Chapter 514 Into The Heart of Vostracane, Creeping Troubles
Izroth activated Shadow Blending under the veil of shadows as he entered stealth. Fortunately, the Skounae built the castle to block out natural lights during the daytime, so the structure had plenty of shadow heavy areas.
A breath of time passed as Izroth moved closer to his first target without detection. He was currently positioned in the middle of a pair of massive pillars that stretched to the very top of the castle.
Izroth did not choose this corner of the building randomly. It was at this spot Izroth could advance smoothly—at least, somewhat.
Situated at the back of the room was a thick metal door with magic symbols carved into its surface. Standing guard right next to the metal door were two elite Skounae equipped with dark-plated armor. In addition, there were three Skounae following a strict guard route.
Izroth scanned the entrance multiple times and realized that there were only two ways into that room. The first was through the metal door, and the second was a hidden passageway that originated from the floor above.
The second passageway appeared to lead right into the room Izroth wanted to access. He would not have uncovered its location with his Energy Vision Sense if not for the faint mana trail that flowed through it and revealed the link between the two areas.
'Strange, that area is completely unguarded. Could it be that not even the Skounae guards know of that secret entrance?'
It was not uncommon for castles like this to have hidden routes to essential locations. These routes were typically only accessible to high ranking individuals and used during emergencies. Therefore, it would not surprise Izroth if only Earls like Salokin and Essirie knew of its existence.
However, knowing the passageway was there and getting to it were two separate matters. Not only was it located a floor above, but there were no stairs or the likes to reach that level. There was also the fact that the section between the bottom floor and top floor was the only place completely exposed by moonlight within the whole castle. The instant Izroth tried to ascend; his presence would be detected.
However, despite the several difficulties, Izroth knew that it was not impossible to reach the top floor undiscovered. There was a small opening among the Skounae's guard route. As long as he timed it correctly and waited for the final Skounae on the guard route to move away to their furthest point, Izroth was confident that he could reach the top floor within the given time frame.
Izroth waited patiently as the three Skounae followed their guard routes to perfection. Then, the instant the third guard moved to the most distant point, Izroth launched into action.
He started by executing his Light Feather Footwork to achieve a short burst of movement speed. This caused Izroth's movement speed to shoot up by 250% for two seconds!
Izroth lightly tapped his foot on the floor as he quickly shot into the air at full speed, using Sky Steps to kick off the air itself.
Tap... Tap... Tap...
As he approached the platform on the top floor, Izroth twisted his body and mildly grazed his foot against one of the pillars to shed some of his momentum. He repeated this process three times, darting back and forth between the two pillars.
In a flash, just as Izroth reached the top floor, the final Skounae guard turned around and looked upward. After three seconds passed, the guard continued on their route as if nothing happened.
The top floor was much less spacious than the bottom level. There was a certain elegance to it that was unusual for the Skounae based on what Izroth had witnessed thus far.
'It should be around here.'
Izroth rubbed his hands against one of the nearby walls a few times before finding a hidden block. When he pressed it, the block sunk into the wall and revealed a long staircase that spiraled downward.
But, when the passageway was exposed, it caused Izroth to narrow his eyes. The energy was too thin to discern any crucial details from far away, even with his Energy Vision Sense.
However, that vile energy that washed over him when the hidden entrance was opened—it was not something Izroth could mistake.
'Why is that vile energy emitting from the bottom of this staircase?'
Since Malentansium was allied with Tempest, Izroth figured that it was only a matter of time before the Shadahi joined the battle. The problem was that the vile energy Izroth sensed at the bottom of the spiraled staircase did not belong to the Shadahi!
'The Netherworld... This energy is as heavy—no, it might even be heavier than that of the Netherworld Envoy, who placed the curse on me.'
Izroth inwardly furrowed his brows. Could it be that Malentansium had a connection to the Netherworld? Or worse, were the Shadahi and Netherworld working together behind the scenes? If so, then this was devastating news for Amaharpe and its allies.
'I suppose there's only one way to find out.'
Without further delay, Izroth stepped onto the spiral staircase and began his descent into the darkness.
Meanwhile, somewhere in Vostracane City...
Visible veins could be seen pulsating on the side of Salokin's forehead. He had searched the entire city three times over and yet could not find that human brat!
"He can not have escaped that fast. Where is that human brat hiding?! When I find him, I'll rip him to shreds!" Salokin growled. From the time he was blinded by Izroth to the point where he gave the order to lock down the city, it could not have been more than five seconds. Salokin refused to believe that human brat had the capability to escape Vostracane within that short time frame.
As for that human taking his own life to escape—Salokin knew that this was impossible. If that were the case, then the Blood Moon would have already shown itself as it could not be contained by the dead.
Essirie cautiously approached Salokin, who was in a foul mood. She did not want to risk pushing him over the edge in this state.
"Earl Salokin, is it not possible that the human was able to escape? Perhaps we should send some Hunters out to sweep the surroundings. Even if he escaped Vostracane, it would not be easy for him to get past the border defenses unnoticed." Essirie commented. While she lamented at the mere thought of Izroth having departed Vostracane, it was not something they should dismiss.
"Do you think I'm a fool?! I've already alerted the border troops to stay on guard! Instead of wasting time, you should-!" Salokin was about to erupt at Essirie when he suddenly heard a cold voice enter into his ears.
"Quite the fascinating chat you're having, Earl Salokin." When Salokin listened to those words and perceived the presence that appeared behind him out of nowhere, it made his heart drop.
Salokin slowly turned his head and was face to face with a hooded figure that stood half a meter taller than him. However, not even the hood could hide those deep, shining blue-eyes.
"We receive you, honored Night Lord!" Salokin and Essirie said in near unison as they fell to their knees and slammed their heads to the ground. The two Skounae could be seen trembling as if they were afraid to make direct eye contact with the individual before them.
Salokin wanted to curse his unrelenting lousy luck. He never thought there would be a day where he wished for a Penumbra Inquisitor to have visited! Why? Why did it have to be this person?!
The Skounae in the vicinity followed the Earls' lead and fell to their knees. There was a natural fear of that individual that dwelled within the deepest parts of their blood.
This person was not a Marquis or even a Duke of the Penumbra—they were a Night Lord of the Antumbra!
NPC Name: Antumbra of Decay, Night Lord Zarolas(???)
NPC Level: ???
The Antumbra only had four members; however, they were all terrifying powerhouses of the Skounae race. Their strength was on par with the two Warlords of Amaharpe's War Brigade, and the purity of their bloodline was unmatched among other Skounae.
Their very existence was second only to the Night King himself! But, why had a Night Lord appeared in Vostracane?!