Translated by: SaltyTank
Edited by: crimsonwolf8439
And we are back from the dead……..or just the server upgrade! How do you guys like our shiny new 50gb RAM? Hmm? Do I hear the cry of jealousy? Don’t worry, I am too.
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As a symbol of chaos and evil, Crimson Dragons were known for the destruction they brought along to the places they visited. Claudius, well, displayed unparalleled chaotic behaviour. He would basically dig holes wherever he liked and temporarily live there, causing pits to appear everywhere in his surroundings. With Claudius’ current strength, there was almost nothing to worry about unless the Savage Wolverine ambushed him during his sleep.
Ultimately, the pits were for short-term purposes and were not suitable for his ‘hibernation’. They only served as places to stay in when Claudius was travelling around. When Claudius was about to enter a lengthened period of sleep, he had to prepare a comfortable and safe place to hide. Perhaps due to the sly nature of the human mind, Claudius seldom returned to his underground base near the pond after he left. It felt kind of unsafe to stay in the same safe house repeatedly, especially after it had been in use for several years. Without fail, the human-minded Crimson Dragon would always empty a few holes in the ground and randomly choose one of them as his home. The rest were used as decoys to fool his enemies, even though they were pretty much non-existent. Of course, this time was no different. Yet as Claudius was about to sleep comfortably and experience growth, he had a bad premonition.
“I have a bad feeling about this…… It feels like something is staring at me from the void……” Claudius muttered to himself.
Perhaps being slightly superstitious, Claudius immediately abandoned all lairs he previously created. “Gotta find a new place quickly!” he thought to himself. With his current ability, it wasn’t too tough for Claudius to leave this place behind and travel to a distant location. That was exactly what he did as well. As he flew along the coastline, Claudius still could not figure out how the sharkmen travelled so deep inland from the ocean. He was only searching for a nice place to sleep though, and thus did not give too much thought about it.
After searching for a while, Claudius found a massive reef near the ocean. A gap was visible on the top of the reef, and it seemed that the inner part was empty for some reason. The cavity was isolated from the ocean as well, eliminating the chance of this reef being the altar of the goddess Anbo. From the knowledge of the Inheritance Ceremony, Claudius instinctively knew that it was best to stay away from the altar of all gods. Nonetheless, the cave was perfectly concealed and even without the use of magic, the terrain alone was sufficient to enshroud the body of Claudius.
Claudius squirmed his way through the gap and lay down in the cave, but this was indeed an unbefitting place for a Crimson Dragon. Apart from the humid interior, the onshore wind was almost like a tempest, causing a continuous shriek simply by passing through the gap. Let alone Crimson Dragons, probably no living beings could fall asleep in such an environment. Of course, the sound was unbearable for Claudius as well, but he had the knowledge of a human. He grabbed two large bunches of seaweed from the surface of the reef, slightly roasted them with his Ring of Blaze, then plugged the make-shift earplugs into his ears. After blocking out the annoying sounds, Claudius went to sleep immediately.
Going back to Sylvia, while the Jade Dragoness did say that she would personally capture the Crimson Dragon, it was not as if she could depart instantly. As the leader of a humongous force, she simply could not leave at a moment’s notice. Furthermore, the situation with the spirits was rather tense at the moment, and skirmishes were breaking out between the two forces. If Sylvia left without giving out orders beforehand, her retarded subordinates would undoubtedly do something foolish and things would go south quickly. Sylvia had to make arrangements in advance, as well as preparing a magic formation which had the power to turn the situation to her favour even if she was not present. After a whole week of preparation, Sylvia was finally able to set out to find apprehend the Crimson Dragon. From what Sylvia knew, Crimson Dragons were aggressively territorial. They rarely left the area under their control after settling down. From this, she deduced that it was highly probable that the young dragon had claimed the zone as its territory. The territory of a teenage dragon was, naturally, smaller than a fully grown dragon. If the target was instead an adult Crimson Dragon, Sylvia might have to search a thousand square kilometres just to locate it. But more importantly, she would definitely not do so as Crimson Dragons were a bad matchup for Jade Dragons in battle. Sylvia might even have to pray that she would be unnoticed as she hid in the forest.
When Sylvia left the forest, her target was already fast asleep in a reef. This time, the irrational goddess did not seem to notice that the prey she once failed to capture had once again stepped into her territory. Even gods and goddesses were not omnipotent in the world of Floren after all.
Claudius’ abnormal behaviour basically slapped Sylvia in the face; who would have guessed that a Crimson Dragon would ‘hibernate’ by the sea?! Unless the Jade Dragon had fortune-telling abilities or legendary-class Prophecy magic, the chances were low that Claudius’ location would be exposed.
The enormous shadow of Sylvia swept through the forest, causing the Spirits to raise the battle alert to the highest level. Sylvia once considered sending a capable underling to lure and capture the Crimson Dragon with traps, but she rejected the thought in the end. The reason was that she simply could not find a person capable of capturing a Crimson Dragon. Sylvia’s army of ogres and gnolls were basically a bunch of brainless battle junkies who could only fight, and the only suitable person was the beastmen Zamed. However, it was dangerous to allow such an intelligent individual to roam free, thus she decided to head out herself.
While Sylvia’s long journey to hunt the Crimson Dragon began, Claudius felt a bit ill even during his sleep. While previously he would remain unconscious throughout the whole sleep process, Claudius was now in a hazy state while feeling irritated by something. The source of this sense of discomfort was the changes occurring within his body. If there were endoscopes in this world, Claudius could have seen what had happened to his body structure.
Dragons were well-known for their breaths, and while it was generally known as a physical behaviour, it was also partly an inborn magic skill. Normally, all the breaths of dragons were bound by this rule, but the current growth changed the physical structure of this unusual Crimson Dragon. On the upper end of his throat, a new organ appeared out of nowhere. The flames in Crimson Dragons’ breaths originated from their blood which granted them control over the fire element, but a sac had formed on Claudius’ throat. The sac could secrete and store highly flammable liquids which would further enhance his breath attack. Inside this newly grown organ was a tube which connected to the upper part of his trachea, and valves were present to control the flow of the liquid. The viscous fluid would ignite the moment it came into contact with air, forming flames of extreme temperatures. Besides the new organ, Claudius’ lungs also underwent reforms.
For the sake of flight, air sacs were present in a dragon’s body and their bones were semi-hollow, similar to birds back on Earth. As the body mass of Claudius increased, the air sacs had to enlarge and multiply in order to support his weight, especially next to the lungs for rapid gas exchange. Strong muscles enclosed the lungs and their air sacs, and valves connected the sacs to form an empty loop. The changes allowed Claudius to inhale a large volume of air into his lungs, then compressing the air to a high pressure in the loops with the help of the surrounding muscles. Apart from increasing his rate of gas exchange, Claudius could also utilize the compressed air to enhance his breath attack. Passing through the trachea at a high velocity, the flammable fluid stored would be exhaled along with the compressed air, forming a stream of terrorizing flames. By controlling his muscles, Claudius could freely manipulate the volume of liquid exhaled in each breath, as well as the shape of the flames. He could spew anything from a tiny fireball to a fan-shaped area-of-effect attack. Additionally, the flammable liquid would stick onto any surface due to its viscosity, causing the target to burn continuously. While it seems that the breath attack was purely physical at this point, but the fire elements would automatically adhere to the flames as the breath was exhaled. The fire elements would then convert to wind elements, bringing in oxygen to induce vigorous combustion. What Claudius did not know was that in terms of range and temperature, his breath attack was no weaker than that of an adult dragon.
At this point, it was almost five years ago that Claudius broke out of his egg and ventured into the world of Floren. This should be the phase which a dragon whelp develops into a toddler, but he was long past that stage. At the age of 5, Claudius already had the physique of a teenage dragon……By the way, Britannia was currently experiencing growth in her ‘hibernation’ as well. As usual, she was still hiding at the same volcanic crater where she was born. Although her body also grew quite a bit, Britannia’s size was nowhere near Claudius’; she was only slightly around 5 metres long while her brother was over 7 metres long.