Ch 36 – Swallowed alive
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Yep I'm an idiot. I posted this chapter on the wrong novel LOL

(The following conversations were translated to human language)

 

A pair of high profile hobgoblins stood to the ground after being dropped by a large tremor.

 

"The hell was that!?"

 

"No clue. Did part of the cave collapse again?"

 

"Don't think so... There's no dust."

 

They looked around, visibly troubled by the unexpected tremor.

 

"What the fucking hell just happened?"

 

They hurriedly went back into their usual behavior as they heard their king's voice coming from behind them.

The king looked particularly disheveled, it was pretty clear he had taken a major fall...

 

"Did part of the cave collapse again?" He asked while fixing his clothing.

 

"We don't think so..."

"There's no dust around... Unless it was pretty far."

 

"Hmmm... Maybe it was something outside..." The king thought about the possibilities. "You two, come with me!"

 

He fixed his wannabe crown and walked ahead. The two generals scrambling behind him. 

 

As they walked through the corridors and pathways the three realized something was off. Every single goblin they saw looked very confused and nervous.

 

"What's going on?" The King asked. 

 

"... Nothing. The floor just started shaking and we have no idea why."

 

A Goblin, responsible for supervising the expansion of the cave system answered him.

 

"Did anything collapse?"

 

"We had a couple small end tunnels that didn't handle the shaking and collapsed. But we were still excavating them so there was no major problem. The ones with the supports you asked are alright."

 

"Good grief... I was expecting another week of lost work. By the way, how's the progress on the earlier issue?"

 

"Ohh... We have almost finished clearing the rocks but we'll have to rebuild that whole section of the cave somehow... It's too unstable."

 

"Then build it in the other direction, leave that area as multiple entrances. Block the vital tunnels to avoid intruders and direct the entrances to a single system."

 

"Yes, my lord. We'll work on that. It should decrease the time to rebuild."

 

"That's the intention. Where's Hathblawrd?"

 

"Hath should still be outside... One of the hunting squads hasn't returned since morning."

 

"... More problems then... Thank you. I'll take my leave."

 

"My pleasure, my Lord."

 

The generals stared at each other as they heard the conversation... Today was an especialy bad day for everyone around. The cave had collapsed due to incompetence, now there was this major tremor that they had no clue as to why, and one of the few squads that hunted food for them was yet to return...

And the day was yet to end. What other surprises could there be...

 

--------------------

 

"Why is this cave so large?"

 

"The heck do I know!"

 

"Shut up and pay attention!" 

 

The group of 15 mercenaries walked almost blindly through the cave. Only a couple of them had Lighting Rods and their mana was about to run out. 

 

*Woosh* 

 

"The fuck was that!?"

 

One of them cried out loud after a black shadow cruised behind him.

 

"What happened?"

 

"The hell do I know?!"

 

*Woosh*

 

"FUCK!"

 

"What was that?!"

 

"Some shit just kicked my foot!"

 

Confusion ensued as dark figures scared the mercenaries from both the back and front. Compressing the group further in a smaller space.

 

"Stop fucking going back!"

 

"Gimme some space you fucking assholes!"

 

It didn't take long before they started to hinder each other's movement. The mercenary group lacked a clear leader, and as such, lacked the necessary directions to deal with the unexpected events.

 

"Brahrlghd!"

 

The mercenaries' hair stood on end and they heard a distant grumble of a monster. It was a sound they knew pretty well.

 

"GOBLINS!" One of them announced. But it was too late. 

 

Before any of them was able to say a word, the floor beneath them disappeared. 

The fall, of just a couple inches, was only able to destabilize the footing of a handful of them, but the trap did not end there.

Those whose footing was compromised quickly learned the bitter truth.

The floor beneath them was heavily slanted. And extremely slippery.

 

*SWOOOOOOSH*

 

Before they even fell, a single thick rope, inches above the ground, flew at high speed through the area in which the floor had vanished, dropping every single one of them to the ground.

 

"Haaa! UGHAA~"

"UAa! UGHAA~"

 

"OI! STOP MOVING! UGHU~"

 

Those who fell screaming, quickly realized their mistake, as their mouths and windpipes were immediately obstructed by a slimy substance.  

Their bodies convulsed as they scratched their throats, desperately struggling to breath, in a pointless attempt that only pushed them and their allies down the slope, into the complete darkness of a gaping hole to the side of the path.

 

"URRRGGHHG"

 

A single mercenary, luckily, managed to grab onto the ledge as he fell, pulling himself out of the slippery slope. 

'I did it! I need to not-'

 

His thoughts were interrupted by a dull pain on his neck.

 

To his side, a shadow holding a small blade was the last thing he saw, before his consciousness fell into darkness.

 

------------------------

 

"Gahan!"

 

"Yeah! Those were screams! We gotta go back!"

 

Hearing the yelling of his colleagues, Gahan and Garth hurried themselves back onto the bath they'd just come to.

 

It would take them a couple of minutes to arrive there based on the softness of the screams. 

 

The pair cruised at maximum speed, more than double that they had been going, through the now empty corridors and rooms they had passed. 

 

*Woosh*

 

"GAHAN!" Garth yelled, prompting him to stop.

 

"What!?"

 

"There's something just ahead."

 

"Huh?!" Gahan was even more sensitive to presences than Garth, yet he was unable to notice anybody. "That's just your minds playing tricks on you! Let's go!"

 

Garth shoved the impression to the corner of his mind, as he darted behind the disappearing Gahan. 

 

It took them a full five minutes to reach the place where they thought the yells had come from, passing the room with the stacked bodies of the defeated goblins on the way there.

 

"... There's nothing..." Garth said, upon arriving a couple seconds after Gahan...

 

"Yeah... Let alone a battle... There's not even a body here..."

 

"Do you think it was an illusion to set us back?"

 

"I guess so..."

 

The two dejectedly moved back the way they came from, completely unaware that the very floor they were stepping was but a trap of the dungeon, and of the dozens of slimes crawling underneath them.

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