The Battle with the Snake
Once we were out of the long and narrow tunnel, my vision was filled with white, and I couldn’t help but close my eyes.
But the air felt warm on my skin. There was nothing under my feet. There were no obstacles ahead of me.
Even with my eyes closed, I could see red. That was proof that wherever we were, it was filled with light.
And so I kept my body in the air and activated Eyes of the God Wolf. Once I was able to see what was beyond my eyelids, I gasped at how strange it was.
It was enough to make me forget that we had been running for our lives and had jumped out into the unknown, without any assurance of safety.
This place that we were in could be described as a paradise. Trees were growing, and there was a huge, beautiful lake that reflected the glimmering sunlight. A vast prairie extended into the distance and the grass moved like the waves of the sea. And animals of all sizes dashed through it.
When I looked around, I saw that the place was surrounded by mountains on all sides. There was nothing above it. It was just a circular paradise under the sun. It was hard to understand how everything outside of it was in a blizzard.
“What the hell…”
Daniela muttered under her breath once she had opened her eyes. I could hear the awe in her voice. What we were seeing shouldn’t be possible.
Forests and fields sprawled on the other side of those thick and tall mountains. Who could have predicted that such a natural paradise that was full of life would exist here?
“It’s like… Yes, the ark.”
Daniela turned to me with a puzzled expression.
“A folktale from my world.”
I didn’t really remember much, but I told Daniela what I knew. She listened quietly until I was finished, and then nodded with satisfaction.
“Indeed, it is like this ark. Chosen animals and plants… Well, I do not see any people. But perhaps there are things that were lost that can be found here.”
“That being said, It’s too early to jump to any conclusions. Besides, we need to deal with this snake first. It will be showing its face soon.”
The exit to the cave was quite far behind us now. When I turned to look at it, the snake had just sprung out.
And just like us, its momentum caused it to soar in the air for a moment before it plummeted towards the ground. As my eyes followed it, I saw that we were actually at a considerable height. Humans would not survive such a fall. However, I doubted the same could be said for the snake.
“Do not worry about me. Go and take care of it.”
“Fine. I’ll let you go now.”
Daniela nodded. When I let go, she created a jade board and flew away from me.
“I will be waiting by the lake. Do not make me wait too long.”
“Yeah, it’ll just be a minute.”
Daniela was good to work with, but there were times when it was easier to be alone.
And so I directed Presence Detection below me. The snake had been caught in a tree, but it was still moving. The dense forest had created a cushion, it seemed. I kept my eyes locked onto it as I took out the spear from the hollow bag and slowly descended.
I tried to land in a relatively clear area and waited. After a moment, the snake started to slither through the trees and towards me. Its white scales were very eye catching in the green forest. I could not hide here.
While I waited, I sent azure energy into the spear, turning it into ice. The translucent spear turned an opaque white and its surface was covered in frost. Cold air emitted from the weapon, freezing the moisture in the air. A weapon that went to sub-zero temperature against an animal that lived in the snow. It was just a matter of which was colder.
“I have to kill you here and now. Nothing personal.”
I held the spear and jumped out. After a brief moment of hesitation, it too jumped forward. I ducked under the large head, just as it was right in front of my eyes. Then I slammed the spear into its exposed body.
It felt like I was hitting a huge log. I could hear the painful sounds of cracking, and yet it did not do much damage overall. Its thick body was mostly hard muscle. I frowned.
As the damage was minimal, the snake quickly turned its head and attacked me with its open mouth. I had no choice but to fall back and hope for a better chance.
But this turned out to have been a mistake.
For a split second, I felt the sensation of having the air be forced out of my lungs. And then I couldn’t think of anything. My eyes were full of tears, but I knew what it was that had hit me. It was its tail.
I was blown into the air and went rolling over the ground. However, I used Legs of the God Wolf to force myself off of the ground, and I regained my posture in the air. Its length made it so dangerous… I hadn’t expected to be attacked by both ends at the same time.
I twirled the spear and psyched myself up. The snake’s tongue flicked as it glared at me.
I dashed forward, raising the speed of the wind on the first step, and brought it to the highest level by the second. On my third step, I dove underneath its head and rammed the spear into its lower jaw.
Perhaps this speed was too much for it, as it was not able to react in time. Furthermore, the spear had gone through its head and straight into its brain. Not only that, but the ice spear was already starting to freeze the wound. So, my magic was stronger than the coldness of the snake.
I sent even more energy into the spear so that it would freeze faster. Everything would be fine if it just died here… It was just as I was feeling a sense of relief, that the snake’s body wrapped around my legs.
Apparently, it could still move. Once its tail was around my legs, it continued to wrap around me. It would be over if it got my whole body. I would be crushed to death.
I sent in the energy, but the glassy eyes did not move. Only its body continued to surround me.
Cursing wouldn’t do anything, but I couldn’t stop shouting. No matter how much I struggled, its grip would not loosen.
In that case… I generated wind through Legs of the God Wolf once again, and shot up into the air. The spear went even deeper into its head.
But that wasn’t what I was aiming for. An attack from high above.
I shot towards the ground while slamming my legs down. Due to Legs of the God Wolf, I was moving fast enough to make a hole in the ground. I was desperate, and had used all of my strength. Thanks to that, the power seemed to leave it.
And so I was able to slip out its grip. Then I looked up at the snake. A pale blood was dripping from its mouth now. It looked like it was completely dead.
“I better be sure.”
I pulled out the Schwarz Tempest and cup off its head. Now there was no question. As for materials…
“Hmm. I’ve never butchered a snake…”
I had heard that it was actually quite easy, but I didn’t have the patience or energy to skin it now. Not something of this size.
“Oh, well. I guess I’ll just take the eyes.”
They were beautiful, like jewels. And so I wrapped them up and put them in my bag. The rest would be returned to the ground as mana.
Now, it was off to see Daniela. She was supposed to be by the great lake. Perhaps Arthur would be there as well. Surely that’s where they would make their base. I would be able to reunite with him soon.