Soulmancer – Chapter 20: A genius and Prodigy

Time left: 10 hours, 17 minutes.

As night descended upon Nanzahemir’s inner city, the vibrant, glistening stars and various hues of the aurora seamlessly melded with the deep, dark sky. Typically, this would be a breathtaking spectacle to appreciate; however, on this occasion, the atmosphere was tainted by a cruel announcement

The monsters are pouring in. Find the target as soon as possible and slay it.

everyone’s fighting spirit had shot through the skies.


Deafening shrieks echoed from the giant Titan Orcs as Izel, with a swift and synchronized flurry, thrust his aurora shortsword into each of their hearts. Mid-air, he twisted his body with precision.


As a barrage of large weapons dashed through the air, intent on ending his pathetic life in one fell swoop, a sharp wind erupted briefly as the blind Walker executed a mid-air twist. Concurrently, he imbued mana into his [Cloud Boots]

[Cloud Boots had been detected.]

[Special Condition had been met.]

[Agility had solely been added to Movement Speed.]



he vanished. The Titan Orcs briefly succumbed to confusion as their weapons struck empty air.

[Movement speed has increased by 50%.]

Only one effect of the Cardigan Cloak partially activates, causing it to shimmer faintly, while the boots are engulfed in a whitish-blue glow—bright, yet not excessively luminous.


“What the heck!” Izel, appearing stealthily behind one of the Titan Orcs to end its life, murmurs in disappointment.


Their cries fade as their skin stiffens and veins grotesquely protrude.


As their iron-like skin clashed, resisting the blind man’s aurora shortsword, tendrils of friction stemmed alongside the high-pitched shrieking noise that strongly throbbed his ears. Izel groaned in distress, “Ugh!” Even, his [Strength] stat he applied was insufficient as his hand trembled and quite became partially impassive.


His [Flawlation] detected a pretty much dangerously projected poisoned longsword from his blindspot, and he disappeared into thin air. It wasn’t that he vanished; rather, it was the quick, brief speed at which he was moving. ‘Just how can’t I no longer pierce any orcs?’ Izel’s mind was quite troubled. He felt something was amiss. As mana coated his sword, he activated [Basic Swordsmanship], and deftly parried and quickly thwarted incoming heavy strikes and dangerous swings from multiple Titan Orcs.

His fighting style, once effective against the Titan Orcs in the initial wave, now proves inefficient. It’s evident that this version of the Titan Orcs is not only stronger but unmistakably tougher, a conclusion reached by the blind man. Despite their enhanced strength, they still haven’t matched up to the gatekeeper’s prowess.

While activating [Cloud Boots] might seem wasteful, Izel, valuing his precious time, decides against the inefficiency of conserving mana. With a swift thought, he propels himself through the air at an astounding speed.


His training in [agility] and mastering control both with and without [Cloud Boots] in the waiting room comes into play. Izel is well aware that, with an 87% speed increase, he can maintain control of his footing and balance for only 45 seconds before a brief pause and then another surge.

‘But, that’s pretty,’ he decides. As the breeze sweeps across his face, the blind man skillfully sways his shortsword…

[Chained onslaughts detected.]

[Attack speed increases by +11%.]

the Aurora-shortsword effect activated, simultaneously rendering his sword lighter while a captivating, aurora-like heterochromatic aura emanated from its blade, momentarily distracting both fellow Walkers.

‘Is that also part of a blind human’s skill? So he was hiding this kind of sinister power,’ Daniel thought amusingly, his expectation of such prowess from the blind Walker affirmed.

Meanwhile, Jenna, convinced that the latter was undoubtedly concealing something, pondered, ‘But to think it was this!’ She mulled over the revelation before refocusing on her task. Though her initial caution about the blind man dissipated, the scene she witnessed wasn’t admirable; she had witnessed more exquisite yet sinister moments.

[Critical point detected.]

[Reaction speed: +6%.]

With the frenzy of notifications jolting his mind



[A clean slash had been initiated.]

[A clean slash had been initiated.]

[A clean slash had been initiated.]

[A clean slash had been initiated.]

the blind man felt an unexpected surge of mastery, swiftly wielding his sword like a swordmaster. With a precise dance of [Basic Swordsmanship] and the aurora shortsword, he sliced through the Titan Orcs, severing their heads. The giants’ decapitated heads rolled across the floor, splattering blood like gruesome orbs. Pausing to catch his breath, Izel was bewildered by the deadly efficiency of both [Basic Swordsmanship] and the aurora short sword effect.

“Darn, enduring that speed for a while really takes a toll,” he muttered.

Indeed, the harsh reality contrasted sharply with the waiting room. Having sustained the breakneck pace for 36 seconds, a thick blur fixated via his [Flawlation], a slight migraine befell him. Clutching his head, he grunted. Frankly, he was quite pleased; rigorous practice spared him from being on all fours, vomiting. Exhaling sharply, he knew he mustn’t stop now. Over fifty Titan Orcs were on the move with murderous intent.




The deafening cries echoed as their feet rumbled, leaving abysmal footprints on the earth. Izel took a brief moment to inhale before his feet departed from the paved ground in the next parade, striving for an overwhelming victory before his mana depleted.

— — — —



Around Jenna, the mage, who held her staff high, spheres of morphed and condensed pinkish mana began to float above, rapidly increasing in multitude.


Startled by the escalating number of mana spheres, the young demon, fending off a Titan Orc’s attack with his shield, widened his eyes and asked, “Are those Mana Blasts?”

The moment he uttered the question, he grazed a certain Titan Orc with a poison axe, acidulating it and slowing its fast movements.

Jenna remarked, “Why?!”

“Why can a human conjure so many Mana Blasts?” the young demon inquired. Simultaneously, fueled by unspeakable adrenaline, Daniel deftly slashed off its limbs, blood squirting in a gruesome display. Internally counting each Mana Blast that Jenna had created, he murmured to himself, “Twenty of them…” Moments before carving off its sturdy head with his greatsword, its head rolled.

Twenty [Mana Blasts].

Furthermore, each of them packed substantial destructive potential, yet held few mana molecules. Soon, he spoke again, “What’s your mana stat? Scratch that – you claim it exceeds Izel’s, so let me put it differently…”

He defended against another hammer attack, his shield trembling with the impact. Gritting his teeth, he questioned, “Is it even possible for a human to control all these Mana Blasts at once? Do you even have demerits?”

[Mana Blasts], a fundamental skill akin to [Basic Swordsmanship], was emblematic of both Walkers and ex-hunters. However, for Walkers, there was a distinction—in exchange for formidable destructive power, they bore the burdens of ‘High Mana Consumption’ and ‘Instability’ as demerits. Moreover, its conversion, unlike the one gained on Eliluam, proved ineffective. Many ex-hunters and Walkers, who acquired it in the Fortress, voiced their grievances on the Forum.


“Hahahaha, Daniel, don’t be overly surprised,” Jenna’s staff directed at the impending Titan Orcs. “This is, by far, the lowest and most effective skill in my arsenal right now.”

It was a jerking response, befitting his curiosity.


The scorching [Mana Blasts] streaked through the air, hurtling in all directions like rockets towards the Titan Orcs charging at breakneck speed.


Simultaneously, a deafeningly pink explosion erupted, shattering nearby buildings.



Amidst the fiery eruption, the agonizing cries of the Titan Orcs reverberated, their forms reduced to smithereens, scattering gores and flesh across the landscape.


Sensing the audible blast through his [Sound Reading], the ground vigorously rumbling, shrapnel and dust filling the air. Izel felt a chill creeping up his spine, acknowledging the sudden fear inspired by the female mage’s formidable abilities before resuming his task.


Meanwhile, Daniel, a witness to this chaotic scene, briefly entered a state of shock. His mouth opened wide in awe, utterly astounded. ‘What in father’s name is this?’ he wondered.


With each landing of a [Mana Blast], an explosive wave of pink energy rippled outwards, further damaging the nearby building. The cries of terror and despair echoed in the aftermath, harmonizing with the shattered remains of the Titan Orcs.

But that wasn’t the end; the [Mana Blasts] continued relentlessly. The numbers were growing, ‘Twenty total with that one,’ Jenna thought as she briefly closed her eyes, contemplating. ‘I can do more,’ she decided. Soon, her concentration heightened, and her mana core exhaled pinpricks of mana. These split and morphed into spheres, multiplying as her staff aimed at the target. Each sphere struck its mark, reducing it to pieces.


Numerous cracks intertwined along each nearby clock tower compromised their stability, causing them to shake with increasing rumbles before collapsing onto the charging Titan Orcs



like meteorites, the clock towers collapsed, smashing the Titan Orcs to bits. It was such a cruel scene.

‘And that makes it twenty-one,’ she sighed, a threshold she hadn’t reached in a while since her mother, Willow Vel. Campbell, a High-Ranker, taught her the Eliluam-type [Mana Blasts]. Even though a single increase in [Mana Blasts] wouldn’t significantly boost the destructive power, the significance of realizing one’s threshold was undeniable.

The number of [Mana Blasts] correlated directly with the ex-hunter’s experience and the Walker’s swift, mana-controlling abilities. Using the most effective skill to instantly eliminate the Titan Orcs, Jenna felt a new sensation as a message floated at the side of her retinas.

[‘Monarch of Mana’ Proficiency has increased by 18%.]

A pretty innate skill, acquired during the E-rank Dungeon raid, significantly improved her sensitivity, control, and mana manipulation. However, its proficiency had not been properly honed since the D-rank dungeon raid. Despite this, [Monarch of Mana] consistently supported every mana-related skill Jenna employed. There was a catch, though – a rather unpleasant demerit called ‘Overconsumption’ kicked in when using unfamiliar or AOE-magic-related skills and juggling multiple high-rank skills.

Moreover, it was the kind of skill any mage would covet, a true jackpot.

[Rank: S

ᗌ Proficiency: 23.74%]

With its significantly increased proficiency, it has demonstrated a more pronounced influence than before.


Another [Mana Blasts] materialized. Jenna, before her stats and skills underwent a reset, could conjure up to 45 Eliluam-type [Mana Blasts]. Though her current skill demerit and proficiency limited her output, a sense of satisfaction lingered. “At least I now know my limit before the cooldown begins.”

Disintegrating the constant charge of the giant Titan Orcs, the mage unleashed more [Mana Blasts] before the cooldown was initiated. An evil grin played on her lips. “It’s about time; I finish what I started. Hahaha!”

At the comical laughter of the mage, Daniel Lan Northwestern couldn’t believe what he witnessed. As the first child of one of the ancient Demon Lords, Gabrilius Northwestern, he had encountered numerous formidable humans and demons connected to his father.

The strength of a [Hunter], [High-Hunter], and [High-Ranker] appeared ordinary from the perspective of the young demon. Growing up, he witnessed the power wielded by these individuals, and the might of both [Hunter] and [High-Hunter] seemed beyond his imagination. However, a clear distinction existed between [High-Rankers] and [Ascenders].

‘This isn’t possible?’ He gulped.

Controlling this much was already challenging for most [High-Rankers]. However, their destructive power couldn’t be compared to that of the [High-Rankers]. It implies that this human had the potential to reach even greater heights. No, she could potentially rank among the top ten within the ‘Continental ranks’ in the distant future.



The ground and clock towers quivered in despair and terror as another pillar of [Mana Blasts] shattered the bodies of the charging Titan Orcs into gruesome pieces.


Amidst the explosions, their cries struggled for a brief moment before fading into nonexistence. Daniel found it astonishing, sparking his curiosity about the mage’s background and the district she hailed from. However, the most surprising detail was the big grin on the young demon’s face as additional [Mana Blasts] materialized around Jenna.


“I can’t let a human outdo me, can I?” his grin broadened. It was a sense of pride, yet an intense excitement surged through him. His demonic blood bubbled, flowing fiercely. In his left arm, he wielded a poisoned axe, while his right hand gripped a greatsword. “Though it’s quite unfair.”

For a human to not only possess an overwhelmingly high mana stat but also dominate mana to such an extent—was a testament to prodigious talent. “I guess Eliluam is much larger than I initially intended.”

Daniel shared the same feeling as Izel, who had first witnessed her extraordinary ability. It was a true display of overwhelming talent, surviving [Extreme] difficulty—a sleeping monster.


Daniel seamlessly integrated his innate strength and heightened [Strength] stat, causing both arms to morph impressively. His shield gracefully slid onto his back, signaling a sudden shift in his fighting style. Simultaneously, [Demonic power] and enhanced [agility] condensed around his feet, lifting him effortlessly from the paved ground.

“I should step up my game a bit. Don’t you think so?”

[Demonic Power Charge: 99.999%]

It was a bubbling power that needed to be charged properly to be used. That’s why the young demon rarely utilized [Demonic Power] in the Fortress, except when necessary. Due to such a demerit, he quite felt regretful, having experienced the aftereffects if he hadn’t abided by such a demerit.


‘But it’s different this time.’He briefly wondered as he leaped above a horde of towering Titan Orcs, numbering around twenty. As he descended into their midst, he coated his greatsword with [Demonic Power]. Without hesitation, he initiated a rapid assault, cleaving off their limbs with his axe. The agonized screams echoed as the Orcs crashed onto rundown buildings. In a seamless motion, he switched to his other weapon, swiftly beheading the fallen. Though appearing straightforward, this was a rapid and coordinated endeavor, overwhelming the Titan Orcs who struggled to keep up.

“Sorry, I was talking to peasants!” Daniel jeered.



As blood rippled in all directions, others thrashed about in terror, unable to mount a counterattack against the swift and potent storm of dual-chained assaults. It was as if they were caught in the chaos dealt by a skilled dealer.


With one hand gripping a poisoned axe and the other wielding a massive greatsword, the Titan Orcs unleashed a rampage as the familiar weapon dripped with ominous purple poison. The counterattack intensified, their fury matching the lethal combination of weapons.




With more horrified cries infused with fighting spirit, they relentlessly thrashed through every obstacle, swinging, thrusting, and hurling their weapons at the approaching young demon. Ignoring their pleas, the poisoned axe now in his grasp appeared to be the weapon of the first commander from the initial wave, yet he remained indifferent. To him, they were just low-superior races. A broad grin adorned his face, fueled by an indescribable surge of adrenaline as he adeptly parried and redirected open attacks while gracefully dodging blindspot assaults. Rending the monsters into pieces was second nature to him, drawing from his experience as a seasoned ex-hunter.

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had…]



A barrage of mind-jerking messages played havoc with his retinas as blood spewed onto his clothes and face, adorning his weapons in the gruesome tableau. Agonizing despair enveloped the Titan Orcs. Suddenly, amidst the bloody massacre, a heavy attack struck him without warning.


It was a distinct attack. Surprisingly robust, the young demon took two steps back and dodged to the left. Before he could redirect and counterattack, a swarm of magical onslaughts, targeting his vital spots, rushed toward him. From the skies, their gazes brimmed with intent-filled hollows.


Unfazed, Daniel clicked his tongue. “What on earth are these attacks?” Moments later, powerful punches, mysteriously enveloped in mana, tore through the air towards him, resembling meteorites.


“Ohoho, getting serious, are you?” His smile broadened as he leaped toward the punches, skillfully reading their paths with his experience, and evading them swiftly. However, that wasn’t enough; there were too many. He revved himself with [agility] and coiled with [constitution]


The air pressures scattered the air itself, creating an intertwined Crater on the ground, knocking off dirt and shrapnel into the air.

within the crater, Daniel coughed up blood. “Ugh! Magic?” He steadied himself with the axe, a grim cocktail of blood and [Stamina]. Without coiling, he risked being crushed or smashed like a mosquito. Yet, as a young demon, he grinned unabashedly.

Simultaneously, another hammer-like attack tore through the air toward him. Swiftly, he swapped his greatsword for a shield, infusing [Demonic power] into it. He deflected the attack and used the sharp momentum to emerge from the haze.


“Captain, those damn bastards are getting more aggressive,” he exclaimed, adjusting his footing. Something’s off; it’s as if the monsters have adapted to the intense battle.

“Yeah, you have a point!” Jenna retorted. To be honest, it’s more like adaptability than aggressiveness. Apparently, it wasn’t only him who noticed; the mage did too. [Mana Blasts] couldn’t deal enough damage to them anymore. Instead, they only managed to take arms or inflict injuries but never stopped them amid the explosion.

It’s as if their skins have gotten tougher, and their [Constitution], [Strength], [Battle prowess], and [Vitality] spiked up greatly.

“Are they really (C-)rank Titan Orcs?” Daniel asked.

“I disagree; maybe a (C+) rank?” Jenna retorted. After all, many hunters struggled with these (C+) monsters in Eliluam, leaving some labyrinths with these creatures unattended. Despite their low rank, their adaptability is impressive.




“Who the heck is that?”

“Is that Izel? It seems even he can’t handle them!”

“Ack!” A figure crashed into the run-down building, triggering clouds of dust and shrapnel that scattered in every direction. As the rest of the group rushed to the location, they discovered it was none other than Izel.

“Are you okay?” The mage inquired, his voice tinged with concern.

“Human, can you still fight?”

“Ah, I’m fine.” The blind man reassured, standing up unfazed. His reflexes and honed agility saved him from the potent attacks of the Titan Orcs. Without the hours poured into perfecting his moves, he might not have twisted his body at the last second, preserving his organs and surviving.

Sweat trickled down his neck, bruises marked his face and neck. Countless struggles are reflected in the patches of bruise, a testament to the challenges faced in defeating even one or two Titan Orcs with their heightened adaptability.

Wiping off the blood stain on his cheek, the blind man reflected, “That fact harkens back to the ancient times of the species…”

Jenna interrupted the blind man, questioning, “Ancient times… How did you know? Did you go to the Center library or read articles on the Hunter’s Kits?” She scoffed, implicitly suggesting, ‘You are blind; how did you read books in the library or read the Hunter’s Kit?’

Izel proudly nodded, ignoring the indirect insult. “No. I’ll take that as a compliment. While fighting a Titan species that attacked their villages in the far northwest, this once-green orc fought back. To cut that long story short, they defeated the titan with witchcraft. After their victory, the intense two-year battle caused drought and devastation to their farmland, leading them to feast on the raw flesh and organs of the Titans and drink their blood to survive.”

Daniel and Jenna, seemingly recalling the history book, simultaneously chimed in, “So, they woke up the next day with a lofty and hefty body and average stats due to the countermeasure of their genes. Instead, they gained ‘adaptability’—the ability to adapt to any dire situation…”

“Ah, you guys finally remembered.” Izel, briefly surprised, dusted off the dirt from his cloak.


Both of them nodded. Jenna remarked, “Their once-flaws have transformed into almost perfection.”

“I didn’t read that part!”

“Perhaps you just couldn’t recall it all.”


In any case, the Titan orcs easily pushed those three dominating Walkers back once their ‘adaptability’ reached its limits. However, all their advantages were in vain, as these Walkers never utilized all their skills from the start.

“I guess it’s about time we show them what ‘adaptability’ truly means.”

To Izel’s declaration and sneer, the young demon responded, “Yeah. This demon is just getting started. Ohoho!” He chuckled briefly.

“Of course, I have prepared some mid-chant for their asses,” Jenna grinned.

Three of them grew more focused, activating multiple skills simultaneously. Izel’s [Cloud Boots] faintly shimmered, indicating his remaining mana, and he swiftly transformed into the wind, creating a shockwave.

Jenna’s lips moved as she chanted, “Voltsgawugu benzguah Duamuah!” It was a mid-rank incantation, summoning a ball of roaring flames. Like a firework, it rained down, reducing their adversaries to cinders.



Amidst the resounding cries, the ground quivered, scattering shrapnel once more. But that wasn’t all. “That’s the spirit! Let your desperation out, hahahaha,” Jenna cackled in a comical manner. The orb on her lengthy staff faintly gleamed as she chanted mid-rank spells, skillfully avoiding irrational mana depletion due to euphoria. The battlefield transformed into a canvas of divine fireballs.

Simultaneously, a new notification appeared in Daniel’s retinas, prompting him to release a deep breath.

[Demonic Anti-magic has been activated.]

With eyes brimming with savagery and disgust, a dark aura screamed out, disrupting the mana in the air like a demonic hollow. He assumed a battle stance, gripping a poison axe in one hand and a greatsword in the other.


In the heat of battle, chained attacks focused on both blades, deflecting any magical assaults as the newly adapted Titan Orcs clashed with him. Swift and absurd slashes unfolded, painting the scene with the crimson blood of his fallen foes.



Everywhere was engulfed in utter chaos and mess—a true disaster. Sweat formed on Daniel’s brow as he charged through hordes of adapted Titan Orcs, showcasing his related skills to counter their adaptability. Alas, his weapons, coated with [Demonic anti-magic], negated all attacks and delivered critical blows.

It became challenging to keep track of the number of Titan Orcs he had slain during this raid—fifty, sixty, a hundred? The relentless onslaught continued. Soon…

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had been slain.]

[Titan Orc had…]



Amid the chaos, a barrage of messages continued to flood in. But that wasn’t all.

[Demonic power charge proficiency had increased by 15%.]

[Demonic power charge’s condition has been met.]

[A Title had been unlocked.]

[The Title ‘Royal Demon’ has been re-obtained.]

[Demonic Power and Demonic Anti-magic have been synchronized.]

[Demonic power has increased by 20.]

[Demonic anti-magic proficiency had increased by 15%.]

The message he had been wishing for finally arrived.

‘Finally,’ he said with a satisfied smile, his expression seeming to broaden. ‘it’s about time,’

Time left: 6 hours, 57 minutes.

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