In Another World With Just Monika Chapter 78
I could see the thing's broken legs starting to regenerate. Linze hurried turned off her magic, but it was too late. The room was bright enough with the blood-red light coming from the now pulsating orb inside the odd creature.
Then it SCREAMED.
It was loud-high pitched sound that ripped through the room and reverberated off the walls, directly assaulting our ears with ringing pain. It rippled through us, leaving us twitching as if we had just been electrocuted. It was even starting to physically damage the stone walls and pillars around us.
The room began to shake and loose dirt began to drop from the ceiling. We were going to get buried alive!
TWO GIRLS ONE CUP!
"GO! GO! GO!" I shouted as a [Boom Tube] opened behind up. The Crystal Creature sprang up with monstrous and struck at me with a freshly-regenerated leg ending in a shining sharp spike. I dived for it, and rolled out the other side of the [Boom Tube], eating dirt on the Old Capital's surface.
I coughed for breath. "THE HECK WAS THAT?!"
Beside me, Elze sagged in relief. She still had Linze slung over her shoulder like a sack of potatoes.
The ground rumbled, and open shaft of the staircase collapsed with a cloud of dust and debris. The underground chamber just caved in, we had underestimated just how precariously it must have been built.
"I have not seen such a creature before, I have not," said Yae breathlessly.
Well this was a world with Crystal Deer, so Crystal Giant Crickets were not all that strange to me. But directly growing off magic? Even our theory of monster beasts getting strong from eating other magically potent beings was not that intense!
Well at least the damn thing's definitely crushed to pieces down there. We wouldn't have gotten anything from fighting it, there's no bounty for what the Guild didn't know. And even the lost historical records would not be so much an issue because we took extensive photographic evidence.
I exhaled roughly, the frantic hammering in my chest starting to ease off. "Well that's okay. Let's just head back now and-"
That sound! It was definitely getting louder? Getting closer!
With a sudden crash of splitting earth and a shower of debris, the creature erupted from underground. Now, in the bright sunlight, we could actually see that it had an almond-shaped body with six elongated legs jutting out from underneath. Its translucent crystal body shimmered and shone like water under the sun. An oddly beautiful sight, if it wasn't a living thing yes, some form of Crystal Creature.
It let out another air-splitting screech and began to move on sickle-ended legs. The slightest movement cut through the stones ruins like a hot blade through butter.
Magic absorption was one thing, but if that thing had a Vorpal effect on those bladed limbs, that was just bullshite. So much bullshite, and I would know, as an existence of cheatery bullshite myself! I call shenanigans!
"Okay, this is CLEARLY out of our Encounter Levels, let's just [Boom Tube] out of here and-"
/"I'm afraid we can't do that, Player."/
Monika flashed a section of the walls in a window over my HUD. /"Beetles and scarabs are a common feature of Egyptian art, and so we didn't think it unusual to see them on another world's hieroglyphs. But the beetle shows off a lot near to what seems to be a representative of a town being burned or sacked in war."/
"Waking up the ancient superweapon is /exactly/ par for the course for Lara Crofting," I sighed.
/"See, that's it. I don't think this is a superweapon. It seems to be the thing, or things like it, that is actually responsible for destroying the Old Capital. It seems people couldn't beat it so they had to wait for it to starve to hibernation. Or maybe it was lured into a magical formation that sapped magic power."/
The Night Baron was not meant to defend anything. It was to keep idiots OUT. The reason why that underground complex was so boring because any traps would have made adventurers even more stupidly determined to believe there had to be something valuable down there. With the Night Baron inevitably returning to rampage on the surface, perhaps powered by the magic dead zone underneath, it meant no one would try to stay around and deal with the hassle of re-settling the Old Capital. This made sure the Crystal Creature would remain dormant. For over a thousand years.
Until we bollixed it up. I groaned and palmed my face.
The Crystal Creature turned around and seemed to have noticed us. It let out a loud screech, but didn't approach as long as we kept still. It was bigger now, about the size of an elephant.
"So why can't we just GTFO away?"
/"Because then it will likely head for the nearest and largest source of magical energy to devour which would be the New Capital."/
"This this our fault. No this is MY fault!" Linze mumbled. "I'm sorry! I shouldn't have I should have listened, Elze! It was too greedy, this is what happens to people who get too greedy! The gods punish it."
" I don't blame you," her twin replied. "I also don't quite believe that, because dammit Playa here still isn't on fire for all his greed, so clearly as long as you can get away with it, it's FINE." She turned to me and asked. "What do we do now? We fight?!"
"[BOOM TUBE] to THE SUN!"
/"Ahahaha, let's try something more modest, shall we? [Boom Tube] to the heart of a volcano for now."/
"Is there even one nearby? I thought this place was roughly analogous to Europe, which is mostly tectonically stable."
/"Is not Italy a part of Europe?"/ Monika showed a part of the known map. /"The southern portions of Belfast are formed from meeting continental plates. There's loose islands born of volcanic activity."/
"Player, whatever you're doing, do it faaast!" Elze hissed, because the Crystal Creature dipped its front with the 'head' as if preparing to pounce.
"Scatter!" I shouted. "Go! Wind! [Burst Leap!]" I roared out next, blasting wind from under my boots and cape shooting me forward to meet its bladed limbs.
[Boom Tube] normally had an automatic foe-denial function. But since clearly we could throw cargo through, it could discriminate against neutral or no intent. We just had to find a way to turn it off and treat enemies like inanimate objects.
"[Shunt!]" I breathed out and a strong blast of air from the left flung me over the right, narrowly dodging being impaled and allowing the Crystal Creature to pass me by straight into an opening [Boom Tube].
But that alone would not be enough. The ground exploded under my feet as I landed and pivoted and kick-jumped back just to be able to touch its body. An enemy could not follow behind us into a [Boom Tube]. To mark something as a 'friendly', I had to take it with me.
I could only hope that Monika could target the exit point of the [Boom Tube] a good distance out from lava so I could try to rocket away to safety.
The Crystal Creature ran through the open Boom Tube. At the other side were Elze and Linze.
/"Player! This thing is Dimensionally Faceted!"/ Monika screamed out in panicked realization. /"We can't pull through something that exists in multiple dimensions at once!"/
Linze screamed too as the creature emerged out of the bright haze of the [Boom Tube]. Elze stumbled trying to run away with her sister still slung over her shoulder.
"Elze-dono!" Yae yelled and lunged. She put herself in the way and slashed up. If her blade failed to cut through, at least she could knock it away from her skewering her friends. The impact sent bone-jarring force down her arms, but for the same reason her sword could cleave through boulders without chipping, infused with her warrior spirit it managed to withstand its strike without snapping.
But Yae didn't have the equivalent mass, so though at least it bought Elze and Linze enough time to get out of its path, the creature just barreled through the rest of way and knocked her down to the ground.
And then it began to stab down, again and again, almost dancing in place as it aimed to reduce her to little more than shreds of meat.
Yae rolled this way and that, narrowly avoiding its strikes, but she couldn't do that forever. An impossibly sharp and hard crystal leg pierced through her shoulder.
Yae screamed. And now that she was literally nailed down into the ground unable to move, the Crystal Creature raised another forelimb to finish her off. Yae only had the remaining time to see a shadow pass over her face.