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42 Slaughter

 "AHH---!!!"

The whole room shook violently when a terrifying screech pierced the air. It was as though a hundred of people screamed at the same time. The white tiles on the floor began to tear apart because of the explosion. It was until then that Lize realized why the room was entirely white - the 'tiles' were made out of bones that compressed against each other till no gaps could be seen!

A chill ran down Lize's spine. If not for Rhode's timely reminder, she could imagine herself entering this horrifying room and who knew what would happen to her after that?

Lize subconsciously turned towards Rhode who was standing beside her, his arms folded and his face indifferent as usual.

How did he know...?

Rhode felt her surprised gaze, but he eventually chose not to explain himself. Telling her that he had died here once, and resurrected again wouldn't be a wise choice... right?

Now wasn't the time to think about such things.

"Lize, get ready to attack."

Once the sea of white bones retreated, the black and dirty stone floor revealed itself. The atmosphere of the room changed drastically, and the previous dream-like beautiful ambiance disappeared. However, the statue still stood beautifully, its holiness and purity weren't affected at all even after all that happened.

But there was no time to appreciate this beautiful disaster. He gave Lize specific instructions and rushed headfirst into the room. While he was running towards the center of the room, he thrust his arm forward, and in his palm, a bright red card materialized once again, turning into a sea of flames which enveloped his whole body.

"---!!!"

Countless of bony arms shot towards Rhode, but before it could reach him, the flames surrounding him lashed out and deflected all of the arms. The Flame Killer's anger was apparent. Even though summoned spirits do not experience true death, but the pain they felt was still genuine.

While each individual bone arm didn't carry a high attack power, they made up for their shortcoming with sheer numbers. Rhode didn't have any ranged area of attack spells, and Lize's spells just didn't have enough power to cause significant damage. Even though they could still eventually wear this foe down by attacking and retreating carefully, but they wouldn't be able to sustain their consumption of soul power.

Thus, Rhode had no choice but to utilize a rather odd and unorthodox strategy - throwing the Flame Killer like a grenade and resurrecting it! Then he would just rinse and repeat the process.

The poor black hound. Its pitiful, heartwrenching whimpers fell on deaf ears and could only helplessly obey its master.

Clang!

Rhode helped block an attack that was heading for the black hound. But it wasn't because he had good intentions, but instead, he wanted to inch closer so he could throw the black hound deeper.

Sure enough, once he got closer, the massive number of bone arms quickly forced Rhode to take a defensive stance. Facing the countless arms head-on wasn't a smart choice, thus, Rhode retreated decisively and 'intentionally' left his summoned spirit behind.

Any idiot would realize that this was a trap. Fortunately, these bone arms appeared to be boneheaded as well. They foolishly grabbed at the pitiful hound and dragged it back with them.

Boom!!!

Without hesitation, the arms tore the black hound apart and it blew up once again. This time, the sea of bones fell to the floor due to the impact. The white bones now were charred black, and some were even broken into thousands of fragments.

Rhode flipped his palm again and summoned the red card.

Luckily there was no way for the spirit to reject him. When the black hound appeared, it stared at Rhode with dead eyes. A great resentment filled its heart, and it lost its vicious demeanor from before. If not for the soulbound contract between the both of them, this poor 'living grenade' would immediately turn around and dash off without hesitation.

The 'cool' Rhode was yet again indifferent towards the black hound's apparent resentment, and he just whistled, indicating it to continue moving forward.

And so, the battle started again.

Surely, if the undead had brains, it would've already decayed. Thus, it didn't question why did something that was supposed to be dead, didn't stay dead. Facing the black hound that rushed towards them again, they just tore it apart like before without hesitation and tasted the explosion repeatedly. The Flame Killer's explosion on death wasn't something that can be blocked easily. After multiple explosions, the sea of bones decreased by a good 30%. It was up to this point when they decided to fill this sudden gap, but little did they expect that Rhode had already quietly crept near them.

Since Rhode had completed this quest before, naturally, he knew where the problem was. The sea of bones was just a distraction and the real enemy was the holy statue at the center.

"Lize, shield!" Rhode shouted towards Lize who was standing further back.

Soon, a golden light wrapped around Rhode's body. This action caused the bone arms to target him, but Rhode was ready as he welcomed them with the sword in his hand.

Slash!

With a flash, Rhode tore the bones apart. Then, as a follow-up, Rhode activated his Shadow Flash and leaped to the sky.

While Rhode's speed multiplied several times after activating Shadow Flash, it still could not totally negate the danger he was facing. When they came in a large number, speed wasn't a problem for them. Soon, many arms trailed behind Rhode, most of them missed him, but some still managed hit the shield which resulted in their fingertips being injured.

Lize then made her move.

Raising both of her hands, pillars of holy light fell from the skies and crushed the bone arms that tried to block Rhode's path. Bits and pieces of bone matter fell onto the floor.

Although it wasn't a genuine spell, since Lize had a faint bloodline of an angel, it still could be cast. As though burned by fire, the sea of bones began to tremble and screamed in a fury. Soon, these bones formed into a 'stream' and speared towards the entrance where Lize was standing.

Meanwhile, Rhode began to lose speed.

After all, he wasn't an angel. Even though Shadow Flash was able to increase his speed, it still had a time limit. Moreover, gravity was a constant, and it bore down on him continually, limiting his movement. Clearly, uncle Newton was not satisfied with him wanted to use him as an example to give a memorable lesson.

The bone arms were beneath him, and Rhode who had lost the momentum to cross the barrier of bones to reach the statue was in dire straits. If he fell into the sea of bones, it would be the end of his life.

But Rhode had another plan up his sleeve.

He reached out his arm and grasp onto a green card which materialized on his palm.

The Spirit Bird.

After appearing, the bird immediately circled Rhode, generating a wind current that prevented him from falling. Then he clenched his teeth and continued to push forward.

This one move grasped the victory. When he jumped again, he managed to reach the top of the sculpture. Looking at the white and smooth statue before him, he felt pity. Then he shook his head and split the statue down from the middle.

But things did not go as smooth as he had expected.

Swoosh!!

When the sword was about to land on the statue, countless of bones suddenly shot towards him from below. However, in an instant, a pair of wings appeared in front of him and blocked the attack.

Clang clang clang!!!

The wings began to glow, and the shining bright feathers slowly fell off one by one as they floated off in the air. Now, the gap between Rhode's sword and the statue was less than a meter.

Swoosh!!!

A gust of wind suddenly swept past.

Rhode only saw a black shadow passing through him, and the next thing he felt was a massive impact on his flank. He could not maintain his balance anymore as he flew towards the wall at the side. Lize was momentarily dazed, she tried to move forward to help Rhode but she felt a sharp pain on her shoulder, forcing her to step back.

"Mr. Rhode!"

"Hmph.."

Rhode snorted and pressed his body against the wall to stand up. He could feel pain all over his body. But at this time, the unknown wind once again swept past him.

Relying on his seven years of gaming experience, Rhode turned his head and saw what had hit him previously.

It was an extended tailbone, lifted high, like a snake coiling the statue. After being attacked twice, the bones became cautious and combined into a sharp tail.

Five meters...

Rhode calculated in his mind for a moment and came up with an idea.

At this time, the undead seemed to have lost its patience. Once again, the bones gathered and speared towards Rhode who was still leaning on the wall. In an instant, Rhode's position was filled with bones and Rhode was nowhere to be seen in the sea of white.

"Mr. Rhode!"

Lize almost fainted and her mind blanked out. She didn't know what to do next. Rhode's confidence brought her this far, even if she knew that it was dangerous, but Rhode seemed to defy all kind of common sense. However, when Rhode's position was compromised, she realized that the gap between their abilities was simply too far apart. Even right now, as she fell into thought, she didn't even realize that the bones were approaching her rapidly.

The sea of bones surged forward towards Lize and would reach her in a few seconds. However, deep in the midst of all the bones, a dim light shone.

Surrounded by a solid cage of bones, Rhode slashed frantically in all directions, causing the cage to tremble and crack. The sea of bones gathered and rushed forward again in an attempt to crush the enemy once and for all.

But this time, they failed.

The sea of bones was split into two. The turbulent waves caused by the impact blew the bone matter in all directions. However, the undead didn't give up and kept roaring. At this moment, Rhode raised his sword, and a brilliant light shone at the tip of his sword like a dazzling star.

Rhode took a half step forward, with his right hand thrusting forward.

As though the undead was aware of the danger, the sea of bones formed a wall and rushed towards Rhode. The tail of bones moved as well, piercing towards Rhode's head.

He put his hands down and dodged.

Swoosh.

The cold and sharp bones once again passed through him. But this time, there was no impact.

Because at the same time, the sea of bones had crashed to the floor. The wall of bones skidded for about two meters before finally stopping at Rhode's feet.

Rhode looked up towards the statue. The formerly beautiful statue now had a sword protruding from its head.

Soon, cracks began to spread throughout the statue. At the same time, a system prompt appeared before him.

[Stronghold unlocked]

Snap!

Followed by a loud, cracking sound, the sea of bones tore apart.