31 Chapter 30: A Real Boss Fight Experience
The loud thumping footsteps of the creature resounded around the area even with the hard down pour of rain quieting all other noise. Even after it exited past the broken doors the bellowing smoke blocked most of its body from view. At first the only thing you could see were its glowing purple eyes, but soon its body started to come into view. When Joshua and the others were able to get a good look at it, it was like looking at something that came straight out of a nightmare.
The creature towered over Joshua and the others as even though it was hunched over and its legs were bent it still stood at a height nearing ten feet. Its body was on the skinnier side, but do to how tight its skin was on its frame Joshua was able to tell how powerful its muscles were as they twitched and moved with every step it took. Its arms were longer than any of the creatures that they had seen back in town as they reached all the way down to the floor as it walked around like a gorilla. Its hands were larger than its skinny arms would suggest as they were more than big enough to grab someone of Joshua's size. Each one of its fingers had long purple claws that scratched across the pavement as the creature continued to move into full view.
After it had completely exited the smoke Joshua was able to see that it was still burning with flames in some spots across its body, but all of its damaged skin was slowly healing as the fires were put out by the rain. When Joshua finally looked up to see its now visible face the first thing that came to mind was the large row of visible teeth that were left open to the world do to its lipless mouth. Its Jaw was extended letting its mouth hang open far larger than expected and allowing the group to see its rows of bloodied teeth that still had scraps and pieces of the zombies it had been eating. Its nose was hardly more than a small protrusion with open nostrils that flared slightly as it sniffed the air. Lastly its ears were long and extended as they twitched around moving its long greasy hair back and forth. Some of the hair was still burning, but the rain had quickly solved that issue.
The creature turned to look around at the four people that had caused it so much pain with its glowing eyes before letting out a blood curdling roar to announce its superiority. "ROOOOOAAAAR!" When it noticed the girls a ways away flinch at its bloodlust the creature's mouth spread out into an enormous grin as it chortled in mocking laughter. It quickly started to rush over towards them as it had decided they were the weak link in this scenario.
"GET YOURSELVES TOGETHER!" Joshua shouted as he noticed why the creature had decided to ignore him for what it thought was far easier prey. Its movements were fast, but Joshua had time to move into its path. The creature seemed to snort as if it was affronted at the fact that the small thing in front of it thought it would be able to stop it. When it approached him it casually swiped one of its clawed hands in Joshua's direction. The speed of the attack was far faster than Joshua was expecting. He could dodge it, but if he did then the creature would ignore him and continue on towards his frozen stiff companions. So Joshua took a deep breath, moved his body into a position where he would take the hit from the palm of the hand instead of the menacing claws that might shred him into ribbons.
When the hand hit him the impact picked him up off his feet even with his sturdy position and sent him crashing into one of the knocked over metal containers. His body smashed into the container so hard that he left a dent in it before plummeting to the ground. He was sure that was going to leave a large bruise in the morning, but he was thankful he hadn't broken any bones from the impact. Even in his battered position he was smiling because of the loud screech of pain he heard coming from the monster as it looked over towards Joshua with pure rage. Sticking through the large hand that had swatted him aside with was one of Joshua's machetes that he had used the impact to force through the creatures tough skin.
Joshua pulled his self-up from off the ground and rotated his arm until he heard a nice loud pop as he put his arm back in order before pulling his last machete from off his belt and beckoning the creature over with his free hand. The creature opened its mouth wide as it let out another ear shattering screech towards what it now considered a threat. It raised up on its smaller legs and pounded its chest with its uninjured hand before charging towards Joshua. "Alright girls you need to snap out of it!" Joshua once again shouted as this time he rolled out of the way sense he had the creature's full attention at this point. "I'm going to need you guys to help if we want to survive this."
Madalyn was the first to snap out of her fears as she shook her head and picked herself up before nodding towards Joshua. 'What do we need to do? It doesn't seem like we could handle getting to close to that thing.' Madalyn said through the mental link sense shouting over the rain would become hard to hear in the current situation. Joshua had completely forgotten about the mental link while under the pressure of the creature's assault, but didn't stumble in his fight when he could hear Madalyn's voice in his head. He continued to dodge and weave around the creatures assaults causing it to grow even angrier with him.
'I'll do my best Nathan impersonation and keep things simple in relating everything that is happening to the gaming terms he explained to you guys.' Joshua replied as he avoided another overhead swing by the monster and slid between its legs. He took a swing at the back of its legs with his machete, but hardly did more than a paper cuts worth of damage due to the creature's tough skin. At this point both Laura and Natalie had awakened from their daze and were now paying attention to his voice. 'In this scenario, I'm the tank and I'm holding the bosses attention. Although that is the case nothing I have on me is strong enough to seriously damage this thing so it's up to you guys to try and see if you can hurt it while it's busy attacking me.'
'Alright, but if you're so close to it our attacks might hit you.' Natalie said with worry in her voice as she pulled out her bow and arrows. The down pour of rain made it harder for her to aim, but the creatures massive size made up for it.
'Don't worry so much about me, I'll keep myself safe. For now Madalyn use some of your most potent liquid poison on Natalie's arrows. If we can slow this thing down a bit we might be able to do some real damage to it. Laura try out a fire ball and see how much damage it does in the meantime.' Joshua explained as he slid underneath another blow only for his weapon to once again bounce harmlessly off its skin. Laura nodded before creating a large fireball and tossing it towards the back of the creature. Although she put a lot into it the down pour of rain had greatly weakened it as it fizzled down in size a bit before slamming into the monsters back.
It let out another loud wail of pain as the attack smashed into its back and forced it to fall forward a bit. The creature's angry gaze left Joshua as it searched for its attacker and locked in on Laura, but before it could make a move Joshua was already prepared for its decision. As the creature turned away from him and was getting ready to charge towards Laura, Joshua was able to see that the burn scars on its back were already fizzling out and healing at a visible rate. That was something that pretty much destroyed any way of killing it with just their current powers alone.
Just as the creature started to run towards Laura, Joshua took his sledge hammer to the nearest knee of the hunched over figure. He put all his strength into the blow and was rewarded with a bone crushing noise quickly followed by a piercing shriek from the monster. It fell over on to one leg as it grabbed hold of its damaged knee while wailing. Soon its eyes were once again focused in on Joshua who was about to take the sledge hammer to its other knee. Before the blow could land the creature jumped backwards avoiding it and quickly swiped its undamaged large clawed hand towards Joshua.
He didn't have enough time to dodge the quick blow so he tilted the sledge hammer into the best blocking position he could muster and was sent careening a few feet away. The blow had also knocked the sledge hammer out of his hands as he crashed into the wall of the burning factory. Joshua quickly rose to his feet only to see an unnerving sight of the angry creature picking up his sledge hammer and inspecting it before tossing it far away. The fact that it was smart enough to get rid of the one weapon he had used to seriously damage it with his own strength thus far was terrifying. This was the second time it had adapted to Joshua's fighting style, ever since he had injured it with the machete the first time around it had been avoiding slamming its hand into him and was only utilizing its claws whenever it saw Joshua holding the machete in a blocking position.
The sledge hammer was sent careening towards the granary that was on the far side of the factory, well out of range of where he could rush to grab it. Now with one less weapon Joshua was forced to go back to using his machete to try to injure its other hand. The creature smiled as it took notice of this, but was interrupted as an arrow struck into its shoulder. It turned to look at the arrow, but just let out a weird chortling sound as if it was laughing at the pathetic attempt to harm it. Even when more arrows landed on its back it completely ignored them as it focused on Joshua while its ears flapped back and forth as if it was listening for anymore fireballs soaring through the air. Although it seemed pointless Joshua smiled at the fact that the arrows had been able to pierce its skin. Thanks to that there would be poison building up in its system which should help slow it down over a longer confrontation.
Joshua continued to weave and dodge up close to the creature to keep its attention while Natalie continued to rain down arrows on it. Laura was recharging her magical strength in the meantime waiting to make another big move. As Joshua continued to avoid the creature's attempts at cutting him down he was starting to notice the creatures attacks become slower, but instead of using this as a chance to get in little hits he feigned having to make close dodges to keep the beast unaware of its predicament.
It was during one of his close dodges that he could make out a flicker of glowing red approaching the creature, but this time it was silent. Laura hadn't thrown a large crackling fireball this time as it would have either been dodged or done little damage. Instead she climbed on top of a nearby metal container that had been knocked over and lunged up high enough to stab her flaming spear into the monsters shoulder. The beast let out another roar of pain as it turned to look at Laura who was still holding on to the spear dangling from its shoulder. Just when it was about to reach for her she heated the spear with more flames causing its tip deep inside the creatures muscles to explode. The blast sent Laura flying towards the ground hard while the creature screeched in pain as bits of its flesh fail on to the ground in chunks. Its arm was now dangling from its shoulder, but Joshua could see strands of muscles starting to regrow slowly.
Laura rolled on the ground a few times after impact and tried to stand up quickly, but the second she looked up an angry monster was just in front of her staring her down. The arm that she had damaged was the one that didn't have a machete sticking out of it. As the creature approached her it raised the only arm it could currently use to try to end Laura's life, but it had once again made the same mistake in taking its eyes off of Joshua. This time it was Joshua who had leaped into the air off of the same trash container and used all the force he could exert to cut the last remaining strands of muscle off the creature with his axe. The blow cleaved off its arm sending a mess of purple blood everywhere.
In its pain the creature did something that surprised Joshua as several pours all over its body suddenly opened and gushed out a smoke screen of purple haze into its surroundings. 'What the hell! We can't see anything going on in there you guys.' Madalyn shouted through the mental link.
'Laura you need to get out of the smoke screen real fast, its target is me right now, but you might get in the way if it can't tell the difference.' Joshua said getting a mental reply of acceptance from her in return. Laura made her way out of the haze as quickly as possible while Joshua remained. He couldn't see the creature so he had to rely completely on his reflexes to avoid its incoming surprise attacks. Now that it was slowed down and one armed Joshua was confident he could avoid any blows based on hearing them, but these circumstances weren't going to help him kill it. It was in that moment that Joshua rolled under its claw that went whistling right over his head. He slowly backed away and continued to avoid any attacks as he waited for the haze to die back down to levels where he could once again see. It took a good five minutes of tense dodging before it cleared up and everyone was able to make out its figure again.
It's now severed arm was limply laying on the floor far away as the creature rushed towards Joshua in rage. Although they had managed to cut the arm off Joshua noticed signs of a new one starting to grow from its shoulder. It would take a while, but if it did grow back then they would be back to square one. Nothing seemed to be working well enough to kill the thing. There was no way they could reach its head so trying stab it there was out of the question and cutting through its enormous neck was also not likely with their current equipment. Joshua looked at his companions and noticed the bad state they were in. Laura was a bit banged up from the explosion and seemed to be running on fumes, while Natalie was running out of arrows. Only Madalyn seemed to be in good condition to help for the moment.
He continued to avoid the creature's maddened swings as he tried to figure out a way to kill it before it could heal and that's when he took notice of the granary in the direction that his sledge hammer was. Within that moment he came up with a plan, it was a bit of a hail marry attempt, but it was there best shot to kill this thing before they all got tired out and killed. 'Laura head over there and start climbing to the top of the stairwell on the granary. We're going to use the grains in side to burn it alive.' Joshua forced his thoughts to all three of the girls.
'How are you going to get it inside? I don't think we'll be able to climb all the way up there before it catches us.' Laura responded.
'There's a railing at the top that leads inside, we'll it lure in through there. It's a bit big to fit through, but I'm sure it will figure out how to chase us inside. The metal frame at the top isn't as thick as at the bottom so we need to get it to fall down.' Joshua explained as he observed the granary while avoiding any attempts at his life by the creature.
'What do you want us to do?' Madalyn asked.
'When I start climbing you need to start pouring in as much gas into any cracks you can find at the base of the granary. We need it to burn hotter than before and for much longer if we want it to die for good.' Joshua explained. 'Alright get going Laura, we'll hold it off while you get up there then I'm following up.'
Laura nodded before running towards her objective while Joshua continued to hold the monsters attention and give her time to climb up ahead of them. Natalie continued to pepper the creature with poisoned arrows until it came down to her last one. She took her time with it and kept a steady aim waiting for the best moment to shoot. When the creature let out another enraged roar she took the chance to fire the arrow into one of its eye causing it scream in pain once again. Before it could turn its attention away from him he stabbed his last remaining machete as hard as he could into one of the creature's feet. The blow was strong enough to pierce through and cause even more pain.
It was in that moment that Joshua made his sprint for the granary and picked up his sledge hammer on the way. The creature at first tried to pull the machete out of its foot, but sense it couldn't get a good grip its attempts were unsuccessful. Feeling even more anger at the reason it was being tortured with such pain the creature's uninjured eye focused on Joshua as it lumbered off towards him. It wasn't nearly as fast with the poison and injuries affecting it. This gave Joshua the time to rush up to the top of the granary, although even with all of its injuries and its missing arm the creature was still able to claw its way up after him. By the time Joshua made it to the top the creature was right behind him as he rushed in through the door and ran right up to Laura who was looking at him worriedly.
In that moment there was a split second of silence where the two waited before the creature tore through the wall ahead of them and landed on the edge of the cat walk causing the whole thing to strain under its weight. It was in that moment that Joshua smiled in triumph as he pulled out his sledge hammer and swung at the collapsing portion of the catwalk in front of him. That one blow was the last straw as it collapsed in on itself sending the surprised monster falling down into the mountain of grains below. Its screams seemed to reverberate against the walls until it hit the ground with a loud thud.
Joshua quickly took the last container of gasoline that he had been saving attached to his belt and tossed it over the railing towards where the creature had landed in the grains below. He could already see a fog of green poison filling the area at the base of the granary to an adequate level so he was ready for the last step. 'Madalyn get back. Laura it's your turn.' Joshua said through the mental link. Laura gave him a simple nod, but even with the mask covering her mouth the way her cheeks raised up told him that she was smiling. She conjured a large flame before sending it crashing down towards the gasoline container. The second she let the flames go Joshua pulled her out of the granary back on to the railing outside.
The very next second a loud igniting sound blared out into the surroundings as the inside of the granary lit up in flames. The explosion was so strong that the glass ceiling was blasted apart and flames started to flicker out of the door they had come out of. The two of them moved further away from the fire as they could hear the monster screaming in pain. Unlike before though the fire wasn't of short length sense it had so much grain to feed off of. Even with the rain outside the fire blazed high into the air. For the next ten minutes they listened to the creatures wailing before it went silent, but the fire continued to burn for a long time after that.