After the commotion calmed down a little, the spectators assumed their positions to watch again. Actually, there were people that used the time from the interruption and went back to the town and brought their friends.
In middle of the crowd, which increased in number than a moment ago, Dokgo Hoo complained toward Jake,
“Since you insisted on stopping me, I will yield, but just what is so great about that guy that’s making you throw this ruckus?”
“Use telepathic communication, telepathic communication.”
Jake actually came to watch the duels between Dokgo Hoo, Vulcan and the three maniacs, but when he realized the Order of Virtue’s young master showed up, he rushed toward Dokgo Hoo. It was because Jake knew well that Dokgo Hoo suffered from anger control disability.
Fortunately, Jake was able to subdue Dokgo Hoo before he made a scene. Jake dragged Dokgo Hoo to the middle of the spectators so Vulcan and Ho-Gwang could have their duel.
After casting the spell, Jake started using telepathic communication,
- There are people from the Order of Virtue, so you need to watch what you are saying too.
- Why is the Order of Virtue here?
- That guy is the son of the Order of Virtue’s leader, and he is also the Beloong City’s greatest asshole, Ho-Gwang.
Dokgo Hoo observed Ho-Gwang who was swinging his sword like he was just playing.
- By the looks of how irritating the guy is, he is more than qualified to be called an ass-clown. It was so out of blue. Why in the world did he get in the way of our duel. Tsk.
- He loves to show off… Looks like Vulcan stood out because he is in the Rookie Ranking’s 1st place. He is the kind that don’t give a damn about what others have to say, and on top of that, he is pretty powerful, so there aren’t many people that can stop him.
- The only language he will listen is a good beating. When the duel is over, I’m going to go over there and personally break his jaw…
- Hey! Did you not hear me? I said he is the son of the Order of Virtue’s leader! The master of the largest organization in the Beloong City is that guy’s father.
- What about it? If his son comes back home after getting beat up, is the father going to come and fight in his place?
- This man thinks the world of his son. He thinks his son is the most precious thing of all. He might wait for an opportunity and kill you.
Dokgo Hoo looked like he was finding all of this to be ridiculous and unbelievable. He stared at Jake for a moment in silence and then said,
- Why did that runt come all this way to Asgard to flex his muscles around? What does he think he is? A grand priest in an occult sect?
- I don’t know much about what you mean by the grand priest thing, but he is indeed throwing his weight around. He doesn’t just go demand people for things or cause ruckus without being provoked, but he is the kind that absolutely will not stand by and watch if something happens to make him lose his face or taint the Order of Virtue’s reputation.
- Oh my gosh. That’s something people would do only in the lower dimensions, so why is he doing that here? I thought you said he is the first place in the Golden Ranking? He would be way better off if he just killed Sarantis, go back to the lower dimension and conquer the whole world.
- How should I know? You never know. Maybe it is quite tasty and fulfilling to stare down at all of these powerful warriors who used to be considered the best in their former dimensions… Ah, it is starting.
- I hope my little brother beat the crap out of this guy.
The two ended their telepathic communication and directed their gaze toward the front.
Vulcan and Ho-Gwang aimed their blades at each other.
‘This is really disappointing.’
With a stiff expression, Vulcan glared at Ho-Gwang.
‘If it wasn’t for that asshole…’
Although it was not for certain, Vulcan had a strong feeling that he could have gained something from dueling against Dokgo Hoo.
Because of this, Vulcan could not help but to have ill feeling toward Ho-Gwang, the one that made Vulcan lose that opportunity.
What Vulcan heard from Jake about this guy also contributed to making a negative impression.
‘He appear to be pretty skilled and more arrogant than he is worth… He is really prideful.’
He was the type that was full of arrogance and considered everyone else to be beneath him, the kind that Vulcan absolutely hated.
[Zenith-Rate Swordsman Ho-Gwang]
Looking at the level alone, he was quite a bit more advanced than Horune.
Of course, Vulcan was not thinking he would lose.
The problem was that, if Vulcan gave Ho-Gwang a beating to his heart’s satisfaction, then he would be making enemies out of the Order of Virtue.
If Vulcan got involved with the Order of Virtue in the wrong way, an organization that had over a hundred Zenith-Rate warriors, it was obvious that it would cause problems with Vulcan’s hunting.
‘Really. Why in the world are these guys playing leader in Asgard? If he wanted to be an emperor, why doesn’t he just go back to the lower dimension?’
Vulcan sighed as he thought the same thing Dokgo Hoo did.
Vulcan did not want to lose on purpose. However, he had to give consideration to the opponent’s reputation and pride. Because of it, Vulcan couldn’t just crush him either.
There was only one alternative left.
‘Looks like I should keep it even for a while and then win.’
Vulcan was thinking about producing a choreography where both sides show off their abilities to their satisfactions, a splendid duel.
Vulcan decided to think of this as a quest.
‘It is more difficult than the Cheetah King. Maybe C+? Although this is not worth anything… I should work hard on this.’
Even if it was just for the sake of peaceful training and level up later on, Vulcan had to do this.
He drew out his blade and activated the Thunder God’s Might.
“I am ready.”
“I heard that you broke through the limitation of being a Player, but aren’t you awkwardly trying to imitate a Murim warrior?”
“Anyway, there were people everywhere praising you, saying you are an incredible prodigy. I shall confirm it for real.”
When Ho-Gwang finished talking, from his behind, ten blades were thrown toward him.
The blades, which were thrown without being covered in sheaths, were just about to pierce through HoGwang’s body, but suddenly, as if somebody grabbed them all, the blades stopped mid-air. The blades steadied themselves in mid-air while pointing their deadly edges toward Vulcan.
The pressure from them felt like ten of dangerous poisonous snakes glaring at him.
“I bet it is your first time to face ten of them at once. Am I right? Have at you!”
The blades were launched toward Vulcan like arrows released from bows.
All blades were engulfed in flashy golden energy.
Vulcan assessed that an Infinite Flame Orb’s level of firepower would be not even close to being enough. Instead, he generated ten Hellfires. Vulcan thought that ordinary Hellfires would not be enough, so he put spins on each Hellfires and then launched them toward the blades.
Of ten shots, seven made direct hits, but other three blades changed their directions and dodged the magic attacks to fly right at Vulcan again. Vulcan launched Hellfires again to block their momentum, but before long, the other seven blades that recovered from the impacts were circling around Vulcan, targeting him from all directions.
‘It feels totally like a mage.’
While dodging blades flying at him, Vulcan felt a huge energy charging at him from distance.
Vulcan could see Ho-Gwang targeting him using the blade & body synchronization technique.
To avoid the attack, Vulcan quickly generated a Hellfire and exploded it. Using its reaction, Vulcan made a great leap to the air. Using quick draw blade technique, Vulcan shattered a blade that was blocking his path.
Watching the pieces of the blade falling down powerlessly, Vulcan thought,
‘It is not a mage, but more like a mage swordsman type.’
It seemed Ho-Gwang’s combat style involved keeping the opponent busy using a mid-distance offensive measure and finishing off in person with a blade.
Having met an opponent that was similar to himself, Vulcan was intrigued.
Vulcan spread magic attacks against nine blades that were flying toward him again.
He erased the thought of dodging them. When a blade dodged the magic attack, he launched another, and if it avoided that one as well, he cast another magic.
Ho-Gwang was also restless with his Telekinetic Blade technique. Whenever he lost his mental connection to a blade from impact with a Hellfire, he focused his mind immediately to re-establish the connection and repeated launching it yet again toward vunerable spots on Vulcan’s entire body.
It was suppose to be a duel between a swordsman and a mage swordsman.
People were expecting a face to face combat, but the two were showing a very different kind of battle.
The arrays of blades and magic attacks decorating the sky continued for many hours. However, slowly, little by little, the Goddess of Victory was raising Vulcan’s hand.
It was because Vulcan’s mana operation technique was superior to Ho-Gwang’s Telekinetic Blade technique.
Actually, Vulcan was not particularly taxed by continuously shooting magic and controlling them.
In the contrary, it had been a while since Vulcan used precision control through the traditional magic, and he found fun in the activity.
It appeared that he was not showing any sign of exhaustion from the mental focus required.
Instead, it sharpened his mind, and the movement of Hellfires became more precise, and this became a heavy obstacle for Ho-Gwang, who was getting exhausted from sustaining the Telekinetic Blade technique for an extended period of time.
At the moment the number of blades was reduced to eight, Ho-Gwang made a decision.
Vulcan was staring at him without any gap in the defense, but Ho-Gwang had no other options.
He just hoped that Vulcan would fight head-on against the attack he was about to do instead of dodging it.
At an instant, Ho-Gwang’s body got sucked into a blade, and a ray of energy blade was launched toward Vulcan.
It was at an instant, but Vulcan still had moments to spare. Because Vulcan was in the state of heightened senses, even as he effectively blocked Ho-Gwang’s Telekinetic Blade attacks, he was still able to notice all of Ho-Gwang’s movements.
Because of this, Vulcan was able to think about how to handle what’s coming.
He thought about if he should dodge it or fight it head-on.
‘Just fight it head-on.’
If Vulcan kept on dodging Ho-Gwang’s Blade & Body synchronization technique and maintained the flow of the battle as it was, that would have guaranteed his victory.
However, if Vulcan beat Ho-Gwang flawlessly, an arrogant man like Ho-Gwang could have ill intent toward him.
Vulcan was not forgetting what he was planning to do before the duel started.
‘It has to be a close duel. When it ends… it should be about 55 to 45!’
Against Ho-Gwang that approached to right in front of him, Vulcan used the Thunder God’s Strike.
However, he wasn’t aiming at Ho-Gwang, but his blade.
Having taken on substantial damage, Ho-Gwang’s blade cracked a little.
Ho-Gwang, who was in the state of blade & body synchronization, received a substantial damage as well. He fell back down as he threw up blood.
However, it was not just Ho-Gwang that was injured.
Two blades that were targeting Vulcan’s side passed by after cutting deep into Vulcan’s thigh and left arm.
Of course, that was the end of the duel.
Ho-Gwang no longer had any more strength left to sustain his Telekinetic Blade technique.
The blades fell to the ground, making a clashing sound.
Ho-Gwang got up as he bled from his mouth and faltered.
On the other hand, although Vulcan had pretty big blade wounds, he was still standing in dignifying pose. There was nobody contesting his victory.
“Well, from the looks of how the duel went between Horune and Vulcan, I figured Vulcan had a bit of advantage…”
“Still, that was amazing. It is quite an accomplishment that he managed to fight this well against a mage swordsman of Vulcan’s caliber.”
“I know. He is a graduate in training.”
“He might graduate faster than Dokgo Hoo. Ho-Gwang lost, but he fought well.”
Positive reviews were given from the people that watched the duel.
The duel concluded after both the loser and the winner have demonstrated magnificent skills.
Everyone was impressed by the high level duel that could be seen only in Asgard, and they took moments to reflect on their own techniques and magic.
However, there was a man that poured cold water to this amiable atmosphere.
“I cannot acknowledge this.”
After drinking special potion that his servants gave, Ho-Gwang said as he grinded his teeth,
“Start the duel over.”
Vulcan was applying potion to his arm and thigh where blood was pouring out. Having heard what he said, Vulcan cringed and replied,
“Wasn’t it a great duel? Honestly, I think I have won.”
“No. This duel was unfair.”
“Just what exactly?”
In light of Vulcan’s impatient words, Ho-Gwang slightly wrinkled his forehead and pointed somewhere with his finger.
There were pieces of shattered blade that Vulcan broke first.
As Vulcan looked at the pieces with a quizzical face, Ho-Gwang said,
“The quality of the blades I had was no good. I was fighting with a disadvantage. If I started with proper blades, I could have won.”
“One of my servants is bringing me quality blades. We will start the duel one hour from now. There, we will finish this.”
The spectators murmured.
No matter who looked at the situation, it was obvious that Ho-Gwang was throwing a tantrum out of stubbornness.
Some murmured words of complaints, but there wasn’t anyone stepping forward.
They were uncomfortable about getting involved with the Order of Virtue, which were made of warriors far stronger than themselves. Also, it was because there wasn’t anyone acquainted with Vulcan.
Not including the time spent training under Filder, Vulcan’s actual time spent in Beloong City out in the open with everyone was less than one year. Because hardly anyone was acquainted with Vulcan, there was practically nobody willing to stand by in his side in this matter.
Vulcan shook his head as he watched what Ho-Gwang was doing.
Ho-Gwang’s tantrum in denial was giving him a headache.
‘To think that a dumbass like him is the top level warrior among all in Beloong city where the strongest gather…’
Vulcan suddenly recalled some of what Jake said,
‘He said even idiots, birdbrains, or stoneheads can become powerful warriors. I guess it really is true. Ah, this is not important.’
Vulcan turned around to hide the expression on his face. In that stance, he tried hard to organize his head, which was now in disarray with convoluted thoughts.
However, it was not going well.
Vulcan just managed to produce a good result from the duel, and it ended with very approving atmosphere by the spectators, yet it still ended up turning this way.
It looked like no matter how Vulcan handled things from this point, the end result would be something incredibly annoying.
‘Should I just lose on purpose?’
Like most warriors, Vulcan also had a very strong sense of pride, so he didn’t like losing as if it was an illness.
However, causing problems for his journey back home, which was going to be a smooth ride, was worse.
‘That’s right. I should just lose on purpose this once.’
After Vulcan made up his mind, his chest felt lighter. Vulcan smiled and turned toward Ho-Gwang with a bright expression on his face.
However, at that moment, he could see Dokgo Hoo running toward Ho-Gwang at a high speed.
“You brainless runt! Just why are you still yapping your mouth? You lost you retard!”
Dokgo Hoo smacked the back of Ho-Gwang’s head when he was waiting for the potion to take effect.
Vulcan watched the scene with his jaw dropped.
The spectators just watched Dokgo Hoo in silence.