Poison God's Heritage


Chapter 53 Battle

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Chapter 53: Battle

I didn't move, nor did the clone.

I didn't need to act, first of all, I need to understand what the h.e.l.l is going on. I'm in some Laughing Slaughterer's paG.o.da, perhaps his trial area where he tests the cultivation noobs for lack of a better term. And the first test is a fight against one's self, so I'll need to prove that I can be better than who I currently am to proceed forward.

Right, now, the clone is not attacking, probably waiting for me to attack first, and if I were to do it will start the battle. I'm not ready yet, I'll need to stay my hand until I'm sure of everything around me. By starting with the setting I found myself in.

An octagonal room, with a locked ceiling, and closed walls, no windows or doors opened. Even the one behind me was tightly locked, and there were no stairs to the next room, so I would have to a.s.sume that once I defeat this guy I'll be able to go to the next stage.

Right, a.s.sumptions aside, I'll need to know of one thing.

I pulled out my sword from behind me, and so did the clone, he pulled out a similar Creeping Demise. Now that's bad. Because it means that whatever is powering this thing is capable of replicating my stuff, so using X is a big no. I don't want to face a copy of my own puppet. Nor would I risk having my own X fight against the enemy's X, in case mine gets ruined in a meaningless battle of attrition.

So, I figured that unless I pull out something from my pockets, the enemy will not have any prior knowledge of the item I own. It would be best if I kept my cards hidden. That's an accidental lesson I learned.

So, how do I beat myself? Simple, by cutting my neck, I'm physically weak. Physically weak compared to regular cultivators mind you as I can easily dispose of a few hundred mortals without breaking a sweat.

But against myself? I'm not too keen on battling this copy, simply put, because I already know how to defeat the clone. This is a test to see if one is able to come to insight in the middle of battle. As one would definitely fight until the bitter end against themselves, and only in this battle where one is equally pitted against his clone would one would understand that unless they came to a new insight, a new killing move, or a new skill, that they would be able to defeat the clone. Because only by bettering oneself would one be able to defeat their older self.

The idea settled in my mind and I was sure of it, this was the answer to this test. But if I were to fight and not come to a new insight of my battle prows, then I will be killed here by a clone.

But what choice do I have? If I were to stay my hand, wait then nothing will change, there is no room to back down, and only one way forward. Then, prove myself better than myself is the only option left for me.

I took a step forward and so did the clone, then another step, then the clone charged me, with far more speed than I ever believed 'myself' capable off. Still, the attack was predictable, a long sword sweep that I could easily dodge if I were to jump back.

Yet, doing so will definitely cause me to be on the backhand, defensive stance. I don't want to do that, if I were to play this battle defensively then I'll be forced on the defensive from the start, and that's a recipe for disaster.

The sweep came close to lobbing my head off, but with a flick of my wrist, Creeping demise sprang to action. Striking against the length of the clone's sword and parrying it with ease. A good parry, I'm impressed I managed it on the first try, but there was no need for me to be all giddy I'm in the middle of battle.

I followed up, reposting with another flick of the sword, this time slicing at the clone's wrist. The ripost was perfect, as I sliced the clone's wrist, then I saw something strange. The clone's wrist bled, but the blood on it was a clear healthy crimson.

I took a step back. A terrible move in any battle when one has the advantage, but I deemed this was the best move. Simply because, I found a better way to defeating this enemy, especially since what I saw happening right in front of me proved that my action to back off was the best course of action I took.

The wrist on the clone healed at astonis.h.i.+ng speeds. So, unless I landed a death blow, I would have been stuck in a battle of attrition against an enemy that probably can heal itself indefinity.

I took a deep breath and spat out my poison breath, to which, the enemy did the same, spewing a powerful gust of Poison towards me, where I greedily smiled as I opened my mouth wide, gulping back my own poison and the enemy.

The action caused the clone to frown and instantly act, as it opened its mouth to suck in the remaining poison.

Only for me to bawl out laughing, "Dumb idiot."

A statement that proved more than true before the clone began shuddering, shaking then outright melted in front of me in a puddle of corroded melted flesh.

"Magnificent display of skill!" the Laughing Slaughterer's voice sounded loud and clear. This simple statement was enough to indicate that this was an automated response to the victor of this stage, and wasn't an actual person watching and speaking directly to me. Otherwise, they'll be asking what the h.e.l.l just happened, or at least know that it had nothing to do with skill and just luck.

The clone was made of human flesh and powered by some sort of mechanism, also it was made in a way that it would perfectly replicate the being that it was cloning. The only difference that it didn't fully copy the enemy's internal body. Otherwise, I would be facing a creature that was really inflicted with the Bone and Body Grinding Poison, instead of just the appearance of the affliction such as the pustules and the tumors.

A large hole opened up on the ceiling where a spiral case of stairs came spinning down, allowing me access to the upper floor.

Then a small pill bottle flew at me, it was fast enough that I didn't realize it was in front of me until it was.

"Receive your reward, dress your wounds and go to the second floor, for your test has yet to end!" the voice said once again, further confirming this was just a 'recording' after all I wasn't wounded to dress any wounds.

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I took the pill bottle and opened it. A strong spiritual scent a.s.saulted my nose, it was sweet and potent. A mid-grade restorative pill, but to me, it was more like poison. Spiritual Pills were useless to me, and a restorative pill will actually try and heal my affliction which is the poison plaguing me, but in doing so, it will literally destroy me from within, or so I theorized, but I'm better off just keeping this instead of throwing it like the useless trash it is.

I was but a mere soldier in this battle, and I didn't have my sword, nor my ability to use poison Qi, as I didn't feel my meridians no matter how hard I tried to rotate my energy.

'Huh, back to being a mortal so soon,' I grimaced at the realization.

"Soldiers! Rank up! Form a line to hold the enemy! We'll pave way for the wounded to escape!" a man with a bristling voice called, his voice booming through the camp in commandeering everyone into action.

A group of soldiers gathered up and lined up in front, where the two cliffs stood as natural barricades, the soldiers lined up to defend the only access point to where we stood. A good strategy to limit the number of enemies we'll be facing.

"Soldier!" a loud shout woke me from my stupor as the same man who had called everyone to line up was shouting at me.

Looking back, I saw a man in slightly more ornate clothes, a round helm covering his face, and in one of his hands a spear that held a blue bloodied banner.

"Are you too scared to move your a.s.s! Show signs of cowards and I'll kill you myself before you taste the enemy's steel!"

I nodded at the man and scurried forward, lining up alongside the other soldiers. So, we're supposed to hold the enemy for the rest of the camp to escape. Pretty desperate, pretty stupid, and outright suicidal.

Most of the people around me looked rattled to their cores as the enemy was upon us. Hundreds upon hundreds of horses were charging their way toward us, and with such a flimsy-looking line of soldiers to hold the line, I was certain that we'll be overrun with the first cavalry charge.

Now, I'm pretty sure this very test was not tailored towards someone such as me. This was a test for the battle-hungry, sword-happy swinging martial artist who will use their skills in slaughtering as many of the enemy soldiers as they can. This is a test of martial skills, of which I didn't have much knowledge.

And since I didn't have any martial skills to speak of, then I'm definitely screwed.

G.o.d, I wish if I could run along with the still scurrying soldiers 'unfit' to hold the line. Fighting here is outright suicide, and backing away is desertion, rewarded with instant death delivered by the captain himself.

I'm too old for this s.h.i.+t...

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