Cutting off thirty years of history certainly helped with the search, but it still left a large number of records to search through. Barrett realized that after they started taking records from the other side of the shelves. Luther was very quick and efficient in his reading, keeping pace with Barrett even though Barrett had enhanced senses and mental processing speed from being a cultivator. It reminded Barrett that even people who didn’t cultivate might have some exceptional skills- were mental exercises a form of body training? The brain was part of the body, but perhaps it could be considered separate. Barrett did train his brain- but mostly for things that were useful for combat, such as quick reflexes and thinking. Reading quickly wasn’t necessarily on the list, though he was better at it just by virtue of being trained in general.
The Immortal Berserker Sect wasn’t particularly rapidly growing- the early death rates had something to do with that, both preventing people from wanting to join and making it difficult to successfully do so. The sect had been about a quarter smaller thirty years before, but that was still forty-five hundred direct members. A hundred years before the present they had been twenty-five hundred members- and the current grandmasters would have just joined at the time. The history continued for quite some time before that… so naturally there were many records to look through.
Barrett frowned. A name had come up several times, and it was one that he should have known. “Who is Grandmistress Aurora?” There were only five grandmasters at the moment, of which one was a woman- and her name was Dima Mabyn. He didn’t know of her having the nickname of Aurora either. It had only been thirty years so she should have still been around, according to her age.
“Grandmistress Aurora?” Luther nodded his head. “Yes, I remember her. She trained Master Hykel, among many others. It was a few years after that I obtained this position… I believe she was killed by the Convocation of Souls.”
“They killed a grandmistress?” Barrett was of course aware that seventh tier cultivators were just as mortal as anyone else- even members of the Immortal Berserker Sect- but it was still somewhat jarring to hear. He knew of the Convocation of Souls- they were a group of soul binders from Smiynia, another large cultivator city a few countries to the northwest of Stredo. He was aware that the Immortal Berserker Sect had some conflict with them- everyone was warned about where it would be unwise to go. He hadn’t known quite how strong they might be or why… but now he knew. “I wonder why Master Hykel didn’t say anything about her…”
Luther shrugged, “Perhaps it wouldn’t have helped you. Tell me, even now, can you be considered a relevant factor in the battle of grandmasters?”
That was a rhetorical question of course. One tier might not be too big of a difference, but Barrett would find it impossible to kill a grandmaster even if they weren’t trying to kill him in return. If Barrett were to try to kill one of the grandmasters of the Immortal Berserker sect- in a fictional scenario- he likely couldn’t do so unless they lowered their bodies defenses, even if they didn’t actively try to stop him. Three tiers was a big deal, after all. Barrett could let normal people stab at him with spears all day long without worry. That said… if he had a good weapon, he might be able to change things. Since he was a master now, he wouldn’t need to worry about his equipment falling behind quickly. The only problem was he couldn’t make optimal use of a weapon with Pure Body Tempering… unless he could get some living metal. Maybe there were other options, but he didn’t have enough of the stone pits to form into a full weapon- though if he could make a mace or club with them it could be quite effective. He did know the stone pits preferred their form and even if he changed it they wouldn’t form sharp edges well.
Barrett considered he would have to search something out soon. Buying a weapon that would be sufficient would be prohibitively expensive. However, before that… he needed to see if there was a way to help Hayden. If there was, he would be prepared if the situation came up again. So far the records showed it was very rare- if it had happened at all before.
Then he came across a name, finally. Failed first destruction- but it didn’t mention deceased. The name was Mariasole Marina, and the incident had happened one hundred and twenty years before. After finding the name, they had to look forward in the records again for that name. Fortunately, they could restrict that search to a few year period- since there would either have been action of some sort or her name would come up as deceased.
Looking by name was much easier- they only had to rescan one column, and they knew what they were looking for. While it had taken days to find the name to begin with, it only took a few hours to find her name later. At the time, Barrett hadn’t taken note of it.
“I have found something.” Luther mentioned, “Mariasole Marina. ‘Consumed a Vitality Pear to aid in her recovery’ followed by a few months later ‘successful first destruction.’”
“Great. What is a Vitality Pear?”
“I have no idea. I would suggest inquiring in the cultivation or medicine departments.”
Barrett nodded. “Thank you Luther. If you could keep track of where we left off… just in case this turns into a dead end.”
“Of course, Master Ravenhall. I will take note of it. I hope you find what you are looking for.”
Once he had a name of something that might help, it only took a short time to find information on the Vitality Pear. While there was an entire book of medicines and such with the name ‘vitality’ attached to them, it was organized alphabetically. The description of its effects were rather short. “The Vitality Pear is a curiosity that can provide healing to non-cultivators and early first tier cultivators. In the presence of energy or magic it breaks down quickly, providing little use. In non-cultivators it has been demonstrated to heal nearly any injury not involving the loss of a body part, with an efficiency similar to a number of first tier medicines. No observed side effects.”
First tier medicines weren’t of much note- Barrett didn’t carry any of them around on him. In fact, except when he was first starting to train under Master Hykel, he didn’t even have any of them- and when he was given them he never used them. However, it was possible that the Vitality Pear would be able to heal damage from a failed destruction- Barrett didn’t blame them for not having notes about something that had happened one hundred and twenty years prior, especially since this compilation wasn’t written for the Immortal Berserker Sect specifically. There was room to add additional notes, and Barrett planned to add them if it was seen to work. First, though, he needed to find a Vitality Pear.
He might be able to buy them- they likely wouldn’t be seen as very valuable so they would be cheap if they were on the market… but that could also mean nobody would bother selling them. If he couldn’t find that, the compilation noted potential growing environments. Because of their nature, they wouldn’t grow in the same places one would expect of any sort of cultivation resource- significant energy or mana in the area, for example. Barrett hadn’t sought out those places in the past, but there might be notes of them. Hopefully, he would be successful and be able to help Hayden.