263 The Stalemate of the Three-Way Duel
*A/N: …Eh? What’s the most important NPC—aka. the Emperor doing? Well, suffering from stomach ache, of course!
Without wasting their breath, the three moved as soon as they had finished applying buffs.
Instead of El—whose entire body was encased in a rounded, streamlined armor that rendered my blade useless, I pointed my dagger towards the abnormally swollen right arm of the Perverted Gentleman
At the same time, El ignored the Perverted Gentleman, and swung his great sword at me, who had the weakest defense among us three.
With a firm stance, the Perverted Gentleman’s fist was connected to El.
Right after I had slashed the Perverted Gentleman’s right arm, I blocked the approaching great sword by layering it with my thread several times over. However, all it did was slightly reduce the momentum. As it was, I’d be blown away.
At the strong impact that shook even the inside of his armor, El flew like a ball.
Thus, it became obvious.
Neither my poison nor my attack at his vital points did any damage to El, while El’s attack only strengthened the Perverted Gentleman.
Unlike El’s great sword, my Odachi—which specialized in severing, wouldn’t enhance the Perverted Gentleman’s strength. In fact, I could diminish his muscles by slashing at them.
As for the Perverted Gentleman, he could unleash a penetrating attack on El’s armor, producing shock on the inside.
…In such a way, a splendid three-way duel was completed.
In addition, my shadows became faint and blurry due to the surrounding fog; while intangible objects seemed to be affected to some extent by the intense electromagnetic waves that periodically passed through our bodies.
Apparently, by sending Kageyama’s clone over to take care of Inoue, I had made the right call
For the time being, I didn’t know whether or not it’d work, but let’s spy on them using Thread Detection. Hopefully, using poison gas, I could inflict status ailments such as blindness to them.
“…El, is there anything different with your armor?”
Even the Perverted Gentleman felt like his arm had grown lighter.
“As long as I know your positions, you’re mine—Stealth!”
Since Stealth wouldn’t suffice, I applied a “shape change” to Inoue, who manipulated the demon. After setting him on the angle of 42 degrees from the front, I activated one of the stealth techniques, bouncing the radio waves evenly to the side.
...This’ll just be a temporary measure, though.
At the same time, by diluting toxic gas into the fog, I was now able to influence the humidity.
Then, I used Shadow Clone to scatter decoys in my surrounding area.
With that, there’d be a good chance of me avoiding detection…
“…Oh, what is this?”
Suddenly, it became difficult for me to monitor the two with Thread Detection.
“Aah, I’m going to suffer from brain damage.”
…I didn’t like that Perverted Gentleman at all. Whenever he hit me, he’d do it in such a way that I’d be airborne, perhaps to prevent the impact from traveling to the ground.
Due to that, my armor was rendered useless. Moreover, I seriously thought I was going to die from the sheer violence caused by his abnormally swollen muscle. After all, whenever I was thrown into the air, I’d also suffer from the shock that reverberated inside my armor.
Besides, no matter how many times I hit him, he only got stronger. Even his stats became broken. When I tried to electrocute him, he’d cry in ecstasy—which was annoying.
But this time, I’d come up with countermeasures against Ichijo—no, against Reina.
Namely, an armor that encased the entire body. This way, she wouldn’t be able to aim for my vital points using poisonous needles and other dirty tricks.
Furthermore, the armor was streamlined so that her favorite short sword—the Odachi, wouldn’t be able to slide in.
…Just when I thought that I finally had her, there was an interesting intruder.
—Well, it can’t be helped.
I need a change of plan.
Unexpectedly, my current armor was weak against the Perverted Gentleman’s attacks. As such, I applied Shape Change, and the streamlined surface of my armor protruded sharply outward, like pointed cones.
However, since the mass of the armor was insufficient as a whole, there were gaps in the joints and around the eyes—
—Nevertheless, it was a necessary and inevitable risk.
Because of this, I’d become somewhat vulnerable to Rena’s Assassination, but I was able to perform a strong counter-attack against the Perverted Gentleman’s blows.
“Right, detection measures.”
Along with the radar waves, I systematically released strong electric shock waves in a wide range. I did it to intercept both the incoming thread and fog.
With that, the threads would be scorched, while the humidity that made up the fog was electrolyzed and separated into oxygen and hydrogen, transforming into a substance that the Perverted Gentleman couldn’t manipulate.
“Huh, it disappears?”
But as soon as it was completed, any trace of reaction disappeared from the radar.
“Hee, did they deal with it?”
As I thought, it was fun to play around with a madman.
In order to compensate for his missing right arm, I channeled my swollen muscles to grow a new one.
After closing and opening my fist to confirm that there was no discomfort, I activated my skill, about to prepare for my next move.
Using the “liquefy” skill of the Undine—a high-ranking water spirit that possessed me, I transformed the attribute of my body into water.
As a result, my steel-like muscles, as supple as copper, were imbued with the unique beauty of water.
Even the sharpest sword wouldn’t be able to cut liquid.
I’d always liked to improve my agility and elemental attack while maintaining my inherent sturdiness and resilience.
…Moreover, it didn’t end there.
After all, some things were better left to the imagination.
By mixing Rena’s bodily fluids with my own, I’d hinder her movement. Not only that, I’d randomly manipulate the water, obstructing her detection.
As a result, she’d be influenced by me, and the accuracy of her Thread Detection will decrease sharply.
“Lastly, Forbidden Muscle Trouble—!”
My size began to expand, and I became much larger than the surrounding buildings. My body, which had transformed into liquid, was dyed black despite having retained its normal characteristics.
To improve my offense and defense, I absorbed the light of the radar waves with my beautiful, onyx muscles that seemed to swallow even light. That way, I’d be interrupting the signal feedback.
—Oh my, even the light paled in comparison to my eloquent physique.
Despite basking in such narcissisms, I involuntarily smirked when I realized that even amidst my own fog, I couldn’t trace the presence of the two.