Chapter 80: A magical cemetery
Han Shuo fell onto solid ground, regained his footing, and took his bearings. He was in a large laboratory. All sorts of containers and large bones were placed everywhere. Several gloomy lights, like green will-o’-wisps, were placed on the walls on the side, lighting up the interior, making it slightly brighter.
There were also a few rooms in the four corners. Han Shuo went into each of the rooms and discovered that two of them were filled with all sorts of books having to do with necromancy magic, and included a few books on dark magic as well. The books in here were obviously all very old. There was a lot of dust on them, and the number of books greatly exceeded the number of books in the dark studies section of the library in the Academy. Many of them were also books that Han Shuo had never heard of.
Magical supplies were stored in the other four rooms. Each of the containers were sealed tightly and were filled with colorful liquid, with some holding strange bones and teeth of vicious beasts that sparkled with light.
Just as Han Shuo was taking measure of his surroundings, the round, green ball in his hand suddenly sent out an eye-dazzling flash of green splendor. The light encompassed the entire laboratory as a black, shadow-like a ghost suddenly materialized in one of the circular magical symbols within the laboratory.
“My child, when you arrive here and see this mirror image, I will have already returned to dust. If you seek to understand everything about the cemetery of death, then you must pay attention and listen to all that I have to say.”
The black shadow was a concentrated mass, whether it was his eyes or the light from the round, green ball, Han Shuo was unable to see its original form. An unpracticed voice slowly formed each word with a bit of difficulty.
Han Shuo was shocked and then immediately realized that this was a way that mages left messages – mirror images. According to the meaning of the words, Han Shuo hastily focused his concentration and listened to every sentence he was saying.
“First, you must know that the cemetery of death was the sacred ground of necromancers during my time. It represents the peak of necromancy magic. The cemetery of death can move. When you finally grasp all that is present here, you will find that you own a frightening city…”
The wispy voice explained ceaselessly. Han Shuo concentrated and listened to the voice’s slow descriptions. When the voice said, “You will still be able to see me on the next level”, the black shadow suddenly disappeared as well.
Apart from the magic matrix above grounds in the cemetery of death, there were two more levels apart from the laboratory and library on this level. In order to fully grasp all the secrets of the cemetery of death, he must travel to the two lower levels as well. Han Shuo had gained this understanding from the black shadow that the cemetery of death was actually a castle that could move, and it was an incredibly powerful castle. This greatly shocked Han Shuo.
The round, green ball was equivalent to a key to enter the cemetery of death. The evil mental brand of a necromancer was held within. If an ordinary person obtained this round ball, they would be unable to escape the corruption of the ball and would finally turn into a senseless zombie, apart from necromancers with the feel of necromancy magic about them.
Although Han Shuo was just a magic apprentice, he still had the presence of necromancy magic about him and thus thankfully hadn’t been assimilated by the curse, but because he had brashly explored when his mental strength had been too weak, he would have been hard pressed to escape death that day if it weren’t for the help of the magical yuan.
The amazing magical yuan was different from all energy of this world. It had actually saved Han Shuo when his mind was being invaded by the mental strength, and had bafflingly helped Han Shuo increase his mental strength. Han Shuo had reaped great rewards in the midst of inhumane pain. This was probably something that the creator of the round, green ball had never imagined.
From the depictions of the black shadow, Han Shuo received limited information. It seemed that a more in-depth explanation existed in the lower two levels. Han Shuo mused silently for a bit, and then reentered the rooms that were full of magic books.
The magic books were the essence of necromancy magic, the product of a time when necromancy magic was at its peak. These were true priceless treasures to Han Shuo. The Academy already had quite a number of books, but books truly dealing with necromancy magic weren’t that many. Most of them only dealt with beginner or journeyman topics, and ones that dealt with more advanced necromancy magic were exceedingly few.
He flipped through the books covered with thick dust in the two rooms. Han Shuo had to sigh in admiration. The magical books here were much more superior compared to the ones at the Academy, whether in terms of quality or quantity.
Three of them were called “Necromancy Magic”, divided into upper, middle, and lower scrolls. They were placed in the most eye catching place and had obviously received special treatment. They were placed in a magical container and still looked quite new. They probably wouldn’t be damaged even in tens of thousands of years.
The upper scroll of “Necromancy Magic” was already quite thick. Han Shuo discovered that it recorded, in detail, everything from the beginning of necromancy magic to the true essence of necromancy magic. The knowledge held within was quite different from what was taught by the Academy, much of the necromancy knowledge and magics recorded were those that Han Shuo had never heard of.
There were handwritten notes on every page starting from the middle scroll, providing detailed footnotes to the content on the page, but it looked like the three scrolls were of one entity. When Han Shuo read the middle and lower scroll, he still couldn’t understand some of the knowledge within even with the aid of the notes.
Han Shuo could just barely understand the first half of the upper scroll, but unfortunately, without the presence of handwritten notes, Han Shuo still felt it very difficult to understand. Perhaps the person who had prepared this set of magical books had felt that people wouldn’t need notes to understand the upper scroll, and that’s why he didn’t leave any explanations.
After thinking for a while, Han Shuo decided to start with the first scroll. He planned on using this complete set of “Necromancy Magic” as his textbooks and slowly study and train from them. After forming his determination, Han Shuo took the round ball and departed from this level, returning to the surface level. He wasn’t affected by the boundary and began to study this scroll, forgoing meals and forgetting to sleep.
Han Shuo was preoccupied with this scroll of “Necromancy Magic” for many days in a row, understanding all the words inside by studying every word. From this set of “Necromancy Magic”, Han Shuo understood that the knowledge and spells currently taught at the Academy were much more shallow than the explanations in the books.
There were many evil magics that Han Shuo would be unable to learn from Fanny.
“Corpse Reanimation” was a basic kind of necromancy magic. It used necromancy magic to turn those who had died into zombies, and would start fighting according to the caster’s will. If mental strength was sufficient enough, a terrifying zombie army could be reanimated.
“Canopy of Necromancy” was another evil magic. As long as “Canopy of Necromancy was released”, the battle strength and agility of dark creatures would be greatly increased beneath the coverage of the canopy and the enemy would have difficulty adjusting to this area spell, decreasing their battle strength.
Numerous spells similar to “Corpse Reanimation” and “Canopy of Necromancy” were listed within the scroll. It was said that these magics had been lost for a long time and none of the necromancers today could grasp them, but there were detailed descriptions within this scroll of “Necromancy Magic”.
Han Shuo understood that he had picked up a precious treasure. If this scroll of “Necromancy Magic” was circulated, then it could possibly immediately change the current condition of necromancers, noticeably increasing the level of the necromancer’s strength. The terror of necromancers would then once again materialize.
He studied for nearly ten days, either meditating or studying the scroll of “Necromancy Magic”. “Corpse Reanimation” was a basic spell, but unfortunately Han Shuo had no corpses to practice on. “Canopy of Necromancy” was an advanced spell, Han Shuo was equally unable to practice it because he lacked the mental strength to do so.
But through his practice during this time, Han Shuo mastered the bone spear magic. Even the zombie summoning spell was almost at hand, but he met with some resistance when communicating with the other dimension.
After calculating the time, it was about time that the Demonslayer Edge was complete. Han Shuo thought for a bit and left the cemetery of death with the small skeleton, carefully evading a few level 3 and above magical creatures. He hunted a few low level monsters and took them with him, once again walking to the dwarves’ village.
Midway there, just when Han Shuo was about to enter the dwarves’ village, he heard the sound of weapons clashing. Han Shuo was greatly shocked and picked up his speed, threading through the trees and bushes with the little skeleton and rushing towards the source of the sounds.
A couple dozen man-eating monsters and almost a hundred goblins were wielding weapons and besieging the dwarves. The dwarves held brand new weapons in their hands, and were so much sharper compared to the ones that the man-eating monsters and goblins were using. The goblins in particular were using a few crude blades and wooden sticks, breaking into many pieces whenever they clashed with the dwarves.
It was the superiority of their weapons that had enabled the vastly outnumbered dwarves to defend until now. The dwarf village was behind them not too far away, and women and children with no fighting ability were there. For the safety of the village, they couldn’t even retreat into the village in case they exposed the village and endangered the women and children.
Han Shuo took in this scene and immediately became enraged. His crossbow had already appeared in his hand as he ran and several crossbow bolts broke through the air with a whistling sound, shooting down a man-eating monster and two goblins. The little skeleton seemed to sense Han Shuo’s anger from the depths of his heart and flew towards the front. The seven bone spurs on its back shot in all directions and lines of blood appeared on the bodies of these man-eating monsters and goblins after ear-piercing sounds rang out.
“Oh, it’s Han! He’s here!” Bennett, who was hoisting up an iron club and surrounded by five or six goblins, when he suddenly saw Han Shuo’s figure and exclaimed in surprise.
Like a wolf entering a herd of sheep, the arrival of Han Shuo and the little skeleton immediately heralded a slaughter. The little skeleton was particularly fierce. Its seven bone spurs danced amongst the crowd of man-eating monsters and goblins, causing injuries and fatalities to them.
After Han Shuo had arrived, he first summoned a few skeletal warriors and they all wielded bone daggers as they dashed towards these villains. Han Shuo himself rather held his ground and targeted the man-eating monster and goblins who had died, beginning to release the spell of “Corpse Reanimation”.
After failing a few times, Han Shuo still continued to remain where he stood and repeatedly chanted the incantation, under the surprised looks of the dwarves, attempting to make the bodies, who had just lost their lives, rise again.
Finally, an ugly goblin with a crossbow bolt still sticking out of its chest suddenly stood up after Han Shuo cast his spell. It grabbed a metal club and tottered over, starting to attack the goblin next to him that was still alive. With one success under his belt, Han Shuo calmly recalled the steps he had just taken when casting and once again cast a “Corpse Reanimation” spell.
He succeeded once again, it was a man-eating monster this time. Under the release of Han Shuo’s “Corpse Reanimation” spell, another five or six man-eating monsters and goblins stood up, raising their weapons in accordance with Han Shuo’s commands and starting to attack the living man-eating monsters and goblins.
When the man-eating monsters and goblins discovered this phenomenon, this immediately caused a strong wave of terror and panic to spread amongst them. These man-eating monsters and goblins were shocked out of their wits seeing their dead companions stand up vacantly and attack them. Saying a few sentences in their own language and pointing at Han Shuo in fright, all of them scattered like the four winds as they fled for their lives.
Even the dwarves on the side felt a bit of fear. They all looked at Han Shuo with exceedingly odd looks, different from those they looked at him usually. Han Shuo blanked and then immediately reacted. He dissolved his spell and the dead man-eating monsters and goblins fell down once again.
“Han, this magic of yours is too evil. Even we are a bit afraid.” Bennett walked towards Han Shuo and spoke haltingly.
Han Shuo knew that the spell of “Corpse Reanimation” was indeed quite evil, and ordinary people would be unable to accept it. He thought for a moment and nodded, saying, “Bennett, I understand what you mean, but I’ve done so in order to save all of you.”
“We understand, thank you Han. However, this kind of magic is truly hard to accept. Even the villainous man-eating monsters and goblins were scared witless by you. Heh heh, let’s go. Your weapon is ready and we’ll give it to you when we arrive at the village.”
“You guys have finished it!” Han Shuo was truly astonished upon hearing that the Demonslayer Edge was ready. He brought up the rear and walked towards the dwarf village.
The little skeleton’s seven bone spurs reattached to its spine and didn’t head for the dwarf village along with Han Shuo. Rather, it followed Han Shuo’s orders and looted the bodies of the dead with a practiced air.
Following Calvin, Han Shuo came to the dwarf village and arrived at the site where the Demonslayer Edge was crafted.
“Han, this is the weapon that we’ve forged according to your requirements. Are you satisfied with it?” Bennett pointed with the hammer in his hand at a weapon on the side as he spoke to Han Shuo.
The Demonslayer Edge was two feet long, and a cold light sparkled along its keen edge. The body was dark brown with three raised thorns at the spiky tip. It was heavy in his hand.
Han Shuo held the Demonslayer Edge and carefully observed it, suddenly stabbing the whetstone beneath it. The Demonslayer Edge sank into the whetstone.
Nodding, Han Shuo looked at the somewhat uneasy Calvin in satisfaction. He smiled, “Elder, thank you for your crafting. I really like this weapon.”
“Heh heh, as long as you like it. This weapon has black iron and black gold mixed in as well as more than ten rare metals. I’m also very satisfied with this weapon.” Calvin breathed a sigh of relief and looked at the Demonslayer Edge as he spoke.
“Be on the alert, man-eating monster and goblins may appear again during this period of time. I will leave for a while and will bring your winter rations with me next time I visit. Make sure to take care.”
After reminding these dwarves, Han Shuo eagerly returned to the cemetery of death, circulating the magic within his body. He used the essence of his blood as a circuit to the Demonslayer Edge, refining the weapon for the next three days and three nights according to the memories left behind by Chu Cang Lan. Han Shuo’s blood was intermixed with magical yuan as it slowly flowed into the Demonslayer Edge.
After three days, Han Shuo was drained and worn out and felt that his magical yuan was a running dry. The originally dark-brown Demonslayer Edge had turned dark red. After Han Shuo’s magical yuan recovered over the next couple of days, he started practicing the “Law of Activating Magic” with the Demonslayer Edge, attempting to manipulate the weapon with his mind.
During this process, the meridians of Han Shuo’s body would occasionally swell painfully. Han Shuo still gritted his teeth against the enormous impact of the waterfall on this day, continuously using magical yuan to refine the meridians in his body. He suddenly sank into a mental state.
Under unbeknownst circumstances, Han Shuo slowly woke up. He discovered that at some unknown time, he had already fallen into the deep pool. When he emerged from the frigid waters of the deep pool, he suddenly discovered that the Demonslayer Edge had disappeared. Startled, he wanted to quickly find the Demonslayer Edge again.
At this moment, a dark-red light suddenly shot out from the waters and flew towards Han Shuo. Han Shuo had thought danger had found him and was planning on evading it when he realized that a bizarre feeling had risen in his heart. It was as if the dark red light shooting towards him had some sort of connection to him.
He first blanked, and then a thought flashed through his mind. Suddenly enlightened, Han Shuo’s thoughts moved. The dark red light shooting towards him suddenly started dancing in mid air. Han Shuo then sensed a fish in the waters of the pool and a thought bubbled up in his mind. The fish was instantaneously pierced through by the Demonslayer Edge.
“It looks like I’ve succeeded.” Han Shuo’s left hand reached out and the Demonslayer Edge shot out from the waters, landing in Han Shuo’s palm.
Circulating his magical yuan, the speed of the “Mystical Glacial Spellfire” was many times faster than usual. Han Shuo was shocked again, and then suddenly discovered that traces of frosty air was leaking out from the Demonslayer Edge, held in his left hand with the mystical glacial air being infused into it. Because the Demonslayer Edge was pointed at the deep pool, a layer of ice had already formed on the surface of the pool as the waters gave off frigid air.
He knew that these were the signs of having broken through the “open passages” and reaching the “molded spirit realm”. Han Shuo was gratified to know that after a few life and death struggles and several sleepless nights of magic training, he had finally once again achieved a breakthrough.
Han Shuo’s magic had once again improved now, and a most excellent Demonslayer Edge was now in his hands. Han Shuo felt that it was time to leave the cemetery of death and thoroughly eliminate the threat known as Grover.
Walking out from the tombs in the mountains behind the Academy, Han Shuo didn’t immediately find Phoebe. Han Shuo harbored feelings of affection towards Fanny. He had planned on asking her a few questions on magical knowledge after their last meeting, but it was a pity that he had received the black gold ore from Phoebe and had eagerly returned to the cemetery of death.
The upper scroll of “Necromancy Magic” contained much knowledge that Han Shuo did not fully understand. This scroll didn’t have many notes. As an adept mage, Fanny was bound to have a more in-depth understanding. Therefore, Han Shuo had long since noted the topics he didn’t understand and wanted to find a chance to ask Fanny again.
The Babylon Academy of Magic and Force had an exalted position within the Empire. Although Grover hated Han Shuo’s guts, he wouldn’t dare brazenly make a move against Han Shuo on school grounds. The teachers of various majors were all quite strong, apart from the necromancy major, the other majors had even more stronger characters acting as overseers. Even if the killers of ‘Shadow Ghost’ came looking for him, it was impossible for them to leave alive once they had been discovered.
It was now dusk and the students were now relaxing or eating meals after a day of learning. Han Shuo didn’t directly go look for Fanny at her lab, afraid that this would attract the attention of others. He waited a while until the sky had completely darkened, before walking to the small building that Fanny lived in without anyone knowing.
Han Shuo had stayed in the necromancy major for so long and had long since learned of where Fanny lived because of his feelings for her. He skillfully deciphered the appropriate direction under the cover of the night, walking to the teacher dormitory building in which Fanny resided.