The Glittering Cave
Normally, I would have loved to carry its corpse all the way to the Ongneer to use as a host but, it was borderline impossible to carry a body this big and heavy to a place that far away.
Not to mention, I think the Ongneer won’t be able to break past its shell in the first place, so carrying its entire corpse back would be useless anyway.
While I still wanted to spend abit more time investigating it, I left it alone and gathered everyone to restart our exploration again.
“Alright everyone, we should go now. I hope you all got a little bit of rest at least.”
“I’m fine now! The leg twitching has stopped as well!”
Ralf did some light jumps to show that his stamina had recovered.
I may have taken the most damage but Ralf was definitely the most exhausted one, so if he looks fine, it should be okay to proceed again.
Me, Ralf, and Snow were the frontline and Esta, Mielle and Fecilia behind us; we took our usual formation and began on our way deeper inside the caverns.
The numerous ivy-like vines of some unknown plant dangled down from the ceiling of the cave and were constantly hitting us as we walked forward making it really hard to move with pace.
And the further inside we went, the more the number of vines that covered the corridor increased. Part of me wanted to burn it all to the ground but…….
Since there was a chance we might burn the fruit of skill that may be ahead of us, I was never going to take that risk so while keeping vary of the ivy, we cautiously continued to move forward.
“The ivy on the ground is increasing as well huh. Be careful not to get you leg stuck and fall.”
“Don’t worry. We are paying attention properly to the ground.”
“Chris! These dangling ivy vines from the ceiling feel like they might entwine around our necks! We should be more careful of those!”
“You’re right, if you fell while your neck was entangled, you’ll basically choke to death from being hung. Be careful of both up and down.”
It really was like we were pushing through waves of ivy.
Their roots were thick so you couldn’t just cut them off easily, and every step took a lot of effort.
Right when it was starting to become a bit too tiresome, we saw a light at the end of the tunnel and a open space past it.
I couldn’t sense any more monsters but, the light was so bright it was hard to believe this was inside the cave.
“Hey isn’t that place glittering a bit too much!? It’s not some monster doing it right?”
“I don’t sense any monsters ahead so no. I don’t know what’s the source of the light but, I think it should be safe.”
“You ‘think’? Man that’s too scary. Are you sure we can’t ask the girls to blast it all away with magic?
“Absolutely not. There’s a chance the fruit is near there as well. If I was okay with using magic, I’d have asked them to burn away the ivy first and foresmost.”
“I guess so………which means, we have to head in even if it’s dangerous eh!”
I still couldn’t figure out the reason behind the glittering cave but, as long as a monster isn’t involved, it should be okay.
Since Ralf was still hesitating, I passed by him and walked into the shining area first by myself.
The cave ended here and we might be coming outside——is what I thought due to the light, but the area beyond the corridor was still part of the cave.
The cause of this strong light……..was it these crystals?
“Chris, does it look safe?”
“Yes it is, so come here already. There’s glittering crystals all over the place that’s all.”
After hearing my words, Snow and Ralf followed me into the area and a little while later, the other three also came out from the corridor.
And around the same time, due to entering a bright area from a dark corridor, my eyes had not yet gotten accustomed to the light at first but I finally I began to get a good look of the place.
The ground was made entirely of black soil and had all sorts of plants growing out of there, and there was even a small lake inside as well.
This must be the rumoured subterranean lake I’ve heard so much about.
And in the centre of this lake, surrounded by various glowing crystals, was a floating island——-
And on that island grew one single stalk that was as big as a tree, and at the end of this giant stalk was oddly shaped, yet colourful, fruit hanging from it.
“Chris! Look at that!”
“Yeah, there’s a chance that that is in fact, the Fruit of Skill.”
“So that’s the fruit of skill…………it really did exist. I always thought it was no more than a fairy tale.”
“But, the small island is quite far away into the water. Should we make a ice platform here as well?”
“I suppose so. I’ll leave it to you three, as always.”
Finally, the fruit of skill was in my sights.
The last piece between me and Klaus.
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I could hear my heartbeat rise, and due to all sorts of emotions I strangely began to sweat a lot but………
I quickly calmed myself by taking a couple deep breaths.
“Since I’ve met you this the first time I’ve seen you look so visibly shook. Are you more emotional than even when you were fighting the Octopus monster and the Heracberg?”
“Probably. It’s not an exaggeration to say that I have been wanting this fruit so much that I’d die for it.
“………well, that certainly sounds like an exaggeration to me. How would you use the fruit of skill if you were in fact dead?”
“No it’s the other way around, there’s no point in living for me if I don’t get the fruit of skill. That is certainly not an exaggeration.”
Fecilia could only tilt her head in confusion unable to understand me but, well her reaction understandable for someone who doesn’t know of my circumstances.
Since the day my life was threatened and I had to run and hide in the Peixa forest, all I’ve wanted to achieve was my revenge against Klaus.
And to overtake the [Sword God] himself, I needed the fruit of skill at all costs.
And if I was unable to do so, I would be rendered unable to fulfil the goal I want to achieve the most in life——–which would mean, I had no reason to live.
……………if Ralf or Esta heard this, they’d probably feel very sad but, this is the plain truth. This has been raison d’être.
“phew………..alright, let’s go and grab that fruit, shall we?”
“Got it. This is our last objective of this entire expedition, barring going back of course.”
“Please leave making the ice platform to us.”
And so after what felt like a long, long expedition across the east area, we finally moved to collect the infamous fruit of Skill.
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