What was shame, what was loss? As Olrich's unconscious body tumbled onto the ground, deep within the recesses of his mind, a voice wondered why those words applied so well to him. It was almost as if on this night, he redefined them all.
The voice stated, then faded in the darkness of his mind, and in a resounding thud, Olrich's body landed.
"Hey, adoptive father, why are you dozing off? The game is barely getting started."
Konrad chortled then waved his hand. Lifted by his irresistible telekinetic powers, Olrich flew back into the air, hovering before Konrad.
And with a resounding slap, Konrad shoved consciousness back into his body.
"Me, me, me. What about me? Sorry, but today is not about me."
Konrad cut, and while keeping Olrich trapped within the air, flew back to his chariot.
"Nils, come here."
Konrad beckoned, and Nils obeyed, rising from her seat to stand by his side.
"Today is your day. Your opportunity to avenge all slights. One against one. Father against daughter. Fight and defeat Olrich, his life will be yours to do with as you see fit."
Konrad declared, then pressed his index on Nils' forehead. In a red light surge, the Valkyrie Mark appeared and vanished within her forehead. Instantaneously, Nils felt her body refined, strength, speed, and resilience all rising to brand-new heights. Although her cultivation remained at the Transcendent Rank, she could effortlessly rip a Rising Saint to shreds. At the same time, her Soul Worm was wiped out.
However, so what? Olrich was a peak-stage Fate Wrestling Saint with a battle-power rivaling those two ranks above him. None on the scene doubted that she was not his match.
But then, the ability Valkyrie Surge appeared within her mind. Understanding Konrad's ploy, Yvonne activated the Valkyrie Mark she'd received from Konrad on the way here. And shockingly, her presence appeared within Nils' mind in the form of a red flame.
Following her instincts, Nils activated the ability.
Bright red flamed erupted from her body, channeling the might of Yvonne's cultivation and adding it to hers. Now, although outwardly her cultivation remained at the same level, it completely eclipsed Olrich's.
His eyes widened in disbelief.
What was this? A glaring attempt to devastate him through shame, that's what it was.
Veins beat on his temple, and though the situation looked grim, he could not restrain a feral outburst.
"Can a man possibly be this wicked? Not content of robbing us of all we have, you now want to add insult to injury by having us battle our youngest? Even if you plan to slay us, does it need to be in such a callous manner?
Recalling all we did for you, don't you feel the least bit ashamed?!"
He roared, hoping to appeal to a sliver of Konrad's humanity. However…
"Nope. Not the tiniest bit."
Konrad leisurely replied while sitting between his beloved consorts.
"Adoptive father, do not misunderstand. I'm not a righteous person, and this is not your due retribution. In fact, on the scale of immorality, I don't dare claim myself much better than you."
Konrad stated while wrapping two arms around Yvonne and Else and patting the silent Verena with a third.
"However, you made the mistake of harming my beloved. My people, no one can harm, my women no one can touch. Whoever infringes on those rules must pay a corresponding price.
And since you dared, suffering a tragic fate is only natural. I believe it doesn't get any more tragic."
On the scene, Konrad and Nils aside, no one bothered to spare Olrich a glance. Yvonne, Else, and Verena all acted as if he didn't exist.
The naked display of disinterest further harmed his crumbling dignity, and he couldn't help but wonder when things went so wrong. This was supposed to be his era. He was supposed to trample all and become supreme. Invincibility, authority, all were meant to be his.
Why then was he finding himself in such an abysm? Konrad, that unfilial traitor of a "son." It was him; it was all his fault!
But Olrich wasn't given time to throw blame because Nils stepped forward. The red flames swirling around her form rose in size and intensity while deep resolve shone within her eyes.
As the one standing before her, Olrich could feel her soaring desire to beat him into a bloody pulp. As if the more she looked at him, the greater that need became.
"Nils, don't let yourself get confused by this predator, you can't possibly think of harming your fa-"
Olrich began, but before he could finish his words, in a burst of red flames, Nils shot toward him, and hurled her clenched fist straight at his jaw!
Before he could react, the hook smashed into the left side of his jaw, and he spiraled into the air with a blood spurt!
"So, you remember that you're my father?"
She asked, her voice trembling with rage, and not waiting for an answer, turned into a red beam to pursue Olrich's spiraling form.
By the time he recovered his stance, an uppercut awaited him. Again, he flew, this time soaring in the sky.
"I thought you'd forgotten. I thought you no longer recalled that we are your family.
But since you didn't, there is no need to hold back."
Turning into four afterimages, she surrounded him from all sides and began a round of brutal hammering.
In a flash, Olrich turned into a volleyball, with the "four Nils" smashing him toward one another.
Nils' explosive speed made him completely unable to evade while her strength left him no way to fight back. Each blow broke through his guard like a knife through butter, and in less than three seconds, he was utterly at her mercy.
If this situation carried on, he would soon turn into a broken rag doll.
Olrich roared and summoned his Divine Shield.
Nils' next punch crashed on the Divine Shield. Its divine power erupted, and she flew backward, unable to leave a dent. With a somersault, she recovered her balance, and undisturbed, flew back toward Olrich.
With the Divine Shield protecting him, all her offensives were neutralized. But at the same time, his lifeforce dwindled at a rapid pace. With his cultivation level, using a Divine Artifact was far too costly, and he would die long before Nils could exhaust herself.
Hence, he could only force a quick conclusion and capture her to secure an escape!
"Nils, you can't blame us for being merciless. This…hurts us more than it hurts you!"
Olrich thought while burning a large portion of his lifeforce to trigger the shield's offensive move.
The shield's light dimmed, and it sank toward the ground. Thinking that he could no longer endure its consumption and not willing to give him a recovery chance, Nils vanished and reappeared before Olrich. His lips curled into a smile.
And the shield vanished to reappear at her back.
However, for the imperceptible split of a second, Olrich's move stopped.
Nils' right fist tore through his lower abdomen, releasing a dreadful force that shattered his energy center and meridians while her left palm slammed the middle of his forehead, and destroyed his spiritual sea.
Olrich's eyelids trembled, and as he felt the cultivation of a lifetime dispersing, his shuddering eyes again locked on Konrad whose lips curved into a fiendish grin.
Blood gushed from his mouth and lower abdomen. And as the last bit of his cultivation vanished, Olrich recalled, that this conclusion was strikingly similar…to his battle with Adelar.