Chapter 22:

Chapter 22 – Competition (3)

Crystal Evolution

About thirty meters from the two bickering brothers, a group of three students, two women and a man, stared at them with stunned expressions on their faces.

"Who are these two clowns? Don't they take this competition seriously?" said one of the two women.

"Let's eliminate them quickly and move on to the next target. Lina summon your beast when Megan and I are close to them," answered the man.

"Okay, Lucas."

The three began to move. Once they reached about twenty meters from them, Lina stopped her steps, and a circle filled with inscriptions appeared under her.

The ground beneath Kieran and Ryan shook.

Without hesitation, Kieran shapeshifted into his lycan form. Grabbing his brother, he escaped the area.

A ten-meter-long giant worm emerged from the ground where they were just a moment ago. The worm howled in their direction, returning under the ground.

"Where is he going?"

The ground trembled again under their feet. Kieran pushed his brother to the side before jumping into the air, the worm came out of the ground, his gaping mouth trying to swallow him.

"Crystal Essence Claw"

A solid crystal essence took shape on its claws, with a swift motion, he sliced off the worm's head with ease, killing it instantly.

When the giant worm died, Kieran heard the sound of a woman screaming in pain in the forest.

He was about to run toward the scream when two figures rushed towards them.

Lucas held a giant ax in his hands, which he violently slammed down on Kieran. At the same time, Megan approached Ryan with long sharp bony claws growing from each of her fingers.

Kieran sidestepped quickly, dodging the ax that slammed into him, he slashed forward, digging his claws into Lucas's chest, eliminating him instantly.

As he took care of Lucas, Ryan formed a barrier around him, stopping the bony claws that pointed at him. Great scratches appeared on his barrier, making it shake violently. Ryan concentrated on keeping the barrier in place.

Megan was surprised that a barrier appeared between her and her target, she quickly backed away, glancing in Lucas's direction when a pair of black claws appeared in front of her. Her vision became black the next second.

Kieran watched the two bodies on the ground slowly disappearing.

"Stay there. There's still another one left."

He rushed through the forest, and a few seconds later, he arrived in front of Lina, who was on her knees on the ground holding her head in her hands. Her face was twisted in pain, she looked at him with a gloomy face.

"You killed my worm."

"I see, the giant worm was your ability."

He raised his claws in the air before lowering them without hesitation.

He then turned back to Ryan, whom he found surrounded by his barrier. Getting closer to him, he gently knocked against the barrier.

"You can remove your barrier now."

"Sorry to be of no use."

"You're not useless. With your barrier, you can take an attack for me, and if you manage to create barriers from a distance, it will be really useful during the fights."

"Maybe, but I'm far from succeeding in creating a barrier afar from my body, and I saw you fight. I don't know if there is another student who can fight against you. What's the point of taking an attack for you?"

"You don't know what can happen. There are rich students in our academy. Some of them might even have already reached the Bronze rank. With your ability, if you manage to create a barrier from a distance, you can take an attack even if your barrier breaks right after, it can buy us time to make an attack or run away. Leave the fights to me and practice creating your barriers, I don't think it will take you long before you succeed."

Ryan nodded slightly.

"All right."

As the two were talking, a tremor shook the whole place. The forest suddenly turned into a huge maze, each wall rising over twenty meters as a stone ceiling replaced the blue sky.

"What just happened?" Kieran asked.

"The teachers have to make sure that the environment changes after a certain period of time. Certain abilities are dependent on the environment, changing the environment will avoid favoring certain students."

"Looks like we'll have to continue through this maze then."

The two continued to move through the maze, the silence in the hallway gave them a bad feeling as if they were being watched. Soon they came to an intersection as they moved towards the left hallway, a bright glow appeared in the corner of their eyes.

Kieran moved quickly, dodging to the side, a blade brushing the side of his cheek and ending its course into the wall of the maze.

He straightened his stance, moving closer to Ryan, he watched all around him in search of his assailant, but all that was in front of them was an empty hallway, not a single sound could be heard.

"Where is he?"

The two stayed there for several seconds, trying to detect the slightest movement. If it weren't for the blade still digging into the wall, they would have thought they had an illusion.

Kieran approached the wall remaining on his guard, he lowered to retrieve the blade when he saw two cold flashes heading towards Ryan and him, he turned around, throwing the blade he had just picked up.

"Ryan, Barrier!"

Listening to Kieran, Ryan created a barrier around him as a blade passed halfway through the barrier. A cold blade was locked a few centimeters from Ryan's head, cold sweat ran down his back.

While Kieran had thrown the blade, he wanted to dodge on the side for any attack that might hit him, but he was one step too late, a blade pierced into his abdomen.

Kieran’s face twisted, holding a cry of pain.

The blade he had tossed through the air hit nothing, but Kieran managed to see deformation in the air near the blade, an idea popping into his head.

"Keep your barrier activated."

While holding his wound with one of his hands, he used the other to create deep scratch marks all around him, gradually forming a cloud of dust.

As he continued to rampage all around him, a figure appeared in the cloud of dust. Kieran lunged at it, digging his claws deep into the figure that had appeared.

He felt his claws dig through flesh as blood ran down his claws, followed by the scream of a man.

"I found you."

A trembling human form became visible in front of him, revealing a young man who carried multiple blades all over his body, blood running down his lips.

"Wait... I can help you."

The man asked with pity, but he found none in Kieran's eyes. Without waiting for the man's next words, his claws dug deeper into his body, eliminating him from the competition, his body slowly vanishing.

He sat down against the wall, holding his wound with his hand. Ryan canceled his barrier, moving closer to him.

"I have some wood panther blood left. I'll bandage you up, don't move."

Ryan quickly prepared the bandage before holding the blade that was driving into Kieran's abdomen.



Ryan ripped the blade from Kieran's abdomen, making him scream in pain before applying the bandage to his wound.

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