The Dark King – Chapter 23
Dudian finally understood how the old man’s arm had turned into that monstrosity. Most of the experiments conducted by the alchemists were carried out on their own bodies. Though from the results it was apparent that the experiment had failed. The additional limb seemed to follow the nerve system signals for taking action. But each action taken would take its toll by having to pay a corresponding price. Otherwise, such body mutations in an era such as this one was without a doubt deemed to be an unstoppable war weapon.
The old man seemed to want to take a rest, so he commanded Dudian in a cold voice: “Go there”. The old man’s palm gripped the small crossbow. He wanted to give the impression that if Dudian refused to move, he would immediately shoot.
Dudian stood up. In this life and death situation, he was anxious and his mind was in a mess. He took deep breaths so that his mind would calm down. His body trembled, Dudian began to move towards the table that old man pointed at. It was a large table. On the edge there were a number of tools used for cutting. Some of them were stained with blood which had not been washed clean.
Dudian heard sounds coming from his left side. He turned to see a large cage. There were more than a dozen snakes twisting inside the cage. Obviously, these were also other captured materials for various experiments.
The old man did not urge Dudian, but quietly observed him, similar to a hunter watching its prey attempting a final struggle. When he saw Dudian’s expression changed, his mouth slightly curved into a cruel smile. At this time, Dudian has arrived to the table.
“Do you see that chain? Tie your arm.” The old man ordered Dudian.
Dudian looked at the few chains fixed to the workbench. Most of these chains and tools were used beforehand in experiments. His eyes flashed but he still grabbed the chain and wrapped around his wrist.
Old man’s face reflected a trace of disdain and sneer. As Dudian chained himself up, he would go to cut him alive to death.
Dudian squatted down. At the same time he shook the chain and hit the cage. The snakes twisted and struggled in attempts to escape.
Old man spoke: “Little devil. You just have to act like a smart ass, don’t you? Do you think you can escape from here? Now, you obediently come out and I will forgive you for once!”
Dudian naturally refused to believe the old man’s words. He kicked the iron cage. He used the table as a cover from the crossbow that the old man was wielding. His aim was to get close to the old man so that he would have the opportunity to wrestle him.
Although the old man had an external amputation to his body, so it took a lot of willpower and it was mentally exhaustive to command it. The fatal weakness of utilizing something like that (the body modifications) was that it would terribly weaken him.
After a few kicks, the iron cage fell onto the table. Fortunately, one of the doors were opened and a dozen snakes slid out of it. Some of them moved towards the darkness, few towards the old man and most slid towards Dudian.
The old man smiled, “There is no difference between life and death to me!”
The next moment, his smile instantly halted. He saw the serpents that were supposedly moving towards Dudian changed their direction. Few of them bent around to move other places but four or five of them moved towards the old man.
“How … …” Old man’s eyes went wide. He suddenly looked to the table. His face became gloomy, “No wonder he had the courage to shake the snake cage!”
Dudian clutched his hand. He held a small bottle of powder. He smeared it all over his entire body. He had previously bet on this bottle of powder. It must be something that old man used to capture the snakes. Even though the old man refers to himself as ‘alchemist’ but essentially he used chemical elixirs.
The old man couldn’t have captured all these serpents unarmed. He had to rely on other things. The results of his logical deduction was spot on as he had expected. Earlier, as he inched closer towards the table he had seen the bottle of the powder on it. Perhaps for too long, nobody else but the old man lived alone. So he had placed many things in a very casual manner on top of the table. Dudian secretly grabbed the bottle as he moved.
“Humph!”. Old man grabbed a brown robe that was hung on the wall. He quickly draped it over his body. After that, the serpents who were moving toward him immediately stopped, twisted their bodies and swam to the surrounding darkness.
Dudian understood that the dress was dowsed with the same powder and most probably was used in catching the serpents.
“Kid, you better be obedient.” The old man stared at the table. The crossbow was still in his hand. As long as Dudian showed his head, he would immediately shoot! Although Dudian was a child, but one after another time had created misfortunes. Dudian had made old man felt threatened so he was not going to give any chances to him.
Dudian looked around the chamber. The only way to survive was to subdue the alchemist. He had a dagger but it was far from enough.
He seized the opportunity to grab the cutting tool from the table which looked similar to a dagger.
Now, Dudian saw large stash of bottles and jars on a board near the fallen cage. There were labels stuck over them. Impressively two of them were labelled with sulfur and charcoal!
This was one of the main raw materials of making gunpowder!
Dudian’s eyes lit up. His heart felt ecstatic, as he quickly looked around, but did not find any nitric acid. He was disappointed as sulfur and charcoal was not enough to create gunpowder.
He clenched his fists. He felt as if he acquired a chance to survive only to be slapped back at the same moment.
“I know, you have a dagger in your hand. Ready to fight with me, aren’t you?” The old man’s voice boomed again. Dudian’s mind sank. It seemed that old man has noticed him taking the dagger. “Are you hungry?”, old man continued.
As he heard him talk, Dudian felt the hunger after an entire day. His stomach juice was burning up.
However, his heart is a little relieved, at least he had the time to continue to think of a way.
At this time, a green mist floated.
Dudian’s pupils shrank, and quickly covered his mouth and nose. He did not expect the other party would even release this darned thing in a narrow chamber. Apparently the old man had antidote or other kind of measure to counteract the mist.
Dudian pinched his nose. His heart was beating fast, knowing that his time had slowly run out. He didn’t stood up in desperation as the other side may had aimed the crossbow at his position. As long as he stood up he would be shot.
He gritted his teeth, and firmly clenched the dagger. He looked at the bottle of powder on his other hand. He was ready to throw it out. Then, an idea flashed in his mind.