Chapter 18: A Ritual with a price part 1
According to the book that we read about the relic, it was an item that enhances the user’s power over the world of dreams & nightmares. They made it years ago beneath the old windmill ruins before the city came as it is. We gave those hunters the slip… Hopefully; they don’t follow us here; they are adamant about taking us out.
“Quinn. Nice job with those hunters!” I smiled.
“Still, I am worried about them still searching for us.” I shouldn’t have ‘take’ that book with me… I thought they would not worry about one simple book.
“Elleri…” I heard someone calling me. “Did you steal the book?”
“No, I didn’t ‘steal’ the book. I’ve borrowed it.”
“Elleri… If they put out a class 3 alert on us for stealing a ‘simple’ book? Don’t you think we are being held responsible for stealing the book?” Even Quinn isn’t letting me off that easily.
“You ignore my warnings and remained in the city.” That voice… Tabitha?! How did she…? “You think just returning the book would be the end of it?”
“Look, I’m sorry, Tabitha. But what is important-” The woman pulls her great sword, the runes are glowing on her sword.
“You should have left the city while you have the chance. It is too late for you all.” The woman chanted her spell.
“Sleep!” It… It did not affect the woman.
“Your dream walking powers will not work on me. My mind is sound enough to repel your attempt.” Oh, darn it…. It looks like we have to fight her.
The woman fired a lighting spell which I used the shard to absorb the energy… reflecting will not work since the hunter has enchanted her blade with those runes. It also doesn’t help she is blind and sense our movements the minute we go after her.
I construct a replica of her blade and block the first strike from her. The woman is powerful, but I am stronger!
“Puny human, you are no match for me.” The woman drives me back.
“Got you!” Mira held her down in a headlock. I’ve pulled out my sleep dart and fired at her. A second one for good measure.
“You… Monsters…” There! There! You’ll be sleeping for a long time. I know she is powerful, but we don’t have the time to fight her. How did Mira sneak up on her, by the way?
“Nice job, Mira!” I nodded my head.
“She is asleep for now… Knowing her, it may last 30 minutes.” My sleep dart is potent enough to put a grown animal to sleep. If the dose is too little, they may be dizzy for a bit. Too much, well? They wouldn’t call them sleep darts if people die from them. “Let’s move! We have little time.”
“On that, we agree!”
The chamber where the relic sleeps
“There it is.” We found the relic in the middle of the room. It is animating dark energies from its center.
Hmm? I heard a voice.
Come to us…. Let us offer you… power.
“Guys, did you hear that?” Quinn can hear it, too. That voice is coming from that relic.
Dream walker… we offer this power. The power to transcend worlds itself. Come to us… Embrace the power. We shall offer you this.
“I would rather destroy you!” Mira whips out her hammer, but I moved in front of her, raising my arms as I did.
“Mira! Stop! Think about this… If you destroy the relic, there is no telling what will happen.”
“That relic is cursed. I fully well what happens if we touch such a thing.”
“I agreed. But we cannot leave it alone, either. It will tempt the next unlucky soul that comes in. It will be worse than destroying it.” I move closer, touching her hammer. “Let me study it. I can cast a containment spell that handles curses like this. Or you can destroy it and risk unleashing apocalypse, you choose!”
While Mira was reflecting on it, I notice Quinn is not… He is getting near the relic; I grabbed and quickly pulled him away from it.
Why do you refuse us… To reject the power…. Is to reject yourself. You’ll need us!
“Quinn!” His eyes are dark and glazed over… that relic is tempting him with the promises of power. My will is strong to repel the promises that relic is offering me… Quinn, however…
“Quinn, are you alright?” I turned to Mira, handing Quinn back to her.
“I need to read the ancient text. I won’t take long and then we can get out of here.”
“Just hurry.” Quinn is reaching out to the relic… I need to hurry.
I scour the wall, looking for clues about how to handle the relic and how to break its curse. I found a mural of a ritual… they knew it as “They who dream reality’.
It is an ancient ritual where the wielder of the relic must drink 3 potions before it is safe to use. Primal, Dream, and Spirit… then the user can wield its power without… succumbing to madness?
Should the user try to use the relic without the proper preparations... It will consume the mind, body, and spirit of its user, turning into a lifeless husk. It will then take over the user and wreak havoc across the land.
After writing what I’ve learned as well the ingredients of these potions. I turned to Mira… Mira?
“Mira? Are you all right?!” I found her lying down on the ground. She is coming too.
“Don’t let him…” Oh, no… As I turned around, Quinn already had his hand on the Relic!