Chapter 174: The End of the Ruinous Fire
The Sword of Ruinous Fire wasn’t fixed to the ground by any magic array but was inserted in a solid stone brick. The blade of the Ruinous Fire was still sharp. If you ignore the curse that caused severe pain, a slightly strong soldier could pull it out.
The black sword body and the hilt were integrated, and the hilt was inlaid with a dull dark gemstone. Its metal inlay was delicate and beautiful, but it wasn’t fragile, and it didn’t feel awkward to use. The scarlet flame was coiled around the black sword’s body, and from time to time orange sparks fell from the blade. Oliver could feel the pulsating power inside the sword, which could be considered a good sword that was full of fury.
Except for a certain point…
Oliver placed the blade of the Ruinous Fire in front of him, frowning. "Why?"
"The bone sword around your waist has no power." Godwin was silent for a long time, clenching the hilt of his sword. "And I will use Breaking Dawn. It’s not fair to you."
Godwin couldn’t tell how he was feeling at the moment.
He didn’t agree with the meaning attached to this sword by the Pope, and truly didn’t believe from the bottom of his heart that a mere sword could be used as a screening mechanism for the Hero. But why? Why could Oliver Ramon and his father use it freely?
He tried to become the perfect hero in the legends, the one who could pull the suffering people out of the water. For this reason, he could sacrifice and suppress everything. He would put his needs after everyone in the world— Godwin had long been aware of it, and now he could skillfully ignore those grievances and sorrows. Not for reputation, money, or power. Godwin firmly believed that he just wanted to do the "right" thing.
Because he was destined to bear the fate of saving the world.
For this reason, he discarded desire, weakness, and even killed his own father. After practicing hard day after day and risking his life, he started alone with just a sword, and developed Horizon into what it was now.
Why was he not as good as Oliver Ramon, who was still nameless a few months ago and operated an inn in a remote town?
Their fathers were biological brothers, so was there a difference in their blood? Or was he not good enough?
If, just if… As his father once prayed, Oliver Ramon is the "Last Hero", what has his life been so far? What should he do with everything he was carrying?
Godwin’s hand clenched the hilt of the sword and trembled a little bit for the first time.
"Block the field," he said hoarsely. "Don’t let it spill to others—"
As soon as Horizon’s mercenaries were about to retreat, they were stopped by the young man with a face similar to their commander.
"No need for you to come. There’s someone on our side who can do it." Oliver waved the Ruinous Fire a few times, then took a deep breath as if he was familiarizing himself with the feel. "Jesse Dylan, block the field."
"Why me! Can’t you let your little sweetheart do it?" Jesse, who was sneaking towards Horizon’s tent, wailed miserably.
Oliver’s and Nemo’s faces turned blue at the same time, and they invariably showed expressions close to nausea. Godwin looked at Ann in disbelief, whose facial muscles twitched a few times. The four students were expressionless, while the little nobleman even tried to cast a sympathetic look at Godwin.
"Where are you looking, Lopez? I wouldn’t bang one of your family members, not even for a night!" The female warrior rubbed her temples hard and made a hideous scowl.
"I’m having a serious fight with Godwin. Serious fight." Oliver gritted his teeth and said pointedly to Jesse. "It may require a very strong blockade from the great Mr. Dylan."
Jesse rolled his eyes. With a wave of his hand, a milky white halo rose around the edge of the stone platform and led straight into the sky. The two people in the field seemed to be separated by a layer of fog, but they could still vaguely see their movements.
"Which one?" Godwin’s face wasn’t good-looking.
"Nemo." Oliver raised his sword. "Now’s not the time for introduction. Let’s talk about this later."
"That’s a demon worshipper! You’re crazy." Godwin gritted his teeth and swung his sword.
"I may be crazier than you think," Oliver laughed dryly and blocked it steadily.
Gray smoke spread out abruptly, and a sense of oppression like a huge wave rushed straight at Horizon. The latter wasn’t alarm. The blade of the Breaking Dawn flowed through the brilliance. A half-moon shape orange and red glow was flung out by the blade, dryly slicing through the gray fog. The movements of the two were amazingly fast that no one except for a few could see how they attacked and dodged. The sound of swords colliding was unusually loud as two figures slam into the ground and then in the air.
The bright figure in the cloak belonged to Godwin Lopez, and the dark one was the leader of Tumbleweed. Most people could only distinguish this. Most of the mercenaries in Horizon could only confirm their injuries when the two of them were pushed back by the impact and a burst of dust was drawn from the sole of their boots on the stone platform, so they couldn’t tell which side had the advantage— That is if they hadn’t been blown away by the storm raised by the battle.
The two leaders looked evenly matched.
Neither side hit hard. The two of them had a few new cuts on their skin that weren’t too deep nor shallow. Blood slid down their sweat-soaked skin and was then thrown out by the body when it moved again.
But Godwin knew in his heart that the current situation was far from evenly matched.
Oliver Ramon at first used the usual swordsmanship and footwork that was taught by the Knights of Judgement, but after a short battle, his style changed…
Compared with the changes, it was better to say that Ramon was quickly getting used to the rhythm of the battle and was calculating the most suitable move to deal with him. His breath was no longer clumsy and immature during their first encounter. As the blades collided, something dark flowed from Oliver Ramon’s movements. His offensive was completely suppressed and even in the late stage he could only defend more than attack.
It was a hungry wolf-like oppression that only desperation could give birth to, as well as death-defying attacks.
If it weren’t for Ramon’s lack of intent to kill, Godwin would have gladly turned this fight into a true fight to the death. The bloody aura on his opponent’s body made him wary. He had only seen this kind of emotion on the remnants of a battlefield.
And those gray mists.
They just churned around Ramon at first and didn’t swarm to him. Ramon sometimes use them to devour the spells he used, but he never commanded them to take the initiative to attack. Godwin accidently brushed past them and the armor that touched the mist was instantly corroded.
As their battle escalated, the surge of gray mist became more regular, but they still stay in place.
The other party was holding back and the idea gave him the creeps. Except for soldiers who held high positions in the palace or the clergy from the holy church who he was unable to fight, Godwin Lopez had few enemies among the free mercenaries. He hadn’t felt this feeling of not being able to see his opponent’s strength for a long time.
Godwin abandoned his defenses, and his offensive became fiercer.
He can’t lose.
The Breaking Dawn hissed, and the entire blade was wrapped in a strong light. Even though there was a layer of translucent light screen, the bright light could make people’s eyes ache.
If he loses, his life would be completely reduced to a tragic joke.
Some emotion was gnawing at his heart, and the pain couldn’t stop. Godwin raised his Breaking Dawn, kicked the gravel slab with his boots, and slashed at the Ruinous Fire in Oliver’s hand with all his strength…
And his opponent looked at him sadly and let out a very light sigh.
At the same time, under the stage.
"Care to explain?" Nemo stared at the battle on the stage as he stretched out his hand and grabbed Jesse’s collar, making sure that the defensive barrier was just right. The blond young man planned to slip towards Horizon again.
"Explain what? Are you and Mr. Ramon planning to keep a low profile? I don’t believe it," Jesse grunted aggrievedly. "Have you told Mr. Ramon my identity? Oh, that expression just now… In short, you sold me out, so I’ll sell you out. This is called friendship, my dear friend. Now let me go. I’m going to get Adri to come see the fun."
"…" The corner of Nemo’s mouth twitched, and finally turned his face to Jesse. Jesse found the right breakthrough. Although as the leader of the team, Oliver had the right to know Jesse’s identity, but when the other party mentioned it so squarely, he really couldn’t get over it.
"What’s going on with this labyrinth?" Nemo decided to change the topic. "Did you do it or did I? At this power level, there could be no one else… I guess it was you."
Jesse, who tried to slip away again, stopped. "Do you want to know?"
"Considering that we’ll have to escape from here in a few minutes and Ollie can’t look directly at you for the time being, I really want to know."
"Well, I did it. Just destroy it." Jesse shrugged. "I don’t care at all. It’s useless anyways."
"I see." Nemo hesitated for a moment, but continued to ask. "Would you mind explaining the, uh, special biological situation here? But this is just my personal question. If you don’t want to…"
"Of course I don’t mind! But even if I tell you now, you may not be able to understand." Jesse seemed to be interested. He turned around and played with the tips of his golden hair.
"Give it a try."
"Well." Jesse raised his brows and gave a half-smile. "Then let me tell you a story."
"Once upon a time there was a lovely bard who wandered about, hungry and cold. Such a poor man passed by a gate and smelled the aroma of food coming out of the crack in the door. Guess what he would do?"
"Beg for a meal?"
"Do you have to say it so harshly? Alas, as they say people don’t get something for nothing. Yes, the poor man pried open the door, entered the room, and found the host was enjoying his dinner alone—"
"I think the word ‘break in’ may be more appropriate…"
"A big table full of food like that couldn’t possibly be finished by just one person. What a waste." Jesse puffed out the from his nostrils, ignoring Nemo’s comment. "Finding that he couldn’t beat the master, the weak bard had an idea. He proposed a deal to the host— ‘I’ll provide you with what you want, in exchange, you can give me some food. The ones that are farthest from the table, just the ones that you like the least’. How smart, right?"
"The lonely and bored host agreed to this deal, but he’s a bit of a purist and doesn’t like to eat the same dish as others, so he made a request. The lonely bard had to find his own plate and choose the dishes he wanted from the table. The host hopes to carefully examine the samples of the dishes on the plate before deciding whether to give them out."
Those ice-blue eyes stared at Nemo with a hint of inexplicable banter and Nemo could feel his body stiffening a little bit as he vaguely guessed something.
"Their transaction went smoothly, and both of them got what they wanted. The bard has his own table and his own food. He just had a small oversight and forgot to wash the plate originally used to hold the sample. Until now, the samples are still on the plate and the flavors are all mixed together."
"Enough." Nemo’s voice was a little dry.
"Don’t you ask me what the ‘host’ wanted?"
"Not now." Nemo took a deep breath. "I’m not…ready yet."
"A wise decision." Jesse curled his lips. "Well, you see, you’re barely a human being now. I’ve told other humans the ‘truth’ and guess what happened to them?"
Nemo stared at him steadily.
"They all went crazy." The beautiful blond young man smiled and shook his head, showing his white teeth as if he just cracked a funny joke. "Are you satisfied now? I’m going to find my darling Adri! ……Do you think he can hold on in the end?"
Without waiting for Nemo to give an answer, he happily rushed towards Horizon.
"I didn’t hear anything!" Before Nemo made a sound, the gray parrot he was holding in his hand squawked in a tiny voice. "I don’t know anything—"
Nemo reluctantly smiled, rubbed the parrot’s head, and looked at the center of the field again.
Godwin’s right arm holding the sword drooped as blood kept dripping on the ground. Oliver had a deep wound on his left forehead, and the left half of his face was stained with blood. Under the sticky blood, he had to close his left eye.
"It’s over," Oliver sighed again.
"It’s not over yet." Godwin’s voice was very hoarse with a sense of sadness. "I… It’s not over yet."
Oliver looked at him sadly. Godwin has no chance of winning, and he knew this very well at this moment.
Godwin Lopez looked painfully miserable. Oliver could guess the reason, and it was precisely because he could guess the reason that he couldn’t take this battle lightly, but he really didn’t want to give it his best at once. That might be too cruel to Godwin.
Abnormal and icy forces surged in his body, impacting his flesh and blood, bringing pain like being immersed in strong acid. If this battle continued, it would only become pure exertion and torture.
On the other hand, he should thank Godwin, Oliver thought to himself. The way his opponent manipulated the holy sword Breaking Dawn was worth referring to. He may have some clues of this strange power.
It was time to end it.
Oliver waved the Ruinous Fire.
The gray mist gathered behind him, pounding each other. A cold light flashed in the gray— Several icicles were born from it, pointing directly in Godwin’s direction.
Godwin was no longer able to hold up his shield.
The leader of Horizon stood stubbornly, his back straight. The holy sword still exuded a warm light, but its owner looked as pale and cold as snow.
"The Pope of the Laddism Church, Dawn Quinn, once said this." Godwin’s tone was equally cold, but it was mixed with a trace of fragility that he had never had before. "A truly brave hero will be recognized by the Ruinous Fire, without guilt and confusion, and will not be burned by the curse. Your father was like that, and Ramon, so are you. You might…"
"If this is what you have been caring about since just now." Oliver approached Godwin, wiped the blood from his face indiscriminately with his hands, and a bitter smile creeped onto his face. "Uh, I think you have probably been deceived."
"Like holding a red-hot iron, or accidentally pressing your hand on the pan for roasting meat while the oil is still hot." Oliver looked at the Sword of Ruinous Fire burning blade in his hand. "It hurts, doesn’t it? But I’m used to it, so it’s okay."
For the first time, Godwin looked at him blankly.
"Did Flint Lopez himself say, ‘Only those who are not confused and guilty can use this sword’?"
"No, he shouldn’t have mentioned it. He only mentioned that this sword has the power of calamity. This is the curse that Clementine successfully parsed from the sword after he disappeared. It will burn people who are guilty in their hearts, and Flint has been using it, so everyone thought…"
Godwin couldn’t continue.
Just now, Oliver Ramon was also using this sword calmly. An absurd conjecture rushed into his mind.
"That’s right. Dad… I know that Dad at least had one thing he regrets in his heart, and he even used it to educate me. He’s not an incredible person. As for the ‘power of calamity’—"
Oliver lowered his head and raised the sword horizontally.
The Ruinous Fire shattered turning bit by bit into powder starting from the blade of the sword, like burnt charcoal. The inlaid gem on the hilt of the sword fell on the powder, shining with a dim light.
"I’m afraid the ‘power of calamity’ doesn’t exist either. As far as Dad’s character is concerned, he may just want everyone to stay away from this sword." Oliver looked at the powder in his hand and breathed tremblingly. "The Ruinous Fire is a good sword, but it’s just an ordinary good sword."
"A fool attached a curse to it so he could punish himself for the mistake he made. I don’t know what misunderstanding you have about my father. He’s just… an ordinary person full of remorse."
The author has something to say：
Oliver did not "successfully" pull out the sword hhhhhhhhhhh I wouldn’t go with that route da~ (ψ°▽°)
The Ruinous Fire is actually the predecessor to the Light Pole Staff! However, the degree of material is definitely better than the Light Pole staff√
The deal between Jesse and Nemo happening in a small corner, happy~
Godwin: Ah, it doesn’t hurt Ramon. Ramon is better than me…
Oliver: Actually, I just have better endurance than you, thanks.
Godwin: …Okay, let’s talk about your boyfriend.
There were many speculations left in the comments in the about the sword and who would be able to lift it… and in the end, it turns out Flint (and the author) was trolling everyone.
Is everyone getting all the clues being dropped from Jesse’s story?