In Phloria\'s family, purple crystals were a given for almost everything.
Yet even most Archmages couldn\'t afford many of them, along with the natural treasures, metals, and ingredients.
The Ernas family was one of the most ancient and richest in the Griffon Kingdom, after all.
Did you tell Kamila She asked while hugging the chainmail suit as if it was something precious and delicate as a newborn.
About what Lith asked.
About the things you told me.
She deserves to know and the longer you wait, the harder it will be for her.
I don\'t see how time can make accepting me for whatever I am harder. Lith chuckled.
If she really cares for you, she will be a bit scared at first, but then she will start wondering: why did he wait for so long before telling me How many more things is he hiding Kamila might start doubting your feelings and her own as well.
Phloria conjured a stone dome around herself to get changed into the Skinwalker armor, using the cover from the Hush zone to not alarm the others.
\'She\'s right, you know.\' Solus said.
\'I know.\' Lith replied.
After his pocket watch marked the passing of the hour, Lith woke up a couple of soldiers and went to sleep.
He had already used Invigoration a few times and with no Gatekeeper to help him, he needed all the edges he could get.
After four hours had passed, Quylla went to ask Morok to resume their journey.
I\'m still beat, but we can move.
If that witch didn\'t hunt us down after so much time, she\'s likely moved to an easier prey.
Let\'s move! The Ranger said.
Lith recovered the mana crystals and dispelled the Silent Shroud while Phloria took her place at the center of the group to better coordinate her men while Quylla moved to the rear, near Lith.
Any advice on how to get stronger My magic has grown since our days at the academies, but I think I\'ve become as physically weak as a kitten. She said.
Do like I did when I was at the academy.
Train until your muscles hurt, eat meat, use light magic to assimilate the food and rebuild your tissues.
Rinse and repeat until you are too tired to continue.
How long would it take Quylla asked, making Lith feel her arm\'s muscles.
A week to get some meat on those bones and a few months to get stronger. Was his reply.
Months I thought it would be easier.
I mean, you and Phloria make it seem easy.
We trained a lot over the years.
If there was a shortcut, everyone would take it.
Besides, even if you had a magical way to regain your stamina at will, you would still need to sweat a lot.
It\'s just like magic, it takes time and effort.
There\'s no \'become an Archmage by training 5 minutes a day\' cheat in life. Lith shrugged.
Professor Yondra and her Assistant, Rainer Lomann, joined them after a few minutes.
Rainer was wearing the uniform of the Black Griffon, a black magician\'s robe that was made out of a material that seemed to be made out of living darkness.
He was the same age as Lith, around 1.72 meters (5\'8) tall, with red hair and blue eyes.
The black of his robe made him appear even thinner than he already was.
Lith couldn\'t believe that he was a Forgemaster.
Being muscular wasn\'t a prerequisite, but a Forgemaster\'s body would be tempered by harnessing the enormous amounts of mana that the advanced crafting processes required.
Rainer was holding his chest, and his breath was already short despite the fact that they had just finished resting.
After receiving the mana crystals and a new spell from Yondra, Lith felted indebted to her, so he decided to further smoothen up the previous incident between them.
Lith placed his hand over Rainer\'s shoulder and gave him a bit of life force before treating his injuries.
The young man stopped slouching as his chest stopped hurting.
Thank you, but we didn\'t come here for that.
I hoped we could resume our earlier conversation. Yondra said, throwing a mean look at her pupil.
Kid, I\'m old, so I need time to recover from a bad wound.
What\'s your excuse Do you realize you are making even a complete stranger notice your weakness
At those words, both Rainer and Quylla blushed in embarrassment, they were in a similar situation.
Seeing them walking side by side, reminded Lith of the odd Forge he had found inside the Lost City of Huryole.
\'She\'s the best next thing to an archaeologist, plus Yondra is a Forgemaster.
I forgot to ask Orion about it, but maybe she is even more likely to know what that was.\' Lith thought.
I brought him on this expedition to show him that even being an historian requires strength and guts. Yondra said.
Sure, we spend most of our days sitting behind our desk doing research, but when you actually need to search for relics, you can\'t just ask to monsters and beasts to kindly step aside and let you do your job.
You need to learn how to fight, dammit.
But Professor, what about the army or the mercenary guilds Isn\'t it easier to get their help rather than pointlessly risking our lives Rainer asked.
The army will help you only if you have solid evidence of a discovery that could benefit the Kingdom. Quylla replied.
As for mercenaries, I wouldn\'t trust them to be satisfied with a few coins if you find a priceless treasure.
They are mages too.
Exactly. Yondra nodded.
This is likely to be the easiest expedition you\'ll ever take part in.
We have two Rangers, an elite squad of soldiers, and six Professors.
The number of things that can go wrong with all this firepower is very limited.
Easiest Rainer was flabbergasted.
We almost got wiped out before even starting!
My dear, that \'almost\' makes all the difference in the world.
When I was your age, my so called bodyguards tried to kill and rob me after I stupidly showed off how much money I had.
I wanted to buy their loyalty, not give them a motive, and yet…
Rainer swallowed several times, wondering why he was the only nervous one.
Quylla was shorter and wimpier than him, yet she looked confident.
Lith used the sudden silence to tell Yondra about his recent trip to Huryole.
He didn\'t mention the sword, the booklet, and not even his theory about the lost city being actually a lost academy.
Lith had checked the army database, yet Huryole was always referred to as a city in the official documents.
Even if Yondra knew the truth, she was unlikely to share it with him.
Once Lith reached the part about the black and white Forge, her eyes lit like stars with greed and wonder.
Are you sure A whole Forge She asked more than once, as if she couldn\'t believe her own words.
Yes, I can show it to you. Lith materialized a hologram of the Forge, mimicking its shapeshifting pattern.
Good gods, how unlucky of you! You found and missed a Forge made of pure Davross. She said.
I didn\'t miss it.
It was bolted to the ground and when I attempted to take it away, the city tried to kill me.
There\'s a big difference.