Ashley once again swung her large sword at the head on the left side. However, she didn’t remain in the same place as she did so. Anticipating that the Hydra was going to attack, she jumped to the left, throwing her body into the air. With excellent control over her body, her stance didn’t crumble as she fixed the position of her sword and released a thrust at the pursuing snake’s head.
Ray glared at the head that was rushing in his direction, the one located immediately to the right of the center head. Immediately after Ashley finished her attack, he drove his spear at the right head with all his might. The head swung its head away, in an attempt to evade the attack. Nevertheless, the snake head couldn’t completely dodge the cross-shaped blade of the spear head that jutted out to the left and right, and ended up having its face torn open. Reeling from the pain, it threateningly hissed at him and raised its arched neck up high. And then, as if awaiting a chance to attack, it flicked out its long tongue while glaring at him.
Immediately after the right head had its face torn apart, the center head swooped down towards Ray who had extended out his body. Not having any time to pull back his spear, Ray flipped his spear 180 degrees and slammed the butt of the spear towards the rapidly approaching head. Betrayed by its own momentum, the spear penetrated deeply into the center head’s open mouth.
It squirmed and wriggled as it tried to steal away the spear. However, Ray immediately back stepped and managed to regain distance.
Although the center head agonized from the pain, the damaged area seemed to have immediately been regenerated as it also lifted up its arched neck just like the right head. It then assumed a posture that was poised to bring down an attack on Ray at any moment.
It immediately recovers from attacks that don’t involve any magic. We’re going to run out of stamina at this rate if we continue to try bringing them down one by one . . .
As for Ashley, she was wondering if Ray had actually found a way for them to get out of this mess.
His movements have become even sharper. Although he’s still not at the level of when I first met him, he’s become much better at “reading” his opponent’s actions . . . I wouldn’t be surprised if he could handle this fight by himself . . .
In addition, she was also beginning to feel agitated by her own powerlessness.
. . . Even if I wasn’t here . . . even the attack I put all my power into earlier ended up being mostly ineffective . . . we have to consider the toughness of this thing’s scales together with its recovery abilities . . . how are we supposed to bring it down before Ray exhausts his magical energy? . . . if I stop thinking so much about running away and only focus on cutting apart this thing then . . . even a single blow from me might . . .
It was unusual for Ashley to lose her calm. She had come here with Ray expecting a relatively safe hunting trip. Now that it had turned into this perilous situation, she felt as if this whole mess were her fault.
Gathering intel in advance is the most basic of basics. And yet, despite that . . . it’s my fault for forgetting it . . . I might forgotten myself as I had fun with Ray . . . no matter what it takes, I have to let at least Ray escape . . .
Ashley turned towards the leftmost head that was heading in her direction and in order to unleash her most powerful attack, concentrated all of her senses on the quickly approaching head. However, despite seeing the head that was rapidly descending down upon her from above, Ashley merely readied her sword and then as if waiting for something, didn’t make even the slightest movement.
Right when the head was about to close its mouth down on her, she lightly stepped to the left and then vigorously swung her sword down. The large sword deeply dug itself right into the back of the Hydra’s head, who with it’s mouth still wide open, collapsed with a thunk onto the ground.
The moment Ashley’s face beamed with a triumphant expression, another snakehead bit its mouth around her right thigh.
It lifted up high the body that was built more solidly than would be expected from a female, and then as if it were a child toying with a doll, slammed her roughly against the ground.
Upon hearing Ashley’s piercing shriek, Ray’s gaze instantly jerked in her direction. He was then greeted with the sight of a woman who had her right leg held deeply within a snakehead’s mouth, being forcefully struck against the rough earthen ground.
He immediately tried to run over to her. However, two snakeheads stood in his way.
He raised a shout of angry and tried to lunge at the center head with his spear. However, the attack of the man who had lost his calm didn’t reach the Hydra. On the contrary, the right head which had sustained severe damage from Ray swung over to him from the side and rammed into him with it’s whole body.
Having not expected an attack from the right head, his body received the full extent of its power. He was blown away, flying a distance of approximately three mertos before his back crashed into the bark of a white birch tree. (TL: average christmas tree has height of ≈ 2.3 m)
The air in his lungs was forcefully dispelled out by the collision and his consciousness was nearly also blown away from the intensity of the pain. However, for the sake of saving Ashley, he gritted his teeth and rose back up, using his spear to support himself. Ray once again faced the Hydra for a second confrontation.
“Release Ashley, damn it!” he shouted, thrusting his spear at the left head which had her in its mouth. Although he was on the verge of losing his sense of reason due to his anger, he desperately struggled to suppress his raging emotions.
Stop. Calm down. There’s no way Ashley is dead yet. The attacks from my spear are effective against this bastard. By bringing these heads down one by one . . .
He poured his magical energy in the spear, causing the spear tip to once again regain its dazzling radiance. When he forced even more power to flow in, the cross-shaped spear head stretched out to more than twice its previous length. At that moment, the Hydra’s eyes seemed to falter for an instant.
Without missing the Hydra’s hesitation, Ray closed distance with it in one go and began swinging his spear in all directions. If anyone were to have witnessed this scene, the figure of a knight attacking a giant snake while wielding his shining red spear as if it were a pinwheel would have probably reflected into their eyes as a legend.
In the face of those attacks, the hard scales which previously couldn’t be cut through were sliced apart without much resistance, as if they were the soft belly of a giant toad.
Aiming for the left head which had Ashley in its mouth, Ray unleashed a series of continuous stabs that sliced it apart from the base of the Hydra. With Ashley still in its mouth, the head which had been severed from the main body fell onto the ground with a thump.
Even if it was second earlier, Ray wanted to rush over to that head and pull Ashley out immediately.
However, there were still two more heads remaining. He forcibly shut in that thought and continued his attacks on the Hydra.
The remaining two heads opened their mouths wide and simultaneously swooped down on the formidable enemy before them. In an attempt to knock him over, the center head utilized the center of rotation for its body to swing at him. The right sided head tried to swallow him whole and directly approached him in a straight line.
Ray was able to easily predict the attacks of the Hydra who had lost itself in anger, lowering his body against the center head’s attack and matching the timing of the remaining right head’s attack, coolly drove his spear in its mouth. The spear pierced the head from its widely open mouth and continued all the way out of the back of its head. It convulsed several times and stopped moving.
The last survivor, the center head, sensed the imminence of its own defeat and tried to flee. However, hindered by the other four immobilized heads, it couldn’t move very far.
Now that the last remaining head’s movements had dulled, Ray was able to easily decapitate the head and send it flying without any trouble.
His mind numbly froze in absent-mindedness towards the fact that he “had won”. However, he immediately regained senses and rushed over to the unconscious Ashley, irritatedly tearing off the Hydra who still had its mouth closed around her right leg.