Chapter 446: Impossible!
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
Four Red Dragon Warriors descended from the sky. When they touched the ground, all four of them changed into their half-dragon forms, their magnificent scarlet armor clasped tightly to their bodies.
"This was the latest scene. Amil, did you find anything?" Felina looked towards one of the dragon Warriors.
This Warrior had recently reached the peak of Level-8. He was also an expert tracker for his age.
He kneeled down, observing the ground closely.
They were standing on the bare forest ground. Around them were a few tree stumps left behind by the villagers nearby after cutting down the trees. There were traces on the ground, but no footprints, as someone had taken great pains to erase them. The only thing that indicated something had happened here were the traces of blood that had soaked into the earth.
From the blood emanated faint signs of Dragon Power, which could clearly be picked up by any dragon.
After inspecting every corner, Amil shook his head. "The killer was cunning, I'll give them that. Left not a single clue that could be traced back to them, and I just can't find anything here that could be of use to us. Maybe we should ask around in the nearby village, see if the villagers had seen anything unusual."
The four Dragon Warriors looked at each other and nodded.
There was a village just two miles away from where they stood. They marched off in single file, and before long, the village of dragon commoners came into view, sandwiched in a narrow valley between two mountains.
"This village is big; there must be around 2000 people living in it. I think we should split up and ask around."
The others nodded and did as they were told.
As the investigation into the Dragon Valley murder case was underway, back in the Dragon Temple, the Magicians of the Emerald Circle were still deep in a discussion concerning the spatial cracks, unaware of what had happened.
In the great hall were the core members of the Emerald Circle; there were six Legendary Magicians in total, including the Red Dragon Queen herself.
Some of these powerhouses were renowned figures, such as the Red Dragon Queen and the representative of the High Elves, Bryant. Others, however, had secluded themselves from the world, virtually unknown across the continent, like the Dwarf Mountain Sage Heroto, the Neanderthal Lucia Silverstar, and two others, who had chosen to shroud themselves in a veil of magical light. One of them was a Dark Magician, and the other a wielder of Light Energy, their identities a mystery to everyone.
The Emerald Circle was a loose collective whose members were concerned only with issues surrounding the World of Firuman itself. The war between good and evil was the least of their concerns.
Though the members of the Emerald Circle who came amounted to more than 100, most of them were basically there to exchange magical knowledge among themselves. Only those six Legendary Magicians were busy discussing the matter of resolving the spatial cracks.
In truth, they were probably the only ones there capable of resolving this issue.
Seated at a round table, the Red Dragon Queen spoke solemnly, "I imagine you must have seen the Void crack on your way.There's no point in hiding the fact that we dragons are the ones responsible for it. But what's done is done; all that matters now is how we should go about making things right. I have given out the exact spatial data on these cracks to all of you, and I would like to hear your thoughts on the matter."
There was a moment of silence, and then Bryant spoke first, "Cracks of this magnitude have always been hard to resolve. Your Highness, your numbers have pointed this out clearly. Even with my current level of power, the most I can hope to do is slow down the tearing of new cracks, but to actually seal them shut..."
He slowly shook his head at the futility of the idea.
At this point in time, Bryant had fully recovered his calm, dignified demeanor befitting of a Legendary Magician. The injury inflicted upon him by Link back in Ferde had also fully healed, and the only thing reminding him of that incident was a false tooth in place of the one that had fallen out. Nobody had noticed the difference, though.
Not satisfied with Bryant's answer, the Red Dragon Queen turned towards Lucia Silverstar.
The Neanderthal shook her head, holding it in one hand. "I haven't recovered from my injury, my head feels as if it's on the verge of splitting from any mental exertion right now. But I've seen your numbers. I fear that even in my prime, I may not be able to fare any better than Master Bryant."
The Red Dragon Queen's expression was grave as she looked at the remaining three Legendary Magicians.
The Dwarf Mountain Sage Heroto raised his shoulders before speaking brusquely, "Honestly, with all the trouble Isendilan has caused, if he was still alive, I would have slaughtered him with my bare hands."
Seeing the grave look on the Red Dragon Queen's face, he added hastily, "Cracks caused by divine magic can only be undone by divine magic. As we sorely lack in strength, the best we can do now is stopping the cracks from spreading... There is a type of Black Kun rock to the north of the Hengduan Mountain Range; it possesses special properties which may allow us to stabilize the spatial integrity. I have some with me, maybe it can be of some use to you."
"You have my thanks," said the Red Dragon Queen gratefully.
Just then, the Dark Magician suddenly spoke, "I heard that Master Link has also arrived here, he should be familiar with spatial magic. Why isn't he here with us?"
The Dwarf Heroto spoke up as well, "Strange indeed. It's been days since, where could he have gone to?"
At this, the Red Dragon Queen stiffened slightly, while Bryant remained silent, his head drooping forward.
After a few moments of silence, the Red Dragon Queen finally spoke, "Master Link is at the moment researching a new form of magic in the Gray Furnace Valley. I've sent someone to notify him of our meeting, but he still hasn't responded. Something must be holding him up."
The dwarf's response was blunt as usual. "If that's the case, let him be. Power informs insight. He has just recently reached Legendary status, he probably shouldn't be able to come up with anything worth our attention. The spatial cracks are expanding as we speak. The longer we delay, the more difficult it will be to stabilize them. We'd best get started."
When he finished speaking, he took out a greenish piece of rock, which, judging from its size, weighed around 100 tons.
"Use this to carve a rune stone, surround a crack with it, and then place a protective barrier over the outer layer of the crack. This should be enough to stop it from spreading. We should be thankful the crack isn't that big as it is now. If we had been a year late to notice the crack, I fear there would have been nothing we could do about it at that point."
The Legendary Light Magician, who had kept silent all this time, produced a magical image above the round table with a gentle wave of his hand. "All we need now is a stabilizing spell. I have here a prototype, a stable three-state model proposed by Spatial Magician Lawson 800 years ago. Perhaps it can serve as an inspiration to everyone here."
Bryant, who had pulled himself out of his reverie, began examining the magical structure for ten or so minutes before speaking, "This is a very concise spell, one that follows a different path from mine. Perhaps they can be used in tandem to attain an even more effective stabilizing spell."
He then drew out a magical structure of his own.
Everyone looked on attentively as they began discussing the two magical structures at hand.
They were all Legendary Magicians, a feat attesting to their passion for magic. No sooner had they begun their discussion than they were already engrossed in the exchange of ideas.
In the course of their deliberation, an entirely new spell was slowly given form.
Throughout all this, the Red Dragon Queen expended much of her energy, while the Mountain Sage Heroto was as blunt as ever, speaking his mind without holding anything back. Bryant and the Light and Dark Magicians, while being somewhat reserved, contributed still to the best of their abilities. Only Lucia Silverstar, besides pointing out a few structural problems here and there, kept silent for the most part, using her throbbing headache as an excuse.
Everyone was aware of what happened to her back then, and so they did not press her.
A whole day went by in the heat of their discussion, and everyone went back to rest, only to pick up where they left off the next day.
In ten days, the spatial stabilizing spell was complete.
In the space of those ten days, all members of the Emerald Circle, including the Red Dragon Queen, had attended their meetings, save for Lucia Silverstar. Using her headache and general enfeeblement as an excuse, she had been absent for at least half of those meetings.
On the eleventh day, everyone, except Lucia Silverstar, whose continued absence nobody seemed to mind too much, began their work on perfecting the stabilizing spell.
At this point, the spell was in its final developmental stages, and all that remained were a few kinks that needed straightening out. The general atmosphere among the Legendary Magicians then was one of relief.
The Red Dragon Queen seemed a little bit more relaxed. Though they were unable to seal the crack up completely, they still managed to come up with a way to stop its expansion. Maybe one of them could come up with an even more efficient solution to their predicament at a later date.
She stretched for a bit and was about to speak when suddenly, she noticed Pettalong at the entrance of the great hall. He stood with a beckoning look at the queen.
Seeing the troubled look on his face, Gretel rose from the table and excused herself. "Excuse me for a moment."
She walked straight for the entrance, cast a soundproof barrier around herself and asked, "What's wrong? Has another Void creature appeared in the Dragon Valley?"
"No, worse. The whole village of Vida was wiped out, 100 miles away from here. All 60,000 of them... All of them slaughtered." The Red Dragon Elder could not bear to finish his sentence.
This may be one of the worst catastrophes that had ever happened in the Dragon Valley in the last 5000 years. Worse still, they had no idea who the culprit was!
"What did you say?!" Gretel trembled furiously, unable to maintain the Soundproof Barrier any longer.
Sixty thousand people had been found dead in the village nearby. She could not believe what she had just heard.
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