Body Altering Pond
Neither Amaysu or Luna knew how long had passed since the moment they had entered the cave, but the long winding and endless walls made them feel as though they had spent a few days in the maze.
The truth was that, including the long rest that they had taken, only a day passed since they entered the maze. Even in this short amount of time the two had subtle changes in their expressions. Luna was even more vigilant than she was at the start of the trial; furthermore, her decisions mid-fight was more accurate, due to her fighting stronger beings.
Amaysu, on the other hand, was more focussed on his single objective: Becoming the Successor.
On his bracelet, he already had the number six while Luna had an even higher number, eight. It was only a matter of time before they reach the minimum threshold to pass.
Luna was extremely vigilant at this moment. Only a few hours prior, finding at least two golems in an hour was fortunate, but now they would find five or six golems every hour.
Her ears twitched as a sound that she heard many times before rumbled through the maze, the roar of a Savage beast golem.
Her thoughts were on point, sounds of feet echoed in the darkness, however, at this moment Amaysu was alerted.
Luna was able to handle the weak golems all by herself, so Amaysu would only bother paying attention to those powerful golems, otherwise, he would keep his hand. Despite this, he realised from the sounds of steps that these footsteps were coming from more than one golem.
“Luna there’s more than one, get ready!” He quickly stated.
Amaysu got his scythe ready and activated his Inherited Legacy.
Just as the last soaring dagger appeared around his body, the owners of the loud footsteps revealed themselves.
“Roar!” a unison roar echoed loudly, with an impressive line-up of golems.
There was a single grey golem and three red golems, all three red golems were in the shape of a wolf type Savage beast.
“You take that golem over there,” Amaysu pointed at one of the wolf type golems: “It should be comparable to an 8th rank Fighter stage expert, it should be within your capabilities, I’ll take the other three, that should let me catch up to you.”
Luna smirked; there was a hidden competitiveness in his calm voice. She knocked an arrow on her bow and released it at her target, drawing its attention.
At the same time Amaysu split his attention between his three opponents, unleashing his soaring daggers at the red golems as he went to meet the grey golem.
The soaring daggers clashed against the two savage beast type golems while he slashed at the grey golem’s right arm.
“Thud,” the grey golem fell to the ground. Having lost both of its arms it revealed the metal gears within its body and its body was missing a head as well.
Furthermore, the two savage beast type golems were already on the floor with giant holes in their body.
“So you’ve also cleared up your side,” Luna walked over to him simultaneously sheathing Silent Tempest.
“I expected you to take a bit longer,” Amaysu mumbled his eyes wandering towards the golem that was on the floor. It had two arrows embedded deep within its shoulders which reduced its mobility and many sword slashes all over its body.
Hehe, Amay~~ You’ve found yourself a feisty one~~ A voice that he hadn’t heard for some time echoed in his mind.
Amaysu wasn’t bothered with him so he heartlessly ignored him.
Luna pouted: “Have a little more faith in me; I’m not a monster like you.”
“That’s why I’m turning you into a monster like me.”
“…” she ignored him and looked at the motionless golems. “This is the first time a group of golems have attacked together. Before we’d meet two to three golems every hour, but now we’re meeting twice as many, yet this is the first time that a group have attacked us.”
This was also a fact that he had noticed as well: “It’s as if they are denser here, congregating here or maybe… guarding something,” Luna voiced out his thoughts.
“That’s what I’ve come up with as well, it’s highly possible that there’s something here. Let’s walk around for a bit and find a bit more clues.”
Twenty minutes later the duo was once again forced to fight the golems, furthermore, the line-up was much stronger. There were two grey golems and three red golems between the 9th and 10th rank of the Fighter stage.
This line-up was too strong for Luna to handle so it was Amaysu’s task to fight.
“Bang,” Amaysu skidded backwards, but he didn’t back down as he once again shot forward to clash against the two grey golems. The red golem’s you ask? He had already taken care of them when the fight began.
Five soaring daggers repeatedly struck the golem keeping it at bay while Luna tried finding an opening to shoot an arrow but it was futile. Her arrows did not even leave a dent on its metallic body.
The golem punched at Amaysu, but he expected this and the silver specks supporting him surrounded the two. Abruptly the golem’s body sunk as the air surrounding it thickened under pressure; fortunately, Amaysu was prepared for the sudden change of gravity.
Grasping this opportunity he finished off the golem with a strike that severed its head. Now that he was no longer preoccupied he wholeheartedly focussed on the second grey golem.
In only a matter of seconds, the second golem crashed to the ground with five giant holes in its body, a sight that Amaysu was used to.
“Huh…huh…huh,” Amaysu gasped swallowing air quickly, sweat trickled down his sheen forehead and fell to the black floor.
Luna arrived quickly: “Sha…”
Just as she uttered the first syllable another set-off roars shook the ground, when she heard these roars she looked at Amaysu’s weary figure and a hint of worry appeared on her face.
“Retreat… quickly!” He said under breath.
They quickly ran away in the direction that they came from, despite this, they came to an abrupt stop. “There was a path here, where did it go?” Luna said with confusion.
He was also confused; there was a pathway here before… he quickly pushed the thought aside, as of now escaping was the most important task: “Forget about it, let’s just go that way.”
For the next minute, they did nothing but run as far away from the group of golems as possible. After a while they finally came to a stop, Amaysu leant against the stone wall to keep himself steady.
He took out a vial that Luna gave him and drank the content in one gulp; he felt nothing for 10 seconds before he felt the effects kick in.
“The stimulant is losing its effectiveness.”
Luna looked at him and nodded, “After a certain amount of doses your body builds up a resistance to it, you’ll need stronger stimulants after that and that just now was your fifth vial.”
He sighed; this was a foreseeable result.
Out of the blue the duo stopped speaking and sat silently, they heard loud voices coming from further along the path.
“That’s probably another group of participants,” Luna whispered, however, Amaysu was pondering on a certain few words that they had said: ‘Body Altering Pond.’
Moments after a group of youngsters similar to them in age walked along the pathway in their direction.
They suddenly stopped the moment that they noticed Amaysu and Luna. From the group there was a young man and young woman between 17 to 20 years old and leading the group was a young woman, her robes were loosely fitted attracting the fiery gazes of many young men.
She had blue phoenix-like eyes that were able to put a spell on the hearts of many unprepared young men. Her skin was fair and her complexion was magnificent, her blonde hair cascaded around her falling to her waist. Overall her appearance was gorgeous; furthermore, she had a natural noble charm.
She was a very beautiful woman, which caused Luna to subconsciously compare her looks to the woman, which immediately made her regret doing so. She then looked at Amaysu only to see that he had a deadpan expression as he looked at the young woman, this made her feel somewhat elated.
The young woman looked at Amaysu with some interest; she wasn’t too bothered by Amaysu’s otherworldly, aesthetically pleasing appearance. She merely raised her hand to cover a yawn.
“You’re the one that offended Edward, who were you again?” she said rudely pointing at Amaysu while trying to recall who Amaysu was. “Ah! You said you were called Shadow.”
In response Amaysu had a deadpan expression, he found her extremely beautiful but he was only appreciative of it. Nevertheless, he was shocked by her strength which was at the peak of the 10th rank.
“You should introduce yourself before you go pointing at people,” he replied.
The male youth next to her frowned, as he was about to lash out the young woman raised her palm stopping him.
The young woman merely smiled, her gaze casually moved from Amaysu to Luna, and suddenly sharpening when she noticed the bow on Luna’s shoulder, but just as fast it returned to normal.
This insignificant change was caught by Amaysu but he acted like he had seen nothing.
“Where were my manners? My name is Olivia Reichfield of the Spring Leaf Sect.”
Hearing her name Luna was startled, her expression sunk and she felt weary: She is Olivia Reichfield? Why did I have to see her here? Could she have possibly recognised my Inherited Legacy?
While Luna was in distress, Olivia spoke, her soft heart-warming voice reaching the both of them: “Our meeting was only a coincidence and we have other matters at hand so we will take our leave,” she then turned to leave.
She stopped; despite this, the male from the group frowned.
“You were talking about the Body Altering Pond, what is it?” Amaysu questioned.
The male of the groups frown deepened and the young woman also frowned; however, Olivia’s lazy expression did not change.
The youngster from the group couldn’t hold it in and spoke: “Body Altering Pond? This has nothing to do with you, just…” As he got to this point, Olivia raised her hand to stop him.
“What do you want to know?” she said with a smile.
The young man couldn’t help but stop her: “Miss?!”
Olivia turned around, her beautiful face carrying a frown but the young woman abruptly interjected: “Miss, you can’t just go tell him,” she advised as she had a better relationship with Olivia than the young man.
Olivia frowned: “What’s the big deal? This is no big secret, all the other factions already possess this information, and as long as I help him here he’ll owe me a favour.”
Amaysu expected this situation: “What is the Body Altering Pond and is that the reason that more golems are congregating around this area?” In the back of his head, he felt that he had come across the term Body Altering Pond somewhere, but he was not sure.
“Yes you’re right,” she nodded. “The body altering pond is a special opportunity that exists within the maze. As long as you obtain a good amount, you can use it to break into the Body Transformation stage and furthermore you’ll reach the perfect Black Tempered Body.”
“The liquid in the pond has a high concentration of two really important substances. Of these two substances, one will break down your bones at a cellular level putting you through unimaginably excruciating pain. This is where the second substance comes in and reconstructs your bones, increasing elasticity, strength, resistance, etc, completely altering your body.”
“Even someone like her,” She pointed at Luna. “If she is able to bathe in the pond, she’ll skip from the 5th rank to the 10th rank without losing her foundation and her chances of reaching the Black Tempered body is nearly 100%.” Even she herself had a desire to find this pond and breakthrough into the Body Transformation stage with a Black Tempered Body.
“Those at my level only need a small amount to breakthrough to the Body Transformation stage so just a few litres are enough for us.”
Amaysu’s eyes widened, understanding where he had heard the description before, it was a resource that was promised to him: So that’s where I heard it from, this is the Body Altering Liquid. It’s highly possible that it is the substance within the Body Altering Pond, luckily the names were similar.