CH7 Sewer Slime
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Alex felt his stomach begin to churn. He had expected small thing that could barely do anything harmful. As Alex held up the brazier he noticed what looked like hardened waste mixed with the body of a smile and loads of disgusting brown sludge floating around inside it's body.

Alex's knees go weak and he feels like he is going to be sick as he looks at what looks like a monster. He had never seen anything like this before and didn't know what to do next. He put the Brazier down and grabbed his sword pointing it at the monster and holding it with both hands. He takes one step forward then another then another. The dull red light provided by the brazier doesn't provide great illumination. Alex was expecting to see a small knee-high slime but closer inspection shows something huge that takes up the entire cavern. There were some odd looking rock-like things stuck to the floor and walls. Alex searched his memory trying to remember where he had seen something similar.

"Is that. . ." He stated while examining the monster. He then feels himself gag again as he realizes how close he is standing to the thing.

Alex wipes his mouth and says, "It looks like a fatburg."

"A what?" Fufi asks as she tilts her head to the side. Alex was glad she hadn't passed out. At this moment she doubled as his mine canary and let him know the air wasn't too toxic.

Alex gives her a look and says, "A fatburg, I saw it in the British news about the London sewers. It is caused by people flushing things down the toilet they shouldn't."

"Like what? Also, I haven't seen a single toilet in this city." Fufi asks as she tilts her head.

"Like baby wipes, oil, bacon grease" Alex said while shaking his head. He then points his sword at the fatberg and says, "I think the slime merged with it and is now stuck to the sewer."

Fufi looks over Alex's shoulder and sees the creature and says, "This must be why there is so much sewer gas coming out here."

"Yep, and that is probably why the fountain is blocked," Alex added.

Fufi turns back to Alex and tilts her head as she says, "I think it would be a good idea if you moved on since that thing is too big for you to handle."

Alex takes a look at it considering his options. "If it is stuck, maybe it can be damaged by ranged attacks and not be able to attack back." He says as he gets into position. He takes aim with a brick that he picked up with his right hand and switched the sword to his left hand. "You stay back and let me know if I am getting too close."

Fufi nodded her head as she stood there switching back and forth from one webbed foot to another.

Alex took a breath and said, "Fire!" as he threw the brick as hard as he could at the creature. As he did he took his sword with both hands and made ready for any counter attack that might come his way. The brick hit the brown slimy flesh with a splash and the whole creature started shaking.

His phone unhelpfully narrated:

[Alex attacks with Brick Throw]

Alex took a quick look behind him and saw that Fufi was okay. Then he looked at the creature and saw a giant stationary slime's attack was already halfway to him. Alex raised his sword to block just in case it threw something back at him. He hoped he was out of range from getting engulfed by the slime. However, instead of the high attack of some sort of projectile the slime turned part of its body into a fetid tendril that shot along the ground and grasped his foot.

[Slime uses Tentacle grasp, it is super effective]

Alex cursed his unhelpful phone as he felt himself pulled along the floor towards the slime. He heard Fufi cry out in alarm as he lost his footing. The slime was pulling him toward it so he hacked at it with his sword that just went through it like he was trying to cut jello.

[Alex uses slash it is ineffective]

Alex looked at the slime in disbelief as he realized that his blade didn't do anything. He then looked at his sword and noticed the blade had turned poop colored from all the slime. He cursed under his breath as he felt himself get pulled further towards the slime. His vision became blurred by a combination of tears from fear and sweat dripping from his forehead as he felt his stomach rise up into his throat. He held the sword with one arm and tried to cut himself free while at the same time grabbing the ground and fruitlessly pulling back against the much larger enemy.

The creature's tendril snaked up from his foot to his knee and he could hear his pant leg tearing and Alex wondered how much longer he could keep up his defense against it. He wondered how long his sword would hold out against such a monster. The slime continued pulling him closer. He thought of his defeat at the hands of the cartoon-like stuffed animal in the rift dungeon and wondered if he was about to be defeated again.

Then he heard Fufi honk in terror. She was standing behind him looking terrified. Her voice was filled with panic as she screeched, "Alex! The creature is turning into a giant mouth!"

Alex's eyes snapped open as he realized what she meant. The slime was turning into something far worse than it had started out as. The creature was starting to morph into something that had no business being in an underground sewer. The creature was becoming a giant mouth that was opening wide. The tendrils of slime were extending from it to grab at Alex.

Alex frantically began hacking away at the tendrils trying to free himself from them, another one wrapped around his sword arm and he dropped the blade. As he struggled against it he could see one tendril of slime beginning to squirm like an earthworm toward him. He swung his arms around trying to fend off the attack but he didn't have much luck. He could see it getting closer and closer. It was almost upon him. Alex swung his arms in a desperate effort to push it away but it kept coming closer. He could see it reaching out with a long tentacle that was trying to snatch him up into its mouth.

His mind was screaming for him to do something but he didn't know what.

Alex knew that this was his last chance to do something, anything!

Fufi cried out in a shrill voice, "Alex stop trying to fight it like a man. Fight it like a magical girl!"

Alex looked at Fufi with wide eyes as he realized what she meant.

"Oh god, what do I do?" He asked himself while fighting the tentacle that was about to drag him into the mouth. He started to struggle against the tentacle as if he were trying to escape from an octopus that was trying to drag him into its lair. The slime's mouth opened wider as it struggled to swallow him. He was suspended in the air with his legs spread apart by tentacles. His right arm was secured and so he grasped at the only other thing he could, the feather duster. The slime's tentacles tightened around his wrist and forearm until it seemed like his bones were about to break. He gritted his teeth in pain and yelled in desperation as he tried to bring the feather duster into a position to dust the slime. He swung his arm around and swept the feather duster along the side of the slime's mouth trying to clear some of the slime away.

His phone narrated:

[Alex uses skill: cleaning on sewer slime it is super effective]

Alex was sure he could hear Fufi yelling in delight from where she stood behind him. The slime was having a hard time. Each brush with the duster massively reduced the body mass of the slime. He saw that it was having a hard time controlling itself now that most of the slime had been removed. He saw the slime's mouth open wide as it tried to engulf him. He took one last desperate swipe of the feather duster across the side of its mouth causing the creature to recoil momentarily. He used that opportunity to dust himself with the feather duster. Much of the slime turned into a brown gas that dissipated into the tunnel and several blue droplets of a thick liquid fell to the ground. Alex could see that most of the slime had turned into a thick brown gas that had already seeped into the tunnel and filled half of it.

Alex tried to stand but his legs felt weak so he sat on his knees catching his breath while Fufi hovered above him looking concerned, "Don't give up, this isn't over yet." She pointed at the brown slimy parts still coating the fatburg.

"What do I do now?" Alex asked as he struggled back to his feat.

"Dust it." She said while pointing at the fatberg that still stood in the middle of the tunnel.

Alex stood up and walked over to where she pointed and began dusting off the slimy pieces. Even the fetid bits of hardened waste turned to vapor with enough dustings of his duster.

"Keep going until you see something different." Fufi told him as she flew around above him dusting off all the remaining slime.

After another twenty minutes Alex couldn't even see any traces of slime on the fatberg. The only thing left was a small blue puddle that settled into the middle of the passage. Fufi landed on Alex's shoulder and chirped, "Now it should be safe to proceed."

"Well, let's go see what this place has to offer." Alex said while stepping forward.

[You have defeated sewer slime]

His phone made a noise that caused Alex and Fufi to jump in surprise. Alex looked down at his phone in confusion. It displayed the text 'defeated 1/20 monsters.' Alex realized that his phone was now reading his progress toward leveling up and decided to leave it alone. He took a deep breath as he looked ahead of him into the darkness of the passage. With the fatburg removed there was a broken ceramic pipe that spilled water into the room that went back towards the way they were heading, presumably toward the river. He noticed some movement from the blue puddle that was the remains of the sewer slime. He started moving slowly toward it as if it were a wild animal that might attack. He reached out with one hand and touched it and as he expected he got a shock. He pulled his hand back quickly while Fufi cheered at his victory and said, "Well done."

Alex looked at her quizzically. Then back to the pool that looked like it was still alive. He reached out with one hand again and this time he stuck one finger into the puddle. It wasn't a pleasant experience as it felt like his finger was being sucked into a jelly but it didn't sting or cause any pain. He watched the blue fluid flow through his fingers like gel. A feeling of energy shot through his body from his spine and out of his hand. It felt like getting zapped by an electrical fence. He wondered if he was supposed to do anything more than stick his hand in there, like pray maybe? Alex didn't know but he wasn't going to stick his head in there so he decided to stop there for now and just watch. A couple minutes passed and the blue jelly formed itself into the shape of a small slime girl. She opened her mouth and said, "Merumeru!" as she stuck her tongue out at him and then she shot off into the water splashing down from the pipe and played around splashing everywhere.

"That's pretty weird." Alex said as he turned to look at Fufi who was hovering above him. "What is going on here? This is bizarre."

"I think I know." Fufi replied as she landed on top of his head and looked around before planting her webbed feet on Alex's shoulder, "It is the power of a magical girl."

Alex looked around and said, "It is? But what does that mean?"

"Well, you are a magical girl aren't you?" She asked, "You have abilities right?"

Alex grumbled, after the near death experience he was not up for this kind stuff again. He shook his head, "No, I'm not a magical girl, I'm an ordinary man."

Fufi hovered above him, "Then I guess it was just a coincidence."

"Coincidence?" Alex asked incredulously, "What are you talking about?"

Fufi started to look hurt and just ignored him.

"Let me guess," Alex started, "There's a slime monster here called Merumeru, right?"

"That's right." Fufi chirped, "And Merumeru is cute! Luna would approve of her. And the right term is slime girl not slime monster. Don't be rude."

"Slime girl?" Alex asked as he tried to make sense of all this, "But how did she turn into a slime girl? Is there something about me that makes this happen?"

Fufi flew above his head and hovered in silence as if she were thinking hard. Then she landed on his head again, "There is something about Merumeru, She is very cute. Can we keep her?" She asked.

Alex looked at the slime girl playing in the water happily saying, "Merumeru" over and over again. Then he looked back at Fufi. "Ok, I guess she doesn't eat people. What should I do?"

"I think we should name her Merumeru." Fufi said while looking at her new friend.

"Merumeru?" Alex asked, "What kind of name is that?"

Fufi flew above him and looked down at him, "She is cute! She can be anything she wants to be!"

Alex scratched his chin and pondered what he would have named her if it had been him, "Fine, fine," Alex said, "Merumeru does that sound like a good name for you?"

The slime girl gave him a bright smile and replied, "Merumeru!"

Alex thought for a moment and replied, "Well, Merumeru, I guess we are keeping you then."

"Thank you," Fufi said while she flew around in a happy circle above his head.

Merumeru was playing with water while looking in his general direction with big eyes. It seemed she wanted him to play with her too so Alex walked over toward her as he took a seat on the ground next to her and looked at her curiously.

"Meru?" she asked him in a cute voice.

"Hmm? No, my name is Alex." He responded.

"Meru." She repeated back to him. Then she looked up at him curiously, "Meru?"

Alex chuckled, "Is Merumeru the only thing you say?"

"Meru, muru!" Merumeru replied happily, "Meru muru muru."

Alex reached out his hands to try and grab her but she immediately popped away from his reach and splashed water at him playfully. Alex sighed, "It seems I am out matched here."

The little slime girl stomped around splashing water around and said, "Meru muru!"

Alex took another glance at Merumeru who was looking up at him with her large eyes while she played with water going down from the pipe creating a stream deeper into the sewer. He turned to look at Fufi who had stopped her happy circle to land in front of him and said, "I think she got stuck here."

Fufi looked up at Merumeru and chirped, "Do you want to play?"

"Meru!." The slime girl answered cheerfully. Fufi hopped after her and they both ran circles around Alex. After several minutes they stopped running around and Merumeru came closer to Alex and gave him a small kiss on the cheek. Alex could hear Fufi saying something but he was too distracted by the fact that a slime kissed him on the cheek. He looked down at the little slime girl and said, "You are getting soaked. Don't complain if you catch a cold."

The little slime girl seemed a bit crestfallen by his reaction but then she giggled and said, "Muru muru!"

Fufi said, "I don't think slimes can get sick. Any germs that get on them will just get desolved."

Alex laughed and replied, "Well, let's try to get out of here before anything gets desolved."

"Muru muru! Meru muru!" Merumeru replied happily as they walked out of the sewer.

***

Alex, Merumeru and Fufi stepped out of the sewers in front of the fountain and placed the grate back in place so no one would fall in there by accident. It may be just the three of them in this town but safety should always be a priority. Alex looked down at Merumeru as she followed after them.

"Are you hungry Merumeru?", he asked the little slime girl.

She shook her head and said, "Muru."

Alex smiled, "Ok, then let's go to the river and get some fish and berries. What do slime girls normally eat?"

Fufi helpfully answered, "I think they are like slimes and can eat almost anything."

Merumeru nodded enthusiastically at that response but she didn't say anything further. Alex looked as they headed to the riverfront and he prepared a meal for the three of them. It was a bittersweet fact that the meal was the best tasting one he had made to date. He liked the food much better this way but hated that he had the cooking skill when he didn't ask for it. Alex and the others then went back to the adventurers guild just as the sun was hanging low in the sky. He took a seat on the stone steps while Merumeru and Fufi sat beside him. As they sat there watching the sunset just taking a moment to catch their breaths.

"Merumeru is not going to eat us in our sleep is she?" Alex whispered to Fufi.

"No," Fufi replied, "She is too cute for that."

Alex didn't buy that logic, "Will being cute keep her from doing bad things?"

"Of course," Fufi whispered back, "Anyone who uses the power of cute for evil deserves divine punishment from Luna."

Alex just rolled his eyes. He didn't buy that kind of logic but was too tired to argue.

Alex stretched out his legs and yawned. Then Merumeru crawled up his leg and settled in next to his leg as a pillow. Alex looked down at the little slime girl who was sound asleep as she rested her head on his leg. He recalled the tentacle that was going up his leg and shuddered. Maybe he was just being paranoid. Alex decided to let sleeping slimes lie and went back to watching the sun disappear over the horizon. He carefully carried the sleeping slime girl down the stairs and wrapped her in the bunny pajamas before going to lay down himself. Before that he attempted to place the girl in a separate spot from him but she clung to him tightly even with her eyes closed. Alex sighed in resignation and let her snuggle against his side. He pulled the cloak over them both and went to sleep with the slime girl warm against his side.

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