227 Chapter 224 Arch Demon of…
"Well, I'm off Joe," said Joseph.
"Don't worry. I'll hold down the fort with Chuck," said Joe, standing on the balcony outside their room.
"I know," Joseph said, laughing.
META finally helped him understand exactly what ENACRA had done to him when he was granted Joe. The short explanation was that his soul was bigger than normal. And with having a soul almost twice as large, a partition was able to be made. They were still connected, and shared everything, but whenever he went to his magical realm with his soul, he would have a longer connection, so the sharing was delayed.
Often, they would switch places when one of them got tired of controlling their body, but only Stella could tell the difference between them. They simply kept everything they hadn't wanted the system to know, on the other side of the partition, and thus even the system wasn't able to confirm their plans.
The proof occurred when Joe had figured out how to hack into the back end of the system and introduced a bug. They knew the gods were able to observe the system, even though, as it got more divinity, it wasn't as easy to read as before. They were both happy when they found out they could introduce a bug so small, even the system didn't notice.
Hopefully, they could swap out Chuck's divinity with Rune power. Both TECHNOLOGY and MAKING/BREAKING were considering him. To match the eyes of destruction, Joseph thought BREAKING might be a better fit, but with his living mechanical body, TECHNOLOGY might be better overall. Once they were done, he would be changed, like Selena was changed to a flame-kin instead of a Human. She's still Wizar as a supertype though.
"Joseph, Joe, you need to stop day dreaming so we can go fix the world," announced Stella, with a raised eyebrow.
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Joe was using a body double to stay in the kingdom, to protect it while Joseph and Stella headed for the world tree.
"Of course, you're right, dear," they said together.
Stella just shook her head. With a minor invocation of MOVEMENT, they were able to move fast enough to kiss her on each cheek before Joe teleported to Chuck, and Joseph flew up towards the wasteland. Stella chased him.
It's not like he could outrun his own shadow anyway.
Stella was still muttering in her head about the double team. Talking was of course impossible, once they broke the sound barrier heading toward the world tree, so they were using their mind link. Either, she wasn't very good at separating her thoughts, or she was leaking it intentionally. Joseph didn't think it was intentional, because she wasn't upset at them for it.
After cresting the second set of mountains, they both focused again. The corrupted here were thick. At least a few hundred thousand were below them, and it was only getting more congested. What bothered Joseph more, was the nasty power signal he was sensing up ahead.
"Do you know what that is yet, Joseph?" asked Stella, through the mind link.
"I think someone is opening a portal. It doesn't feel like when I was summoned to another realm, or when I summoned Trull, though. It feels worse than when NIKMESH was summoned actually. More like when we fought that god of corruption."
"Do you think it's a demon invasion? I don't sense divinity."
"Maybe. You can sense divinity? Since when?"
"Since I ate one. Basic hunter instincts to find prey. …Is that odd?"
Joseph shrugged. "Maybe for others, but you're special, so I can understand it with that explanation. Joe, don't go there. I know we thought it but still…"
Stella rolled her eyes at them, which was actually rather impressive at Mach speed. It was only a few more minutes before he saw the portal.
The corrupted were all heading in the direction of the world tree, but over a hundred demons were below the portal and sacrificing the corrupted to power it. It was a mix of demons with some having mostly black skin and blades for arms. They were in charge of the sacrificing. It looked like their leader, a 30-foot-tall devil, was already through the portal. Everywhere he touched actually colored the ground black, instead of dull and grey, and he was wreathed in flames. His fluffy long tail ended in a poisonous stinger. Each of his six arms ended in three fingered claw-like hands.
They flew up to the portal and the demons turned towards them.
(YOU HAVE RESISTED VARIOUS AND SUNDRY MENTAL EFFECTS. BY THE WAY, STELLA WAS HIT WITH LUST, BUT SHE KEEPS ENOUGH ANGER IN HER BACK POCKET TO OVERCOME IT DURING THE FOLLOW-UP. DO YOU WANT ME TO KEEP YOU INFORMED OF THIS? BETWEEN THE COSMIC MIND SHIELD YOU PURCHASED FROM ME, AND THE MIND RUNE'S PROTECTION, I CAN'T IMAGINE YOU ARE GOING TO FALL FOR ANYTHING LIKE THAT AGAIN.)
'Nah, it's good, system. Just let me know if others will be affected.'
"FOOL! Now that you have come, know that I…" cried the demon leader.
'…hmm I could take over this portal…' thought Joseph, completely ignoring the demon's tirade.
"I am the arch demon of…" went on the demon leader, oblivious to Joseph ignoring him
"…it actually wouldn't be that hard, and then I could…" he thought, tilting his head to look at the magic pulsing around the portal.
"…tremble before my awesome might, as I kill you, and then betray NURKONG and usurp him…" ranted the demon, raising his arms above his head.
'This should work,' he thought, certain of his next move. Why did all big bad guys feel the need to tell the hero everything they were going to do before doing it?
Gaining control of the gate, he focused and began to fluctuate two spells.
Thousands of demons poured through, before being forced back, only to be sucked back through. Joseph controlled the gate, to get narrower and narrower. The arch demon, whatever his name was, got caught up after the 13th time. More and more demons were getting involved and squeezed through a constantly shrinking opening. The ones on the edges were starting to be shredded by the edges of the gate.
"It sure screams loud," muttered Stella.
"Ah, that's better," she said, giving Joseph a smile.
The big guy was clawing his way towards the middle of the shrinking gate, killing the other demons that were in his way. After about five minutes, he was curled into a little ball and even then, the edges of the gate had started ripping pieces off of him. It only took another minute before Joseph closed the gate. The invading demon army, and the arch demon, were shaved into the space scattered between dimensions.
"I can't believe something that wasn't even a god, thought he could take you, Joseph," she pointed out.
"Whatever. That should be the 4th faction. Only NURKONG, or maybe his high priest, is left."
They continued on their flight towards the world tree, ignoring the contaminated below them.