Chapter 4: My Life Now
REYNOLDS LEYWIN’S POV:
My baby boy!
I was so happy we had a son. When can babies start training? When did I start training again? Man, I can’t wait to teach my baby boy all about magic. I hope he turns out to be an Augmenter like his old pops. I may know the basics of Conjuring, but I can’t do anything practical with it except use it as a form of mental exercise.
Alice, on the other hand, is one of the most talented people I’ve ever seen. Even as an Emitter, she’s exceptional. Back then, after she agreed to date me, she joined my party and we went on missions together. Her restorative powers were amazing in it of itself, but what shocked me the most was when she used an area of effect spell which healed allies inside. Talk about one of a kind! And I’m her husband!
Hehe… I still don’t get tired of saying that.
Back in the good old days before Alice wanted to settle down, we would go into Beast Glades and hunt for mana beasts. Mana beasts were various unique animals and creatures that were born with the ability to absorb mana into their body and create their own mana core, which we call beast cores.
Beast cores had an unlimited amount of uses, making them very valuable and highly sought after. Of course, the higher the classes of beast cores were, the more valuable they are. Mana beasts are classified anywhere from E class (the domesticated fanged bull used for meat and leather), to your SS class monster. I can’t tell you much about those simply because I’ve never seen nor heard of one, but supposedly they do exist.
Rule of thumb, you should assume that the mana beasts are stronger than humans of the same class. This is simply because, even if we take mana out of the picture, a beast’s physical body is much stronger than the average human.
While the Beast Glades were dangerous, as long as you were cautious and don’t get lost, it was pretty easy to keep yourself out of trouble. The stronger beasts tend to be further down in dungeon-like caves underground or farther away. The first few tens of kilometers of the Beast Glades are pretty well mapped and as long as you were at least a C class adventurer, you’d be fine.
Once in awhile, there are missions posted up that requires a couple parties of adventurers. Those are usually for trying to clear and map the harder dungeons that aren’t fully explored. If a mana beast has the power to create its own lair and have other mana beasts serving him, then you can bet there are treasures to be gained.
I tell my son Art all about this life, telling him this and much more so I can brainwa… I mean nudge him to at least have some experience as an adventurer when he gets older.
I don’t know what I’ll do if little Art never awakens. Oh God, it doesn’t matter how long it takes, as long as he can train to become any kind of mage, I’ll be a proud and happy father.
It’s pretty easy to tell what type of mage someone will be when they awaken because, while Augmenters, Conjurers, and deviants form a translucent barrier, the mana behaves differently around them during this time.
Augmenters, when they first awaken, form a sort of pushing force around the barrier, signifying that they have dominant mana channels in their body. Conjurers, on the other hand, form a vacuum of mana around them, which means that their mana veins are much more dominant. Of course the degrees of the pushing force and vacuuming force depends on their talent in either type.
I don’t mean to brag, but when I first awakened, at the early age of twelve by the way, I was sleeping and the pushing force made me float for a good couple of minutes! Enough force to lift a human body?
Sheesh, Alice should be grateful I stopped being an adventurer and settled down, not making full use of my talent… Okay don’t tell your mother this.
Anyways, as soon as he awakens, I’m going to train him. If he ends up becoming a conjurer, I think I can get him a tutor from the main town since Alice and I aren’t adept enough to be teaching him…
…Is what I said but…
Currently, 3/4th of the house is gone…
Luckily I was with Alice in the front yard for a bit after dinner but… Art….Little Art is still in the house…
Alice’s face drains of all blood as I see her go pale, eyes wide in disbelief and worry. I nudge my wife down while covering her with a temporary shield that will last for a couple minutes.
I rush into the direction of the explosion, shielding my body with a layer of mana over my skin. The debris from what’s left of my house is constantly thrown towards me as I reach deeper into the source of the explosion. After fighting myself through the scraps of what is left of my house and several pieces of rocks, I see it.
My son had the all but noticeable translucent barrier around him. Better yet, the pushing force of his awakened powers is what caused this explosion. He was floating in the center of a crater that cleared 3/4th of our house as well as our entire backyard.
My legs gave out and I just landed on my knees while I continued to gape at this sight. My son is almost 3 years old and he awakened. Only 3…
“I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry”
I glanced back at my wife with my mouth still hanging from shock. She managed to slowly make her way towards me, after there was no more debris to be thrown out.
She was making half-steps towards me, covering her face with her arms to shield what she could from the strong pushing force still emanating out of Art.
“Reynolds! What happened? What’s going on? Where’s Art?”
I still couldn’t find my voice so I just pointed my finger towards the direction of our son.
While confused, she looked at the direction I was pointing at and all she could manage to whisper was, “Oh my…”
ARTHUR LEYWIN’S POV:
Wow I feel great!
Feeling refreshed at my breakthrough, I closed my eyes to sense my newly formed mana core. My sweet little mana core!
“ART! OH MY BABY! Are you okay?”
I see my mother rushing towards me while my father is on the ground kneeling.
What did he do this time that caused him to get punished by mother?
My mother lifts me up and hugs me, almost to the point where my underdeveloped ribs give out.
I managed to squeal out a “Mom, no cry. What’s wrong?”
She didn’t answer me and continued sobbing while cradling me. My father arrived next to her, patting her back and patting my head as well, giving me a weak smile.
After a brief moment of confusion, I peeled my head away from my mother’s bosom and I looked around to see that we’re standing in the center of a giant crater, with most of our house gone.
…What the fuck?
Who caused this? Who dares have the audacity to destroy the home of a King?! The perpetrators will rue this day! I will hunt them down day and night and not rest until…
“Congrats Art honey. You awakened Champ.”
I did this?
In my old world on Earth, a similar phenomenon happens when a youth awakens. A clear barrier appears around the awakened and a small pushing force surrounds the barrier. I’m guessing, though, that the pushing force in this world is lot stronger because of the mana in the atmosphere, something that wasn’t there back on Earth.
As once a King of integrity, I decided on apologizing for this… er.. situation.
“I’m sorry Mom, Dad. Am I in trouble?”
“Haha… No Art honey, you’re not in trouble. We were just worried about you. I’m glad you’re alright.” My mother managed to chuckle through half teared eyes.
My idiot father, on the hand, was a lot more excited.
“My boy is a genius! Awakened at the age of less than three! This is unprecedented! I thought I was fast but jeez!”
So a couple of moments of a picture perfect atmosphere was broken when a neighbor passing by screamed, “What in the world?!”
“Haha, we better clean this mess up” my father grins while rubbing the back of his head.
A couple of weeks have passed since my awakening. We decided to keep my awakening a secret for now. My father managed to contact a couple of his past Adventurer party members to help rebuild the lost part of our house while we stayed in the nearby inn. With conjurers raising the ground for the foundation of the house and augmenters doing the grunt work, the house didn’t take too long to finish. The beauty of magic! Surprisingly, none of my father’s ex party members seemed to question why our house blew up.
That seems to say a lot about my idiot father.
During the middle of reconstructing our house, my birthday came around (May 29). My parents woke me up that morning with a present and what seemed to be a loaf of….bread? in their hands.
Ahh! It was a cake!… would’ve been easier to tell if it wasn’t black.
Opening the present box to find a carefully carved, wooden sword, I hugged both my parents, thanking them for the present and cake.
This surprised me because my parents didn’t bother to celebrate my past two birthdays so I assumed this world didn’t really celebrate it. I later found out that birthdays are celebrated starting at the age of 3 because of a tradition from a long time ago when babies were more susceptible to death before the age of three.
Another thing I took an interest in noticing.
Seeing children as well as teens working in farms with their family and forges as apprentice blacksmiths made me realize there was no mandatory form of a structured education system.
Any sort of rudimentary education was provided by their families (just basics like reading and writing).
As soon as I turned three, my mother began giving me lessons for a set time, teaching me how to read and write. Playing the role of a genius son, I pretended to learn quickly, to her delight, so I can read harder books in the library without drawing suspicion.
These last couple of weeks passed by in a blast. After awakening, my father taught me the basics of mana and how to start training in it as best as he could. He tried to simplify as much as possible so that a toddler can understand I guess, but if it wasn’t for my adult comprehensive abilities, I don’t think I would’ve retained much.
The basics go as the following:
An easy way to know where you stand in strength lies in the color of your mana core. When you start off, the mana core is black, due to the body’s blood and other impurities mixing with the mana particles as they formed together to be a mana core. As the mana inside the person’s body becomes more pure and the impurities are filtered out, it’ll turn to a dark red color. From there, the lighter the mana core’s color will become; from dark red, to a red, and then to a lighter red.
The order goes as follows: black, red, orange, yellow, silver, and then white.
From the red mana core ‘til the yellow mana core, the colors split into three shades of that said color (Dark Orange, Orange, Light Orange). Rule of thumb, the lighter the mana core color, the more pure one’s mana core is and the more power they have access to.
While the lessons with my father proved useful, I was getting impatient at the pace. I asked mother a couple days later, “Mom, can I get books on magic?”
Since my mother still had connections in the Guild Hall (Adventurer Guild), She managed to acquire a pretty good collection of books on basic mana manipulation as well as fighting with different weapons. Some of them were just picture books with only simple words and mostly pictures of basics on how mana was condensed, but I ignored those. My mother gave me a strange look because the books that I’ve been looking at were on a higher level. She assumed I wouldn’t even be able to understand most of the words in there and tried to cajole me into some of the simpler books, saying that it’ll be easier to understand, but eventually she relented.
A typical day would involve taking reading and writing lessons from mother and Augmenting training with my father. After he covered the basic theory and application of Augmenting, we started physical training. Seeing how my body is too small to start sparring, we opted to running, and body workouts. I think seeing my three-year-old body trying to do a pushup would be the funniest thing but my father did a good job holding in his laughter.
When I’m not taking either lessons, I usually stay cooped up in the newly improved library, reading and meditating to further condense my mana core.
As the year passed and not much happening outside of my typical day, my father spoke up while we were having dinner one night.
“Honey, I think it’s time we get Art a proper mentor.”