Floor 50, August 8th, 2026
Galant walks inside the current HQ of the guild of the Supreme Legion, in the city of Acceria. He was going to have a reunion with the leader of the Supreme Legion, and the current “King of Aincrad”, or as he called himself, The Supreme King, Hao.
According to Galant’s knowledge, Hao was a survivor of SAO, just like him. It seems that afterwards, he joined New ALO to finish what they had started, conquer the castle. That was Hao’s primary objective at the time, and for the time being, he was going very well. His guild first great victory was of defeating the 25th boss floor. Hao himself alone did it, with the help of his unique skill named “Supreme Weapon.” He could basically open an invisible gate of his unlimited storage at his back, and shoot weapons out of nowhere. He could also wield or dual wield any class of weapons. This combined traits made him one of the strongests players of the whole game, if not the strongest.
Since the defeat of the Boss of the 25th floor, thousands of players had joined his guild, the Supreme Legion. In a matter of months, it became the largest and most powerful guild in the history of Aincrad. Thier numbers were so high that other guilds from both SAO and ALO looked like simple insects, compared to the monster of a guild Hao had created. Hao personally didn't command his legions, leaving the task to his generals while he rather uses strategies that leaded the guild do defeat several armies of the 9 races, leaving few to stand against his power. As he got more power, he took the government of Aincrad into his own hands. Therefore, many players decided to bend the knee to the Supreme King of Aincrad. Many had left battle behind and transformed into common citizens that the legionaries kept on the line.
Galant didn’t care for this. In fact, he just cared about a simple thing in that moment: Mordread. That was the only reason why he was there. He had made an alliance with the King himself: Galant'd follow the command of Hao, and just Hao, himself, in exchange for Yrd and information about the League of Darkness Knights. Other of the terms was also that he was free; he wasn’t member of the Guild, just a simple ally. Galant still was a Solo Player, and he didn’t always work from them.
He rapidly arrived to the place where escorted by two guards and Taikeus, his contact in the army and the man he co-worked. Still, Galant follows just one command: himself.
He could see Hao without of his armor, training with other two soldiers of his guild, both armed with a standard long square shield (Scutum) and a standard Legion sword (Gladius).
He never stopped training. Even out of the field of battle, Hao never stops sharping his skills on wielding any weapons specially two swords.
He kicks the opponent back, as the other advances but Hao, faster, hits his shield with both of his swords, stopping his advance and making him fall back. The King advances, and several hits to the shield he manages to make it part from the soldier, and places the sword’s edge touching the players neck, the other approaches from his back, but in a second he turns and places the point of his sword the players neck, not killing him, but rather ending the rush. He removes his weapons and walks parting as the soldiers did the same.
He notices Galant, and nods his head to him, what Galant replies the same.
“Your skills are even better today, King.”
One both soldiers attack. Hao parries the blade of the one of the left and stops the other’s advance with his left hand blade. He lowers his head, bending his entire body as the right’s shield just passes above him. Once his entire body passes, he raises his head and kicks the opponent on the side, both soldiers clashed of them clash. Hao spins and clashes both blades them with both blades, sending his soldiers to the grounds.
Hao looks to Galant, and then back to the soldiers.
“We are done for today! Go back to your work. Markus, you can also go.”
Hao’s little brother and one of his generals, Markus gets up and sights after what seemed horrible for him, watching the soldiers getting beat by his brother. Just behind of him, the soldiers training with Hao follow.
Hao returns his weapons to his storage, making them banish in the air. He speaks for a moment with Freya, a beautiful girl who was his personal attendant.
“We have to take your weapons, Galant.”
“All the reunions we have had with your King, they’ve never asked me my weapons.”
“Well, now I do.”
“I won’t give you my weapons.”
“HOLD!” Hao said, interrupting the battle, leaving Freya for a moment.
“You herd him, Galant.”
“I wasn’t talking to him, Taikeus.”
“But King!” he looks ta him surprised.
“I never gave you an order to remove his weapons. Now, get out of my sight.”
“But King, he’s a player killer! A VRSMA user! He can kill you in real life as well! I won’t…”
Taikeus lowers his head in sign of respect. After raising it again, he leaves, as both solider follow them.
Hao starts speaking.
“I’m sorry for the manners of my soldiers. They’re the best of the best, but need to learn a thing or two in the ways of diplomacy.”
“Don’t be. They three couldn’t defeat me no matter how hard they tried.”
“True. But still I keep my apology. Come, we have many things to speak about.”
Hao walks to a small table where Freya brings both him and Galant some drinks. Galant refuses his. Freya leaves after nodding her head to her sing in sign of respect follows, leaving both the Champion and the King alone.
Hao started talking
“You do know how I became the Supreme King?”
“It’s amazing how this thing made me the man I’m now. Just moving piece by piece of the chess, I controlled almost all of Aincrad. But the true war is about to beginning...”
“The Great Aincrad War.”
“Yes. The war of the remaining 49 floors. Just one guild, from which just one player shall get to floor 100, and defeat the last boss, becoming an all-powerful game master. A god in this game. This is what I wanted to talk with you today. The war starts once this floor’s boss is defeated.”
“I know. The players are already heading south. It seems that they’ve found the entrance. Tomorrow a reunion takes place in there.”
“Still the battle wasn’t why I requested this meeting. The truth is, you’ve proven a great ally for my guild. But I want you to become more than just another sword: take a place that you deserve alongside the generals and me as a leader.”
Galant shakes his head.
“I’m here just because of my friends. To beat the game and kill Mordread and his guild, but I’m no leader, neither seek to become one again.”
“Well, when you defeated Cerdic and his hordes, you think a lot different.”
“I was. But my friends died because of me, if wish I’d never taken command of the guild and I shouldn’t had. I won’t put any others in risk. And besides, even if I wanted, all the members of your guild despise me.”
“Well. I can’t force you on this. But still know my offer to you remains.”
“I don’t think I will ever accede, King. Besides this, who do you think is planning this party reunion for the boss battle?
“Lamorak. Commander of the Sylphs and Caith Siths. You know him?”
“No I don’t. But I’ve heard of him.”
“He has been fighting against my legion for a long time, and loosing since then, but somehow, he managed to get to the city of Tritos, the closest to the labyrinth. He set camp there, but they aren’t enough to defeat the boss. It’s a desperate move to begin the GAW heading first, trying to take distance from me and my legions.”
Galant refreshes his mind.
“The boss of floor 50th on SAO took many lives. The fight won’t be easy.”
“They better get ready. Because I’m not going to participate of the party. Even if I wanted, I wouldn’t be welcome. What of you?”
“I don’t know. I’m thinking…”
“None of my men will go. You shall stand for yourself if you go.”
“I’ve stood for myself over the last two years. This won’t be a problem if I go.”
Hao notices for the first time to Galant’s new sword.
“Maximus Caliburn. Yes.”
“The sword with the Diamachearus unique skill. Can I look at it?
Galant grabs the sword with his right hand and unsheathes it, turn it around and hands it over to Hao, by grabbing it by the blade. Hao grabs the handle, but when Galant removes his hand, the sword falls as dead weight to the ground, too heavy for him to grab it. Though he tries several more times, he can’t get it up from the floor.
“What is this?”
“Maximus Caliburn wielder must have a special characteristic. Not everyone can wield it.”
Galant takes his sword from the ground and sheathes it back.
“I couldn’t wield few swords in SAO. Very specific weapons, those wielded by Alpha Testers. I couldn’t grasp them. This one shares the same qualities…” Hao walks over the place thinking with his hands placed on his back. “Alright. One more thing before you leave. There is one more thing I would ask of you now Galant: I need to send a message to General Eugene. Taikeus sent his own men, but they were slaughtered by the Salamanders. But a single man like you will penetrate nearby without effort.”
“I told him to not go, but he didn’t listen to me. He underestimated his opponent.”
“He and my brother have shown great promise as soldiers. But they’re both foolish and don’t think twice their moves.”
“You should teach them.”
“It’s what I’m doing.” Hao takes out a bag full of Yrd, and then gives him a list. “That’s intel from The League of Darkness Knights. Hope it’s of use.”
“Anything about them is useful. By the way, I was attacked by an Imp named Lyunatix, He was member of the Leauge of Darkness knights, and from a party named The Band of the Nine…”
“Take a look upon it. It may be of use.”
“I’ll leave now, to finish this mission.”
“Wait up. It’s not necessary, rest if you need here. Drink and woman…”
“I appreciate it. But decline the offer. I don’t want to sleep with a woman that has been commanded to do so.”
Galant walks away, but when he was about to leave the place, Hao shouts him.
“Galant, this is yours.” He tosses him something that Galant catches in midair. Galant looks at it, a wooden sword. “Your Rudis.”
Galant continues to look at the sword that now represented him as a Mercenary for the Supreme Legion, and the object he had to show to any member of the Legionaries. That sword represented his freedom on the game; therefore, it had to always remain at his side, proving that he was a free mercenary player.
“I almost forgot to give you that”
“Thank you. King.” Galant nods his head and leaves.
He takes from his menu a small scabbard and sheathes his new Rudis to it and then places it on his belt to his left side, leaving his left hand taking hold of the handle.
As soon as he was out of the palace, he speared his wings and flied towards the south.
Galant advances thought the vast forest in the southern region. Taikeus men had been there some days ago but never came back. Probably they had been assaulted by a squad of at least 5 players on their way. To avoid finding them, Galant took out his wings and moved showed by the deep vegetation surrounding him. It wouldn’t be long until he found either a squad.
He continued thinking as he walked.
General Eugene and his salamander army had had running battles with the Legions since the guild began to get bigger and bigger. Still, they were inn a better situation than the rest of the armies. Salamanders had three great advantages that the other eight races didn’t: First, they are the physical strongest of the races, and therefore, second, General Eugene was the strongest Salamander. And finally third, the brother of Eugene, Mortimer, which according to what players said, he was a very skilled strategist. Maybe one to be compared to Hao himself. Yet, for the moment being, just General Eugene commanded their forces, and Mortimer remained on the salamander territory, outside Aincrad.
“Hey you there!”
Galant looks to his back, noting a group of five Salamander warriors right above him floating on the air, using a crimson dark armor, a large tower shield on their left arm and a spear on their right. He remains still and silent, looking towards them, who began to go down and finally touched the ground, ten meters from him.
The leader speaks first
“what’s doing here a no-race?”
Galant remain silent looking towards him.
The leader laughs to his expression.
“…So if you aren’t going to talk…”
“Hey.” Galant interrupts. “Take me to the General.”
All of them laugh while Galant keeps calm and serious, his eyes looking every movement they did.
“haha..Why would I bring a shitty no-race to our encampment?”
“I come bearing a message from the Supreme King, Hao.” He reveals his rudis. “It’s directed to your leader. If you want to ignore it...”
“We killed four other of your friends? Why we can’t do the same to you.”
“Because even you five wouldn’t nearly approach to manage that.” Galant thinks, but he responds another thing. “I’m not from their guild. Just a mercenary working from them. You win nothing kill me.”
“Maybe this can of use Kagemune…”One talks to the leader.
“Right…Come with us, we shall escort you there. Don’t try anything stupid.”
Accompanied by Kagemune and his guards, Galant arrives to the camp, calling the attention of all Salamanders looking towards the non-race player. Galant remains still as if nothing happened, it was already a second nature to him being cold and without emotions towards players he found across his journey on Aincrad. He looks round the place trying to find the so called “Salamanders Strongest Warrior”, but he wouldn’t have to looks so far. Descending from the skies, a is a tall and well-built Salamander with bristling flame-like, purplish-red hair that framed a face reminiscent of a dark-skinned bird of prey, Though with his crimson and read with golden details armor, he looked like a phoenix, incinerating all those next to him with his power. He carried a long two handed sword on his back.
He immediately looked down on Galant who did the same.
“Who is this no-race, Kagemune?”
“A mercenary from The Supreme Legion. He carries a message from Hao himself. We found him near the woods at the north.”
Eugene looks at Galant again.
“Whatever the message I will kill you myself. Yet, in respect to your courage to come here alone, you can speak.”
Galant remain serious but he speaks.
“My name is Galant.” This caused whispers for a moment among the fire fairies, who may had heard of him. Even the general seemed to have herd of that name. However the voices ended quickly. “I work for the Supreme Legion as mercenary. Hao himself sent me to give this message to you: he requests a meeting. He’s interested on an alliance with your army.”
“I've already recived a similar proposal from the Sylphs and Cait Siths..." Eugene grins. “And you, alone, without a single guard to cover your ass represent them?”
“Yes. And the guards were slaughtered by your men yesterday. The reason I’m here.”
“You totally alone, wearing that horrible gear. You can’t expect me to believe you.” he turns around. “kill him!”
“The soldiers rushed to kill him ready with spears and shield pointing at him. Galant doesn’t move a single millimeter.
“GENARAL! LET’S HAVE A DUEL!”
Eugene stops, and turns around.
His men stop as soon as he does this.
“A player challenge me to a duel. With that pity sword of yours?”
“Yes.” Galant draws Maximus Caliburn from his back. “If I won, I want to leave this place alive. If not, you can do what you want with me.”
Eugene grins again.
“General you can’t be thinking…”
“You have a big mouth, you know that?” interrupts him.
“Just step aside! This is a battle between him and me. No one more.”
Kagemune steps back as the rest of the soldiers did the same.
Both Galant and Eugene begin to go upwards in the air spreading their wings and looking to each other.
“You are an interesting person, general.”
“What do you mean?”
“I don’t trust in the other guild and race army leaders. But if you accepted my duel, so it’s different. I will trust you…”
“You are filling my nerve kid…” He draws his sword from his back.
They stop ascending one they are 100mts above ground.
“Let’s see what the Champion of Aincrad is capable of…”
They ready the swords pointing towards each other, staring deeply on to each other eyes trying to find each other’s weakness just by piercing with their sight.
The clouded sun finally made an appearance by long ray lights moving by the strong wing. One of these rays appears on the general’s body moving towards his sword. He moves millimeters his sword making reflect on the sun fall to Galant’s eyes, blinding him. The general seizes the distraction he caused, and attacks Galant, who had few seconds to clash swords with the general. But the sword of the General phase through the blade of Galant, who couldn’t do anything by timing and surprise. He receives the full strike, rocketing at high speed to the ground, smashing upon impact some trees and the ground finally.
Galant get’s up, and looks up to the General, looking to him, still on the air.
“The rumors are true…Demonic Sword Gram.”
The weapon Eugene wielded was a two handed sword that required at least 950 skill points in that type of weapons. And besides that, it had an unique ability: Ethereal Shift, which allows it to phase through objects such as swords or shields in order to hit its target.
This doesn’t get Galant down never les and rushes at max speed towards the general who blocks his strike.
“I0m impressed that you are still alive!”
“Nice sword you have here, general!”
Galant makes his fist pure ice and attacks the general right on the face, who also attacks back hitting his chest with his left hand. Galant the makes space between them, and attack the general, but the Salamander makes the attack first. Galant is forced to elude the sword and slashing with Stardust Slasher, but Eugene matching his speed deflects the attack. The time being was enough or Galant to set distance between them for a second time, but an attack of the general swiftly followed trying to stab his face Galant managed to elude the sword once again and attack the general, but it is once again parried by the crimson sword and the general slashes him, and though he tries to parry, the sword shifts though his blade and slashes his body for a second time.
Galant distances from the general for a second
“What they say is true Galant. You are worthy of your legend.”
“But you are already done! You won’t overpass this!”
“We shall see!”
They attack each other several times clashing swords each time after coming and going using their flight speed to their advantage. They stood head to head on each strike and each move. Their skill was the same. Yet, Eugene’s weapon was superior, and Galant’s HP was considerably less than the one that his opponent had.
Galant makes a thrust .which is parried, and passes by. Tries attacking though his back and makes there swift strikes after coming back but they are again parried y the General. He raises his swords and attack above him, but the general slashes blades with him and they are left struggling of a moment, as the general then riced his hand and charged a fire ball, which strike Galant’s body forcing him back as the general then advanced and made lots of fast cuts directly on Galant’s body. At last the Champion manages to place a good kick to his face setting distance for moment, as the general was numb and Galant began circulating round him with all his speed.
“Scatter Stardust Slasher!”
Galant’s constant sing of Stardust Slasher multiplying attacking constantly the general, taking few of his HP, but saving time for Galant. Eugene covers from some and parries others.
“THIS IS TO MAKE TIME!!!”
He makes one single slash, defecting all the sword skills which either can on the ground on re lost in the sky.
He looks around trying to search for his opponent but is nowhere to be founded.
Galant appears out of nowhere fling at fast as he could towards the general, with his left arm behind his back and his other arm. He did the same reading his sword to finish him off, as Galant prepared his sword to parry.
The blades clash, as Gram quickly moved towards gallants face but suddenly it was parried by other sword that looked exactly the same as the other that Galant had on his right hand. Galant pushes the sword towards the general setting distance between them.
“MAXIMUS CALUBURN! DIAMACHEARUS MODE!”
Gram’s unique skill didn’t work on two continued blades. Just one at a time.
Eugene tries to go back, but Galant begins a vicious max speed slash, taking great part of the salamanders HP. They clash swords as he lets him win territory, just to regain balance and then as Galant attacked him, he parried and tried to counter but the Champion used both blades to block his move for a second time, leaving both of them struggling powers for a moment. The general gets back and prepares and attack.
He creates a circle of fire round him, leaving Galant out of it .
He quickly get out however…
He raises his sword and gets in down with all his strength. But Galant parries with both of his blades and spins cutting after finishing the right hand of Eugene, making him loose his sword. Galant spins and twist as the general begins to fade after all his strikes, combined with all his stardust attacks. The general tries to choke him with the had his had left, but the Champion manages to kick him, forcing him even more to the ground and rushed downwards at high-speed.
Galant rises his right sword.
He lets it down rapidly.
He draws a huge slashing across the general’s body cutting his body in half, leaving nothing but a fire explosion after that.
He opens his arms and sheathes both swords on his back, one pointing to the sky diagonally and other to the opposite position.
General Eugene is being revived by Kagemune heal spell, as Galant remains steady with his arms crossed. The general appears out if his Remain Light, getting up and moving ad testing his new body before his looks towards Galant.
“Legends are true, Galant. You are worthy of your name.”
“The same I can say of you.”
“I’ve never thought a no-race, a player not capable of using magic, could achieve this level of power it seems I’ve underestimated you. ”
“An error you should not commit again. Any other guild could see that opportunity.”
“This castle and this worlds are really big. I wonder who may dual wielders or strong players could be found round here. ”
“Way more than we both can imagine. But going back to my point. Will you believe me…or not?”
Eugene closes both of his eyes and thinks for a moment. After a minute of this, he speaks
“Tell your King that I accept the reunion if it takes place here, and he shall be accompanied by no more than 30 men. Under other terms, nothing is acceptable.”
“Understood.” Galant spread his wings ready to get away from the camp.
“Wait!” The general stops him. “Just know something Galant: I shall have a rematch upon a day.”
He holds his fist close to him.
Galant does the same and they clash fists.
Galant spreads his wings and flies back to the city of Acceria ready to deliver news to Hao.
He thinks to himslef how many other player he would face across the journey of the war, and how many shall be as skilled or maybe more than the general. The future is imposible to guess, but he knew many player he would see would be as good or maybe even better.