Chapter 13 – Arcanum Great Master
The small ball of fire seared Lin Qi’s head, burning his hair to ashes and causing a greenish black cloud of smoke to rise above the remnants. It wasn’t only the hair on top of his head that burned either, his eyebrows, eyelashes, and even his thin beard were reduced to ashes under the intense heat. The burns on Lin Qi’s body were so bad that hissing sounds could be heard coming from his skin as he miserably howled in pain. It was as though his upper body had been drenched in boiling water.
“Wretched old freak!” Faced with a ball of fire that could kill him in a single strike, Lin Qi desperately pulled out a single-bladed sword that was concealed in his trousers. With sword in hand, he let out a long and courageous battle cry as he chopped into the side of the fireball, sparing no effort to push it aside.
The sword burned bright red upon making contact with the fireball, causing the unpleasant smell of burning flesh to drift out from Lin Qi’s palm. He shrieked miserably and released his grip on the sword’s handle, unable to bear the pain. Despite his best efforts, the ball of fire only deviated a little under 16 centimeters from its intended target, but it was still enough. The fireball whizzed past his cheek, nearly burning it off as it shot past him and crashed into the gate behind.
An array of runes that resembled a rose flickered on the iron gate as it quietly absorbed the formidable power of the ball of fire. .
Lin Qi, who was panting and sweating from head to foot, felt both of his knees go soft. Heneeled on the floor, cursing softly.
The owner of this laboratory and the person Lin Qi was supposed to serve, the empire’s newly hired distinguished visiting professor, arcanum great master Ke Zha noiselessly walked up to Lin Qi. A cold dry hand pulled him up, grabbing a scarlet-colored bottled medicine and pouring it on Lin Qi.
Once the medicine with a strong fishy smell entered Lin Qi’s mouth, it became a surging heat wave that rushed into his stomach. His recently depleted energy was rapidly recovering. His previously burned cheek was also healing at great speed. Lin Qi exhaled heavily, a flattering smile already plastered on his face , then politely bowed at his waist in greeting and salutation: “Respected Great Master Ke Zha, I hadn’t received your call for several days. Is there anything you want me to do here?”
Ke Zha wasn’t tall. He was shorter than Lin Qi by more than half a head. A black gown with big holes all over it was wrapped around his slim body. Its cloth was stained in all kinds of bizarre colors, made by splashes from the various kinds of raw materials that he usually handled. Even Lin Qi did not know what Ke Zha looked like, since a huge scar was covering his face.
It must have been caused by an accident during a certain arcanum experiment, Ke Zha’s entire face being destroyed. A mottled scar ran from his face down to his chest, making his appearance extremely unpleasant. His nose and ears had been fully destroyed by a certain medical juice, leaving only several black holes. Red, white, and black scars alternated, slightly wriggling as he moved. Ke Zha’s every breath carried a hint of a strong medicinal smell.
Conveniently throwing the crystal bottle he had been holding onto a square table next to him, Ke Zha released Lin Qi and gloomily muttered, “Really? Seems like I haven’t seen you in several days. Oh, there are some things that you need to prepare immediately. My laboratory’s food supply has already ended, replenish it for me at once.”
Whilst talking, Ke Zha’s belly made several growling sounds, his face violently twitching several times. It seemed that he hadn’t eaten for several days?!
Lin Qi didn’t dare to make a sound, and hastily nodded his head in response.
Ke Zha’s temperament was extremely and strangely antisocial. Except for Lin Qi, who had been appointed as his servant by the school, he strictly prohibited anyone from coming close to his laboratory. Moreover, Ke Zha was extremely paranoid. There had been times when he had gone mad. Even if Lin Qi was the one who entered the laboratory, it was still possible for him to be attacked.
After four or five janitors in a row had been turned into ashes by Ke Zha’s magic, Ke Zha’s laboratory had turned into the most dangerous restricted area in the Tower of Great Masters. Except for Lin Qi, no one else dared to approach it recklessly. Therefore, during the several days when Lin Qi had not came by the laboratory, Ke Zha’s food supply had ended, and he had not been able to find anyone to replenish it for him. In the end, he could only starve like this.
Lin Qi actually felt a little regret in his heart. These few days he had had too many things on his hands. Those six sharp swords already occupied most of his thoughts and effort. On top of that, some of the brotherhood’s outer members had been arrested by the Dragon Cavalry again, and he still had to raise money in order to pay the fine for their bail out. Various things piled up together, he actually forgot about this unlucky but dangerous man, Ke Zha.
If the grand empire’s distinguished arcanum great master simply starved to death inside his own laboratory… Thinking about the dreadful consequences, even the extremely daring Lin Qi couldn’t help but shrink back.
Reaching into his sleeve, Lin Qi pulled out half a chunk of white bread. Lin Qi had stolen this from the banquet held for Tie Chui, and had been planning to save it for a midnight snack. In the end, it just happened to be useful now.
Once Ke Zha caught sight of this half-chunk of white bread, his eyes immediately turned green. He grabbed the white bread and swallowed it in big mouthfuls. Teeth turned black by the corrosion of some acute liquid poison and rotten like the teeth of a wild dog rapidly grated against each other, making a sound similar to the unpleasant grinding of wheels.
The big chunk of white bread was swallowed by Ke Zha in three bites. After letting out a burp, Ke Zha, fully satisfied, muttered softly: “If you hadn’t come… I was so hungry that I wanted to use some liquid medicine to sustain myself. If it had really gotten to that, I guarantee that you would have been roasted into a lump of human fat!”
Ke Zha let out several odd, grim bouts of laughter. Lin Qi only felt a burst of chilliness at the back of his neck. ‘No wonder that today, once I entered, I suffered the attack of a fire ball. Was it so that Ke Zha could intentionally speak like this? Fortunately, today I arrived in time. Otherwise, if I only remembered about Ke Zha several days from now, since he said he would refine me into human fat, he absolutely won’t turn me into a dried corpse.’
This queer old freak! What would slaying several unlucky servants mean to him? Those damned ‘copper hats’ won’t bother at all about a trifling servant and such an old freak.
After eating his fill and burping strongly, Ke Zha twisted his deformed lips and used his extremely hoarse and unpleasant voice to firmly berate Lin Qi. Lin Qi sighed softly and lowered his head, obediently listening to Ke Zha’s berating. Now Lin Qi was broke. He was very broke, and Ke Zha was Lin Qi’s biggest financial backer. So even though Ke Zha had already started cursing that only a pair of dammed wild boars could be as dumb as Lin Qi, Lin Qi still listened obediently to all of it.
After crazily cursing Lin Qi for a full half hour, Ke Zha finally stopped talking,satisfied, and took out a sheet of tough, enduring parchment out of his sleeve.
“This is the list of drug ingredients that I currently need, as well as and their quantities. Hurry up and fetch them for me!”
Gloomily eying Lin Qi, Ke Zha rolled his eyes and coldly snorted: “Tell that group of trash in logistics that the five blades of ‘White Crow Grass’ age they gave me last time was insufficient, and that the concocting technique was also wrong, so it was only due to my powerful and efficient refining energy that I turned them into a powerful aphrodisiac potion. If next time they still dare to make this kind of mistake, I will pour an aphrodisiac potion strong enough to explode a bison’s genitalia on them!”
Lin Qi was so frightened that he quivered once, then joyfully and tightly held that sheet of parchment. His heart was already blossoming with happiness.
Fifteen minutes later, Lin Qi was whistling. With satisfaction, walked out of the Tower of Great Masters while was carrying twelve bottles of ‘Violent Energy Potion’ that were regarded as trash by Ke Zha . The medicinal potion wastes of Ke Zha’s refinements had always been handled by Lin Qi.
Aphrodisiac potion strong enough to explode bison’s genitalia? Lin Qi’s pupils were glittering with distinctive golden rays of light.