Chapter 180 :
Episode 35 : Encounter (6)
A sight where Mirai encountered, she instantly spotted her captain in a critical state where a fatal wound was on his chest.
Apart of JoonChul, there was HwanGi who was burning by hellish flame, armed with a familiar weapon.
Without a doubt, Mirai would be able to put the puzzle pieces together to know what's going on.
‘That sword! Isn't that!?’ Mirai wondered.
As a comrade of JoonChul, Mirai learned and understood things she never would have imagined.
By being beside her captain, she already knew that the sword that would hurt him dearly was the Excalibur in the hands of HwanGi.
Known to Mirai as a weapon who will put her captain in jeopardy at the beginning stages.
Enraged, Mirai bellowed. "So you did this to my captain?!?"
From that moment on, Mirai's wrath became noticeable by the irked atmosphere around her, even bewildering HwanGi a bit.
"Wait, I didn't mean to—" HwanGi tried to calm the situation down only to be cut off.
"Shut up, you worthless scum!"
The voice in which Mirai conveyed was baffling to HwanGi since he hadn't heard her speak in this infatuated and loud tone.
HwanGi panicked. ‘What should I do..?!’
Upon looking closer, HwanGi finally came to terms that this dilemma was unfixable by the way Mirai's glare and voice were.
Unbeknownst to HwanGi, he couldn't know the depth of Mirai's fury where her blood was boiling in rage, steaming in the heat of the ambience.
In the end, Mirai's hand that was gripping onto her fan, had snapped into two as it dropped to the ground.
"You'll pay dearly!"
From there, Mirai sent her dagger glance toward HwanGi, burning her fury into HwanGi's gaze before she reached out her hand into the air.
In no time, stings ejected from Mirai's hands flew toward HwanGi when it wrapped itself around his body, enveloping him completely before he was dragged to the sky by Mirai.
"Garghh!" HwanGi grunted.
Not long after, Mirai swiftly slammed down her hand which led her strings to smash HwanGi into the ground as hard as possible, obviously attempting to break all of his bones to immobilize him.
"Shine!" Furious as Mirai should be, she yelled with rage.
* ( "Shine" Japanese → English "Die" )
In spite of the death threat, HwanGi exclaimed toward Mirai, trying to calm her down. "ACK! Please, stop for a moment!"
"As if! You dared to hurt my captain and that's a fact! Now begone, boke!!" Mirai grinds her teeth.
Slowly but surely, the surroundings were filled to the brim with the constant crashes and groans of HwanGi.
Grounds were nothing more than a crumbling mess while red fire outspread onto the cluster of blows that the grassy grounds once were.
A mess piled with another mess which was Mirai mercilessly and savagely flinging HwanGi back and forth to cause destruction not to the ground as well, but the trees, bushes, etc.
..Nothing was left untouched by Mirai's fury.
However, there was one area where Mirai hadn't laid her hands on. It was none other than the place where her captain laid bare upon a rock, seeming too grievous to watch.
No doubt, a frown engraved on Mirai's sorrowful face as she bit her lip in frustration. ‘Captain.. If only I was quicker..!’
Unfortunately for her, Mirai didn't have the time to express her emotions when the groans of the man she was trying to kill resounded pathetically.
"Uagh.." HwanGi moaned with his consciousness slowly falling out.
Having enough of that idiotic groans, Mirai cooled herself down before laying HwanGi on the ruined ground.
Where the ground was crackling with fire of hell, Mirai looked around as she noticed the area had gotten far from its original image.
..Now, it was just a ruination.
As a result of the floor and nature masked away by the fire, it was best that Mirai paused herself from doing further devastation to her surroundings.
It wouldn't be good if the forest itself turned into a deforestation of fire, right?
In actuality, Mirai didn't stop because she wanted to, if she could, she would definitely murder HwanGi if she had a chance.
‘My Captain's identity is more important than to kill this worthless scum.’ Mirai mused as she glared fiercely at HwanGi.
‘I'll just kill this boke silently.’
Cautiously, Mirai observed HwanGi from afar as she narrowed her glance from what she saw. "The Excalibur is still in his hands.. How should I go about taking that sword? It'll be impossible.."
"That's how Excalibur is. Unable to leave the wielders' hand without their consent."
Surprised by the familiar voice, Mirai felt a hand placing on her shoulder before she shifted her gaze at the person next to her.
"..! Aah, captain!" Mirai's lips widened into a relieved smile, rushing for a hug before she embraced her captain desperately.
"Hai, I'm alright." JoonChul embraced her back, comforting Mirai as much as he could.
"Captain… I'm sorry for not getting here fast enough.."
"It's not something you should be sorry for. I should thank you for coming here. Arigato, Mimi chan."
"Fufu.." Mirai flushed.
"By the way, I'm curious why you're here."
"Eto.. I missed captain." She lied.
As obvious as it was, Mirai didn't want her captain to know that she was actually here because she was mad at him for being with that mermaid..
No way she would tell him..
All of the sudden, HwanGi uttered in surprise while looking at the two JoonChuls. "JoonChul-ssi.. How.. But you're over there unconscious.. Then, the 'you' right now.. is?"
JoonChul with a gruesome gaze gripped the air before his jet-black weapon flew into his hand, aiming a katana at HwanGi in an instant.
"Your life is over now." JoonChul stated without a hint of mercy or take back from his voice.
Hearing JoonChul's tone like this, HwanGi dishearteningly gazed at JoonChul before letting go of his clutch to release Excalibur from his hand.
Everything had been going downhill the moment HwanGi found this sword, so it was only right that he despised Excalibur..
‘I'm really going to die like this..’ HwanGi thought while taking a look at his damaged body.
As if HwanGi has already given up in the beginning of the fight when he didn't utilize his skills to combat against JoonChul and Mirai, he clenched his hands in his anguish because he knew he wouldn't win against those two even if he were to put up a fight.
Aside from the fact that the skill, ‘Hellfire' was constantly incinerating HwanGi the entire time he was repeatedly smashed and bashed..
HwanGi let out a groan. ‘This fire is.. painful.’
Eventually, HwanGi wouldn't be able to bring himself to kill Mirai, and mostly JoonChul who had been with him in the start of the stages.
"JoonChul." HwanGi uttered before locking his eyes on JoonChul.
With a scowl on JoonChul's face when HwanGi caused him to narrow his eyes from the removal of honorifics. "Go on."
"..Could you look after everyone for me?"
Those words voicing out from HwanGi's mouth brought shock into JoonChul's eyes by how much resemblance he saw within HwanGi.
Slowly but surely, JoonChul bit his lip as he mused. ‘..You might as well be 'her'.’
A complicated yet angered frown formed on JoonChul's face when he glimpsed at HwanGi.
‘Alaine, Mya and Louis, how lucky you are to have such a wonderful man as your friend.’ JoonChul thought with a laugh.
Even if it could be irritating to look after humans he doesn't care about, it's a promise JoonChul can keep either way.
"..Thank you, JoonChul."
Even the screams and fear of death that one would hear when facing death's door isn't resounding from HwanGi.
Far from that, HwanGi looked relieved in spite of his death drawing near. His eyes and smile were expressing something vexing in JoonChul's gaze, watching a man grinning in front of death's door was wholly abnormal.
"...Bastard." JoonChul mumbled as he began to swing his katana at HwanGi.
JoonChul's eyebrow twitched. ‘..That name again. He still thinks I'm his childhood friend when he himself isn't even sure.’
"How pathetic." JoonChul said.
Caught by a blinding light suddenly appearing above the wounded HwanGi, it surprised both JoonChul and Mirai while they were staring right at it.
In that one flash of a second, JoonChul's eyes widened once he realized what was going on, grinding his teeth as he exclaimed. "You exceeded my expectations, Michael..!"
"Nande?! How can she be here?! And why would she?!" Mirai gasped in awe while she was trying her best to block the light from hurting her eyes.
Without further to do, Mirai instantly enclosed the area with her cocoon, not even allowing a single ant to escape from it much less a soul.
[Combinations of ‘Hellfire’ Lv. 4 and ‘Silk Cocoon’ Lv. ??? had turned into ‘Hell-bent Cocoon’ Lv. 4!]
Once the cocoon was set up within a second, JoonChul unleashed a veil of hellish flame to engulf the entirety of the cocoon which would further enhance it.
In the end, JoonChul's real name was called out by the voice of an archangel who was descending upon the unconscious HwanGi as though to rescue him, illuminating her royal blue light before everyone to showcase her immense powers.
Hatred and anger etched a scowl on JoonChul's face as he glared at the archangel. "My name isn't something you can utter."
Among themselves, the archangel, Michael's appearance was completely blurred out with her face unseen by others.
But without that, JoonChul remembered clearly how she looked. An archangel with long pale golden hair with royal blue irides was a look that JoonChul could never forget.
"She looks the same as ever.. Why can't I even get to see her face~?" Mirai asked with a pout.
Only JoonChul, himself, witnessed Michael's appearance while his comrades haven't gotten a slight glimpse of her.
"Michael, I never thought I'd see you this way."
On the other hand, the situation at hand was something truly unprecedented to JoonChul who seemed to be faintly puzzled by the scene in front of him.
..A scene in which an archangel actually came down to save their apostle, was something unforeseen.
No mere 776 lives ever experienced such a thing, and no matter how much pain and torment the archangels' apostles ever experienced, archangels didn't descend for a mere human unless it was a special occasion.
Mumbling, JoonChul didn't remove his glance away from the archangel. "You're so kind, aren't you?"
Amidst his surprises, JoonChul was suddenly caught off guard by the flare of holy light shooting out from Michael's index finger, almost penetrating through his clone body if it wasn't for him parrying the holy light off.
"Captain!" Mirai cried out before she dashed toward Michael to attack.
[Player ‘16’ has activated her Hidden Skill, ‘Outgrowth’ Lv. ???.]
In a blink of an eye, plants and trees sprouted in excessive growth caused by Mirai's skill, prompting nature to attack Michael in the possible.
Hellish fire on the earth lit up the plants that grew, and went perfectly as what Mirai had planned. She then directed those burning plants toward the archangel.
But instead of having dealt damage to Michael, HwanGi was casually lifted up from the ground by Michael, relieving HwanGi of the hellish flame from his body as she looked down upon the two people below.
..Or are there more than two people?
Like lightning snapping in unexpectedly, another one of JoonChul's clones appeared right behind Michael, blasting reddish fire onto the archangel to eliminate her.
[Heed my warning, oh fallen angel. For there shall be no future for thou.]
"Shut your damn mouth."
Anger which fueled the fire, gushed out extremely vigorously as it spread mayhem onto the surroundings around the archangel, burning and flickering with the thought of slaughtering one target.
[Quadruple Combos! ‘Thunderstorm’, ‘Hailstorm’, ‘Wave Vortex’ and ‘Multi-Blasters’ were combined into one Skill!]
[The Combined Skill, ‘Storm Outrush: Three Convergences’ has arisen!]
In that moment, three storms were brought into existence, bringing forth their disastrous havocs toward the one archangel.
Thunder, water and ice showered the archangel aggressively, swirling and swaying in a way that would be too difficult to even avoid amidst the hectic storms.
If humans were to be put in the archangel's spot, they would be left dead in the middle of the storm..
..But an archangel is an archangel for a reason.
The combined skill that was once the ideal skill to defend against one of Ruby's and Sapphire's attacks in the past, was..
In a matter of seconds, the storms were put into a stop as it vanished in the spot, revealing the archangel in mint condition without injuries at all.
"You think I'll allow that?"
As per JoonChul's words, he discharged right at Michael before swinging his dagger straight at Michael's face, inflicting a small scratch on her cheek when she dodged.
The archangel was silent while her blood dripped off her cheek, intentionally letting her blood fall because she knew her blood was special.
"For Mya's sake, I'll take those blood droplets." Mirai spoke after she made small cocoons to contain the wild blood of an archangel.
If those blood droplets were left untouched, it would have prompted the things it landed on to go haywire.
In this case where nature was outgrown, a droplet of blood would have been devastating to Mirai and JoonChul as it would have caused a problem.
A problem in which a forest or more would grow out of control with only one droplet, forcing Mirai's enclosed cocoon to be overcrowded with nature.
Not only that, it also contained holy power which would be effective against JoonChul if Mirai didn't stop it, so it was convenient that Mirai stored the blood where it would be safe and sound.
"Good job, Mimi." JoonChul praised Mirai even while he was in the middle of fighting off the archangel's holy light beams.
Meanwhile, Mirai blushed in this chaotic situation. "Hai! Heheh."
Calling out JoonChul's real name again was the last straw, the archangel didn't realize that when she was completely surrounded by dozens of snow golems and flowers that were prepared to attack.
As if JoonChul would allow the person he despised so much to leave safely after what she had done to him, his first clone immediately commanded the snow golems to strike while flowers fired ballistic bullets at the archangel in consecutive shots.
JoonChul's second clone set off a devilish flame to bombard the archangel, lighting fire to everything it touched while empowering the flowers' bullets to give it enough forces to pierce through an archangel's body.
As for Mirai, she did her part to buff up her captain and debuff her enemy, then she rained down her offensive skills onto the archangel while sending plants flying from below to the archangel.
At that point, being surrounded by life-threatening attacks from every direction, the archangel seemed to be entirely cornered by the sheer terror of those attacks.
…The reason archangels are archangels..
..are because they're overpowered.