Chapter 191 - Demons' Forest (6)

After the explosion that blasted through De Roy Lake finally settled down, Aether ground his teeth. “Damn!” His armor was charred black, and it looked as though it would fall apart at any moment. If the light element he possessed didn’t give him resistance to fire, he would be in big trouble. “Who’s left? Who’s still alive?”

As Aether shouted through his connection with his team, three of his subordinates started to appear one by one. All of them were injured, and a couple were barely clinging to life. His nine-person team had included high rankers, and now five were dead.  

They should have been able to capture Galliard and Brahm, but everything had been ruined by that interfering player. If he hadn’t caught them off guard, he thought that they would have still managed to pull off their mission. But instead, they’d ended up like this.  

They had no chance of making another attempt to capture Brahm now, and he hadn’t felt this furious since he’d fought Heaven Wing. Crunch. His tightly clenched fists trembled, his veins popping out.

Aether began to seriously contemplate whether or not he should turn back. He could return and gather more forces. Since he’d observed Yeon-woo’s skills, he was sure he wouldn’t lose to him next time.

However, if he did that, everyone would look down on him for losing to someone who wasn’t even a ranker. Althought Yeon-woo was skilled enough to take first place next to Allforone on the twenty-first floor, there would be some families among the Elohim who would hold it against Aether.

‘They can’t find out.’ Aether didn’t have any other choice but to use what he had now to fend Brahm off and kidnap the Dragon Human child Sesha. She was the only one with dragon blood in the Tower apart from the Summer Queen. If they could collect the genes of the highest of the Superior species, the Elohim would be able to expand and move one step closer to resurrecting the Draconic species.

However, he wasn’t sure how he’d pull off this mission. On his own, Brahm would already be a difficult opponent, and then there were Galliard and the Hoarder complicating things. “Damn!” Perhaps it was best that they rested a bit and thought over some strategies first . As Aether turned around to look at his subordinates, a familiar voice said, “What are you going to do in that condition?”

Aether narrowed his eyes as a woman appeared from a green portal. She looked exactly like Aether although her personality and air were different. It was his twin, Hemera of the Day. They’d taken different paths, so their fates had diverged as well.

“What are you doing here?”

“Can’t you see? I’m here to help my useless brother.”

“If you’re trying to make fun of me…!”

“Does this look like I’m making fun?” Hemera flicked her finger lightly and several portals opened around here. Around thirty people emerged; they were all her subordinates, and each one was from a rare species. “These should be enough to fill in the gaps. What do you think?” Hemera rubbed a finger on her lips and smiled.

Aether clenched his fists. “Are you trying to take the credit?”

“Of course not. Why would a sibling do that? I’m just saying that I’m here to help since you’re having such a hard time.”

Aether shut his mouth. His pride wouldn’t let him accept her aid, but logic dictated that he ought to. Nothing would please the Elohim more than the ability to resurrect the Draconic species. With the new dragons, they would be able to take on the Summer Queen and capture Allforone, from there, they’d be able to move upwards and control the beings above him. It was the right time to move since the Summer Queen’s Dragon Heart had been destroyed, and Hemera clearly wanted to be part of it.

Aether didn’t want to be indebted to her, but he’d left on his mission promising to bring Sesha back. He couldn’t return empty-handed after boasting about securing a member of the Draconic species. If only he had Heaven Wing’s corpse, he wouldn’t have to suffer this humiliation.

He truly had no other options. “Fine. Let’s work together, but we’re splitting the rewards fifty-fifty.”

Hemera’s eyebrow twitched slightly. “Why? You can’t do anything without me, how can you be so arrogant? Thirty-seventy.”

“Hmph! If you don’t agree, then leave. I’m the only one who knows where Brahm is, after all. If you want, you can just search the entire stage with your subordinates, then.” Aether crossed his arms and sniggered. “Also, I’m sure you know about the transmutation circle that Brahm is making. If I can’t have it, I’m just going to throw it away.”

Hemera had to take a step back. “Fine. Forty—”

“Seventy for me, thirty for you. I said that you can leave if you don’t accept. There are a lot of people who’d be happy to join on those terms, I’ll just swallow the disapproval. If I can bring back the dragon specimen, I’ll redeem myself.”  

Hemera ground her teeth. He was really stubborn when it came to things like this, which was probably why he’d left Arthia, which was known to be nice. ‘If I can’t do it, I’ll have to use another way.’ Hemera concealed her thoughts and looked down at the ground as though she’d given up. “Fine. I’ll do it. Where are they?”

“They’re…” Aether named a place that she never expected. Hemera’s eyes widened slightly.

***

Brahm and Galliard returned after Yeon-woo fed Sesha and made her nap. The pancakes he’d made for her had lowered her guard, and so she chattered to him about this and that the entire time. Yeon-woo discovered that she liked to talk quite a bit, and as he looked at her sleeping face, he thought she looked like an angel.

“Is she asleep?”

“Yes. I gave her a snack, and she seemed to like it.”

“That’s a relief. I was worried that I didn’t have anything prepared.” Brahm smiled faintly as he put his tools down. The smell of magic emanated from him, and he’d probably been busy fortifying the magic around them. “I’ll watch Sesha now, and you can go pick some purple Devil Flowers.” Brahm pulled out his subspace pocket as he spoke.

Yeon-woo smiled ironically when Brahm asked him to look for the same hidden piece he was hoping to gather. Since Brahm was an outstanding alchemist, there was no way he wouldn’t know about the effects of the Devil Flower. ‘So that’s why I couldn’t find purple Devil Flowers in the forest. Did Brahm take most of them?’ He said, “I apologize, but I need purple Devil Flowers as well.”

Brahm’s eyes flashed, and a thoughtful look appeared on his face as he pursed his lips. “Are you planning on growing the Demonic Factors?”

Yeon-woo clucked his tongue. Brahm had understood his intentions just from hearing a single ingredient. Yeon-woo probably wouldn’t be able to hide anything from Brahm while he was here.

The Draconic species and the demons had been enemies ever since the dark ages of history. The Draconic species sought to understand the different laws of the world and tried to synchronize with them, while demons desired to circumvent the laws and do whatever they wanted. This fundamental difference made it difficult for them to get along.

However, this same enmity made them perfect sources of power to each other. The Draconic species swallowed demons to purify their magic, and the demons ate the Draconic species to improve their mana. The more of their enemies’ blessings they had in their genes, the more powerful they grew. Even though Yeon-woo couldn’t catch a demon, he knew of a shortcut that would produce the same results.

Purple Devil Flowers are perfect locations for the Demonic species to grow in. The more demonic energy they contain, the better the effects are for pure Draconic species. However, even after awakening, I couldn’t just eat the Devil Flower since I was still half human. It would only make me sick.

I needed something to refine it, and Bayluk was the one who helped me find a way.

As his brother cleared the twenty-third floor, he and Arthia had caused an uproar in the Tower. Because of that, numerous clans grew hostile to them, so Arthia needed to find methods to quickly increase their powers.

Anti-Venom Bayluk began to search for a way to harness the Demonic Factors, and he discovered that the purple Devil Flowers would be able to help refine demonic energy in a way that would allow the Dragon Body to absorb it easily. The other important ingredient was the heart of the Ceratopsian Dinosaur of De Roy Lake, which would help lessen the toxicity of the Devil Flowers.

“How did you know?”

“Because I’m doing the same thing.”

Yeon-woo’s eyes widened.

Brahm waved his hand as though it weren’t important. “As you can see, Sesha isn’t proficient at using the magic power of dragons. It’s one of the limits of being a Quarter-Dragon. So I’m refining Devil Flowers to raise the level of her magic power.”

Yeon-woo nodded, finally understanding why Brahm had been staying on the twenty-third floor for so long.

“However, we won’t be competing against each other.”

“I don’t understand.”

“You’re looking for flowers that have a concentration of at least forty percent, right?”

“Yes.” Yeon-woo nodded.

“I need those with thirty percent or less. The higher the concentration, the higher its potential to make you sick. You can have the highly concentrated ones, just bring the less-concentrated ones here.” Brahm crossed his arms and smirked. “We’re overflowing with highly concentrated ones anyway.”

Yeon-woo was startled. They had too many purple Devil Flowers? He’d thought that the flowers were so rare that it would be a miracle to find just one.

“Follow Galliard. He’ll explain it to you.”

Galliard frowned like he was annoyed, then he sighed. What power did a guest have? If his host asked him to do something, he couldn’t say no. Galliard told Yeon-woo to follow him and left the cottage.

At first, Yeon-woo thought Brahm had only been joking about the flowers, but as he followed Galliard, he quickly realized that it wasn’t the case at all.

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