“The Great Plains of Death is indeed a place no ordinary person can cross!”
Leylin sat in the carriage as his body constantly jolted up and down. The tiny window opened as a golden ray of sunshine peeked in, giving the interior of the carriage a trace of liveliness.
It had already been over ten days since the attack of the plains direwolves pack. During these ten days, the travelling party encountered an increasing amount of danger as they ventured deeper into the plains.
Only now did Leylin find out that the plains’ direwolves were merely at the bottom of the food chain. There were still many more cunning and vicious predators above them.
On the way, Leylin saw several animal colonies whose numbers were not inferior to that of the direwolf pack from before.
Besides the plains’ direwolves, there were flocks of huge black birds that were several meters tall and even enormous monsters, dozens of meters long, which looked like sabre-tooth tigers, except their bodies were like tiny mountains. Just their aura alone caused Leylin to feel suffocated.
Fortunately, the deaths of the apprentices seemed to have reached the limit and the white-robed Magi had started to act. Not only did they set up magical defensive arrays on the carriages, they also directly stepped forward to disperse the animal groups that attacked. Through these measures, a large number of casualties was prevented.
The most dangerous time was when they confronted the monster that was dozens of meters long.
Thankfully, that small mountain-like monster seemed to possess some intelligence and knew that the white robed Magi were not to be trifled with. It quickly left after a short confrontation and did not unleash any attacks, causing everyone in the travelling party to sigh in relief.
“It’s time!” Leylin took out his pocket watch and looked at the clock hand. It had already reached the 3 o’clock position.
He stood up and opened the front door of the carriage. A moist breeze blew towards him, bringing a salty smell with it. It smelt very fresh and clean and Leylin could not help but deeply breath in a few times before seating himself besides Angelo.
“Good afternoon! Sir Angelo!”
“Good afternoon! Such a courteous noble gentleman!” Angelo did not turn as he directly handed over the horsewhip and reins to Leylin, “Good timing, I need to rest for a while!”
Leylin chuckled as he received the horsewhip and skilfully urged on the carriage.
Angelo leaned to one side as he unclasped a bottle at his waist. When he opened it, a strong alcohol smell floated out, and as he lowered his head to take a gulp, his eyes narrowed in joy.
“We are about to reach our destination. Based on the fact that you’ve helped me drive the carriage for a month, I can answer two of your questions!”
Leylin was just enjoying the view on both sides when he heard Angelo’s voice sound out.
“Alright!” Leylin lightly smiled. He had specially tried to get into Angelo’s good books and this was one of the reasons why he had done so.
“Then my first question is, what will there be at our destination?”
“Some temporary tents set up by the various Magus academies. Over there, all of you can freely choose an academy to join based on your interests and also undergo an even more accurate aptitude test!”
Angelo looked a little impatient as he answered, “These things will be explained by the great Magi when we arrive, don’t waste your opportunity!”
“An accurate aptitude test?” Leylin was stunned. Soon after, he recalled that they had only managed to identify his talent in magic initially before being sent onto the carriage by the viscount. As for how good his talent was in comparison to others, he did not have the slightest inkling.
“Temporary tents set up by the Magus academies? Looks like this is similar to the school recruitments of my previous world. I wonder what the requirements are.” Leylin silently thought to himself.
“Alright then! My second question! In your heart, what is a Magus!”
Leylin asked his second question.
“A Magus? They control enormous power and pursue the truth, with an equivalent exchange as their doctrine. Brat, don’t daydream of obtaining any free benefits from a Magus, or else the flames of desire will gush out from the abyss and punish your soul!”
Angelo’s face twitched as if he had thought of an unfortunate event, while his voice became extremely low.
“Pursuit of truth, equivalent exchange? I like it!” The corners of Leylin’s mouth formed a smile.
After answering, Angelo seemed to have lost all interest in talking. He ferociously chugged down two mouthfuls of the potent alcohol as he lowered his head and closed his eyes. Ten minutes later, the sounds of snoring could be heard.
Leylin dully gazed at the scenery to his front. Although the plains were very beautiful, after a whole month of looking at the same things, he now felt like throwing up at the sight of it.
As the carriage continued to advance, the green in the distance became less and less. In place of it was a vast blue, and wave after wave of strong winds.
“We’ve finally arrived, the Death Beach!”
The sleeping Angelo opened his eyes and looked at Leylin, “We’ve reached our destination!”
As they neared the sea, a small town-like place appeared at the end of his line of sight.
Numerous tents of various shapes and sizes stood together, and they formed a huge camp. Surrounding them were dozens of carriages similar to the one Leylin was driving.
And what numbered the most were acolytes of similar ages as them, around thirteen to fourteen years old, each and every one of them carrying looks of curiosity on their faces. Leylin did a rough estimate and counted that there were at least hundreds of them, filling up the entire camp. From time to time, some acolytes walked out from the tents, many different expressions adorning their faces.
“Alright! Ladies and gentlemen! Welcome to the intermediate stop of our travelling destination, the Death Beach! You will all decide on your future academy here, and then return back to your respective academies with your teachers to practice magic!”
The horse carriage halted, and three white robes came out and gathered the acolytes, then the leader Crow began speaking.
“Now, follow me into the campgrounds, and choose an academy. Remember, you may check on all the various academies, but once you have signed a contract to join one, you must not renege! Anyone who disobeys will be hung to death at the gate of the camp!”
Crow’s frosty words made the acolytes hearts turn cold.
“Haha! Crow! You guys are pretty late today!” A voice sounded, and a fatty walked out from the camp grounds. He too was wearing a white robe, and he greeted: “Don’t scare these adorable newbies!”
“There were some difficulties along the way!” Crow explained.
“Alright! Newbies! Now follow me into the camp!” Fatty spoke with Crow and the others for a while more, then turned his head and shouted to Leylin and the rest.
“You guys can call me Jevon, of the beautiful Ennea Ivory Ring Tower. Trust me, if you are to choose an academy, the Ennea Ivory Ring Tower is definitely your best choice!”
Jevon said as he brought the acolytes into the camp.
Once they entered, various sounds travelled into their ears, reminding Leylin of the marketplaces in his previous world. As for Crow and the other two white robes, they seemed to have something else to do, and they soon left the group.
The surroundings were bustling with activity, mostly due to acolytes just like them. Some of them had gathered in a circle, while there were others who were entering or exiting the tents.
Jevon brought Leylin and the rest, a total of 40 odd people, into the middle of the camp grounds.
Here, was a large tent of pure white colour, and there were still strange flower patterns on the outside of it They seemed like both ornaments, and yet resembled writing as well.
Leylin could not help but look at it closely, “A.I Chip! Begin Scan!”
“How could this be?” Leylin stared at the tent once again with disbelief.
With every passing minute and second, the patterns on the tent seemed lifelike, constantly twisting itself.
“Hehe!” “Haha!” “Ji Ji!”
Various noises travelled to Leylin’s ears. The surrounding lights seemed to distort itself, and Leylin looked at his own hands. At this point, his arm seemed to have been pulled into a long shape, which looked extremely slender.
“Leylin! Leylin! What’s wrong with you?” At this point, there was a pat on Leylin’s shoulder.
Leylin’s whole body suddenly quivered, and he came to his senses. Looking at the surroundings, the acolytes were still listening to Fatty Jevon’s speech, and everything seemed to revert back to its normal state.
“Could it be that it wasn’t an illusion earlier?” Leylin got scared, “A.I Chip, reproduce the situation I was in earlier!”
“Phew……Magi, are they always this mysterious?” Leylin wiped his cold sweat off, still carrying a lingering fear of the events earlier.
“Leylin! Your complexion is really bad! Could it be that you have fallen ill?” George asked from the side.
“No matter who, their expressions won’t be any better if they had experienced that earlier!”
“Not……Nothing……Where did Jevon stop at?” Leylin hurriedly digressed.
“Oh! We need to fill in a form, and take the aptitude test! And then it will be free time, and we can choose our academy autonomously!”
“Because you guys have come a day late, you only have a day’s worth of time left, and in this span of period, you must choose an academy where you will practice magic in, if not you will have to wait until next year!” Jevon was still speaking loudly ahead of them.
Now, all of you line up and take the form from me one by one, and then enter for the test!”
Jevon sat behind a white table, and took out a stack of forms and placed them down.
The line moved forward quickly, and very soon it was Leylin’s turn.
“Fill in your particulars in this form, and then enter the tent and follow the instructions of the person inside!”
Leylin took the form and realised that it was made of sheepskin paper. The particulars required were minimal, only a name, age and location born, as well as a few others.
Picking up the goose feather pen on the table, Leylin filled in the form very quickly.
The faint, red coloured, inked flower patterns on the sheepskin seemed to be very beautiful.
“I never thought that this brat’s handwriting from the mainland is still pretty good!” After Leylin finished writing, he picked up the sheepskin paper and entered the white tent.
“Come over!” An ancient voice sounded.
It was very spacious inside the tent, and there was only a white-haired old lady sitting on a black chair and a crystal ball which rested on a table.
“Okay! Why would I suddenly think of those divination witches!”
“Hello!” Leylin greeted the witch.
“Bring the form here!” Clearly, this witch was not having any of it, and her voice was still frosty cold.
“Leylin huh? Place your hands on the crystal ball!”