Chapter #6: The road to Lycia

I’ve been walking for some time now in this god forsaken road. It looks more like a path, rather than a main road that connects one city with another. Having a vampire as the lord of Pedasa led to abandonment, so it makes sense that this road is the way it is.

At least, I got the Vampire Origin Bloodline here and now my powers increased exponentially. I feel I can walk for days without rest. Although I’m not as strong as a normal vampire, let aside a Vampire Lord, this new class / sub-race came handy. I better keep that fact to myself though, I don’t think the NPCs of this world will be happy if they learn of my bloodline.

As the night comes, my heightened senses inform me of a new menace. Something is approaching. I don’t know what this is, but the stench of death is everywhere. I must hide somewhere, it’s not safe here. I climb a tall tree I find before me. I manage somehow to climb it, although I don’t have any climbing skills.

My first action now is to double-check if my spell inventory replenished, but as expected, I can only use cantrips. I haven’t rest and I’m unable to use any 1st level spells so far. Fortunately, my HP is full again. Another advantage of having the bloodline. I wonder what will happen later as I level up. Will my avatar remain the same or the urge for blood will overrun me? There’s no way I inherited a class like this without its demerits. But that’s something I’ll have to consider once I’m out of this mess.

To my surprise, instead of ghouls and vampires, I now hear the synchronized marching of the knights. It must be the Vampire Hunting Squad. Each and every one of them is stronger than me. I doubt I can fight a single one of them and win. Especially now, that I’m out of spells. I can see them now, they are eleven in number and their leader is this girl, Melissa that I talked earlier. She’s the commander.

“Look at the mess that you got us in, Melissa,” a bearded knight tells her. “If you had killed the guy, now we’d be hunting Ambrosia and the rest of the Vampire Lords. Instead, we must find the vermin that drank the blood of our lord.”

“If I knew the events that preceded, I would have killed him myself,” she says, while she glowers at him.

“It is said that a vampire lets a mortal being drink its blood only when they have taken an interest to them. Having a simple vermin drink our master’s blood… I will make sure he breathes his last breath once I find him.”

My NCI gives me a new Main Quest: Escape the Vampire Hunting Squad.

Ok, I’ll have to stay here till they get bored, I guess.

Unfortunately, it takes me only a few moments to understand that they know where I’m located. How they know? I’m not sure, but there are a couple of items in this game that could have given away my position. Probably they’re using some type of scry gem or spell to track me down.

I climb down the tree and start running. I hear their voices behind me, cursing and shouting at the same time. “Stop! Don’t you dare move, you vermin,” the white bearded knight barks at me as he raises his heavy crossbow and aims at me.

You must be mad if you think I’ll stay. Eat my dust Vampire Hunting Squad. I might be weak, but my stamina is way higher than theirs. I will keep running and hopefully, they will get tired earlier than me.

***

I've been in a running battle for the last couple of hours. The Vampire Hunting Squad hasn’t stopped. These bastards are better prepared than I thought. From time to time, I’ve seen them drinking a potion that replenishes their stamina. It will be impossible for me to escape them, but there’s now way I can fight them. I access my NCI again and search for the difficulty level. It’s casual, so I wonder if there’s something wrong with this game’s settings. Probably the only think I must do right now is keep running.

That’s until the stench of death fills my nostrils again. It’s the same stench I smelled before the knights appeared. Creatures lurk here and wait for the right moment to attack. I hope their target is the Vampire Hunting Squad and not me.

Without notice, I see several level-6 ghouls coming from left and right. The vampire hunters take defense positions and stop hunting me. It’s the chance I’ve been waiting. I sprint for a couple moments, then I turn back and I see that only Melissa, the innkeeper’s daughter is following me. Her knights are left behind, battling ghoul menace.

“Stop, you bastard,” he shouts at me.

I think she must be insane if she thinks her order will work on me. “Just leave me alone, I did nothing wrong,” I shout back at her.

I keep running and she keeps chasing me for a couple more minutes, till the ghouls and the knights are no longer visible. Is she perhaps the boss of this stage and I have to battle her in this condition? It could be the case, but I haven’t seen any updates in my NCI, so she probably isn’t the boss after all.

Suddenly, Melissa stops chasing me, and I stop as well. Before me stands Ambrosia, the Vampire Lord I encountered just yesterday. Her Threat-Level increased to 24. Her HP went up to 93 and she seems a bit stronger as well.

“Well, well,” she claps her hands, amusement on her face. “What do we have here? If it isn’t Melissa, Nestor’s favorite toy.”

Melissa seems pale and surprised, as if a great revelation occurred before her very own eyes. “So, it was your plan all along,” she tells Ambrosia.

“Indeed,” the Vampire Lord confesses with a smile. “I thought that Nestor would be fool enough to send his precious Vampire Hunting Squad and their commander to take the head of this abomination.” She points at me with her forefinger. “It makes perfect sense for me to take advantage of the situation. You my dear,” now she points at Melissa, “are the perfect hostage. With you, I’ll be able to blackmail poor Nestor. You are his favorite after all.”

Melissa talks back at Ambrosia. “You overrate me Ambrosia. Nestor will replace me in no time, but you’re a fool to you think I’ll let myself live and have your way with my master. But enough talk, show me what you got there!”

Is she insane? Her Threat-Level’s only 9, while Ambrosia’s 24. There’s no way for her to win this battle.

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