Hunter Academy’s Battle God
[Translator – Bob ]
[Proofreader – ilafy ]
[The assimilation rate has been calculated.]
A notice came up on the hologram. At the same time, pain began manifesting in Sumire’s right hand.
‘M-my right hand is hot!’
It was slightly dulled—like the pain you get when you suddenly dip your hand in hot water. Tears sprang to her eyes, but she endured it.
[The assimilation rate has been calculated referencing the (Wicked Witch) article in the Tower Records.]
The pain began growing even worse as the explanation went on.
But Sumire squeezed her lips tight and powered through it all, keeping a proper eye on the hologram in the meantime.
[The assimilation rate between the witch Laplace and Hanajima Sumire are as follows:]
[1–The information cannot be displayed.]
Even someone as studious as Sumire couldn’t understand what was happening in front of her eyes. The situation was completely outside the realm of possibility.
She bit her lips, eyes filled with worry.
‘S-so there really is something weird going on…’
The Wicked Witch, Laplace…
She was categorized as a rank 7 boss, on the level of a national disaster, alongside other witches like the Winter Witch Luisa. Seeing traces of someone of her caliber in a rank 5 dungeon was much too out of the ordinary.
[2–Basic personality and behaviors]
The hologram kept displaying information even as Sumire was lost in thought.
[Your assimilation rate will lower by 22% based on the second category.]
The assimilation rate dropped.
It meant that Sumire’s personality and her behavior were different from Laplace’s.
[Your assimilation rate will rise by 5% based on the third category.]
The rate increased since they both used black magic.
‘I heard that you’re compatible if the assimilation rate rises above 50%.’
[Your assimilation rate will rise by 12% based on the fourth category.]
“S-skeleton-ah! It… it rose!”
Both Sumire and YuSung’s skeleton were elated. However, the current situation was that the assimilation rate had been cut down more than it had been raised up.
Only one category remained:
[5–Physique and appearance.]
The moment of truth.
Sumire tightly grabbed the skeleton’s hands and stared at the hologram screen.
[Your assimilation rate will rise by 6% based on the fifth category.]
[Final assimilation rate 51%]
[You have been determined as compatible.]
[You have obtained the witch’s first fragment, (Laplace’s Stone Tablet).]
[You will absorb the black magic etched into the witch’s fragment based on your assimilation rate.]
The hologram began displaying rows upon rows of letters, emulating a computer trying to execute a program.
The light shining from the stone tablet was sucked into Sumire’s hand.
Sumire didn’t know why the remnants of Laplace were there in the first place, but one thing was for sure: she had succeeded in the absorption process. She had managed to obtain the power of the calamitous witch.
“I-I did it! S-skeleton-ah! I really did it!”
Overjoyed, she hugged YuSung’s skeleton. It rattled its jawbones in response.
Sumire had managed to absorb the fragment of a rank 7 boss. It could raise the potential of someone’s Trait to an insane degree, even if the said trait was F-rank.
[The witch’s fragment has fused with your Trait, strengthening its abilities.]
That was only the beginning.
The hologram from Sumire’s Pocket shows no signs of stopping.
[The Trait (Controller of the Undead) has been upgraded to (Witch’s Black Magic).]
[The Skill (Call of the Undead) has been upgraded to (Witch’s Call).]
[The Skill (Veil of the Undead) has been upgraded to (Witch’s Veil).]
Sumire’s base Trait and all other Skills had been upgraded by absorbing just a fragment of the witch’s powers.
YuSung’s skeleton, who was standing right next to her, suddenly clenched its fist.
“Y-you feel like you’ve definitely gotten stronger? Huh… I’m still not sure if I have yet…”
“G-got it…! If you insist this much, I’ll believe you!”
Sumire felt happy at its words.
However, the strengthening of her Trait and Skills was nothing more than the advancement of her own skills. It was in no way Laplace’s true strength. Even as a fraction of a whole, the fragment belonged to a witch who was labeled a calamitous disaster—her incredible power could only be represented through her Skills.
[Yuu have obtained (Laplace’s Coffin) as a Skill from the witch’s first fragment.]
It was a Skill she had obtained not from her Trait, but from the fragment. Due to that, not even the wielder, Sumire, had an idea of what sort of skill it was.
“…Well, whatever it is, I’m sure it made me stronger!”
Sumire stared at her right hand, genuinely happy about what had just passed. She was willing to use any means possible to become stronger if it meant that she could be of help to YuSung. A bright grin stretched across her face.
However, the strange twist of fate that had just come to pass was on a much grander scale than she assumed.
One could search every single hunter to exist from the dawn of hunterkind to the present day and could count the number of people who had obtained a boss’s fragment on one hand. And even if a hunter managed to beat those horrific odds and find a fragment, they would not even be able to reap its benefits if it didn’t sync with them. And on top of that, most fragments that increased one’s Trait were located in rank 7 dungeons.
Only some of the very few hunters at the top were the ones who had discovered the existence of those fragments and had obtained their power. That was the first time that a student had ever obtained a boss’s fragment.
On top of that, the one Sumrie had obtained was from the Wicked Witch Laplace, who was one of the strongest bosses among even her fellow rank 7 bosses.
“O-okay, skeleton-ah, let’s keep going!”
Sumire still had no idea how incredible the sleeping potential within her was.
* * *
Translator - Bob
Proofreader - ilafy
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* * *
Japan’s team had also split up in two, just like Korea’s team.
Sakura was hiding behind a wall, her bow aimed at a particular target.
‘…As expected of a rank 5 dungeon, huh? Even the small fry are too strong.’
The monster at the other end of her arrow looked like a mix between a snake and a lizard. It was called a basilisk, and it was pretty strong even among its fellow rank 4 monsters.
‘I need to kill it in one blow–!’
As Sakura let go of the string, the power of the wind boosted the speed of the arrow.
Her arrow streaked through the air, leaving behind trails of green light until it hit the basilisk squarely in its neck.
Sakura drew her bow once again at the monster writhing on the floor. That time, however, she had not notched an arrow.
She used a gathered ball of mana instead and loosed it. Bam! It blew the struggling basilisk into smithereens.
“Easy win~ easy win~”
Bow in hand, Sakura hopped and skipped her way towards the downed monster.
“This place is all cleared up. Now I just have to meet back up with Seiji~”
And right when she was about to turn her head, a carefree smile on her face, she heard a whisper behind her back.
“…And who says you can do that?”
A saccharine voice whose whisper reached all the way down to her soul. Sakura immediately realized that the other was not a human being.
‘Wh-what’s going on? M-my legs…’
Even though her mind was screaming at herself to run away, her feet refused to lift off from the ground. Paralyzed, like a mouse before a snake.
“You’re completely petrified, hm? Looks like you’ve sensed my intentions. What a sensitive child…”
A hand clothed in a black glove appeared from behind Sakura; the arm connected to it was pale and smooth, like marble.
“…What? Fufu, did you never imagine I’d personally come for you?”
Sakura grimaced and bit her lip at the question. It was true, the thought had never come to her mind. To think that the boss of the dungeon would be there…
“I knew succubi were intelligent, but…”
“How rude, comparing me to those baby nightmares. I’m a succubus with quite a lot of experience under my belt, you know?”
The gloved hand stroked Sakura’s shoulder. The succubus approached her and slowly wound herself around the girl.
“…I was dropped into a weird location, but, at the very least, it’s a simple task for me to cook and eat up you little minnows.”
During the Outbreak, both gates and dungeons had suddenly appeared. In the cases where the monsters were intelligent and friendly towards humans, they could coexist with one another.
The succubus was not one of those monsters—she enjoyed the act of draining the lifeforce of humans and turning them into her minions.
“…And this is why you all should really have put more care into wondering why this castle has multiple entrances.”
“…What’s the reason?”
“The complicated structure of this castle is much like a spiderweb. And I am… the spider hunting you all.”
As the succubus kept speaking, Sakura tried to spread as much mana as she could throughout her entire body. The reason why she couldn’t move was due to the effects of one of the succubus’ Skills, [Petrifying Gaze]. Given enough time, it was plenty possible to dispel.
“I am the only free existence in this spiderweb.”
Her body was starting to respond.
Sakura gathered her mana together.
‘My opponent is a rank 5 boss… I need to run away from her, no matter what…’
She only had one chance.
Sakura quickly spun towards the succubus and shot a ball of air towards her head.
The ball of air hit its mark, piercing through the monster’s head.
But something was wrong. The image of the succubus, head blown off, dissipated like smoke.
“Is that the end of your struggling?”
The succubus had somehow appeared on top of the basilisk, sitting on its corpse. She laughed in an easygoing manner.
She dipped her ring finger into the basilisk’s blood and tasted it with her tongue.
“Delicious… I understand why vampires are so crazy about this stuff. Should I feed you to them, as well? They can’t hold themselves back when human blood is on the line, you see…”
Sakura’s body shook like a leaf at the terrifying sight.
‘W-we can’t win against this thing… a rank 5 dungeon really was too much, after all…’
The more Sakura’s terror grew, the stronger the effects of the mana emanating from the succubus became.
A pair of wings sprouted out from her back.
The succubus looked at Sakura, who was scared stiff. The milky whites of her eyes had bled away.
“Do you know now why… I chose you as my first prey?”
The monster looked like something out of Sakura’s nightmares. She shook her head left and right, tears flowing down her face.
“I-I don’t know! I don’t know… anything like that!”
Sakura’s consciousness was slowly shutting down from the magic energy that was emanating from the succubus.
“It’s because… you were the weakest one,” she continued, voice like silk. “No matter how tough you act, it’s useless. Your true nature will never change…”
Saying that, the succubus stroked Sakura’s head. Sakura slowly lowered her hands, giving up on resisting the monster’s enchanting voice.
The succubus smirked, secure in her victory.
‘The preparations are complete.’
There was a reason why she had persistently attacked Sakura mentally. That reason being that she had a Skill she could only use when her opponent’s mental walls had been completely lowered.
She placed her lips on Sakura’s own.
Using [Enchanting Kiss], she poured pink-colored mana into the girl. The light in Sakura’s eyes slowly dimmed.
“Who are you?”
Even when asked a question, Sakura didn’t respond. Under the succubus’ enchantment, Sakura was no different than a puppet without her own will.
“You’re going to help me… and kill all of the intruders, okay?” she whispered.
Sakura nodded, eyes blank. “…Yes.”
The succubus smiled, satisfied.
“Kuhuhu! I can already envision the looks of surprise on their faces!”
Their opponent was a rank 5 boss with intelligence. Even with the collaboration between Korea and Japan, she was not an opponent to be underestimated.
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