“What, is that it?” the leader of the group of Heavy Blades watch as Barrett stumbled backwards into the waves of the Metal Sea. He watched as the waves covered him, then receded, then covered him again in a pattern that seemed like it would go on forever.
“It should be,” the woman who led the Silver Blades said, then coughed. “His breath has stopped, his heart has finished beating. His energy is fading.” She threw a sequence of needles, all of them landing in his neck, mostly his windpipe and jugular veins.
The mercenary leader closed his red eyes, grimacing. “Let’s get out of here, then. This place is…” he shook his head and walked toward Barrett. Some spray from the sea splashed onto his hand, “Damn, that’s hot,” he shook his arm, “Nearly burned me.” He waited for the waves to retreat before grabbing Barrett’s body by the ankle and pulling him up onto shore. “Can’t forget this though…” he lined his axe up with Barrett’s neck, raised it up and proceeded to behead him.
At least, the axe swung down in that action. However, immediately before it struck Barrett’s hand caught the handle of the axe as well as the mercenary leader’s ankle. In the same motion, he was thrown into the sea, and the axe hurtled toward the woman leading the Silver Blades. Even in the unexpected situation she dodged a single step to the side and the axe just barely slipped past her.
“Tch. So that’s why they say Immortal Berserkers are such a pain to deal with…” she turned to the Silver Blade behind her who had been hit by the axe, “Another failure. The rest of you should learn to never let your guard down.” During the time she spoke, she was not idle. She threw a final few volleys of needles, though Barrett managed to block them with his arm.
Of course, Barrett also didn’t stand around while she talked. There were still plenty of rocks within reach, helpfully given to him by the Heavy Blades. Several of them completely had their guards down and soon found themselves with crushed faces.
The leader of the Heavy Blades had found himself thrown a full ten meters into the Metal Sea. In the handful of seconds it took him to swim back to shore, he would no longer have been recognizable if not for his armor, the very same armor that continued to cook him alive. He shouted something incomprehensible at Barrett as he staggered towards him… only to find himself being tossed backwards into the sea by a charge from Barrett. He tried to stand up above the waves, but Barrett had gone in with him. He struggled briefly, but Barrett held a hand on his throat even while he was underwater, crushing his windpipe and cutting off blood circulation.
In the few seconds that took, the remaining mercenaries had organized themselves to cut off his escape. There were still nearly twenty enemies- including the three third tier Silver Blades. Half of them stood out of reach preventing him from walking up onto the shore, and the other half had spread out to either side so they could catch him if he moved through the waves.
Barrett looked at them and laughed. “What, then? Want to fight? Come and get me!” With a flick of his wrist he threw one of the lead balls he carried on him. He hadn’t had much use for them against a good portion of the opponents he had met in the Metal Sea, but the Heavy Blades weren’t particularly adept at controlling anything beyond their own equipment. His target managed to bring up his shield and block, but the force of the throw and the berserk energy in it shattered his arm. “Still not coming?” Barrett reached into his magic bag and pulled out his axe. Against other opponents it might have been a liability, and he still preferred to fight unarmed… but the axe would more efficiently use berserk energy, and against so many opponents he needed to save what he could.
Barrett ran toward the bunch on the right, between the two sets of boulders. There were only four there compared to the six on the other side. In response to his charge the three Heavy Blades attacked together. Their teamwork was admirable… but they were already coughing up blood, short of breath, and barely able to see. Whatever they had used to protect them from the corrosive air could only take them so far. With them being weakened far more than Barrett, it was easy to avoid their attacks. The lone Silver Blade with them reacted a moment too slow in retreating, and for that lost a leg. The Silver Blades barely even trained their body, so they were the worst off.
Of course, Barrett wasn’t fighting at peak capacity… but he put himself at about eighty percent just because of the reduced oxygen available. His body had grown resistant to the corrosion for the most part, and the poison… well, it was possible that some of it he had built up a resistance to, but it didn’t matter. The needles had been coated with poison ahead of time… and hours of chasing through corrosive, moist, and salty air had diluted all of it to the point of being irrelevant.
On the backswing, Barrett killed one of the Heavy Blades, then retreated toward the shore so he couldn’t be surrounded. Along the way he had to cut down the fastest of the left group who was almost able to cut him off. Then he stopped, ankle deep in near-boiling water. The heavy blades who had moved to the sides to prevent his escape saw it wouldn’t do much good, and they would be served better by closing in. As they did so, Barrett cut down two more of the mercenaries in front of him.
Then the remaining third tier Silver Blade- that wasn’t the leader- jumped up on the boulder to Barrett’s front. He had pulled out several vials of undoubtedly nasty concoctions and was preparing to throw them… but as he landed on the boulder slid forward, sending him off the edge as he fell onto his back. Barrett was glad the trap he had set finally paid off, and though causing the boulder to be exceptionally slick wasn’t very impressive… it also wasn’t immediately obvious. That was the best he could do at the moment.
The fall wouldn’t have been a problem, since the man was still behind the line of Heavy Blades… but Kail was laying there. When the Silver Blade fell prone next to him, Kail elbowed him in the windpipe. Then he scrambled to his feet and toward one of the axes dropped by fallen Heavy Blades. Barrett was surprised Kail’s acting had worked… but then again, the opponents never really cared about him to begin with.