Chapter 312 Unreasonable Demands
It was a weird atmosphere when they landed on top of a building near the massive gate. Ranks of dark ones stood in formation, mages behind as barricades were created. Weapons at the ready, they waited. The gates remained closed. Lucas had moved to the very front, none of the people stopping him. “You think he can do anything?” She asked Maro who was standing next to her.
“I doubt it. I like the way he thinks, I really do. Admirable. Depends on the enemy forces I suppose and what their goal here is. If they even break through the guardians positioned outside. I don’t know much about the political situation as well as the Feynor.”
“Will you fight them?” Terok asked, constantly switching his attention between the gate, the dark ones below and the two people next to him.
Maro didn’t reply, simply focusing on the gates. Ilea wasn’t sure either. The elves had left no survivors, going as far as eating dead humans. She didn’t know what would happen if Baralia took Virilya but some of the soldiers had killed civilians without restrain, others had ignored them. Let’s see what the Feynor are like. The only thing she knew was that once those gates opened, chaos would ensue.
“They will attack us regardless. Those dragon worshiping cunts are ruthless.” Terok commented.
“Have you fought them then?” Maro asked, the dwarf shaking his head, “Then let’s see where this leads.”
Ilea sat down a moment later, her legs hanging freely. Came here to have some time off from fighting and all I did so far was fighting. She smiled, at least it hadn’t been Taleen or undead knights. And she had some food, though the shopping was underwhelming.
“How the fuck are you guys so calm? We’re all going to die…,” Terok looked around, as if he was trying to find an escape route.
Maro glanced at Ilea but turned his head forward again. “At least I get a warning this time. With all the other attacks it came out of nowhere.” She was the one to answer. “Just stick with us, you’ll survive.”
“Probably.” Maro added.
Ilea smiled, “Probably.” She repeated. It was true of course. Terok would be safer as far away from the gates as possible but the dwarf was at level 223 already, higher than most of the dark ones standing below. It simply depended on how powerful and numerous the attackers were. The same was true for Ilea and Maro and while she didn’t know his reasons, she refused to ignore an event like this happening close by. Ilea would be standing there even if she was the only one inside the dungeon.
The pounding on the gates became louder, different spells and explosions audible in a muffled tone. “At least thirty of them. If we assume only attack mages are trying to get through we should expect at least eighty of them.” Maro commented.
They shouldn’t stand so close together. Ilea noted, looking at the dark ones gathered in the big area before the gates. The house they were on stood around two hundred meters further back, the sounds audible thanks to the silence of the defenders. Ilea could feel them through her sphere, at least those standing close enough. “They’re terrified.”
“Course they are, their home is about to be sacked.”
“Tell me dwarf, what happens to settlements the Feynor attack?” Maro asked.
“They usually don’t leave anything behind. An affront to their own culture. At least that’s what everyone says.”
The king nodded and walked to the back of the house, holding out his hand before bones started dropping down to the alley below.
“So you will fight?” Ilea asked.
“There might be no choice. As much as the old man believes there to be one.” He replied.
One last explosion bent the gates inwards, the torches and glinting reptile eyes reflecting the light indicated quite a bit more than the eighty attackers Maro had suggested. A single one walked inside, the collective holding their breath as he approached. A small figure compared to most of the people in Lisburg, not taller than Ilea herself. Squinting her eyes, she could make out some details. It reminded her of a lizardman, the tail much shorter and where they were greenish, these people were going towards yellow, gold or brown.
The head was completely different, more dragon like than anything else. Even the drakes had lacked some of the features the Feynor sported, the amount of horns the most prominent one. The reptile looked dangerous, powerful, its spear glinting in golden light. It wore light armor, open in several places to reveal scales it likely deemed appropriate in defensive capability.It was too far away for Ilea to identify of course but the sheer confidence it exuded after entering the dungeon had her guess its level pretty high.
“Welcome noble warrior, to the Vineyard Caves. May we…,” Lucas was interrupted by the Feynor.
“Your kind is not welcome here. Do not speak for those dreadful monsters.” It raised a hand and continued, addressing not the elder but the people of Lisburg, “Surrender now and you shall die without pain, I swear on the dragons of the high peaks. Be returned to where you came from, released from this world you do not understand.”
“Negotiations braking down.” Ilea commented, Maro snorting next to her. The people around them were getting more and more terrified with each word the Feynor spoke. The sheer arrogance and contempt was damn near graspable even from the distance.
“That’s how you keep the moral high ground after slaughtering a people.” Maro said, his magic spreading behind him, Ilea glancing back.
“Terok, if shit goes south, lead people to the arena and barricade yourself in with them.” Ilea said to the dwarf who obviously didn’t want to stay there. He nodded quickly, not even glancing at her as he stared at the torchlight quietly swaying in the dark tunnel beyond.
“These people are peaceful, unwilling to take part in your war. Neither do they encroach on your territory. Leave this place, you are unwanted here.” Lucas spoke loudly.
The Feynor nodded, “You shall die with them old man.” He shouted something in a hissing language before a storm broke loose. Dozens of the Feynor appeared beyond the gate, spells started flying in as defensive barriers and walls were erected by the Dark ones who quickly spread out, rushing into houses or behind cover as the first spells impacted. The speed and precision of both the attackers and defenders was a marvelous and terrifying thing to watch. Ilea glanced a wooden wall forming where Lucas had stood, now obscured by rising smoke, explosions and fire.
Ice rained down on them as Maro raised a shield above. Terok looked at Ilea and she just nodded, the dwarf vanishing right after. She watched as Maro lifted his hand, a beam of black opaque energy slamming into a flying ball of fire, the thing exploding in mid air. More and more of the creatures rushed in, hunting down the dark ones still remaining near the gate. Four or five to one, they broke through their defenses and cut into their armor, skin or ethereal bodies.
“What are they doing?” She asked as she stood up, her ashen armor forming as a series of dark orbs slammed into her. Maro stood behind his barrier as she felt his magic intensify, the noises of bone on stone audible behind. Many of the dark ones were already fleeing or repositioning at this point, not thirty seconds after the initial breakthrough.
“The gift for surrendering was a painless death. There is no rush when they hold the only entrance.” Maro suggested.
Ilea shook her head, a Feynor appearing in her sphere before he lunged at her, barbed spear in hand. Stepping to the side, she grabbed his neck and squeezed.
[Warrior – lvl 159]
He thrashed and clawed at her armor, spear continuously slammed away by a limb of ash before she slammed another one down his throat, exiting on his back after severing the spine. The creature went limp in her hand before she let go. A skeleton moved up next to her, grabbing the body before bringing it to Maro. “So you’re going all out?” She asked.
“They’re already burning down the city. If anything I owe it to Lisburg to stop these ridiculous creatures. What are you going to do?”
Ilea watched as six of them taunted a downed dark one, blood seeping out from his severed legs as they kicked at him. She noted that it was one of the two warriors that had stood behind the idiot in the arena. “Dunno, Improvise I guess. Oh man, this is going to be a mess.” She didn’t wait for Maro’s reply, blinking twice to reach the group of Feynor. Identifying them quickly, she noted the highest leveled one was just below two fifty.
“Healer…,” One of them spat when she stood above the dying dark one, a tendril of ash sending mana into him to stabilize his body.
“Yes. Why don’t you just finish him off. There’s no reason to torture him.”
“They are not of your kind? Why do you care human?” One of them spat.
When two others moved to attack, her limbs rushed out, piercing four of them while one managed to deflect it. Her ash extended further than she had moved the limbs before, a change from her evolutions she hadn’t tested so far. Pushing further, her limbs punched out of their heads before retracting again. The Feynor took a step back. “Look around you. Do you think beasts would build houses, sell trinkets? Why don’t you stop this and fuck off? No further killings necessary.” Ilea knew of course that they would ignore it, she had killed four of them right here.
“You will die and so will they, in pain, suffering, wishing you were…,’ Ilea appeared behind him and punched the back of his head, bones cracking as he shot forward and impacted hard on the ground. She followed up with an ashen limb cutting into the wound and smashing his brain.
She avoided the strike from the last survivor of the group, the one with the highest level. His weapon was clad in crystals. When the blade rushed at her, she just let it hit, her Azarinth Fighting informing her about the impact.
It bit into her ash before she grabbed his arm, her limbs cutting into his body with quite a bit more difficulty than the others. Still the end result was the same, his limbs ripped off before head was pierced. Ilea ripped out the blade that had cut surprisingly deep into her ash considering the kingsguard hadn’t managed as much with some of their strikes. Must have been confident. She noted the crystals growing in her ash but simply discarded that part before remaking her armor.
Locating the dark one’s missing legs in her sphere, she extended her limbs further than the ever had and grabbed them, bringing them back before she healed the warrior. Enough so he could at least run. How far could I reach before? Three or four meters, that was at least eight or nine just now. Sending a wave of mana into him, the warrior gasped and coughed. “Go to the arena, defend it.” Ilea simply said and walked towards the exit. She saw a group of skeletons rushing by, Maro hard at work.
Entering the combination of mist, fog, smoke and ash that had formed, she trusted into her ash. She watched a group of Feynor cut into the corpse of a dark one before another one came and hissed something, the five muttering but walking towards the city. This isn’t an invasion. Ilea noted, appearing between the walking ones before ten limbs of ash absolutely shredded through them. Bloody and limbs were sent flying as her arms of ash moved through a second time. They were all dead, below two hundred all of them.
“Hey, what did you tell them?” She asked, appearing close to the one she heard talking before. The smoke around them moved and light broke through, revealing the creature before her.
[Mage – lvl 251]
“A healer… human even, no, you are more than that. Why are you defending them? Do you not know what they are?”
Ilea’s teeth ground against each other, “Same offer to you. Leave this place and don’t return. Or die.”
The creature hissed before a curse crashed into her, her life draining as he moved backwards. She simply shook her head and kept walking towards him. The power of his spells were impressive, yet his curses were nothing compared to Elfie, his drain nothing compared to the Miststalkers. “Fool.” He said and vanished, appearing farther towards the exit.
Ilea followed, blinking once to reach the middle of the square. She found what looked like a cocoon of wood, cracked open with a bunch of dead Feynor laying to its side. Negotiations failed? She blinked once more.
“Kill her.” The same dragon like creature shouted as a dozen mages sent their spells at her. Ash moved, forming barriers in front of her, reforming and moving in parts to deflect and stop the projectiles. Many managed to get through, Ilea moving quickly to dodge, trying to not exert herself too much as the spells rushed past, some grazing or even impacting on her armor.
“Stop it.” She said, forming shrapnel from what remained of her ash before all of it smashed into the shields and defenses of the Feynor, the first line losing at least eight as her ash punched through scales, organs and bone alike. The ones with a higher level survived, some injured while others managed to stop her attack entirely. She noted the shouts as well as warriors moving in behind her. “Good. Now that you’re all here, I’ll repeat it.” The mages looked at the collapsing corpses and the lances of ash forming above her head, “Leave this place, or die.”
Roars came from all around her as they attacked in unison, the lances sent into the mass of Feynor still standing in and beyond the bent gate. Ilea vanished, twelve ashen limbs on her back now, they slashed through the confused mages and warriors, vanishing again as soon as she could to keep them on their toes. It was absolute chaos, her Sphere and high reflexes keeping her focused and in control as she slaughtered the beings. Her spells she only used against the higher leveled ones, absolute destruction and storm of cinders taking quick care of even level two twenty enemies, their defenses simply lacking against her form of attack.
Her limbs were defended against rather well by many of them but for every one deflecting her blows, there were three being cut apart. It was obvious that at least half had some form of spacial perception but it was her positioning against theirs. As long as there were dozens of weaker Feynor in the tunnel, she could simply use them as shields or cover against the spells and swords from those more powerful. Ilea had no time to meditate, conserving her mana and using her reversed Absolute Destruction whenever possible.
Finally reaching the end of their ranks, nearly sixty meters into the tunnel, she grabbed one of them and formed another shroud of shrapnel. This time she tried a star like shape, investing quite a lot more time in the mass and density before the attack rushed into half confused half pursuing enemies. She let go of the dead warrior, her reversed healing having killed him, “Flee and I won’t pursue.” She said and slammed a spear to the side before four of her limbs crashed into the warrior, denting his armor, one of her arms piercing. A kick sent him flying, impacting several more as they appeared around her, blades, spears, arrows and spells flashing.
As she thinned their ranks, Ilea moved back towards the city, more and more spells impacting her now that the chaos was reduced. The remaining warriors and mages became increasingly defensive as she slaughtered one after the other. She wasn’t seeking the city for help but for cover against their ranged attacks. While few had pierced her armor even half way, it would only get worse over time. When she reached the houses again where Maro and herself had stood on, she noted that there were no corpses around. It was nearly quiet, the enemies behind her moving in and as well as explosions resounding in the distance.
Blinking into an apartment, Ilea took the spear of the appearing Feynor right on. It dug into her ash two thirds of the way as her limbs cut into his neck. She moved two ashen arms around him to get him closer, a hard punch ripping off his head. Three more appeared while a group of mages sent spells in through the windows. She danced through, her ash ripping into them, now fourteen limbs that were still as easily controlled as her initial eight.
The heat in her chest started to increase as more and more warriors appeared, poking at her while they deflected her ash. Only elites had remained, all her resources being drained by the mages outside while a curse slowed her down and made her feel sick. Her mind was being punched by magic too but all of it was manageable thanks to her resistances and healing. The more simple offensive spells were simply dodged or ignored as they slammed into floating ash or her armor, burning away layer after layer while the warriors got in hit after hit.
She used the time to meditate, deflecting only the most dangerous attacks. The drain to her resources became more and more negligible as time went on, the heat in her chest reaching levels where her health started to drop. Ilea blinked, appearing near the biggest cluster of six mages as her ash rushed out to envelop them in a thin mist. My body, no teleportation.
The warriors appeared within her range and rushed at her before she sacrificed five hundred health, activated her third tier Aspect of Ash and released Heart of Cinder.
A sphere of fire and heat ripped through them, Ilea spreading her wings as she floated above the crater. Half of the house was missing and of the two dozen enemies only one remained, both arms missing as he had been aiming a spell right outside the range of her attack. His eyes were wide as she floated towards him, sixteen ashen limbs ripping through the defenseless mage before silence returned to the square.