Book 1, Chapter 74

Inheritance Of The Silver Moon

Richard thought of something all of a sudden, asking directly, “Master didn’t leave any trauma with you, did she?”

“Of course not!” Gaton replied furiously. But then he realised that he’d stood up, sitting back down so forcefully the tombstone under him let out a creak, as if it would collapse at any time. This was a tombstone with the truename of one of the Archeron ancestors!

Under the pressure of Richard’s look of suspicion, Gaton gradually turned quite green. He finally snorted, and said, “There’s some trauma, but that doesn’t even matter! Isn’t it just money?! Your old man is actually a great leader, I’m sure I’ll be able to pay back the debt if I conquer several more planes over the next 180 years!”

These ‘wise’ words didn’t seem very right in Richard’s ears. He wanted to ask about that 180 year timeframe, whether it was plane time or Norland time, but he hesitated thinking it would be too much to attack the man.

However, Sharon and Mountainsea being in his life had largely influenced Richard’s disposition. One aspect of that was that he was predisposed towards being on the offence.

But the moment Richard was about to speak, Gaton felt a sudden but familiar ill feeling. His sharp intuition told him something bad was going to happen, so he instantly interrupted Richard, “Alright kid! Stop beating about the bush, and forget all that rubbish you learnt in the Deepblue. I’ll teach you some real techniques, ones that will allow you to use the power of your bloodline.”

Gaton rose up and looked at Richard’s unsettled expression. He let out a sigh, saying, “Don’t be in such a hurry to say no, I’m not teaching you any Archeron arts. Your mother should’ve taught you these, but since you don’t seem to know I’ll have to do it myself.”

“Mother?” Richard was startled. Although he’d realised during his study in the Deepblue that Elena was not just an acolyte, he didn’t expect her to be at the level of a great mage.

Gaton nodded, “Your mother was once a royal of the Silvermoon Palace. In fact, she was the Shaman of Alucia, the Goddess of the Moon. So a part of your bloodline actually comes from the silvermoon elves. What I’m going to teach you now is a secret technique passed down from their shrine.”

Gaton swiped his wrist, and a peculiar weapon appeared in his hand. It was around a metre and a half long, with a four centimetre wide blade that had a perfectly straight edge. Sharp on only one side, it seemed more like a long, thin knife than a sword. When Gaton gently flicked the edge of the knife, it started ringing as its tip vibrated endlessly.

“Look carefully. This is one of Silvermoon’s secret swords, Annihilation.” Gaton stepped forward suddenly, raising the weapon in his hand abruptly and holding it straight in front of him.

A blue crescent slowly emerged above Gaton’s head, concentrating gleaming azure moonlight on him like a screen of water. The tip of the weapon glistened blue as well, and some mysterious power seemed to push Gaton’s body as he launched ten metres forth in an instant. The weapon pierced forth without warning.

This move was beautiful yet desolate, and Gaton’s steps left behind a trail of blue as if this was a dream. But the sword contained the strength of the fourth moon, the blue moon, and whizzed ahead on its path. It looked like it would pierce through even a huge dragon in its path.

It was unknown when exactly Gaton appeared in front of Richard again. He’d already stowed the sword away, although it still seemed like the blue moon had leapt across space to stay over his head. The projection was still within ten metres of Gaton, shining cool moonlight onto Richard’s body.

Gaton gently stroked the long sword, saying disappointedly, “This is a move your mother used once, so I could remember it clearly. The other moves I figured out on my own in the free time I’ve had over the past years, but without the silvermoon bloodline I’m not sure if they’re correct. Take mine as a foundation, and perfect the moves when you have a chance.”

The crescent above Gaton’s head turned red, changing from the fourth moon to the first. His momentum burst forth again, and this time the sword with a blanket of scarlet moonlight on it chopped silently through the air as he took the same forward steps.

The first move was like the advance of a lone brave warrior, but this was more like a regiment exerting irresistible force. The crescent in the air faded as it followed the sword’s trajectory, and it looked like a light red crystal was infused into Gaton’s graceful moves as he outlined a new moon. This was the secret technique corresponding to the scarlet moon: Beheading Newmoon.

This was soon followed by the second moon, the amber moon, and this attack was one that covered an entire area around him. The violet moon, the fifth moon, was a single fast attack able to tackle quick opponents. The silver moon, the sixth, created a spiral of endless attacks at the enemy.

To end it all, when the moon above Gaton’s head turned a jade green, he stopped moving immediately and stood straight. Light green moonlight poured down his shoulders like the flow of mercury, diffusing the moment it touched the ground and spreading a few metres away. A rich smell of life spread everywhere the moonlight touched, dyeing even the black volcanic rock a rich green. This stone, that hadn’t budged even during an eruption of lava, actually cracked apart to reveal young seedlings growing out. This was the third moon’s secret sword: a devout prayer that could restore life.

Once the green moon slowly disappeared, the smell of life faded back into that familiar boiling sulphur. The young seedlings wilted immediately, turning to a dark gray ash that eventually just disappeared. Everything returned to normal, leaving those six illusory moons seeming like nothing but a dream.

“There should be a technique corresponding to the seventh moon as well, but I can’t figure it out.” Gaton threw the long sword over to Richard, “There, it’s now yours! I snatched this sword from an elven kingdom in a strange plane. You can give it a name later.”

Richard felt abnormally at ease when he got the sword, so much so that he couldn’t help but feel surprised. There was still a hint of the six moons on the blade, and it made his body hum slightly. The seventh moon itself, the gold moon, was the darkest of the lot. It only appeared a few days every year, and was easily neglected with how dull its colour was. Its power was bound to be the hardest to unearth.

The sword was sheathless. Richard stroked the blade gently, but accidentally cut himself on the blade. A drop of blood landed on the blade, but it slid down quickly and dripped onto the ground. There was no bloodstain left on the weapon’s blade.

He automatically grabbed the shaft with both hands, pointing it straight ahead. The blade gently vibrated here, and a faint blue appeared on the tip. Richard had felt something unique from the first move Gaton had displayed that allowed him to already vaguely feel the power of the fourth moon.

‘Maybe it was because he saw Mother using the move, so he could understand it better than the rest,’ Richard thought. What he didn’t know was that Gaton had discovered this technique when it pierced through his own heart. He’d also neglected another problem at that moment: how had Gaton used a secret sword of the elves that was only passed down within Silvermoon Palace?

Gaton sat down on another tombstone and returned to his original state, saying, “Now tell me, what are you planning to do next? You can stay here and continue runecrafting, or come to my territory and form your own troop. I’ll give you ten for the time being, and you can also join my own troops in attacks. It’s Archeron tradition to start training as a normal troop leader, but since you’re a runemaster you can start off as the troop mage at once. You’ll also have your own rune knights to protect you. Of course, you can also just build your own lab and experiment with magic if you want.”

Richard had already decided what to do in the future. He took a deep breath and replied, “I want to go take part in the war for a plane.”

“Alone?” Gaton was stunned, and rather doubtful of Richard’s decision.

“Mm, alone. I want to discover the secrets of the planes by myself, conquering a few of them along the way. I don’t want to follow you and a big army.” Richard was very firm with his words.

Gaton laughed, “Not bad! But this is war you’re talking about, not some ordinary adventure. Even adventurers need parties. Wars aren’t games, you can’t conquer planes alone!”

Richard frowned and replied, “I am already a qualified runemaster. Within two to three years, I can form two ten-man troops. I can give you ten rune knights, and leave the other ten for myself to form a core troop for planar battles with. From what I remember, ten rune knights is enough for an elementary force in some of the lower planes. The ten warriors that I hand to you can be considered repayment for what the family’s given me. I’m aware that it isn’t enough, but I want to start exploring the planes earlier.”

Gaton’s eyes glistened as he listened to Richard, “You’re saying you can build twenty rune knights in a mere three years?”

Richard nodded, “All novices, but yes.”

Gaton broke into laughter all of a sudden and slapped Richard’s shoulders, almost making him fall, “That’s enough! I didn’t expect you to be that capable. Maybe you can get some results in the endless planes before I did!”

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