Noctis Noir
20 A Clash of Swords
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Noctis Noir
Author :Papina
© Webnovel

20 A Clash of Swords

It was the fourth day of the first preliminary round. Once the day was over, they would have the first batch of guilds eliminated from the competition. As far as the Noctis Noir girls were concerned, they only need one win left to qualify for the next round. Black Rose and Jupiter also needed just one win left, while Hot Spicy Crabs lacked two more wins. The Knights Alliance won all three matches so far, so it wasn't necessary for them to win any more.

"Now, it's Luna's turn," Lyria said as she searched for Luna's name in the list of competitors. The moment she spotted it, she let out a gasp.

Luna froze the moment she caught a glimpse of her opponent's name. "Tank?"

"What an interesting plot twist."

Luna was in panic. "I can't win against him! He's levels ahead of me and has way more PvP experience!"

"At least you get to fight him. Show him what you've got." Lyria winked.

Amelie nodded. "Yeah. Beat him up and make him fall for you!"

Luna was deeply touched by her friends' encouragement. "Thanks guys."

Astrid placed a hand on Luna's shoulder. "Don't worry about losing. Just show them how strong you are."

"Go Luna!" Amelie raised her pom poms up. "Come, everyone! Let's cheer!"

Luna nodded. She felt a little reassured. "I'll do my best."

They went inside the amphitheater, where the day's battles already began. Lyria recognized the competitor on stage. It was Magnus. He looked fairly calm, unlike his opponent who appeared as if he was having a tough time. It didn't take long for the guildmaster of Jupiter to finish off his opponent with Crimson Rain.

The valkyrie declared the victor. "The winner is Magnus of Jupiter!"

The Jupiter mages sitting behind the Noctis Noir girls all cheered. "We made it to the next round!"

"As expected of Magnus! No one can beat him."

For a split second, Magnus glanced at Lyria's direction. She pretended not to notice by checking the match schedules on her menu tablet. "Yours should be after the next match, Luna."

Luna was starting to shake. "I'm really nervous right now."

Astrid bought two pairs of limited edition shades from the robot maids and gave one to Luna. "Here, put this on and tell yourself that you're awesome."

Luna did as Astrid said. "I'm awesome." She paused. "It's not working. I'm still nervous."

"Take deep breaths. Didn't you spar with him before?"

"Yeah. I did once, but that was just in front of his guildmates. This is different. We're fighting in front of the whole world!"

"Remember the feeling when you sparred with him. Once you're on stage, keep your eyes locked on your opponent. Forget the audience. They're only a distraction. Focus on surviving."

Luna nodded. "Got it."

"And lastly," Astrid placed a hand on her friend's shoulder. "Just have fun."

After Magnus and his opponent left the stage, the valkyrie made an announcement: "The participants have forfeited the match. The next competitors are Luna of Noctis Noir and Tank of the Knights Alliance."

"Go Luna!" Amelie cheered with her pom poms.

Luna stood up from her seat and clutched the pendant Tank gave her the other day. She took a deep breath and walked to the center stage.

"Well, this is an interesting turn of events," said Tank when he reached the middle of the stage. "I'll be going all out this time. I need to score a win for my guild. I am the guildmaster after all. So, I apologize if you get badly hurt during this fight."

Luna smiled. "No worries. I'll be doing the same."

"Commence battle!"

Luna immediately ran straight for her opponent. Tank used his crusader skill, Mirror Shield, to deflect the physical attack. At the last minute, she activated Defense Break, shattering the shield. He blocked the blow with his sword.

"I guess I can't use Mirror Shield against you, huh?" he said.

Tank activated his skill, Seraphim's Protection, which reduced damage received and boosted defense by 10%. Luna knew her best chance of dealing significant damage was hitting him with Defense Break and following it up with Ground Break. However, Ground Break required a large amount of mana, so she had to use it sparingly. With her current mana bank, she could only use the skill up to five times.

Before she was able to plan her next move, Tank used Holy Spike. A glowing spear materialized in his hand and he charged forward. Luna managed to react in time, using her shield to block the holy spear coming towards her. The impact was strong enough to push her back, almost making her lose her footing.

"Don't forget your stance, Luna," Tank reminded her.

"Thanks for the reminder," she replied before returning his attack with a critical hit. His health barely dropped.

She continued attacking as he parried all her attacks. After one final strike, she immediately activated Ground Break, hoping to make him lose balance. However, her plan failed. He still stood strong with both feet planted on the ground. It also barely made a dent on his health. Before she could hit him with Defense Break, a holy spear hit her, doing 20% damage.

"Go Luna! Don't give up! Show him how cool you are!" Amelie shouted from her seat, which distracted Luna a little. She was holding up a 'We love Luna' sign with a badly painted drawing of her face. Astrid was beside her wearing the limited edition shades and holding Amelie's pompoms up.

Luna felt like it was a repeat of what happened when she first sparred with Tank. This time, she kept her eyes locked on her opponent and concentrated on blocking his hits. She was glad he didn't have an agility build. Otherwise, keeping up with him would have been difficult with his strength and vitality build.

Tank launched another spear at her. This time, she completely evaded it and managed to hit him with Defense Break. By instinct, he quickly moved back. She charged towards him, trying to land a hit while his defense was down by 50%.

After five seconds passed, he said, "Sorry, Luna. Our time is limited, so I'll have to end this battle quickly."

Astrid leaned forward. "I think he's about to do Redemption."

"Oh no, I can't look!" Amelie covered her face with the 'We love Luna' sign.

Tank summoned a giant golden cross that appeared in the sky right above Luna. As she was basked under golden light, she felt as if the heavens opened up. The cross plunged down onto the earth, dealing massive holy damage on Luna.

"So this is what it looked like from here when Lyngvi hit me with that skill," said Astrid as she watched her guildmate getting hit by the same skill.

Luna managed to activate the skill Endurance right before she was hit. She was left with just two health points. She knew she had no chance of winning, but she still wanted to leave a mark on his health right before the end of the battle. She swiftly jumped forward, doing Ground Break right on his stomach. The crusader was pushed backwards after being caught unaware. His health went down by 20%. That was all the damage she could manage, before the next strike that hit her ended the battle. She collapsed on the ground.

"You ok? You did great." Tank extended his hand to help her up.

Luna took it. "You really hit hard, you know?"

He laughed. "You're a tough one yourself. Are you sure you don't want to switch to my guild?"

"Thanks, but no thanks. I love my friends."

He noticed the pendant she was wearing. "So you wore it today, huh?"

"Yeah. Thanks for the pendant. It really helped improve my stats," she replied nervously.

"Glad you like it." He smiled. "Hope I'll see you in the next round. One more win, right?"

"Yeah. Thanks."

"Good luck!" He waved before leaving.
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    《Noctis Noir》