55 Part 2
But who on earth could have possibly thrown that?
There were no members who could throw bo-shurikens.
Could it have been Air?
Kagemitsu quickly looked around, but could find no signs of a strange mask.
He probably was still fighting the Monster Parade.
None of the small monsters were heading his way, so he was certainly not dead…
But was Air okay?
The fact that the Lizardman’s eyes had been disabled allowed Kagemitsu to think about things outside of his own battle.
In this situation, would they be able to escape without having to sacrifice anyone?
Kagemitsu was still trying to figure out how to escape from the battle.
Suddenly, a piece of the Lizardman’s scales was sent flying from behind its back.
And a small laceration appeared on its tail, which so far had only been as much as scratched over a few times.
After seeing that, Kagemitsu’s intention to escape disappeared.
Was it Doraneko?
Or perhaps Van?
He didn’t know what happened behind the Lizardman’s back.
But this was a great opportunity.
The boss turned around and away from Kagemitsu’s face.
“Where do you think you’re going!?”
Kagemitsu enhanced his presence, gaining the boss’ aggro.
This was Kagemitsu’s special ability, the one that he so far had not revealed to Air.
There was nothing like it. It was Aerial’s advantage.
With it, he can freely manipulate the monsters’ aggression and keep their formations undisturbed, no matter how much they are attacked from the rear.
If they can control the monsters’ formation, then they can control the flow of the battle.
This was Aerial’s most important skill in their quest to conquer the dungeon.
Affected by his Taunt, the boss once again turns to face Kagemitsu.
Kagemitsu mustered up all of his strength and slashed at the boss.
However, he missed.
Still, Kagemitsu did not lose hope.
There’s no need to panic, even if his attacks don’t hit.
Because one of his companions was relentlessly attacking the monster from its rear.
This is how Aerial could decide a battle.
The ones in charge of dealing damage could do so freely, without worrying themselves about attracting aggro from their targets. With this, they could even take down a monster of a higher grade than them.
But then, he got distracted.
He took a vicious attack from the boss.
It was getting even angrier than before, now that it was sustaining damage.
It was also growing impatient since it could not fight back against the one hurting it from behind because of Kagemitsu’s Taunt.
The Lizardman’s attack was fierce.
However, Kagemitsu was able to withstand it.
When Kagemitsu turned to his full defense mode, not even the Lizardman’s attacks could break through his defenses that easily.
That was also a given.
After all, Kagemitsu’s job was to attract the monster’s attention.
He had been the team member who had received the most attacks for years.
When Kagemitsu fully devoted himself to defense, he would not go down easily.
His body, which seemed to have gone beyond its own limits, forgot about its own fatigue and pain, and simply moved so as to survive.
A single mistake could mean death.
But even under those circumstances, Kagemitsu kept his cool and continued to make the right choices.
The boss’ attacks were getting more and more violent.
Even though he was guarding, he was gradually sustaining damage bit by bit.
Still, Kagemitsu kept his cool and continued to take on its attacks.
Their chance to win would come for sure.
That’s what he believed.
The moment had finally arrived.
Several splintered scales scattered away from the Lizardman’s back.
Its tail, which hadn’t sustained any serious damage up until then…
… Had been cut off clean from its root, and was dancing in the air.
＊ ＊ ＊ ＊ ＊ ＊ ＊ ＊
After taking off his mask, Haruki threw four handicraft pikes.
Out of those four pikes, which had been a drop from an earlier boss, two had plunged themselves into the Lizardman’s eyes.
It managed to block the other two, but it didn’t matter.
Since it had lost one of its eyes, the Lizardman’s fighting capabilities had been reduced.
Kagemitsu, who had been pushed around by it until that point, was finally able to stand up to it.
After making sure Kagemitsu was recovering some of his lost ground, Haruki employed all of his power to sneak behind the boss’ back.
He wanted to attack the Lizardman quickly.
He wanted to help Kagemitsu at all costs.
However, with Haruki’s ability, getting in front of the monster would mean risking taking one of its powerful attacks.
A single mistake, and he could be dying for nothing.
That’s why Haruki carefully looked at the boss from behind.
Haruki grit his teeth.
He had to make his best efforts not to give in to his impatience.
A stream of light burst out.
Observe, remember, imagine, and guess its movements.
Carefully carve its patterns into your head over and over again.
The path became hazy.
A power that went beyond his expectations.
It was interfering with Haruki’s scrutiny.
–A little more!
Its methods, its habits, its patterns…
Find them, no matter what!
He was reaching the limits of his ability to concentrate.
The world was moving frame-by-frame.
Then, his expectation and the way ahead finally met.
At that exact moment, Haruki made his move.
A second extended into eternity.
His dagger met with the Lizardman’s tail, which it had been moving constantly behind its back.
But it was too hard.
With Haruki’s level of training, he was unable to put a single dent on it.
However, Haruki kept on slashing at it.
Was it reacting to it being damaged?
The tail quickly approached Haruki.
But that was something he had seen coming.
Haruki changed his position without even looking at the incoming tail.
The boss’ attack whiffed, hitting nothing at all.
The tail went sideways, missing Haruki by an inch.
It made a crushing sound as it slashed through the air.
Even though that single attack could have killed Haruki right there, he wasn’t scared at all.
Without even flinching, Haruki kept on attacking.
Rhea was constantly attacking the tail as well.
Rhea’s bullets were scraping off the boss’ scales little by little.
Haruki dauntlessly put all of his strength in his hands.
“–This is it!”
He could feel it.
It was crystal clear.
Haruki’s blade plunged into the Lizardman’s tail, which until then had successfully repelled each and every one of his attacks.
The fact that he had increased his Technology score by 1 had nothing to do with that.
Such a small increase would still not allow him to punch through such armored scales.