Soul Of Searing Steel Chapter 289


Chapter 289: The One I Look Up To

Unlike the Illgner World where heavy rain, haze, and lightning are often present, the nights in Moldavia are quite warm and quiet. The dry summer wind blew in the empty streets from across the wastelands of the Western Mountains. Other than the pyroxene lamps on the sides of the streets, there was not even a slightest trace of light in the entire city.

Besides one spot.

The liege's residence.

The lights in the liege's residence located in the center of the city remained lit at night. On the third floor of the mansion, there was a peculiar room next to Joshua's study room. The room was filled with many complex magic circles. Those were magic circles that were drawn and cast by the masters from the Royal Mage Guild. Some of them were even drawn personally by Nostradamus himself. All of the magic energy was concentrated in the center of the room filled with those magic circles. A violet crystalline runic core was placed in the middle of the room.

The crystal was gleaming with a mesmerizing radiance. A small figure of a person was levitating right above the crystal.

The Artificial Intelligence girl appeared as if she was slumbering. Her eyes were peacefully shut as she hugged her knees to her chest, the runes were circling her body, flashing as if they were providing protection to her.

With a simple glance, 03 does not seem any different from before. However, taking a closer look, one would be able to notice the delicate facial features of the lady were slightly livelier than before. Her pale skin that seems almost translucent looks a little pinkish. Her blue long hair floated with the movement of the air, making it look real. Not to mention that she was in a gothic dress where its design seems complicated.

In the past, anyone could tell that she was a projection just by glancing. Now, the projection of the A.I girl was much more realistic that she could fool anyone into believing that her projection was actually a real person. She is becoming more like a real human after observing humans ever since she set foot into this world. Furthermore, her mind is different from the mind of an Artificial Intelligence.

However, she seems alarmed by something. The runic crystal that was resting a while ago started flashing. It began to operate. 03 slowly opened her eyes, revealing her gleaming eyes with faint blue light.

"Intruder."

She spoke softly with a hint of helplessness in her tone. "Are those goddamn cultists coming out from their hiding again? They really do know when to pick a time to reveal themselves and it is always midnight."

After she finished her sentence, the projection of the girl vanished, leaving the violet runic crystal behind.

In the meantime, in the distance, in the civilian area on the border of the city, six men in black clothing were sneaking into the city as swiftly as they could move towards the inner city.

Ever since their operation in the Imperial City was foiled by Joshua van Radcliffe, the church had shifted their main focus over to Moldavia as they suspected that the cultists would want to retaliate against the warrior for ruining their sacrificial ritual. However, since that the territory in the north was too far away from the church, too few followers of the church were able to arrive at the territory. Hence, the church could only put their main focus on the main city as they gather their men in the city of Moldavia.

However, as the six men in black clothes were running towards their targets, they were planning their next move quietly on their minds. Suddenly, with a surge of magic energy, a small figure of a lady emerged right on top of their heads without making even a single sound. Before the leader of the cultists who wore a black robe could even lift his head up, a heavy restraining force was cast upon his body, bringing his whole body straight to the ground and trapping him. It was a spell that restrained a person's movement. As the magic energy poured out, the other five men in black were all knocked out on the spot by an air hammer.

The dress danced with the winds. 03 yawned as she stretched her back a little just like a human. Boredom was etched onto her face. "Another group of stupid weaklings. What a bunch of insignificant pests Can't believe that the words that Joshua usually said sound so useful at a moment like this. These words are quite fun to speak."

She seems to be amused by her own words. However, even though 03 was laughing, her hands did not remain idle. Along with a change in the hand gesture of the girl, the six cultists were all cuffed with a layer of invisible shackles. All six of them were pulled towards the church in the middle of the city by an invisible force or some sort of existence. The holy knights that were on duty also received news about the appearance of the cultists. So they swiftly went out of the church through the front door. They were expecting to see six strange men in black robe lying unconsciously on the ground in front of the church, and they did.

"Our liege has left us a really powerful backup."

Having kicked the unconscious cultists for a bit with scorn on his faces, one of the holy knights could not help but sigh. He felt a little excited. "Our liege just left the territory for a few days, and this is already the fifth time the cultists have attempted to break into the territory. However, none of them succeed because they were spotted by the mysterious backup that our liege left to keep an eye on the territory."

"That's right. These goddamn cultists would always pick the time when we are most vulnerable and unguarded. They managed to get through all sorts of elite guards available in our city undetected all these while. However, they have not been able to get through the eyes of the mysterious person that's been guarding the safety of our city."

Another holy knight voiced out to express his agreement on that. He moved his arms around and brought up a question they all needed to think about. "So, what do we do to these guys?"

"The usual. Into the pit and wait for the interrogation by Master Artanis himself tomorrow early in the morning."

And so, the small fuzz was being handled before it could even reach the ears of the others in the city. The lady with the wings no longer had the mood to rest. 03 fluttered her wings as she glided across the sky above Moldavia. She was observing the city, looking at the people who were living in the city with her gentle gaze. Her eyes seemed to be carrying a trace of compassion and admiration.

She was an Artificial Intelligence after all. That was already a fact a thousand years ago the moment she was being created and embedded into the core of the moving fortress. It was an accident that she had a real soul. No one expected that an Artificial Intelligence would possess a soul.

Perhaps, as an Artificial Intelligence, she had many perks compared to the humans. For instance, she would never feel tired or exhausted. She had no need to worry about food and water. All she needed to do in order to keep herself functioning was to charge herself with sufficient magic energy. By doing that, she could forever stay awake and energetic. Not to mention that her thinking process was way beyond ordinary men. She could even keep her attention on every movement of every living being in the entire city at the same time."

However, the Artificial Intelligence was really tired of it

She craved to become a true human being.

A real human being that could touch, breathe, be touched, communicate with others normally, stand on the ground, and embrace other people.

It was not a very important desire she craved for, nor was it a goal that she must achieve. That was merely a thought that flashed by in the mind of the Artificial Intelligence. She was just curious, so she wanted to become human, having the opportunity to live with the warrior in her own flesh and bones, an existence with true human form. She just wanted to be like Ying and Ling who were able to stand beside the warrior like two humans.

That was not really a wild dream, nor a real hope. It was simply an insignificant thought to the Artificial Intelligence.

Descending into the liege's resident, the Artificial Intelligence strolled along the corridor of the mansion. The lady servants had gone off to their own quarters to get some rest as it was already late. Other than the footsteps of the patrolling guards who were on duty for the night, there was no other sound at all.

From the third floor to the second floor, and from there, 03 walked all the way back to the main hall of the mansion on the first floor. Then she suddenly stopped. She noticed the decorative armor that was being placed nicely at the side of the corridor. The armor had stiff lines all over it. The armor was also unusually tall. The girl had to lift her head up just to see the entire picture of the armor.

That's so similar, it looked just like that time

A shadow of a man flashed across the mind of the Artificial Intelligence. She did not know why, but her body was fuelled with the urge to reach her hand out to touch the armor.

However, her translucent hand went straight through the surface of the armor.

03 was slightly surprised at seeing her hands going into the armor. She was merely a projection after all. No matter how much she looked like a human or how much she impersonated the behavior of a human being, she would not be able to change the fact that she was just a projection.

It seems that her dream of becoming a real human was far beyond her imagination.

Letting out a sad, soft sigh, 03 lifted her head up and looked as if she was about to say something. However, she remained in silence. Afterward, she went back to the room on the third floor as she went back to slumber.

In the meantime back in Illgner World.

The ground was shaking violently.

A gigantic thing was moving across the mountains.

Lightning flashed across the dark sky of the night, illuminating the land on the outskirts of the suburbs for an instant. A tremendously huge stone giant was approaching the Babel Province with trembling footsteps from the distant land. It was moving towards the man who wielded the gleaming light that carried the Order energy.

The existence of that man bore a resemblance to the beacon of light. Although the light seemed weak, it penetrated the mists in that area. Ever since the Rock Puppets sensed that repulsive presence, all of them changed their priorities. They stopped their assaults on the other cities as they immediately turned around and headed towards the capital city of Babel Province.

The golems withhold their attacks as they gave up on the walls of the cities that were on the brink of collapsing. They were not bothered by the fierce attacks from the elves that were aimed at their backs the moment they turned around and left. They were merely following the rules and orders as they moved and gathered at a spot.

In the gathering of Rock Puppets, the stone giants were seen appearing among the golems one after another. They seem to be formed from hundreds or even thousands of smaller Rock Puppets. There were also quite a number of Mithril-tier and Adamantine-tier Rock Puppets among them. All of them seem to possess divinely powerful strength that was beyond imagination. Such an occurrence had yet to be seen in any of the previous wars with the elves. However, because of the appearance of that presence, the golems resorted to their final resort as they combined themselves into one larger and far more powerful being, preparing to launch their assaults at the presence of Order energy.

An endless stream of magic power gushed out of the weakening spot caused by the dimensional rift, causing those stone giants to have sufficient power to move in this world that lacked elemental power. The rumbling continued on as time went by. More and more of those stone giants emerged from the distance. The first stone giant had arrived within the border of Babel Province.

As the haze was too thick and the fog too dense for anyone to see anything, all of the Observation Circles were unable to pick up any of the movements of the golems. The elves from all cities went through hell just to rid themselves of the entanglement with the golems in battles. They finally had the time to rejoice as they quickly catch their breaths. They wondered why everything around them was happening. Soon, they were not too bothered anymore.

On the outskirts of the capital city, Black had caught a glimpse that something was wrong. It slowly stood up as it looked into its surroundings feeling puzzled. Its basic instinct was kicking in, alarming it to leave the spot as soon as possible. It knows that the place was extremely dangerous now. It could lose its life at any given moment if it stayed there.

However, Black would never flee the scene just because it felt that its life was threatened. No matter how perilous the situation turned out to be, it would only decide on how it should react based on the situation after it could identify its enemy.

Not to mention that Black was currently right beside its master. It would never get too dreadful no matter how perilous the circumstance could get.

Time went on. Even the people who were still roaming in the outskirts of the capital city could feel the earth trembling. It was not an earthquakethe trembling came from a series of rhythmic footsteps. Black was no longer the only one who sensed that. The elves who were in the capital city could also feel it. In the sanctuary, a little boy was voicing out his own fears to his parents with trembling voice. Another girl was anxiously asking her boyfriend if he felt the same fear the little boy felt. The holy knight, who was still aiding the rescue operation among the rubbles, lifted his head as he looked into the distant.

The footsteps were getting heavier, so did the trembling. Suddenly, a voice was broadcasted from the mayor's office that was manning the monitor circles all around the city. It was a scream filled with shock.

"Holy heavens! What... what the hell is this?!"

The voice sounded extremely panicked, along with a sense of desperation. Others had also abandoned whatever they were doing as they immediately turned their heads around and looked towards the direction where the voice came from.

Meanwhile, right in the middle of the screen, an enormously giant thing walked.

The monster was estimated to be hundreds of meters tall. Its body was irregularly formed into shape by a bunch of giant rocks. It looked exactly like a gigantic walking statue that was formed from many golems. It was so huge that it could step a mountain flat. Along with its movement, the forests were destroyed, the rivers were severed. The villages and smaller cities along the way had been reduced to rubbles and wreckages. There were two gigantic light dots flashing on its head. They were unleashing strong waves of energy.

The alarm was sounded across the entire city. The downtown bells were heard echoing back and forth throughout the city center. The shouting that sounded as if the person had used all his energy to shout was heard coming out from the circle, requesting all of the citizens to go back to hiding in the sanctuary. However, their voices sounded empty without energy. After all, the gigantic statue could bring the entire sanctuary to the ground with one simple stomp, killing every single elf in it. Despite that, they were desperate enough to hide in the sanctuary and stay there until everything came to an end. They could not have done it any other way.

In the face of such calamity, they were powerless.

Using the superiority of their psionic bodies as divine armaments, Ying and Ling were able to see the huge energy source and the strong energy waves that it emitted into its surroundings from the distance. The boy and the girl frowned at the same instant. Ling seemed deadly serious. Ying, on the other hand, was serious in her own way as well.

"Such power This thing is at least ten times more powerful than that daemons back in the Imperial City" The black-haired boy was determining the power level of their enemy, and the silver-haired girl nodded in agreement. "However, it seems less charming if we were to compare it to Master Nostradamus. This monster has not even reached Supreme tier yet. It's merely a very powerful Gold-tier monster."

In that case, there should be nothing to worry about. However, just as the both of them were beginning to relax their minds, increasing energy sources came from afar. Instantly, Ying and Ling were surprised. They became stiff and unbelieving at the number of the energy sources that kept appearing in the distance.

"What the how is it possible that there's so many of them?!'

"Such number Twelve of them?! And it is still increasing?!'

Even the two people who had seen all sorts of waves and storms could not help but feel astounded and lost. Although the stone giants had yet to reach the Supreme-Tier, each of their abilities added together was not far from reaching the power level of a Supreme-Tier being. The situation would not be that bad if they were only going to battle against one or two of them. However, it would be outrageous for them to face more than twelve of them.

Regardless of the circumstance where they would be battling these monsters in this world filled with weak weapons and fragile armors, even if they could battle these monsters back on the Mycroft Continent, these monsters would still be deemed as war machines that could bring fear to the Empire Kingdom, and that forced them to increase their alertness towards these monsters.

While the two divine armaments were panicking, a voice pierced through the rain. "Alright. Don't panic."

A figure came out of the dark fog as the rain continued to pour from the heaven. However, not even a single drop of rain was able to wet the body of that man. He seemed to not be bothered by the appearances of the gigantic monsters in the distance. Instead, he calmly said, "Those are just a bunch of gigantic stupid beings. Get ready to battle."

Upon hearing their master's voice, regardless of whether it was the half-draconic horse or the two divine armaments, they seemed to have gotten a backbone to lean on. All of them were fired up as they responded to the warrior in unison.

Standing in the middle of the wasteland with the city of the elves behind them, the black-haired warrior looked at the stone giants that were looming in the fog and darkness far away from the distant land. He seemed to be grinning a little as he revealed a smile of excitement.

A warrior is named so not because he or she has any fear towards facing enemies that are strong and tough.

Instead, it was because their very own existences could bring the will and the courage to the others around them, leading everyone into the battle with courage.

"Now this is what I've been expecting my whole life."