A term used to refer to magical beasts and monsters with their own unique names, possessing greater strength or special abilities than their peers.
Kuf the Moss, too, was one of these named magical beasts.
Its appearance resembled that of a giant turtle carrying rocks on its back, rather than a shell.
With a body length of 15 meters.
Hard rocks covering its back as if to say it would not allow any weak spots.
True to its name, Kuf the Moss was covered in all sorts of mosses that clung to the rocks on its back.
To hunt down this named magical beast, which had already surpassed the limits of a 6th grade monster, there was no way to do it through conventional means.
"Switching to heavy sniper rifle mode."
I switched my Ark-15 automatic rifle to heavy sniper mode and looked through the scope.
"The distance is... a bit ambiguous."
According to what I could see through the scope, the distance between Kuf the Moss and myself was about 8km.
Although the Ark-15 heavy sniper rifle was capable of taking out a target at any distance, it was not necessarily suitable for hunting, so I felt the need to approach a bit more.
Anyway, Kuf the Moss rarely moved from its spot once it settled into a location, so I didn't need to worry about my prey running away.
"Another mountain climb, huh."
I couldn't complain.
I would have to climb mountains endlessly in the future.
After narrowing the distance between myself and Kuf the Moss to about 3km, I once again held my Ark-15 heavy sniper rifle.
Looking through the scope, I saw that Kuf the Moss was calmly standing in place as if nothing was happening.
From now on, it had no idea what fate had in store for it.
"Fortunately, the direction is facing me head-on."
In other words, Kuf the Moss's eyes were facing this way on both sides.I took aim at the two half-closed eyes of the moss-covered kufu, confirming my target before swapping out my magazine for an armor-piercing one.
Armor-piercing bullets were commonly used for anti-material sniper rifles, making them the perfect choice for the current situation.
"Preparations are complete."
All that remained was execution.
Even an ordinary Grade 6 monster would be a difficult hunt, let alone facing off against a Named one.
There was no room for complacency.
"I'll take both eyes at once."
Taking away its sight was the first order of business.
The first shot hit the left eye.
The second shot hit the right eye.
I waited patiently for the perfect moment, when the moss-covered kufu's half-closed eyes would open fully.
A skilled sniper understands the beauty of waiting.
And that moment was now.
I pulled the trigger twice in quick succession.
A sound louder than usual echoed through the surroundings, as two straight lines drew themselves across the moss-covered kuf's eyes.
"It's a success."As if to prove that fact, a fountain of blood shot out of both eyes of Mossy's Kuf.
Mossy's Kuf screamed and the area around Kuf began to shake as if a small earthquake had occurred.
This meant that a large monster over 15m long was jumping around.
Of course, since the distance between Mossy's Kuf and me was over 3km, the aftermath didn't reach here.
However, seeing the huge monster jumping around in front of me, I couldn't help but feel a chill run down my spine.
"Now it's for real."
For Mossy's Kuf, both eyes were almost like exposed weaknesses to the outside world.
But now, such a weakness has disappeared.
This was also the reason why we must approach to hunt Mossy's Kuf.
Even with the firepower of the anti-material sniper rifle mode, we couldn't aim for the vital points by penetrating the tough shell of Mossy's Kuf.
"But there's something to do before that."
I grasped the anti-material sniper rifle and aimed at the monsters near Mossy's Kuf one by one.
This was because we shouldn't have any obstacles around when approaching Mossy's Kuf.
"Probably 8th to 9th grade monsters and beasts."
I replaced the magazine with armor-piercing bullets.
Although we couldn't aim for the vital points of Mossy's Kuf with the level of 15th armor-piercing bullets, it was enough for 8th or 9th grade monsters.
"I'll smash their skulls at once."
There was no need to hesitate.
From now on, the sniper would be just a one-sided hunt.
The explosion of one 9th grade monster's head signaled the beginning of the full-scale hunt.
Even though they were approaching me, the distance between the monsters and me was still 3km.
Naturally, the monsters didn't know my location, so there was great confusion among them.[Click!]
A strange and indescribable howl echoed through the air, and I pulled the trigger repeatedly.
Of course, I hadn't forgotten to manage the heat properly, so as not to repeat the mistakes of last time.
Although the barrel of the Ark-15 rifle was made of Arc Memory Alloy, overheating beyond a certain point would render it unusable until it underwent self-repair.
"Come at me."
Step by step.
With each blast of the armor-piercing rounds, the heads of the monsters exploded.
And then, a voice that was all too familiar yet impossible to get used to.
At the same moment, the monsters' gazes all turned towards my location, as if they knew exactly where I was.
And soon enough, they began rushing towards me.
"...No wonder it was so quiet."
This was the problem with having inadequate Ether Sensitivity.
Until reaching a certain level of maturity, incidents like this would occur all too often.
"But that's not something to worry about right now."
Although the speed of the monsters varied, the fastest ones could easily exceed 150 km/h.
Even though there was a distance of 3 km between me and the monsters, I couldn't let my guard down if my location was exposed.
"It's time to manage the heat."
Dozens, if not hundreds, of monsters were now charging towards me.
The fastest ones were already outpacing the others, and would reach me in less than two minutes if left unchecked.If one were to consider the fact that I was currently situated atop a rugged mountain, then the speed at which I was traveling was nothing short of absurd. "Not that it matters," I thought to myself. With the Ark-15 anti-material sniper rifle in hand, I sent two armor-piercing rounds directly into the heads of the swift-footed creatures before me. It was a gift befitting of the fearless steeds who valiantly stood at the forefront, devoid of any fear.
To the swift steeds, a swift death.
It was the verdict being handed down by my anti-material sniper rifle.
But even then, the distance between the herd of steeds and myself had clearly narrowed.
No matter how hard I pulled the trigger, I couldn't possibly take down the charging herd of steeds.
"...Their numbers are too great."
Who would have thought that closing in on the Kuf of moss would result in this...
"Regardless, there's no easy way out of this."
As the distance between the herd of steeds and myself shrank to less than 1km, I turned the lever of the Ark-15 anti-material sniper rifle.
It seemed as though the one-sided hunt would have to come to an end here.
From here on out, it was combat.
"Converting to automatic rifle mode."
I switched out the magazine for regular bullets.
Armor-piercing rounds possessed formidable penetration power, but didn't possess strong stopping power to prevent the approaching steeds in this type of combat.
"Come at me."
While I was preparing, the distance between the herd of steeds and myself had significantly decreased.
Perhaps around 500 meters in distance?
They were now right in front of me.
Whether it was due to the loss of their comrades, I couldn't say for sure, but a ferocity emanated from the pack of steeds charging towards me.
Of course, my response to this was three bullets straight to their heads.[Crack!]
When facing a large number of enemies, managing one's nerves is not a choice but a necessity.
That's why I intentionally turned around and fled every time I put a hole in the head of one of the five demons.
It was a kind of hit-and-run operation.
[Clang, clang, clang!]
After repeating running and shooting, the number of demons chasing me had decreased to less than two digits.
Realizing that the time had come, I stopped my footsteps and faced the demons who had come within reach.
It was not efficient to waste my stamina by running any further.
As if they understood my words, the demons rushed towards me.
Well, they were actually running towards me from the beginning.
[Squeak, squeak, squeak!!!]
The ear-piercing screams echoed around me as if they were ultrasonic waves.
"It's noisy, damn it."
I gave a bullet to the screaming demon's vocal cords and another to its forehead, then faced the demons rushing towards me.
"Now it's finally quiet."
The demons continued to charge, but as if they had hit a wall, they fell one by one just 15 meters in front of me.
It was like a barrage.
Ten shots, twenty shots, thirty shots, forty shots…
Flames continuously spewed from the muzzle of my Ark-15 automatic rifle, and the demons fell one by one.
A pile of bodies was growing.
But only a few demons managed to get through the barrage and reach me.
[Crack!]As the head of the last charging monster exploded into a shower of fragments, the once ninth-class beast lay still on the ground. A moment of respite followed the battle with the unexpected onslaught of monsters.
But before they could catch their breath, a deafening roar shook the earth, causing the surroundings to tremble.
The origin of this sound was all too clear; it was coming from the mossy Kuf.
The creature was calling out to them.
[The Bone Armor (2) - End]