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Maria's eyes showed contempt, disappointment swirling in her heart.

Her opponent whom she expected to be strong enough to pose a challenge was already shivering in her grasp.

Surely, the real deal would have shown more resistance than this pathetic excuse before her.

'He hasn't even struck one blow yet...' Her thoughts trailed.

Maria wasn't particularly looking for a fight where she would struggle, but wasn't it common sense that a truly powerful enemy would at least make her push everything she had to the limits?

'Archangel Drive is my Fusion Mode in addition to Mage Mode...' Her thoughts trailed.

Was that truly enough to defeat the upper echelon of the Demon Army?

"I should finish what I started, though..." Maria murmured to herself, already losing interest in the red lump of meat in her grasp.

Unfortunately or fortunately for her, the Crimson Demon she held had a differing opinion.

"Y-you... you've humiliated me to this extent..."

Maria was surprised that the one called Lucien could still speak despite his swollen lips and bloodied face.

"You call me weak... you treat me this way... no more!"

Maria could feel the negative energy within and outside him growing stronger than ever. It was peaking to a point that even Maria had to let go of the opponent.

"You..."

The Crimson Demon began growing in bulk. His muscular figure grew even buffer.

Lucien darkened in complexion, and a fiery aura enveloped him. His dark hair turned amber, and his eyes glowed as well.

His injured body slowly had a makeover, and signs of damage slowly faded away.

"I don't know what you did to hamper my regeneration... my power... but no more." His sharpened teeth let out steam as he spoke.

In his current state, even as they both floated in the sky, he was much bigger than her.

'About twelve meters? Maybe thirteen...' Maria thought as she analyzed her predicament.

Of course, her expression was as stoic as always.

"Looking down on me, uh? You little bitch! I'll make sure to tear you apart!" He roared like a battle-hungry maniac.

Currently, the Crimson Demon had adopted a form known as Martial State.

As one who relied on only brute force and Martial Arts to fight, he didn't know any Magic. Still, he was strong enough to become the most powerful among the Demon Generals.

The reason for his edge over everyone was the special abilities he developed in his Martial State.

For one, he attained instant recovery—though, for some reason, it had slowed down thanks to the girl's troublesome ability.

Secondly, he grew more and more powerful depending on how enraged he was. His energy would keep climbing until it reached a threshold.

No one had been able to beat him in this Martial State, as he would decimate every one of his opponents.

"You... I'll make sure to kill you and everyone you love!" Lucien growled, now baring his fangs at the angelic girl before him—his eyes bloodshot.

"What did you just say?"

"What?"

"You just said something.... killing me and everyone I love... something like that."

"Y-yeah! What about it!"

Lucien was conflicted about how to feel about the girl he was about to rip to shreds. Anyone who saw this form of his would instantly realize the power gap and at least show some level of fear.

They would flee, or at least show a degree of despair.

But, this one was not like that at all.

Her expression seemed to turn even colder as she stared at him icily.

"You? Don't make me laugh. You're not worthy."

Veins appeared all over the Crimson Demon's face as his bloodshot eyes bulged.

He hated being looked down on the most—especially when it was an inferior human scum that was responsible.

"I'll rip you apart!"

>WHISH<

A white blade sharply interrupted Lucien's lunge at Maria—piercing the right side of his chest.

"U-uh??"

It had moved faster than he could process.

The sinking white blade burned Lucien from his insides, causing him to roar in pain as he tried pulling it out.

However—

>SWOOOSH<

>SWISH<

Two more pierced both arms, causing him to shout in greater pain.

His body felt like it was burning from the inside out. The amount of agony he suffered was indescribable.

"My Familiar is an Archangel Seraph. I imbue Holy Magic to all my Spells in this form. I suppose Demons are quite vulnerable to that energy..." Maria spoke as she stared at the Demon condescendingly.

She slowly ascended as the Demon began raising his head to view her Majesty. His body throbbed in pain, and his heart began racing in fear, yet Lucien could not take his gaze off his opponent.

"Someone like you can't threaten to hurt Jared. You're nothing."

As she made this statement, over a dozen more blades appeared in the sky, surrounding her as they brimmed with power.

"Die."

The blades took that as the go-ahead and were launched simultaneously—each piercing respective parts of Lucien's body.

"Guar—"

Even his mouth was impaled by a white blade, and the sheet force caused his body to plummet to the earth.

Maria turned her gaze from the Crimson Demon General and snapped her fingers.

As Lucien made crashed upon the ground, the blades began glowing brighter and brighter, making ominous hums as their power swelled beyond control.

"O-Ohhhh..." Was the only sound the Crimson Demon could make before his end arrived.

>BOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMM<

The area of impact was shrouded in white light, consuming everything around—including the rotting dead bodies of Lucien's victims.

"Rest in peace... that is, until Jared resurrects you."

After all, everything that had happened so far was a part of his grand scheme.

Even though she couldn't see Jared on the battlefield, and she was unsure whether or not he was watching her exploits in the fight, Maria still felt relieved that when push came to shove, she didn't disappoint herself.

'All those times I spent with Serah really paid off...'

With a smile on her face, Maria flew off—most likely to find a better opponent.

***************

[A/N]

Who do you think is winning in a fight between Maria and Ana?