The Doppelganger slashed with its claws and only when they passed millimeters away from her face did Jirni notice that instead of fingers the creatures had five small Scorpicore\'s tails.
\'Yesterday Manohar told us that these things can just copy someone\'s appearance.
He never mentioned the ability to combine and imitate Emperor Beasts!\'
She assembled her remaining needles into the staff of a polearm to block the following slash, but as soon as she perceived the creature\'s strength, Jirni knew not to be its match.
She jumped back, using the momentum of the impact to gain some distance and drag the Countess with her.
Give me the woman or die with her! The Doppelganger\'s voice sounded like gurgling water while their words revealed a compassion that Jirni didn\'t expect nor respect.
A second before she and her mark were about to get caught, Jirni activated one of the needles\' many enchantments to recall them to her hand.
They released pulses of water magic that froze the Doppelganger\'s liquid body and darkness magic that sapped its strength.
The combined effect of the two elements made the Doppelganger groggy and allowed the needles to easily pierce their hard rock skin on the way back.
\'My attacks may only cause ripples to a creature capable of adjusting their density at will, but even if just for a split second, those ripples can create an opening.\' Jirni thought.
The needles had actually opened gaping holes in the creature\'s head, blinding it.
On top of that, the moment the needles touched the polearm they extended it further and formed a curved blade on its end.
Jirni stabbed at the Doppelganger\'s still opened mouth, turning it into a block of ice blackened by the amount of darkness magic it was imbued with.
The creature stumbled, but it wasn\'t enough to stop it.
The Doppelganger grew a new set of legs from their chest, using them to break the fall and become even faster.
Jirni threw her spear at one of its feet, nailing it to the ground and enveloping it in a thick layer of ice.
Yet she knew it wouldn\'t last.
Run, you idiot! Jirni ordered and the Countess was happy to oblige.
The Doppelganger didn\'t even bother freeing their limb.
They just cut it off and grew another before their prey could take ten steps away.
Orion wasn\'t faring any better.
He was a mage and could use magic holding rings, but they didn\'t make much of a difference.
The creature in front of him shrugged off anything below tier four but using such a powerful spell would have killed everyone present including the Marquis.
The armor he wore had the same body-enhancing enchantments as Jirni\'s which was the only reason they were capable of keeping up with the Doppelgangers boosted by elemental fusion.
His shield and sword were of little use against an enemy who could grow as many limbs as they wanted and even extend them at will.
Orion kept trying to gauge the Doppelganger\'s attack range just to see it increase every time he took a stand.
To make matters worse, the creature didn\'t care much for him and focused on the Marquis, forcing Orion to spin like a top to block the attacks that tried to bypass him from every direction.
Even after activating Full Guard, he had often been forced to choose between defending himself or Beilin, taking many blows just to keep the City Lord alive.
Not even Jirni could interrogate a corpse and the Royals needed to know the identity of the person who had been secretly pillaging the Kingdom.
The only silver lining was that the Doppelgangers were limited to tier two magic due to their weak cores which also affected their skill with fusion magic.
On top of that, they had the mass and the strength of an Emperor Beast but lacked the battle experience necessary to use them properly.
Thrud had trained them to the best of her abilities but between the large number of possible forms the Chimeric Body could take and the limited time at her disposal, the Doppelgangers were amateurs fighters compared to the Ernas couple.
Amateurs with countless limbs, no vitals, and a weight of several hundred kilograms, making each one of their relentless attacks as heavy as a charging bull.
The Dragon scales were no match for his blade, Grimlock.
Yet every time Orion cut a limb asunder, the stump simply extended forward and exploited the opening that his perfect counter had created.
Even without scales or claws, the stump still hit like a battering ram.
The pieces that Orion cut, instead would either immediately reconnect to the stump or slither back to the main body, bringing Orion back to square one.
\'If only I could use dimensional magic.\' He spat out a mouthful of blood after receiving a heavy blow to the chest.
\'I would just Blink the Marquis to safety and lure the monster outside, where I could use powerful spells without causing a massacre.\'
The ballroom was still full of screaming nobles running for their lives.
Together with the elemental sealing arrays of Ruham, they greatly limited Orion\'s options.
The Doppelgangers knew it and it was the reason they had barred the doors before revealing their presence.
The presence of so many hostages gave Thrud\'s children a food reserve at hand in the case they needed to heal their wounds, kept their magically gifted opponents from using high tier magic, and if push came to shove, the Doppelgangers would also have a perfect cover for their escape.
The creature in front of Orion was over three meters (10\') tall, whose upper body was that of a humanoid covered in emerald scales.
It had five sets of arms, each one ending with razor-sharp fingers that the Doppelganger could move and extend freely, making their trajectory unpredictable.
From the chest down it had the body of what looked like a giant silver wolf with quills instead of fur.
The four-legged stance gave the hybrid a speed and reflexes that Orion could barely follow while the quills allowed the Doppelganger to keep attacking even when Orion gained some distance.
The reinforcements arrived seconds after Orion had sounded the alarm, but between the civilians standing in their way and the rest of the Doppelgangers using the nobles as human shields, they could barely advance.
Blow the **ing wall! Orion yelled while activating his tier five Mage Knight spell, Searing Gate, he had imbued his sword with.
Grimlock released waves of darkness alternated with flames that engulfed the entire space within a meter (3.3 feet) of his body, sparing the Marquis that was still glued to Orion\'s back.
Not only did the spell produce a heat capable of melting rock, but it also pushed back whoever and whatever entered its area of effect.
Doppelgangers were naturally resistant to fire, but the molten ground still hindered their mobility.
Also, the waves of darkness magic attacked everything on their path, making it impossible for the creature to retrieve a part of their body once it fell onto the ground.
Until that moment, the Doppelganger hadn\'t cared about the severed limbs or losing quills because they would always come back by themselves, allowing the creature to not lose precious body mass.
Yet now fire cauterized every wound that Orion opened while darkness seeped inside the quills, making them rot.
If you find any errors ( broken links, non-standard content, etc..
), Please let us know so we can fix it as soon as possible.
Tip: You can use left, right, A and D keyboard keys to browse between chapters.