"Hyaaa!" Rallen cried, swinging his ax. A shriek filled the air the blade slid through the body of an enormous bat. As the two halves of the body fell they darkened, shattering before they hit the ground.
"Rock make, Blades!" Adan swung his arms across. Two pieces of sharpened stone sprang from the ground, cutting into a charging monster bat.
"Heh." Vann smirked as he sent a monster flying into the wall. Vito and Ava watched from the side.
"They're pretty good." The woman commented.
"Feh…" Vito said irritably. Dashing forward, Vann's fist slammed into a Snake Monster. The creature shrieked in pain as it was blown backwards, shattering when it collided with the wall. As the black shards evaporated the cave fell silent, the battle over.
Adan relaxed, lowering his arm. The glowing of the beads on his wrist diminishing. He looked around the tunnel. "This dungeon is quite similar to the one we were in yesterday. Except it's much larger and there are quite a few monsters in here."
"We're pretty deep in, so isn't that natural?" Ava asked.
"I suppose, but this is the first time I've seen this many to attack a party at once." Adan replied.
Everyone flinched when a loud shriek suddenly filled the air. A moment later another bat monster flew out of the dark. Vito quickly drew his sword and cut it in half as it neared them. As the body darkened and shattered the warrior smirked and sheathed his sword.
"Ha!" He said triumphantly.
"Well, I guess you aren't totally useless." Vann commented with a deadpan expression.
"What the hell kind of compliment is that!?" Vito exclaimed.
"There's an exit here." Adan cut them off before they could start fighting. He pointed towards the end of the tunnel, where a dim orange light could be seen. Putting away their weapons the party headed for the end of the tunnel.
"Woah!" Rallen breathed as they stepped out of the narrow tunnel. Before them was a gain pool of hot lava. Ahead, a withered wooden bridge stretched out across it, attached to an island in the middle of the swirling fire. On the other side of the island was a another bridge leading to a massive door on the other side of the enormous cavern.
"This looks suspicious." Vann commented, walking across the bridge, Adan following.
"Uh…is this really okay?" Rallen asked, peering over the side of the bridge into the pool of fire.
"Don't worry. Unless this bridge was programmed to break, the only way you'll end up in the lava is if you fall in." Adan paused for a moment before adding, "So watch your step."
"Wait, what's that supposed to mean?"
It took a minute for the party to cross the bridge and get to the island. As soon as the last person stepped off the bridge a loud rumbling sound filled the cavern. The island started to shake slightly, waves of fire crashing up onto the sides of the rock.
"The hell!?" Rallen exclaimed. Lava splashed everywhere around the island. Adan fell back slightly, trying to regain his balance.
"Something's about to happen." He frowned.
Without warning, something enormous crashed into the center of the island. An explosion rocked the stone back and forth. The smoke it created covered the island, hiding whatever had crashed into it.
"What the?" Vito shouted.
A low growl emitted for inside the cloud of smoke. All the groups eyes widened in surprise. A loud thump was heard, followed by another. Slowly, a massive troll emerged from the smoke, snarling angrily. Ava gasped while Vito gritted his teeth.
"I think we just found the mid-boss…" Adan commented. Vann narrowed his eyes.
"Mid boss? That thing!?"
"Look closely," Adan replied, gazing past the monster, "We're not at the end yet. It can't be the big boss himself."
"Geez…" Vann sighed, "You weren't kidding when you said this could be hard."
"Uh, guys…? What's the plan here?" Vito asked nervously. Vann didn't turn around to answer him. He was silent for moment before he replied.
"Just stay there, we'll take care of this." Vito's eyes widened.
"What? By yourselves? Look at that thing! There's no way you're strong enough!"
"Oh shut up." Vann said, sounding irritated. The blue haired teenager cracked his knuckles, "We'll be done with this quickly."
Vito stared at him. "Wha…"
Suddenly the troll moved. Growling, it raised the massive club it was carrying. Vann narrowed his eyes.
"Adan." he said quickly.
"Right," Adan quickly placed his hand on the ground.
"Rock, rise!" The ground in front of them shot into the air, forming a shield.
"There's no way that things gonna hold against that monster!" Vito shouted desperately. Letting out an inhumane roar the Troll swung its weapon downward
"Rock turn to, Crystal!" The rock suddenly became clear. The club crashed into it. Suddenly the sound of splitting wood filled the air. The club snapped in half, its top flying off into the lava. Vito's eyes widened in disbelief.
"Wait…T-that was…Alchemy!" he stuttered. Ava's gasped in surprise.
"An Alchemist? No way…You have to be at least at level fifty to convert to that class of mage!"
"Crystal make, Spears!" Long sharp spears suddenly shot out of the crystal toward the troll. Blood sprayed as the weapons tore through the monster. Its head falling back the Troll let out a pained wail. Reaching up, the monster grabbed one of the spears and tore it from its body.
"Hurry up Rallen!" Adan shouted.
"Hah! I'm already on it" Rallen replied as he ran toward the monster. The crystal shattered before him and he ran through the new opening. Smirking he leapt into the air, raising his axe.
"Devine…Smash!" He swung the axe down. The blade sliced through the troll's torso. Blood sprayed everywhere as the troll again roared in pain.
"I got it!" Rallen shouted triumphantly. Jumping back out of the monsters range. Blood pouring from its wounds, the Troll fell to its knees.
"That move!" Ava exclaimed.
"That's a Knight Class Move!" Vito said, "I can't believe it, not just an Alchemist but a Knight as well!?"
"GRAAAAAAAHHHH!" The troll roared in fury, bringing its fists crashing down onto the ground. Adan and Rallen stood before it, watching it calmly. Growling, the monster struggled to its feet. Its yellow eyes narrowed as they focused on the two who had injured it. The two teenagers didn't move as it bared down upon them. The Troll leaned forward and roared at them.
"Where are you looking?" A dark voice behind the troll suddenly asked. The Monster paused and looked over its shoulder. Vann stood on the other side of the island. Vito took a step back as he stared at the blue haired teenager. He could feel a strange energy pulsing from him, causing his hair and coat to blow around him. Growling angrily the Troll spun around, swinging its arm in a giant arc. A large explosion shook the island as the monsters attack smashed into Vann. Dust and dirt flew into the air, covering the majority of the island.
"S-such enormous strength…" Vito said hoarsely, covering his face with his arm. "That thing…it must have crushed the kid."
A chuckle caused Vito to look over at Adan. The hooded teenager just smiled, not looking worried at all.
"Don't be so sure." He said. Furrowing his eyebrows in confusion Vito turned back to the Troll. He froze, all the color draining from his face.
The smoke started to clear, revealing a dark silhouette near the Troll.
"There's no way…"
Vann stood with his hand stretched out to the side, effectively stopping the Trolls fist from reaching him. The energy pulsing from the teenager suddenly grew stronger. His eyes narrowing, Vann pushed back on the Trolls fist, making the monster stumble backwards. Growling in fury that its attack had not crushed its enemy the monster stomped on the ground, causing the stone to crack.
Howling, the creature clasped both hands together and raised them above his head, intending to smash the teenager. Planting his feet, Vann sucked in a breath.
"Fire Dragon…" he breathed. The Troll swung at him, "ROAR!" A huge burst of flame suddenly burst from Vann's mouth. The monster fell backwards as the fire slammed into its chest. The island shook as it fell onto the ground, cracking the rock underneath it.
Vito stared in complete shock. His eyes were wide as he gaped at the blue hared player. "…N-no way…" He said slowly, "A Knight and Alchemist I'll believe but…"
"Vito?" Ava asked, staring at the fight, "What kind of class is that?"
"I-I've heard rumors," He responded, "About a group of classes that can't be obtained by ordinary means…"
Vann flexed his fingers and spread out his arms.
"Now to finish this." He said. A blue wind suddenly started swirling around his arms.
"Wind Dragon," He rushed forward, "Wings!" He slashed his arms across. The vortexes flew outwards and smashed into the monster, the wind slicing the troll across the chest. Blood flew everywhere as multiple gashed appearing on its body.
"…I don't believe it," Vito sputtered, "Legendary Classes, they really are real."
"Legendary Classes?" Ava repeated, not taking her eyes of Vann.
"A group of classes far more powerful than any of the warrior or mage classes. I've only heard rumors of them. But from those rumors…I've heard the most powerful. No, the most powerful class in all of Final Fable is…"
"Earth Dragon Slam!" Vann's fist crashed into the center of the monsters chest, blowing a hole straight through it. The ground under the monster shattered, causing a crater to from under the two. The monster screamed as its body started to turn black. The scream faded as it's darkened body shattered into pieces.
"Dragon Soul…" Vito said in a low voice.
Vann rubbed the back of his neck as he stood inside the crater he had created.
"Wow…three attacks in one battle," Adan smiled, standing on the edge of the crater, "That thing must have been tough."
"You're telling me." Vann smirked.
"Hell yeah! Look at all the experience points I got!" Rallen exclaimed, waving his axe around excitedly. Vann rolled his eyes as he jumped out of the crater on the other side of the island.
"Heh, makes you wonder what the boss is gonna be like." He called over to Adan. The Alchemist smiled.
"I don't really want to think about it." He replied.
Suddenly his eyes widened when the ground started shaking. Everyone froze, looking around with surprised expressions.
"What the-" Vann stared in shock as a small bits of rock started to break off from the cavern, raining down around them.
"It's…collapsing!?" He exclaimed.
"What the hell!? Dungeons aren't supposed to collapse!" Rallen shouted.
"Vann! Get your ass over here now!" Adan called. Vann looked over at him.
"Ri-" He froze when a shadow fell over him. His head shot up just in time to see a large boulder falling above him.
"Gya!" He shouted as jumped back to avoid it. It crashed into the ground in front of him.
"Vann!" Adan shouted. At that moment the cavern completely caved in. Vann scrambled to his feet and ran across the swinging rope bridge to the other side cave, the falling rocks raining down around him. Pressing himself against the giant door, Vann could only watch as the stone and rock fell, creating a wall of rubble between him and his friends.
It took several minutes for the cave to settle. When the shaking had stopped and the roar had died down, Vann slowly took a step forward. A layer of dust was covering the floor and small pieces of stone still occasionally fell from the roof of the cave. Walking over to the rocky wall Vann placed a hand one of the pieces of rubble.
"The hell is this?" He said to himself, "I've never heard of dungeon where something like this happens." He was about to put his back down when something caught his eye. His eyebrows furling in confusion he removed his hand from the rock and held up out in front of him. After a moment he reached out with his other hand and pulled his sleeve back. His eyes widened in surprise.
"What the…?" A large metal armband was attached to his wrist. "When the hell did this get here?" running his fingers over it, he narrowed his eyes. The item was clearly made out of a lightweight metal. It was black except for a thin yellow strip winding around the middle. Turning his wrist, Vann could see a thin slot running across the top of it.
"This thing…What the hell?" Staring at it a moment longer Vann finally sighed. Lowering his arm he turned around, facing the only exit. For a moment he just stared at it. Then he scowled.
"Enough with this weird crap, I just want to get out of here. Hopefully there'll be an exit on the other side." he said, pushing his sleeve back down. Walking up to the door he stopped, looking up at it.
Now how do I-
Vann stepped back when the door vibrated slightly. Dust and dirt fell to the floor as the door cracked open. Its sides slowly swinging open. Peering past the expanding crack Vann could see another dark tunnel on the other side. As the doors came to rest Vann moved forward, walking into the tunnel until the darkness completely encompassed him.
After about a minute of walking Vann was able to see dim light in the distance. Slowly, Vann approached it. A single light crystal was attached to the wall at the exit of the tunnel. Glancing at it briefly Vann stepped into another large cavern. The room was pitch black except for the small light behind him. Vann stood at the edge of the dark cavern, unsure where to go.
Hesitantly he took a step forward. As soon as he did he heard a small scraping sound against the rock as a large round stone suddenly rolled in front of the exit behind him, sealing off the only light source he had. Scowling, Vann turned around to face the cavern
"Damn it, trapped again huh?"
Guess I have to beat the boss for it to open.
"Would be a hell of a lot easier if I could see." Vann frowned as he faced the dark room. The shadows before him blocked out everything. He could barely see more than several feet in front of him. Vann's eyes narrowed slightly.
It feels…cold in here.
Walking forward, he looked around, squinting to try to make out anything in the darkness. He frowned when he heard a small splash. Looking down, he saw that he had stepped in a small puddle.
He shook his foot, shaking the liquid off. It sprayed across the floor, staining the rock. Vann narrowed his eyes when he saw the darkened patches. Putting his foot back on the ground he kneeled down, looking down at the puddle he had stepped in. Slowly, he reached out and placed two fingers into the liquid before withdrawing them.
His eyes widened as he brought his fingers up to face level, watching as the blood dripped down his hand.
"Blood?" Vann whispered. Looking past his hand into the darkness of the cavern he took a deep breath.
"Hello!?" Vann called out. Vann waited quietly but there was no response. His fingers curled into a fist.
What the hell's with this? Any blood from a player should have disappeared as soon as he got a "Game Over" and logged out.
The only reason why there could be blood was if there was an injured player still playing but…there's no one here.
His eyes narrowed, his fist shaking slightly.
Damn. Something about this place's making me feel uneasy. What the hell is with this place?
A sound in the distance made him look up. Slowly, he got to his feet, unconsciously stepping into a defensive stance.
"What now?" he gritted his teeth as he tried to peer past the shadows.
Vann's eyes widened as a loud thump caused the ground underneath him to tremble. He fought the urge to shake as a chill shot through his body. He took a small step back as he stared out into the darkness. His fists clenched again as the sound continued to move toward him.
A scaled claw reached out of the shadows and crashed into the ground, cracking the stone. A moment later, an enormous reptilian head snaked its way through the dark, soon two more followed. Vann watched, paralyzed as the monster crawled towards him. Its three heads all watched Vann, hunger in their eyes.
The monsters three heads twisted around almost hypnotically as it stared down at its prey. Vann gritted his teeth. Angrily he glanced down at his right hand, which was visibly shaking. Reaching across he grabbed his wrist, holding it in place.
"Damn, it!" He hissed, "What the hell's wrong with me! I've never felt like this when I've played before!"
Why does it feel…
Like I'm in real danger here!?
Vann barely even noticed one of the Hydra's heads shoot forward. His eyes widened when he saw a flash of fangs. He cried out as he flew backwards, just managing to dodge the incoming blow. The first Hydras head slammed into the ground with such force that a crater formed in the stone, causing small chunks of rock to fly in random directions.
Vann struggled to get his feet on the ground as he flew through the air. Feeling himself falling back Vann swung his legs up, springing off his hands and back onto his feet, sliding back across the ground.
Shit! I totally zoned out! What the hell's wrong with me!?
Something moved out of the corner of his eyes. Glancing off to the side he saw one of the other Hydra's heads had snaked around to his left and was now rushing towards him. Gritting his teeth, Vann reached out towards the creature and leapt into the air, grabbing onto the top of the monsters head the Dragon swung himself safely over the attack.
I'm only on the defense here! I gotta attack back!
The final head of the monster rush rushing him head on, baring its fangs angrily. Vann narrowed his eyes and dashed forward. As he neared the creature he jumped into the air and brought his foot crashing down on top of the Hydra's head. Curling his hand into a fist he pushed off the creature head and jumped further into the air. As soon as he started to fall back to the earth he brought his fist back.
"Earth Dragon SLAM!"
His fist collided with the Hydra's back. He felt the ground underneath the creature crack from the force of the blow.
"HA!" he cried out triumphantly.
Time seemed to freeze when something flashed off to his side. His eyes widened and a moment later blood sprayed into the air. The Hydra's fangs threw Vann into the caverns walls. His eyes widened when he felt a sharp pain surge through his body. As he fell to the ground he grasped his bleeding arm. His mouth opened but no sounds came out. His breathing became jagged, as if he were choking on air. Suddenly everything hit him at once.
"AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHG!" He screamed, blood soaking through his fingers. "Damn it! DAMN IT!" Drops of red fell to the ground, creating small puddles at his feet. The Hydra's roar was deafening, it's three heads raised as they howled. Vann barely noticed it.
My arm! My arm! This hurts! Damn it, this hurts!
Pain…You're not supposed to be able to feel pain in the game! It's just a freakin game!
WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON!?
Glancing down at his arm his eyes widened in shock. Past his arm a small puddle of blood had formed beneath him. His hands started to shake as he gripped his injured arm tighter.
Slowly, he reached out and placed two fingers into the liquid before withdrawing them. His eyes widened as he brought his fingers up to face level, watching as the blood dripped down his hand.
"D-Don't tell me-!"
Suddenly the cavern was flooded with light as torches attached to the caves walls burst into flame. Vann felt his entire body go numb, feeling only a cold flow through his veins.
Blood stains splattered the walls. Entire sections of the normally brown rock were painted red. Corpses were littered around the cave, lying in pools of their own blood. Torn limbs were scattered around, leaving trails of crimson from where they had been separated from their bodies.
Vann couldn't advert his eyes, everywhere he looks he could only see death
It can't be…No…NO!
Players bodies disappear after a game over! They immediately respawn in other places. They don't leave anything behind! And NPC's shatter just like monsters do! They don't leave remains either!
Then that means…these people are…
Vann's eyes widened when a shadow fell over him. Tearing his eyes away from the bloody masses of the corpses, he looked up. The Hydra was standing looming above him, its heads looking down at him, bloodlust in their eyes. Vann hadn't even noticed it approach him.
I'm…going to die?
The middle head opened its mouth, its fangs glinting in the firelight. A low hiss escaped its throat.
I need to move…
The other two heads reached around to surround him, their hungry eyes locked on him.
I have to move.
All three roared at once. Vanns hair whipped around his face from the wind. His fingers slowly scraped across the ground as he clenched his fists.
Move! Damn it! Move!
Snapping its jaws, the middle Hyrda's head surged forward.
The ground shattered as the Hyrdas fangs bit down into stone. The monster gagged in surprise, trying to dislodge it's fangs from the earth. Vann twisted around in the air, clenching his fist.
"EARTH DRAGON SLAM!" The Hydra's head was slammed back into the ground by the Dragon's attack. No sooner had his fist connected than the two other heads sprang towards him. Vann crossed his arms.
"Iron Dragon Scales!" Vann swung his two arms outward. His fists slammed into the heads of the attacking Hydras. A metallic grinding sound filled the air as the Dragon managed to divert the attacks. As soon as the heads passed by Vann jumped back, putting some distance between him and the monster.
He gritted his teeth as he clenched his fists. Small trails of blood dripping down both of his arms.
Damn…It even broke through the Iron Dragons Scales…this things attack level is seriously high.
Vann glanced to the side at the mangled bodies and pools of blood. He closed his eyes for a moment before turning back to face the creature.
"You Bastard…" He hissed, "You killed all these people, didn't you…?"
They Hydra lowered its heads, staring at Vann. The Dragon let out a breath. A stream of smoke blew from his mouth.
"I don't know what the hell happened here but…" His eyes flashed in fury "Like hell I'm just going to sit around and get killed!"
The Hydra roared at him. The force of the howl created a gust of wind that blew past the Dragon. Vann planted his feet and sucked in a breath.
"Fire Dragon's…!" The Hydras claws bit into the ground. Roaring one more, the monster leapt at him. Vann clenched his fists.
"ROAAAAAAAAR!" A burst of flame erupted from Vann's mouth. The fires intensity lit up the entire cavern, encompassing every shadow in an orange light. The ground under the flame shattered as the flame surged forward, creating a crevice underneath it.
The monster screamed when the fire crashed into it. The flames blew outwards, causing an explosion of rock and flame. Dust covered the entire cavern, enveloping everything in a dark cloud.
A few moments later, Vann let the flames dissipate. As the last flicker of fire evaporated he hunched over, breathing heavily. The monsters scream had long since died down. Vann searched for it, but the dust blanketing the cavern hid everything from view. The cave grew quiet, the only sounds being Vann's jagged breathing.
Vann waited for any sign of movement within the dust, but nothing happened. After a moment he relaxed, closing his eyes. Sucking in a breath he let it out slowly, standing up straight. He let his bleeding arms hang by his side as he stared forward.
I guess that's it th-
Blood sprayed the air as a Hydra's fang tore through Vann's side. His eyes widened in shock. He felt his body leave the ground and fly through the air. He opened his mouth to scream but no sound came out. He barely realized the fact when his back hit the caves wall. Pain exploded in his side but he found he could only fall to the ground, his back leaning against the caverns wall as a blood poured from his side.
He struggled to raise his head as the Hydra stood over him, its three heads hissing and growling at him. It seemed to be waiting for him to die. Vann fist clenched at his side as he gritted his teeth.
I'm going to die…
I'm seriously going to die.
I'm going to-
Don't give in just yet.
Vann's eyes widened.
"W-what?" he asked, his voice hoarse.
You fought well…But let me help you.
"W-who the hell?"
I am here.
"What are you talking about? Who are you?" Vann shifted on the ground. His eyebrows rose when he felt something in his jackets pocket.
Vann slowly moved his hand, wincing at the pain it caused. Reaching into his pockets he felt his hand wrap around a thin object. Pulling it out he held it up. His eyes widened in shock.
"Guess he's gone…" Vann muttered, holding the card in his hand. After a moment he sighed, placing it in his pocket.
"Well whatever, I guess." He muttered.
The black card glinted in the firelight. It's yellow strip standing out against its dark color.
I am here
Vann clenched the card tightly as the voice spoke again. His sleeve fell back slightly, revealing the strange armband. Above him, the Hydra suddenly seemed to become agitated. Its heads snapped angrily as it looked down at the teenager.
You must hurry!
The monster roared one final time, shaking the cavern with its howl.
ACITVATE ME NOW!
As the Hydra's middle head lunged at him Vann gritted his teeth, crossing his arms. Swinging his arms back he crammed the card through the armbands slot.
A bright light suddenly exploded. Everything turned white. Vann felt a surge of energy erupt in front of him. He could hear the Hydra shriek in surprise.
All of a sudden, red was added to the white. A pained howl filled the air. Something crashed into the ground before the teenager. Slowly, the light started to dim, Vann could barely make out one of the severed head of the monster. As he stared at it in sock the rest of the light died down. Slowly, Vann looked up from the head. His eyes widened as he saw the glint of steel.
Before him stood a young woman with blond hair. She was dressed in a fashion similar to Samurai with a red sash tied around her waist, contrasting with the dark blue color of the clothes. An enormous sword was resting on her shoulders. The blade itself was easily as tall as she was. Because she was standing with her back to him, Vann could only see a small portion of her face. Her dark violet eyes narrowed as she stared at the injured Hyra before her.
The creature was trashing about violently, blood pouring from the stump where it's middle head used to be. Raising its remaining heads the creature howled in fury. The woman slowly lifted her sword and held it in front of her. Snapping its jaws, the Hydra lunged at the woman. Gripping her sword the woman dashed forward.
The monsters first head shot towards her, followed closely by the other. As the woman got close the first head lunged, baring its fangs. The woman dodged to the side and twisted her sword.
"Hyaaa!" The blade flew upwards, cutting cleaning through the Hydras neck. As blood sprayed through the air, the woman planted her foot and pivoted, holding her sword to the side. The final head of the monster opened its mouth to bite down on her when the woman swung he sword. The blade bit into the monsters mouth, cutting the head in half. Running forward, the woman pulled her sword from the neck of the monster and leapt into the air. The blade shimmered in the light as she spun it in her hand. As she fell to the ground she plunged it downwards. The blade pierced through the center of the monsters body, causing it to crash into the ground.
The creatures body jerked violently. The bloodies stumps thrashed around wildly, crashing into the ground and into each other. The woman narrowed her eyes and twisted the sword, causing the monster to fall still. After a moment she pulled her sword free of the monsters corpse. Jumping off of the body she landed a couple feet from Vann, who could only stare at her in shock. Talking a breath she raised the sword to rest it on her shoulders. Slowly, she lowered her gaze on the teenager in front of her.
"Are you alright…Master?"