Chapter 23.1 – The Scroll of Fusion Magic
As Nian Bing closed the book, he recalled the first thing Cha Ji had told him: practice cooking for ten years, comprehend cooking for ten years. Yes, this sentence could be applied to any other domain. The word comprehension, made him see magic arrays in a whole new way. Probably, an ordinary person could study for ten years and not reach his level of comprehension.
As usual, Long Ling accompanied Nian Bing while she cultivated her spirit force just as Nian Bing had taught. But at this moment, she hadn’t focused on cultivating because Long Zhi had given her a very important task: to manage Nian Bing’s everyday life and satisfy his every need. She hadn’t cultivated for some time, so she could look after Nian Bing.
“Are you reading?” Pulled in by his presence, Long Ling raised her head to look at Nian Bing, who had stood up.
Nian Bing smiled slightly and nodded his head. He said, “I think that we can go to the third floor now. Although I have no way of utilizing the information from there, I’m hoping to find a few things in particular. If I can employ them into my magic scrolls, they will possess special characteristics not found in any other scrolls.”
Long Ling could not believe what Nian Bing was saying. “So you’re saying that you can improve magic scrolls? But the magic scroll making method has been passed down for over a thousand years, and there hasn’t been anyone who could make any changes!”
Nian Bing chuckled, then said, “That is because our predecessors lacked the innovation to do so. I think that I should be able to do it. Although I’ve just started learning the art of magic scrolls,I’m confident in my ability to succeed, given a little bit more time to further my research.” He had already understood much from his knowledge of magic arrays, but application and theory are completely different. Right now, even if he hadn’t seen magic scroll production methods, he could already guess the higher levels of magic scroll drawing and production theory. This can be attributed to the principle of comprehension.
Based on Long Ling’s expression, it seemed she remained skeptical of him. Nian Bing bent down to pick up a piece of paper from the ground. Yes, a magic symbol was drawn on the paper. He passed the paper to Long Ling and said, “What do you see on this paper?”
Long Ling took the white paper and saw a few uncomplicated symbols. Her eyebrows creased, and she said, “There seems to be a scroll drawn here, however, from the degree of complexity, it should be a rank 2 scroll! What is the purpose of this?”
Nian Bing smiled slightly and said, “What you said is correct. This is a scroll, a low-level magic scroll. However, the rest of your words were wrong. This isn’t a rank 2 magic scroll; it’s only a rank 1. Don’t be surprised; whether or not it is a rank 1 magic scroll, it is obviously complex. There is a reason for the complexity. Take a look.” Having said this, he took the scroll from Long Ling’s hand and waved it. Under the stimulation of light blue magic, the white paper disappeared in the blink of an eye. An ice cone appeared in mid-air and suddenly homed in on Long Ling. Naturally, a rank 1 magic attack could not pose any harm to Long Ling. Long Ling raised a hand and sent out an identical ice cone. Common sense would dictate that the two ice cones would dissolve into powder upon impact. Why did Nian Bing do show a common thing with a predictable outcome?
As expected, the two identical ice cones collided and ice powder came out. Long Ling thought it was over already, but from the ice powder, an ice blade suddenly appeared. In a flash, it had already come slashing at her face.
Long Ling let out a surprised sound. At this time, it was too late for her to use magic. She could only try to dodge. Nian Bing smiled slightly and waved his hand. The ice blade flew in an arc and landed onto his palm. “How was it? Do you finally understand?”
Long Ling looked at Nian Bing, and gradually recovered from her shock. “This, this is?”
Nian Bing smiled and said, “This is the results of my research. On the surface, it certainly appears to be a single rank 1 spell scroll, but two magics – the ice cone and ice blade – are actually combined in the scroll. One is a rank 1 spell, and the other is a rank 2 spell. If you were distracted by the rank 1 ice cone, you would be injured by the rank 2 magic that follows. To fully display this, I wanted to prove the theory before you. Admittedly, the knowledge passed on by the previous generations are a treasure, but if we aren’t any more innovative, our will not progress from the pastt. That is why I am researching the method of making magic arrays, which is very similar to magic scrolls. My knowledge is yet undeveloped, but you can imagine that if I could combine a rank 6 and a rank 5 magic in a scroll, it may be formidable enough to overpower even a Magic Scholar.
Long Ling stared wide-eyed at Nian Bing. She could not at all comprehend how the mind of the youth in front of her worked. In over a thousand years, this was the first time a person had the courage to harbor such thoughts. This was the first time this kind of research had emerged. Nian Bing was just a Great Mage, but his accomplishments did not pale in comparison to a Magic Scholar. So long as his research was successful, inevitably, the Ice Moon Empire Mage Association’s position on the continent would improve enormously.
“Nian Bing, how did you do it? You actually succeeded.” Long Ling gazed meaningfully at Nian Bing. After all, all girls, no matter the type, would always be attracted to a successful man.
Nian Bing smiled slightly and said, “Actually, this is nothing. Come on; let’s go to the third level. Once I perfect this research, I will teach you how to make combined scrolls. It’s just a pity that this kind of scroll has major problems in its production. It has only one more word than a normal scroll, but even I am only capable of making the one I just showed you. Higher ranked of magic will require an even greater spirit force and magic power to support it. However, I have always thought that there would be more theories and principles that will help me solved it. Right now, I merely forced two magic spells onto a scroll. If I could get them to integrate, then the results would be on an entirely different level. You can keep the scrolls on the ground and give them to your father. This time, I only made ten rank 5 magic scrolls, and four rank 6. On the third level, I think I’ll need to focus to progress in my study of magic arrays. Once I have a better method, I will continue to make more scrolls.” While saying this, he made his way up to the third floor of the library.
Naturally, Nian Bing did not say all of his thoughts out loud. Actually, he could make even higher level fusion magic scrolls right now. He had used white paper to test all kinds of fusion techniques. The strength of the magic was different, but the principle was the same. As long as it was possible to succeed with low level magic, it would definitely work with high level magic.
When Nian Bing’s figure disappeared around the corner of the stairs, Long Ling sat on the ground dispiritedly. Looking at each and every one of the book shelves before her, she said to herself: “Why? Why can he see life from these dead books, and I can’t? What magic genius. Before him, I am but a mere child.” She faintly felt that not too long in the future, Nian Bing would definitely cause great tremors in the magic world. At that time, he would be an immortalised existence. As for herself, she would be the first to witness the appearance of this person.
Nian Bing’s research was exceedingly difficult. Toiling hard under his own demands, he hadn’t left for a month since he entered. When he was tired, he would use the meditation method to rest and recover his spirit, before immediately continuing his research and studies. The collection of magic knowledge on the third floor was much larger than he had imagined. Nian Bing first embedded the memory of all the incantations in his mind. Afterwards, he began to research magic arrays, followed by scroll making. Scrolls were, after all, just extras. Even if he made many scrolls, they could all be used in a day. They were far from being able to compare with his own strength. In terms of magic scrolls, actually, only weak people would rely on them. The truly strong individuals would disdain those that did so. Thus, he simply worked hard at his research, because magic arrays could possibly be the key to opening up the secrets of his ice and fire magic source. The secrets of the ice and fire magic source were truly Nian Bing’s greatest interest.
While continuing to research, Nian Bing didn’t know that Long Zhi, in order to support his research, had already given an order to blockade the entire library. Except for Long Ling, who would give him food and attend to his daily needs, other people were unable to enter at all. This order was issued by Long Zhi when he found out about Nian Bing’s research on magic fusion. When he issued the order, he had made the firm resolution to not spare any expense to ensure Nian Bing wasn’t interrupted during his work. He didn’t want to for just his person to stay, but rather to get his heart to stay. If that happened, the Ice Moon Empire Mage Association could become even stronger.
The third floor of the library was obviously unlike the first or second floors. The first and second floor had tens of book shelves each, but the third floor only had four. Every bookshelf, however, had hundreds of books per shelf, and the vast majority of books appeared to be very old. Every class of magic incantation, from rank 6 large area magic spells to rank 9 single target magic spells, were readily available. Although he couldn’t use them right now, he still carefully memorized all of it.
“Nian Bing.” Long Ling’s voice rang out, waking Nian Bing from his research. He did not even know how many days he had spent on the third floor of the library.
“Ling’er, what’s up? You don’t seem to be visiting much these days.” Nian Bing put down the book in his hand and smiled while talking.
Long Ling smiled slightly, saying, “It isn’t that I haven’t come by less frequently, it’s that you are too focused, and haven’t noticed me at all.”
Nian Bing gave a sheepish smile. “Probably. Since I’ve entered the library, I’ve paid little attention to anything else. Ling’er, did you need me for something?” He knew if there wasn’t any special matter, Long Ling wouldn’t have interrupted him.
Long Ling smiled slightly and said, “Naturally, I did. There is someone who came to the Association looking for you. Do you want to see them?”
Nian Bing went black. “Looking for me? Who could it be!” Don’t tell me it was Xue Jing or Feng Nu? It couldn’t be that guy, Yan Feng.
From Nian Bing’s grimace, Long Ling got an idea of what he was thinking. With a small smile, she said, “Relax, it isn’t Yan Feng. Although he did come by, Father told him that you were in closed meditation in order to send him away, and he hasn’t returned since. Anyway, it seems it may still cause problems if a man is pretty, hehe.”
Nian Bing said with ill humor, “Don’t use such a word to describe me. Of course, if you want to use handsome, suave, masculine, and the like, then I wouldn’t oppose it.”
Long Ling stuck out her tongue at Nian Bing. “Who do you think is beautiful. Rou’er is the one looking for you, but I don’t know what for.”
Luo Rou? Nian Bing remembered that wise and exceedingly beautiful girl, as well as their ongoing bet. It looks like a month has passed since he entered the library. “Since a beautiful and intelligent girl has come to pay a visit, how can I not see her?” Nian Bing asked himself if he had left any gaps in his cover story. The wise girl should not have been able to discover anything about his real identity.
Long Ling looked at Nian Bing, her gaze full of a hidden bitterness. “Rou’er is already engaged. You have no chance.”
Nian Bing huffed a laugh. He said, “Quickly, go and ask her to enter. Relax, I am a lowly person, how could I have such presumptuous thoughts?”
‘Are you really a lowly person?’ thought Long Ling, a thread of doubt rising. She did not say anything more and turned to leave. In just a moment, the sound footsteps returned, Luo Rou, clad in a pure white cheongsam, entered with Long Ling. The white clothes set off her blue hair. When paired with her intelligent eyes, her figure made people suffused with a pure feeling. Right now, compared to the splendid attire she wore that day, Luo Rou had a more simple and elegant sense of beauty.
Luo Rou took a look at Nian Bing, and couldn’t help but be shocked. Turning her head to the side to look at Long Ling, she asked, “Ling’er, is this Nian Bing?”
Long Ling smiled, saying, “How couldn’t it be him? Just one month has passed, but you can’t even recognize him?”
Nian Bing subconsciously looked at his person and discovered that the magic gown he was wearing had long been covered in creases. His body emitted an unpleasant scent and when he touched his face, he realized that his facial hair had begun to grow quite long. It’s not a surprise that Luo Rou couldn’t recognize him. When he was studying magic, he really had forgotten everything else. Embarrassed, he said, “Sorry, Miss Luo Rou, for letting you see such a laughable sight. I feel very dejected.”
Luo Rou covered her mouth as she laughed quietly. She said, “It’s not that big of a deal. Moreover, you look haggard. It seems that you’ve been working very hard recently!”
Long Ling said, “He hasn’t been working very hard; he’s been working extremely hard. I don’t understand how to support him when he’s working this hard. There may come a time, I’m afraid, I will step over his withered corpse. He won’t hear what anyone says to him. It’s like those magic books have become his wife.”
Nian Bing smiled bitterly. “Don’t speak so cuttingly about me, could the gracious Rou’er excuse this one to let me clean up for a bit?”
Luo Rou laughed slightly, saying, “Cleaning up doesn’t matter, as long as you still remember our deal.”
Nian Bing’s eyebrows creased slightly and said, “Did you really find something?”