Dīnō, enraged beyond all restraints, charged at Pochi and Asley.
Behind it, Chiquiata began drawing another one of her Spell Circles.
Pochi, with Asley on her back, had expected Dīnō to come at them in a straight line, and in turn had planned beforehand to jump backward.
Taking only a short moment to gain some distance, Pochi then exclaimed,
Asley was aiming his spell at an open space, so as to not catch Bright within the scope of its effect.
“Pochi Pad Bomb!”
He invoked one of the Swift Magic spells in his Torrent Dragon Staff, launching a gigantic ball of water toward Dīnō.
Considering the size of it, Dīnō had thought that deflecting it would be easy enough, but then a voice from behind tried to convince otherwise.
“Dīnō, dodge it!”
It was too late; by the time Dīnō realized what it was up against, the spell had already come too close for it to avoid.
However, Dīnōs survival instincts had saved it from the worst possible outcome.
It had unleashed its Zenith-level Breath Attack right at the Pochi Pad Bomb.
Upon impact, Dīnō was buffeted by an intense gust of wind and what felt like a hail of water missiles.
The Dynos life was ultimately protected by the tenacious scales of the Dragon archetype.
However, only the indirect effect of Asleys spell was enough for it to get some major injuries.
Dīnō stopped right in its tracks, its red-green-spotted body dyed in fresh blood.
Seeing how the Dyno gritted its teeth and refused to let itself collapse, Pochi flinched.
“No way! Arent those injuries supposed to be fatal, sir!”
“Its the Dynos ego that keeps it going – its in its nature of a proud Dragon… But now its injuries are too heavy to be healed – its as good as out of the fight now.
Shiro, keep a close look on the womans movements!”
“Leave it to me, sir!”
As she said that, Pochi jumped diagonally forward, avoiding Dīnōs glare while getting closer and closer to Chiquiata.
Chiquiata started drawing a Spell Circle, intending to cast a recovery spell for Dīnō.
However, Pochis approach forced her to cancel the process.
Instead, she promptly swung with her staff, attempting to fend off Pochis charge.
However, Pochis capacity for sharp reaction enabled her to catch the staff with her mouth.
“Damn you little-!”
Chiquiata gripped her staff with both her hands, trying to shake it off, but ultimately achieved no results against Pochis gigantified body.
Rendered practically immobile while focusing on reclaiming her staff, she was then faced with Asleys follow-up attack.
“Roar, my pecs!”
From Chiquiatas point of view, the Torrent Dragon Staff, in those steeled arms of her enemys, was likely no different from a conventional blunt weapon.
The result, however, was not what she had expected.
First things first, the head of her staff…
It was still held in Pochis mouth, but its length was a third of what it used to be; Chiquiata herself had the remaining two-thirds, cleanly split apart from its whole.
“Uuooohhh! Split open, my abs!”
Asley twisted his body, exerted pressure onto his abdominal muscles, and brandished his Torrent Dragon Staff once again.
Chiquiata, her eyes unable to keep up with the speed of that swing, had her face cramp up from genuine fear.
Her enemy had just leaped behind her, by means of utilizing the staff head in Pochis mouth as a springboard.
“Rejoice, my tr.a.p.ezius!”
…But then Asley made a hundred-eighty turn, flexing at Chiquiata with a back double biceps pose.
Asley, planning to bask in theglory of his flex, instead had his attention caught onto Myans, who was rushing to Dīnōs aid.
[Thats… the Myans girl! But wheres Bright!]
The boy, who was supposed to be within Myans clutches, was now nowhere to be seen.
Asley tried looking around, but all he saw were the enemies.
Assuming that Bright could be in his one blind spot – the backside of the carriage – Asley planned to jump on top of it, but before he did, he heard a voice coming from below him.
And that was all he needed to hear.
Chiquiata, upon seeing Myans, glared at the girl and clicked her tongue out of annoyance, but Asley had no time to waste with her now.
As Bright emerged from the underside of the carriage, Asley invoked the Spell Circle that he had on the ready in his left hand.
However, the spell showed not even a sign of taking effect.
Before long, the Circles arcane energy dispersed, signifying Asleys failure to invoke the spell – but in fact, he knew very well what he was doing.
“There! Copy & Write!”
This second spell, which he had drawn with his Torrent Dragon Staff, created a perfect duplication of the spell in his left hand.
“What in the world is that creepy spell… wait, could it be…! It wasnt invoked right after being drawn… a fixed-position type!”
By the time Chiquiata realized that, Asley had already completed the replication of the Spell Circle on the ground.
In the background, Myans was in the process of healing Dīnō.
Although Chiquiata had a bad feeling about what she was seeing, she still couldnt react to it quickly enough.
“Bright! Get on!”
Asleys informal tone of the statement had come out on the spur of the moment.
However, the intention behind it was fully understood; Bright did not let the tone hinder his decision-making.
The Spell Circle he stepped on radiated light, signifying their invocation; that moment, Brights body glowed dimly like a disembodied soul and started fading away.
Pochi stood firm in front of the Circle, while Asley stood behind it, both keeping a vigilant watch on Chiquiata and Dīnō.
Brights dim figure eventually fully disappeared as if s.u.c.k.e.d into Spell Circle.
And then, after a brief moment, the Circle itself vanished.
Asley and Pochi, now sensing no presence behind them, hopped on the top of the carriage immediately, as if they had coordinated the movement beforehand.
Pochi landed first; Asley landed on her back, and was in the process of drawing another Spell Circle.
Seeing that Dīnō was now healed, Pochi bared her fangs in a threatening gesture.
However, Chiquiata and Myans only stood still, dumbfounded by the mysterious phenomenon that had just occurred before them.
The spell was called Teleportation, a spatial transference spell invented by Asley himself… in the future.
It was something utterly incomprehensible by the two mages native to this era.
During the engagement up to now, Chiquiata had been the most troublesome opponent to Asley.
This momentary confusion of hers provided him with just the chance he needed to win.
“Rise! Sancta Boundary!”
Asley unleashed his most powerful Boundary magecraft at Chiquiata.
Dīnō, the only one undistracted, rushed to Chiquiatas aid, but was stopped in his tracks by Pochis Purgatory Breath.
Myans, on the other hand, had no reaction whatsoever.
For what it was worth, Chiquiata did know what sort of magecraft she was up against.
Her expression now was not so carefree as it had been before.
“…Not bad at all, boy.”
Chiquiata whispered, and then licked her upper lip.
That moment, Asley and Pochi felt a terrible chill run through their bodies.
Asley was alerted by something approaching from above; Pochi leaped backward with such force that smashed the upper half of the carriage.
Moreover, Asley heard a characteristic, resonant ring coming from his staff.
He looped up to the sight of a gigantic, shadowed figure.
The figure unleashed a blow – powerful enough to crush the earth – at the magecraft he had used, instantly destroying it.
When Pochi landed, what she and Asley saw before them was a gigantic blue Dragon.
Its head alone was half the size of Pochis gigantified form.
Countless sharp fangs lined its mouth.
Gold and silver fur lined the length of its back, and glittering blue scales covered its whole body.
Four short limbs extended from its long torso.
Asley couldnt help but be dumbfounded at the sight of this monster – one he had never even seen before.
“Thats… A Cobalt Dragon……”
But then, Pochis increasingly fierce stance toward the opposition called him back to his senses.
The next thing he realized was that Dīnō was now right in front of them, the Dyno having tail-whipped the carriage out of its way, and that Chiquiata was now scratching the Cobalt Dragons chin.
[Damn it! How did I not see this coming! I knew that the Myans girl is Dīnōs Master, and Chiquiata is also a mage… so why did I not expect her to have a Familiar as well!]
While Asley panicked, the voice of his long-time friend reached his ears,
“Because youre a fool, sir!”
“I see! …Hell no, Im not!”
Dīnō approached them, fuming heavily out its nose; Pochi took a step back, and then another.
“You really gave me a hard time just now, kid…”
The state of the battle has changed dramatically.
They had thought they could fight an even match, but that was very much not the case now.
They could never expect to win by carelessly charging in.
Still, winning the fight has never been Asleys objective here.
Chiquiata whispered something to the Cobalt Dragon, prompting it to turn to Asley and Pochi; at the same time, Asley pointed his Torrent Dragon Staff upwards.
“Pochi Pad Bomb!”
He shot another paw-shaped water bomb, sending it soaring high into the sky.
Dīnō and Myans watched carefully where the shot was going.
Chiquiata and the Cobalt Dragon, on the other hand, focused on Pochi.
Asley shouted once again, invoking the fourth spell of his Swift Magic slots,
The spell was targeted at the Pochi Pad Bomb; upon impact, those two spells fused, and then disappeared.
“Hmph, what did that spell even do…”
Dīnō turned to glare at Asley once again, but unbeknownst to it, right when its eyes averted from the spell, light gushed forth from high up in the sky.
The Cobalt Dragon turns its long neck upward; it now realized what was up.
It wasted no time to coil around Chiquiata, its Master, in an attempt to protect her.
Dīnō clicked its tongue in annoyance and followed the Cobalt Dragons example, rushing to Myans protection.
It pushed Myans down and stood over her – and then felt something hot rain down on its back.
“HOT-! WAH- OUCHCHCH-!”
Although Kaiser Dynos were highly compatible with fire magic, they were weak against heat penetrating through their bodies surface and throwing off the temperature within.
Asley, having used a layered casting onto the Pochi Pad Bomb, had heated up the latter spells water to the boiling point.
While the Cobalt Dragon and Dīnō fended their Masters from harm, Chiquiata and Myans maintained their respective Familiars health with recovery spells.
Seeing how those two Familiars attacks had ceased, Asley contemplated launching a surprise attack.
“Its about time!”
Dīnō, having anticipated that the previous attack would cause actual damage, had positioned himself over Myans just in the nick of time.
But while it fended off the relatively harmless precipitation of hot water, what Dīnō saw in the corner of its eyes was…
Asley and Pochi were now facing away.
The latter only briefly turned her head around, confirming what was behind her before running off.
“That was the spell for reheating my cold stew!”
Then Asley turned his upper half around, keeping a careful watch on what was behind him.
“And for warming up my coffee! How does that feel, huh!”
The duos insults reached Dīnōs ears; that was enough reason for it to unleash another Zenith-level Breath Attack.
To Asleys brief instruction, Pochi leapt up, did a front flip, and then countered the incoming Breath Attack with one of her own.
At the same time, Asley, who clung on to her back, got the back of his head scraping along on the ground.
…Or, perhaps, it would be more accurate to call that a collision.
“Damn it, Shiro! That freakin hurt!”
“…Did you see that, Master! Ive countered it perfectly!”
“Listen, damn it!”
Although Asley had his grips with how Pochi tried to dodge the question, he was quite satisfied with the greatly enraged look on Dīnōs face.
Then again, the fact was that they had been forced to withdraw from this confrontation.
The fact served to show the both of them the room for improvement, and also the next step they ought to take.
“All right, lets bounce, Pochi.
You know what to do.”
Asley, assuming that their enemies couldnt hear them anymore at this range, said to Pochi.
“Oh, yes, I know!”
Pochi knew by heart what Asley had meant to do, and was fully on board with it.
“”WELL GET YOU NEXT TIME!!””
Their voices echoed through the wilderness.
Chiquiata sighed in dismay as she watched her opponents run into the distance, and then she muttered to herself,
“What in the world…”
Though they were her enemies for the duration of their encounter, the other sides ridiculousness rendered Chiquiata and Myans unable to express any anger.
“GAAAARRRR… ILL KILL THEM ALL!!”
That reaction did not apply to Dīnō, of course.