Emery's confidence was palpable as he questioned, "So how do you want it? A duel?"
To his surprise, the scar-faced commander responded, "No, that doesn't prove much." He moved towards a control panel and initiated a challenge for Emery, setting it at level 3.
Jai, who was observing the interaction, voiced her concern. "Commander, level 3? Maybe we should start with level 1. The guy just arrived, and he doesn't know much about these Avalonian drones."
The commander responded firmly, "Jai, as a tactician, you know the most about fighting an unexpected battle."
Emery's initial impression of the commander wasn't favorable, and he felt a bit annoyed by the decision. However, Jinkan intervened, suggesting, "That's okay; he can take level 3. Maybe even higher levels?"
Emery's unexpected response left everyone taken aback. "Level three will do, but I don't see the point of doing this."
The commander was about to assert his authority, "You reject my order? I am the commander of this…" but Emery quickly interrupted. "Hold on," he said. "I just don't like fighting without anything to compare to. What about a contest? You and me, who can clear this challenge better."
Emery's cocky challenge excited the other elite team members and even amused the commander. "Alright, I will show you how it's done."
"Great," Emery replied, setting the stage for a competition that would test their abilities and establish their rapport within the team.
Emery and the commander each enter a room, side by side. A warning sound echoed through the chamber, and then, from the walls, emerged towering metallic constructs with humanoid forms, their glowing chests illuminating the space.
[Mythical, Level 30]
[Battle power 400]
Emery recognized it as the same constructs the other group had previously battled four on one. However, in this challenge, Emery was compelled to face one of these constructs alone. Just as he prepared for the confrontation, five more constructs descended from the ceiling.
[Mythical, level 10]
[Battle power 300]
They were the same adversaries that the new recruits had been pitted against. It appeared that Emery's friends had faced difficulties in their encounters with these diminutive constructs.
The test commenced with four constructs uniting to confront Emery. Each of these constructs boasted magus-level powers. As a beeping countdown initiated the battle, all four constructs lunged at him, their coordinated assault pushing Emery to draw his [lightsaber]. Without hesitation, he charged headlong into the fray.
Observing Emery's audacious tactics, one of the watching magus- couldn't help but exclaim, "He's stupid!"
The constructs exhibited a preference for long-range attacks, and as Emery recklessly charged forward, the drones took to the air. They formed a precise formation around him and began unleashing concentrated energy beams, each equivalent in power to a tier 5 spell. These beams posed a significant challenge for Emery, as his lightsaber struggled to adequately deflect them.
Emery reacted swiftly, redirecting his focus to neutralize the beams and disrupt their attempt to immobilize him. Yet, the colossal construct joined the fray, rapidly discharging beams from both of its massive hands. Instead of evading the imminent threat, Emery made a daring decision. He cast [Aegis of the Void], eager to put it to the test against the construct power. In that crucial moment, he glanced at the scarred-faced commander, who was engaged in a remarkable display of combat prowess on the other side.
The commander drew five high-tier swords and manipulated them with his spirit force. He used these weapons to engage the five drones, breaking their formation. Simultaneously, he confronted the colossal construct one-on-one, employing his considerable agility and combining it with the effective use of his spells. With every spell unleashed, he targeted the construct's chest, gradually diminishing its power.
As the pieces of the puzzle fell into place for Emery, he couldn't help but smile. "So that's the trick," he murmured, beginning to understand the dynamics of the fight and the role he needed to play in this formidable challenge.
This was precisely why Emery had issued the challenge in the first place—to learn from the commander's strategies and tactics. Fighting alongside him was the most effective way to gain insight into how to navigate this perilous situation.
Without a moment's hesitation, Emery nimbly evaded the onslaught of beams and reappeared, creating five illusory clones of himself. These phantoms immediately embarked on a frenzied charge towards the five aerial drones. Emery, however, adhered to the commander's tactical approach, channeling his energies and aiming his attacks at the colossal construct's chest.
Among the observing magus, there were approving smiles and nods, as they recognized Emery's brilliant tactic. Though the commander succeeded in vanquishing all six constructs and drones first, Emery was not far behind, eradicating his targets just a several seconds after.
Growing visibly irritated, the commander barked, "Level 4!" The entire audience was suddenly on the edge of their seats, their excitement reaching a fever pitch as the challenge entered a higher and more demanding stage.
In the next stage of the challenge, the difficulty had been significantly raised. Now, there were not just one, but three colossal constructs and a swarm of ten drones. The commander showcased his expertise, commanding ten swords and skillfully engaging with the three constructs simultaneously. Emery adjusted his strategy by creating a larger number of clones to confront the drones. However, dividing his power amongst ten clones made each one individually weaker. Emery was forced into a fierce battle, struggling to confront the trio of massive constructs. He nimbly evaded their attacks using his blink spell, and, when necessary, repelled them with his gravity spell.
With an audience of elite magus watching, Emery saw an opportunity to impress. "I should give them a good show," he mused with a smile.
Resheathing his [lightsaber] and activating his [Twilight Transformation].
Under the influence of the powerful buffs from [Immortal Gate] and [Paragon's Blessing], Emery's battle power skyrocketed, leaping by over 500 points. With this immense strength, he could now shatter the metallic limbs of the constructs with his bare arms, showcasing his overwhelming might. As if that wasn't enough, his enhanced [blade claws] allowed him to systematically dismantle the constructs one by one, leaving a trail of metallic wreckage in his wake.
Despite the challenging nature of the test, both Emery and the commander almost completed it simultaneously, impressing everyone who watched with their exceptional skill and prowess.
The commander raised the stakes even higher. "Level 5!" he declared, setting the stage for an even more daunting trial.
lightsΝοvεl ƈοmAt this new level of challenge, with five constructs and thirty drones, even grand magus would find it difficult to clear. The commander, using this as an opportunity to test Emery's limits, smiled and said, "Let's see how long you can resist."
He then calmly summoned the essence of his divine spell, [Sword Sanctuary] This incantation harnessed the power of ten sword artifacts, each shimmering with its own unique aura.
The swords floated around him, forming an intricate pattern in the air. The blades emitted a faint, radiant glow as they settled into their protective formation. It was like a whirlwind of shimmering steel, a barrier of divine blades that defied intrusion.
All the energy beams and physical strikes crashing upon the formation were met with an indomitable resistance. The barrier of blades held firm, the strikes repelled, and the energy beams dispersed, leaving no dent or scratch upon its surface.
Some of the onlookers expressed their disappointment, as they had hoped for a more aggressive display of power. However, Jinkan quickly silenced them and explained, "You won't be disappointed when the commander uses this skill to save your life."
Despite the overwhelming odds and the relentless onslaught from the constructs and drones, Emery refused to succumb. His body ached, and his limbs felt heavy, but he kept fighting, enduring the pain and the energy beams that bombarded him from all directions.
Five long minutes ticked by, and still, Emery remained standing, defying the expectations of those who watched in awe. The determination and resilience he displayed were nothing short of astounding.
In the next moment, Emery gathered and condensed his spirit energy while under fire, channeling it into a single, powerful burst of [Dao matter]. The explosion was devastating, obliterating half a dozen drones and severely damaging one of the constructs. It was a calculated risk, and it paid off, as Emery seized the opportunity to push forward, systematically clearing out more drones.
As the number of opponents dwindled, it became increasingly apparent that it was only a matter of time before Emery would emerge victorious in the level 5 challenge. The commander and all the elite magus watched in silent awe as Emery's performance defied all expectations.
Thirteen grueling minutes later, Emery stood as the sole victor, having completed the level 5 challenge, a testament to his unwavering determination and indomitable spirit.
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