Dragon Devouring Mage Chapter 218

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Dragon devouring mage

Whirrrrrr.

The swirling currents formed a vigorous eddy, creating a long passage that led to the entrance of an underwater cave.

Having confirmed the series of all these elements, Russell did not immediately dive in but took a moment to breathe deeply.

He calmed his raging heart.

‘There’s no way it ends here.’

Based on his past experiences, such missions usually had gates that tested him or served as portals for growth.

But so far, in this mission, he had not encountered any such gates.

However, the task of reverse-engineering the mana patterns to dispel them was far too negligible to qualify as a real test.

‘It’s likely the actual gate lies within that cave.’

After steadying his breath and raising his mana, it took only a few seconds for Russell to be battle-ready.

“Pepper, will you return for now?”

With a tender gesture, Russell sent Pepper, his familiar, back to the spirit realm, wrapping up all his preparations. He then plunged into the swirling vortex.

Wooshhhhhhhh!

The sound of the fierce water’s rotation pounded at his ears.

In that moment, as Russell began to infiltrate deeper into the underwater cave—

Wooshhhhhhhh!

The eddy suddenly narrowed, and the whirling waters all around him rushed towards him in an instant.

‘Kuh-!’

It was like dealing with a tempestuous water dragon, as dozens of vortexes formed, slashing at Russell’s entire body with its watery claws.

The sensation of being thrown into the heart of dozens of violent currents!

Any ordinary human would have been shredded and crushed by the mere force of it.

Even a seasoned and strong individual would have struggled to maintain balance.

Bang, bang!

Russell warded off the water’s flow with strategically placed shields and carved out a path, swiftly regaining his equilibrium.

His eyes followed the aggressive motions of the water sharply.

The deep waters, where even breathing became a challenge, did not faze him.

Nor did the bone-chilling cold unique to this frozen environment seem to deter him.

Maintaining underwater breathing spells, Russell continuously created and dispelled shields to block the diversely shifting currents, all while his eyes read the flow with icy precision.

‘This is no ordinary water…’

Even the most powerful and unique currents couldn’t possess such diverse patterns.

Not to mention the faint traces of mana he could feel in the flowing water.

‘Is this the true test, or the gate perhaps…’

He had to break through this current to enter the depths of the underwater cave.

Moreover—

‘There’s no guarantee this is the end.’

He had just entered the cave, and there was still quite a distance to go until the end.

It wouldn’t be strange if the difficulty of the gates increased midway.

Indeed, as Russell had anticipated—

‘Ice?’

Despite not venturing deep, the current had already grown more violent.

Moreover, shards of ice, sharply cut, mixed within the water.

Ordinary ice shards wouldn’t have mattered, but these, propelled by such fierce currents, were no different from weapons.

‘It’s like being bombarded by hundreds of blades from all directions.’

Truly murderous water.

It was as if he was facing a fragment of powerful magic, like the Blizzard or Avalanche spells from the arsenal of grand magics.

Crack, crackle!

The shards scraping against the shield altered Russell’s expression.

Like the water, the ice shards were also imbued with mana.

Although it was fine for now, if the impact continued to accumulate, the shield would surely break.

‘Increase the toughness and alter the structure.’

His thoughts concluded, and instantly his mana responded.

Woosh.

His magic power, now more formidable, enveloped the shields, reconfiguring them into a hexagonal structure in the blink of an eye.

Completing this series of actions in less than a breath, Russell stared deeper inside the underwater cave.

‘Halfway there.’

What lay ahead was yet to be seen.

.

.

‘─!?’

Sure enough, as he approached the end of the underwater cave, a change occurred.

Swoosh!

Not only currents and ice, but suddenly, a flurry of sharks appeared out of nowhere.

The sharks, swimming against the rapid water, bared their sharp teeth.

Then, using their powerful bodies, they launched a barrage of physical attacks towards Russell.

Boom!

The intense collision shook the crisscrossed shields violently—

‘Damn…!’

Even beyond the magical barrier, the shockwave forced a gritted response from Russell.

‘They’re not just sharks.’

The biting cold of the fierce current, and in inadequate measure, the sharpness of ice shards.

Ordinary sharks could not possibly live in such perilous waters.

Moreover, sharks that could generate a shockwave powerful enough to penetrate the shield with a mere charge!

Swoosh!

The clashing shark pack turned, riding the current and forming a sort of barrier wall in front of Russell.

‘They won’t let me through easily, huh?’

Then…

‘I’ll just have to intercept.’

Crunch, crack.

Without delay, dozens of ice lances materialized around Russell.

This was no simple Ice Partisan, but a higher-level magic: a closely packed phalanx of icicles.

Icicle Phalanx.

‘Charge!’

With a flick of his hand, the icy battalion surged towards the pack of sharks.

Fast enough to cut through the fierce torrents and leave a trail of its own!

In an instant, the currents were disrupted as sharks and icicles collided.

Sshhh, splash!

Some ice lances pierced the sharks, while others were smashed by the charging creatures.

Rumble, crash!

The ensuing shockwave shattered many icicles.

‘I’ll use the remnants of the mana from the already used spells to reignite the magic’s embers—’

Immediately after, Russell’s hand gripped sharply.

‘I’ll link the spells to amplify the firepower.’

Just before entering the underwater cave, he had gleaned a method of mana manipulation from a spell recorded on a scroll that he was now attempting to replicate.

Visualizations, equations in his mind, and the mana needed to manifest the spell aligned perfectly.

Mana threads branched out like webs, connecting to the shattered ice fragments.

These were pieces too small to be called icicles anymore.

With a single intention transmitted, these fragments transformed into an altogether new kind of magic.

‘Group Dance of Thin Ice!’

In the center of the damage dealt by the icicle phalanx, a massive storm of ice erupted amidst the pack of sharks.

Crack, crunch!

Chaos of large and small ice shards thrashed about, assaulting the sharks.

Kyaa!

For a brief moment, the impact created a gap among the creatures!

‘Now!’

Boom!

Russell accelerated, cutting through the spray of water protected by layered shields, bursting through the gap.

He then soared to the end of the underwater cave, towards the light penetrating the surface.

Splash!

.

.

“Phew…”

Russell emerged from the water, exhaling long and deep, his wet clothes hanging heavily like water-logged cotton, dragging his steps.

“Dry.”

Using a simple spell, he dried his damp clothes and surveyed the surroundings.

The first thing he noticed was the long stalactites and glowing stones overgrown with light.

He had escaped the water, but he was still within the confines of the underwater cave.

Perhaps the light he saw just before surfacing had been shining through these glowing stones.

Thinking so, Russell followed the light emitted by the stones.

A long cave extended, with gleaming stones embedded at regular intervals, lighting the way.

‘Are they beckoning me deeper inside?’

An artificial setup, clearly the work of someone’s hand. Russell had just passed the gate and was about to step into the dragon’s lair.

.

.

He thought he would be alright after emerging from the chilly water depths, but—

‘Why does it seem colder the deeper I go inside?’

The coldness was such that it froze even the light breath he exhaled.

Russell dispelled the penetrating cold with a simple circulation of mana throughout his body and stared down the still fairly long stretch of the cave ahead.

‘There must be something inside this cave producing this cold.’

The dragon’s nest. And when thinking of coldness, there was only one thing that came to mind.

Ice Dragon.

Also known as Sea Serpent, a subspecies of the Water Dragon. Of course, he couldn’t be certain that a real Ice Dragon was there.

But at least, something related to the Ice Dragon must have been left behind.

‘…If it’s not a living dragon, it’s likely the horn.’

This was his conclusion, deduced from his past experiences.

And as if to prove his speculation was not misguided, upon venturing into the depths of the cave, a massive horn revealed itself.

It was a horn of striking beauty, like a gigantic sculpture carved out of ice.

At that moment, a notification sounded:

[Mission completed.]

[A horn of Ice Dragon is awarded as a reward.]

‘As expected.’

Russell walked towards the horn, ignoring the alert.

Crack, crackle.

Possibly because of the chill emanating from the Ice Dragon’s horn, the frost on the ground started to crack.

‘Uh!’

When his fingertip touched it, a powerful mana surged within him.

The mana from the Ice Dragon’s horn was so cold it deluded one into feeling as though freezing to death.

‘If I take this in directly, it’ll be the end of me.’

Likely, both the mana circuit and every muscle and vein in his body would freeze over. Assessing the situation quickly, Russell spurred his heart’s circle.

Whirr.

The seven circles reacted simultaneously, spewing out flames akin to mana.

And then, the hot, surging mana clashed with the mana imbued with coldness inside him.

Boom!

The recoil from the collision of the two opposing magics caused Russell’s chest to heave wildly.

‘Ugh…’

Gritting his teeth against a pain that almost whited out his vision, Russell held onto his consciousness.

He couldn’t afford to lose his senses now.

To wholly assimilate the rampant mana of the Ice Dragon, he needed to counterbalance it with a contrasting force of mana.

One hand remained on the horn of the Ice Dragon as Russell hurried to find his stance.

Closing his eyes, he proceeded with rapid circulation work.

[Absorbing the horn of the Ice Dragon.]

[Excess mana exceeding absorbable limits will seep into your potential.]

[Your prowess is exceedingly high. A considerable portion of the Ice Dragon’s horn can be absorbed.]

Perhaps due to his advancement to the 7th circle.

Another line had been added to the notification, but Russell had no room to pay it heed.

Inside him, the powers of the flame mana and that of the Ice Dragon were already clashing ferociously.

Roar!

.

.

While Russell’s body was caught in a tumultuous battle, changes were happening not only within him.

As the Ice Dragon’s horn gradually lost its mana to Russell’s absorption, the surrounding coldness also began to subside at a rapid pace.

The temperature rose, the nearby ice slowly melted, and after some time—

Rumble.

An ice wall that blocked a side of the cave crumbled, revealing a space beyond.

In that space lay a massive egg glowing with a blue hue…

Thump, thump.

As if responding to Russell’s mana, something within the egg pulsed its beat.

Of course, Russell, focusing on the absorption of mana, didn’t notice this yet.

The Dragon Devouring Mage.

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