78 Secret Plot

 Link learned one thing from the battle he fought in the game against the boss of the Syndicate - Morpheus was not truly a god, no matter how powerful he seemed. He was just a false-god or a demigod who had stumbled upon a fraction of the mysterious secret knowledge from the realm of the heavens! Even though he had set up his own altar, and even though he possessed a power that seemed infinitely strong to a mortal, he still wouldn't match up to the powers of a true god.

Link noticed something that proved this point. Although Morpheus could control the stone statue from afar, his control was still crude and limited. It might be the perfect ploy to strike terror into people who were unacquainted with magic and spells, but when faced with someone knowledgeable and experienced, his tricks fell like a house of cards.

For instance, Link could sense that Morpheus's grasp of the current situation in the cave was less than perfect. There were many secret moves and tricks that could be easily concealed from him. And that was the perfect window of opportunity for Link to attack him!

Right now, under the control of the red aura from the statue, the white orb was gradually condensing, and its formation was nearing completion.

Once complete, the red aura would guide the white orb into the statue's body, becoming the point from which Morpheus would control the movements of the statue.

Anderson tried to stop this process, but the minute he entered the area shrouded by the red light, his footsteps staggered, and he entered a trance-like state which made him lose control of his movements and tumble straight to the ground. Soon after, there was also a white light on his body that was starting to condense into a white orb.

Anderson almost died of fright, but he managed to muster up all his strength and roll his body out of the zone of the red aura. He'd never dare to go near it again. This showed that the power of a Legendary-level figure, even in its limited and weakest form like the one they were up against now, was still something that a mortal could never match up to.

"Mr. Link, do something!" shouted Anderson. Link was the only one left that they could rely on.

"Shh! Be quiet," said Link with a thin smile on his face and a finger raised to his lips. While speaking, the tip of his wand glowed slightly, and from the tip a fog-like greyish aura kept flowing out, which then headed towards the heap of corpses.

It was strange how the fog did not face any obstruction this time. It easily floated through the air and into the pile of corpses, effortlessly merging with the white orb.

Ten seconds later, a white orb was then fully formed. And under the red aura's control, it started to penetrate into the statue. At the same time, Link's spell was also complete, he could feel that his grey aura was inside the white orb, entering Morpheus's statue together. And the supposedly godlike Morpheus was completely oblivious to all of this!

When the white orb settled deep inside Morpheus's statue, the black haze around it became extraordinarily thick, and the red shroud of light disappeared. Then, a stony spike about half a foot long materialized in its right hand, and it began to move.

"Hahaha, you mere mortals, I'm tingling in anticipation of your fresh blood! Especially you, Magician!" It was the sinister voice again.

When Link looked over to the statue, a notification popped up.

Morpheus's Elemental Puppet

Level-5 Elite

Specialty: High-level anti-magical properties and immense physical strength.

Battle Skills: Unknown

Status: Weak (not yet activated)

Weakening Spell

Level-2 Spell

Mana Consumption: 32 points.

Effects: Reduces the strength and power of targets by 80% for five minutes.

(Note: The higher the target's level, the lower the weakening effects. Not effective on targets with skills of Level-6 and higher.)

The details of the spell had put Link at ease, because the Elemental Puppet was at Level-5, just within the range of the spell he had just purchased with 20 Omni Points.

The Weakening spell would be able to weaken the strength of a Level-5 Elemental Puppet for about 30%, which was good enough for Link. However, the opponent had anti-magic powers and its body was solid rock, which meant that it would block the powers of magic spells efficiently both inside and outside its body. This would basically render any of Link's spell attacks useless.

The Elemental Puppet was now rushing towards Link and the team. Because its body was rigid and stony, its movements weren't exceedingly fast, but was roughly on par with the speed of a Level-3 Warrior. All the Warriors on the team could match up to its speed.

As a shield-wielder, Jacker rushed forward with his shield raised, ready to block its attack.

"Be careful, it's strong!" warned Link.

His warning made Jacker hesitate for a moment. They had fought together in two battles, so Jacker knew that it was wise to take Link's judgment seriously. And so Jacker changed his tactics and abandoned his plan to charge at the Puppet head-on but opted instead to go into a defensive stance. He gradually slowed down his footsteps and went into a stable stance to defend against the monstrous opponent.

A couple of seconds later, the two collided with each other. Their speeds weren't all that fast, and yet the resulting impact of the collision was frighteningly explosive!

The instant they collided, Jacker raised his shield to cover his face and head, his seven-foot frame was fully covered with steel armor that made him look like a charging tank, while the eight feet tall Elemental Puppet raised its left hand while the other hand attacked Jacker's shield head-on.

The clash between the colossus and the brute rang through the hall in a reverberating boom. It wasn't the volume of the clash that was intimidating though, but the fact that it resonated with everything in the cave - everyone there could feel the vibration in their chest, and even the cave walls shook, causing dust and pebbles to fall from the walls.

But that still wasn't the terrifying part. What was truly disturbing was the strength of the Elemental Puppet!

Jacker was already in a fully defensive stance and was fully bracing himself for the oncoming attack. He was also boosted by the spell Giant's Strength while possessing the power of a Level-5 Warrior himself. Still, when he was hit by the Elemental Puppet's attack, he was hurled backward by one punch!

Yes, he was sent flying, where his whole body was lifted by the force of the impact and then was hurled a few feet backward. Had the monster been fast enough, Jacker would've likely died with that one hit.

When he was in mid-air, Jacker's body was completely numb, he couldn't muster up any energy left to even lift a finger. At the same time, he saw the Elemental Puppet rushing towards him to finish him off.

Luckily, he was not alone.

When he was still in mid-air, Jacker could feel that his body moved backward much faster than it should be, as if there was a powerful force pulling him backward. This slight acceleration had given him time to recover while at the same time saving him from the Elemental Puppet's next attack.

It must be Lord Link's Vector Throw! Jacker was by now very familiar with Link's spell. He recognized that this spell had once saved Lucy's life from the Occult Viktor's attack, and now it had saved his life.

As his body was moving backward, Jacker could feel a cool gas entering the pores of his skin which instantly made him feel better. The numbness he felt receded and he could feel his body was being replenished energy.

It was Link's Elemental Cure!

After unleashing this spell, Link now had an accurate assessment of the Elemental Puppet's strength.

"Attack it with all your might! Jacker, charge on!" shouted Link.

After hearing this order, the moment Jacker's feet hit the ground, he unhesitatingly charged towards the Elemental Puppet, as if he wasn't the one who had just been hurled backward by the monster's attack just moments ago. He would never doubt any of Link's orders.

Meanwhile, Lucy was close at his heels. She thrust the Gale Sword behind her, creating a wind force to push her forward. Her body was as light as a butterfly and as nimble as a cat, so the resulting force easily propelled her towards the Elemental Puppet at a high speed.

Gildern shot an arrow too, sending an arrow with high penetration power whistling through the air, hitting accurately at the Elemental Puppet's eye.

The only person who proceeded with some reservation was Anderson. The sight of Jacker being completely overpowered by the opponent, was still too fresh in his mind. He dared not follow too closely behind Jacker, in case he was once again hurled backward, which would mean trouble for him if he was right behind him.

The Elemental Puppet seemed slightly nonplussed by the oncoming joint attacks.

"Aha, are you ready to meet your ends, then, mortals?" said the sinister voice.

Just before Jacker and the Elemental Puppet crashed into one another, Link waved his wand at the Elemental Puppet and said, "Weakening!"

"Weakening? You're using a magic spell against me? Magician, have you been struck dumb by the sight of my power?" jeered the Elemental Puppet, after bursting out in laughter. The Elemental Puppet possessed high-level anti-magic powers able to block any kind of attack from mid-level spells.

But Link only responded with a smile on his face.