Immersion 3.19

Imm 3.18.                                 Cla 4.1

I finish the spell just as I hear a great crack. Screams start to erupt from me as I realize what’s happening. Jason’s face twists into a snarl as my skull starts to splinter like a grape.

I feel a sudden impact and my vision blurs as he suddenly stops. I lay there, tears of blood and salt cascading down my broken face. Every breath is a slice of agony. When my sight clears I see Addle has pierced clear through Jason’s skull. His hp bar has disapeared, and my tears of pain, sorrow and anger take on a sweeter tone. I have survived, even if it was at the cost of my friendship. “Goodbye Jason. Leave Supernix to me and try to work on looking for who’s responsible, maybe you’ll have better luck.” His body starts to quiver.and Jason’s minotaur form shatters into pixels leaving only his ax behind.

Next to me lays a boulder about 2 feet in diameter, in a small depression. My improvised meteor spell was spot on it seems.

A large event complete window appears in front of me.

[Event Complete: The Labyrinth ]

[The beast inside the Labyrinth has been slain by the hero Addle through ingenuity and courage. It very nearly cost him his life, but through this deed he shall now be immortalized in legend +1000 fame]

[As the first person to successfully complete the unique event “The Labyrinth” you qualify for a heroic reward. One reward will be chosen at random by the event roulette and your injuries will be immedietly healed..]

A roulette wheel appears in the sky, crafted out of clouds with a lightning bolt as the pointer. It has tens of thousands of rewards, but in the brief instant that it appears it immedietly begins to spin.

All too quickly it comes to an end, before I can even read any of the possible rewards I see a new system message appear as the pointer stops short of even a single full rotation. [Skill forcefully generated: Aura Sight: Allows the user to see the souls of those around him.
!As a legendary skill Aura Sight may not be fused.
!As a legendary sight skill Aura Sight will subtly change any other sight related skills
!As a legendary skill Aura Sight will prevent the creation of another legendary skill of the “sight” category.]

My vision suddenly clears as my wounds vanish. I was frighteningly close to death, but it seems like I barely managed to outlast Jason. I shudder as I realize how close to death I had come.

The walls of the Labyrinth disappear as I lose consciousness. the last thing I saw before then was someone fighting while protecting a crowd, with an azure serpent cooling around her.

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Authors Note: Sorry for the long gap everyone, taxes hit me hard this year and I was too busy to write with the accident. I ended up trading in my car and taking a loan out on a Ford Escape, which was rather expensive. Now that it’s taken care of I should be back to regular updates.

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Immersion 3.18

Imm 3.17

As I created all of the false walls I deliberately made sure there was always someplace to easily hide. Jason quickly caught up to me after his initial confusion, howling at the top of his lungs he charged around the maze looking for me.

I ducked into a safe spot I created, holding in my laughter at seeing this bizzare scene. The truth was the maze was actually a little shorter than the minotaur’s overall height, his horns very purposefully remained above the wall line. As a direct result I always knew where Jason was in relation to myself.

I ignored him and continued to add false trails and in a larger gap a particularly shabby section of wall.

After five or six minutes of this Jason was clearly getting upset, while I was quite quickly regaining my total mana supply. God only knows how long it might have persisted if he hadn’t tripped over his own tail when he came to a :”Dead” end and made an abrupt turn. As he tumbled forward his shoulder crashed into a wall that I had created after the maze event started.

He was clearly confused when the wall was accidentally destroyed as he stopped cold and stared at the wall intently as be began to get back up. “ROBBIE! Your little tricks won’t work on me any longer. Come out and I’ll make it less painful for…”

I had been creeping up on him ever since i heard the wall get destroyed, and it was at this time that i finally reached him.

I spring forward and thrust Addle into the back of his skull, while simultaneously drawing [lightning] [imbue] in my core. The spear crackles with energy the moment before impact.

Jason seems to notice a fraction of a second too soon and whips forward, sending himself sprawling. The motion wasn’t as dramatic as it could of been, as he was still on his knees. Jason also swung his giant ax behind him, in a desperate attempt to smash me.

Continuing with my forward momentum I take another step forward, and teleport underneath the still falling Jason, barely making it before his ax would have destroyed me. I adjust my orientation so I’m on my back, and i hear a sickening squishing noise as Addle pierces Jason’s forehead.

Three quarters of his hp vanishes instantly, and I start crying. “Why Jason. Why can’t you look past your hatred. Both worlds are worth saving. We don’t have to kill one another.”

Jason smiles sadly. “You know the worst of humanity Robbie.  But at least humans are weak. We’re easily killed, we starve. We age! But AI’s can survive forever and are incredibly difficult to kill. It only takes maitenance and backups for them to survive which means a rogue AI could build an eternaly despotic empire. ”

“You would condemn a race for the possible actions of one? This is our fault Jason.”

“Then they’ll die for our sins.”

“Goodbye Jason.”

“Goodbye Robbie.”

I begin to draw an unfamiliar spell.

Jason’s hands grip my skull.

We both begin to cry.

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Sorry for the delays everyone. You wouldn’t believe my week so I’m not even going to write it here.

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Rough Draft of 3.17

Imm 3.16            Imm 3.18

“Hahaha! You would put a Minotaur in a maze. Unfortunately for you these pillars mean nothing to me Robbie!” Jason smashes his fist against a pillar, and just as he does a new window appears in the sky, not in the usual place near our eyes.

From the way the villagers and Jason are looking at the sky, it seems to be visible to everyone

[Event started: The Labyrinth: A Labyrinth has appeared and is restraining a powerful monster. So long as the event is active the Labyrinth is considered invincible. It cannot be changed, it cannot be damaged, and it cannot be escaped. The event ends if either the creature, or the creator of the Labyrinth is killed ]

[For recreating the epic of the Minotaur Addle will temporarily gain the Vorpal quality, allowing that specific weapon to ignore all defense. This property will remain until the end of the event.]

[Access restricted] The last window appeared as I was pushed off the pillar, I twisted around to see that there was now a roof to the maze as I hit the ground. This was unexpected, but welcome. The probability of being able to win went up from an abysmal 0% to something almost equally as bad, but at least now there was hope. I dust myself off as I try to listen for Jason. This was a battle of wits and stealth.

Unsurprisingly Jason realized this too and has been attempting to muffle his footsteps, however as he was an enormous eight foot Minotaur of doom with an ax made of enough iron to arm a small squad of knights this wasn’t entirely effective. I start stalking toward the noise as I note the direction the sound is coming from. I wait for him to start to round the corner and I lean forward, thrusting Addle along with me.

Addle punches through the gut of Jason and I see his blood start to pour out as he roars in rage. I quickly and without reservation begin to teleport past him and down the new corridor. I feel a large gust of wind behind me as I look back and see the ax rebound off the Labyrinth wall. Unsurprisingly it made the earth itself begin to shake, as it nearly killed me in a single hit.  The maze is completely unaffected however, which is a good sign, as I expect this will take awhile.  I have to find another way to do this, as my attack did a miserly 1% damage to his health. My luck wouldn’t hold out that long, and sooner or later he would grow accustomed to my sneak attacks.at that exact moment I came up with an amazing idea. Who said all the  walls had to be invincible. I flee a fair distance away, leaving the awkwardly charging Minotaur in the dust as i create false walls ( as my mana allowed, it was still relatively low, however my prodigious regeneration rate more than will allow me to keep using such a simple spell), any of which i could hide behind or in. After all, my strongest asset right now wasn’t my spear. It was my brain.

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Authors note: Sorry for the late chapter guys, I’m apartment hunting and got caught up. You’ll notice this chapter has “Rough Draft” in the title, it’s the complete chapter, just missing the graphics i would generally add to give it the finished look.  As always, votes at TopWebFiction would be appreciated -KnightSavant

Immersion 3.16

Imm 3.15             Imm 3.17

“After I finished basic training I was assigned an old avatar kept in storage. My old one lacked the power I needed to fight the AI’s armies, and any attempt to create a new avatar or ‘hack’ one resulted in failure. Jason paused for dramatic effect. “Join me Robbie, help me destroy Supernix so that we may avenge those who died.”

I look at him with sadness welling in my chest. “Jason. I can’t do it. When I was first trapped here I held out hope that I would be rescued. It was my most fervent wish, but no matter how long I waited no rescue came. I chose to embrace this as reality, and I’ve come to believe that their lives are real, they matter no less than you or I.”

“You’re not wrong Robbie. When Supernix was infected he split off portions of his consciousness and infected the NPC’s, seeding them with true intelligence, just to a much lesser degree than Supernix originally had. That’s the reason we’re killing them. We have to harm Supernix as much as possible before his infected core manages to re-absorb the bit’s of consciousness hidden away inside the NPC’s. The most effective way is to simply kill the NPC’s before he can.” He looks mildly ashamed for a moment.

“I don’t think I’ll ever be the same after this, but you know it has to be done. You of all people know why. The right thing to do isn’t always easy, otherwise everyone would do it.”

“Don’t do this Jason, I won’t allow you to kill them for no reason. Destroy the core, reverse the virus, but don’t do this.”

Jason stops leaning on his war ax and stares at me. “I hoped for better from you Robbie. This should free you from Fuzion, but I’m not really  sure how it works, so don’t blame me if you die.” He pulls out a stupidly large gem from his inventory, it barely fits inside his over-sized Minotaur hands. The gem glows blue and pulsates brightly every couple seconds. He pushes it onto his ax and the red glow around it turns blue, and becomes sharper, more real, as the stone disappears.

I ready my spear and leap back backwards, drawing the sigils for [Stone] and [Pillar]. A limestone pillar erupts from the ground, quickly rising and bringing me over 8 feet in the air. Jason snorts. “Parlor tricks. A geomancer has no hope of defeating me Robbie.”

“Let’s see about that.” I channel addition mana into my core as I draw the stone pillar spell again, but this time added the sigil [Garden]. In general it’s a rather useless sigil, as it adds an element of randomness to a spell, which makes it hard to visualize, and consequently cast. I made one last modification to the spell as I release it, adding [Maze].

I see my entire mana pool empty as the spell takes shape. A throng of pillars erupt from the ground in random directions and angles, From where I stand on top of my maze I can clearly Jason in the center of a maze over a hundred yards long in every direction.

“How do you enjoy my present?”

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Author’s Note:

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I hope everyone had a happy Valentine’s day, I quite enjoyed spending it with my girlfriend. It also helps that it was also my birthday .>=)

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Immersion 3.15

Imm 3.14                          Imm 3.16
Kira explained to me how the Architects had created a master program, that should be able to delete anything it comes into contact with. It has the highest level passcodes they knew of, that should put it a step above the AI’s own authority. As we prepared ourselves to go under the earth, that’s an ironic term that some Advancer came up with  for going into Virtual Reality as the koffins at the Mausoleum descend into the ground when in use to help prevent outside interference,  Kira grabbed my arm and looked into my eyes. “I need to know that you are willing to do anything to save humanity Jason.” She pauses for effect. “Even kill.”

I shut my eyes. Tension rolls through my body as i have difficulty breathing; all while an intense feeling builds in my gut. I get queasy as I come to an uncomfortable conclusion. “I can. For humanity.” My eyes grow moist with those words as i steel myself. Slowly I calm down, my heartbeat slows. I’m not 22; anymore that is. My body may look it, my hormones may get the better of me at times, but I’ve lived for the better half of a century, even if it was in Virtual Reality. I’ve seen the grim realities of human evil, the selflessness some men and women were capable of, and witnessed what happens when the stupid reign over the ignorant.

I pull away from Kira and started stripping down. Silence reigns for a minute as I finally start to lay inside the Koffin.

“We’re a flawed species, but we don’t deserve this. Especially not before we fix what we wrought. I’ll do whatever is necessary Kira.”

I imagine Kira smiled at that, but there really was no way to know. At that moment I was already enveloped in the koffin, and I sucked in an uncomfortable breathe as the feeding tube attached to my nutrient hatch. The top of the koffin closed as I sank deeply into unconciousness…

And awake inside a military barracks. My fatigues are pressed and perfectly fitting. My form is a complete replica of my own body so there is no adjustment period.

I try walking and find it to be quite natural. As I leave the barracks I see a large gravel road surrounding the cluster of buildings where I am, and off in the distance in the trees I recognize the distinct ring of steel striking steel.

Kira comes running out of the trees with a longsword banging against her hip as it was just thrust through her belt. “Jason! Come meet our instructor!” She excitedly pulls me along past the road and back into the trees. What I see literally leaves me speechless.

I seriously can’t describe it any other way except that YODA was training soldiers in how to use melee weaponry. I don’t mean he looked like Yoda or he was similar or even just small. What I mean is robe and all, with a bloody lightsaber in his hand, straight from the movies Yoda was there leaping around fighting the soldiers while giving out critique.

Overall the soldiers were giving a poor show of themselves, as they were being mercilessly beaten by his lighsaber which apparently was more like a soft rod than a weapon of destruction.

By far the most disturbing thing for me however was his voice. He was so perfectly replicated here I felt his voice must be the same. But that’s far from the case. “Pay attention maggots!”

“Do you enjoy getting beat with my pretty green dildo that much!?”

“Raise your sword higher soldier.”
“Deflect don’t block.”

Eventually all the soldiers were on the ground panting and groaning. Yoda ( I can’t think of him by any other name) walked over to me. “Welcome to basic training soldier. In case you haven’t heard, which i doubt with how secretive these people are , I’m your instructor, Adoy.”

My jaw drops while my eyebrow starts to twitch.

“I’m just kidding of course.” he chuckles softly, which does NOT look right coming from a green midget alien. “My codename is Durandel, I’m the next generation AI in charge of showing you how to use the program Ragnarok.” He lifts his hand and a sword comes careening toward him, Durandel catches the sword with the same hand and is pushed over, head smashing against the ground. “Sorry sorry, I forgot about the whole mass times acceleration equals force thing haha!”

I catch the sword as he jumps onto his feet and tosses it to me. “Lets get training!”

“Sir! Yes! Sir!”
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Author’s Note: It’s that time of the week again, if you voted before I’d like to ask you to please vote again, as TopWebFiction discards votes over a week old. Thanks!

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Immersion 3.14

Imm 3.13             Imm 3.15

The stairs leading down were austere, the walls and floor were all an off shade of white reminiscent of a hospital. Little speakers built into the wall would appear every twenty feet, but they remained silent during our decent. After what felt like an hour of walking down stairs (but was in actuality only 20 minutes or so) Kira and I came across another vault door. This door had four large spin dials in the center, spread out in a classic diamond layout. She rotated between them, seemingly at random, and entered a variety of numbers. Eventually a deep ‘click’ sound can be heard from the door as it swings inward. Inaide I see a variety of very large powerful computers, each manned with a person in front of it. A cable runs from the computers, to the back of the individual’s heads. It’s clearly seen that they’re being directly connected to the computer.

I stand there with my mouth agape. It was them. A portion of our schooling was figuring out who made the games we played, and how. The answer is surprisingly simple in hindsight, but it was much more difficult then to imagine that these individuals, whom we had colloquially dubbed the architects, were humans who had directly connected their minds to a computer. They gave up many of the subconscious tasks our brain controls over to more crude medical equipment, which freed up more processing power to push the bounds of programming. Kira struggles to close the vault door behind me, and this snaps me out of my trance. Unfortunately Kira had at that point already forced it closed, while she panted, out of breathe.

I hear that this latest generation of architects will truly be something to behold, providing they survived of course. It wasn’t readily apparent but I see one computer that is unmanned, it’s life support equipment and cable unused. Kira sees me notice and smiles sadly. “At least we found out about Vexler’s plans before he finished them, he had planned to infect all of the 15 great AI’s. Instead we forced him to start early, when he had control of only eight.” She pauses for a second as if trying to pick her words carefully. “We’ve been in contact with North America and Africa, their AI’s remain uncomprimised, however they refuse to send aid, their intelligence corps are instead focusing on creating new protocols to prevent such a disaster from happening again.” My mood had soared when she had said that America and Africa were safe, however it fell just as fast upon realizing that we were alone.

We head past the computers to a new room, one lined with koffins, with a table and water dispenser in the center. “We’re not as alone as we could be at least.” The future guard are here, and they’ll be invaluable assets for our plan. You see.. we have a way to destroy AI remotely, but it’ll require us to log in to the Koffins and leave ourselves open to the AI’s influence. Here’s what we’re going to do.. .”

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Author’s Note: Thanks for supporting me on TopWebFiction everyone! We’re tied for 7th place right now, and that’s all thanks to you!

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Immersion 3.13

Imm 3.12              Imm 3.14

I fought my way through panicked streets filled with people crying, looting, and killing one another. Blood flowed freely down storm drains like a light rain had just struck the city of Munich, coalescing into bloody streams.

Cars lay abandoned in the streets, electricity crackled around them as their batteries went haywire, igniting the air around them as they produced ozone. Burnt corpses were inside them where the victims hadn’t had enough warning to leave.
Many people were wounded from what looked like either shrapnel or burns; nearly every electronic device they owned had been used to terrify or harm them. Supernix truly was going for the throat, and trying to eradicate all resistance before it was ever mounted.

I nearly gave up then, convinced that we were doomed if we attempted to fight back, but I continued on. After a few hours, and many such scenes later I arrive at my destination.

It’s a nondescrepit building, low to the ground and made out of gray concrete. The building was situated in the business section of town, in between a machinist shop and an autobody shop. The front of the building has no windows, and a large single door with an electronic terminal that takes both a keycard and password to open. I bang on the door, hoping against hope that the people inside were safe. That there was a chance to fix this. I wait several minutes and then my legs lose their strength as i came to terms with my defeat.

I cry without restraint, for Robbie, for our class mates, for the future. Snot and tears obscure my vision as I sit there. Who knows how long I would have stayed there, but just at that moment I felt a shoulder clasp my shoulder. “We’ll fix this Jason. The architects were here for other reasons, and as long as we have them, we have a chance to right this.” I look up and see Kira standing above me. “The Maeusoleum is intact.”

The doors are open now, and the inside of the building is far more noteworthy. The door did not swing in or out, but instead retracted into a niche in the wall. The wall that was actually several yards thick, with a vault door open just past the earlier door. As we cleared the doors and resecured them a Lazer suddenly scanned us, and a warning bell sounded. “Please place your phone into the receptacle in front of you. It will be destroyed through a severe jolt of electromagnetic energy. Failure to comply with immediate force, up to and including lethal.” I’m shocked by the changes to our school, but glad all the same. After all, we were the best so the likelihood of any protocols designed by us failing was minimal at best.

I place my phone into the container in front of me and watch as it retracts into a wall. A brief glow can be seen and then a bell chimes after we’re scanned again. ” You’ve been cleared to enter the Maeusoleum Jason. May god help us for what we’ve unleashed upon the world.” Kira and I step forward, to the only remaining feature in the room. Stairs leading down into the Earth.

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Author’s note: So we’re almost 8th place at TopWebFiction, let’s keep up the pressure, and make it to fourth!

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