Chapter 4: Shadow Servants
Within the inn.
The room had been completely filled by a massive workbench and all kinds of research equipment scattered everywhere. A crystal lantern hung from the wall, shining so that it appeared as if it were still daytime.
A bandit lay on the research workbench, completely powerless. Su Chen held a needle in his hand, slowly carving something on his flesh.
This kind of engraving process originated from the Ferocious Race’s body inscriptions, which were improved by Ancient Arcana Techniques. This made them even more complicated and mysterious.
Of note was that the person whose body was being engraved on couldn’t feel the slightest bit of pain - Su Chen had finally succeeded in creating a numbing medicine.
After three hours, Su Chen’s experiment finished.
Using nine needles of various sizes, Su Chen had engraved an intricate tattoo on the bandit’s entire body; almost every area of skin had been covered with thick black ink. When the light shone on those engravings, there was actually no reflection of light, as if they were unfathomably deep.
Su Chen examined the bandit’s internal condition carefully and nodded, saying, “The medicine is beginning to soak into the marrow. Just a bit more and it should begin to take effect.”
As Su Chen spoke, he watched as the bandit suddenly began to tremble violently as if there was an electrical current going through him.
Su Chen pulled open the bandit’s eyelids, only to find that his eyes had rolled into the back of his head.
After inspecting the bandit’s internal condition, Su Chen knitted his eyebrows and said, “The medicinal power was too strong. His body isn’t able to withstand it, so I have to decrease the medicinal strength next time.”
The bandit spasmed uncontrollably for a bit before finally becoming motionless.
He had died.
“Iron Cliff, practice dissecting him,” Su Chen said.
Su Chen didn’t even want to waste their corpses. They would be good practice for Iron Cliff.
“Got it!” Iron Cliff walked over and carefully pulled out a surgical knife, then began to dissect the corpse under Su Chen’s direction, identifying and studying the organs one by one.
The Cliff Race wasn’t the most intelligent, but that didn’t mean they were imbeciles. In the past, they never had much of an opportunity to study due to their low social status. Iron Cliff knew very deeply how amazing of an opportunity he had been given, so he studied diligently and with great focus.
At dawn, Su Chen hopped onto a carriage, then continued to take the hostages with him.
This time, they were setting out for the distant Clear River. They still had quite a journey ahead of them.
During the day, Su Chen would research which combinations of medicines complemented each other, and at night he would perform experiments.
At first, he kept failing. If it wasn’t that he had used too much medicinal strength, it was that he had used the wrong ingredient, which had begun to erode their body; or, he had created an energy imbalance, resulting in the body attacking itself; etc., etc.
There were so many reasons for failure that Su Chen was basically discovering a new one every day.
Slowly but surely, however, Su Chen was able to fix these reasons for failures. Eventually, there was no more room for failure to go, and it could only reluctantly give way to success.
Su Chen continued his experiments.
Needles covered the body of his target. Once the last needle had gone in, a black glow began to emanate from the bandit’s body.
A formless energy began to suffuse from the bandit’s body, slowly gathering into a shocking amount of power.
Next, an incredible scene appeared before their eyes.
The bandit’s figure began to slowly fade before it completely disappeared from sight.
Upon seeing this, Su Chen revealed a smile. “Finally, success.”
“I...... I...... What did you do to me?” The bandit couldn’t help but yell in fright upon seeing his illusory body. The instant the experiment had finished, the bandit had broken free of his restraints, finally regaining his freedom.
“Don’t be afraid. Draw in your consciousness and feel the energy in your body. Try and control the way it’s moving in your body, and your body will reappear......”
Under Su Chen’s instruction, the bandit’s figure reappeared.
He stared at himself in excitement. “I...... I can turn invisible?”
“It would be more accurate to call it shadow concealment. It requires a source of shadow power to activate,” Su Chen replied.
Shadow power was actually just a type of Origin Substance that Su Chen called Shadow.
Su Chen had extracted this Shadow Origin Substance from that pile of black rocks.
After analyzing the black rocks over the course of a year, Su Chen could already control one of the Origin Substances within. He discovered that this Origin Substance could give a person shadow-like qualities.
The bandit was simply manifesting this “shadow power” by shadow concealment.
Upon concealing himself in a shadow, his figure began to disappear.
This kind of disappearance was on the physical level. It would be difficult to detect even if someone passed their hand through the previously occupied space. The user could only be detected via Origin Energy.
The Hemolytic Totem wouldn’t give someone that much power. It was just a vehicle that was responsible for transferring power. It was like a blank slate in that regard. If you wanted some kind of ability, you would need to first give it a corresponding supplement. Naturally, this would consume Origin Energy.
One could say that the Hemolytic Totem had realized a transition away from the Ferocious Race’s Totemic Inscriptions. In addition, there were many more available possibilities, and its future potential was much higher.
The first individual with a completed Hemolytic Totem had been augmented with Shadow Origin Substance.
Even though the current Shadow Origin Substance could only confer Shadow Concealment, its further development could result in even more shadow-type moves. The specifics depended on what aspects Su Chen wanted to focus on improving, as well as the physical composition of his Shadow Servants.
In some sense, this was like a bloodline. However, it had no way of being passed on, and it couldn’t help a person raise their cultivation base or break through a bottleneck.
It could, however, be used in conjunction with a bloodline. This had profound implications.
Now that the first Shadow Servant had been completed, Su Chen and Iron Cliff were incredibly excited.
That bandit was in similarly high spirits.
He constantly controlled the flow of energy in his body, feeling out the changes, and his body faded in and out of view.
“I’ve gotten stronger! I’ve actually gotten stronger! Haha!” The bandit was extremely excited.
He glanced at Su Chen, a thought suddenly appearing in his heart.
If I were to hide myself in a shadow and ambush him from behind, would I be able to kill him?
That thought had just emerged when the bandit suddenly saw Su Chen’s amused expression. His heart trembled violently as he cursed at himself; if this prince could create him, he could just as easily destroy him. His shadow concealment was probably nothing in the prince’s eyes. Making a move against the prince was equivalent to asking to die. If the prince had put some restrictive measures on him, he might even be incinerated just for having such a thought.
As soon as he thought of this, he instantly knelt down in fear. “This little one, Chang Er, greets Prince. Many thanks for Prince’s
Upon seeing his behavior, Su Chen grunted. “At least you’re aware of the situation.”
How could Su Chen not place some kind of restriction on his target? If Chang Er wanted to try and kill Su Chen, Su Chen wouldn’t even need to make a move; just a thought from him was enough to give Chang Er a tragic fate.
At that moment, Su Chen said, “You are all criminals. Since you’ve landed in my hands, I control whether you live or die. You’re quite lucky - you’re the first successful individual to become a Shadow Servant. Not only did you not die, but you’ve also gained the ability to turn invisible. From this day onwards, you’ll be one of the Shadow Servants under my command. As long as you obey my commands, you’ll find that I’m actually not too terrible of a master. But if you don’t......”
Su Chen paused, then said, “I won’t kill you either. I’ll just make you a subject of my other experiments instead.”
Chang Er was badly startled. He instantly kneeled and said, “I will be loyal to Prince Su even unto death!”
“Very good,” Su Chen said indifferently.
Of course, he wouldn’t place any trust in the loyalty of a bandit.
But it didn’t matter. He had enough self-confidence that, no matter how sly the bandit was, he wouldn’t be able to escape from his grasp.
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