While looking at the little ice chunk coming towards him, Noah simply raised his left hand and a thin stream of flame was launched towards the stone, melting it back into liquid form.
"You…. Do you have a blessing? AND WHY IS YOUR BLESSING MORE POWERFUL THAN MINE?!?! " At that point Harry realized that he had screwed up, he had already lost his morale when he indirectly killed his own friend. Now that he had shown that he was weaker than the "weakest" of the group, he started to fall into despair.
There was no need to comment on how surprised everyone was to discover that Noah actually had a blessing, especially the adults, since some had already participated in more than one fortress invasion with Noah and had never seen him use the blessing once. Of course, some were still skeptical of Noah, thinking that he was weak and that this blessing was just as weak as he was, probably the reason he never used it before.
Noah, of course, did not even bother to explain that his blessing was not weak and that it had the potential to become the strongest blessing of all. The best card in their sleeve that a magician can have is one that the audience has no idea exists. He had no reason to tell his enemies that he was powerful. That, they would have to find out in the worst way.
At that point, Wendy's spiteful look at Amy only deepened further and further, as Any had stopped her from talking to Noah while they were still on the bus because she said the boy was weak and would die in a short time. But at this time she could see while they were together, if there's one thing about Noah, it wasn't that he was weak: be it how skillful he was with a knife, the tactics he always collaborated with the team, or especially his flame that burned and purified all of the rats. How could she not be angry with her friend who did not let her go to talk with and befriend Noah? Who knows; maybe he was just hiding his strength all this time?
The group thought Noah was stupid because he was wasting energy by burning these rats, but because he was useful as the group's scout, no one complained that he was delaying them. Only he knew he was not wasting energy. To quite the contrary, the more rats he burned, the stronger his flame became and the more powerful he would be in the battle against the Super Boss.
At that moment, while they were standing in front of the entrance to the Super Boss lair, Noah's Status read:
[User: Noah Stern
Level: 01, 8/100 exp
(Hell Flames Lv 01 Exp 27/100: A technique that consists of invoking the flames of hell itself. The flames of hell were no different from normal flames, but after purifying so many sins and so many sinners, it became the most powerful flame, having even burned the flame god himself, making him beg Lucifer to extinguish the flames before he died. To increase the power of the hellfire flames, the user must burn sins or sinners.)]
In a stinky sewage tunnel, fourteen people were standing while looking at a circular metal door, which must have once been used to prevent sewage from crossing into the other area like some sort of dam.
Among the fourteen people, six teenagers were facing each other with shaking hands, still not believing that the first fortress invasion they participated in was so dangerous even though they were still in a Rank F fortress. Some of them shivered when they imagined the difficulty of a Rank E fortress, or even a Rank D fortress.
On the other hand, there were seven adults concerned about the family that waited for them outside the fortress: the family that needed money to buy food, to pay for electricity, to turn off water, to survive. Just thinking about the possibility that they might not be able to get out of this fortress today and thinking about what their family outside would have to go through had already made everyone there afraid.
Even Noah was worried, thinking of a person who depended on him outside, a person who would not be able to support herself, that person for whom he worked and almost killed himself over several times in the past four years. Under no circumstances would Noah allow himself to not leave this fortress alive today.
When he looked at his hand, it was noticeable how nervous he was by how shaky his fingers were. Even though he was trying to keep his nervousness to himself and not let it show to anyone in the group, Noah was one of the few people who knew how serious their situation was right now; the chance of survival was minimal.
Because he had no strength before his blessing woke up, Noah was forced to work smart, so what he valued most was intelligence itself as strength. He analyzed the data and information of each possible Rank F fortress that he could enter: the strength of the monsters, the intelligence of each one, what the Berserk mode of the Bosses would do with each Boss, and what is the most practical way to complete each fortress.
Looking from the outside, this clearly looked like data from video game dungeons, but unlike those dungeons, this data and information was captured from the blood and sacrifice of each Blessed person who died in unknown fortresses, as well as the survivors who willingly contributed to the base data of the strongholds they witnessed to help the Blessed of the future and decrease the number of deaths.
Unfortunately, in addition to the majority of the blessed not bothering to study the fortresses they invaded, sporadically completely new fortresses appeared, making any kind of information that the Blessed ones invading those places knew become useless.
Fortunately, the fortress that they are now in was part of one of the fortresses of which Noah already had information, so even though this normal fortress turned into a super fortress, he still believed that it would be completely possible for them to kill the final Boss.
Looking from side to side, Noah couldn't help but sigh as he accepted that most likely most of the faces he was looking at would not come home this time. But of course, it was not as if he cared so much. At the end of the day, the only important thing was that he returned home alive, regardless of how many people died today.
"Okay, people with Blessings that favor ranged attacks will stay away from focusing on causing damage to the Boss. Be careful not to spend all your energy in the beginning, since when the Boss enters Berserk mode, everyone will have to do damage as quickly as possible so he doesn't call a huge hoard of rats to himself," said the scarred man as he opened the metal door that led to the King of Rats' lair.
Noah was now on full alert. Having read everything possible about this fortress, he knew that upon entering the King's lair, he would instantly notice them and launch himself at everyone to try to kill some of them right away. With that in mind, he went to the back of the group and left people with Blessings that could strengthen their bodies to go ahead first.
Just as he imagined it would be, at the very moment the circular metal door opened, the King of Rats launched himself from the dark towards a woman holding a shield, and without her being able to do anything, the monster's fangs immediately latched on and dragged her inside.
The teenagers at that moment froze when they remembered their friend who had suffered the same fate; the only difference was that this time instead of the rat being the size of a motorcycle, he was the size of an SUV car.
Noah might as well have warned the group that this was going to happen, but it would have just caused a conflict where no one would want to take the lead, and in the end, they would have never escaped this place. Sacrifices were necessary, and Noah knew that he was not the only one who had the knowledge that this was going to happen. He reflected as he looked at the scarred man.
Taking the lead from there, the scarred man ran forward with his sword while shouting to force the others to wake up from their shock. "Let's go! Attack!"
Noah had already recovered and in the middle of a dark region of the room he used his own flames to send an improvised fireball in the direction that the noise of the King of Rats was coming in order to guide the other Blessed to their target.
Thanks to the spatial sense that he had developed, Noah's clumsy fireball managed to hit the big rat and make some of his hair catch fire. Even though it didn't do much damage, now in the darkness, those few flaming hairs served as a perfect target for the rest of the blessed to be able to aim their attacks.
Unfortunately, with the fireball it was also possible to see that the body of the Blessed one that the rat grabbed when they entered was already divided in half. In the rodent's mouth only the upper part of her body remained, the lower part probably fell off somewhere.
Since Noah had developed the Flames of Hell ability only recently, his control over them was still very low. Just as a Blessed man who controls earth would not be able to make a wall of earth in his first year, Noah also did not have enough control over his own flame to be able to make a perfect fireball, let alone something more elaborate like the words of flame that appeared in the system notification windows.
Looking ahead, Noah knew it was going to be a close battle against this Super Boss.