Even Invigoration is useless.
Healing magic repaired my body, but every bit of energy I spend is lost forever.
The only reason I survived this long is that I modified one of the circles in a last ditch effort.
Now it\'s supposed to hold all kinds of energies, but it does a poor job.
I didn\'t know what\'s wrong with me, so I had to make it a makeshift jack of all trades.
Okay, now unless you have something medically relevant to say, shut up and let me think. Lith replied.
Sorry, it\'s just that after being alone for so long, talking to someone that can understand my research…
Mom, what part of shut up you didn\'t understand The shut or the up Nok scolded her.
Kalla\'s eye glowed in silent annoyance.
Lith had no idea what to do, so he used his diagnostic spells first and used Invigoration later.
Once again according to his magic, aside from being on the verge of death, Kalla was fit as a fiddle.
\'This doesn\'t make sense.
It sounds like one of those The procedure was a success but the patient died jokes.\' Lith thought.
\'I have one last card to play.\'
Lith then used the Scanner spell.
It was the fulcrum of tier five healing magic, the art of perceiving and manipulating all kinds of life forces.
He had already turned it into true magic, but had failed to find a way to integrate it with Invigoration.
Unlike Invigoration, Scanner revealed to Lith in what pitiful state Kalla was.
Her life force had stopped flowing.
For some reason, Kalla\'s body was unable to replenish its strength or assimilate any kind of external energy.
Even when Lith attempted to share with her part of his life force, it did her no good.
She was dying because her own body was slowly consuming itself in order to survive.
Her abdomen was what worried him the most.
A small portion of it was completely black.
Scanner was unable to sense any life force coming from it, but that was supposed to be impossible.
Invigoration confirmed the initial evaluation: there was nothing wrong with her physical condition.
A second Scanner also produced consistent results: Kalla\'s body was starving and part of it was already dead.
It was the first time that Lith\'s trump cards were at odds with one another.
\'Why couldn\'t it be something simpler Like waxing a gorilla or teaching a crab how to give the finger\' Lith thought for long about the problem, but neither he or Solus were able to find a solution.
Did you get caught in the aftermath of the experiment too He asked Nok.
Since their conditions were similar, maybe the Byk could be able to provide him more clues.
What gave you such an idea
You look like crap. Lith replied.
\'How tactful of you.\' Solus sneered.
\'His mother is dying; you could at least be gentle.\'
\'I have no time for niceties.
I need answers and I need them now.\'
Oh, this Nok stood on his hind legs while looking at his battered fur.
This is no one\'s fault.
Since mom got injured, I had no time for hunting so I have skipped a few meals.
My sis too refused to leave her side.
Her hunger is worse than mine because if she doesn\'t eat, she doesn\'t get thinner.
Nok pointed his snout to a pile of dirty rags lying in a corner.
It was a sour note in the otherwise pristine room.
You sister Lith had forgotten about Kalla\'s vampire daughter.
Lith, this is Nyka.
He is an old friend of mine.
The dirty rags stood up, turning out to be a woman in her mid twenties.
Dust and mud covered most of her naked body.
Her hair was disheveled, making it look like a mop too old to be still of use.
Her skin was white as milk, and so were her eyes.
They had no pupil or iris, yet Lith could feel her staring at him.
Why is she naked Lith asked.
Because beasts do not care if I wear clothes and humans try to kill me no matter my attire. Her voice was raspy like she had a sore throat.
Her body was flaccid and her hair white with a tinge of yellow.
\'Compared to her, Nana looked like she was in her prime.\' Lith was disappointed.
Vampires looked nothing like he expected them.
Nyka reminded him of one of the witches from the MacBeth play.
Can you please feed her, Scourge Kalla asked.
With Invigoration, you can get your life force back while if Nok weakens any further, his core could suffer permanent damage.
Lith took out a lot of food from his pocket dimension, allowing the Byk to feast to its stomach content for the first time in weeks.
Well yes, but actually no. Lith replied.
I haven\'t slept in a week and during the last two days I was busy with experiments.
If I feed her, I might not have enough energy left to heal you.
\'If I understand the underlying cause of Kalla\'s sickness, of course.\'
\'You and your experiments!\' Solus scolded him.
\'How many times have I told you to sleep once every two days\'
\'Do you have any idea how much time I would have wasted that way\'
I understand. Kalla interrupted their telepathic quarreling.
I\'ve lost track of the time so often that my children…
Mom, shut up! Both Nok and Nyka yelled as one.
Lith checked Nok\'s condition with Invigoration and was happy to see his body regaining its strength.
\'What could have possibly happened to make even Invigoration useless Why does the life force that I give Kalla go to waste\' Lith kept wondering while he alternated the use of his breathing technique and Scanner.
\'Maybe it\'s just a coincidence,\' Solus pointed out.
\'But don\'t you think it\'s odd that the black area Scanner detects is partially overlapped with the one where Invigoration locates Kalla\'s core\'
\'It\'s no coincidence, just idiocy.\' Lith replied.
\'Mine!\' Lith inwardly cursed at himself.
I know what\'s happening. He explained to Kalla.
To split and move your mana core you have \'destroyed its cage\'.
Said cage is your own life force.
It makes sense.
Both success and failure required for me to die.
My survival has been an unexpected accident. Kalla pondered.
The damage you have caused has permanently altered the flow of your life force, making it unable to connect properly with the mana core.
That\'s why Invigoration is useless.
The world energy has no way of being passed to your body anymore.
Can you fix it Mother and children asked in unison.
If I was at full strength I\'d answer \'probably\'.
In my current condition, I don\'t even know how long will it take for me to collapse from exhaustion.
Repairing such huge damage near the mana core is a very delicate job.
Can you hold on for a couple of hours
I think I have another couple of minutes in me. The shadows enveloping Kalla\'s figure shrank while the light in her remaining eye started to flicker.