Atlas and Lotte trudged through the deep snow, towards the city of Disceath. The blizzard had not stopped since they arrived and the airship was no longer functional. They had searched every corner in the Academy for an entrance to the Ice Crystal Temple, but didn't come across a way down.
"We should abandon the mission... we don't really need the replacement Crystal energy..." Lotte sighed. Atlas ignored her and walked on ahead. "Atlas..." Lotte called out.
Atlas carried on walking toward the city in silence, and Lotte reluctantly followed him. It took them almost half a day to reach the doors to the Crystech Spire. The snow was piled up against the door, so Atlas smashed a glass window and jumped inside, Lotte climbed down after him.
"Finally, we're here" Atlas sighed, as he brushed the snow off of him.
"So now you speak?" Lotte shrugged.
"Hmm?" Atlas turned and looked at Lotte confused. "What do you mean?" He asked.
"Out there, when we were crossing the lake, you ignored me..." Lotte frowned.
"I..." Atlas pondered. "I didn't hear you, I'm sorry" He smiled.
"Oh..." Lotte smiled. "I forget that you don't have ears like mine" She chuckled. Atlas smiled and hugged Lotte.
"What did you say back there?" Atlas asked.
"Oh... just that we don't really need the Ice Crystal's energy, Roisin already has it" Lotte shrugged.
"That's true, but it could help speed the creation of a Crystalla" Atlas smiled. "Plus, I need to see... if Rychard did anything like he did back at the Academy" He frowned as he looked up at the large atrium staircase.
"I won't hurt, I guess. We could also permanently shut down the Crystech Network from here too, maybe limit the range of this Inferno guy's influence" Lotte nodded.
"Yeah, and maybe get an advantage from whatever tech Rychard was working on" Atlas smiled, as he headed over to the staircase. Lotte followed close behind, as the wind howled through the broken window.
It took a few minutes to reach the top of the atrium, the temperature higher up was even colder, due to several of the windows being shattered from the blizzard. Atlas and Lotte headed over to a doorway, but it was locked with a fingerprint scanner.
"Can't we catch a break?" Atlas sighed, before summoning his Celestial Blade and pushing the sword into where the lock would be, as he did, he heard a bestial roar from behind the door.
"Uh..." Lotte stepped back from the door, as she did, something from the other side of the door grabbed the blade and yanked at it, pulling Atlas straight into the door and knocking him out.
"ATLAS!" Lotte shouted, the beast behind the door began banging against the door, as cracks began to appear around the door frame. Lotte quickly pulled Atlas away from the door and readied her Celestial Spear.
The door frame collapsed as a large bipedal wolf, with cybernetic augmentations stood behind it.
"What the fuck" Lotte muttered, as she threw the Celestial Spear at the wolf, knocking it backwards through a window. Lotte stood in silence as she heard more bestial cries from upstairs. "What was that thing?" Lotte asked herself, before looking down at Atlas.
Lotte sighed, as she pulled Atlas into a nearby office and barricaded the door. She pulled out her communications device, to call for an emergency evacuation, but the signal had dropped, due to the harsh weather.
She paced around the room, looking out of the windows at the almost blank white vista. All she could hear was the lonely howling of the wind. She grabbed a coat from a nearby rack and placed it on Atlas to keep him warm, before sitting down against a cubi