A small tongue licked Grid’s cheek. Gentleness was conveyed to him from a furry white cat. Well, no, it was the tongue of the best demonic beast of hell—the memphis called Noe.
“Master... Are you hurt, nyong?” Noe’s speckled eyes showed he was worried about Grid. Deep concern was displayed in Noe’s bright eyes.
Feeling thankful, Grid touched Noe’s small, round forehead. “I’m fine.”
Grid didn’t want Noe to become more anxious, so he barely swallowed his curses. Due to the effect of Indomitable, Grid had failed to deal the final blow to the clone. Grid was concerned about a counterattack and moved away, making him very uncomfortable with this situation.
‘What is this damn timing?’
[-Has a certain probability of invalidating a portion of the incoming damage. The lower the health, the higher the probability.
* The higher the number, the higher the effect.
* Stat points can’t be distributed to this stat.]
The special stat, indomitable, had a good effect. Players or NPCs with the stat could invalidate a portion of the enemy’s attack. However, the probability of it activating was between 0.01 to 0.001%. Grid wondered if the Satisfy makers had forgotten about the indomitable stat and how it could be implemented. Why? Grid had made many items and his indomitable stat was close to 2,000 points… ‘However, I can count the number of times I experienced this effect on less than five fingers! That damn, bastard clone. He is too lucky.’
The indomitable effect had activated the moment the clone had been about to die. Grid felt deprived since he hadn’t been able to enjoy the effects of indomitable. He was dissatisfied in many ways, so it was no wonder why he wanted to curse.
‘Items and luck... He is a real dirty bastard.’
Grid felt the emotions that his enemies had been feeling about him until now!
“...!” Then he suddenly noticed the clone’s subtle shoulder movements and hurriedly leaped away. The energy blade of Linked Kill pierced the place where Grid had been standing.
‘I would’ve died if my reaction was slower.’
Grid had used this move hundreds of times, so he could detect it and prepare for it in advance. Just as he was feeling relieved while flying into the air, he heard applause. Clap clap clap!
“As expected from King Grid!”
Who was it? Grid shifted his gaze at the applause and saw Lauel. Lauel, who had been worried about Grid a little while ago, was now smiling.
‘Did he eat something bad?’
Why was he laughing in the midst of this dire situation? Grid frowned at Lauel who exclaimed, “Your Majesty deliberately spared the clone!”
“You know that today’s incident will happen again if you kill the clone in the Blackening state!”
“Additionally, you are using this opportunity to learn!”
“...Huh?” The confused Grid touched his forehead upon realizing that Lauel was misunderstanding the situation.
“The first day Your Majesty met Randy, you used it as an opportunity to learn. Using that small brain of yours to learn... It was very virtuous and looked good.”
Yes, that’s right. Back when Grid met Randy who copied the image of Pagma and when he met his clone on the Behen Archipelago, Grid had fought and gotten defeated repeatedly. He had tried to learn from Randy and his clone. However, he overlooked learning this time. Grid didn’t even think about trying to learn Transcended Linked Kill Wave Pinnacle from the clone. It was because he couldn’t afford to think about it. His colleagues were currently at risk. How could he take the time to study the clone when his colleagues, who were fighting with him, were at the crossroads of life and death? It wasn’t right. These were Grid’s thoughts.
“It is well thought out! Fight as long as possible so that Vantner’s and Pon’s sacrifices aren’t in vain! Use the clone as a nutrient for growth!” Lauel yelled out. He misunderstood that Grid had deliberately spared the clone.
“What? He let it live on purpose?”
“I don’t understand, but it’s great. He isn’t nervous fighting against a stronger opponent...”
“This is why he is the best. How can anyone top that?”
“Catching the opportunity at the expense of his colleagues... I see.”
“His colleagues sacrificed themselves to support Grid.”
“This is the strongest Overgeared Guild!”
Lauel’s shouts caused the spectators, including Haster, to misunderstand.
‘Earlier, Grid saw the clone’s preliminary movements and correctly captured the timing to attack. This is why he saved the clone. Grid intends to fight as long as possible to understand the pros and cons of his skills and to raise his strength to another level.’
The misunderstanding deepened! The eyes of the public shone like lanterns!
“Grid, have strength!”
“We might be citizens of the Murray Kingdom, but we will support you!”
“God Grid! God Grid!! God Grid!!”
Cheers for Grid rang out throughout the capital of the Murray Kingdom.
“No... That wasn’t my purpose…”
Why did people always misunderstand his actions? Grid sweated tensely and took a deep breath. ‘Yes, this is an opportunity.’
No one said that an opportunity couldn’t be found in a crisis. The clone was the worst enemy that threatened Grid, but there were many things to learn from him. Moreover, Grid was currently in an advantageous position. The clone weakened after losing his armor and could be killed at any time. Meanwhile, Grid was still healthy. The immortality variable had already been exhausted on both sides.
‘Still, is it really okay?’
Could Grid afford to observe the clone during the confrontation when the clone had his attack power strengthened by copying the Enlightenment Sword? Would his colleagues be safe? Grid looked at his colleagues. The 10 meritorious retainers had persuaded Asmophel and distanced themselves from the battle.
“G-Grid, have strength!”
“God Grid, fighting! Show your greatness!”
“Kukukuk! Your Majesty can do it.”
They were pushing him to fight while they stepped back? Was it because they had no loyalty? No, not at all! The clone had lost his original majesty. His colleagues had done their part, so now they were being considerate of Grid. They were giving away the prey to Grid.
“Okay.” Grid controlled his mind and waited for the duration of the clone’s Blackening to end. “Bring it on. Show me all the sword dances that you have completed. Let’s fight for as long as possible. I’ll face you fair and square,” he spoke in a cool manner.
“Gulp.” Grid drank a health potion manufactured by the alchemy facility.
Was drinking a potion considered as playing fair? The spectators, whose blood were boiling, became stunned.
‘He should’ve drunk it 1.3 seconds earlier,’ Haster thought regretfully as he counted Grid’s potion cooldown time. He realized that the clone had a high health recovery rate. ‘Based on the change in the health gauge... If the clone doesn’t get hit in the next 5 seconds, his health will go up by 10,000 per second.’
This was a boss monster... a top boss monster. Grid didn’t have an advantage just because he could drink potions. Haster’s interest grew. ‘Will Grid be able to fight as long as he intended?’
It would be tough. The more Grid dragged out the time, the more health the clone would recover. Grid wouldn’t be able to depend on potions alone.
‘Will the vampire ring and recovery ring that he showed in the National Competition be sufficient?’
Well, that wasn’t the end. Haster was aware that Grid was one of the greatest players at the moment. He doubted Grid’s judgment during the initial confrontation with the clone, but that was all. Grid’s combat power was evaluated as the best. Yes, Haster believed in Grid’s power and thought that Grid would show a great fight against the clone.
He just had a personal wish. ‘I hope he ends up in a crisis and summons Piaro.’
“...” The exciting atmosphere was sinking heavily. People held their breaths as they watched Grid and the clone. Grid and the clone both took one step forward... before stepping back.
There were the God Hands, Noe, Randy, the sword of light, and the Blade Aiming at the Gods floating above Grid’s and the clone’s heads. Grid’s pets and swords were moving on their own to block the clone’s God Hands. Thanks to this, it became a one-on-one fight. The tension heightened, and the sound of gulping could be heard from all over the place. It didn’t have any effect on Grid and the clone. They were busy concentrating and didn’t react to the sound.
The person who used the sword dance first was Grid. He moved forward and stabbed with his sword, while the clone rotated to the left.
The attack power of Kill was overwhelmingly higher than Wave. However, Grid noticed the clone’s intentions behind using Wave. The actions of Wave completely counteracted the movements of Kill. The clone avoided Kill and unleashed a wave of energy. Grid was defenseless for a moment after using Kill and was hit by the energy.
“Starting...!” The clone gave the signal after Grid was hit by Pagma’s Swordsmanship, Wave. The clone saw a loophole in Grid’s defenses and launched the full-scale offensive. He was unconcerned about the Link that Grid used and threatened him with Pinnacle. Pinnacle was hard to avoid.
The clone had copied the Enlightenment Sword and exerted an attack power that was just as good as Grid’s. If Grid were hit by Pinnacle, he wouldn’t be able to avoid a serious injury despite his items. Even Lantier’s Cloak and Valhalla of Infinite Affection were unable to take all the damage of the Enlightenment Sword.
“...Keuk!” Grid fell down. He was hit by an attack that should’ve never been allowed and lost a massive amount of health. The clone saw Grid’s stumbling and grasped his status.
The linked skill struck at Grid’s heart. Thanks to having the best artificial intelligence, the clone could do perfect calculations, and he decided that the strike would kill Grid. This was if the blow hit its mark.
“Wave!” Grid evaded Kill and fought back. It was the exact trick that the clone used!
“...!” Rather than Kill hitting its mark, the clone was hit by Wave and staggered back. Wave’s attack power was a big threat to the clone who had lost his armor. The clone was confused. ‘Grid’s skill. He should’ve failed the counterattack. Changed?’
Grid cried out to it, “Link!”
The clone couldn’t cope with the successive cuts that followed.
The clone failed to avoid Pinnacle that Grid used out of nowhere. Grid’s sword cut the clone’s chest, and blood spurted out. Then two red tails appeared behind Grid. This was the moment he used Cray’s Strength attached to the Rune of Darkness. Grid converted 100% of the damage done to the clone into his own health. Two blood tails were created because the volume exceeded Grid’s maximum health.
“What? If you don’t want to die like this, then come on!” The two-tailed Grid provoked the clone.
[The target was destroyed!]
[You have won the fight against yourself!]
Unintentional notification windows started to rise in front of Grid. The clone who had lost his armor was just a meat shield. He couldn’t bear Grid’s attack power and was killed!
“N-No...! Show me anger!” Grid reached out toward the clone.
“...End.” The body that resembled Grid was already dispersing into gray ashes.
[You have succeeded in beating the 41st island!]
[You have acquired one skill level point from the mission clear reward.]
[You have overcome your limitations and have taken one step closer to being a legend.]
[One of Pagma’s Descendant’s hidden pieces ‘Sealed Ability’ has been acquired.]
“...??” Grid felt a sense of deja vu. The contents of the notification windows were the same as what he had witnessed on the Behen Archipelago a few years ago...
“...Will it be the same?”
[The passive skill ‘Blacksmith’s Eyes’ has been acquired.]
[The passive skill ‘Blacksmith’s Eyes’ has already been acquired.]
[Please wait for a moment...]
[The rewards have been deemed insufficient, and Blacksmith’s Eyes will change to ‘Code Name 214098 Eyes.’ It is believed that the player should have an intuitive sense of the skill. According to Satisfy’s history and lore, the name of the skill ‘Code Name 214098 Eyes’ will change to ‘Eyes of Pagma-Baal’s Contractor Version’.]
“I’m stupid...” Grid found it impossible to understand the situation. He checked the notification windows several times and was still confused. On the other hand, the S.A Group’s operations team was thrown into chaos.