After fiercely negotiating the price, Leylin finally cut the price down to eighteen thousand magic crystals and bought the slaves.
Furthermore, right in front of Lucia within the shop, Leylin used his own spirit brand and branded the six slaves’ minds.
That meant from thereon, the fates of these slaves were all grasped within Leylin’s palm.
Also, the nature of the soul brand was such that they had to be completely obedient to Leylin. Even if they were asked to kill themselves, they had to do so without a moment’s thought!
One could go so far as to say that if Leylin felt a sudden urge, these slaves’ brains could simply explode like a watermelon.
“Haha… I’ll stop bothering you and be on my way then!”
Once they were on the street of their villas, Crew silently judged the two gorgeous female Knights behind Leylin with a mischievous twinkling in his eyes as they returned to their respective homes.
“That old geezer!” Leylin was speechless as he shook his head, before bringing the six slaves into his villa.
“This is my villa. You’ll be staying here from hereon, and you can choose your rooms in the back. Nobody is allowed into my bedroom and the basement! Understood?”
Leylin turned and swept his eyes over his six newly-bought slaves as he ordered.
“Understood, master!” The six of them split up and left.
“Damien, you stay behind!” Leylin stopped the level 3 acolyte.
“Master, do you have any more orders for me?” Damien questioned respectfully.
“From today onwards, you are the butler of this villa and will be in charge of managing this place when I’m not around. Also, regarding the villa’s defense spell formation, I’ll give you the authority to modify it. Your task is to tidy up the entire villa, and stock up on items needed for everyday use…”
Leylin began to give a series of instructions.
In a trading centre such as Nightless City where the Magi were in charge, there were many things that only a Magi could do. A typical Knight or Grand Knight didn’t have a sea of consciousness, so how could they even control their spiritual force, chant incantations and the like?
In order to maintain the operation of his villa even after Leylin left, an acolyte-level butler was indispensable.
“Also, tell me how you became a slave.” Leylin was slightly curious.
At the mention of this, Damien’s expression darkened and he trembled, a look of suffering appearing on his face.
It was clear that his past was an extremely painful experience for him.
However, due to the control of the soul brand, he still had to adhere to Leylin’s command. “I was from the Steel Fort and was born in a regular little town. I was fortunate enough to be tested to have an affinity for magic and was accepted by my mentor into the Moonlight Shadow. Master may not have heard of it, as it is but a small Magi organisation. Even though I had to allow my mentor to experiment on my body, I was still lucky enough to survive and even became a level three acolyte…”
Until this point, Damien’s expression was still normal, but a traumatised look emerged on his face.
“Right after that was… the war! That darned war! As the powers lording over our district, the Wetland Gardens Academy began to support the expansion of other small organisations just because our leader was against them. Moonlight Shadow was conveniently used in the war, and my mentor, as well as many other seniors, died in battle. I was held captive and eventually became a slave…”
Leylin nodded in agreement. In the unwritten rules of the Magus World, Magi were typically not allowed to hold acolytes captive and use them as slaves, or else there would be no order in society.
But there was one situation where the Magi was evidently not protected by any laws or agreements — it was when they were the prisoners of war!
The prisoners of war and sub-human acolytes from established academies were the chief sources of magician slaves!
Leylin watched Damien, who was somewhat indignant and sorrowful, and suddenly felt a surge of fear.
At the beginning, if not for Abyssal Bone Forest Academy warding off the attack from the enemies, he wouldn’t be able to escape at all and his fate might have been to be killed by an official Magus or captured as a prisoner, and later be sold off as a slave.
“That’s why I’m so desperate for power! Only by possessing strength can I take control of my future!”
Leylin waved Damien away with a gesture of his hand.
“Familiarise yourself with the surroundings first. I want to go out and will only be back in the evening.”
The villa that Leylin was renting was extremely spacious, and there were rooms specifically meant for the servants to live in. Having six slaves moving in wasn’t crowded at all, and on the contrary, added a bit of life into the villa.
Damien revealed his abilities as an exceptional butler and kept Leylin’s villa neat and tidy. This allowed Leylin to relax and discard thoughts about odd jobs that needed to be done around the villa, and focus on brewing the ancient potion, Tears of Mary, in the basement.
Countless days later, Leylin went to the old witch’s shop alone and passed on to her the two portions of Tears of Mary that she was entitled to, based on their contract. They also set a timing for their next transaction.
After obtaining the ancient potions, no matter how hard the old witch tried to conceal her excitement, Leylin was still able to see her become feverish with elation.
She also stated that she was more than capable of handling even more spirits and that Leylin should prepare himself for that.
From the looks of it, in order to obtain more of these precious potions, she was willing to gather and prepare the ingredients at all costs.
Leylin was quite pleased with this temporary ally of his.
Though he didn’t know the reason why she needed the potions so urgently, this was a situation that benefited him too.
After the two of them came to a consensus, Leylin returned to the villa and took care of all the matters in the villa. He then proceeded to the outside of the city and returned to Four Seasons Garden’s headquarters on a Dragon Crown Nighthawk.
After joining Four Seasons Garden, besides the allocated amount that all Magi were entitled to, the great amount of resources in the library was something he something he coveted.
However, as a member of the organisation, he obviously was unable to stay in Nightless City all day long unless he was retired.
The missions this month were simple and could be completed in a few days, which gave him a lot of free time that he decided to spend in Nightless City.
At the moment, he had to return to Four Seasons Garden and take on the monthly tasks. Unless he wanted to renounce the portions he was allocated and the little power he had, he had to follow this sort of lifestyle.
If he were a typical Magus and were to use this way of life to slowly amass enough knowledge and resources for him to break through, it would take more than a hundred years!
But Leylin was different. Not only did he possess a high-grade meditation method, he was also extremely knowledgeable about the path one would need to take to become a rank 3 Magus. In addition, he had also stocked up and done preparations to ensure he had the best materials and ingredients!
In order to gain power and wealth, one needed to come up with alternative methods that might be frowned upon by others. He had never been a principled person.
Leylin had two main sources providing him with materials. One of them was the Four Seasons Garden, and even though the portion allocated by them was meagre, it still was a constant flow and the items were gained based on merit.
The other source was the dark Magi organisation he had recently joined. While it was slightly dangerous, the profits were plentiful.
With these two sources, one from an honest organisation and the other from an unscrupulous group, the rate at which he gathered his resources and increased his strength was far from what anyone could predict.
“Next, I’ll have to lay low, gather all my resources, and wait for the second transition of my bloodline.”
Leylin had planned everything for the next few years well ahead.
The current him was just like the Dragon Crown Nighthawk he was sitting on — before it flew, it would silently save its energy, anticipating a time in the future when it could soar through the skies!
Time flew by quickly, and in the blink of an eye, one year had passed.
The mountain that was the Four Seasons Garden’s headquarters was still standing strong and proud as always. Magi travelled through the passages within the mountain, looking like ants as they travelled around.
“Leylin! The theory of the ecology that you tested in the secret plane aroused my interest. How about it? Shall we have a discussion about it?”
At the moment, in a room for rest and relaxation, a male Magus with fire-red hair was speaking with Leylin.
“Of course! I also hold an interest in the experiences and thoughts Magus Truman had while taking care of the Lava Goldfish.”
Leylin looked about the same as he did a year before, the main difference being the blackness in his eyes that seemed to have another layer of depth to them.
“I was planning to take a trip to the library anyway. We can talk there!” Leylin invited Magus Truman.
“But of course! I’m very familiar with your reputation as the child of the library,” Truman teased.
In answer, Leylin merely gave a light chuckle and did not take his comment to heart.
In the span of this one year, he had been lying low most of the time, completing his missions without complaints and receiving his allocated resources every month, mostly living in seclusion.
The place where he spent the most time in was the Four Seasons Garden’s giant library.
The Four Seasons Garden was on a much larger scale than Abyssal Bone Forest Academy, and the records and resources in the library were abundant.
In addition, with Leylin’s status as an official Magus, he had access to much more materials than what acolytes could get their hands on.
Though some high-grade knowledge and potion formulas needed to be exchanged for using the specified amount of contribution points, the resources that the Four Seasons Garden provided free of charge was extremely helpful for Leylin.
He spent about half a year gathering the information he had access to and saving them into the A.I. Chip, thereby largely enriching its database.
In order to prevent others from noticing the strangeness in his actions, Leylin would sometimes spend time in the library despite having saved all the information that was in there. For this pretense, he had rejected the invitations of countless beautiful female Magi. That had gained him several nicknames that were along the lines of ‘the insensitive wooden block’ and ‘the child of the library’ which quickly spread.
The Four Seasons Garden’s library was constructed within a huge hill, and acolytes could often be seen entering it.
As official Magi, Leylin and Truman naturally received special treatment and received an isolated room in order to facilitate their discussion. There was also a soft sofa and multi-coloured snacks within the room.