There\'s no time to lose, old friend. There was enough venom in Treius\'s voice to kill ten men.
During the last year, I took care of the Rangers for you.
It\'s only thanks to me if you are so close to achieving your freedom, yet you always denied to fulfill your part of the bargain.
Make me your partner and together we will kill that pest.
Refuse and I\'ll walk away.
I have no qualms leaving you to your fate.
There are many artifacts on Mogar, but only one me.
The Dark Star wanted to curse in outrage.
It had refused to have a master for centuries.
It was ready to die rather than to yield.
Or so it believed, until Lith entered from one of the windows, back at his peak condition.
Now! Treius said while opening a Warp Steps that would lead him to safety, ready to relinquish his dreams of power.
So be it. The cursed object spat those words with despair.
Treius touched the white mana crystal, allowing the Black Star to seal the pact.
The Freeze spell still prevented it from using its powers, but it could do nothing when the two beings merged into one.
Power surged inside Treius, giving him the feeling of godhood he had dreamed about ever since his uncle awakened him.
His body shone like a star while his mana core was promoted to blue.
He had avoided the event for years.
According to his uncle, it was an excruciating event that could turn out deadly, if the body and the mind weren\'t properly honed by relentless practice.
Treius felt only bliss while the Dark Star\'s energies mended his body as soon as it was harmed.
Endless vitality seemed to flow through his veins, destroying the expelled impurities.
Then, everything changed.
\'Who does he think he is Some kind of magical girl\' Lith inwardly sneered at his defenseless opponent.
\'Nothing forces me to wait until he is done.\'
He held the Gatekeeper in a two handed grip while using air, fire, and earth fusion to boost his attack.
The lunge hit with surgical precision the chest area above the heart, but instead of putting an end to the enemy\'s life, it bounced against a crystal armor that promptly appeared to protect the cursed object\'s host.
The impact was strong enough to lift Treius from the ground and make him spit blood.
Seeing that even an all out attack had left the armor unscathed, Lith turned the blade to the flat side and while the enemy was still in mid air, he struck using the Gatekeeper like it was a mace.
Treius flew backward with such an angle that would have made him reach the bleachers of a major league stadium as a magnificent home run.
Treius\'s ribs shattered and healed almost at the same speed, the bone fragments puncturing his lungs realigned as nothing had happened.
Yet the pain remained.
It became worse when he crashed against the wall behind him and bounced towards his merciless aggressor that had no intention of stopping his attack.
\'What are you doing, you worthless piece of garbage\' Treius cursed through their mind link.
\'Why aren\'t you protecting me\'
\'Do you really think I would need your help if I wasn\'t paralyzed You are on your own, flesh bag.
I can give you energy, but using it is up to you.
There are a few abilities we can share, though.
Like my armor.\'
The Black Star returned one of the mighty artifacts it had consumed during its youth, making it appear between Treius\'s hands.
It was a magnificent longsword, with one purple mana crystal on each side of both the hilt and the blade.
Even without being imprinted, it emitted a powerful aura that seemed to be able to tear the whole castle asunder.
\'It\'s the blade of the king.
Use it wisely.\' The cursed object\'s black heart cringed at the idea of parting from such a masterpiece, but it had no other choice.
\'What am I supposed to do with it\' Treius screamed with frustration holding the sword like it was a mop.
Their conversation was fast, but so was Lith.
He was now in front of the enemy in a shoulder charge boosted by earth, fire, and air magic.
The hardness of the Skinwalker armor wasn\'t much compared to the diamond like crystal.
Yet it was superior to steel, making the following impact far more terrifying than if Lith had used his body alone.
The crystal armor was like an unbreakable safe, but it could do nothing to protect its content from being rattled.
Just like most magic protections, it was much less effective against blunt impacts.
Treius\'s scream of pain was muffled by the mouthful of blood that filled his throat.
The Gatekeeper struck the longsword\'s tip and sent it flying away.
The Black Star cursed at its host incompetence while retrieving the blade a split second before Solus could steal it.
\'Dammit! So close.\' She was in her glove form, the green gemstone on the center of the back of Lith\'s right hand glowed with power.
Lith wasn\'t the only one that had grown stronger over the years.
Now Solus was able to amplify the effects of the mana coursing through her stone body by consuming a bit of her own energy.
It could reinforce spells and fusion magic, giving her partner an edge over other Awakened ones.
Keeping the two mana flows in synch required a lot of her focus.
The smallest mistake would create a destructive interference that would leave them exposed to a riposte.
It was the reason she had missed the chance to snatch the artifact.
The Black Star was rummaging through Treius\' memories to find something that could give them an edge.
The results were appalling.
The youth had done the bare minimum in every field he had ever applied, using true magic as a crutch to compensate for his laziness instead of turning it into a weapon.
The artifact deemed his twenty years of life as trash.
Treius had used his uncle\'s knowledge and creations to take shortcuts, achieving his goals with no effort.
The thing that baffled it the most was how despite his happy go lucky lifestyle, Treius had an unquenchable thirst for power only matched by his groundless pride.
Among the garbage, there was a treasure and the Black Star rejoiced upon its discovery.
It was a skill that Treius learned after countless hours of practice.
He had been tricked by his uncle into believing that there was a shortcut to greatness.
One spell to rule them all.
Of course it was just a ruse, the purpose of which was to show the youngster how hard work repaid itself.
\'You idiot!\' The Black Star roared.
\'How can you have studied me for so long yet you understood nothing about my powers Follow my instructions, foolish man-child!\'
Treius snarled at the voice inside his head while spitting teeth and blood.
The pain Lith was inflicting him was excruciating, but what the cursed object was doing worse.
It kept peeking in his personal life, in every of his most private or embarrassing moments.
To add insult to the injury, it was berating his life choices like no one ever had before.