Chapter 378: Hourglass Plane
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
Spring Leaf Village
"Are you Great Magician Rockman?" Link asked.
The old man's smile widened. A glint appeared in his eyes.
Magician Rockman shook his head. "Young man, please don't call me a great Magician. I'm still far from being a great Magician. However, I can see that you have great potential! How about this, would you like to study magic from me?"
Link didn't rush to answer him. He waved his hands helplessly and said, "But I have no money."
Rockman pulled Link's hand warmly. "Haha, why talk about money? I, Rockman, have never asked for money from students learning magic. Come come, follow me. Are these your slaves? Follow me... Oh hey! This is a magic puppet! Not bad."
He dragged Link by the arm as he walked into the yard. When he reached the yard, Link saw a person standing there.
It was a black-haired young girl. Her skin was fair, and her features were delicate. On her neck was a slave collar, but Link immediately recognized her as the demon princess Savoriny.
"This is??" Link jumped backwards in shock. Princess Milda and Riel also retreated behind Link as though they were facing a strong enemy.
Rockman laughed as he introduced, "Her? She's a new slave a bought. Pretty isn't she? Don't mind her, I'll gift her to someone soon."
As he said this, the white-bearded old Magician shouted, "Fu, Fu!"
Soon, a fat-faced middle-aged man walked out. This middle-aged man was also wearing a slave collar. When he saw Rockman, he bowed and asked, "Master, you called?"
"See this pretty lady? Send her as a gift to Great Lord Bal. Bring her away and train her."
Newly bought slaves were unusable. They were disobedient and rough and didn't know how to serve people. They needed to be trained. This was especially so for a slave that was being given as a gift to a great lord. Such a slave needed even more training so as not to lose face for the giver.
Once Fu heard that this was to be a gift for the Great Lord, he respectfully acknowledged the order. "Master, rest assured. Give this slave three months, I guarantee that she will be as tame and gentle as a sheep."
"Okay, go on," Rockman said, pleased.
Fu beckoned towards Savoriny. Although her face was bitter, she didn't dare to resist. She obediently followed along.
Link and the others were shocked speechless. They simply couldn't believe that this was the ferocious demon commander that they knew.
Princess Milda and Riel were even more afraid. They had slave collars on them too. Could it be that there was no way to break the collar? Otherwise, why would the demon princess still be so obedient?
Meanwhile, Rockman turned back to look at Link. "Young man, your two slaves don't look like they have been trained. Would you like Fu to train them for you? He's a great slave trainer."
Link hurriedly refused. "No thank you, I'm already used to them."
"Okay then. Come with me, let me find you your accommodations."
Link said, "Sir, could you arrange for my slaves to stay with me? I grew up with them around and would like them nearby."
Rockman's face was neutral. "Haha, that's no problem. You decide what to do with your slaves. I'll find you a comfortable place to your liking!"
He dragged Link along with him into the yard.
There was no reason for Rockman to be so welcoming. It seemed like he really was looking for a student to teach magic to. Furthermore, he was surely extremely stingy. However, for Link, that didn't matter. Link needed someone to depend on to find a place to settle down and understand this world better. Therefore, Link let Magician Rockman pull him into the yard.
Princess Milda, Riel, and Nana naturally followed behind Link.
Along the way, Link realized that although this fellow was old, he was still strong. He seemed to be equivalent to a Level-7 Warrior. He also didn't use a wand but a magic sword instead, just like Link.
The sword gave off a mysterious aura, something that could not be underestimated. Surely, it was a Legendary weapon. However, its appearance was crude, even pathetic. It looked like the work of a three-legged cat.
On his way in, Link also met many students of magic. However, none of them were as welcoming as Rockman. Many of them look disinterested. In fact, there were even those that looked over at Link with a sneer. There was a cold laugh on their face, as though saying, "Look at that, another fool has been tricked by Rockman."
Rockman pulled Link to a solitary stone building in the side of the yard. "Here, this is yours. Doesn't it look comfortable?"
The stone building was about 860 square feet wide, with two floors. On the upper floor, there was a balcony. Outside, there was also a small garden that looked rather beautiful.
"It is beautiful. But I haven't even done anything!" Link responded. He turned back to look at all the other Magicians. Once in a while, they would enter their wooden huts. Compared to his stone building, the difference was just too great.
He wasn't a kid who would believe that a random old stranger would treat him so nicely for no good reason. That person must have some kind of motive.
Rockman laughed. He pointed at the Magic Ring that Link wore. "Did you make that ring?"
"The handiwork is not bad. I'll give you materials and talisman blueprints. If you help me create talismans, I'll teach you magic. What do you think?" So, Rockman was attracted to Link because of the magic items he wore.
Whether it was the magic sword on his waist or the ring on his hands or even the magic puppet by his side, they all looked flawless.
Perhaps the magic on these items wasn't particularly strong, but because of their appearance, their value would increase by at least 50%.
To Rockman, as long as that person could help him earn money, that person was a talent that deserved privileged treatment!
Link now knew his intentions. Link immediately agreed. "No problem! I just wanted to learn magic from you."
"Great, great!" Rockman laughed uproariously. The wrinkles on his face bloomed like a flower. "Truly a young man with determination! Here, this is a Tier-1 talisman. See if you can do it."
Link received the talisman blueprint from Rockman. Princess Milda curiously looked over, wanting to see the blueprint. Immediately, Rockman frowned and shouted, "How unruly! Get back to your position!"
This was Princess Milda's first time being scolded like this. Her face was flushed, but she could not talk back either. She bowed her head and retreated.
Link did not say anything to interfere. He simply continued looking at the blueprints.
He realized that what Rockman called a Tier-1 talisman was actually not that complex. The magic knowledge inside was similar to that of Level-4 magic on Firuman. However, the way it was used and arranged was almost like that of a Level-8 magic spell. It required huge amounts of patience and meticulousness. The smallest mistake could ruin the whole talisman.
"This shouldn't be too difficult..." Link said.
"Not difficult? Hahaha, you're truly someone with talent. Young man, what is your name?" This old man was one of a kind. It was only now that he asked Link for his name.
"I'm Link, this is Mil..."
Before he could finish, Rockman interrupted him. "Don't tell me the names of your slaves. Even if you did, I wouldn't remember them. How long would it take you to finish the talisman? Is two weeks enough?"
Link was at a loss. They take two weeks for a talisman like this?
Before, Link would take about an hour for one talisman. After obtaining his pure Dragon Power, he could maintain a state of high concentration for longer periods of time. Three days was enough for him to craft one talisman. In response to Rockman's offer of two weeks, Link thought for a moment before saying, "Ten days is enough for me."
Unexpectedly, Rockman frowned and said, "Ten days? Young man, it's good to be ambitious but do not be overly ambitious. How do you expect me to believe your big words?"
It seems like two weeks was already a high expectation. This talisman would take over two weeks on average. Link wracked his brains to find a suitable reply. "Sir, ten days is the time I take if I expend all my energy. I cannot do it for too long. I need to rest for a week after each talisman. So on average, it takes me about 18 days."
"Oh, so that's how it is. There's no need to rush so, two weeks is fine. After two weeks, if you give me the talisman equipment, I'll give you a Tier-1 magic book and answer three questions on Tier-1 magic for you."
"No problem," Link agreed, nodding.
"That's good. Then I won't bother you. This is the key to your lodgings. Everything has been prepared inside for you. There's also a special room for doing talismans. You can begin anytime."
After handing the keys to Link, Rockman turned and left. On his way out, he saw another student walking slowly. Rockman kicked him, causing the student to stumble. "What are you wasting time for? You've got no talent and only know how to skive. Hurry and help me wash the Winter Night Grass!" Rockman scolded.
His attitude towards this student and Link were two worlds apart.
Riel whispered quietly, "Link, how confident are you? I feel that if you can't complete what you promised, we'd be chased out after two weeks."
"Of course I'm sure. Let's go inside. I'll try to figure out what's the deal with the collar," Link said.
After entering the room, Link began inspecting the collar.
He found that the collar had no seam lines to show where it was connected. After knocking on it, it produced a thick sound that didn't seem like either metal or wood. Furthermore, there were no talisman markings whatsoever on it. It was as though it was completely natural.
"This workmanship is amazing," Link praised.
He gestured to Nana. "Try using the dagger to cut it."
The Breakpoint Dagger could cut through all items. It probably shouldn't have trouble cutting through this three-ringed collar.
Nana was just about to use the Breakpoint Dagger to test out Riel's collar when Riel immediately panicked. "Wait wait wait, stop! It hurts, my head hurts. Don't poke at it anymore, please."
His face was pale.
Nana helplessly pulled back her dagger.
Riel let out a sigh of relief. "That was really scary. It felt like my soul was tearing apart."
"It seems like this collar cannot be broken with force. No wonder the demon commander was like a cat after being captured. I need to study this more."
Link was full of regret. If he knew this would happen, he wouldn't have made them wear this collar.
Princess Milda consoled him. "This isn't your fault. This is a new world, if we don't wear this, we might not have even lived."
Riel also said, "Sir Link, there will be a way. Don't be anxious."
Link nodded. He opened the book he just bought, the Encyclopedia of Aragu, flipping through the pages to understand more about the place.
At this point, a notification window popped up in his vision.
All this time, the system had been silent. Now that it appeared, it showed a message:
Anchor point in time has been discovered. Determining the current timeline. Player is in an hourglass plane.
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