For only about three-hundred seconds, or, converted, for only five minutes, she is super strengthened.
That is the skill 《Ravenous Wolf (Garou)》.
It’s a rare skill with the same kind of origin as Rou’s 《Trickle of the Poisonous Snake》, but as of right now nothing is happening except Rou’s MP being consumed as she compares her skill to《Ravenous Wolf》, a skill which has a hidden and yet huge demerit.
It doesn’t just increase the death penalty or reduce your defensive abilities.
This skill’s biggest flaw is not the demerits you can see easily, it’s that the user’s perception is totally unchanged.
Just like the Red Wolf that Sukuna fought against, who had speed so fast that all it could do was simple attacks, this skill has the same effect.
As the body is not a machine that calculates its movement with a program, when given something over its specs you wouldn’t be able to control it.
With this skill that just gives you high stats, if that increase can be managed easily there won’t be any problems.
It’s easy to be deceived by assuming the only demerits are the ones on display, but originally you are supposed to「get used」to the skill before it can show its true power.
That is on the assumption that the user is just a normal player.
In a VR game, it’s not unusual to be given physical abilities that are incomparable to reality, and if you train you can get 「used」to them.
Then, if this skill is used for the first time, if it’s by an expert player they will be able to handle the skill without being manipulated by it.
And then, this is one of the exceptions to this.
Recognizing that the strength of her steps was incomparably stronger, Sukuna smiled a little.
And suddenly, digging her foot into the ground, her doubled speed exploded.
The enemy before her had shown her trump card.
While feeling intoxicated by that fact, Rou, suddenly feeling a chill crawling on her back, reflexively thrust her sword out behind her.
A sharp sound of metal resounded as they clashed.
On Sukuna’s first step she had gone around to her back, and on the second step she had come to crush Rou’s head.
For just an instant of time, she had certainly lowered her guard.
However, that lapse had nearly gotten her own head crushed.
Knowing that, Rou’s chest started to beat faster.
Kill the ones that came before your eyes.
Torture the small fries until they die.
Don’t hesitate to use foul play or to perform an ambush as long as the purpose is to kill.
All of these things made her happy.
However, the one right before her…..Rou could feel her joy crawling through her body.
An iron club and a rapier ground into each other, but even with the bolstered strength from her skill it seemed that Rou’s strength was still higher.
Even while being in a disadvantageous position she didn’t lose in a match of strength as sparks scattered.
However, this gridlock did not continue.
As Sukuna suddenly let go of her weapon, the rapier which Rou had put all her strength behind lost its support and pushed into the empty air.
Her left side was mercilessly gouged into with Sukuna’s right foot.
The moment Sukuna had let go of her club, she rotated and used that momentum to deliver a roundhouse kick.
Same as earlier, the damage of the attack wasn’t that high as it was not a skill.
However, being roundhouse kicked while in an unsteady position, Rou’s body had been blown a few meters away.
With a cartwheel-like movement Rou had repositioned herself, and after knocking down an incoming throwing knife that seemed to have the intent to deliver the finishing strike, she threw a sharp thrust behind her back where nothing could be seen.
「Cough, that was too much of….a good response.」
As if showing it, the sound of clashing metal belatedly reconfirmed what had happened, Sukuna, who had gone in with a surprise attack had instinctively shifted to block Rou’s surprise attack with the center of her iron club.
「How did you know?」
「A maiden’s intuition….If I said that, would you believe me?」
Talking as she attacked, three sounds rang out as all of Rou’s attacks were blocked by the iron club.
However, despite only having been a matter of seconds since the fight had started, Rou had noticed the change in Sukuna’s condition.
「Hee, that skill…..So it consumes your HP.」
But, if I don’t use it, I won’t win against Rou.」
Rou also remembered that, of skills that sacrificed your HP while it is activated, talking is a waste of time.
Even so, Sukuna went along with it.
Which meant that there was some sort of reason to it.
「You should look out above, you know?」
Rou, who backed away instantly after hearing those words, almost dropped her rapier due to the shock of the iron ball that landed on top of her shoulder.
“It got me,” Rou thought.
She didn’t know at what time it was thrown, but before she knew it, an aerial trap had been set up.
Sukuna even calculated that Rou would take a step back, so she had purposefully called out.
Rou stopped taking distance from Sukuna, who had been pursuing her.
She didn’t know what effects the skill had, but she understood that Sukuna’s agility was –Over Level 60– and was indeed much higher than her own.
As she had lost in agility, it was not a good idea to take distance as she fought.
And so, to make use of having higher strength, she must go with close melee combat.
Fortunately for Rou, Sukuna had a time limit to her skill.
An effect of that level should last ten minutes at most.
Having formed a hypothesis, she immediately came to three possible conclusions.
One, Sukuna’s HP would be consumed until it ran out, at which point she would die.
Two, her HP being reduced to one would automatically stop the effects.
Three, her HP being reduced to one would prevent it from decreasing further but the effects would continue.
No matter the case, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine that she would be on the verge of dying by the time the skill finished.
The problems were Sukuna’s incredible vision and her quick reflexes.
As if making fun of Rou, who had put considerable time into getting used to having stats that were far superior to those in the real world, that oni was controlling her avatar perfectly.
Half-baked attacks wouldn’t get through and would instead leave an opening.
If Rou’s arts were dealt with, during the opening that occurred after using arts, it wouldn’t be impossible for Rou, who had distributed no points to her defence, to receive fatal damage from Sukuna’s arts.
Even with both the《Rapier of Temptation》’s named skill and Rou’s own rare skill it would be difficult to deal with Sukuna because those skills are the type in which you needed to physically damage the target before they took effect.
It seemed that this prey’s affinity was strong against the ability of Rou’s cards.
However, as a PK player, Rou had decided to always kill her chosen targets.
Even though she may have dug her own grave, this didn’t give her any reason to stop being a PK-er.
And it wasn’t like this was the first time she had encountered this kind of situation.
As she had done with the sixty-six players who she had killed up to that point, she would certainly go and kill Sukuna as well.
No matter how ugly it got, no matter how dirty it was, it was fine as long as she was the last one standing.
（This’s really not something you can laugh at.）
Even though she just went to check out the abnormalities of the wetlands and play around by PK-ing, while returning she had totally picked out a rather wild horse.
Checking her available moves, she gazed at the incoming Kijin.
Sukuna was not the only one who had a trump card.
There certainly was a way to kill her.
That was why Rou decisively committed to a battle of endurance.
Rou’s choice to go with a battle of endurance was something that I had expected.
No matter how high my agility itself was, my other stats were all lower than Rou’s.
I needed Ravenous Wolf so that I wouldn’t be killed instantly.
If I got hit even once, Ravenous Wolf’s time limit would be reduced greatly, which was an obvious disadvantage.
On top of that, this game had SP.
The way it worked was that the faster I moved the faster my SP was used up, but because of the time limit of Ravenous Wolf I needed to keep attacking, making my situation much worse the longer it continued.
And then there was the girl right before my eyes who was much more used to battling other players.
I couldn’t underestimate her and assume she had no idea how to deal with opponents who were faster than me.
With the moves that she had displayed and how she reacted to the two kicks that I had solidly hit her with up to this point, there was no mistake that she was a speed-type swordswoman with low defense.
Her body handling was not that good, but based off of the outstanding speed of her sword, her dexterity should also be quite high.
She should also be strong enough that I must not lower my guard in close melee combat.
I had been keeping her off-balance by using fancy tricks, but from this point on I should act with the mindset that I wouldn’t be able to hit her unless I completely broke her guard.
The sound of weapons reverberated through the wetlands.
In this battle, I didn’t use the two-handed club.
It may have seemed like it would be easy to win with it, but in a 1v1 fight that weapon was hard to handle.
To be precise, it was not suited for constantly attacking during high-speed combat.
Looking at how large the weapon’s range of damage was, it was true that no matter where you hit with a two-handed club, it would deal lots of damage.
But when it came to using it in a fight, I would ultimately end up sitting on the fence regarding choosing it.
The weapon’s range was incorporated into arts like《Mow Down》, in which the entire pole delivered a strong effect, but other than that, it really had no other uses.
Rather, I thought that it was more strongly suited for a melee battle in which you dug into a spot and didn’t move.
Its use was the same against monsters, and it surely had many situations where it could shine.
It was just that, right now, I needed to keep the pressure on Rou who was focused on avoiding my attacks.
Also, having considered that I would also be using a throwing weapon at the same time, I decided to avoid using a two-handed weapon.
I was in a fight where I couldn’t even help not using my new weapon.
My iron club that was slashing diagonally from the right was deflected.
My roundhouse kick feint that turned into a low side kick was evaded with a back step.
And the stones that I flicked with my hand only grazed her cheeks.
I popped out of my crouch like I was breakdancing and tried to attack Rou, who faltered for an instant from some damage, but as if sneering at my attacks, she swung and countered back.
I used the thorns on the iron club to ward it off, and taking one step forward, I drew out a 《Strike》along her side.
As expected, Rou couldn’t completely evade it and was forced to receive it with her sword, though it seemed it also managed to hit her lightly and reduced her HP.
Two minutes since the battle had begun.
My remaining HP was around 60% but Rou too had received the same amount of damage.
Considering Rou’s reaction speed, I wouldn’t be able to use arts with big openings so I ended up using《Strike》, the easiest and fastest art, but as expected, the hits refused to connect cleanly.
Even if there were just a few trees around……I couldn’t help but complain that this was a flat wetland.
Even my throwing items do little more than create a diversion.
「Fufu, at this pace, I wonder who will die first?」
「I will show you that I will kill you.」
「What a lovely suggestion.」
An exchange of techniques, evasions, and words.
Thanks to my reckless speed that exceeded her agility you could see that I was on the attacking side, but in reality my situation was quite severe.
Rou’s ability to analyze was way better than I had imagined.
Thinking calmly about it, she too is a player that had defeated a named boss monster.
It was obvious that she has the playing skill to match.
Rather than saying that my attacks were hitting her, it was more accurate to say that she was letting them hit her.
To avoid being struck with a clean hit, she sacrificed some of her HP.
This was the result of Rou’s abilities.
As the time, which was jam-packed with action, passed, the clashing of weapons increased, and as if the weapons were an instrument playing music, their vibrations resounded through the wetlands.
The one chasing, me, and the one being chased, Rou.
From an observer’s perspective, it may have even looked like we were dancing.
I might say it like that, but at that time I was doused in the feelings of happiness.
It was the same as with the fight with the Red Wolf, a battle where it was fun to use all your brain matter to find the path to kill your enemy.
The world that Rin-chan invited me to.
The ability to do things that I couldn’t do within the constraints of the real world.
It was a world I jumped into only wishing for that.
It was still not enough, I still hadn’t used it enough.
My limits had not been reached yet.
I could still go faster, even faster, drive in a sharper attack!
Before I knew it, Rou and I were smiling.
Even forgetting that it was a fight to the death, we laughed.
That was why.
Because we were only focusing on each other.
We weren’t able to notice -that-.
With a thunderous sound, despair had landed in the wetlands.
With a thundering roar, it comes flying.
The wetlands shake.
As if a missile impacted, there is a crater around its feet.
That’s right, that monster appeared from the skies.
With a jet black carapace, its huge body.
Able to cut everything to pieces, its sharp claws.
Its eyes shine gold–just swinging its tail causes a storm to blow violently.
Everyone knows what existence this is.
A symbol of fear.
Or maybe an incarnation of the devil.
Finally, an existence that tediously appeared in every work, a being with absolute strength.
《True Dragon of Truth -Apocalypse- Lv ???》
This is the invasion of a dragon.
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