Editor: Ghost Ape
The place I was forcibly carried to was the former site of the vanished gold mountain. Rēko’s train of thought was that because the most valuable gold mountain had vanished there would be no problem even if we were to destroy the surrounding topography.
“I’ll be in your care Evil Dragon Lord. Please go ahead and examine how much stronger have I become.”
“I know all too well just how strong you are. Okay? Let’s stop this, all right?”
“… So that’s how it is Evil Dragon Lord. You’re worried I’ll lose my life in the midst of us exchanging blows?”
“Well, honestly I’m definitely more worried about my life here.”
“It’s okay. As the kin anointed by the Evil Dragon Lord, I’ll make sure to survive no matter what it takes.”
Ah, it’s already hopeless, I give up. No one can stop her now.
Carrying on her shoulders the spirit and standing behind Rēko, Sheina was intently staring over here with her eyes narrowed. I couldn’t read her intentions, but she must’ve been anticipating my strength as the Evil Dragon Lord.
“Then here I come, Evil Dragon Lord.”
“At least, at least listen to one thing Rēko. Please don’t use that dagger. Blades are banned.”
“… This blade? Yes, I understand. It wouldn’t be my true strength if I were to use weapons.”
“Okay, whatever you say, so please use only your strength.”
In return for dropping the whole sheath with the dagger on the ground, Rēko spread her five fingers like claws.
“Then I’ll start by showing the Evil Dragon Lord’s fundamental skill―― Rend the earth.『Giant Claw of the Dragon King』”
Simultaneously with Rēko swinging down her hand, a slash made of vast magic power had manifested itself. What rent the earth per her verdict and assaulted me was undoubtedly a giant claw of an Evil Dragon.
I couldn’t even raise a scream. With eyes rolled back, my soul wanted to gush out through my gaping mouth.
I managed to squeeze out a groan only after the slash attack had been completely extinguished when touching me. I established previously when Rēko had gone berserk that it’d turn out like this, but when push came to shove my knees gave way, and maybe because of my age, I had even felt like I leaked a little. Trembling timidly I tried asking Rēko if it’s over, but there was already no sign of her on the ground. Instead, the sunlight from up above became slightly obscured.
When I looked up in a hurry, Rēko was covering the sun with her giant black wings with her eyes glowing in a blue hue. Immediately after she took a deep breath, a vortex of raging deep blue fire came pouring down.
Even though I logically understood it’d be nullified, my animal instinct told me I was going to evaporate. Once I took a direct hit still petrified, my consciousness came to a stop for a few seconds due to the excessive fear. And when my consciousness returned, there was a weight on my back that I recognized right away.
When I slowly rotated my head and looked behind me…
“Fufufu. I allowed myself to take your back. Did my flames manage to become somewhat of a smokescreen?”
Rēko was straddling my back with a smug grin on her face.
“Ah, yeah, it certainly dazzled me. My consciousness, that is.”
“Then please prepare yourself. From this position I’ll unleash a flurry of physical attacks all at once.”
“Blades are forbidden, remember?”
Bomp, a fist lightly landed on my back so with a little bit of effort I collapsed flat on the ground, relieved. What transpired then was a series of hits just right for my shoulders and back. The power was as if no different from the previous massage. If a child were to straddle me awkwardly without a magically boosted strength, I guess it’d turn out like this.
“Aaah… Right there. No, a little lower.”
“Ku, as expected of the Evil Dragon Lord, what tremendous endurance… Able to ignore these attacks which would smash rocks into powder…”
Not being able to put up with it anymore, Rēko jumped off my back. Just when I was starting to sigh in relief thinking that she has given up――
She picked up a massive boulder, intent on throwing it at me.
“Ahh! No no no stop! You cannot do that!”
“I know it’s going to be useless. However, after briefly drawing distance and attacking with projectiles, I’ll await for my chance.”
With my knees still weak from before it seemed unlikely for my legs to move right away. In which case I’d need to activate the phantasmagoric black claws I had received from the God of Hunt for the first time in a while. I’d have to hang onto something and move my body out of here―― However, the already released giant rock moved too fast to permit such leisure evasion.
Eh? Am I really going to die here?
When the rock approached before my eyes, the world suddenly turned slow motion. For some reason I quietly thought just before that I’d make it somehow, but I had absolutely no way of somehow dealing with that large rock. If I were in my original form I might’ve been off with only a broken leg, but in this size I’d be flattened.
“I refuse to die like a pressed flower!!!”
Thanks to my overflowing defensive instinct, I caused the black claws to transform. It turned into an umbrella like shape protecting my body, but the instant it came into contact with the rock it started easily cracking and crumbling――
Suddenly, the collapse stopped. On the contrary, the cracks which appeared on the umbrella mended there and then, and as though generating a repulsive force, it sprung the large rock back where it came from.
“Eh…? W, Wha? I’m okay?”
Was this perhaps the so called superhuman strength caused by the adrenaline? If that’s true, I might still be worth something after all.
However, when I was considering the possibility of a miracle, I abruptly felt a sharp pain travel from the tip of my tail. The one biting on my tail was obviously the spirit, who managed to escape from Sheina before anyone noticed.
I tried rolling around on the ground to shake it off, but the spirit was determined to absolutely not let go. Moreover, even Rēko walked near me with a warped face, saying,
“Evil Dragon Lord, playing around with that spirit during our exchange is too much. I apologize if you were bored because of my inadequate abilities, but…”
“You’re wrong, Rēko. I’m not playing around, this spirit is going at it by herself!”
“Ah, my bad! I unintentionally forgot myself spectating you two and let her run away.”
Appearing flustered Sheina ran over here and recovered the spirit. Chomping her teeth at me as usual was just needlessly scary.
“Weell, then it’s after all Evil Dragon Lord’s win? Though only Rēko has been attacking…”
“Indeed. Although vexing, it looks like Lord planned to only observe my strength until the end. The fact I didn’t make him budge is a proof of my inadequacy.”
“No, I wasn’t making light of you like that, you know? I only, how should I put it, my legs were acting up.”
“… Anyway Evil Dragon Lord, how did you defend against Rēko’s attacks? It looked like you almost didn’t use magic-ish magic…”
I held my breath. In the first place it wasn’t like I blocked it. It was Rēko’s magic power itself that had a property of ‘doesn’t work on me’ in it.
“The Evil Dragon Lord’s scales are not only resistant to magic, but are also an invincible shield against all physical attacks. That sturdiness is unattainable by any known minerals existing in this world.”
When Rēko said it puffing up with pride, Sheina started prodding my side as if to validate that story. Squish, my sagging stomach caved in along with my scales, and because it was ticklish an “ehe” sound escaped from my mouth.
“How does it feel, Sheina? Evil Dragon Lord’s pride, the black scales, which hardness surpasses even diamonds…”
The barrage of squishy blows made me writhe in ticklishness.
“Ah, but Evil Dragon Lord also used magic once right? The time you snapped that large rock back. I don’t think that attack was a big deal, so why did you use it only then?”
Sheina asked with her head slanted to the side. I could only reciprocate in the same manner, by tilting my neck. I couldn’t answer why, since I wasn’t gifted with magic power after all. But still, repelling that rock wasn’t a feat the usual me should be capable of.
“Gulp…” It can’t be, I swallowed loudly.
―― Has at last Saintess’ teachings paid off, making an evil dragon’s power dwell inside me?