Chapter 57:

Chapter 53: Malice Incarnate

The Immortal Witch's Death Wish

A smile indicative of the stars being inferior, and eyes that looked down from beyond the void. That was the best way to summarize the existence that was before them. From his height and stature, he was one who could peer down on everyone, including Grodd. The tall slender form of his was peculiar. Much more tantalizing, was his stature. He stood out like a sore thumb.

His clothes were that of a general. Long black cloth and tightly knit interlaced fabric glistened under the sunlight. Gold chains adorned themselves from his epaulets to his chest, as if encasing a chest of gold.

Every now and then a crest lined itself down the bottom of his sleeve and even embedded itself into his skin. Pale and ghastly as it was, it still looked rather human. Just- rather dead. The eyes were also like that of a dead man. It made one wonder if they played any role in securing optical detail, or if they were just placed there for show, and he was instead utilizing a different means of sensory.

Those dead eyes locked eyes with everyone as he knelt down. The pressure of his aura was immense. It threatened to drown everyone if they remained within it too long. He knelt down beside the child. His hair matched the child’s, golden, but fading and losing its luster. Almost Ashen now was the hair he adorned. “Zari… Oh Zari…. You went ahead and told didn’t you?”

Zari was too stunned to speak. He patted the child’s head. “It’s alright. This time, I won’t let this go punished. See you’ve done something wonderful this time.”

His eyes shifted to the back of his head, and an eye appeared on the back of his scalp, trained on Lusha.

“You see… you’ve introduced to me a chance I will only get once in a lifetime.”

“Hell- I doubt I would even get this chance in a thousand years.”

He slapped Zari’s head hard enough to knock his gaze to the ground. He immediately stood up and sequestered his smile and excitement. “What are you all doing around me? I have no interest in any of you.”

As he said those words, a volatile pulse pushed everyone away. Grodd, Zari, Ire, Inora, and Roy all flew several meters in the directions they were situated. This was not a technique or magic, he had simply densified his aura and shoved them through it.

The only person to be unaffected by the energy pulse was Lusha, who stood observing the demon with intrigue. Never before had a creature manifested itself in front of her like that. In more than a thousand years, this was a first.

She could suddenly recall the writing within Merlin’s guide. ‘A being that was not supposed to exist.’

“Technically… I’m not supposed to do this… especially not to a coordinate- but you know, it would truly be fun wouldn’t it?” He cracked one of his fingers and they bent the wrong way before snapping off entirely. “Oh-.... my apologies, Zari. I’ll take more care to take care of this body of yours.mmm– Buut for now”

His speed was immense, he barrelled towards Lusha before one could even blink. The gap was closed as his fists blared outwards. Lusha ducked underneath his fist, and slapped away the other hand that came towards him.

Another rapid succession of strikes followed. Each of them were repealed by Lusha who ducked and weaved out of the way of the flurries. This high speed onslaught was one characterized by split second movements and actions dodging by just a hair. She seldom had time to launch a counter attack. When she did, it would be entirely sideswiped and she would have to respond back again at his pace.

With each punch she was stepping further back and back, until one of the punches landed, pummelling into her cheek and sending her tumbling back. The arm that collided with her face splintered at the bone. The sheer force of the strike though, saw to it that she appeared as a single stretched line. A noise soon followed that sounded like a giant arrow whizzing passed.

The trees and structures all crumpled as her body flew through them. After one of the bigger trees had disrupted her flight, she quickly regained her footing just in time to move out of the way of the demonoid’s next attack.

She quickly took several hops back, but this creature’s movement was strange. It was as if a puppet controlled by a string. Whenever attacks that should impede his movement occurred, he was still capable of moving without factoring in his position, force, or momentum.

A knee collided against her stomach, which she grabbed and swung around, launching the man into the sky. There as he flew up, he stopped himself in place, without regard for momentum or gravity.

Just in time to see Lusha leap towards him. He changed his momentum, grabbing her fist and slamming her into the ground below. He then landed beside her, only to receive a swift kick to the side of the head as soon as he landed.

He tumbled for several feet before- just suddenly disappearing. No… that wouldn’t be quite right to explain what had just occurred. Lusha could feel the kick and the force connect with her feet… yet, the demon had not only disappeared, but all of his effects on the surroundings too disappeared.

The grass and ground which he had excavated in his body’s thrashing was no longer disturbed. There was no evidence that the actions that she had just done had actually happened. This perplexed Lusha to no extent. There wasn’t the faintest trace of magic in these actions thus far. Yet, it was clear that the attack had been negated somehow.

“Lusha Viscirilis…. The coordinate. You’re as good as would have expected ~~”

“Hmm… I wonder who would have been stronger between the two of you to face??”

Lusha wiped the blood of her cheek. “Between the two of us?”

“That’s riiiiight~ between the two coordinates.”

She took the opportunity to try and punch the man yet again. Her fists were caught with ease. “Your reaction tells me you don’t know who the other coordinate is, do you??”

There was a moment of silence before he released Lusha’s fist. “I’m speaking about you, Lusha. And Aaiiaiaaass~~”

Lusha’s eyes widened. This creature had now known both her name and that of her brother. Her energy flared up for a second before she calmed it down entirely. If she were to double this effect, there was a chance that several of the others would crumple under the pressure.

Instead, her power rose significantly.

[Manipulation Magic; Blessings of the One Being]

The next punch that followed suit, could not be traced. It couldn’t be felt, or even seen from the demonoid. He had just simply flown. His entire upper body felt numb from just the blow alone. Before he could even regain control over his body, Lusha had lifted his body to the skies and slammed him down into the ground.

This flurry of actions were much too fast… much too forceful. He couldn’t stop the attacks from reaching him. He continued to crash through the ground and the trees. Whenever he felt that he could regain composure, Lusha had yet again sent the man hurtling towards uncertainty. How many trees, how many craters had he made with his body alone? He was losing count.

Further and further, he continued getting slammed and pushed along in a direction.

“Ah I see… you’re trying to create distance between me and the others?” Yet again, his body disappeared and his form was reset. Somewhere far away from where Lusha was. The ground and the terrain also remained unperturbed.

Suddenly it clicked. Lusha quickly utilized her teleportation ability to reappear right back where she initially was. If that thing intended to go after the others, there was no chance of stopping them. The spatial configuration worked and she reappeared back in the original position with a hand through her chest.

The teleportation technique did have a weakness, and that was if one were to teleport into a location that had already had structures existing. In this case, the demon had known of her intention to teleport.

“You know. If I truly wanted to, once you die, I can stick my finger through the middle of your brain. With each reincarnation, you would not be able to cognizantly think and this would be over with. But that would be a mundane end for one such as yourself. A coordinate, falling by a means such as that… unacceptable no?”

He decapitated and pushed the dying Lusha off his arms and let the body fall to the floor. “Go on. Recover.”

As her body attempted to regenerate, his feet collided with her upper body, fracturing her ribs. “Come on, Lusha. You’re being quite disappointing.”

Her head regenerated along with her ribs. Everyone could only watch in awe as the fight of the century had just unfolded before their eyes. There was also a sense of hopelessness as they could see Lusha failing to combat this demonoid.

Roy was the first to react. “Hey… we have to get out of here…. We’re just getting in the way.”

He could note from Lusha’s earlier actions, that she was merely attempting to separate them from the demon. The immense pressure that they were feeling right now was just the beginning. Grodd had been protecting all of them within a bubble of his own aura, yet this was only doing half the job. The air still felt as dense as before. -Just a bit more digestible now.

Ire was also the first to exclaim his shock. “Who… is that woman? She’s strong..- stronger than anything I’ve seen.”

“We can consider ourselves lucky that they came to this place when we did. We would surely all be dead had she not been here… but alas, we have to leave this place… now. We need to call the adventurer’s guild as soon as possible.”

Inora shook her head. “We can’t just leave her here against this thing.”

“We’re only getting in the way.”

“Say… why haven’t you used any of your abilities yet, Lusha?”

The demon spoke. It maintained a voice of familiarity. As if long time friends speaking to each other. “You know. Your ability.”

She got up and cracked her bones a bit more. “The skills that got you this far no?”

“I want to see who it was they dubbed the name The Wretched Witch of Despair.”

With her skill still activated, she channeled all off her energy into her finger tips and pierced through the man’s skull just as fast as she had moved before. The man’s body went limp for a second, and then reappeared unhindered several feet away.

The blood that had encompassed her hands had also disappeared. It was as if that reality had never happened. She wasn’t sure what it was or how the mechanics of this creature worked, but she was understanding a little bit more now.

“Is it because of them? Is that why you refuse to act~~~?” He motioned his hands at the audience before him.

“iiiif so— You know… I can take care of them for you. It would be easy… don’t worry, it won’t detract from our conversation. It will only take a second…” He took the time to observe them. “No… less than that.” His smile was the same as before. “Ohh but I don't enjoy hurting others so quickly. That ruins the fun doesn’t it?”

“Say Lusha, doesn’t it ruin the fun?”

“Oh, I know. I’ll try and kill them one by one. Let’s see how many of them you can save?”

This was clearly done to goad the Witch and anger her even more. Yet, he was very serious. If the Wretched Witch of Despair activates her ability, surely they would all die. If she doesn’t, then he will kill them all.”

“So how about it? Let’s play a quick game, Lusha Viscirilis– no, Wretched Witch of Despair.”