|Xylen, the Succubus Queen|
The Dark Overlord’s throne...
Cristophe can’t believe his eyes. He actually has gone this far behind enemy lines. And now he catches sight of a gigantic hall, larger than any palace court he has ever seen – even in Levides Palace.
The hall of which has black walls full with faces – humanlike, monsters or demonic – embossed on it. All are either frightened, fierce or dead faces as though the actual creatures are pushed headlong from the wall, inside to outside.
Six giant statues on top of six black pillars stand on the right and left side of the room plus one on the far corner, behind the horrific Throne of Bones.
The seven statues are carved lifelike, depicting the seven original sins: A big devil for ‘pride’, an extremely fat abomy for ‘gluttony’, an old miser with long nose and his eyes looking far left for ‘greed’, a banshee for ‘envy’, a dracolich for ‘anger’, a zombie for ‘sloth’ and a succubus for ‘lust’.
Suddenly, a shrill woman’s voice comes from nowhere, and the startled Paladins ready their weapons at once.
And SWOOOSH, SWOOSH, SWOOSH!! Three flashes of light sweep across the Paladins – red, green and blue. The blue light then transforms into a devil-winged woman with blue skin and hair, landing slowly on the Throne of Bones. The red and green lights also transform like the blue one, and the three surround their three opponents.
There’s no mistake about it: They’re succubi, the she-devils who feed from lust for power. Chris recognizes the blue succubus at once, saying, ‘YOU again.’
The Succubus Queen, also known as the Archdemoness of Desdemon puts up a wide grin and bares her fangs behind her azure lips. Her black eyes with bright-blue pupils stare straight at her ‘favourite’ foe, saying, ‘Hmm, so the runt-to-hero has come for another rematch.
Well, as you can see, this time I shall finish you all of at once. No pesky bug may pass from here. You may come in, but none shall come out.’
Startled, Iris speaks, ‘What? You mean, there is no exit from here?’
The she-devil laughs evilly, saying, ‘Hahaha! Of course there is an exit, and you won’t be able to find it unless you search for the switch in this hall, and you won’t be able to search for it before you defeat the three of us.
Speaking of which, let me introduce my two sisters.’
The red-skinned succubus with her crimson hair flailing like fire flaps her enormous scarlet wings and moves her scantily armored body like belly-dancing, saying, ‘I am Katarina the Red. I’ll send you all to the place where you belong: In the infernal depths, with me!’
The green succubus moves forward. Her cute visage is somewhat similar to Iris’, and her green, large blank eyes show that she’s a sadist little girl who just found a toy to wreck. She wiggles side-to-side and talks with a childish tone, ‘Hi, I’m Nepathya, and you’ll be my new, cuddly, DEAD toys! Whee!!’
And lastly, the blue she-devil, the Succubus Queen gets up from the Throne of Bones and flies closer to the Paladins and stops, floating in mid-air.
‘Don’t any of you recognize me?’ she says suddenly, her face dead serious. ‘ANSWER ME!’
Chris responds without a single glint of fear on his face, ‘Yes, your face might look familiar when I fought you, but I never able to figure out who you are, or who you were.’
‘Is that so? Well, no wonder your mundane minds can’t identify the person behind this infernal physique. Too bad Robert isn’t here with you, he won’t have trouble guessing my human name.’
‘Robert, you say?’ Chris blurts out with surprise. ‘Are you saying you had something to do with the murder of Pope Xylen Felicitia? Or… Good heavens…’ He gasps. ‘You are…’
‘Yes, I am she. My true name is Nelyx, the Archdemoness of Desdemon, and my human name is…’
No sooner the word comes out from Iris’ lips than her bow and arrow aiming at the blue succubus. The latter only stands casually holding the two-edged Glaive of Chaos on her back, saying, ‘Exactly. That’s easy to guess. So, let me guess your next question… What was really happened back then in Basilica Vadisium?’
Before the Paladins can say a word, Xylen talks on.
‘Well, I really died that day, stabbed myself to death with the sword of the one I framed. But then, the Dark Forces’ agents took my body out from the crypt. And, thanks to necromancy, my body was transformed back into my original elf, the Succubus Queen, and now here I am, stronger, faster than ever.’
‘So, the case of ‘Robert Murder the Pope’ was nothing but a set-up, and you, my dear, has connected the missing link,’ Hernan comments with a mock smile. ‘But, the outcome is always the same. You are a lost soul who knows no happiness, always seeking false satisfaction by destroying everybody.’
‘Huh, you’re not so good yourself,’ says Xylen to hernan. ‘Just don’t’ pretend that you care for me, I don’t need it.’
The flirty Don shrugs, ‘Maybe I am and maybe I’m not. I was trying to help you see the light, but you’re really a lost case, rotten to the bone. As for me, I’ll go home and make amends with my family after I destroy you, once and for all. The one who sold one’s soul for lust is really lost and doomed, that’s for sure. I just hope that I haven’t sunk into that level yet.’
Lust, the abyss of no return.
‘Well, save your preachings for yourself,’ says the Succubus Queen. ‘Too bad Robert isn’t here with us. I just loove to see his face when I tell him the truth.’
Nepathya the Green says, ‘Talk time is over, now it’s PLAY time! Come on, let’s do round one, and then I’ll play with my new dolls – your corpses!’
The calmer and more serious Katarina the Red says, ‘Not if I kill them first. That man with a mustache, he’s mine.’
Xylen spins the Glaive of Chaos and swings it aside in mid-air, speaking thunderously, ‘And I have a score to settle with this red-haired runt. Let the rumble begin!’
SWOOSH, SWOOSH, SWOOSH!!
The she-devils sweep down towards their targets: Nepathya versus Iris, Katarina versus Hernan, and Xylen versus Cristophe.
As the glaive darts like lightning, the red-haired Paladin casts one of the few spells he knows, ‘An Acavela Aschi!’
KUAAAKK!! The griffin champion Acavela comes out from the summoning circle, moving in high speed and coming between Chris and the she-devil. The Prince quickly evades the glaive thrust by climbing onto the griffin’s back. THUD, and ZOOMM!!
Up he goes. Just as he’s right above Xylen, he launches multiple random slashes and thrusts downwards. CRAS, CRAS, CRASH! The sword skill, Rocky Road of Righteousness hits Xylen in several places: shoulder, arms, back, wings, only leaving scratches on her thick layer of dark aura.
Xylen recovers quickly in that state and kicks rapidly upwards with her skill Irresistible Desire. BASH, BASH, BASH! This time the rain of pain is pouring at Acavela and Chris, the latter then pulls away from range.
Both combatants seem evenly matched on the first impact. Xylen also pulls away, leaning on the succubus statue on the corner.
‘Good, you fight much, much better than before,’ says the she-devil, massaging her limbs and shaking her head. ‘However, man and beast will never beat winged creatures, that’s the rock-solid fact.’
‘Well, not if the man and beast act as one, becoming one body and one mind. And it’s high time we show it to you, right now! HHEEAAHH!!’ With that shout, Chris and Acavela dart away like arrow shot towards their opponent.
To their surprise, Xylen flies away instead, saying, ‘Catch me if you caaan!!’
ZWISH! ZWISH! She slaloms past the three large pillar statues and Chris follows suit. And then the blue succubus turns near the entrance and slaloms again past the other three statues of Seven Original Sins, nearly knocking over the green succubus shooting green lightblasts from her pointing fingers like a gunslinger at her opponent, Iris.
‘Hey, watch where you’re going!’ Nepathya scolds, closing into her opponent while evading Iris’ arrows altogether.
On the other hand, Chris chooses to stay in the middle of the hall, thinking that Xylen is trying to tire him and Acavela out. And then, Xylen goes out of sight.
With the Sword of Justice and the Shield of Faith in hand, Chris readies himself from a sneak attack from any direction. His eyes catch sight of Katarina and Hernan dogfighting, with the latter mounting the cornus*) he just summoned.
(* Cornus = Unicorn-pegasus, a horse with a cone horn on his head like a unicorn and wings like a pegasus. Never a superior being to both, cornus is a very rare species, a breed between a unicorn and a pegasus.
ZWWOOOSHHH!! Chris sways aside, avoiding a sudden attack from behind. Then comes the glaive sweeping, grazing the tip of Chris’ Helmet of Truth, K-CHIINGG!!
With reflexes, Chris aims and shoots a Guiding Light of Faith from his sword. The beam misses its target and DASSH!! Chipping a rough dent on the ‘Gluttony’ statue.
The attacks come again! This time, they’re like arrows that have been shot from all directions, altogether in split seconds! ZWISH! ZWISH! ZWISH!
‘Just like we’ve practiced, Acavela! NOW!!’
ZWISH!! The man and beast move together as one, maneuvering back-and-forth, side-by-side, avoiding each and every strike. Actually, they have done this before in a dogfight spar with their teacher, Avariel the Archangel.
But no, this is different than our training. This hall is not spacious enough for flyers. I must be extra careful!
DASSH! A hit on the armor confirms Chris’ thought. And yet, that hit didn’t disrupt his momentum at all. Another hit lands, DASSH! Chris swivels like a windmill, a fast swipe with his sword and CRAATTSH!! Wounds his target slightly.
The she-devil skids to stop in mid-air, and staring at her opponent she shouts, ‘Nice hit. You predicted my movement and wrapped it with a swift finish. If not because of that blasted armor, I should’ve yielded a better result… NOT!’ Putting a hand on the wound on her shoulder, Xylen makes the bleeding stop, and the wound closes like it never happened before.
That doesn’t surprise me, Chris thinks. This is the third time I battle that she-devil, and I still can’t overcome her. No, this is not the end. I won’t crack under pressure. This is my last fight with her and I’ll come out the victor, the survivor.
‘Lo, are you stunned or anything? Because…’
Before the she-devil can finish her words, ZZZOOOMM!! A streak of white light comes straight towards her. Xylen somersaults, trying to evade Chris’ Singular Voice of Truth. The singular thrust of concentrated power darts through and grazes a deep cut on Xylen’s right foot!
‘GYAA!!’ The Archdemoness reacts by touching the wounded foot to heal it, but then comes a simple yet powerful slash of Power Bash. THANGGG!! She blocks it barely with the glaive on her right hand, and the impact slams her into the floor! BRUGG!
Before Xylen gets up, again Chris comes with yet another basic move: Three-Point Chain Slash. His sword slashes towards three possible weak points: throat, heart and foot.
‘Huh, trying to find my weak points out with that lame move? You must be kidding me.’ Saying that, Xylen springs and kicks vertically, repeatedly with both her hands as anchor. BAG, BAG, BAG, BAG, BAMMM!!
Chris blocks the kicks with his shield and uses the attack force to push himself and his griffin into the air. Using this momentum to replenish his energy, Chris is about to attack again and a blast of Dark Disintegration ray comes from his right!
BYAAARSCHH!! Once again, the Shield of Faith protects the rider and steed, saving their lives. Acavela flies haphazardly off-balance and gets back in control a moment later.
No attack from everywhere. Acavela flies around the room with Chris looking at all directions warily. Suddenly, GRABB!! The succubus grapples Chris on his back!
‘Ooh, nice, such a beautiful body. Care for a tighter hug?’
Xylen puts more pressure on his opponent, electrifying him with dark energy. And then, she literally unsaddle the White Paladin and takes him up, up, near the ceiling.
CRAACKKK!!! Chris hits headlong on the ceiling!
‘How do you find my new move: Shackles of Intimacy? Tantalizing, isn’t it? Want to taste some more? Relax, that was just the first part, and this is the more exciting part! GHEEAGHH!!’
Chris screams in pain inside his helmet.
The scream add up in terror as Xylen dives! SZOOOMM!! She’s about to smash Cristophe’s cranium on the floor! Chris tries to explode his aura, but no! He’s like powerless, unable to set free from his impending doom…
Stone and dust fly, chipped from the already broken floor in the hall that’s also used as an arena to gain supremacy among the Dark Forces. The cloud of dust quickly disperses, and the result soon comes into view:
Xylen stands in triumph and Chris lays immobile beneath her feet. The sword Excalibur also stands straight with its tip in the floor.
‘HAHAHAHA!! At last! The Heir of Vadis, the strongest among the Forces of Light, succumbs under my absolute power! I am invincible, I am the strongest, the most beautiful! And no one, I say no one can stop me now!
With Arachus gone, I am the second in command, and as soon as I wipe out these critters, the whole world will be my playground!’
‘Not so fast, demoness.’
‘What?’ Startled, Xylen looks down and sees the Heir of Vadis struggling, getting up on his knees, putting his left hand on the sword. His entire body is glowing like a firefly, and the blade of Excalibur also glows, making his whole appearance divine-like.
Lifting the visor of his helmet up, his visage becomes radiant with rejuvenated energy, and his voice becomes clearer as he says, ‘The Heir of Vadis is stronger than you thought. You, who fight only to satisfy your ego and bloodlust will never prevail against the one who fights with his heart, with love, with all the willpower of the people he wants to protect.
The only place for a traitor like you, Xylen, is in the deepest bowels of hell, tortured and burned for eternity!’
Gritting her teeth, Xylen bends backwards and shrieks at the top of her voice, ‘SKKHRIEEEE!!! JUST SHUT UP! Save your worthless speech! My soul is already lost since the Dark Overlord converted me, gave me this name Nelyx and treated me as his mistress, his mate, his pet. So now I live for him, to worship his greatness and to repay him for bringing me back to life, more powerful than ever!’
And yes, I have done many things to please my lord:
Setting up the trap mission in Enia’s Sanctum to cover and to open the path for Paliades, that faulty heir. Good thing we’ve found his ‘replacement’.
Framing Robert into the crime he didn’t commit.
Going into battles, missions, fighting you, even consented to wait in this place for you, all for the True Heir of Darkness.
I am the most loyal, most devoted servant of the Dark Overlord, and nothing pleases me more than to eliminate each and every one of you who stands in my way, and no word can ever change that!!’
Xylen then leaps and floats in mid-air, shouting, ‘Nepathya! Katarina! Trinity Eternal Banishment!’
‘All right! Time for total annihilation!’
Saying that, Nepathya the Green breaks up from her fight with Iris and Eshmyria. Katarina the Red also leaves Hernan and joins her two sisters above the Throne of Bones.
Flapping their wings constantly, the three succubi form a triangle and outstretch their hands.
FWOOM, FWOOM, FWOOM! Legions of lost souls then come out from the seven gigantic statues, each carrying a mass of dark energy generated fromt heir sins in life: the seven original sins that combine into the strongest, the most evil, the terrible force of all: the antithesis of Chris’ holy power of faith, truth, righteousness, diligence, justice, kindness and love.
Chris, Hernan and Eshmyria charge forward to interrupt the spellcasting process and BAF! BAGG! THOOK! A massive, concentrated black force field deflects their attack, throwing the three heroes away.
‘GUH!’ Chris steers Acavela with effort, and man and griffin land roughly on the floor. BHLAGG!!
Chris immediately dismounts from Acavela, his shivering hand lifts the Shield of Faith, facing his opponents, saying, ‘Get behind me! Unsummon your steeds and guardian spirits! Support me!’ He unsummons Acavela, and Hernan and Iris do what they’re told at once. But, Eshmyria won’t withdraw.
‘Eshmyria told me that she wants to help. We better honor her wishes, then,’ says Iris, putting her palms on Chris’ back.
Tentative Illustration Image Source:
(Top) Succubus Queen by GooDHopE (kekse0719.deviantart.com)
(Bottom) Daughter of the Devil by kekse0719.deviantart.com
(Bottom) Daughter of the Devil by kekse0719.deviantart.com
Note: Script check: pg 340/487