Chapter 14 - Solael's Castle
It was not correct to even call this a floor of a dungeon, as it seemed like a world by itself. There was a huge expanse of trees all around us and on the horizon, a humongous castle was apparent, this was [Solael’s Castle]
The castle was built in a medieval style and had a grand look that imposed itself on all that looked towards it. This castle housed more than a hundred C ranked monsters and a humongous titan that we would soon be facing.
Anderson began talking as we made our way towards the castle "When that door opens, we will be facing 10 C rank monsters. They are made up of extremely tough stone-like materials that need a very damaging skill to break. We will have to break through multiple rooms that hold these statue-like monsters in order to reach the boss in the main hall of the castle. I’ll be covering Dina and Stacy" He pointed to the two women that were covered in robes. "And the two of you," He said pointing to the two hunters holding the huge shields, "Will cover Rachel and...Noah. I do not want any mistakes, be confident in your skills and attack to kill"
The rest of the group nodded in understanding and we were soon near the castle which opened its doors to show a large room where ten statues were standing still.
The moment that we entered, the statues that were three meters tall and had a golden shine opened their blank eyes and came towards us. The ten C ranked monsters spread out all over the room and rushed in with a semi-circular formation.
Anderson dashed in first with the two mages following not far behind him heading towards the right, already casting their spells. The two tanks nodded at me and Rachel and went towards the other side, quickly colliding with the huge statues.
Everyone here was fairly knowledgeable, so skills quickly went off and flew towards the statues in sparkling shades of colors. I cast [Flames of Torment] and formed it into a circular disk that I threw at one of the statues. Instantly smashing the head
Rachel, the berserker that was standing by my side Instantly disappeared and drew the sword she had on her waist, which was now showing a dark red color that instantly went to split apart another statue.
On Anderson’s side, I don’t know exactly how he did it but three of the statues were already broken and lying on the ground as shattered stones.
The Mages behind him had both cast a spell that quickly formed a dark thundercloud that spewed down light which struck down on the heads of the remaining two statues and took them down as well.
On our side, we had three statues still alive as the tanks were holding them off, knocking them back with their Shields as they neared. Rachel stood at a distance and then slashed her sword horizontally. The sword let out a blinding light that struck and destroyed two statues, quickly giving more breathing room for the two tanks.
I controlled [Flames of Torment] and quickly smashed the head of the remaining statue. It was just the beginning, but the teamwork seemed to be fairly solid. This was only the first room that we had to pass in this castle before we even came close to the huge Titan that would be facing.
After the room was cleared, everyone besides Anderson sat down and closed their eyes, most likely recovering their energy. I followed their lead and acted as if I had also spent a significant amount of energy to cast [Flames of Torment] repeatedly.
During this time, I activated skills that did not show on my body as I was pretty sure a significant amount of time in this dungeon would be the recovery time between the castle rooms. I activated [Aura of Haste] along with [Life essence], which shone two colors on my body that soon faded. I also cast regeneration even though I had no injuries just to test its effects. A feeling like I had just received the best massage flowed over me as the tension in my body was quickly released
This was probably the last possible use anyone thought this high ranked skill that required a high cost of energy would be used for. I was surprised at its effect as I had never been injured and didn’t plan to be anytime in the future. Safety first.
After about 10 minutes, most of the group had gotten up and we were ready to move on to the next room. This one held an extra statue, bringing the numbers up to 11. The same strategy repeated.
I observed Anderson using a skill this time around, as he swung his sword and an arc of lightning flew out, smashing onto and destroying three statues right away. His rank was not for show. The mages by his side cast the same skill that blasted down lightning, quickly taking other statues down as well.
The teamwork was becoming even smoother for our group. As the two tanks in front of us stopped any statues from getting near us while Rachel moved in and out with her sword, occasionally throwing a curved blade of light that smashed onto the statues. I kept the [Flames of Torment] versatile, as it shifted from a rapidly spinning disc of flames to a tight cable that wrapped around the statue’s head until it exploded
The tanks occasionally had lights shining on them or transparent shields appearing whenever they were taking hits from the statues, always making sure to stand their ground and not be pushed back.
After we cleared about five rooms and we were resting again, Rachel approached me and spoke. "Your handling of skills seems to be very precise, but I’ve never heard of you since I came to Outer Bank X, did you also recently move into the city?"
I gave a smile as I replied. "No. I have been here all this time, I just awakened recently."
This was information that anyone could easily dig up on me if they put the time in, so I wasn’t worried about sharing it.
She seemed surprised and asked. "Really? Then you must have awakened a fairly powerful inherent skill"
I gave a smile and I didn’t reply.
A few hours slowly passed like this. We were clearing many of the rooms in the castle to move forward, with the numbers of the statues increasing by a one after each room
In our tenth room. We’re facing 19 statues which made things much harder. A few of the statues broke away from the defense of the two tanks with a huge shield and ran towards me. I acted quickly to cast flames of torment and swung the line of flames as if it was a huge baseball bat to push them away. Rachel dashed back a few seconds later to finish them off.
There were a few injuries, but no casualties. On Anderson’s side, he protected the Mages fairly well while moving in and out and pushing back any statues who were trying to breakthrough
The rooms after this kept a constant number of 20 of these stone statues, taking a significant amount of time to clear while trying to prevent injuries as much as possible for the coming BOSS fight
After we cleared the 19th room, serious expressions arose on Anderson and his original party members’ faces. The path out of this room led to a large hallway that had a golden door at the end of it. We would now be facing the BOSS of [Solael’s Castle]. This BOSS was somewhat special though, as he would not be alone. He had 10 of these statues standing guards around him
This was the point in time where many people failed if there wasn’t a powerful enough person to hold the BOSS back as other members quickly took down the guards and then joined in to help the top hunter quickly finish off the boss.
Anderson called everyone together and gave me a piercing look as usual. I had been getting that look every time he observed the fights throughout the past few hours. I’ve been hiding literally almost all of my skills, only using [Flames of Torment] to destroy the statues that came our way, so I shouldn’t have given anything away
He seemed to become less angry at me as time went, and just adopted the disdainful expression more and more. I didn’t bother with it as it was always good to be underestimated and not be on guard against
He began speaking when we came close "I will be holding the boss back and make sure that it doesn’t break free. The rest of you need to take down its 10 guards as soon as possible and then reinforce me." He turned to the 2 tanks and continued.
"You guys need to do your best to protect the mages and Rachel. Make sure that nobody gets heavily injured as we all need to be in our prime to take down the boss."
The tanks nodded their heads while the rest of us prepared for the fight. I was looking forward to meeting this Titan of a boss that had taken down many hunters
As soon as everyone had their energy recovered, we went towards the huge door and stepped into the BOSS room.