IGN: Not Carla - Lv. 99 High Priest
Deep breath in, and exhale.
The tower looked foreboding, shrouded in the mist, but I’ve done this climb many times in the past. This journey shouldn’t be any different.
A bloody path forms our red carpet, as my friends decimate horde upon horde that stands in the way. Words of encouragement echo across the halls, over the piercing screams of slaughtered demons and monsters. I effortlessly support, as I’ve been trained.
Bolster their strength. Protect them. Resurrect the fallen. Keep them alive, better than alive.
Even when it seems that we’ve been ravaged by the flames, we manage to get up and continue on our way. I take a deep breath in—
—and I struggle to inhale. Oh right, there’s something they don’t know. Something they don’t see.
I stop in my tracks, gathering perturbed glances across the room.
“We’re almost there, let’s keep going?”
“Don’t be scared, I’m here.”, I say calmly
“We’re here to win it all, remember?”
It’s not the hand of fear that tightens my throat, but the small gleam of an anticipated victory. The sight of felling the final guardian and conquering this tower.
In hindsight, I think it was that other thing.
At the top, we summon him. A massive demonic general wielding twin blades, his flames glowing crimson and cerulean.
He calls down meteors, blizzards, splitting the ground into a thousand pieces, but we hold fast. In between shrinking intakes of air, I ensure that our unwavering strength doesn’t falter.
There’s still something I must see.
When the final battle concludes with a swift victory, the battlefield is filled with our cheers. My exterior is serene as I look upon my friends, the guts of hundreds of monsters still fresh on their armor—their smiles glowing with triumph.
I send them home, warping them out of the mist, making sure every last one is safely on their way. My job is done.
As my portal to home faded out, I stayed, feeling my lungs constrict further.
It’s time to face it. I can’t breathe anymore.
Darkness clouds my vision, and I fall to my knees in the cavernous hall.
I’m alone. Somebody, help me.
I blink my eyes open to a world tinted in red. Is that.. my own blood?
I unlatch my rosary and succumb to the suffocating dark forces. My precious accoutrement that belies my unholy secret.
Ah, still locked. I was naïve to think that just one ocean’s worth of spilled demon blood was necessary to lift this curse.
Each step forward brings forth the form of one more that has possessed me, until I’m engulfed in an inverse sea of spirits.
I hear a scythe slice through the air.
They got another one, another to add to my haunting burden.
With my last breath, I scream in despair, realizing how far I am from being free..
..and as my anguished tears finally flow, a chilling, sinister voice whispers behind me.
“Don’t be scared, I’m here.”