After everyone has woken up properly and ate some dinner they get ready to ascend into the sky.
“I’ll go on Danmi with Metztli, you go on Narae” Cleamon says.
Danmi and Narae have already transformed into their Efreet form. They climb on and Cleamon uses his Wind spells and they lift off.
They rise up quickly and the big white cloud comes closer. Once they reach the top of it a massive castle appears.
“This is bigger than I expected” Cleamon says.
The castle is at least 10000m² with two big gardens, four big towers, three sub-buildings and one main building.
They land on top of the castle wall, just above the gate. Narae and Danmi change back and put on armor Cleamon provides. Cleamon himself wears the best armor he currently has, and provides Metztli with his second best.
Metztli and Andrea take off their transforming items and change back to their original form.
“Let’s go inside, Metztli do you smell anything?” Cleamon asks.
“Yes, I can smell something, there are two different kinds of smells here at the moment. One of the smells is much stronger than the other, it also seems it has multiple versions of the same kind of smell”
“So there are inhabitants here, maybe the stronger smell is the guards or visitors to this place. It’s not any of the people that once entered here right?”
“No, the smell isn’t the same as I smelled before we entered here”
“Okay then let’s go, don’t let any killing Intent leak out and if we meet someone don’t attack unless they attack you. They might not be enemies and just friendly, but be careful you don’t get caught off-guard, a single mistake could cost your life” Cleamon says.
They walk down the stairs towards the main building and move across the garden and watch out for any signs of life.
Slowly they approach the main door without any encounters, Cleamon sends out his aura and tries to feel if anything collides with it.
“The scale of this door seams big compared to human doors, the things living here might be a lot larger than our forms currently” Andrea says.
“The door is magically sealed, my aura can’t penetrate it. Whatever is behind here has the power to create very powerful Seals” Cleamon says touching the door.
“I’ll remove the Seal, be on guard” Cleamon says as he takes his Sealing Orb out.
He uses his orb and with a crackling sound and a bright flash the Seals fade from the door. Instantly the door swings open and five big creatures, clad in armor storm out.
The creatures have lion-like faces, their bodies are muscular and completely covered in fur, on their backs big white wings are visible.
“Who dares disturb our rest!” the one in the front of the group shouts with a booming voice.
“Everyone kneel, be as polite as possible” Cleamon whispers to the others.
They kneel quickly and lower their heads.
“Sir, we came here in search for what happened. We found the entrance to this place while exploring, we didn’t mean to intrude, but we thought no-one was here” Cleamon says with respect.
“How can we trust you? You could’ve just knocked instead of destroying our Seal on the door” he says in a stern voice.
“We’re sorry, we didn’t expect anyone to be here. It looked like it has been abandoned for a long time, so we assumed that no-one was home” Cleamon says apologizing.
“Fine, we’ll take you to our master you can explain it to master. Come with us!” He says as he casts a Sealing spell over them, locking them inside a bubble.
“Is this really needed?” Andrea asks.
“We can never be too precautious with strangers, you also showed great strength when destroying our Seal. We can easily take you on, but you never know with human. The many humans that came before you were all tricky and deceiving”.
“You’ve met humans before?” Cleamon asks.
“Yes, many years ago humans came here. They tried to get rid of us just so they could have the treasure. Of course they were no match, but they did cause us significant damage”.
“Although I’ve never seen a group like yours. You have an Elf, Efreets, a Demon and a human. We have no qualms with them, but then again we haven’t really seen any of them inside here before”.
“You guys have never been to the outside?” Narae asks.
“No we were born here, our master created us to master’s liking. We are born to serve master and will do so till the day we die”.
‘I can’t wait to meet this master, I’ve never seen a magician that is able to create life as complicated as this’ Cleamon thinks to himself, his face is showing a sincere smile.
As they walk through the castle, the ranges of creatures change, many have the characteristics of animals, but with human features. Most of them are stationed as guards, while others patrol.
“Excuse me, how long have you been here? The last footsteps that lead inside here were at least 50 years old. You also told us you met humans years ago” Andrea asks.
“I have no idea how long the master has been here, I have been alive for over 700 years”.
The guards seem generally nice, they do get some weird and hostile looks from others.
‘I wonder if they met any visitors that weren’t so nice and understanding’ Cleamon wonders.
Metztli is holding his hand, she is a bit frightened as the lion-faced monsters resemble a more fierce version of her own clan. Cleamon feels her hand trembling as they meet more and more weird looking creatures.
Cleamon puts his arm around her and keeps her close, she relaxes a bit.
Narae and Danmi looks perplexed as this is the first time they see so many different creatures.
“Andrea, I think these creatures are based upon real creatures, but they seem a bit off compared to the real thing. Have you ever come across some of these?” Cleamon asks.
“Some of them look familiar, but I’ve come across maybe two of them. So I can’t be completely sure about it. Do you think they have some connection to the real thing?”
“I think they were made from the pictures of a book, the look similar enough but don’t have the aura of the real thing”.
“They all smell the same, but they look part of the demon clan. They are not demons though” Metztli says.
“This must mean the owner is either a demon or a fan of them” Cleamon says.
“With the attitude of the guards it’s hard to believe he would be part of the demon clan, this castle also doesn’t look like someone who would be part of the demon clan. Besides that, this is high in the sky that rules out almost all of the clans. Maybe it’s a harpy, but that wouldn’t make sense as they aren’t intelligent enough” he continues.
“I guess we’ll have to wait and see” Danmi says.
Danmi is now holding Cleamon’s other hand, she’s not scared, but just wants attention.
They walk for 20 minutes before reaching a big door.
“Wait here!” the guard says as he knock on the door.
The guard enters the room alone.
“Master we have intruders, they claim to not know someone was home. They destroyed the Seal to the front gate. They don’t seem hostile, what should we do with them?” the guards tone has changed significantly as he speaks.
“Let them in, I’ll see for myself if they have any evil intentions”
The guard emerges from the room.
“You can come in, but I warn you don’t try anything or we will take action”
They enter the room.
The room is brightly lit, a big table is positioned in the center of it. Along the walls are many works of art, a big fireplace is located at the end of the room. At the other side a big cabinet full of books can be seen.
“Welcome visitors, I’ve heard from my guard you thought there was no-one home and that’s why you destroyed my Seal. Is this true?”
They look around, but no-one can be seen, the only thing is a big chair with the back to them.
“We’re sorry, we really didn’t think anyone would be home” Cleamon says bowing.
“Fine, I’ll believe you for now. Introduce yourself, name and species”.
They all introduce themselves.
“That’s a lot of different races banding together, I presume he didn’t force you all to be with him?” the entity says.
“Actually they are traveling with me” Andrea says.
“She’s also the only one that doesn’t want him” Danmi says smiling.
“I guess it’s time to introduce myself as well”
A bright flash fills the room, transparent wings come out of the side of the chair.
“It can’t be you are…” Cleamon says.