82 Chapter 82 Stella POV 3
The light was fading, and she started to get nervous. She had bonuses to see in the dark, but this was a magical fog. She couldn't see anything in it. The edge of the fog was only five or so feet from them, not quite two meters.
As they walked blindly forward, Joseph was muttering to himself, deep in thought. Normally it didn't bother her, but her nerves were frayed from the dangerous fog being so close. She had no way to fight magic!
"Stella?" he asked, turning to her.
"Ah, finally stopped muttering?" she asked back, immediately regretting her snapped response. It wasn't his fault the fog was so dangerous. Thankfully he didn't seem to notice.
"Yeah, I'm going to do something I think I can do, that will freak you out, ok?"
She blinked. What could he possibly be thinking now?
"If I tell you, do you promise to let me do it?"
Stella thought about that seriously. The danger was all magical. She didn't have a problem killing something, but this was so far out of her league, she had no choice but to trust him.
"Better just do it," she finally said in a small voice. She couldn't help but cringe inside and fell panic start to bloom when he handed her his heat stone.
He moved to the edge of the fog and breathed it in! She almost screamed. Fighting the panic that was boiling inside of her, she waited. There was nothing more she could do. The fog was so thick, barely any light made it from above. He fell to his knees and she had to fight her instinct to rush over to him.
Keeping an eye on their surroundings she tried to distract herself from what he was doing, by making sure nothing was sneaking up on them. As long as he was fighting against the magic of the fog, she had to keep away from it. There was no telling what would happen if she approached with the stones.
As soon as he climbed to his feet and turned to look at her, she rushed over to him. He seemed wobbly, as if he had been hit in the head, and she worried that he might have taken damage to his brain.
"Master Joseph, are you ok?"
He started to giggle and she immediately realized what had happened. All of her fear and worry evaporated, and she became mad.
"Never better, though, I think I may be drunk ."
"You're weird," she said with a sigh. There was no reason to be mad when she couldn't take out her anger on anything.
"I think I may need a break," he giggled, stumbling and breaking out in loud laughter.
"It had to be now, that you got drunk. It couldn't be when we were safe, but right before we get to the big scary evil," she muttered under her breath.
"You're cute, even when you're mad. Did you know that?"
She sighed again. What other crazy drunken things would he say?
"It would be best if you stopped talking now."
"Oh, ok. Should I do interpretive dance instead?"
Stella swung around, shocked. If he started dancing, and stumbled into the fog…!
He sat, surprisingly, and she blinked. As he sat there, he started playing with his mana, and she just shook her head. He was saying something, but she didn't catch what. Something in the fog had caught her attention. A form was moving, just out of sight.
"Hey Stella, watch this." A line of flames streaked off into the fog, as far as she could see, burning off the fog instantly, and revealing the most terrifying things she had ever seen in her life. A winter wight. They were ghosts that with one touch would suck their souls out.
Jumping to her feet, with a scream of utter terror, she immediately tried to think of what she could do to escape with him.
"Huh, I wonder if it burns?" he mumbled, then it caught fire, and burned up in a bright green flash.
It was gone. The most horrifying thing she had ever seen, was destroyed in a moment of drunken magic. She turned to look at him, as he mumbled something about that was neat, and he made a funny face at her and laughed.
"Sorry, did you want to kill it? I'll let you take the others."
Panic coursed through her. Of course there would be others!
"No! That's okay! You can do it," she quickly answered before any more of the ghostly monsters appeared.
"Are you sure?" he asked, uncertainly.
"Positive," she squeaked. Swallowing her heart back into her chest as it pounded furiously, she watched him turn to look at the fog.
"Stella, should I try detonate instead? I could just 'splode 'em all at once, or do you like the candles instead?"
The thought of him trying to blow anything up in his current condition almost terrified her more than the wights did.
"I like the candles instead. The candles are pretty!" seeing him nod, she didn't catch all that he said next as he started lighting them up. She was counting them. He stopped at fifteen.
"I'm sorry Stella, I kept trying to get different colors but they only seem to burn green."
"That's ok I like green. Green is a good color." She was still watching for other shapes to appear out of the fog, but none did.
Suddenly a ring of fire appeared around them, and after mumbling something, he fell over in a deep sleep. The fire made the area immediately toasty warm, and she breathed a sigh of relief when the wights that were revealed shied away from the flames. She tried to taunt a few to come closer, and got them to burn themselves up, but the rest drifted away.
Stella paced the ring of fire the entire time he was out. Nothing came to bother them, but she couldn't rest. Master Joseph was unconscious and she knew she wouldn't be able to wake him until he burnt off some of the extra mana he had acquired.
"Stella?" he asked, sitting up. She turned towards him immediately, but he seemed to be fine now.
"Yes, Master Joseph?"
"Drugs are bad. I'm hungry."
She pulled out a piece of meat from her purse and handed it to him.
"Here you go.'
The ring of fire went away, and she watched anxiously as the fog drifted closer to them again. Master Joseph cast fire above his head, and it kept the fog further than the stones had. They continued walking, but it wasn't far before they stumbled across the frozen remains of the barbarian camp. Stella looked over the campground, with the tents still pitched and the corpses still in their blankets, and realized the fog had pulled back.
A form rose up from behind one of the tents. Stella noted the frozen exterior of the creature, and knew her blades would not be able to scratch it. As it threw the frozen body of a child larger than them into its mouth and started to chew, she hoped Master Joseph had a way to defeat this thing.
"Breath weapon! Stella the powder!" Joseph screamed.
Grabbing the as many bags of charcoal dust as she could with both hands, out of her purse, she hurled them at the mouth of the beast. Joseph created a rune just as they reached the space in front of its open mouth.
"Did we kill it?" whispered Stella. She couldn't see anything in the ensuing cloud of crystal dust. Then as it cleared, she saw that the head and neck were gone.
"Never ask that!" said Joseph, almost angrily, as he glanced around them.
She looked around as well, wondering if they were about to be attacked.
"Why?" she asked in confusion.
"It's a bad omen." There was no movement from the monster. "Stella, in my last life, an online friend of mine had a saying. After playing a scary game, set in a space station, it's not dead until you get experience."
"What?" she asked, even more confused.
"Keep throwing the bags. I don't care if it can regenerate, has a second form, or an extra life. I'm killing it."
She kept the bags flying, aiming for the spots that the rune appeared in. After 27 bags, there was only shards left. Backing away as he created a fire, she watched as he burned the thing until the ground was glowing. Shockingly, there were still crystals left.
She watched as he did something to them, then melted them using an even hotter flame. Tossing him some of the last of their meat when he asked for it, she thought maybe he was hungry after using so much magic, but instead, he threw the meat on top of the pile of ashes, and purified it. The ashes were gone. Then he burned the meat until it was nothing but ashes, but didn't stop until the ground was melted and even the ashes were gone.
The camp was gone. He chuckled softly to himself and his knees buckled. Catching him, she lowered him to the ground slowly. She checked his heart, to make sure it was still strong, and it was, so she stood over him, as he slept, and looked over the melted and burnt surroundings. No one would ever be able to tell there had been a camp here. All signs of the monster were gone. The fog was even dispersing. Her master was awesome. She finally breathed a sigh of relief. They had survived.