Chapter 592: A Fragment Has Been Found! (1/2)
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
“Am I back again?” Link looked at the footprints on the ground again and realized that it was the same place that he had passed by moments ago. It was also the place where Eliard, Milose, and Nana had vanished.
This was the third time Link had walked by the same place. He realized that he had been walking in an endless loop. Strictly speaking, it might even be a four-dimensional closed loop he was dealing with.
In this icy wasteland in the Far North, no matter which way he went, he would always return to the loop’s point of origin. Time in the outside world would also rewind back to the moment when Eliard and the others had disappeared without a trace.
It was easy to spot a spatial loop. On the other hand, no ordinary human being would be able to notice a loop in time, especially when he or she was trapped in an icy region where there was nothing but ice as far as the eye could see. The wind was silent, and nothing stood out as a point of reference for Link.
Link would not have been able to sense a time loop as well, had it not been for the fact that he had spent most of his time studying his time magic book recently. Though he still had a long way to go, his research had bore some fruit, such as the fact that he was able to sense a stagnation in time.
Link decided not to walk in circles any longer. He sat down on the snowy ground. With one hand on his forehead, he tried to remember what had happened before, hoping to find some clue for him to break out of this loop.
Though he sat there, motionless, his mind was working at a feverish pace trying to piece together an explanation for his situation. Not only was he going through his own thoughts, but he was also flipping through the time magic book in his mind in an attempt to corroborate his own theories.
After silently sitting there for a long time, Link suddenly jerked up from his thoughts. He finally discovered the secret behind the loop he was trapped in.
It may seem like an endless loop, but it still has a point of origin. Otherwise, I would not have ended up here in the first place. The loop’s origin is its endpoint. It is also my way out of here!
He stood up and drew out his Ode of a Full Moon sword. Under the starry sky, he stabbed at six different points around him with his sword.
A runic wheel appeared from the sword’s tip with each stab. There were countless smaller rings of runes within each runic wheel. At a glance, it looked like the interior of a clock, its gears rotating rapidly with each other inside it.
When Link was done, six exquisite hexagonal runic wheels now surrounded him.
As the wheels spun on for three seconds, Link heard the sound of ice breaking. Soon, his surroundings began changing drastically around him.
The silent, dark, icy wasteland was now fading away quickly before Link. Snow then whirled around him alongside the wind, which roared into Link’s ears like a wild beast. The surrounding temperature had dropped to a few hundred degrees below zero in an instant.
The cold was now beyond bearable. Even Link’s magic robe could not resist the freezing cold. His eyes felt like they were about to freeze up and fall out of their sockets. There was no way a human body would be able to withstand such temperatures. He needed to warm himself up as quickly as possible.
One of the most convenient methods for any Magician to keep warm would be magic itself. Before, Link would have cast a spell to do so without hesitation. However, at the moment, he decided not to use magic.
In order to magically keep oneself warm, a Magician would need to focus on maintaining the spell’s effect on himself. This would not have been a problem to Link under any other circumstances. But given the erratic nature of his surroundings at the moment, he would not be able to react in time to any sudden changes if he had to focus on two things at the same time. This was not a risk he was willing to take.
Instead of magic, Link decided to use a new technique that he had acquired after practicing the Beastman King Avatar’s Soul Furnace technique.
The energy in Link’s body began to circulate at an accelerated pace as he willed it to. As a result, he began to feel his body warming up more and more. The heat in him flowed through his every vein to every extremity of his body.
In a matter of seconds, the numbness in his body was gone. Link had regained the feeling in his limbs.
In truth, the technique that Link had just used was similar to the way a Warrior used his battle aura. This was an easy task for a Warrior, but to a Magician, it would have been extremely difficult.
A Magician was usually accustomed to drawing out Mana from within, forming magical constructs outside his body and then summoning the elements of his surroundings to fight his battles. In truth, Magicians had little to no mastery over their physical bodies. There had also never been a Magician bold enough to cast a spell on himself. Even casting a supplementary spell on oneself was a taboo in itself. This was due to the damage a Magician could cause to his own body by doing such a thing.
But now, Link had transcended the difference in power between Magicians and Warriors by using the Beastmen’s Legendary battle technique, the Soul Furnace. This was only made possible by his mastery over his own power.
His body was now warming up. Link glared at the freezing wind as he pressed on towards the north.
The voice of his sword spirit echoed in his head, There’s that voice again. It said that this is the second test.
“Understood,” said Link, as he continued walking forward.
Soon, Link realized that the air was getting colder by the minute. As a result, he was losing body heat quickly. He needed to speed up the circulation of his energy in his body before he froze to death.
After walking a few hundred feet forward, a message popped up in Link’s line of sight. Straining his eyes, he saw that it was a warning message from the game system.
Player’s current Realm Essence recovery rate is at 134 points per second, while current rate of power usage is at 135 points per second. Player’s power reserve is beginning to drop!
Link’s current maximum power was 10365 Realm Essence points, which was more than what the Red Dragon Queen had by 30 percent if converted into Dragon Power. Also, his current recovery rate was 134 points per second, which meant that his power was virtually unlimited. However, in order to withstand the cold, his power recovery rate had taken a huge hit.
The first test was to test how much I understand about space and time. What’s the second test about this time? Is it testing the level of mastery I have over my power?
As soon as the thought flashed across Link’s mind, he heard the sound of ice breaking again amid the howling of the freezing wind.
He narrowed his eyes, trying to see what was up ahead, but the flying snow around him was so dense he could not see a thing. Just then, he felt a slight protrusion beneath his feet. He lowered his eyes and saw that a huge number of cracks had appeared on the ground that he was standing. The cracks were dark inside. Link could not see how deep they went. A piece of ice fell off the edge of a crack. Sounds of its collisions against the ice walls echoed from within the abyss as it fell. Link had no idea just how deep the crack was.
A moment later, the ice beneath Link’s feet began to give way.
In a flash, Link tiptoed his way across the gradually collapsing ice layer. His body floated gracefully through the air and finally landed on a patch of ice in a corner.
Link could have used one of his spells throughout the whole thing. He chose not to, as he could sense that there was an unseen danger lurking beneath the ice layer. If he had cast a spell to help himself across the collapsing ice, he would be distracted by said danger and consequently fall to his doom.
This was why he chose to use a battle technique instead.
Before he could let out a sigh of relief, the layer of ice he had landed on suddenly began to collapse as well. Link sprang up, sailed lightly through the air and landed on a patch of ice that was still intact.
Without warning, the ice there began to break, and Link leaped into the air once more. This whole process went on without any danger of Link stumbling in midair.
An outside observer would probably notice that Link was stepping on falling pieces of ice throughout the whole ordeal. The layer of ice he landed on would collapse, and Link would leaped off fragments of it in the air as he moved forward. It seemed as if he was literally walking on air.
This went on for around ten minutes. In that time, Link had taken 1329 steps forward across ten miles of ice without missing a step or slowing down. It was as if he had rehearsed for such an occasion.
When he took his 1330th step, his foot finally hit solid ice which did not give way immediately.
This circular patch of ice was around a hundred square feet. In the middle of it stood a man completely covered in frost. Before Link even had time to plant both feet on the ground, the man came at him, appearing before Link in the blink of an eye. An ice sword materialized in his hand and was already less than a feet away from piercing through Link’s chest.
No Magician or Warrior would have been able to react to such an attack in time, especially after experiencing what Link had gone through. They would be stabbed by the man’s ice sword before they even knew what hit them!
Anyone on the wrong end of this sword would be killed in an instant!
However, Link was not just an ordinary Magician. As he was leaping off of falling ice, he had already spotted the ice man in the distance. His power had already flowed into his sword. When the ice man teleported before him, Link immediately stabbed at him with his Ode of a Full Moon sword.
He then activated the time sword technique, which had the effect of 1000 years squeezed into the span of a mere second.
As the Ode of a Full Moon sword lightly touched the tip of the ice sword, cracks began appearing across its blade. An instant later, the entire ice sword burst into a fine powder.
In this realm, nothing could withstand the destructive power of accelerated time.
After shattering the ice sword, Link swung his sword up and stabbed the ice man’s forehead with it in one fluid motion. Power then flowed into the tip of his sword, activating an incredibly destructive fire spell that belonged to the dragon race: Ball of Destruction.
Purple light flashed out from the ice man’s head. Then, his body fell down limply and melted into a puddle of water. The puddle of water froze up immediately in the cold.
As the puddle of water turned into a new sheet of ice, Link’s surroundings began to change again.
The blizzard was gone, and so was the biting cold. A full moon had appeared in the sky. Up ahead rose a towering mountain of ice. On the peak of the mountain was a platform, from which shone a faint light. Looking closely, Link realized that a broken stone fragment was the light’s source.
The fragment of the Book of Creation! Excited by his discovery, Link began to climb up the mountain to retrieve his prize.
Just then, the sword spirit said, The third test has begun.
Five flashes of light appeared in quick succession not far away from Link. There were silhouettes standing in the light. One of them was no more than 300 feet away from him.
Link narrowed his eyes. “Eugene.”
Eugene looked disheveled. His black robe was torn in certain places. His hair was in a mess, and there were even bloody wounds on his face. A look of surprise flitted across his face when he saw Link, but he quickly got a grip of himself and laughed out loud. “Hahaha, if it isn’t the lord of Ferde himself. Never thought I would find you here, of all places.”