Book 3, Chapter 144

Advancement

Richard felt his head starting to hurt. These followers of his were growing increasingly difficult to understand, and even the broodmother was showing the same signs. Was this the result of letting them grow on their own paths? He sighed inside, quickly reading through the information that had been sent over, “Anything outside of the flight?”

“Of course, Master. I’ve specified everything.”

There was just too much information this time. Richard had to go through it for five minutes before he could even come upon everything related to Zuka’s blood. It had increased her divinity storage from fifty points to seventy, which was also the biggest benefit of the lot. The more divinity the broodmother could store, the more powerful her main body would become. However, the sacred spirit’s blood was tremendously powerful and would take several more months to fully analyse; the broodmother had only managed to complete a fifth so far. This blood was far purer than Zim’s.

In the analysis section, he noticed there was information related to the unicorn bloodline. Zim’s bloodline was very thin, forcing her to use divinity to make up for the incomplete parts so she could build his mount. Richard’s unicorn was a far cry from the true sacred beast, but she mentioned that more unicorn blood or a live unicorn would allow her to enhance her creations. If she had enough samples, she could eventually start creating drones that were better than the original.

For now, Zim’s bloodline gave all of the broodmother’s drones a 20% magic resistance if she wanted to add it. Of course, that would increase the cost of creation as well. On the other hand, the unicorn she had built for him had consumed a full thirty points of divinity. It could grow in level as time passed.

Even now, the broodmother had another thirty points of divinity left, enough to ascend to level 7. However, she had only just reached level 6 and hadn’t completed the process yet; it would be a few months and 500 magic crystals before she would be able to take the next step.

Having read up to this point, Richard heaved a sigh of relief. 500 magic crystals was about 200,000 gold; this would have been an astronomical figure a few months ago, but now it didn’t even pinch.

There were additional unexpected gains. The fifty humanoid knights that had guarded the broodmother were given the potential to evolve from the cocoon’s fluids; they would grow in battle until they reached level 14. Richard immediately chose to arm them with obsidian equipment; better equipment would increase their chances of survival, something necessary for them to grow.

Having dealt with the broodmother’s matter, Richard told her to continue foraging for food in the Land of Turmoil while creating more humanoid knights. Faelor thus entered a period of peace.

……

Richard was deep in meditation that night, his consciousness chasing after an azure strip of light with great effort. This was a grade 4 astral ray, only the second one he had seen in the last three months. He had failed to capture it that last time. Of course, he hadn’t seen any grade 5 rays either.

The strip didn’t seem to have a clear path, but he used his blessings to try and work out a formula for its advance. However, this required a tremendous amount of calculation that even his blessings of wisdom and truth could not support. A dozen seconds later, the strip of light flickered for a while and disappeared.

Richard sighed, trying to erase the disappointment in his heart before turning to capture a violet ray that wasn’t far away. This was rather good as well, only appearing once every day or two. He normally never let these things go, but he had ignored it for the sake of the grade 4 ray nearby.

He captured the grade 3 ray after a nerve-wracking pursuit, leading it into his body. He had found that this process of meditation wasn’t just growing his mana pool; his mental strength and calculation speed were being polished as well. The Deepblue series of meditation techniques were far beyond others.

When he captured another grade 2 ray, his body suddenly trembled. His mana pool slowly brimmed over a divide, telling him that he had reached level 13. He could now cast grade 7 spells!

There was an incomparable gulf between every grade of spell starting at grade 7. The power of offensive magic grew exponentially with each level, and the number that one could practise also increased. It was no longer strange for single spells to be able to turn the tides of a war.

At grade 7 were powerful spells like Finger of Death or Spirit Lash that could instantly kill weaker opponents, arcane gates that allowed for short-distance teleportation, and banishment spells that dealt great damage to conjured creatures. There were also barriers that could reflect weaker offensive spells, as well as powerful lightning storms, burst fireballs, and iridescent jets. There were also the greenflame sword, the sword of darkness, and other such mana weapons that surpassed even superior-grade enchanted weapons. However, magic-based weapons were an entire grade weaker than divine weapons at the same level of spell, be it in might, range, or duration.

Richard’s mana growth was currently four to five times that of an ordinary mage. The Deepblue Fantasy itself only worked at twice the rate of a normal technique, but with the support of his blessings and astral affinity his ability to capture astral rays was far beyond the other mages who trained in the technique. As his level and bloodline advanced, his training speed correspondingly grew. This was the source of his confidence.

Having just reached level 13, he chose not to continue meditating, instead loosening up his limbs and cooling off. He walked out of the meditation room and wandered aimlessly to his laboratory, looking at the nearly complete rune blueprint on the desk.

With the strength of his mind and soul raised, inspiration surged out like a geyser at the very sight of the rune. It didn’t take long for him to solve all the minor problems that had hindered the rune’s completion.

As he looked at the completed design, he found himself extremely pleased with his work. The few issues he was experiencing had been solved using his excess precision, adding six lines where even great runemasters could normally only draw four. Even if this design was made public, few would be able to replicate it.

“Waterflower!” he immediately summoned his soulguard through his mind, “Come to my lab, now!” It only took a moment for her to open the door and silently walk in.

Richard glanced at the time. There were four more hours until daybreak, enough for him to complete the rune. He spoke to her while preparing the materials and tools, “Breath of Darkness is only a grade 1 set, but I found a way to enhance it. I’m calling this new set the Guide of Secrets, designed specifically for you. I’m only upgrading the old runes, so you can keep every ability you already had; combined with your current abilities, you should be able to fight a Faelor saint head-on. Alright, there isn’t much time left; let’s begin.”

Having experienced rune tattooing before, the girl silently took off all her clothes and stood naked in the centre of the laboratory. When Richard finished pouring the ink into his magic pen and looked up, he was greeted with another sight of the perfect body that was filled with an explosive power. He felt nearly suffocated by the beauty. The complicated lines of the Breath of Darkness looked elegant on her person, only giving her an added sense of mystery.

He regathered his focus, “Sit there and turn around, the first upgrade will be on your back.”

Waterflower did as told, leaning her upper body a little forward. Her shoulders were broad, her figure curving sharply inwards at the waist before broadening once more at the buttocks. An unimaginable strength was hidden within those curves.

As Richard drew closer, her body began to tense visibly. By the time he was right behind her, she was trembling. When he raised his pen and lightly dotted her backbone, her entire body shuddered and she produced a startled cry.

“Does it hurt?” Richard asked in worry.

“No, it’s fine!” the young lady answered stiffly.

There were many instances in Waterflower’s life where she had sustained bone-deep injuries without making a sound. Pain normally only made her more violent. Having a rune drawn on one’s body would cause some pain, but it couldn’t compare to near-death injuries.

Richard placed his left hand on the girl’s back, his fingers spreading her flexible skin wide; this would slightly reduce the difficulty in drawing the rune. The pen then descended once more, moving at a slow but uniform rate. A winding elegant line was drawn across Waterflower’s back.

Her body tensed as his breath blew across her skin, greatly increasing the difficulty of his task. Still, Richard pretended to notice nothing and just slowed down to prevent any errors. The process of removing a tattooed array was far more difficult and troublesome than adding one. That was another reason for all of his runes this time just being additions to the originals. Unless it was absolutely necessary, he didn’t want to alter or erase what was already drawn.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Ying

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA