Chapter 682 The Dark Side
It was a stark contrast to the grandeur of the chapel below. The space was also big, suffused with an eerie half-light that cast long, twisted shadows across the walls.
Obscure artifacts lined the room, each exuding an aura of malevolence. An altar adorned with grotesque carvings stood at the center, radiating a palpable sense of darkness.
But amidst the darkness, an elevator emerged, its presence betrayed by a faint, ghostly glow. The lift was adorned with ornate patterns, resembling the wings of angels twisted into grotesque shapes, and it seemed to beckon them forward with an ominous allure.
Princess Lorelai's dispelling magic had not only revealed the physical space but also the underlying malevolence that permeated every inch of the hidden second story.
Silence hung in the air, broken only by the soft, echoing creak of the revealed elevator as if inviting them to ascend into the depths of darkness.
"After you," Ren said with a serious face to the princess.
Both Evie and Elena looked at him with a deadpan expression.
Princess Lorelai's gaze remained steady, her resolve unshaken. "Let's go and put an end to this madness."
Unaware that she was being used as a decoy to test the waters, Princess Lorelai proudly entered the elevator.
As Princess Lorelai confidently stepped into the elevator, a cacophony of clicks, hisses, and snaps echoed through the chamber.
One by one, traps triggered all around her. Blades swung from hidden panels, arrows shot from the walls, all sorts of status effect gasses burst inside, and the floor beneath her feet seemed to collapse, only to reform moments later.
Yet, miraculously, none of these traps had any effect on the princess.
She stood with a stony expression, her body protected by an invisible golden halo, a shield that repelled every attack directed her way.
The traps, designed to harm any intruder except for Salister Kane's minions, were utterly futile against her.
"Did something happen just now?" the princess asked casually, brushing off her shoulder as if swatting away an annoying insect. "I think something bit me. No problem, it doesn't hurt anyway."
Ren and the others stared at her in disbelief. If she were any normal player, they would have been blown into smithereens by now.
Yet, Princess Lorelai remained unscathed, her calm demeanor defying the deadly chaos that had just unfolded around her.
"Come in now. It's safe," she said, her voice steady and reassuring as if they had just taken a leisurely stroll through a park rather than a perilous journey through a trap-laden dungeon.
The group exchanged glances.
"Seems like we've found our official trap tester," Ren quipped with a grin.
Elena shot him a disapproving look. "Ren, you can't say that to a princess!"
Evie chimed in, giving Ren a clap. "That's my man, ever so resourceful."
"Could you please not encourage him?" Elena scolded.
As the group ascended to the second level, they found themselves in a chilling hallway resonating with the anguished cries of the souls Salister had ensnared within his pocket dimension.
This corridor, a nefarious trap, had the power to assault the minds and distort the perceptions of any non-fiends who dared to tread its haunted path.
However, under the protective halo of Princess Lorelai, who led the way with unfaltering pride and confidence, the spirits hurriedly fled, fearing annihilation at the mere touch of the princess's protective aura.
"Her defenses are truly remarkable," Ren whispered in awe. "She's really the perfect person for the job."
Elena's expression was a mix of amusement and exasperation, and she decided to withhold any further comments, choosing instead to focus on the challenges that lay ahead.
In the dimly lit chamber of the Devil's Forge, Ren and his companions cautiously entered. The air was thick with the scent of smoldering metal and the faint echo of hammer strikes.
The room was cluttered with an assortment of arcane tools and peculiar contraptions, evidence of Salister Kane's magical craftsmanship.
Princess Lorelai's eyes scanned the room for potential threats. Ren explored the corners, uncovering a relic from the reliquary. It gleamed with an otherworldly sheen, untouched by Salister's dark curses.
A collective sigh of relief echoed as they realized they had found something valuable, safe from the malevolence that surrounded them.
Moving on to the Cult Quarters, they entered a room filled with rows of cramped beds, each neatly made, devoid of personal belongings.
The eerie ambiance was heightened by the effigies depicting Salister Kane's true form that covered the walls, casting eerie shadows as the flickering candlelight danced upon them.
Elena murmured a protective prayer, her keen senses detecting the lingering darkness that clung to the room. Through her prayers, a shield of safety enveloped the group, guarding them against any curses that might have otherwise befallen them.
Moving on to the Armory, they discovered a vast collection of mundane weapons and armor. Although lacking in magical properties, the room was a treasure trove for any adventurer seeking basic gear.
Ren inspected the weapons and stowed them away in his inventory, intending to sell them later. While he couldn't wield them himself, he saw the opportunity to turn them into profit.
A little upgrading with the right materials would surely up their price.
Their journey took a more ominous turn as they ventured into The Pit, the residence of Salister Kane's devilish minions.
Bone Devils and Ice Devils lurked in the shadows, their eyes gleaming with malevolence.
The secret door, veiled beneath illusions, opened into Salister's private quarters, where he conducted the ritual.
The group confronted the Bone Devil and Ice Devil, formidable adversaries known for their strength and cunning. The battle was fierce, marked by lightning-fast strikes and icy blasts.
However, their menacing prowess proved insignificant against Princess Lorelai's might.
With each swing of her weapon and each incantation of her spells, she demonstrated a power that surpassed their demonic enemies.
If it had been a battle involving only players, it would have been utterly devastating. However, with the two princesses fighting alongside Ren, it almost felt like a cheat.
Finally, after navigating the second floor, they finally arrived in the heart of the area, the lair of Salister Kane himself.