Azhure: Just two more chapters and I’m done!
“Welcome! It is a pleasure to see each other again… Court Wizards!”
It was like the Green Deity… was all Alicia could think of when she heard the familiar title.
Just like in Geron Yor, it was supposed to be a simple task of rooting out a secret order of evil mages seeking to complete an eldritch ritual. But, not only they except Jonathan were trapped, but the cultists also knew about them. As far as Alicia was aware, only the Coastline royal family along with their closest retainers, and the Bell Branch manager plus his most trusted employees would know and none of them had any reason to be in cahoots with the cultists.
“That voice,” Jonathan muttered over on the other side, breaking Alicia’s chain of thoughts.
“Missed me, Jonathan?” the lead cultist then taunted.
He, knows him? What is going on? Alicia widened her eyes as she watched the lead cultist lift his hood with his left hand covered in grey feathers and his right hand holding an iron dagger. Aside from his face looking to be in his late thirties, Alicia could also see a set of grey seagull wings sprouting out of the back of his black robe with a grey accent.
While Alicia was surprised by the lead cultist’s statement, Jonathan seemed to understand what was going on as he spoke out one name, “Gray.”
Then, in one swift motion, Jonathan pulled his hood and took off his metallic mask, dropping it to the floor much to Alicia’s shock. She was told the first rule was applied even more so in your own world which included hiding your face and here Jonathan just broke it.
“Ah, such a familiar face,” Gray said with a sinister smile. “I was right to approach you all those years ago, hero descendant.”
“You were dead,” Jonathan stated sternly, uncaring of the seagull beastfolk’s last remark.
“My death was greatly exaggerated,” Gray chuckled. “And it appears you think so as well.”
“Master, what is going on?” Jill was the first to ask. “Who is that man? How did he know us?”
“You never met him,” Darc explained. “He was someone in Jonathan’s group in the civil war. He’s supposed to have died back then, looks like we’re wrong.”
“Is that how he knows us?” Alicia then asked.
“Yes, and now some things make sense,” Darc then looked down at the shining runes that were now not as bright as before but would still impede his magic. “I recall one mission with Zenya where she spilled my magic when prompted… by him.”
“…She just told him?”
“Huh, I have always thought it would bring trouble later.”
“You faked your death,” Jonathan concluded.
“I appreciate your compliment,” the lead cultist cooed, clearly proud of his handiwork. “Oh?” he then looked towards the Court Wizards behind the glass wall and noticed something. “Is the Court Wizard who beheaded poor Dubarim not with you? What a shame,” he shrugged. “I have a few words to say to him. He did massacre a couple of our brothers and sisters too, after all.”
Before anyone could even ask, Gray continued, “Oh yes! I was the one who aided Doug von SaltWaters in his little coup. He’s so full of himself! I was afraid my poor wings would break folding inside my robe every time I dealt with that manchild!”
“Then why help him?”
“Oh, nothing really, I thought I could stir up some trouble to aid our quest,” Gray shrugged lazily. “But then I thought I could catch an even bigger fish and lead that noble to your not-so-humble Bell Branch!”
“That confirms the noble’s harassment of the Bell Branch was premeditated,” Darc stated.
“If it was not obvious already,” Jill said sarcastically.
“Yes, I scarcely believed he would divert his attention away from his rebellion,” Richard remarked. “He may not be as competent as his father, but I doubt he would be so incapable either.”
“Hey, that means he’s the one who told him to assassinate Alicia!” Owen growled with narrowed eyes, his face frowning in discontent.
“Ah,” Alicia gasped. “That is right…”
“Was there not an assassin who tried to kill me?” Alicia asked. “What happened to him?”
“We’ve thrown him back to his world with his memories wiped,” Darc shrugged. “He doesn’t know anything other than Doug hiring him for the job and then telling him to assassinate instead of abducting after he couldn’t find you for the first few days.”
“And that led us here,” Jonathan concluded. After all, it was the request from the Bell Branch that led them to stop Doug’s coup and find out about the cultists which resulted in the investigation that got them here.
“Right into our trap, that is!” Gray practically sang, taking every bit of enjoyment out of this. “First, it was your being a hero descendant piquing my interest. Then, it was your unique ‘magic’ that got me joining your merry band. Imagine my surprise finding out you lot calling yourselves ‘Court Wizards’ exist and are watching us in the skies. But honestly, you’re all idiots.”
Here comes the cringe monologue, was more or less every Court Wizard’s thought.
“You have great power,” Gray continued, “and for what? Babysitting us? Don’t joke with me! You can put this sh*tty world under your thumbs, for Abyss’ sake!”
“We don’t do that,” Jonathan retorted unamusingly.
“And that’s why I trapped you here!” Gray snapped back. Lifting both of his hands up like a megalomaniac, he continued, “soon, you shall be enlightened once our lord Abyss comes and gives us the release to this world!”
“What is this ‘release’ you’re even talking about?” Jonathan demanded.
“The release of this world’s suffering!” Gray exclaimed, then pointed his finger accusingly at the war hero. “You say you’re going to help us and yet we are still here in the same craphole as before? Clearly, only our lord Abyss can show us the path out of this hellhole. We just need to follow it!”
“And that entails sacrificing a child?” Jonathan insinuated.
“Of course! This child shall call our lord’s agents to prepare for this world’s release! One kingdom at a time!” Gray swung his free hand towards the boy, then swung it back to point at the other hero’s descendant’s hair. “Just like you, this child bears the cursed color of our lord’s enemy, and he wants his soul!”
“His and my colors are the colors of the Ancient Heroes,” the brown-haired hero corrected. “And your Abyss is the Great Destroyer. You’re mad for bringing him back.”
“We are not mad, hero!” Gray squawked at Jonathan both as the hero of Coastline and the descendants of the Ancient Heroes. “Our lord Abyss’ is not here to destroy us, but to release us to a better place! Those foolish heroes are too short-sighted to see it!”
“…He, makes a point there,” Alicia muttered after hearing the lead cultist’s frustration about how his life still seemed to be bad despite Court Wizards being in this world.
“Yes, and the answer is still the same: we keep moving forward,” Darc simply stated. “We’re breaking the glass.”
“I will try, excuse me,” Jill declared as she shuffled through the other Court Wizards and into the front of the glass wall. Summoning her Cherished Armament, [Speris Heirloom], she held the spear over her head and thrust it with all her might.
“It is like hitting a boulder!” the red knight exclaimed as staggered from her spear recoiling, the narrow hall giving her less space to make her stance properly.
“Allow me to attempt this.” Then Richard, the white knight and Light Court Wizard, gestured the others to make way and as he did so, he unleashed his Cherished Armament. His was a bastard sword with runes engraved in the blade, giving off a soft glow.
As Jill stepped back, Richard pulled back his sword with his two hands and swung.
Only to stumble back like the other knight as the tight corridor meant that he could not set himself a proper footing.
“Hah!” The lead cultist laughed, noticing the knights’ futile attempt to break the glass. “The glass is magically enhanced by our best mages! Your sticks and poles won’t even come close to shattering it!” he mocked. “And no need to try your ‘magic,’ it’s infused with Magic-Dampener Stones. I’m sure it will still work on your ‘foreign magic’!”
To test that theory, Darc put his hand in front of the glass wall and ordered a [Darkball] set to stay on the spot. Sure enough, it dissipated much faster than normal. Much like how Darc’s magic can work in another Fantasy Law if it’s similar enough to his world’s, so too can things like anti-magic work vice-versa. Not even Manegia’s Fantasy Law can escape this, Alicia knew that much from Aqua’s lecture.
“As expected!” the lead cultist boasted.
Unperturbed, the dark elf stepped forward and pointed his right arm towards the glass wall. He crooked his hand to a hand gesture of a sock puppet, only with a biker glove, and created a shadow within his hand.
“Ah,” the winged cultist let out a gasp, his eyes widening a bit. “I did not think of that!” Hearing the explanation from a rather enthusiastic little sister was one thing, but understanding every aspect of it was another.
Partially true to the lead cultist’s word, the stake burst from Darc’s hand and met the glass wall, but it only made a small dent which can only be seen from that side. Being constrained to a relatively small hand, the stake wasn’t as thick as what the dark elf usually produced.
“Hah!” Gray smirked, relieved to see that the glass wall held up. “I knew-”
And then, blackness covered the visible corridor as Darc covered his surroundings with [Carpet], countering the light from all directions with shadows cast from all directions. Although that will cost a lot of maneg, a Guardian like him can take the strain.
An absurd number of Shadow Stakes, in their full power, manifested from all surfaces to pierce the glass. When the magical constructs dispersed from the glass wall’s anti-magic, Darc simply unleashed another volley.
By this point, it was clear to anyone what he was trying to do. Although each stake only made a few millimeters of progress on the thick glass wall, it was all on the same point so it was only a matter of time before this brute force method paid off.
The leader of the cultists, however, has something to say otherwise. “A futile effort!” he cried before turning to his cultists. “Unleash the Iron Knights!”
“By lord Abyss’ will!” One of the cultists began to chant. “Oh, steel. Thou art the holy crusaders. Unsheathe thy sword. Slay our adversaries before us. Awaken, oh Iron Knights!”
Nothing seemed to happen at the moment as if the cultist’s spell was a dud. But then…
CLANK CLANK CLANK
As Alicia felt her maneg soul suppressing her emotions, looking behind her, she saw Richard moving to the front while pulling out a shield under his robe while Jill stood behind him with her flaming spear prepared. Alicia herself was behind her childhood friend’s small stature and prepared her offensive wand Catalyst Amelia Rickens made.
CLANK CLANK CLANK CLANK
CLANK CLANK CLANK CLANK
“I’ll focus on breaking the glass,” Darc stated as the sounds of marching steel were masked by his Shadow Stakes cast at the same time. “You guys defend.”
They came. Looking at one of them, it was a suit of armor two meters tall that almost reached the ceiling. The armor itself had a devilish black design with two horns attached to the helmet. Alicia could already tell the suit of armor was hollow inside as malovent magic pulsated from it. Already she could see at least a dozen more behind it wielding greatswords that were frankly unwieldy in the tight corridor in her opinion.
“Automatons,” Jill stated, readying her spear to strike.
“Better not hold back then,” Richard added, lifting his shield up.
“Hahahaha!” Gray laughed maniacally. “Lord Abyss’ rise to this wretched world is inevitable! Just give up and die!” he boasted, confident with the cards in his hands that he went on belittling the Court Wizards and not hurrying up bringing about his lord Abyss’ rise.
“You sound so sure,” the Mature Court Wizard narrowed his eyes.
“Of course!” the cultist quipped.
“I know everything about your little group. You stand no chance against us!”
“Do you really think you can take us on?” Jonathan demanded as a matter of fact
“Sure I do!” Gray boasted. In his most devious smile, he then said, “after all, I…”
Alicia nor the Court Wizards trapped could not hear what parted from Gray’s lips, much less see them moving.
But what happened next was clear. While Alicia couldn’t witness it, it was clear by the sound that the child on the altar was displaced right under Gray’s nose.
I got the kid. (Jonathan)
Especially when Jonathan messaged it himself as voices could no longer reach. And even through that, Alicia could tell Jonathan’s suppression broke.
“What did you-”
“Lord Abyss! What is this!?”
“You have not learned enough. You should have known this,” Jonathan growled, an expression of anger must’ve been written over his face.
“We hold back, far too much. And, you will never get away from your crimes against us.”
Name: Richard Sworsis Age: 20 Sex: Male Species: Human World: Irongrad Element: Light Element Color: White Cherished Armament: Sworsis Heirloom (bastard sword) Rank: Wizard
Azhure: So, what you do all think of this sub-chapter? Is it good? Are there any problems with it? Any reviews or feedback is appreciated as long as they’re not plain insults meant to blow off your stress.
Voice: Don’t do that to people! Not even on the internet!
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