The nagas were no match for Locke since they were only as strong as mid-rank Knechts. He passed them like a breeze, plunging his spear into three of them in the process. They began to bleed from the deep holes inflicted. The gaping wounds were so deep that bones were visible. Even so, the nagas remained standing. Locke had to applaud their resilience.
Locke’s overwhelming difference in ability had attracted the other naga’s attention. A few clambered over to subdue him with numbers but he showed no fear. The monsters were two metres tall and were bestowed superhuman strength but they were just only as strong as mid-rank Knechts. The difficulty posed by their combined effort was only equivalent to fighting two high-rank Knechts simultaneously. He wasn’t going to hold back. Nagas were sent flying away every dozen seconds.
Apart from Locke, the strongest on the deck was a one-eyed mariner who was a high-rank Knecht. Granted that these nagas were largely weakened by the scarlet tarantulas, they could only rely on the never-ending stream of support that joined them from the waters. Two sailors were torn apart while another was bathed in his own blood. He yelled, “Captain, you need to use that!”
Hesitation dressed the mariner’s face. He watched his sailors fall victim to the nagas and came to a resolution. He waved, “I need an extra pair of hands!”
It was complete chaos on the deck so Locke hadn’t noticed their plan. It was only until he heard a loud creaking that he’d bothered to check. The pair had brought out a pitch black cannon made of steel. Its deep muzzle was engraved with complex enchantments and there was a shining green magic crystal embedded on the base of the barrel. It was a magic crystal cannon!
Magic crystal cannons were no strangers to Locke since he’d seen plenty in the planar war. He could vouch for its vehemence; it was truly a harvester of souls. However, the cannon before him didn’t appear as massive as the ones he’d seen on Botania. It appeared more like a flawed version.
The cannon was aimed at the ship’s right flank, where most of the nagas used to board the vessel. “Steer clear!” the mariner screamed. The sailors in the area quickly dispersed like a flock of startled birds. Before the nagas could comprehend what was going on, the mariner seized the opportunity to slap a protruding button on the barrel. A blinding light swirled to life within the cannon.
A loud explosion rang. The area where the nagas gathered was turned into burnt charcoal, gone with it was a chunk of the ship’s flank. Water began to gush into the hull. If it wasn’t for the vessel’s massive size, they would’ve gone under soon enough.
The fire had taken out fifty nagas, which the mariner heaved a sigh of relief. There was finally some breathing space for everyone. “Jess, Brute, head below to stop the water from entering the second basement!” He turned around. “Everyone else, follow me. Let’s stop these pesky nagas!” The older man brought up his longsword and led the rest into battle.
“A magic crystal cannon strong enough to endanger a level-one lifeform?” Locke questioned under his breath.
The majority of nagas on the deck had perished under the violence of the cannon. The mariner and the sailors closed in on the surviving five; it was a matter of time until the last of them was slaughtered.
Locke grew bored of toying with his naga opponent, finally circulating his Falconim with a tilt of his spear. The monster’s green skull split open like a watermelon, reds and whites splattering onto the ground heavily. From what he could see, the nagas were very primitive. There was barely anything shrouding their bodies and the only semblance of modesty was a patch of seaweed over their privates. Perhaps they are only as valuable as pet food, maybe I should feed them to Fermoss, thought Locke. He wasn’t interested in keeping any part of the naga, soon turning his attention to the occupied sailors.
The damage was somewhat remedied once another seven sailors joined the effort. They were seasoned men of the sea hence Locke wasn’t worried that he’d drown in their care. The last remaining nagas were forced towards the edge of the deck, new lacerations created across their bodies at every second. Even so, the nagas held on stubbornly despite being in proximity to water. The monsters’ green skin was covered with red swelling sacs and spots. It appeared that those red spots were the culprit behind their suppressed capabilities. They were supposed to be stronger than the sailors but the bamboo hat Magister had reduced them into a pathetic state
Just as Locke was about to rush to their aid, a devastating sound came from a distance. It sounded like rolling waves and his sharpened auditory senses had picked up on the Magister’s furious roar that was quickly muddled by the noise. His heart sank. This is bad.
The noise didn’t go unnoticed by the sailors and nagas. Amid the sailors’ confusion, the nagas started to claw back desperately. Their movements were reckless and unhinged; the nagas were putting their lives on the line. No one could understand what was the cause, though.
The feeling of impending doom grew stronger. Locke pulled out his longsword and dashed to help subdue the nagas. He was more confident in his sword skills than in wielding spears. He stomped the wooden floor hard and leapt towards a naga, sword’s tip aimed at its skull. In that split second, he changed his trajectory unnaturally, swinging his blade behind. Clang! The crisp sound of metal collision resonated loudly, sparking pain in everyone’s eardrums.
“Huh?” A vaguely human sound rang from a blue four-armed naga. Two of its arms held peculiar marine plants while the other two held sharp daggers. The weapon that’d caught Locke’s blade was the calcareous plants whose rigidness was uncanny.
Locke had no time to process everything, though. The blue naga was about to drive its dagger into his chest! This was not good at all. Even with the fortified body of a quasi-Ritter, the direct stabbing would leave behind deep holes.
“Watch out!” Kristin screeched from where she’d been watching them.
Laffey reached for her longsword and armour from her spatial ring, hastily gearing up to aid him. Locke had to admit that four arms were way more challenging to handle than two arms. He narrowly dodged the daggers with an impressive backflip, landing firmly at a good distance away from the four-armed naga.
“You’re as strong as a high-rank Knecht…” Locke narrowed his eyes.