Chapter 2 : Abnormal Magic Duel
“Let me go, let me go! You are invading my human rights! You guys are violating trafficking laws! You guys are abducting children!” Being tied up into a meat dumpling, Kaiser yelled repeatedly.
Meinan and Purity had already distanced themselves with their hands holding firmly onto their ears, to avoid having their ear drums damaged from the loud noise. Fortunately, Daylight, whose ears were as determined as his personality, was still able to carry this “source of sound pollution” of a person towards the match.
Seeing they were nearing the arena, and Kaiser still struggling, Liola suddenly stopped and said to Daylight, “Maybe we should put him down. If Kaiser really is unwilling to participate match, I don’t want to force him…”
“Who said I don’t want to participate!” Kaiser interrupted Liola loudly.
Liola asked curiously, “But you…” then his eyes looked towards the ropes.
“This is the plan to fool the enemy! Do you have any idea?!” Kaiser said with a happy face.
“Fooling the enemy?” Liola shook his head. He didn’t understand at all. He then turned his head towards his companions…
Everyone shook their heads in unison!
“Hey!” Seeing everyone shaking their heads, Kaiser explained angrily, “You idiots! Do you guys know about feigning weakness for your enemies to see?!”
[T/N: This is a famous line from Art of War. It basically means to feign being weak so your enemies would underestimate you.]
Everyone then nodded their heads in unison.
“This is my plan!” Kaiser showed a huge smile, “Think about it, if the team happened to have a person who doesn’t even want to participate in the match, wouldn’t everyone think we’re weak? Hehe, then we will have some opportunities to exploit!”
Everyone looked as though they suddenly understood.
“Wait!” Kaiser narrowed his eyes dangerously, “You guys all shook your heads… because all of you really thought I didn’t want to fight?”
Hearing this question, Daylight showed an apologetic expression, Liola nodded, Meinan suddenly had interest in the roach crawling by and turned his head to look at it, and Purity was practicing her Kung Fu move called “Moving Backwards”.
“You guys don’t trust me at all!” Kaiser roared angrily.
“I’m truly sorry, Kaiser.” Daylight put Kaiser down from his shoulder, and started to try to untie him.
“What are you doing?” Kaiser glared at him.
After a pause, Daylight said honestly, “Helping you untie the ropes.”
Kaiser widened his eyes some more. He was so angry that he almost wanted to burst the ropes open, and cut Daylight’s head open to see if there was anything at all in his head. Daylight saw Kaiser’s horrifying expression, and took a few steps back in fear. His face, however, was still filled with confusion, because he didn’t understand why Kaiser was angry again.
Seeing Daylight in fear, and innocent look on his face due to not knowing what he did wrong, Kaiser felt weak throughout his body. He said helplessly, “If you untie me, then wouldn’t the show I’ve just put on completely go to waste?”
“Ah…” Daylight suddenly understood.
Kaiser snapped, “Quickly carry me and continue walking. My limbs are falling asleep from being tied up!”
Daylight hurriedly carried Kaiser again, and Kaiser… continued his sound pollution. Everyone hurried to cover their ears with their hands while walking into the arena, as though they were doing the walk of shame… All the Knights present acted as if something disgusting had walked in.
Fortunately, all the members of the Aklan Troublemaking Squad were no ordinary person. They all had no shame, no idea what shame was, or thought this was what they did normally anyhow, and therefore was not considered shameful.
“I can’t believe even the Dragon Continent has arenas made specially for Magic duels.”
Meinan carefully examined this place. The biggest difference between the arena for a Magic duel and an ordinary one was the cylindrical protective shield surrounding the arena. If it were not for this protective shield, there might not be any audience; a place where a Magic spell might head towards you at any time was not a place many would attend.
Because Kaiser was “feigning weakness”, Meinan was the only one to approach the Dragon Emperor for the formalities. Luckily, because Meinan was the son of a Prime Minister, he diplomatically asked the Dragon Emperor, “Dragon Emperor, Your Highness, may I ask, how do you wish to proceed with this match?”
The Dragon Emperor answered courteously, “Since this is the battle of Magic, naturally Magic should determine the victor. I see you should have three people who could use Magic, then why don’t we each send three Magicians to battle?”
“Since Your Highness have decided the number of people, then can we also decide some terms?”
Meinan requested courteously, which made it difficult for the Dragon Emperor to turn down immediately. Though he was unwilling, but on the surface, he still answered with a tolerating attitude, “Do tell.”
“I believe the strength of Magic is very important; however, the cooperation between companions is also something that should be tested. Therefore, why don’t we have a team match, rather than one on one battles?” Meinan suggested, knowing it would be greatly advantageous to his side because he specialized in defense, Kaiser specialized in offense, and Purity… specialized in all things unexpected. Their combined strength was far greater than the sum of their parts.
Though he knew the Dragon Emperor would no doubt understand this as much as he did, but Meinan had to take a gamble to see if the Dragon Emperor would be willing to accept this disadvantageous term.
The Dragon Emperor scrutinized Meinan for a while, to the point where it looked like his entire plan was completely seen through by the Dragon Emperor. He basically thought the Dragon Emperor would never agree to this term, but then, a miracle happened.
“All right, it’s decided. We’ll have a team match.” The Dragon Emperor answered calmly.
Meinan was stunned. He did not think it would actually work. Could the Dragon Emperor really not know about Kaiser and him… and, uh, Purity’s combined strength was far more than the sum of their parts? Or perhaps the Dragon Emperor sent Magicians who would work well with one another? Or, did the Dragon Emperor have another sinister plan?
Could Kaiser’s plan of feigned weakness have actually worked?
“Then, let me introduce, the Magicians on my side.” The Dragon Emperor stood up slowly, with a smile on his face as though victory was already pre-determined.
With the Dragon Emperor’s call, a figure slowly emerged in the air. His looks was familiar: golden hair and small glasses. His figure was familiar: a body covered in a strange long robe of black and white… However, his expression was no longer familiar to them. Mizerui’s feigned warm smile was now nowhere to be found. Instead, it was a face devoid of all humanity.
The expression of the people on Liola’s side changed slightly, but none of them were too surprised. As soon as the secret base was under attack, everyone knew Mizerui was under the Dragon Emperor’s control. In the battle of Magic today, there was no reason for the Dragon Emperor not to send him into battle. After all, Mizerui was the apprentice of the famous wanted Magician, the Devil Gle.
“When we are in the fight, we’ll all call out to him. Mizerui is a Magician, and controlling him with Magic is not something easy.”
“Okay.” Purity widened her eyes, and nodded repeatedly.
Though Meinan heard, but because the Dragon Emperor’s attention was still on him, so he did not respond. In his mind, however, he fully agreed with Kaiser’s suggestion. Never mind how strong Mizerui might have been or whether they could defeat him, he was, after all, Meinan’s father’s companion. If it were possible, Meinan did not want to resort to fighting.
The Dragon Emperor continued the introduction, “And the Magician always serving the royal family — Idojin.”
The Magician wearing black robe had always been standing next to the Dragon Emperor. Hearing his name, he took a short step forward, and bowed slightly to everyone.
This candidate was also not unexpected, but everyone on Liola’s side was now guessing who the third person would be. After all, they had not heard of any other famous Magician working for the Dragon Emperor.
“Must be some random person they grabbed!” Kaiser concluded carelessly.
The Dragon Emperor looked at Meinan with interest, which made him feel a bit alarmed, as though this third person had something to do with him. It can’t be his father, right? Meinan’s expression was a bit strange. He felt as if Qiusi really would jump out at any moment, and yell, SURPRISE!
‘I’m going to kill him if it’s him!’ Meinan held his fist tightly.
While everyone continued to guess for a while on Liola’s side, the Dragon Emperor finally opened his mouth and said elegantly,
What?! Everyone on Liola’s side froze.
Another figure slowly appeared next to Mizerui, Barbalis, who had been long missing, suddenly appeared. Everyone glared at him. Was he being controlled? Or… was he betraying them?
“My God!” Kaiser moaned, “This isn’t a suspense fiction, why the hell is there a traitor in the end? This is too much. Barbalis, what the hell are you doing?”
Barbalis’ face remained expressionless, nor did he answer Kaiser’s question, as if he had been under Dragon Emperor’s hypnosis…
“Give me a break!” Kaiser yelled loudly, and jumped down from Daylight’s hand. He quickly got out of the ropes. By now, there was no more point of feigning weakness.
Kaiser’s eyes flashed, and he said word-by-word, “Barbalis, you’re not under control at all.”
Barbalis’s face twitched, and he could no longer continue his act. He said sadly, “H-how did you know?”
Kaiser glanced at the other people. Never mind Liola, who had been under control, but even Meinan, Daylight, and Purity did not seem surprised. They had already known Barbalis was not under control, but they were all confused as to why he was doing what he’s doing.
“Everyone already knew. Your acting skills are too terrible!” Kaiser added insult to injury, then explained, “Hmmph! We are Liola’s companions, and we have seen every kind of cold face: be it Liola’s natural rock face, Silver Moon’s acquired ice cube face, or successor Silver Moon’s hypnotized marble face… Do you really think you can fool experienced people like us with that twitching face of yours?”
Kaiser shook his head with exaggeration, “You’re too naive, old man.”
Seeing everyone nodding in agreement, Barbalis’ face sank, “Damn! Quit shaming me. I’ve been acting so much that my face is having seizures! I can’t believe how hard it is to be an ice cube.”
“Cut the crap! Damn old geezer.” Kaiser yelled loudly, “What the hell are you doing?”
“Oh.” Barbalis suddenly became serious, “I’m here because of Dragon Emperor’s request to come test your powers.”
‘All I’m hearing is you giving me bullcrap…’ Kaiser opened his eyes wide while listening to the worst lie in the history of lies. His thoughts spun quickly, trying to figure out what Barbalis was actually thinking about.
Seeing Kaiser’s face as though it was saying “Nobody would ever believe you,” Barbalis began smiling bitterly. This little runt did know him quite well. Indeed! Even if it would cost him his life, he would not want to help the Dragon Emperor. However, instead of his life, the Dragon Emperor was threatening him with Mizerui’s life.
“That old geezer’s eyes…” Kaiser said to himself, “He tilted 15 degrees to glance at Mizerui, this thing must have something to do with Mizerui!”
‘Wow… I better not ever peep at anything in front of Kaiser.’ Everyone thought.
“Arrogant runts! In any case, I will definitely win against you today!” Barbalis yelled loudly. This was the only way he could think of to warn these people that he must win this match.
“We will definitely win in this match!” Kaiser yelled back coldly.
Barbalis paused. As he glanced his eyes towards Mizerui, he said, “Please, for the sake of my old friend ‘Mizerui’, I have to win!” He was trying hard to hint at Kaiser and others. He had to win or otherwise, Mizerui’s life would be in danger.
“Hmmph!” Kaiser also glanced his eyes towards Liola, “Let me tell you, we have to win as well! For our companion ‘Liola’.”
Barbalis frowned. He did not know about the Dragon Emperor’s Heart, nor did he know Liola promised the Dragon Emperor that he would eat the Heart if they lost, but he still understood Kaiser’s hint. In any case, if Kaiser lost, then Liola would either die or end up in a situation worse than dying; otherwise, they would definitely care about Mizerui’s life.
Barbalis and Kaiser stared at one another, and they both thought of the same thing at the same time, ‘Did we… reach an impasse?’
“It seems like our old friends have already greeted one another.” Seeing both locking their eyebrows, the Dragon Emperor seemed quite satisfied. His smile widened, “Please, don’t let our audience wait for too long. Let the match begin.”
Both sides were hesitating, but they still had to go stand on top of the arena. The moment they had done so, the cylindrical shield around the arena instantly activated. Kaiser and the two others were still hesitating. Although, Barbalis had yet to attack, the other two on his team would not wait another moment.
Idojin knew about the dilemma on both sides, so he was going to take advantage of the time when they were hesitating to open up with fierce attacks, and defeat them in one go.
Thus, he started with his killing moves!
“Mizerui, use Oppressive Gravity.”
With Idojin’s command, Mizerui reached out his right hand, and cast the Gravity Magic he excelled in. The air began to warp, and a heavy force fell towards Kaiser and the others from above…
“Protective Shield!” Fortunately, Meinan was paying attention to his opponent’s every move. As soon as Idojin said something, he already began to summon his protective shield.
Idojin had already done his research on where the strengths of his opponents lie. He knew Meinan part of the family of Magicians specializing in protective shield. To break it, they would have to do it via attrition, until he becomes drained of power, or perhaps use strong Magic to directly overwhelm him.
If it was Qiusi who was here today, Idojin might already be in a difficult place. After all, Qiusi lived years in danger of assassination, and therefore he held a shield at all times. It was at the point as though his mana was an unending pool. Truth was, no one would have the patience to test how long Qiusi could hold up his shield… Usually the one who would give up first was the attacking side.
However, the person in the arena was Meinan, a young man in his twenties. No matter how much time he had spent researching protective shield, the lack of mana will be his fatal flaw.
Especially when his opponents were three Magician with hundreds of years of training. His mana was like a pail compared to them, so how could it possibly hold up against a sea of fire?
‘Let’s end it quickly.’ Idojin began chanting. He conservatively used Magic with high piercing property, since this was the best way to break a protective shield.
A blue ray shot straight at Kaiser and the rest of his party. Their eyes tightened. When the ray was about to make contact with the protective shield, and when the audience thought a fight between offensive Magic and defensive Magic was about to begin, the ray passed through without colliding into anything, until it hit the protective shield on the outer arena. It eventually lead to an explosion, and caused the stadium to tremble, to the point where the protective shield around the arena began to crack a little.
Luckily, all the audience present weren’t ordinary people, but were powerful Knights instead. Although they were a bit surprised by the power of the Magic, none of them panicked.
When the dust settled, Idojin’s face was filled with shock. He would have never imagined his opponents would not defend against his spell. Instead, they dissolved their shield, then dodged the Magic.
They did not even use teleport to dodge, but used their own legs to run to the side!
This practically violated the common sense towards Magic duels. No Magicians would, in a duel, dodge with their body instead of using Magic to stop the opposing spells!
Did these kids have any common sense to Magic duels?
Truth was, probably not.
As soon as Kaiser dodged, he fired from his gun. The power of the Divine Fireball made Idojin fumble around to defend himself. The shield he put up was just in time to barely perish together with the fireball. When the dust settled from the collision, a figure charged at him.
The person charging at him was not the attack-oriented Kaiser, but Meinan, who knew nothing of offensive Magic. Nevertheless, he was not using Magic to attack, instead he was using the shiny dagger he hand on his hand, a sharp one that had been passing down in his family.
Idojin had no time to cast Magic. Panicked, he yelled, “Mizerui.”
After sensing Magic nearby, Meinan suddenly jumped to the side. He lowered his head, only to see a deep crater created by gravity Magic where he stood before.
Having his life out of danger, Idojin quickly flew into the air, to prevent getting “assassinated”. As soon as he reached a safe spot, he immediately began to yell angrily, “How dare you use weapons?! Do you have no common sense about a Magic duel?!”
Kaiser quickly aimed the gun in his hand at Idojin. As he fired his gun, he gave out a sinister laugh, “Sorry! We always fight with Mechas, so we don’t have even a bit of common sense in Magic duels!”
“Whatever, as long as we take you out!” Kaiser roared, while a bunch of fireballs shot out of his giant gun.
Idojin quickly formed a protective shield, while thinking these people did not play by the rules at all. It would be better to let Mizerui handle them, while he looked for the opportunity to attack.
The shield he had up was no Meinan’s ancestral shield. It was able to stop Magic, but not a physical attack. An arrow scraped by Idojin’s shoulder, almost making him lose control and fall out of the air. Shocked, he looked towards the source of the arrow, only to see Purity holding a crossbow. When she saw the arrow missed, her face was filled with frustration.
“Crossbow?” Idojin was now really mad. This was not even a Magic duel anymore. He roared angrily, “That’s against the principle of a Magic duel!”
“Is that so?” Kaiser raised his eyebrows, “We didn’t use Aura, so it’s not a Knight’s duel, nor did we use Mechas, so it’s not a Mecha duel. We are using Magic. I also looked up the rule book, and Magicians can bring a ‘personal weapon’ onto a duel. We didn’t violate any rules!”
Idojin was speechless. He didn’t think these people would find a loophole like this. Indeed, some Magicians would bring a dagger with them, but it was mostly for counterattack when their opponent would attack in melee, but not to attack with it!
Nor would any Magician bring bow and arrow onto an arena. After all, to a Magician, the time to shoot an arrow would be enough to allow the opponent to cast several spells to blow him into pieces.
After thinking about this, Idojin threw out a fireball. According to his intelligence reports, this girl didn’t even know simple protective shield or Magic at all. This fireball would be enough to make her a charred corpse.
Facing the menacing fireball, Purity was still desperately trying to load another bolt into her crossbow, completely unaware of the fact she was about to give off a charred smell in the next second…