Supreme Magus Chapter 1407 | legion20
The Master couldn't believe that beings millennia old could also be so stupid that they would face Baba Yaga with outdated artifacts. Unfortunately, Adamant was rare and to equip a single creature the size of any of the Guardians' bloodlines required tons of enchanted metal.
After Xenagrosh purified Adamant to its utmost limit with Origin Flames, its quality increased tenfold, yet its mass decreased by the same amount. The Master couldn't afford to go into battle with the Guardians without giving the Abominations the best money could offer.
Davross was so rare that even Eldritch Abominations older than the Guardians had just acc.u.mulated a few ingots. Enough for a man, but barely enough to cover one of Xenagrosh's talons after she shapeshifted.
The Master had given up on finding enough Davross to make equipment and relied on the black market for a regular supply of Adamant of. The Gorgons living in Leegaain's lair produced the priceless metal simply by breathing on grass, making it inexhaustible.
The Guardian would put batches of Adamant on the market from time to time, to allow powerful Forgemasters to put their abilities to the test and improve their skills, but this is a story for another day.
"You're being unfair!" Xenagrosh stepped forward to protect Tezka from the Master's fury. "We did it only for you. Lith is not only my little brother, he's also precious for your plans. On top of that, his family was under attack and-"
"Nice try, but I don't believe you." The Master had the hologram of Lith's hybrid form fighting Night appear in the middle of the room. The Organization had the resources to get their hands on Captain Locrias's report the moment he submitted it.
"An unknown necromancy spell, an army of magical beasts, Origin Flames, and even an array powerful enough to make a Horseman bend the knee. Verhen didn't need your help. He would have found the path to victory on his own, he always does."
The Master replayed the images in a loop, sighing with admiration and envy.
Nandi did his best to read the room, but both his instincts and sharp mind failed to make sense of the events unfolding in front of his eyes. No matter what appearance the monster-Abomination hybrids took, they were titans whereas the Master was just a human.
No matter how powerful the Master's mana core was or how tall they were. In front of immortal beings that descended from the Guardians, anyone else looked like an ant. Something that should stay quiet and pray to not get stomped.
The Master, instead, acted like a disgruntled father reprimanding his unruly children and the Abominations couldn't even look them in the eyes.
'Maybe spending too much time alone drove me mad and Baba Yaga suppressed it while I lived with her because this doesn't make sense.' Nandi thought. 'I'll play along for a bit longer before taking my leave.'
"Nandi." The Master's voice snapped him out of his reverie. "Are you sure of your decision? From what I understand, you bear the mark of Baba Yaga's Firstborns and my Organization doesn't get along with her.
"I can't afford to waste time and resources on an unreliable ally. I need to know where your allegiance truly lies before admitting you among our ranks. Answer me and answer me honestly.
"Would you be able to treat the witch as an enemy if you were to meet her on the battlefield or does your past relationship cloud your judgment?"
"I don't know how you know about the mark, but my personal business is my own. Whatever I decide to do is only up to-" Nandi attempted to say.
"Kneel." A single word from the Master was enough to bring the powerful Minotaur to his knees, needing sheer willpower just to keep his head from hitting the ground.
"How stupid do you think I am?" A wave of the Master's hand made Nandi feel like his body was on fire.
"I created the process that gave birth to you monster-Abomination hybrids. I knew your body better than anyone else the moment I laid my eyes on you. Baba Yaga may have given you her blessing after merging your two halves, but she did a poor job."
'How does the Master know what happened and how can Baba Yaga's work be considered sloppy?' Nandi could feel both his black and monster cores going into disarray, causing him unspeakable pain, yet his curiosity burned stronger.
"You are not the first Returner we got here. A clone who bested his Original and took their identity. I've devised arrays to defend this place from the likes of you and spells that allow me to identify those who knock at my door." The Master said.
"I give you my word that I won't kill you, no matter your answer, but I need to know. Where does your allegiance truly lie?"
"What do you expect me to say? I barely know you and your plans whereas I lived with Baba Yaga for months, sharing her bread and teachings. Of course I won't fight her without a good reason." Nandi said amid grunts as he tried to break free of the Master's control.
"However, if what Tezka told me about you and if what even Baba Yaga told me is true, I'll gladly join your side. If the two of you clash, the best I can promise you is to assist neither, but only if you plan on helping me and not just exploiting me."
"Sounds fair." A snap of the Master's finger deactivated the arrays, allowing Nandi to stand up.
"That's it? Do you really believe me?" The Minotaur blurted out, unable to repress his surprise.
"A creature as powerful as you has no need to lie. If you really wanted to harm me or escape, all you had to do was to manipulate the world energy in the room and stop my arrays." The Master said, surprising Nandi even more with his accurate understanding of the Minotaur's abilities despite the fact that they had just met.
"Of course if you did that, the second set of arrays would have put you down for good. Welcome to the family, Nandi. Your role will be to make us a crystal mine and use your abilities to feed your siblings with world energy.
"You have no idea how much power it takes to fully develop your bodies. What you have is just the beginning." The Master activated two tier five spells, Life Master and Master Scalpel.
They were respectively the upgraded versions of the Scanner and Chisel spells. Together, they allowed the Master to stimulate Nandi's life force so that his two natures harmonized even more and his power rose to new heights.
"See? The witch's treatment wasn't bad for a newbie, but she failed to take into account that hurting your body mixed your life forces in a chaotic way. They don't have to just flow together, they must become one or you'll never reach perfection.
"I won't alter your life forces, but by studying them, I can devise methods that will allow you to tap into the best abilities of orcs and Abominations without being hindered by their respective limits." The Master said.
"Thanks, I'll get to work immediately." Nandi instinctively gave the Master a small bow. He didn't respect people for their race, only for their knowledge and the Master had proved to have plenty.