Interlude 3: Of a Hero facing Something worse
There's a looot of bad guys in this ritual room.
The Hero and her party were sent to the Abandoned Demon Lord Castle in the Desolated Lands just outside the Kingdom. There have been rumors and eye witnesses of many NPC (Non-Prayer Characters) gathering there.
And so far everything stands corrected! An army was being made, from Goblins to rare enemies like Mommies or lesser demons.
But there was something else. On one side of the room there were all kinds of bad guys she defeated for the last year or so. But on the other side… so many creatures she has never seen before.
Brown and orange beasts, flying red or brown meatballs, pink creatures with sharp teeth, fat cyclops with what looked like cannons for hands, armored skeletons but bigger and somewhat scarier than the one she saw in the past, brain spiders on mechanical legs and some big muscular enemies with black skin.
She'd never seen any of these creatures before. They were standing there, waiting and it looked like all the NPCs she knew about were wary of them. Not one dared to approach them.
But aside from all those new creatures, what really caught the Hero's party's attention was a giant portal made of dark and light matter surrounded by cracking orange flames. It looked like the whole army was waiting for something to come out of it.
Just what was that? Dang It, she was getting a bit too excited. The others, Sword Saint and Sage noticed it too and had to remind her that they should stay quiet.
A Dark Elf Priest suddenly walked in front of the portal and turned towards the army.
"Dear Friends and Allies! I regret to inform you that the Dark Scout who was accompanying three of our new allies from Hell has died, and everyone else in the group too." The Pries started.
There were some murmurs from the news. For some reason all NPCs were shocked of the news, while the 'Allies from Hell' looked enraged and restless, but she did notice a few laughing in one corner, she could even tell that the orange one was wearing a bandana that she recognized the design as one that Dark Scout usually uses… weird.
"But have no fear or worry!" the Dark Elf Priest exclaimed, "For today! New powerful allies will join our ranks."
As if on cue, a large, very large figure came out of the portal behind the Priest. It looked like a minotaur but with pink armored skin, a skeletal face and brown goat-like legs.
"Ah! Perfect timing!" the Priest said with a smile, "I've been informed by your kind that you are one of the most powerful ones, right? A Baron of Hell?"
The 'Baron' looked at the other unknown creatures and let out a low chuckle of confirmation.
"Good! Now w-"
"WhiCh iS wHy we'Ll taKe OveR fRom HerE." The Demon said to the Priest, leaning forward and reaching for the Elf's head.
But the cult leader had one of those disgusting grins only a bad guy can have plastered on his face.
"Heh. You think I wasn't prepared for something like this?"
He said as he pulled out some sort of statue, or maybe a relic? The Hero couldn't tell from where she was hiding? Whatever it was, it froze the Baron of Hell.
"Kneel before me!" the elf shouted.
The Baron trembled and slowly obeyed.
The elf let out a hearty laugh, satisfied with the result and was about to exclaim his victory until he heard the Baron just burst out laughing from behind him. Before he could turn around, a large hand grabbed his body, lifted him up in the air and slammed him down on the pavement, leaving cracks all around the priest's agonizing body.
"H-How- ARGH!" he was going to ask but got interrupted as a giant hoofed foot stomped on his chest.
"YouR Toy Is UseleSS AgaiNSt Us. We WeRe AlwAys in ConTrOl!" the Baron said as he gripped at the priest's legs and started to pull, "AND WE WILL BURN THIS WORLD TO THE GROUND!" it roared and ripped the elf's lower half of the body, it threw the legs to the mass of demons who started cheering and laughing.
The Dark Elf Priest was still breathing but was put out of his misery when the monster clawed his face to a messy bloody pulp.
The large demon then looked at the NPCs in the large room, its green eyes shone with malice as it said with a grin.
"WhaT AbouT yOu? Are yOu WiTH Us or AgaiNsT Us?"
No one dared to move or answer, some even looked at their neighbor only to see the demons mocking and laughing at them with a carnivorous grin.
The Baron let out a sinister chuckle.
"We'll taKe yoUr SileNCe as A ProoF oF SuBmIssIon. BuT whAt AboUt yOu ThrEe?" It suddenly asked, looking at the top of one of the pillars supporting the ceiling of the large room.
Crap. They got found out.
"Don't do i-"
"Too late! I'm gone!" Hero said enthusiastically as she jumped from her hiding spot.
"Ah… I'll prepare a way out of this mess." Hero heard Sage sigh.
"We're not exterminating all of them?" Sword Saint asked her partner.
Whatever they said next, the Hero couldn't hear as she was about to bring her sword down on this 'Baron of Hell' and be done with it!
"THE HERO?!" several NPCs exclaimed.
But no time for autographs! Time to kick some butts!
"HYAAAAA!" she exclaimed as she swung the holy sword down on the Baron, blade full of holy energy that would burst the moment she hit the demon.
The demon in question looked at the girl with barely any interest as it raised its hand to block the swing.
The blade went between two fingers and a flash of light illuminated the whole room, blinding everyone in it.
The Hero landed not far from where the Baron was standing, a smug grin on her face. A job well do-
"RRAARGH!" she heard a pained roar behind her.
She looked back to see the Baron using green flames on its right injured hand.
It barely had any damage on itself aside from some light burnt scorches on its body. And her swing of the sword… It only went from between the demon's finger to its wrist!
The demon grunted as it was cauterizing its wound to not let any more blood spill out.
She turned around, gripped her sword and finally took the matter at hand seriously as a bead of sweat rolled down her forehead as she understood she clearly underestimated the giant pink minotaur.
"Huh. Normally any enemy gets burnt to ashes from a swing of my sword. But you barely took any damage! You must be some sort of Demon Lord or Overlord, aren't you?" she said with confidence.
But then she heard laughter, from behind her, all the demons were laughing hysterically and even the Baron of Hell in front of her chuckled then just burst out laughing. Completely forgetting the earlier pain.
She felt pretty embarrassed to be laughed at like that. She didn't like it one bit.
"W-What's so funny?!"
Then all of a sudden, another Baron emerged from the portal. It looked confused about the laughter resounding in the ritual room.
"WhaT DiD I MiSs?" it asked.
The injured Baron pointed at the Hero the same way a noble would point at a lowly peasant that made him laugh?
"ThiS HumAn iS So WeaK thaT shE tHinkS I aM an OveRLorD!"
As soon as the new Baron heard that, it joined in the laughter.
And as if two Barons weren't enough, a new one appeared.
"Hilarious." The newcomer said.
Hero didn't need to guess, this Baron was the leader of this army. It was obvious with how different it looked next to the other two: first of all, the color.
That new Baron was ashes gray, its whole body was gray apart from some glowing red cracks around its body. It also had burning wrist blades, large ones. The other had green eyes but this one's eyes were yellow.
And secondly, it was much larger than the others.
The Hero might be a bit arrogant (well she's only 15 with powers given by the Gods!) but she knew when a fight was unwinnable. If a pink Baron could resist a hit from the Holy Sword blessed by the Gods of this World, there was no way that she'd be able to defeat three of them. Now that she thinks about it, she never lost in a fight before. At least she doesn't remember it.
Maybe it was a message of the Gods? In any case, her instincts were screaming only one thing for her to stay alive.
She suddenly shouted for her party to get ready to run and before any NPC or Demons could react she turned around and unleashed a Sun Burst to fray herself a path to reach the large doors of the room for escape.
She was shocked to see that the Demons were mostly blinded by the blast; she could count a few deaths but barely a dent to their numbers. She ran as fast as she could, slashing her sword in front of her with precision but without much effect besides kicking them away a bit or cutting a limb on the smaller demons.
"Half of you, chase and kill them." She heard the gray Baron order the Demons, soon after a cacophony of roars started to follow the party.
Sword Saint was lifting Sage on her shoulder as she ran besides the Hero.
"Have you found the Gate Scroll yet?" Sword Saint asked Sage, clearly distressed as she looked behind her, seeing a wave of orange and brown creatures.
Suddenly the demons started attacking, flame balls of multiple colors from Orange to Blue or Green started to rain on the Hero's Party.
"Argh! You look for them!" Sage shouted as she threw the bag to her partner's face before summoning a protective wall, "Hurry!"
As the demon crashed and started hitting the wall to break it, Hero stabbed and slashed through the wall at them to keep them at bay, hoping to gain enough time for the Sword Saint to fish out the scroll.
The grimace of all those demons were haunting, not one stopped laughing maniacally or menacingly, she saw the Spider thing crawling on the ceiling, raining down on the protective wave after wave of blue flame orbs. One of the pink bull-like monsters charged over and over at a single spot that started to crack faster than the rest of the barrier.
"I got it! GATE!" Sword Saint exclaimed and didn't waste a second to activate the spell.
The Party didn't waste a single second to jump through the portal that appeared that led them directly to the King's Throne Room. What they didn't expect while Sword Saint shredded the scroll to pieces to cancel the spell so no demons could follow them, was that one of them, one of the smallest one, orange skinned, jumped through with them.
The demon roared at the Party who immediately got in an offensive stance, ready to throw down with the monster.
"You're in the presence of the King! Surrender!" a soldier suddenly shouted.
Dozens of soldiers, armed to the teeth, surrounded the demon who was strangely still, looking around itself.
Then, with a grin, it raised its arms in surrender.
"Hero, what is the meaning of this?! What is that thing?!" The King exclaimed.
Oh boy, this is going to be a long discussion.
Baka's notes: Wow, I can't believe it's been so long since last chapter... And that this story has been going for 4 years already! I'm so thankful to everyone for still reading this story today! I'm so sorry for being so slow lately. And even thos this story is approaching its climax (in I'd say 5-6 chapters) I have no idea when I'll work on the next chapter. That's what happens when you work on multiple projects at the same time.
Especially now that I played and loved OMORI so I have a new fic idea and new one shots ideas.
But despite it all, I hope you'll keep reading this story, give a shot to my other stories.
My 26th Birthday is fast approaching (in 3 days when I'm writing this down) so again: Thank you all for reading.
Next update from me will be of an Omori oneshot, then it will be either Spider Hope or Despair in Lobotomy... Or maybe my new idea that I got.
Honestly, I got so many lately it's a curse.