Originally, the people who were forced to struggle to survive in the village below, would sacrifice a young virgin girl every month. The High-Priest would cut her heart out and after that, a blinding light would shine down from the ‘Heavens’, protecting them for a period of time. Otherwise, the monsters would invade the town.
In fact, there had been hundreds of similar cities, but throughout the years, only a single one remained intact. Of course, the reason Arcana created such a seemingly ‘terrible’ rule, was actually in order to protect the women from being mistreated. If they needed to retain their chastity to become life-saving sacrifices, then the men wouldn’t be able to abuse them too badly. At least, that was her ‘logical’ decision, but it didn’t work out all that well.
However, the pit did have a purpose, other than genocide. Not only was it a dungeon, but the people placed inside of it had the opportunity to become extremely powerful. After all, there were many treasures hidden in the more dangerous parts of the abyss, including one of the nine Seeds.
Unfortunately, humans are very cowardly creatures and the beasts were too cautious to risk their lives over anything aside from food. Thus, even after three years, the only ‘hunting’ that anyone ever did, was in order to obtain the bare minimum amount of sustenance needed to survive.
It wasn’t as if every single soul who died on Earth would have the opportunity to enter Arcana. From her perspective, being allowed to enter her universe was a gift, not a punishment. Anyone who she saw as unworthy, wouldn’t be allowed entrance. Although, considering that she was relatively ‘open minded’, unless they were a rapist or slaver, it was unlikely that she would waive their opportunity to become ‘Players’. In certain cases, if she truly despised someone, she would forcefully drag them into one of her many ‘other’ Realms. There were even instances where she would directly ‘consume’ a soul, without even bothering to give them any chance at repentance at all.
Considering how powerful she was, it wasn’t very surprising that people would revere and fear her as either ‘God’ or the ‘Devil’. Those sacrificed virgins would actually receive a rather decent starting bonus in their next lives, but anyone else who participated in the ritual, would be unintentionally offering up the mana from their own souls to the Arcane Goddess.
That angelic woman who was laying unconscious on the altar obviously wasn’t a resident of the abyss. A few months earlier, a group of hunters had found her on the verge of death, a few miles away from the village. She was totally naked and in a coma, covered with grievous wounds.
Since she seemed rather young, wasn’t one of their own and was dying anyway, they had decided to use her in the ritual. However, when they placed her upon the altar, it suddenly activated without them even needing to cut out her heart.
No one knew where she came from, or how she managed to heal from such ridiculous wounds, but she had been ‘protecting’ them for a while. Eventually, they started worshipping her, as if she were some sort of Goddess.
Most of those demonic-beasts had the Darkness Affinity, so the Light aura that radiated from that ziggurat was lethal to them. Not only that, but the magical device acted as a gigantic space-heater, which prevented the village from freezing to death. It was a symbol of worship and a literal beacon of hope, that they would be able to one day leave that horrible abyss and see the sun again.
Every day since they placed that mysterious woman upon the altar, the brightness had been growing. What started as a dim lamp, had turned into a blinding radiance that was impossible to approach or gaze upon.
Those monsters that lurked in the darkness were forced away, leaving the entire gigantic caldera as a totally safe refuge. At least, that was what everyone had thought…
On that fateful day, when Minari vanished from New Tokyo, that was when everything changed. All across the world, the mana-density rose by a factor of ten. However, it wasn’t only Earth that was affected. The Moon, Mars, Venus and even the Sun itself had started changing dramatically. There was a sudden awakening, which spanned not only the Solar System, but the entire Milky Way Galaxy.
“What is this… place?” As that beautiful, naked girl finally opened her golden eyes, she quickly sat upright. Then she glanced down at the horde of hideous demons and frowned, murmuring “Mom… where are you? No, I shouldn’t be worrying about her… I need to focus on myself. I’m not a little kid anymore, I need to learn to survive on my own…”
When she glanced down, she blushed slightly and her huge breasts were swiftly covered by a fluffy white, angel-feather bra. Then a thin white gown appeared in a flash of light, along with comfortable panties. An unadorned silver spear materialized in her right hand, and bronze boots protected her feet.
As she unsteadily stood up, a commotion erupted from down below. All of those kneeling and praying humanoids gazed up at the rapidly dimming ziggurat and were sent into a frenzy. Since her body was so brightly illuminated, she stood out far more than before.
The ground began rumbling violently and millions of demonic beasts started pouring in from every single tunnel throughout the caldera. Gunshots and explosions rang out, along with a myriad of screams and yelling. Within moments, everything below her had transformed into pure chaos.
There were mages, archers, people with pistols and rocket propelled grenade launchers, to giants who used their tentacle-like fingers to squeeze the monsters to death. She watched as squadrons of men with spears would march forward in a literal phalanx formation and be torn apart by colossal draconic serpents.
A young mildly mutated girl was crying and pleading, as her own parents dragged her up the steps of the altar. There were also a few bulky humanoids protecting them from flying bat-like creatures. That brown-skinned child with the head of an octopus, was the only hope that their rapidly dwindling village had left.
While the angelic woman was listlessly watching the battle unfold, she let out a long sigh. Even if she didn’t have any connection to those people, she still didn’t wish to watch them all be massacred if she had the ability to do something about their situation.
Standing with her back straight, she hopped up onto the highest point of the ziggurat, that altar. Then she slammed the bottom, flattened part of her spear’s shaft upon the dimly glowing stone. A bit of her mana was sent into the enormous magical-device, and it lit up as bright as before.
Those people who had been carrying the little octopus-girl up the stairs were blasted off, and suffered from severe burns. That child was fortunate that she wasn’t in direct contact with the steps, or she likely would have been killed.
Thousands of demonic bats exploded in the air and their flash-fried chunks were raining down upon the few hundred survivors who were still left. Shadowy hellhounds burst into flames and squid-raptors crumpled up into tiny balls, before turning from purple to black. Of course, the majority of the monsters had managed to survive and flee back into the tunnels.
She muttered “Elly always told us that we should help those in need… but she also said that it was bad to kill animals…” Her name was Carly Cinagra and it was difficult to tell exactly how ‘old’ she really was. When she entered Elina’s Soul Realm, she was only a child, but after spending several years there, she was released into the world. Before her coma, she had been exploring the abysmal pit with her mother Jane.
The angelic girl began walking down the stairs. Every time her boots made contact with the glowing stones, they would emit a high-pitched buzzing noise and emit sparks. However, when she was halfway to the bottom, the light abruptly vanished. Then there was a deep and overpowering roar from the tip of the ziggurat. A few dozen meters above the altar, there was a blindingly bright green radiance, which exploded in every direction. It wasn’t just Nature aura, but a physical substance.
Those spores instantly infected every single demonic creature in the entire caldera, including all of the mutated people who were still alive. Even the corpses and buildings were totally infested by those glowing viridian fungi.
“Hungry~! Need food~! Must eat~! Devour~! Grah~!” A titanic fox appeared and immediately soared over towards a fleeing draconic lizard. It was a colossal orange monster that was at least fifty-feet long, yet the beast was swiftly devoured by that starving vixen.