47 40 Versus 1
The next day Zoey continued deeper into the caves. After a few hours of exploring empty caverns that had nothing interesting, she finally got some action. She had been walking carefully through a smaller cave when she found a makeshift spear lying on the ground. It was a crude weapon with a handle made from bone and the spear tip out of stone. It did tell her though that there were other inhabitants in these caves.
Then, off in the distance she heard a faint echo through the caves. She could barely make it out but something was out there, deeper in the caves. She decided to check it out, curious about what she would find. She headed towards the sounds that she could occasionally hear making their way through the tunnels and caverns to where she was. As she drew closer the sounds became more distinct. She could now make out a guttural language being yelled and screamed by many excited voices. From the bits she could make out in the racket, they seemed to be hunting something.
As Zoey carefully made her way into the next cavern, she finally got a look at what the excitement was. The cavern was big and mostly lit up by the light from torches carried by about thirty or so green-skinned goblins, the same creatures she had encountered in the first challenge in the dungeon she had gone through recently. They carried the torches and makeshift weapons like clubs and the spear she had seen earlier. The excitement and noise they were making was thanks to the fact that they had managed to corner what looked like a Rank 2 Armafrost creature in one corner of the cavern.
A Rank 1 Armafrost would only have one spike on its back, and this one had two. It was a squat, four-legged creature that resembled an armadillo with a rat-like head. It was about a meter and a half long and a half meter tall, and the creature was completely protected by an ice armor carapace that left no weak points exposed except for the eyes and mouth. On its back were the two icey spikes that signified its rank and at the end of its tail was a heavy, ice covered club that swung about threateningly.
The hunting party of goblins was not able to harm the creature with their primitive clubs and spears, and anytime one of them made the mistake of getting too close, they were met with the club-tail of the Armafrost and thrown aside with a wet crunch. It was obvious that the goblins were only trying to keep the creature trapped though, they were waiting for something while they kept the beast busy. Sure enough another party of ten more goblins entered the cavern a short while later and the racket got even louder.
The hooting and screaming by the goblins and the panicked bellows from the Armafrost made the cavern quite lively. The new group of goblins that had showed up had slightly better equipment than the others and Zoey could see their leader that looked like a shaman of some kind with a multitude of totems and necklaces draped around his neck.
The shaman took up a position away from the Armafrost and started chanting and placing totems while the other goblins kept the trapped Armafrost from going anywhere. Once the shaman's ceremony was complete, he raised his hands with a screech and a huge fireball formed in the air above him. He howled and threw the fireball at the Armafrost as the goblins screams reached a fever pitch.
The Armafrost was directly hit by the fireball and bellowed in agony. Blinded by pain and rage, the creature lost its reason and blindly charged straight into the surrounding goblins. The ice carapace on the left side of the creature's body was cracked and melted from the fireball but that did not stop it from using its tail like a wrecking ball, snapping bones and crushing goblins as it charged through.
The goblins practically threw themselves at the beast with little regard for their safety, hoping to bring it down with sheer numbers while the shaman started chanting again. Zoey simply stood back and watched the battle as more and more goblins were crushed and trampled to death. The goblins managed to land a few hits as well, and the Armafrost's carapace cracked more and more after every his. She could tell the beast was getting exhausted, but it had already had killed all but twenty of the goblins.
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But the shaman was not done yet. Just as the Armafrost rammed into another goblin and trampled it to death, another fireball was thrown at it. The fireball hit and was followed by an enraged bellow as the Armafrost's carapace finally shattered. Seeing their opportunity, the remaining goblins screamed their war cries and charged the beast. The wounded Armafrost on the other hand had locked its sight on the shaman that had attacked it and charged with a furious howl.
The final few moments of the battle was the Armafrost charging the goblin shaman while smashing and trampling the goblins that threw themselves at it. One of the bigger goblins managed to stab its spear into its exposed neck right before he was trampled to death, but the Armafrost barely even slowed down. Another goblin managed to stab his rusty blade into the Armafrost's side before taking the club tail on the head, killing him instantly.
The wounded creature smashed its way through the last few goblins and finally reached the shaman. In a panic the shaman tried to turn and run, only to fall on his face. As he tried to scramble to his feet, the Armafrost reached him and made one final lunge, smashing into the shaman and crushing his body into the ground. Silence fell on the cavern. In its final charge, the Armafrost had taken too much damage and now lay dead on top of the crushed shaman. Every goblin had been killed by the Armafrost in its wild rampage. The beast had killed them all, but had also died in the process.
Zoey had only been an observer this entire time, witnessing the epic battle between more than forty goblins and a lone Rank 2 Armafrost. She would have to be careful if she faced one of them in the future.
She did not want to share the same fate as the goblins.