51 Second Floor
[Congratulation on reaching the second floor]
[Order and Chaos]
[The one who shall put order in this world shall prevail]
[The heretics shall perish]
The interface stood in front of the players for three seconds before finally disappearing. Shesmu who was still holding on DepressedRyan's body, looked around him and found multiple platforms flying in the air, with multiple bridges connecting them.
"This is weird, is that a number in the middle of the platform?"
Following Leo's remark, the whole party's eyes focused on one point. In the middle of the platform that they were standing on, an immense number 1 was carved.
"Hmm, so I guess that we should go from one to two and so and so forth," concluded Leo.
"Yeah, Mr. Leo is right. That talk about order was probably hinting to this, right?" added Kazumi.
After hearing the party's input, Shesmu thought for a second before giving his two cents.
"One, two, three, four is one order. One, two, four, eight, sixteen is another order. Any numbers can be ordered in one way or another, depending on how you think about it."
"You're right, but then what are we supposed to choose? There must be a way for the system to tell that we're respecting an order, right?"
"Yeah, there must be a way, Leo." Shesmu paused before continuing, "The thing about order, it's that it's meaningless, without initial parameters that are."
"Initial parameter?" asked Kazumi.
"So you mean, we need to do something here to disclose the order we're going to use. Is that right?"
Amaterasu's words shocked Shesmu to the core. This b*tch… she isn't bad. How the heck did she reach this conclusion?
"Wow, Amaterasu, I would have never thought about that."
"Right? Mister Leo. Amaterasu has always been the smart one! Whenever I have a problem, I always go to ask her about it!"
Amaterasu blushed at the compliments, while Leo just muttered "Mister Leo".
"Yeah, we need to find how to initialize the parameters for the order to make sense. And if I understood anything in my years of gaming, it's that the way to initialize them will be in this first platform."
Of course, Shesmu already knew how to initialize the order. However, he couldn't possibly just go and activate it first thing. Thus, he put down Ryan's body and started searching with the party. The search took five minutes before Shesmu finally revealed the secret.
"Hey guys, I think I found something."
Shesmu was looking at the middle of the carving when the trio heeded his call. A blue gem was engraved at the dead center of the number. Shesmu touched when a blue screen appeared in front of him, startling Kazumi and Amaterasu.
"Is this a map?" asked Leo.
The blue interface had many nodes, linked with one another with a line. These nodes at the end all linked to a red node and a blue node on each end.
"Yeah, these nodes are the platforms and these lines are the bridges. Now, if I got this right-" While Shesmu was talking, he clicked on the blue node. It turned yellow. He then linked it with another node. The latter and the bridge connecting the two nodes both turned yellow. In this way, Shesmu kept linking the nodes until he reached the red one. The interface disappeared.
"Now, the order has been set. We just need to choose the right-most bridge every time and we're set."
This order might not have been the most efficient one, but it only consisted of six platforms. Shesmu had already known that the interface would disappear the moment he reached the red node, so he opted for a simple order.
They crossed the bridge, and when they reached the other side, they found six monsters. The monster looked like humanoid dolls with metal claws. Each of which had a number engraved on its chest.
However, Shesmu already knew that the numbers were nothing but a distraction. His eyes focused on number engraved on this platform before inspecting the humanoid monsters.
"Guys, distract these dolls but don't kill them. Just buy me ten seconds."
"Okay, you got it," responded Leo. However, while he was fine with following Shesmu's orders without the need for an explanation, Amaterasu was a different story.
"Hey! What are you going to do?"
Shesmu looked at her with the corner of his eyes before responding, "We need the order on which we should slay these monsters, right? I'm going to go find that."
"Oh, and how are you going to do that?"
"Same as before, I'll check the engraving in the middle of the platform and see if there is anything there."
"Okay, you got it, Great Master. We will make sure that none of them reach you before you're done."
Shesmu nodded at Kazumi's words while Leo took the lead.
"Guys, we need to be the one leading the charge if we don't want to let Shesmu hold the aggro."
Leo then charged at the steel dolls with Amaterasu and Kazumi behind him.
In the meantime, Shesmu who was still in charge of carrying Ryan's body, put the latter down. He then distanced himself from the fight and took a roundabout way to the carving. He found the same blue gem and touched it. A blue interface appeared in front of Shesmu denoting the order: Five, twenty-six, one, seven, fifty-three, eighty-one.
Shesmu repeated that order in his head so as to remember it. He turned around and looked for the doll numbered five. Once he found it, he unsheathed his sword before Dashing towards it. With one Slash Cancel, he was able to cut down the monster.
Shesmu then turned around to look for the doll numbered twenty-six. In less than half a second, he identified it and lunged at the monster. After piercing its chest, he took out his sword and slashed at its neck, killing it instantly.
In unison, all the remaining dolls turned their head towards Shesmu. Their soulless eyes stared at him, cold, ghostly, dark eyes. Amaterasu shrieked at this sight, but Shesmu just bolted towards his next target: The doll numbered one.
Before the monsters could even react, Shesmu slashed at the monster and kicked him towards number seven who Kazumi was fighting. The two dolls fell on the ground, one on top of the other. Shesmu jumped high into the sky and plunged his sword piercing the both of them. This one hit killed both of his targets.
The two remaining dolls were still fighting against Leo and Amaterasu, so Shesmu made quick work of them.
After killing every monster on this platform, Shesmu's party crossed the rightmost bridge again. The same scenario repeated itself multiple times until the party reached the last platform.
After crossing the bridge to the red node, Shesmu's party were greeted by six steel dolls. And, behind them a monster of similar height and look. However, it was engulfed in red and black energy. After inspecting it, Shesmu smiled.
Greater Steel Doll