A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special - Chapter 104: The way forward had been cleared long ago .
The way forward had been cleared long ago .
Desir and his party members ran towards the exit of the second stage .
Desir began to briefly explain the Mother Great Worm, the entity that commanded all Great Worms, to his party members .
“Her strength increases as she lives longer, but you can assume that her attacks will be stronger than your Clothes Lines can handle . ”
Tough exterior aside, she was capable of withstanding any sort of physical attack . Only magic coming from at least the Third-Circle would be able to pierce her carapace .
If its tough defense were the only barrier then it wouldn’t pose much of a threat . However…
“Whatever damage we inflict will be meaningless; her rapid regeneration allows her to healin an instant . ”
“What an unassailable monster… ”
Pram replied in a strained voice .
Almost impenetrable defense and rapid regeneration . How troublesome .
That wasn’t even addressing her offensive prowess . A powerful attack coming from her immense size couldn’t be ignored .
“That’s why I’d hoped that the Mother Great Worm wouldn’t show up…”
Desir trailed off .
Adjest said that she had heard the screams of the Blue Moon party .
As they hurried down the passage, a wide-open area appeared . However, all they could see after arriving at the hall was debris and dirt strewn everywhere .
Despite injuries all over him, Kelt continued invoking spells, deflecting and diverting the Mother Great Worm’s attacks . Beside him stood Argeria, clutching his mangled arm .
It was a battle that was already lost .
The frontlines had already fallen . One warrior and one magician already lay dead . There was no way that they could stand up to the Mother Great Worm .
There was only one reason why they were still alive .
As if she’d discovered a new toy, the Mother Great Worm sadistically tormented them as she blocked the exit with her massive body .
Every time she sprayed acidic fluid, screams from the Blue Moon party filled the room .
But there was something else that horrified Desir’s party more than anything .
Two bodies were splayed across the floor . Something that wasn’t supposed to happen in this simulated world .
Desir’s party was shaken .
“… No way . ”
“When pushed to the brink of death, you’re transported out of the system . How did this… ”
Desir wordlessly stroked his injured finger .
It ached . No matter how much he thought about it, it felt no different from the real world . In other words, it was dangerous to assume that any of the protective measures set up by Hebrion Academy were still in place .
Desir’s gaze then turned to the two bodies that were scattered on the floor .
‘Does this mean that the safeguards against death have fallen along with our resistance to pain?’
There was no way Hebrion Academy hadn’t caught on to what was happening within the dungeon . Evaluation footage of the parties’ battles were being transmitted in real-time to the panel of judges .
However, despite this anomaly, the parties’ struggle to survive waged on . This meant that the current situation was out of the Academy’s control .
Since the beginning of Hebrion Academy’s history, this level of disaster had never occurred before .
There were many possible causes, but after recalling what had happened in the Prillecha Empire, Desir narrowed down the list of possible actors right away .
‘… An Outsider . ’
Desir looked straight ahead .
The Mother Great Worm let out a scream .
“Desir, what do we do now?”
At Adjest’s question, Desir confided his thoughts .
“Right now, our priority is to take care of what’s in front of us . ”
What had originally been used as a simple hindrance to conquering the dungeon, had now come back to bite them as a life-threatening danger .
Desir had to make a choice .
He could help the Blue Moon party that was still fighting, by defeating Mother Great Worm for them . Or he could choose to run away and prioritise the safety of his party members .
Allying with the Blue Moon party would guarantee a win against the Mother Great Worm, but that didn’t mean that everyone would survive the battle .
This right here was a real battle . Dying here would mean dying in the real world . The best way to protect his party members was to leave immediately .
‘… But there’s no way I can do something like that . ’
Desir shook his head .
He couldn’t ignore the people dying in front of his eyes .
Although they were nobles that looked down on commoners, their skills were the real deal .
Even within the Blue Moon party that boasted the best skills of Hebrion Academy, they were selected as the elites of the elite . They would later go on to play an active role in saving lives in the Shadow Labyrinths of the future . Letting them die here would change the future he had experienced .
For the sake of clearing the Shadow Labyrinths and for the lives of countless others, he could not just leave them to die .
‘Besides, it’s not just the Blue Moon party that we’re saving . None of the following parties will be able to escape annihilation by the Mother Great Worm if we leave her in this state . ’
The many parties that had yet to arrive would do so eventually, and they would have to face off against the Mother Great Worm too .
If they hadn’t noticed that the configuration of the simulated world was changed, they would have attacked the Mother Great Worm without hesitation . A dungeon of this level was easily defeatable by Alpha Class students of their caliber . Why would they fear a bigger Great Worm?
“Everyone, ready for battle . ”
Desir spoke .
At his command, each member of Desir’s party raised their weapons . Desir studied their expressions .
Adjest was stone-faced as usual . As for Pram, he too was simply following orders . Romantica may have displayed some signs of disgust, but she wasn’t scared in any way .
They were calm . Despite witnessing the Mother Great Worm overpowering the Blue Moon party and knowing that they could lose their lives, they were unshaken .
After all, they had already encountered a being many fold more horrifying .
The Demon of Destruction, Dadenewt .
‘Compared to then, this ordeal is way easier to deal with . ’
It was undeniably a strong opponent, but their experience was unmatched . They didn’t make the mistake of panicking like rookies .
‘Seems like yesterday when we were struggling with lower level demons . ’
However, the two new members were exceptions .
Freechel and Takiren didn’t dare move as they stood with their mouths hanging open . They had been completely overwhelmed by the spectacle before their eyes .
“You two watch from the rear . ”
Desir addressed Freechel and Takiren before turning to Adjest .
“Adjest . ”
“Leave it to me . ”
Adjest raised her sword . The ice magic that she cast formed a massive wall, splitting the gap between the Blue Moon party and Mother Great Worm at last .
The sudden appearance of a giant ice wall took the Mother Great Worm by surprise . For just a split-second, its unrelenting assault ceased .
Romantica’s bullets instantaneously streaked through the air .
She was a Third-Circle magician, but her sniper skills were powerful enough that they actually approached the Fourth-Circle .
Her Wind Bullet punctured the Mother Great Worm’s carapace and penetrated deep into her flesh .
The Mother Great Worm stopped her attacks and drew back in pain . At the same time, red foam boiled over the chunk of the body that Romantica had blasted off .
The damaged part was instantly restored . It was a truly exceptional ability .
But dealing permanent damage wasn’t the goal in the first place .
The real goal had been the brief window of opportunity presented as she stood still to regenerate .
During this window, Desir and Adjest’s spells finished invoking .
The Mother Great Worm’s body was frozen solid .
Desir’s spell then collided with the Mother Great Worm . With a loud crack, her body started crumbling slightly .
Immediately, Pram’s blade followed up and pierced the Mother Great Worm’s body .
A silver wave danced along the trajectory, which was then followed by a sharp piercing noise that rang out .
‘Did it not break through?’
As Pram took a step back, he gripped his rapier tightly . In that moment, a faint light trickled out of it . An aura appeared and wrapped itself around Pram’s rapier, albeit the quality of it showcased the inexperience of the wielder . To a swordsman, this was the crystallization of their mastery in the way of the sword .
Pram took a step forward and just like that, he easily sliced into the Mother Great Worm .
A long red mark was drawn across the Mother Great Worm’s body . Bodily fluid and what appeared to be blood gushed out from the wound .
As this happened, Desir yelled towards the Blue Moon party members .
“Hurry up and escape before she finishes regenerating!”
Foam bubbled over and spilled forth . But the undeniable severity of her injuries meant that she needed more time to heal .
The Blue Moon party scrambled to escape the area . Every single one of them was covered in injuries and they were clearly weary after fighting their hearts out .
The Mother Great Worm let out a yell as she attempted to pursue the Blue Moon party that was attempting to escape .
But Desir’s party wouldn’t allow that to happen .
Romantica’s shots rained down and Pram’s blade blocked the Mother Great Worm’s path .
Pram had only recently climbed up the ranks . As a swordsman who relied on his attacking skills, his defenses were rather weak .
Hence why he chose not to take a defensive stance against the Mother Great Worm .
Every time he swung his rapier, the Mother Great Worm’s tough exterior cracked, allowing him to slice deeply into her flesh .
By inflicting damage and forcing her to regenerate constantly, Pram didn’t give the Mother Great Worm any time to attack . This was only possible for a swordsman that was both talented and wielded a blade crafted out of Blankšum .
While Romantica and Pram bought some time, the Blue Moon party reached Desir .
Fortunately, there were no more casualties, but everyone had sustained heavy injuries . The only people that could still move were Kelt and Argeria .
“We can talk after the battle has ended . Can you still move?”
As Argeria struggled to open his mouth, Desir cut him off with a curt answer .
Argeria’s weary eyes shot open .
“Wait, did you say that you’re going up against that thing?”
“Unless someone is willing to be bait, no one will be able to escape safely . Our only option is to fight . ”
“You must have seen what it’s capable of though?”
Argeria stammered while pointing to the bodies scattered across the floor .
“You might die . Commoner, I acknowledge that your party is strong . However, that isn’t a monster that can be defeated with who we have right now . It’s at least on the level of a boss in a Level Three Shadow World . ”
A Level Three Shadow World .
That was the objective evaluation of Argeria, Hebrion’s number one single ranker of the third grade, who had been clearing Shadow Worlds of all levels .