Rise of the invincible

prologue

The wind howled as it rushed through Grestan glacier, and bringing with it sheets of snow that covered the young man's footsteps. He moved slowly and carefully along the dangerous landscape, wary of falling from such heights. As he came to the end of the snow trodden path he caught the first glimpse of the Gothic monument that protruded out of the darkness and gave it self away as his key destination. Leaning carefully over the mountain edge he looked down and saw a chipped and narrow stairway that had been built into the rocky side of the mountain he stood upon, squinting, he tried to make out what lay beneath the dense mist. All he could make out were the beginnings off a large paved courtyard and hazily in the background a strange stone statue.

He brushed at his shoulders losing the snow that had deposited itself there and turned to kick at the ice that had over years slowly began to encase the ancient staircase. cautiously he knelt down, taking his time he reached downwards and began his decent across the treacherous passage. His fingers brushed gently against the rough ledge, then another ledge, and another ledge. ledge by ledge he grasped at the ice face, it took more and more out of him but nonetheless he pushed himself.

When he finally reached a comfortable distance, he leapt the last few broken steps onto the icy courtyard. The only noise was the sound of his boots scraping against the crystallized floor, he wasn't sure if he liked it.

"it's freezing down here" he shivered taking in his surroundings when he noticed it "what do we have here?" he smiled to himself whilst looking over the statue that lay at the centre of the courtyard. Observing the statue, he stood stroking his chin mockingly, the statue showed a knight holding his sword up to the sky clutching tightly to the horse that he sat upon, his face strained into a battle-cry.

"Interesting" he frowned

Inspecting it closer he found the description below it:

"The great king Vernadon rode out to the battlefield with six hundred men in tow knowing this would be the battle to seal humanities fate. The enemy, the demons of nightmares and stories of the old world were already waiting for the humans, along with the demon king Kariknov. The end seemed fast approaching, one by one the humans were slain until only ten men stood against the coming evil. When the dark lord Kariknov halted the conflict and confronted king Vernadon personally. Kariknov roared a challenge to the king his fury filled the air. If he could best the demon king alone with only his mortal essence he would flee living the world of light to humanity and let them live in peace. Though if the king failed humanity would pay the price and the light world would descend into utter chaos.

The king reered his stallion forward, sword withdrawn and held up high for all to see. With one bound he had dismounted, catching Kariknov off guard and open, he sliced the demon king clean in half. Those demons who followed him were dragged backwards into the hell which they had previously escaped. The ten gallant Knights headed back to their kingdom victorious and as heroes of legend, though none knew of the corpse of Kariknov that lay back on the battlefield, ignored by the heroes as a final insult. From its dissolving form two new demons, Diablos the guardian of the orb of creation and was the first of the new breed. It flew off into the night and hid its orb in the middle of an icy glacier, whilst the second, Pandora the guardian of the orb of destruction, hid its own orb in an ancient destroyed city long overlooked by human eyes it would stay long forgotten by humanity but not those of the demon world. The two orbs once merged are said to bring back the demon king and his armies, a rebirth that would mean the end of the world itself."

he looked up and finally took in his surroundings, the Gothic looking mansion that dominated the inside of the glacier stood larger than any structure he'd seen in years. It had the strangest sensation from sight alone, alongside the statue it made for an uneasy experience.

"Ugh, sounds kinda boring, who the heck made this crap up anyway?" sighing he rasped his knuckles on the stone "then again on the other hand that orb sounds kinda special. Hmmm, orb of creation eh? It does have that ring of riches in its name. If it's still here that is... What the hell! Worth a shot I guess." amused, he moved towards the looming form of the mansion and as fast as he could on the fragile icy surface.

At first they made no impression of moving but with more of a strenuous display of energy the large iron doors pried open inwards. An eerily empty large hall greeted him and yet even inside, the frost had locked what remained in place for years. Chairs stood in two aisles to his left and right leaving a path going straight down the middle and even more icy than the courtyard outside. He made his way across the room tentatively to the opposite end where he was confronted by another statue, this one was bizarrely hidden. When he first entered the hall he had mistook it for a decorated wall but as he got closer the realization dawned on him painfully. An armoured dragon. Looking down to the dragons feet, a much shorter inscription was presented this time reading

"the Legendary Beast"

looking back up he noticed something glistening in the dragons chest plate, reaching out he put his hand on the smooth sphere and pulled it out. Bringing it closer he realised what it was with a guffaw.

Something made a noise behind him. Twisting, he pulled out the relic of a pistol pointing it hesitantly at the entrance of the hall he waited cautiously with bated breath for what felt like hours, just aiming. Nothing. Above the entrance was an oil painting of who he guessed must have been the demon king Kariknov judging by his elegant throne made of bones and flames that lifted the serene scene into one of complete obscurity particular picture. Scanning the room with more interest in detail than he'd previoulsy had, he noticed several doors leading to different areas both to the left and right wings of the mansion. Imagining the treasures that lay beyond those doors made his leg ache, the kind of ache he always got when he felt the old dream of the hunt. He threw the shining orb up in the air and caught it with his other hand.

"This should fetch a high price enough for me for now anyway'" he grinned "Then again if it doesn't, maybe I can find my way back to this ol' place and loot the rest of the plunders, might even find that one special treasure'' he faced reddened as he remembered her and the promise he'd made, enough time for dreams later he thought. Heading back towards the door though not as slowly something made him stop and turn back. Something made him look towards the cold statue and even from here he could tell the true unnerving form.

"What the?!"he froze in shock as a piece of metal clanged to the floor falling off the statue. More debris followed as the form beneath horrificly came to life, he threw himself to the ground as more pieces of stone flew towards him, crashing into the rows of chairs with a thundering crash. smaller clangs filled the room and slowly faded out whilst a wave of wind crashed in his direction. He carefully pulled his arms away from protecting his head and finally fearfully lifting his sight up to where the noise had started.

The statue had disappeared.

Without thinking Rick Krimson charged at full speed out of the hall and away from the mansion. Out in the cold night his speed didn't stop as he sped across the frozen surface passing without a moment to mind it, the now newly damaged statue of king Vernadon that he had spent such time examining and a crafter of old had spent more time painstakingly moulding.

He froze.

His mind came back to him as the sight flashed past, his eyes tore backwards. The king's sword hand lay a short distance away from the now incomplete statue, Rick looked around hoping to find the culprit but with no luck or maybe with it, he decided to continue his escape. Sprinting with all his remaining speed to the fractured stairway and frantically grabbed at the ruined steps one after the other in quick succession, his progress was insanely impressive in comparison to his fearful descent. The airship sat waiting in the midst of the blizzard just a short distance away, Rick shielded his face and dragged himself towards it.

Something had moved behind him, he turned but not for the first time he found nothing in his wake.

In a seconds instance he came up with a new plan. Run.

He charged as fast as his feet would let him in the sinking snow and sped aboard the airship. Desperate to make a hasty retreat, he was unaware that as he sealed the boarding ramp and continued to boot up the airship the orb in his pocket glowed with a hint of hidden power resonating to an unknown force, though all the trasure hunter cared about was the crystal clear embrace of the skies beyond the mist.

Up in the sky he would leave the eerie frost bitten mansion behind, maybe hidden in the nightmares or maybe just a hazy dark memory. Though the further he got away the more he felt the unsettling feeling that it would most likely be the first.