On the 40th floor stood a massive wyvern whose rage and excitement were evident in its eyes. Not long ago, he had sensed that extremely potent bloodline aura re-emerge in roughly the same position it had been when he lost it.
In his excitement, he was preparing to leave his stronghold and catch that beast before it could run again, but he realized he didn’t have to put in so much work. That aura was already speedily making its way towards him.
The wyvern stood up, its head held high in pride, as it looked towards the entrance to the 40th floor. But what emerged in front of him wasn’t what he was expecting. Rather than the wolf he had been chasing, the one that emerged from the entrance was the bipedal beast that had aided the wolf.
However, the wyvern wasn’t mad at this fact. He had always felt it was a stain on his record to let someone weaker than him escape his grasp, and he felt that killing this beast was the best way to regain his honor. Plus, he felt that bloodline aura on the bipedal beast now, meaning he’d reap the same rewards by consuming it.
When Damien emerged on the 40th floor with Zara concealed in his shadow, he expected the wyvern to immediately attack, but it seemed he had underestimated the temperament of this beast. The wyvern stared down at Damien as if provoking him to attack.
And although Damien wasn’t provoked, he was indeed rushing to kill this beast. During his 6 month stay in the subspace, Damien had read up on the various beasts in the world. It seemed that all beasts were descended from what was known as ‘Godbeasts’.
The bloodline of these godbeasts within them became more potent as beasts evolved, and when they reached 5th class, normal beasts could also walk the path of becoming godbeasts. One of these godbeasts was the True Dragons.
This wyvern was one of their offspring, and judging from its intense fixation on Zara’s bloodline, it must have accumulated a large portion of True Dragon bloodline.
This wasn’t what Damien was interested in though. What caught his interest was a trait that True Dragons possessed, their superior regeneration. A True Dragon’s regeneration was capable of regrowing limbs, which was something Damien desperately wanted.
Although it hadn’t impeded him much, Damien was still missing an arm. He mused that if he killed this wyvern and devoured it, even if he couldn’t regrow his arm, he’d be able to take steps in that direction.
Not wanting to wait any longer, Damien charged forward with his sword drawn. The wyvern met him head-on as it charged as well. When he got close, Damien teleported to the wyvern’s side and used the first step of the sword art he’d been creating.
‘Void Sword First Step: Bladeless’
Damien’s sword flickered as its blade disappeared from existence. In the next second, a 10-foot long gash tore through the wyvern’s scales.
This was the first step of his art. When Damien swung his sword, he’d meld its blade with the spatial layers in the surroundings and essentially form a spatial tear that acted as his sword blade.
This tear would superimpose on whatever existed in the spot occupied by its space and banish it into the void. It was an unavoidable and unseen blade, which was why he chose to call it ‘blade less’
The wyvern let out a guttural roar as its flesh and muscles were exposed and swung its claws towards Damien. However, Damien had long vanished from the spot. The ground cracked as a miniature earthquake was induced by the wyvern’s paw.
When Damien reappears, he was on top of the wyverns head. Turning to face its back, he once again used the first step of his art. Another deep gash appeared on the wyvern without it even understanding what was happening.
The wyvern was getting fed up. The ant he could’ve crushed within seconds 6 months ago was now handling him like a child. Damien hopped off the wyvern’s head and stood in front of it, taunting it to do something.
And the wyvern easily fell for his provocation. Opening its maw, it concentrated a beam of energy to fire. This was its trait as a descendant of dragons, Breath. Facing genuine dragon’s breath, Damien wasn’t scared in the slightest.
When the beam fired, it sundered even the space around it as it charged unimpeded towards Damien. ‘This is the perfect practice dummy’ Damien thought as he looked at this attack.
While Damien put his whole focus towards the breath attack, using it to perfect his vector control, a subtle shadow detached from his own.
The breath attack finally reached its target, as Damien put his arm out and put all his focus to block it. At first, he could only slightly divert the trajectory of the attack, making it narrowly miss him, but his entire left side was slowly being burnt.
His flesh melted and his internal organs began to feel the heat of the breath, but Damien continued forward with the same method. Slowly but surely, Damien was able to avert the breath until it couldn’t affect him anymore, though his entire left side was burnt to a crisp in the process.
‘Ha! This pain isn’t even half of what my eyes went through in the last evolution.’ Damien scoffed as he took a moment to pat himself on the back for his successful evasion.
Meanwhile, the wyvern was even more enraged. The breath attack that it had prided itself on, that it had inherited from its all-powerful ancestors, had been blocked. Even though the bipedal beast had been injured in the process, he couldn’t see any signs of pain on its face.
As the wyvern focused on Damien, it failed to sense the slight chill that began to permeate the air. Zara had stealthily made her way towards the large gashes on the wyvern’s back and was preparing herself to go for the kill.
This was why Damien hadn’t attempted to land any fatal wounds on the wyvern. All he wanted from the wyvern was its experience and its corpse. Zara, however, was constantly chased by this wyvern and its underlings for large periods of time.
Over the past 6 months, Damien had also discovered that Zara’s parents were the previous inhabitants of the 40th floor and had been killed by the wyvern months before his arrival.
Naturally, with this kind of grudge, Damien would allow her to get the kill. He only made some preparations for her since her strength wasn’t necessarily enough to break through the wyvern scales. And since they were connected through contract, Damien would still get the experience from killing the wyvern.
In return, Damien had promised Zara that every beast from the following 9 floors would be given to her, so she could also grow in strength.
Once Zara was prepared, she sent tendrils of darkness into the wyvern’s wounds, corroding them, while she sent compressed blasts of ice energy to freeze off its muscles and organs before destroying them.
By the time the wyvern moved to stop her, Damien was already healed and in front of it, stabbing into its eye and temporarily blinding it. Although the wyvern was enraged that it was getting attacked from two sides, it couldn’t do anything about it.
Damien kept its attention on him, without allowing it to focus its attacks on Zara, while Zara slowly chipped away at its life force, making sure the wyvern could feel the pain of its corroding insides. And within 10 minutes, the wyvern fell to the ground as a lifeless corpse.
Damien smiled at Zara, who had come back into his shadow. Although she acted like nothing special happened, he could feel the relief and satisfaction she was feeling inside. While feeling happy that his partner obtained her revenge, Damien walked towards the wyvern corpse.
The shadowy maw emerged from his palm and swallowed the corpse into its abyss, turning it into pure nutrients for Damien. Zara was shocked as she watched, but Damien had already warned her of what he was about to do so she didn’t panic. After all, he was going to be in a load of pain after his devouring.
And a load of pain was indeed what he felt. With the goblin king, it was his muscles, tissue, and tendons, with the spider, it was his eyes, now with the wyvern, the intense pain he felt was concentrated in his throat.
Although different from the spider, his bodily defenses were also being significantly raised. As time passed, multiple dragon-like scales appeared and disappeared on Damien’s skin, while his eyes became reptilian before that receded as well. Within his throat, Damien felt a burning sensation akin to swallowing the sun as he endured.
The pain was terrible, but putting together the context clues, Damien had a good idea of what he was receiving at the moment, and that thought made him incomparably excited.
Slowly, his evolution ended, and Damien felt his body filled with renewed vigor. This type of vigor made him feel extremely bestial, giving him the urge to roar to the heavens to assert dominance.
And roar he did.
It was the roar of a king, the roar of a dragon, and with this roar, came a destructive, semi-translucent beam of energy that destroyed everything in its path.
Damien had acquired the dragon race’s most prided trait, Breath.