368 Goralpri part three

    Nix appeared in the peaceful Grove a moment later; he cleared his throat while covering a smile with one hand.

    Tai'Qui was standing knee-deep in mud, carefully forming mudpies with her hands.  She looked up when Nix made a noise.  \"Back so soon?\"

    Nix glanced at the large stack of mud-balls on the grass.  \"Yep, couldn't stay away.\"

    Tai laughed at his expression and waded toward the grassy bank. She wore brown leather leggings that were rolled up to her knees and a red scarf wrapped around her head that made her look like a gypsy. \"This is how rumors get started.\"

    \"I am aware.\"  Nix walked toward her, stopping next to the pile of mud.  \"These for me?\"

    Tai pursed her lips while considering the question.  \"Half of them, I need your help, though.\" The mud ran smoothly off of the dragon's brown legs when she stepped onto the grass.

    \"Perfect.  I need your help also, we can exchange favors.\"  Nix grinned and picked up one of the mudpies that were dried.

    Tai smiled slightly while rolling her pants legs down.  \"This is so sudden, Nix.  I don't feel prepared.\"

    Nix laughed at the innuendo.  \"Very funny.  Why are you flirting with ants?\"

    Tai pretended to give him a stern look.  \"I don't consider you an ant Nix. I'm going to steal you from Deidra.\"

    Nix laughed loudly, the sound of it echoing in the Grove.  \"Are you implying that Deidra and I are intimate?\"

    Tai nodded slightly.  \"She told me so herself.\"

    Nix suppressed a shudder.  \"No, she didn't.\"

    \"Hmm?  So it isn't true?\"  Tai moved closer and placed a hand on the mudpie that Nix was holding. \"Push one of your elements into this.\"

    Nix nodded and pushed ice flame into the fist-sized ball of mud; it hardened immediately and turned white.  An inscription was visible on it. \"What does this say?\"

    \"Ice Flame,\" Tai answered quickly and hefted it in one hand while summoning a small earth creature.  Without speaking further, she tossed it at the tiny rock fiend that was running in circles.  It instantly froze in place; a pitiful wail came from it as the frozen flames ravaged it for a few seconds before it died.

    \"How do you make those?\"

    Tai gave me a slight smile.  \"I can show you, but you'll have to pay my price.\"

    Nix nodded.  \"Now you sound like Deidra.\"

    Tai frowned at the mention of the other dragon.  \"Fine, no charge.\"

    \"Damn... I came here for a reason.\"  He handed her one of the ingots from the warehouse.  \"Seen this before?\"

    Tai nodded calmly.  She immediately knew what it was.  \"Dragon Steel.  Where did you get such a large amount?\"

    \"Huh?\"  Nix stared at the ingot while she turned it over in her hand.  \"That's one of thousands, maybe even tens of thousands.\"

    \"Nix...\"  Tai handed it back to him, her face showing alarm.  \"Are you being serious?\"

    Nix nodded.  \"Where does it come from?  Why is it so rare?\"

    \"Common metals infused with Dragon bone, only my kind is capable of making it.\"  Tai shook her head at the thought.  \"The amount you mentioned shouldn't be possible.\"

    Nix shrugged.  \"I've been seeing a lot of things regarding dragons that shouldn't be possible, perhaps someone has raided Khalam'Zhur.\"

    Tai's face showed her surprise.  \"How do you know that place?\"

    \"Deidra mentioned it to me when we were discussing the Dragon puppet that Vega possessed.\"  Nix gestured to a half dozen mudpies that were dry.  \"I have to get going.  Can we load up a few of these now?\"

    Tai nodded and started picking them up one at a time while Nix pushed different elements into each one. \"When you're finished with your mission, I expect you to come back and help me with the rest.\"

    \"I will.\"  Nix placed a half dozen of the mudpies in his inventory.  \"Can you open me up a breach?\"

    \"Think about the place you wish to go to.\"  Tai placed a hand on his shoulder, and a moment later, a breach appeared.

    \"Thanks for the help.  Cya soon.\"  Nix stepped through the breach an instant later, leaving the Earth Dragon alone.


    In the few minutes Nix had been gone, a large amount of the crates were moved to one side, exposing the entrance to an elevator.

    /Hotness: Pon: Done vacationing yet?

    /Hotness: Nix: Yes.  Leva, bring enough people in to transport everything here to HQ in Ionova. As it happens, these ingots are precious.

    /Hotness: Semmi: If that's the case, we can expect more resistance.

    /Hotness: Nix: Yes.  Leva will stay here and strip this warehouse bare while the rest of us head down.

    /Hotness: Ronnie: Should we come with you?

    [Summons: Mortimer]

    [Summons: Fey]

    [Summons: Ducky]

    /Hotness: Nix: Yes.  Prep for a fight.

    Morti waddled slowly over to Nix before sitting on the floor.  \"Can you tighten my helmet?\"

    Nix nodded and cinched the belt tighter under Morti's chin.  \"Not sure what we are facing, let's make sure we protect everyone.\"

    Morti's big head nodded up and down.  \"When we're done here, can you come back to Nescari with me? Mom wants you to meet someone.\"

    Nix scratched Morti's ears roughly.  \"Of course.\"

    Semmi did a quick count of their numbers before giving Nix the thumbs up.

    /Hotness: Semmi: Looks good Nix, I think we are ready.

    Morti: Tank

    Rock Golem: Tank

    Nix: CC

    Ducky: CC

    Fey: DPS

    Ronnie: DPS

    Bali: DPS

    Pon: DPS

    Wind: DPS

    Semmi: DPS

    Wilo: Buffs

    Fajii: Buffs/DPS

    Eron: Heals

    Fajii buffed everyone and then moved beside Nix.  \"Summon your Earth pet; I'm really curious.\"

    Nix nodded and walked toward the elevator.  \"I will when we get down.  Leva, come with me for a moment.  I don't like the idea of taking everyone in the elevator.\"

    The elevator was obviously built for the purpose of freight. When Nix and Leva stepped inside, the small control panel next to the door lit up.  There were four buttons, two were designated as up and down, while the others were open and close.  \"Seems easy enough.\"

    Leva watched as Nix pushed the close button and then the down arrow.  \"After this, can Ducky and Fey come to Chyanama for a while?\"

    \"If they want to.  Just make sure you take good care of them.\"

    Leva nodded her head.  \"I will.  Thanks, Nix.\"

    A few minutes later, the elevator finally came to a halt with a grinding of gears and a loud metallic bang.  Nix didn't have to pretend he was surprised when he stepped out; it was by far the most massive cavern he'd ever been in. Hundreds of torches gave the air a strong scent of fire and smoke.

    Leva stared at the vast open crater in the middle that seemed to want to swallow up the cavern. \"What is that?\"

    Nix walked towards the edge of the crater.  \"It's a pit mine.  I've never seen one that was underground.\"

    Leva opened a breach to bring the raid team in while Nix watched the activity below.  A single winding road pushed down into the dimly lit maw.  It clung to the side of the crater, spiraling as far as the eye could see.

    Nix held up his arm and examined his blood-red tattoo. He hadn't drawn the scimitar since he started using Wrath.  He pictured the blade in his head, and instantly it appeared in his hand.  It made a loud humming noise when he swiped it in the air; most of the blade was red except for the edge, which was black.

    Hell's Vengeance [Soul Blade]

    Scimitar: Breach Commander's Weapon

    Description: This blade doubles the effectiveness

    of all fire abilities.

    +100 to All Stats

    20 percent chance of a critical hit

    [Damage is based on Strength X Agility rating.]

    [Fire Shadow]: Become immune to all Damage for 10 seconds.

    [Sudden Death]: Instantly slay someone who is mortally wounded.

    He moved the blade to his left hand and equipped Wrath also.  The white blade emerged into the air with a soft hum.

    [Dual Wielding Set identified.  Designate current weapons as Dual Wield I?]

    \"Yes.\"  Nix turned back toward the group that was approaching, a flash of black and a cold nose pressed against the side of his face announced the arrival of Eron.

    The black fox stood casually on Nix's shoulder.  \"I sense a strong spirit close by Nix.\"

    Nix turned his head slightly so that he could see Eron.  \"Dragon?\"

    The small black head nodded.  \"Splinters of one, I recognize the technique.\"

    \"Hmm... Keep me apprised.\"
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