Azure Sins (Pure ver.)
"Me? I'm just a guard dog. Woof!"
He said in his verbal disposition, chuckling immediately after. Keeping a steady pace and eyes trained on the demon, Karna became gradually further from the girls, watching the demon's glowing palm follow his movements.
"He...already sees himself as some kind of evil."
Miyaura mustered her strength to say, earning the other girls' attention. Tears streaming down her face.
"Feeling like he's something horrible, he can't remember but he feels the rage, sadness, and pain that's never left him. He's *Sob* suffering so much inside yet he wore a smile because we depended on him. There's just so much pain...it's been so heavy on my chest ever since he found us."
Aisellia noticed Miyaura sobbing prohibited her from speaking anymore.
"Miyaura, in that flame...you connected on a deeper level, didn't you? You were able to temporarily feel what he held inside..."
Miyaura began nodding her head in confirmation of Aisellia's thesis. Leiliana approached them and took a knee at their side.
"Those flames that gave you strength, it seemed to be too much agony it negatively affected your body. The volume of that flame, his manifested Sin. All those emotions were too great. So much t backfired on your body."
"It's my fault..."
"I couldn't control it, I want to be there for him but...I couldn't even bear more than a small bit of his burdens."
"As an expert, this whole thing is still quite confusing to me. Just why is a demon defending us?"
Aisellia began to say.
"He's believed for a long time he was a monster...we've seen what lust demons do on their own will...but we still chose to care about him. At first, I thought I did it just for protection, to make it home safely but I realized. No matter what he's done...we've decided none of that matters anyway because we care for him now,"
Leiliana said questionably, looking over at Karna.
"That's more than enough for him to face dangerous threats to protect you. He's more than just a demon to you two. He is...different. A person, fighting for someone other than himself."
Leiliana watched Karna walk, having a revelation of her own, unable to shift her gaze from the man. Soon only able to look at the girls and chuckle on her own.
(Sifu...you were right again. My hate may have clouded me from life experiences. These girls...they have experiences that allowed them new perspectives and experiences one can only obtain when they stay true to themselves, even if it may be to a fault. That's something they accept not just for themselves but for those close to them...just like you...just like you tried to teach me.)
Suddenly her eyes fired wide open.
(Teach? Teach...teach...The shaman!)
Quickly she looked over to Karna and immediately screamed out.
"Be Cautious! It wasn't capable of mass domination of the goblins! It dominated their shaman connecting it to the others. Shamans are intelligent, everything the goblins have learned in their lifespans all transferred to that demon! It understands our language and combat!"
Just as she finished speaking, the demon's eyes immediately locked onto Leiliana and immediately aiming the charged attack at her and the girls, instantly releasing the blast once its aim was locked. Unleashing the orb charged in its palm manifested a massive red beam of light that easily scorched the earth of the large-scale radius of the attack. Leiliana could not even react, her eyes only having enough time to witness she had dropped the Angelo as it lied further away from her. The speed of the attack closing the distance between them almost instantly. Before her eyes could shift again to face the attack, its light and warmth had already overtaken her field of vision. Without warning, Karna tossed his Katana with such speed, it plunged into the ground directly in front of the young woman. Making it just in time for the blast to crash against the sheathed blade. His weapon seemingly automatically erecting a flowing barrier of azure flame. Protecting the women from the blast, allowing the excess energy slightly deflected around their frontal shield-like barrier. Just as its attack appeared to fail, the eyes of the superior demon returned trained on Karna who to its own surprise, had already closed the distance separating them. Karna's fist launching forward and violently smashing into the demon's face send it flying backward. Once the blast had cleared from the girl's field of vision, they were able to witness Karna's strike just in time. Their eyes held wide open, mouths agape in shock of what they had witnessed. All but Miyaura, who lied in Aisellia's lap smiling.
Leiliana said, unable to fully process what she just witnessed.
Leiliana said only able to question more of the sight.
"Without Miyaura, we wouldn't have been able to have him."
Aisellia attempted to answer, leading Leiliana to turn and meet eyes with her, her expression displaying her confusion.
"No...how did he obtain such power so close to that of captains?! Only Legendary slayers and the most powerful captains have been able to even take a superior classed demon alone much less alone land an effective attack."
"Wait Leiliana, you are already incredible skilled, you aren't the strongest captain?"
Aisellia questioned, her surprise evident on her face.
"Numbers doesn't determine skill level but of the thirteen captains I'm ranked only above a few others. There are others more powerful than I, the strongest have never lost their positions as captains. The strongest of us rivaling legendary slayers of old, their skill and power even said only to be challenged by demons so powerful their abilities are mythological in nature. Demons in history who allegedly fought against the angels. At least...that's how the story tells of their incredible power."
The demon stopped his flight path, performing a backflip and coming to a sliding stop, lifting its head to catch Karna once again in front of it. Being in mid-air already performing a horizontal kick aimed at the demon's head. Only to be contested by the demon's lifted arm, causing a collision with the demon's forearm. It was then both of these powerful being locked glares. The impact of their attack causing an audible boom followed by a gust of wind that reached even the girls. The demon immediately grabbed Karna's leg with both hands before he could react. Quickly slinging Karna over its shoulder and viciously slamming him, smashing through the ground's very surface. Karna's face displaying the intense pain the slam had caused him yet he did not yield. Using the impact of the slam to bounce upward aiming a skyward kick to the demon's chin but it proved quick enough to lean back outside of the range of the attack. Leaving Karna to perform a backflip, landing on his feet once more. His eyes widened with surprise as the demon had flipped tactics already being nearly face to face with him. Its hand straightened to a blade of which it thrust it towards Karna's chest. This attack was evaded by Karna stepping to the side just in time for the attack to miss but not completely, its hand grazing his side. In the same evasive step, his other leg lifted from the ground and rammed against the demon's stomach. Unfortunately, its heels dug into the ground preventing its movement from its footing, Karna was able to see it grit its teeth from the pain.
Before it could grab his leg again, he quickly withdrew his foot, using the momentum to spin backward and aiming a spinning roundhouse aimed for the demon who to Karna's surprise, had predicted his attack. Their feet colliding in the middle above eye level for both combatants. The demon hopped off its grounded foot, its other which was used to block Karna's kick forcibly pushed Karna's foot downward. Executing one fluid motion, the demon guided Karna's leg down into the cuff of the back of its leg. Locking its opponent's leg, holding Karna's leg curled and locked between its own calf and thigh. Elevated in the air the demon swung its free leg towards the head of Karna. Quickly smashing the side of his face and sending the man sideways rapidly spinning through the air, Karna quickly extending his hands towards the ground. His fingers tore through the ground unable to fully stop his momentum but allowed him to slow down just enough to stop his forced spinning and quickly adjusting his body. Performing a flip to correct himself to an upright position allowed him to plant his feet onto the ground. Karna lifted his head looking for his opponent. Blood dripping from his face and his opponent not in sight, yet not needing to see the demon for the sense of its demonic energy was behind him. Without haste, he rolled to the side just barely evading the demon's straightened hand swipe downward at him. Karna immediately stood up in time to raise his hands and begin stepping backward enabling him to deflect the incoming series of strikes from the demon with his hands and arms. Soon given an opportunity to throw his own series of strikes causing the demon to begin stepping backward as Karna pushed on, the strike evaded and similarly block by the demon. The exchange became mixed with multiple strikes and kicks.
Both combatants alternate between being the pushing force causing the other to step in retreat. Unfortunately within their vicious exchanges some of the demon's attacks would connect yet not ceasing their battle of power, speed, and combat technique. Their final strikes collided, forcibly pushing both being backward, the feet firmly planted to their sliding stops. Aisellia looked into the distance, her eyes looking but unable to see the two battle. Looking towards Leiliana, Aisellia took notice of her eyes, rapidly shifting quickly in what seemed to Aisellia like random directions. From her eyes alone she could tell the combating demons were sporadically appearing in one location than another with each sudden eye movement.
(They're too fast for me but she sees them.)
She thought before looking forward once more only catching sight of them once their collision led them to slide apart. Each new collision between the two creating its own boom that was easily heard by the girls. In the clash, Karna and the demon continued to strike, evade, and counter each other's attacks. Initially, the demon's combat skill appeared superior, several strikes slipping through Karna's defenses, resulting in him being dealt powerful blows. Karna swiftly blocking, evading, and launching counterattacks of his own. Although not able to slip any past the creature's guard. Catching and locking both of Karna's hands before delivering a fearsome headbutt, temporarily knocking the signs of life from Karna's eyes forcing him to began falling backward. In the split-second prior to his feet leaving the ground, Karna seemed unconscious. Suddenly life returned to his eyes, now baring an intense red coloration. Gritting his teeth through the pain and with an anger-filled expression on his face, he used his backward momentum to swing a foot skyward, crashing into the demon's chin from under. The blow sending it back into repetitious backflips same as Karna. Both quickly separating and flipping back onto their feet simultaneously. Both quickly standing upright, immediately moving at such a speed causing them to vibrate briefly before disappearing from the naked eye. The two beings clashed once again, hands entangled with each other, both headbutting the other leading them to forcibly attempt to force the other back. Growing intensity from opposing forces caused the ground underneath them to fragment and splinter yet neither faltered. Their faces displaying the sheer force they each fought with accompanied by bulging veins visible on their heads and exposed arms. Gradually a violet-colored aura emerged from the skin of the superior demon, soon bulking an aura fully enveloping its body, gifting it the strength to gain power against Karna. His feet beginning to be pushed into the ground and forced backward.
Karna yelled. Having a black color aura erupt around himself of similar size thus allowing him to equalize the pushing force between them. Aisellia and Leiliana watched in amazement at the power struggle happening before their eyes.
"I can't believe it. I've known about him but... it's terrifying."
"You should be more than fearful. He's not strong enough to defeat it."
Leiliana announced. Aisellia could only visually show the fear in her expression, her heart practically dropping from what she was just told.
"No no no! It can't end here right?!"
She questioned, moving her gaze downward to see an unconscious Miyaura.
"Listen Aisellia. If he loses...take her and run, I'll buy you as much time as I can."
"But it's too powerful-!"
"I know! I know more than anyone!"
Leiliana interrupted angrily, slamming her fist onto the ground in frustration.
"We have to be realistic and that demon...your friend just isn't strong enough either. Shingen and Eleanor should have made it by now. They're likely already sending scouts and fortifying their defenses."
"Leiliana...I-I don't know how else to tell you...we were ambushed on the way back and-"
"No more Aisellia...please no more. I've had my guesses. But someone with Eleanor's kindness wouldn't have allowed you to come here on your own. She had her fears...but she braved anything for her allies. Even if that meant...losing her own life."
Aisellia could only look as Leiliana went through her own despair over her lost subordinate. Looking down at Miyaura silently for a few seconds then looked out at the battle. Seeing each person physically and emotionally defeated as Karna struggled against the great threat facing them all.
"You all gave everything...no matter what it cost you. Protecting what you care about even if it leaves you all broken and bloody. If this is how it's supposed to end...I'll put myself on the line too. For everyone. Miyaura, I'll need a little help with this."
She said, reaching her hand out for the katana pierced into the ground which protected them while the other rested on Miyaura's head.
"If you can hear me...I'll do it. If being a regular girl will cost my friend's lives...I'll throw being normal away! Hear me! "
Aisellia yelled, prompting Leiliana to turn and look at her, confused about the words she spoke and more so whoever she was speaking to. Meeting eyes with Aisellia both could see the tears coming from each other's eyes. Just then the Katana began to shift around in the ground, suddenly disappearing and reappearing into Aisellia grasp. Appearing with a small burst of azure flame as it materialized in her hand.
Taking the demon off guard, Karna lifted his feet from the ground paired together. Both feet lifting eye level with the demon and forcibly delivering a dropkick to its face, forcing the demon to release one of Karna's hands. Yet it didn't move from its position. Quickly swiping Karna's legs to the side, stepping forward, and pulling on the arm still in its grasp. Pulling Karna in with one hand as the other slammed downward into Karna's stomach sending him crashing deep into the ground. Using the same grip on the man to pull his body up from the sky, releasing him and allowing his body to seemingly hover in front of it. The demon rapidly unleashed a series of powerful gut punches to the man, each one lifting Karna back into the air allowing the demon to continue his combo. Drawing its straightened hand back, the demon thrust his palm forward, aiming to deliver a devastating blow to Karna yet just before its palm was able to connect, Karna gripped onto its wrist stopping the attack just before impact. Expecting to catch the demon off guard again, Karna visually became confused as he saw a smirk begin to form with the demon's lips before a bright light began emitting from its palm. Karna's gaze shooting downward but not quick enough to stop the following pulse wave of energy released. Instantly shredding most of what remained of Karna's attire while simultaneously creating multiple injuries all over his body. The damage being done in the instant it was released the secondary effects initiated sending Karna flying backward through the air.
Leiliana watched as Aisellia hunched over, her chest practically smothering Miyaura, who even while unconscious proved able to crack a smile in the joy of it. Aisellia sat crying in pain, faint whimpers quickly turning into withheld agonizing screams through her closed lips. Aisellia's free hand held firmly onto Miyaura's. Without warning the back of her attire blew off her back into shreds leaving her entire back exposed to the air.
"Aisellia...what are you doing?"
Leiliana questioned before going speechless, witnessing the azure flame that protected them painfully scorch lines into her lower back, burning an insignia into her flesh. It was then she could no longer hold the painful screams any longer. On the back of her hand, another symbol appeared painlessly compared to her back.
Without hesitation, the creature immediately aimed its palm at him once more. It's freehand gripping onto its wrists as it appeared to take a more stable stance, firmly planting it to the ground. In his palm an orb of concentrated energy began to form, its charge being much quicker than before. Soon releasing a massive beam of energy easily double in size to its first one that had been aimed for Leiliana. Karna's eyes once again faded, unable to move or much less react to the incoming blast. In the final second before impact, a pulse surged through his body. His eyes shifting to the side almost automatically fixing on Aisellia who now threw herself upright and in a similar fashion her eyes met his. It was then the words of the mysterious voice replayed in her mind.
(That's the only way I can offer. It'll cause you extreme pain, but the pain it will cause him will be unimaginable. It's not like Miyaura's power-up. More than that you'll be forcing him to endure. The madness inside of him will begin pouring out of him uncontrollably. It's beneficial he can't remember much as of now for the full weight of madness...is irreversible. Or so I thought, only I have been able to pull him back but I believe you two have what it takes. To call upon his inner darkness and bring him back. You'll be binding your soul to his, meaning life for you will change permanently...if your heart wavers, you could lose your life before anything happens. It'll only be temporary but you all will have a better chance to survive this battle. You may make the choice as I have before you. Your life is at stake so please consider carefully if it's worth your life.)
Just as their eyes met, Aisellia blue eyes began to glow causing the red color and pupils of his to disappear from his eyes. Robbed of visual sight, a vision entered Karna's mind, Seeing his vision as if he were viewing through someone's eyes during his experience.