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33 Tino's Relief

 Taku took off the broken gauntlets in front of everybody. These were the only things that received any form of significant damage. Even his beast skin clothing had not been damaged. Taku's expression turned solemn as he turned around and spoke to Tino. "Protect those three, make sure that those two enemies don't kill them and that they don't come intervene here."

Tino nodded as he squared off with the two people. The trio of Tadi, Ranga and Nyasha were shocked by the power that Taku was showing. The three of them were only slightly weaker than the two that Taku was facing off with. In fact if it wasn't for that lady with the bow then the tree of them could've easily ran away.

Taku on the other hand was extremely cautious. Not because of the threat that the opposition caused, but because of his own threat. He knew that the only way he could defeat the duo in front of him was if he used the weird smoke power that he had.

The only problem was that, the last time that he had used this weird power he had completely lost control. He had experimented with it a couple of times after that, but he feared that he might go on another killing spree, so he had restrained himself. He did not want to turn the Foot Guard into a mess.

He stared intently at the duo in front of him and proceeded to attack. His feet began turning into smoke as well, and what surprised the two is that Taku's speed went up a level. In but a blink of a eye, Taku was already in front of the blade wielding man. He punched out and the man this time barely managed to raise his blade to block. This time around the blade was suddenly surrounded by a dim brown light.

Bam!

The minute Taku's fist landed on the blade he felt as though he had hit an indestructible wall. The man took a dozen steps back, but was perfectly fine; he was not injured at all. What surprised him the most was that Taku did not bother attacking him again instead he used his situation to his advantage.

The man and woman were standing right beside each other when Taku attacked, and now that he had pushed the man back he was not going to give the lady any chance to retreat and open up a gap between the two. He had experienced just how deadly this woman's archery skills were, so at the moment he was not going to take any more chances.

He threw out his fist with the fastest speed that he could muster. Now the lady was well prepared as a wall of fire suddenly appeared in front of her. Taku did not bother stopping his fist when he saw this. His fist rammed into the fire wall and the flames immediately retreated a bit.

Ba!

Even though the woman was not directly hit by the fist, she still spat out a mouthful of blood as she retreated. Taku noticed what the woman was trying to do so he quickly moved his feet as he followed the woman. Just as he was only about to close down the distance, he found that the blade wielding man was coming up to attack him.

He used his very keen soul power to see this man. The man swung his blade towards the target that he thought was unaware of his presence and attacked. Taku just smiled as he ducked down and dodged the blade by only a hairs length.

"What!" The duo could not help but exclaim, when they saw that Taku had dodged this attack. The woman knew just how dangerous the blade wielding man was when he was sneaking up on someone. Even people who were a level above him would be injured if he sneaked up on them, especially in an environment like this which completely supplemented his earth element.

Taku just smiled as he kept on chasing after the lady, fist after fist were thrown at her, and time after time she used her firewall to block.

Bam!

Bam!

The man kept on trying to attack from behind but each time Taku would dodge without any effort. Just as the man was about to attack again Taku spoke. "You should just sit down and wait for me, I would have finished her a long time ago if it wasn't for you being such a pest and slowing me down."

The man was truly enraged when he heard this. He knew that if it wasn't for him then the lady would have died already. Just as the man was about to attack the lady spoke. "Bruce you should go help those other two out. I can hold on for a couple of minutes. Once you are done that side then the three of you can come back and assist me."

Bruce only smiled as he spoke. "Captain it is not that I don't want to listen to you, but it is just that this monster would kill you before I even have time to take care of the other brat that side." After saying this; the man's body was surrounded by a dim golden light as he aimed his attack at Taku.

"Brat! Taste my Earth Annihilation."

This attack was incredibly deadly as it swept its way towards Taku. Taku knew that he had to think of a way to dodge and cursed at himself for not learning any martial skills before he left. He quickly stomped his foot on the ground as he flew into the air but to his surprise the blade followed.

Taku twisted his body when he was still in mid-air and then used his hands to block. The hands that were covered in smoke collided with the massive blade.

Bam!

Taku was thrown further up into the sky as Bruce's feet dug into the ground. The lady took this opportunity to draw her bow again. This time the arrow seemed as if it was a level more powerful than the one Taku had faced before. The lady let go of the bowstring as the arrow flew towards Taku.

Whizz!

It was at this moment that Taku's eyes turned bloodshot as his whole body turned into smoke. His body quickly drifted out of the trajectory of the arrow as if the wind itself was carrying him. His speed once again doubled as he sped towards Bruce and sent a kick out.

Bam!

Bruce raised his blade by instinct and managed to just barely block the attack, but he paid a heavy price from it. His hands turned numb as he flew away whilst spinning awkwardly in mid-air. He landed several meters away, but at the moment he could barely get up. A hint of fear could be seen in his eyes.

"These damn Gutu freaks!"

He looked at the battle between the other three and noticed that his teammates were actually about to be defeated. He struggled to stand up and looked and Taku who was just standing there looking mockingly at him. He then looked towards the lady and poke softly.

"My lady you should hurry and escape. Even if we all die you should escape."

The man this time had spoken more like a servant would to his master. Instead of calling her captain he had used 'My lady'. The lady hesitated for a bit. "Do not let my sacrifice be for nothing." This roar from Bruce's immediately brought her back to her senses as she turned around and ran.

Taku was about to go chasing after the lady, but at this moment that Bruce used all his strength to launch a barrage of attacks towards Taku. Taku had no choice but to take a couple of steps back in another direction, he could tell that this man was now going all out to let that lady escape.

Bruce then spoke. "If you want to chase after her then you will have to do it after you have stepped over my dead body."

Taku was calm as he replied. "As you wish!"

Taku then launched himself towards Bruce, blade and fist met as a deafening boom sounded out. Taku took two steps back as his fist felt a little bit numb. The man staggered back as he spat out some blood, the tip of his spear was slightly melted when he looked at it.

When he was about to attack Taku he noticed that another silhouette passed by him and entered the forest. He then looked towards the place were two of his teammates were fighting with another youth. And as his eyes scanned over he was greatly shocked to find his two mates lifelessly lying on the floor.

His heart sank when he saw this. He did not bother chasing after the boy who went chasing after his captain. He knew it was pointless because this boy in front of him would not let him turn around even if he wanted to.

Seeing the situation the blade wielding man threw himself towards Taku. He used his last remaining strength to throw this attack towards Taku. He knew that he would not be able to kill the boy, but he was hoping to injure him enough for the boy to be unable to move. He knew that if he lost here then Taku would be able to chase after his captain and with his speed he would be able to catch up to her in no time.

Even though the other youth was fast, he would still need to discharge a lot of energy to catch her. So he was still slightly confident that she would be able to escape. He was very grateful at the moment that the other three would not be able to chase as well.

This last strike of his contained all his remaining power and it was pretty scary. The captured trio's faces all turned ashen when they saw this. Even though they thought that Taku was powerful, they also knew just how powerful this attack from Bruce was.

Taku just stood there motionlessly as he welcomed the incoming blade attack. The blade was only two feet away from him when he finally threw out a fist. The roar of thunder this time was very deafening as fist and blade met one last time.

Boom!

It was at this moment that the intertwining threads of fire and lightning exploded and sent both Taku and Bruce flying. As Bruce landed with a thud his body released his last bit of breath as he died on the spot. On the other side Taku was slowly getting up. he looked towards Bruce's lifeless body and then sighed in relief.

Just as he was about to stand and give chase his vision suddenly turned blurry. Taku knew what was going to happen, so in order to keep his new teammates and Tino safe he sat back down and began meditating.

The trio behind him were not surprised by this because they thought that he was heavily injured from the last exchange. What they did not know was that Taku was actually about to lose control like he did a couple of years back.

The smoke around his body began to fade as he meditated. He felt like he had just dodged a bullet. If it was not for the fact that he was a little bit more powerful than he was back then, then he probably would've have lost control again and attacked everyone on sight.

Just as the last strand of smoke disappeared Tino came back. He looked rather dejected as he walked back but when he saw Taku meditating he only had one thought in his mind.

Thank God! At least it's not like four years ago.

Even though Tino had not been part of that group that witnessed Taku's brutality, he was still informed of it. Especially when they were leaving, he was told by his uncle to run away if Taku began using this strange power of his but the stone in his heart landed when he realised that Taku was now somewhat able to control it.