Rowan woke up in darkness and silence. He had a weird sense of grandiosity, and he realized what he was feeling was a new type of sensation.
His flesh had been liquefied, and were being transformed, this transformed flesh was what carried this awareness.
It felt right. It felt complete, present, In the moment, as if he was just a wisp of smoke before, but now he was transforming into metal.
Soul Eater gave him clarity of mind, it enhanced his soul and he became more aware of spiritual forces and other fundamental forces of nature like gravity and light.
Ouroboros went the opposite direction, it enhanced his bodily perception, he could almost tell each of his bones apart, besides that was all he was at the moment--bones.
The level Zero of Ouroboros Record -- Bone core.
Rowan noticed a small granule growing inside his skull, it floated inside the empty dome, it slowly spat out long pieces of silk-like materials that began to attach to his skeleton, he was slowly being rebuilt, discarding his former shell for something new.
His skeleton was absorbing the golden liquid, turning slowly bronze. Then another round of absorption began and the bronze colour began to deepen to a shade of gold beginning from his skull.
Rowan thought of many things at this moment, and he took his bony hands to his jaw and bit off his thumb, it was the only part of his skeleton that was not yet transformed, a new thumb grew in its place, this one more golden.
There was this final moment of panic where he felt he had lost something entirely when he knew he had taken a step he could never return from.
He wondered if it were not for his limited lifespan, would he have taken this step? He was no longer human and if not for his physique being similar to a human, there was no more relationship with him to the race he was birthed from.
"So you are leaving no part of me behind."
Rowan clutched the thumb bone, the golden liquid sensed his conviction and flowed around the bone, "Let this be a vestige of our presence!"
Rowan did not know how long this process was going to take. Building up always takes longer than breaking down, so he settled back into sleep.
"Well at least.." Rowan thought, "I still kept my human form. I could have easily become a giant snake or maybe a frog."
Maeve watched the "egg" for the entire night before leaving and sealing the doors to the laboratory, she had other duties that needed attending to, she kept a OneCircle flowing Rune beside the egg if it made any movement she would be alert.
Her place was beside Rowan and she needed to settle the many minor issues that arise from a large household.
The staff were to be updated with new changes in the manor, luckily the affairs of the manor were sparse, and Rowan was not acknowledged at court, so he had fewer responsibilities, a blessing in disguise for the moment.
Maeve knew the importance of keeping Rowan's transformation under wraps, and she did not entirely trust the staff, for spies could be among them. With the powerful Dominators at the Royal City, there was no chance Rowan could go through this wondrous metamorphosis in peace if they became aware.
At the moment of Rowan's return, Maeve deliberately laid off every nonessential staff in the manor, reducing them to the bare bone minimum required to ensure the steady operation of the manor, the thirty-bedroom manor now appeared desolate.
Even though this action would inevitably attract suspicions, it held far lesser risk for Rowan who was in a state of weakness.
A short while later, Maeve had finished organizing the daily affairs of the manor and was about to return to her master, when the butler announced a guest. The Dark Priest--Purdue.
There was a troubling update that the cook, a lovely woman by the name of Katherine was missing. Maeve found that news was deeply disturbing, but she kept that matter aside and decided to attend the Priest.
Maeve frowned, she did not want to be far from her master except when necessary but she remembered that the priest was an interesting fellow. Dark priest ply their trade in areas of conflict, their spells most suitable in dealing death, few was as peace-loving as Purdue, and Rowan especially loved this priest, his simplicity and wisdom charming the heart of the young noble.
Maeve sighed and walked to the guest room, eager to be done with whatever matters the priest brought forward, she did not find the priest amusing. Wolves were meant to be wolves and sheep to be sheep, she believed everyone had a purpose in life and detested those who strayed far from their potential.
As she walked into the guest room, she saw the priest surreptitiously slip into his robe, a piece of cake, no doubt to be given to the poor children who took advantage of the priest's generosity, she made a mental note to tell the cook to wrap up some pastry for the priest when he was leaving.
"You requested the presence of Lord Rowan, priest?" Nevertheless, she was in a hurry and had no time for small talk. Every moment of not being beside Rowan made her uneasiness grow.
Purdue coughed, "em... you see it's you I intended to find."
"Is that so? Then why is that, priest?" Maeve elegantly sat on the chair facing the priest, her back straight like a ruler.
"Lord Rowan is a great land owner and noble, but.... eh, to be frank, there are matters he cannot touch, paths he cannot walk." Purdue paused and assessed Maeve, seeing the composed look on her face he continued,
"Something is going wrong in our little town, we have been having cases of mysterious disappearances, our stored produce are getting spoilt faster than normal, and there have been reports of strange sighting in the night...."
Maeve interrupted him, "The Guard Captain informed me of his plan to head into the town today for more in-depth information which he would pass across to me, perhaps you should be going to him with your queries, he is more than capable, and whatever he cannot handle I would take charge of."
Purdue clutched his robe to himself, "In any other instance, I believe that should be the wise option, but I believe there is more to this series of incidents than meets the eye."
Maeve arched her brows, she felt an unknown palpitation in her heart, and the sense of uneasiness in her heart grew. "Continue." She said.
Clearing his throat, Purdue began to talk, but his voice had unknowingly fallen to a whisper, "Most of the town folks think it's a recent matter, folks missing and all that, but you see, one of my hobbies is bird watching, in particular the Modo birds, and since the month of Tulvi, late last year, I have noticed their population of the birds dropping, which frankly should be quite impossible, Modo birds are incredibly prolific.
lightsΝοvεl ƈοm"I had my suspicions, and I tried to investigate if there were any other invasive species, but I could find none, lately I correlated a frightening conclusion, when the last of the birds disappeared, people started going missing!
"It is just recently I have been made aware of the lack of presence of Fish and other marine life in our lake, which is beyond troubling. The Sylvan lakes are massive and I find it alarming that it has suddenly become devoid of life."
Purdue paused, a hint of deep fear and horror in his eye, "I think..... I think an Abomination is here, In this town. I think it has been here for a while and was growing in secret. We should inform the Justice Council or the Kuranes family quickly."