Standing within the arena’s stage were three dragons.
An Emperor Dragon Typhon which was the one that had reddish brown limbs and was clad in a golden aura.
A Black Dragon of Death Siegwurm which was the one clad in dark miasma.
And a Storm Dragon Knight Bahamut which was the one clad in jade-green wind.
Just from the aura projected by the three, anyone would be overwhelmed and have goosebumps.
Such was the fight I, Stolas, and the three strongest Demon Lords were about to witness.
“Dan, the ring seems to be much larger than when Kuina and Fel fought. Is it?”
Previously, the ring had at most a radius of 30 meters.
Right now, the ring had a radius of about 500 meters.
“If it’s dragons that are fighting, a stage of this size is only proper, don’t you think? It was a lot of work, but we’ve manage to prepare this specially-made arena. And because it’s simply impossible for me alone to cover an area of this size with the powers of [Time], I summoned all the members of my [Chronos Knights] to help me today. That should be enough to enable the rewinding of time.”
I see, the larger the area, the exponentially greater the time powers needed. There’s also the issue of how long it’s going to last.
When I asked how much time could be rewound for an area of 30-meter-radius arena, I was told a couple of hours.
Surely, even with all of the [Chronos Knights] to help, the time that could be rewound for the current arena would be less.
But then again, that might be more than enough for the dragons.
In the first place, the maximum distance of 1 kilometer was actually rather short for them. Considering they could all exceed the speed of sound, they would be able to traverse from end to end in about 2 seconds.
Moreover, each dragon boasted incredible attack power.
And so, the fight began.
The one to make the first move was Caesar. He stomped the ground, opened his mouth widely to produce a golden ball of energy, and then fired it.
Rather than a violent breath attack of golden light, it was more of a thick, concentrated laser.
In response to that, the two dragons flew and split up left and right.
The only thing that Caesar’s attack made direct contact with was the protective barrier being strengthened by Marcho. When it hit, there was cold sweat flowing from Marcho’s temple.
“Geez, what absurd raw power. If I wasn’t my current self, this attack would have definitely pierced through.”
Marcho had always been strong but after being reborn via [Rebirth], she was significantly stronger now than when she was a Demon Lord.
And yet, she still said such a thing.
Actually, the aftereffects of the blocked attack were so strong, part of the ring being used got obliterated. It didn’t just break, it got obliterated.
Had Duke and Enlil not managed to evade that attack, they would have been killed then and there.
Enlil, who had flown high up in the sky, unleashed a rain of lightning bolts.
Each one was capable of wrecking even an A rank monster.
Caesar, after glaring at Enlil, surrounded himself with a golden light and flew up, pushing his way through the rain of lightning bolts until he got close to Enlil.
It was hard to believe, but it didn’t look like Caesar got hurt from Enlil’s lightning attacks at all.
The distance between the two shortened, Enlil flew as fast as he could to escape the charge. He even used the wind around him. Alas, he was still grazed.
It was just a graze and yet Enlil’s magic-power-enhanced scales were smashed, leaving him bloody.
Despite that, it gave the chance Duke was looking for. Almost at the same time that Caesar ascended to charge at Enlil, Duke flew up as well.
After the moment Enlil was grazed, Duke activated his skill, [Netherworld’s Miasma], and fired off a darkness breath attack full of miasma. In addition, Duke also activated his [Valor] skill to boost his attack power. With this attack, even Caesar would be deeply hurt.
Even so, there was no sign of being perturbed from Caesar’s face.
Much like what Enlil did to evade earlier, Caesar flapped his wings harder and even converted the light he was clad in into propulsive force in order to boost his speed.
Unlike what happened with Enlil however, Caesar was unscathed.
Duke’s full-power breath attack did nothing but slice the sky.
Not deterred, Duke tried to give chase, but Caesar was able to get away in an instant. Caesar was so fast, he soon was the one giving chase to Duke instead.
In the next moment, Caesar was able to catch up and smashed Duke into the ground.
Intending to provide support to Duke, Enlil engaged in a dogfight with Caesar. In terms of speed and maneuverability, Enlil had the upper hand. However, his attacks were not doing damage despite of hitting due to the golden light around Caesar.
“……this is not good. Caesar’s too powerful.”
“Yeah, he’s quick, tough, and strong. But all that’s within expectations.”
Stolas and I commented so while watching our respective dragons.
In order for Enlil to beat Caesar in their dogfight, he needed to be able to do damage to the latter. However, with his attack power, he couldn’t punch through Caesar’s protective golden light.
On the other hand, Duke’s attacks could penetrate through, but his problem was that he couldn’t land a hit on Caesar.
In other words, neither Duke nor Enlil could land a telling blow.
Meanwhile, thanks to using a net-like technique over a wide area, Caesar was able to make up for Enlil’s superiority in terms of speed and land attacks on the latter repeatedly. There were no decisive blows yet, but it was only a matter of time at the rate they were going.
“Fumu, Stolas, Procell, your dragons are strong, but I guess it’s still too early for them to challenge Caesar.”
As though taunting us, Ast said so and then chuckled.
“No, we’re just getting started”
“Don’t make light of our dragons, Astaroth-sama”
Just as Stolas said earlier, everything was going as expected.
The fight up until now was just a preliminary test.
We had made Duke and Enlil gather as much data about Caesar without receiving any fatal wounds.
And there were a couple of things we had noticed during the fight.
One such thing was that golden light around him. He was using it to boost his attack power, his defense, and even his movements.
However, thinking the other way, without that golden light around him, Enlil’s lightning bolts would deal damage and Duke’s attacks would hit. Without that golden light, we had a chance at victory.
As far as I could tell, Caesar couldn’t use that golden light for attack, defense, and maneuvering all at the same time. Once Enlil and Duke realized that as well, their course of action should be clear.
In my opinion, that course of action should be doing Formation 2 of the five formations the two dragons had prepared for this fight.
Looking like he thought the same, Duke signaled Enlil.
The two flew and formed a line.
Enlil took the lead, made his wind form an aerodynamic shape, and sliced through the air in front of him. That way, Duke who was following close behind was able to slipstream and thus fly at an increased speed.
Caesar sensed the potential danger this formation presented and tried to create some distance. However, unless something happens, the two dragons would eventually catch up with him.
If Caesar used his golden light to boost his speed, Enlil would have to leave Duke behind in order to fly as fast as he could and catch up. In this case though, Caesar then would be susceptible to Enlil’s lightning bolts.
So, what Caesar chose to do was keep the golden light around him and rush toward Enlil instead.
Right before impact though, Enlil suddenly ascended. When Enlil vanished from Caesar’s field of vision, Caesar found himself opposite Duke.
As for Duke, he already had a darkness breath attack filled with [Netherworld’s Miasma] primed and ready to fire.
Caesar accepted that he couldn’t evade in time and instead converted the golden light into a breath attack of his own.
The breath attack of light and darkness collided and pushed each other, both refusing to give way. Black and white light flashed in alternating order. It was a blinding spectacle.
At the point where the two breath attacks met, energy from both sides gathered and then swelled until it finally exploded.
The one that was able to push farther and receive less damage was… Caesar.
Duke meanwhile fell to the ground.
He was in tatters. After using his left arm to protect his body, it was now gone. All of his scales were also scraped away. His wings were blown away too.
He’s alive, but only barely. He’s certainly in no condition to fight anymore.
However, his attack was not in vain.
Although Caesar wasn’t as close to the explosion as Duke was, Caesar was still heavily wounded.
Moreover, he had used up his golden light. Duke’s breath attack had forced him to. From the start, this was Duke’s true goal.
It would take some time before the golden light was back online.
Enlil who had flown upwards earlier was now charging downwards while being clad in lightning.
Numerous lightning bolts then descended upon Caesar, making him shriek.
Now that the golden light was gone thanks to Duke, Enlil’s lightning bolts were able to inflict damage to Caesar. And so, while Enlil chased after Caesar, he kept firing his lightning bolt attacks.
Caesar tried to shake Enlil off, of course, but due to the lightning bolt attacks he received, his body had gone fairly numb and thus was unable to function as well as he wanted to.
And then, finally, Enlil caught up with Caesar and the two wrestled while falling downward.
Stolas and I watched with bated breath. We hoped, prayed even, that we would win. Just a little bit more and it’s our win.
“Your plan was good, but too bad… it’s paper-thin, but it seems Caesar has already reconstructed a new one. This is checkmate. Your Duke and Enlil fought well. However, it seems they’re no match for my Caesar.”
Ast confidently declared his victory when Caesar was once again clad in a golden light.
What?! While he was getting hit by all those lightning bolts, he was storing power!? At this rate, unless Enlil can tear that down soon, it’s over…
“No, it’s not over yet!”
I shouted so.
I had felt a strong heartbeat. It was Duke’s.
It’s not over yet. As long as Enlil notices Duke, there’s still a chance. I guess the question now is, how much does Enlil trust Duke?
And then, Enlil began acting oddly.
Instead of lightning, he began using his wind again.
No matter how much he tries, he’ll never get through that golden barrier with his wind. The most he can do is slam Caesar to the ground… wait, he’s noticed it!
“Push through, Enlil! Remember, you are my knight!”
Having received his master’s encouragement, Enlil exerted even more power.
He produced a powerful downburst while biting down on Caesar’s wing, causing the two of them to descend swiftly toward the ground.
“Planning for a crash to the ground, are you? Sorry to tell you, but that amount of damage won’t be enough to down my Caesar.”
“No, we’re aiming for something else. And Enlil believes that Duke will get them there.”
Enlil had put his faith on Duke. He believed that Duke would persevere despite his injuries and do what must be done.
And so, careful to not expose Duke’s form, Enlil plunged himself down along with Caesar.
Duke’s injuries had left him immobile, missing an arm, and even unable to do another breath attack. Even so, he could still stand on his feet.
So, while looking up at the sky, he poured whatever remained of his magic power, miasma, and everything else into his remaining arm. He was hoping and believing that Enlil would notice him and bring their enemy near him so that he could unleash this attack. This was literally going to be his last shot.
When Caesar noticed Duke on the ground, he got startled, but it was already too late.
Of course, he tried to break free, but he just couldn’t when Enlil was going all-out in bringing him toward Duke.
And when they were really close to the ground, Caesar decided to take a risk and convert the golden light from a barrier into a propelling force. However, the moment the barrier went down, he became numb from the lightning Enlil attacked him with and was thus unable to resist further.
Duke roared like that as he raised his right fist that contained everything he had.
Upon contact, there was thunderous crash and the surroundings was wrapped in a black flash. When the flash was no more, I discovered a cloud of dust.
For a moment, everyone forgot to speak. Everyone watched and waited for the cloud of dust to clear so that they could know the outcome of this fight to the death.
And when the cloud of dust no longer obfuscated the arena, we saw lying on the ground a barely alive Enlil.
Near Enlil was Duke who, almost like a statue, had his right arm firmly raised up.
As for Caesar, he could be found impaled by Duke’s arm.
“We won… Procell, we won! Enlil and Duke won!”
Tears in her eyes, Stolas embraced me.
I embraced her back and expressed my own joy.
Our dragons had bested the strongest dragon. What a truly terrifying monster he was though. If Duke or Enlil had challenged him alone, there wouldn’t have been any chance for victory.
The completely silent audience then erupted in applause.
That was soon followed by the roaring of the 19 other dragons. I was not familiar with the dragons’ language, but I knew what that meant: they approved of Duke and Enlil.
“Stolas, let’s go to the two.”
“Yes, we have to praise them.”
Our arms linked, Stolas and I headed toward our dragons.
I was quite curious on who inherited Caesar’s [Dragon Emperor], but more than that, I just wanted to praise Duke for the excellent job he had done.
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