A note from HoppyCobalt

Last upload for the day! Again, thank you for checking out my work and I hope you enjoy!

Part 6

With Maxine and Hodge’s little demonic cult fresh in my mind, I got to work. I opened the [Dungeons] tab, and everything unraveled before me.



Dread Level: 4/10 - brutal finish(+); new dungeon(+); bloodthirsty core (++)

Crystals: 200

Essence: 2 (David Edwin Yates); (Yates Residence Dungeon)

Aura & Environment (0/3)

— empty —

— empty —

— empty —

Monsters (0/2)




— empty —



— empty —




Master Bedroom

Vivian’s Bedroom

Xavier’s Bedroom

Master Bathroom

Second Bathroom


Living Room

Study Room



Basement (1 kill, brutal finish)

Car Garage


After messing around for an hour, I learned that [Dread] fluctuated based on what I did inside the dungeon. I didn’t know how to feel about the system marking me as a bloodthirsty core, but I admit I did go overboard with killing Dave by throwing him around like a ragdoll and crushing his skull with the cabinet.

I also learned that it had a passive influence around the property, which fed on the dungeon’s aura and environment. I happened upon it by accident. With my many-eyes always active, I sensed someone outside the house, a woman walking her bulldog by the sidewalk. Her dog peed on the Yates’s front lawn, and as I watched them curiously, she suddenly shuddered and snapped her head directly at the house.

I could sense the hairs at the nape of her neck stood up, eyes warily glued to the residence.

The bulldog looked directly at me and growled.

The woman snapped out of her trance and gently pulled on her dog’s leash. “Come on, Willow. Let’s get back home.”

Still, the bulldog—Willow—didn’t want to leave. She growled at me and barked at the house as if she could sense me standing five feet away from them.

“Hey, what’s wrong with you, girl?” The woman tugged on the bulldog harder.

I floated closer to the dog, but she suddenly whined and backed away, tail tucked, and started running in the other direction. The woman, pulled by the leash, scrambled to follow her. “Hey! Not so fast! Not so fast—!”

She gave another wary glance at the house before walking away.

“Weird,” I muttered.

My stomach growled again.

“Oh, fuck you, too,” I groaned. I had only absorbed Dave’s essence two hours ago, but now it felt like my hunger was worse than the last time. I didn’t know if my core was broken or if I would always be hungry like this.

I returned to the [Dungeons] tab and accessed [Aura & Atmosphere]. They were easy to learn. Like what the woman experienced—the heebie-jeebies, I called it—I could actively influence anyone who entered my dungeon with unique “lair” actions.

And the list was long. It took me an hour just to read a tenth of it. I couldn’t access most because I wasn’t powerful enough or higher in rank, but I chose three auras I liked the most from those I could pick, costing fifteen crystals each to purchase.


Phantasmal Cold

The dungeon is unusually twenty degrees colder than the outside’s temperature, shedding a delver’s resolve over time. Duration: 1 hour.

Strange Noises

Produce an audible noise from within the chamber—a cry from a baby, a howl of a wolf, a whisper, or a scream. Take your pick and lower a delver’s Resolve. Duration: 1 minute.

Luring Trance

Play with a delver’s emotions and lure them into a trap! (Dread requirement: 4)


Each aura had a cooldown of about ten minutes after the effect ended. If I wanted to lessen the cooldown, I had to increase my rank title from Z to something else I had yet to encounter. I also learned that the people who entered dungeons were called delvers and that their common trait was Resolve. Each delver had varying numbers of Resolve, just as I had with Power, but I had to lower it to make them more susceptible to my attacks, traps, and the monsters’ unique effects. The lower it was, the higher chances they would die.

However, the only way to lower it was to basically torture them with all my contraptions.

I frowned. A part of me still clung to a semblance of my former life, I feared that I would be like this permanently, and the only way I could survive was to feed on essence. I tried to feed on a small robin that perched on the chimney with my telekinesis, crushing it with my mind, but no glowing wisps like Dave’s emanated from its corpse for me to siphon.

It had to come from a person—a sapient being.

I had to survive like a fucking vampire.

Despite that, I would gladly feed on Hodge and his cultists over and over if possible. They deserved that much after what they did to me. As the hour ticked by, I noticed that I was getting excited for Maxine to arrive.

With only an hour left, I opened the [Monsters] tab.



















Unlike auras, I had to use essence instead of crystals to purchase a monster’s archetype.

At first, I thought I would be buying a single goblin or a ghost from another long list, but it was much simpler than that. I could purchase an archetype using essence and mold that monster by trading in crystals based on a list of traits (for there were thousands) appropriate to the template.

When I looked at the [Beast] template, one of the traits included [Savage Maul], which meant a beast monster could maul a delver to death—for a [Construct], death machines, robots, and animated objects, included [Plain Sight], which allowed them to blend into their surroundings more as inanimate objects. However, I was locked out from the more powerful monster traits because I was at a much lower rank, didn’t have enough crystals, or didn’t own the prerequisite traits. As Rank Z, my monsters could only have three traits active at the same time. They gained more traits as I increased in titled ranks.

I had two essences I could spare to create my monsters, one coming from Dave’s body, and the other was a reward for building my first dungeon.

Using Dave’s essence, I chose the [Demonic] archetype, planning to let loose a murderous demon on the fucking demonic cult. What poetic justice.

Let them get a taste of their own medicine, I thought eagerly.

Browsing through the listed available traits, I purchased my demon’s first three for fifty crystals each, leaving me with only five left to spare.

I added a temporary name for now.



Dread Score: 8/10

Creature Type: Demonic

Cooldown: 1 week

Special Traits


The monster possesses a delver’s mind and body, using all the host’s functions and abilities, while the host remains imprisoned inside you. The monster has total concealment. (Resolve Requirement: 2)

Mocking Torment

The monster can induce hallucinations, read minds, copy voices, and produce demonic speech to torment a delver’s psyche by gleaning their memories and fears, shedding their resolve.

Incorporeal Body*

The monster has no physical body but can still be harmed by physical attacks. They can pass through solid objects like walls, interact with creatures and objects, moves silently, and has an innate sense of direction to the next living creature.


What’s interesting was their dread score, which represented how formidable the monster was for a dungeon. Once the traits I had selected were put together, the system placed them at a higher score, which worried me for a moment. As for [Cooldown], once I summoned a monster and it died, I couldn’t summon it again until after one week had passed. Again, increasing my titled rank should lower that time.

I hovered over the asterisk, which I noticed from the traits, revealing more information about the effects on the demon and its victims.



Paired with the [Demonic] archetype, Possession traits will inflict physical and mental trauma on the hosts over time. The longer the monster inhabits the host’s body, or the more damage the demonic creature inflicts upon the host, will corrupt the soul and automatically drag them to Hell once the monster breaks the concentration on the possession.

Incorporeal Body

Paired with the [Demonic] or [Undead] archetypes like ghosts, spirits, and malevolent devils, the monster with the incorporeal body trait can still interact with the mortal realm and yield considerable strength and limited telekinetic force to inflict physical attacks upon a delver.


I didn’t have enough crystals to create a second monster, so I saved my last essence for the future. I think the demon would be enough, I thought.

With five crystals left, I purchased a rug trap for the exact amount, turning the Yates’ foyer rug into a temporary animated object. With these contraptions, I could set specific triggers like when a delver was five feet nearby or when the moment they touched the object. However, I put the rug’s trigger to animate when a delver tried escaping the house. They’re there to prevent anyone from opening the front door and running away to their car.

With my dungeon fully realized, I hung back and ensured everything was in place. All my Powers were back to normal (I realized they replenished by one per hour), but since I created a dungeon, it instantly upgraded my Powers to ten maximum. I made a note to reserve my Power once Maxine was here. After all, I already had a monster to do most of my work.

“Okay. Let’s bring you up.”

I summoned the demon.

I thought there would be something fancier, like an incantation I had to do, but once I thought of my demon monster, it materialized in front of me as a billowing cloud of smoke with an acrid smell of rotten eggs and burning wood. I was nervous. I didn’t know how they would react to a dungeon core or if I had to fight them to control them, but the cloud remained where it was, coldly staring back at me.

“Um, hi,” I said.

The Possessing Demon did not reply.

“Okay. I see that you’re not very talkative.” I wished that was in the description.

The demon’s cloud released a lick of flame—an idea formed.

“Er, do that again, but only for yes answers. Do you understand?”

The cloud released another flame.

Oh, good. At least it wasn’t dumb. “You can’t speak, but you can understand me.”

Another flame.

“All demons are not capable of speaking?”

No flame.

“I gave you Mocking Torment. Can you speak through that?”

No flame.

“Alright. I’m guessing that’s only for…” I looked over at Dave’s body.

The demon produced a little lick of flame.

“Do you want me to make a mouth for you?”

A flame.

I nodded. “Okay. And I’m guessing that’s a trait?”

Another flame lick.

I glanced over the traits list and found [Speech] there, and it cost fifty crystals. Excellent, I thought sarcastically. This would get expensive real quick if I wanted my monsters to talk back to me.

“At least you can understand me. Well, um, demon, we’ve got a lot of work to do. Someone’s coming to this house soon, and I want you to bring them Hell. Torment them. Torture them with your mind tricks. Possess them. I’ve given you the traits you need.”

Another lick of a flame.

I smiled. “Once I give the word, we will begin—”

A car door slamming close interrupted me. It came from the front of the house, and I flew over there and saw a woman take out her luggage from the trunk of a car. Another man helped her.

“Oh, you don’t need to do that,” the woman said to the driver, who grabbed the luggage for her. “It’s not that heavy.”

I froze when I recognized her from the family portraits displayed in the Yates’ living room—Ashley, Dave’s wife. I completely forgot that she was supposed to come home from the airport and take an Uber!


Shit, shit, shit.

Ashley waved goodbye to the driver. “Thank you!” She said before walking toward the front door and entering the dungeon. Once she stepped on the threshold, a green aura glowed around her body.



About the author


  • United States
  • 🪐 Empire and Dungeon Builder

Bio: Avid Sci-Fi and Fantasy reader. Loves BBQ, bacon, and shrimp. Oh, I also love hiking in remote places. Did I forget anything? Oh, right! I love to write, too!

Log in to comment
Log In

Log in to comment
Log In