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Realm of Myths and Legends - Chapter 574 - Izroth's Test, Niflheim's Response!
Chapter 574 - Izroth's Test, Niflheim's Response!
Izroth had not been in a state this bad since his fight against Sage during the second team's selection. However, his condition could be considered as good compared to Niflheim's.
Niflheim was covered in two to three times as many wounds as Izroth. He took long semi-controlled breaths as he tried to bring order to his breathing, but his limits were fast approaching.
29 hours—this was the longest Niflheim had ever fought nonstop in RML, and the toll was a lot greater than he imagined. Even with the fatigue-reducing effects of the Ocean Rejuvenation Pill he consumed while still a Captain of Blue Oasis, Niflheim found himself out of breath and ready to collapse at any given moment.
The only thing that prevented him from doing so was his wager against Izroth. No matter what, he had to see things through until the very end!
As for the current results of their wager...
[Izroth Lives Remaining: 84/100]
[Niflheim Lives Remaining: 2/100]
It was a completely one-sided match up. Niflheim had come nowhere close to the number of lives Izroth had remaining. To make matters even worse, every death Izroth experienced was a direct result of him covering for Niflheim, who was low on lives during the latter end of the challenge. In reality, all sixteen of Izroth's deaths belonged to Niflheim—a crushing defeat.
"You should give up and cancel the wager, Niflheim. You have seen the difference in our strength with your own eyes. There is a zero percent chance of you winning this wager. Give up, and admit your defeat. Surrender, and not only will I accept your request, but I will even revoke my request as the victor. All you have to do is say two words—I surrender. This is the last time I will make this offer. Do not waste it." Izroth said indifferently.
Izroth had been pushing Niflheim to surrender for the past several hours. It was not that he enjoyed bullying or taunting Niflheim. But, Izroth saw no better opportunity than now to truly test him.
After countless hours of fighting under a high-stress environment, getting repeatedly told that he should give up, being mentally drained, and on the losing end of a one-sided wager—how would he respond?
This was Izroth's final test for Niflheim, and he hoped not to be disappointed.
Niflheim held firm and rejected Izroth's "offer" at every point, but this time was different. The situation for him was hopeless, with no path to victory in sight. Under his less than fortunate circ.u.mstances, Izroth was handing Niflheim a free way out—well, almost free. There was an intangible price, which was Niflheim's spirit.
The moment he accepted Izroth's offer, Niflheim's competitive spirit would be damaged, and he would be trading one lingering regret for another. However, if he could resist grabbing the tempting olive branch Izroth placed before him as he endlessly sunk in his present state, there would still be a long road ahead of him in RML.
"... Up..." Niflheim muttered.
"I said... Shut up! As in, you talk too much! The last two hours have been nothing but give up, surrender, give up, surrender...! I've told you once before, and I'll tell you again, my answer is no! You can ask a thousand more times, and my answer will still be no! So you can take your offer and shove it right up your a-"
Out of nowhere, the hissing sound of steam could be heard coming from the golden puppets. Simultaneously, the temperature in the room started to climb at an alarming rate! In less than a breath of time, the temperature had gone from a mellow feeling of warmth to a blazing summer's day.
As if his mind had just caught up to his mouth, Niflheim snapped out of it and seemed to realize how he had just spoken to Izroth.
"I-" Niflheim wanted to apologize for his unprofessional and immature behavior; however, he could not find the right words in his moment of embarrassment. He had not lost his composure and temper like that since the early days of his professional gaming career!
But, against Niflheim's expectations, he faced Izroth only to find a carefree smile on his face. For the first time since the wager started, there was no wrath, coldness, or indifference.
"I've received your message loud and clear, Niflheim. A man needs to know when to retreat, as well as when not to retreat and stand his ground—even if the odds are stacked against him. Adversity shows no mercy, and at times, we must return the favor." Izroth stated.
He then faced the golden puppets and continued, "Though I have to say, I never expected your language to be one so colorful."
Niflheim's eyes widened in shock as his clouded mind cleared up and realization set in. As a result, he could not help but release a deep sigh.
"Of course, another test... Your tests are quite ruthless, Izroth. Aren't you afraid I'll come to curse and despise you after this?" Niflheim sighed as he helplessly shook his head.
"If you did, then it would have been my vision that was lacking. Besides, any other testing method would have been much too easy for someone with your level of expertise. However, in its own way, this can be seen as your win. After all, now that I've observed you at your best and worst, you have not only gained my trust but my respect as well. And in this world, there are not many I give either to. You would do well not to misplace it. For it is not difficult to find again—but impossible."
As the final few words left Izroth's mouth, the steam from the golden puppets came to a halt as their golden bronze coating turned bright red.
At this point, both puppets absorbed several of Izroth and Niflheim's skills, as well as heavily examined the way they fought. Now, these puppets were twice as powerful and out for blood!
Niflheim was about to step forward; however, he was prevented from doing so as Izroth held his hand to stop him and said, "There's no need. You have nothing left to prove. Allow me to see our sparring partners off once and for all."
'It's unfortunate that I could not acquire the tenth sword form, but it has not been a complete waste. Not only has my Heavenly Golden Body significantly improved, but...'
A small ring formed around Izroth, and in the next moment, a rippling effect spread throughout the earth, carrying with it a piercing sword intent. From an outside perspective, it looked as if the solid ground had transformed into a wavy body of water!
The instant the golden puppets advanced a single step, their entire bodies came to a grinding halt as the room turned deathly silent. Not a single sound escaped for a full two seconds, and when it did return, the first thing to enter one's ears was the sound of falling metal.
"Ninth Sword Form: World Quelling Ripple."
Skill Name: Ninth Sword Form: World Quelling Ripple
Skill Creator: Izroth
Skill Level: 1/4
Skill Rank: S
Requirements: Sword Equipped.
Passive: The user has a 1% chance to create a «Quelling Ripple» and lasts for 5 seconds with every sword attack, invoking the active effect of «Ninth Sword Form: World Quelling Ripple» and dealing 50% reduced damage, as well as ignoring its cooldown time. If the skill is on cooldown, the remaining cooldown time on the skill is not affected and remains unchanged.
Active: Creates a «Quelling Ripple» on the surface beneath the user that sends out a rippling effect of sword intent in every direction, briefly deafening everyone in range for 2 seconds and damaging all hostile enemies in 20 meters (+5 meters every second following its initial activation) once for 10,000 fixed pure damage. In addition, for the next 20 seconds that «Quelling Ripple» is in effect, all incoming projectiles that enter into its effectiveness range will be destroyed or obstructed, and any hostile magic or mana in the area will be disrupted.
Special Note: This skill can only be leveled up through repeated usage and proper execution.
Cooldown: 2 hours 30 minutes
The steel sword in Izroth's hands vanished along with the metal shield in Niflheim's possession as a stream of system alerts greeted the two.
〈System Alert: Congratulations, you have completed the quest «Resseki & Kiren's Challenge: Sword & Shield»!〉
〈System Alert: Your final score is [Total: 30,000/30,000] (100%)!〉
〈System Alert You have received x1 «Resseki's Flawless Armament»!〉
〈System Alert: Generating additional rewards based on your total score and completion percentage...〉