Chapter 333. Final Wave (3)
I knew that the dungeon was mysterious in many ways, but it was hard to understand how a single floor of a dungeon could have the area three times the diameter of Earth.
Not to mention, each monster in this place was big enough to end a large city or even a small country. But there wasn’t just a few of such monsters, this entire floor was swarming with monsters like these!
“Just how did you bring them here?”
[I moved a world that was waiting for its doom after losing its power.]
“An entire… world?”
[Yes. Not all worlds are classified as winner or loser. If a Hero escapes to the dungeon foreseeing his defeat, both the invader’s world and the defender’s world will end. In addition, if the power isn’t directly taken from a Hero, the world’s power may suddenly disappear. In other words, just because one side has come out victorious, it doesn’t mean that the winning world will survive.]
It was something I considered before. I already knew that Loretta was a Hero who came to the dungeon after losing with her power intact. The other administrative guild masters were the same, and Kain was surely not the only runaway Hero among explorers.
After these Heroes’ defeat, extinction was the natural fate of the defending world, but what about the attacking world?
If mutual destruction was the result of their struggle for survival, what could be more depressing? I couldn’t cheer them on, but in the end, they were also victims of this senseless competition for survival.
[The dungeon had to prepare trials for its challengers, and these worlds rejoiced in knowing that there was a way to survive. Since both sides had something to gain, the dungeon is able to offer such an environment to explorers.]
It was truly laughable. The dungeon, the attackers, the defenders, all of them. Who wouldn’t find it funny?
“This isn’t the only floor like that, right? Sherafina… Just what is your…”
I stopped mid-sentence and swallowed my words. A thought suddenly crossed my mind. If Sherafina moved over entire worlds, wasn’t it the dungeon maintaining these worlds?
If Sherafina had such a great power, why did she need to nurture Heroes and explorers through the dungeon? Couldn’t she have solved it with her strength directly? Why did she need to create this system known as the dungeon?
[This is the first time since the dungeon’s founding that a world-class floor has been opened to an explorer. To prevent the dungeon’s loss of energy, everything on this floor is for one-time use. Though burdensome, it is a needed sacrifice to achieve the dungeon’s goal.]
[As very little of the dungeon’s power has been used, the dungeon has very little control over it. Do watch out for danger.]
“Thanks for the advice.”
I smiled bitterly at Sherafina’s kind message. The timing of her message was perfect as though it was an excuse she had prepared beforehand.
Monsters in the vicinity charged towards me, as though I was their ticket to freedom. The sky was filled with countless number of dragons, the earth was filled with antlions and other massive monsters hidden underground, and the sea was littered with super-sized krakens and other sea monsters. This entire world was my enemy.
“I do feel sorry for you all, but sadly, we can’t join hands and be friends at this point.”
I grabbed my spear tighter. The several dozen meter long spear blade of lightning cut through the air and cleanly severed the head of a dragon.
“This older brother is busy. Let’s hurry up.”
I announced as I spread my mana out and increased my detection range. Currently, the most important task was to reach the end of the dungeon. I could think about other things later.
“Looks like the stairway to the next floor isn’t nearby. Guess I’ll have to clean this place up before I go.”
[I am Dortu. Dortu will help Master clean up.]
In general, metals have high thermal and electrical conductivity. Although copper was the most widely used metal in practice, it was silver that has the highest conductivity for heat and electricity. It was only because of their high cost that electrical wires used copper.
However, this was before mana or monsters appeared. With the advent of monsters, Earth came to discover new metals, and silver quickly had to give up its place as the number one conductor of heat and electricity. But of course, because of these new metals’ sky-high cost, copper was still the most commonly used metal.
In any case, Dortu had the ability to make a metal with higher thermal and electrical conductivity than any of the metals found on Earth. Not only that, his metal could transfer energy without any loss, and he could even turn heat energy into metal.
What was so amazing about Dortu’s ability wasn’t that he could infinitely produce gold. It was that he could make metal with any property he desired.
[I am Dortu. Dortu will now make electricity torture hell.]
“Sorry Dortu, but your naming sense sucks.”
I couldn’t help but cut in.
[I am Dortu. Dortu will not make it.]
“Don’t sulk and make it, Dortu.”
[… I am Dortu. Dortu will now make electric hell.][1. He says this in English.]
Did he think it would sound cooler if he said it in English? Sorry, Dortu, but you’re wrong… By the way, what happened to ‘torture’? … Don’t tell me you don’t know how to say it in English?
From a single point in the air, a line of metal began to be drawn. As though a painter was moving his brush on his canvas, Dortu was drawing a line of metal using the air as his canvas.
In a flash, the line extended far beyond the reach of my sight and even split into multiple lines like the branch of a tree. The lines then tore through any monster in their paths. Although enraged monsters destroyed some of the lines, broken lines were mended in the blink of an eye and continued to kill any nearby monsters.
It felt as though the world was trapped in a birdcage created by Dortu. What started as a single strip of metal had now branched out to cover the entire sky and was beginning to advance to the ground and sea. My mana was being sucked out rapidly. It meant Dortu’s metal carried an immense power.
[I am Dortu. Preparation is finished.]
[I’m done too, Master!]
“Good, let’s do this!”
In an instant, the elongated spear of lightning shrunk to its original size. When the lightning energy became compressed into the spear handle, platinum sparks began to crackle around the spear. Would Zeus’ lightning be stronger than this? Perhaps so with Sky God’s Rage, but without it, Peika and Dortu’s power combined might very well match Zeus’ divine lightning!
A dragon with his wings pierced by dozens of metal lines roared and breathed out fire. The metal Dortu created had an extremely high heat conductivity. The moment it breathed out, countless other monsters roared in pain.
At that moment, I raised my spear and struck down on a metal line nearby.
The spear severed the line and released the lightning inside at the same time. Immediately, the world became dyed in white. An absurd level of lightning erupted through the metal lines and reached every target in the world.
[Master, a lot of monsters are still breathing!]
“It’s fine, ignore them. It doesn’t look like they can be a threat.”
I retrieved my spear and looked around. First, I could no longer see any monsters in the sky. Thanks to Dortu’s metal covering most of the sky, the sky was now nothing but clear and clean.
There were many injured monsters on the ground, and the sea monsters must have received indescribable shock, as several hundred boiled octopus legs floated on the water.
But if they were dead, they should have disappeared into particles of light. Since they were still there, they had to be alive even if their legs were cooked.
[I am Dortu. Monsters in this area have been disarmed, but the previous undulation of mana attracted more monsters. Master has low mana.]
“It’s fine. There’s lots of scattered mana in the air from all the dead monsters.”
I smiled at Dortu’s concern, immediately spreading out Steel’s power and starting Peruta Circuit. The mana particles saturating the air immediately began to rush into me.
“Every time I clear a floor, I’m conquering a world.”
After sucking in all the scattered mana, I murmured with a sigh.
“You said the 45th floor was the last floor in Beyond?”
[Yes. Just like the dungeon’s 100th floor, no explorer has ever stepped foot into Beyond’s 45th floor.]
“So if you don’t enter Beyond by the First Dungeon’s 55th floor, you can’t reach its end. It’s a rough place, so I understand.”
[Beyond is a bit different than the rest of the dungeons.]
Normally, there would be a detailed explanation after this, but Sherafina didn’t say anything more. Just when I was thinking she’d never tell me about it, Sherafina’s message continued.
[Beings that can ignore a part of the dungeon’s power even while being tied to the dungeon. Higher floors of Beyond is a place to test whether explorers can come out victorious against such beings.]
“And if they fail, they’ll die.”
[That has never happened to this day.]
Sherafina sounded like her pride was hurt. Since I didn’t want to provoke her more and get hated, I changed the topic slightly.
“What happens when you conquer all of Beyond?”
[You will be given a world’s power.]
[Through the ages, countless number of explorers and numerous Heroes have entered the dungeon. Heroes who died while staying in the dungeon didn’t have a reason nor a target to transfer their powers to, and the dungeon managed to obtain their powers when they died. An explorer who has conquered Beyond will be given a portion of such worlds’ powers.]
What can one do a world’s power? All worlds had powers that fit their form and size. But if a different world’s power was brought to a world that lost its power… it should be possible to ‘revive’ it. Even if it might not be fully revived, even if everything couldn’t return to the way it was…
In that case, a similar reward might be given for conquering the dungeon.
… I should be the first one hearing about this, right?
I felt a slight headache, but I regained my calm after taking a deep breath.
“I’ll say it beforehand, but I don’t need something like that. Give it to another explorer.”
[In that case, as the conqueror, you have the authority to give the power to an explorer of your choice.]
I nodded without replying. However, most of the foreign explorers I knew were already Heroes who carried their worlds’ powers or were people like Ludia who was preparing to fight the one who stole their world’s power. Although Kain’s world went extinct, he still had his world’s power.
How many explorers wanted to grant their world a world’s power? If I had to choose one to give a world’s power to, how am I supposed to make my choice?
“You sure like troubling people, Sherafina.”
I spoke with a sigh. Sherafina then replied with a slightly different tone than usual, like a young girl full of emotions.
[I am always rooting for you from the bottom of my heart. Always and forever.]
Another month went by.
I was advancing through Beyond’s 44th floor.