The curious thing about people who wanted to kill you was that they themselves refused to die. Claire sighed, legs crossed upon a chair of ice, breath frosting even the cold, windy air of her realm; almost breaking into snowflakes as she looked down at the destruction upon the world of snow.
Half of her land was the blackness of empty space. A void shattered into existence by the pure force of rupturing mana a half-dragon could wield. The other was an ocean still alive with the breath of cold. Then, in that middle, a meteor of ice had crushed upon her foe.
She watched the meteor sink into the ocean and the sparks of crimson fall along with it and the thundering splash of water.
Thunder crackled and an explosion of lightning reverberated, crimson sparking until the meteor shattered apart in a flash of hot light.
Then, a boom resounded as a figure broke through the ocean and shot into the air.
Claire looked forward as the wings of the figure flapped in front of her.
"You. . ." A gnash fell as the voice of her opponent grumbled. Half-part in pain, half-part in anger.
The girl was ravaged. Her scales, which should have been strong, were crumbled and blood leaked out from them. She breathed in and our, harsh breaths filling her lungs as her right hand gripped her weapon. What was most surprising, however, was that her right eye was now forced close by her eyelid.
'So her right eye isn't an ability she can use for long. That or it drains her insanely fast,' She thought. She supposed, if it were stronger, it would reach a point where it could be used more. 'A bit like the Sharingan isn't it?'
Claire looked at the Dragon Slayer.
"Do you give up?" She asked.
The answer came with a breath of swirling mana, crimson spinning around the person's greatsword. Then, sparks of lightning echoing to join it.
"Give up? No. I've never lost," Lara De. Frag said, "Because I am a hero, I never lose."
Claire sighed. "Hero? Really? You? You're clearly in the wrong, so why are you still fighting?"
"In the wrong? I'm trying to get stronger so that one day I can kill the demon lord before they destroy the world. If one small village is destroyed on that journey, what of it?" Lara scoffed, "Are you telling me one little town's collateral damage is greater than saving the world?"
Claire was speechless for a moment.
"The problem is that you didn't have to fight the lesser dragon there," She chided. "And neither of you had to fight each other there, as well."
Her cold eyes looked at the girl.
"If you can't understand that, then you clearly aren't a hero." She ended, remembering Aura's form as she charged to save Fieth. "You don't deserve that title."
Claire was not heroic by any means herself, but even she had the tact to not bring destruction upon others simply because she had the power to.
Lara, however, scoffed as the air around her greatsword rumbled.
"I. Don't. Care."
[The Dragon Slayer's sword burned with lightning and mana and she faced the Ice Queen with a desire for destruction with one fell swoop. . .]
"Alright," Claire spoke, seated upon her throne, giving up hope for the girl. "If you want to continue, then let's end it."
Her right hand reached in front of her and a small spear broke from her chair to float above it. Then, the ocean beneath spurted a geyser between them and she flicked the thing forward.
"I'll simply crush you."
The spear leaped into the mass of water and came out of the other side enlarge, spinning. Snow and water spun around the tip and body of the weapon until it became something akin to a drill. A brilliant weapon of elemental destruction still seething.
Within that small timeframe, the distance between the two girls naught more than ten meters, Lara De. Frag held her weapon with both hands and slashed down.
"Like I said, a hero never loses!" She yelled.
The air crackled.
The world was momentarily dyed crimson.
Then, a blade streak sliced, its force ripping apart the air, and met the spear head-on.
Blue. Crimson. Snow. Lightning.
The four clashed and Claire squinted as her weapon advanced with the sound of something cracking reaching her ears.
When she realized what it was, she smiled.
'Ah, I see, since the art she uses gives her mana a physical property. . .I can freeze it much the same way as the Cyclops's concussive beam. . .'
It wasn't as simple as the spear crushing through lightning and mana. No, Claire's power was freezing the half-dragon's attack. It was slow. It was barely perceivable. But it was there. Freezing the surge of power.
"Sorry," Claire muttered, "But you lose."
Lara's attacked shattered apart into a collateral of ice shards.
The girl who had just completed her swing, exhaustion clouding her, stared, eyes widened.
"What the hell?!"
The spear leaped forward and plunged into the girl.
There was a horrendous scream of pain.
Claire ruthlessly streaked a finger down.
The spear changed its path and plunged, breaking through the air until it reached the ocean floor and exploded.
For a moment, all was quiet.
Claire disappeared from her position and appeared upon the ocean floor. She took a step forward, ice immediately frosting below her feet.
Harsh breaths reached her ears.
"You really are tenacious. . ."
Lara De. Frag shook to stand. In fact, she barely stumbled up. Her two hands grasped her greatsword, dragging it as she took a step forward. Her scales were ripped apart—along with her clothing—her bare chest having become bloodied with a grotesque hole in the middle. No, every part of her had lost dragonian scales and became blood riddled.
She took a deep breath as she stepped forward, that action almost causing her to fall
"Ha," She laughed. Blood spurted from her lips and splashed the ocean. "I can still fight."
"Barely." Claire shook her head. "It looks like me simply breathing will kill you."
The half-dragon glared. Her vision was hazy but she still wouldn't stand for that. Losing? She had never done that in her life.
"A hero never loses," She almost growled those words out like a beast, "And I'm a hero."
Then, her remaining scales receded.
She stopped in her track.
Her mana receded, the crimson luster upon her body gone.
"What?" The girl's eyes jumped.
Then, she felt strength leave her body, gone from her control as if the cold winds of the Ice Queen's realm carried it away.
"Wha—what?! Where're my powers?! Where's my mana?!" Lara Screamed.
Her legs quaked and she began to sink into the ocean floor.
[̷L̷e̴g̷e̸n̷d̴ ̶o̸f̶ ̵t̷h̷e̷ ̵D̷r̷a̶g̷o̴n̶ ̸S̷l̴a̶y̵e̵r̷,̶ ̵T̵h̴i̸r̴d̶ ̸C̶h̸a̷p̶t̶e̶r̵,̶ ̷'̴I̷'̷m̸ ̸a̵ ̵H̴e̸r̶o̸!̵'̸]̷
The usually clear, serene, voice was scratchy and almost unrecognizable. It was as if Lara's 'story' had become corrupted. Forever losing its meaning and form. Gone into a void.
Claire tilted her head, confused, before a book appeared in front of her as if it birthed itself into existence. Then, the more serene voice came back.
[Record of the Dragon Slayer: This book contains the records of Lara De. Frag's story from Chapter 1 to the beginning of Chapter 3; made by the Fairy's victory against her.
If grasped by someone not within the Game of Gods—not a Hero, Demon Lord, Guardian, nor Fairy—and wished to be used, they will gain the might, powers, and abilities the former hero once wielded within those chapters and become the new Hero.
If grasped by another hero, their stats shall increase by 1 minor rank and their abilities shall mutate, combining both uniqueness to become stronger.
If grasped by a Guardian, their assimilation percentile shall increase by 10% for every complete Chapter the book holds (20% in this case) and no Dragon Slayer shall ever exist again.
If not used by someone within 1 week, this record shall shatter and a random denizen of the world will become the new Hero.]
Claire was an intelligent person.
'Hold on. . .'
She stared at the book with furrowed brows.
It seemed, her role as the 'Fairy' in this game between gods was larger than she thought. If she could remove part of a hero's power—storing it in an item—by defeating them within their story, what else could she do?
Essentially, she now realized why she was in this game. She supposed, for someone like her who had trouble trusting others or placing them in her heart, she was perfect for the role.
'I'm supposed to pick a fitting person to be a hero, and who could possibly be on Alicia's side or against her. If I don't pick, someone else will become one in short notice. If I pick wrong, maybe someone greedy to become a God, I'll just be making a new enemy through my own hands,' She thought, 'A double-edged sword, yet. . .no wonder my ghostly mentor was so glad that I was the one that inherited the Water Seed as I can use it on myself as well.'
Should she use it on herself, however, or should she create a new Dragon Slayer? One would directly strengthen her, she figured, but another would create a valuable companion as strong as a hero, with potential for growth, that could act independently to help her and Alicia—as long as they were trusted. Interestingly, by the rules of the book, there was also an unsaid option to give it back to Lara.
Claire decided that debate was for later as the book frosted and disappeared from her grasp. The only thought on her mind now was what to do with the currently shocked girl.
"You—!" Lara De. Frag screamed, halfway sunk into the ocean as she looked at the girl in front of her. Realization dawned. "You're the Fairy?!"