Having already changed into a brand-new Holy Dawn school uniform, Ayrin stood in a test room, his face brimming with excitement.
Liszt, Songat, and Cana stood in front of him.
After having completed some detailed tests about Ayrin’s physical condition, Cana made her final injunctions at Ayrin before he left the infirmary.
“Remember, you’ve recovered very well, but even if you were to fight with someone, you still can’t use arcane skills at the level of a Thunderblaze Wall or a Ruin Fetters. Or else, you might very possibly have to come back here and stay in bed.”
“I understand. Even if I go on stage, I’ll definitely control my arcane particles, because staying in bed here is really too boring!” Ayrin loudly promised.
Songat had fished a grilled sausage somewhere from one of his pockets and was nibbling on it while he casually asked with indifference, “Are Carter and you really planning to put him down in the fighting roster?”
“When you’re injured, the way to control your arcane particles and your own body when you fight, that’s also something he needs to learn.” Liszt offered a faint smile. “But Carter thinks that he might not have the opportunity to make an appearance anyway, even if we put him on the fighting sheet.”
“Are you guys so confident against Silver Trout?” Songat suddenly took on a stop-with-your-boasting expression. “Do you think we’re still in the era of your Evil Six?”
“You wanna bet?” Liszt smiled a lazy smile.
“Alright!” Songat’s eyes suddenly shone. “The one who loses invites the other to a Jungle Dancers show?”
Cana bristled as she shouted, “Can’t you pay attention? There’s still a woman here!”
“Ohoho…” A sudden strange smile came from Songat. “Cana, I thought a woman as pure as yourself shouldn’t even know who are the Jungle Dancers.”
“Bastard!” Cana itched to kick Songat flying.
Ayrin felt very curious. “Who are the Jungle Dancers?”
“Little kids shouldn’t ask too many questions!” Her face full of black lines, Cana bopped Ayrin’s head. “It’s a place only a lonely wretched middle-aged pervert like him would go.”
Just as Ayrin finished his physicals, ready to leave the Office’s infirmary so that he could go back to the Arena and meet up with team Holy Dawn for tomorrow’s match, a young woman was crossing a street not far away from the infirmary.
One side of this street was full of hotels with elegant landscapes, while on the other side were some novelty shops selling all sorts of odd and bizarre things.
This street with deep-purple roses planted on both sides seemed especially quiet and empty, because it was close to the time for the tournament to resume tomorrow,
This young woman wore a long, belted and skirted dress, a style trending in the area around Eichemalar. She also wore a pretty lace-bordered, wide-rimmed sunhat, and her hand even held a little flowery and ornamental umbrella with a handle made from green gems.
Her attire looked like a young noblewoman going to an appointed meeting with someone.
No one paid attention to this young woman. They couldn’t see her face, and her figure and clothes weren’t particularly breathtaking.
However, her footsteps slowly become heavier and heavier.
Under the wide brim of her hat, her eyes became more and more hazy, gradually turning totally blank like a wandering ghost that’d lost its will, making its way on the street in a stiff gait!
“Time’s up… Time’s up… Time’s up…”
From her mouth came a string of repeated words in a stiff and vague voice only she could hear.
If someone could notice her increasingly stiffer steps and see her face under the brim of her hat, they’d definitely be weirded out and frightened.
“Time’s up… Time’s up…”
Along with her repeated mumbles, white powder suddenly rustled down her face.
This white powder wasn’t some kind of cosmetics some young girls liked to wear, but fragments of skin falling from her face!
Her pretty face suddenly seemed extremely sinister as the skin flaked down. Her entire body suddenly twisted as well. Countless tiny bulges roamed nonstop under her skin, as though countless tiny bugs were about to crawl out of her.
Just then, a pale-white silhouette suddenly emerged from shadows not far behind her.
This figure seemed to have drilled its way out of the ground. From head to toe, it was covered in frightful pale-white particles.
Countless pale-white particles suddenly sprayed outward, wrapping the young woman inside together with this silhouette.
All these white particles entirely left this young woman’s figure a mere second later, then vanished back into the shadows along with the figure.
The young woman toppled on the ground like a wilted flower. A dried corpse riddled with holes and sores.
Someone suddenly noticed something abnormal when this woman fell on the ground and shrieked in shock.
Liszt, Ayrin, and Songat heard an alarm sound for arcane teams as soon as they went out of the infirmary.
“What happened?” Ayrin suddenly blinked.
“Someone used an arcane skill and killed someone. We’re going to rush there. Ayrin, don’t leave my side!” The instant Liszt heard this distinct alarm, he immediately told Ayrin a few words and swift shot forward, leading the way.
“What arcane skill did they use to cause something like this?”
As soon as he’d hurled himself there together with Liszt and Songat, Ayrin immediately saw a young woman’s corpse riddled with holes and sores.
The corpse even seemed to have been bitten by countless maggots. Around the murder scene, there wasn’t any trace of blood to be seen.
Three arcane teams were already gathered at the scene. Among them, a tall man with a flattop issued a tense order to those around him: “Stay on high alert!”
“Liszt?” This man’s face eased up a little when he saw Liszt’s approach.
Liszt merely nodded. Before he could say anything, this man had already taken the initiative to explain the situation in quick words. “We already inspected the scene. They must have come from the sewers then suddenly killed this woman. Judging from the remaining traces of arcane energy… It must have been Lotton, the one who ran away last time.”
“Lotton?” Ayrin blinked. “Has he been hidden in the sewers all this time? He never left Eichemalar?”
All the arcane masters in the surroundings seemed to recognize Ayrin. Their eyes were very friendly when they looked at him, but when they heard his words, their faces suddenly fell a little.
The arcane teams of the Office of Special Affairs had never stopped their search in the sewers, because some arcane teams suspected Lotton of hiding inside all along. But now that their guess had been confirmed, it was like a sudden slap on the faces of many arcane teams in the Office.
So many arcane masters at the peak of the kingdom were actually powerless to find a young, heavily-wounded arcane masters inside the sewers.
“It seems our first guess was right… Such a dark underground is indeed the environment that suits him best, and he definitely has some special arcane skills to match.”
Without showing many emotions on his face, Liszt looked at the flattop man and said, “What’s the identity of the deceased?”
“A lady from House Rudolph in Oaken City. House Rudolph is merely a small ordinary clan…”
“It’s the Black Death’s Plague…”
Crouched on the side and inspecting the surroundings, Songat interrupted their dialogue before the flattop man could finish. “Before this woman came to Eichemalar, she’d already been controlled by a taboo skill from the Evil Dragon followers. Her body also shows signs of disease. Among the Evil Dragon followers, there’s only Plague Bishop’s taboo skill, Black Death’s Plague.”
“Plague Bishop Ancenoli?!” The flattop man and the other arcane masters were all greatly taken aback. But they clearly didn’t know Songat, so they looked at Liszt with inquisitive eyes.
“This is Songat, the best medical master in the Office of Special Affairs. He must have come into contact with people struck by that arcane skill. He’s more authoritative than me in that area.” Liszt introduced him with a shrug.
“So you’re the pervert…” With a blink, the flattop man almost spouted Songat’s nickname.
“Right right right. Let’s go watch the Jungle Dancers together next time you’re free.” Songat looked at the flattop man as if he didn’t mind at all. “If you’re free, you can also go the infirmary and look for me.”
“Who’s going to go to the Office’s infirmary… That’s a place only for the grievously injured and those about to die,” the flattop man and several arcane masters around suddenly mumbled in their minds.
“What’s the Black Death’s Plague?” Ayrin couldn’t stop himself from interrupting at this time.
“A skill that can spread disease around. Through microorganisms in the air, it destroys parts of someone’s functions. Usually, people with low resistance can’t withstand it and will become black corpses,” Liszt explained with a glance his way. “Among the Evil Dragon disciples, there’s only one Bishop who can use this taboo skill, but this taboo skill still requires the consumption of a large amount of life force to use. It’s a type of dark sacrificial skill. The price of invoking it is considerable.”
“And now?” Ayrin was suddenly startled. He could almost feel his hairs stand on end and a fishy taste on his tongue.
“It’s alright. This skill has been interrupted before it could break out. Otherwise, this place would already be submerged in a black-colored Death’s Plague fog,” Liszt said, reading Ayrin’s thoughts. He glanced in the direction of the infirmary. “This place is so close to the infirmary. If it had erupted here, the infirmary would definitely have suffered quite a few casualties. It seems Dias hasn’t given up yet after his schemes failed last time… That said, the only problem is, Lotton is also an Evil Dragon follower, so why did he actually kill this woman all of a sudden before her final eruption? Only his Greed Particles can absorb these filthy things.”
Ayrin said, his eyebrows creasing, “Last time when I fought him, I felt that he seems to have been forced into a very tragic life… He might be controlled by the Evil Dragon followers, but he wants to escape from that life. Only, he’s trapped by his fears can’t escape from his fate.”
“If he did that because of a common enemy… Then we have at least to understand what he’s afraid of, what he needs,” Liszt said after a moment of silence.