Chapter 789 Weeds Part 1
The members of the Fallen Races had an astounding spawn rate.
It gave them an appetite for food matched only by their thirst for battle.
Yet Friya didn\'t expect to find a bald area of that size.
It surrounded the caves for a space of over 100 meters (328 feet) and to make things even more unsettling, it wasn\'t just trees that had been cut down.
Even the grass was missing, along with any trace of wildlife.
Friya\'s hand emitted two consecutive short pulses of light, signaling everyone to stop.
Doesn\'t this remind you of something She pointed at the familiar scenery.
It looks like the place where I killed the Abomination in the White Griffon forest. Lith replied.
Yet too many things don\'t add up, I doubt this is the work of an Abomination.
What do you mean Phloria asked.
Abominations were rare creatures, even rarer than Awakened.
If not for Balkor using them for his revenge, they would have still been considered just a myth.
A newborn Abomination would have eaten much more than that, whereas an adult Abomination would have never been so obvious.
They are apex predators, not morons.
They all had seen what had happened to the academy\'s forest and the Trawn woods.
Years had passed and they both had yet to completely recover.
Could this be one of those hybrids you told us about Like that thing you\'ve fought in the mines After all, the report mentions the presence of an unknown race of monsters.
What if they are just a known race mutated by an Abomination Friya said.
Unlikely. Quylla had just finished casting a Life Sensing array.
I\'ve studied lots of samples from both Balkor\'s minions and captured hybrids.
They all have one thing in common.
While undead are not detected by Life Sensing arrays, all creatures who have Abomination blood gets detected as a negative life force.
It\'s something that doesn\'t make sense but at the same time makes them incredibly easy to find.
I can clearly sense a lot of life forces below us.
They are unusual, but that\'s to be expected.
Each race has its own life force and that of monsters is usually twisted beyond recognition.
The group landed gracefully, without making a sound.
Lith activated Life Vision and Solus started to scan their surroundings.
They both agreed with Quylla\'s evaluation.
There was no trace of black cores or Chaos magic in the air.
Also, if it really was the work of a hybrid Abomination, Lith knew that it would have attempted to train its thralls to hasten its development whereas the creatures he could spot through the ground had weak cores.
Too weak for Awakened creatures that had already had enough time to practice Accumulation.
Everyone prepared their spells before discussing what to do.
The caves had more than one access, making it easy to fall victim to an attack from behind.
Three small stone arches lead into the ground and were covered in footprints.
The lack of grass coupled with the soft soil gave them plenty of clues about the nature of the threat at hand.
Whatever it was, they were heavy, with claws on their feet and each individual weighted at least 100 kilograms (221 pounds).
What\'s the plan Lith asked.
Usually, I\'ll have you guys go down while I searched the forest for ingredients. Phloria said while digging from the ground the remains of what once was a precious Stoneflower.
Yet since the nature of our enemy is unknown, it\'s too dangerous to split up.
Lith and I will cover your back, you focus only on defending yourself, Quylla. She was aware of Lith\'s Life Vision, so by teaming up with him it was impossible to take them by surprise.
They had just nodded when Quylla fell on her knees, panting.
Gods, how do you guys manage to keep tier five spells at the ready with such ease Keeping the Life Sensing array plus several powerful spells had drained her until she had lost her focus.
We don\'t. Friya replied.
I\'ve prepared just a few tier three and a dimensional spell in case things go bad.
Couldn\'t you tell me earlier We have yet to start and I\'ve already wasted a lot of mana. Quylla was so pissed off while drinking a tonic that even the gulping sounds she emitted sounded grumpy.
The burned hand teaches best. Lith said.
He had only prepared a Blink, to keep his mind clear and focused.
With Ruin at his side and Solus telling him that there was no one in a hundred meters radius, he had no reason to worry.
Quylla replied in a very creative and impolite way that would have made a sailor blush.
Then, she prepared a few spells and took the stone arch on the right, where her array had spotted the biggest number of creatures.
She preferred to take them on while she had still plenty of stamina.
Also, that way she would be able to kill many monsters with a single spell.
Have you noticed that there\'s no smell in here Phloria asked.
Yep, the air is too clean, both inside and outside the caves.
Either this is the first race of monsters to care for personal hygiene or things are going to get weird.
Lith had cleared dozens of dungeons in the Kellar region and the Rothar caves barely qualified as one.
If not for the footprints outside and the havoc the creatures had caused, the area was too clean.
There were no bones laying around, no blood spats, nor the marks that the constant quarreling between monsters usually left everywhere.
There was too much order under the thin layer of chaos of the caves to not stir Lith\'s paranoia.
Yet the deeper they went, the less he felt threatened.
According to Solus, their mana cores were weak and their life forces unremarkable.
\'It\'s not any race of monsters we have ever met.\' She thought.
\'Their energy signature is too weird.\'
Quylla had no way to know that, and even though Friya was just a couple of steps behind her, she was as tense as a bowstring.
She was wearing Orion\'s night vision goggles to avoid the need of light, plus she had cast spells that canceled her smell and the noise of her steps, yet she still felt insecure.
She had seen too many horrors to be scared by monsters, yet there was something in the reading she had gotten from her earlier array that kept bugging her.
She was trying to sort out her thoughts without losing her focus when two creatures stepped from around the corner, yelping at the sight of intruders.
They were yellow-skinned humanoids, standing 1.9 meters (6\'3) tall with long pointed ears and nose.
They had long dirty brown hair all around their head, making it look like a mane, white eyes, and teeth so big that they were visible even when their mouth was closed since their lips barely covered their gums.
They were holding thick three branches that could barely pass for clubs.
Quylla immediately recognized them from the bestiary she had read at the academy.
They were bugbears, another failed mutation in the goblin race in the attempt to recover from their fallen state.
They were bigger and stronger than their forefathers, but also more stupid.
They had obtained a greater physical strength in exchange for their magical talents.
She didn\'t have the time to wonder how could anyone had mistaken them for an unknown race when the bugbears screamed their challenge and charged towards her.
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