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“Contract? What contract?”
“First, you cannot reveal any information regarding the advancement to an official Magus. Furthermore, after you become an official Magus, the contract that you signed when you entered the academy would not impose any restrictions on you anymore. Hence, you must swear upon your soul, under the witness of Trial’s Eye, you will be of service to the academy for 100 years!”
“After signing the contract, you will be able to obtain a defensive rank 1 Magus spell for free, and a standard amount of Grine Water!
Leylin saw an introduction to Trial’s Eye before on an ancient manual. It seemed to be a massive organism with Rules from a different world. It did not have a consciousness of its own, and magicians preferred to use it as a witness when undertaking important contracts.
The effectiveness of its constraints was known to be amongst the strongest of all contracts. Moreover, there was no way to be rid of it.
Once an agreement was formed, within the span of a hundred years, even if the academy were to have Leylin sacrifice his life during a battle, he had no choice but to obey.
This agreement was similar to a slave contract, yet it had more constraints stipulated in it than in a regular slave contract.
Leylin rejected it immediately within his heart. He was a person for valued absolute freedom, so it was rather distasteful for him to be under such constraints.
Of course, on the surface, Leylin still pretended to be extremely moved, struggling for an answer.
Finally, Leylin asked, with his throat a little parched, “So, Mentor, did you sign such a contract too?”
“Indeed! And because of this, I’ve joined Abyssal Bone Forest Academy, and became a member of the professors!” Kroft gave a definitive reply, “Actually, the treatment that the academy gives to Magus like us - who came from abroad - is not too bad. They wouldn’t let us take on extremely difficult tasks as well!”
“Professor, asking me to come back to the academy, I’m sure there is some other way?”
Leylin looked at Kroft in anticipation.
Signing a contract and obtaining resources was a very common practice, and had nothing to do with the current precarious situation the academy was in. Leylin naturally did not assume that Kroft asked him to come back for this.
After hearing Leylin’s words, Kroft seemed to be happy. “Indeed, you are still as intelligent as before. Your eyes are also filled with wisdom, if not for your average aptitude, your achievements in future would definitely surpass Merlin’s!”
The façade of inferiority towards Merlin was put on by Leylin. He smiled, not speaking, waiting to hear what Kroft had to say.
“Actually, the war of Abyssal Bone Forest Academy is not over!”
This sentence of Kroft made Leylin’s hair stand straight.
“What?” Leylin was so flabbergasted that he stood up immediately, “Was the war not mediated after the Lighthouse of the Night stepped in to stop Sage Gotham’s Hut and Whitewoods Castle?”
“This news is indeed accurate but is incomplete. The war between official Magi have ended, but for acolytes it is still far from ending!”
Kroft smiled wryly.
“Although Lighthouse of the Night is one of the strongest guilds around, they are not the only one. Behind Sage Gotham’s Hut and Whitewoods Castle, there is also a powerful guild supporting them from behind.
“Hence, under the mediation of Lighthouse of the Night, although the war between both sides has ended, yet there was a special clause!”
“What is it?” Leylin could faintly discern that it had something to do with the acolytes, but he still asked.
“The opposing factions have requested us to recall all of our acolytes, and engage in a bloodbath with their acolytes in a secret plane!
“Secret plane!? Bloodbath?”
Towards Leylin who had abundant information and knowledge, only after searching in the A.I. Chip’s data bank, he found the information he needed regarding those two terms.
The secret plane was a dimension used by magicians to protect their own lab and store their resources. It is created by a spell and the dimension is got by connecting to a region from the outside world.
Because of the powerful spell effects outside of these secret planes, magicians of the acolyte level could not break into it. As for some higher levelled secret planes, even if official Magi were to enter, they would also perish.
With the passing of time, some magician guilds will join forces, using spells to form a temporary secret plane, and conduct some experiments or for war/battle.
As for bloodbath, it contained the meaning of madness and massacre.
In the Magus World, if two magicians have a huge conflict that could not longer be mediated, only with death they would rest their case. Under these circumstances, they will undergo a bloodbath with a host as a witness!
Before the bloodbath, both parties would sign an agreement. After any one side dies, their families, professors and friends may not directly avenge them.
This was a kind of battle, but with the effects of spells, the contracts, too, were difficult to breach. Many magicians with dignity would engage in this life and death conflict, yet they did not wish for the collateral damage to spread. So a bloodbath was the best choice.
“So, the academy summoned us acolytes back…”
Leylin suddenly realised that his throat was extremely parched as if he were a person dying from thirst.
“During the signing of the contract, the other parties have summoned Trial’s Eye as a witness, so our academy could only go according to the stipulated agreement. If not, all of us professors- including the chairman- will have our souls resting in eternal peace…”
“This time, it’s not only you guys, even the other genius fifth-grade acolytes, including your senior Merlin, must participate in this bloodbath. Moreover, the acolytes from each of the 3 academies, will all be at the same place…”
“Wait, which is to say, the acolytes from the other two academies will join forces and attack our Abyssal Bone Forest Academy?”
Leylin felt rather dizzy, Abyssal Bone Forest Academy acolytes have already suffered tremendous casualties from the war before. As for Sage Gotham’s Hut and Whitewoods Castle, they were forces with a level similar to Abyssal Bone Forest Academy. If any of these two were to engage in a bloodbath battle with Abyssal Bone Forest Academy’s acolytes, it would be 50-50, not to mention there’s two of them now.
Moreover, at the moment, there were only 50-60% acolytes remaining behind in Abyssal Bone Forest Academy.
“This is too crazy, why would the academy accept such conditions?”
“There’s no choice, who asked for our academy to be in such a state? Sage Gotham’s Hut and Whitewoods Castle wants to wipe our acolytes out at one go, and let the Abyssal Bone Forest Academy’s legacy be broken!” Kroft smiled bitterly, “Furthermore, be it our acolytes or the enemies’, they are not allowed to bring in any battle items of official Magus strength. This is programmed into the defensive spell of the secret plane. Any tools which exceed the strength of an acolyte will immediately be rejected upon entering the secret plane…”
“Can I still leave now?” Leylin harboured his tiny glimmer of hope.
“What do you think?” Kroft looked at Leylin deeply in the eyes, and the meaning implicated made Leylin quiver.
“Alright then!” Leylin resigned to his fate and sat down. “The bad news is over? You should tell me some good news now!”
“You little brat!” Kroft smiled and shook his head. “Before the bloodbath, the academy will conduct a competition, where the rewards are bountiful. Moreover, various remuneration have increased by twofold, and the spell models and potions on the sales counter are also at a large discount…”
“They want to raise the strength of their own acolytes before the bloodbath, huh?” Leylin thought silently. He was a very optimistic person and had already faintly thought of a scenario like this before, unlike the extremely shocked appearance he was putting on right now. Since there is no room for retreat, his brain immediately adapted to the situation.
“All these have nothing to do with the advancement of official Magus. Previous, Mentor has told me that there is a method to advance, could it be inside the bloodbath?”
“Indeed! The academy has issued a mission to all level 3 acolyte like you for a blood vengeance. You are to massacre as many acolytes as you can inside the bloodbath!”
A sign of madness appeared for the first time on Kroft’s bespectacled features.
“We have assigned points on the enemy acolytes, every level 1 acolyte is worth 1 contribution points, level 2 acolytes are worth 3 points, and level 3 acolyte as 10 points. Towards the more noteworthy acolytes, we have corresponding values assigned to them.
There was a huge temptation behind Kroft’s words, “This time the academy’s mission reward is extremely bountiful. If you were to obtain enough contribution points, no matter if it is a rank 1 Magus defensive spell model or Grine Water, they all can be exchanged for with contribution points!”
“This is the only method that does not require a contract, and still can advance with resources!”
“If it’s this way…” Leylin closed his eyes, and quietly pondered of his mentor’s speech.
On the surface, Leylin looked calm. In fact, his brain had already begun to ponder over various scenarios, with the A.I. Chip constantly bringing out different simulations, projecting them in front of Leylin.
Minutes later, Leylin stood up again and bowed to his Professor Kroft. “If there is nothing else, please allow me to take my leave!”
“Where are you going?” Kroft was rather stunned by his own apprentice’s actions.
“Of course to see the Trading Post and sales counter!”
Leylin bowed again, and after obtaining Kroft’s approval, he left immediately.
Walking on an empty school route, Leylin thought over many things. First of all, trying to escape under the noses of various professors of the official Magus level and then being hunted was something impossible.
Leylin only thought briefly, before beginning to toss that notion away.
Previously, he was able to escape was because of Kroft’s pointer and his personal capabilities. The largest reason was still that the academy allowed him to leave. If not, regardless of then and now, Leylin would never be able to walk out of the academy’s doors.
“Compared to official Magus, it seems like there is more hope in the bloodbath between acolytes, although the situation is still as unfavourable as before!”
Leylin walked to the Trading Post. The acolytes here numbered slightly more than other places, but many acolytes still had glum expressions on their faces. It seems that they had already gotten news of the upcoming bloodbath.
First, Leylin went to Woox’s store to have a look. A pity, however, the little wooden hut was already gone, and the fatty Woox was not known to have escaped or died.
Leylin sighed in disappointment. At the Trading Post, he purchased some ingredients he needed, before walking to the spell models sales counter.
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