CH97: martial arts tournament 4) Oliver vs.
“… Hey, what’s with the stupid sword?
“Don’t worry about it.”
“You’re just trying to make up excuses when you lose! You’re pathetic.
“Don’t bark. Get ready. No matter how much time you buy, you’ll always lose.
“… !!!! I’ll kill you.”
Derrick is holding his shield and sword in a great rage.
“Well, it looks like the two of you are ready! Now, the fourth match of the second round, let the competition begin!”
Derrick closes the distance right off the bat.
If we stir things up that much, of course they’re going to try to crash into us.
It’s really easy to use.
Derrick’s coming down with a sword.
When I was in the heroes’ party, Derrick was already a part of the party when I converted to a grantmaker.
I’ve been watching Derrick’s movements for years.
And I’ve matched his moves with [Instantaneous Ability Super-Rise Impact] many times.
I’ve already seen… I’ve already seen it.
I take a half step back to meet Derrick’s sword, and the tip of it runs right in front of me.
After confirming that the attack is a success, he moves to Derrick’s right side and aims his dagger at his neck.
Derrick reacts to my attack and tries to duck.
He knows that when Derrick takes evasive action immediately after an attack, he always moves from his left foot.
Immediately after moving the left foot, he kicks the right foot as if he pushes it away.
He then immediately slams his back left fist into Derrick’s face, intending to break his nose this time, based on the feeling he had when he hit him yesterday.
We can get you patched up when the fight’s over, and it won’t matter if you break your nose.
He throws his right dagger and draws his long sword from his hip, then charges after Derrick, aiming for his chest.
He thrusts the tip of his sword into Derrick’s eye as he lies on his back.
“… We’ve got a match.”
Derrick’s eyes aren’t dead and he’s staring at me.
There’s no way you can turn this around. You should at least know when to back off.”
“Ugh, that’s so annoying…! Aaaaah!”
Derrick took his left hand off his shield and was about to hit me in the shin.
But his aim was too obvious. I hit him in the left hand with my long sword.
“… Referee, make a decision.”
“… The winner, Orn Dura.”
The judges have ruled, and I’ve won.
It’s a bit of a letdown, as you’d expect.
Now we’re off to the big game against Fuka…
Orn, you did it.
When I got back to the waiting room, I heard Will’s voice.
Will? Are you okay now?
Fuka and Hurt were not in the waiting room, but Will and Lecrae were.
Thanks to Leclerc’s restorative magic.
“Thank you very much!”
The atmosphere of serious concern for Will was gone, and the usual Lecrae was there.
“Yes, yes. Thank you… Congratulations again. Keep up the good work.
“… Yeah. I’ll do my best for Will.
Thus ended the second day of the martial arts tournament.
The third day of the martial arts competition.
Fuuka and I had left the Red Copper Lanterns Clanhome and were on our way to the arena where the match was to take place.
There are only four of us left.
Two of them became the Red Copper Lanterns. Isn’t that enough?
This tournament has been more of a hassle than I thought it would be, and my motivation is pretty low.
“Oh, that’s so annoying.”
I thought you were going to take this seriously.”
Fuka, who is walking next to him, asks him a question.
“Well, that’s what I thought. You’ve done enough. But you’re still pretty high-strung.
I’m not sure what he’s thinking, but he looks like a child who’s too excited to wait.
“I get to fight Orn today. Maybe we’ll get to see Orn in action.”
Fuka’s eyes are shining.
“Well, I don’t remember you cutting corners. I thought he looked pretty serious ・・・・・ in both the first and second rounds.”
“I think he fought as hard as he could the day before yesterday and yesterday. But Orn’s true spirit wasn’t like that, was it?”
No, I don’t know if you agree.
Mr. Hurt, hello.
While I was waiting in the waiting room, Orn came in.
You’re sharing a room with Orn today.
Hey, Orn. How are you doing?”
I’m ready. Today’s opponent is Fuuka.
Orn is also aware of Fuuka?
I’ve been paying attention to his fights ever since Fuuka told me about Orn’s reputation.
But I still think he’s not as good as the others.
You’re a good fighter. I’ll give you that.
But I can’t help but think that he doesn’t have the potential to be as good as me.
“… Hey, Orn. Are we really going to fight today?”
“I don’t know what you’re asking, but I don’t cut corners every time. I don’t fancy myself as a winner by cutting corners.”
I still don’t think you’re lying.
There are only five people I know of in the whole world who have a chance against him.
But Orn isn’t one of them, and I don’t think Fuuka will lose just because it’s a possibility to begin with.
Fuka is special.
Well, those five are special, too.
“Hello everyone! The semi-finals of the martial arts tournament will begin soon! The winners are all S-ranked explorers. I guess there’s a big difference between A-rank and S-rank. Let’s see who will play today. In the first game, Oliver Cardiff of the Brave Party and Hurt Tendow of the <Red Copper Haze> will fight each other! In the second match, we have Huka Shinonome of the Red Copper Lanterns and Orn Dura of the Silver Rabbit of the Night Sky. This is a matchup of S rank party aces! Both cards are a matchup not to be missed!
I stopped thinking at the sound of the host’s loud voice.
As I walked to the back of the waiting room to go to the match, the MC was just calling my name, so I walked straight to the center of the match venue.
I check Oliver’s expression after we’re both in position, and he’s staring at me with a blank expression.
They’re supposed to be totally superior to us, but they don’t seem to be letting their guard down at all.
(I never thought I’d have to fight Oliver ・・・・・ like this…) Well, let’s see how you do…)
We went to war with each other without saying a word.
And now! The first semi-final match, let the games begin!”
We close in on each other at the sound of the drums.
Of course, a sword has more reach than an empty hand.
That means the other side will attack first.
I’m going to deal with that attack and counter it, just like I always have.
But contrary to my expectations Oliver makes no move to swing his sword.
(What are you thinking?)
Something golden floats in front of you, as if you can’t read Oliver’s intentions.
I was thinking, “What the hell is this?” And then it popped right in front of me.
Jump back as fast as you can.
(Oh shit! What the hell was that?)
I’m surprised inside, and then I realize something.
… I jumped backwards, which means I’m the right distance away from the sword again.
Of course, this time he’ll swing his sword.
You fling the blade at him with your basket hand, and then move further away from him to get out of the way of the sword.
Oh, my God… That would have been over in a second.
(So this is the Convergence of Magic… It’s amazing that you can do something as dexterous as this while having the destructive power to destroy a city… This isn’t the time to be impressed. First we’ll destroy the sword as before and draw them into our side!)
He concentrates his ki into his fists and then closes in on Oliver.
Ki is the energy that flows through the body.
This is something we all have, but controlling it is no easy task.
My ancestors attained the highest level of ch’i and passed their knowledge on to their descendants.
I’ve been taught about Ki control since I was a child, and now I can handle Ki as easily as I can breathe.
The circulation of this in the body can greatly improve physical performance.
… Exactly like the support magic buffs.
Furthermore, by releasing this Ki out of your body, you can do many things.
For example, you can make your ki flow and explode when you strike a target, destroying it from the inside.
Here’s how to rig the weapon’s destruction.
Oliver’s going to attack as I move.
Too bad. I’m after your sword!
I will meet the sword with my fist and channel my ki into the sword at the moment of the blow.
But… But the sword didn’t break… and I was caught off guard.
He moved before he could think, and was able to get out of range before the attackers could follow him.
(What do you mean? I touched the sword. I channeled my ki.)
“You look as if you’ve seen something incredible. Is it really so strange that my sword isn’t broken?”
Oliver sounds cold.
So you’re telling me you’ve already taken care of the weapon destruction.
“Oh, my God…”
My fighting style is all about breaking.
The rules of this tournament are even less compatible with me than they are with other searchers.
They didn’t want to show their hand, so all they did was destroy the weapon.
When I saw Oliver’s blade, I knew why it couldn’t be destroyed.
It’s his unique ability, the Convergence of Magic.
The magical membrane over the blade prevents the ki from reaching the blade.
No, really, how easy is it to use?
… I’m going to give up now.
No, I should probably watch Oliver fight a little more closely for the ・・・・・ future.
Huh… We’ll fight some more, and then we’ll lose at the right place.
We don’t stand a chance. I’m sorry Alf, but there’s nothing we can do.
After establishing a plan, we’ll distribute the ch’i throughout your body and improve your physical abilities.
He seems surprised that I’m moving faster than before, but he quickly deals with it calmly.
I keep trying to create an opening, but I can’t break his weapons and all I can do is hit him, so there’s no way I can win.
Gradually, he began to devote more and more resources to defense, and was finally defeated by Oliver in a devastating defeat.
It hurts so much…
After the fight, he gets treated for the bruises Oliver gave him, and then goes to see Huey and Katie in the audience.
It’s the leader who was beaten up by the heroes…
When Kati finds out I’m here, she’s gonna give me a hard time.
Isn’t that a bit harsh on a fellow soldier who fought so hard?
“Because I got beat up for cutting corners, that’s all I can say.”
“No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no! That’s the limit of the rules!”
“But if the Commander really intended to win, wouldn’t he have been able to attack unilaterally from outside of sword range?”
“So, what’s the problem?”
“You’re talking in tongues… We wanted to see the Commander win against the heroes…”
Huey mutters with a really sad look on his face.
“… I’m sorry I made you look like such a fool. But you gotta understand. I couldn’t just go after him. I couldn’t ・・・・・・・・・ It would’ve taken me too long to beat Oliver. So I’ll leave it to Fuka to win.”
It’s time for the second semi-final! Will the battle unfold as fiercely as in the first match? First up is <Sword Princess>Fuka Shinonome, who has won both the first and second rounds with just one sword! On the other side is <Dragon Slayer>Orn Dura, who has won with his skillful fighting!”
As we were talking, the second game was about to start.
Huka and Orn take their positions and get ready for battle.
“Huh? Unlike before, Orn only has one long sword.
Kathi pointed that out to me too.
Orn has been fighting with two swords, a long sword and a short sword, but this time he has only a long sword and no scabbard.
Are they trying to make it a little lighter to cope with Fuuka’s speed?
I don’t think that’s gonna make a difference.
The two of you are ready! The second semi-final match is about to begin!”
A few moments after the battle has begun, the audience begins to let out a few groans.
The reason is quite simple.
The battle has begun but Huka and Orn haven’t moved a step toward each other.
… Hey, it’s already started!
… Get the hell out of here and fight!
The audience, who are getting tired of the motionless duo, start to shout wildly at them.
“Commander, why aren’t you two moving?”
“Those two are in the middle of an epic battle to the death, you know? They’re going so fast, they look like they’ve stopped.”
“Yeah, no shit… Ow!”
I tried to make a joke to make him feel at ease, but it didn’t go down well with Kathi and he kept poking me.
“Don’t tell me you’re lying here!”
“I’m sorry. Don’t hit me again! The second part’s a lie, but the first part’s true.
Now that I’m free of Kati’s violence, I’ll begin my commentary.
Well, you’d have to be pretty knowledgeable in the martial arts to know what you’re doing.
What do you mean?
“It’s true that they don’t seem to move, but they do make slight movements, like shifting their weight. They’re reading each other’s slight movements and fighting each other in their brains. It’s all about tactics.
“… Can you do that?”
“It is said that a battle between masters is decided before they even begin to move. Fuka is in that range, but I didn’t expect Orn to be in that range.”