Chapter 539 Deceiving The Rules of The Dream Domain
"Impossible..! How could he break my Aura with just his sword arts?!" Prime exclaimed. He could not hide his shock at the sight of his Aura dissipating.
What startled Prime more than anything was that his Aura had been destroyed not by another Aura user but by someone using only sword arts!
Aura was unique to the kingdom Prime served and was the main reason they were considered an untouchable powerhouse. It was not something one was born with in this world, but rather something they had to be "gifted".
However, the amount of Aura was limited and strictly regulated. This made it so that the total number of Aura users in the kingdom could be counted on one's fingers alone. Due to their power, every single Aura user on their own was recognized as an elite fighting force. But, Prime's case was special as he was not a genuine Aura user.
Prime glanced down at a small silver crystal no bigger than three centimeters embedded in his sword's hilt. The crystal had miniature cracks on its surface, and the faint silver hue it initially released had greatly diminished.
"The valuable Aura Cell given to me by my lord is...!" Prime's facial expression darkened.
Indeed, Aura had to be gifted; however, there were a small number of items that could display a might similar to Aura. An item able to contain Aura was referred to as Aura Cell.
Aura Cells were costly and extremely limited. For this reason, they were accessible only to the highest ranks of nobility. Even if one had the money, they couldn't get their hands on an Aura Cell if they lacked the authority or influence.
The power provided by utilizing an Aura Cell was nothing to scoff at, but it left more to be desired compared to the might of a genuine Aura user.
Prime was well aware of the limits of Aura that relied on an Aura Cell to function, which was all the more reason why he was alarmed by his Aura's sudden disappearance.
As far as Prime could tell, his opponent was not an Aura user. Furthermore, they did not possess an Aura Cell, and the probability of them acquiring one in the first place was practically nonexistent.
So, how did they do it? How did they shatter his Aura? Attacking the same point? At best, that action would generate a few bruises—not the loss of his Aura Cell!
As numerous thoughts flooded Prime's mind and tried to find an answer, he felt the world around him start to spin.
Prime hit the ground as he viewed the world sideways. But, it was not the world that had experienced a change.
Prime fell to his knees before collapsing onto the ground, motionless. Before he realized what was going on, his head had already been severed from his body!
Izroth stood over Prime and picked up the sword dropped by the First Knight.
If he relied solely on Viselo's sword arts, Izroth knew that taking down Prime would be challenging. That's when Izroth had an idea. The system restricted the use of skills in the dreamworld; however, for a combat master like Izroth, who did not innately rely on the system for skills, did it truly matter?
In normal circumstances, the answer would be yes. After all, a skill granted by the system allowed for a much needed consistency. But, the same could not be said for the dreamworld. In this place, a combat master like Izroth had an advantage that the vast majority of others lacked—he had plenty of practice executing his skills without the system's assistance.
While some of his techniques could not display their full strength, the foundations were still present! With Viselo's Advanced Swordplay, it was possible to breathe life into those foundations, and that's precisely what Izroth did.
When executing Viselo's sword arts, Izroth infused them with the principles of the Way of the Heavenly Sword's sword forms! First Sword Form: Converging Points, Second Sword Form: Returning Wave—Izroth could employ every sword form without restraint! The system may not officially recognize it in the dreamworld, but that did not diminish its effectiveness—as proven by the destruction of Prime's Aura.
'I can't tap into any of the elements linked to the Way of the Heavenly Sword, but the fact that I can use it in this place holds countless benefits.'
Izroth shifted his focus to the distance to check on Venare.
Venare had already dealt with the two archers on the rooftop. As for the other knights, without Prime's presence and having to take Venare alive, they had difficulty getting a firm hold on the situation. Two of the knights had been eliminated by Venare, and another three were severely wounded. But, none of them seemed to realize that their leader was no longer of this world.
'With Prime out of the picture, the Commander can take care of the rest. Though I must ensure not a single one of them escapes. In the meantime...'
Izroth carefully examined the hilt of Prime's sword and soon discovered the Aura Cell. But, even though he had a vague impression of its purpose, Izroth was still unclear about many things.
'That feeling from earlier—is this the source of it?'
A few moments later, Venare finished up things on his end. However, as Venare was about to eliminate the final knight, Izroth stepped in and requested that they be kept alive.
Regardless of the circumstances, Izroth still needed to meet with Nobleman Fraun to discern their identity. If possible, Izroth did not want to kill this group of knights just in case Fraun was an ally; however, he could not risk it.
Izroth walked up to the last remaining knight, who was bound with rope. Compared to the other seasoned knights, this particular one was on the younger side and looked to be in his early twenties.
"Your lord is the Nobleman Fraun, am I right?" Izroth questioned.
The knight stayed silent, but from his surprised expression, it was easy to read his thoughts. Of course, Izroth knew this information due to Dreamer's Knowledge, but the same could not be said for Venare.
Seeing how he was unable to disclose the information within Dreamer's Knowledge directly, Izroth was forced to use an indirect method.
"Silence is also an answer in and of itself," Izroth said with a carefree smile.
Izroth went on to ask a series of questions to the knight. However, the questions were only a cover to feed Venare information.
Izroth put every question into a yes or no format. Whenever the question was a true statement, he would end it with "am I right?" and if it was a false statement, his last words were, "am I wrong?".
Venare immediately recognized what Izroth was doing and paid close attention.
"This is his first time in my Dream Domain, but his method of choice—it's as if he has been here numerous times. Where did that woman find a little monster like this? Then again, I suppose monsters tend to attract other monsters." Venare thought to themselves.
After nearly five minutes of questioning the silent young knight, Izroth had disclosed everything he could to Venare. Now, the rest was up to them.
"If I go now, I can still make it in time. As for what to do with him—I'll leave that up to your judgment. We'll meet again at the rendezvous point you mentioned. If the situation becomes compromised, we will go with plan B. I know what you want to do, but I feel the need to remind you to proceed with caution. We've already created three Tale Variations. Any more, and we may encounter a total blanking. I'm sure you've already seen the results for yourself." Venare said before taking their leave to carry out their initial task.
'Total blanking? Is she referring to the part of the story that was blurred out by Dreamer's Knowledge?'
After meeting with Nixere and running into the first Tale Variation, Izroth noticed that not only had new sections been added to the tale, but a small portion was blurred out. The strangest thing was that Izroth could not remember if anything was there or not, which given his perfect memory was troubling, to say the least.
"There's no point overthinking. For now—shall we go pay your lord a visit?" Izroth said as his gaze locked onto the young knight.