BTOG 278 – Unconventional martial arts.

In fact, Rinne had understood the reason why Nana was struggling against Shuten Douji from the moment Nana was hit for the first time since the battle began.

(Shuten Douji’s Fist Dance{Ken-mai}. They say it’s the embodiment of destruction and violence, but it’s not like it’s without technique. I’ve never seen martial arts so uniquely refined.)

When one hears about the specs of the being called Shuten Douji, anyone would imagine an ultimate embodiment of violence far removed from the realm of technique or ingenuity.

It’s not that this is actually wrong; Shuten Douji was indeed an absolute violent entity even in the Age of Gods where gods and demons thrived.


The Age of Gods was not such a sweet time where one could survive merely by having a high status and a powerful [Authority].

From the moment Shuten Douji became aware of her own talents until the end of the world was imminent, she devoted herself to long periods of training, resulting in a unique martial art exclusive to Shuten Douji.

(A fist technique specialized only for attacking. A martial art just for one purpose. She arrived at this bizarre technique because she can destroy anything she touches… and it’s allowed for her.)

Just by touching with the intent to attack, she can destroy everything.

Conversely, that also means she can’t destroy anything unless a weapon or part of her body reaches the target.

In both offense and defense, “reach” is the most important thing for Shuten.

As a result of pursuing this, her fist became a bizarre martial art, specialized only for catching fleeing opponents.

(No matter how exceptional Nana’s reflexes are, and even if she can easily perceive supersonic bullets, predicting is essential for actually evading. However, Shuten Douji’s fist still has some leeway to shift even after Nana has confirmed her trajectory prediction. This is the mechanism behind why Nana can’t completely avoid Shuten’s fist. It’s just a graze because Nana can see it coming down to the wire, but other players might have taken a clean hit.)

Nana’s absolute confidence in her predictions and her preference for minimal evasion makes it so that she fails to recognize the slight deviation that occurs after her predictions.

It’s undoubtedly a divine skill. To lure out Nana’s predictions and slightly shift the trajectory at the very moment evasion is confirmed is easily accomplished by the shadow.

(It seems there might have been an enemy like this. Considering the various exceptional abilities I’ve encountered, I wonder if there was a foe possessing a power akin to foresight.)

If the goal is simply to hit, the style utilized by the shadow warrior is inefficient.

If the aim is to merely land an attack, it would be more efficient to release a faster and sharper attack that can’t be simply dodged, and evidently, if you look at the remains of the destroyed world, the original fighting style of Shuten Douji is probably more like that.

As a result, Shuten had to master this technique when fighting against anything that couldn’t be defeated with pure strength alone. It was a bad coincidence that it is now hurting Nana today.

(The ideal countermeasure is to guard the attack with equipment that has guard capabilities. However, Nana’s current weapons can’t do that. There’s also the option to deflect with a parry, but it’s hard to call it a perfect method since the attack deviates more than expected. It would be fine if her defense was decent, but with the current Nana, she’d be done for after taking just two or three more hits.)

Shuten Douji’s fighting style assumes that she has the strongest status in addition to her [Absolute Destruction].

The shadow warrior’s attacks, on the other hand, which contain both suppressed aspects, can be completely neutralized by simply defending with an object large enough that the attack cannot be completely moved out of its guard range.

Initially, this trial is designed as a battle of attrition to be tackled with a full team of members. The challenge becomes more difficult since Nana is attempting it solo; however, if you bring along a competent tank-type characters, it becomes relatively easy to complete. This is also why Shuten Douji’s comments didn’t portray this trial as especially challenging.

Moreover, if Nana didn’t have the significant debuffs from her battle with Melty and wasn’t particularly fatigued, she could break through this difficulty without Rinne’s help.

Rinne think that there’s no need to explain it verbally and it’s not something that can be easily conveyed by simply putting it into words.

If Nana doesn’t notice it with her own eyes, she won’t be able to strategize for the subsequent battles. That’s why Rinne’s assistance is limited to helping her.

If she doesn’t understand after six attempts, it just means that today isn’t the day she can clear it.

And next time, she should rest well and challenge it again in perfect condition.

“I’ll help you six times. I’ll teach you the dance steps, so make sure to engrave the rhythm in your head.”

With that said, Rinne directed six of her seven duplicates, each with offensive capabilities, toward the shadow warrior.


Shuten Douji thoughtfully watched the battle between the shadow warrior, Sukuna, and Rinne from a safe distance.

“Far from perfect. I thought they could handle it more easily… That fragility, could it be that Sukuna had taken the secret medicine of the oni? If she were granted that, it would have to be Teru… No, if they were to fight without holding back, it might be someone higher. Judging by the way they mentioned meeting Melty, they may have had a skirmish.” {new character foreshadow…}

Melty Bloodheart is the only survivor, aside from exceptions like gods and the Seven Star Kings, whom Shuten Douji has directly met.

However, they haven’t had many conversations; they only exchanged words a few times.

Melty offered a slim thread of salvation to Shuten Douji in a dire situation, which ultimately led to the demise of the vampire race.

The reason why Melty wasn’t involved in the world’s collapse was that Shuten Douji felt a sense of gratitude somewhere in her broken heart.

She still can’t fathom Melty’s emotions for wanting the destruction of her own race, but Shuten Douji believes she’s just another young girl who’s been at the mercy of the power called “Authority.”

A prodigy who loved and mastered sorcery but lost the seat of god because of her Authority. Even in comparison to demon gods or true dragons, there probably hasn’t been anyone who surpassed that with simple magical power.

“That’s too high a wall for Sukuna right now. And considering they’re somehow dealing with my shadow warrior in a completely exhausted state, that’s impressive. But above all… she has such a wonderful friend.”

A lightning spirit user.

The source of her power, Spirit King Tistamia, embodies relentless and strict judgment against monsters. {tln: this is not a typo, but I could swear, previously it was Titania.}

Hence, to borrow that power, one must invoke an extremely difficult-to-activate spell called “Judgment.”

Having the courage to choose the lightning of judgment in over a hundred battles with monsters is the quality the Spirit King seeks.

At the very least, the fact that she’s manipulating the lightning spirit means that she has undoubtedly achieved that.

Rinne had sent one of the seven lightning spirits that possessed healing abilities to Sukuna early on. It was an obvious choice since there was no reason not to heal in a situation where a clean hit could be fatal. The question was how to use the remaining six spirits. Shuten Douji was paying close attention to this when she was astonished by the result of the first lightning spirit Rinne sent.

“…Did she understand the essence of my fists in such a short time?”

Sukuna had been avoiding a phenomenon where, despite having dodged an attack, she was still grazed by using large evasive maneuvers. However, being forced to perform large evasions repeatedly would gradually delay their reaction to the shadow warrior’s pursuit, who already had higher stats than Sukuna. To reset, a time would inevitably come when she had no choice but to make a last-ditch evasion. That timing was what Rinne aimed for.

Nana read the shadow warrior’s fists, predicted, and took evasive action. After the shadow warrior’s “prediction” was confirmed, they used the slight “play” they had prepared to launch a pursuit. The lightning spirit’s headbutt, released lightly in the brief gap of less than one frame between the change of the shadow warrior’s attack trajectory and the attack hitting, exploded as if to blame these two actions that unfortunately meshed together.

“Wha-!? …Ouch!”

An awful sound escaped Sukuna’s mouth due to the unexpected impact. The attack from the lightning spirit, which exploded at an unforeseen timing for everyone except Rinne, was too late to divert its trajectory, and the inertia of the attack that was already about to hit couldn’t be stopped. The attack that should have hit Sukuna did hit as expected, and the HP recovered by the healing lightning spirit earlier was lost again. However, thanks to the “paralysis (stun)” caused by the lightning spirit’s electric shock, Sukuna instantly stepped back and crushed a potion taken from her pouch.

(But whether or not they have healing is trivial. That single blow must have been invaluable to Sukuna.)

If they just wanted to buy time with the electric shock, there was no need to aim for that timing to hit. If they had hit earlier, they wouldn’t have had to take the damage they took now. Rinne hit the attack at that timing to make Sukuna aware of the mismatch happening within them, having understood the characteristics of the martial arts wielded by the shadow warrior and, in turn, Shuten Douji.

Watch, predict, and evade. The slightest gap in time inevitably slips through the so-called foresight. Rinne demonstrated her ability to pinpoint that brief, blink-of-an-eye gap that even Sukuna unconsciously overlooked.

The timing when Sukuna is cornered and forced to make a last-ditch evasion. The type and speed of the attacks the shadow warrior unleashes. The slight gap from when Sukuna evades those attacks to when the shadow warrior’s attacks miss. And the time it takes for the lightning spirit to fly and hit. She casually aimed and shot at the moment when all of these overlapped.

(The principle is different from Sukuna’s ultra-fast reaction, which involves seeing and then evading. Rinne didn’t even see the crossing point at that moment. A prediction close to future foresight and precise lightning spirit control that can shoot the predicted future without a hair’s breadth of deviation. An irregular due to being a foreign traveler like Sukuna.)

In stark contrast to Sukuna’s approach of dealing with everything they see by relying on their overwhelming dynamic vision and perfected reflexes, Rinne acts according to a simulated future based on the information she has analyzed, whether or not it’s visible to her eyes. From an outsider’s perspective, it looks like mere gambling. But there is a clear theory in Rinne’s approach, and above all, it is filled with absolute confidence.

“Comrades who fight together… friends who stand by your side and support you.”

Having gained some insight from Rinne’s attack, Sukuna fights with eyes wide open, as if the drowsiness they felt before was a lie. Rinne, too, watches the situation, ready to provide the necessary support when needed. There are no words exchanged between the two, and as their occasional eye contact refines Sukuna’s every move, Shuten Douji quietly recalls.

“Heh… I feel a bit sentimental today.”

The gift of companionship remains elusive for one who bears the mantle of the strongest. To witness the spectacle of fighting side by side with a cherished friend is an experience she has never known, thus prompting Shuten Douji to express her wistful longing.


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1 Response

  1. AnsLiu says:

    Thank you for the chapter!

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