Disclaimer: I do not own BNHA, Konosuba or any other fictional story that i my use in here. Chapter 12
With the first rays of sunlight entering the room, Izuku stirred awake. Months of back breaking training and scheduled lifestyle meant that waking up so early was ingrained in his body by this point.
Not having really any need to actually get up this early, he decided to lay under the covers for a little bit more. Even with the gas powered fireplace their big room was quite chilly in the morning, the comfortable warmth he felt was to good to give up. Looking in the direction of his roommates he started to blush madly when he saw Momo and Darkness entangled in one another. It looked like one of them embraced the other in search of heat, then the second girl reciprocated the gesture.
Deciding to ignore what he saw, Izuku closed his eyes for a bit more. Then he heard the soft snoring off the third girl just beside him. Stiff like a stone statue he slowly looked in the direction of Nana, peacefully sleeping with him in the bed drooling a bit on his pillow. Somehow the floating girl managed to fit herself between him and the wall of the room, not waking him up in the process.
After a short while when his brain managed to catch up to the situation, he yelped and jumped out of the bed as if it was on fire. This action woke up the two sleeping in the double bed, both of them flailing to get up.
"Whaa... What's happening?" Darkness asked seating up, her hair sticking all over the place. Momo in a similar state was blearily looking around, trying to find the source of all this commotion.
The greenette gathered himself from the floor standing up and blushing madly. "Sorry i woke you two up. Nana just surprised me and i overreacted." He stated, taking effort to not look in the direction of the two now seating girls. In their haste to untangle themselves and get up, the clothes they were wearing shifted quite a bit. Certainly to much for comfort of the only male in that room.
"I'm gonna go change my clothes in the bathroom." He said nearly to fast for them to understand, gathered his clothes and bolted out of the door. The whole action took him less than few seconds, in his panic he used his quirk to do it faster.
With a quizzical look on her face Momo looked at her blonde friend who blushing slightly set her clothes straight and gestured to her to do the same. When she noticed the state of her own clothing she blushed so hard it was a miracle her face didn't catch fire.
She wasn't shy about her body, the need to have some skin exposed for her power to work was something she already was over with. Even her heroic suit was build to maximize the creation surface area, effectively being a skin tight and to her chagrin rather skimpy outfit.
But mere moments ago she nearly flashed her crush, and that fact was so embarrassing for her that she felt as if her cheeks would stay red forever now.
"Nana! Why would you enter a man's bed in the night like that! We had enough trouble convincing him to rent a room with all of us instead of going to some other establishment!" Darkness woke up the still sleeping girl and didn't waste any time to reprimand her.
"But it was so cold in the night and he is so warm!" The culprit of the morning commotion tried to defend herself.
"You can't be so selfish, he jumped out of bed in fright when he saw you." Momo chastised the girl too.
"You two are just jealous that i spent the night in his bed." Nana fired back, flustering both girls. All in all, this morning turned out rather eventful.
Back in Axel, Kazuma was still laying in his bed sleeping. Suddenly his eyes snapped open, an urge to scream lucky bastard at the back of his head. Not following it, he decided to start his day. With Darkness gone on an adventure with their three new party members the large house he lived in felt more empty now.
Or so he thought until it came to his attention that the house was in fact getting empty, literally. He could have sworn that there was a small table with a vase of flowers in the corridor yesterday. Now looking more closely around, a few less used pieces of furniture were missing. Even a couple of spots on the walls were discolored in square shapes, clearly missing a painting or two.
Now getting a bit more than worried, he had a sneaking idea who would be able to sneak out their belongings like that, and for what purpose. Kazuma saw that Aqua had a bit too much money lately, keeping in consideration that she didn't take any quests from the guild.
That babe from the kingdom, Sena, spoke with him earlier about the bounty for the Dullahan, but he decided to wait for the rest of their group. It was Creati's plans that enabled them to defend from that monster's attack, and Deku was the one to kill him off. It would be really disrespectful if he didn't wait for them.
Well he wouldn't have such a thought if he was penniless, but he had quite a nice sum of money in the guild bank. Aqua on the other hand went thru her money quicker than the booze. He did supply the house with food so she wouldn't starve, but it was a bit irritating for him to keep that alcoholic around.
'Wait a minute... Was it how my parents felt about me?' His entire thought process crashed to halt with that revelation, giving him a bit of a mental whiplash.
After gathering himself back up he decided to unravel the mystery of the missing furniture, and maybe to try help that useless goddess be less... useless.
With awkward silence between four of them, or rather three because Nana didn't seem to see any issue, they walked to the entrance of the underground ruins. All of them decked out in the winterized versions of their gear, courtesy of Momo.
Darkness was really amazed at the true nature of her friend's power when she was gifted a custom made warmers for her armor. Seeing earlier how Creati took some things out of nowhere she was thinking that the black haired girl was in possession of a storage artifact or something like that. The blonde understood immediately thou why the raven haired girl wasn't too forthcoming with the information about what she could really do, and was really flattered that she was trusted with such information.
With a nod from one of two guards who were keeping a head count of people entering down under, they started the descend. For the first few floors the architecture was clearly Dwarven with stone columns keeping the ceiling up, nearly all of them being decorated with some kind of engravings. The long corridors were lighted up by gas powered lamps, with just the right spacing between them to give the place a bit an eerie vibe.
Following the clearly written signs they arrived in a bit of a bigger chamber that has a bit of activity. A guild official with a few of the helpers was issuing entry permits, to make sure someone who can't handle the ruins would't go inside.
"Good morning, we would like to enter deeper into this place." Momo went ahead and gave the man her party's status plates.
The older man scanned the identification cards one by one, stopping for a second to look at Nana who was floating near a wall to look at the mural painted on it. It was depicting dwarven miners digging with pickaxes and some kind of manual drills, bursting into a cavern clearly different from their tunnels.
"Is that woman the mentioned summoned spirit? You should take care to keep her close, there are places down under where flying like that could prove really hazardous, especially with a long cape like that." He said with a bit of a flat voice, not too interested in the thing he inquired.
"Thank you for your warning, we shall take it seriously." Darkness said, reaching for Nana and 'gently' dragging her down by said cape. Taking back their identification documents they walked thru a massive metal door into a down leading slope. At the end of the descent, they arrived in a big chamber, in a totally different style than all of the underground they saw earlier.
To Darkness all of this looked really alien and foreign, smooth walls with angular ceiling. A few strange decorations were hanging from the roof connected to it by chains. The big doors that led deeper into the structure were cut open, one part of them still in their place. Large amount of pipes ran along the walls to the gate before them, going through the wall. Opposite of the doors was a short cavern ending nearby in a cave-in.
Izuku immediately recognized the architecture as something that was nearly took out from their world. He saw a few documentaries about cold war in late 20th century, maybe with a bit of fantasy touch but the similarities were uncanny. The industrial lamps hanging from the ceiling weren't working, the whole chamber was lighted up by a few gas powered lamps that got installed here by the dwarves.
Walking deeper into the structure, Momo called upon her light spell to brighten the way. They traveled thru a long corridor that once again went down, she couldn't really tell how deep they descended already. After walking for anther 10 minutes the first actual chamber of the ruins greeted them.
"This... This looks amazing." Izuku breathed out. They arrived at an atrium, reaching through a few levels up and down. With the gas powered lamps ending at the entrance, the only source of lighting right now was a floating sphere of light created by Momo.
The four of them walked slowly to the balustrade to take a better look. It was made from a dark golden metal, without any signs of rust or any other damages. Looking down, the lowest level seemed to be submerged in water with a small amount of it running down a wall nearby. They were located at the middle floor right now with a long walkway leading all around the large opening in the middle. In the middle of the ceiling a large fan with multiple blades was seen, it wasn't moving and probably was in this state for a really long time now.
Nana was about to float into the middle but was stopped by Darkness. "Remember what that man said, we need to be careful. You shouldn't move away from us until we are completely sure it's safe." The blond Crusader stated, getting into her adventuring persona.
A soft glow from Momo caught the attention of the whole group. After removing one of her gauntlets, she created a few LED headlights and normal flashlights.
"Here, take this. It will come in handy if for some reason I won't be able to cast my spell." After saying that, she proceeded to hand out the items, telling her blonde friend what it was and how it worked. Darkness was really impressed by the small devices, the headband one being most to her liking.
Izuku opted for both, fastening the normal one to his shoulder for the ease of movement. After everyone was ready to proceed, he took the point with Darkness keeping an eye on their rear. In this formation they went to explore deeper into the structure, starting their adventure for real this time.
With anther heavy thrust the giant blast doors at long last gave out and collapsed inwards.
Keeping his sword at the ready, Kyouya slowly stepped inside the ruined underground structure. His companion casted a light spell immediately brightening up the corridor. It was appropriate to the gate, around 4 meters wide and 3 high and with the light from Fio's spell the end was barely visible.
Not letting his guard down immediately proved to be a right choice when a low hiss of a wall panel was heard. Another security automaton jumped at him with intent to kill, half meter long blades springing out of his arms.
Mitsurugi immediately moved, deflecting the attack to the side, at the same time hitting the machine to make it fall. Moving as fast as he could in this cramped space, the blue swordsman stabbed his assailant's chest, right in the place where the most important components were. The automaton spasmed for a short second and went still. Planting his foot on its chest he ripped Gram out of its body, further crushing and destroying it just to be sure.
He took point and started walking deeper into the facility, still at the ready and keeping an eye on his small companion just to be sure. He opened door after door, searching the whole place. He found a few empty hangar like rooms, really similar to the one up top. Just a thought that there can be a functioning golem of that size somewhere in there sent a shiver down his spine.
After looking around and fighting thru some more security drones, they arrived at a place that looked like a command center of some kind. A lot of work stations with round glass panels were all around the room, some had metallic chairs near them. In the center of the wall across the door was the largest glass panel he saw in the whole facility, and it was on.
A bright picture of a globe turning slowly, with a few places visibly highlighted. Walking closer he could recognize the continent they were on right now. Being a high ranking adventurer he had access to the royal library and a few times took a look at the maps. The one before him was looking more like a picture taken from orbit than a cartographer's work thou.
"Kyouya... What is this thing? Is this some kind of an artifact? It looks like a map of some kind but why is it on a ball?" Fio asked, the scholar in her a bit intrigued with the discovered item.
Being taken aback he looked at her, only after a few moments he remembered that she was from a medieval society. He never was a top student, or never was he interested in sciences but he had a basic school level knowledge of how solar systems worked.
"This is a map of the whole world. It's round because the planet we walk one is like that." He said simply, smiling a bit at the look on her face.
She looked shocked at the revelation, so much in fact that she stumbled a little and had to lean on the nearby console.
"General! Shielding integrity is at 17 percent and dropping!" A loud male voice sounded from all around clearly distraught, full of static and with a heavy accent the both of them never heard before. The poor girl jumped up, looking in all direction as if haunted by a ghost, but Kyouya understood nearly immediately.
"It's alright. Set everything on auto and go to your family in the living quarters, you should spend the last moments with your loved ones. It means all of you, that's my last order." A gruff and old sounding man said.
A bit of a commotion was heard and a soft voice of a female sounded. " It was an honor to be able to serve with you sir."
"Don't worry Fio, it's just a recorded voice. There is no one there." Kyouya said in a brief pause of the recording, walking to the frightened girl and embracing her in a light hug. She immediately calmed, now sporting a blush.
After a minute of silence, the man spoke again. "I am General Marneus Grunman, the last commander of the defense army belonging to the Kingdom of Norse. We lost contact with the other outposts over 40 hours ago and it seems like we are the only ones left." The older man made a short pause, as if gathering his thoughts.
"As the oldest of our people left alive, i will leave a short recounting of our history on this base's servers. I know that there is practically our whole knowledge there, but i guess that whoever will find this place probably wouldn't have the know-how needed to access it anyway." Making another pause, Kyouya and Fio heard the man clearing his voice. The static and crackling of the old speaker system making it really eerie.
"We, the Kingdom of Norse originate from a collection of scientist, engineers and soldiers that fled their home-world to escape a supernova explosion that killed all life on their planet. With their technology, they managed to punch a hole in the fabric of space itself making a doorway into this world. With how primitive the civilizations were here it would be really easy to defeat them all, but our people arriving in this world had enough of mayhem and destruction. We settled in underground shelters, that we named Arks as they where the place where our civilization would survive."
Hearing all of this, Mitsurugi started to understand how such advanced kingdom came to be in this world, but couldn't even begin to think how they disappeared. When searching thru this place they found only a few skeletal remains covered in thick amounts of dust, but by the sound of this recording there should be much more.
"After around 75 years of living in peace, when we established ourselves in the underground cities, a sudden enemy appeared. Gates to our towns were attacked by the local populace, seemingly as if they were compelled by a greater force to do that. At first we didn't retaliate because they couldn't even scratch our defenses but then a mysterious power appeared in the world. Out of nowhere the local people that to this day were using iron tools and weapons started tossing fire and ice around. They started to get stronger day by day and after some time a tragedy occurred, first out of many, the first Ark fallen to our enemies." Suddenly a shrill alarm sounded, scaring the petite girl. Kyouya was about to search for it but the recorded man started coughing.
"Warning! Energy Shield overload imminent." A heavily distorted and unnatural female voice stated.
"Thank you NOVA, i guess I won't have time for a long story." After a few wet coughs he continued, a bit wheezing now.
"Some type of higher beings started to meddle with this world, they modified every native organism. What we barely managed to achieve after 50 years of research they did with a flick of a finger, granting them all a natural ability to interact with background radiation present in this world that we called Mana. Locals started to revere them as gods, but there is no such thing. They were doing exactly the same when our people showed in this world with technology they couldn't even dream of. Now, when we as the outsiders were left out, all of this world decided that we were evil if the new gods didn't want to grant us their powers." Kyouya looked at his companion, she had a look of disbelief on her face, as if her whole world had collapsed around her.
"The war started around 50 years ago, after a few grueling battles we managed to push them all back. With our energy shielding and weapons, mobile armor units and drones we were barely able to defend ourselves. Some of the more radical groups started a few projects, like the Crimson Spell-casters who with gene manipulation were able to use Mana like the natives, the Green Valley Berserkers who were able to withstand extraordinary amounts of damage, the Trans-Dimensional Relocation that was trying to replicate the technology used to get us into this world or the Destroyer, a machine with the most powerful energy source created by us. Some were with success, but our time ran out." The old man suddenly started to cough really hard, it was easy to pick up that he had trouble breathing.
"One of the beings we dubbed a Blue Demon decided to hear out her flock of followers and choose to eradicate us for them. The defense shielding of our towns were holding at first but after few days the civilian facilities started to fail. That diabolic being created some form of radiation that affected only our species, causing our organisms to fail and fall apart. I saw my own children turn to dust on live feed from the moon base... What did we do to deserve this?" A choked cry was heard, as if the old man was overwhelmed by his own emotions.
"One of our lead researchers went into a frenzy, after it was clear that we won't be able to stop the process, he boarded the Destroyer and hijacked it, his last known location was in the middle of an ocean halfway across the planet, he left a trail of destruction and scorched earth behind. A group of extremists decided to go out with a bang and used the Pure Fusion warheads and rained death upon the surface, reducing it nearly to rubble in minutes. Last i heard the Trans-Dimensional relocation project was testing the equipment with the help of volunteers consisting of the Green Valley Berserkers. The Crimson Spellcasters had their biology modified to such a degree that they were the only ones that weren't affected by that demon's powers." The man stopped talking for few minutes, from the sound of his breathing he had trouble to do so.
Both of the young adventurers were in shock from the story that they heard, the two of them were probably the only people that heard the truth in over 600 years. Fio learned about the great war that happened long ago but didn't know that it was just a desperate struggle to survive of a race that just wanted to live.
Kyouya now understood how those people disappeared, they literally turned to dust that was so common in these ruins. Some kind of godly being decided that it was fine to allow a race of people to vanish just because it's followers wanted that. Whatever it was, it had to be something really powerful to just turn an entire race to ashes.
"General, I'm loosing life signs of the personnel in the facility, should i initiate lock-down to investigate?" The same unnatural voice sounded in the recording.
"There is no need NOVA... Please, set the facility to go into a lock-down after this recording ends... I'm sorry that I do this to you, but you will be left alone... After we all die..." The old man stopped to talk for few minutes, only the raspy tones of his breathing could be heard.
"Who is he talking too? I thought he sent everyone away?" Fio asked quietly, still in the swordsman's embrace.
"It probably was an AI... a spirit that controlled this place for them." Kyouya said, trying to understand by himself.
"General, your vital sign is fading. I am sending a first aid droid right now." The robotic voice continued.
"It... It's alright... After... This recording ends... Activate the defense protocols... In all the facilities you can reach... " Those words sent shivers down Kyouya's spine. He started to act before it was too late, grabbing his companion under his arm startling her, and transformed into his powerful state.
"Yes sir. Orders acknowledged." The machine said in monotone.
"Be safe... Nova..." When the last words of the General sounded, a loud siren ringed. All around the facility hidden panels revealed tens of automatons spilling out, ready to kill anything they encountered.
Speeding up, Mitsurugi ran to the exit with Fio in his arms, dodging and weaving between the attacks of the golems that appeared out of nowhere. Not slowing down after getting through the double gates he jumped between walls of the stairwell, the form of the two nothing more than a golden blur.
He stopped for a second at the top of the stairs to catch his breath, checking if his partner is alright. The small girl was dizzy from the overwhelming speeds they were going with.
"We need to get out of here, this place isn't safe anymore." He said looking around, far away behind them the stomping sounds of few automatons running up the stairs could be heard.
Still carrying her, Kyouya went up to their impromptu camp on the second floor, luckily there were no enemies there so they could take a moment to pack and rest.
"This place is really strange, it looks like they use electrical lighting but the golems we fought clearly use Mana to power them." Momo stated, after using her Mana Sense on one of the automatons. She saw how they absorbed the energy from around them via vents on their backs.
After exploring for over two hours the party was really impressed with what they saw. The atrium at the beginning was only the tip of an iceberg, as they went deeper and deeper that place started to be more like an underground city than a bunker. Walking through giant caverns littered with dilapidated furniture, that were clearly incorporated into the structure, sets of ruined rooms and corridors the trio of transmigrated teens were feeling as if they traveled back home. There were some ruins of military installations from the 20th century that looked eerily similar to the place they now were in.
For the blonde Crusader it was an alien place. Grey stone and metal everywhere, sometimes broken by a black or golden color. The poor girl was on edge non stop, looking in every direction and checking all sounds, somehow she felt uneasy being goddess know how deep underground.
Now the group was taking a break, sitting in a room with few benches still intact. They were following a group of three other adventurers guarding their back, mostly because they didn't need to hunt for resources. Only wanting to explore and look around there was no need to put themselves in any danger.
"Yes, i can't put my finger on it, but something is wrong with this place." Darkness said, still with uneasy expression on her face.
"There are no remains or bodies of the inhabitants." Izuku said, getting their attention. "We found a few skeletons but it's all, a structure this big should have tens of thousands of people in it, and one day they just disappeared like that..."the green haired boy stated to mutter to himself.
Momo had to agree with him, it was strange. Especially when they never encountered any signs of struggle or a fight inside. Everything was just worn down by the passage of time, the large amounts of dust were another thing that was strange. The vents were still pumping in fresh air from somewhere, but she didn't think that this amount of dirt would be able to pass through ventilation.
A loud clacking sound cough their attention, it was in the distance but still discernable in the relative silence of those ruins. Just when Darkness wanted ask what that could have been, another one sounded much closer putting all of them on guard. Then the third one sounded just around the corner and the whole team was nearly blinded when all the lights shined at once.
"That sounded like an industrial breaker, why would it start to work right now?" Izuku asked no one in particular.
A shrill female scream reached them as they were reorganizing themselves, causing all of them to take off in the direction it came from. Rounding the corner first, Izuku saw one of the adventurers they were following, sprinting in their direction through a long corridor, with a few windows on one side of it.
Seeing a strange automaton he never saw before chasing after the girl, it was clear that the machine planned to shoot her with something, judging by the outstretched hand with a gun-barrel sticking out of it.
With a burst of green energy he was between the two in a blink of an eye, deflecting a steel dart that was fired with so much force it managed to chip away a bit of his gauntlet. Just when he was about to cave in the golems chest with his fist, the combined weight of them both caused the flooring to cave in sending them down to the bottom of a giant cavern.
Using his training from Gran Torino, Deku managed to slow down his descent using a few pillars and the wall. His opponent wasn't that lucky, crashing in a heap of parts and scrap metal, not moving after it's hard landing.
"Izuku! Are you alright?!" The frantic voices of Momo could be heard, her handheld flashlight lighting up his surroundings.
"Yea, i landed safely. Give me a second i will find a way up there." He replied to the relief of his friends.
After nearly getting a heart attack, Momo looked around the cavern thru the window. Darkness and Nana checking the frightened girl for injuries trying to calm her down. The whole place was like a giant hangar, a few gantry like constructions were now visible thanks to the lights working. The far wall was caved in, spilling stone and gravel nearly everywhere.
Seeing with her Mana Sense how the energy in this place flowed harshly to the side they entered from, she carefully leaned on the window to try and see what caused that, just to freeze in place with a cold sweat starting to go down her spine.
Down at the ground level, a figure around 5 or 6 meters tall could be seen, a soft mechanical hum reached her ears as it's armor plates were saturated with the Mana it absorbed. The four eyes on its square head started to glow in a red color, the metal construction keeping it in place slowly unfurling by itself.
"Izuku! Look out!" She shouted just in time with the first step the metal giant took.
Author's Notes: Hello! I am sorry for such a long wait. I feel guilty too, as I bought Factorio and it just sucked out the rest of my free time. We still have snow! Around 40 cm in fact so that's fun…