GDK 387 – Absorbing the serene luster gem
The extremely cunning bone dragon Zasika was around fifteen meters long. His body was made out of thick and solid white bones, as though it was built from the hardest iron and stone. Its body was also overflowing in rich death qi.
When the bone dragon roared, all the higher ranked undead creatures started to flee, while the low ranked undead creatures stood still, shivering under the pressure of the bone dragon's imposing aura.
The netherworld's bone dragon was different from the Profound Continent's standard dragon race. As a special clan of dragons that were born in the netherworld, bone dragons possessed enormous strength from the moment they were born. This was because they were formed from pure white bones that were resistant to the majority of physical and magical attacks.
Bone dragons were peculiar creatures brought up in the netherworld's unusual environment. They were also able to nimbly manipulate the netherworld's death qi, even possessing a few mystical dragon breath abilities. This resulted in them being more powerful than most dragon clans in the Profound Continent.
The three undead creatures that had planned to surround and attack the little skeleton had already fled in different directions upon hearing the bone dragon's roar, no longer interested in attacking the little skeleton. The little skeleton who had obtained the serene luster gem while bone dragon Zasika wasn't paying attention immediately flew toward Han Shuo. When he was about to reach Han Shuo, Han Shuo immediately abandoned the skeletal body he had condensed from death qi and willed his consciousness to float by the little skeleton's side.
Once Han Shuo's consciousness reached the little skeleton's side, the little skeleton shoved the serene luster gem into Han Shuo's wraith-like consciousness without a second thought. He then urged the bone demon to escape into the distance.
When the bone dragon flew out of the pitch-black spring, it immediately emitted the imposing aura of a high ranked undead creature. Once the numerous undead creatures had fled, he stared at the rapidly fleeing little skeleton and roared, "Sinister, despicable skeleton, you won't be able to escape."
After uttering a long, loud cry into the boundless sky, the bone dragon directly pursued the little skeleton. The bone demon beneath the little skeleton had been remolded by the little skeleton with the bones of the supreme ranked magical creature found within the taboo land of the Profound Continent. Within the netherworld, the flying speed of the remolded bone demon was actually extremely quick. Even the lightning quick bone dragon Zasika wasn't able to catch up in a short period of time.
At this moment, the serene luster gem that the little skeleton casually stuffed into Han Shuo's consciousness suddenly blended with the mental energy within his consciousness. A mysterious mental energy suddenly entered Han Shuo's consciousness, gradually combining with the original mental energy within.
Han Shuo suddenly trembled. This method of growing his mental strength had the same feeling as when he was imbued with mental strength under the Cemetery of Death. Han Shuo could almost confirm immediately that the item that had improved his mental strength in the Cemetery of Death must have also been a serene luster gem.
However, this wasn't the time to ponder why there would be a serene luster gem in the Cemetery of Death. Having had prior experience, Han Shuo immediately absorbed the mental energy flowing out from the serene luster gem into his consciousness to his heart's content. He also tried his utmost in seizing the chance to refine the serene luster gem's mysterious energy.
Out of a sudden, an incomparably huge amount of mental energy rushed into Han Shuo's consciousness. This caused a sharp pain to spread out, soon after Han Shuo was dizzy and wasn't sure what he should do.
As Han Shuo gave out a resonant shout in pain, back in the Profound Continent, the skeletal staff his true body was holding on to whistled sharply and endlessly. Han Shuo's originally muddled eyes gradually regained clarity.
While a huge amount of mental energy was still revolving within his mind, Han Shuo suddenly felt that he was holding something hard in his left hand. Looking down, he saw that it was actually the mysterious skeletal staff. Han Shuo was shocked but became ecstatic shortly after. He understood that he had once again returned unfathomably to the Profound Continent from the netherworld.
Excessively excited, Han Shuo didn't ponder any further, hastily discarding all distracting thoughts and started melding the remaining pure mental energy flowing within his consciousness with his original mental energy. At this moment, he was filled with immense joy.
After an unknown period of time, Han Shuo gradually sensed that the mental energy from the netherworld's serene luster gem had been fully absorbed. At that moment, an intense shout was transmitted from the little skeleton in the netherworld. Han Shuo suddenly recalled the recent experience of escaping from the netherworld and remembered that the little skeleton was still being pursued by bone dragon Zasika.
The little skeleton's shout was obviously a cry for help. Han Shuo didn't hesitate, chanting the lowest ranked necromancy spell. The little skeleton riding the bone demon abruptly arrived in the hidden underground room.
The little skeleton had actually come out unscathed. However, the bone demon he was riding on had more than ten of its bones broken, probably by the bone dragon. Once he arrived from the netherworld, the little skeleton patted his chest like a human, while still having lingering fears. He then transmitted a message to Han Shuo, "That cunning bone dragon is truly extremely frightening. However, I will definitely make him pay in the future."
Han Shuo looked toward the little skeleton, his heart truly had unbounded emotions. This little skeleton who had the ambition to kill the bone dragon was the same fellow that helped him at that time to clear the garbage in the middle of the night?
"Father, how did you enter my world?" The little skeleton asked, its Purple Demon Eye glistening as it looked at Han Shuo.
Han Shuo had gradually adapted to the way the little skeleton addressed him. He laughed bitterly as he shook his head, replying, "I have no idea. However, I understand that it has something to do with this skeletal staff. For the time being, I still have not fully comprehended how it happens. However, I believe I would be able to be clear about the situation very quickly."
After Han Shuo explained the situation to the little skeleton, he knitted his brows, inquiring, "Do you know what exactly is the serene luster gem that I absorbed?"
"This type of serene luster gem is an extremely rare item in our world. It can temper our souls, causing our souls to become purer. It is extremely beneficial to our evolution." The little skeleton explained for a while, pausing for a moment before continuing, "Father, in our world, there similarly are some unusual items as well as peculiar existences. For example, that apparition had evolved from a wraith. That huge knight is a soul from another plane that descended into our world and was developed from an evil knight's body after absorbing death qi within the world…"
The little skeleton seemed to have planned to explain the world he knew to Han Shuo, taking great pains to explain the situation in the netherworld to Han Shuo, as though to sweep away the misunderstandings Han Shuo had of the netherworld.
From the little skeleton's descriptions, Han Shuo gradually realized that he still had a one-sided understanding of the netherworld. It turns out that the creatures in the netherworld were not limited to those that he knew from necromancy texts. The undead creatures that were listed on necromancy texts were those that ancient necromancers were aware of and had found the corresponding summoning spell.
There were also a few evolved or mutated undead creatures as well as eccentric undead creatures that had been naturally produced by death qi in a particular occasion at a particular location. These undead creatures were not known to necromancers and had never been successfully summoned. These special existences were equally formidable, so much so that some of them were stronger than bone dragons.
However, previous necromancers had never encountered them nor had the way to summon them. Hence, they did not exist in necromancy books. However, for the little skeleton who had spent much time in the netherworld, he who had the same origin as these undead creatures naturally understood a few peculiarities that previous necromancers didn't know of.
According to the little skeleton's narration, Han Shuo also found out that the netherworld was split into regions and territories. Some of the most ancient formidable existences occupied vast territories, ceaselessly campaigning against one another. There were even extremely formidable undead creatures that possessed the strength to tear apart the restrictions of their position, having the frightening strength to travel across the world with their own strength.
"Father, I ought to return!" while Han Shuo was slowly comprehending the little skeleton's words, the little skeleton suddenly transmitted a message.
Much time has passed. As Han Shuo also had a mental connection to the earth zombie and the other zombies, he could directly send the little skeleton to their side. In that case, the little skeleton and bone dragon Zasika would be separated by an extremely large distance and the bone dragon would naturally be unable to endanger the little skeleton again.
Once the little skeleton reminded Han Shuo, he smiled as he nodded his head and then sent the little skeleton back to the netherworld. Even after the little skeleton had left, Han Shuo still pondered on the little skeleton's narration. The things that the little skeleton had just mentioned exceeded Han Shuo's comprehension, causing Han Shuo to momentarily be unable to adapt.
Han Shuo had gained a new level of understanding of the netherworld from the little skeleton's descriptions. He was also clear that that world was different from what he first imagined. It seemed like not all the creatures in the netherworld could be summoned by necromancers. Many formidable undead creatures that had transcended the bindings of their position would definitely not be restricted by the strength of a necromancer's contract.
Shaking his head, Han Shuo stopped thinking about matters concerning the netherworld. Han Shuo then chanted a spell and utilizing his mental energy, rows of bone spears took shape in front of him, silently forming motionlessly in the air. Han Shuo simply counted the number of bone spears and was pleasantly surprised to find out that the number of bone spears had increased by a third. This meant that Han Shuo's mental strength had indeed improved substantially. Although his mental strength was still within the realm of grand magus, the stronger his mental strength, the might from a spell would also be greater. Currently, Han Shuo could release that many more bone spears with the same spell. This sufficiently proved that Han Shuo's mental strength had indeed undergone substantial improvement in the netherworld.
"Serene luster gem. Truly a good item. However, why would a serene luster gem appear under the Cemetery of Death? Also, why would the skeletal staff be able to let the soul enter the netherworld, could it be that there was some kind of connection between the Cemetery of Death and the creatures in the undead world?" Han Shuo knitted his brows as he contemplated.
Han Shuo couldn't resolve this question in a short time. However, he knew that the Cemetery of Death definitely contained many secrets and planned to carefully explore the Cemetery of Death after a period of time, to take a look if there were other items that he had yet to discover.
After his consciousness had entered the netherworld, Han Shuo had lost track of time. Now that he had returned to the Profound Continent, Han Shuo didn't know how long had passed, hastily exiting the hidden room and returning to the ground level of his official residence and calling Steward Kallas over.
Steward Kallas immediately spoke when he rushed over, "Lord Count, where have you been the past few days! Miss Phoebe has come over three times to look for you and His Majesty has also requested for you to head to the royal palace and meet him. Furthermore, there has been bad rumors about you spreading around, making me extremely anxious."
"What bad rumors?" Han Shuo first grasped the main issue, inquiring from Kallas about the harmful news about himself.
"This… this…" Steward Kallas hummed and hawed, only replied fearfully when Han Shuo stared at him, "There has been rumors spreading that you are a member of the Calamity Church. Very few ordinary people know about the Calamity Church but many nobles and people of status understood that the Calamity Church was an evil organization.
Han Shuo was shocked when he heard Kallas's response. The Calamity Church was the symbol of evil in the eyes of many nobles. Of everyone in the continent that knew of the Calamity Church's existence, there shouldn't be many that held good impressions of them.
Han Shuo had never dared to have too much contact with the Calamity Church precisely because he was afraid of leaving such an impression. Never would he have thought that although he always kept a distance from them, such a situation still happened in the end.
Without much consideration, Han Shuo knew who the rumors had originated from. Apart from the Church of Light and Lawrence's political enemies, Han Shuo did not have many enemies within the Lancelot Kingdom. In recent days, it was the moment for Han Shuo who was rising rapidly within the kingdom to have major undertakings. However, it was precisely this rumor that could ruin Han Shuo.
This matter was quite thorny. Han Shuo hesitated a moment, before replying Steward Kallas, "I understand. You can withdraw first and help me invite Prince Lawrence and Miss Phoebe over. Just tell them that I want to talk to them tonight."
After giving Kallas his orders, Han Shuo immediately left the manor. He hesitated a moment, before heading to the Dark Mantle's headquarters to look for Candide.
When Candide saw Han Shuo, he immediately said, "Why have you only appeared now! Come with me to meet the king. I'm aware of your affairs and have already spoken to his majesty about it previously. This matter has become quite huge, we must handle it carefully."
While on their way to the royal palace, Candide pointed out that the rumors had originated from the Church of Light, eldest prince Charles as well as the Grand Duke. As one of the three heavyweights of Dark Mantle, it was naturally very simple for Candide to investigate such a matter.
Han Shuo and Candide discussed for a while, before directly entering the royal palace through the Dark Mantle's teleporting array, immediately heading for King Uhtred's palace.