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TOTGDK EP 18: Trial of the Hunter: Second Trial (2)

The sight of the bulking gorilla barreling towards Naxio and Moushira was enough to paralyze anyone frozen with intense fear. They quickly moved out of the way of the stampeding form but even then, the whip of the wind from such a large creature's moves still managed to knock them a bit off guard. Now the beast was between the two of them, each on one side of it. It seemed to look between the two before choosing a target.

It chose Naxio.

"Naxio! Move!!" Moushira yells out as she quickly saw the beast winding back to slam its hands into the ground where Naxio stood.

He quickly let out a blast of sound which seemed to only further annoy the beast. Seeing that his attack had no effect he was quick to try and escape the blast radius. Moushira at the same time was tried to use her wires to wrap around the beast's arm and pull it backward. She did manage to stop it from its earlier plan but the beast's strength was unlike anything she was expecting. It easily picks her up and swings as it's trying to slam her against the many trees around. She rotates her body quickly and jerks her wires in an attempt to steer herself safely around the trees.

It works only partly.

Naxio lets out another volley or sound burst. his time at more targeted areas of the beast. The sounds blast is smaller this time but is practically visible with his Yang energy. The beast is jerked left and right from the blasts and then suddenly swings around again. He's trying to throw Moushira at him!

Moushira seeing where she is being thrown quickly releases her wires again. She quickly used some tree as leverage to turn herself again. She does avoid slamming into Naxio but she, unfortunately, is set sailing to the ground with a loud thud.

"Ugh!!" She coughs out as she could surely feel a bone-breaking.

Naxio doesn't stop his attacks as he steps further back trying to draw the creature away from Mousrhia's fallen form. It works fortunately the beast, though being continuously thrown off by the blast does start to follow Naxio. Quickly he disappears into the forest, the beast hot on his trail.

"Naxio!!!" Moushira cries out even as she can no longer see him.

She tries to get up but is slow, her right arm is broken for sure and her left leg is sprained. But she bears this pain as she pushes herself to get up and follow.

Back with Naxio, his situation isn't looking any better, unfortunately. He had hoped with many trees in the way, it would impede the gorilla's speed. But it just barreled through everything like nothing was in front of it. Its eyes glow in the still-not-quite morning dark sky. Farther and farther he goes, not even really watching out for any other threats given the big one behind him. Fortunately, nothing else shows, most likely known the apex predator that is following him isn't one to mess with. His mind was racing with ideas of how to get away!

"..Wait is that-?" He mumbled as his eyes narrowed ahead.

Far into the distance, looked to be a mountain face peeking through the trees. A dead-end most likely, something that he really didn't need at the moment.

"Where else can I go?!" He said as he looks around frantically still moving forward.

Nothing but more trees around him. And not knowing if there was any other danger wasn't making this any easier.

"Maybe I should try to the left? Even if it doesn't lead anywhere is better than-"

His words are suddenly cut off as he feels a sense of weightlessness. His eyes look down to see that in his panic he didn't notice the sudden end cliff coming. The tree just stops dead at the end of the cliff just below him and at once he is falling.

"Ah-!!??" He yells as he starts to plummet into a dark abyss.

His instincts however do save him at the last moment. His hand shoots out and grabs onto a branch that fortunately holds. However, he can see the beast coming. Its footstep shook the area around it. He cannot stay here!

He moves quickly to the side but still doesn't fully dodge out of the way. The beast doesn't see the cliff, however, too focused on Naxio and goes go over the edge. It tries to reach out for him but just barely misses.

Naxio is set sailing through the air, he watches himself almost in an out-of-body kind of experience sail right over the end. There is nothing but jagged rocks and a dark abyss below him. He has a moment of realization as he slowly falls.

He thinks this is the way he is going to die.

He can't think of anything else as the abyss gets close, the scream of the wind as his body weights his down. The cold claw of death was about to welcome him.


A familiar voice calls out to him but he can't hear much over the whipping of wind and the loud beat of his heart racing in fear. Something wrapped around his middle and he's pulled through away and away from his impending doom. His body hits the ground none too gently. And there is someone next to him but he can't really be conscious to see. His body was still shaking in fear as his eyes stare almost unblinkingly ahead of him. The person is trying to shake him out of it, he thinks calling his name. Who this person is however isn't something Naxio couldn't focus on.


Warm hands slap against his cheeks finally pulling him from his nightmare-fueled stupor. He looks up, an expression close to that of a lost child on his face. There are two people there, one was unfamiliar to him. One was a young boy, who appear a bit older than Naxio in age. Long brown hair pulled into a ponytail and concerned purple eyes gave away that this was one of the Lorecia clan. The other one however Naxio was quite familiar with.

"Li-Li-Ren...?" Naxio mumbles out still quite shaken from his near-death experience, small tears in his eyes.

Li-Ren looks a bit rough but the stern look on her face does soften as Naxio finally responds back to her. She had been calling him for about 10 minutes and was worried that something may have been wrong with him

"Are you okay?" She asks a bit awkwardly.

Li-Ren wasn't one who was good a giving comfort given her usually stern appearance but Naxio felt relief in seeing her even though. He let out breaths that he didn't even know he had held and was slightly slumped over. Li-Ren seemed to watch him for a second before turning to the Lorecia boy and speaking in a low tone. The boy nodded and got up and walked off somewhere. Li-Ren then turned her attention back to Naxio who had finally gotten his body back under his control.

"Naxio?" She calls out to him.

"I-I'm okay.." He said in a small voice.

His heart had finally stopped beating like a drum and his mind finally realized that he was not in fear of dying.

"I'm okay." He repeated again this time firmer.

He even looks back up to Li-Ren with a weak smile. She eyes him for a few seconds in silence, searching for something but doesn't seem to find it. She just nods and then turns her head as her teammate returns. The boy had a complex look on his face as he neared them.

"It's not there. It must have fallen into the canyon." He informed them.

Naxio's mind was a bit slow still from his experience but he soon gathered that the boy was talking about the gorilla Daemon that has been chasing him. Naxio had mixed feeling about that as his body went into overdrive about the possible return of his creature.

"Naxio check your tracker." Li-Ren said.

Naxio threw her a confused look, at first not understanding what she was talking about. However, that didn't last long as he remembers what the lead hunter had said about the tracker. He quickly fishes his out and looks down at it. He is pleasantly surprised by what he sees.

"It-it counted?!" He said in shock.

Naxio was almost afraid to blink, just in case, it was just his imagination. A score of 70 points stared back at him on his tracker. He was surprised that it counted but figured there must be some way that examiners must be taking into account who attacks last. As the Lead Hunter had mentioned, whoever deals the killing blow gets the points. So since Naxio was the only one attacking the creature upon its death, he got the points!

Naxio let out a big sigh of relief knowing he doesn't have to deal with that thing ever again. He doesn't see the rather soft look on Li-Ren face as she watches him.

"You've grown quite strong now." She praises him.

Naxio straightens up almost immediately, remembering that Li-Ren was once his mentor. He looks shy at her praise as this is the first time beside Moushira, he's been complimented on his skills.

"Ah... it was due to your teachings that I've gotten stronger." He says in a soft voice.

He could vividly remember himself at the beginning, barely able to make even a simple barrier spell. His attacks were basically a small breeze, and his manipulation was poorer than a child. It was funny for him to see how far he had come.

"No, I may have taught you Naxio but you overcame these hardships through hard work." Li-Ren says simply, as if just talking about the weather.

Naxio wasn't really prepared to get all these compliments, especially from someone like Li-Ren. So he panicked a bit and shook his head wildly.

"No way! Without you Li-Ren, I would still be useless!" He says.

Li-Ren frowns however to his statement and her face turns back into her usually stern expression.

"..Don't make light of your accomplishments Naxio." She said sternly.

"Teaching doesn't always equal to results. You must understand it and hone your skills. You have. So believe in yourself."

Naxio is stunned at her statement. He just stares at her for a few minutes before finally nodding to her. A warm feeling pools in his stomach as a small smile comes to his face.

"Ah right, where is your partner by the way?" Li-Ren said as she looks around.

A bucket of cold water felt like it was dumped over him as his eyes scan around him. Moushira was nowhere in sight and given that she was injured, he knows she may run into trouble!

"Ah Li-Ren I have to go! Moushira is injured!!" He said in a yell.

He quickly gets up and is about to leave when Li-Ren suddenly joins his side. He looks at her shocked that she seemed to be ready to go with him.

"We'll help you find her. There were a few Daemon on the way here, so I'm hoping she is able to either get away or hide for now."

Naxio just nods and together they all begin races through the forest. Naxio's sure it was just due to how worried he was but he could help the cycle of nightmare scenarios that were teeming in his head. He searched and searched but after about 20 minutes, he was getting more desperate.

"Moushira!!" He calls out again.

The forest looks all the same around, nothing to give even a hint of where she could be. He needed to find her now!



He turns to Li-Ren's call, she motions for following her. She leads him to a small clearing that had the appearance of a struggle occurring. Naxio frowns deeply as this clear was on the direct line with where he had been running.

"She might have been attacked but there's only a little blood. It's not human so the daemon she might have fought was injured." Li-Ren said as she looks forward.

There was a trail of a battle that went off for a few more feet before finally, they found a corpse of a Daemon. It had long-line scars all over its body. Naxio looks again at his marker and does notice the extra points. The body had been dead for a long at all so maybe during their search she was attacked? But the overall question needed to be answered.

"Where is she?" Naxio said as he looks around.

This wasn't a clearing so there was thick forage everywhere he looked. The only thing of note was one of the many large trees that stood tall before them.

"Moushira!" He calls out again.

No answer still which made a small heavy stone feel like it just dropped into his stomach.

"Naxio, calm down. She isn't dead. If she was you would be notified." Li-Rens said.

"But she's obviously suffering?! How can I stay calm if she could be dying right now!!" Naxio cries out as he stares at Li-Ren.

She goes to open her mouth but stops upon herein a sound close by. Naxio instantly perks up and moves over to where the sound is.

"Naxio be careful!" Li-Ren scolds as she quickly follows behind.

"But Li-Ren.. I-I think this is..?"

He walks around the large tree until he finally gets to the front. As he approaches, he sees something familiar which raises his heart.

Silver metal wires were tangles on the ground.

However, the sight that he sees next almost murders that hope completely. It was a blood trail. It was hard to tell how much, it appear to be a lot. And there slumped over, head down was Moushira.

"Moushira!!" He yells as he runs to her side.

He quickly starts to use his Yang to heal her. It was probably due to her being unconscious that he couldn't feel her Yang greet him. Usually, when someone uses their Yang on another, the person being influenced will either have their Yang greet them or reject it. There was a large and nasty wound at her side, bleeding quite purfusly. Naxio poured his Yang in to close it.


He doesn't turn to Li-Ren as he is too focused on healing. Li-Ren and her team however don't say anything at them near to Naxio and see the condition Moushira is in. Naxio knows she isn't dead but the amount of blood she lost made it a very near thing.

"Come on Moushira..." He mumbles in prayer.

Her wound slowly scar over, he curse that he wasn't one from the Kai-Shen clan, given that their healing was something of legends. If he was, then not one scar would have been left on Moushira. After she is free of any bleeding scars, he checks her pulse again. It was slow but it was there.

"Moushira?" He calls to her again, placing a hand on her face.

She does wake this time, after what felt like an eternity of waiting for Naxio. Her head lifts weakly as she takes in Naxio then Li-Ren in her teammate. She then turns back to Naxio, a weak smile on her face.

"H-Hey Naxio....We-we really need to stop meeting like this huh?" She said in a joke.

Naxio gives her a sad smile and nods. The running meeting in dire situations between the two of them is something that doesn't seem to want to stop any time soon. But Naxio is happy to see she is alright nonetheless.

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