Book 3, Chapter 60

Lie

The second option left Richard seeing black.

Divine Blessing: Awaken Bloodline. The power of time shall cleanse your body, developing your hidden bloodline powers to the fullest. You may choose one of these abilities:

  1. Conflagration (Archeron bloodline. Upgraded version of Blaze. Increases spellcasting speed by upto 50%).

  2. Empowered Beckon (Elven bloodline. Increases nature affinity when casting summoning spells, upgrading the creature type by one grade and the count by three).

  3. Endless Vitality (Elven bloodline. Doubles energy and mana recovery rate).

  4. Celestial Rain (Elven bloodline, astral powers. Doubles the effect of the Deepblue meditation techniques).

Richard couldn’t bear to look further. He originally didn’t know what powers his bloodlines could potentially unlock, so the most he did was to adjust the growth of his bloodlines to maximise their potential. In other words, there were trade-offs he had to maintain. Now, however, this blessing would give him the prerogative to make his own decisions. He instantly thought up dozens of combinations that would maximise his bloodline power.

He almost had to block off his blessing of wisdom. Ahead of him right now were various extremely powerful abilities, the pinnacle of both his bloodlines. Take Empowered Beckon, for example. It was only slightly weaker than Sharon’s Master Summoner ability, the power of a legendary bloodline!

‘Second only to Sharon…’ This was an appraisal that definitely made Richard proud of his bloodlines. There was even greater reason for joy: although his bloodline powers didn’t have any set date when they would awaken before, he held such a boost to his power in his fingertips.

A simple decision would give him great power. Who was he to say no to such an offer?

Richard took in a deep breath, forcing himself to calm down. How could this be? Why were there so many options laid ahead of him, the choices giving him such great power? He simply had no reason to reject these things! He was still human, a mortal of flesh and blood. These blessings were almost impossible to resist.

He voided himself of all emotion, mechanically shifting his gaze to the third option. This time, he was no longer shocked, merely consuming the information as if he had grown numb to everything on offer.

Divine Blessing: Enlightenment. You shall be granted a third bloodline, chosen randomly from the following options: dragon, behemoth, unicorn, planar wanderer, astral beast.

Divine Blessing: Mystical Transformation. Your mana will be enhanced by one of the following elements: astral power, moonforce, timeforce…

Richard stopped before looking at the fifth option, instead shutting his eyes and beginning to ponder. If that man were facing this situation, how would he likely react?

He suddenly opened his eyes, jerking upright before screaming, “Does he truly think this bullshit will captivate me? It takes more than that!”

Due to his elven bloodline and the patience he had cultivated over many years, Richard was normally always calm and composed. Growing so agitated as to spew enraged curses did not match his typical image at all. Even more intriguing was the fact that he suddenly felt a lot more relaxed after the outburst, the attraction of the various blessings seemingly fading away.

There were thousands upon thousands of routes towards the peak. Why should he have to depend on the charity of others?

In that moment of standing up, Richard felt like he understood half of Gaton’s domineering nature. He continued to read the various options for blessings, but this time it was with ease and no emotional burden upon himself. He treated it as simply broadening his horizons; after all, this list of blessings would also provide insight into his own potential.

With this change in perspective, Richard suddenly found his worldview a lot wider. He realised that reading the contents of these blessings was in itself a useful endeavour; he did not need to possess them to obtain their benefits. These numerous options were actually pointing him in the correct direction to advance his path.

After going through 120 options, his eyes suddenly gleamed as he focused on a particular one. Divine Blessing: Distribute Grace. Allocate some of your divine grace to a target of your choice.

This was also the last option. As such, Richard reached for it without hesitation and allocated all his remaining grace to Flowsand, upholding his promise to Ferlyn.

He hadn’t yet realised that he had willingly sacrificed his own power for Flowsand.

……

Outside the isolated space, Flowsand had grown extremely shocked as the ritual unfolded. The ceremony typically ended much earlier than this, and there were no traces of the descent of the Eternal Dragon either. However, in that instant, a golden ray of light fell into the hall and spilled over her body. She was taken aback, finding enormous amounts of divine grace entering her!

‘What’s going on? Why is this coming to me?’ Flowsand was extremely perplexed. A quick calculation told her that this was three-fifths of the total divine grace from the astral beast’s skull. In other words, outside of the grace used to strengthen the planar passage, Richard had allocated everything else to her.

‘Why would he share his grace with me, and so much at that? Could it be… Did he find out about it?’ The cleric was starting to grow anxious, but she quickly denied that thought. This was a secret known to only the titled individuals in the Church of the Eternal Dragon. The old dragon himself had decreed that nobody else could know. Everything followed the principle of equal exchange: a title came with a dear price.

It didn’t take long after that for the curtain of timeforce to disappear. Richard emerged from within, a faint smile on his face. Flowsand was suddenly left in a trance. The Richard ahead of her now appeared to be slightly different, but she could not put a word to it.

She walked forward to talk to him, asking in a hurry, “Why would you allocate so much grace to me? You should prioritise your own abilities! If you’re always so reckless, how can you lead us to conquer many planes? I’m still counting on you to perform more ceremonies for me to get grace from!” By the end, her rant had taken on a lecturing tone.

Richard shrugged, “Can’t be helped, it was the only option. What else could I have done?”

“Only option? And it was to give your grace away? HOW COULD THAT BE?!” Flowsand was growing agitated. She knew from experience that such a thing was impossible.

“That’s right, I was left with no choice!” Richard put on an innocent expression. ‘What can I do now?’ it seemed to say, ‘I can’t take back what I’ve given.’

Flowsand continued staring at Richard, seeing something in his eyes. Tears welled up in her own, almost flowing freely down her face. “You’ve learnt to lie.”

“Really? How come I didn’t know that?” Richard beamed, no shadows in his smile.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Jessa

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA