Translator:EndlessFantasy TranslationEditor:EndlessFantasy Translation
“This shouldn’t be all of your skill, undead spirit,” said Joshua.
The warrior withdrew the Dragonslayer Swordspear and stood his ground, his presence calm like a towering peak. He did not continue his attack, or kill Armand a thousand times to shave away the source of the ghost army and destroy the general in the process.
“It seems you’re seeking death,” he said with a low voice instead. “Such a battle insults me. It’s uninteresting to the very last.”
Joshua’s voice was thin and without emotion. At the moment, he shook his head as a mere fighter.
“I should be stronger?” Armand’s expression was absentminded for a while as his body reassembled once more. Then, the corners of his mouth arced, but without any sentiment.
“Seems like something someone No, a dragon had told me once before.”
The dragon-armored general could not help reminiscing about something that had happened a long, long time ago.
When he still lived.
At the southwestern reaches of the Central Empire around five-hundred years ago, the Forest of Weaving Shadows was in a drought that spanned over thousands of miles following the ambush of several Heavenly red-dragons. The Empire, busy quelling the internal strife and piracy at the oceans around its border had no time to rescue the settlements around the forest.
And so famine raged as withered bones blanketed the land. Every survivor was willing to kill for a little water or food, even falling so eating human flesh and drinking their blood.
Amidst this terrible calamity, a boy named Armand who was born in the Fernand family that once lived in a small mountain town had survived, drinking from the toxic stream in a mining cave. His one elder sister, as well as one younger brother and sister, eaten by the other crazed famine victims.
However, those famine victims also eventually died to the despair of starvation. With the targets of his vengeance lost, the youth started to the edge of the horizon with a gaze filled with poison and curses, towards the corners by the Sea of Tears.
It was the direction of the Dragon Island.
The direction of his hate.
Later, taken in by distant relatives, the youth strived fanatically, exhausting all methods to hone himself as hate drove him to struggle ceaselessly. After a few years, Armand enrolled in the Imperial Magical Energy College so that he could do his best to raise his ability.
However, due to his heavy consumption of mining cave waters that contained substantial metal content at a younger age, his body was severely disabled. In turn, his ability could never catch up to classmates with the same innate talent, much less attaining his goalto attack the Dragon Island and kill all the giant dragons.
But just as he gradually fell into hopelessness, another student with unknown roots and was usually extremely discrete forum him.
“Armand, your body limits your growth,” the youth had smiled and said, “However, your talent and hard work should not be lost from that alone.”
“I like you. Serve me, and I will give you the power to fulfill your wish.”
It turned out that the student was the Fifth Prince of the Emperor. The young man also became Armand’s mentor and gave him his secret technique, one who fully supported the general that bathed in blood and war and the man who ascended the throne as the next emperor.
That was why, thirty years later, the undefeated Lord of the Armies took control over three hundred thousand of the Empire’s finest troops. Under the Emperor’s orders, they crossed the Sea of Tears and besieged the Dragon Island, completely wiping off the pure-blooded giant dragon race.
“The king of the gemstone dragons had said so before.”
Five hundred years later, the general who awakened from peaceful eternal slumber spoke with a nostalgic tone.
“You’re here for revenge. It’s the work of fate that you wipe the dragons awayI won’t bear any grudge. It’s just a pity that you’re no real champion.”
“It’s a pity you’re not powerful enough. That’s what the strange dragon said.”
Meanwhile, Joshua stood silently opposite Armand, listening to the general as he reminisced bits and pieces of old memories without any intention of interrupting.
That was because as the general told his story, the scent over the dragon-armored general changed bit by bit. The shift was extremely intriguing, as if a deathly land awakened and life began to birth within the darkness.
“I’m not a warrior like you, man from another world.” The dragon-slayer general Armand Fernand smiled quietly as he sheathed his sword. “I’m a great general who commanded an army. My combat skill? It’s enough as long as I could delay even champions like you until my sentries come to helpthat is certainly all I’ve got.”
“Furthermore, I should never have been your opponent with this broken body.”
With those words, Armand demeanor suddenly changed. His voice no longer had the cold and deathliness it had before, now carrying a hint of desire instead.
“But you’re right, I assuredly should not be that much of a failure.”
“I should exhaust all efforts, and even more so.”
Sword returned to scabbard, the general whose full-body armor was made of dragon scales looked up towards the military god. The colossal skeleton then lowered itself and reached out with its gigantic energy arm.
It lifted Armand and carried him in its palm, while bottomless layers of black fog with not a hint of luster surged out wildly from between the seams of Armand’s armor. It seeped into the military god’s body while a deep male voice echoed throughout the air.
“That’s why, witness as you wish”
“The limits of the Lord of the Armies!”
The energy ripples over Armand’s body declined instantly into Supreme-intermediate tier, as his violent power that was also as vast as oceans completely poured into the titanic specter of the solider god as well as the ghost soldiers around them.
That was undoubtedly a decline in terms of combat ability.
When he assembled the power of his entire army, Armand was Joshua’s superior in terms of power alone, but due to the gap in technique he could at most trade blows with the warrior, with all his skills seen through after hundreds of exchanges. And now, with all his energy distributed to the gigantic military gods and many thousand armies, basically a fate that was broken.
Nevertheless, a wind billowed in the very next instant.
It was as if the machine-like ghost soldiers had just awakened from a dream. The scarlet radiance within their eye sockets that never undulated suddenly glinted with liveliness. Layers of gray-white flesh and innards thus began to grow over their bodies, filling their hollowed bodies. Then, after a brief chaos, these soldiers that had repossessed blood, memory and killing intent focused their savage gaze on Joshua once more.
They were the ruthless army that had followed the dragon-slayer general into hundreds and thousands of battles undefeated. Though they were not sure what was happening at once, they soon understood clearly through the link from the secret technique [Lord of the Armies] that the man before them was their enemy!
Boundless bloodlust condensed as the giant military god phantom begin to grow flesh and blood too. With an enraged hoarse bellow, a robust god of war, wearing a leather armor and staunch expression and utterly different from the skeleton before now stood above the ground. In his hands, the sword and armor had also been reappearedbut was seemingly heavier and sharper than before.
“I’ve never taken pride in my individual brute strength, but I do gain victories through the power of many.”
Even as Armand stood in the palm of the military god, his entire body was gradually melding with the behemoth.
He gave one last command before he vanished.
With the responses that reverberated across the horizon, severalor even up to dozens of runes imbued with intent for killing and strife appeared out of thin air in front of the ghost soldiers’ forehead. The runes spread across the air, seemingly bestrewn but in reality had a discrete rhythm in their flying trajectory.
In the space of a few breaths, those combat runes formed a gigantic magic circle that was thousands of meters in diameter, its core being the military god.
Joshua, meanwhile, was completely encased at the center of the circle, most of his moments sealed.
At present, the shadowy energies from the numerous ghost soldiers that approached Gold-tier repelled everything in the circle. They ceaselessly shifted as the runes moved with them, forcing the warrior to stay where he was while their rapid killing intent corroded anything living. The fleshed soldier-god also roared in rage after pausing for some time, cutting down on Joshua with its sword.
The towering giant wielded its blade, swinging a blow as if it was a force of nature. The energy tidal wave as exploded instantly like the seas after a long accumulating of power. Within the blink of an eye, Joshua who could only face it was drowned in the powerful swing.
Such was the chosen path Armand had taken as an undefeated generalusing the army as limbs, the military god as core while he organized the formations and stayed at its center to assemble the force of millions, crushing everything! Though he now had just a little over ten thousand elite troops, one could imagine how majestic the sight would have been at his peak, when he led three hundred thousand to neutralize the Dragon Island!
Right now, Joshua could only raise his spear to parry the sword slash after being restrained by the formation on every turn. Having attained his wish to see Armand’s full power, the warrior too brought out his full ability!
Bang!A sound as if some shackle had been forcefully broken by brute strength rang across Joshua’s body, and countless veins that resembled plant roots cascaded out from every energy node of the warrior’s body. Tentacles of meat, as if a titan’s, condensed the majestic energies around it. Soon, a combat aura steel armor that reflected gray metallic luster as if iron appeared around Joshua’s body, transforming into a metal giant that was a dozen meters tall!
Every bit of lifeforce within the Azurite had been mustered into steel armor as if imitating the Majestic Mountain Titan that held incomparable strength. The spear tip too turned into a drill with impact force and incredible heat that could sear through all things. Their destructiveness was one-plus-one-equals-to-more-than-two, as Joshua collided against Armand’s blade that held the power of his ten-thousand army capable of shattering the lithosphere!
Joshua’s body quivered the moment the blows come in contact, the combat aura steel armor breaking apart immediately while his arms exploded into multitudinous fragments of blood and bone.
The warrior himself was also punched into the ground once more by the power of the ten-thousand army.
On the other hand, Armand was worse off despite being inside the body of military god. The fusion core spear that penetrated everything had destroyed all defenses over the military god’s body, directly damaging the real body of the controller himself.
Not only was there a huge cavity by the military god’s hip, but the dragon-armored general’s lower body was also blown off.
Hundreds of ghost soldiers had vanished immediately, but in the next instant, a crimson light shone from the crater while the wounds on the military god’s abdomen rapidly healed.
To those two, this was just the start.
Northwest to the world of Grandia.
Above the seven obelisks in Guetard, the former capital of the Ulan Empire, a swordsman who was silently sitting on the tip of his own obelisk as if thinking promptly lifted his head.
“The Lord of the Armies’s full-power form?!” He stood up abruptly and looked towards the south, his thin voice that appeared eternally unchanging filled with shock right now. “To force Armand into such an extent!”
The energy shockwaves resulting from the battle between two Heavenly-pinnacle champions could spread through most of the continent.
It was not only the swordsman commander of the undead spirits who could sense itin the Xayar Mountains at the center of the continent, Urbandy who had been resting beneath ground too poked out with its tree-root clone, its single purple-flame eye staring towards the south.
“So that’s the power of a Sage Legacy’s heir and a commander of undead spirits” It mumbled with a complicated voice. “Humanssuch a terrifying race. Capable of shining in such dazzling radiance in less than a century.”
In the town of Jarien, the old heroic spirit that was slumbering within its own shrine was jolted awake.
He did not speak, merely frowning for a bit before relaxing.
The victor has already emergedhe did not have to keep paying attention.
At present, the Southwestern Wastelands in the Grandia continent.
Currently, the colossal military god and the endless ghost soldiers were slowly dissipating into the air as ever-present fragmented specks of light.
The core that linked the energy of ten thousand undead soldiers had been penetrated with one astonishing spear blow. As its wielder, the general was sent flying out of the gigantic magic circle.
He now would pay the full price when the secret technique [Lord of the Armies] is brokeneverything that was once connected would thus turn into ash.
With his helmet splintered and his flesh regrown, Armand’s current appearance could be seen. He was an imposing middle-aged general whose hair had mostly whitened. He was not tallthe damage during his younger years prevented his body from ever sizing up to the bodies of his counterparts from the same tier, leaving many defects and weak points.
However, Armand disregarded his fragmenting body, laughing carefreely instead. “Leading the grand army, going all out Now that I’ve been defeated head-on, I have fulfilled my promise, and shall vanish as I’ve wished!”
“What promise?” Joshua asked suspiciously, his brow furrowed. The warrior’s combat aura steel armor had been destroyed, his arms heavily injured as he forced himself to stand uphe was not even able to hold his spear steadily.
“You’ve frequently revealed some obscure but vital information throughout our battle. In the earlier moments, you’ve even fought by yourself deliberatelyobviously seeking death.”
“What are you thinking?” The warrior asked with a deep voice. “And why would you use the Death Shades to corrupt this world?”
“ Warrior from another world,” Armand said softly, as the general who still did not know Joshua’s name until now leveled his gaze at the warrior.
“Unlike those Death Shades, the Seven Grand Commanders had been revived by the Ulan Empire because they baited us by promising to ‘fulfill one wish’. However, they never intended to realize our wishesso we had to do it ourselves.”
“And what caused all of this was that lord’s ‘wish’. And since he had granted my wish, I have to follow him according to my own pledge.”
“Even if that lord’s wish was to destroy the world and slaughter innocents?” Joshua asked.
“Even if it’s to destroy the world and slaughter innocents,” Armand answered without hesitation.
In response, Joshua shook his head in mirth. “Your death-seeking behavior before contradicts what you say.”
Armand paused for some time after that question, and sneered too. “Seeing through oaths and promisesthat’s my code.”
“But I was a hero once, after all.”
Then, dots of light dispersed and Armand vanished completely.