Heimarian Odyssey - Chapter 435

This was perhaps Locke’s longest battle yet. It was only when their battle had pushed past the three-hour mark that he noticed a decline in Yeffermun’s momentum. The potency of the Vermouth potion had way exceeded his expectations; Yeffermun must’ve been saving it for the showdown.

It was a pity that the grey-robed caster had the misfortune of encountering Locke and Fermoss. The scorpiondrake’s fortified exoskeleton and Locke’s agility were great advantages against the caster. Yeffermun grew frantic and in his last attempt to conjure another Death Grip, Locke plunged his longsword into the caster’s chest.

Yeffermun watched the tip of the weapon slide into his cavity with widened eyes. He staggered backwards before finally doubling over.

Locke was in horrible shape. A third of his armour was damaged; the Death Grip’s vehemence was intense even with the scorpiondrake’s protection. Death had begun to eat away his internals and if not for his sheer will, Locke would’ve already dropped dead. He suppressed the urge to cough up blood and quickly kept Yeffermun’s corpse in his spatial ring. This was no place to stay.

“Let’s go, Fermoss, to the southeast!” Locke hopped onto the scorpiondrake’s back and they strode away.

Similar to Locke, Fermoss was wrecked. Blood was spilling out of every crevice and a good portion of its inky green scales were flipped over. Thankfully, scorpiondrakes were shadow monsters, so Fermoss was a tad resistant to the corrosive nature of phantom magic. Even so, the damage Yeffermun landed on Fermoss was extensive. It would take years for the scorpiondrake to recover without any auxiliary even with its impressive resilience.

Many cultivators arrived at the battle location soon after Fermoss ferried Locke away to the southeast. There were hints of struggle that remained on the ground, leaving behind answers to the gaps in information. The cohort of mid-rank cultivators gaped at the sight; the turbulent elemental energy that lingered in the air meant that the fight had been exceptionally intense.

Should we chase after them? The thought crossed many of their minds.

Locke hadn’t erased his tracks so it would take no effort at all for experienced fighters to track them down. It went without saying that the ferocious battle had left him vulnerable at the moment. They were bound to receive a mountain of points upon annihilating Locke and the idea was no doubt enticing. Many considered the idea but none launched into action.

The monstrous footprints in the dirt pointed out that the injured elite possessed a massive familiar or mount. While the size and the ability of a monster were not exponentially related, the concept applied to most species. There were risks but only a few could resist such temptations. With a flutter of their lashes, many began to follow Fermoss’ trail. Some, on the other hand, had consciously chosen to stay out of it. This was merely the third day and while there was a possibility of looting a huge bulk of points, there was the inevitable risk of death. They’d much rather preserve themselves for the intense final battles towards the end of the event.

Locke found himself a shelter in a secret cave between a patch of thorn bushes when evening arrived. He worked a blade against his abdomen with gritted teeth, shaving away at the dead flesh. As miraculous as the Botanian essence was, it couldn’t help with curing odd ailments. It was better if he removed the problem and utilise the healing potency of the Botanian essence to hasten the regeneration of new flesh.

As the pale flesh dropped from his blade and fell to the ground, making contact with the barbed thorns that were tougher than rocks, it began to melt away the structure. The thorns bubbled and smoked up. It was no wonder quasi-Ritters couldn’t procreate with regular humans; there was no way a quasi-Ritter could be considered human anymore with flesh that could corrode even rocks. The human skin was too weak to shoulder such torment.

The many necrotised areas that littered his body burned through four daggers to remove. He painfully gulped down two tubes of Botanian essences and a Botanian nucleus core, finally calming down to allow the concoctions to take effect.

The four daggers weren’t Locke’s. He hadn’t had the luxury of stopping since his battle with Yeffermun yesterday. Fermoss was injured so the speed of their travels was greatly dampened. It certainly didn’t help that they were frequently troubled by other cultivators that attempted to slaughter them. These opportunistic parasites eventually became victims of Locke’s longsword and a great meal for the scorpiondrake. The skull-shaped brooch on his chest hadn’t stopped vibrating since.

Despite that, Locke refused to lower his guard. He’d led Fermoss deeper into the forest after they held off the first wave of attackers and went into hiding. He was in no shape to defend himself from an onslaught of enemies.

The slightest movement birthed sparks of pain. He hissed. The gut-wrenching pain was so horrible that even Locke, whose will was unwavering as steel, couldn’t help but scrunch his features and pant in agony. He could see his moving lungs in between the hollowed cavities. It was fortunate that every armour in existence was designed with focused fortification around the chest; Locke did not doubt that his lungs would be a gone case if it wasn’t for the design.

Locke made a mental note, Two days… I’ll take two days to recuperate. True enough, he was able to recover significantly over the next two days with potions and Botanian essence. To no one’s surprise, Fermoss had recovered faster than its master since it was a major monster. Locke’s generous feeding had allowed it to regain its peak form.

A battle between the strong was always difficult; regardless of the outcome, it would both be unthinkable for both parties. Those on the same level were not easy opponents. Slight mistakes in this situation would end up being precarious enough to pull one into deep trouble.

Locke harboured no regrets regarding his battle against Yeffermun, however. Even if he was given a chance to rewind time, he’d still challenge the quasi-Magister to a duel, but ideally with better preparation to avoid such a sorry state. Even so, Locke felt one step closer to becoming a Ritter, having had a near-death experience and endured harrowing pain.

Becoming a level-one lifeform and break free from the shackles of gravity was the dream for most. He would finally touch the sky with his own hands and be involved in Zauberia’s conquests. Even so, Locke wasn’t too crazy about that. He’d much prefer having his family around to see him stand on the pinnacle of the world.

“No matter what happens, the elven potion is mine. It’s a pity that I’ll have to give up on the Leaf of Life, though.” A sigh escaped his lips. A treasure that could help with advancing as a level-one lifeform was incredibly rare even at the Three Western Isles’ Sanctum. Even if they had something like that, there was no way they’d hand it over to an unaffiliated knight, which was what spurred his decision to embark on a journey.

He was suddenly reminded of Yeffermun’s brooch in his spatial ring. Oh right. I wonder how much this bastard has managed to collect... 421 points! Locke’s eyes went wide. Yeffermun’s score was about the same as his!

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