TL: I’ll probably fix table of contents later. Next chapter in 5-6 hours.
Chapter 116 – Five-headed Hydra (1)
When Brendel tracked down the Hydra, he also discovered Amandina and Dia hiding in the bushes hundreds of meters away to spy on the mythical creature.
Amandina had originally gone out to find Dia, who was moving everywhere senselessly to gather materials for Tamar. She was guarded by the Fire Claw Lizardmen and they managed to find her near a lake looking at the scale that was eventually passed to Brendel.
Amandina recognized the scale as she had encountered the description in the books that she read, and a few of the books described the Hydras in great details.
She got the Fire Claw Lord, Ropar, to report to Brendel, while she got the others to track the serpent. Soon enough, they discovered the huge creature. It was a five-headed Hydra, its body was sleek and elegant against the areas of light and darkness. The detailed scales were ink-black, but there were several sections seemed to have a green glow.
It was a Poison Hydra.
Its defense and strength were not as strong as its other relatives; it could not become a fog-like existence like the Nine-headed Shadow Serpent, or manipulate Ice or Fire Elements like the other subspecies. However, they were the hardest to deal with because their corrosive poison could shoot a hundred meters in distance and melt Magic Alloy.
“All of you stay here and wait!” Brendel immediately ordered the excited youths who were ready to try their mettle. “Kodan, Scarlett, Ropar, attack it from the back while I attract its attention and force it to use its poison. The angle that it can attack from is only 180 degrees, so make sure you stay out of range.”
Brendel was the first to charge out.
“That’s too dangerous!” Kodan pulled out his sword and followed next. Brendel had promised to give him a Potion of Dragon Strength for taking part in this battle.
“Leave it to me!” Brendel activated the specially crafted Wind Sigils by Tamar on his sword sheath, raising his Agility tremendously.
He entered the Hydra’s guarded range a few seconds after he spoke, and the gigantic creature that was tens of meters tall had its third head raised up. Its huge tapered mouth opened up and shot a geyser of black poison from nearly a hundred meters away, but the youth had not forgotten how to fight this creature.
He frowned and immediately veered towards the sides, allowing the poison to fire past him while he continued to advanced quickly. The hissing poison continued past him and splattered onto the ground.
Smoke immediately appeared as the poison corroded the foliage. The chemical reactions even caused the liquid to burst into flames, while the surrounding plants visibly wilted at the speed where the naked eye could even detect it.
The young men who were originally ignorant of the monster they were facing immediately paled and even a few yelled out.
Mordenkainen stared at Brendel who was now dodging the Hydra’s projectiles from the five heads in disbelief. The latter’s movements were in a blur, but it was clear that he was avoiding the poison arrows with ease.
He had heard of Brendel’s legendary exploits that seemed almost exaggerated, but he discovered that the reality before him surpassed the stories. His jaw collapsed several times and went back up to clench his teeth when it appeared dangerous.
“I-Incredible. Didn’t our lord say that we can be as strong as him one day? Is this really true?” The person next to Mordenkainen suddenly spoke and jerked the nearest person’s sleeve, who happened to be Merial. She pulled back a little.
“Oh. It’s you Merial. Did I pull too hard?”
“N-nothing,” Merial shook her head vehemently and replied, “our lord seems like he’s a Gold-ranked swordsman, I think we would need decades of training to reach his level……”
“Decades, but our lord looks like he’s at most twenty years old!”
“Our lord is a genius, do you think you can compare to him?”
“Well that’s true, but isn’t it too long to train for decades?”
“You’re talking about a Gold-ranker.” One of the youths who was a former mercenary replied sarcastically at once: “Do you think it’s lettuce from a field and you can get a large number just by planting them? You have heard of the reserve knights from the Holy Cathedral, right? As long as you have the abilities of a Gold-ranker, you can enter the Holy Knights’ reserves—”
Many held their breaths when they heard him speak about that position. It was a legendary status where most would aspire to, and they were existences far beyond the likes of Graudin.
Someone else added to the discussion: “You don’t even need to reach the Gold-rank, as long as can become a Silver-rank, you can become knighted under any lord!”
Even if a knight was the lowest class of nobility, the title was full of enticement.
“Then is it possible for us to reach the Silver ranks?”
Carglise finally came back to his senses. He suddenly felt that Brendel must have been laughing maliciously inside when he rushed at him with a sword. He was merely an Iron-ranker and dared to challenge a grandmaster swordsman with the capabilities of a Gold-ranker.
Even though he was thick-skinned, he could not help but burn up a little. Still, he looked at the others and answered: “We will definitely be able to enter the realms of a Silver-rank.”
“Why are you sure, Carglise?” Merial asked curiously: “A common man would find it hard to reach that level, and you need a certain level of talent right?”
“Don’t you find that you’re improving really quickly?” Carglise asked.
Everyone stared at him. Did they really improve? Kodan called them fools where no man could hope to compare, and Scarlett shook her head every time she saw them. Even their lord who seemed friendly and approachable merely smiled at them without saying anything. These actions made them feel like they were completely untalented.
But Carglise shook his head. He knew that they had no problems. In fact, he realized that his swordsmanship that had not improved for a long time was starting to become better. He was even surprised to find himself becoming stronger after entering the Dark Forest for a week. He was almost at the stage where he could be called a Silver-rank.
“Do you know what swordsmanship the lord is teaching you every day?” He said, and most of them shook their heads.
Merial frowned: “It appears to be the Holy Cathedral of Fire’s swordsmanship.”
“Isn’t it forbidden to teach it outside the Holy Cathedral?” Someone called out, and suddenly there was silence amongst them. A few of them looked at each other; it was quite a severe crime to teach the techniques from the Holy Cathedral of Fire.
Carglise did not care the Holy Cathedral as they would not pick the youths here to train them. The latter could choose from a large number of talented youths who were blessed by the Gods.
He was a normal person at the end of the day.
He patted Merial lightly on her shoulders: “Do you understand why I feel like I have chosen the correct decision?”
Merial blushed a little.
The others started pondering when they heard Carglise’s words.
While the youths were lost in their thoughts, Brendel was not as relaxed as they thought. Even though there was no direct hit by the venom shot out from the five heads, there was a flashing warning in green color on his retina:
Brendel had gone past the fifth round of attacks by the Hydra, and the monster finally needed a little time to prepare for its next projectile. He quickly made a signal to Kodan, Scarlett, and Ropar to make their moves while making a side turn in order to lure the monster, as well as staying away from the poisonous cloud.
He swiftly checked his Stats Window to confirm his vitality.
It was still green.
Even though he was poisoned, his Physique was high enough to resist the venom since it was past a hundred points. Any normal person would have died a hundred times if they passed through the poisonous cloud.
But once he inspected the details, he found that the Resistance Bar was yellow at 87%, and it was dropping. He calculated the time and estimated that he had less than ten minutes to resolve this issue, or he would die from the poison.
[As expected from a high-level Gold-ranked monster. It’s not easy to deal with it.]
The time taken by the Hydra to spew its poison again was a minute and a half, and the attackers needed to close in the distance. However, the Poison Hydras were intelligent enough to retreat and shoot its projectiles while retreating.
Unfortunately, Brendel had drawn its attention long enough for his allies to sneak up behind it. When the Hydra finally discovered them, it could only hiss angrily as it did not understand strategies.
The time taken to get close to the huge monster only took thirty seconds. Brendel activated his Charge skill, leaping to avoid the Hydra’s tail swipe that was like a steel whip. It was a classic move for dragons and its subspecies. The tail had scales harder than metal and easily broke the ancient trees apart, sending loud smashing sounds accompanied by tremors that could be felt miles away.
Brendel somersaulted and landed next to the Hydra’s front right leg, raising Halran Gaia as he did so.