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Pixel Courage 36

Hard to see anything, in the darkness of The Sewers. I held my sword out. Didn’t want to waste time unsheathing it, if any danger came my way.

The place was damp but hot. Smelled like shit, which made all too much sense. I walked along the side, a small walkway which kept me out of the dirty water. The sound of it rushing by blocked out the sound of anything else. My hope was that that meant it merely blocked out the sound of silence.

At the same time, there was the knowledge that a monster could very much take me by surprise. My eyes couldn’t see much in the darkness. My ears couldn’t hear much, over the water. And even my sense of smell was weakened by the stench of The Sewers.

Walking in the path of dragons would’ve been bad enough. Walking in the path of dragons while blind was even worse. Walking in the path of dragons, while I was practically blind, deaf, and even unable to smell anything. Not a great position to be in.

Oh, yeah, and they weren’t just dragons, they were Blood Dragons. Whatever the fuck that meant. Whatever it meant, it couldn’t be good. It’s not exactly like you put “Blood” in front of things that were sweet and kind. Blood Grandma, Blood Teddy Bear, Blood Snuggles. That shit just didn’t make any sense.

I continued trekking next to the running dirty water.

Footsteps weren’t the way to do things. Instead, I shuffled along the edge of the sewer, making sure I didn’t take a wrong step and tumble right in.

In fact, I got pretty close to stumbling into the sewage at one point. Realizing it was a turn, I instead walked. This time I kept my hand on the wall to make sure I didn’t fall in.

Given the state I was in — which is to say, ‘unable to notice jack-shit’ — it was pretty easy for me to feel afraid. This feeling was exacerbated by a sound that managed to break over the rushing water.

At first I questioned why the sound reminded me of the Jurassic Park films. Then I realized it wasn’t dragons I was hearing.

It was Blood Dragons.

I reached an area where a bit of light was shining through from above. It was in front of me, off in the distance, but it at least made me vaguely aware of my surroundings.

In the light there was a sliver of red.

Sword drawn, I approached.

It didn’t look like a wing or a foot. No idea what the sliver of red was.

The dragon made another loud roaring sound, reminding me that it did of course belong to the Blood Dragon. In that dragon’s roar, there was something peculiar — something that hadn’t been heard from the Earth Dragon.

When the Earth Dragon roared, it’d sounded almost obligatory. Roaring was just the way it communicated. With the Blood Dragon, things were entirely different. It sounded more mournful. I heard in its roar a pang of anger and a pang of sorrow. It reminded me of a train whistling away in the dead of night. You know: it had that power, but also that sense of aching loneliness.

I continued the approach. It became clear to me that the sliver of red was a bone.

I approached the light. Got used to the confusing mix of light and darkness. Thought I could see the outline of the dragon. It was huge.

The bone sliced in my direction.

Thwacked it away with my sword.

79/80 HP

The red bone was connected to The Blood Dragon.

The red bone was The Blood Dragon. I saw that the bone was really just the edge of one of its wings. The whole dragon was a skeleton.

The dragon once again tried bringing the sharp bone of its wing down on my head. Once again, I blocked it, hacking my sword at the bone to bring it off course.

It hit against the concrete floor, missing me.

Still, a sharp pain ripped through my arm. The bone had been so powerful, the dragon’s size giving it an advantage when it came to strength.

93% HP

No way I could keep up this sort of attack, not with my HP dropping seven points just because of the force of the blow. Thorn Punch wasn’t likely to do much damage against bones, anyway.

The bone came down again. I used my sword to protect myself.

86% HP

Fuck.

78/80 HP

So far as I could tell, there was no way to fight this dragon with my current powerset, not unless I could figure out how Lightning Eyes actually worked.

The pain in my arm made it hard to think. I switched the sword into my non-dominant hand, backing slowly away from the dragon.

Would that make it charge forward? No idea how to tell what the dragon might do.

No choice, though. The dragon outclassed me big time.

As I backed up, the Blood Dragon moved forward. The red bony wing came more into view. I could see it was leaf-shaped, with a lattice-like collection of bones stretching across the empty space in the wing’s outline.

After that, the red bone foot came into view, its three sharp talons coming out the three toes.

The wing of the dragon became shrouded in darkness by the time the head came into view. It looked just like a dinosaur skull — the sort you might see in a museum. Except this skull was read instead of white. And the eye sockets weren’t empty. There was a cloudy whiteness in them, at the center of which lay a dot.

The Blood Dragon roared again, this time with much more anger suffusing the pain. To put it simply, I was clearly in some deep shit.

I turned around and ran.

No more subtlety, no more backing away slowly.

Sheer. Fucking. Terror. Racing through my veins and pulsing through my heart. It welled up inside me.

Arm hurt while I ran. My feet smacked against the hard floor, over and over.

The Blood Dragon’s roar drowned out even the sound of rushing water.

Fuck, fuck, fuck.

For a moment, the rushing water once again overtook the sound of the dragon’s roar. I craned my neck to see what the dragon was doing.

Something flew out of its mouth. No way of telling what exactly, in the darkness. Fire? But it didn’t emit light the way fire was supposed to.

My foot ran out of floor to run across. I’d forgotten there was a turn here, and that running straight led me straight into the water.

Too late.

As I began falling towards the septic water, the dragon’s fire hit my back.

But it wasn’t fire. No, it was an acidic substance. Ate through my armor in half a second. Was eating through my skin before my foot even touched the water.

My HP Bar made its way to 0% before I had time to process what’d happened.

With everything burning — everything hurting — I died.

I died before I’d even touched the water.

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