Lone shook his head after recalling his experience with Darkness and tapped into the element's power. Unfortunately, it had a very visual effect.
"Lone-ro! Your fur!" Lossa called out in shock.
Indeed, Lone now looked exactly like the version of himself that was inside of Darkness' Pyramid. Deep purple tails, hair and eyes.
"Don't worry, I'm perfectly fine," Lone said. His voice sounded far more relaxed and soothing than it usually did. This was another side-effect of using Darkness' powers. His attitude became ever so slightly similar to the element's, however, he was most definitely still Lone.
Sophie frowned. She didn't like this change to Lone. Something about his tails in this mode made them seem not as fluffy as usual, which was a disaster in and of itself and it disturbed Sophie deeply.
"Well, if you'd allow me, I kinda need to touch your heads for this to work," Lone shrugged with a slightly embarrassed face.
"Bah, damned charlatan," Brahman mumbled under his breath before crossed his arms and wearing a dissatisfied expression.
Lone ignored the Purity Dragonkin and waited for permission from the two Foxkin. Tama and Lars looked unsure of what to do. Lars looked at Lossa for guidance. The clan Elder smiled and nodded her head. Seeing this, Lars looked at Lone and said, "I'll be putting myself and my wife in your care then, Lone-ro."
Lone didn't hesitate and put a hand on either Foxkin's head. Tama and Lars immediately closed their eyes and held their breath. Naturally, they had little hope for being cured, but for some reason, Lossa, their clan's Elder, had faith in the young nine-tailed Foxkin before them, so they would be lying if they were to say that they didn't wish for a chance to live a normal life again.
A few moments passed and nothing seemed to change. A heavy feeling entered Lossa's chest and she looked disappointed.
A massive grin spread across Brahman Elksworth's lips. "As I said, a swindler. Lossa, was it not obvious at first glance that this whelp stood no chance at curing Mr and Mrs Redtail? It pains my heart knowing that they will never be cured, but it really was a horrible and devious act to promise such an impossible thing."
"My apologies, Lord Elksworth," Lossa clasped her hands and bowed, "I did not mean to offend you and I beseech you to not hold Lone-ro accountable for his rash actions. He is still young and knows little of the world."
Brahman waved his hand in a magnanimous way. "No matter. I was unjustified in my provocations earlier as well. I can see that he's a talented youth, so it's only natural for him to overestimate his abilities."
Eolande looked at the ancient Dragonkin stroking his beard with an ecstatic look on his face. it was arguably the most defining trait of a Purity Dragonkin, the ability to tell if another person was telling the truth, and this fact confused Eolande slightly.
"Hey, Wrinkles, are you really a Purity Dragonkin?" Eolande said very disrespectfully as she hovered around the very old man.
"Are you talking to me, Tylwyth Teg?" Brahman raised an eyebrow and forced his SS-Ranker aura to encompass Eolande and only Eolande.
Naturally Lossa and Lone detected this. Lone remained focused on what he was doing while Lossa had a panic attack. She had just smoothed things out, and now Lone's companion had outright insulted Lord Elksworth to his face. Lossa was wondering, that if at this point, was looking out for Lone really worth it?
"Who else would I be talking to?" Eolande looked at Brahman like he was an idiot. "You're the only one in this room that looks like a dried-up apricot."
'She's dead. After saying something like that, there's no way Lord Elksworth will forgive her, is there?' For the first time in at least two-centuries, Lossa felt like hiding in a corner and crying her eyes out.
A thoughtful look spread across Brahman's face before he sighed and brought his aura back into his body. "To think that you really did escape. That was certainly one of the more interesting millenniums. How long ago was that, three, four thousand years ago? I forget these things with my age. So, I'd like to ask why someone like yourself is travelling with an arrogant pup like this man, but first, I'll have you explain what you meant."
"Interesting," Eolande smiled. She didn't expect to meet someone that recognised her so soon, and it was a fascinating encounter at that. It was true that the entire continent had heard of her and her people when they were hunted, but to think that rumours of her survival had persisted to this day... this was truly interesting.
Al'ka and the Foxkin present were confused. Why did the normally short-fused Lord Elksworth suddenly ignore the blatant provocations of an H-Ranked warrior? Not to mention that he was talking as if the weak Eolande was as old or older than he was.
"What I meant was, are you really a Purity Dragonkin? From my knowledge, they can tell when someone is lying, and Husband was telling the truth about being able to cure those two." Eolande's gaze turned to Lone who still held the heads of the two unsure Foxkin and he had a clearly focused expression on his face.
'Husband? So the greatly coveted Fairy Princess of my youth was finally captured? Perhaps the God of Fortune favours this young Foxkin? Well, there goes my opportunity to teach him a lesson. I can't do anything extreme with such a powerful backer by his side,' Clearly, Brahman knew more than he let on.
"Of course I could sense that he was telling the truth," Brahman snorted.
"Then why do you insist that he'll fail?" Eolande was confused.
"Just because he'll fail, it doesn't mean that the boy can't believe he'll succeed. You should know that us Purity Dragonkin can only tell if a person believes that they are telling the truth or not. The lad's overestimated his ability and thus thinks he's capable of something that even I can't hope to accomplish." Brahman had a smug look on his face after saying this.
"You're really starting to annoy me. Just shut up, you damned backseat healer," Lone's voice could be heard snarling.
Suddenly, a deep and powerful purple aura covered both Tama and Lars, the Foxkins' children. This aura created a vast pressure. Lone was trying his best to contain it, but it inevitably leaked out and filled the entire room.
Everyone was struggling to breathe, even Eolande, at the sheer might of this power. Brahman was prepared to cut Lone's head off at that very moment because he was under the assumption that whatever Lone was trying to do had backfired and was now running rampant.
Luckily for Lone, No one except for himself could move. 'You sure are taking your time, Darkness. What's the hold up for? It shouldn't be that hard to dispel their curse, right?'
'Of course, Master. Simply raise your strength to the Cosmic level, then it will only take me a mere second or two to nullify the curse of an adult Darkness Dragon,' Darkness responded sarcastically.
'... Point taken,' Lone conceded.
If one were to look very closely, it would appear that the purple aura was actively fighting against the black patches of skin on Tama and Lars' bodies. However, the aura was clearly losing.
'Wasting my energy on such a weak curse... Master, this is going to hurt, a lot. I'm done trying to get rid of this damned curse. I'm going to absorb it instead. Afterall, this has drained far too much of my power,' Darkness said and he waited no time at all to hear a response from Lone.
"AHHHHHHH!" Lone roared in pain. Normally, nothing could harm him like this. He was more or less immune to physical and mental pain. What was happening right now was that the purple aura of Darkness was consuming the black patches of skin.
They were flaking off and slowly climbing Darkness' aura before entering Lone's body. It felt like his soul was being shaken to its very core. It only took a moment or two for all of the patches to enter Lone's body. They all disappeared and left no clear marks. However, Lone was left sprawled out on the floor.
He was still awake, but he was gripping his head like he wanted to tear it open and destroy his own mind. A few seconds passed and Lone's wailing stopped followed by Darkness' aura disappearing. What was left was simply Lone who looked no different from before except for his purple-tipped tails, which were now slightly longer and the purple hue in his eyes was slightly larger.
'Perfect... congratulations, Master, this is your first ever awakening that you've ever experienced while being fully conscious.' Darkness sounded playful, but Lone ignored him and simply lay on the floor as he struggled for breath.
"Lone! Are you okay?!" Sophie yelled before immediately rushing to his side and propping his head up to rest on her lap.
Everyone else realised that he wasn't in the best of conditions. It was just such a shocking scene that everyone forgot to think momentarily.
A dangerous look flashed through Brahman's eyes and he was about to jump onto Lone and kill him. 'That power inside of him, it's too dangerous to let loose on the world!'
"Move another step, Wrinkles, and I'll kill you," the bloodthirsty and serious voice of Eolande washed over Lord Elksworth, instantly stopping him in his tracks.
'Indeed, a frightening woman to be able to intimidate a mightly SS-Ranked Purity Dragonkin. Just who is this girl?' Lossa thought to herself.
"I'm fine," Lone said while Sophie gently wiped away the sweat on his forehead. "Anyway, I think the most important thing right now, is you, Brahman."
"Yes?" Lord Elksworth was fully expecting Lone to get angry at his attempted interference and hostile attitude, however, lone's next works almost gave the ancient Dragonkin a heart attack.
"Why aren't your shoes off yet? You have a pair of socks to eat," Lone grinned as he enjoyed the soft feeling of Sophie's lap on the back on his head.
Everyone was dumbstruck. Everyone except for Sophie. Her hands were very busily stroking and squeezing the tips of Lone's tails and she was trying very hard to not squeal with delight. 'They're so much fluffier!'
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