74 The Black Dragon Roars
Draco walked into the GloryGore Labs, his visage altered and his eyes sharp as a knife. Majority of the workers here were busy moving up and down, doing something or the other as they tried to meet workplace objectives in a timely manner.
It was a mixture of white coats walking about, technicians and a large majority of them being the general help as well as assistants.
Draco had taken the form of an assistant who had been sent to buy a quick snack for one of the main researchers of the AI project. Draco had intercepted him and placed him somewhere discrete.
With his Control's Void of Perfection, it was simply too easy for him to warp the light that reflected off his body to resemble the rays that did same for the real assistant.
He hadn't changed his clothes, but he looked like a whole different person. Even to cameras and the like, he was essentially the assistant himself, as all those devices also relied on the reflections of light to define our visages.
The only things that would give Draco away were his smell, his voice and his mannerisms. Also, there was the fact that he couldn't allow anyone to touch his body, as the sensory dissonance between touching Draco's true body and the assistant's fake body would give him away.
It would be similar to to old games from the early 2000's where characters could pass through each other, their hands entering the bodies of other characters due to poor graphical rendering.
Draco walked along the hallways of the labs with a packet of food in his hands. He eventually reached the area where the assistant's boss was working. It was a pretty young lady with blond hair and amber eyes, a bizarre combo that made her look otherworldly.
Her face was small but angular, giving her an asiatic beauty that was attractive. She looked like she should be a movie actress or a pop idol instead of a researcher.
Her body was impressive too, with a c-cup that pushed the front of her blouse forward as well as a backside was round and a bit perky, but her hips were the best part, seeing how wide they were.
She wore blue blouse that displayed a bit of cleavage with a snow white suit jacket. She wore a tight black office skirt that showed the roundness of her peach as well as her drool inducing thigh gap.
She wore a pair of high heels that totally perfected her whole attire. She looked to be about Draco's age, yet her expression was locked into a mask of seriousness as she pondered over her findings.
When she saw Draco enter though, her face broke out into a smile. It was clear that she was the type who was focused when it came to work, but friendly when it came to people. She was the exact type of intelligent and strong woman that made every man bow beneath her skirt.
"Hey, you're back so soon, Francis. Did you get what I asked?" Her voice was not really high-pitched and cutesy, more mature and sharp. It was pleasant in a totally different way from the twins, more like Rina's and Maria's.
Draco adjusted his voice box a little with his Body of Godliness, mimicking the voice of the assistant, Francis.
"Yep. One cappuccino and some danish rolls for you."
Draco had read the profile Jade collected of Francis, learning that he was a bit of a chipper and happy go lucky lad who was smitten by this woman, whose name tag that was pinned to her chest read 'Amber'.
Because of his pleasant demeanor and his willingness to help, Amber had come like the fellow as a little brother more than a potential lover, which Draco felt amused by.
Amber took the food and opened it up quickly, but paused and frowned when she saw what was inside. Draco also frowned internally. Was there a problem with the order? One should note that he had checked it himself.
"Didn't you get any for yourself?" She asked with an accusatory tone.
When Draco heard her, he was startled, but his light-reflected illusionary form only displayed a bit of shame and bashfulness. He had no idea that this Amber was such a pleasant person, who cared for the people around her so much.
She saw Draco's expression and crossed her arms with dissatisfaction, looking like an elder sister who was exasperated by her silly younger brother.
"You Francis, how many times do I have to tell you to take care of yourself first? You're such a handsome lad who needs all the nutrients he can get to grow, so please don't skimp on meals on my behalf, okay?"
Draco didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Francis was 23 years old and Amber was 21, meaning he was older than her, yet she referred to him as 'lad'.
(Author's note: Can I get an F in the chat for Francis? Poor fellow is brother-zoned for life.)
Still, he was on the clock, so he didn't have time to play house. He directly walked up to Amber and thrust his hand out.
"Francis, what are you…?"
Her eyes widened at his actions because she never assumed she would ever be attacked by the sweet and chipper Francis. As she fell into unconsciousness, she heard a voice that was powerful and possessed a dark solicitation.
"I am not Francis."
Draco left her office and locked it up, his body in the form of Amber currently. Just because his light-reflection was of a woman didn't mean he possessed the features of one. It was just that in everyone's eyes, he was Amber. He felt not a even little bit different though.
Since the offices of the researchers had no cameras - for privacy purposes of course - Draco wasn't worried that he would be found out. Since the office was locked and Amber had logged out, it was a fact that she was out. No one would enter her office at this time, not even the cleaners, because she needed to give permission for that beforehand.
Draco walked to the end of the hallway, reaching an elevator that was bereft of human presence. He selected the underground floors and used Amber's identification to access it.
Of course, it meant an eye scan, facial recognition and a special password, all of which Draco provided easily.
The elevator went down slowly, some light music playing in the background as the announcer mentioned the floors they had passed. Once they reached the floor with the Artificial Intelligence for Boundless project, Draco got off.
What startled Draco was the the hallways were narrow and undecorated, bearing a simplistic and minimalistic design. Even worse was that it looked like it was constructed years ago, but kept in good shape.
Each division in the hallway was separated by two columns on each side. This went on for as far as Draco's eye could see. This made his heart go cold, because it was clear that there was something going on here.
For the hallway to stretch across such a long distance, it was clear that he was no longer in the GloryGore Labs. Even if they had such a large underground construction, it would never be permitted by the authorities. It was far too long.
It was also impossible for this place to be hidden. There were satellites that continuously scanned beneath the earth for such things especially looking for the hidden bunkers from World War 3, meaning that this floor was more than just a part of an underground facility.
Draco removed Amber's form and began walking along the hallway cautiously. He removed her form because it was no longer necessary to be disguised. With whatever was going on here, wearing the form of a researcher wouldn't change anything.
Draco walked and walked for what felt like days on end. He noticed that the further he went, the lower the level of illumination. It wasn't overt, but very subtle. Every division in the hallway was like its own world, the lighting and the air become dimmer and dimmer as he went.
Draco began to sweat as he went forward. Not because of fear or any physical difficulty, but because of the pressure. Draco was becoming more and more aware than he had stumbled onto the reason why no on ever returned from the missions involving GloryGore.
Even though Jada stated that his survival rate was absolute, she didn't state how that would happen as well as the potential damage Draco could suffer before hand.
Draco could survive by being taken as a test subject and locked into experimentation. Maybe that was what Jada meant by he would succeed and fail at the same time?
His steps became heavier and heavier, his eyes became sharper and sharper still. His will galvanized and his determination rose.
He was destined to survive this! All he needed to focus on was how to keep the twins alive and well!
Thinking that, Draco decided not to play any longer.
He first began to sprint across the never ending hallway, his every step taking away the light ever so slowly and surely until he could barely see around himself.
For the first time since Draco entered this hallway, he looked back. He tilted his head around and peeked at the progress he had made so far, but what he saw shocked him so much he broke out into a cold sweat.
Behind him was… nothing!
It was an endless black void of nothingness that seemed to swallow all matter. In fact, Draco thought he could see some tendrils creeping out of the darkness, trying to consume more of the world.
His heart went cold. Draco realized that whatever was going on was outside of the realm in which he could comprehend. Bloodlines, Lineages and all had some scientific grounding no matter how fantastical their abilities were.
Even Jada, who was technically a psychic, was only so because of a unique neural system in her brain, not magic or mysticism.
This was the real world, not Boundless. This was the world of science and logic, not magic and fantasy. For all of this to happen in the real world overwhelmed him a bit.
No matter how big your balls were, being thrust into an endless hallway where everything behind you was being eaten by an endless darkness and everything in front of you was losing its light, was an experience that would stretch your courage.
They key issue here was that Draco was alone. If he had been with anyone else, or even the twins, he could maintain his calm while they panicked and found a way out.
But he was alone.
Draco didn't have any fantastical powers. Even Control was just two abilities, Body of Godliness - which allowed him to manipulate his body easily - and Void of Perfection - which was a domain skill - both of which were useless in a supernatural scenario like this.
After all, Draco still had Control active. He hadn't been able to sense the darkness swallowing up the world behind him when he was moving. It had registered that nothing had changed and the hallway was as it should be.
However, now that he had turned around and seen this horrifying sight, his Void of Perfection was telling him that just one or two steps behind him was a bottomless abyss of nothingness.
Control, despite how overpowered it seemed, had one fatal flaw. This was the flaw of humanity.
The human brain can only process and access a certain range of signals, stimuli and information. Control was built on using the human brain's extreme computing power to perform such wild feats.
However, in the face of something that the human brain couldn't process, all the Void of Perfection in the world was no better than using your eyes.
Body of Godliness had a similar weakness. Even though Draco could redistribute the force in his body to strike at his optimal power, it was still subject to the laws of physics.
He would have absolutely loved to channel his Body of Godliness and punch a hole in the wall, but the best that would do was shattering the bones in his hand.
As Draco stood rooted to the spot, the darkness also halted.
It was like that old game where that guy with the mustache and the red cap had to eat mushrooms to get bigger. Draco remembered that there was a ghost in that series that pretended to be invisible when one looked at it, but would become corporeal once one looked away.
It was a strange situation, but it was real.
Draco took a deep breath and calmed his chaotic emotions. The Black Dragon's eyes flashed with hate and anger.
To make me feel fear, YOU ARE COURTING FUCKING DEATH!
It roared so loudly that Draco's body shook. The seals which bound the Black Dragon trembled and cascaded violently, like a small boat in the midst of a terrible sea storm.
The seal wasn't weakened, but the Black Dragon's roar managed to clear Draco's mind. His natural and human fears were beaten back as a primal rage and arrogance rose in him.
How dare… how dare these… these mongrels…
How dare these mongrels make him feel fear?!
He was Draco!
The Chosen Son of Lucifer!
The Incarnation of the Black Dragon!
The Reincarnated Soul who was destined to stand at the top of two timelines!
His eyes became red and his breathing became sharp. The Black Dragon continued roaring in his soul, its anger limitless and never ending!
If not for this seal, I would rend this world apart, right to its very foundations!
Draco didn't continue going forward into the simply lit hallway. Instead he began to walk into the darkness. Right into the maw of the beast that looked like it would consume all the light and life in the world.
He took each step with a heavy stomp, waves of force reverberating from the soles of his feet. It felt like a primal giant was taking stroll over mountains and valleys.
The physical and spiritual pressure of Draco's presence began to climax.
His eyes narrowed into slits and his lips flattened into an unamused expression. His curly hair began to move and shift on its own, as if a strong breeze was flowing around him.
His bright green pupils darkened until they became almost black. His skin twisted and shifted as his fingers bent back, almost forming claws.
Had Eva been here, her heart would freeze. This was the exact phenomenon that occurred to Draco when he had witnessed Local Lord on top of her. This was the exact phenomenon that had led to the shameless and gentle fellow onto the path of evil and murder!
A shockwave erupted from Draco's body, making the walls tremble shakily. His short hair billowed about crazily as a dark black light surrounded his body.
When the word 'aura' had been used previously, it had always referred to an intangible thing that was only on the level of brainwaves at best. However, Draco's aura manifested into his form as a visual and corporeal phenomenon had been created because of it!
The Black Dragon had only been roaring at first, but now, it became crazed as it pounded on the walls of the seal with reddened eyes. Its roars were earth shaking and heaven shattering, each hit it made on the seal caused its light to dim a little.
The Black Dragon used its deadly claws to strike the seal over and over, its form becoming a blur as its speed climaxed to new heights. The seal began to tremble and shake so furiously that one could only wonder on how it managed to stay together.
The words on the seal began to dissipate one by one, much faster than anything the Eyes of Caelo could do.
In the real world, Draco had finally lifted his leg and made that final step. That final step that would place his appendage right in the eternal darkness that swallowed all light.
He made that step without hesitation, not stopping to think of the possible consequences or outcomes. The Draconic Soul in him which had been suppressed for 21 years of his early life, 15 years of his Boundless life and this week in this life had finally had enough.
Enough of the bullshit!
Enough of the games!
First, I died and was reincarnated!
Then, I found out about the Lineages and my heritage, telling me I'm some sort of heavenly prodigy that made everyone fear, yet everyone stepped on me in my early life!
Then, I found out that due to some bullshit conflict in my family, I was unfairly crippled and thrown out into the world!
Then, I found out that my soulmate, who I had wasted the whole of my previous life trying to punish, was actually my greatest benefactor!
Then, I found out that the one who orchestrated all this had the last laugh and no matter what I did, I shall not be able to get revenge since he existed in a different timeline!
Stop playing around with me fate!
If my destiny is so great, then what is with all this bullshit theatrics?!
Why is it that every time I take a step forward, I am only walking on the path of someone who has no idea of the true story going on?!
I, Draco, have had enough!
From now on I shall show you what it feels like to be played with, Fate!
I shall show you the consequences of playing with a Black Dragon!
I shall rend this timeline asunder and make it bow beneath my feet as punishment for daring to reincarnate me!
"EVERYTHING SHALL FALL UNDER MY FEET!"
With that roar, Draco's body shook as the black aura around him billowed out into the hallway, swallowing everything before him, even the darkness that seem all encompassing.
With one final bellow, the Black Dragon struck the now wan and dim seal, shattering it completely.
The Black Dragon, the most evil and powerful serpent in the nine heavens, was finally free!
(Author note: You might be wondering why this happened now instead of later. There are too many reasons and explaining them all would extend the word count, increasing the SS cost of the chapter unfairly. All I'll say is the next few chapters are going to be thrilling and full of BADASSERY. After that, everything will be explained.)