Book 5, Chapter 76

Remnants

Io eventually did end up healing Daychase, but at the same time he raised his guard against Richard. The legend’s body was placed inside a long, metallic box and escorted by four rune knights to the outside of the church spire, where the astral chrysalis was lying in wait. It swallowed the box whole before flattening, allowing the knights to climb on before it floated into the sky.

The chrysalis made a graceful manoeuvre mid-air before swooping away, heading all the way south to where the portal was set up. The entire journey took only a day, after which it immediately returned to Norland and allowed the knights to escort it back to Faelor and the broodmother. The process was lightning-quick, ensuring that no soul form would have the chance to interfere.

With that taken care of, Richard returned to the realm of divinity and the locked door that led to the third room. He threw an enhanced fireball towards the door, but the flames spread across the entire surface while doing no damage at all. His brows furrowed and he cast a lightning spell instead, this time striking a corner, but the power was spread out once more. From the looks of it, even a grade 9 spell wouldn’t be able to do much damage.

“Tiramisu!” he yelled.

“Yes, Master!” the ogre agreed, bounding towards the door. His body flashed red as he spun around, ramming his warhammer into the metal.

*BANG!* The hammer was sent flying back, almost smashing the ogre himself. The shrill ringing caused many of the weaker ones present to empty their bowels and faint, while Tiramisu himself fell back several steps with blood dripping down the side of his mouth. The handle of the epic-grade hammer was bent, and several sparks of magic were flickering out of existence on the head. The ogre shook his two heads vigorously, but the recoil had left his so dizzy that he fell on his buttocks.

This was Tiramisu’s full force, almost comparable to a legendary being’s attack in brute strength. Richard’s gaze landed on the door, finding no difference apart from a tiny dent. One could only imagine how sturdy the thing was!

Tiramisu struggled to pick himself up, his three eyes red with anger. Seeing his hammer destroyed, he howled in rage and took one from a rune knight before trying to attack the door again.

“Enough!” Richard’s command stopped him in his tracks, “We’ll have time for this later on. Let’s go find the power source underground.”

“Give me another chance, Master! I can destroy this thing!” Tiramisu roared.

Richard shook his head, “I only wanted to see how sturdy this was. The entire church will be blown apart if you destroy this door.”

The ogre was taken aback, scratching his head, “What kind of magic array is so strong?”

“Maybe it’s detonating some magic crystals on the other end, I’m not sure…”

“This place is filled with strange things. Just the door is so sturdy, the guy who made it has more things up his sleeves,” the ogre muttered in agreement.

Richard nodded. The three priests had tried their best to hide some information from him, but Nyra had already extracted everything he wanted from their memory. Alongside the other broken bits of information he had, he knew that trying to force open these rooms would cause the church to destroy itself. Even a legendary being couldn’t build such a place alone, so any warnings from the creator would be wise to heed.

……

After Richard and his followers left the realm of divinity, a face suddenly appeared from the metallic wall. It was a phantom so transparent that its features almost couldn’t be recognised, with the edges constantly dissipating away. Her face was filled with resentment as she glared in Richard’s direction, but she didn’t dare follow. Nyra’s scream earlier had almost completely dispersed her spirit body, so she knew that she would only be a toy in the soul shepherd’s pen if she was caught.

After some thought, she retreated back into the metal wall. A rune knight had been guarding near where she appeared, but he was unable to detect her movements.

……

Richard’s group followed the spiral staircase back down to the bottom of the church, following through a narrow downwards slope before entering a half-opened door. They were all taken aback the moment they stepped in, surprised by the hall so large that it exceeded their imagination. There was a floating platform in front of them, but not in the style of the locals. A mechanical arm from above was attached to the centre of the circular platform, slowly turning in place, and while the light inside the hall was dim a red glow emitted from the platform itself.

This was a place constructed with metal, filled with pipelines and a large, alchemical machine. For a moment, Richard and his followers forgot that they were in the Resting Orchid Plane. He tried to go inspect the thing, but frowned upon the realisation that a barrier separated the platform from the rest of the hall. Although he couldn’t read this new language yet, the warning on the edge was familiar as well: do not attempt to destroy.

Seeing this power room, even the wildest of his followers were at a loss for words. This scene had exceeded their imagination, leaving them all stupefied at the splendour and greatness of the construction. However, just what sort of race had built this? Why would they make such a great thing and then leave it here?

Richard lightly tapped on the barrier, lightning coursing through his fingers and crawling up the energy with no harm. He could feel that this shield’s magic resistance was even greater than with the door earlier, almost to the point of immunity. From the size of the warning compared to everything else, destroying this thing would immediately unleash a catastrophe.

He frowned as he looked over the interior of the hall, finding another large passageway that seemingly led to a larger space within. However, this passage was also sealed. If the locals couldn’t discover anything new in thousands of years, he had no plans of trying to force his way through.

He eventually pointed at the giant alchemical machines in the room, turning to Flowsand, “Do they have any value in a ceremony?”

Flowsand looked over them for a while before shaking her head, “A little, but definitely not worth it. The old dragon likes goods with energy in them, like rare ores. Once you’ve turned those into metal, they lose their value. The cores might be worth at least a lesser sacrifice, but that’s about it.

“Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t take these things apart and sell them.” Even without removing the barrier, taking these things apart was much more difficult than it was worth. If they weren’t worth much as an offering, they wouldn’t grab a high price on the market either. Flowsand’s words immediately caused everyone to lose interest in this hall.

“Let’s go deeper in,” Richard said, leading them into a warehouse with a half-opened door. The items within had decomposed long ago, but from the looks of it the locals had rebuilt the area and turned it into the prison. The church itself couldn’t be destroyed, so one only needed to guard the front gates to leave all prisoners unable to escape.

Recalling the information from the priests, Richard understood that those locked in here were the vilest of criminals. The guards had been killed long ago, but he had posted two groups of rune knights here to guard. Seeing him arrive, one of the knights came over and handed him a book of records made of drake skin. The edges were smooth from long periods of turning, but there were only a few names written within. Most of the names were crossed out in red, with only three that were still untouched.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: OMA

Edited By: Theo