The moment that Valhalla of Infinite Affection was shattered, the clone felt a dark emotion for the first time since his birth. Feelings of insecurity and fear dominated him.
‘Lost armor. Can’t be repaired.’
[You have suffered catastrophic damage!]
[Activating the protection sequence based on your birth. For the next five seconds, health is fixed to a minimum and you can’t die.’
Grid’s sword pierced him again, and the clone groaned. “Ah...”
The terrible pain made his mind and body tremble.
He didn’t want that. He didn’t want to disappear.
“Blackening!” The clone barely managed to cry out, with blood pouring out from his mouth. He had to destroy Grid and take Grid’s place. Surrounding by demonic magic, the clone’s skin started to whiten and his black hair grew longer.
[Your physical abilities have increased greatly.]
[The fusion skill Linked Revolve has been opened.]
[The fusion skill Transcended Linked Kill Wave Pinnacle has been opened.]
[Pagma’s Swordsmanship, Splendor has been opened.]
The clone had copied Grid’s physical abilities when he entered the Behen Archipelago. Then while living in hell, the clone had hunted and raised his level, exceeding level 400. His stats experienced the fourth awakening, but it wasn’t an overwhelming development compared to the stats that Grid enjoyed from making items.
However, the proficiency of his swordsmanship was different. The clone only relied on Pagma’s Swordsmanship, unlike Grid who obtained the power of the Hero King and the sword technique of the Undefeated King. His swordsmanship was developed to a higher level than Grid’s, and he was able to use a variety of sword dances. It was only possible when he used Blackening to enhance his physical abilities.
“Pagma’s Swordsmanship.” That’s right. In order to acquire new fusion skills and sword dances, Grid had to raise his stats. This showed that leveling up was more important than he thought. “Transcended Linked Kill Wave Pinnacle.”
“...!?” Grid felt that the clone was finally coming. The clone used Blackening and sublimated his movements before using the five fusion sword dance. Dozens of energy blades appeared continuously.
“Transcended Link!” Grid tried to intercept them, but it was impossible. It was because the dozens of energy blades flying toward Grid scattered all over the place.
“...!?” Grid was confused as the dozens of energy blades disappeared from sight.
“Master!” Noe’s desperate shout rang out. The Blade Aiming at the Gods suddenly changed its course and flew over Grid’s head.
‘This...!’ The frightened Grid raised his head toward the sky. He saw the energy blades filling the sky. It was an amazing sight, much like an aurora was unfolding.
“Revolve!” It was in the realm of instinct. Grid was surprised because the power of the five fusion sword technique was greater than he had imagined. The dozens of energy blades spread out in the sky fell toward Grid’s head as the Pinnacle part of the sword dance.
“Lephel’s Embrace!” Euphemina used a skill that she had saved. Lephel was an indigenous god that monks served, and she asked him to protect Grid from the energy blades.
“Arrow Rail!” Jishuka fired dozens of arrows over Grid’s head. This was also a defense skill. Jishuka wanted the barrier of arrows to guard Grid.
Lauel unfolded wind magic to alter the trajectory of the sword, attempting to weaken the power. Meanwhile, Peak Sword tried to intercept the energy blades. However, it was wishful thinking. The attack power of Transcended Linked Kill Wave Pinnacle transcended the power of the skills used by the 10 meritorious retainers. It seemed to scorn the 10 meritorious retainers as the heavy rain of energy blades poured toward Grid’s head. Grid was already using Revolve, and the rotating sword swallowed up the energy blades pouring from the sky. Still, it was only partially effective. It was impossible to counterattack against the dozens of falling energy blades with a single move.
“Cough!” Covered in blood, Grid fell to his knees. Some energy blades that entered the area around him were shot back toward the clone.
“Ohhh!” The spectators let out cheers. They knew that Grid was aiming for mutual destruction with the clone.
However, the clone wasn’t an easy opponent. “Revolve.”
It was using the same counterattack as Grid to return the attacks to Grid...? The viewers thought that Grid was going to die alone.
“Revolve!” Then another Grid besides the real Grid and the clone appeared. It was Randy. Randy used the counterattack against the counterattack, threatening the clone. In the past, the clone had summoned another Randy, just like Grid.
“Pagma’s Swordsmanship.” The clone’s Randy had died the day that the clone fell into hell. Right now, the clone was alone. “Linked Revolve.”
Counterattacks were activated continuously! The energy blades that were strengthened by the consecutive counterattacks flew toward Grid.
[You have lost more than 70% of your maximum health.]
[The First King title effect is activated.]
[A protective shield containing the health that was lost in the last minute has been created. For the duration of the shield, terrain adaptability will increase by 100% while movement speed and defense will increase by 10%.]
“Keuk...!” Grid stood at the crossroads of life and death.
[You have suffered catastrophic damage!]
[A legend doesn’t die easily. You can resist all attacks for 5 seconds with a minimum of health.]
Of course, it was still too early to give up. Five seconds was great. Grid had just entered the immortal state while the clone’s immortality was coming to an end.
“Blackening!” Grid felt hope and raised all his power.
“Linked Kill Wave.” The clone unleashed a menacing attack.
“Freely Move!” Grid used the skill that avoided all non-targeted skills and approached the clone. “Drop!”
The attack that was triggered instantly threatened the clone. Grid saw a chance to win until the God Hands interfered!
Drop didn’t get triggered because the God Hands flew over and restrained both of Grid’s arms.
“You...!” Grid was completely captured by the four God Hands and completely lost his freedom. His arms were spread open like he was nailed to a cross. The clone’s ability to control the God Hands was several times higher than Grid’s ability.
“I am you,” the clone’s creepy voice entered the ears of the captured Grid. Grid realized that the clone wanted to completely usurp his existence. He was absolutely horrified that the clone had evolved like this and was threatening now him.
“You...” Grid was certain. “You must die!”
Only the clone’s complete disappearance would guarantee his safety. Grid determined this with murderous eyes. Simultaneously, a smile appeared on the clone’s face. Yes, it was an obvious smile. “You are the one who will die.”
The clone was evolving even at this moment. In the process of feeling fearful toward death and feeling the joy of being liberated from death, the clone could experience various emotions. Now he was truly dreaming.
“I am Grid.”
Failure pierced Grid’s heart.
Then the clone took out the hammer and hit Failure several times, transforming Failure into the Enlightenment Sword.
“Four seconds,” he stated as he pressed the Enlightenment Sword deeper into Grid’s heart. “Three seconds.”
It was the remaining time of Grid’s immortality. The clone knew that Grid would die very soon. He believed that if he held onto until the end of Grid’s immortality, he would surely win. Of course, variables existed.
“Take your hands off him right now!” Asmophel and the 10 meritorious retainers cried out. All of them bombarded the clone to get him away from Grid.
However, the clone still had a trump card. “Pagma’s Swordsmanship, Splendor.”
Flash! A brilliant white light emerged from the sword piercing Grid’s heart, causing the 10 meritorious retainers and Asmophel to become ‘blinded.’
This was the end. The clone predicted Grid’s death. He glanced at the future that he would replace. The God Hands tightened their grip on Grid’s arms, forcing him to be still.
“Result. Your death.”
The clone used Kill.
There was another flash of light that disturbed their vision as the sound of skin, flesh, and bones being pierced was heard. The flash was from the linked attacks of the light elemental and the Blade Aiming at the Gods. Yes...
“Cough!” The one coughing up the blood was the clone, not Grid. Unlike the predictions of the onlookers, the clone was the one falling down.
“Do you also have the Rune of Darkness?” Grid freed himself from the God Hands that were confused after their master fell.
“...” The clone didn’t answer. He just knelt down and coughed up blood.
Grid asked again, “Had I used the power of the rune, would you have copied this power like you did with the armor and sword?”
It would be a lie to say that Grid felt no sympathy for the clone. Grid felt uncomfortable as he thought of the loneliness and confusion that the clone, who had been born to kill Grid, would’ve felt. However, the clone was a threat to Grid and his kingdom. Setting compassion aside, the clone was an opponent that must be killed. Grid struck the clone’s throat. After losing his armor, the clone was infinitely weakened, and Grid determined that this was the end.
...At least, until the Guardian’s Necklace and Guardian’s Bracelet that the clone wore luckily activated the Indomitable effect.