To make matters worse, each breakthrough was harder than the previous ones and since it was the first body refinement Lith would experience with a blue core, he couldn\'t take any chance, not with his life force already cracked.
\'I was thinking about Yondra\'s words, she actually left us a big clue about Runesmithing that we have overlooked so far.\' Lith thought.
\'She used our Skinwalker armor as an example, saying that after the Bonding process, the Orichalcum\'s mana flow becomes too vigorous to be Forgemastered.
Which means that runes have to be applied before Bonding the material with mana crystals.\'
Lith took the sword and the booklet he had acquired from Huryole out of his pocket dimension.
\'While we wait for Orion to fulfill his part of our bargain, we can start experimenting on the swords.
We have two blueprints, after all, and we can even try out the patterns in the book.\'
\'Well, yeah, but those are all old-ass runes.
I mean, the Odi\'s Adamant sword is much better than the teaching prop we found, but its runes are even older.
The materials needed for the experiments are cheap, but I\'m afraid we might just waste our time and learn outdated methods.\' Solus replied.
\'True, but we can try and experiment with the new runes we know and see how different the outcome is.
Orion isn\'t wrong when he says that it\'s unlikely for anyone to accept us as a disciple.
\'I doubt that the Hydra will take us in with no strings attached, so the more we know before we meet her, the more knowledge we can squeeze from her even just by a few hints.\'
Lith spent the rest of the time until lunch in the Ernas library, consulting tomes about Wardens.
Arrays were the only form of magic that used runes and by comparing old and new arrays, Lith could expand the number of runes from the booklet that he was able to convert into modern magic.
Jirni and Kamila returned to dine with the family, but since they were following a delicate case, they left soon after, leaving Lith alone with his worries.
He would have loved to sneak out and go back to his tower, but each time he watched at his impurities nearing to his core, he was reminded of how little time he had left for a complete recovery.
There wasn\'t much he could do without magic and on top of that, Quylla had also forbidden all kinds of physical exercise to him.
This is going to be the longest day of my life. He groaned.
\'That\'s not true! You can spend your time with Phoria and Quylla, or you could call Friya.
I mean, how long has it been since the four of you have done something together\' Solus objected.
Good gods, Lith, you look wonderful. Friya said.
When Quylla told me that you were on the brink of death, I returned home as fast as I could, but you look damn dandy.
Lith had already regained the lost weight, but his body had rebuilt itself better than before, with the result of him being less lean and more muscular than before.
He suspected that Quylla was right and that his two life forces somehow communicated.
His muscles weren\'t much thicker than before, but way denser, like they were in his hybrid form to not get hindered by the scales.
Friya, it\'s so good to see you.
Not only because you\'re even hotter than I remembered you to be, but also because I\'m bored as heck!
Are you coming on to me She chuckled.
Because the compliment sounded a little too honest for our usual role play.
Has something bad happened between you and Kamila
Yes, it did.
Because of my wounds, we can only hug and hold hands despite the fact we haven\'t see each other for almost a month.
Sorry if I made you uncomfortable. Lith preferred not hugging her this time, limiting their greeting to a handshake.
He already had enough headaches with Kamila.
Well, let\'s go get my sisters.
The four of us have a lot of catching up to do.
Free country of Lamarth.
Beyond the eastern borders of the Gorgon Empire.
I never dared to dream that this day would come true! Bytra, the Raiju-goblin hybrid Abomination said.
Now that she had moved in the Master\'s Headquarters and had been bestowed the Rank of Master Forgemaster, she had spent the last month practicing the skills that back in the day had earned her the title of Ruler of the Flames.
It was the greatest honor that an Awakened Forgemaster could receive and there could only be one per generation.
Yet since now Bytra was an immortal Eldritch Abomination, she would have all the time she needed to reach perfection.
There were so many things she had forgotten and even more still clouded in her memory.
Even after consuming her original self, her hybrid body and mind had yet to stabilize completely.
Still, even though the Master had no clue about runes or how to smelt very powerful metals, there was very little that their network of human and Abomination connections couldn\'t provide Bytra.
After countless explosions and having wasted almost a ton of precious black iron, Bytra had finally completed her first Orichalcum weapon.
That makes the two of us. Xenagrosh didn\'t share one bit of Byra\'s enthusiasm and neither did her voice.
Xenagrosh had spent the past month only eating and training in using Origin Flames under Bytra\'s insistence.
According to their resident Forgemaster, Origin Flames could be used to refine any kind of material in its purest form, granting to enchanted items made out of such materials astounding properties.
The Master and Xenagrosh had kept this knowledge for themselves and had prohibited Bytra from sharing it with anyone else.
Even to the eldest Abominations such secret was either unknown or well kept.
The Master had ordered Xenagrosh to help her newfound sister to the best of her abilities since soon things would take a turn for the worse.
The Eldritchs who didn\'t take part in the monster hybridization project were envious of those like Xenagrosh who had reached the next level while they were still stuck in their old form and all the other plans of the Master had yet to bear any fruit.
Also, they were scared of the clones that had defeated their originals and were now hidden in plain sight, maybe plotting to feed on their weaker kin.
The Master was aware that only power could keep such a rough bunch in line and powerful artifacts would help them reaffirm their authority.
Xenagrosh had always used Origin Flames only as a means of attack against those dumb or slow enough to stand in her way.
They were just flames, after all, hence easy to dodge compared to a spell that she could freely move around at will.
Bytra had taught her that just like spells, Origin Flames could be controlled, in order to not have them destroy so much as purify.
The problem was that Xenagrosh had no idea how to do it and Bytra had only vague explanations to offer Xenagrosh based on her memories.
Xenagrosh had destroyed a mountain worth of ores before understanding what she was supposed to do and had almost died in the process.
Using too many Origin Flames in a short amount of time had weakened her life force to the point of almost breaking it.
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