Beginning with a massive earthquake, to the south of Ariel’s Meadow, the ancient bone-dragon ‘Wormwood’ rose from its colossal crypt. On that Moonless night, the Goddess of Darkness was the first to make her move.
In less than twelve hours, her legions of undead traveled in a straight line, passing through Carrabelle Plains, spreading disease, pestilence and wanton desolation upon the entire zone. They weren’t moving aimlessly though, but aiming towards the colossal Archean Bridge.
Carrabelle City was completely devoured, as the bone-dragon swarm flew above. The High-Priestess of Light, and her army of Paladins were completely powerless to protect the town; the most powerful among them was only at level-nineteen and rank-E after-all.
The Elven Enclave managed to evacuate via their private teleportation gateway, which they deactivated afterwards. However, there were only a handful of Elves, so everyone else was forced to flee in other ways.
Powerful adventurers banded together and escaped into the Archean River or towards the northeast. However, very few actually had time to make it far enough away, before the deadly pitch-black fog enveloped them.
Overall, the humanoid casualties throughout Carrabelle Plains were well over three-hundred thousand. Yet, that was merely the beginning; their true target were the most densely populated lands in the whole world: The Goblin Empire.
There were a total of fifteen zones in all, so even the swarms of colossal bone-dragons couldn’t cover all that land within a single night. Seven-million square miles, and seventy-five countries, with at least six-billion Goblins.
That single Empire was only able to compete with the five Human Kingdoms to the southwest, because of their ridiculous numerical advantage. Unfortunately, The Goblin Empire was actually controlled by Orcs and Ogres, because the majority of the tiny green-skinned men and women were incredibly weak.
Even if they had excellent immune-systems… there was simply too large of a level-difference between themselves and the hordes of undead. By the end of that first long night, over twenty million people had been killed and resurrected as zombies, skeletons, or colossal abominations: That wasn’t including all of the magical-beasts which were converted as well.
When morning came, the Goddess of Light awakened her own forces. Thousands of stars began falling from the heavens, crashing down upon the Human kingdom of Talion.
They were most famously known as the home of the official Assassin’s Guild. Nearly every person in that country was ‘tainted’ by the Goddess of Darkness from birth.
When the World Boss ‘Helel the Shining One’ descended upon their capital city, everything within a twenty miles was consumed by an enormous nuclear explosion. The six-winged Seraphim was one of the closest beings to Lux herself; in the eyes of the devout worshipers of Light, she was known as ‘Salvation’ or ‘Justice.’
However, that elegant and beautiful little-girl was widely recognized by another name as well: ‘Rapture.’ Wherever she went, two out of every three people would perish.
The strange thing about radiation from spells that carry the Light-attribute, was that only people that the caster recognized as an enemy, could be affected. Which meant that even with all of the nuclear fallout, the lucky few who weren’t born with the Darkness-affinity, never became sick: while they watched their children, parents, spouses, and everyone they ever loved… die horrible, slow and agonizing deaths.
Immediately after the angelic army arrived on the planet, they all soared to the southeast, towards The Kingdom of Light, named after their Goddess: Luxia. While a small part of the super-continent of Arcanus was being corrupted and purged, there were plenty of places like ‘Raphael’s Jungle’ that were completely undisturbed.
At least that’s how it appeared on the surface…
After Michael had finally managed to fall asleep, laying on his left side and facing the snoring Priestess, she suddenly opened her eyes and had a serious expression. Her stamina was certainly very low when they reached the waterfall, but after bathing in the sunlight for over an hour, while calmly meditating, she was fully recovered.
Once she stood up, the freckled cat-girl glared at the unconscious Human with her normally yellow irises glowing with a bright golden luster. She smirked at him and whispered “Thank you for the immortality, but unlike you and that disgusting little monster, I have a mission to accomplish…”
The moment that she disappeared into the jungle, a leather-clad worm-girl suddenly appeared out of thin-air. She looked down with disgust at Michael, who was completely naked, and then saw a strange notification that popped up in-front of her: “New Quest: Your Companion Elina is acting suspiciously. Follow her covertly and uncover her secrets. Reward: Two silver coins and forty experience points.”
A truly disturbing grin emerged on her face, showing all over her tiny, fang-like teeth. Before she left however, Sarah crouched down next to the sleeping, one-armed man and whispered “Thanks for the immortality asshole, but I still fucking hate you.”
Then the girl suck out her surprisingly long, pitch-black tongue, and started slobbering all over his neck, cheek and ear: leaving a clear, glue-like substance in his relatively short beard-hair. She rubbed her slimy fingers and tail across the majority of his body, and then left while snickering.
What Sarah didn’t know, was that it was impossible to molest someone like that… unless they were awake and wanted it to happen. Michael muttered “Seriously, that fucking brat; ugh, now I’m gonna have to masturbate again. Shit, my porn’s gone…”
After an hour, right at the worst possible moment, he felt horrible, agonizing pain, coursing down his spine and a large ‘-20’ appeared above his head. Then he received a notification: “Inari has died; respawning directly into Companion Storage, now.”
Before he had the chance to realize what was happening, he felt a tingling sensation throughout his whole body and was immediately forced into his wisp-form. He carefully observed the fox carcass, and his own rigid corpse for a few minutes before noticing the problem.
The vixen’s body suddenly began dissolving rapidly and transformed into a large, crystal-clear blob of mucus, which had a relatively large blue mana-core floating around within it. Above the creature’s head was the name “Slime Fox, Level-5, Rank-F.”
Michael grumbled “Figures… one of the most annoying creatures in any RPG.” as his corpse suddenly transformed into a slightly different monster. However, after they oriented themselves, the two doppelgangers suddenly transformed from globs of liquid, into forms that were relatively similar to the prey that they had just used to evolve.
If all he had was rocks, he wouldn’t have even considered fighting against such troublesome enemies; fortunately, his Arcane Orb was extremely effective against such opponents. When he spawned a dozen meters away from the pseudo fox and Human duo, a glowing crystal-ball appeared in his right hand.
Before the two even had a chance to react, he pitched the sphere at the slime-man’s head. The attack only did forty damage, but the fragile monster only had 25/35 before being hit.
A ‘+10 Exp’ appeared, and then the humanoid form slowly started dissolving. Michael grabbed the rebounding Arcane Orb, and telekinetically fired it into the unprepared gelatinous triple-tailed fox.
It was another instant-kill, which rewarded him with another ten experience points. As he caught the surprisingly slime-less ball, the naked man sighed and then complained “Just having a single rare weapon makes such a ridiculous difference. Although, it kinda feels like the hardcore difficulty goes both ways. If there was some kinda death-penalty, I would be fucked: and not in a good way.”
Instead of walking over to the puddles of goop, Michael summoned the resurrected and completely refreshed Inari. The moment that the tri-tailed vixen materialized, she saw the bright-blue mana-cores laying on the ground and sprinted towards the closest one.
After devouring it, she ran over to the other one and slurped it up as well. Between the two of them, she had received a total of one Aura, and two Perception points.
Then she began licking the puddles of slime that were simply laying there, unable to be absorbed by the soil. Michael suddenly pulled a bright-green bead out of his inventory, and asked “Inari, do you wanna gain your first Elemental Affinity?”
Hearing her name being called, the fox instantly turned to face the smiling man, but her gaze automatically locked onto his left palm. She stood on both of her hind legs and whimpered a few times, before he tossed the mana-core towards her open mouth.
As soon as Inari swallowed the tiny crystal, her body began to rapidly transform. The first change was her eyes glowing with an azure radiance, and then all of the vixen’s fur started turning a bio-luminescent green.
All three tails twirled together once, before splitting into four separate, bushy, viridian vine and bright-blue colored, flower-covered fox-tails. Then her growth began, from the size of a dog, until she was closer to an adult black-bear.
However, Inari was still a child, and thus lacked the ridiculous proportions of that giant grizzly-shaped treant, from which the tiny-bead was derived. After her swift transformation had ended, Michael received a notification: “You have successfully evolved Inari into a Quad-Tailed Nature-Fox. Base stats have increased based on your luck and the ‘Natural Ursus Treant’ that the mana-core originally belonged to: Aura +3, Vitality +2, Strength +2, Endurance +2.”