Book 2, Chapter 160

Territory

When Perrin turned around, Richard was surprised to realise that the man had an extremely youthful face. This was definitely a young man, definitely no older than thirty. However, his white hair and hunched back made him look no different from a sixty-year-old man from behind. And yet, when he saw the fellow’s back again, he sensed that the fellow’s aura was truly old. This caused him to turn to Flowsand, who nodded slightly to confirm his conjecture. Perrin’s body truly was aged, but he had a young soul!

Perrin gave off the aura of a weak mage, somewhere around level 6 or 7.

The Duke gently closed the door behind them, bringing Richard and Flowsand to a nearby lounge. He personally brewed a pot of rich black tea, speaking bitterly, “Perrin is my third son…”

Richard was slightly shocked. Duke Bevry was only 46 years old, Perrin was in his early thirties at best!

The Duke paused for quite a while, seemingly finding it tough to choose his words, “Perrin… His mother was the greatest love of my life, but she passed away due to a difficult childbirth. Even when he was young, the boy had talent beyond comparison. He wasn’t a one in a million genius, no, he was far beyond that! He was the kind of genius you never see in your entire life! Everything you saw was solely his research. He says it is the path to the final mystery of magic arrays, and that he already found the key to that great door.”

Richard appeared very calm on the outside, but he was actually shocked further. Faelor and Norland had similar systems of magic, just that Faelor was a step behind. The ultimate mystery of magic arrays… Whatever it would be called, the final result was runes!

Perrin is only twenty,” Bevry said calmly.

“Is it a curse?” Flowsand probed.

“Yes. I suspect it was a curse from the God of Time. When he was fifteen, Perrin publicly announced some opinions regarding Faelor’s origin. He thinks the plane’s power system is not perfect, so Faelor itself cannot be considered the perfect, flawless, and supreme plane the gods claim it is. There has to be a plane out there whose power system far surpasses ours, but we call them all primitive and barbaric. He also theorised that the gods of Faelor are not the strongest; somewhere in the myriad planes, there is likely a formidable god who exceeds them.”

Indeed, this Perrin was just like Essien. It was an extremely bold conjecture that displayed his sheer genius; at the tender age of fifteen, the boy had taken a step closer to the truth!

Richard fell silent. He knew from history that anyone who was a step ahead of their time would become a great person, but someone who was two steps ahead would just be a sacrifice. Perrin’s statements regarding the power of Faelor’s gods was basically blasphemy.

The Duke’s voice grew bitter, “Not long after his opinions shocked the kingdom, Perrin suddenly started to age ten times faster than normal. Five years later, he just grew to be 20 but his body is already that of a 70-year-old man. Many people whisper that it is because of his treacherous words. The gods were angered, and thus they punished him.

“Ever since the incident, he started to fear the sun and the winds. Only deep within this mountain, where our ancestors’ powers and magic formations protect him, can he avoid the torment of his curse. His only wish now is to complete a foundation for magical mathematics before the reaper knocks on his door.”

“This is that weight?” Richard asked ambiguously.

“Yes. Perrin… I owe his mother too much, and I owe him too much as well.”

Richard turned to Flowsand and asked, “Is there a way?”

Flowsand nodded, “This is a powerful ageing curse, most likely put down by Runai himself. This curse doesn’t affect the flow of time, instead catalysing his body itself. Yes, this is likely a divine punishment.

“Of course, the curse of a god is beyond me. I’m not yet powerful enough to lift this curse directly. However, as long as the altar is built and a sacrifice is successfully made to the Eternal Dragon, the Dragon’s grace can lift this curse. However, the damage has already been done. Perrin will need a much stronger blessing to restore his body as well.”

Flowsand quickly explained how such a blessing would work, finally concluding, “The altar and an offering will be key to saving Perrin.”

For the first time since their meeting, the Duke’s eyes started to glow. He’d been trying his best in the past five years. Outside of pleading for mercy from the gods, he had already looked through countless methods. He went through endless ancient records, sending envoys to distant countries to search for legendary herbs, magical beasts, materials… Anything that could prolong one’s life.

And now, for the first time, he felt that there was hope.

He carefully enquired about the grade of the required offerings. When informed that a blessing of time required a powerful demon or devil at the least, his face contorted a bit. However, the expression of difficulty was soon replaced by determination and resolution.

Greater demons and devils all surpassed the power of Norland’s saints. The more powerful ones even approached level 20. This was a powerful enemy for the Direwolf Duke to provoke, but he would not hesitate.

“Where will the altar be built?” the Duke asked.

“My territory,” Richard replied quickly. He had already considered this question, ”That way, it will be easier to keep it secret.”

“Alright! I will try my best to support you. What do you need? Supplies? Gold? Troops?” This was clearly a display of support.

Richard pondered over it for a moment. He could not ask for a lot— for now, all they had was a preliminary agreement. Their relationship was very fragile, and excessive requests could break it apart.

“Thank you for your kindness, Your Grace. I do indeed need help now, and it’s mainly in three areas. First, I need a steady transaction channel for food, weapons, slaves, and materials. Next, I need a list of names; I need to know your true allies, as well as the powerhouses I need to be wary of. That includes legendary beings as well, and the more detailed the better. Last, and most important, is a large number of materials to build the altar with. I will pay for the supplies, but I need a guarantee that you will supply them to us.”

The Duke cast a deep glance at Richard, speaking with a faint smile, “You’re not asking for money or troops, eh. You’re a very ambitious brat!”

Richard was slightly frightened in his heart, but his face remained stoic.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: XE

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA