Supreme Magus (Web Novel)-Chapter 3002 Ears of Menadion (Part 2)

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Chapter 3002 Ears of Menadion (Part 2)

3002 Ears of Menadion (Part 2)

Even though the tenth floor was the smallest, it was a room 30 meters (100') long and wide. Maergron had already used the enchantments of the lab to move all the Forgemastering tools to the floor below, leaving only the throne room's original decorations.

Aside from the bronze basin and the stone throne, there was nothing enchanted left.

The two side walls were covered in murals and bas-reliefs depicting the history of the Garden. Ryka had a hard time looking at her enemy rather than staring at the tales they depicted.

Above the murals, two long stone shelves covered the entire length of the walls. Above the shelves, there were hundreds of small dolls made of dried grass, clay cups, and metal amulets that the pilgrims had presented as votive offerings before the Groundkeepers past.

There was no Groundkeeper now, only a Fae.

He looked to be in his early twenties and was 1.9 meters (6'3") tall. He wore a full suit of armor that left only his face exposed, revealing a pale green skin. His eyes were as red as rubies and reflected the mystical lights no differently from real gems.

The Awakened noticed that the bronze basin was empty and that the armor seemed stretched thin, as if it could barely contain the raw violence of the Redcap. It showed that he still had the powers of the Titania just like the jolts running over the metal were too similar to Strider's.

Blades as long as short words rested on the forearms of the armor, one for each knuckle but the thumb's. They looked like long sleek fingers, made more to stab than cut.

Lith, Solus, and the Eldritch-hybrids, however, were much more interested in the helm covering most of Maergron's head. Its design was similar to the armor's but it was clear that the helm was much older.

The Ears had an angular shape, flat on the sides and tapering on the top of the head. The artifact's front was empty, outlining where the Eyes and the Mouth were supposed to fit and form a full helm.

At the ear level, there were angular protrusions that reminded Lith the speakers of gaming headphones. There was no headband connecting them, just white magic crystals shaped like arrowheads on their top.

According to the Eyes, the crystals worked akin to antennas, collecting the fluctuations in the surrounding world energy and feeding them to the artifact to decipher.

The Eyes also revealed a steady flow of world energy going from the throne to the Ears. It was one of Pharek's greatest successes and the reason Maergron refused to escape.

Only inside the Garden and only near the throne would the Ears receive the energy the artifact needed to tap into its full power without burdening the Redcap's mana or mental focus.

'I can't believe it!' Lith thought.

'Me neither!' Solus replied. 'We've found the last piece of Menadion's Set! Do you know what this means?'

'That after shapeshifting the Ears a little here and there I can call myself Tiamatimus Prime!'

'I'm fucking going to-' Whatever she had to say, it was cut short.

"You've come here by following the most direct route without ever taking one of the many dead ends or triggering one of the traps left by my master." The Redcap said. "Clearly, you have a way to track me down, and running away would solve nothing.

"However, I doubt it would have taken you five months to find me if it was that easy. My guess is that one of you guided the rest here so once I kill you all, I'll have the time to pack my stuff and disappear. The Council won't find me ever again."

"Dream on, kid." Xenagrosh sneered at him, locking the Maw to her face.

"You possess the Hands and the Mouth of Menadion?" Maergron was flabbergasted. "Now I understand how you've found me. Master Pharek was right. Menadion was killed by an Abomination."

"Sure." She laughed at him. "I killed Menadion. I taught Arthan what he knew. I'm the one responsible for Valeron's death. It was me all along."

"I'm Maergron Ashvein, creature. Who are you?" He said, having no idea if the Eldritch was mocking him or telling the truth.

Judging by the shocked gazes of her companions, both were equally plausible.

"Xenagrosh the Final Smile." She pointed at the fangs-shaped gemstones on the Maw while giving him a mocking bow.

Maergron and everyone else in the room went pale. Even Azhom's skull somehow lost color.

"What's with those faces?" Zoreth asked the members of the Hand of Fate. "You've known my name all along."

"I thought you were another Xenagrosh." Rhuta took a cautious step back.

"I didn't kill Menadion, I've never met Arthan, and I'd never harmed Valeron, for that matter."

"This makes you just slightly less terrifying but thanks for the clarification." Ryka moved a bit to the left.

"Screw it. If she wanted to kill us, she would have done it long ago." Azhom hit them with her staff. "Let's capture this guy. I call dibs on his armor."

"I call dibs on the helm." Lith said.

"That old junk?" Strider scoffed. "Then I'll take his weapons. I think they'll suit my style."

The Lich's joke had restored unity and battle formation. Also, for some reason, now Maergron looked more scared of Lith than of the Eldritch.

Xenagrosh's eyes moved left and right, trying to find a safe attack path. Not for herself, of course, but for the others. The room was big, but not so much to allow a group as large as hers to attack a single target at the same time.

'Bytra's powers and those of the Zouwu might hinder each other. Even worse, we have no common tactic with the Hand of Fate. We risk interfering in our respective attacks and ruin everything.' She thought.

"I'll go first and test the waters." Strider raised his right blade in a chivalrous salute and circled the left to his back, stabbing at the air multiple times with subtle movements. "This guy is too confident for a dead man."

His cloudy tail released a powerful bolt of lightning that fueled his bloodline ability, Flash Steps, and produced a flare of mystical light that blinded Life Vision for a split second.

It was all the time Strider needed to cover the distance with Maergron and strike at his heart and neck at the same time.

Lith, Solus, and the Eldritches were caught by surprise and cursed at the Zouwu.

They didn't know how his abilities worked nor did they catch his silent signal. The Members of the Hand of Fate did. Ryka and Unanna covered their eyes and Blinked behind the Redcap.

The Titania was already the strongest member of the unit back when she was a bright blue core and now she had gained the deep violet. Unanna could strike six times, making him akin to three people fighting with perfect teamwork.

More would have meant obstructing each other movements and messing up with Strider's attack pattern.

Maergron was blinded by the flash as well yet the Zouwu read annoyance, not fear, in the Fae's expression.