Chapter 48: A Duel in Broad Daylight
My thoughts were unbelievably clear.
The man, who I once thought wasn’t approachable, was standing right in front of me.
Cold air filled my lungs. A brief moment of silent covered the entire space.
I could hear the sound of the air being cut by my blades
The knives in my hands kept pulsated continuously. A familiar sound reached my ears intensely.
I pulled my right foot forward. Then, I elevated my elbows in order to create an offensive stance with both of my right and left handed knives. My targets were both the neck and wrists.
I already decided on the concept of my first strike. I dreamt of this moment in my head for many times. I decided that if I ever had a fight with this man, Helot Stanley, I’d be the one to make the first move of attack.
The chances of winning this fight were slim. However, I’d be giving my head to my opponent if I gave up here and now. I had to measure my time, and fight against the enemy with initiative and mental focus.
Of course, I knew how difficult it was to deal with this man. Yes, because this man was my nemesis, Helot Stanley. The famous hero.
The two shining lights pierced towards the frontline, which were supposed to strike with a surprise attack. Yet, both were blown away by the strike of a white light.
My strike was interrupted by Helot Stanley’s defense. He defended himself from one of my knives, and managed to prevent the attack from the other knife with his wrist bent down. Such a great dexterity with a double-edged sword, huh.
「…You don’t need to force yourself. We’ll take care of you first. 」
Helot ordered the guards, who took their own swords, to strike at my back.
I didn’t feel any chivalry spirit coming through my veins. On the other side, I felt an obscure feeling that almost swallowed me alive.
This situation was frustrating and my stomach was upset. My throat was freezing and my body was covered with cold sweat.
A rough breath leaked involuntarily from my throat. My eyes narrowed as well.
This duel was completely different in nature from the tavern duel against Caria. I could say that this was an extended version of that duel. In other words, this fight could threaten my life. It was a life-and-death situation without a doubt. But, it was so for both parties even though I was in a disadvantageous position. I could lose my life, but Helot could lose his neck as well.
Helot took an offensive stance towards me and pointed his double-edged sword to my chest. This stance showed me that he could attack me without any hesitation. Nonetheless, at the same time, I couldn’t grasp the meaning of his stance. I didn’t sense any killing intent nor a bit of hostility on his position. I wondered if something was preventing him from slicing me.
Ah, how annoying. Too frustrating indeed. The difference in fighting strength was obvious. With the first strikes, Helot probably found out about my abilities and weaknesses. Obviously.
Of course, it was just my guess. But, if my judgement was correct, then there was only one thing that I could do. On this precise moment, I took a deep breath…
I bent my knee and managed to kick the dust on the ground and raise it into the air. After creating a safe route, I rotated to the other side and tried to strike the enemy with my dull silver knives. Still, none of the strikes reached the enemy.
A bright silver light bounced back the attack of my dull silvery lights. Every time, both of our lights touched one another as if they were piercing through the glowing sky, a strong metal sound echoed tremendously on our earlobes.
But, I didn’t give up. I changed my posture continuously every time I tried to strike back. Each time I tried to attack, I rounded up on below, upward, and the sidelines of my nemesis. Angle, timing, speed. I used all kinds of means to let my knives break through his defense.
There was no time to take a deep breath. My lungs were mad trying to search for air. I was tired from moving extremely fast from one side to another. But, I fully understood. My head was clear about this. Yes, I was aware that my torso would be sliced in half if I tried to calm down in order to breath properly.
Helot had no murder intent. There wasn’t any evidence of hostility. Yet, sometimes I noticed his strong golden gaze towards me. From time to time, I could see a brutal gaze that seemed surreal. It was as if he wanted to finish me off already. The violent gaze of his eyes didn’t suit his gentle-looking face.
My heart understood this dangerous situation. If this man got serious about killing me, he would split my torso in half immediately, trampling on my skull and breaking my limbs apart. Yes, in one single breath.
All it took was one breath to take my life away. I couldn’t read his thought nor his intentions. It was a bit confusing. But, his expression was calm and no sweat dripped from his face. For now, I only tried not to get myself killed.
…After all, I had only one chance of winning this fight.
My brain quivered because of the lack of oxygen. My eyesight became slightly blurred.
The shining light of the blades kept wavering back and forth. The spirit of life wasn’t extinguished yet. But, Helot didn’t give up either. He took a different stance to change the position of his wrist and waist.
There was no giving up. This was annoying as hell. Yet, I felt thankful for this. Yes, I could fight against him even if I had no chance of victory.
I kicked the ground strongly to take a few steps back.
If his strike reached me on that previous spot, I’d certainly die. But, I knew it. He hesitated for a brief moment, as the gesture of his feet was static. He didn’t move forward at all.
「…Let’s put our blades down, Lugis. There’s no point in doing this. 」
He uttered those words to me. Actually, the tone felt a bit different from his previous talk.
My whole body was covered with sweat. The burning emotions spread throughout my chest. My exhaled breath transformed into scorching flames that burnt my mouth.
Helot warned me. It felt as if he implied to me, “you can’t hurt me with your skills”. That’s why it didn’t make any sense to continue with this fight.
I hated it. Yes, I truly hated the sound of his words. But, he was somewhat right. Even though he was a young man, he had no shame nor doubts about his swordsmanship skills.
Caria’s sword skills were still mixed with delicate gestures as opposed to her future skills that didn’t have any sort of lingering emotions. Filaret’s witchcraft had not been sharpened yet as she was still a little bit inexperienced on this timeline.
However, I was wary of Helot’s sword skills even on this era.
He had outstanding skills for a young lad. Moreover, the guards were silently watching this scene behind his back. I couldn’t see the Lizard among them because my eyesight was blurry, but he was probably right there ready to give aid to my nemesis. My heart beat even faster.
I heard that special people were destined to be heroes. It meant that a hero was someone who received the blessing of God. Many people believed that heroes were, in fact, direct messengers from God. Therefore, their existence was sacred.
「The great words of a hero, huh. Well, I won’t deny that it will be hard to beat you with my skills. I recognize that I’m not in a favorable position, but…」
I twisted my tongue, while I wiped the sweat that fell from my forehead.
In order to avoid getting unnecessary emotions on my head, I locked them away and let the anger feed my heart. I tried to speak clear words without showing my unstable emotions.
I felt that the wind increased in this area. Dust came flying over and my eyes blank slightly.
「Lugis. You know…I don’t hate you. I’m just curious about you. I don’t think you’d steal so recklessly like that. I want to know your motives behind this entire act. That’s why I don’t want to fight you here. Just back down. I swear to God that I won’t harm you.」
My cheeks quivered upon hearing his words. My eyes hardened and my skin constricted.
Why was Helot curious about me?
I felt conflicted in my heart. His interest in me was quite concerning. Something went baldy wrong. So wrong that my Destiny was messed up on this era.
However, the opponent that I once thought that was my nemesis was suddenly curious about me.
Pitiful. This was too pathetic. It would be too shameful to agree with this man’s words. There was no way that I was going to fall for this man’s illusion.
Not yet. This fight was not over yet.
「What are you talking about? I haven’t received a single wound on my body yet. If you want to back down, then put your sword away first, Helot Stanley.」
I was getting tired of this facade. Therefore, I threw cheap words at him.
Still, he wouldn’t bind that easily. But, he would waver between doing it or not. I knew the nature of this man named Helot Stanley. He was a man that regarded the word trust with conviction.
He shook his golden hair and narrowed his eyes. I noticed that Helot’s knees moved for a brief moment.
…No sound was heard.
I could only hear small breaths.
Then, his eyes became wide open and glittered. It was as if a predator was looking at its prey.
The dust opened its way on his direction as if it didn’t want to disturb him. It was as if nature was responding to him.
At this moment, my mouth slightly opened and felt irritated. My white teeth were showing as if they were fangs.
Then, Helot elevated his double-edged sword from his waist-area to above his head. He drew a “circle” with it.
His arm muscles tightened up as he held his sword with a strong grip. There was no way that I could defend myself against an attack that powerful with just mere knives. It was really the realm of madness if I were to think otherwise. He had the strength and agility to put me down on the ground and break my bones.
Of course, that was only my prediction. Besides, the light was too strong and I could barely see my opponent. I only noticed the bright light of his blade as it approached me.
It was intense. This was far beyond the scope of human understanding. Yet, this imminent danger didn’t surprise me.
…Yes, this wasn’t that unexpected though.
I knew it… I knew it too well that I had only one chance of victory.
Before his movements were in motion, I had to keep my hands low while my two dull silvery knives were pointed directly at my opponent. Only one. There was only one chance.
The golden movement could be imminent now.
I raised the knife into the air so that the strike could be created with more speed and accuracy. I wanted to hit the opponent’s only unprotected area, the lower part of his stomach. But, I couldn’t see much of his figure because of the daylight.
My impending attack was completely based on prediction and past experiences that I had seen so far. Even if I were at a disadvantage, and even if my eyes couldn’t see that well, I had to use the sunny sky to my benefit. This was the best option I could choose right now.
While the white light of his blade didn’t come near me, I grabbed this opportunity to devote myself on the attack to his stomach. I raised my arm to the sky and tried my hardest to hit my enemy.
I could hear the sound of the wind on my earlobes.
And, what I felt was…an excruciating pain as if my flesh was torn apart.
Sorry for the late release, I had to slay a dragon this afternoon and did not have the time to edit this chap, sorry in advance if you catch some mistakes… other than that, enjoy this frustrating chap 😉
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