Chapter 149: Meeting #288

 

After a meeting with the Elders we have determined a pattern from some of the dungeon cores that are being targeted by the one posing as Dyson. After splitting up into two groups Madam Erin, Dyson, and myself make a surprise visit to Dungeon Core #288 Chansey.

After teleporting we arrive in a small open forested area with a small brook running past us and the entire scene is quite picturesque. Madam Erin and Dyson however seem confused as their heads snap back and forth looking around with a puzzled expression on Madam Erin’s face.

Madam Erin: “Where the hell did you take us?”

Dyson: “This is supposed to be it!”

Madam Erin: “Well it sure as hell isn’t!”

I start looking around as well and notice not all is as it seems, what I thought was a exterior location is actually an interior. The walls and roof however are mimicking deeper parts of the forest and the sky. There even seems to be motion in the clouds along the ceiling.

“I don’t see an exit.”

Dyson: “That is because there isn’t one.”

A small frog jumps from the brook onto a large flat stone, and after it wipes its eyes with it little webbed feet it speaks in a voice of a young girl.

Frog: “Oh, what do we have here? Two, no, two and a half Dungeon Core Elders stuck in my little box.”

Dyson: “Chansey, is that you? What did you do to us?”

Frog: “Who, little old me? I think you should be asking yourself, what did you do? Thinking you could just sneak into the depths of my dungeon.”

Madam Erin: “If you haven’t noticed there has been a lot of dungeon cores perishing recently.”

Frog: “And all at the hands of the one standing next to you. Or has it been?” –The small frog’s wide mouth curves up forming a smile.-

Dyson: “What do you know of what is going on?”

Frog: “That all depends on what it is worth to you.”

Madam Erin: “If you might not have noticed but they have been targeting all the dungeon cores trained by Leland, and that puts you in danger as well.”

Frog: “Oh, but indeed I have. In fact I dealt with one of the little buggers just this morning. I do have to say it has been fun watching you die in absurd and interesting ways Elder Dyson.”

Dyson: “It sounds like you have dealt with more than one, have they all attacking while posing as me?”

Frog: “None have quite had your flair, but I have to say it’s quite entertaining to watch you scream, cry, and piss yourself before you die each time.”

Madam Erin: “If they keep attacking you, you should tell us what you know so we can put a stop to them.”

Frog: “And miss out in all the xp they have been providing to my dungeon? Not a chance.”

Dyson: “They might have been easy so far, but they have killed the likes of Faron, and Maric, so sooner or later they are going to send someone that you can’t stop.”

Frog: “I have managed to stop half of the Elders in a single swoop, what makes you think I am scared?”

Dyson: “Listen here you!” –He says scooping up the frog squeezing it in his grasp.-

The walls tremble and trees crack and fall as the room shrinks to half the size cramming everything together, and it takes quite a bit of effort not to get pinned or crushed by the trees.

Frog: “No you listen! You are in my house, unwelcome, and uninvited. Even if you are Elders I could kill you all right now, and there is nothing anyone could do about it!”

Dyson: “You could try!”

“Dyson, this isn’t helping! Look! We don’t mean you any harm, and we really did come here to help. You say you can defend yourself then fine, but what about the other dungeon cores that can’t? If you would just tell us what you know, we would be out of your way.”

Frog: “Dungeon Core 212… I have wanted to meet you for quite a while now, so let’s have a little chat shall we?”

I then feel a pull on my chest and everything goes dark. I quickly look around and it seems I am unhindered, but I can’t see anything. The sounds of rattling chains can be heard then I feel something grab my wrists and jerk.

It jerks me so hard it pulls me backward until I collide with something causing me to stumble. I fall into what feels like some kind of hard chair as the tightening on my wrists intensifies. I struggle to free myself in the darkness, but something then wraps around my ankles pulling them tight against the chair as well.

[Blink], [Gate], [Light], and several other spells I try casting but nothing seems to work. A bright light then flashes in my eyes causing me to clench them tight, and then something moves in front of me and I slowly try to open my eyes.

With the dark room and the bright light shining directly in my eyes it makes it hard to focus, but I make out a small figure in front of me. The light is then pulled back a bit and the figure becomes clearer, and the figure is that of a small girl.

She appears younger then Lala and Lele, and is wearing a light summer dress, her auburn hair is so curly that if it were straightened it might extend half the length of her back, but instead it barely reaches her shoulders. Rocking on her heels with her hands behind her back she leans forward giving me a once over.

Chansey: “You don’t look like anything special.”

“That’s because I’m not, now is all of this really necessary just to talk?” –I say pulling against the straps around my wrists.-

Chansey: “A little thing like me can’t be too careful.~”

“How did you pull this off anyway? I can’t even cast any magic.”

Chansey: “Now, you should know there are three things you never ask a lady, and that’s her age, her 3 sizes, or her dungeon secrets.”

“What about Dyson and Madam Erin, are they still alright?”

Chansey: “They are arguing about something quite fiercely, so if they are in any danger it is from each other, at least for the moment.”

“You said you wanted to talk, but so far I am the only one asking any questions.”

Chansey: “I have to determine if you three are here for the reason you said you were, and if it is true, I have to decide if I even care.”

“Someone out there is killing dungeon cores left and right, do you not care about them at all?”

Chansey tilts her head to one side and looks to be thinking about it before she shakes he head and says. “Nope, not really.”

“From what Madam Erin said Dungeon Core #634 Rosalinda was your typical dungeon core until she started working with whoever is behind these attacks, and then she was strong enough to put Madam Erin in a tight spot, so do you really think you can hold out here on your own?”

Chansey: “Really…? Rosey acquired that much strength working for these people? Maybe I should join them as well.”

“Except they want you dead, and for whatever reason, it is because you were trained by Leland.”

Chansey: “Even dead he is still a pain in my ass, just now figuratively rather than literally.”

“Then help us get to the bottom of this.”

Chansey: “That pain didn’t come without a hefty xp reward, so what is it Dungeon Core #212 has to offer me?”

“If you are asking for compensation for your information, Dyson and Madam Erin are the ones you should be talking to, my dungeon is barely scraping by as it is.”

Chansey: “Your dungeon is quite special is it not? I hear you managed copy the items the fake Dyson’s are using.”

“I don’t know where you heard that…”

Chansey: “I told you, I killed several of the fake Dysons. That means I have their belongings and with it were their nifty little rings. After putting one of them on and doing a little digging it was quite simple.”

“Then you tracked the ones that are doing the attack! You know who they are?!”

Chansey: “I couldn’t tell you who is pulling the strings, but sure I know a few of the puppets involved.”

“Then you have to tell us!”

Chansey: “See that is where you are wrong. I don’t have to do a thing.”

“If you speak to Madam Erin or Dyson I am sure there can be something arranged for the information.”

Chansey: “The rings are not the only items you managed to create, isn’t that right? You see they have quite a bit of information on you, enough that I could probably make an educated guess on the color of the underwear you are wearing.”

“I seriously doubt that is helpful to you, just tell me what it is you want then?”

Chansey: “You are the first Dungeon Core to ever procreate. I want you to do to me whatever you did to your boss monster.”

“It isn’t that simple…”

Chansey: “Why not, I powdered my nose, put this dress on that seems to be your preference, and I know it’s not my appearance because some of your girls aren’t that much older in appearance then I am.”

“How could you have learned so much about me, and yet so little…? Belinda is my wife and my only “girl”, and that isn’t the reason I said it wasn’t that simple. My dungeon being different isn’t the reason Belinda got pregnant. She might have been the first but she wasn’t the last.”

Chansey: “Then how is it possible?!”

“I could hold that information until you tell me what you know, but I won’t do that, because the answer is that it just isn’t possible right now. We are already at the limit of the number of these new dungeon cores to be born for now.”

Chansey: “Then if I kill one that should free up space!”

“I don’t think it works that way, even when [Menu] summoned new dungeon cores, even if you killed a training core it wouldn’t make another until the following year. I can promise however as soon as another becomes available I will let you know, but as to who the father is you will have to figure that out on your own.”

Chansey: “That’s not good enough!”

“I don’t know what to tell you, because that is all I can offer.”

Chansey: “You are really shaping up to quite the disappointment.”

“I told you that you would have better luck with Dyson or Madam Erin…”

With a sudden pull at the back of my chest I am thrown to the ground at Madam Erin and Dyson’s feet.

Madam Erin: “Thank goodness, you alright, pup?”

“I think so…” –I say while returning to my feet and rubbing my wrists.-

Dyson: “Did you get what we needed?”

“I found out she has a lot of information we could really use, but she wouldn’t tell me unless I got her pregnant…”

Dyson: “You should have taken one for the team.”

“I know you probably would have done it willingly, but you know I couldn’t have even if I wanted to…”

Dyson: “I already told you I draw the line at children.”

Madam Erin: “Now what? We haven’t heard from her since you disappeared, and we have tried about everything to escape, I don’t know how she managed it but she has found a way to prevent any kind of teleportation magic within this sealed off room.”

“What about communication, Have you tried to contact those on the outside?”

Dyson: “That doesn’t work either, it sounds like the same thing Hecate used when she attacked your dungeon.”

“Well I don’t think Chansey is working with them, but she has tracked a few of them down, maybe she pilfered one of the same type of items that Rosalinda gave Hecate.”

Dyson: “If we could get one of those things to your dungeon, we could put them to good use.”

“Excellent suggestion.” –Says another frog that jumps out of the brook.-

Madam Erin: “You have more of them?”

Frog: “Maybe…”

Dyson: “You give us the information we need, and one of those items, and Two-Twelve will produce 2 more for you.”

Frog: “Five!”

Dyson: “Three.”

Frog: “Deal.”

Madam Erin: “We also need assurances you won’t use them against the Elders.”

Frog: “You stay out of my dungeon, and you won’t have a problem.”

Dyson: “Alright, then tell us what you know.”

Frog: “Stones first.”

Madam Erin: “Then join us at the neutral zone, we will produce the stones, and then hand them over once you tell us what you know.”

Frog: “And leave my house for yours? Pass!”

Dyson: “Damnit Chansey, I’ve never let you down before, have I?”

Frog: “And there won’t be a first time.”

“You have to work with us a bit here!”

Frog: “I do…? I seem to be the one holding all the cards.”

“I will throw in what we talked about, you’ll be the first to know.”

Frog: “Madam Erin and Two-Twelve goes, Dyson stays and learns the information. When you return, we trade Dyson for the stones.”

“I don’t think…”

Dyson: “Deal.”

“Are you sure?”

Dyson: “It will be fine.”

“Alright…”

A large stone appears in front of me and drops into the dirt at my feet. It looks like a magic stone but tin comparison it is massive, even the largest magic stone I have seen, which is the one Dyson presented to me earlier, was still small enough to fit in the palm of my hand. This stone however even Madam Erin would struggle to wrap both hands around it with her fingers still touching.

I then pick up the stone, I feel a pull on my chest again, and I land on the ground in a heap. The terrain looks the same as the room we were in before the trees were knocked over, and there is a large cave entrance nestled in the tree line, but now we are clearly outside.

Madam Erin landed on her feet and after looking around and giving the air a quick sniff she says. “Alright pup, your spell should get us back to your dungeon quicker than mine.”

When I landed in the dirt I dropped the stone, so after collecting it again I cast [Gate], and Madam Erin and I step through the portal that I formed arriving at my house.

“I hope Dyson knows what he was doing, we don’t even know how much this thing will cost to replicate, and we have to make three of them.” –I say while storing the item in the dungeon’s inventory.-

New Item Available

Magical Blackout                                             Cost: 10,000*

 

“They are quite expensive but not as bad as I fearrrred…” –I start to say but I drag out the last word when I notice the asterisk.-

*Item must be summoned with godly quality. Base cost does not include quality cost of item.

Madam Erin: “What’s wrong?”

“It says I have to summon it with godly quality, base price is only 10,000xp but to actually summon one it will cost 1 million xp, each!”

Madam Erin: “That’s 3 million xp!”

“I don’t even have enough for one of them right now…”

Madam Erin: “This information better be good.”

I have to cast another [Gate] spell so Madam Erin can return to her dungeon and collect an xp bead for the amount we require, and when she returns she says. “I only could muster up 2,750,000xp without digging myself into a hole, so I hope you can at least cover that much.”

“It will be tight, but I think I can manage.”

I let the bunnies know what I am doing and then add the xp bead, and summons three of the stones. I feel my heart drop as I watch all that xp just disappear in a flash. I store the three new ones and then pull the original back out of my dungeon’s inventory and store them with [Shadow Pocket].

I have the appearance of the location in my head, but Madam Erin has to tell me the geographical location of Chansey’s dungeon so I can [Gate] us back there. It takes a few minutes after we arrive before a small frog hops out of the brook just like the one inside the dungeon.

Frog: “Did you get them?”

“And Dyson?”

Frog: “I want to see them!”

I cast [Shadow Pocket] again and pull out two of the stones setting them down on the bank of the brook next to the frog. “Now you know we can replicate them, now give us Dyson and you can have the other two.”

Dyson then appears, but like Madam Erin he has no problem landing without ending up like I did, and the first thing I ask is. “Is that you?”

Dyson then takes off his helmet, tucking it under his arm and runs his gauntleted fingers though his hair. “In the flesh.”

“Now the gauntlets.”

Dyson: “Don’t trust me at all do you?” –He says as he starts removing his gauntlets.-

“I am sure you would find comfort in the fact we didn’t give up the goods before making sure we weren’t dragging home an imposter.” –I say while checking to see both of his hands are ring free.-

Frog: “Yes, yes, you got your leech back, now can I have my other two stones?”

“And the information?”

Dyson’s face contorts into a menacing smile. “You bet your ass I did, and you are not going to believe this!”

Madam Erin: “It better be good, because you now owe me 3 million xp for your half of the stones. –She says while I pull the other two stones from my [Shadow Pocket].-

Dyson: “3 million?! Shouldn’t we at least split it 3 ways?”

Madam Erin: “You expect the pup to have that kind of xp readily available?”

Dyson: “Fine, I will just have to take it out of the hide of the one that is responsible for this mess.” –He then looks to the frog.- “And trust me when I say I will be back for that other thing we talked about.”

Frog: “I will be waiting.” –It says while putting all the force in its little body to start rolling the stones into the brook which causes them to completely disappear.-

“Alright back to the neutral zone then?”

“Not quite.” –Dyson says while slapping his helmet back on his head grabbing ahold of Madam Erin and my wrists and with a pull on the back of my chest we we are off again.-

When my feet find the ground again we are standing outside the gates of a large castle, I have been here before, but never to the castle, I still recognize it instantly however as the Royal Merretta Castle.

Madam Erin: “You’re joking… I don’t care for Lucille either, but you don’t really think it’s her do you?”

Dyson: “Well it isn’t, not exactly anyway. –He says kicking in the door of the castle causing shards of metal and splintered wood to fly in every direction. As the deafening sound of the shattering gate is still ringing in my ears, the sounds of horns and hustling soldiers in heavy armor can be heard quickly approaching.-

Madam Erin: “Are you insane?!”

Dyson: “You said 3 million right? Time to start gathering!” –He says pulling his sword and cuts down 5 soldiers in a single swipe making their heavy armor look less then cloth.-

Madam Erin: “You better know what the hell you are doing!” –She says as kicks a soldier back pulling her greatsword from her hip swinging it around with one hand obliterating the soldier that was charging at her.-

Dyson: “Don’t just stand there with that look on your face, even you should be able to handle a few of these guys at a time!” –He says as he cleaves another small group in two.-

Dyson then seems to intentionally side step from a few of the soldiers leaving them a clear shot right to me, which between the insane werewolf looking woman and the demonic suit of armor, this little guy with the dumb look on his face must seem like an easy target.

I have no choice then to pull my own sword and join in the battle. My first strike causes and explosion sending the soldier I attacked crashing into three more, and now my sword is bathed in dripping flames.

Dyson: “Still full of surprises I see! This is going to be fun!”

It is quite literally 3 people against an entire army, although I can’t say I am having much of an impact. Between Madam Erin and Dyson dropping entire squads of soldiers at a time I am merely picking off the strays.

We make our way past the gate, and into the outer-courtyard, I don’t know how much time it takes but there are soldiers, or at least pieces of them lying everywhere. Merretta Castle has several layers to it, so even as we bust through another gate entering the actual interior of the castle for the first time we will still have to pass through at least one more open courtyard before we reach Lucille’s dungeon which is if I understand correctly a hidden entrance in the back of the throne room.

Once we enter the passageways of the castle moving becomes far easier, because the soldiers don’t have room to gather in large numbers, but that doesn’t mean we ever stop fighting them in smaller quantities as we press forward.

I don’t have a clue what Dyson has planned or what he heard, but I am sure if I could see his face it would have the largest smile I have ever seen adorn his face, as he seems to be enjoying himself a great deal, and he even goes out of his way to drag more of the soldiers into the battle.

“Dyson! These soldiers don’t have a connection to Lucille’s dungeon, there isn’t a reason to needlessly kill innocent humans.”

Dyson: “They might not serve Lucille, but they serve Merretta, and that means they owe us their xp!” –He says cleaving another soldier in two.-

“At least let those that are choosing to flee live! Abandoning their post is considered treason, so they have as much giving up their claim to serve Merretta.”

Dyson: “Fair enough.” –He then hits his chest with his free hand calling out.- “[Battlefield Echo]!”

What Dyson says next is loud, but not just in my ears, but in my head and it reverberates in my bones, similar to with Ceres used the [Stop] ability.- “I have come for your king! All who wish not to die at the hands of the hero’s descendant Dyson can choose to abandon Merretta and lay down their weapons. Only then will your lives be spared from my wrath!”

Madam Erin and me: “The king?!”

Dyson: “Indeed. Laura was right the Dungeon Core Elders have underestimated humans for far too long, and under her very nose, those Lucille thought were her puppets cut their own strings.”

Madam Erin: “But calling out the king like that he will surely try to run now.”

Dyson: “It has been ages since I hunted a king, and never one quite as high in the food chain as Merretta’s King, so chasing him down will be half the fun!”

“Even if Merretta’s King is involved he has to have Dungeon Cores backing him or they would have never gotten as far as they have.”

Dyson: “Oh I am counting on it!” –He says cutting down the last of the soldiers between us and another large gate.-

Dyson then busts through the next gate and we find ourselves in another large courtyard, but this time it isn’t only soldiers but they have large dragon like mounts.

Dyson: “Wyverns! Oh Lucille you must have really dropped the ball to not notice something like this! Madam Erin, grab ahold of Two-Twelve it’s about to get rough.”

Madam Erin then scoops me up, her arms alone feel like solid stone, and it feels I am being crushed between boulders. Even her breast has no softness to it as buries the side of my face into one of them as she pulls me tight against her body.

Dyson moves so quickly that it looks like he used the [Blink] spell to reach the center of the courtyard. Several of the soldiers start to take flight and others begin a charge along the ground on their wyvern mounts.

Dyson takes a stance in the center of the courtyard and swings his sword wide arch above his head while calling out. “[Void Attack]!” The very air seems to be sliced open as massive gust of wind quickly pulls my sword right out of my hand causing it to fly through the air disappearing into the fissure above Dyson.

Even Madam Erin seems to struggle to hold her position with me in one of her arms she casts a spell and everything from her waist down turns into a solid boulder. The wyverns that took flight stand no chance being sucked into the fissure.

Their size however prevents them from passing through it cleanly and you can hear the cracking and shattering of scale and bones as they disappear one after another. The wyvrens on the ground don’t fare much better as even try to grip ahold of something only for the item they gripped to break lose flying into the fissure along with them.

Soldiers fly through the fissure as well all that were lose on the ground and others that lose their grip on their mounts as their wyvrens cling to parts of the castle. Entire chunks of the castle start to break away one of which pieces strikes Madam Erin in the head as it flies past, and she quickly casts another spell creating a wall of stone between us and Dyson, but it only lasts a few seconds before it shatters and is consumed as well.

Hundreds of footsoldiers, and dozens of wyvrens and their riders are gone, leaving only Madam Erin, Dyson, and myself left in the courtyard before the fissure seals and chunks of the castle start falling to the ground that were flying through the air.

I can’t tell the extent of the damage, but two complete towers of the castle have fallen along with many sections of the walls. Dyson stands there in the middle of the courtyard surrounded by the fallen rubble and even through his heavy armor you can see he is breathing quite heavily.

Madam Erin’s legs break free of the stone and it then disappears as she sets me back down on the ground and says. “By the gods! What the hell was that?”  I meanwhile cast a healing spell on Madam Erin as she has rather large gash to the side of her face where part of the wall hit her.

Dyson: “The power of… Two-Twelve… When he puts his mind to it…” –He says between labored breathing.-

I then cast a [Clean] spell on Madam Erin cleaning the blood from her to make sure the wound is completely healed and then I ask Dyson. “Are you ok?”

Dyson: “I have just never seen something… Use so much of my magical power… So quickly… But I should be alright… Shortly…”

Madam Erin: “We just destroyed half the castle, the king isn’t going to take this lying down. Get your shit together and lets find him before he has a chance to escape.”

“I lost my sword…”

Madam Erin: “I am sure if Dyson didn’t already take out the rest of the soldiers, when we run into some more you can get you another sword. Might not be as good, but at least its something.”

Dyson stumbles a bit as he takes a step forward, but quickly rights himself, his breathing has started to slow, but doesn’t seem to be moving very fast. The collapsing of major sections of the castle has left our path forward blocked, but even chucks of the castle that are 2 to 3 times Madam Erin’s size she pulls out of our way like they are pebbles.

We run into a few more soldiers on our way to the throne room, but so far all just throw down their weapons and run when they see us now. I have switched swords three times since then each time I find a better one, but the one I currently got is still no better than a master quality dark steel sword.

By the time we reach the door leading to the throne room Dyson has returned to normal, but he has probably only recovered a fraction of his magic, but that could very well still be more than my magic is when full. Dyson then kicks in the door and we proceed inside.

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