The girl in the gothic dress pulled out her rapier and looked curiously at it as she said it calmly.
The moment I had thought that, the distance between us was instantly closed and her blade came for my neck–I caught it in the middle of my iron club.
As a metallic sound was created from the clash, the rapier was deflected on its own, but as soon as you had thought that, it suddenly came back as a thrust.
Using the iron club as a partial shield while I evaded with half of my body, when I tried to use my momentum to make a low swipe sideways, the owner of the sword jumped gracefully backwards, looking as if she was floating.
「I did not think that I would not be able to kill you.
Even though it was a perfect surprise attack.
Are your eyes that good? Or maybe you have a good perception? It really is mysterious.」
She pointed a finger near her mouth as she tilted her head, which was that of the girl I rescued earlier.
She was a girl smaller than I and she clothed herself with a gothic dress.
She was probably around 150cm.
Taking another look, that wavy blond hair and red eyes suit her really well, it was an appearance that was far from that of a Japanese person.
Well, you could always tamper things like that during character creation, but that gothic dress was obviously made by a player.
「So, attacking so suddenly, what are you planning?」
16 years old.
Let’s get along well, okay?」
「I don’t have any hobbies that include getting along with a girl that suddenly slashes at me out of nowhere.」
Even though I wanted to get along with you.」
「For now, can you stop slashing at me-」
She rushed over to me without making any noise, and I blocked the incoming flurry of thrusts by using the iron club as a shield.
From inside the sound of the clashing of metals, there were some kinds of continuous wailing noises, then suddenly the girl’s mouth arched upwards.
At the moment that I felt a bad omen, where there had been continuous thrusting before, now there was a sudden lack of thrusts.
Suddenly, the rapier that had been withdrawn was covered in a poisonous purple, and then came at me with double the speed.
「Wa- that was- close!」
To avoid the rapier that had been thrust out, I forcibly used a sidestep to evade.
While feeling the straining of my ankles from the unreasonable move, targeting the stomach of the girl that was suffering from her techniques stun time, I executed a roundhouse kick with all my strength.
With a smashing sound from the kick that was driven into her, the girl was blown several meters away.
However, when the girl was about to hit the ground, she used one hand to support herself and easily repositioned herself as she landed.
「Cough cough……what a horrible thing to do.」
「What are you talking about, you used some kind of dangerous art right now, didn’t you?」
If that hit then you would’ve gotten a deadly poisoning.」
「See! I’m not the one that’s in the wrong here, okay!」
The girl smiled and didn’t shy away, even as she was coughing violently.
I didn’t know how much power this girl had, but it seemed that my attack, which was based on my strength stat that was boosted by my job, had gotten through to her–I had taken out around 10% of her HP.
However, the smile from the girl didn’t disappear.
It seemed that she was at ease enough to be talkative.
「You, what’s your name?」
So it’s Sukuna.
Then let me introduce myself again.
I am Rou.
I am known as《Murder Princess (Sajinki)》, but I want you to call me Rou.」
「Murder….a red-named player, is it? Doing it even though it only has demerits.」
The death penalty only restricts your status and experience for a slight bit of time.
In WLO, where the town is a safe place, Player Killing was an act that had no merit to it.
And that was not all.
If you were a PK player, you also wouldn’t be able to get into town, and if you made an uproar near the town, the NPC guards would come and capture you, and then you would lose your money and items.
Even if you got done in by a monster and respawned, the NPC guards would catch you and you would receive the same punishment.
And on top of that, if you got PK’d by a player, you would lose all your money and items, and your level would be halved.
The only good part about PK-ing in WLO was that there was no benefit to doing it at all.
That was what PK in this game was.
「If you are talking about merit, there is.
You can kill people as often as you like.
Which, to me, is something that is without a doubt a merit.」
That girl―― Rou–while playing around and twirling her rapier in her hands, she said that while breathing.
Those eyes were cruelly pure, making you believe that there were no lies in them.
「I’ll get a bit serious, okay? If it’s Sukuna, then I think you won’t die.
So, please survive, okay?」
Rou readied herself as she said that, and I understood that I had to prepare seriously as well.
I changed the way I thought.
What Rou wanted was a fight to the death.
If you didn’t kill, you would be killed.
Even though it was a game, it made you feel like that.
The pure bloodlust Rou was releasing was so cold and so clear that it caused me to shiver.
Instantly, Rou appeared in front of me, going for a slash.
I moved the iron club between us to defend against it.
I could see it and I could also react to it.
However, compared to her leisurely movements from before, it was simply too fast.
Did she predict that I could defend against it? Before I knew it, she had a dagger in her other hand.
She rotated her body 180 degrees as she swung it around toward me.
As I tried to evade with a backstep, enduring the chill that ran up and down my spine during that final moment, I grabbed her wrist.
The dagger was bait.
The real attack would come when my body was open from swaying back or backstepping.
She planned to drive a thrust in with the rapier that she hid behind her back.
The both of us were facing each other, putting us in a stalemate.
The one who broke the standoff was Rou.
As she tried to use her rapier to slice my hand that was on her wrist, I let go to evade the strike and she used the opportunity to jump backwards.
「Even though I thought I could skewer you.」
Rou muttered, sounding really disappointed.
However, her pupils were shining more brightly.
Matching her emotions, her rapier was slowly stirring in the air, and from the tip, I could see a flaring excitement emerging.
「I won’t easily let you do that, you know.」
「Aha, it’s gotta be like that.
I’ll crank up the pace one more time, be sure to catch up.」
Having said that, Rou charged in.
She had chosen a head-on clash.
Normally it was specialized for thrusting, but a rapier was still a two-edged sword.
That was why, if she wanted to, she could cut with it, and actually, Rou frequently chose to slash more than thrust.
However, that was only if we were talking about hypothetical ways to use a rapier.
At the very least, the rapier’s thin blade was not made for collisions, and although this was a game where durability rules, a thicker weapon was still more suited to clashing than a thin weapon.
In conclusion, the rapier shouldn’t even have the structure to properly fight in a head-on battle.
Even after a minute of defending against dozens of attacks from her, she didn’t show any fragment of being impatient.
「That sure is a tough- rapier!」
「Yeah, it is my favorite.
I understood that as soon as I saw it.
It’s the same as Sukuna’s armor, you know.」
Seemingly looking happy, Rou said so.
My armor was made entirely from the materials of a named boss monster, and as of right now, it was equipment that boasted of having monstrous specs.
This included the hair pins as well, which were made from the super rare drop, the 《Soul》of a Named.
These too were pieces of equipment with truly broken specs.
Those who had the same kind of equipment, according to Konekomaru-san, only numbered three, excluding me.
「So a Named weapon, is it?」
「Yes, that’s right.
It was made from killing the one named《Poisonous Snake of Enticement -Valdia- 》.
Though obviously I had a friend help me out, that too was a wonderful battle.」
Rou, who stopped attacking and gently rubbed the blade, looked to be in a really good mood, and talked about the birth of her weapon.
Rather, she had a friend? So she had a friend.
If it was a friend of a red-named player, then they ought to be really troublesome.
Even if she had no more than one friend, the idea that she had a friend that could fight equally as well against a Named was a surprise.
「《Rapier of Temptation -Mellow Rapier-》.
That is the name of this weapon.
『Every time you Slash your opponent, their abnormal status resistance reduces』, it’s a blade with that effect, you know?」
That certainly was a powerful effect.
Poison, paralyze, sleep, even with just those common effects, if it could ignore the resistances of the opponent then it could certainly maximize those effects.
It was just that, for a named weapon that was most likely made with a《Soul》, its effect was a bit weak.
「You think that it doesn’t have that much effect alone? Fufu, since Sukuna defeated a Named too, you should know as well, right? When you defeat a Named, you can get a rare skill.
The reward I got from Valdia was the rare skill known as《Trickle of the Poisonous Snake》.
And the effect is『Consuming MP to enchant poison attribute to the weapon』, a rather simple description.
It’s strong by itself, but if you pair it with the Rapier of Temptation….You see? 」
As if to display it, Rou placed a purple aura on the rapier.
That was most likely the effect of the 《Trickle of the Poisonous Snake》skill.
So that means the thrust art《Death Thrust》 that she tried to hit me with earlier should have been totally absent of the poison attribute?
Really, that skill was nothing to laugh at.
Its activation could be done anytime, and the effect of the weapon matched with the skill as if they were made to be used together.
Thinking about the durability of named equipment as well, I couldn’t hope for it to break.
To make it worse, she was a red-named player that probably had a higher status than me.
A situation so bad that you would just laugh–that was how bad my current situation was.
「So, are you fine with exposing that?」
「My skill and I are quite famous, you know.
I don’t really have any reason to hide it anymore.
And moreover, this is something that I only use when I want to play with a monster or torment small fry.
Most of the time it won’t really do well against players like Sukuna, and regardless of whether a small fry knows or not, they’ll die either way.」
「You sure are full of confidence….
Having that much ability, it’s probably only because of that-」
Fighting against this girl, I had felt something.
The way this girl fought was neither bad nor good, it was extremely careful and she altered it on the spot.
She investigated her opponents thoroughly, and rationally did a surprise attack.
That was why I had no plans to say that it was simple, but no attacks come from impossible angles, and if you can see them, it would not be as difficult to deal with as it looked.
It was just, what was troubling was that she attacked using her unusually high status.
To say it plainly, she had a higher physical status than me.
And that was including not only that she was human race, but also the status increase from my red wolf’s attire.
There was almost certainly no mistake that she was a player who was higher-leveled than Rin-chan.
No matter how simple it was to handle her attacks, if this pattern of endlessly receiving her attacks continued for a long time, it would be a pain in the neck.
Although, saying that, if I were to also charge in, with the difference in status, I would probably just be evaded easily.
Even with the halved SP consumption from the 《Moon Camellia’s Solo》, it was doubtful that I would be able to gain the advantage.
It looked like I had to prepare for the worst.
Although it was not like I would lose anything, I should at least struggle as much as I could.
「Aha, what is it? It’s the first time you called my name.」
「In exchange for telling me your secret, I will also show you my secret.」
「Really? I’m really happy.」
Opposite of Rou whose face brightened up, I felt like sighing.
To be honest, I didn’t think that I would use it that quickly.
However, fortunately, I was not streaming right then.
The whole point of keeping your trump card a trump card was for situations just like that.
There was a feeling that it was a waste.
But, for some reason, I didn’t like the feeling of losing to her without going all out.
The activation key was just one line.
And I-…loudly sang:
「《Hunger and Devour, Wolf king’s fangs》」
At that instant, my body was covered in a red aura.
Rare skill:《Ravenous Wolf》.
The skill received from Aria the red wolf……consuming my own HP, for five minutes max, my strength and agility were raised….it was a double-edged skill.
The feeling of excitement covering my whole body was reflected in reality through the change in my status.
「So, that is Sukuna’s trump card.」
「The one and only, you know.」
「It really is wonderful.
My heart skipped a beat, you know.」
With a face of ecstasy, Rou said so.
There were no more words needed than that.
No, there wouldn’t be any more leisure to do so.
When our eyes had exchanged glares, the death match began.
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