Episode 30: Deathmatch against a Spiritual Beast.
At the bottom of the rock salt mine, there stood Yamato, faced against the Spiritual Beast.
“It truly resembles a black tiger.”
After finally appearing before him, Yamato analyzed the appearance of the dangerous Spiritual Beast.
He had heard of its appearance from Gaton, so he instantly recognized it as the opponent he was looking for. Its outward appearance was reminiscence of one of Earth’s carnivore animals, the tiger.
“But… I can’t go thinking that, this is obviously a different being.”
At a glance, it looked just like a tiger similar to those of Earth.
However, the huge and sharp fangs that grew from its mouth, and the keen claws growing from its paws pointed that this was a totally different organism.
“Wouldn’t it be better to call it a ‘Saber tooth Tiger’?”
Accurately speaking, the Spiritual Beast resembled more that ancient animal from Earth. It feels weird to actually be before that figure I once saw at a museum, Yamato thought.
In order to keep himself calm, he started to speak to himself as he analyzed it. That way, he could objectively confirm the situation he was in.
“Why aren’t you suddenly attacking me?”
Since the Spiritual Beast appeared, it had only been staring at him.
Likely, it was measuring what level of threat Yamato posed. That ‘observation’ was a habit of intelligent carnivorous animals.
Soon after, it seemed like the observation time was over.
Slowly taking steps, it started to advance towards Yamato. I supposed it judged me to be ‘an adversary it could easily kill’, Yamato thought.
“What a coincidence. I think so too.”
In a similar manner, Yamato’s ‘observation’ time had ended.
So, he too started to advance, walking towards the Spiritual Beast. He decided that he would ‘hunt down’ the black beast in front of his eyes.
“Let’s do it! “
As both made up their mind, they kicked off the ground at the same time in order to attack the opponent.
The battle with the black Spiritual Beast had finally begun.
The huge fangs of the Spiritual Beast targeted Yamato’s unarmored torso.
Its movements were swift and agile one wouldn’t believe it with that massive body, fast enough to even lose sight of it if Yamato were to blink. A quick attack making use of it enormous leg strength in order to overwhelm a person.
No wonder the Mountain Clan People thought it simply vanished, he thought, if it was like this it’s no surprise it was a unilateral slaughter.
“So fast! But…”
At the last moment, he avoided the enormous fangs trying to rip him. Shifting his weight, Yamato bended his body and slipped through a blind spot of his opponent.
And at the same time, holding a knife with both hands, he aimed at the unprotected neck of the Spiritual Beast.
“Damn, I won’t…!? “
Feeling an impending sense of danger, he canceled his attack and simply avoided altogether.
A second after, the huge, sharp claw of the Spiritual Beast cut through the spot where he was standing just now.
If I pressed on the attack, my head would have been totally torn open, cold sweat ran through his back as he was having those thoughts. The counter attack of the Spiritual Beast was that much frightening.
“But at least, its full of gaps! “
As he continued to avoid, he threw the knives he was wielding at the beast. His aim was to defeat the Spiritual Beast by damaging its seemingly thin-skinned side flank. Pulling out a spare knife, he moved on to the next attack.
After avoiding the thrown knives, the Spiritual Beast let out a sonorous roar and charged.
“Not yet! “
But its quick movements were also within Yamato’s calculations.
He immediately avoided it and moved towards its back again, attacking with a knife in both hands.
But being a quadruped animal gave it advantage in stability in a ground battle.
However, the movement of the joints were limited, so there was always a direction in which it was hard to react to. And Yamato persistently aimed for that.
Nevertheless, the Spiritual Beast instantly positioned and fought back the attack that was coming from behind. Kicking up its back legs, he launched its sharp claws trying to cut the tender meat in Yamato’s body.
“Crap, I knew it would be different from ordinary animals. But still! “
He continued to move around, relentlessly attacking the Spiritual Beast without giving it time to rest.
But the Spiritual Beast too responded with unbelievable reflexes and was pressing on.
It really is abnormal… but, I think I have a chance…
The strategy he had decided on was to continuously attack the opponent without letting it get time to rest.
After all, his senses and physical abilities had been improving since coming to this different world.
But since he was living with everyone at the village, he never tried to use all his strength.
However, the improvement he had seen was quite remarkable. And it was only thanks to that, that he was able to fight against the Spiritual Beast on equal grounds.
Its strength and attacks are top notch. However, this is not an opponent I can’t win against…
Up until now, all the warriors and Knight squads that faced against a Spiritual Beast were destroyed.
But its movements reflected a lower grade of intelligence than humans.
Its speed and reflexes were extraordinary. However, it lacked ‘technique’.
I’m impressed by the training drilled to me by those self-called adventurer parents of mine, he though, thanks to that I’m able to cope up with the movements of this Spiritual Beast.
During those frantic days, he had to fight against his father in what appeared to be deadly bouts, but now he appreciated those days.
Alright, if it keeps going like this, in a couple more exchanges…
As both of them continued their monotonous offense, Yamato was slowly laying a trap.
And in order for the other party not to notice, he tried to let out as little hints as he could.
So, while measuring the terrain in the mine, and checking the lightning intensity let out by the shinning moss, he was waiting for ‘that moment’.
The Spiritual Beast, who had been numbed due to Yamato’s relentless attacks suddenly launched an unexpected attack.
Using a speed faster than the one it had been using up until now, it dashed towards him.
It felt as if it was now used to Yamato’s moves.
Using its sharp and huge fangs, the attack came at a speed at which Yamato couldn’t react. It was a powerful and savage deadly blow, the very essence of a wild beast.
“Hah… I was waiting for it! “
Looking at the incoming and terrifying Spiritual Beast, he spat out those words. This was the moment and position he was aiming for.
“First of all, the eyes! “
It happened a second after those words.
A bright, silver light shone, explosively illuminating the bottom of the mine. The space that was previously dimly lit by the light moss, was filled with an explosion of pure white light in a single moment.
Reacting towards the unexpected blast of light, the Spiritual Beast faltered and stopped for a moment.
“Now, the throat! “
It was only for a moment… but Yamato wasn’t kind enough to let that chance pass.
Diving into the Spiritual Beast, he slashed at its unprotected throat. His attack aimed at that respiratory organ, and it successfully landed, completely severing it.
“And lastly, the brain and heart! “
He continued to press on against that opponent that could no longer breathe.
Holding out two crossbows, he aimed at the skull and heart of the Spiritual Beast, successfully landing both bolts.
This was his trump card, one that he had kept hidden until this last minute. With its impressive destructive power, both bolts pieced through.
“Sorry. But I couldn’t afford to hesitate.”
He threw those words at the corpse of the Spiritual Beast that now lied on the cold ground at the bottom of the mine.
This was the least he could say to the other party, to the beast he had challenged in battle.
It paid off to add the ‘Improved Flash’ to the stun baton, and the spare crossbows I had Gaton make.
His trump card this time was a defense weapons he had brought from Japan.
With the flash made from a modified digital camera, the Spiritual Beast was robbed of its vision. And since it was used to live in this dark area, it probably couldn’t understand what had happened.
Then, he cut its throat with the knife and used the stun baton’s electric shock at the same time to stop its movements.
And lastly, was the attack from two crossbows.
It might have been unfair, but since the start this was not a fair fight, he thought.
He was putting his life on the line after all, and his opponent was a Spiritual Beast.
After piercing the Spiritual Beast, he took some distance just in case.
After reloading and once again pointing the crossbow at the Spiritual Beast, he kept his distance as he watched his opponent go into cardiopulmonary arrest.
After all, his opponent was a Spiritual Beast. It might have a different physiology than ordinary animals.
“I did it… I guess.”
He waited for what felt to him like ages.
But in the end, the Spiritual Beast remained unmoving.
It had its throat completely cut off, and with its brain blown off and heart pierced, it was finally killed.
“It truly was a tough opponent…”
After relaxing a bit, he left out a sigh of relieve.
He had to maintain his high concentration all this time and was on the offense until the very last minute.
The mental fatigue was kicking in more hardly than the physical exhaustion.
If I had to fight for a little more time, I might have been in trouble, he shuddered.
Although it seemed like a clean victory, truthfully speaking, this was a really close battle.
“Well then, let’s go outside and call everyone…”
The Spiritual Beast, the objective of this trip, was finally defeated.
And after confirming that there were no more dangers, they had to discuss the future use of the salt mine. Seems like it will get busy again, Yamato thought to himself.
“But first, I want to take a good rest today.”
He really was at the limit of his strength.
What he wanted to do now was to go back to the village and, after taking a good bath, simply lie down for the rest of the day.
After all, it wasn’t as if wings would sprout out of the mine and it would fly away.
It happened after he let out that sigh of relief.
It was ‘that’ feeling again.
While having an ominous feeling, he slowly turned back.
“What a nonsense… could it be that it’s immortal…?”
Before the exhausted gaze of Yamato was a ‘jet-black beast’.
With its skull and heart still blown away, the Spiritual Beast revived with a suspicious shine in its eyes.
A huge thanks to my Patreons for making all this possible, specially J., Alex and Vinny.