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18 Summoning Master

 The first rule of how to play a Spirit Swordsman was to absolutely not attack alone at any point in time.

[Used 1 Skill Point to enhance the Moon Shadow Swordsmanship 1/5, Rank C--Moonbeams Unlocked]

[Used 1 Skill Point to assign talent -- Summoning Master]

[Summoning Master First Talent has been unlocked:

Soul Resonance (Every 10 levels, the character's summoned spirit capacity will increase)

Telepathy (Share your thoughts with the summoned creatures, increase the telepathy active time duration)

Integration (Dual Spirit Fusion)]

[Received Permanent Skill: Soul Resonance LV1 (Every 10 levels, the character's summoned spirit capacity will increase +1)]

[Summoned Spirit Capacity +1]

When the last line of the system prompt disappeared, Rhode came across a huge shadow. However, he didn't retreat in shock. On the contrary, he raised his sword and thrust forward.

Swoosh!

A green shadow quickly flew out from the sword and shot towards the Gargoyle.

It was the Spirit Bird.

The fact that he was unable to summon two creatures at once was his current weakness. Alas, unfortunately, Star Mark was also considered to be one of his summoned weapons.

The Spirit Swordsman class was almost similar to an ordinary Swordsman. They could also choose to equip a 'normal' weapon, but Rhode decided not to. Even though he had considered using a normal weapon instead, he could not bear to give up Star Mark's attribute bonus. And because of that, he was able to easily eliminate higher-leveled monsters which provided him with many benefits, such as additional EXP. On the flip side, he was unable to fight with his 'summoned creatures,' making him look like a full-fledged Swordsman.

This caused Rhode to feel really uncomfortable, but he couldn't help it. If he summoned the Spirit Bird, then he would need to give up Star Mark. But this way, his future battles would be more troublesome. Even though he could summon creatures, his class was still 'Swordsman' and not 'Mage'. He couldn't act like the mages who stayed at the back.

However, if he wanted to use Star Mark, he must give up on the Spirit Bird and fight like an ordinary Swordsman. That wasn't an suitable option either.

The Spirit Swordsman class had a big weakness when compared to the 'genuine' Swordsman class. It was the class penalty --- All the Swordsmanship rank -1.

This meant that if a genuine Swordsman achieved the highest rank of SSS, the maximum a Spirit Swordsman could reach was only the SS rank, no matter how much effort they put in. Moreover, in the beginning, both classes starting point were different. A Swordsman started with Rank D, but Rhode, as a Spirit Swordsman, started with Rank E. That was the difference.

It could be said that until now, Rhode was fighting really hard. If it wasn't because of the Star Mark and his deep knowledge of the Dragon Soul Continent, he would have been very miserable. Even more so because he'd been familiar with his summoned creatures and fighting style. It made him feel extremely pressured.

And now, after choosing the 'Summoning Master' talent, his the weight on his shoulders had finally been reduced.

Yes, though the Spirit Swordsman lacked a strong attacking power, they were not the type that would just run up to monsters and mindlessly attack things.

As the Spirit Bird flew forward, the Gargoyle could not react in time. It could feel a magic power from its opponent, but his AI could not figure out what was this thing in front of it. But it still identified the other side as an enemy, so it attacked with its claw.

But at this time the Gargoyle missed.

When the claws finally met its foe, the Spirit Bird suddenly disappeared into a puff of smoke. The air that spread within its claw drifted away in the wind, leaving no trace behind. Not giving any chance for the Gargoyle to react, Rhode rushed forward, holding the sword in his hand tightly as he swung it down.

A silver moon appeared from his sword as it flew through its target.

This was the Moon Shadow Swordsmanship 3rd Skill -- Moonbeams.

Although it was the same as the Blade of Destruction since the attack was condensed from the sword aura. But the effect was completely different --- the Blade of Destruction created a light that pierced forward. Even though it was strong, but the AOE was too small which made it very easy to dodge. But Moonbeams was different, the crescent moon-shaped attack had a large area of effect, it was very difficult to dodge.

As expected, facing the incoming sword light, the Gargoyle flapped its wings frantically, trying to escape its opponent attack. But it was too slow, and the light pierced its right wing. The Gargoyle trembled violently and began to lose altitude.

But Rhode wasn't done yet. When it attempted to maintain its balance, Rhode took another two steps forward and waved his left hand, making a strange hand gesture.

The Spirit Bird which previously transformed into a gust of wind arrived from the Gargoyle's rear and froze its body once again. Followed by a tweeting sound, the wind smashed directly into the Gargoyle's back. The collision made a powerful impact which sent the Gargoyle flying away. This made the Gargoyle even angrier as it started to scream loudly. But Rhode did not wait for it to express its anger as he drove a shimmering light into the Gargoyle.

One.. two... three!

The Blade of Destruction accurately and continuously pierce the Gargoyle's right wing. Even it was made of rock, it still could not withstand a series of continuous attack on the same spot. Cracks spread through its wings and with a snapping sound, the wing completely shattered. The Gargoyle that lost its wing screamed hysterically as it fell to the ground. When it smashed onto the floor, it created a small crater in the bluish stone asphalt.

Relying on numbers to win as well as combining quantity and quality was the Spirit Swordsman's fighting style.

Rhode finally reunited with his old fighting style. In fact, if he was holding a normal weapon right now, when he activated his 'Summoning Master' talent he could summon two creatures to attack. At that time, not to mention rare elite monsters, even if it was a boss monster, he would surely kill it.

Unfortunately, this world had no 'ifs'. Reality was harsh. He did not have a second spirit to summon.

That was why he gave up this idea and retreated immediately.

Because at this time, the second Gargoyle was already rushing over towards his direction.

Perhaps when it saw its comrade being attacked, it rushed over as fast as it could. As for Rhode, since he could now summon the Spirit Bird, he did not intend to fight it head-on. Instead, he raised his head to stare at the monster that had once made him so miserable and then blew a whistle. A strong wind quickly blocked the black shadow that was trying to attack him, throwing the Gargoyle off its flight trajectory as it fell and rolled several times onto the ground, only stopping when it smashed into the wall of the church.

Of course, Rhode would not miss such a good opportunity to retaliate.

Under his command, a green whirlwind gathered from below. The Spirit Bird then stretched its wings and attacked its enemy once again.

In a blink of an eye, he switched from defense to offense.

The Gargoyles, who previously had aerial superiority, were now grounded. Rhode who was previously under a lot of pressure managed to turn the tide. He deliberately made the Spirit Bird separate the two Gargoyles so that they could maintain the '2 vs 1' battle and made sure that the other one had no way to come to rescue its comrade.

Although the situation had turned for the better, Rhode was still unable to continue the next battle. The recent clash consumed more than half of his current Soul Power. In the game, once you level up, your avatar will automatically replenish to the maximum. But of course, reality wasn't like that. When he leveled up to level 10 and unlock the talent tree, his Soul Power did not change at all.

If he just relied on his remaining Soul Power, he definitely wouldn't be able to destroy the two Gargoyles. Since he had already consumed a lot of his power, he must ensure to avoid the 'power outage' condition. After all, the level gap between them was simply too large. The Gargoyle's defense was naturally very strong. Even with the Blade of Destruction, he could only destroy one of its wings which did not really damage them to the point of death. But since he almost consumed all of his power and there was still one more Gargoyle he had to face alone -- even an idiot would know what the outcome would be.

Right now the only thing he could do was to buy some time until Lize and Matt found the 'Controller Device'

Otherwise, the tables would turn upon him again.

"---!"

Though one of its wings was destroyed, it still did not lose its threatening gaze. It crawled on the ground as if it was a dark giant dog and attacked like a goblin. This was the frightening part of alchemy creature. If someone thought that all they could do was fly around and attack, then they'll be sorely mistaken.

Luckily, Rhode understood their behavior very well. He wasn't the newbie who believed that once they lost their ability to fly, the Gargoyles would be as good as dead. But the fact still remains it still reduced some of his pressure as he did not need to worry about air attacks any longer.

A black shadow suddenly appeared behind him, it was trying to sneak attack him from behind. But he was prepared. Rhode sidestepped and blocked the attack with his sword. At the same time, he stretched his right hand and made a hand gesture. After recognizing the gesture, the Spirit Bird flew towards him and blocked the other Gargoyle that was trying to launch another attack from above.

The Spirit Bird level was low and it could not really cause much damage to the rare elite monster. But as an elemental creature, it was not a difficult task to parry an attack.

As time passed, Rhode's heart beat faster and faster as he felt increasingly anxious. His body started to become sluggish, unable to keep up with his techniques. His vitality and Soul Power was running dry. Up till now, there was still no movement coming from the church.

Could it be that they had not found the controller device?

Swoosh!!

He heard a sharp sound of wind slicing through the air beside him. Rhode was caught off guard which made him feel slightly surprised. He immediately threw his body to the side and activated his shadow flash, but due to him being slightly careless, he lost his balance and the skill automatically disengaged.

His Soul Power almost ran out!

Rhode's heart sank. Right now he could not think of anything anymore. He quickly spun around and swung his sword forward. The pure white sword clashed with the Gargoyle's claw, igniting a loud, screeching sound like metal scratching against each other. The Gargoyle quickly retreated after it failed its ambush but Rhode was too exhausted to chase after it.

Just at this moment, a voice sounded from behind.

"Mr. Rhode! We've found it!!"