Chapter 122 – Specters from the Past (2)
Azell was now completely acclimatized with the Dragon Weapon named Vitan’s Chalice. He didn’t feel any discomfort at the prospect of using the Vitan’s Chalice in battle. He even sparred Kairen, who had become frustrated at his absence from the sparring sessions.
“It was frightening and unbearable to see a man child, who’s over 100 years old, throw a tantrum. Thankfully the nanny came back from his vacation.”
“Ha ha ha. I thought you enjoyed it.”
“I won’t deny that fact, but that man doesn’t need to know the extent of my enjoyment.”
Kairen sparred with Azell until he was exhausted, and he went away to wash himself.
From that point on, Leticia started to spar with Azell. Azell had focused his attention on Vitan’s Chalice for a good amount of time, so he was a bit impatient at that moment.
The sword lightly exchanged blows with the spear as if they were probing each other. Then their exchanges kept increasing in speed. The speed had increased so much that a normal person wouldn’t be able to follow what was occurring. Then they released their magical energy. A battle between Spirit Order and the Dragon Arts had started.
As they were exchanging mental waves in a remarkable manner, Leticia let out a sharp stab with her spear.
When it looked as if her cross spear was about to clash against Azell’s Dragon Sword, Azell accelerated as he tilted himself. He used his shoulder armor to hit the shaft of the spear. As the spear was thrown off its path, he stopped on a dime to do a roundhouse kick.
His attack had totally caught her by surprise, but Leticia remained calm. She jumped into the air as she avoided the kick. Her body spun in the air as she aimed for Azell’s head with the part of her spear, which held no edge.
Instead of deflecting or dodging, he dashed towards her again. At the same time, his body blurred. She faced with two opponents coming at her from both sides. She couldn’t differentiate between the clone and the real body.
“I was wondering when you’ll use that… Are you planning on attacking in earnest?”
A white frigid energy rose up from Leticia’s body. She knew Azell’s clones possessed substance. This was why it was pointless to waste energy in figuring out which one was the real one. She’ll just seal the movement of both of them!
The cold air exploded forth, and the surrounding froze. Leticia was about to retreat backwards as she used a linked attack. However, she saw something unbelievable before she could do anything.
“…how did you do that?”
Azell had pierced through the cold air, and the tip of his sword was right in front of her nose. She had just caused the explosion of cold air, so she a.s.sumed she had bought a moment of reprieve. When she started to move, he took her by surprise. She had experienced all sorts of hardships through battle, yet she couldn’t do anything against his attack.
Azell spoke as he put away his sword.
“You didn’t try to discern which was the real body. You were decisive, but you shouldn’t put too much trust in your area of effect attack. A tough opponent can just brute force his way through, and an opponent with good senses can read the flow of power to avoid it.”
“You still haven’t answered by question.”
“It was simple. I knew your Dragon Arts had the property of coldness. I just needed to change the property of my magical energy to match yours.”
This was the same as the insulation method he used against an opponent, who enjoyed using electric attack. He wrapped himself with magical energy, which had the property of coldness. An attack of this strength wouldn’t be able to harm him.
Leticia flinched in surprise when she heard Azell continue to speak.
“You shouldn’t use this method against high ranking magicians. You probably had a lot of fun using it against Spirit Order pract.i.tioners and the Dragon Arts pract.i.tioner…. Moreover, there are others out there that can change the properties of magical energy like me.”
Azell’s voice emanated from behind her. Soon, the Azell in front of her dissipated, and she was struck dumb by a realization.
“Incarnation…. I’ve heard about it, but now that I’ve experienced it for myself, it leaves me flabbergasted.”
Azell had pointed his sword in front of her face, yet it had only been the clone created using the ‘Dance of Shadow’. He had also used this method against Niberis before. His clone possessed the property of the element used by his opponent. While his clone conducted a surprise attack, he hid his real body in an attempt to find the next opportunity to attack.
“I guess not many people uses this technique anymore. Is this the same in the Plain of Darkness?”
“It holds true there to my knowledge. I wasn’t able to climb too high in their hierarchy, so I can’t be sure…..”
Even during the Dragon Demon war, there were hardly anyone, who used the Incarnation technique. A much smaller pool of people were able to use it in a proficient manner. Aside from Azell, there had been only three people, who were able to use Incarnation in a proficient manner.
There was the alliance’s best technician and vertan knight Duke Croix Nidel. The rest were Almarick, who was one of the four Dragon Demon Generals, and…
Dragon Demon king Atein.
‘Well, it was a technique that was very discerning on who could use it.’
Aside from the difficulty of the technique, there were other criterias that determine which users could use the technique. Even if one was able to do the Incarnation, it didn’t mean the user was always stronger than the others.
“Anyways, now that I’ve fought you, it made me feel more confused.”
“What are you talking about?”
“Your Dragon Demon Qi is really… It similar to the one I know.”
“Didn’t you say your teacher was a Dragon Demon named Reshoo?”
“Yes. He was my fourth teacher.”
“You had a lot of teachers.”
“There were five in total. Well, it is a bit dubious to call that old man a teacher….”
Azell’s fourth teacher was Dragon Demon Reshoo. Reshoo’s status was a bit ambiguous, since he was neither an enemy nor an ally. Then there was Duke Croix Nidel. He was Azell’s fifth and last teacher.
Leticia asked a question.
“You said the Dragon Demon named Reshoo taught you how to handle the power of Dragons. What did you mean by that?”
“Is it my turn to receive questions from you?”
“If I don’t start getting some answers in return, it feels as if I’m sustaining too much of a loss.”
“I’ll acknowledge that. Mmm. Reshoo was a first generation Dragon Demon.”
“A first generation Dragon Demon…. Those who walk on this land without parents?”
“I guess some call them that. They possess peerless power when compared to the other Dragon Demons.”
From Azell’s memory, no one was more powerful than Reshoo in terms of Dragon Demon magic. If one was measuring only the quant.i.ty of Dragon Demon magic one possessed, even Dragon Demon king Atein was weaker than Reshoo. Reshoo’s use of power was almost identical to the Dragons, so he didn’t have to use techniques of the Dragon Arts. He could use his will to wield his power, and he was able to produce calamitous results.
“Isn’t he the type of being able to wield his power using just his sense?”
“He was. Well, when he acted as a teacher for me, he learned a lot of technique from me. Afterwards, he changed a lot, but his fundamental characteristics remained the same.”
“Did he use a weapon?”
“No, he always insisted that his body was the best weapon for him.”
“Yes, the difference becomes more stark as you speak. From my memories, I’ve never seen my teacher use powerful Dragon Demon magic. He might have been strong, but he never revealed it to me. Moreover, he never wasted his power unnecessarily. For example, he gave me a drill where I had to receive drops of water….”
“You partic.i.p.ated in a drill where you had to receive drops of water?”
“It is a training where I stab quickly with my spear. The blade of spear won’t disperse the falling drops of water, and my spear would receive the drops of water intact. This is only possible if one is able to finely control one’s magical energy.”
“Why are you making such an expression?”
“No, it’s nothing.”
“Hmm. You said you learned how to control the power of Dragons. What does that entail?”
“It is as the words imply. Originally, humans do not possess Dragon Demon magic. Isn’t that right?”
“When a human awakens to one’s magic, one develops a new sense and power. One has to through a lot of hardship to train it. Let us say one trains in the magical energy until it’s like controlling a limb. What if this existing power if changed into a completely different power?
What will happen?”
Leticia spoke after thinking over his words for a moment.
“…your senses will become confused since it’s used to handling normal magical energy.”
“That’s right. This is the inevitable trap for those who gain Dragon Demon magic through the Dragon Slayer’s Ritual. On top of that, it isn’t as if one’s magical energy converts into Dragon Demon magic in an instantaneous manner. The properties of magical energy slowly takes on the properties of Dragon Demon magic. This adds to the difficulty. If one thinks of developing magical energy as growing a new limb, then the magical energy changing into Dragon Demon magic is like one’s limb turning into something different and weird. Of course, the performance of this limb is better, but what if an extra joint, a finger or the range of motion appears….”
Even now Azell’s magical energy had not changed entirely into Dragon Demon magic. From Azell’s experience, it would take at least two more Dragon Slayer’s Ritual to completely change his magical energy into Dragon Demon Magic. He would have to go through the process of completely processing the power of the Dragons.
“If one is sloppy in the process of gaining Dragon Demon magic, one’s own senses could become out of joint. What would you do if that occurred?”
“I would try to expand my normal senses, and I’ll put my effort into learning how to wield a new weapon.”
“It is as I’ve said before. You are very outstanding in terms of understanding techniques.”
“Don’t treat me as if I’m your student. You are only a young human.”
“It was an innocent compliment. Anyways, that’s the problem.”
When one obtains a new power, one had to maintain one’s prior senses as one expanded control over the power. This allows one to be able take advantage of the merit of the new power as one became stronger. However…
“It isn’t enough. The feel of the techniques has to be built back up from the bottom.”
When he obtained the Dragon Demon magic for the first time, Azell had used the Dragon Demon magic to increase the efficacy of his techniques.
For example, when he normally tried to make a flame sword, he coated his magical energy over the blade. This was done so his blade wouldn’t lose its edge from the fire. Then he had to make sure a constant energy was provided as fuel for the flame. He had used a combination of these two magic conjuration to form the flame on the outside. However, after he acquired the Dragon Demon magic, he could directly create a flame over the sword.
“Reshoo asked me why I used such an idiotic method.”
When Reshoo saw the result of Azell’s technique, he had a puzzled expression on his face. He asked why Azell hadn’t created a flame that doesn’t damage the edge of the sword.
“…it sounded ridiculous. What do you think about his idea?”
“From my point of view, he gave a logical response. Of course, it is possible to do that.”
“This is the difference between someone who was born with the Dragon Demon magic and a person who had acquired it.”
Would he really be able to create a flame that burned one’s target, while the blade remained unburnt?
The users of magical energy thought about protecting the item before setting the item on fire. On the other hand, the users of Dragon Demon magic just made a flame that didn’t burn selected targets.
It sounded ridiculous, but one could create this phenomena using just one’s will. One could use Image Making to achieve the desired result.
“Reshoo taught me about my problems, so I had to rebuild my techniques from the ground up. While I was doing this, Reshoo learned as many systematized techniques he could.”
“Basically, it wasn’t a one-sided relationship. Are you saying you guys were each other’s teacher?”
“It was like that for Reshoo and the old man, who was my fifth teacher.”
Azell smiled as he reminisced over the past.
His fifth teacher was Duke Croix Nidel. At the time, he was known as the living encyclopedia in the world of Spirit Order. He possessed expansive knowledge, and at the same time, he had the skill to utilize all the techniques. At the time, Azell had been learning any techniques he could scrounge up. When Azell met him, he was able to find learn about the frightening power of learning techniques, while having a clear-cut root to his skills.
As recompense, Azell taught him about handling Dragon Demon magic. Croix Nidel was advanced in age, so he had been very set in his ways. However, he was able to gain enlightenment. He even came up with the technique where one was able to use multiple Dragon Demon weapons at the same time. It had been something only the Dragon Demon king Atein could do up until that point.
Azell didn’t give much details on Croix Nidel to Leticia. Still, she was surprised just from the fact that he had been a better technician than Azell.
“They are quite interesting figures. Could you perhaps tell me what the Dragon Demon named Reshoo looked like?”
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