Book 3, Mountain Range of Magical Beasts – Chapter 14, Danger (part 2)

“Ah….ah!!!” His wrist had been totally bitten off. The pain caused the dark shadow to scream in misery.

With a flash, the little Shadowmouse, Bebe, suddenly arrived right in front of the dark shadow. The dark shadow stared with terror and amazement at the pet-sized Shadowmouse. “What…what…what freak is this?” The dark shadow definitely couldn’t believe that this was a Shadowmouse. He had seen Shadowmice before, and none were this terrifying.

The dark shadow forced himself to ignore the pain from his severed wrist as he generated a dark layer of protective battle-qi while also moving to flee.

The dark shadow only seemed to see the little Shadowmouse flicker in front of him. And then, he felt sudden, excruciating pain, as the little Shadowmouse had lunged forward and bit him directly on the throat. Even his protective layer of dark battle-qi was chewed through.

“CRUNCH!”

That person’s quavering scream suddenly cut off. Half his neck had been bitten off. His head was only attached to his body by a thin strip of flesh. The eyes of this dark shadow gradually lost all life, and his body slumped down to the ground.

At this time, Linley also landed on the ground. He immediately pulled out the dagger, blood already pouring from the wound in his chest, staining his clothes red. Seeing the wound in his chest, Linley felt his heart quiver. If his opponent’s knife had went in just a few more centimeters, his heart would have been penetrated.

“So close. Just a bit further, and my life would’ve been gone.”

After this narrow shave, Linley couldn’t help but turn to look at the little Shadowmouse, Bebe. Bebe urgently said, “Boss, what’s the situation?”

“Not too bad. I didn’t lose my life.” Linley smiled at Bebe. If it weren’t for Bebe, he really would’ve died.

Hearing these words, Bebe’s face was no longer as frantic as it was earlier. At the same time, he also began to grow cocky. The fur on his back stood up straight, and he began wagging his posterior at Linley. After wagging a few times, he delightedly said to Linley through their mental bond, “Boss, you are way too weak. You keep on saying that you want to train yourself, but look! You almost just got yourself assassinated by that guy.” There was no way that the little Shadowmouse, Bebe, was going to give up this opportunity to mock Linley.

Linley only chuckled.

“Bebe, thanks. You saved my life just then.” Looking at the those two terrifying wounds on his chest, Linley couldn’t help but sigh. “And this was just the first day!”

Doehring Cowart appeared as well, also sighing in surprise. “This assassin’s subterfuge abilities were really terrifying. This time, the little Shadowmouse really saved the day. If it weren’t for him, Linley, you would’ve been done for. As for me, this useless old fellow, all I have left is my spirit. There’s no way for me to rescue you.”

Linley understood that Doehring Cowart, despite being a Saint-level Grand Magus, only had his spirit left.

“Doehring Cowart, how could that assassin move so quickly? Even with the assistance of wind-style magic, I couldn’t outpace him.” Linley didn’t really understand.

Doehring Cowart explained, “That assassin should’ve been a warrior of the sixth rank, but he specialized in the strange, secretive ways of darkness-element battle-qi. In addition, he should’ve received special training in subterfuge and concealing his aura. A warrior of the sixth rank who has received special training should have higher combat ability than the average warrior of the sixth rank. Darkness-element battle-qi is quite strange and secretive. Most likely, he specialized in a certain darkness-element technique that boosted his speed.”

Linley nodded slightly.

Darkness-element magic or battle-qi was forbidden in the Holy Union. In the Four Great Empires and in the Dark Alliance, however, the darkness styles were not forbidden. Similarly, in the Dark Alliance, light-style magic and battle-qi training was forbidden.

“Boss, get over here quick!” The little Shadowmouse, Bebe, began jumping out and down next to the corpse of the assassin.

Linley glanced over questioningly. “Bebe, what is it?”

“This assassin had a pouch on his back.” The little Shadowmouse, Bebe, said excitedly. Linley walked over to the assassin’s corpse. The black clothes on the assassin’s back had already been ripped apart. Clearly, this was the doing of the little Shadowmouse.

Beneath the torn back clothes, a backpack was tightly strapped to the assassin’s back.

“Linley, I’ll wager that those five we saw earlier was killed by him as well. Based on his ability, who knows how many he has killed? His pouch most likely has quite a few magicite cores.” Doehring Cowart smiled as he spoke.

Linley couldn’t help but feel excited. Based on this assassin’s prowess, he perhaps was able to kill even your average warrior of the sixth rank. Most likely, he had quite a few possessions.

“Squeak squeak!” The little Shadowmouse grabbed the backpack with his teeth, and with a bound, leapt on top of Linley’s shoulder.

Seeing this, Linley couldn’t help but feel secretly surprised. “Bebe’s speed really is incredibly fast now. Even though that assassin was very fast as well, he was only a bit faster than me. But Bebe’s speed is fast enough that I don’t even have the ability to react to him. No wonder that assassin was bitten to death by Bebe without even having the chance to dodge or block.”

“Squeak! Squeak!” Holding the backpack by his teeth, the little Shadowmouse, Bebe, shook it a few times. “Boss, hurry up and open it up to take a look!” He said rather urgently to Linley through their link.

Bebe was very curious as to what was inside the pouch.

Laughing, Linley accepted the pouch. This was a pitch-black backpack, also made from leather, but clearly of far higher quality than Linley’s own leather backpack. Most likely, it was made from the skin of some high-rank magical beast. He opened the backpack.

Seeing the items inside, Linley’s eyes lit up. Within the backpack, there was a set of clothes, some dried rations, and a sack of gold coins. Inside the backpack, the largest space was reserved for a large sack of items. Opening up the sack, Linley couldn’t help but suck in a cold breath of surprise.

“How many people and how many magical beasts has this assassin killed?” Linley was somewhat stunned. The contents of this large sack were all sparkling, rainbow-colored magicite cores, and even a few large magicite gems mixed in.

“So many magicite cores! There’s got to be at least a few dozen cores here.” Linley felt excited.

Linley immediately began to count the number of cores, and also differentiate them by value. Differentiating the amount of magical energy contained within a magicite core was quite easy for a magus. In a short while, Linley had completed his accounting of the various cores within the pouch.

“A total of 102 magicite cores and 7 magicite gems. For the magicite cores, there are five magicite cores of the sixth rank, 26 magicite cores of the fifth rank, and 71 magicite cores of the fourth rank. No cores of the third rank. For the magicite gems, six are medium-grade magicite gems, while one is high-grade.”

Linley could feel his heart beat frantically. What Linley didn’t realize yet was that this assassin had also acquired magicite cores of the third rank; he just didn’t bother keeping any of them.

As for the magicite gems?

Magicite gems were usually affixed to a magestaff to help the magus rapidly recover his mageforce. All of them had been acquired after the assassin had killed a magus and torn the magicite gem from the magestaff.

“The 102 magicite cores are probably worth around 13,000-14,000 gold coins, while the seven magicite gems are worth around 1600 gold coins at least. All together, the value of these things is about 15,000 gold coins.” After reaching this calculation, Linley couldn’t help but feel surprised and overjoyed. In a single backpack from an assassin, he had suddenly gained so much wealth.

As for his clan?

Previously, in order to acquire the funds to send his little brother Wharton off to the O’Brien Academy, the clan had virtually exhausted all of its savings. Even if you asked the Baruch clan to produce just ten thousand gold coins, it would be extremely difficult.

“This is just my first day in the Mountain Range of Magical Beasts, and I’ve already acquired so much. How much will I have gained after two months?” Linley’s heart was filled with anticipation.

But Linley also knew quite well that there was no way he would constantly meet with such a ‘fat sheep’ for slaughtering. In addition, most ‘fat sheep’ were quite powerful as well. This time, Linley had nearly died. Thinking back to what had just happened, Linley couldn’t help but touch the wounds on his chest as well as the wounds on his face caused by the shattered straight chisel.

Linley suddenly turned to stare at the ten dead Windwolves.

“Ten or so magicite cores of the fourth rank, combined, are worth several hundred gold coins as well. Can’t let’m go to waste.” Holding the assassin’s knife in his hand, Linley went over to the Windwolf corpses and began digging out the magicite cores, one after another. Upon using the knife, Linley came to the realization that it was much sharper than the one he had been using.

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