Genius Mage in a Cultivation World - Chapter 119: Nightshade (1/3)
Irea asked her question in a normal tone. At most, she was only slightly curious and stunned by the marvelous sight of the completely dark sky. But that situation didn’t last long.
“It’s not me,” Layn said while shaking his head. He strained his eyes, trying to see the source of this unusual blackness.
‘It can’t be an eclipse, not on this scale,’ Layn thought, tuning himself down. Irea followed him to the outside, closing the doors behind her. The voices of the men inside the dorm turned silent. Layn closed his eyes and attempted to sense anything extraordinary.
“Layn?” Irea asked, wrapping her hands around his arm. Her body was slightly trembling. What started as a curiosity now turned into a genuine fear of the unknown.
“I have no idea what’s going on.” Layn gently shook his head. There was no point in trying to cover the truth. Right now, they had to figure out whether their lack of any light from the stars was just a prelude to some real trouble.
A wave crashed into the shore nearby.
“Wait for a second,” Layn requested, prompted by the sound. “When the monsters attacked you, where did they came from?” he asked.
A bad premonition appeared in Layn’s thoughts.
“Back then? From the lake, around….” Irea took aim with her arm before correcting it a few times, “there.” She pointed her hand in the one direction Layn hoped she wouldn’t.
‘Isn’t that where that structure lays?’ The archmage noticed with a grim look surfacing on his face.
“What kind of monsters were they?” Layn turned his head to Irea. His eyes were filled with a strange shine. A shine Irea saw for the first time in her life.
“Ugh?” she mumbled, clearly at a loss for words. “Three of them were like giant frogs, three others looked roughly like snakes,” Irea started recounting, only for Layn to raise his hand and stop her.
“Did they look like seaborn monsters?” He changed his question.
“Oh,” Irea moaned in surprise, finally paying attention to this small detail she missed.
“They were not, right?” Layn didn’t even look at the girl when asking for clarification. His eyes were glued to the shore instead, watching how the ripples on the otherwise flat surface of the water continued to grow bigger and bigger.
“Yeah,” Irea replied, nodding her head to her words.
The sound of the water crashing against the shore intensified. Now even Irea noticed it. Her head turned towards the shore while her eyes widened.
“What are we going to do?” she asked.
“For now, go and alert everyone that something is coming,” Layn replied while biting on his lips.
‘If I’m right,’ Layn thought, analyzing the stray thought that appeared in his head. ‘If that’s right, then it would make sense.’ The archmage looked in the direction of the site from before. ‘If all the monsters it produced would end up as a feed for the existing ones,’ Layn thought while rushing towards the shore, more and more inclined to believe his intuition, ‘then where did all the monsters that are alive come from in the first place?’
There was a chance that the original monsters were introduced here artificially or were naturally present in this place before the site was built. But the chances for it were small. It was impossible to construct such a detailed structure while under constant threat of the monster’s attack.
And that left only one possibility.
This strange, lightless night, when both of the moons and all the stars disappeared, had some kind of effect on the monsters. Maybe said effect applied on all the monsters around, or maybe it only affected those freshly created by that site, allowing for the fresh cycle of newly created monsters to establish themselves in the habitat without being jumped by all the other monsters in the area right off the bat.
‘It would also explain why there was that random attack,’ Layn thought, stepping into the water all the way to the point where it reached his knees. Even without the light, he could feel everything in a small area around him, making Layn completely immune to sneak attacks.
If this kind of blackout was something occurring periodically, the local monsters would develop instincts warning them about it. This was the likely cause behind the monsters attacking Layn’s camp while he was away. Without a presence strong enough to deter them, they just passed through in an attempted escape from an area that would soon turn dangerous!
‘In that sense, it wasn’t an attack at all,’ Layn thought, looking at the huge waves that appeared on the surface of the water in the distance. ‘But I can’t tell them that,’ he thought, turning his head towards the approaching group.
“Why are you guys here?” Rather than rejoicing at the support, Layn scolded his people. “Get back to the dorm. Be ready to leave at the first notice, but stay cooped inside for now,” Layn ordered his people before retreating from the shore himself.
‘Judging from the speed at which the waves are spreading, I should have enough time,” Layn thought, rushing towards the brick-production facility. Only when he got his hands on four bricks, exactly the same as the one used to build the dorm and the kitchen did Layn dare to return to the shore.
At that point, there was no lmore ripples on the surface of the water. The entire lake was rocking in waves up and down, making the place look like a scene of an apocalypse rather than an eerie lakeside plain it was just a few hours ago.
“It’s coming,” Layn said to himself, lowering his body on his knees. The bricks weighed in his hands, making it all the easier to stay leaned forward and down.
“SCREECH!” One of the approaching monsters suddenly jumped out of the water, only to release a deafening scream before diving right back into the lake. The entire motion was pretty similar to what the dolphins would do, but there was no hint of playfulness that those animals would present. The only thing that Layn felt from that slim-whale-looking monster was the killing pressure.
“I guess it’s time to test my theory,” Layn said to encourage himself, watching how the monster jumped out of the water again. Then again.
“Right…” Layn released three of his bricks, making them fall to the ground. “About…” taking aim and precisely measuring the time, the archmage waited.
“NOW!” Screaming from the bottom of his lungs, Layn hurled the brick forward, right before the monster jumped out of the water again. But this time, rather than falling back to the water, the brick smashed it right into a small, rocky protrusion on the monster’s head!
“Fuck, it’s evolved!” Layn only noticed this small peculiarity now. When it came to the bodies of the monsters, outside of the obvious and natural differences required to form a precise shape, the entire body of the monster would have a uniform structure. Outside of claws, teeth, or even hardened legs, the entirety of its skin would be exactly the same here as it would be on the other side of its body.
But that wasn’t the case for the evolved monsters. Monsters that amassed such an insane amount of magic over the course of their existence, that their natural monstrosity was shed and left aside, replaced by the vicious intelligence of a hunter with years of experience.
Thankfully, being an evolved monster only proved to be a handicap in this exact scenario. What Layn’s brick struck, wasn’t just some random protrusion on the body of the monster, but the flaw that appeared on the bodies of every single evolved monster.
Once the monster would reach this one level higher, its power would rise beyond the natural limitations imposed on all living beings by the world itself. While some believed it to be the heavenly intervention aimed at preventing humans from falling prey to the monsters, Layn was too close to science to believe that bunch of crap.
The weak spot was bound to appear in a random place of an evolved monster’s body. While commonly called a weak spot, it was actually a single place where the monster would constantly exchange its mana with the world, allowing it to postpone the deterioration of its flesh caused by the immense power it held.
And with Layn’s brick smashing right at that point, the option for that monster to avoid the natural forces of the world clashing inside its body and obliterating it from within was gone.
“Uff, it worked out nicely,” Layn thought when the body of the attacking monster suddenly bloated up to nearly five times its original size, before simply fading away from existence.
Layn looked at the brick that fell to the water and quickly sunk below its surface. Less for the monster dying, this was the very result Layn was hoping for.
In a clash between an evolved monster and his brick, it was his brick that reigned supreme!
And that meant, the buildings created with the use of those bricks should be safe from any monster incursions!