Zatiel was getting deeper into the Endless Forest, heading in the direction where his mission took place, and as he was advancing through the trees, he looked back.
’The strongest ones are after me, well, the rest won ’t be a problem for little EZ. Still, I must say they are really careful. ’
Zatiel could feel that the number of people who were following him has diminished, but the overall strength has not.
’They are constantly using spells to hide from me, the one they call Arthur is a cautious person, but it doesn ’t matter, eventually they will reveal themselves, ’ Zatiel thought with a calm face, not concerned for the threat that the group could present to him.
As Zatiel was advancing, he was making sure not to draw attention from the magical creatures that made their lair in this place.
The ones that find themselves in this area barely have the power equal to a Rank 2 Apprentice and could not contribute anything to Zatiel, except a waste of time.
Even though he will only be acting in the periphery of the forest, the periphery itself covers thousands of kilometers, after all, the Endless Forest in its entirety covers hundreds of thousands of kilometers.
’With my current speed it will take me around five days to arrive at the mission zone, I will take an opportunity to practice my spells. ’
As he was advancing, chains materialized around him only to disappear in the next second. Although abyssal chains were an extremely complex spell to master, as a Neo-Demon, Zatiel ’s talent was amazing so he was increasing his proficiency with every minute.
After a couple hours stronger magical creatures started to show up, most of them with a strength rivaling Rank 3 Apprentices.
As Zatiel was advancing, he found himself before an Earth Rhino. This was a 3-meter tall creature with earth-like armor covering his body and a weight bordering a ton.
Although this creature could not use any type of spell, it has amazing strength and its resistance was incredible.
’This beast is extremely resistant to physical damage, so it is a suitable target to test the strength of Abyssal Chains. ’
Zatiel stood before the creature without taking his sword or adopting a fighting stance.
The Earth Rhino detected Zatiel and roared in his direction, trying to intimidate him and making him leave.
Even though the beast will normally attack anyone that dares to cross into his territory, it has already developed an intellect not inferior to that of a normal person, letting him know that something was off with the human in front of him.
So instead of attacking blindly, it tried to scare the individual and make him leave, but unfortunately for it, the person didn ’t react to its intimidation.
Seeing as the human did not retreat, the rhino finally attacked charging with immense strength towards Zatiel.
As the rhino advanced, it carried so much power that the ground was cracking, proving the amazing strength that the creature was carrying in its charge.
Zatiel kept himself immovable before the creature and when the rhino was barely 20 meters from him, his eyes focused and his Abyss Aura burst as 4 abyss chains appeared around him, and with incredible speed and precision, they launched themselves to the magical creature.
The Earth Rhino felt an immense threat when it saw those chains, but he was charging with such strength and the chains were so fast that it could not dodge.
The chains rotated as they headed for the creature, one headed right towards its throat inserting itself 50 centimeters inside the creature, and another crashed against its spine.
Although it didn ’t achieve too much, it carried so much strength that it fractured the first vertebra.
Even though the chains hurt the beast, it was not enough to prove a threat to its life, but it momentarily paralyzed the rhino ’s head, letting the other two chains attack.
Each of these chains went towards one ear, piercing them and reaching the brain. The pain was so much that the beast gave a thunderous roar.
Even though the beast was done for, and its charge was diminishing his speed considerably, it still arrived before Zatiel with considerable momentum and although he could have easily dodged the now dying beast, he didn ’t move.
’Let ’s see how strong my body is on its own. ’
Adopting a posture and focusing all the power of his body into his fist, Zatiel launched a punch with all his strength at the rhino head.
A bang could be heard as they collided against each other, the impact was so great that Zatiel was thrown 6 meters before he could stabilize himself and as he did, he could feel his arm shaking and his bones were cracked from the impact.
As for the Earth Rhino, a depression in the shape of a fist appeared on its head and it was thrown 3 meters in the air before crashing on the ground.
After taking a moment to calm his body and making sure the Earth Rino was dead, Zatiel assessed his strength.
’Not bad, although I was on the losing side, the strength of that impact was enough to severely hurt any Pseudo Magus even if they practice body-refinement and I merely end with some broken bones, and besides the creature was carrying huge momentum increasing the strength of its impact.
Since my bones are fractured, it is a good opportunity to see how good the Abyss Regeneration is. ’
As he was thinking, a significant amount of Abyss Aura inside his body headed directly to his arm and started to mend the bones, and before a minute passed, these injuries were completely healed.
Neo-Demons, like all powerful life forms, have strong passive regeneration. But any injury can be healed quickly by using Abyss Regeneration.
It consists of using the Abyss Aura to increase the speed at which the body heals. It was not a spell, but more like a natural function of the body.
After healing his body, Zatiel headed towards the rhino and dissected it with his sword, taking the heart of the creature. After having done that, he left the place, leaving the rest of the body behind.
’The sound of the fight and the smell of blood will surely attract other creatures, I should leave, besides I already have the most important part with me, ’ thought Zatiel as he looked at the heart.
Generally, the magical creatures before advancing to Rank 1 have most of their energy concentrated in the heart, so this part is very nutritious and is the most important part of their body.
After a couple of minutes of moving and making sure that no beast was in the proximities, Zatiel cooked the heart of the Earth Rhino and once it was ready, he devoured it.
As he consumed it, his body immediately started to digest it and the Chaotic Core began to absorb the energy accumulated to use it to improve itself.
’I should rest for today, it will become dark soon and will it be difficult to advance without deviating from the path. ’
Although seeing in the dark was no problem for a Neo-Demon, trying to move in a straight path in the forest during the night will be difficult and a waste of energy.
So Zatiel jumped to the branch of a tree and closed his eyes to rest. Still, despite his eyes being closed, he was constantly assessing his surroundings.
It was the third day of advancing towards the mission zone, and during those days, Zatiel kept practicing his Abyssal Chains with some magical creatures and used them as food to improve his power.
This day he faced a Raging Hyena, a beast that was supposed to be a threat even for some Pseudo-Magi. This beast was especially skillful in agility, so it constantly dodged the attacks from the abyssal chains.
But when it got overconfident and pounced on Zatiel, trying to tear his body with its claws, unfortunately for the creature, Zatiel used his Shadow Form to vanish from the beast ’s view and appeared right by its side.
The Raging Hyena tried to make some distance, but it didn ’t manage to do it before a sword was buried in its neck and it didn ’t even have time to scream as Zatiel rotated the weapon, killing the creature. After taking the useful part of its body, he left the place.
It was when the day was ending that something strange happened.
’The have stopped following me, how odd. ’
Although Zatiel could not pinpoint the location of Arthur and his team, he could always feel as though they were keeping an eye on him, but at this moment, the feeling disappeared.
’They wouldn ’t have followed me three days, only to disappear without doing anything. They must have been tracking me to make sure of something, and now that they know something, they are implementing the next part of whatever plan they have, ’ Zatiel thought, and after a moment he looked in the direction where his mission would take place.
’Interesting, they are even more careful that I think, but still, trying to trick me is futile. ’
Zatiel started to eat the heart of the Raging Hyena with a carefree expression as if nothing was happening.
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