"I don't think we should go," Brad smiled uneasily, pulling an impassive look from Ray as he shrugged, "Why not? I mean, that's definitely a rank 9 host, why wouldn't I want to try and talk to the guy."
"Because that person is Rank 9, we should steer clear!" Brad groaned as Ray gave him an annoyed look. "Whatever. I am going." Before Brad could even say anything else, the succubus disappeared, making Brad curse, finally revealing his venomous tongue, "Damn... almost had them. Can't play games in front of Adapt... sadistic f.u.c.ker." Muttering under his breath, Brad exited the auction but instead of following Ray, the man exited the entire set-up altogether.
Meanwhile, Nik stood in front of Adapt. The common area wasn't secluded but the diffusion of sheer pressure that his existence seemed to bring pushed off any potential 'trader' or host wishing to fish some benefits and strangely, even if the pressure easily surpassed the barrage of will that Lucifer's true clone pushed against him, Nik still felt a gesture of welcoming as he looked towards Adapt for confirmation. While Nik, once again, displayed a greater physique with Adapt standing at 1.87 meters and Nik having a proportionate figure of almost 2 meters of height, there remained not the slightest hint of negativity within Adapt's expression and if he did feel anything, he did well enough to hide it that Nik couldn't glean anything from his expression.
"Don't mind the pressure," Adapt spoke, his voice slightly rough and quite polite... like a salesman, "If I don't let others know my capabilities, some form of trouble would follow eventually..." continuing, Adapt inquired, "I have a private plane. Would you like to discuss trade there?"
"Private plane... as in Aeroplane?" Nik smiled wryly.
"Plane as in private realm..." not minding the caution on Nik's face once he explained, Adapt took back the offer, "On the other hand, it doesn't seem too pleasant to invite a bloodline of debauched capabilities to my world. Let's talk about our exchange here."
"Before we begin," Nik took a deep breath, "Would you answer a few questions?"
"These questions can be part of the information that I am willing to trade with you," Adapt nodded.
"I see... well, I am willing to sell the Tome of Battle... considering our possible relationship, I am willing to sell it to you whole instead of dividing the bloodline techniques and the martial techniques differently. However, what are you willing to exchange it for?"
Thinking for a while and finally putting down the handbag, Adapt's gaze grew a little dazed before he whispered extremely lightly.
"The number of skill points you want... you either want to pull almost all of your skills to their maximum level... or a single one. The only kind of skill that demands such a high price is the skill seeds of the concepts. What I am willing to present to you for information is information. I am willing to exchange the methods and specialty of each rank."
Surprising Adapt, Nik shrugged, "I want something that is useful to me at the moment." Of course, Nik didn't need such information with Sky, a rank 9 being, tied to him. Furrowing his brows, Adapt thought for a while, "Then, I have a few techniques that can form better skills"
"Please," Nik awkwardly cut in, "Don't get mad or anything like that, but I'd rather steer clear from any more skills. It is getting quite stressful lately."
Pursing his lips, Adapt slowly shook his head, "I am not getting offended... but yes, you have a knack of becoming annoying, son of Nirdai."
"Excuse me?" Nik raised his eyebrows as Adapt smiled quietly, "I can offer you the coordinates of the worlds and planets with most organized power systems that allow a host to reach Rank 9. Of course, this is my list and many others have their own. Or, I can tell you a few things about your mother... blood mother."
'Talk about being annoying,' Nik's brows twitched as he took a deep breath, "Adapt, is it okay if I call you by your name? I feel that we both can get along if we let go of formalities." Seeing Adapt nod with a slightly amused expression finally touching his face, Nik continued, "Adapt, you look a capable person with correct mental faculty. You will either present something useful for the information I am willing to forsake, or you will find me later when you have the necessary possession. As for my mother, we f.u.c.k.i.e.d and she died later due to an illness which fortunately wasn't s.e.x.u.a.lly transmitted. As for the person who's w.o.m.b I came from... look at me once again and find if I give a flying shit, oh, and you have the potential of being as annoying."
Smiling politely, Nik waited. The 'feel' of the pressure didn't change at all but Adapt adopted a slightly casual posture. "I tried to offer you information on the basis of the fact that you are trading information. Then I decided to base the trade on the techniques that comprise the entirety of the information and presented a few techniques... but you didn't like that either. Now, where are we on the list of co-ods?"
"Don't want them. As I said, I would like things that are helpful to my situation presently. I recall you saying something about removing the restriction on my body placed by Khooni."
"The techniques aren't a fair exchange," Adapt shook his head. "That is service which can only be traded for service."
Furrowing his brows while finally realizing the kind of fair exchange Adapt was talking about, Nik suddenly realized something, "You are known as Adapt. Is there a need to be so rigid?"
"I have adapted to both, fortunate and unfortunate circ.u.mstances. You, however, are none of them. I don't wish to adapt to your whims..." Adapt continued with a sigh, "Give the techniques I am offering a look. The quality of the techniques is so high that I am sure that not only they are helpful currently, but their benefit would grow further and further... I am saying this for your ravager bloodline."
Finally, Nik gave a nod of agreement as a dialogue box opened in front of him once again.
With the first skill presented already present in his arsenal, Nik felt a little depressed and amazed that such a skill is actually placed right next to an entire Tome of Battle. The next skill turned out to be a strange one.
[Physical Essence: Lvl 1
Allows the body to passively absorb the beneficial energy present in the surroundings and the nutritional intake to actively reinforce the body at every level. From bloodstream to bones to the...]
As the description continued on for a few lines further, Nik realized something strange. He had three such skills that could be combined and affected his physical body in a positive manner. Realizing a massive blunder he could have avoided quite easily, Nik opened his skill section, locating [Hamon Manipulation: Lvl 28], [Purple Qi Manipulation: Lvl 23], and [Life Energy Manipulation: Lvl 38], Nik attempted to combine them and even if Adapt felt Nik going slightly dazed as the information within Nik's mind slowly started to extrapolate various forms of knowledge, methods, and manipulation skills based on the three body enforcing skill, soon, Nik found a new skill emerging in place of the three skills.
[Full Body Strengthening: Lvl 13
Use: Allows the user to actively strengthen each section, organ, and cell of the body. This skill comprises and utilizes various forms of energy present and the effectiveness of the skill in strengthening the various corners of the body depends on the user's knowledge of the myriad energy.]
However, instead of getting any level 10 boost, Nik found his body feeling refreshed. The effects were different from his [Purification] and while Nik once again attempted to fuse [Purification] with [Full Body Strengthening], Nik found the combination instantly crumble into the two skills once again, finally making Nik realize that he simply gained the skill out of the sudden eruption of the ravager bloodline flowing within him and not his own knowledge and practice.
Meanwhile, Adapt looked at him with the slightest hint of surprise. "Did you just learn [Physical Essence], no... feels slightly incomplete. My skill would have strengthened your body in its entirety and not simply your eyes, muscles, and ligaments."
Not replying, Nik mused that if he had finally gotten dumb enough to not find the simple connection with three skills after having too much s.e.x and losing too much of his liquid. Sighing, Nik gazed at the two remaining skills. With two physical manipulation skills, what greeted Nik's sight was two forms of energy manipulation skills.
Both of which Nik already had, finally making him realize... that he was stacked with treasures whose values he had been underestimating from the beginning due to his narrowed perception itself. Under the collected gaze of Adapt, Nik smiled wryly, "You wouldn't have some strange skill that could allow me to evolve my bloodline by combining other stuff, right? Cause... I am not interested in the skills you just presented."
"You are trying to chew more than you can digest." Adapt commented, finally, allowing his sheer pressure to fall over Nik by the slightest of margin. A little unnerved, Nik coughed, "No point in hiding from a Rank 9, I guess... I have a similar type of skills already. Unless you have"
"This is my last offer. If this doesn't suit your taste," cutting in, Adapt finally spoke grimly, "I'll have to 'adapt' and change my method of achieving my goal. That is robbing you."
A little surprised by the sudden declaration, Nik looked at the description tab in front of him.
[Imperfect Chimera: Profession
Use: Allows the user to store the data of various species by absorbing their blood. Through the Profession, the user can bring measured changes to one's own evolutionary trait.]
"Profession is simply a better and perfect version of a skill which includes all the boosts and even a minor Legacy. I am willing to present this profession in exchange for the Tome of Battle and another one of the items from that bird."
Adapt whispered in finality, making Nik think carefully. From the moment he stood in front of Adapt, Sky had surprisingly taken control of his spiritual world and actually closed off all the paths into his spiritual world. So, he simply couldn't even hear her two bits. But realizing that it was either a profitable trade or getting targetted by yet another rank 9 being, Nik realized that this is a far better bargain than he could have imagined.
Nodding, Nik presented another item. "This is the Token to enter the Holy Paradise."
For a moment, Adapt's eyes widened as he actually took the item from Nik's hand and carefully gazed at the token, his breathing even pacing slightly quickly.
"These are the only two items I am left with. One of them was the Smite Token but it is completely used up."
"A considerable loss. The will hidden within the token could have been used to find crucial information... Anyway, here you go. With this, our trade ends here."
As Nik transferred the real Tome of Battle with multiple copies already stored within Dream Core, Nik found his inventory credited with a [Profession] while Adapt, who was almost going to exit was stopped by Nik's hasty call.
"Wait! I have a favor to ask!" He breathed out quickly, fearing one of the few chances slipping away.
A little annoyed by Nik but still stopping for the sake of the gains Adapt surprisingly found in the auction he barely had any hopes for, he stood and inquired, "What is it?"
"Can you connect me to the son of the Supreme Seraphim Undead Lucifer?"