Chapter 36: The Elder Shrine
Angel is able to break out of the underworld where he had been trapped after getting thrown off the bridge by gargoyles along with Mariano back in the Cabal docks. Angel loses Mariano in the underworld but kept his confidence up and is the lone survivor in what was otherwise a death sentence for any other human being. Now Angel explores the Elder Shrine what will he find inside the shrine? Will he find Caleb? Will her find Dayvon and Luis? Will he find Maria? Or will he find Darkgaryl the one who tried to trap Angel by using his thoughts against him?
Angel teleports to the Elder Shrine and found himself in a prayer room surrounded by fiends that were quietly lying down. Angel tries to open the door behind him but the door would not budge, the fiends eventually sensed Angel’s and began to head towards him. Angel still had juice left in his thunderbolt which he uses to kill off the majority of the fiends while he used to flare pistol to finish off the last few of the creatures. In the back of the room Angel is able to find some more fuses for his thunderbolt and flares for his flare gun. He also finds a switch which opens the door that was previously locked which leads Angel to a hallway with multiple doors. There are three doors but only one opens so Angel heads inside only to see a combination of undead knights and ogres. Angel has a tough time at first as the room also has an upper level but he rips the sword of one of the knights and uses it to impale the remaining knights. Then Angel throws the sword onto one of the ogres killing it and then he burns the rest with the flare gun. Angel finds a switch at the back of the bottom level of the floor which opens one of the doors but a couple of Cabal Phantoms come out looking for Angel. With the help of his x-ray glasses however he’s able to see the phantoms and he defeats them. Angel heads back to the hallway to see which of the two locked doors have opened.
Angel finds the door to the right is open and the one to the left is still locked, Angel heads for the open door. He enters a semi-dark room with a big pool towards the end of the room, Angel heads down to the lower level where he finds some ogres who Angel kill off easily. He finds a switch in the area where the ogres were located and hears the other door opening but there is no way for Angel to get back up to where he was, there was no ladder and Angel was unable to jump back up onto the platform. Angel says “Well looks like I going to have to take to dip in the pool.” Angel dips into the pool where he swims until he finds the light above him where he resurfaces. However Angel finds himself resurfacing in a graveyard which is infected with zombies, no surprise there. Angel finds himself surrounded by zombies with nowhere to escape.
Angel enters the Elder Shrine hoping to get to the Elder Temple to meet Darkgaryl, get the anti-matter ball and get back to his current time to stop the glooba invasion on Earth. Meanwhile who’s this is Caleb he is also in the Elder Shrine although in a different part of the shrine. Caleb is exploring the shrine looking for any evidence of Darkgaryl but when he heads to a small wooden door to keep moving he is mysteriously assassinated with a crossbow bolt through his heart. However there was no sign of any cultists around or any of the creatures around. The assassin gets out of the room quickly after killing Caleb but who was this killer, was it Darkgaryl? Was there someone else involved that our heroes haven’t met yet? Or is Angel’s worse nightmare coming true by finding out that Maria is a turncoat? Angel had his own problems though he was surrounded by zombies and lots of them; until some of the zombies began to implode in front of him could it be Maria?
Angel looks ahead and it was indeed Maria looks like she escaped the grasps of the gargoyle to get to the Elder Shrine. Maria and Angel teamed up to kill off the zombies in the graveyard which the heroes assumed was the burial spot of the people the Cabal killed or sacrificed to Darkgaryl. Maria is happy to see Angel jumping on him and kissing him on the lips, while Maria was ecstatic about seeing Angel; Angel on the other hand wasn’t as happy still having those thoughts that he had seen during the mind trap. Maria asks Angel “Why the long face honey?” Angel says “It’s nothing it’s just that Mariano is gone. I got sent to the underworld and while I was able to escape he wasn’t as lucky.” Angel purposely doesn’t tell Maria about the mind trap he had experienced; Maria consoles Angel saying “I know it must be hard for you and I feel your pain, don’t worry he’ll be back once we complete our mission. Anyway how did you get to the underworld?” Angel replies “We were with Luis exploring the Cabal docks and while we were crossing the bridge to the bell tower a group of gargoyles pushed us down the bridge. I thought I was a goner but then I just got up and I was in this strange underworld place then the rest was history I got out while Mariano fell down to the water; I tried to ask him if he was ok but he didn’t respond which must mean he’s dead. Maria replies “Wow honey that’s quite a story but I have one as well, I was with all the other until a gargoyle grabbed me I had no idea where he was taking me. Before I knew it I was here in this graveyard left for dead.” Angel hugs Maria and asks her “You trust me right?” Maria replies “Yeah why do you ask?” Angel responds “Just a random question, just too many weird things taking place here biggest one is why did Caleb run away from us?” Maria replies “I don’t know hun, I just want to get out of this place it gives me the creeps.” Angel says “Yeah you’re right, hey I see a way out straight ahead a teleporter!” Our love couple is finally reunited and was heading inside the teleporter.
Angel and Maria go through the teleporter and end up in the room which was behind the third and final door in the hallway. They are met with a group of behemoths which they take out with the combination of Maria’s crossbow and Angel’s flare pistol. Once the room was cleared the two discover a dead body near the door to their left. The body however was that of Caleb’s and Maria quickly approaches the body sees the bolt that went through Caleb’s heart. However Angel notices something strange the crossbow bolt was exactly the same as Maria’s crossbow, he grew suspicious that perhaps Maria may actually be involved and he saw her acting very suspicious as well. Maria asks “Who could have done this it looks like he was targeted by an assassin and it wasn’t a group of baddies.” Angel then raises his pistol to Maria’s head and says “Yeah I wonder who could have done this with such precision, you wanna start explaining yourself like when you were going to stab me in the back.” Maria is shocked and scared when she hears those words come out of Angel’s mouth. Maria says “What are you talking about honey; you don’t think I killed Caleb?” Angel angrily says “Well the murder weapon is in your hands isn’t it? It looks like that mind trap was actually trying to tell me the truth about you!” Maria still scared says “Angel I would never kill you, just because I have the same weapon it could had been anyone, everyone uses the same crossbow here! Please Angel you gotta believe me on this one!” Angel says “I don’t know what to believe anymore and I don’t know who to trust neither.” Maria says “I don’t know what garbage Darkgaryl put in your head or what he wants you to believe but I love you and never would I try to kill you.” Angel says “The problem is that according to the future you are working with the Cabal and you try to shoot me, what does that tell me?” Maria becomes angry and says “That bastard Darkgaryl is trying play with your head and you’re falling for it. If you shoot that gun and kill me you are falling into Darkgaryl’s trap, you see that’s what he wants for us to separate and kill each other so he can overtake the rest of us to spread his evil. Only thing I’ll ask you is what do you believe Angel, you’re the one with gun you decide what you want to happen! Who do you believe me your future wife or some stupid illusion that this bastard is trying to put in your head!” Angel stutters and can’t decide what to do until he decides to lower his gun. Maria goes to hug Angel and reassures him she won’t turn on him.
Maria then asks Angel “How do you know Mariano is dead and didn’t actually survive the fall, did you check him?” Angel replies “No but ne never replied when I asked if he was ok why do you think he’s still alive?” Maria says “Yes I do and remember Caleb and Mariano didn’t necessary get along with each other. I’m not assuming anything but I smell a rat here. The mind trap you experience might be right about a turncoat existing but it may not be the person to expect it to be.” Angel says “Well we can’t be concerned about that right now, I’m just happy we are on the same side now lets’ go.” The two go ahead through the door Caleb was about to go through before getting killed. They enter a dark blue hallway where undead knights go after our heroes, our heroes are ready for the knights and they take care of them easily. When the continue through the hallway they hear a strange creature bouncing up and down behind them the creature hits Maria in the back then it stops to show itself. It was a spawn just like Dayvon and Luis had seen in the pain maze. The spawn jumps towards Angel but he is able to dodge the spawn and then shoots it with his thunderbolt which causes the spawn to explode. Angel says “What the hell is the blue glob thing, Maria are you ok?” Maria gets up and tells Angel she is ok she only went down for a moment. Then the duo continues their way down the hall they are met with more undead knights which they kill off easily then they find a door to the Elder Temple but it needs a gold key. Meanwhile a couple of behemoth try to take our heroes out but Maria kills them with her crossbow, Angel says in a suspicious tone “That’s pretty good shooting there honey!” Maria replies “What are you trying to say Angel? Angel responds “Nothing I’m complementing you on your shooting, that’s all.” The heroes head straight ahead where they see two paths the one to the left contains a spawn trying to ambush our heroes but Angel spots it and destroys it. The door simply leads back to a room that Angel has already explored, so they go take the path going right.
Angel and Maria see a hallway straight ahead which is all too quiet not a single enemy can be seen but the duo knew that meant the hallway had to be rigged with a trap. Angel starts to walk and to his suspicion the floor begins to open up and below was, Angel walks back when he sees the floor start to open up and says “Shit looks like we gotta find another path or use the pole to shimmy our way to the other side.” So the two jump up to the pole and begin to shimmy their way through to the other side. This would require plenty of upper body strength because if they fell it would be a toasty death for them. However as they got close to the other side the floor came back and when they made it to the other side the floor was already back where it was covering the lava. Angel says “I’ll be damned you could had just waited for the floor to reappear again, we used all that strength for nothing.” Maria says “Well at least it was a good workout for us and we did it together.” Angel replies “Glad someone finds pleasure in all this, well you’re right anyway we’re together and that’s what counts." However the small talk was cut short with the walls surrounding them opening with a knight and a fiend popping out. Angel takes care of the fiend using the trap to his advantage by activating the trap and getting the fiend to jump into the lava. Maria uses her sword skills and takes on the knight in hand to hand combat defeating it in the process. After killing the two enemies the duo finds a sliver key in the third wall that opened, Angel says “A key but it’s not the one we need so perhaps we need to go back to where Caleb was killed I saw another door in that room.” So the heroes negotiate the trap and wait until the floor reappears then the duo sprints across the hall.
Angel reunites with Maria however the reunion at first doesn’t come too sweet as Angel has his suspicions that Maria was going to turn her back on him. His suspicions became even stronger as he saw the dead body of Caleb shot with the same crossbow that was in Maria’s hand. Angel threatens Maria at first forcing Maria to pretty much beg Angel to believe her and she also convinces that what he saw in that mind trap was just that a mind trap set by Darkgaryl so he could separate the two to make his job easier to spread his evil. By a miracle Maria is able to convince Angel that she is indeed on his side and Angel once again puts his faith in Maria besides it was the love of his life. So the duo explores the shrine and they find the sliver key then head back to room where Caleb was dead. However our heroes would make a shocking discovering…
When Angel and Maria head back to the hall where Caleb was killed they see that the body was no longer there. Angel says “Well I believe you now Maria that’s the good news but the bad news is…” Maria cuts Angel saying “Yeah now we have a mysterious assassin who could be watching our every move.” Angel says “Yeah… that’s about what I was about to say… Anyway there’s the door to we need to open let’s get moving!” The duo heads through the door where they go down another blue hallway which was much lighter compared to the other side. Then three undead knights head for the duo; Maria heads in to take care of the knights, with her sword skills she kills all three knights. Then they see a gold key on the floor but then they get surrounded by undead knights along with death knights. Angel says “Ok… this is gonna to be a bit of a rough one here, any ideas honey?” Maria says “None here babe we just gotta fight or die trying!” Angel looks at the death knights saying “Hey tin heads want a piece of me, come and get it!” Angel grabs the sword of one of the knights using it to behead that knight; then the other two knights begin to shoot fireballs at Angel but Angel uses the sword to deflect the fireballs back at the knights burning them alive. Maria makes quick work of the undead knights that try to attack her and says “Well that takes of that honey, hey hun I love you!” Angel happily replies “I love you too I’m sorry I ever doubted your loyalty towards me, I guess I’m too much into spiritism that I’m gullible to demons as well.” Maria says “It’s fine babe I know you’ve been through a lot in this time traveling adventure. Angel says “I just never figured it would get this serious where the enemy tries to play with our emotions and those we love the most that make me sick to my stomach; I can’t wait to get my hands on Darkgaryl!” Maria responds “Yeah but our real target is the glooba emperor who sent us here and started this war on us.” The duo heads to the exit now that they have found the key.
Angel and Maria head back to the exit but before they get there they are met with resistance. They see a few behemoths on the way killing them on the way; then they see a combination of fiends and undead knights which they take of easily. When they head close to the exit they see a few ogres that Angel simply burns with his flare gun. However before our heroes could get to the exit Maria is hit by a skull blast from behind, Angel knew it could only be only one thing. It was a Cabal Phantom, with Maria down Angel had to face the phantom himself. The phantom shoots another skull blast at Angel who dodges it easily but then the phantom disappears out of thin air and Angel could not for the life of him find the phantom. The phantom reappears behind Angel who is unaware of all this but by some miracle Maria is able to warn Angel to look behind him. Angel looks behind him and indeed it was the phantom ready to take a slash at Angel, Angel reacts quickly and uses his thunderbolt weapon to zap the ghost away. Angel then says “Wow thanks honey but how did you know he was behind me if you couldn’t see him only me with my x-ray goggles.” Maria replies “I believe in spirits as well you know and I sensed it’s presence in fact I gotta tell you I actually saw it as well.” Angel says “Nah you joking right what did he look like?” Maria replies “He had a gray hood with a skull for a head along with a scythe basically he looked like or at least resembled the grim reaper.” Angel says “So my journey is completed I always wanted to find a fellow medium to be with me, Maria you’re a medium just like I am. We can see things others can’t although we see don’t necessarily see the same things but working together no ghost or evil spirit will hide from us. I’m convinced now that not only our love is true but it is destiny, we are destined to be together and we have to stick together if we are to win this war!” Maria cries tears of joy saying “I’m glad I found you I always had a crush on you but I was always scared to admit it. Now that I know I’m not the only one who can see things that are hidden and you can do the same I know now who I will marry. Angel will you marry me?” Angel shocked and blushing says “Maria marriage is a big step honey I love you but we got to get to know each other even better; I don’t want to make you feel bad but I got to get know you better, get to know the family you know we just need to just have some fun first.” Maria replies “I hear you babe I just don’t want to lose you I want you forever nobody is going to have you. I found my prince charming right here right now, never thought it would come at a trial of saving the world but I’m glad I met you.” Angel says “Thanks Maria that means a lot and you won’t lose me I promise that I want you as well. However…” Maria asks “However what babe?” Angel replies “What I was going to say was first we have to get out of this virtual world alive and make sure the Earth is saved before anything.” Maria laughs saying “Yeah you’re right no point having a relationship if we are dead or if the world is taken over by ugly ass aliens or cultists. Honey lets go inside the Elder Temple!” Angel says “Yup time to kick some medieval ass!” The duo prepares to enter the Elder temple.
Maria and Angel find that the corpse of Caleb was no longer where it was when they found it. Where did the body go or who took the body? The duo face many challenges in the Elder Shrine but during the challenges the relationship between Maria and Angel becomes stronger instead of weaker like Darkgaryl thought it would become. The duo gets attacked by a Cabal Phantom by the exit heading towards the Elder Temple. Maria gets knocked away by a skull blast from the ghost leaving Angel to deal with the ghost by himself. Angel dodges a blast from the ghost but then the ghost totally disappears from Angel’s view but somehow Maria was able to warn Angel that the ghost was behind him despite she did not have any x-ray glasses. After getting rid of the ghost Angel realizes that Maria is indeed faithful to him and she’s a medium like he is, Angel knows he has found his one true love and they need to stick together along with Dayvon and Luis if they are to survive along with Earth. Maria even goes as far as asking Angel for his hand in marriage but Angel declines her proposal at least for now because he wants to know her better although he’s gotten to know her well already. Angel wants to first complete the mission at hand before talking about marriage which is understandable for if Earth is destroyed or taken over it won’t matter anyway. What was waiting in the Elder Temple for our heroes and would Darkgaryl finally be defeated. Finally would our heroes regain the anti-matter ball and get back to their current time period where they belonged?