Reg fires his extending arm to grab Riko, but is repeatedly blocked by other Corpse-Weepers swooping into his path. Riko is helpless, due to suffering from 2nd layer ascension strains, as she is carried toward a nest where Corpse-Weeper chicks will feed on her. Several Corpse-Weepers attack Reg together, and he blacks out briefly. Reg's body suddenly recalls it's own power, and he fires a wide beam, obliterating everything in it's path; killing the Corpse-Weeper carrying Riko. Reg uses his extending arms to catch her, and the surviving Corpse-Weepers fly away. Riko seems unharmed but is still suffering from ascension strain. Reg is disturbed by the realization that if his aim had been off, he would have killed Riko.
Riko wakes up, finding Reg nearby and herself topless. Greatly flustered, Reg explains that he got worried when she didn't wake up right away, so he checked her for possible wounds. Riko thanks him, then notices the nearby destruction. Instead of being disturbed by the idea that he could have killed her, as Reg feared, Riko is amazed by Reg's beam, which she names Incinerator, and has faith that he will master it one day, which she is eager to help him do.
Reg has a nightmare of Riko being eaten by a Corpse-Weeper. Reg is startled awake by Riko shouting. Reg learns that he passed out. Riko suggests that he was low on energy due to firing the Incinerator. Riko shouted because her delver notebook is gone, likely lost during the Corpse-Weeper attack. Riko is sad, less because of the information that was lost, and more because she will be unable to take notes on their journey beyond this point.
Riko makes another delicious meal. Reg comments on how well she did to hunt by herself, but Riko credits him since the meat came from the Corpse-Weeper he killed. Reg is disturbed to be eating something that ate people. Riko points out that the orphanage served meat that came from animals in the 1st layer, who likely preyed on delvers, so in a way, past delvers are passing their strength on to the current ones. This comforts Reg, and he finishes his meal.
Riko and Reg reach the Forest of Temptation, and Reg gives Riko his cloak to deal with the strong wind and lower temperature. As they approach the Seeker Camp, they are noticed by a delver seated behind a large telescope. Riko explains the connection between The Abyss's force field and the strategic location of the Seeker Camp, which is in a tree high above ground level. Riko is puzzled by the lack of greeting, as there should always be a lookout on duty who can signal for a gondola to be sent down to allow guests in. Reg thinks the presence of a Red Whistle and a robot may be making the guards uneasy. Reg extends his arms up to reach the camp but is startled by someone grabbing his arms. This person is Ozen, the White Whistle in charge of the camp, who is intrigued by the fact that Riko is still alive.
- Volume 2, Chapter 10: Second Layer, The Forest of Temptation
- Volume 2, Chapter 11: The Incinerator
- Volume 2, Chapter 12: Second Layer's Lowest Area, The Inverted Forest
references to previous episodes
Bestiary Indexing Edit