Another chapter bring to you by the Patrons
Chapter 12 – Ruler
Now that I remembered, I asked Black Mist what I had been worried about all this time. “Hey, is there a human town or village nearby?”
“I see, were you actually aiming for a human town?”
“If there is one, then yeah.”
“Tsukuru… I have some bad news for you.”
“Wh-what is it?”
“Right now, you’re almost at the center of the Great Borf Forest…”
“I was wondering if you were planning to go to the center and defeat the lord of this forest.”
“S-such a lord exists?”
I thought I could get out of this forest if I went down the river! Why am I suddenly about to reach the center!? And to think this forest has a lord? I don’t want to fight such a monster! It’s gotta be stronger than a Hell Bear or Musk Leopard, right? There’s no way the lord of the forest would be weaker than its subjects…
“Oh, it has such a loud voice…”
“What the hell is that…!”
At that moment, my [Wild Intuition] started setting off alarm bells, and I felt the presence of a very strong monster with [Presence Detection]. The monster was clearly coming right for me. I knew immediately because I could see large trees falling down in the distance, and getting closer. It’s dangerous! I was about to run away, but the monster showed up right in front of me in the blink of an eye, sniffing at the air eagerly. Its warm breath washed over me like a rough breeze.
Race : Emperor Dragon, Level 300
Skills : [Emperor’s Breath] [Fighting God] [Supreme Motion] [Super Regeneration] [Physical Attack Resistance] [Magical Attack Resistance]
Attributes: HP [S] | MP [S] | STR [EX] | INT [B] | AGI [A] | DEX [C] | LUK [E]
Title: Ruler of the Devil’s Nest
So, as you can tell, it’s a dragon, and it’s completely locked on to me.
Black Mist chuckled. “This brings you motivation, doesn’t it?”
“Why are you so happy?”
“You can beat this thing, right, Tsukuru?”
“Are you stupid? This guy level is 300, you know!”
Moreover, it’s even got [STR (EX)]?
The dragon looked like a huge lizard with wings attached. It was probably over five meters tall, with a likely length of thirty meters. Its golden scales were beautiful, and its batlike wings were folded on its back, so it might be able to fly.
Come on, if you have wings and can fly, you should just do that instead of knocking down trees in the forest.
“Hey, why does this guy notice me even though I’m wearing this hermit’s coat?”
“The Hermit’s Coat isn’t flawless, you know. Someone at a higher level than the wearer can notice you easily! In this particular case, your enemy is almost ninety levels higher, so the Coat will have almost no effect on it.”
It’s totally useless! Not being recognized by stronger monsters is way more important here!
“Don’t worry, if something is the same level as you, it will definitely still be effective.”
“Right. So, what are we going to do about this? There’s no chance of winning if we fight it, is there?”
“I’m here too, you know! So don’t worry!”
I could just feel Black Mist pushing out her chest proudly. She doesn’t have a chest anyway, she’s just a katana.
The Emperor Dragon in front of me raised its left forefoot and swung it down at me. I immediately jumped back to avoid it, but with such destructive power behind the blow, the impact formed a crater, throwing debris in all directions. The size of the debris varied, and I quickly pulled out Black Mist to block them.
“So how can we defeat this thing?”
Black Mist chuckled. “Isn’t it okay if we just fight it normally?”
“You stupid idiot! I haven’t even fought with a sword, you know!”
“What are you talking about, don’t you have the [Swordsmanship] skill?”
“[Swordsmanship] is a skill I got at the same time I got you! I’ve never used it before!”
“Wh-wh-what should we even do, then!?” Black Mist stuttered.
“That’s why I’m asking you!”
While the two of us were arguing, the Emperor Dragon made a big gesture of inhaling. The moment I realized what it was doing, it sprayed a golden breath from its mouth, accompanied by a devastating roar.
Needless to say, it was the Emperor Dragon using its [Emperor’s Breath], and since my [Wild Intuition] was ringing alarm bells before it happened, I jumped as far as I could to avoid it, but the range was incredible ― as was the pain when I couldn’t avoid it.
I don’t know how long it was until I regained my senses, but my vision was distorted and I panted in agony. The pain across my whole body now made my suffering from the Hell Bear and Musk Leopard seem like a children’s game.
I had leveled up significantly, my [HP] was at [B], and I’d even learned the skills [Strong Body] and [Sturdy], both of which were activated right before the breath hit me, which means my [HP] should’ve been equivalent to [S], but that one attack still ravaged my entire body and put me at the brink of death. I regretted not activating [Iron Wall] just then.
“Hey, are you still alive?”
Am I? I can’t even tell if I’m alive… I feel nothing. I can’t even talk. If I am still alive, it’s a miracle. When I managed to open my eyes, I saw the Emperor Dragon approaching me with thundering footprints and a triumphant expression.
“Hey, say something!”
I don’t have time to play with Black Mist right now. If I don’t escape now, I’m screwed! I activated [Dark Magic] and my body sank into the darkness. The Emperor Dragon looked regretful that I escaped before it could stomp me, and it started sniffing at where it last saw me while smashing the ground. I threw some meat into my mouth from [Material Storage].
It’s still a tough situation, even though I’ve experienced this several times. I eventually managed to swallow the meat after softening it enough with my saliva. If I had an HP bar, my remaining hp would definitely have been less than one percent. Even though this meat should be delicious, I couldn’t taste it at all.
Finally, my senses started to return. I couldn’t feel any pain before since I lost feeling in my whole body, but now I suddenly felt severe pain across my entire body. I couldn’t suppress a scream.
“Whoa, are you okay?”
I groaned. “Do I… look… okay… to you?”
“It looks like your sense of pain has leveled up after you escaped from the verge of death.”
“…Just stop talking, ugh… everything hurts.”
I chewed up a second piece of meat. It took time to chew, and it was painful just to move my jaw. A third, a fourth, a fifth… it took five pieces to fully recover. The Emperor Dragon was still loitering near where I first sank into the darkness.
“Hmm, what’s with that guy?”
“Are you not going to try again?”
“I don’t like being beaten, so I will, but what should I do? Should I try [Spring Water] first?”
“I don’t feel like I can win in close combat, so teach me about [Swordsmanship] next time.”
She laughed gently. “It can’t be helped. Alright then, prepare yourself! My special training is tough, you know!”
“Okay, first of all, [Spring Water].”
A raging torrent of [Spring Water] crashed into the Emperor Dragon, but for its huge body, the water was about as effective as a splash from a bucket. It didn’t seem to care at all.
“It doesn’t look like it did anything?”
“Well, I was expecting as much.”
The Emperor Dragon noticed where my attack was coming from and started to dig at the ground with anger. But I’m not in the ground, so no matter how much it dug, it wouldn’t reach me.
“Next is [Ignition]!”
Above the huge mouth which could swallow me in one gulp, its entire face lit on fire. As one would expect from the Emperor Dragon, it immediately tried to extinguish the flames by rolling around to smother them. I recalled how I beat the Sword Reaper, so I figured it was time to just leave it alone for a few hours. In a few moments, the golden body of the Emperor Dragon started to glow brightly, and my [Wild Intuition] alerted me to incoming danger.
“What is it?”
“I have a bad feeling about this.”
I quickly activated [Acceleration] and ran away at top speed. I couldn’t afford to be careless anymore, so that’s why I had to get away from it. Then, a terrible shock hit me in the back, knocking the wind out of me and sending me flying. The Emperor Dragon had caused some kind of shockwave as it emitted light in all directions.
I got blasted dozens of meters away, tumbling uncontrollably through the darkness. I didn’t take extra damage from the tumbling because I activated [Iron Wall] right before the initial impact, but I still took considerable damage overall.
I was glad to finally stop spinning, but soon after, I was painfully informed of how badly that impact hurt me. Why can its attack hit me even in this darkness? I immediately popped another piece of meat into my mouth, fully recovering after three slices.
When I looked back at the Emperor Dragon’s huge body, it looked small enough that it must have been a few hundred meters away. And when I saw the spectacle around it, I was speechless. It wasn’t the fact the Emperor Dragon had spread its wings and now flew through the sky, it was the massive crater right where the Emperor Dragon and I had just been.
It seems that the shock waves carved out the ground and rivers, and destroyed an extensive area of the forest. The river was now flowing like a waterfall into a huge basin. The devastation was immense. For those opposed to destroying nature, the Emperor Dragon was surely the enemy of the world!
I looked back at the Emperor Dragon hovering in the air.
I couldn’t see it clearly because it was so far away, but I felt like that monster was looking right at me.
“Hey, how does he know where I am?”
“I don’t know either, but that guy’s persistence is guaranteed, you know. Several monsters invaded his territory in the past and then tried to escape, but none of them ever succeeded, he killed them all.”
“…What an obsessive guy.”
“He might keep chasing you even after you leave the forest, you know.”