Sunday, January 22, 2017

The First Alchemist - Chap 31

Chapter 31 - Fight

Chem Au and Sorka Bo didn’t move, only glaring at each other.

“Aren’t you going to unsheath your sword?” Chem Au asked.

Sorka Bo scoffed, leaving his sword in its scabbard. “Do you think someone like you is worthy enough to make me use it?”

Chem Au could only shake his head. In a fight, every advantage counts. He knew that you must never grow arrogant and underestimate your opponent.

White light wrapped around Chem Au's legs as he charged towards Sorka Bo who rolled his eyes and used the Soaring Crane Skill as well. It was obvious he was better at it than Chem Au by how much faster he moved, easily dodging Chem Au's first strike.

From there a flurry of punches took place. For every punch Chem Au managed to land on his quick footed opponent, Sorka Bo was able land five of his own. Chem Au tried to move as fast as he could, but he was unable to keep up.

The crowd watching the fight murmured to themselves, saying how obvious it was that Sorka Bo was going to win.

What they didn't see were the thoughts running through Sorka Bo's head. His fists hurt. It felt like he had been hitting stones. But that wasn't the only part of him in pain. Every spot that Chem Au struck him was screaming. Those punches were heavy. When Chem Au slammed a fist into his stomach, it felt like he was about to cough up blood.

And when he looked at Chem Au, it didn't seem like any of his own hits had affected him. Chem Au stood there, his fists up, still looking fresh and ready to go.

No, he must be hurt. He's just faking looking okay to trick me, or at least that's what Sorka Bo told himself.

Sorka Bo charged in with renewed vigor. He threw another flurry of punches at Chem Au, most of them landing. His attacks were so vigorous that he didn't bother to put his guard up, making him unable to block one huge punch from Chem Au.

Chem Au put his entire weight into it and slammed a fist against Sorka Bo's face, who then flew backwards and landed in the snow.

Sorka Bo coughed, blood gushing from his mouth, dyeing the snow with red. He looked up and saw Chem Au moving towards him, still looking unhurt. That’s impossible, Sorka Bo thought. His entire body was aching but Chem Au didn't seem hurt at all.

With rage filling his eyes, Sorka Bo jumped up and at the same time swung his sword from his scabbard, aiming for Chem Au's head. Chem Au jumped back, barely able to dodge. Sprigs of his hair fell from his head and slowly floated to the ground.

"Feel honored," Sorka Bo shouted. "You're good enough to make me use my sword." He sounded like he was condescendingly complimenting Chem Au, but on the inside he felt embarrassed. He never thought he would need to use his sword against someone who had barely broken through the sixteenth profound level. Even if he wins, it would only look like he won with a weapon advantage.

He could feel the stares from the crowd. Did they see him as weak for having to use his sword? Sorka Bo shook his head. Right now that didn't matter. He had to win this fight.

He ran towards Chem Au, faster than ever, and swung his sword. But he missed when Chem Au jumped to the side so he continued his attack again and again.

Chem Au managed to dodge all of it by just running away, but when he reached the edge of the crowd, there was now no longer any place for him to run. Sorka Bo cleaved down with his sword. Chem Au tried to weave around it, but he failed. The sword sliced his shoulder.

On instinct, Chem Au rolled away, then jumped back on his feet, out of range from the sword. He looked down at his shoulder. There was no pain, no wound. Sorka Bo's sword had managed to cut through his profound aura, but it didn't cut through his leather armor.

With a sigh of relief, Chem Au backed away, eyeing the sword in Sorka Bo's hand.

Sorka Bo scoffed. "You got lucky. But let's see how much longer your luck would hold up now," he said. "Soaring Crane Skill - Second Layer!"

White light wrapped around the sword as he eyed the crowd watching him. He didn't want to use this skill. It seemed like a sign of weakness, and this wasn't exactly the best place to use it. Sorka Bo looked at Chem Au's legs. He would have to aim there.

Sorka Bo swung his sword and a white crescent light flew out, flying low. Chem Au dodged. The white light hit the ground, causing an explosion of snow. He missed, but that didn't seem to matter to him as he shot out more and more crescent attacks.

These attacks moved faster than even Sorka Bo. Chem Au barely dodged them until the last one landed a hit right below his knee.

A sting of pain jolted through Chem Au. He looked down. To his surprise, there was barely any blood. That white light had managed to cut through both his profound aura and his leather armor, and when it pierced his skin, it drew blood. But not a lot of it.

Sorka Bo was surprised as well. The bottom of his jaw was almost scraping the ground. That was the second layer of the Soaring Crane Skill taught to him by his father! It should have cut off Chem Au's leg. What the hell was going on?

While Sorka Bo stood there, frozen in surprise, Chem Al was watching from the crowd. He shook his head in disappointment. The Hard Earth Pill was doing its work, making his big brother's body hard to damage, but it also showed how weak a mere third tier pill was. He couldn't believe that Sorka Bo, a weakling at the sixteenth level, managed to draw blood with a such a pathetic skill.

The fight seemed to have stopped. Sorka Bo was still in shock while Chem Au continued to examine his leg, and sighed with relief when there was only a hint of blood. He had expected his leg to be completely chopped off. He was so happy that his little brother's pill worked. He knew that the pill had hardened his body against attacks. However, there was a difference between protection against an attack from a cultivation skill and an attack from his weak, little brother trying to stab him with a knife.

Now that Chem Au was absolutely sure that the pill was effective, he began marching towards Sorka Bo, a determined grin on his face.

Sorka Bo snapped out of it at the sight of the approaching Chem Au. He must have missed somehow. Yeah, that was it. There was no other explanation as to why his attack wasn't effective. White light wrapped around his sword again as he shot out another crescent. It hit Chem Au square in the chest, but all that resulted was a small cut and a little blood.

Sorka Bo's heart felt like it was going to jump out of his throat. He attacked again and again, firing off crescent lights one after another. He even aimed for a gap in Chem Au's leather armor, but there was barely a better result.

No! This was impossible! He kept on attacking, but his attacks started to go out of control, not caring if he hit the crowd of villagers behind Chem Au.

The crowd backed away, but they didn't need to worry because Chem Au took those attacks, not bothering to dodge them. He even went out of his way to move in front of the crescent lights that would have missed him. And as he did so, he just kept moving closer and closer to Sorka Bo.

Sorka Bo's arms grew numb. Not only did swinging his sword around tire him out, he had also used up most of his profound energy. And although Chem Au now looked like a bloody mess with dozens of cuts all over him, he didn't slow down at all. He marched forward like an unstoppable monster.

Panic began to set in. Sorka Bo could barely catch his breath. It was difficult just to keep himself standing. But no, he couldn't give up now. He had to win. He had to become the village chief.

There was nothing left to do but to charge. Sorka Bo screamed at the top of his lungs as he ran towards Chem Au, his sword high above his head, shining with white light. The moment he got close enough, he chopped down, wanting to split Chem Au in half. "Soaring Crane Skill - Second Layer!" he shouted out again, putting his all into this last attack at point blank range.

The shining sword came down and was caught in Chem Au's hand, leaving only a bleeding cut.

Chem Au smiled as he smashed his fist into Sorka Bo's face. Blood gushed from Sorka Bo’s nose and mouth as he flew backwards. After landing in the snow, he didn’t get back up. He had blacked out.

Chem Au won.