Although the Black Knights had stopped advancing, that didn't mean that they would give up.
Countless black spears were hurled into the sky, producing an ear-piercing whistle.
The spears were like a thundercloud ready to pour down at the Picard.
"Stay behind me!" Kieran said.
Then he wielded the dark red greatsword like a whirlwind, forming an invisible barrier that guarded Schmidt, Raul and Cidney, who was in the driver's seat.
The great sword and the spears kept clashing, the metal producing a clunking noise that sounded like a downpour.
The spears that had been hurled at Kieran and co. were all blocked, but those that had been hurled at the car
The trunk of the Picard had been turned into a beehive. One of the spears had even pierced the plate below the trunk, jamming the bearings of the wheel.
The Picard started to wobble like a wiggling snake. Although Cidney tried his best to control the steering wheel, he wasn't able to. On the contrary, the situation got even worse.
"Jump!" Kieran shouted, quickly making a decision.
Everyone started to leap out of the car. Kieran grabbed Schmidt's belt and jumped, while Raul hugged her husband and rolled out of the car.
Everyone landed safely after a couple of rolls, but the Picard flipped over and crashed against the side of the road.
As the Black Knights shook their horses' reins, loud neighs were heard once more.
"Back off!" Kieran ordered everyone. They were undoubtedly in a big pinch, so Kieran had no reason to hold back anymore.
If he ditched Schmidt, Raul and Cidney, he might have been able to get away, but his personality did not let him do so. Even though he kept reminding himself that they were just natives, he just couldn't do it.
He couldn't do it and didn't want to.
He took a deep breath, readying himself to transform into his fiery devil form.
A dense sulphuric stench started to escape from Kieran's body as a rampant, chaotic aura started to form.
Kieran's feather mantle was moving, even though there was no breeze, and an energy stream was blowing against his hair, revealing his black steadfast eyes.
Schmidt, Raul and Cidney, who had been backing off, opened their eyes wide. Although they knew that Kieran had the ability to transform into a fiery devil, this was the first time they were seeing it with their own eyes. They couldn't let that chance slip away.
The next moment, when Kieran engulfed himself in flames hot enough to burn the sky, an extremely dense gray mist appeared in the sky.
The thick blinding mist was swirling around in mid-air before it flew over to the Black Knights and covered them.
As the gray mist rumbled and swirled, the Black Knights dissipated with it!
Kieran was shocked. Even Schmidt rubbed his eyes.
"What the hell just happened?" Schmidt asked with a puzzled expression.
"I don't know" Kieran shook his head. He signaled at the others to stay put and then went over the area where the Black Knights had disappeared.
The tracks on the ground were clear, but the Black Knights were nowhere to be found. Kieran frowned. He unconsciously looked at the direction where the Black Knights had appeared. The tracks of the Night Owls were also clear, which meant that the Black Knights had ridden there on their horses.
"What was that mist? Did it also appear when Forende Town disappeared?"
After a quick, fruitless scan over the area, Kieran walked back to the flipped car.
Thanks to Raul, Cidney and Schmidt's help, they managed to flip the car over again.
Schmidt was inspecting the car while Kieran questioned Raul and Cidney.
"No, it didn't. Although we were being hunted back then, I remember it very clearly. There was no gray mist during the massacre or our escape from Forende Town! Only when we decided to return, did we discover that Forende Town had vanished. It had disappeared as if it had never existed!" Raul said in an affirmative tone. Cidney agreed with his wife's statement.
"Is that so?" Kieran believed that Raul and Cidney wouldn't lie to him.
But then What just happened?
Had the Black Knights sensed that something was wrong and retreated using that special method? Or had something they didn't recognize appeared?
Kieran was making guesses, but the lack of information prevented him from confirming his theories.
However, he was sure that the Black Knights were well-organized and had a high level of intellect. This ambush was proof enough, yet this was all he could come up with.
As Kieran was thinking things over, Schmidt walked up to them.
"Hey, guys. I have some good news and some bad news. What do you wanna hear first?"
"The good news, please. The chase back there was sh*tty enough. Some good news would make me feel better," Kieran said. Raul and Cidney nodded.
"The good news is, after some repairing, the car will still be able to run!" Schmidt said in a joking manner.
"And the bad news?" Kieran asked.
"The bad news is, it might stop moving at any moment. This is based on my 10 years of driving experience! We need to get to the nearest town before it breaks down completely. Otherwise, we might have to walk!" Schmidt said with a shrug.
"What are we waiting for then?"
Kieran squeezed into the passenger seat without opening the door.
When Schmidt, Raul and Cidney got into the car, the Picard gave out a screech and the engine died.
"I think we would have a better chance continuing on foot," Cidney said sadistically.
Raul reached for Cidney's hand with hers, communicating in a way only they understood. Then she carefully used the forceps to clip the broken glass from Cidney's skin and bandage his wounds.
Kieran and Schmidt exchanged an odd gaze.
Although they knew the couple were husband and wife, it felt weird every time they watched Raul, who looked like a bandaged mummy, take care of Cidney.
"Don't expect me to bandage you up!" Schmidt joked, his lips moving sideways.
"F*ck off!" Kieran said straightforwardly.
After trying to start the car about five times, it finally roared to life.
They drove at a fifth of their original speed before they finally stopped at Johnny Town at nightfall.
Under the dark sky, Kieran could see someone standing by the entrance. They seemed to be armed.
Kieran lifted the box that held [Arrogant Word] right away.
Is the person in Johnny Town Friend or Foe?