A thank you for another month to Seadrake! ❤
Chapter 40: A Different View
The grime that had coated me slowly began to dry as I stood among the many dead ‘Lucids’.
“I’m going to kill Laurent.”
The calling was clear, it was all that filled my mind. Even the curiosity of what all these bodies meant about Lucid’s past couldn’t distract me from thinking about it.
He has to die by my hands as I did to his. He and his party took away what was most precious to me in this world.
The first thing that connected to me. The guiding hand that made sense of this bizarre land. Gently framing everything perfectly so I could understand.
I owe my life to Eurval. Without it, I would be dead many months ago. I wouldn’t have had the fighting chance it gave me to adapt as quickly as I did. I don’t care that it was just a computer, a tool, used by most of the people from this world. As a being, Eurval felt every bit real to me.
Every bit real was the gratitude and fondness I felt and every bit real was the sense of loss that’s filling me now.
I collected myself. There are things I want to do and things that needed to be done. I just have to bid my time.
Alra…be smart okay?
Since I died it should have been summoned out a couple hours after I died. Empowered with the resistance of four elements and strengthened with what is a considered a giant piece of mana body it should be plenty stronger than the rock tortoise I fought.
Survive until father comes to get you.
It was an adolescent when I fought it and still an adolescent when it became my own creation, is not my child?
Willing the small flame to follow me I gently stepped over the Lucids. I had no map and no support from a MAGI. I was experiencing this world in its raw state and I didn’t like it one bit, however, I didn’t feel hopeless.
“Sorry, excuse me, coming through~” I took careful steps as to not disturb my brothers.
I made way to the edge of the deep pit taking more effort than I thought it would have to lift myself up to the ground.
I wanted to laugh. All that essence training for nothing. Nothing!
Shit, no, I have to be positive. I can’t say it was for nothing I remember every detail on how to do it. If I did it every day without skipping once then doing it reaching where I was is easy.
Naked I ran into the forest nearby. Whoever was dumping these bodies sure as hell don’t want them living. With light steps on my bare feet, I made my way into the forest. It was not lowland evergreens like the Tole Forest but dense collection giant pointy firs of an alpine forest. The rocky ground was especially painful on this weak body.
With only my thoughts making circles on what happened two hours past by. Not a single hyre had come to visit nor did I find any sign of other people.
I’m hungry, I have no money, I have no weapons, and I have no idea where I am.
At least I’m not cold or thirsty.
Heat and water are easily reproducible. I don’t even need to use a magic circle. The only reason I would use one was to decrease the mana cost but for the amount needed for a single person to keep warm and to drink its negligible.
Times like these I at least had Eurval to pass the time with…
A breath escaped me followed by a longer intake of the cold air. The fragrance sharp, sweet, and quite strong. Especially so when I stepped on a fallen branch of a fir, crushing it against the piles of rocks on the ground.
Even with the flame, it became terribly dark with the canopy of trees now covering the little moonlight I had.
The rocky path I had been following which I assumed was a dry river bed became blocked.
The flame moved forward lighting what lay in front of me. A massive line of firs I had to squeeze through. I could see the rocky path continue under it.
“Fuck, ow! Shit! ow, ow, ow!”
What the heck are these trees made of? Plastic razors?
I have to stop waiting for a reply. It only serves to make me sad and angry.
It was more painful than I thought to scrape through the needle filled branches, but at least it led me back onto the rocky pathway to who knows where.
However, I did know one thing. In the direction, I was headed I could sense the mana undulations that can only be felt where there are a lot of people. Like the cheers from a stadium I could hear them and like a single voice far away I very much doubt they could hear me.
How far away the source was?
I…can only pray its close, I’m not that good.
I just hope they aren’t the ones who tossed me into the pit.
“Maybe… I should have prayed harder.”
The sun had come up now, I would have been completely entranced by the view of lush fir packed into the forest, but hunger isn’t something that was easy to forget.
Without Eurval I can’t tell what plants are edible or what I can collect to lustrate with especially in a completely different environment. Had I been relying on Eurval too much?
No. We were a duo…
Well, maybe. I never expected to be separated from it since it was permanently inside me…
I should at least try and look around with the sun out. Eurval would be pissed if I wasn’t trying my damnedest right now.
Refocused I put effort to search through the greenery among the many trees. My eyes continually scanning back and forth as the hours of morning light turned into the midday.
“Clacka root!” I knew that flower!
I gunned towards it, using my hands I dug it up. Quickly, I pulled it out by its thick root. After ripping off the flower stem I washed it with a bit of water and threw it on my mouth.
“Mmm, mmm, mmm! What a delicious nutty flavor!” Truly a magnificent plant.
Everything tasted better when starving and judging by how meager this body is who knows how long since it was last fed.
Surrounding it where many other clacka flowers for me to pick up. One by one I plucked them gorging myself on juicy their roots. The caffeine within them perking me up too.
Full, I sat down to rest with my back against a massive white rock using the petals of the clacka flower as a seat for my naked butt.
I never expected to learn how badly I would miss clothes or even just underwear. After walking for six or seven hours I was only a little tired. I didn’t mind, with mana circulating through my body it was doubling as a bit of essence training. It’s also the reason why even pure mages gain stronger bodies when adventuring.
Every little bit counts!
Is what Eurval would say.
Soft steps of four paws gently reached my ears. Instantly I cast Rainer’s movement spell.
“Too slow!” My body shot forward as I turned back to see what hyre had finally come to visit.
An ugly dog sized rabbit stared at me from where I just been sitting. It’s massive front teeth chipped from biting into the rock where I sat against.
Quickly I produced a fire arrow in my hand. Even with no bow, I can throw them!
Little by little its disgustingly muscular hind legs tightened at our stare off, both of us measuring each other up.
Aiming for my throat the rabbit flung itself at me.
“Should have run away!” Jumping back with the movement spell I threw the fiery arrow like a bolt from Zeus exploding on contact.
I saw its beady black eyes widen before the explosion took its head, splattering a pastel blue blood with pink bits onto the rock and petals behind it.
With the momentum lost the rest of its body fell to the ground with a resounding thud in front of me.
That’s a nice sound.
The sound of meat to be eaten!
This combat was closer than I was used to, but it wasn’t so bad. My guess was this hyre is maybe a third as fast and as strong compared to the crimson fanged tigers?
Grabbing a sharp looking stone I smashed it against another to create an edge. Reminding me of my hunts on Earth I began to skin and clean the rabbit after creating the mana and essence orbs.
Peeling the hide back, cutting open its chest, then pulling from the top to get all the guts out. The cuts of meat weren’t perfect, but it was good enough. The major difference being my hands were coated in a sky blue blood.
After a quick rinse, I tossed a piece onto a hot rock heated with my flame to cook. The mana undulations feel as faint as they were when I first sensed them so I felt it best to preserve most of this meat. Who knows this trek might take days so I thought best to cut it into thin strips and smoke it into jerky.
I didn’t think about it before, if it’s coming from a city with the population the size of Laurent’s then it could seriously be very far…
Especially with the speed of this body…
As I ate some more and waited for the meat to smoke the hours past by.
“My mana is topped off now I should lustrate.”
The thin strips of meat were still mostly raw.
But before I sit down and do it I should…
I summoned a two dozen fire arrows jamming them into the ground then setting them to trigger when they come into contact with any living being.
Developing the trigger for the lightning arrow was more useful than I expected. I was sure this body couldn’t take the load, but at least I could implant my modifications to my other magic.
After setting up the ring of death I sat at its center summoning a familiar lustrating spell.
Is it bad that I find using Laurent’s circle extremely funny?
Instantly I was brought forth to a familiar plane.
“Hmm? That’s different…”
No longer was I greeted by my cute flame, instead blue crystal floated at the center.
The blue crystal lightly tilted forward at my presence as if giving me a humble bow. If I described the flame as an energetic friend then this mana body reminded me of a level headed knight.
“I wonder if familiars take the traits of the mana body…”
It would explain why Alra fought so unlike how I expected it to.
Without Eurval or a database, I doubt I would find the answer anytime soon, but I didn’t have much else to do while the crystal absorbed the mana I had brought. Included with this meal was the mana orb from the giant rabbit hyre.
Now I wait…
Nothing happened while Lustrating or any of the other three times in the past days. I am kinda curious to see the face of the first hyre killed my magic land mine.
However, I was attacked four times while traveling towards where I think people are. Four times by the same rabbits and four times they died from the explosion of a flame arrow. I took it as a good sign I only clashed with weak hyres.
Like the areas Eurval mapped for me in the Tole Forest, an abundance of weak hyres meant areas where adventures trafficked through often. The stronger hyres were smart enough to avoid those places.
“Should modify it into a javelin?”
I’m surprising myself with how good I’m getting at throwing the arrows. I nodded my head at my idea.
It’s not like I have anything else to work on without the materials Eurval provided. While I wondered what to modify I continued down the same rocky pathway I’ve following the entire trip.
A yell rang out from off the rocky trail.
“Get away! Get away from my brother!”
Quickly I made my way to the source but slowed my steps before arriving to see the situation. Two young kids in plain looking hard leather gear were tossed back by a kick from the same rabbit hyres I’ve been fighting.
One of them had a small buckler shattered in half, on it I could see clear bite marks where the rabbit had attacked. The older sibling’s feet wobbled as they stood before the readying rabbit.
The two of them should be strong enough to kill one right?
I continued to wait to watch from afar.
A mass of green thorny vines shot out from the ground latching onto the soft pelt of the large rabbit. Like tiny hooks, each thorn dug in deep.
At the reminder from her brother’s words, the girl shot forward splitting the rabbit’s head in two.
Nice, they did it.
“We…we did it! Quickly, we let us go back before another shows up. I don’t think your shield can take another…”
The young boy nodded and picked up the broken half of his buckler. Brushing himself off following after his older sister.
This was great news. A city is nearby, all I have to do is follow them.
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