The surface of the water shook gently and with a loud thundering noise, some strong waves appeared. The wild boar carcass floated back up for a moment before something below pulled it back down into the water again.
“Archers, ready!” Rody immediately shouted.
The well-trained Wolf Fangs immediately aimed their arrows at the lake. Soon after, another seven or eight huge tentacles rose to the surface along with the boar before tearing it apart into several pieces.
Rody knew that an attack of this degree would not have much effect. He took out a thick rope from the saddle that he had specially prepared to tie up prey during a hunt. At one end of the rope, a specially-made heavy arrow was attached. The tip of the arrow had metal barbs on four sides1. Rody weighed the arrow for a moment before shooting it out.
Swish! Through Rody’s powerful strength, the arrow flew and pierced through a tentacle. The four barbs were embedded into the tentacle. The lake monster was in pain and struggled violently creating huge waves in the lake. The rope on the ground was being rapidly pulled into the lake.
“Don’t even think of running!” Rody coldly shouted. He then pulled the rope hard with both hands… The rope was stretched taut; the ground under Rody’s feet started to rustle due to the friction between the ground and the soles of Rody’s shoes. A tremendous force was pulling Rody towards the lake. Rody raised his eyebrows. His eyes flashed with determination. He lifted a foot and then stomped the ground extremely hard. With a loud thump, a deep hole appeared at the place he stomped.
Rody was thus stuck like a nail to the ground. The rope trembled before it started to move again towards the lake…
The other Wolf Fang soldiers also followed suit. They grabbed the barbed arrows made specially for hunting from their saddles. They then tied up the arrows with ropes and shot the monster with it.
However, the tough sarcomas on the surface of the tentacles blocked a vast majority of the arrows shot. Only three or four of the arrows shot by the stronger warriors managed to pierce through the tentacles. The Wolf Fangs then gathered and pulled the ropes. Hundreds of people pulled the ropes at the same time.
Waves continued to break out as the rope gradually returned to shore. After that, a huge whirlpool emerged and a smooth and glossy head-like shape appeared from the surface of the water.
Everybody was shocked as the lake monster finally showed its true appearance.
It had an oval-shaped body that was as big as a two-story building. It had eight tentacles that were tossing about. It looked like a giant octopus.
The only difference was that this octopus had a huge opening at the center of its head. The opening seemed to have a gray and muddy eye in it. The monster did not seem to have a mouth. However, on its head, there were about three transparent, long and thin straw-like things — the tips were sharp and pointed. What made everyone surprised was that one of the tentacles was rolled around a boar body part. It was constantly crushing and squeezing it. The monster then planted the straw-like things into the carcass. The boar’s red blood could be seen flowing through the transparent straw into the monster’s body.
Gadar immediately cried out, “It is a bloodsucker!”
Rody also realized this and shouted loudly. “Release the arrows! Shoot the eye!”
The soldiers that weren’t pulling the rope picked up their bows and shot arrows at the monster’s eye, but there was no effect. The monster simply closed its eye. When the arrows hit the monster’s head, it simply slipped away. It was as if the monster’s body had a layer of unusually creamy grease. It had an invisible layer of protection that made arrows ineffective.
Gadar’s eyes flashed. Although he was standing at the back and did not fight, he was still observing. He then suddenly shouted, “Pull it ashore! This monster seems to be a kind of octopus. It would be in trouble the moment it leaves the water!”
However, it was difficult to pull the monster closer to the shore even though more than a hundred soldiers including Rody were pulling the ropes. On top of that, the ropes were becoming tighter and had clearly reached their limit. The rope could break at any time.
The monster seemed to whimper and then swung its tentacles fiercely at the men. When the tentacles swung at them, the soldiers that had been pulling the ropes scattered quickly. Some fell because they were slow. If not for their armor, they would have been seriously injured even if they were still alive.
After losing two ropes, all the efforts were concentrated on the remaining two ropes. As the ropes were pulled longer and longer, they became thinner. Rody suddenly had an idea. He desperately shouted, “Use fire! Attack it with fire!”
Nicole was the first to react the moment Rody’s voice faded. She opened her arms and two fireballs were launched towards the monster from both hands. Boom! Boom! The fireballs burst into sparks as they collided with the monster. The monster then whimpered violently and angrily although nobody knew where the monster’s voice came from as it had no mouth, but the whimper sounded angry and painful.
It was obvious that the monster was afraid of the fireball attack. As the monster lived in the water, Rody guessed that it is mostly water-based. Sure enough, the fire attacks would harm it.
The only sorcerer available at that moment was Nicole. The other soldiers’ ranks might not be low, but they did not know any magic or sorcery. Nicole had shot out several fireballs, causing the monster to struggle in pain. Its glossy, and clear black head now had traces of getting burnt. However, it was not a fatal blow.
Besides that, a rope also broke when it struggled fiercely from the intense pain. The soldiers all lost their balance when the rope broke and crashed.
“Damn…” Rody cursed softly. “Do I need to expose my real strength again?”
With Rody’s strength, it was possible to chop the monster into two. However, he was now technically just a Grade 5 Swordsman. It would be dangerous to show his amazing strength, including that golden fighting energy.
While he was feeling troubled, he felt the last rope in his hands also broke. Before he could react, a huge shadow appeared. Rody then felt his body shook and flew into the air…
The tentacle had swept past and heavily hit him in the chest. Just that one hit caused the chest area of Rody’s clothes to be torn. Rody also crashed into the ground.
Gadar felt scared and closed his eyes. He thought to himself: I am doomed!
He had already clearly seen how powerful the monster was. A horse that was a few hundred kilograms was sent flying. Two of the soldiers that were swept away had not died on the spot, but their armors were broken. They then fell to the ground and started spitting out blood. At least a few ribs were also broken.
On top of that, Rody is young. How much skill could he have? He was also not wearing armor. If he encounters an unexpected misfortune here…
Nicole saw Rody fly away and she screamed instinctively. Even though she knew that Rody would be alright, when she saw that frightful scene, she could not help but worry and scream.
Rody flew to the edge of the woods and crashed into the ground. He immediately turned around and jumped back up. He saw the clothes on his chest torn. Although his strong body did not receive any injury, he could still feel a dull pain in his chest. He was trashed right in front of everyone! At this moment, Rody felt a strange heat rose up from his waist. The heat rushed towards his brain and he could not help but feel angry. As if his body was hit by a strong electric current, all the anger in his heart suddenly broke out.
Within a short moment, his mind became chaotic and angry. In his agitation, he suddenly shouted, “Bastard! That hurts!”
Everyone was surprised when they saw the young man completely furious. He then grabbed a large tree beside him, pulled it out from the ground, roots and all, and then angrily throw the tree at the monster as if he was throwing a spear…
Boom! The tree struck its target.
The monster originally had a smooth and round head. However, the head now seemed to have dented. Besides that, the dented area was at the edge of the eye. The injury caused half of the eyeball to protrude out. The crevice at the eye then secreted a sticky green liquid.
The monster suddenly shook violently. Its eight tentacles flew around and slapped the surface of the water as if it had gone crazy from the pain.
Rody’s anger did not subside. He took off his torn clothes, revealing the strong muscles at his upper body. He then walked towards the water.
The moment Rody went deep enough for the water to reach his knees, a tentacle swung at him. Rody’s eyes then flashed. He dodged the tentacle and then grabbed onto it. Rody then saw the barbs on the tentacle as if it was a snakehead trying to bite him. Rody immediately used a free hand to pull out a scimitar. This was the curved sword that Gadar had presented to him. He had taken the scimitar with him during that desperate moment earlier.
There was a cold flash of light. After that, the sticky green liquid sprayed out as Rody cut off the tentacle. While everybody was still wide-eyed, they heard Rody shout and saw him hold the sword in his mouth. After that, Rody grabbed the huge tentacle, twisted his body and threw it.
The huge monster flew across the water and into the sky. For a short moment, the huge figure completely covered the sky. After that, there was a loud crashing sound. Rody had thrown the monster to the shore. Its huge body had smashed across seven to eight trees.
The monster lay on a pile of broken trees. Its tentacles clawed around trying to move itself, but it could not move easily on the shore just like what Gadar had guessed.
The soldiers had retreated to a side and looked at their commanding officer. Meanwhile, Rody walked out of the lake.
Gadar was the most astonished person. He was smart and noticed that something was strange. He saw that Rody was filled with a violent anger. However, Rody’s eyes were clouded. It looked as if Rody was not clear-headed. For some reason, Gadar also felt like Rody’s anger felt somewhat … somewhat … evil.
Rody looked like a cold-blooded death god. He had a cold and detached expression and he walked onto the shore in front of everyone. He only glared fiercely at the giant monster.
He walked up to the monster and took the sword from his mouth. He fiercely thrust the sword into the ground and then shouted in a cold and evil tone. “What’s wrong? Painful? Are you afraid?”
Rody then bent down and picked up a broken tree trunk. The huge tree trunk was thick enough to be hugged by two to three people. However, Rody’s hands clung to the trunk of the tree with his fingers stretched open and lifted it easily.
The monster cried out in fear and started to struggle again. It clumsily moved back towards the lake.
“Trying to run?” Rody’s voice was cold like ice and was completely emotionless. With a really cold expression, he raised the four-meter-long tree trunk and started to smash the monster with it.
Bang! Bang! Bang!
His action was like a blacksmith hammering iron. He kept smashing the monster’s head…
After two smashes, the monster’s body had turned soft. Its original oval-shaped body had been smashed flat. Only a few of its tentacles were still moving. By the sixth smash, the monster had turned into a slush. It had been smashed out of shape. Green fluid flowed out of its wounds. Its tentacles that were still moving earlier lay softly on the ground like dead snakes.
Rody continued to smash the monster expressionlessly. He continued to smash until it was badly mangled and unrecognizable, and the ground was sunk in.
Everyone around him was stunned. However, Rody still had a dark expression. He had a strange and violent aura that gave off a murderous and oppressive feeling. Surprisingly, nobody around him said anything.
“Ro… Rody!” Nicole was frightened and could not help but shout, “Stop hitting it! It is dead!”
Nicole’s delicate voice was like magic. Hong! The tree broke apart with one last smash. The tree in Rody’s hands finally broke apart after so many consecutive smashes.
Rody looked at the broken piece of wood in his hands and finally stopped his actions.
He looked at his hands in a daze while breathing heavily.
What the hell just happened?
Rody had, for some reason, suddenly felt very angry. That strong emotion occupied his whole heart, and he had the intense desire to destroy something!
Nicole cried out and pushed away the guards. She then ran towards Rody. Two Wolf Fang officers tried to stop her. One of them even said, “Miss, it is dangerous over there.”
Nicole did not care and forced her way forward as she ran towards Rody. She held him regardless of all the strange green fluid on his body and trembled. She could not help but cry as she asked, “Rody. What’s the matter? What…What’s the matter?”
Rody’s mind gradually cleared up when he felt a familiar soft body clinging onto him, smelled that familiar body scent, and her familiar shouts. Nicole’s sudden action thus brought him out of his dazed self.
Rody breathed deeply and hugged Nicole. He then said, “I am okay now.”
Seeing Nicole still in tears, he then said, “I am really alright now. When I was dragged in just now, I was a little agitated.”
He pushed her away a little and said, “Look at yourself. All the dirty muck on me have now stuck onto you.”
Nicole continued to hold him hard and whispered, “I don’t care. So long as you are alright.”
Rody nodded. He saw the scimitar stuck into the ground. He bent down and pulled it out. At that moment, when his hands touched the cold hilt, his body started to tremble. He felt a strange feeling move through his fingers. That weird feeling was the same as the one he felt when he got angry and became violent earlier.
Rody shook his head. His body vibrated and that strange feeling in his hand vanished. With a strange feeling, he put the scimitar back into the sheath.
This scimitar was really weird.
Rody did not notice that the sorcery spell engraved in the dragon language glowed with a strange light when he inserted the curved sword into the sheath.
Rody gently pulled Nicole’s hands and walked to the front of the crowd. However, everyone had already looked at him differently.
At first, the Lightning God’s Whip and the Imperial Guards had looked at him with the respect that was due to a commanding officer. When they learned that Rody had obtained the favor of the Duke’s elder sister, they became more intimate and even cracked jokes.
But now, all of them looked at him with shock and awe.
Is this guy really human?
Is he really just a Grade 5 Swordsman?
All the soldiers had the same thoughts in their heads.
Rody frowned, feeling a little bit irritated. He then softly, “Fall in! Take our injured companions back! We are also going back now!”
Even after he gave his orders, everybody was still stunned. They only started to execute the order after Rody coughed heavily.
Gadar walked to Rody with a complicated expression. He looked at Rody and could not say anything. At that moment, Gadar was still too shocked.
Gadar saw the young man’s strength that exploded forth when the young man got angry—he had the same thoughts as the soldiers, as though the words were resounding in his brain: Is he human?
However, Gadar, who had been dealing with officialdom and business for many years, knew that questions involving people’s secrets must never be asked. Accidentally touching on a taboo question would waste any goodwill that had been built up.
So, Gadar refrained from asking and then said, “Rody, I am afraid that you must properly investigate this matter.”
Rody helped Nicole onto a horse and replied, “Yes… This hunting grounds had always been the Tulip Family’s estate. Yet, nobody has ever heard of this strange monster.”
Nicole suddenly whispered, “Gadar, earlier, you said that this monster was like some of the Roland Continent’s Mythical Beast? I heard that the Mythical Beasts have all been eliminated in the Radiant Continent hundreds of years ago.”
As he was questioned by the eldest daughter of the Tulip Family, Gadar immediately straightened his body and then replied, “Miss Nicole, legends must never be taken at face value.”
Rody looked again at Gadar the moment Gadar said those words. Obviously, he agreed with these words.
He then heard Gadar continue. “The legend of the Mythical Beasts is only described in the records of the Church. However, these teachings were also passed down from generation to generation. None of us actually saw what really happened. Oh, I do not dare to doubt their teachings. I just do not have much trust especially when it involves things I cannot ascertain myself. It is a personal habit.”
Nicole nodded her head and looked at Gadar respectfully. She then said, “Then is that a Mythical Beast?”
Gadar whispered, “I am not sure whether or not it is really a Mythical Beast. After all, I have never seen a Mythical Beast before but… Miss Nicole, Rody, I have a little bit of an opinion that I am not sure if I should say.” Gadar then glanced at the two.
Nicole did not speak but instead nodded towards Rody. Her meaning was for Rody to make the decision.
Rody smiled and said, “Baron, please speak.”
Gadar pondered for a moment and then said, “I have two ideas. The first one is that what happened today is strange. This hunting ground belonged to the Tulip Family for a very long time, and such a thing has never happened before. However, the monster suddenly appeared today. In other words, this monster only appeared recently. So… this might be a good starting point to start investigating.”
He then paused and looked at Rody. He looked as if he was hesitant to say it.
Rody smiled and said, “Baron, you don’t have to hesitate. Please speak.”
Gadar laughed very slowly and said, “Your Excellency Rody. Please just call me Gadar. It is too awkward for you to be addressing me Baron, and I addressing you Your Excellency. How about we just call each other by our names? It would be much simpler.”
Rody understood that Gadar was trying to be friendly. He gave a wry smile and said, “Well, you do have the title of Baron… Alright. In that case, Gadar, please speak!”
Gadar showed a trace of satisfaction in his eyes. He then showed an upright expression and said, “The second thing is… If this is really a Mythical Beast, then you should understand what it means. Mythical Beasts are things from the Roland Continent. This is related to the Roland Continent and should be reported to the Church. The Church’s attitude…”
Rody laughed and then softly said, “I understand what you mean.” He then slowly said in a cold voice, “Not everything in this world needs to be controlled by the Church!”
1. A kind of barbed arrowhead. A barbed arrowhead I found on google image only has two barbs and is flat. This specially made arrow has four barbs, forming something like a + symbol.