Chapter 50: The Tiger Loses Its Tail
This male tiger was incredibly quick!
Just when the tiger was a hair’s breadth from being squashed by the huge rock, it lowered its body and pounced forwards.
The male’s tiger body was huge, but extremely nimble. The charge took it about four or five meters and away from the rock’s impact zone. However, although it managed to save its head and body by the skin of its teeth, its tail did not escape the huge rock that had fallen from the sky. Its forward momentum was powerful, but since its tail was trapped beneath the rock, the tiger flew up diagonally instead.
Then, a roar followed.
Even when the tiger was one or two kilometers, its roar was both powerful and forceful, much less now when the beast was right in front of him. The roar was extremely unpleasant and grating on the ear; even the puddles on the ground inside the passage were rippling from the roar. If it wasn’t for the urgency of the situation, Yue Qiang would’ve pulled the plug on his speaker already. Yin got it even worse, crouching on the ground and covering her ears in pain.
Thankfully, the tiger’s tail was trapped beneath the rock, preventing it from moving about.
Without its agility, the greatest obstacle to victory for Yue Qiang, even a fierce tiger was nothing but a lump of moving experience points.
This was the perfect opportunity to beat the cur while it’s drowning!*
*meaning to attack something or someone while they’re impaired by a certain predicament.
Yue Qiang equipped his iron rod, activated his Run skill and charged forwards.
It was only when he closed the distance that he was able to sense the tiger’s ferocity more clearly. Its body was at the least twice as big as that dead female tiger. The tiger pounced forwards repeatedly, but because of its trapped tail, it was forced to stop midway every time.
Naturally, Yue Qiang would not let got of such a golden opportunity. He placed himself just outside the tiger’s attack radius and attacked continuously.
He was in a fine position, literally and figuratively.
Both the tiger’s claws and teeth were just out of reach of him.
The male tiger’s attacks were extremely ferocious, and its aura was extremely shocking. Its claws contained the force of a thousand cattie*, and Whenever it grazed the passage and cave walls it was always able to knock off some stones and bits of wood.
*The catty or kati, symbol 斤, is a traditional Chinese unit of mass used across East and Southeast Asia; equivalent to about 600 grams.
Yue Qiang’s iron rod might be slightly ugly and weak, but it had one point of advantage.
In view of the situation, Yue Qiang lost his urgency completely and jabbed the tiger with his iron rod again and again. The beast’s HP bar was gone, but more and more blood flowed out of its body and its injuries grew more and more severe. Moreover, the iron rod was imbued with poison damage. As long as he ground it down slowly, he could definitely kill it without taking any damage.
Just as Yue Qiang schemed to fight his protracted battle to the end, the male tiger’s tactic changed.
It retreated backwards continuously until it reached the furthest end of the corner. Then, it pounced forwards abruptly!
This pounce was different from the countless pounce it did earlier. It was both stronger and faster. Yue Qiang heard a loud, shredding noise and…
The tiger’s tail was torn apart!
One must understand that a lizard losing its tail and a tiger losing its tail were two completely different things. A tiger’s tail contained more than twenty vertebrae, and it was as huge as a human adult’s upper arm! Because of the tiger’s struggle to break free the thick tail was torn apart.
The choice it made was no different from that of a powerful man grabbing his own left arm with his right and pulling it right off his shoulder!
One could see just how vicious this tiger was.
The male tiger let out a terrible howl in great pain. Now that it was free, its claw slapped down down Yue Qiang as quick as lightning!
Yue Qiang activated Run LVL 2 without the slightest hesitation, but he still failed to dodge the blow.
It was just too fast.
The event where the tiger had pounced towards Yue Qiang, waved its claws and passed by him had all happened nearly in an instant. Yue Qiang immediately realized right after that his left arm was bent at a bizarre angle.
His left arm was broken.
This one attack alone had disabled his left arm. Right now, the blue progress bar had reached 80%, and everyone HP bar including his own were now in an invisible state. But the concept of HP was still there, and this fact was reflected from the various warning signs displayed on the screen. This single strike had taken away more than one third of his health.
The tiger did not plan to give Yue Qiang any breathing room at all. After being camped by Yue Qiang for such a long time, its beastliness was fully brought out. It adjusted its posture in an incredibly short amount of time before turning around and swiping once more!
If he was struck by this Yue Qiang would be flattened into a meat patty immediately.
He retreated rapidly in the face of danger and just barely avoided the attack. However, he failed to dodge the hidden tiger claw.
His chest and stomach was torn open with an ugly noise.
As a claw swiped across Yue Qiang’s chest and stomach, a huge amount of blood instantly gushed out of the wound as the monitor abruptly changed into a dark red color. Yue Qiang knew that this was the warning sign that his health had fallen below 30%.
The tiger’s near instantaneous pounce and swipe had brought Yue Qiang to the brink of death, whereas Yue Qiang’s continuous jabs had only depleted a bit more than half of the tiger’s HP. The situation was extremely ominous.
The only thing left that was worth Yue Qiang’s expectation was the fact that his Rage gauge was filled in an instant.
During the previous stage of the battle, he had put all forty to fifty points of his Rage into his Basic Jabbing skill. Now, he put the iron rod back into the backpack instead.
He had lost the range advantage anyway, and the poison damage from the iron rod was still ongoing. In that case, this was the time to battle it out with his fist style!
His fist style was a lot more damaging than his jabs! But all the same, using it in close range also meant a much greater degree of danger.
Yue Qiang himself was slightly pissed off from the battle.
Without any hesitation, he tapped the hotkey for ‘Break Fist – Killing Style, One’ and injected all 150 points of Rage into the skill. Then, he clicked the correct position in the appearing Fu Xi Hexagram with unprecedented speed.
In fact, he almost didn’t need to aim at all.
When Yue Qiang had unleashed his punch, the male’s tiger humongous head was already close in front of him. Its round, bulging eyes couldn’t be more than half a meter away from him, and his fist fully empowered by Rage just happened to strike in between the tiger’s eyes above the nose.
When the fist fell, Yue Qiang himself was thrown backwards by the tremendous impact of the two clashing forces.
His vision was very chaotic and dancing all over the place while he was in air. But Yue Qiang’s head remained very clear, and he knew that he was on the winning side of the clash. He had pushed himself out of the range of the tiger’s chomp with the impact, and the Killing Style One fully amplified by Rage was fully dealt to the tiger!
100 points of Rage could more or less amplify a skill’s damage by 100%, and this particular punch had struck the indicator of the Fu Xi Hexagram perfectly and was amplified with all 150 points of Rage. It was capable of dealing 20 times the damage of his Strength value!
He had grounded more than half of the male tiger’s HP previously, and with this punch and the continuous poison damage, it meant that he still had the chance to overturn the tide and obtain victory!
At the same time, Yue Qiang’s newly acquired stat ‘Cockroach’ began to show its effects. His HP, Stamina, and especially Rage were recovering at a tremendous rate.
Rage already enjoyed an improved growth rate when his health was below 30%, and when the rate was amplified further by the Cockroach stat it could be said to be growing at a flying rate.
Yue Qiang unleashed ‘Break Fist – Killing Style, One’ for another two times consecutively, and with the amplified recovery rate brought by Cockroach he had the ability to an extra unleash Killing Style, One, and this was when Run was still active.
Not only was his Stamina recovering swiftly, his HP was also recovering continuously. Without Cockroach, Yue Qiang would have had to dodge continuously to avoid the tiger’s attacks and be unable to return any blows at all. When his Stamina was depleted, he would then be slaughtered easily. However, with the stat Cockroach, not only was his Stamina’s recovery rate slowly catching up to his usage rate, even his health had recovered past the safety line where he could take another blow and not die instantly from it.
In the end Yue Qiang took a full claw to his calf, but he also found the opportunity to use ‘Break Fist – Killing Style, One’ to eliminate this vicious beast once and for all!
Victory, belonged to Yue Qiang!
After a series of extremely trying micros, Yue Qiang was finally able to relax as he slowly controlled his character to walk towards the male tiger’s corpse.
Now he could finally verify if this ridiculously difficult quest had a reward that was as ‘rich’ as he had imagined!