Book 3, Chapter 20

Power

“Yes!” Richard looked obviously lost, unable to understand exactly what was wrong, “Aren’t assassins just dishes on a plate once their traces are discovered? You can just surround them with heavy infantry and have a cavalry troop block their escape. Once your archers shoot into the encirclement, won’t you kill as many as there are?”

Falcao paled with no idea of what he could say. Richard’s statement was correct in theory; an exposed assassin was indeed not as good as most others at the same level. However, the problem came with the discovery of these traces the mage was speaking of. Could someone just discover Blackwing if they wanted to? He himself did not have this ability, and Rolf’s curious expression was proof that the swordsman was in the same boat.

“You truly are someone who can create miracles, respected Master Richard!” Falcao said sincerely.

“The Lord is the source of every miracle,” Richard suddenly said with a solemn expression. This left everyone deep in thought. Gods were indeed sources of miracles, and one was hidden behind this great mage.

On their way back to the inn, Flowsand found an opportunity to speak to him in secret, “Your acting skills are getting better! If you want to join the Church, you’ll definitely become a priest!”

Richard smiled in response, “One always grows quickly when they walk the line between life and death.”

“You're only 17!” Flowsand said discontentedly.

Richard only continued to smile. With the upgraded blessing of wisdom, his seventeen-year-old body held a mature mind.

……

By the time he returned to his room, the maid had already prepared a tub of hot water. As per his instructions, she had poured in some relaxing lavender essence.

Richard stepped into the bath, immersing his entire body in the hot water. The fatigue from many days of battle flowed out of his pores as he unwound, thinking back to all the fights of the past few days. He started to quickly sift through the information, analysing the amount of power he held in his hands.

Blackwing’s death had given him sufficient confidence. As long as he worked out an appropriate strategy, it wouldn’t be impossible to kill a saint with his current forces. Both the Lens of Time and Outburst were crucial in a battle against a single target, and when combined with his own rune they allowed him to bring out his greatest might.

Kellac was a very important character as well. At level 13, he could perform grade 7 spells. The power of such buffs was adequately displayed when Blackwing was killed.

Olar, Zendrall, Flowsand, and Kellac… All of them had the power to turn the situation in a war around completely. The 200 barbarians served as the core of the army, while the throwers were extremely effective on the offensive. Even the desert warriors, despite their low level, were essential for their quantity and ability to fight in any terrain. Although hundreds had joined from the Demon Hunting Spears, the desert people could still be replenished with money.

Last, and most important, was still himself. His blessings were playing more of a role as time passed, especially with Precision which gave him an astonishing degree of control over the battlefield.

Richard replayed the process of every battle in his mind, pondering over the areas in which he lacked and figuring out how to improve them. These days he was always reading one book or the other about famous generals or essays by experts of war. He also simulated some battle situations on his own whenever he was free, although all of them were small in scale. He still hadn’t reached the point where he could take command of an entire campaign.

Spending some time on politics would allow him to sow the seeds for war in advance. However, his current influence left him far from able to actually make room for them to sprout. He could only rely on opportunities like had come from the Highland Unicorn.

In addition, with the two great blessings of wisdom and truth, Richard was strengthening his own control of magic by the day. Not only did this grow the power of his runes, it directly influenced his use of magic. Take the grade 6 Nature’s Beckon, for example. He could finely tune the effects of the spell, lining all the direbears in a row…

About ten minutes later, when the water had cooled off, Richard felt that his fatigue had eased up quite a bit. He had come up with all sorts of plans to fight Chuck and Phinbar over this period of time. With his ability to think ten times as fast as the ordinary human, the ten minutes of deduction was equivalent to an hour and a half’s worth of pondering for most others.

Done with the bath, he walked out and wore new clothes, returning to his room to begin his daily meditation. Even a legendary mage could only improve their mana pool bit by bit through meditation.

Ever since he crossed level 10, Richard had aimed to add two units of mana to his pool every day. This would allow him to reach level 12 after a month, giving him a chance to learn more grade 6 spells and craft a majority grade 2 runes.

Sitting in position, he quickly entered a state of deep meditation. His consciousness gradually delved out of his body, looking over it once more. However, as his mana slowly spread out, he saw a surprising three astral rays appear in the surroundings at the same time!

Richard was delighted, immediately catching them all and sending themselves into his body one after the other. They turned another small part of his mana pool blue, many more blue dots circulating throughout his own body. All of this was the power from the blue astral rays he caught using the Deepblue Fantasy.

Just this discovery alone made this session much more efficient than any before it. Still, just as all three were integrated into his mana, two more started to glow in his mind’s eye.

Richard was pleasantly surprised; this session was turning out to be unprecedentedly effective. He captured both of the new rays as well, fusing them into his own mana. However, just as these rays passed near the tree in his sea of consciousness, they were both absorbed by the central trunk with the nature affinity. He immediately felt his elven bloodline begin to strengthen, albeit very slowly. It was so sluggish that even he found it difficult to notice, but looking at the lights disappear he could tell that its power was growing.

This event was extremely significant. It implied that he could technically choose to strengthen any of his bloodlines whenever he wanted to! Although this time had only been by chance, it was proof of possibility.

Bloodline abilities were mysterious yet powerful. There was no rule that dictated their awakening and growth; in fact, a vast majority of the lucky ones who did possess bloodline abilities did not know where they came from. They didn’t know when a second would appear, nor what kind of ability it would be. The higher the status of the one with the bloodline, the more worried they would grow over this matter.

Previous Chapter Next Chapter

OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: XE

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA