Floor 1 Absolute Trust
Three figures were travelling inside the forest, running agilely along the rugged ground. Seemingly distracted, the girl following in the rear kept looking behind. The distraction eventually got her tripped by a broken twig. When she was falling——
Leonard: Watch out!
Elpis: ...Thanks, Leonard.
Zack: Still haven’t recovered from the exhaustion?
Elpis: No...I just…
Leonard: Just worrying about your baby, right?
Elpis, Leonard and Zack decided to go back to the Eldus’s base for their fellows, who were held hostages by Enlil the Eldus. Before the departure, Elpis had entrusted her baby to Cang Bi the runedragon and let him suppress the abnormal energy with the power of runedragon.
Still, as a mother, Elpis couldn’t let go of the anxiety, and her actions had completely reflected her thoughts. Leonard, who saw it through in her, reassured her by pressing her shoulders and looking into her eyes.
Leonard: Just believe in Cang Bi!
Elpis: “I can see he really trusts Cang Bi...Leonard rarely puts his faith in others like that…”
Elpis: ...Right. I believe in him.
Elpis pulled herself together. At this moment, Zack broke his silence.
Zack: Then what’s our plan now?
Leonard: Of course rescuing Astrid and the others!
Zack: But Enlil must be well-prepared for the war, and she might have traps ready for us. With our number, the only possible outcome will be death if we go directly against her.
Elpis: That won’t be necessary. We can fight with our advantage.
Floor 2 A Distracting Raid
At the Eldus’s base, Enlil the pink-haired Eldus was standing on the cross-shaped podium of the central skyscraper, gazing at the collapsed building on her left torn down by Cang Bi. Despite the sweet lovely smile on her face, there was nothing but cruelty in her eyes.
The podium where Enlil was standing was the only point connecting the eastern, central and the western areas. Meanwhile, a large group of figures assembled at the center and was trapped by a light cage. At this moment, two Eldus approached Enlil, dragging a severely wounded earthling.
After tossing the earthling into the cage roughly, the two Eldus bowed at Enlil and reported respectfully.
Eldus A: Lady Enlil, all the escaped earthlings have been captured except the combat division.
Eldus B: Should we continue the pursuit?
Remaining silent, the smiling Enlil looked at Astrid the earthling, who was lying next to her without the left eye. To force Elpis to bring the baby back, Enlil held the remaining earthlings hostages as leverage.
Lifting Astrid up, Enlil softened her voice to speak while stroking Astrid’s blood-stained cheek.
Enlil: No need. They’ll come back.
BOOM! BOOM! All of a sudden, multiple explosions took place at the surroundings, brightening up the whole base.
Eldus A: This is the noise of explosion...Those earthlings must be messing around! Lady Enlil, we’ll send a reinforcement to strike back now.
Just when the Eldus were about to leave in groups, Enlil stood up and told them to stop. All the Eldus looked at her in confusion, who signalled them to shush. With her eyes closed, she listened closely then cracked a grin.
Enlil: I know it’s your trap, my dearest Elpis.
Enlil spoke out loud, but she got nothing in response. Displeased, she pulled Astrid’s hair and pointed a knife before her right eye.
Enlil: I know you’re here. Stop hiding and show yourself, or your friend here is gonna suffer again.
Enlil pushed the knife further and cut Astrid’s eyelid to bleed, who then moaned painfully. Just when Enlil was about to continue the torture, a voice stopped her.
Elpis: Stop hurting my friend!
Floor 3 A Trap in a Trap
Elpis revealed herself from the skyscraper on the right, carrying something wrapped in a cloth. Her young face was written with seriousness and fear.
Enlil: That’s my good girl. Come over and give me your baby.
Elpis: ...Will you spare us if I do so?
Enlil: Of course. I’m not interested in killing you all. Just give me the baby and I’ll set you free. Isn’t it a win-win situation? So come over.
Elpis: ...No, I ain’t going. There are too many Eldus on your side. I...I’m scared…
Enlil: “Her mind is unstable. She might break the clone inside the baby…”
Enlil: Alright, I’ll come to you then.
After leaving the wrecked Astrid to two Eldus, Enlil walked towards Elpis from the shiny area to the shade. At this moment, she glimpsed at a reflection on her right.
Enlil: “This is...Leonard’s rifle!”
Enlil guarded herself immediately, but things didn’t go as she expected. The shot wasn’t aiming at her, but the building behind her. The blue light fired from the rifle crushed a corner of the building, causing it to collapse towards Enlil.
Leonard’s shot was not supposed to tear down the entire building. It collapsed because Zack had wrecked the structure by explosions, which explained the noise earlier.
Elpis: “This is our advantage. We know the structure of the base and how to fight more than the Eldus do!”
Floor 4 Resistance Out of Expectation
Eldus A: Lady Enlil!
Eldus B: Darn it! How dare you tools defy us! I’m gonna kill you all!
The Eldus were enraged when they witnessed Enlil being buried alive, and they were about to vent the anger at the severely wounded Astrid. However, two strands of dark mist entangled the two Eldus and threw them onto the wall.
Astrid: Zack...Stupid...Why did you come back...You guys could be freed…
Zack: There’s no way we would abandon you...You folks are my family…
While Zack was focusing on Astrid, he didn’t notice that an Eldus was about to attack him from behind——
Clank! Luckily someone guarded Zack’s six o’clock, shielding him from the Eldus’s spell attack.
Leonard: The battle hasn’t ended yet...No...The battle has just begun…
A swarm of hostile Eldus came from everywhere to the podium. Every single one of them wished to crush all the earthlings. In the meantime, Leonard destroyed the light cage and shouted at those confused earthlings.
Leonard: Brace yourself and fight back if you don’t wanna die! Defeat those Eldus who enslave us!
Leonard’s speech ignited the battle spirit within the earthlings, who had their fear-controlling spell lifted by Enkidu. As their minds were liberated, all of them chose to rebel against the Eldus.
The war between the earthlings and the Eldus began. With the advantage in number and their high spirits, the favour soon fell on the earthling side. However, Leonard sensed something wrong.
Leonard: “Elpis...Elpis isn’t here!”
A dominating power shrouded the whole battlefield in just a blink of an eye. All present Eldus and earthlings could feel a soul-chilling terror, as if they would be shattered if that power moved.
Leonard: “Who...Who possesses this power...It couldn't be...”
Enlil, who was supposed to be buried alive, walked over with dirt and blood all over her. Innocence and purity could no longer be found on her face. Instead, she looked like a bloodthirsty demon. Right now, Enlil was holding Elpis hostage, threatening her with the sharp claws grown from her nails.
Enlil: Stop or I’ll kill her.
Elpis: Everyone just let me be!
Leonard: “Damn it! Even burying her alive couldn’t kill her! What the heck is she!”
Enlil: Tell me where the baby is, and I might spare your life.