༺ The Beast Corps Commander ༻
The Beast Corps Commander, Leonos.
The king of the Beasts and the vanguard of the Demon King’s army.
The day he crossed the boundary of the Demon Continent and invaded the empire’s border, three castles crumbled and an entire legion was swept away.
If the Undying Corps Commander announced the beginning of war to humanity by annihilating the Iona kingdom, the Beast Corps Commander was the first to showcase the powerful strength of the Demon King’s army in front of humanity.
Eon and Leonos’ eyes were directed at each other.
Leonos sported a wild smile, and Eon’s eyebrows slightly furrowed.
Recognizing him was not difficult. A mane like a lion, rugged and golden, a face with horns protruding like a rhinoceros, and a tremendous physique reminiscent of a bear. Undoubtedly, it was the Beast Corps Commander, Leonos.
Eon knew this was impossible. The Beast Corps Commander had been killed in the Battle of Ragnarok Plains by the Sword Saint’s blade.
Having heard directly from the Sword Saint about Leonos’s death, he was certain that the highly skilled Sword Saint wouldn’t have been mistaken. Therefore, it must be a fact that Beast Corps Commander Leonos lost his life on the plains of Ragnarok.
Eon’s eyes swept over Leonos’ upper body. A single streak of a sword wound traversed his body. Considering its depth and location, it was a definitive fatal wound that couldn’t be avoided.
Elizabeth, clinging tightly to Eon, spoke.
“The corpse of the Beast Corps Commander was taken over by the empire. I heard it was moved to a laboratory for research… This is…”
“Right, it’s necromancy.”
The crimson energy that wrapped around Leonos’s entire body.
It was different from dark mana. The trace of necromancy was clear.
The bodies of the Giant Corps Commander, defeated by the Goddess champion, and the Insect Corps Commander, burned to death by the sage, were each moved to the Mage Tower and the Law Nation. However, the bodies of the Dream Demon Corps Commander, defeated by the hero party, and the Beast Corps Commander, defeated by the Sword Saint, were taken over by the imperial army. And so, their corpses were being analyzed secretly in the intelligence department.
Perhaps shocked by the severe jolt of the unfair situation, Heinrich, even while vomiting blood, wore a twisted smile.
“To be precise, it’s not just necromancy… They used alchemy to graft the decaying corpse here and there, necromancy to resurrect the dead body, and spirit magic to call out the soul… Cough! But in the end, it’s just a shell…”
“The aim of resurrecting the corps commander was twofold. One was to use their enormous power as the empire’s weapon… and the other was for information. Information about the Demon King and the Demon Continent….”
Heinrich’s complexion was pale due to excessive bleeding. Sensing his impending death, he spoke with a mouth that felt lighter than usual.
“But it was all in vain… The souls of demons are greatly different from those of humans. It was only a half-baked resurrection with just a soulless body. All that remained inside was the memory and emotion most strongly felt at the moment of death…”
“If it’s not the real Beast Corps Commander, then he won’t be able to stop me.”
“Even if it’s just a shell, the power is real… Of course, he won’t be able to defeat you… but the goal wasn’t you from the start….”
At that moment, Leonos’ roaring voice vibrated the air.
“My nemesis! How long do you plan to chatter on!!”
Leonos raised his arms high and powerfully struck the deck.
Bang! The hull of the airship greatly shook and the impact spread in all directions. Leonos hadn’t intended it, but the impact restored the balance of the airship that had been rising into the sky.
Leonos, clenching his fists and bringing his elbows close to his chest, let out a fierce battle cry.
“Let’s fight! Now! Together with me!! I have waited only for this moment!!”
He was like a predator that had discovered the prey it had been chasing for a long time, and like a warrior feeling the thrill of a long-awaited battle finally approaching.
Looking at Leonos, Heinrich couldn’t hide his surprise.
For the past five years, numerous experiments had been conducted on the corpse of the Beast Corps Commander. But this was the first time he had shown such intense emotion.
Whether it was because the brain had also decayed in the soulless shell, in the early stages of resurrection, he was no different from a wild beast that could not even recall what he was and instinctively committed only destruction and murder.
Even such a state did not last long and he quickly fell into a vegetative state. Because his life was not much left, he was treated as a failure, but to recognize the opponent and speak as soon as he woke up?
‘Could it be… Is his memory returning now?’
Eon no longer needed to hold on to Elizabeth, so he gently set her down on the deck. Then, he walked straight toward Leonos, quietly gathering his energy.
Elizabeth lightly grabbed Eon’s wrist, deterring him. And she spoke carefully in a low voice.
“Instructor, there’s no need to fight him obediently. All we need to do is escape from here to achieve our goal.”
Eon replied without taking his eyes off Leonos.
“It seems you have a plan.”
The appearance of the Beast Corps Commander was surprising, but still, Elizabeth quickly figured out the enemy’s intent.
If the airship had crashed as planned and the body of the Beast Corps Commander had been discovered, it would have been intended to pin the fatal false charge of colluding with the Demon King’s army on the First Prince. Even if the airship didn’t explode, it would have been an insurance-like existence to use for just in case, like this moment.
There was no need to obediently fall into that. Other people had already evacuated safely, and the only ones left were Eon and Elizabeth. And with the hidden means Elizabeth possessed, the two of them could escape safely.
But Eon gently removed her hand and said,
“Whatever it is, save it.”
Eon shook his head.
The abandoned airship could fly anywhere and explode unpredictably. Moreover, considering the tenacious personality of the Beast Corps Commander in his lifetime, it was instinctively felt that he would not give up on us and pursue us to the end, even if we simply left this place.
However, Eon did not explain all of this in detail. Instead, he raised his right arm high.
The blood-crimson spear that had been stuck on the deck flew to him by itself and landed in Eon’s hand.
“It seems you still don’t understand.”
Eon stretched out Ajetus forward. The tip of the spear was pointing straight at Leonos.
“Your instructor does not lose to such a guy.”
Elizabeth could no longer speak.
The opponent was the Beast Corps Commander. Although she had not experienced the battlefield, it was enough to know how strong and fearful he was just by looking at the remaining records.
He was on a different level from the enemies he had faced so far in order to protect his students. Even if he were one of the seven heroes of the continent, he would be a formidable opponent risking his life.
Looking at Eon’s broad back, Elizabeth could not imagine her instructor losing.
Leonos bared his teeth and grinned ferociously.
“Hehe… Is the conversation over?”
“Yes. I kept you waiting.”
“It’s no fun to face an unprepared enemy when the fight I’ve been waiting for finally comes.”
Instead of replying to his words, Eon readied himself and gathered his energy. Leonos, following suit, stretched out his front paw as if about to rush out at any moment and crouched his body.
In the suffocating tension, a man and a beast confronted each other, feeling the gusty wind on the deck of the airship with their whole bodies.
Another small explosion occurred in the engine room, which had already been overheated to the limit.
At the same time, the roar of the beast tore through the space and resounded.
With a roar filled with vicious delight, Leonos swung his front paw. Although he no longer possessed the horned armor ‘Lunorstal’ that injured his attackers and the great sword ‘Stormkarg’ that induced storms, his sheer physicality marked by wild muscles was already a weapon in itself.
Sparks flew as Leonos’s claws, stronger than steel, collided with the blade of Ajetus. Their weapons didn’t touch each other, but a powerful shockwave exploded out, leaving deep traces behind them on the deck – three behind Eon and one behind Leonos.
“My sworn enemy! Why! Why did you not show up for the battle that day!!”
Leonos swung his arms crazily towards Eon, who held his spear tightly and repelled all attacks with its tip alone. The afterimages of gold and blood intertwined violently, with more than ten exchanges occurring in a single breath.
‘This is… the heroes of the seven continents and the Demon Corps Commander…’
Even with Elizabeth’s Dragon’s Eye, the exchange was difficult to follow.
The man and the beast engaged in fierce combat, and with each successive attack, the surroundings were brutally swept away. But even as the walls and floors were destroyed and the airship rapidly collapsed, no attacks reached Elizabeth.
“I’ve only been waiting for you! Not that old swordsman! But you, who were even more beastly than a beast, more devilish than a demon!! You made my blood boil! But why-!!”
Instead of answering, Eon swung Ajetus. No emotions surfaced on his face. He was focused solely on the fight. The spear blade brushed past the golden mane, but Leonos’s skin was as hard as armor, only a few strands of fur were cut off.
“Wear your armor, Eon! That black armor! Are you belittling me because I have no weapon and armor!”
Leonos roared out as he continued to attack.
“Give it your all! I mean, fight with all your strength!!”
Eon’s eyes narrowed.
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