"How will you train me…?" Gabriel asked skeptically. "I tried many things with Sandy… Nothing worked… I don't have a talent for fighting…"
Asahi listened to her rave about her experience with different weapons and how she used them in Heaven's training room. Gabriel's poor affinity with combat didn't come as a surprise. She may have transcended into a half-manipulative girlfriend for headpats, however, at her core, she was still a spoiled angel who never faced many difficulties in her life.
She didn't go to the front lines like Sandalphon and faced devils and fallen angels.
She had no solid drive to fight.
"Let's start with some light training."
Gabriel nodded with the obedience comparable to a child, a barely concealed glint of excitement in her eyes.
"Sandalphon, come with us."
Of course, he couldn't be unfair and leave the other seraph out of the training session.
'Klyscha, show me Sandalphon's stats.'
—Favorability points: 170 [Her Lord]
—Class: Light Swordsman
—Holy Power: 280
[—Light Element (S-Rank)]
[—Unholy Resistance (A-Rank)]
[—Sword Mastery (S-Rank)]
Gabriel was one of the Four Great Seraphs, and Sandalphon belonged to the rank under Gabriel, the Ten Seraphs. Yet, Sandalphon was stronger from every perspective, with one of the highest sword mastery skills he had ever seen. She could rival Saeko, the sword freak.
'Her base stats are low. Rest is fine.'
He didn't see any need to train her. But he had to do so when she smiled so brightly in anticipation.
'Geez, people around me are dying to get strong.'
(Isn't that because of your explosive growth? They don't want to be left behind. They are hungry to be of use to you.)
Asahi rubbed the back of his head. "Let's go."
In a white space devoid of any distractions, Asahi nudged Sandalphon toward Gabriel. "Sandalphon, attack Gabriel with your sword."
Gabriel's eyes opened wider than Sandalphon as they stared at him as if unable to comprehend his simple command. His stern expression stopped them from leaking a word of inquiry.
"Don't take pity on her because she is weak." Asahi turned his gaze to Gabriel and gave her a V-sign. "Survive Sandalphon for twenty minutes or no headpats for two days."
Gabriel's instincts kicked in the moment Asahi mentioned headpats. She clapped her cheeks. "I can't go two days without Asahi. Let's do this, Sandy. Attack me."
Sandalphon nodded, albeit reluctantly, and created her sword of light. She closed the distance instantaneously and slashed at Gabriel. The sword cut down carved a wound on her chest. Blood blossomed and covered her white dress in its vivid red.
"Lady Gabriel, I…"
Feeling of guilt veiled Sandalphon's face. She acted spontaneously upon Asahi's command, not realizing her attacks could deeply wound Gabriel.
Gabriel flinched from the burning pain. The agony erased every thought from her mind, leaving it barren.
"Headpats," Asahi's whisper echoed in her blank mind. "Don't you want headpats?"
She gritted her teeth and touched her wound. The warm seeping blood stuck to her hand. As she applied her light energy on it, a series of golden threads closed her wound and stitched her skin back.
"What speed? I couldn't even react." Gabriel giggled. "Sandy is strong. I also want to be strong. Catch me."
Gabriel unfurled her wings and darted away from Sandalphon. Asahi told her to survive two minutes, not engage in a head-on collision against Sandalphon.
'Sandy is strong but I'm smarter. I will fool Sandy… for the headpats!'
Asahi chuckled at Gabriel's antiques. "She is exploiting a loophole now. Sandalphon, hurry after her."
Sandalphon was stuck between a rock and a hard place. Even so, Asahi's order took priority, for he was her lord. She clenched her light sword and chased after Gabriel's fleeting figure.
"What is happening?" Biblical God arrived beside Asahi and patted his shoulder. "Why is Sandalphon chasing Gabriel? Is it some kind of family game?"
Asahi turned to his father-in-law with a grin. "They're fighting for the first wife position."
"I'm training Gabriel. She'll be stronger than you in a year."
"Stronger than me?" God scoffed. "I am her creator. I know her better than everyone. Gabriel is a beast without fangs. Too pure and selfless to harm anyone. Her kind never finds the desire and motivation to surpass their limits."
"Don't smirk at me, jerk. I trust my instinct. With no bullshit treasure, I highly doubt Gabriel will surpass Sandalphon."
"I'm just amused by your ignorance, father-in-law. Gabriel changed a lot."
She became an addict, the people with one of the strongest motivations. He was using her cravings to guide her. It worked splendidly as Sandalphon came short of reaching Gabriel. Sandalphon wasn't holding back either; Gabriel acted under pressure to escape Sandalphon. Headpats meant everything to her.
Twenty minutes flew by.
"Alright, that's it."
Gabriel emerged with shallow cut wounds, courtesy of Sandalphon's light based projectiles. She gasped for breath. Covered in sweat and blood, she looked like a mess. Despite her haggard appearance, she smiled brightly, reveling in her small victory.
"I did it… I completed your challenge, Asahi."
Sandalphon, on the other hand, hadn't broken a sweat. She lowered her head before Asahi. "I have failed you, Lord Asahi. I couldn't keep up with Lady Gabriel."
Asahi rubbed her head. "You did what I asked you to. How is that a failure? You both did great."
Sandalphon gaped at the realization. Asahi merely asked her to attack Gabriel. Nothing more, nothing less. She had fulfilled his order.
Asahi healed Gabriel and rewarded her with headpats. She wrapped her arms around him and melted in his embrace, exhausted from her small cat-and-mouse trial.
"You're so cruel to send Sandalphon after me. Using my love for headpats against me…"
"It worked, didn't it?" Asahi chuckled. "You were forced to think outside the box."
"Ummm… it did. I think I'm good at running."
"You want to be a coward?"
"Hmph. It'll be disgraceful to run away as your wife."
"Disgrace and honor mean nothing." Asahi flicked her forehead and reminded her of his second identity. He was the Emperor of Devils, not above using deceit to gain advantage against his opponents. "Survival is the utmost priority."
"Survival…?" Gabriel frowned, focusing on Asahi's words with great concentration.
"Let me put it simply. As long as you're alive, you can enjoy headpats. You can't do it if you are dead."
"Oh. It makes sense." Gabriel nodded in a daze. "Survival is the priority."
"Stop playing with her heart," God grumbled. "Why are you teaching her about survival? Those lessons are useless within the confines of Heaven?"
"What about outside Heaven?"
Asahi was planning on sending Gabriel outside to experience new things. There was only so much she could do within the safe walls of Heaven.
(Shall I toss her in some cultivation world?)
Asahi looked at the curious Seraph in his arms. 'That's… not a bad idea. We'll discuss later.'
(I'll sort out a list of worlds for her!)
God raised a brow. "I have no say in what you do with Gabriel. She is your wife. When is the wedding?"
"In four days. You're coming."
"I'll drop by." God shrugged and vanished.
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