Part 50: Stratum 2: TemptationThe Majin have been a serious threat to humanity for millennia. One of their leaders, a great Silver Wolf, even tried to destroy the world long ago.
- excerpt, Legend Cycles of the Ancients
Into the Aether
There were three paths out of the empty space. Two of them looked a bit too ordinary, though. Im much more comfortable with a crazy path through the sky, its not trying to hide what it is.
Though I wish I could say the same about some other people.
Video- Temptation Lead In
Click For Video
(Dammit, how much longer do I have left ?)
Wh-What do you want?
Calm down, Im not here to attack you.
Youd be dead before you could even try !
Choose your next words carefully, heretic.
If it werent for Thage, you wouldnt be alive right now.
The magic in Besek is like poison to humans.
If you care about your safety, you should leave this place right now.
What? Why should I listen to advice from a Majin!?
Where we have been and where we are going are worlds apart.
The effects of Beseks magic on your body and mind will only get stronger as we reach the lower Strata.
If you continue, you will eventually be crushed by the pain.
Thage saved your life, but theres no need to throw it away, is there?
Why does this suddenly matter to you now!?
Retica and Raki were having a chat earlier.
What did you say ?
A-Anyways, Im not leaving yet!
(Eternal Poison, huh ?)
(Whats the little runt plotting?)
At least theyve not killed each other or anything.
Click For Video with Commentary
Weve got the same team as we did on Morpheus, no Majin really worth summoning and no new mercenaries worth using. I have picked up some new weapons for people, though, including a Longbow for Retica who can use them now. Ive also got Thage armed with an Aqua I spell I got from sacrificing an Aquamote, Ill need it later in Aether.
Were up against an interesting group of Majin here. Weve got three Cursed Souls, two Jade Sylphs, two Caprus, and two Uro Lumen. I think weve seen everything but the Uro Lumen that are on this map.
This Uro Lumen is a lot like the weaker ones we met a long time ago, its vulnerable to Darkness, Water, and Strikes. Its still a melee attacker, and we need to be even more careful with it than when we saw them long ago because they can Seal people as well.
We deploy so we can sweep up the map and grind through the Majin. I actually wish these Majin were more aggressive, because theyre pretty weak relative to my levels and I could take them coming at me.
Look well, for this is Beseks true form.
Drop your guard, and you wont last long.
I wont let some Majin defeat me!
No one will dig a grave or mourn your passing here, kid.
We start a bit jammed up, and have some comical Three Stooges style mishaps getting some of our slower characters out.
Ill feast on your soul!
You speak our language?
Oh, this ?
HAND IT OVER! NOW!
Youd do well to be afraid of it, creature.
We draw the first Cursed Soul in, which is a death sentence for it because our party is death incarnate.
Their magic level is higher than the others we fought.
I prefer a little challenge.
This Cursed Soul is no challenge at all, though, and Raki cleaves it down to below half in a single blow.
You look delicious. Can I eat you?
Youll answer me, or Ill trap you in this librum
Can I eat your librum?
Alright, thats enough from you.
Thages conversations with Majin are the best conversations with Majin. And that certainly IS enough from that Cursed Soul, so we burn it to a nice even black color with a Pyro II.
The Falsin who awakened me You will regret it!
I wont be killed that easily.
Now we start pushing towards the middle of the map. Raki moves up to lure in another Cursed Soul and a Jade Sylph. The Cursed Soul is so slow and is melee-only so Jade Sylph is going to be my next victim. Raki runs up and nicks it a bit just to give me peace of mind, but really Thage can one hit Overkill it with a Malus III and does indeed pound it into the dirt. The rest of the party meanwhile gets ready to engage the incoming Cursed Soul, with Retica starting the show on it. Yuri throws a Sacra I on it for massive damage, which makes me realize she can actually land an Overkill on it. Weve got the other Cursed Soul and a Caprus coming in now too, so Thage and Raki back up towards the rest of our party. Thage does get a level out of the parting shot, though.
One thing you might notice here is that Ive given Thage a new librum I got for defeating Morpheus, and shes actually got a pretty respectable Attack stat now. Were going to be using that when appropriate because Thage is surprisingly brutal as a Hellcaster.
Sh-Shut up! Stop talking!
Now its time to decide in what order Im going to deal with the Majin Ive got. Theres a Cursed Soul I definitely want to finish with Yuri, another Cursed Soul who wont even reach my lines with its next move, and a Caprus who is sort of scary because its a spear attacker.
I told you, Im not afraid of Majin!
Hmph, well see how long you last
Raki runs up and hits the new Cursed Soul, which got its action first. Then Yuri blasts the injured one straight back to whatever hell spawned it (probably this one I guess), which gets her a huge level.
Yuri gets both Sacra II and Magusphere with this level, which is pretty nice. Though Caprus is a larger threat, the second Cursed Soul is already weakened by Rakis efforts and a bit more fire on it so I finish it off with Thages turn then move some other people onto the Caprus to keep it out of the casters. I throw attacks at it and set up a good combo to bring it down. While Alexei hasnt really gotten much of a chance to attack so far, he does get a level after a strike from the Caprus. Since he already leveled up, I decided to have Retica and Raki finish the goat instead of Raki and Alexei. Raki levels up afterwards.
Rakis become a lot less vulnerable to magic since we first saw him, though some of that is coming from a buff so dont be too impressed. The same thing applies to his physical defenses, hes got a fortify buff. Anyway now we start moving up to the last group of Majin, which is going to draw in a Caprus, an Uro Lumen, and possibly a Jade Sylph. When Caprus does indeed move up, Thage runs ahead a bit to start the show on it. This isnt as unsafe as it seems, because Raki is going to get a chance to act long before anything can get to her and Uro Lumen cant actually get in contact with her no matter what it does this turn. We get Caprus down to near death with an attack from Raki after a few arrows, but annoyingly Raki catches a Bleed from an Aero II afterwards. When Caprus moves to attack Alexei, I have the perfect opportunity to have Thage join him for a devastating combo. Komori levels up from a heal right after.
Komoris biggest problem is that hes still D rank in Water, which makes his heals pretty bad. Uro Lumens now come in and even lands a Seal on Raki, but its no real problem. Alexei clocks it with his big hammer, and then we send it to the eternal darkness with a Malus III. Now weve just got a Jade Sylph and another Uro Lumen left, so we start pushing forward again. After throwing a few physicals into it for the free experience were ready to end the Sylph once and for all.
Will it be satisfied after I feed it all the Majin here?
Th-Th-Th-That librum ! The evil!
Terrifying! Why does a Falsin possess it!?
Thage trashes the Jade Sylph with overwhelming force. Now I just want to play around with Uro Lumen a bit to milk it for some experience.
*pant pant * These guys are getting to be a pain
How many more before its all over?
You look exhausted.
Really? N-No, Im fine
I wont rest until every last one is dead before me!
Hey, kid ?
We mess around a bit more then finish the job with a Combo from Alexei and Thage, getting both of them levels.
Thage has advanced to A rank in Fire and B in Earth with this level, its pretty awesome. With that, its all over.
Cursed Soul Lv 8 x 3
Jade Sylph Lv 9 x 2
Uro Lumen Lv 9 x 2
Caprus Lv 9 x 2
Reticas having quite a lot of trouble.
Video- Temptation Lead Out
Click For Video
Tired already? After such an effortless encounter
What are you talking about!? Theres something unnatural about you!
We just slew a whole horde of Majin!
And you stand there, like it was nothing! How!?
I guess I owe it to the librum.
He wanted to know more about the Librum Vespera, which really isnt his concern.
What is it, exactly?
Its not your concern.
You wouldnt understand it, anyhow.
S-Stop patronizing me!
Im not. Im saying it would be impossible for you to understand.
Why do you hate the Majin so much?
Dont all people hate Majin ?
Your hatred stems from something deeper, though. Learn to control it.
You dont want to get yourself in trouble, do you? Even Raki has his sights on eating you
Oh, now youre genuinely worried for me, huh? Just leave me alone.
Dont misunderstand me. Raki wont bother with you, if you learn to behave yourself.
Hes a Majin, though.
I did tell him more about Raki, though, since he should probably know.
Hes the Guiding Sage
If hes so powerful, shouldnt I be even MORE cautious around him!?
He isnt some mindless Majin with no self-control. He doesnt attack humans without a reason.
Im sure youve heard of him before. The Silver Wolf
Silver Wolf ?
The same Majin that tried to destroy the world a thousand years ago!?
Hes a high-level Majin, and you should learn to pay him some respect.
Respect!? A Majin!? Especially one who tried to destroy the world!? Never!
Thage, hes a Majin! Hes the enemy! Ill never respect him. I have nothing to do with him!
Alright then. Do as you please.
If he gets himself eaten its his own fault.
Muse: I hate Majin, but I like Raki!
Hes so fluffy and cute!
Its probably best not to tell Raki hes fluffy and cute to his face, though. That guy from Stag admitted hes from Stag finally.
Velnor: Um, to be honest Im from Peluna, a Stag country.
But dont worry, Im not here to cause any trouble!
We picked up another Koona, theyre hard to say no to.
Ossa: Gninethgirf os!
Drah krow lli! Nioj I nac?
Daeha deeps lluf-f-f-f-f!!!
Komoris kid also joined up with us, she hates the Majin at least as much as Retica does so Im sure theyll get along great.
Nena: The dog you have with you Is it a Majin?
All Majin must die How can you let that monster travel with you?
Ummm If its not too much trouble, can I come with you?
Th-Thank you very much! I promise I wont slow you down!
That archer from the Knights noticed the Count is checking out my librum and mentioned it to me, not a surprise but good to know.
Irina: I see Your book is, no doubt, very important.
But I find the Counts obession with it to be rather strange. Be careful.
The Count is, as always, nonchalant.
You seem a bit irritated
Would you care to share your worries with me? I wont tell anyone.
Hahaha Do not make such a face.
Despite what you may believe, I have feelings, too
Elizabeth was burning something horrible, at first I thought shed died or something.
Whats that smell?
Elizabeth: Its incense. One of the many luxuries afforded to ladies of my status.
I received it as a gift just the other day.
This stench is supposed to be some sort of luxury ?
It smells like a mixture of spoiled milk and feet!
Put it out. I dont like it.
Elizabeth: If you dont like it, you can leave.
But this is my house
Elizabeth: And this is my room.
Ha, youve got some nerve
Im leaving anyway, so Ill let you go this time.
But it better not be here when I come back.
Also I figured Shockburt could at least make himself useful if hes going to stick around.
You never change, do you
Shockburt: Ill take that as a compliment, and I ask that you never change, as well.
You can do whatever you like.
Shockburt: So what can I do for you today? What desire can I fulfill?
Youre a doctor, right?
Shockburt: Yes, but I usually only reveal that to very close, intimate relations
Okay, Im leaving.
Shockburt: Hey, wait! Please, take a seat. What can I do for you?
Retica has a stomach ache. Can you take a look at him?
Shockburt: Ah, your little friend?
Im at your service, milady. Anytime, anywhere, anyhow.
Follow me, then.
I almost feel like Besek went easy on us this time around, Im worried about what might be coming next
- recovered text fragments