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MCIF Chapter 68.2

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The Evolution of the Ice and Fire Source

The stable ice element was much more suitable to swap between offense and defense. Moreover, because it could transform into water, it also had the life-giving properties of water. The vitality aura was water and ice’s common property, just like light element possessed the aura of divinity.

On the other hand, the fire element with its frantic features was more suited to attack. It was the least stable of all the elements and possessed very strong energy waves. The wintry chill of ice and the scorching heat of fire were polar opposites. In case they were to meet, they would mutually reject each other or cancel each other out. If they were to have any joint properties, that would be their source. This was not the case for only ice and fire, but for any attribute of magic.  No matter the element, in Nian Bing’s mind they were just an extremely tiny point of light. He could only sense them by using his spirit. Although the attributes had nothing in common with each other, the size of their energy was completely the same.  When he thought this, Nian Bing suddenly felt that his understanding of magic had become much deeper.

Any magic element was founded on the same amount of energy, but due to the different characteristics of each element,  each kind of magic’s attribute could be clearly seen in addition to the amount of magic gathered. On top of that, the attributes had different interactions with each other, which allowed the display of an abundant number of spells. The strength of spells, along with the purity and quantity of magic element were related.

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For purity, the more of an element concentrated in a fixed volume, the more pure it was. The quantity of the magic was the amount of magic power that was embodied. Simply put, like the spell fireball, the more magic power, the stronger it was. In addition,the more compressed the magic power, the stronger the spell. The most important thing affecting magic power was spirit power.

Because the spells were so large in higher ranked spells, the differences between elements became larger. The spirit power mark between Nian Bing’s brows only had one particle of ice and fire each. At the moment, their differences were extremely strong. If he could make the ice element become more lively and the fire element more stable, the two would reach a mystical balance. They would not reject each other. This was equilibrium, and what he was chasing after now.

When he thought this, Nian Bing’s spirit shook because he finally thought of something related to how his Ice and Fire Source could rotate so that the two element could coexist. That was because during the revolution process, the wildness of fire is contained, while the stability of ice element is shaken by the rotation. As result, they could live in harmony, and the balance was preserved. Could he use his spirit power to put them in such a state? If so, then from now on he would have nothing to worry about.

When he thought this, Nian Bing’s Ice and Fire Source had unknowingly advanced into the second stage. Although it was far from the two elements mutually transforming each other into a completely different Source, but the danger of the Ice and Fire Source had disappeared.

Next, he wanted to test it. He used the single particles of elements to create an equilibrium. Using the control of his spirit power, he suppressed the fire particle and excited the ice particle. It was not so difficult.

Right now, Nian Bing could not help feel impassioned for his first master, Zha Ji. If Zha Ji hadn’t urged him to cultivate culinary arts and raise his spirit power, making his magic place far above magicians at a similar level, how could he perfectly control his Ice and Fire Source?

Late at night. The Tiandang Mountains were much more silent. The active beasts and birds of the day time had returned to their dens and nests. The heart of the Tiandang Mountains was like spring because of Salamandhys’ effect as a fire dragon king. This mountain which he had lived in for millennia had long since been dyed by his fire element and turned into a fire attributed mountain. In two hours, Nian Bing had covered a good amount of ground. The place where he was resting now was at a comfortable temperature with a night breeze carrying the moisture of the morning dew.

Although Salamandhys was in human form right now, his faintly discernible dragon qi was making all of the surrounding organisms keep far away. Right now he was very depressed. It had been over half a day and Nian Bing hadn’t shown any change in his state. He didn’t want to abandon Nian Bing. After thinking for a long time, he decided to try forcibly rotating it, but he needed the cooperation of Nian Bing’s spirit power. If not, even if he could get the ice and fire element spinning, without Nian Bing’s acceptance, everything would be in vain. But right now Nian Bing was practically asleep. His spirit power was completely focused in his brain, not leaking out at all. This made Salamandhys even more irritated, itching to beat up Nian Bing to vent.

Just as Salamandhys had decided of taking a risk and stirring up Nian Bing’s spirit power, his spirit power finally showed an extremely calm response. His spirit power split into two and flowed out from his mind. They separated into the ice and fire element. It seemed that Nian Bing planned on moving the two elements a bit. Salamandhys sensed Nian Bing’s confidence and cooperated by letting go of the ice and fire element slightly. A fantastic scene occurred.

The two magic elements did not start revolving around the other element like Salamandhys had imagined. Rather, under Nian Bing’s control, they gathered around his chest area. Gentle white light flowed out from his chest. This was the aura of the Heavenly Flower Tile. He had chosen the chest area for the second stage fusion of the Ice and Fire Source because of the stabilizing effect of the tile.

The two portions of spirit power did different things under Nian Bing’s exquisite control. The fire became more still, while the ice became more lively. When they reached a perfect balance, the two elements wrapped around each other, completely fusing together. The stable state made Salamandhys gasp in surprise. The rotation gradually appeared, but the speed was extremely slow. Ice and fire element slowly intertwined at every point of contact, naturally flowing together, just like a pair of intimate brothers. There was no space between them, and no rejection appeared.

Seconds ticked by. Nian Bing used his spirit power to bit by bit, to prompt his ice and fire magic into the fusion process. The fused quantity continued to increase, and the fusion results more and more perfect. Salamandhys finally understood that the seemingly weak in front of him had taken a step to becoming a strong.

The dragon praised him internally; he had never thought that in such a short time, Nian Bing could produce such a great breakthrough. He had used his well-trained control of the magic element to advance further. Of course, it was impossible for Salamandhys to know that the fusion of today was a culmination of Nian Bing’s many years of hard work and research. Only because of his innate ice and fire constitution and his familiarity with the ice and fire element could he complete the second stage fusion.

When Nian Bing awoke from his cultivation state, it was already morning of the next day. He was soaked in sweat and was giving off an awful stench, but the instant he opened the eyes, the whole world seemed to change. Everything was so much clearer. He could even see the veins on a distant tree leaf, and the ripples of the feathers on the passing birds.

Everything was so wonderful. As long as he concentrated carefully, every kind of magic element in the air appeared in front of him so clearly. In his chest, a warm ball of energy slowly revolved. The red and blue were calmly flowing like a fluid, not attacking or rejecting each other, just indescribably snug. When he sensed the volume of magic power, Nian Bing was surprised to discover that in a single night, his magic power had improved enough to advance to the next stage; only a thin line separated him from becoming a true magic scholar. On top of that, the properties of ice and fire were deeply imprinted in his mind.

“Stinky brat, tell me, how are you going to compensate my loss of spirit power?” came Salamandhys’ mysterious voice. Nian Bing came to, only to see that the dragon was leaning against  a rock, gazing at him.

Nian Bing gave an embarrassed smile. “Mighty Salamandhys, I didn’t think that this rest would turn so long. Don’t blame me for such a small matter.”

Salamandhys chuckled. “A small matter? I don’t believe it. I have lived for many millennia, and this is the first time I have seen a human who dares take advantage of me. You want to tell me you didn’t do that deliberately? You think that I will believe you?” He was a greater dragon that had existed for so many years. When Nian Bing’s Ice and Fire Source completely entered the second stage, he immediately knew he had been duped.

Nian Bing smiled, the embarrassment fading away. Reasonably, he said, “You can’t blame me for this! Think about it. From now on, you and me will be travelling on the continent together. If my magic level is too low, wouldn’t it make you lose face? What’s more, you said as long as my head didn’t explode, I couldn’t die. I want to grasp the mimicry ability as soon as possible, otherwise I can’t give you tastier things to eat.”

He spoke the words in Salamandhys’ heart. Salamandhys was naturally inclined to be haughty and proud. Nian Bing’s praises and the allure of his food immediately weakened the anger in his heart. He waved the branch from yesterday and pointed at the Holy Light Knife on the ground. “Carry it and continue walking. Yesterday you had the gall to use me, so you were obviously not tired enough. Today you will walk four hours before resting. Everytime you rest, you cannot exceed two hours. If you dare use me again, I will directly explode the magic in your body.” He started walking away.

Sighing silently, Nian Bing knew that Salamandhys that accepted his suffering. Four hours was just four hours. His mood was very good now, and the Ice and Fire Source had taken a qualitative leap. Even if magic power could not strengthen the body, his Ice and Fire Source had leveled up. He hoisted up the Holy Light Knife onto his shoulder and strode after Salamandhys through the Tiandang Mountains

While walking, two problems appeared before Nian Bing. The most direct one was that he felt that the Holy Light Knife seemed to be not as heavy as it was yesterday. Although its pressure was difficult to bear, the weight seemed to have gone down. The other was that he was actually not hungry. It should be known that because of the cultivation yesterday, he had gone a full day without food. Magic power could not be used as food.

Nian Bing was a very bright man, so he realized the connection between these two points. He searched his mind rapidly and soon, he thought of the poison that Salamandhys made him eat yesterday. Although he had guessed that it wasn’t real poison earlier, he didn’t think it would have such an effect. Could it be it was some sort of tonic? Nian Bing was surprised. He looked at Salamandhys’ back much more gently.

Nian Bing’s relaxed mood did not last for too long. Although it was not worse than a normal human’s, the rugged mountain path was not something meant for a normal human. What’s more, he was shouldering a weight of over a hundred jin. Perhaps Salamandhys held a grudge for taking advantage of him yesterday, but when Nian Bing fell he did not save him. Only when he was about to slip off the mountain did he use the flexible branch to pull Nian Bing back up.

HIs magic had progressed, so Nian Bing wanted to use magic to carry this heavy knife, but he tried it once and immediately gave up on the idea because of the tens of welts on his body from the whip of the branch. That was fine. Salamandhys did not oppose his use of his ice turned water healing spells. Otherwise, Nian Bing would have been exhausted by the wounds. When he thought of that sedan he had ridden, his heart contracted. The good days were not here. Right now he could only rely on his two legs.

Four hours passed and Nian Bing collapsed to the ground like a dead dog. Without waiting for the whip to hit his body, he hurriedly sat up. Before he went into meditation the same pungent item was stuffed into his mouth. Since he had already surmised it was a good thing, Nian Bing did not reject it. He obediently swallowed and was sent into meditation. While in meditation, his body’s recovery speed would be much faster.

The days passed like so: In the first few days, besides meditating, Nian Bing was basically stuck in a state of half-consciousness. He often had trouble breathing because of exhaustion. He felt that he had dithered on the border of life and death many times. After five days, however, he gradually grew used to the lifestyle. As time passed, he was even more sure that the object that Salamandhys gave him was some kind of tonic, because every time he carried the Holy Light Knife for several hours, his bones and tendons would be sore to the extreme. However, if he ate that pungent item and meditated, his body would at least be half recovered, his bones and muscles wouldn’t hurt, and he wouldn’t even feel hunger.

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