Chapter 398: Ice Cave
Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
Not meant for humans?
Angor and Shadow exchanged a puzzled look and waited for the woman to explain.
To Venees, she would die rather than walking on this dangerous path. And she wasn’t going to keep it a secret now.
“Each level of Dark Castle has a certain ‘theme’. For example, B9 is Blood Prison…”
There were 18 more levels under Dark Castle.
B1 was the Corpse Forest; B2 was Spirit Realm; B3 was Soul Exile; B4, Swarm Nest; B5, Ice Cave; and B6 to B18 were all prisons.
“From here to B6 are prison areas. I don’t think the apprentice guards can stop you, but starting from B5, we’ll start facing danger. The most troublesome ones should be B2 and B3. They are meant for souls and spirits… not human trespassers.
“I can take you till there, but I’m not going into those two floors. There’s no way I can survive in there. Just… kill me. That’s a better death.”
“So B3 and B2 are very dangerous. What exactly are in there?” Shadow asked.
“I’ve never been there myself,” Venees said while she shook her head. “But I saw B3 from a portal before. The entire place is full of souls. I mean, thick crowds of souls. You can’t walk past them without bumping into any, so your invisibility won’t work. The only way across is to fight them off.
“As for B2… It used to be Lady Isabelle’s secret training room. There are many soul barriers she left behind. There’s a rumor that Lady Isabelle left a part of her soul in there which contained her knowledge, but it was proved a lie. Now, everyone knows for sure. A very powerful Soul Manipulator apprentice once went in there and came out with his brain broken.”
After listening to her explanation, Shadow spoke through Spirit Bond. “I think she’s telling us the truth. But we have to climb the levels. What do you say? Do you know how to deal with souls?”
“Not really. I’m an illusionist,” Angor said.
“What do we do then? I’m completely useless in this situation. Can you use your illusions to trick souls?”
“Yes… for ordinary souls. But as she said, the floor is packed with souls. My illusions won’t work well like this.”
They remained silent for a while since no one knew what to do.
“There are no other portals except this one?” Shadow asked Venees.
“Each level has a portal. But… since this one is closed, we can assume that all the others are the same. Whoever in the control room can shut them all at the same time.”
That left them only one way up.
“‘She’ might want me dead, since she… really hates my teacher. And if you have blond hair and blue eyes… she’s gonna treat you in the same way. I don’t think she’ll show mercy and let us out,” Shadow said. He put a hand on Angor’s shoulder and shook his head as he added, “Sorry about dragging you into this. But I don’t think she’ll actually come and personally deal with us, or use her true strength, which means we still have hope.”
“Let’s do this.”
Venees had no choice since her shadow was in Shadow’s hands now. “I can’t stop you, but as I said, I’ll stop in front of B3. Please don’t force me. Unless… you can do something to ensure my safety.”
As a level-1 apprentice, Venees would meet a quick death if she approached the wandering souls. Still, she had to move ahead now.
Before they could begin, Shadow called and stopped her. “I’ll take the lead. Mask, watch our back. As for you… What’s your name again?”
“Okay. You stay between us and tell us where to go. Careful with your words. One wrong move and I’ll kill your shadow,” Shadow took out the small sack again as he threatened her.
Shadow made this decision because his Bloodline-enhanced body would work better against potential hazards compared to Angor. At least that was what he believed.
Venees nodded and accepted the order. “Go ahead for now. There are no traps on these stairs between floors.”
As she said, they proceeded swiftly until they reached the entrance gate of B8.
“Don’t touch the door. Use fire to light that lamp nearby.”
Shadow complied and didn’t notice anything. “It didn’t work?”
“Blow it out again and you’ll see the door,” Venees said and moved to snuff out the fire.
Angor dragged her back and asked Shadow to do it instead.
When the lamp was extinguished, they saw a door emerging from the wall.
“This is B8, the Water Prison. But there are no prisoners right now. I think we only have one apprentice watching this area.”
They walked through the prison and arrived at another blood bathroom. But they didn’t see anyone in here.
Shadow scowled at the hanging corpses and turned away.
“There’s a button that triggers another portal,” Venees said, “and if it doesn’t work, we can tell that Lady Butterfly has shut off all portals.”
“I’ll check it out,” Angor offered. He believed he knew better about magic arrays.
A moment later, Angor moved back from the button. “There is a portal. And no, it doesn’t work anymore.”
It meant Venees spoke the truth. Their only way out was to climb the floors on foot.
They left this floor and moved to the stairs toward B7, during which they never saw the “apprentice guard” mentioned by Venees.
They kept moving. Both B7 and B6 were empty.
Venees visibly grew nervous. There was only one explanation to this—that the guards already received the message and escaped.
At this moment, she and the two intruders were the only ones trapped underground. Venees felt desperate about her fate.
Meanwhile, Shadow and Angor also realized the situation.
“Welp, she’s not letting us go easily,” Shadow moaned through Spirit Bond.
They previously thought about kidnapping the guards as hostages. It seemed that the option no longer existed.
After walking through another wooden door, they were welcomed by freezing air.
“We’re at Ice Cave,” Venees said.
“What are we expecting here?” Shadow asked.
“… When Lady Isabelle was still here, she used this floor to train her soul. And it was left unused since she left until my teacher brought some cheap materials and stored them here several years ago.”
“So it’s an icebox?”
“You can put it that way, yes.” Venees nodded.
“Cheap materials… What exactly? Do you have Mystic Fog Strings, High Bronze, and Meteorite?” Angor asked.
Shadow glimpsed at Angor. He knew Angor was looking for materials, but he didn’t expect Angor to ask about them in such a situation.
“I don’t know their names,” Venees said as she considered. “But I think there are enough materials kept here, if you only look for cheap ones, that is.”