Dyon steeled him at the final words he’d be hearing for the next few months.
‘Think about it this way. In two months, you’ll be strong, right?’ Dyon chuckled to himself, trying to ignore the nervous sweat creeping down his back.
Feeling something touch down on him, Dyon took in a sharp breath, trying to prepare himself… But, nothing could have made him ready for this…
Suddenly, Dyon felt like screaming. He didn’t know whether he did or not. In fact, he couldn’t even feel his own throat vibrate anymore. It was as though the ripping in his chest was all there was to the world.
It felt like his entire body was restructuring itself, breaking down into its smallest components before reforming… Just to break down again.
And maybe the worst part was that he couldn’t hear himself scream. It made him feel as though his pain was insignificant… As though in the grand scheme of things, his feelings meant nothing…
All he could do was endure. To feel his organs being shoved apart and rearranged. He had to feel his rib cage expand and contract, bursting out of itself just to reform again – then repeat.
Maybe the most uncomfortable feeling was the invasion of his brain… The uncomfortable crawling of his skin… The feeling of having himself turned inside out…
And yet, there was still worse to come… The nervous system was the connection of the natural to the supernatural as Dyon had said.
Now, what do you think happens when untold pain finds its way to the system responsible for letting you know that you’re in pain…
It was as though there was no break to breathe. The meridians were forcibly attaching themselves to a system of things they had no business being a part of before.
They ripped apart Dyon’s nerves, finding homes for themselves within. They pumped Dyon’s body with essence energy, only amplifying his senses to everything that was going on… and yet still, there was more to come.
Because… the implanting of the meridians was only the first part…
What happens when fully opened meridians enter and merge with the body of a boy still within the foundation stage? … Agony. Pure and untold agony.
Dyon’s body began to bulge as new energies ravaged him. He felt every new will of the Gama energy the meridians had been tempered with coursing through him, but they were of no help… They were like a doorway he was barred from, only to supply him with pain when he poked and prodded.
And yet, still, Dyon couldn’t hear himself scream… There was no one to hear his pitiful cries and the old man had pretended as though he had never known Dyon in the first place.
It was as though nuclear bombs were going off … 108 of them… And Dyon was just a spectator to the destruction of his own body…
In the end… Dyon’s body really did burst apart…
Just the bulb of his aurora protecting his soul within remained as the blood and gore floated around him, trying to slowly reform itself.
But, somehow, the pain was still very real.
Every blob of blood felt as though it was still a part of Dyon… every bit of flesh that had been torn asunder… And still, he couldn’t hear his own scream…
At Lotus Tower, a battle still raged on. It had been months since Dyon’s disappearance, and Ri no longer worried as much as she had… But, she still got the sinking feeling that something major must be going on for her fiancé to still not have come back yet.
‘Are you conquering the Epistemic Tower right now?... Are you safe?...’
“Commander! We need to pull back!” Arios’ voice snapped Ri out of her trance.
She suddenly realized that her vision was red and that she could barely feel her arms even though he sword was held out in front of her. ‘What’s wrong with me?...’
A strong hand grasped Ri’s shoulder as they teleported away from the battle field.
“Ugh.” RI collapsed to her knee, stabbing her sword into the ground as she took deep breaths.
“What’s going on?” She asked. Looking around, Ri was truly confused.
All of the demon generals had teleported away along with the elves and the few from the Niveus Sect. Right now, they stood as the center of a teleportation pad, distortions fluctuating around them faintly.
Akash kneeled beside Ri, wiping the blood from her forehead. It seemed that Ri had been fighting so hard that she hadn’t even noticed a gash had opened up, reddening her vision.
“Silly girl. You’re a princess. Didn’t you realize you were out there fighting alone? We were worried sick so we sent Arios out to get you.”
“Alone? Since when?” Ri truly hadn’t noticed. But, that was beside the point. Why had everyone pulled back?
“It was only a few minutes before we noticed, but, it took Arios quite a while to cut his way to you…”
“But, what’s going on?”
Arios sighed. “You’ve been too distracted to notice. But, I can’t blame you.”
Ri was too disoriented to understand what was going on. If Dyon had been here, he would have likely diagnosed her with a concussion. But, symptoms like that for a martial warrior would disappear within minutes.
“On the first day,” Akash spoke up. “Dyon took out four hundred thousand.” She said solemnly. “With the following two weeks, we managed to whittle them down to just one hundred thousand by using your tactics… But…”
“But?” Ri’s eyes blinked, still trying to adjust to her surroundings.
“But, it’s been more than two months since then and yet it doesn’t seem like their numbers have gone down at all. In fact, in that time, we’ve only taken out an additional ten thousand…”
“What?” Ri tried to stand but stumbled. It was suddenly clear to her that she had long since lost her faith seed transformation. Why had it taken her so long to realize something like that? She was supposed to be commanding! ‘Dammit!’
Over the past two months, the basilisks had been stalling for time… And it seemed like the lotus alliance was running out of time to figure out why such aggressive beasts had suddenly become so clever…
And now, suddenly only their most elite of warriors were left…
What the lotus alliance didn’t know was that a massive army of essence gathering experts was headed toward their location. And Bas and Liska were certain it wasn’t something they were prepared for…