Chapter 241 : Dungeon boss (5)
321 1 7
X
Reading Options
Font Size
A- 15px A+
Width
Reset
X
Table of Contents
Loading... please wait.

The dungeon's boss' left arm...it was gone!

Alex's eyes opened wide in surprise at this incredible sight. Under no circumstances did he think that this dark energy emitted by the double-headed scythe he was holding would cleave the boss's arm. In the first place, he only followed that hunch he had the instant his mana penetrated the scythe.

Before Alex could feel elated, though, he suddenly felt a wave of fatigue hit him. His legs buckled, and he fell to his knees, coughing and wheezing. It felt as if all his energy had been drained in an instant.

Suddenly, it felt to Alex as if he had run a marathon. His breathing became ragged, and his chest hurt, each breath a struggle.

'Damn, what is going on,' Alex wondered, his mind racing to make sense of his sudden weakness.

It didn't take long for him to realize the source of his exhaustion.

It was obviously the price he had to pay for that powerful attack he had launched seconds ago.

'I didn't expect that to happen,' Alex thought as he attempted to stand up, 'that attack sure was something, but if this is the price to pay every time I use it, I'm not sure I'm that interested.'

Meanwhile, across from him, the dungeon boss was looking down at its severed arm, its reptilian eyes reflecting a mix of pain, confusion, fear, and anger. 

There was also another emotion, an emotion much more potent than the others. That emotion was an unfathomable and seething fury.

The slits in the lizardman's eyes turned into razor-thin lines, looking like slivers of pure malice. Its gaze locked onto Alex with hatred, and in that moment, it seemed as if any semblance of intelligence it had had vanished. If one looked into the lizardman's eyes right now, they would feel a cold shiver run down their spine, sensing the primal rage that now controlled the beast.

Uncaring of the blood pouring from the stump where its arm had been severed, the boss lunged at the hateful human on the ground.

Due to its wound, both the boss's speed and balance had dropped, but even then, in what felt like the blink of an eye, it had covered more than half the distance separating it from Alex.

However, right at that moment, its instincts screamed, warning of incoming danger.

The boss abruptly halted, its head snapping upward. It was then that it saw her.

Up there, near the chamber's door, the woman who it had dismissed as useless due to her inactivity throughout the fight, had her hands outstretched. Hovering just a few centimeters in front of her was a massive ball of what looked like to be concentrated energy.

The ball shimmered and shifted with multiple lights and colors, it's size half the woman's.

The boss could clearly sense it; this ball of concentrated energy was the source of the danger. The threat it posed was easily ten times greater than the dark blade that had severed its arm.

Though it didn't understand what the hovering ball was, it was unwilling to face it. It resisted the urge to shred Alex to pieces and changed its trajectory, charging straight at Amelia.

But would Alex let it do as it pleased? Absolutely not!

From the beginning of the fight, Alex was never meant to slay the dungeon boss. His role was simply to distract it while Amelia accumulated all the residual energy in the chamber. That was why he had to analyze the chamber before committing to this plan. If the chamber wasn't vast, the whole plan would fail as they would be caught up in the explosion they had caused. Thankfully, not only was the chamber vast, its structure also favored their plan.

Alex appeared right in front of the charging monster and tightly wrapped his arms around it, holding it in a vice-like grip.

"Get off my back, bastard!" the dungeon boss snarled.

If it were before it lost its arm, the boss could have easily shrugged Alex off. But right now, with a missing arm and a mutilated body, it seemed impossible using brute force alone.

It opened its mouth wide, preparing to breathe fire when Alex head-butted it.

Bang!

The boss' head snapped back and a wave of fire erupted towards the ceiling, illuminating the room with an ominous orange glow.

Ignoring the pain coming from his bleeding forehead, Alex glanced back at Amelia and shouted, "NOW!"

Without hesitation, Amelia launched the ball of residual energy straight towards the entanglement of Alex and the boss.

Seeing the ball coming at them and feeling the cold breath of death brushing its neck, the boss seemed to have finally snapped back from it's furious state. 

Its eyes turned calm once again, it stared at Alex and in those last few seconds before what seemed to be his death, he asked, "Are you going to sacrifice yourself just to take me down?"

The smoke mask Alex was wearing dissolved, revealing a wicked grin plastered all over his face. "Of course not. I have far too many great things to accomplish to perish in this godforsaken dungeon!" he replied with unwavering confidence.

A split second later, the ball of residual energy was upon them.

Just before the imminent impact, Alex mouthed "goodbye" to the boss before snapping his fingers, a gleam of triumph in his eyes.

Immediately after he did so, he appeared next to Amelia, leaving the boss alone to face the impending destruction.

In the following instant, he wrapped his arms around his sister, shielding her from the oncoming explosion.

His smoke armor rippled, separated from his body and expanded into a dome above the siblings. As if that wasn't enough, a part of the dome separated and expanded to form its own dome above the first dome, and then the same thing happened once again and again. In the blink of an eye it took the ball of residual energy to collide against the dungeon's boss, several layers of protective domes formed of solidified smoke were shielding Alex and Amelia.

And then it happened.

BOOOOOOOMMMMM!!!!

An enormous and devastating explosion went off inside the dungeon's chamber. It was so violent and destructive that the entire chamber shook under its immense force, its very foundation threatening to collapse. The blast sent shockwaves through the ancient stone walls, causing cracks to form and spread like spider webs across the floor. Debris rained down from above as the chamber groaned under the strain of containing such raw, unleashed power.

Alex and Amelia didn't know it, but the explosion caused by Amelia's residual blast ability was so devastating that its effects even spread outside. 

****

Maya, who was outside of the boss' chamber diligently practicing the intricate combat moves Alex had taught her, suddenly stumbled and fell to her knees as the ground began to violently shake. The force of the tremor caught her completely off guard, interrupting her focused training session and sending a jolt of alarm through her body.

"W-What is going on?" Maya wondered aloud, her voice trembling with a mix of fear and confusion as the whole floor continued to quake beneath her. The vibrations intensified, causing loose debris to fall from the ceiling and creating an ominous rumbling that echoed through the corridor.

Slowly, her gaze turned to the large, imposing door of the boss' chamber. She mumbled with a solemn expression, her eyes filled with worry and determination, "I hope they are safe." 

****

Inside the boss' chamber, the explosion of residual energy was propagating in every direction and soon, it collided with the dome of protection Alex had meticulously crafted. 

The instant it happened, Alex felt that the several layers he had made were being quickly destroyed. In the blink of an eye, more than half of them were gone. However, at the same instant they were destroyed, Alex was creating new ones with fierce determination. He could feel his mana, the small bit that remained, being rapidly drained, but he held on, his jaw clenched and sweat beading on his brow. He was acutely aware that if he were to allow themselves to be caught in the explosion, there was no way to know what catastrophic consequences they might face. 

Fortunately, while the explosion did last quite a while, it had died out before Alex completely ran out of mana. That wasn't to say that he was in a good condition though.

Alex collapsed to his knees, his body and clothes drenched in sweat and blood. He violently coughed, blood coming out of his mouth in alarming amounts. His body was already at its limit after he had launched that dark blade that severed the boss' arm; forcing himself to stand up to stop the boss and then teleporting himself had increased the burden on his body exponentially, and he was currently paying the price. He could feel that his inner organs were severely damaged, suffering wounds that even his healing smoke couldn't mend.

The pain was excruciating, threatening to overwhelm his senses.

The dome above them shattered as Alex lost control of the smoke forming it, the particles dissipating into the air like ash. He was feeling drowsy and was in a precarious state, teetering on the edge of consciousness, but he stubbornly refused to close his eyes until he had confirmed the boss' death. 

Ignoring the chaotic state of the partially destroyed chamber, with its crumbling walls and debris-strewn floor, Alex focused his senses on the humongous crater in the center of the chamber, right where the boss had been when the explosion happened.

The air was thick with dust and the acrid smell of destruction.

Several seconds passed in tense silence as both Alex and Amelia, who had a pale face as if she had been drained of her blood, stared down inside the crater, waiting to see if the boss would emerge. The atmosphere around them was charged with anticipation and dread. But even after a full five minutes had passed, with each second feeling like an eternity, the boss never appeared. The silence was deafening, broken only by the occasional sound of settling debris.

"It's dead," Alex announced with a visibly relieved expression, his voice barely above a whisper due to his weakened state.

"Yes. It sure was-" Amelia was replying when she immediately moved to catch Alex, who lost consciousness just after he spoke. 

"Alex!" 

7