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9 Trials

 The saber greeted the shield, making Taku fly upward into the sky. The large man did not hesitate and followed through with another stab, this time his movement much faster showing the sheer power his legs held. While Taku was flying he caught up, ready to stab Taku in the chest. The shield was still in front of Taku when the man arrived. Taku at that moment felt as if death was nearby. His body turned cold and his mind raced like never before. It is said that when one is near death they are able to pull out their best potential; thanks to this experience Taku realized just how true this was.

Using the weight of the shield as leverage Taku twisted his body somewhat. The shield was rotated, causing the large saber to deflect. Then taking advantage of his tiny body Taku placed his feet on the shield. The sword had been deflected downward thus Taku used the shield like a snowboard gliding on the long saber. The man was stunned by this feet, because the movements were incredibly unconventional. Before he had any more time to ponder, his head had already been separated from his body by Taku's sword.

The man landed headless while Taku landed panic-stricken. He did not realize what he had done until he landed. When he realized just how close he was to death he almost fainted, but the voice did not give him time to rest.

"Third stage of the unconquerable test complete! Fourth stage begin!"

Taku's body tensed as he realized that now he had lost his shield, not to mention that he swung the sword with too much strength, resulting in him flinging it far away. When he looked up, he saw a man if full metal armour standing before him. Even his head was armoured. Not to mention the aura this man gave off was completely different. If the other men were waves, then this was a tsunami, one that made Taku feel helpless. Then the unexpected occurred.

"Boy, admit defeat. You cannot defeat me in your current state!"

Taku stared at the man for a full minute. Should he concede? What would it mean if he did? Would he die, find himself back in that throne room or back by Saru's side?

These were the questions that were plaguing Taku's mind. What would giving up really mean in this situation? After a full minute of thinking Taku finally realized how stupid he was being.

If he fought he might get killed and actually die, if he concedes it might lead to death either way. There was no definite path for him this time, so he decided to go with his feelings.

And at the moment Taku was really pumped. The last 3 fights had completely made him hungry for more.

At first he really was scared sh*tless. He had gone from a luxurious throne room to an Ancient looking battlefield, where he was suddenly attacked by a man.

But by the time the third battle started, he had actually began to enjoy it a little.

F*ck it! I've got nothing to lose anyway.

Taku closed his eyes and inhaled a large breath of air and then exhaled.

He opened his eyes and ferociously stared at the man. This greatly shocked the armoured man, he had initially thought that his overbearing aura would be able to suppress whatever excitement that Taku had.

He chuckled when he saw that Taku was not willing to back down. "Keke... You do have a good pair kid. But be careful, because if they outgrow your body they'll only bring you down."

After saying this the man grabbed his weapon which was a long Saber. The Saber design itself was simple and crude, but the aura of death that came from it almost made Taku choke.

The man moved towards Taku whilst raising his Saber over his head.

So fast!

Taku couldn't help but exclaim. He had thought that the third man was already as fast as people could get, but this fourth guy shattered his reality.

Taku calmed his emotions, but by that time the man was already 3 meters away from him.

The man swung his Saber towards Taku. At this moment Taku felt as though a huge mountain was being dropped on his head.

He quickly dodged to the side, but he noticed that as soon as he dodged the Saber seemed to change direction.

Even though the direction change came was a shock to Taku, he still managed to calm himself at an exceptional rate.

He quickly jumped up and stepped on the Saber as he used its momentum to go further away from the man.

But as soon as he landed 10 meters away from the man he realized that the man was able to catch up to him within a breath. Seeing this Taku's expression turned grave, he didn't think that the man would be able to react so quickly.

By the time Taku thought about dodging the Saber was several centimetres away from his head. Taku laughed at himself mockingly for being so weak.

He knew that the man was strong, but he had figured that he would at least be able to give the man a run for his money. But to his surprise he had been almost completely suppressed.

Taku instinctively raised an arm to try block the Saber. He closed his eyes waiting for the indescribable pain that was supposed to make him wish for death.

But to his surprise that pain never came. His eyes were shut for at least five breaths before he opened then. The minute he opened them he was almost shocked to death.

In front of his eyes was a haze of smoke, smoke that to his surprise seemed tangible, as it was able to block the Saber attack. He could still feel both his arms, but not as if there were inside the smoke, but as if they were the smoke itself.

Compared to his shock the armoured man was even more flabbergasted. He had honestly thrown everything into this strike, and yet it was 'casually' blocked by a child. He didn't even have the conviction to attack again.

He just stood there and stared blankly at Taku for a long period of time. Never in his wildest dreams did he think that his most powerful attack in this level would be blocked so casually.

"I admit that I underestimated you." The man started. "Without that smoke of yours you won't even be able to last a second before your arm gets shattered."

These words cause a chill to run down his spine. He looked solemnly at the man in front of him and a million thoughts raced through his mind.

The man chuckled and continued. "Reaching the fourth level with your strength is already a massive achievement. I beg of you to stop here and get the guardian spirits of this level."

Taku stared blankly at the man and asked. "What exactly is going on here?"

"No need to ask me..." the man said as he dropped his weapon. "That pompous old Fart will explain everything after you concede."

Taku was still a bit sceptical of the man's words so he decided to ask. "Won't I die if I concede?"

"Kid if I wanted to kill you I would've let you go to the fifth level and die."

Taku had to admit that the man made some sense. The chances of this man lying to him were low but there was still a chance that he could still be on trouble after conceding.

"Why are you helping me?" Taku finally asked after a long moment of silence.

"Hehe..." the man laughed. " Your situation is a bit special. Almost everyone in this place knows that. So there is no point in killing you until we actually see how good you can be."

Taku was flabbergasted by this answer. After thinking for a while Taku finally decided to concede.

"Good choice kid." The man started. "Try not to disappoint me in the future. We all want to see just how good you are."

After saying this the man began to fade away. After a couple of breaths he noticed that his surroundings had changed yet again. He was now back in the large throne room, but this time he noticed that he could vaguely see the giants now. After looking around, it seemed as if they were organized in some sort of semi secular manner, with one particular giant at the head of the group, right behind the throne.

Before he could even think about looking around more a very loud domineering voice sounded out in the room.

"Congratulations on reaching the fourth level. You can now choose which guardian spirit you desire. This will all depend on your luck as your choice will be completely random."

As the voice cleared Taku noticed that the Giants became even clearer.


In another place not so far from Taku the 'giants' were having a heated argument.

"This is bullsh*t!" One giant shouted out.

"Why does he get to choose of us so randomly. Shouldn't it be us who is supposed to choose which people we want."

"He's too special for us to choose. If we get into it we won't stop bickering about him. If he chooses himself we won't be able to say anything about it, we'll just have to deal with it."

Whilst most giants were complaining non-stop, there was one giant who stood out. He was lean, unlike other giants, and he was remarkably quiet.


Back in the throne room Taku was stuck between a rock and a hard place.

It nearly impossible for him to get a guardian spirit he actually wanted so he was a bit dispirited. He walked around the huge room for almost half an hour but he still couldn't choose.

Why do they all look the same? Like shouldn't they have something that distinguishes one from the rest. They are all so bulky.

Taku couldn't help but smile wryly at the injustice in front of him. During this time he completely failed to notice that both his hands were still covered by a faint haze of smoke.

Just when he was about to choose a random giant, he felt as though both his hands were being pulled back by something. He looked behind him, but there was nothing there. Only when he looked down at his hands did he realize the problem.

The smoke was surprisingly trying to drag him away from the position he was standing. From previous experiences he knew that the smoke had some kind of sentience to it so he decided to follow it.

He felt as though he couldn't control his own body when he moved. He noticed that the throne was a lot larger than he thought because after walking for about five minutes he realized that he had just passed his original position when he first came here.

After walking for a couple of more breaths the smoke finally came to a halt. He looked at the giant he had stopped in front of and couldn't help but feel annoyed. Just another bulky man!

Just as he was about to choose that giant, the smoke suddenly moved as it flew upwards. It went up for at least a breath before it stopped at a weirdly looking giant.

This giant was lean and unlike the ferocious looks the others had, its expression was calm. Him really?... Well I did want something different. Since it's the smoke that chose him I will choose him as well.


"What the f*ck!!!" One giant loudly exclaimed. "Him really!? Him?"

When they had noticed that the smoke was now kind off controlling Taku, half of them had already given up. But at this point even the ones who knew that they had no hope from the beginning were a bit reluctant to accept Taku's choice.

As someone bred by the Gutu they were expecting him to choose the bulkiest Giant in the room, but Taku had taken a different route to their expectations.