Ultimate Level 1

Chapter 121: Life or Death
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Chapter 121: Life or Death

Max stood there, waiting for the deal this thing inside him would offer. The sound of his teeth grinding against each other told him to stop clenching his jaw so tight.

What what is the cost?

There will come a time when I will require a life. You will take that life when I say it is time.

And if I refuse?

Max felt his stomach tighten. It wasnt him doing this action but whatever was inside him.

If you strike the deal and fail to live up to your part, I will no longer allow you access to me for some time. Imagine not healing, getting stronger, or finding skills to gain. What will your party do when you stumble and fall and cannot protect them?

Eventually, you will come begging to me, asking me to let you be free until the day you lose yourself.

I would rather die than allow you that.

Max could feel the conflict inside him. It knew he was telling the truth, and they were at an impasse.

There is no way I will allow you to pick someone at random and decide they should die. I will not kill a friend or someone innocent or

No one is innocent! Everyone has killed something! If you want to handle this fight alone, do so. Just know that their deaths will be because you were too weak.

Seth?

Looking up, Max hadnt realized he was staring at the ground. He saw Tanila and the other two watching him.

What does it want, Seth?

Moving his jaw to release some of the tension that had formed, Max groaned as he moved his head around, feeling all the tightness in his neck.

It wants me to kill someone when it chooses someone. It will tell me at its choosing, and I

You cant! exclaimed Batrire, moving closer to Max as she cut him off. How can you let it make that choice?!

I may not have a choice, Max replied. His frown was evidence of his displeasure with the problem. If I dont and one of you dies, how will I ever live with myself? Especially if I knew I could have prevented it.

Do not trade your soul or conscience for that! Batrire exclaimed again. None of us want you to ever trade that for us! Right?

She turned and looked at the other two behind her, and Tanlia and Fowl nodded in agreement.

All three of us would rather die than allow you to be enslaved to whatever would make a deal like that.

What if it was a murderer or someone bad? What it

No. Fowls voice was firm and as clear as a bell. Batrire is right. We chose this place. We will fight this. If we live or die, it will be a test of our skill as a team.

Fowl approached Max, grabbed his friends arm, and squeezed. Family doesnt trade lives. We fight for them. Today, we will live or die together, but we do it the right way no matter what happens. Do you understand?

As Max nodded, he could hear laughter inside him.

I shall enjoy watching this. Perhaps you will all live. Maybe you wont. If the moment comes and you find yourself with no other option, just ask, and I will consider our deal made.

I would rather die.

We shall see.

Max grunted and shook his head, trying to clear his mind so he could focus.

Ok. Lets figure out what we can do and how to win, Max said, giving a quick nod. What are our options?

Max didnt like the choices, but their options were limited.

Remember, it should be slow, but there is no guarantee it will be. Keep your distance and try to skirt the outside of the room. Use the two hundred yards of space we have to our advantage.

Fowl grunted and began to rotate his shoulders. Max is right. Also, you two look over there. Use those rocks to hopefully slow it down if it does come after you.

Tanila and Batrire nodded, scanning the massive floor once more.

Dry, slightly cracked brown dirt filled the massive circular room. The walls were a rock of similar color that rose over one hundred feet before ending in a mid-afternoon sky, complete with a sun that seemed to radiate heat. A few rock piles that were ten feet tall stood around the floor, each at least ten feet wide.

Ill focus on control. You just do what you can to stay Tanila stopped herself, realizing what she was about to say.

If you stumble upon this tale on Amazon, it's taken without the author's consent. Report it.

Dont worry, Ive got this, Fowl answered, tapping his plate helmet gently with his hammer. You all ready?

Everyone grunted, and Max could hear Fowl's deep breath before he charged across the yellow line.

The massive boss moved toward them, slow steps eating up the distance with each stride.

Max realized how far one hundred yards was as he and Fowl raced toward the boss, knowing there was no way things would be easy. 𝚏r𝐞𝗲𝚠eb𝚗o𝐯el.com

I got its front. You let me get its attention! Fowl shouted as he ran.

Throw a rock at it. Im sure it wont like that! Max yelled back as he moved off to the side.

Smiling to himself, Max saw Fowl put his hammer away and pull a rock out from his storage, preparing to throw it at the boss.

No way to miss that thing its massive

Fowl planted his feet and threw, his rock bouncing harmlessly off the boss, but for a moment, Max thought he saw the golem move faster.

Pulling his hammer back out, Fowl moved to position the boss, making it turn so its side would face Tanila and Batrire while Max was behind.

One shot one shot

The boss reached Fowl, dwarfing the tiny warrior as its rock foot slammed down near him, barely missing as Fowl rolled to the side, avoiding the stomp.

The ground erupted, sending up rocks and dust.

One shot the math works it has to.

Max gave the signal by lifting his halberd over his head and shaking it.

A stone wall appeared before him, ten feet long and slightly angled, leading up to the boss's back.

Max ran, driving himself up the ramp and leaping toward the boss.

[ Power Strike ]

[ Evasion ]

[ Regeneration ]

[ Berserker ]

Mid-air, as Max hurtled toward the boss, his vision shifted, and all he could see was the massive back side of his target. His attack had already started, the hammer side coming toward the bosss back as his vision and ability to think vanished.

The small part of his weapon struck, a massive sound of rock shattering filling the room as a four-foot wide crack splintered across the back of the golem, creating a fissure over a foot deep in its natural armor.

It tumbled forward, almost falling on Fowl, who darted out of the way of the massive golem.

Max landed on the boss's back, swinging repeatedly, raining down blow after blow upon it.

Chunks of rocks scattered in every direction, and a massive arm swung at him, dodged not because he cared about it but because his evasion skill made him move.

He jumped backward, landed on the ground, and lashed at the golem's leg. His first strike cracked its left leg, and the second one caused a good two-foot chunk to fall to the ground.

Another strike came at him, a leg this time, the golem somehow spinning, and Max leaped backward again, putting distance between him and the boss.

Max didnt notice the green flicker around him as he charged the boss, the evasion skill wearing off as he ran, hammering at the bosss leg again.

It had fixed itself and was upright, its body able to maneuver as rocks shifted against each other, allowing it to stand as he approached.

All Max could see was a rock that needed to be crushed.

His halberd connected with its massive arm as the creature swung, and a thunderous sound came as the two collided.

Max flew backward, a trail of rocks coming with him while his halberd was flung across the room.

A section of the golem's arm up to what one would consider an elbow was gone, smashed into fragments of random sizes.

Tumbling over and over, Max didnt register the pain in his body. Both arms were broken as he stumbled, trying to stand, a red view of the world still clouding his vision.

Batrire healed, and his regeneration kicked in as bones snapped back into place, cuts, and wounds sealed from the two forms of healing.

The golem moved toward Max, running with a noticeable limp. Its speed was reduced now, and Max began to charge the boss, with thirty yards between them.

With ten yards left, Maxs vision returned to normal, and he stumbled, seeing the boss coming at him, its arm raised high and ready to smash him.

With no time to spare, Max pulled his shield from his storage and prepared for the hit.

[ Armored Warrior ]

The bosss left fist slammed into him, a crack coming as Max felt his shield fracture under the weight of the blow. His legs buckled, the strength of the boss now vastly above his own, and he was driven into the ground.

For that brief moment, Max understood Fowl's pain when he suffered blows like this. It didnt hurt; he knew his hit points had doubled, and his body felt hard. He could easily take another hit but didnt want to waste the opportunity.

As the golems left leg came to kick him, Max rolled to the side, not wanting to be punted away, and looked around the room.

To your right! Fowl shouted.

His dwarven friend was smacking the bosss right leg with his hammer, small chips of stone coming free but doing no damage.

Looking toward the right, Max moved again, easily dodging the slow blows of the boss now that he could see them and react. About forty yards away was his halberd.

Max took off sprinting toward it and was halfway there when the ground began to shake.

He staggered sideways, the floor rising like waves on the water, growing bigger as they traveled past him. He could feel them coming and tried to maneuver up and down with them as best as possible, but it was more complicated than he thought it would be. Every time his foot touched the ground, the motion vibrated through him.

Glancing back, Max saw the boss had turned a black color headed toward him, and every step it took sent out shockwaves that acted like a pebble in a pond, rippling out in a circle.

Fowl was on the ground, bouncing up and down from the rapid rings of dirt and stone that rose up one or two feet beneath him.

The ground rose almost five feet high where Max was, requiring him to be on top of a wave to see his friend faltering.

The distance between him and the boss was rapidly shrinking, and Max knew if he didnt do something, it would catch him, and his defensive ability was over.

[ Haste ]

Cursing under his breath, Max activated his last ability, feeling power and speed flowing through his legs.

Like an arrow fired from a bow, he took off, navigating the rolling dirt floor, and scooped up his halberd from the shifting ground.

Looking backward once more, he saw the golem still coming.

Sighing, Max knew he needed to stay away and was unsure how long the bosss ability might take to wear off.

Running was his best option; he needed to get closer to his allies without bringing the boss and its ability to them.

He ran away from them for now, counting the seconds he had till Haste wore off.

Inside his head, he heard laughter. Gritting his teeth, Max fought back the dread that threatened to overwhelm him.

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