In the city said to be made overnight, rainbow colored and constantly churning object covered the entire area like a fog. The people of Ixion were at first surprised, then they were filled with the hope that this was yet another one of the miracles of the city’s leader, McRaed. But a small percentage of especially perceptive individuals recognized the approaching danger.
“Gramps! Let’s leave this place!”
Clarice who only yesterday got admitted as a resident proper of Ixion instantly abandoned everything without any hesitation and began her escape from the city.
“Wait, where are you going? So late at night.”
“I’m getting a bad feeling! Come quickly if you don’t want to die. Throw away anything unessential.”
Clarice and Kruut Assam collected the bare minimum supplies and left their home to leave the city.
The city’s gate guards blocked their paths but they moved aside when the citizenship papers were produced.
“Do not go towards the Settlements. You could die.”
Clarice nodded and hurried away.
It wasn’t until the small exit next to the main city gates were closed that the soldiers saw it. Something faint taking shape and popping out of the glowing object covering the city.
“Hey. Todd. What’s that?”
“I don’t know. It’s the first time I see it too.”
The two soldiers approached the white object in question without too much concern. The white object resembled a tadpole with only a head and a tail, and it was flying freely in the sky above while assuming a form of an animal never seen before.
It was only when one of the soldiers got close to the mysterious object with his spear in hand that he saw it. That the monster’s only organ was the mouth, and that it was coming straight for him with its mouth wide open.
Once the first death throes rang throughout the city night, all parts of the city became simultaneously enveloped in screams and shouts.
Sungchul watched the white monsters that emerged from all directions without any emotions. The monsters freely flew through the sky as if unburdened by the laws of physics and were roughly the size of a small child. They made no noise and endlessly emerged from the void.
“Wha… what’s that?”
Bertelgia quickly escaped into Sungchul’s pocket as she asked.
“I have never seen them before.”
“Those… appear to be Harvestors.”
Marakia answered with a slight tremor in his voice.
When Sungchul asked, Marakia answered with a grave expression.
“I have seen them before in an ancient text. Before an advent of a Lesser God, wraiths called Harvestors appear like harbingers to devour souls.”
“Harvestors you say…”
The white monstrosities were already teeming in every direction. They endlessly spawned from the light and were already enveloping half of Ixion’s sky. One of them took notice of Sungchul and company and descended quickly towards them with its hideous teeth bared.
Fal Garaz handed squarely on the head of a Harvestor. The Harvestor twitched a few times on the ground before dissipating like smoke.
Sungchul looked towards Vestiare collapsed on the floor. Dozens of Harvestors orbited around Vestiare to consume her soul, but the small clone-like children Vestiares were using magic to desperately defend their master.
The summoning of the Lesser God had already left Vestiare’s hands. The advent was progressing regardless of Vestiare’s will.
“It does not look as if the Lesser God has materialized.”
He raised his hands and from his palms, a magic formation appeared. An Observer’s Eye. It was a much larger and deeper black than ones summoned by ordinary mages.
The Observer’s Eye bypassed the thousands and thousands of Harvestors as it rose high in the sky to find the information that Marakia wanted.
“As I thought.”
Marakia muttered to himself.
“This entire city is an altar dedicated to the Advent of a Lesser God.”
McRaed who was standing silently in a corner opened her eyes wide and asked. Marakia glared at her and spoke condescendingly.
“Do you have trouble understanding words, Human? This entire city is an altar. And all living things in the city are all sacrificial offerings. Of course you as well.”
McRaed fell to her knees when she heard this. She understood it in her mind when Vestiare spoke earlier, but she couldn’t accept it in her heart and she collapsed in the face of cruel reality. It was a shock strong enough to wither away even the fire of the berserker’s blood boiling behind her eyes.
Sungchul could not help but be appalled by the level of cruelty of Vestiare’s designs.
‘So I guess this can be called the food chain.’
Ixion above the Settlements, and above Ixion, Vestiare.
What Ixion did to the Settlements in the name of survival was, in the end, identical to the thing that Vestiare was trying to do onto Ixion itself. At least in terms of trading human lives in return for something.
‘City of Mages and all that was all a ruse to summon a Lesser God. If at all possible, the advent of the Lesser God must be stopped before it can be finished.’
Sungchul asked Marakia about any methods to put an end to the summoning. Marakia replied in a uncertain tone.
“As I said earlier, the entire city is an altar for the advent of the Lesser God. Therefore, there might be important markers in the city that we could destroy to slow down the summoning.’
“Is that so?”
“Although it might be already too late from the point the Harvestors have appeared.”
Sungchul approached McRaed was sitting down on the floor and spoke to her calmly.
McRaed was still deeply in shock and stared blankly at Sungchul when she noticed his voice. Sungchul tried again.
“Is this not your city? Who will defend this city if not for you?”
Sunghcul’s words caused a transformation in McRaed’s eyes. Sungchul grabbed her hands to help her to her feet as he spoke.
“There is no time. Go with Marakia and destroy all the targets that Marakia indicates.”
Sungchul pointed at the tiny black feathered Avian with his hands at her question.
“That tiny little thing.”
Sungchul immediately headed to Marakia to convey his will.
“I will go and destroy things elsewhere. You and that woman go and destroy structures together.”
“What do you have in mind?”
Marakia asked Sungchul in a low voice.
Sungchul looked around at the ivory colored walls of the city with disinterest as he responded.
“Trying to destroy something larger.”
Marakia scoffed and flapped around his wings as he waddled up to McRaed.
“Lift me up, human. You know how to use Flight magic at least?”
McRaed obeyed Marakia and picked up his tiny body. Marakia’s feathers were much softer than they looked, and felt incredibly good to the touch.
‘So soft… and fluffy…’
“What are you doing, human? Move quickly!”
McRaed nodded at Marakia’s barking and flew towards the center of the city. But as she did so, countless Harvestors in the sky detected them and flew towards their way. When McRaed’s eyes were filled with fear and surprise, Marakia in her arms became covered in numerous and extremely complex magic formations.
A vast quantity of balls of fire came flooding out of the magic formations.
Boom boom boom!
It was an overwhelming display of magical power. All Harvestors that attempted to approach them were burnt to pieces midair and dispersed like smoke.
“Stop spacing out, human! Destroy that statue!”
Unlike when he was around Sungchul, Marakia became a tyrant and issued commands after commands at McRaed to pull his weight in the effort. In a short period of time, the many statues of Sidmia that stood within the city were destroyed and scattered.
At the same point in time, Sungchul was sprinting towards the outer parts of the city at full speed.
“Save me! Please!”
Terrible cries of terror came from all over the city. The Harvestors that completely enveloped the city attacked all the residents of the city indiscriminately and were busy devouring their souls. Sungchul was able to see people’s corpses scattered all over the road. The corpses had the same conditions as those found in Settlements when he was there to clean.
Sungchul ignored the screaming and the pleading and ran towards the towering walls. At the foot of the walls were a completely uncountable number of Harvestors blocking the way, and scattered amongst them were gigantic Harvestors many dozens of times larger than normal with a greatly intimidating presence.
The Demonic weapon Cassandra appeared in Sungchul’s left hands.
The Cassandra flew through the air like a snake and ripped apart an entire line of Harvestors out of the air. Once the small fries were slain, the large behemoth of Harvestors flew towards Sungchul to attack. There was no way that the Fal Garaz held in his right hand could leave them alone.
No matter how large it was, there were very few beings capable of withstanding a single attack from Sungchul.
Sungchul mercilessly and rapidly destroyed all that stood in his way and arrived at the bottom of the castle wall. Sungchul looked up at the towering and beautiful ivory colored walls said to be built overnight. Although it was visually stunning to behold, it was still strictly a part of the altar. Sungchul saw the destruction of this walls, which formed the outer boundary of the ongoing summoning, to be the key to stopping the advent of the Lesser God from progressing any further.
God-like strength was put into the hand holding Fal Garaz. Sungchul approached the wall and gave a single, full powered blow.
A massive impact strong enough to shake the earth rocked the walls. The shockwave coming from the collision caused an immense gale that swept things away from around him. A short moment of stillness later, the sign of the damage appeared on the wall.
Centered on the point of impact, a crack in the shape of a lightning coming down from the heavens appeared on the wall.
Sungchul sighed before he hit the walls once again. The ground shook once more and the cracks on the ivory colored wall spider webbed out like branches on a tree.
And soon after.
A thunderous sound rang out as fragments and debris began to fall from above. The walls surrounding Ixion had begun to crumble.
Marakia and McRaed who saw this from afar couldn’t help but exclaim.
“Really, nothing can stop that man.”
Sungchul went around the city inflicting his merciless and devastating strikes against the city walls which crumbled like cookies under the power of Sungchul’s god-like strength.
The effects were immediate. The strange luminous object enveloping the city seeped out the broken parts of the city wall until it became disbursed, and the innumerable Harvestors vanished along with it.
The power to summon the Lesser God was weakening. But Sungchul could unmistakably tell.
There was no way to stop an advent once it began.
This one took a while. It has been a crazy week for us, Gamja fell ill and had a covid-19 test. Thankfully the result was negative and he was diagnosed with cold. He has recovered quite a bit. Take care everyone, be careful and be safe!