Regressor of the Fallen Family chapter 26

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Chapter 26: In the Heart of the Collision

The shockwave that spread from the center of the collision upturned the ground, sending dirt and dust into the air.

“Uwaaagh.”

In the front lines, knights wielding a greatsword and a spear were rolling on the ground, spurting blood in similar states. Before them stood a Teslon knight, a senior knight whose pallor had turned ashen as he steeled himself in front of them, while the knights with short spears and longswords who had rushed at Patrick’s back were also pushed back, gasping for breath.

“Just in time, it seems.”

“…Logan.”

Patrick, who had been coughing up blood and sitting down, looked over at his eldest son who had somehow appeared by his side with a shaky gaze.

‘How did he make it here?’

He had seen the mercenary troop appear at the rear, but he had not anticipated seeing Logan here, at the heart of the battlefield.

‘To come from the rear to here…’

Instinctively, Patrick turned his head, and in his peripheral vision, he witnessed an incredible scene: enemy lines that seemed pierced in a straight line as if by a monstrous charge, and bodies strewn on both sides. Among the corpses were not only soldiers but also many of the Teslon knights. The gazes of those who remained were uniformly fixed on Logan. In the eyes of his allies, there was admiration; in the eyes of his enemies, tangible fear.

It was then that Patrick finally sensed a shift in the atmosphere of the battlefield. His son’s presence here was no fluke or coincidence. And had he not seen with his own eyes? How Logan had deflected an attack aimed at him.

“When did he become so strong… No, that’s not what’s important right now.”

Patrick grimaced, pushing himself up.

“I’m not sure how the battle is going…”

With a pale complexion, Patrick stood and grasped Logan’s shoulder.

“Your presence here means the tide is in our favor, right?”

That question stemmed more from hope than from a cool assessment of the situation. Fortunately, Logan had the response his father’s intense gaze was hoping for.

“Yes.”

“…Good. Well done.”

Patting his son’s shoulder, Patrick’s touch felt reassuring. To Logan, his father’s awkward words and actions were unexpectedly heartwarming.

* * *

Sir Raul, a senior Teslon knight, gripped his trembling hand and forced himself to maintain composure. The internal injuries from blocking Patrick’s lance charge, along with the wound in his side, were getting progressively worse, but there was no time to attend to them.

“Rix, Trombel. Get ready, quickly.”

His growling voice focused the attention of his two subordinates who were spitting blood at the edge of their mouths.

Patrick McLaine was no longer a big concern. He was more wounded than Raul from the collisions and cumulative damage.

“There’s no time! You four, take that man. I’ll handle the Baron.”

What mattered was the assailant who with a single stroke had deflected the combined attacks of Panan and Ramston, knights who had rushed at Patrick’s rear. Even more baffling was that the enemy seemed hardly in his county twenties, a young man reaching the ridiculous extremes.

‘Does that even make sense?’

A man in his county twenties deflecting the simultaneous attacks of two intermediate-grade knights? When Raul was that age…

Twenty-odd years ago, he recalled the days spent toiling to become a knight, spinning his head to discard the distracting thoughts. None of that mattered anymore.

“This man will die here.”

A lowly burst of jealousy unconsciously turned into a murderous intent that exploded.

However, Patrick scoffed at his enemies, who were emanating killing intent.

Of course, his injuries were not light. His left side was soaked with blood, and with each breath, the pain was sharp, and the taste of blood continually rose in his mouth. Yet even if his opponent was less injured, he was confident in his superior skill.

Moreover, his son had shown a force far surpassing that of a intermediate-grade knight. How he had improved so much in such a short time was beyond him…

‘He might not yet be senior-ranked, but average intermediate-grade knights couldn’t handle Logan.’

And certainly not four mid-rank knights who were already gravely injured. Patrick was sure of this as he took a step forward.

But Logan blocked him. His son’s thinking was different.

“I’ll take care of him.”

“No, it’s too risky.”

Patrick’s voice was firm as he held back his son. Even if Logan had grown, his capabilities’ limits were clear in Patrick’s eyes. Logan may have looked outstanding among intermediate-grade knights, but he was not yet at the senior level.

Even if the man was injured, Logan couldn’t possibly face the enemy’s senior knight.

“At least I am in better shape than you are now, Father.”

Gently pressing.

“Cough!”

Patrick, caught off guard, forgot his dignity as he groaned in pain.

“At your current condition, I can even defeat you. Trust me and let me handle this.”

Logan’s eyes burned with intensity, showing no signs of backing down.

“Alright.”

There was no time to argue stubbornly. As Patrick stepped back, he quickly ran calculations. Even if they were mere remnants, four intermediate-grade knights, but they were also wounded.

Patrick, in his current condition, might not be less injured, but there was an essential disparity they could not overcome.

‘I’ll finish first and then help Logan.’

The direction was opposite to what he had initially planned, but it seemed like a not-so-bad alternative.

“Be careful, son.”

“Remember, until the war is over, I am not your child.”

“…”

“Let’s hurry and finish this, my Lord.”

A joke that didn’t fit the situation, yet Logan smirked and drew his sword. Patrick, in turn, let out a hollow laugh and, holding his sword up, stood back-to-back with his son.

It was a feeling of reassurance beyond imagination that was transmitted through his back, feeling even the pain in his side lessen a bit.

“Let’s finish this quickly.”

Father and son wielded their swords, facing their enemies on both sides.

‘How dare this whelp!’

Raul’s eyes narrowed as he faced the charging opponent. Surprisingly, it wasn’t the Baron but that young man in front of him. The force that had blown away the intermediate-grade knight was certainly useful, but he was not a match for himself.

Raul was also at the senior level, and even his mere presence could be intimidating.

‘A mid-ranking Force user at best. He has superior physical abilities, but…’

He was not a match for Raul, a senior-ranked knight. But during the clash, the moment his red blade crossed with the enemy’s golden sword…

Boom!

“Cough!”

“Kugh!”

The one who was pushed back further was him.

“What!”

This was unfathomable. The difference in levels was not merely about strength and speed. Even with the same power, the efficiency in harnessing it and the sheer force it could bring to bear was precisely the difference in level.

Even accounting for his own injuries, considering the enemy’s strength and level, the young man was not someone who was a match for him.

‘The kid must have pushed himself too hard.’

That was the only conclusion Raul could accept. He gathered his strength for the next clash.

Boom!

But as their swords crossed, the shock along with the surging blood indicated his inner organs had been hit hard.

However, Raul, pushed back by the recoil while smirking bitterly at the whelp, couldn’t afford to show weakness.

Swallowing hard, the forcefully ingested blood aggravated his internal wounds, but there was no time to tend to them.

‘If you push yourself, I’ll push too.’

Eventually, the difference in levels would define the difference in outcome.

With clenched teeth, Raul gathered all his power, not caring about what laid behind him.

But…

Cling!

Scrape.

The enemy’s deflected sword quickly redirected and etched a long gash on his thigh. Accepting the grim reality, Raul realized that his strength was decreasing, while the enemy was becoming even faster and stronger.

“Yieek!”

Despite recognizing the grim reality, the frustration was overwhelming. If not for the injury, he wouldn’t have suffered such humiliation.

But Raul was not one to give up without a fight, so he changed his tactic.

‘It’s not all about strength and speed!’

He had wielded a sword for longer than the whelp had been alive.

His only way out of this crisis was to capitalize on the difference in their swordsmanship.

From that point, he avoided clashing swords as much as possible, relinquishing his pride as a senior knight, and deftly luring for an opening with minimal movements.

Cling!

Whoosh!

With a light flick of his wrist, he changed the direction of his blade, tirelessly exploiting any weakness.

However, in a battle of Force users, it was impossible to completely avoid collisions, and the internal damage worsened, pushing him further into a defensive state.

Yet Raul held back, waiting for the right moment.

Observed by the prospect that a simple deflection was intended, a gold shine intensified on the boy’s blade, indicating his intent to smash the technique with brute force.

A smile curled at the corner of Raul’s mouth. This was what he’d been waiting for.

The red glow around Raul’s sword deepened for a moment.

“Ugh?!”

Using the Force, Raul pulled the enemy’s blade toward him, surging forward, using his opponent’s primed strength to disrupt the balance, feeling the stagger.

‘It’s done!’

The center was compromised, the sword thrust forward.

With full understanding of the enemy’s condition, Raul launched his decisive strike.

Scrape!

A clean slicing sound, but Raul’s expression stiffened in despair.

‘Just the hem of the robe?!’

Through the battle, he had slowed more than he realized while the enemy had sped up. Overlooking this difference was Raul’s fatal mistake.

Having shown a brief look of surprise, the enemy now laughed ferociously and resumed his offensive.

‘Curse it!!’

Raul cursed his missed chance but it was too soon to despair. The swords clashed again, and he gritted his teeth, employing the same tactic once more.

However, the opponent was not naive enough to fall for the same trick twice.

“Die!”

With a ferocious smile, the enemy’s sword burst with a golden shine, feeling the danger Raul hastily retreated.

He quickly moved away from the reach of the blade, but it was futile. The swung enemy blade released four layers of gold waves that enveloped Raul.

“Impossible…”

Quadruple Wave – the first technique of the Divine Swordsmanship. An ancient secret technique that appeared in the world for the first time in a thousand years, unleashed its full power.

“A senior knight using tricks, huh.”

Staggering for a moment and then spitting out disdainfully, Logan raised his sword again.

Then, he severed the head from the nearly-crushed corpse and impaled it on his blade.

“I, Logan McLaine, have killed the enemy commander!”

Even as Patrick hadn’t yet finished his battle with the intermediate-grade knights, the proclamation that echoed across the battlefield decided the outcome of the war.

* * *

At the moment when Logan’s declaration sounded across the battlefield, fissures erupted within Teslon’s last standing forces.

But within those fissures was a grave misconception.

“The count is dead?”

“No way!”

“It can’t be!”

“Now that I think of it, the flag has been missing for a while!”

The count’s choice to lower the flag and hide in unfavorable moments had bizarrely backfired.

Logan’s action, thinking decapitating a senior knight was enough, had unexpectedly engendered an even more dramatic effect.

“Let’s surrender!”

“Are you crazy?!”

“We need to save our skins!”

Faced with the increasingly dire situation, even the most loyal soldiers who hadn’t fled and fought to the end became chaotic as their focus of loyalty vanished.

“Let’s surrender!”

“Don’t attack!”

More than half of the remaining Teslon forces, numbering less than three thousand, declared their surrender on the spot, dropping to their knees.

The first to feel the impact were the McLaine soldiers who had been fighting against them, as the persistent enemies finally laid down their arms.

Caught in the battle’s frenzy, or perhaps in fear, they had to acknowledge the changed situation.

And amid them, with the loudest voice, was none other than Patrick.

“Long live young lord Logan! A thousand cheers for the young lord!”

While Patrick’s behavior was perhaps overly excessive as he even shed tears while shouting, many among those relieved to have saved their skin joined in his cries.

“Long live Logan McLaine!”

“Huzzah for our young lord!”

“The battle isn’t over yet, you fools!”

Indeed, voices grounded in reality did attempt to awaken them, but the remaining enemy force had already lost its will to fight, only afraid to drop their weapons lest they be killed.

However, the reactions of the few surviving strong ones, the knights, were a bit different.

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