"Ugh..." Quite groggily, Elizabeth woke up to the sensation of her numb body tumbling as if she were rolling down a hill. Her body was still in stasis, so she couldn't move her eyes, and about a minute after her consciousness jolted awake, she concluded that something or someone was messing around with her body.
She couldn't be completely certain of her guess, but with Kinesthetic Acuity, if she had to bet on it, she would guess that she as being washed clean. The sensation was also similar to the time Jane took care of her, but Elizabeth wouldn't know the truth for another couple minutes.
Gradually, the numbing sensation spread across her paralyzed body started dissipating. As Elizabeth slowly regained her mobility, that numbness was replaced with a comfortable warmth. Even after she gained the ability to fight back against whatever or whoever was washing her, the warmth invading her body worked like a calming agent. Its effects were so exaggerated that even with Elizabeth's obsession over doing her best for the legacy trial, she felt inclined to stay laying in her comfortable position for a little while longer.
So… she did! Only, instead of completely wasting her time, when Elizabeth could open her eyes, she decided to do a bit of intelligence gathering to figure out how she ended up wherever she currently was. As she opened her eyes, the very first thing she saw was a stranger's face about an inch away from her own face…
Before she could even ask what was going on, the stranger gave a tearful cry as she said, "Young miss! You've finally woken up!"
Startled and confused, Elizabeth felt like dying after the strange woman lunged at her and started to smother her with the impressive pair of mounds on her chest. Feeling threatened, Elizabeth galvanized her Inner Strength and a pressure similar to the one she had to fight against in the Foundation Substation Legacy Trial descended on her immediate surroundings.
She pushed the strange woman away and callously barked, "Who are you..."
"Master! Forgive me! Forgive me..." This woman… Now that Elizabeth had distanced herself and got a good look at her, she noticed that the woman wasn't human; at least not 100% human. Her lower half was specter-esque and she "stood" before Elizabeth with her torso cutting off as a trail of energy.
"Mhmm... " Elizabeth didn't receive an answer and the way the female genie referred to her was also troubling. "I'm not anyone's master… Explain yourself..."
"Right! Maste… Young miss… I was just so worried! You've been out for over a week and I was just a bit overly excite..."
As soon as the idea that a whole week had passed Elizabeth's comprehension, she immediately cut the genie off, asking, "A fucking what, when? A week?! Where am I?" In Elizabeth's mind, this was no time to dilly dally. She most certainly couldn't have continued on with the legacy trial if an entire week had passed. Wherever she was, it was probably much less secure than the trial site. With this insecurity, emerged Elizabeth hyper-cautious vigilance.
"You're in the Resting Chamber of the Sky Seizing Castle. After you blacked out in the Foundation Substation Legacy Trial, you earned the Castle Lord's respect and were delivered here to hasten the speed of your recovery."
"Sky Seizing… Wait! Didn't you say a week went by? Shouldn't my time here have ended long ago?"
"Ended?" The female genie looked confused, but shortly afterward, a lightbulb seemed to have ignited as she exclaimed, "Oh! You must mean the time on the wall, yes?"
"Right… Shouldn't that be the amount of time I have left before the castle kicks me out?"
"Not at all! That time only dictates how long you have to continue challenging substations. After the limit runs out, you'll still be allowed in the castle. Only the round room will be off limits. That is… unless you spend the tickets required to buy more time."
"Oh?" Elizabeth was about to continue asking questions, when suddenly, a familiar voice sounded off in her mind. 'Mhmm… I'm not sure whether I should be laughing or crying. Your performance in the First Stage of the Cataclysm… What can I even say?'
'P?! What about my performance? Wait! Don't tell me… Did I fall behind?' Though she was elated to hear the voice of her deity supervisor, the thought that one of her worst fears was being realized caused her to momentarily ignore the genie.
'Huh? Uh… no. You actually rose to 11th place.'
'Then what seems to be the problem?!'
'Problem? There's no problem. It's just you keep accomplishing ridiculous feat one after the other. I mean seriously… Out of ALL the chosen in the Cataclysm, your run through the First Stage was the shortest. Yet you didn't just rise up two ranks… but you also secured an embryonic Goldfinger! Fuck! Even saying it gets me hyped!' By the time P finished speaking, she was practically blowing out Elizabeth's eardrums from the sheer excitement present in her tone.
Elizabeth tried to cover her ears to block out P's voice, which by now was so loud it was getting distorted as if compressed. But given that P's voice appeared in her mind, her gesture was an exercise in futility. Elizabeth couldn't help but shout "Fucking stop!!!" She successfully managed to startle the genie that stood a couple feet away from her and with what remained of her consciousness, Elizabeth also asked through her soul, 'The fuck is a Goldfinger?'
"Hahaha… Oh, sorry..." P quickly stopped the delirious rioting within Elizabeth's soul as the last thing she wanted to do was hurt her "most precious" chosen. P took a couple seconds to completely calm down, but as she started talking, though the overwhelming nature of her excitement no longer hurt Elizabeth, the excitement from before was evident and impossible to hide.
P said, "Goldfingers… Hahaha… They're what each chosen received in their initiation into the Cataclysm. The various functions that now make up your game-like reality are in and of themselves, a complete Goldfinger! Now, you have the nascent form of what could potentially develop into a Goldfinger in the future! Do you understand how important this is?! You are the second and last person to have obtained an embryonic Goldfinger in the Cataclysm, thus far!"
"Wh-what are you talking about? What embryonic gold-whatever?! I think I'd remember if I received something as ridiculous as that..."
"Right, right… You probably blacked out whilst receiving the message! Check your status~"
Still unsure of how to respond with the various different going-ons around her, Elizabeth came back to face the world outside her mind. She turned to the genie which was still prostrating before her and said, "St-stand up… I'll sort things out with you in a little while, so stop… whatever it is you're doing..."
The genie obeyed Elizabeth command without missing a beat. She stood floating silently as Elizabeth went through her Status. As Elizabeth read through her status, and all the things pending or new… her face devolved almost cartoonishly. Starting with surprise, her eyes widened and mouth opened to various degrees until shock set in. Then, from shock, it was confusion, concern, worry, and full on terror.
Name: Elizabeth Ultimatia
Level: 5 (15/20)
Rank: Peak Mortal Stage (100%) [Chaotic Anomaly]
Inner Strength 65,000/65,000
*New) Innate Skills
*New) Chaos Affinity
Tier: Sub trash-tier
Description: Technically impossible to achieve before reaching the Spiritual Realm. Grandmist cultivation is now possible.
Current Effect: Interacting with Grandmist will not result in instantaneous and absolute annihilation of the mind, body, and soul.
*New) Chaos Requiem
Grade: Incomprehensible to the user
Description: A technique that transcends the limits of God. Considered an embryonic Goldfinger for its borderline cheat-esque nature of ignoring the limits of one's talents, this technique can turn average cultivators into supreme powerhouses, and talented cultivators into beings that surpass **********. Originating from a ********-level powerhouse, the requirements to cultivate this technique to the cusp of perfection are nigh impossible to achieve.
Current Effect: Allows for the generation of fragmented grandmist — the absolute worst kind of chaos energy — to nurture the soul and body.
*New) Chaos Seals (9)
Grade: Incomprehensible to the user
Description: Complements to the Chaos Requiem technique. Even a technique as ridiculous as Chaos Requiem can't indefinitely augment the depths of one's talents and potential. Even if it could, eventually, the benefits of progression in cultivation will make it impossible to compete unless there is advancement. Thus, the Chaos Seals were created to make use of chaotic energies once they no longer excavate hidden potential.
Current Status: 1 Seal Complete (Fragmented Grandmist)
Current Effects: Level 1 Pressure, With the user acting as the epicenter, a weak pressure influences everything in a 1-meter radius.
Hidden Quest: The Start Of The Endgame… (Complete)
Degree of Completion: Perfect
Difficulty: Dependant on the user
Objective) Develop Affinity For Chaos. (✔)
Description: Hacks! I call Hacks! It shouldn't have been this easy for you to achieve Chaos Affinity! What idiot gave you access to the Sky Seizing Castle? Oh, wait... Nevermind~
Deadline: Unlimited (Completed upon finishing all primary Objective)
Reward: None; just the chance of gaining Chaos Requiem and the 9 Chaos Seals is reward enough…
Bonus: Fuck off…
Chain Side Quest 1: Legacy Inheritor (Complete)
Degree of Completion: Perfect
Difficulty: C → Incomprehensible to the user
Objective 1) Reach the second story in the castle legacy trial (✘)
*New) Objective 2) Enter a discipleship with the Castle Lord (✔)
Optional Objective) Pass a substation legacy trial (✔)
Hidden Objective) Earn a Cyan Ticket (✔)
Hidden Objective) Transcend the limit of a legacy substation by earning a score above 100 (✔)
Deadline: Once the First Stage of the Cataclysm ends.
Reward: Chaos Energy
Bonus: More… Chaos Energy; enough to completely excavate your hidden potential at the Mortal Stage and fill up 1 Chaos Seal.
Punishment: The rate of time doubles outside of the Sky Seizing Castle until you leave. Current amount of time passed: 17 Days
Main Quest 2: Reach Level 10! (Complete)
Degree of Completion: Technically Mythical, Actually Sub-Abysmal...
Objective One) Manifest Magic and enter the Pawn Stage (✘)
Objective Two) Complete the Pawn Stage to the crest of perfection. (✘)
Description: These will only get more and more difficult as your journey through the higher and higher summits of cultivation. The Cataclysm waits for no one — well that's not entirely true… you could certainly delay the arrival of the Cataclysm if you opt out of accepting any of the other rewards granted by completing Main Quests; though you'd be essentially inviting disaster by doing so, it's still an option… — thus you need to keep improving lest you find yourself ill-prepared to tackle the final battle and come out victorious.
Punishment: Halfs the time allotted for Main Quest 3
Main Quest 3: Reach Level 15! (Incomplete)
Objective One) Seamlessly Integrate Magic with your entire musculoskeletal system and reach the cusp of perfection within the Soldier Stage.
Description: I shouldn't have to reemphasize the importance of these Main Quest, but in case you forgot... Your standing and the probability of your survival in the subsequent stages of the Cataclysm will degrade if don't complete these quests and make use of your break time. Most chosen are at least at the Soldier Stage by now, and though you're clearly set on a path that requires "patience" try to keep up... All the remaining Stages of the Cataclysm won't be as easy and safe as the First Stage.
Deadline: 1 Day, 22 Hours, 42 Minutes, 19 Seconds]