Chapter 314 Annihilation
It was Garcia’s first-time experiencing the horror of an extraordinary.
The weapon in her hand was obviously only an ordinary one-handed sword, but the burst of pressure from her every move seemed to absorb parts of her soul. Each blow that came raining down on her shield was as heavy as a strike from a two-handed sword. Two or three blows later, Garcia could no longer even lift her arm and was hit on her chin by an upwards moving strike.
After her restoration, the Queen of Clear Water thoroughly abandoned defense, and before she could second guess herself, a ballista had already appeared in front of her body. She pulled the trigger, it wasn’t an iron spear that she released, but several jars of black water. Reacting instinctively, Zero cut the jars apart, only to get showered in the black water. When the pieces of fire crystal hidden inside the jars came in contact with the air, they quickly began burning, and turned the whole area into a pillar of fire.
However, it was still not guaranteed that this would work. After all, Zero could still use her speed which far surpassed everything an ordinary person could ever achieve to move around the flower pond while the ballista couldn’t even turn around. Thus, Garcia had no other alternative than to rely on raising the stone walls embedded with spears to restrict the Purified’s movement. In addition, she turned the flower pots surrounding the pond into explosives by filling them with snow powder, and hid several pits into the ground, setting up a formation of deathly traps.
After killing the other side several times like this, Garcia discovered that her breathing gradually became heavy, beads of sweat started running down her forehead and waves of dizziness started to attack her mind, leaving her almost unable to keep standing upright.
“Well done,” the once again reborn Purified said, she wasn’t taking advantage of Garcia’s weakened state and was instead clapping her hands. “That you are able to do all this far surpasses my expectations. However, there is something I forgot to tell you. Even though you can use your consciousness to change the environment and venue in this world, it will consume a much larger amount of energy than creating completely new things… the amount is even similar to one’s restoration. You should already be feeling the weakness and exhaustion taking over your body, maybe after your next death, you will already fall into an eternal sleep.”
“Ah, that’s still better than getting one’s neck cut off,” Garcia panted heavily, “But you seem to forget the screams you made when being burned by the evil fire. I do not think you’ll be able to hold on any longer than me.”
“…” After a moment of silence, Zero said, “Ever since I’ve become a Purified, the Church has given me a lot of support to improve my abilities. From increasing my knowledge to teaching me fighting skill, to feeding me with Judges to improve my ability. Those Judges, even knowing that they would be sacrificing themselves, were still glad to enter the Battlefield of Souls. Here, in the World of Conscious, they honed my skills in life and death struggles, reassuring me that they accept their death before transmitting all of their insight and experiences to me.
Garcia did not interrupt her words. Even if the other was stalling for time, she also needed a break.
“I have swallowed up an extraordinary, and her strength was impressive – I nearly lost a Battle of Souls. But in the end, I relied on the Devil’s weapons to prevail over her and then got everything from her. Due to the different characteristics of magic, I can’t actually turn into an extraordinary or use the abilities of the witches I swallow. However, here in the World of Consciousness, these differences don’t matter to me. In the last two hundred years, I can’t even remember the number of people I have swallowed, but there have only ever been a few individuals who could threaten me. All their pain, happiness, sadness, and delights they’ve had in their life, became part of my own personal experience…” She paused, “Including their death.”
“What exactly do you want to tell me?” Garcia cautiously asked.
“The difference between you and me,” replied Zero calmly. “The assimilation of so many souls has made my will matchless. In case you want to know the number of death I can survive, I think I can bear at least hundreds of death by now.”
“In that case, I will have to help you to verify it.” She scoffed. But inwardly her heart sunk… When looking at her demeanor, it doesn’t seem that she is merely bluffing. From the time at the pier, where she cleanly and easily killed all their personal guards, it could be seen that this Purified possessed fighting skills that went beyond her age. If that’s the case, I need to use even more powerful weapons… quickly, what can I think of that can easily kill even an experienced super witch?
“The Battle of Souls isn’t a contest to decide who has the greater imagination,” Zero said, as if she already seen through her, “You cannot make yourself impervious to sword and spear without foundation, nor can you summon the weapons which destroyed heaven and earth from the legends of ancient times… Things you cannot understand you also cannot create, what we have seen and understood is the key to success.”
“Then I’ll just cover the whole garden with strong snow powder, even you will be unable to avoid it,” Garcia declared coldly, “Even if I die, at least I will drag you down with me!”
“Even if killing me doesn’t have the least bit of importance?” The Purified looked at her with eyes full of pity. “In that case, let me show you the real power of the Church.”
Suddenly a red light appeared behind Zero and condensed into a ferocious looking war chariot. Its shape had such extreme dimensions that it immediately crashed against the walls of the garden. To Garcia, the two sharp metal spears at the top of its head looked like the report given by one of the Wolf King’s personal guards – a kind of never before seen ballista which was attacking the walls. Both its range or power are at unprecedented levels. Don’t tell me that this monster in front of me, is what the guard has been speaking about.
Then she heard a loud hum.
The thick and solid spear directly broke through the layer upon layers of barriers Garcia had set up, not even bothering to spend any power to tear her in half as she was immediately sent flying backward. As she flew she could see her own organs and blood being left behind.
In unbroken succession, the war chariot continued to shoot those spears, thus soon after being restored, she again suffered the same death. She didn’t even have enough time to create the snow powder and take the enemy down with her. Under the constant pain, her consciousness gradually became blurred, the earth began to shake, cracks appeared in the sky, lightning flashed, thunder rumbled, and the garden burst into a blazing fire.
“A strong will can only delay defeat, it cannot change the outcome. Close your eyes now,” Zero said, “You’ve held it for long enough, rest in peace.”
The moment her voice fell, the whole world broke apart.
“Is it over?” Isabella curled her lips, “Shouldn’t it be done in an instant? You’ve already changed back into your original appearance, but for quite a while now you haven’t said a word… I thought you really failed this time.”
“I found some fascinating things in her memory,” Zero opened her eyes, “This way of thinking… makes me sigh.”
“Oh? There are still things which can make you sigh?” Isabella said carelessly, “That kind of strange alchemy powder should be something you have found out, right?”
“Well, the alchemist called it strong snow powder and the composition is quite simple. All the needed components are the most common things in the workshop.”
“If it’s like that then let us go back to the Holy City to report, we have already fulfilled all the orders given by His Holiness O’Brien,” she spat out. “This battle will continue for at least three to four days, but now without a leader or witch to guide them, those remnants won’t count as a threat to the God’s Punishment Army.”
“Let’s go,” Zero nodded.
“Hold on…” Isabella shouted for her to stop.
Was it an illusion? Obviously, there’s no change in her appearance from before. But why do I feel that the look from her light red eyes has become somewhat different? Isabella carefully studied her counterpart but then shook her head, “No… it’s nothing.”
I guess I’m just overthinking things.