Chapter 9 - Age of Adepts

After licking the blood off her face, the girl in the red dress turned around, once again revealing her delicate and seductive face to the two quivering Apprentices. Fenrir, who couldn’t withstand such a powerful visual impact, fainted, his arms and legs splaying out on the floor in random directions.

The terrifying and ferocious look of ‘Mary’ had been completely covered up, as she had turned back into the lovely girl with the beautiful face. However, her blood red eyes and the two small, yet sharp looking, teeth sticking out from her lips gave hints of the terrifying being hiding behind the charming beauty.

Though nearly half her body was splattered with blood, she somehow managed to look as delicate and charming as a flower. It was such an intense visual impact that even Greem, who was only glimpsing this through the crack in his door, couldn’t control himself and felt himself being charmed by her intense beauty.

A Vampire in its nascent form had no fear of having its body damaged, because, as long as they had blood, they would be able to obtain unlimited vitality. This was an immortal species which only existed in ancient books in this Land of Adepts. As they were over hunted by Adepts, their species was nearly extinct. Even if there were some survivors, they dared not to expose their real identity.

This was why Greem was so shocked by seeing Mary turn into a Vampire. After his initial shock over Mary’s current racial status, Greem also felt a shiver, as he thought about how powerful Adepts must be, that they should be able to hunt these vampires into extinction.

What kind of Magic experiment did Mary go through? How did it turn an ordinary human girl into this bloodthirsty ancient species who loved to kill? Could the strange noises he heard during the night have been caused by Mary’s ‘mutation’?

Right when the red dressed girl Mary moved threateningly towards Ellen, who was still trembling, the torches on both sides of the dark corridor suddenly lit up, and a mystic figure stepped out from the shadows of the wall and spoke.

“Halt your steps, my child. Today’s slaughter has been more than enough for you to complete the last step in your evolution! From now on, you have to try your best to restrain your desire for fresh blood by steeling your mind. Return to the path of searching for knowledge!”

The man who was speaking had a bent back, and his face was full of wrinkles and loose skin. A long, flowing, pure black robe covered his body, and a long pointed hat, which curled slightly at the top, sat on his head. He was holding a staff made from twisted roots and gnarled branches, and it had a big green crystal embedded on top of it. Specks of light diffused from the crystal, creating layers of amber in the middle of the air.

This old man was the only Adept in this Adept Tower, the great Adept, Anderson.

As for his Adept rank, with Greem’s current knowledge and experience, he had no idea.

Although he had known that today’s events would alert the master of the Adept Tower, which is why Greem had disabled his elemental vision beforehand, but when Adept Anderson suddenly appeared in the hallway, the strong magical energy radiating from his body still caused Greem’s eyes to sting and tear up.

Greem quickly, yet gently, shut his door as tightly as possible, hiding quietly in his room. He didn’t have the courage to peek at what was happening outside. If he saw some secret that Adept Anderson didn’t want anybody to know about, his pathetic life would quickly end.

All the real Adepts, that Greem knew about, were cruel and vicious men, who weren’t phased in the slightest when it came to killing someone, and who carried out all sorts of dangerous and evil magical experiments on living human and creatures as if it was nothing. No matter how careful he was, there was no way he could hide from Adept Anderson’s spiritual senses. However, by behaving in this way, he was showing that he wasn’t trying to watch, and wasn’t involving himself in any of the Adept’s business. At least if he left before anything really happened, he would be safe.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the wall, a nasty confrontation was ongoing.

Mary had, once again, turned into a ferocious and frightening Vampire. Her blood red eyes were flashing like a wild beast’s and her nails had started to grow crazily, eventually becoming sharp claws with glinting tips.

Clearly, the Vampire Mary had a bestial nature. Her body was up against the wall. Like a gecko, she was climbing around on the vertical wall at an incredibly high speed. She started rushing toward the master of the Tower, Adept Anderson.

Running along the wall at high speeds, when she got close enough to the Adept, Mary kicked off the wall with her powerful legs, catapulting her lithe body toward the Adept at a blazing fast speed. While her body was flying through the air, Mary stretched her claws forward, reaching out to grab at the Adept’s heart.

When faced with this aggressive Vampire in her nascent form, all Adept Anderson did was grin his evil smile. There wasn’t the slightest sign of panic or worry on his face. He shook the staff in his hand, and a small tornado appeared in Mary’s path.

“Even though it is just a homunculus, the bloodthirsty nature actually surpassed the consciousness of the host… what a pity…”

Mary’s body weight was rather light after being modified, so her attacks were focused on speed and agility. Too bad that, in the eyes of an Adept, her innate abilities, though beyond that of normal humans, were not enough to cause him even the slightest bit of worry. Therefore, when Mary slammed into the tornado, she was immediately caught tightly in it, and was unable to escape.

A second later, as the suction force of the tornado became stronger, Mary let out a cry of shock, as her body was being spun about, making her ridiculously dizzy.

Under the control of Adept Anderson, the tornado twisted, and Mary was thrown out from it, forcefully slamming into a nearby stone wall. Although it did not seem like Anderson had put much effort into it, but the impact was enough to take Mary out of the fight. Greem could even hear the sound of bones cracking through the wooden door.

“A newborn Vampire who has lost her mind… Why would I keep you? Go to hell!”

Adept Anderson smiled hideously, then he raised his skinny and wizened right arm, unleashing a pale white flame, filled with the aura of death, which floated above his palm. Then he flipped his palm and pressed down onto the struggling and groaning girl’s forehead.

Perhaps it was because she sensed that her death was near, but this vampire, who were known for having extraordinary senses when it came to detecting danger, finally stopped struggling about like a beast. Mary suddenly let out a grating scream, moving her body backward desperately, a deep fear could be seen in her eyes as she looked at the flame. Those same eyes had shifted from a crimson red to a deep green color.

“Eh?” Master Anderson stopped pressing his arm down. The deathly fireball was still burning quietly, but the cracking sound of a normal fire burning couldn’t be heard. The reflection of the pale dancing white flame made Mary’s pale face look even whiter, as if there was a thick layer of powder applied to it.

“Oh… So the fear of death can make you regain consciousness? This is a phenomenon that I have never seen before… I think there is value in researching this.” Adept Anderson spoke to himself under his breath. He waved his palm and killed off the flame. After that, he snapped his fingers, creating dozens of small air vortexes around Mary’s neck, limbs, and all her joints, firmly chaining her up.

Then he turned around and glanced at Anksorus’s corpse.

Because of Mary’s blood crazy feeding, all the blood in the body had been sucked out. Therefore, Anksorus’s corpse had taken on a very grim visage. What had been healthy looking skin minutes ago had become wizened and saggy, making his corpse look similar to that of a mummy who had been buried underground for dozens of years.

“The original Apprentice Leader is dead… I’ll have you replace him! Remember to properly manage all my apprentices.” With a frown on his face, Adept Anderson simply pointed his finger at Ellen, who was barely able to stand by supporting his weight against the stone walls, and gave out his order in an indifferent tone.

After he finished saying that, the torches on the corridor’s wall suddenly dimmed. When they resumed their original brightness, the master Adept and Mary had disappeared from the corridor.

After witnessing a bloody feast and barely escaping with his life, Ellen was unexpectedly promoted to Apprentice Leader. His body was still trembling violently, and his pants were wet, but his face was filled with a mixture of shock and excitement.

Suddenly he thought of something. With staggered steps, he leaped onto Anksorus’s corpse and began to crazily search through the contents of the dead man’s pockets.

Since he had become the new Apprentice Leader, the Magical Talisman which represented the status of Apprentice Leader now belonged to him. He had to find it as soon as possible.

Waist pocket, inner pocket, neck guard, leather boot…

He performed a thorough search through all the places that could hide things on Anksorus’s body. The corpse, which he had formerly looked on with fear and distaste, had now become his treasure chest, filling him with great delight.

Finally, he found the Magical Talisman on the dreadful looking broken neck of the corpse. Holding it high up, he laughed loudly and merrily, obviously having no idea how insane was his behavior looked in the eyes of others.

Fenrir, who had fainted on the floor, moved his body, struggling long and hard to stand up.

As he gazed at Ellen, he was filled with a murderous intention due to the jealousy he felt.

As a matter of fact, he had awakened long before, but, as he couldn’t predict what would happen, he had remained lying on the ground, pretending he was still unconscious.

Who would’ve thought that his fear would actually make him miss an opportunity to become the next Apprentice Leader, which was quite a prestigious status to him. At this moment, he wished he could strip Ellen’s flesh from his bones!

“Why didn’t that vampire kill him?!?” Fenrir roared furiously in his mind.

But on the surface, he had covered up the feeling of loss and fury, which was so prevalent in his mind. When he stood up from the floor, he had a flattering smile on his face.

“Apprentice Leader Ellen, quickly get up. The floor is dirty. Let me clean up the mess for you!”

Fenrir’s interruption immediately restored Ellen to reason.

Ellen stood up swiftly and tidied up his appearance. While looking at the Magical Talisman in his hands, an arrogant smile covered his face.

“I’ll leave everything here to you! Something bad has happened to the original Apprentice Leader. I need to inform everybody about this urgent news… Hmm. I seem to remember that it is time to feed those Giant Alligators outside…” The last part of the sentence was said in a cruel and uncaring voice.

“Understood! I’ll clean this mess up right away!” Fenrir couldn’t help but bend his head even lower.

After enjoying the first tastes of his newfound power, Ellen couldn’t hold himself back, and let out a loud laugh again. Then he quickly walked down the corridor and out of sight.

He had looted everything left on Anksorus’s body, but there might still be some good stuff left in Anksorus’s room. Therefore, after leaving the mess to Fenrir, he impatiently sprinted toward the end of the corridor.

It took a few minutes for the sound of his malicious laughter to die away.