"P-Poisoned? W-When?" The duke was startled. Blood and internal organs left his mouth every time he coughed.
The middle-aged man that just appeared continued talking indifferently. "Before the ritual started I put mana poison inside the magic circle. Each time you absorbed power from the magic circle, you were absorbing a part of the poison. The amount you absorbed each time was negligible, so you did not notice it, but now that you absorbed enough, it has finally erupted, killing you slowly."
The duke paled and staggered several steps back.
Finally, he heaved a sigh, and his shoulders hunched.
"… Son, why?"
"Do you need to ask?" The middle-aged man sneered. "Look at what you have done to the city. Do you think you are still suitable to be the duke? You have become crazy, father, so it's time for me to replace you."
The duke fell silent. At some point, he stopped coughing and his face regained a bit of color.
"I always knew you were ambitious, Ryzen. But I never thought you would betray your own father." The duke said.
"Please, father. This would not have happened if you remembered your responsibilities as the duke." Ryzen said indifferently. "Now, if you still have a bit of sanity left on you, stop resisting. The poison in your body doesn't have an antidote, and with how much it has spread now, whatever you try is useless. Just die quickly so I can become the new duke and bring back peace to this place."
The duke stared at his son with a trace of disappointment. Then, he chuckled.
"My son, I know I'm going to die. I felt it when the poison first erupted. However, resisting is not useless. In fact, it already achieved its objective."
The duke's son frowned. But before he could understand what his father meant, blood-red mana started to ooze from the duke's skin.
The mana was like a cursed flame that burned with sins. It seemed ominous and cruel, and carried the power of a demigod.
Then, the duke smiled.
"My son, the little bit of time I gained while resisting the poison will be useful... To kill you!"
When these words sounded, the duke roared.
Instantly, his mana turned into a horrifying snake-like fiend that opened its mouth and attacked the Ryzen!
The fiend was so powerful that Bloed and the others paled. It had already surpassed the power of an A-Rank. It was an attack on the level of a demigod!
However, Ryzen did not panic. When the serpent-like fiend was about to touch him, one of the clerics beside him opened his mouth.
Instantly, white-hot flames ignited the serpent-like fiend. The flames burned so fiercely that the fiend the duke created was instantly turned into ashes!
Then, the flames continued advancing towards the duke!
"CHURCH OF THE SUN GOD!" The city lord cried in fury and fear, creating a barrier of mana in front of him. The barrier managed to stop the white flames, but it was destroyed in the process.
Behind the barrier, the duke looked at the cleric with bloodshot eyes.
"You were supposed to stop the other churches from interfering with the plan! I should have known you betrayed us when the Church of Fate and Moonlight Glow appeared here!"
"Betrayed you?" The cleric shook his head calmly. "Our church never cooperates with despicable villains like you. Villains that kill their out men and made use of something as vile as the Blight."
"YOU!" The duke growled furiously, but then, he shook his head and started to laugh. "How expected of religious hypocrites like you. I should have never trusted your church's words… Are you going to help my son to take my place as the duke?"
"Mr. Ryzen is the legitimate heir of the duchy. We are just doing what we need to do."
"Hehehehe… You even sent a demigod… I see you came prepared." The duke chuckled self-deprecatingly.
At that moment, a voice came from the clouds.
A man then appeared in front of the duke with two swords in his hand. He was Hugo, the demigod that had been fighting Kallevang.
Kallevang also appeared beside Bloed and the others. Apparently, he and Hugo had stopped their battle when they realized the situation changed.
Even Regina had appeared at some point. When Bloed asked her what happened with the demigod she was fighting, she said that he escaped when he felt noticed the suspicious movements of the church of the sun god.
"My Duke, are you alright?" Hugo asked with concern. When he saw the duke cough a mouthful of blood, he glared at Ryzen and the clerics of the Church of the Sun God in hatred.
"Mr. Ryzen, do you know what you are doing!?"
"I'm just doing the right thing," Ryzen replied calmly. "Killing the monster that hurt the citizens of this city is my duty as the future duke. You should come to my side too, Hugo. Why would you follow a man without a future like my father?"
"Hahaha, you are crazy." Hugo laughed in disdain. "Are you doing this to become the new duke? Mr. Ryzen, although I respect you, you can't be even one hundredth as good as your father when it comes to governing this duchy. I will never serve someone useless like you. I prefer to die!"
For the first time since he appeared, Ryzen lost his calmness. An angry expression appeared on his face, but instantly, he recovered his composure.
"Is it so? That is a shame. Although I was expecting something like that."
"Stop talking, Hugo." The duke growled. "Help me to kill this bastard!"
"As you order!"
Hugo roared and kicked the ground, appearing in front of Ryzen in an instant!
But the demigod of the church of the sun god moved too. His index finger moved in a circle, creating a barrier in front of Hugo. Then, he waved his hand to create a sword of light that attacked.
But while Hugo was distracting the demigod, the duke moved. With a wave of his hand, he summoned hundreds of blood-red spears.
When Ryzen saw that, he shook his head.
Then, he unsheathed the sword on his waist.
–And slashed towards the spears.
The slash seemed strangely slow, but for some reason, it was completed before the spears could arrive in front of Ryzen.
And when the slash finished, all the blood-red spears had been slashed into two.
The duke opened his eyes wide.
"Are you surprised?" Ryzen spoke indifferently when he saw the surprise on his father's face. "I broke through to the demigod level one year ago. And unlike you who relied on a dirty and despicable method breakthrough, I did it with my own strength."
The duke staggered another two steps.
"I-Impossible… Y-You don't have that talent!"
Ryzen shook his head slowly and didn't bother to explain that.
"Currently, the knights of the church of the sun are killing the believers of the god of slaughter and the soldiers that allowed this atrocity. Give up, father. Everything ended."
The duke snarled and created several more blood-red spears, but Ryzen just shook his head and took a step forward. That step put him in front of the duke.
Calmly, Ryzen wielded his sword, destroying the blood-red spears around the duke and stabbing towards his heart.
The sword pierced the duke's heart, exiting through his back.
"Even if both of us are demigods, I have been one much longer than you. Moreover, with the poison in your body, you can't show even thirty percent of your strength. This is your end, father." Ryzen said.
"Duke!" Huge cried, but he was being suppressed by the demigod of the sun god. In the end, he could only watch how the duke was killed.
The duke vomited a mouthful of blood. He glared at his son with a look of rage, and then, he took a decision.
With a thought, he released the power of the creature in his chest! He let it go berserk!
But one second later, his eyes opened wide.
A flash of understanding appeared on his face. Staring at his son, he started to laugh in resignation.
But Ryzen's gaze was completely indifferent.
Pulling back the sword in the chest of his father, he waved his hand again.
And the head of the duke flew away.
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