled up to the extreme, so it wouldn’t be much help to the party to kill these monsters.
Of course, that would change a bit as they got closer to the heart of Nirotacid.
This was why he was even more curious. Maetel’s father was human, so how was he able to survive in this place······?
It happened at that moment. A monster appeared along the horizon. The monster looked like a rhino with two enormous horns. It was several dozen meters tall, and its entire body was covered in sharp needles. Each needles was emitting considerable amount of Demonic energy. It looked extremely dangerous.
“Those that possess outstanding physical attributes usually possess a small Mana pool. Those with a large pool of Mana have aptitude for Magic. However, there are exceptions. There are times when a monster possesses high physical attribute and a large pool of magical energy. These types of monsters are able to coat their Mana around their body. It is a unique skill that allows them to strengthen their body.”
“Those types of monsters are incredibly frightening. Their armors are made out of Mana…. Their body won’t be wounded unless one pierces through that armor. Even if one is able to penetrate it, one will be greeted by an extremely hard body.”
Basically, it was the type of monsters that everyone hated to fight. The fight was only fun if the enemy had a weak point that could be exploited. If one wanted to kill these monsters, one had to simply deplete their magical energy and stamina!
“It will take a long time even if I fought it….”
“Maetel, be prepared to block its charge.”
“Elite forces to the front! Our enemies are 100 levels higher than us! Form groupings of a thousand!”
The hero’s party was an exception, but for everyone else, level was absolute. In truth, Artpe had no idea why the merfolk were confident in their ability to face off against level 350 monsters.
Even if a thousand merfolk formed a group, it didn’t mean they could combine their powers into one…. Their blades wouldn’t be able to pierce through the monster’s hide, so Artpe was puzzled as to how the merfolk would fight. The Genesis Mermaid quickly gathered into groups, and light blue Mana started appearing between the Genesis Mermaids. Artpe was having a hard time believing what he was seeing.
“That looks very familiar.”
“I roughly copied Maetel-nim’s ability using my Innate ability.”
“A rough copy? This is beyond copying her move!”
Recently, Artpe’s party was able to concentrate their Mana and Status into one. The merfolk were doing the same thing. The magical energy and strength of 999 Genesis Mermaids were being focused into one! Since they were all Genesis Mermaids, they were under the control of Sherryl’s Innate ability. Despite knowing this, the sight occuring in front of him was almost miraculous.
“Of course, there is a limit. However, after repeating our endless growth cycle, we were barely able to gather the power of a thousand merfolk into one. We cannot defeat our enemies with overwhelming power, but we are able to fight them on equal grounds!”
“You are amazing······.”
“What an honor, master! Well······ I’ll be back after defeating this bastard!”
The power and will of 999 merfolk were gathered into one warrior. There were a total of 200 warriors. Sherryl led these 200 warriors across the desert. She looked valiant. When the rhino spotted the merfolk, it started emitting Demonic energy in an uncontrolled manner. It charged towards Sherryl and her warriors!
At Sherryl’s sonorous shout, the 200 merfolk immediately split to either side of her. Sherryl continued to run in the center of the V formation. Tridents made out of water appeared in each hand.
Two streaks of blue light shot into the air! The rhino couldn’t stop its momentum, so it crashed head-on into the two light. Surprisingly, the impact from the tridents made the rhino miss a step, and it fell to the ground!
Hundred merfolk were on either side of Sherryl. They immediately attack from both sides. The Demonic energy stretched out from the rhino’s body as if to put up a resistance. However, it wasn’t enough to stop the attacks from the merfolk! Black blood started pouring out when they ganged up on the rhino.
“I can see how the Genesis Mermaids were able to dramatically increase their power within the ocean…….”
“Oooh-mmmm. Assuming I had to fight against that…. Mmm mmm.”
While the other party members were speechless at the monster being overwhelmed, Maetel was going through a hypothetical situation. She wondered what she would do if she fought against the Genesis Mermaids.
Maetel’s face had been scrunched up, but unexpectedly, her expression became bright in short order. The Genesis Mermaids could focus their power into one mermaid, and it was a powerful ability. However, there was a clear weakness. She just had to kill the helpless merfolk, who had lent out their power.!
Artpe also knew this, so he was protecting the other merfolk.
“Disperse once again!”
The school of merfolk had been in the midst of their attack, but they immediately broke off their attack when they heard Sherryl’s sonorous shout. Afterwards, Sherryl’s trident impacted on the rhino once again! The rhino had regained its sanity, and it had been about to kill the merfolk by amplifying its Demonic energy. However, it failed to accomplish this task when Sherryl attacked. Instead, it had to block her attack.
“What a ridiculous amount of Demonic energy…. It is acting as a bladed armor. Ah ah. We really are in the Demon world!”
The rhino raged. Beings that were much lower than it was wounded its body. It couldn’t accept such a reality! A red smoke started emanating from its body, and it was entering into a berserk state. Sherryl’s smile deepened.
“It doesn’t matter if its a monster from the human realm or the demon realm. They are all idiotic. Everyone get ready to throw your spears!”
The rhino was equipped with a thicker armor as it charged again. It had only one target. It aimed for Sherryl, who ruled over the Genesis Mermaids! However, Sherryl didn’t run away. She boldly took up her trident as she waited for the rhino. She planned on becoming the bait.
“In my eyes, Sherry is the one that looks to be the most idiotic······.”
“No, that’s not true. She is confident that she’ll be able to kill the monster before it reaches her.”
What did Sherryl say? Didn’t she tell her troops to get ready to throw their spears?
She hadn’t shouted those words with false confidence. Two hundred Genesis Mermaids were already in position, and they were concentrating their Mana. They aimed their water spears towards the rhino.
Sherryl was facing off against a rhino in the middle of a desert, yet she create a storm of water. The water drenched the rhino’s body, and for a brief moment, the armor deteriorated by a small amount!
“Throw your spears!”
“Let’s kill that bastard!”
“Throw your spears! Throw your spears!”
Two hundred spears split the air as they deeply embedded themselves in the body of the rhino!
“Wow······ That must have hurt.”
Matel mumbled in a small voice. Artpe agreed with her words, so he just nodded his head. The rhino’s stamina had reached its limit. Afterwards, the merfolk immediately swarmed the rhino as they butchered the monster.
Afterwards, their exploration of Nirotacid was smooth. The Genesis Mermaids were growing at faster rate compared to what they had experience in the ocean of the Demon realm.
An army that was much more scarier than the Demon King’s army was being born. Unfortunately, the Demons and the humans weren’t aware of it.