Chapter 379 - Touhou Players Rejoice
Although Gunst couldn't understand how Alice had managed to heal her wounded waist with only a bandage, he knew that he was at an incredible disadvantage now that Alice had seen through the properties of his taboos.
Gunst had developed his own set of unique taboos based on numerous training and actual combat experiences.
Meanwhile, his taboos had the characteristic of fusing sword waves with mana to unleash a power that could cut through almost anything.
Even defensive-type taboos would have difficulty stopping his cuts.
Hence, most people would suffer when they went up against him for the first time.
There was no doubt that Alice had suffered a similar fate as these people initially.
However, now that she had already recovered from her injuries and figured out the trick behind his taboos, she would know to evade his attacks using speed and agility rather than trying to defend against them.
Gunst could see the characteristics of beastification in Alice, so he knew that Alice must have used a taboo made by the beastkins.
After all, almost all taboos made by beastkins would cause its users to take on the traits of their race.
Meanwhile, Alice's cat ears and tails clearly indicated that she had used a taboo from the catkins.
The agility of felines need not be mentioned.
The catkins' taboo had undoubtedly strengthened Alice's speed and agility.
Hence, even if Aurora was an attack with incredible speed, Alice still managed to evade it.
Now, he would have a much harder time landing attacks on Alice.
To make matters worse, Gunst could already feel his mana pool running low.
Although there were around 20 people capable of using taboos in the human realm, none were capable of freely using taboos like Heroes and Demon Kings.
If the use of one taboo cost 100 points of mana, Heroes and Demon Kings would have a mana pool of 1,000 points.
Combined with their ability to recover 100 points of mana every second, they could use taboos as easily as if they were drinking water.
They couldn't run out of mana even if they continuously cast taboos without rest.
In Gunst's case, his mana pool could only hold around 500 points of mana.
While this was enough to let him cast a few taboos, he recovered only one or two mana points every second.
This difference in recovery rate prevented him from casting numerous taboos in a row.
In his current state, he'd run out of mana after using two more taboos.
She's also used multiple taboos consecutively, but why doesn't she look tired in the slightest…
Gunst frowned when he saw Alice's current state.
Unlike himself, Alice wasn't gasping for air or showing other signs of exhaustion.
On the contrary, she looked quite relaxed.
Apart from the big tear in her shirt giving her a somewhat miserable look, she looked mostly fine.
This scene surprised Gunst, so much that he couldn't help but harbor the thought of "Could this person be the Hero or the Demon King"
Unfortunately, Gunst wasn't among the guards who had accompanied King Haydn to the last Conference of Kings.
King Haydn also didn't inform Gunst about the Hero's true identity.
As a result, Gunst's image of the Hero and the Demon King remained on the level of a muscular man with a pretty face and a tall and slender onee-san.
So, Gunst naturally wouldn't connect the little girl before him to the Hero and the Demon King.
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This could be considered a blunder on King Haydn's part.
King Haydn never imagined the Hero would intervene in this matter.
After all, the demon spy operating in the Royal Magic Tower was the biggest breakthrough point for his great undertaking.
Even if someone were to intervene, it would have to be the Demon King, not the Hero.
Hence, King Haydn never bothered to tell Gunst about the Hero's true identity.
Unless the Hero was in contact with the demon spy, there was no way the Hero would find out that "someone in the Rhine Kingdom is trying to ally with the demons" or notice King Haydn's plans.
This was also why King Haydn was so anxious to chase the Demon King out of the Rhine Kingdom.
It was because he worried that the Demon King might interfere with his plans.
Unfortunately, King Haydn probably wouldn't have ever imagined that the Hero and the Demon King were actually the same person.
Alice and Gunst stared off at each other for a moment, neither taking the initiative to strike.
Eventually, though, Alice chose to break the silence.
Alice was still in the Rhine Kingdom's territory.
King Haydn might send other people to help Gunst if she dragged on the fight for too long.
Although not many people in the human realm could threaten her, there were still quite a few.
She also wasn't naive enough to think that the Rhine Kingdom only had one person who could use taboos.
To avoid a situation where Gunst could work with his reinforcements to fight her, Alice naturally had to make the first move.
Immediately, she kicked off the ground and began rapidly approaching Gunst in a zigzag pattern.
With Wind Hunter's effect, Alice's current speed had already exceeded Gunst's reaction speed.
If Alice closed the distance in a straight line, Gunst could still defend himself or even launch a counterattack.
However, if Alice approached him in a zigzag pattern, Gunst wouldn't be able to defend himself since he couldn't even determine which direction Alice would attack him from.
Gunst also realized Alice's goal, and he couldn't help but feel troubled.
This was also the feeling most people experienced when going up against the Hero and the Demon King.
Heroes and Demon Kings could learn a large number of taboos in a short period of time.
Hence, a well-developed Hero or Demon King would almost always have a counter taboo for any situation they faced.
For example, if they were going up against fire, they could counter it by using a water-type taboo.
When they were going up against an attack that couldn't be blocked, they could use a taboo that strengthened their speed to dodge the attack.
When they were going up against opponents with powerful physical defenses, they could use a spirit taboo.
Simply put, it was impossible for mortal humans to win against Heroes and Demon Kings in a contest of taboo repertoires.
However, although Alice's zigzag approach made it difficult for him to perceive her attack trajectory, Gunst did not give up.
Instead, he tried his best to keep up with Alice's movements and lifted his hands in a defensive stance.
However, Alice suddenly disappeared from Gunst's line of sight the next moment, this unexpected development catching Gunst off-guard.
In this situation, Gunst's first reaction was to hurriedly turn around and look behind him.
Normally, when someone was trying to launch a sneak attack, they would do so from their target's back.
So, the moment Gunst lost sight of Alice, he made the most reasonable decision to defend against the most likely direction from which Alice would attack him.
But…there was nobody behind him.
When Gunst still failed to see Alice's figure, he quickly realized what was going on.
It turned out that Alice didn't move to his back.
Instead, she had jumped into the air.
Unfortunately, Gunst was too late to notice this, and before he could react, he felt a sharp wind brushing across his scalp.
Then, five sharp claws clawed through his scalp, pulling his head back and smashing it into the ground again.
Immediately, a powerful shockwave spread from Alice and Gunst's location, the shockwave creating numerous cracks in the sturdy street.
The average person's head would have most likely cracked open like a watermelon after getting smashed so hard into the ground.
However, Gunst wasn't an ordinary person.
As the Rhine Kingdom's royal guard captain, in addition to being able to use magic swordsmanship taboos, he also had frightening physical qualities.
Even if his body wasn't as tough as dragons, he should still be one of the toughest, if not the toughest, humans alive.
Even the demons' Four Heavenly Kings wouldn't necessarily be tougher than him.
Hence, even after suffering such a powerful impact, Gunst remained conscious.
Meanwhile, sensing the claws latching onto his head, he swiftly pulled out a small folding knife from his pocket.
Alice had already thrown his longsword away just now, so the only weapon he currently had on him was a folding knife he normally carried around.
However, it didn't matter.
The application of his magic swordsmanship wasn't limited to longswords only.
If need be, he could use his magic swordsmanship with even small bladed objects such as a folding knife or a butter knife.
Although his folding knife would most likely break after he executed a few taboos with it, it was enough for his purposes.
Previously, Gunst had trouble keeping track of Alice's position when she rapidly moved in a zigzag pattern.
However, now that Alice was holding onto his head with her claws, he knew exactly where she was!
The next moment, Gunst's folding knife radiated a blinding brilliance.
Then, with Gunst's body as the center, numerous sword waves of various colors burst forth into the surroundings.
The attack pattern of Rainbow was similar to the attack patterns of enemies in bullet hell games.
The further one was from the enemy, the bigger the gap between the enemy's attack projectiles would become.
Conversely, the closer one was to the enemy, the tighter the gap would become.
So, at such a close distance, no matter how agile Alice was, it was utterly impossible for her to escape from the seamless sword waves.