(The Gott Statue hung quietly in the air of the dungeon, held aloft by forces unseen and unaccounted for. There was no real answer to this oddity beyond the fact that it was one of the game's more interesting nuances, an outdated myth regarding the so-called elemental gods of The World. There were no true gods here. Only edifices. And the release of the treasure waiting before the statue, ready to reward the weary traveler with the spoils of war, would end this illusion. It was all part of the game. Nothing special beyond simple mechanics rendered in code. Yes, the code... The genome of The World. Complex enough to take lives across the breach between mind and machine, as it had stranded a group of players whose only real desire beyond the defeat of the Elites...was to come home. Unfortunately, the power that put them there was the only one that could bring them back, and outsiders did not have access to that power. Still, there were...some things that could be done.)
(The room was silent, save for the sound of medical instruments beeping, human breathing, and keyboard typing. They kept it dim, supposedly for 'his sake', though they didn't know a thing about him or what he needed, in reality. He was a corpse to them, a dead body that breathed and still required nourishment, but possessed no functions as a living being. There was a game once that had a name for this condition, except that Apathy Syndrome required the subject to be conscious at times. Damon was not. She kept watch over him and he had never so much as flinched during his game-induced coma. A victim of The World, only she knew the full story. Under the pretense of doing a medical study, she was investigating the phenomenon. At first, it was just to tail the rash of disappearances by following a group of explorers into a hacked realm using...subtle methods. Now, however, the mission had changed. She'd been in contact with the young man whose coma she was overseeing. It was a hard and trying process, but it helped that he didn't have any next of kin to require permission from to go to the limits that she had. Still, what she was about to do now was a bit beyond what even her employers had in mind. The reason behind it, though, was twofold. First, it was to help out the young man in the coma, and second...a challenge had been raised.)
"Now, we'll see who's powerless, Marionette."
(They say you can't truly appreciate The World except from the inside. Well, some people have work to do in the real world and must remain so, thus they send envoys on their behalf for not being able to interfere directly. The area of the Gott Statue, deep in the cold dark cave-like dungeon, suddenly flickered, as did the treature chest nearby. It was suddenly in a different position, facing backwards, sideways, and then upside-down. The chest itself began to warp and distort with implanted code before finally resolving itself, and then everything went quiet. The deed was done, and now there was only to wait for the nearest sucker to open Pandora's Box...which didn't take long. The room soon had a new arrival, a Wavemaster - called Mackie - in a green tunic. He stepped into the room, looking around carefully before breathing a sigh of relief.)
Mackie: Phew! And they thought I couldn't go it alone. 'Wavemasters are for support, dude.' Hah! I may not be a high in levels, but I know where my head is. It's an equal-opportunity World, boys, and I don't see anything stopping this magus from taking his share.
(Flipping his staff in hand, he did the traditional chest-tap to make the reward pop forth. Then, it would be time to hit the topside area and Mac Anu to report his success! Mackie waited for the chest to respond, and found...it wasn't opening. There was a sound in the background, sort of like a loading noise. Ack... Not lag at a time like this! The Wavemaster stood impatiently, sighing in annoyance. Finally, a message came up on his screen.)
Mackie: Eh? Bogie? What's tha- AAAAGH!!!
(At that moment, the treasure chest EXPLODED with considerable force as a creature forged in hell burst from the box and pounced on the Wavemaster! The player found himself pinned by a large monstrous hound, that had to be almost as big as a human being! It was a demon dog of some kind with thick horns on its head and freakish pupil-less white eyes. Mackie was in a panic. Was this some kind of in-game boss character? A secret quest-beast? What was it?! Well, the Wavemaster really didn't have time to find out. While nervously going for a spell to cast, the devil hound swiftly ripped him a new one with its powerful jaws. Too bad about Wavemasters. They have distance-killing power, but their actual defense is such that you NEED to kill a beast at fifty paces, or else your health is in half in no time flat. And Mackie's was already down from a previous fight. He was grayed and put to death by the Baskerville beast. It looked around for other targets for a moment, and only raised its somewhat drooping ears when a sound was heard from behind. The Gott Statue had fallen, and then disintegrated into a tornado of dust and gravel. From there, a vague fox-like visage appeared before it.)
"Well then, you know what to do...Shadow. Go find your master."
Shadow: Yes... The master awaits.
(A dark voice emanated from its throat - Like Orsen Welles as Unicron - without moving its mouth. But there was no human here, only Zuul...or a creature similar. A terror dog, hellhound, or otherwise equivalent beast... The only real thing to set it apart from other monsters - aside from the fact that it fit no category known to CC Corp - was a simple leather collar with steel studs embedded in it, and a simple brass tag. The tag had the name "Shadow" inscribed on one side, and the sign of a fox on the other. In two worlds, Reyome smirked as the dog ran off through the dungeon and into its new life in The World. He would be the eyes and ears, arms and legs, and whatever else that she was not allowed to put into this game herself. Rules were meant to be broken, sometimes. These Elites had to be stopped, and those who were their victims needed help. This was her commitment to the cause. The impression of the fox's presence disappeared with the whirlwind, and the canine was left to its own devices.)
(There had been little to hunt in the deep recesses of the dungeon on the way out. The Wavemaster had done a decent job of carving a path through the caverns. The hound used his scent to retrace the path through the area. No human in this World had the gift of in-game senses, but a creature of the game certainly would. Grunties were a prime example. The monster dog prowled along until it reached out of the cave into a more open area filled with ice. From here, the canine senses detected - and confirmed via the map - the presence of very many things to kill. You can't tell from his face, but Shadow was now grinning, as the placid ice world music of the field was replaced by a more amusing tune...)
Shadow: Time to feast...
(The evil hound cast Ap Do upon itself and ran in the direction of the nearest prey, apparently empowered by a few in-game spells. Over an icy hill it bounded effortlessly, trouncing the nearest low-level monster without missing a beat. There were others in proximatey. That was when the beast let loose such a horrid sound... A reverberating howl, hauntingly mournful and viciously steeped in terror-inducing vigor. it was the call of a creature whose voice sends chills down to the base of the spine, resting there to cripple movement or otherwise terrify. One of the game monsters froze instantly, caught in paralysis as the Bogie struck down the other one in a pounce of teeth and claws, leaving the motionless one to be gnawed at with patience. Shadow was empowered with spells of speed, paralysis, and darkness. He would provide backup for the master, once he found him. The Bogie would home in on his brainwaves wherever he went, and follow. A little surprise for a certain Twin Blade...)
OOC: I'm gonna be writing about this, off and on, probably until the actual side-quest. Got tired of keeping the idea on the sidelines. Besides, this is fun.