Book 4 Chapter 23.6

Book 4 Chapter 23.6 - Price

When it was Ansuna and Cirvanas’ turn to be pushed onto the experimental stage, Conier didn’t show the slightest hesitation. Not only did he add his son and daughter onto the list of chosen names, he even added a mark of priority. Under Conier’s direct push, the young man and woman quickly ascended onto the experimental platform, and they each spent several years on adjacent experimental platforms. During this period of experimentation, almost all of therir internal organs were extracted, and then based on a certain direction and layout, a brand new body composition was trained, turning them into cages. 

When the war broke out, Cirvanas had just had the heart of darkness inserted into him, while Ansuna was designated as his substitute. Based on the original ‘prison’ plan, even though her body was stable from a composition standpoint, Ansuna, who had lost all of her internal organs and relied on nutrient fluid for survival, would only be able to hold on for a year at most before rotting away and dying. Meanwhile, Cirvanas, with the heart of darkness, could instead exist for much longer. 

The virus that wreaked havoc was a product of Conier’s ambitions. That was originally a biological weapon he developed by using the heart of darkness as a reference. However, after the war erupted, the various installations of the base became no longer stable, and as such, there was a leak, infecting many researchers, as well as awakening the heart of darkness. 

Thus, Cirvanas obtained his freedom, controlled the researchers who had turned into irregular life forms after being infected by the virus to chase Conier out from the base. When he found Ansuna, the young lady sensed the revival of the heart of darkness, stopping Cirvanas’ emotions from running wild, and insisting that he didn't leave the research base, as well as suppressing the heart of darkness’ awakening. Meanwhile, she would accompany him, the two of them living in the lonely underground world until their lives reached an end. 

Then, several decades passed in the blink of an eye, until Su’s arrival.

Su straightened his back slightly. He gave the quietly sitting Cirvanas a look. The handsome youth was unexpectedly quiet, nor were there any fluctuations within his heart. Su could sense any intense thought movements he had. The bottom of the youth’s heart was currently deathly still and empty. 

What was transmitted from Cirvanas’ nucleus was a deep loneliness and faint grief, as well as Ansuna’s appearance. 

Su already understood how the youth was feeling. Ansuna’s departure, for Cirvanas, turned the world black, and everything else lacked meaning. However, if they were talking about the past circumstances, forget about the two of them standing against each other, just the fact that Madeline would have lost her life without the nucleus meant that Su would always choose to kill Ansuna, no matter how many times he was allowed to repeat the choice. 

This endless amount of time, endless narration, didn’t take Conier that much time to completely recount. The old man’s words were extremely concise. 

“What should I do now? Kill you?” Su looked at Conier. 

The wrinkles covering the old man’s face immediately twitched a few times, and then he suddenly stood up. He removed a rather unremarkable looking small case from the bookshelf that leaned against the wall, and he produced a firmly sealed test tube, placing it before Su. 

"X-215?" When he saw the serial number on the test tube, Su was a bit surprised.

“To be more precise, it is X-220 gene stabilizer liquid, X-215’s upgraded version. The effects in improving one’s lifespan is unchanged, but six of its main side effects were removed.” Conier then added, “In the world before the war, this was what made everyone go mad.” 

Su picked it up to take a look, but then he tossed it down without paying much attention to it. “This kind of thing is practically useless to me. Also, it seems to be something from several decades ago.” 

Conier shook his head and said, “We aren’t ahead of the olden era in all fields. In this blasted world, there isn’t enough manpower, energy, various complete sets of data, let alone a secretary who can take care of everyday life and deal with miscellaneous tasks! We might be a long way ahead of the olden era in certain areas, but I believe that there are even more areas where we have fallen behind. X-220 isn’t very useful for a high level ability user such as your distinguished self, as your lives are much longer than those of ordinary people. However, for those ordinary people at your distinguished self’s side, the day might come when they discover that they truly need this.” 

The ordinary people at his side… Helen, Kane, Sally. Su immediately thought of many people. X-220 not only extended one’s lifespan, it also had the effect of stopping genetic collapse. For low level ability users, its meaning was significant. 

The experienced and careful Conier sensed Su’s hesitation. He immediately added more weight to his side of the scale. “X-220 is not my own success during these past few years. Right now, there are eleven projects that are at there critical point, but due to a lack of energy and installations, they have been set aside. As long as I can use the research base’s facilities and obtain several breakthroughs, I can repair genetic damage.”

When he heard the elder’s words, this time, Su truly felt a bit of hesitation. In the world of ability users, the first cause of death was naturally war, but but the second was genetic collapse. Genetic collapse was a process that wasn’t long or short, but once it began, it became irreversible. Even in all of the Black Dragonriders, the only one who could complete the genetic repair surgery was Dr. Connor himself. If it truly was as Conier said, that he could repair genes, then his value was great enough to take the risk of accepting the bribe. 

“Fine, the research base is yours.” Su came to this decision. 

Su didn’t raise any conditions, nor did he issue any threats, but Conier understood Su’s intentions clearly. His life was spared by Su, and Su could take it at any moment. Su could enter the research base and turn Cirvanas into a puppet that only obeyed his orders, so he naturally could enter the research base to take his life, regardless of what kind of biological weapons Conier could produce.

“Many thanks!” Conier stood up, and then he gave Su a deep bow. 

---

After a night of rest, Su who had finished his preparations brought Madeline and Cirvanas towards the boundless snowy mountains. He was going to cross over this domain of death and return to the region west of the great lakes. Madeline already completed her fusion with the nucleus, and her strength recovered to its optimal state. After experiencing the research base battle, the young lady raised all of her Combat Domain abilities to the fifth level, as well as producing an ability derived from the Combat Domain, Acute Vision. 

This was an ability that would only appear after all of the basic Combat Domain abilities reached five levels. Those with Acute Vision could sense the energy distributions of abilities that didn’t exceed seven levels. This meant that even if it was a ninth level or even higher level ability user, if they were using abilities that were seven levels or lower against Madeline, she would see it through the flow of energy distribution, and from there on decide on her next actions. This signified another increase in Madeline’s fighting strength. The use of Acute Vision was probably something only someone like Su who possessed high levels of Perception Domain ability could deeply understand. 

Cirvanas’ body already had the inner quality of an ordinary person with five levels of Combat Domain abilities, but his many years of controlling the heart of darkness made him proficient at the control of biological energy, signifying talent in the Magic Domain. This was also one of the reasons why Su used the nucleus to revive him. Even though the youth’s current abilities weren’t that outstanding, under Su’s protection, he could still overcome the mountain domain of death. 

After leaving Conier’s village, the three of them crossed the snowy line after just half a day, proceeding into the depths of the snow-covered peaks. Wind and snow gradually stirred about. The three of them couldn’t help but tighten the cloaks around them. 

After walking an entire day, Su finally reached the summit of the first peak on their way back. This place was already situated within the clouds full of radiation, but they could already vaguely sense the aura of the region west of the great lakes. Of course, only someone with Su’s level of perception could sense this. 

As he stood at the peak of this snowy domain, Su only felt his heart suddenly become open, releasing his perception towards all directions. Just as he did as he pleased, the heart of darkness in his chest suddenly jumped, energy pulsing in all directions! 

In a place far above them, there seemed to be an enormous pair of eyes that slowly opened. Their gaze penetrated the thick clouds of radiation like a flood, landing on Su’s body. 

Then, a dignified and profound voice sounded beside Su’s ears. “I see you!” 

Su was frightened and alarmed!

This hallucination quickly disappeared. Su looked around him, finding that neither Madeline nor Cirvanas sensed anything. However, his instincts told him that everything that happened just now was real, not fake. 

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