Erotic Stories

Godless and Faithless Chapter 7 by Tyrone Wilson

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Axel woke suddenly, jolting up in the bed. The last thing he remembered was a great deal of pain after he sealed the Miasma away. Rayner must have carried him here.

A woman sitting by his bed left calling for a man named John. When John came, he explained what happened while Axel was sleeping.

“He did what?”

“He left to fight the dragons, rescue the maiden and free our people of this scourge,” John explained for the third time.

Axel sighed, it sounded like something Rayner would do. Stupid hero. Not like he had much of choice. If he refused, Axel would still be asleep, or dead.

He thanked the man and went to get his things. Maybe he could catch up with Rayner if he hurried.

He could hear a commotion coming from outside, people were screaming. John was out the door first.

Outside villagers ran around in chaos. John stopped one of the villagers. “What is going on?”

“Attack. Goblins, wolves, kobolds, worms, drill birds. Everything.”

Before John could ask him any more questions, the villager ran off.

“What’s a drill bird?” Axel asked.

“It’s a monster bird with a sharp beak that spins as it dives toward a victim. That’s not the problem. The problem is why are they all attacking.”

“It could be the Inimi. They work with goblins.”

A woman with a spear hurried to them. “They are not working together. They are attacking together.”

“The difference being?” John asked.

“They attack each other instead of cooperating.”

If a luck stat existed, he would have to find it and check to see if it was zero. He wouldn’t be able to go to Rayner. “Looks like we are in for a siege. The village is walled right?”

“Yes,” the spearwoman said. “The walls weren’t built for this.”

“We will make it work. Who’s in charge?”

“Me.”

“Do you know what to do?”

“No. I would accept help.”

“You got it.”

Axel wished he had Rayner’s booming voice; with it he, John and the woman with the spear named Mary would not have had to run around the village trying to create order. Another man named Walker joined them later, to tell them bad news. “The worms are filling the trench. Soon the other monsters will be able to attack all around the wall.”

“Can’t the worms just tunnel into the village.”

“Our local God’s blessing prevents that. It’s why the village was built here long ago.”

“Any other benefits?”

“The well water is always clean.”

The small gods of Alta didn’t follow a theme. No god ruled over a single emotion or idea. Rather, they granted and represented a hodgepodge of abilities and ideals.

It was a form of direct worship; villagers wanted clean water, they thanked the god for the clean water and lack of sickness as a result, and continued to get filtered water. He had not seen a single bible since coming to this world.

“How many men and women in the village militia?”

“20. The population of the village is 300 men, women and children,” Mary said. “Should we recruit more?”

“For now, no. They will be of more use supporting the fighters. Only in the stories do people who have never fought before perform well against monsters.” Axel felt strange, and he couldn’t figure out why.

Walker left to gather the militia to the walls, John checked if all those who could not fight were taken care of, leaving him with Mary.

“What skills does your militia have available?”

“We volunteered based on willingness to fight, not by skills. Some have none. I have a skill that increases the durability of my spear. The others have a skill to handle waste without getting dirty, a skill to feel when someone is sneaking up behind them…” She went on to describe useless but interesting skills.

Skills were the bread and butter of combat in games, and this remained true in this fantasy world Yazid sent them to. Everyone had skills, naturally. The difference is the use of mana that activated it.

The magical energy, mana, enabled a supernatural quality to skills. Firing an arrow was a skill but only with mana did it become something more. With mana the arrow did not only rely on the physical power or talent of the user. In a way, even floor sweeping could be a special skill with mana applied to it.

He remembered what he had told Evans. He said that not all skills needed an obvious combat use. “Tell me the skills of the villagers as well.”

Standing on a guard tower at the gates, he saw the varied horde of monsters gathering around the village. He was not afraid of the sight. It was just a mob. A mob was as dangerous to itself as it was to others. This was how they would defeat them.

But the first part of his plan was to wait. They had walls, so they would take advantage of that. Using the skills of the villagers they would make sure the walls held.

A villager had a skill that stopped wood from splintering; he used his skill on the parts of the wall in disrepair. A boy who could harden mud helped him. A woman timed her skill so when the monsters pushed against the wall it became elastic then pushed back at them.

Those without skills poured hot water on monsters trying to climb up the walls. Some hurled rocks at the flying enemies. Meanwhile, children helped dig traps near the weakest parts of the wall, giving them another line of defense to fall back on.

Despite their efforts, monsters made it into the village by flying creatures like the drill bird, and ones that had great jumping ability like the spring spider.

Axel jumped from the guard tower, quickly engaging the spring spider. The end of its limbs looked like springs and he could hear a coiling sound as it prepared to attack him. Its many eyes didn’t allow it to see behind it as Walker speared it in the back.

Even wounded it jumped away and into two women carrying buckets of water to the gates. They screamed, grossed out by the black hairy spider. Axel didn’t blame them; he wouldn’t want to touch the creature either.

The women may have been frightened of it, but not so much to miss an opportunity to kill the enemy. They took out their knives and stabbed it in the eyes.

Walker gave the women a nod of acknowledgment. “That will teach it to mess with our village girls.”

“Walker, I thought you were at the other side of the village?”

“I wanted you to know that the goblins are using ladders.”

“Where the hell did they get those?”

“Goblins are more than capable of building tools.”

“Right, still you could have just sent a runner.”

“Some of them are moving to this side, so I thought you would need the help.”

“Thanks, but we have to trust the others will hold out without further aid. For now, we need to make a sweep of the village to make sure none got inside by other means. Monsters have skills too.”

“I saw none on my way here, but it wouldn’t hurt to check.”

With that, the two looked for invading enemies.

“Over there, the rabbit.” Walker brought his attention to a cute little rabbit eating from a dropped basket of food.

The rabbit turned toward them. Red eyes glowing, front teeth sharp as daggers. Another creature that had an ability to jump over the walls and small enough to escape notice. It was ready for them, bouncing side to side like a boxer. Walker moved first, but the bunny dodged with ease. Axel tried next, but the bunny was too fast. It jumped at Walker, head-butting him in the stomach.

“C’mon Walker, we are not going to get schooled by a rabbit!”

Walker clutched his stomach and leaned on his spear. “Rabbits are one of the more dangerous monsters around here Axel.” He parried another headbutt. “They ruin gardens and breed…well, like rabbits.”

“Point taken.”

As the rabbit prepared to pounce on them again, one of the bucket-carrying women from earlier dumped scorching hot water on the rabbit, causing the rabbit to hop around in pain until it lost consciousness. She then finished it with her knife.

“You should join the village militia,” Walker said. Instead of responding she went back to refill her bucket.

A villager armed with a broom fought off several drill birds. When she swung her broom, the loose straws would harden and pierce the monsters, turning the broom into a spear and a distance weapon.

Her act was proof of concept, everyday skills transformed with the use of mana. Their gods had blessed them with skills relevant to their daily lives.

“What kind of skill is that?” he asked the woman.

“I use it to straighten my hair.” Looking at the forest on her head she called hair he could see why.

“Head to the walls, that is a useful skill, it will be of more use there.” They left the woman after defeating the birds, looking for the next enemy.

It became clear the villagers were more capable than they gave themselves credit for. They took his advice about how their skills could be of use in non-standard ways to heart. If they kept this up, he wouldn’t need to enact his plan.

After clearing the village, they checked the walls. Mary shouted orders, running back and forth making her presence known.

She wasn’t ready for an attack of this scale, so he told her that compared to others she was very experienced. Axel wasn’t just giving her a confidence boost, according to her stats she was as strong as Barny’s guardsmen.

She displayed her strength when a goblin got onto the walls with a rope. She engaged it without hesitation. Piercing it through the stomach, for good measure she threw it over the wall. She let the rope it used to climb the wall fall, along with the other goblins climbing it.

“I see you are doing well Mary,” Axel said.

She was, better than well, a grin was on her face. “If I knew they would be this easy to kill, I would not have hidden behind these walls for most of my life!”

“The walls make our paltry number of fighters look like a force 10 times our true number.”

Seeing that the walls were holding he went to get some rest. An odd thing to do during an attack, but if people did not get enough sleep, they would falter. So, he led by example and got some shuteye.

Entering John’s home, he saw Martha, the healer who used her skill to relieve him of his condition. She was looking for something. He could guess what.

“Ma’am, I know what you are looking for, it is best you leave it be.”

“It’s an evil thing you keep, I can feel it but I can’t find It.”

The ball of miasma that he sealed away not only floated it camouflaged itself. No that would be inaccurate. It was so horrible to look upon that anyone seeing it would tell themselves it wasn’t there. When he met back up with Rayner, he would put it in his notes to study the effect.

“Look, thanks for saving me, but shouldn’t you be resting? I have the object you are looking for contained. Besides, I don’t think I can destroy it.”

“It reminds me of the miasma close to our village. Nothing good comes from there.”

“I agree.” She didn’t need to know that the item she searched for was the miasma in its entirety. “Now if you don’t mind, I am going to get some shut eye.”

She didn’t question his choice to sleep during a battle. She mumbled about evil gods and left. The healing spell was supposed to cripple her. She must have exaggerated to Rayner the effects the skill would have on her to convince him to fight the dragons.

After she left, he went to sleep.

***

The walls held. He half expected everything to go tell hell while he slept. Even better, some of the more troublesome enemies had abandoned their attack. The flying enemies were gone, and so were the worms. Worms could not tunnel under the village and hurt themselves trying. That woman with the broom massacred the birds.

The retreat of the birds was not entirely a good thing. They were part of his plan to defeat the rest of the monsters. It was not a huge setback; he would just have to find another delivery method.

“Walker, you’re awake, did you not get any sleep?”

“I’m a light sleeper and the horde of bloodthirsty monsters at our gates doesn’t help.”

“What about Mary?”

“She refused to rest, and it’s probably for the best as not many in the village can lead.”

“Well if my plan works this siege won’t last any longer.”

“A siege. Something I can tell my kids about.”

“You have kids?”

“I will after this!”

A messenger came to update them on the situation. They had captured the monsters needed for his plan.

The group of monsters were tied up and being watched by no less than 40 of the villagers. One villager had a skill that let her tighten ropes to an extreme degree making it near impossible for the monsters to break through.

John moved between the monsters, double checking the ropes just in case. “Are you ready Axel? I have my doubts about this plan. It seems hopeful.”

John’s doubts were valid, he had never tested this before. It relied too much on luck. But using his skill combined with those of a few *********** villagers he might pull this off.

Axel pulled out his knife. “Have faith, John.” He activated his skill Fear Knife, cutting each monster. The skill differed from Pain Knife, the depth and severity of the wound didn’t increase its effects.

After brainstorming with the villagers, he had found a solution to improve the skill’s effectiveness: drugs. Using Fear Knife, drugs, a skill that increased the effects of debuffs and another skill that increased the potency of drugs, he got the result he desired. Terrified monsters.

That was the first step. With the help of the villagers, they took the terrified monsters to one of the gates. This gate had the most monsters in front of it and was the closest to breaking.

“Everything is ready for you Axel,” Mary said.

Three men with the required skills came forward, used their skills on the monsters and left.

“Open the gates!” a man said.

Then they released the monsters. The terrified monsters ran into the others who charged the now open gates. At first, the monsters simply batted them away.

Then other monsters became just as fearful. It spread until all the present monsters attacked or ran away. When the uninfected monsters saw the others fighting, they assumed the tentative truce was broken and assaulted each other.

This was no army, it was a horde, a mob. It quickly dissolved when events went wrong. They had been fighting for too long with no result and ran away defeated.

The villagers spent the remainder of the morning dealing with the aftermath, collecting all the monster corpses, and destroying them. If left to rot, sickness would spread or attract more monsters looking to eat the corpses.

Heaving the final kobold into the hole with the rest of the bodies, Axel wiped sweat from his forehead. The dumping of the bodies tired him more than killing them in the first place.

“What are you going to do now?” John said.

“I would follow Rayner but I will continue on our original quest instead.”

“A difficult choice but I understand. These monsters could be heading to the village of the family you’re supposed to escort.”

“Exactly.”

“I’m sorry but we can’t lend aid. We have to stay here and defend the village in case the monsters come back.”

“I understand John.”

Martha called to him as he passed the village gates. “Come to say goodbye Martha?”

“Yes, and a gift. We don’t have much money, but I have this.” She handed him several small bottles.

“Are these?”

“Healing potions. Normally we would not have access to the ingredients, not having strong enough fighters to collect them. But having killed a mob of monsters we will have enough for months.”

“I did not know monsters were used for potions. I thought they required herbs and such.”

“We took your advice; we can use skills for more ways than described. I got creative to make these. They taste bad but they work.”

“Thank you.” He shook her wrinkled hand and went on his way.

He ran into little trouble on the short path to Fred’s family’s village. He avoided monsters that were part of the attack on the village, but other than that it was a pleasant walk. The first one in a long time.

He took the time to take in his surroundings. Not since first coming to this world had he noticed the vivid colors, again reminding him of a cartoon. Axel had figured out this was an effect of the mana that permeated everything, making all colors brighter and deeper.

Madam Grace told him his high level affected how his mana interacted with foreign mana. He used this to seal off the miasma. In most games, level was a simple representation of overall strength that sometimes came with access to greater skills or points to increase attributes like strength or wisdom.

Did the way he interacted with mana currently change how he interacted with the world? If so, how was he seeing and living differently than others? Axel might be living some alien experience far outside the realm of comprehension from others. The idea disturbed him. This was the real reason he wanted Rayner to catch up to him even though in a fight Rayner would likely win.

They had to keep too many secrets. Not a single encounter led him to believe the people would be sympathetic with their circumstances. The people of this world had troubles of their own, in many ways greater than theirs.

They lived in a fancy hotel full of prostitutes that served their every whim. Meanwhile, the refugees had lost family and lived in slums and makeshift homes.

He had not thought of his family in a while. Yazid said his family debts would be taken care of, but he had no way to confirm that. How much did he really care? His parents had put him in a horrible situation, at the mercy of debt-collectors. Debt-collectors were violent people who bullied him when he could not pay. They were thugs.

He hated his title: thug, for that reason, not because of the race implications it had like Rayner thought. Besides, the things he did to pay them back may have earned him that Title. Did Rayner know what he did after school?

This was why he hated being alone. It made him think, contemplate, agonize. Like some brooding beta baby. That was not him. He was a fighter in a fantasy world! He fought battles! Thinking about a world he could not go back to was a waste of time. He would add his concerns to Rayner’s to-do list.

He took a drink of devil’s water, letting the candy tasting liquid fill him and tingle through the rest of his body. That felt much better.

By the time he arrived at the village he had finished all his devil’s water, the stuff was so good. The village was walled, or it used to be. The walls had crumbled. Inside the village, giant holes were all over the ground. Worms must have tunneled under the gates, and the intruders destroyed the walls from inside.

Bodies lay everywhere. Checking each body for life and finding none, he searched the homes next. Axel found more of the same. The smell of death, maggots, flies. It was too much, he threw up.

The bodies were mutilated in ways he would never forget. He wished he had more devil’s water to make the sight easier. If this were a game, he would have used this as an opportunity to loot the houses, but he didn’t have the stomach for that either. Besides, the monsters had already taken everything.

That didn’t make sense. If a horde of monsters came through here and killed all the villagers, they would have fought each other as soon as the humans were dead. Also, monsters did not need human food, money, or jewelry. They preferred eating humans instead.

Yet monsters had attacked this place, he was sure, monsters of the human variety. They must have come after the monsters softened the villagers up, then came in to slaughter the rest of the inhabitants.

Something else came to his attention. There were not enough bodies. Mary told him this village was more prosperous than hers. It had 480 people living behind its walls. Not enough bodies were here. This made sense if he accounted for the monsters eating them. It would not explain, however, why any of the bodies remained.

Like the bandits, it must have not been enough to destroy their home, kill the people and take their things. No, they had to take their entire being as well.

He had not seen Fred’s family among the bodies. He could have failed to recognize them as most of the bodies had suffered grievous burns but he didn’t think so. If there was a chance they were alive, he would find them. Then he would deal with the human monsters that did this.

***

Axel didn’t have to be a tracker to find the bandits. They had left the bodies of the villagers who tried to fight back like a trail of bloody breadcrumbs. This was not his only clue on the location of the bandits. Villagers had a place to go in times of disaster, like a forest or a cave. Axel guessed that the bandits had taken over the cave for their own evil purposes.

He assumed their numbers were small since the monsters did their dirty work for them. Still, he could be wrong. He had no skills in sneaking, how would he approach them without being spotted? The answer was obvious, he couldn’t.

If he can’t sneak up on them, then he would walk right in. The cave was unguarded, nothing was in his way.

He walked right in. He saw a man who did not look like a bandit. He was armored, the symbol of the Coalition on the chest plate. Deserters, or at least he hoped they were. If the Coalition sanctioned this behavior, then Alta was doomed. The guard wasn’t paying attention. Axel considered killing him, instead, he ignored him as if nothing was wrong. Avoiding eye contact.

It worked; the guard must have thought he belonged there. That was when he got a wicked idea.

He returned to the man. “I’m next on watch since you don’t seem to be.”

The guard was glad to abandon his duty.

It worked, now he would wait until the next shift. Then he would blend into the structure of the bandit soldiers. He would walk deeper into the cave because he had been invited. Not because he sneaked past the guard.

When the next guard came, he had no reaction at seeing him. This confirmed that these soldiers did not know each other well. That made sense; if they were all deserters or even a mix of soldiers and bandits, then they just ran into each other.

They had placed torches to light up the cave. Men and a few women sat on crates playing cards and gambling with dice. Blankets lined the edges of the cave where they must have slept. None of them paid him the slightest attention. This was not the cream of the crop. He could smell their unwashed bodies, faces coated in dirt, armor uncleaned.

Deeper into the cave he could see alcoves with curtains; he supposed those were rooms for the officers. He would kill them first.

“Sir, I have something to report,” he said.

The officer got up from his cushions. “Did someone run off again?”

“Yes, it was—” Axel stabbed the man in the throat, covering his mouth to prevent him from making a sound. He wiped the dagger on the cushion. Moving to the next room.

He killed 3 officers and knew someone would discover the bodies, so he preempted them.

“We have a traitor; someone killed the bosses!” Instead of saying it was an intruder, he would have them turn on each other.

To increase the effect, he stabbed two bandits with Fear Knife and Pain Knife. His two victims ran around the cave screaming; when one of the bandits, thinking these were the traitors, stabbed at the terrified men, the others took objection with their action.

This was how they turned on each other. For good measure, he gave a couple more bandits a good stab with his skills.

While they fought, he looked for the prisoners. The cave was bigger than he thought but that made sense as it was chosen to shelter an entire village’s population.

A naked woman ran out from one of the cave rooms. Axel grabbed her. “I am not one of them, I am looking for the other villagers.”

After a moment she calmed down. “A Worshiper has come to save us, impossible. They don’t care what happens to us. Let me go!”

“I guess not,” he said, letting her go to move on.

“W-wait.” It worked. Her words were not that of someone who thought he was an enemy; people don’t speak to enemies as she did. She was giving him attitude for the sake of it. That was the kind of thing Rayner would put up out of sympathy for her plight. He was not Rayner.

“Unless you can help, I’m going.”

“I can help, I know where the villagers are.”

“Take me there.”

He followed her to groups of tied up villagers. Men, women, and children. For what purpose were they captured? They looked at them terrified.

This confirmed what he already suspected. “Hold on, I will cut those ropes off you.” He raised his knife—and slashed the woman behind him. Or at least he tried. She easily parried the strike.

“How did you know?”

“I assumed you were being used by the bandits at first, but the way you talked to me proved that wrong. You were fishing for information.”

“Clever.”

“Give up, you’re unarmed and your crew is in chaos.” He raised his knife toward her for emphasis.

Grinning, she raised her hands exposing her full figure, he took a moment to admire her until fire gathered in her palms, forming into a ball. She fired it at him, he moved out of the way but it burned one prisoner.

“Keep jumping around and I will burn all the of them.” She created another fireball.

This was the first time he’d seen a skill like this. He knew magic existed in this world but so far he had only seen skills that involved using an object like his knife. Even Rayner’s Roar had him using his voice. The guardsmen’s Shield Wall was the most magical thing he had seen that didn’t involve the direct blessing of a god.

He tried rushing her, but she would send out a short wide stream of fire towards him preventing him from attacking. He tried again and again, but the combination of fireballs and streams of fire gave her a near perfect defens, and more than effective offense and she was moving closer to him.

“A weak Worshiper like yourself thought he could come in here and challenge me!” She hurled another ball of fire, missing him and burning another villager. “Do you know who I am!”

“No, and soon it won’t matter because you will be dead.” Axel whispered to himself ‘hesitate and die’; he grabbed one of the smaller villagers and used her as a shield to approach the woman. She screamed as she was hit with balls and streams of fire. When he was close enough to the astonished fire wielder, he stabbed her in the stomach.

The villagers had freed themselves using the flames and were picking up weapons. One of them went to help the woman he used as a shield.

“Look, I know you all want to attack me but I have come here to help. Fred Copper sent me on a quest to find his family and bring them to Ridgehill. But I will help all of you get out of here.”

“We’re not going to attack you; these weapons are for those bastards that took us. That woman would burn us for sport. As for how you killed the bitch. Well…we all do what we have to,” a man said.

The girl caring for the burn victim looked up to Axel. “This is Fred’s wife. I am his daughter.” Axel’s stomach churned.

She was not trying to guilt trip him, she stated facts, these were the two he had come to rescue. He took out the potions Martha the healer gave him. “Here, use these.” Taking the bottles from him, she opened her mother’s mouth to help her drink it.

“Have her keep drinking those till she recovers. The rest of you. Let’s kill some bandits.”

This would have been a good time for Rayner’s Battle Cry or a little bit of the charisma he’d been showing but they didn’t seem to need it. With Axel in the lead, they searched every nook and cranny of the cave for bandits to kill.

It was a short battle. The villagers were angry and not completely unskilled with weapons and the bandits had killed each other as they had no leaders to help them regroup.

After it was over the villagers searched the loot for their possessions and covered the bodies of those who did not survive captivity or the fight. He was relieved to know that Fred’s wife was not among them.

The daughter let him carry her mother back to the village. They left the bodies of the bandits to rot.


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