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454 Unexpected Collaboration

 The Stalwart broke through the rubble with even more rage than it had before for the draugr, its crimson-colored body turned a pitch hotter and the flames turned blue.

The heat increased exponentially in the area, forcing Dave to go into the [Infernal Tyrant's Oppression] as the heat will soon be unbearable.

Warlord and Valentine backed up, the heat instantly send them to Overheating and they were not prepared for such things.

"Call the raid team, get them here!" Valentine shouted through the voice com.

The raid team was the Devastators strongest assets, composed of the strongest players the Western Super guild had to offer.

Dave ignored the lot that needed preparation to fight and dove right toward the Stalwart.

"Skelly's going for the kill! He'll have all the loot and EXP!" a player shouted.

"Shut up, he can't beat that thing before our party arrives, It's even better if he withers it down for us," another replied.

While the group were arguing how to make the best use of Skelly, the latter dodged a clawing strike that was aimed at him, though Dave was still a good distance away from the Stalwart. Dave had no doubt in his mind that the Stalwart's seemingly missing attack didn't have any other side effects.

His bet paid off when the Stalwart's clawing motion rendered the air, as large cleaves of energy spewed forward slashing through the air and moving at a breathtaking speed where Dave was a fraction of a second ago.

The attack ripped and sundered the ground, then moved ahead clashing into the party of huddled up players. The most attentive of the lot had either moved away or used their defensive skills.

The rest were all turned to burning cinders and ash. Even those who used their defensive skills didn't escape unharmed, in a matter of fact, the only ones that survived the direct clash against the Stalwart's attack were the ones that used their high cooldown defensive skills that granted them either damage immunity or fire immunity. The rest that opted to save on their big skills didn't fare any better than their scorched comrades.

It was clearly apparent to the lot that the fight was going to bring a huge casualty count, so the ones that had the least confidence in their skills and skillsets backed off leaving the fight to the pros.

The Stalwart charged at Dave like a rhino, clawing at the ground to get more momentum and moving with enough bulldozing speed that one would dare swear the creature would break a mountain in half if it crashed into it.

Dave slid under the paws of the beast and dug Durandal under the stalwart's belly. Lava spewed out from the wound and caused the enraged creature to shudder and turn his frustration and pain at the bystanders.

Players began screaming as the Stalwart chased after them while dragging the draugr under him.

"Fuck it's indiscriminately killing players, Valentine, we need to help." Warlord suggested.

"Not now, we need the healers, Everyone who is less than level 450 leave the area!" Valentine shouted the last sentence, and players obliged, they knew the fight was much bigger than them.

Even the players who met Valentine's criteria weren't as confident in faring against the Stalwart as the lower level players.

The creature's mere presence was enough to force them to continuously chug on Health Potions just to offset the Overheating effect.

Dave managed to unlatch the sword from the belly of the beast and was freed. He stood up then ran after the mad Stalwart, jumping in [Immortal Apparition] then landed on the Stalwart's head.

The Stalwart clawed at its face to get the draugr to leave its perching spot, to which Dave did a back roll, landing on the Stalwart's back dodging the claw.

Dave swung down Durandal, forcing a pained scream out of the Stalwart. The creature did a barrel roll, tumbling to the side forcing Dave to jump off. Once the creature gained its balance, it opened its mouth wide, white, and blue rays of light gathered around tis gullet.

"Not this time bitch," Dave cursed and charged in [Stampede], crashing into the Stalwart and rose up in a shield bash up the beast's lower jaw, causing them to clank shut.

An explosion blasted inside the Stalwart's mouth, causing the pent-up ray of light to blast through the holes between its fangs, and at the same time breaking a few of those dagger-sharp tools of death in the process.

Dave took a few steps back, the attack he stopped was bound to cause unwanted damage, to the players, and if he was unlucky to himself as well. It was a tradeoff still, as the Stalwart didn't get to release the energy and remained in his overheating form.

"The team is here! Skelly, step aside we got this," Warlord said.

Dave ignored them and kept fighting the Stalwart.

Being ignored Warlord drew his battle-ax and charged ahead.

Dave glanced back, noticing the advancing Warlord and spoke up, "The moment you turn that blade against me, is the moment your gaming career ends."

The undead focused ahead, and didn't even pay the charging warlord any heed, his threat was true, and deep down, Warlord knew that the draugr was not boasting.

He knew the difference in strength between the two, he knew that if the undead wanted he could clearly summon his followers here and have the entire area razed to the ground. Not to mention if he had the ability to summon those fearsome Abyssal Knights.

Never mind the Stalwart, any one of those Abyssal Knights was a power to be reckoned with, even without their armies.

Warlord didn't speak but swung his ax forward, its direction was at Skelly's back. Yet before the thrown ax touched Dave, it changed direction and landed neatly on the Stalwart's neck.

Warlord appeared right where the ax was and raised his fist and swung down.

A mighty Gauntleted golden fist materialized in the sky and dropped down upon the Stalwart.

It missed Dave squarely, but the intention of Warlord was clear, he was going to fight with Dave, but if he got in the way, Warlord was not going to be responsible.

Dave didn't care, he wanted the Stalwart dead, both to piss off the Ash King, and secondly to get the token as it gave him the right to exchange it from Drahma for another Conquest Right.

Dave swung Durandal at the Stalwart's hind legs, the creature stumbled to the side and flailed its long rocky tail at Dave.

The draugr held his shield up to absorb the attack that never came, in front of him was a gigantic pink shield that stopped the attack square in its place.

Valentine joined the fray and stopped the attack from landing on Dave, giving him enough time to charge up an attack.

Dave thrust Durandal forward the moment Vlaneinte's shield deflated. The giant sword morphed into a larger form of dark light, into a [Sword Lunge]. The sword sawed through the stalwart's tail ripping it from the base.

Warlord hacked down with his ax on the stalwart's head, before the latter could fully counter with a swipe, a red spear pierced through the Stalwart's open palm.

Dave didn't need to turn to know it was Satan Slayer who joined the fight.

"Blessings of the Mighty!" the sound of a holy prayer sounded from the back, the spell was a continuous healing mass effect, yet it only targeted the Devastators players, leaving Dave out of the area of effect. The healing effect would have done nothing but damage to the draugr, and the priest knew it well.

Dave pivoted around the Stalwart, being the one with the highest aggro, the creature turned to face it, giving the Devastator legacy holders the chance to pile down on the damage with little to no obstacles.

The group went into a silent agreement to bring down the Stalwart. No one spoke further, they began collaborating in seamless jolly cooperation.

Dave leeched the aggro, giving Warlord the pleasure of doing damage, Valentine acted as the party's Guardian, interfering when any one of them needed a breather or when the Stalwart attacked.

Satan Slayer poked at the creature but kept his aggro to a low level, this way he would be able to disrupt the Stalwart if Valentine didn't have the opportunity to assist one of the DPS.

As for the healer, he buffed the party besides Dave, yet this didn't mean that the draugr didn't have any assistance, a few bards showed up, and began buffing the group including the draugr.

No one spoke, no one said anything, the choreography of movements, the attacks defenses, and even the occasional assist from Dave to the Devis, or vis versa all happened as if the group had partied together for ages.

The Stalwart was on its last leg by the second hour of the fight. It was exhausted, fully flame depleted, and the players began to have mental exhaustion from being forced to fight a creature that could kill any of them for the least mistake.

Some of the bystanders that remained alive were attentively keeping an eye on Dave lest hi betrays the Devastators for the kill. But nothing of the like happened as it seemed, Warlord brought down his ax on the Stalwart's neck severing it and landing the final blow.

Dave had all the time in the world to steal the kill, but he was not interested in that. He knew by taking the Altar away from the Devastators, giving their Guild Master the Kill on the Stalwart would at least remove some of the bitterness in their hearts, even if they didn't know that siding with the Ash King was never going to be good for them.

As for the EXP, Dave didn't care, he still had more raids to do, and more Stalwarts to kill if they appeared in the other temples. He could compensate for this loss for the benefits it would give him.

Warlord was secretly surprised as to when Dave didn't finish off the Stalwart, he knew the Draugr had an amazingly powerful legacy and there was no way that he didn't have high damaging skill, thus his surprise came when the draugr let him get the kill.

The players all stood still at the cooling body of the Stalwart.

Dave placed his sword on his back and moved toward the body.

"Where are you going?" Warlord asked.

"Looting, what do you think?" Dave said.

Before Warlord replied in anger, at how this was a teamwork and all the loots should be split together, Dave sent him a party invitation.

"This way we'll split the loot as a party, I only need one thing, you can have the rest," Dave said.

Warlord accepted the party invitation and invited the rest of the players with him.

"Alright," Dave touched the Stalwart's corpse and a list of items showed up.

***

[Sworn Stalwart's Cleaver] Bound Legendary Weapon

[Sworn Stalwart's Infernal Hide] X1 Crafting Material

Sworn Stalwart Diagram

[Sworn Stalwart's Token]

Sworn Stalwart's Claws X 18

10,000Gold

***

When the group saw the loot, they were all shuddering, the loot had a diagram for the Sworn Stalwart's gear. This means that they could craft armor made out of this creature, and judging by its level, the gear would make the Devastators incredibly powerful.

"Skelly, what item do you want?" Valentine asked.

Dave didn't hesitate before saying, "I'm taking the Token."

The answer came as a surprise to Valentine, he didn't dare believe his ears. The following words came out of his mouth even without him wanting to say them, "Are you sure?"

"Yeah, and I know what y'all are thinking. I don't need the Stalwart armor; you guys can think of it as a replacement to the altar. This way, your power will increase without submitting to the Ash King. Anyway, I'm off."

"Right, thanks for the help," Valentine said.

Dave shrugged.

Warlord's frown disappeared and he nodded at Dave before he turned his head.

"Heh, Tsundere," Dave laughed and used a teleportation scroll to the Underworld.

Once Dave appeared in the Dead Realm, two Death Knights showed up in front of him.

"Your Lordship, the Smith Andre has finished his work and is waiting for you at the forge."

"Nice, done already, this is good," Dave said. "Let's see how this gear looks like then, shall we," Dave followed after the Death Knights.