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34 Gash

Some years earlier

"Kid, today I have a big one for you."

"A big load of bul*****?" snickered Helial.

Vidio scowled and went on: "The other day I was browsing an ancient manuscript…"

The master put a giant volume on the table in front of him, blowing off the dust on the cover right into Helial's face.

Coff! Coff!

Helial got smothered by the cloud of dust and was shaken by a coughing fit. "Damn old fart… Coff coff! Do you think you're funny? How old are you, five? Coff coff!" Helial fanned himself frantically.

"On the path to Immortality, you could find mythologial creatures you have heard of only in my stories. Not even I know where the legends stop and reality begins. But I'm sure that opening your ears will only do you good", grumbled Vidio.

Helial rolled his eyes and conceded: "You're right this time. Let's hear what this is about, then."

The look on the boy's face grew serious. Vidio mentioning the path to Immortality was not without reason. The Master knew his pupil well: when things turned out to be useful, Helial never missed a word.

Vidio, also intoxicated by the dust, coughed and cleared his throat: "Ehem, besides Qilins and Dragons, there are many other kinds of incredible creatures in this universe. One of these is the Heavenly Star Tigers…"

"Heavenly Star Tigers?"

Vidio nodded. "According to the legend, the first Heavenly Star Tiger was born from the firmament. That means from a star. Their heavenly bodies are huge conglomerates of Life Energy, so together with the Qilins, these creatures are one of the greatest among the ranks of the Forces of Life.

"They were born from the star Alfa in the Orion constellation after a great catastrophy. The first of their kind has fought side by side with Kirin in one of the many battles against Dragons. Tigers and Qilins are natural friends", Vidio smiled, "however, even though there is one of the most recent species, Dragons and Qilins have nothing on them. They are the fastest creatures in the universe. The Heavenly Star Tigers are without a doubt the fastest living creatures. If a Heavenly Star Tiger called itself the second fastest creature in the universe, no other could boast the title of first."

Indeed if Qilins represented the peak of physical ability and Dragons the peak of Mana Control, then Tiger were the symbol of speed.

Qilins had the most destructive physical strength, but could not control Mana. Dragons had a terrifying natural aptitude for Mana, to say the least, but could not rival the other two either in speed or physical strength.

"Master, I have a question", uttered Helial.

Vidio's eyes sparkled. Helial rarely took an interest in his stories, unless they were purely technical lessons.

"What do they look like?"

"What?"

"These creatures. What do they look like?"

Vidio shrugged and said: "The book did not say."

"Do you ever know anything useful?"

"…"

Heavenly Star Tigers had white fur with black stripes. Although not as resistent as that on Qilins, their constitution was envied by many.

Their claws very deadly weapons, sharp ad lethal. A Heavenly Star Tiger could have ripped your head off without you even noticing.

Adult Tigers had the symbol * on their forehead that set them apart from other cats.

Their pure white fur had inspired many ballads and the Tiger's elegance and refinery was known in all the corners of the universe…

***

In the present

MIAOWWWWW

Miaow?

Aiiiiiii

Right after the miaowing, several wolves began yelping.

What is happening?

Boom! Boom! Boom!

Fwoosh!

Helial heard some terrifying booms and what sounded like a battle.

He was not liking that at all.

Skill Activated:

Perception

Helial sensed various Auras some hundred yards away. One of these seemed to be surrounded by thirty or so wolves.

Helial told Lumia to wait for him there, after checking that there were no wolves waiting for a surprise attack. He hid her.

He opened the Inventory and his hand vanished through a translucent window and then reappeared grasping a cloth.

"These are very powerful protective runes; they will completely screen off your presence. Take it."

Lumia nodded and Helial, without saying anything else, ran away in the direction of all the Auras.

Thirty wolves and only one opponent. If I don't kill them, those thirty wolves will come to look for Lumia and me, after getting rid of that fellow. Right now I have an ally.

He could not let the wolves rally and attack him from every side. He had to do something.

He put Curse of the Demon behind his back and began condensing Mana on both hands.

Fwooosh!

As soon as he got in the next room of the Dungeon, he saw a wolf flying midair. It was only after a couple of seconds that he noticed that the body of the beast had been slashed in two and now the two parts were separating, falling some feet apart and smashing on the ground. A shadow landed on the stone floor on… fours paws.

It turned around. With a clean sweep of a paw it slit open the throat of another wolf.

What the f***?

Helial did not think twice.

Crack crack

A web of racks spread under his feet. He bolted towards the wolves.

Skill Activated:

Mana Pistol

Skill Activated:

Mana Pistol

BOOM! BOOM!

The heads of two Black Wolves exploded in a bloody mist.

Now there were almost fifty wolves. While Helial had been running there, their number had increased. It looked as if all the monsters of the Dungeon were there.

Helial sensed movement behind his back, but could only defend himself with his forearms.

Fwoosh!

The attack was too swift even to hope to dodge it.

The claws sank deep in his flesh, leaving eight bloody wounds.

You lost 98 HP!

The wounds closed up immediately, stopping the Malus of bleeding.

"Brat, get the f*** off, make room for the Supreme Cat. These puppies haven't learned their lesson yet. If you behave though, I might spare your life and keep you as my pet."

Helial could finally see the creature clearly.

It was a humongous white cat with the face of a kitten. His sweet and cute face was in stark contrast to his savage, arrogant eyes.

"Now let's kill the wolves, we'll talk later."

Helial ignored him and took a step towards the wolves, or at least that was what he meant to do.

Skill Activated:

Heavenly Star Tiger Thunderbolt

The cat hissed and swiped his paw at Helial, but this time he did not catch him off-guard. Grasping Curse of the Demon, Helial slashed to parry the blow.

BOOM!

Both flew backwards, crashing against the stone walls.

The wolves were looking at each other, confused by that turn of events.

"WHAT THE F*** ARE YOU DOING? I'M HELPING YOU!" furiously yelled Helial.

"Make room for this Supreme Cat. I don't need the intereference of a man cub", the huge adorable pile of white fur snorted and licked the paw that had clashed against Curse of the Demon.

Even if it didn't show, I'm at a slight physical disadvantage. Who the hell is this brat?, thought the cat to himself.

Helial suddenly spun around and slashed at the First Phase Black Wolves with Curse of the Demon.

Skill Activated:

Flame of the Qilin

He enveloped the sword in whitish flaming tongues and struck two nearby wolves. The wolves were caught off-guard and, without a chance of dodging it, got the full power of the blow.

Fwoosh!

Black Wolf lost 8153 HP!

You killed Black Wolf!

You earned 7435 Exp!

Black Wolf lost 7866 HP!

You killed Black Wolf!

You earned 7435 Exp!

Helial did not lose a second. The wolves were too many to engage in a futile fight.

"Cat, I'll see you after killing all these wolves, how about that?" Helial smirked, turning towards the white furball. "Or maybe you don't think you can win in a fair match?"

"Umpf", the cat snorted, "do you think you're up to it? Do you have any idea who I am- Are you listening to me?!"

Helial was fighting four wolves, slashing furiously. He turned around for a second, while a wolf was biting his arm as hard as steel and retorted: "So?"

"Alright! I'll give you the honor of beholding my magnificence from up close!"

Helial rolled his eyes. If he had to die and reincarnate one day, he hoped to finally find normal people and a quiet life.

You lost 20 HP!

You lost 15 HP!

You lost 31 HP!

The Black Wolves were mauling and clawing Helial's arms, who was trying to awkwardly fight them off.

Another wolf reached Helial.

The boy is about to come to a bad end, or is he…?, the cat observed from afar. He had suffered some injuries and now his pure white fur was stained with blood.

Crack

Boom!

The cat heard a sudden explosion and was hit by a heat wave.

Helial was surrounded by a ring of fire that had engulfed all five of the wolves, turning them to ash. The fire started disappearing into beams of gray light as soon as all the wolves were dead.

Helial had let the monsters get as close as possible and then, when they least expected it, he had burned them alive. He wiped the sweat off his face with a hand. It was not over, not at all…

"Brat, do you think you can show off in front of this Supreme Cat?! Forget it, let's now see who is the most magnificent between us!"

Skill Activated:

Heavenly Star Tiger Thunderbolt

This time the cat activated the Skill on both the soft pads in his paws, condensing as much Mana as possible.

Crack! Crack!

The air started crackling.

"This time I will get it right!"

He kept the Skill and darted towards five Black Wolves.

Fwoosh!

Fwoosh!

Afterimages were created as the cat slashed devasting blows against the monsters. The blows that hit the mark did not need to be repeated and all the wolves ended up beheaded in just a few seconds.



Meeting such a creature right here, very interesting…

But what about his personality?



Boom! Boom! Boom!

The fight went on for about ten minutes.

Helial and the cat were able to kill all the wolves, all the while having a dig at each other.

Anf anf

By the end they were both exhausted and panting. Helial had disheveled hair and a blood-streaked face, his arms were all chewed and clawed. He was trying to catch his breath, while leaning on Curse of the Demon.

Even the cat was in a pitiful state: his fur was drenched in blood, giving him a dreadful appearance.

The both of them were not doing so good.

"Cat, are you done yet?"

The cat slit the carotid of the last wolf, then landed a couple of feet from Helial. He raised a claw, waving it in front of Helial's face.

"Guess who's next."

Helial scowled. He had just sensed too powerful a presence to mind that cat.

"Cat…"

"Human scumbag, my name is Snowflake, but you can call me Master Cat, if you like."

Helial looked in those icy blue eyes.

"Did you feel it?"

"I did."

A terrifying Aura was approaching. the cat and the human grew suddenly very serious.



Let's see which one of these two loudmouths will be the first one to be ripped to shreds.



Coff coff

Helial started to snicker.

"What are you laughing at, human? Didn't you get that we're about to be in BIG trouble?"

"I certainly did, SNOWFLAKE! Puahahahah…"

It took a second for Snowflake to realize that the human was mocking him, but when he did he went ballistic. With claws unsheathed he said: "How dare y-"

AUUUUUUUUUUUUU

A wolf with silver fur and crimson eyes appeared out of nowhere. It must have been about 13 feet high. It was just humongous.



First Phase… Late stage. What will you do now?



Match with the Dungeon Boss: Silvery Lone Wolf.

Special mission:

Defeat Silvery Lone Wolf to receive the title of "Wolf Hunter".

Since this Boss has never been fought before, you have the chance to find a special object.

At "you have the chance to find a special object" Helial forgot all about how scary that monster was and began wishing to obtain some good object for Lumia and himself. He went into some kind of frenzy.

Pshhhhh

Helial felt something hot against his leg. He turned towards Snowflake at his side who was busy pissing on him.



Seriously? And these Tigers should be the most elegant and refined creatures in the universe?



"****!?"

"Hohoho, this Supreme Cat had a full bladder", Snowflake was laughing his head off.

Helial threw a kick, which was dexterously dodged by the pile of white fur.

Fwooosh!

The Silvery Lone Wolf struck with a paw, sending an air blade towards the other two to test their strength.

Helial was caught off-guard and the air blade hit him right in the chest, shaking him slightly. It did not leave any signs on his body… but it had completely torn his tunic.



Interesting.



Snowflake suddenly sensed a bloodthirsty Aura override that of the Silvery Lone Wolf. His animal instinct told him to take a few steps back. It was Helial. Now he looked like a totally different person. His eyes had grown cold, a blue ocean of death. His knuckles had turned white while gripping Curse of the Demon.

He stared furiously at the Dungeon Boss. Despite the rage, he slowly lowered Curse of the Demon to the ground and took off his faded tunic, putting it down carefully.

"Snowflake, that tunic must stay intact until the end of the fight. Were it to receive even just one scratch, I'll behead you right after I am finished with this giant pile of s***." Helial's cockiness seemed to be coming straight from hell.

There was something dreadful about that boy, right at that moment. Snowflake was arrogant, but not a fool. He sensed a deep hatred in those words and snorted: "All yours… When you're done we'll see if you'll still have enough courage to talk like this to this Supreme Cat, mpf mpf."

Having picked up the Longsword, Helial took a step forward and rose shirtless against the huge monster.

Crack

A thick web of cracks suddenly spread on the ground where it came into contact with the soles of his shoes, while he dashed forward.
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