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255 To Mt. Glory

 Dave checked his map for the Mt. Glory marker, it was in the Southern Kingdom which belonged to the Heaven's Dawn guild. And those particular guildies were very protective of their 'turf.' Dave groaned, the closest teleportation gate was hundreds of miles away from Mt.Glory, not to mention the way from the gate to the mountain was probably filled with monsters. Grinding along the way would have been great to get some EXP, but he needed to get to Baalam fast, the quest fail condition was that the NPC might die. The faster he got to him the better.

Dave operated the teleport gate, entering the coordinates for the Southern Kingdom. Suddenly, the gate started humming and the coordinates the controls moved by themselves, overwriting the coordinates. The arch of the portal filled with a whirling vortex of black and violet light.

Dave stepped back, drawing his sword. The Urburg gate was linked to the underworld and had once been used by demons to access the Overworld.

The druid that used to live in the ruins talked about the gate's history and warned them against using it. But the Undeath god claimed he'd made it safe to use. Now Dave wished he'd listened to the druid instead of that maybe-god punk rocker.

Dave tightened his grip on his sword anxiously, preparing for some interdimensional horror show to appear.

Black light flared and a basilisk with a rider on top pushed through the vortex. The portal flared again and another basilisk came through. The flashes of light repeated as more basilisks and paladins continued to step out of the swirling vortex.

"Commander, I did as you ordered, I got everyone safely out of the dungeon," Zorah saluted after dismounting.

"Holy crap, how did you manage to come through the gate?!" Dave was delighted.

"We discovered a hidden chamber with a teleport gate inside the Chaos dungeon," the priestess answered as she joined them.

"How did you know which gate to take then?" Dave asked in wonder.

"I had a divine revelation my lord. In it a strange child appeared and told me to come to this place."

'That damned punk-god again.'

"You guys can stay here instead of the Underworld then. I am leaving on a quest. Just don't go past the city walls and you should be okay, the Wilds are very dangerous," Dave warned.

"As you command, sir," Zorah said.

Grumpy stomped over and stood in front of Dave, the basilisk grunted and pushed his massive head against Dave, making the draugr stumble.

"Commander, Grumpy wishes to go with you on your journey," the unholy priestess said.

Dave scratched under the black basilisk's jaw, "Okay Grumps, you can come along on my quest."

"Can we join you too, sir?" Zorah asked.

"No, I can't bring anyone with me on this quest. Grumpy let's go," Dave said and jumped onto the basilisk's back.

***

The Onyx Basilisk (Grumpy) looks forward to the journey and the battles that will surely be a part of it.

Your affinity with the Onyx Basilisk (Grumpy) has increased.

Affinity level: 3/7

You can now summon the Onyx Basilisk (Grumpy) to your location anywhere in Conquest.

You have unlocked a new mount option:

[Spirit Link] (Passive): communication and understanding between you and your mount has improved, level 1/4.

You have unlocked a new mount option.

[Mounted Combat] (ground): Level 1/10, fight from the back of a pet or companion-beast.

Damage is increased by 10% when fighting from a [Spirit-linked] mount.

***

"Wow, this is great," Dave said, looking through the bonuses for mounted combat.

Then he remembered when he'd tried to fight from atop the basilisk before, his reach was too short. He could use ranged attacks, but his ranged skills had long cooldowns, so he wouldn't be able to spam them.

Grumpy snorted and chuffed in the direction of the other basilisks. Dog's basilisk replied with a grunting cough and came over to stand in front of Grumpy. The smaller basilisk started hacking and gagging, like a cat bringing up a furball. The basilisk continued and with a final convulsion of its throat, it spat out a coiled length of sharpened and articulated vertebrae capped with a spiked knob of heavy bone on one end.

It was Dog's bone weapon. The one he'd crafted from the spine of the first basilisk they'd fought and killed.

Dog's basilisk picked the coiled length of bone up with his mouth and tossed it to the draugr. Dave caught the weapon and inspected it.

***

Basilisk Bone Flail.

Category: Weapon

Type: Barbed Whip-Club

Requirements: Dullahan race, or level 450, or Death Knight class.

Damage: 20,000-30,000

Attribute bonuses:

+ 100 STR

+100 VIT

Effects:

Club Form:

[Slug 'em] (Passive): attacks have a 10% chance to inflict a [Stun] effect on the target. Causes target to [Stagger] if the user's Strength is 100 or more points higher than the target's Strength.

[Skull Crusher] causes [Disorientation] to targets (duration 10 seconds). Disoriented targets will be afflicted with a 67% reduction in accuracy and response time (2 minute cooldown).

Whip Form:

[Too Long] (Negative Passive): whip form causes 20% less damage than club form.

[Bypass] (Passive): Attacks can be changed in mid stroke, for example from Overhead Sting to Side Snap. While in whip form the flail can strike around shields and other obstacles.

[Poki Poki]: a whip form attack that has a 10% chance to cause [Laceration], bleeding targets for 10% of base weapon damage. Stacks up to 5 times.

[Flailing Circle of Death]: whirls the whip form around the user, creating an offensive barrier that deflects projectiles and causes 20% base weapon damage per hit. Cooldown 5 minutes.

Rarity: Epic

Weapon Tier: S

A weapon made from the spine of an Azure basilisk using forgotten eldritch techniques. Crude in appearance, the flail is designed to be used from close and mid range, adaptable to many situations.

***

The bone flail was a good deal heavier than his sword, but when he equipped the weapon it felt right. He lashed the whip in the air, cracking it. The whip form of the weapon was long enough to reach the ground with length to spare while he was on Grumpy. He flicked the grip a certain way and the vertebra clicked together, transforming the weapon into its solid club form with the grim spiked knob on the end.

Dave was impressed with the reach and versatility of the weapon. And the base damage on the flail was the same as the Stalwart Gauntlets, which were dropped by a level 750 mob. Dave wondered how Dog, a newly created undead, could create a weapon like the flail. Maybe he was a legendary blacksmith when he was living.

"That fucking Dog and his tricks. Yeah, this will work. Let's go Grumps," Dave led the basilisk to the teleport gate.

They appeared on the teleport platform of an oasis town set in the middle of a souk. NPC 'shops' were rugs spread under the shade of palm trees, with all sorts of wares on display, weapons, rations, potions and more. The NPCs competed, calling for players to look at their items and bartered intensely with any player interested in buying what they had to offer.

A scream echoed through the town square, a female elf with red hair pointed a trembling hand at Grumpy.

A player in full steel armor, including a helm with a red horse hair crest, ran up to the platform. Another player in silver-chased leather armor carrying a halberd followed close behind the first. Both players did a double take when they got a clear view of the draugr seated on the black basilisk. The leather armored player grounded his halberd like he had to use it to stay standing up.

"A Death Knight!" the red-crested player said.

The player in leather armor gulped, "I thought all the greater undead were gone.".

Dave inspected the first player.

***

Name: Snakeking ;-)

Level: 220

Class: Hellion

***

"Hey man, what's the best way to get to Mt. Glory?" Dave asked in his hoarse draugr voice.

Snakeking looked to both sides then pointed at himself in a 'Who, me?' gesture.

Draugr-Dave smirked, "Yeah, man."

Snakeking shrugged, "You've never been here before?"

Dave shook his head.

"Good thing you didn't just take off into the desert then. The wiki doesn't mention or give the locations of the sand eaters."

"Sand eaters?" Dave tilted his head.

"Yeah man. not all quicksand is quicksand pits, some of them are sand eaters waiting underneath with their stomachs open, waiting to trap you. Falling into one really sucks."

"How do you tell the difference?"

"If you're careful and go slow you'll smell it. Sand eaters are basically open stomachs."

"Got it. Thanks for the heads up, bro. Can you mark the pits on my map?" Dave asked.

"Sure thing, Mr. Skeletal."

Dave shared his map with Snakeking and moments later Dave's route to Mount Glory was marked with red symbols.

"So, can I get an autograph?" SnakeKing asked.

Dave tilted his head, "An autograph?"

"Yeah, I'm a big fan of your videos."

Dave looked at Snakeking blankly for a second, then he rummaged through his inventory. He found the cutlass he didn't use anymore, the one from his days as a low level draugr.

"I don't have a pen, but I used this when I first started as Skeletal. There's probably video of me with it online."

The player caught the weapon Dave threw to him, his smile grew from ear to ear.

Grumpy galloped through the oasis town and past the entry markers, heading north in the direction of Mt. Glory.

EXTRA:

Hellion: a melee character class that uses halberds. Proficient in close quarter combat, good as a half-tank half-DPS build, but lacks mobility to be considered an all around combat unit.