I have to do it.
I watch as the giant approaches sadistically towards me and say this inside my mind.
I have taken the attacks of the Butcher countless times now, but thanks to my new armor and my 3x stats, I have somehow managed to survive.
However, it doesn’t matter how much HP I currently have remaining.
At this rate, if I don’t defeat him, I will definitely be killed.
That’s already a certainty.
The biggest obstacle in using Incarnation of Fury in actual battle, as expected, is the 30 second duration.
Once the buff of 30 seconds ends, that effect immediately does a reversal.
The base stats that have been buffed by the skill will then be decreased all the way to 1/100th of what they originally were.
It doesn’t affect the weapon and armor, so it is not like the defense and attack will straight up be 1/100th of what you were before, but that doesn’t even serve as consolation.
There’s no way you can receive an attack from an enemy with 1/100th of your HP, and with agility at 1/100th, you can’t even expect to escape or avoid.
Being exposed to monsters after those 30 seconds means death.
(That’s why I will defeat this guy before that.) (Souma)
The way to get through that is of course skill canceling.
I should have a chance here if I can at least do a Godstep Cancel.
Step is the first movement skill and Side Slash is a basic skill, so you could say they are both beginner skills.
That said, it is not like canceling them is easy.
You could even say they enter the difficult category.
We are talking about Nekomimi Neko here, so it is not absolutely the case for everything, but the length of most cancel timeframes depend on how long the skill itself is.
A skill that continues for a while normally has a proportionally long cancel frame, and the skills that end quickly have a tendency to have their cancel timing end in an instant.
For example; in my knowledge, the one with a long cancel timeframe is Midare Sakura.
Midare Sakura has a visual animation that’s close to 20 seconds, so the time you have to input the cancel is long, and for players you have reached the point of obtaining this skill, failing to cancel Midare Sakura would be harder instead.
In contrast, there’s the Ground Compression that has fast movement speed and activation, and not only does it have one cancel point, the time you have to get it right is outrageously short.
That and coupled with the fact that there’s only jump type skills that can cancel it are the reasons why Ground Compression is called a skill for highly skilled players.
Step and Side Slash are at the midpoint of this. They are slightly better than Ground Compression, but if you have to do it consecutively and without messing it up, the difficulty shoots up drastically.
Of course, it is not only Godstep Cancel that is difficult.
The movement skill combo with Air Hammer added into it, and the Oboro Cross and the cancel after activating Midare Sakura.
Now that I think about it, all of my special techniques have canceling as their core.
But I currently feel as if all of those are impossible for me to do right now.
(Can I do it…as I currently am?) (Souma)
I ended up questioning myself.
But I shake my head.
(It is not about whether I can. I have to!) (Souma)
I resolve myself and look at the Butcher.
I felt like I saw the shadow of the Demon Lord for a moment there.
(I will definitely win!) (Souma)
I psyche myself up like this and concentrate on the giant body that is slowly getting closer as if measuring the distance.
I can’t use my skills with the same sensation.
I might as well just think of them as new skills with 3 times more rougher timings.
No, I know that my base skills are all running at 3 times the speed, so the conditions are even looser than that.
I tell myself in that fashion and draw myself moving at 3 times faster than normal in my head.
And then, at the breaks of those skills, I draw a detailed picture of the next skill I will be activating there.
I search for a skill with a similar timing, and imagine that timing.
I sharpen my senses.
I rid myself of all noise, and everything aside from my target fades out.
A second is diluted several times, and the movements of Butcher’s arm that is raised towards me looked like it was in slow motion.
(I can do this!) (Souma)
I was pushed by a strong confidence that had no basis, and I…
My concentration was shaken by the sudden voice and I missed that opportunity.
Time returns to normal.
The arm of the giant holding a humongous cleaver was about to be swung down.
However, that was stopped by the silver light that came flying from outside my field of awareness.
That silver something hit the arm of the Butcher, and its movement stopped for an instant.
(That’s the Wakizashi?! Gouging Vajra!) (Souma)
I thought that in an instant, but the speed was slow to be that and it seemed to lack power.
The Wakizashi actually only stopped the movement of the Butcher for a brief moment.
That blade easily bounced off from the meat armor of the Butcher.
(Not a skill but merely throwing? Why…?) (Souma)
I hurriedly jumped out from there and searched for the person who threw the Wakizashi.
I saw Ringo, who had swung her hand widely, in my vision.
But she is still far away.
Lightning Strike isn’t suitable for accurate attacks due to its trait.
I don’t know why she didn’t use Gouging Vajra, but Ringo must have noticed I was in trouble here and provided assistance from over there by throwing the Wakizashi.
Despite her having thrown her only weapon, Ringo was trying to run my way.
Even when her balance was unsteady after throwing the weapon, she was still desperately trying to come here.
Moreover, head first.
That comical sight made me laugh even at a situation like this.
It is the result of her desperately doing her best for my sake, so I shouldn’t be laughing.
But seeing that, I felt like strength left me.
(Good grief, what am I doing?) (Souma)
That’s what I muttered…to myself.
It is as if I had gotten rid of something that had been haunting me -as if I had woken up from a dream.
With that unnecessary strength leaving me, I finally understood how stupid I am being here.
(I am being way too impatient.) (Souma)
I think this as I jump to the side and avoid the cleaver that was swung down along with a roar.
If I just calm down…no, if I just don’t purposely close my eyes to it, I could soon tell that this battle is stupid.
It is true that there’s only 9 days until the time limit for subjugating the Demon Lord.
But I still have 9 days.
Even if this is for the sake of testing the 3x speed of Incarnation of Fury, even if it is to defeat the Butcher and strengthen myself, there’s no need for me to fight all alone with all these reckless conditions.
I wouldn’t have suffered such a hard battle with the Butcher simply by bringing Mitsuki and Maki, and if I had at least not placed a restriction prohibiting elemental attacks on top of the 3 meter distance, I wouldn’t have had as much trouble as I am having now.
(Seriously, what am I even doing?) (Souma)
If I had to put logic in these unreasonable actions, it would go like this.
—I must have been seeking danger unconsciously.
My impatience of wanting to defeat the Demon Lord quickly, my debt for pushing Ina to that situation, being the reason for so many people being cursed, and the guilt of living my days without being blamed turned out in me cornering myself.
To the point that I even pointlessly fabricated a crysis with the excuse that it is a countermeasure against the Demon Lord.
I duck the cleaver that was being swung while roaring and sighed at myself.
No wonder Mitsuki and Ringo didn’t want me to go alone.
I didn’t expect blood to have rushed my head to this extent.
In the first place, no matter how you think about it, awakening a new power when in trouble isn’t my fighting style.
You can just leave that stuff to the heroes on manga and TV.
My fighting style is more…
I avoided the kick of the Butcher while I was in the middle of thinking, and I once again looked at that white giant.
Well, how to say it, it obviously doesn’t look like the Demon Lord.
He is just a bit of a big and gross normal monster.
“Now then…” (Souma)
My head has cooled down.
Then, there’s only one thing I need to do here.
“There doesn’t seem to be much time, so let’s defeat it quickly.” (Souma)
When I muttered this, I first jumped to the back.
I won’t care about the 3 meter distance anymore.
That’s the final objective and there’s no need to achieve that right now.
I shove my left hand in the bag while in midair.
It doesn’t matter whatever it is, so I take out whatever weapon I find. A Heat Knife.
“So unlucky.” (Souma)
The weakest weapon within the ones I expected.
But there’s no problem with that.
I began chanting at the same time as I landed.
The chant finished pretty quickly with 3x speed, and I raised the Heat Knife with my left hand.
“[Catapult Wind]!” (Souma)
I cast the spell with a loud voice.
This is a bit of a quirky spell.
It is an enchantment wind element spell, and if you use a spell while extending your hand, the weapon will be enchanted with the wind element, gain the throwing trait, and fly off.
This moment is of course not an exception. The Heat Knife in my left hand flew off in a straight line as the spell activated.
Towards the approaching Butcher…far above his head, onto the sky where there’s nothing.
But after seeing it off, I quickly enter the bosom of the Butcher.
If it is just 3x movement speed without using skills, the Butcher can still manage to react.
The Butcher roared in anger and tried to crush me with his left hand that held nothing.
“Good work!” (Souma)
But I slipped past that arm while getting close to him, and swung Shiranui onto the arm.
This slash that utilized the momentum of the enemy advanced onto the arm of the King Butcher, and easily cut that arm…
(Well, that’s pretty much what you would expect without the physical resistance.) (Souma)
I confirmed that with cold eyes, made full use of the 3x speed, and cut off the body of the Butcher one by one.
This sharpness, which surpasses even the times when in Power Up, were slicing the Butcher, and he couldn’t deal with it.
Why did my attacks suddenly begin working on him?
The trick is simple.
It is the spell I used just now: Catapult Wind.
This is a simple spell that ‘enchants your weapon with the wind element, gives it the throwing trait, and shoots it off’…or at least that’s its description.
But the actual effect displayed is: ‘You eject the weapon you were holding, and in the time while it is still in flight, the weapon attacks you do will have the wind element’.
Basically, in the case when you are holding a weapon on each hand, if you attack with the weapon that wasn’t ejected, there’s for some reason the wind element and throwing trait added to it.
If you use this spell like normal, the effect will end the moment it hits the enemy, but not only did I throw the weapon at the sky where there’s nothing, I have increased the throwing range of Catapult Wind with customization.
With this, it should be effective for 10 seconds or more.
This technique that’s called [Magic Sword: Catapult Wind] is actually plain and isn’t really that convenient, but it can become a trump card in this situation.
Maybe because the damage is on a whole different level now, the Stagger that happens after consecutive slashes was suppressing the Butcher completely.
I thought that I would be able to push it to the end at this rate, but…
(Well, of course it wouldn’t go that smoothly.) (Souma)
The Butcher suddenly ignored my attacks and changed stances.
I remember this sight.
The preliminary motions for the charge.
The Butcher is in Super Armor state, so he won’t be staggered, and the charge attack will come soon after.
It is easy to avoid the charge.
But it is a bit of a pain to defeat the Butcher in the middle of its charge.
There’s the chance the Catapult Wind or the Incarnation of Fury will wear out in that time.
“An enemy in the middle of an animation is a good footstool!!” (Souma)
I placed a leg on the body of the Butcher that is busy with the preliminary motions, and got on that big body.
Normally, an enemy would stagger, but there’s no issues with that when the enemy is in Super Armor state.
I reach the shoulder of the Butcher in the blink of an eye and…
“[Power Up]!” (Souma)
I chant the spell as I kick the body of the Butcher and launch into the sky.
Right now I can’t do something as skillful as calculating the time of the combo to set a Time Activation for it.
But this isn’t a combo but a single move.
If it is predicting just one thing, even I can do it regardless if it is at 3 times the speed.
I soared in the sky and pulled back my arm in order to match the activation of the Power Up and…
“[Side Slash]!!” (Souma)
I release a powerful slash towards the weak point of the King Butcher; its ugly face.
I bring retribution towards the giant that’s ridden in wounds.
I lost control of my body because of the skill stun, and I fell to the ground pulled by gravity.
The deathcry of the Butcher reached my ears at the same time, and I saw his body disappear into light particles.
Having finished this battle that had a lot of twists and turns, what was taking over my chest was not the relief of having defeated the enemy within the time limit or my regret from this time’s rash actions…
(I am definitely going to be scolded real hard by Ringo after this…) (Souma)
Such a first-world problem.