Ranker’s Return - Chapter 560

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“I thought you were just watching... Have you finally thought of fighting, Marquis?” the emperor said to Hyeonu, who was standing next to him.

He had a rough grasp of Hyeonu’s strength. The emperor still remembered the performance Hyeonu had shown against the hatchling who had gone crazy in Rondal. He knew that Hyeonu could amplify his power in an instant, and it was not weak. This was even more so now that Hyeonu’s power was on a whole other level compared to before. He’d made many developments in the short time in between.

‘It is sufficient for a helper,’ the emperor thought. This was enough. The rest could be filled in by the emperor personally.

“I believed in Your Majesty and waited for a chance. I might be a small fry when compared to a demon king, but haven’t I at least killed a few demon nobles?” Hyeonu replied to the emperor. Challenging a demon king was something that couldn’t be done with an ordinary mentality, but Hyeonu certainly had enough courage for it.

“Marquis, how many minutes can you fight for?” the emperor asked suddenly.

Hyeonu felt that his mouth was blocked by that question. ‘How does he know?’

How did the emperor know Hyeonu had a limited time to show his power?

‘Ah! He saw it at that time.’ 

Hyeonu was reminded of Rondal, where he’d fought in front of the emperor.

“I can hold on for five minutes, Your Majesty,” Hyeonu answered calmly. It was the giant skills that had the shortest duration, and they lasted for five minutes.

“Five minutes? That will suffice. Don’t overdo it. Don't be afraid. I will be behind you.” The emperor nodded. That was enough time to kill one demon king.

“I understand, Your Majesty. Then I’ll take the demon king on the right.”

The demon king Hyeonu designated for himself was Galiya. Damanos would be left to the emperor. It was because they already had the experience of fighting each other.

“Once again, don’t overdo it. I will entrust him to you for the time being,” the emperor advised Hyeonu once again. Hyeonu’s strength was outstanding, but he was lacking a lot compared to a demon king. All he had to do was hold on. Perhaps, if he were lucky...

‘I can deal a few blows.’

It was highly likely considering Hyeonu’s natural senses.

“I will keep that in mind, Your Majesty.” Hyeonu engraved the emperor’s advice on his bones. He too knew that he couldn’t let his guard down or overdo it against a demon king.

‘I have to drag out every minute and second.’

Hyeonu extended the Mysterious Sky Sword toward Galiya without any hesitation at all. Rather, he wanted to attack continuously in his slightly stronger state. Dozens—no, hundreds of black-red pure energies covered the air. It was Mysterious Sky Range. This was the maximum number of pure energies Hyeonu could control.

Hyeonu raised his concentration right from the beginning without thinking about the future. Hundreds of pure energies bombarded Galiya’s surroundings and covered everything. They blocked Galiya from every direction, leaving the spot where Galiya stood as the only space free.

Just then, a dark blue curtain appeared around Galiya. That was when Hyeonu’s black-red pure energy collided with Galiya’s shield. Hundreds of pure energies struck the shield and disappeared, but the shield stayed firm without any flaws. Seeing this, Hyeonu immediately swung the Mysterious Sky Sword again. He didn’t rest. No, he couldn’t rest. The moment he stopped attacking, Galiya would fly toward him.

‘Guess Mysterious Sky Range doesn’t work then...’

Hyeonu’s next choice was Mysterious Sky Range again. However, this time it wasn’t just Mysterious Sky Range; it was Mysterious Sky Range combined with Crescent Moon Cut. Hundreds of crescent moons appeared in the air. The sight of hundreds of moons floating in the sky was one that could never be seen in real life. Yet at this moment, Hyeonu had created it.

The crescent moons flew toward Galiya, emitting a force that was tens or hundreds of times stronger than the previous Mysterious Sky Range. Galiya didn’t take any action and merely looked at the pure energies that surrounded him. However, his inaction brought about a bad result for him.

Hyeonu’s pure energy quickly hit Galiya’s shield. Unlike before, the shield shook slightly this time. Then it started to break. Hyeonu still had a lot of pure energies left.

 Galiya frowned and shouted, “How dare you?!”

A storm of black air flowed from his body and swallowed up Hyeonu’s pure energy.

‘I can’t even hit him once.’ Hyeonu also frowned at the sight. After all, Hyeonu had a very high level of defense penetration. He was confident he could deal damage, even if it was against a demon king.

‘The method isn’t right...’

So he had to use the right method. If it wasn’t right, the high defense penetration was just a useless figure.

‘Let’s go to melee combat.’

Hyeonu realized that ranged attacks wouldn’t work and chose melee combat instead. It couldn’t be helped. He had to try everything possible as he couldn’t just run away or give up.

‘I’ll leave the magic spirit here.’

Hyeonu didn’t mobilize the magic spirit; he just summoned it. It was still more comfortable for Hyeonu to move himself than to fight using the magic spirit. If it were a weaker opponent, he would’ve used the magic spirit, but a demon king didn’t fall into that category. In such a battle, Hyeonu had to use what he was most familiar with and what he was good at.

Hyeonu gave strength to the hand holding the Mysterious Sky Sword and kicked off from the ground.


***


The emperor watched Hyeonu’s battle with interest. In particular, he admired it when Hyeonu created hundreds of crescent moons.

‘It is really great.’

This was a level of magic power control that went beyond one’s imagination. If Hyeonu kept improving… 

It seemed that a rather fun situation was developing.

“The marquis seems better than you.”

The smile disappeared from the emperor’s face. No matter how fun it was to fight the strong, there was a time and place for that. Right now, the relatively weak Hyeonu was fighting so hard.

“What? Comparing me with that guy!” Damanos fell for the emperor’s light provocation. This was originally a provocation that Damanos would’ve never fallen for, but the comparison object was a human, not a god. It was hard for him to accept being considered below the humans he normally thought were inferior.

Unable to endure his boiling anger, Damanos charged forth. He quickly appeared in front of the emperor and swung his fist three or four times. The cannonball-like black pure energy shot at the emperor.

The distance between the emperor and Damanos was less than one meter, so the pure energy reached the emperor in an instant. The emperor was silent. He raised his hand without being flustered at all. A rainbow emerged from the emperor’s hand, and the black pure energy stopped moving. The rainbow surrounded the frozen black pure energy, breaking the latter. Once the rainbow light achieved its goal, it headed straight toward its next target—Damanos.

Black air currents rose from Damanos’ body and prevented the seven-colored magic power from threatening its master. The emperor laughed at the sight. He was confident that he could win. While laughing, the emperor moved his fist lightly.

It was at this moment that Damanos’ expression changed rapidly. He looked very flustered.

“Will you block this too?” The emperor pretended to gaze at Damanos in admiration, but his raised mouth clearly showed that he was laughing. Damanos had no time to answer the emperor. He was busy trying to calm the emperor’s magic power that was rampaging inside his body.

The emperor raised his fist again and pulled his arm toward his body. The seven-colored magic power spread around the emperor’s body in concentric circles. At the same time, there was the strong force inside Damanos’ body that was slowly pulling him over to the emperor. He was unable to withstand this force. Even at this moment, the emperor’s magic power was rampaging inside Damanos and tearing his body apart. The moment he was distracted, it would devour his body.

“Damanos!” Galiya was calmly fending off Hyeonu’s attacks when he witnessed this sight. Damanos would definitely die if he were dragged over to the emperor. The pressure the emperor was currently giving off was far more threatening than before. To Galiya, it felt like he was watching Baler.

Galiya turned and shot toward Damanos like a bullet. Just then, a dark-red figure appeared in front of Galiya.

“Where are you going?” Hyeonu stood with the Mysterious Sky Sword on his shoulder. It was a very relaxed appearance, but he didn’t feel as good as he looked.

‘There are now three minutes left for the buffs...’

It had only been two minutes so far. During the span of this short battle, Hyeonu’s mind was already exhausted.

‘I was crazy to do a melee. Truly.’

The choice of doing a melee was the worst. As a demon king, Galiya had crazy physical ability. He attacked Hyeonu and dodged Hyeonu’s attacks in the blink of an eye. Even if Galiya’s attack didn’t directly hit, the aftermath alone overturned the ground and caused pockets of air to explode. If Hyeonu got hit, he would be seriously injured. It wouldn’t be strange if he was broken or cut at once. The battle where he seemed to be walking on a knife’s edge lasted for only two minutes, but it was natural for fatigue to accumulate.

“Die, human!” Galiya shouted loudly and punched at Hyeonu. He was in a hurry. Even though it was a brief battle, it was a great loss for him to be tied up by a human. This human was much stronger than he looked.

‘I thought it would be over in a minute...’ Galiya remarked inwardly. The human’s magic power and physical ability weren’t so great, but his combat skills were crazy. It led the battle to a level that Galiya hadn’t expected. The battle went downhill from there. Damanos had been pushed by the emperor from the very beginning. It was Galiya’s role to help him in the fight.

‘I have to kill him even if it means using more magic power,’ Galiya thought. Covered with black-red pure energy, the Mysterious Sky Sword deflected Galiya’s fist, just barely. Nevertheless, Hyeonu used Mysterious Sky Steps and moved smoothly. Stepping around Galiya, Hyeonu stopped behind him and stabbed him with the Mysterious Sky Sword.

“Kuaaah!” Galiya cried out. Dark wings and tentacles sprouted from his back and blocked the Mysterious Sky Sword. Then he quickly aimed them at Hyeonu. However, Hyeonu avoided the tentacles that shot at him. The moment he stepped on the ground, the tentacles rushed at Hyeonu. He couldn’t stay still for a moment and continued to use Mysterious Sky Steps.

Galiya didn’t attack Hyeonu with just the tentacles; he launched multiple attacks simultaneously. He pointed his fingers at Hyeonu, and dark blue beads that looked like drops of water poured toward Hyeonu. Then Galiya kicked off from the ground, ran to Hyeonu, and waved his fist. Hyeonu held the Mysterious Sky Sword and blocked it, but he had no spare strength to do more than that. Seizing this chance, Galiya quickly dealt another blow to Hyeonu.

“Kuaaaaaah!!!” A sharp scream rang through the battlefield right then. Damanos was kneeling on the ground while covered in blood. It was dark blood that glittered faintly. Standing before him was the emperor who hadn’t shed a drop of sweat. Even his clothes weren’t messy.

“This is a suitable appearance for you,” the emperor said as he put his hand on Damanos’ head.

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