Chapter 08 – Let’s practice magic
I awakened the next morning and sat up on the inn’s bed. Ah, what a pleasant morning.
No headache or fatigue. I got off the bed, equipped the leather armour I’d bought yesterday, and quickly went downstairs.
The clock above the inn’s reception showed that it was still only 5am.
Being too excited to sit around, I quickly went outside.
With the rising sun, the sky had turned bright, but the town was till shrouded in darkness.
The town had begun preparing for the new day, smoke was rising from various chimneys, and you could find people bustling about to prepare their stores for opening.
I did a few warm-up exercises and headed towards the town’s exit.
I’ve been itching to practice magic since yesterday.
Given that I can no longer contract a Servant, I still need some prowess to make a living as an adventurer.
A prowess that can match the existence of a Servant.
Moreover, I want to try things that I’ve never been able to until now.
I greeted the old man at the gate and exited the town.
I walked until I reached a remote spot, where there was nothing of import around, and stopped. I should be able practice here without worrying about any mishaps.
After all, there is no way I can reimburse a damaged building if do something like throwing a Red Grizzly or flip about unexpectedly.
I breathed in deeply to calm down a bit.
I’d never been able to properly use an Ability with Katrina, the fact that I could actually use magic now made me really excited. Let’s begin with Body Strengthening. I had a decent grasp of my endurance under Body Strengthening, I’d carried the Red Grizzly for over an hour yesterday and was still fine after.
What I wanted to test now was the maximum output of my Body Strengthening.
Like yesterday, I imagined a warmth coursing through my body.
First, I restricted the mana used for the Strengthening and tried jumping. Whoa! Despite jumping lightly, I’d reached a height easily exceeding my own. What do I do now If I jumped any higher I am worried whether I’ll land safely. After pondering for a while, I finally recalled it. That’s right! I remember reading about it.
I believe it was called Aura, an extension of Body Strengthening. By wearing this Aura, one can even come out without a scratch after being slashed at by a sharp sword.
By fortifying it, one can also endure large impacts like falling from a great height. Problem is… I have no clue about how to don an Aura. For a while I tried circulating the mana inside me, fumbling for a way, but it didn’t feel like I had anything protecting me from external impacts. Looks like I need some sort of knack for it.
Let’s try asking someone who knows about it.
Next, I decided to try out some water magic.
I’ve made some Water Balls while training with Katrina, but I haven’t tried to cast them myself yet.
I focused and imagined balls of water floating in front of me, but… It’s not working at all! I tried extending my arms out and posing in different ways, but it was all in vain.
In the first place, I don’t know how to squeeze out the mana inside me.
At least with Body Strengthening, when circulating the mana inside myself, I would feel the warmth that accompanies it.
When I tried something similar outside my body, that feeling would disappear. There is no way I can sense the warmth of things outside my own body! I could feel it getting warm just in front of my finger or above my palm but any further than that, I sensed nothing.
I don’t know how to expel the mana inside me.
I felt that I might have to bring my mana outside for donning an Aura too.
Cornelia, what exactly do you do when casting the Lightning Shield I asked immediately after meeting up with Allison at the guild. Even if you ask me how I exactly I do it…. Cornelia groaned in thought for a while and said, “I suppose I just want it show up, and it’s there.” That explanation is of no use at all! I crossed my arms and said, “I am able to use Body Strengthening because it’s similar to how I did it through an Ability with my Servant.
But I have no idea how to send my mana outside.” Allison thought about it for a while and said, “When we were training to use our Abilities, after learning Body Strengthening we practised Sensory Enhancement.
Sensory Enhancement is the first step in learning Detection.
It allows you to hear, see and sense the movement of the surrounding air very well.
Since I wasn’t good at wielding a sword and I didn’t have much mana, I prioritised a training regimen where I used Sensory Enhancement to sense and evade attacks.
After training like that for a while, we were naturally able to cast the Lightning Shield”
Cornelia was nodding in agreement to this. For Sensory Enhancement you begin with concentrating the mana on the surface of your body, but that is insufficient to hear all sounds and sense the movement of the surrounding air.
You’ll need to expand the range at which you can gather your mana outside your body to properly enhance all your senses for detection.
You can further increase the range at which you can gather mana by relying on these enhanced senses.
The process of gathering your mana and the warmth that accompanies it, is the same Body Strengthening though.
Can Servants tell what their contract holder is feeling Like it’s hot or cold or hear a certain sound Cornelia’s explanation raised a new question, so I asked her about it. Yeah, I can tell.
In particular, when I become a shield and receive Allison’s mana.
You feel something similar too, right Allison Allison nodded in assent and said, Yeah.
I can sense how it feels when Cornelia uses an Ability.
I can also help with constructing it. I see.
It’s quite shocking that Katrina felt nothing at all.
I wonder if the proficiency of the Servant and the depth of the bond with their master have something to do with it.
The only thing I was able to relate to was that the contract holder could sense how the Ability was being cast.
When I used to train with Katrina to use an Ability, I could feel how it was being cast, and besides I was the one who was doing almost all the construction and mana control too.
“Thanks you two.
I’ll take that has a hint and try it out.”
We then moved toward the bulletin board to pick a request.
Since I was at Rank-E and Allison at Rank-D, the requests we could take were restricted.
Most of the Rank-E requests were filled with stuff like Help wanted with relocation or Search for a missing dog.
Requests that involved combat started form Rank-D onwards.
While they might require some combat, they were still pretty chore-like.
I’d like to use Nicola’s mana and practice using Abilities that include the water attribute., said Cornelia. I, too, want to be able to use magic soon. In my present state, I can only use Body Strengthening.
In the event that they choose a request that involves combat, I’d have no choice but to stick to Allison for cover.
Oh, this one looks good., said Cornelia as she pointed at a request that asked for the subjugation of a monster called Rubber Turtle.
With a fire resistant shell made of a rubber like substance, it can’t be defeated by using swords, fire or lightning.
Due to such properties, it is often in demand to be used as an armour material.
At the hint of an attack, it retreats inside its shell and seals it tightly like a shellfish, making it hard to defeat.
Turns out, the common way to kill one is to submerge it in water, force it to come out for a breath, and then sever its exposed neck.
No! Definitely not!, said Allison vehemently while shaking her head.
I was a little taken aback by such a strong refusal and asked, “Why not It’s just a turtle right” Seems easy when compared to a lot of other monsters. That thing has a really strong bite.
You can’t drive it away using the lightning attribute either.
When I was a kid, I didn’t know about that and almost had my toes bitten clean off!, said Allison while gesturing with her right hand to mimic a bite. That one was a baby turtle.
It didn’t have such strength.
Stop exaggerating., said Cornelia rolling her eyes. You were hardly so calm back then!! Cornelia had no response to that. Looks like she’d panicked too.
But you could defeat it using the water attribute right It would also serve as good practice. Allison bit her lower lip in thought and finally gave in with a sigh, Fine. We then accepted the Rank-D request for Rubber Turtle subjugation.