Arc 6 Chapter 93: Map reading adventure

They rode on the top of Blues large head in the small house that had been built for special guests. Only a few select people were allowed to travel with him. Inside the small house were several large beds fit for royalty and the large pantry had enough food stored inside to last over a year.

They were thankful for such a great place to stay while traveling it was like they were kings and queens traveling the world on an expensive ship with everything they needed only a few steps away.

During the trip, they spent their time sightseeing the large underwater world as it passed by and occasionally talking to Blue who was normally silent unless someone talked to him.

With Blue leading the way they had no problem with any sea monsters or sirens causing problems for them and were able to travel in peace.

The trip took over a week with Blue moving at a constant speed night and day. The speed was far faster than what their small ship could have done even if it were brand new.

***

[The others are not pleased with your failure.] Glowing words written by number 4 appeared on special paper in an unknown dark cave under the ocean.

“It’s only a small setback. We can finish the job we just need more time,” said a sweet female voice.

[Everything was destroyed! That place is no longer usable. The reason we wanted to use it was because it was in a remote place where others were supposed to not find out about it and it had a good layout for the rune placement. It is useless to us now that the runes are destroyed! The mermaids now know of the place and are watching it. It would be stupid to try and continue working there!]

“We can take care of the mermaids it’s no problem,” said the siren trying to protest.

[If you could have taken care of them the current problem we are facing would not have happened and I would not be talking to you right now. I had to convince the others that you may still be of help to us later in order to have them spare your life.]

“Thanks…I guess,” said the siren mumbling the last part.

[You have been spared for now but you better keep a low profile because if any of the others meet you they will not hesitate to kill you, especially number 3 he hates people who fail. If in the future we need your help you will accept the request without complaint to wipe this stain away. I’m going now. I suggest you remember my warning if you want to live.]

Several minutes passed before the Siren Queen lashed out at anything that was near her destroying it in her anger.

“Those damn cultist! Who do they think they are to boss ME, the true Queen of the ocean around like that! Damn those mermaids always getting in my way and ruining everything!”

***

“Did you make sure to grab the map the Queen left for you?” asked Blue.

“Yes we have it,” said Mileena holding up the map.

“Good, I can’t go any closer to the shore or I’ll get stuck and be unable to leave so you’ll have to swim the rest of the way there,” said Blue his voice booming.

“Thanks for the ride you were a real help,” said Maya.

“Hahaha, it was nothing don’t mention it,” said Blue his entire body vibrating from laughing.

“Well, I guess this is goodbye. Let’s go everyone,” said Akira jumping into the water.

Everyone else followed him into the water jumping from the top of Blues head that was just peeking out of the water.

The shore was not all too far away. Within ten minutes they were able to swim to the muddy beach and walk out of the ocean.

Akira turned around and looked behind him. Blue’s large body had already disappeared into the ocean and was long gone.

Several seagulls flew in the air above them letting out their cries of unhappiness at the four who had entered their territory and disturbed the peace.

“So… does anyone know where we are?” asked Mileena.

“No, even if we did know, we still don’t know exactly where the Werewolf clans are so it doesn’t matter much,” said Maya cleaning her glasses.

“We’ll have to travel inland a bit to find some landmarks on the map. Hopeful we’re near a city so we can get some information about this place and maybe even find a guide who knows the southern part of the Swamplands,” said Akira removing the special underwater breathing mask and putting it into his bag.

They decided to have a short rest in order to try and air dry some of their clothes but it didn’t help much because of the weather in the Swamplands.

With the humidity in the air added with the heat, it was a rather unpleasant place to want to live making everything feel sweaty and sticky.

They wrung out their clothes the best they could before walking away from the beaches and the angry seagulls in search of some type of landmark or a nearby city. But all they found was wide open grassy plains.

While Akira’s armor and shield slowly dried in the humid air they lost their sparkle and glow which was interesting to watch happen. He guessed that the sparkle and glow only happened when they were wet.

“Wait, are we in the right place? I thought this was supposed to be the Swamplands?” asked Varbu.

“I think we’re in the right place. See here? It looks like the northern part of the swamp continent is wide open grasslands, we should be around here somewhere,” said Akira pointing to a northern part of the map where the grasslands could be seen.

“Damn! Why did we have to get dropped off in the middle of the grasslands and not in the south?” asked Varbu.

“We’re lucky that we were able to get here as fast as we did with the help of Blue. Now that we have an idea where we are, we should head to this town and see what we can find there,” said Akira pointing to a small dot on the map.

“Can I do the map reading for the trip to the city?” asked Mileena.

“Do you know how to read the map?” asked Akira.

“I was taught how to read them several years ago!” said Mileena puffing her small chest out.

“Then I see no reason why you can’t do it for the short trip to the city,” said Akira.

No one else objected so they continued traveling with Mileena leading the way.

A week later.

“Mileena are you sure you are reading the map correctly?” asked Maya.

Both Varbu and Akira were wondering the same thing.

“Show me where we are on the map,” said Akira.

Mileena pulled the map out of a small pouch she had at her side and unfurled it.

“Right here? I think,” said Mileena pointing to a certain spot on the map.

“Right there?” both Akira and Varbu repeated her words in shock.

“What is it?” asked Maya coming over to see.

“Sigh… I’ll take care of the navigation from here on,” said Akira shaking his head in amazement.

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“What I thought I was reading it just fine,” said Mileena.

“You dummy you were reading the map sideways,” shouted Maya exasperated.

“What should have been a few days travel has turned into multiple weeks if we want to go to that town now,” said Varbu.

“No use worrying over spilled milk. We can only do what we can to salvage something out of this. Luckily there is another smaller town on the map in this area. We’ll have to get resupplied their and see what information we can gather there,” said Akira.

***

“Looks like we’re entering a swampy area that we have to pass through before we can get to the town,” said Akira looking at the map and the surrounding landmarks.

There were several small islands of dry land and several large Bald cypress trees populating the knee-high green swamp water that was everywhere. There was no telling how deep parts of the swamp was.

“It smells,” complained Mileena holding her nose shut with one hand.

“The faster we get through it the faster you can have some fresh air,” said Akira jumping onto one of the moist islands.

“Be careful these things are a bit slippery…”

Splash! Akira’s warning was all in vain as he watched both Mileena and Maya fall into the swamp both of them clawed their way out back onto dry land sputtering with green algae all in their fur.

“Ugh! You stink get away from me,” complained Mileena pushing Maya away form her.

“You stink worse than me!” said Maya. Mileena sniffed her arm and scrunched her nose at the bad smell.

“Let’s hurry up you two,” said Varbu as he passed them trying to hold his breath to not get hit with the bad smell.

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When they were halfway through the swamp they were stopped by Akira.

“Something moving in the water.”

Everyone’s eyes darted to the nearby water searching for movement.

Fwhssssssh! Crack!

Several finger-sized short bursts of high pressured water shot out of the water at where Akira was standing seconds before. They missed and hit the tree behind him cutting large holes into the tree’s trunk, cutting it in half.

“We’ve got to get to the other side before we get surrounded and pierced by whatever it is that’s attacking us,” said Akira leading the charge forward.

Bam! Bam! Several water arrows were shot at Akira trying to stop him but they were all blocked by Akira’s new shield as he jumped to the next dry island.

In front of him were several small black snakes that were swimming out of the water and occupying the next island trying to block his path forward.

[Baby Blackhorn swamp snake lvl 35]

Before they could launch another attack Akira jumped forward and used [Sword Slash] sending a blue light rushing forward cleared a path for Akira and the others to land.

Varbu and the girls were following right behind him running and jumping as fast as they could while trying to dodge the attacks of the small snakes that were hiding under the water.

The [Blackhorn swamp snakes] were rather easy to take care of due to their weak bodies the only problem was the large number of them living in the swamp, along with their deadly high powered water arrow attack.

With the help of Varbu’s fireballs, they were able to kill over 100 [Blackhorn swamp snakes] and reach the last island before reaching dry land.

Akira jumped into the air but as soon as his feet left the ground his gut instincts told him to stop his jump so he grabbed onto a branch of a nearby tree and stopping his movement.

Swoosh! A large black scaled head the size of a super-sized watermelon with a sharp gleaming horn shot out from under the water.

[💀 Blackhorn Queen lvl 39]

Its mouth snapped shut only to bite the empty air. It’s large and long body slammed back into the water. It was only a few seconds later before the [Blackhorn Queen] shot back out of the water with its horn pointed at Akira who was still hanging from the tree branch over the water.

Akira hastily swung his legs forward and grabbed the branch with his feet holding onto it like a lazy sloth. The [Blackhorn Queen] horn sliced through the air trying to pierce Akira’s bottom only missing by a few feet.

Varbu acted immediately and shot out a large fireball which slamming into the [Blackhorn Queen’s] neck drying up its scales and causing large burns.

The [Blackhorn Queen] retreated back into the water to extinguish the flickering flames that clung to its scales.

Akira took those few seconds to swing from the branch back to the island so he could protect everyone. As soon as he landed a large water arrow the size of his arm shot out from the water.

Akira leaned his body and shield to the right in order to block the attack and was knocked off his feet from the pressure and the slippery ground. He slammed into a tree behind him stopping his movement as well as knocking the wind out of him.

Swoosh! The [Blackhorn Queen’s] headshot out of the water and headed straight for Akira.

Fwoosh! A large fireball slammed into its face stopping its attack as it cried out in pain.

“Thanks,” said Akira standing back up. Regaining his breath he used the skill [Shadow chains] to restrain the [Blackhorn Queen] for several seconds.

Mileena darted forward dodging the smaller water arrows from the pipsqueak snakes and jumped into the air holding both her daggers out high above her head and slammed them into the [Blackhorn Queens] eyes robbing it of its eyesight.

This vicious attack that Mileena liked to used was jokingly given the name ‘Eye gouger’ by Akira while they had traveled to the swamp continent. It was an extremely brutal attack almost making you feel sad for the enemy… almost.

Mileena was knocked away from the [Blackhorn Queen] from its pained struggling as it tried to break free of the shadow chains.

Akira jumped forward and grabbed her hand pulled her over to him stopping her from falling into the water.

Several green wind arrows shot past them and pierced right through the body of the [Blackhorn Queen] body.

With a shout, Varbu flexed his muscles and jumped forward bashing his quarterstaff into the [Blackhorn Queens] head.

Boom! An explosive fire erupted from his Quarterstaff as it hit the head causing both blunt and fire damage.

Bam! The head slammed into the moist ground of the island where it lay stunned.

“Stand back!” shouted Akira.

A blue X shot forward and cut cleanly right through the [Blackhorn Queen] neck that had been damaged and weakened by the fire from Varbu and the wind arrows from Maya.

Ding!

You have killed [💀 Blackhorn Queen]!

Level up!

Your Level is now 40!

+3 Toughness.

Nine colored deadly Meep fish scale armor special stat unlocked: +5 to Agility.

King Cockleshell shield special stat unlocked: +10 Vitality.

Akira’s hand grabbed the coins and other items on the ground and stuffed them into his bag before standing up and running forward taking less than a few seconds to do it.

“Let’s go,” said Akira, jumping towards the dry land.

They all let out a sigh of relief when they were far enough away from the swarm of snakes.

“I hope the swamplands aren’t like this place otherwise it will be a pain to travel,” said Mileena walking next to Akira.

“Man you stink. You really need to take a bath,” said Akira holding his nose closed and jumping away from Mileena.


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