Chapter 18: Peaceful
In the world I came from, Elemental Augmenters were just pract.i.tioners of different Sects. The Earth, Fire, Water, and Wind Sects consisted of their own techniques that utilized their element.
What allowed me to become King in my old world was by knowing how to fight in all 4 different practices of the elements. Translate that here and I’d be a sort of Quadra Elemental, if that even existed. Of course I did have my preferences. My weakest was Earth and Wind and my strongest was Fire and Water. I hardly used Earth and Wind except for slight support. No. I was feared in battle because of my mastery in the two complete opposite elements of Water and Fire.
While I was training with Gramps, I tested out a bunch of different theories. One thing I learned very quickly was that I had absolutely no talent for conjuring. Grandpa brought over an elf Conjurer one day when I asked him to get someone to teach me the basics and I ended up nearly killing myself. Augmenting and Conjuring are very different. I just regret that I had to learn that the hard way. Another thing I tested out was my ability as a potential deviant. Grandpa Virion and Tess were both already nearly shocked to death when they found out I could manipulate all 4 elements but after the four months of trying to see if I can control any of the higher elements, I got mixed results.
“Try not to be too surprised Dad!”
My hair stood on its end by the electric current coursing through me. There were crackles of yellow lightning popping around me as I prepared to attack.
“What the…” My father almost stopped his attack from his concentration wavering. Before giving him the chance to recover, I dash towards him, leaving a trail of charred gra.s.s and earth behind me. I flash behind him and concentrate the lightning into the blade of my hand and I chop at his sides.
My father managed to block my attack with his burning fist but the recoil made him crash into a nearby tree.
*Whew* I will the lightning current to settle down but my hair still looks a little crazy from the static. During the 4 months of training after the affirmation stage, I was able to start controlling Lightning and Ice. Of course, I’m still a beginner at both though. I can probably keep up my Lightning form for about a minute or two, which was why I wanted to end it quick. For Ice, it’s even harder for me.
The reason why only very few mages are able to transcend the basic element that they’re adept at and into its higher form is that the higher form is completely different and incomparably more difficult. Of course, me being able to learn both Lightning and Ice within 4 months probably doesn’t back up this point, but trust me, I’m a complete beginner in these higher forms of elements. My old world experiences didn’t prepare me in becoming a deviant after all.
As for Sound and Gravity, I’ve yet to produce any favorable results. In order to even take the first step, a mage needs to understand the link between the basic elements into its higher form. After that, your body needs to be able to naturally understand this link and harmonize the structure of the mana from the basic element to its higher form. For Wind and Earth, even if I somehow become able to feel the link between the basic to its higher form, my body wouldn’t be able to change the structure.
My theory held true in that I wasn’t compatible to Wind and Earth both in my old world and here.
The energy from my body is drained and I collapse on my behind, sweating profusely. I notice the dead silence so I look around.
My father is already up and his face is in utter disbelief. The only one that seems fascinated is my sister, but that’s only because she doesn’t really get what’s going on. She was probably used to seeing Father fight so nothing outside of that really registered. Vincent and Tabitha’s faces are all in sync, faces pale, jaws slack, eyes wide. My mother has her hands covering her mouth in surprise while even Lilia knew that what I did isn’t normal.
This reaction was within my expectations.
“Haha… Surprise!” I throw up my arms, laughing weakly.
“Kuu~!” Sylvie scampers towards me and gives me a concerned gaze, as if asking, ‘are you okay Papa?’
Vincent is the first to speak up.
“D-deviant!” He spews.
“My G.o.d…” Tabitha just sighs in astonishment.
“Art, Holy cr… when did you learn to do that?” My father shakes his head while making his way towards me.
“Not too long ago Dad. I can barely control it though.” I say sheepishly.
We made our way back into the living room and we were all situated around the dining table.
“Rey, y-your son. Do you realize the kind of future he has? He’s only 8 but he’s already stronger than a veteran B rank Adventurer.” Vincent says, hardly able to contain his excitement.
My father scratched his head, “This is crazy. I thought that him awakening at the age of three was already terrifying but to think he was deviant as well.”
“What? He awakened at the age of three?!” Tabitha cried while standing up.
My mother just nods at this, saying, “Arthur managed to blow up most of our house in the process.”
Both my father and Vincent lean back, sinking in their chair, just sighing.
“Papa? Are yoo okay?” Eleanor pokes her father in the cheek.
Laughing, Father picks her up off of Mother’s lap, “Haha yeah I’m okay princess.”
Vincent gets up from his chair now and looks seriously at us, but arms stretched out on the table.
“Rey, how about enrolling your son in Xyrus Academy?”
“What? You can’t be serious right Vince? He’s only eight!” My father sits up now.
Tabitha chimes in now, “Rey, Alice, I think your child is more than capable of exceeding at Xyrus.”
“I thought that only n.o.ble geniuses were allowed to attend Xyrus Academy?” Alice responds with concern etched into her face.
Excitedly, Vincent chimes in, “I can handle that! I do a lot of business with the Director of Xyrus Academy so he’ll be lenient in the enrollment process.”
“B-but the school fees are much too extravagant for us to handle.” Rebuts Mother, still not certain about this.
“Alice. That should be the least of your worries. We will be glad to pay for the fees. Arthur’s talent is immeasurable. Who knows what he can accomplish. Even if we don’t pay, I’m sure he’ll be able to find n.o.bles who’d beg to sponsor him.” Tabitha grabs Alice’s hands in comfort.
“Ahem! Do you mind if I have a say in this?” People seem to forget that the person that they’re talking about is right here with them.
“I have just arrived back home today. Can I spend a bit of time with my family before I decide whether to go to school or not?” I fix my gaze on Vincent.
“O-of course. I apologize. Haha. I guess I was too excited there for a moment.”
He just laughs weakly before sitting back down.
“Thank you.” I give the Helstea family a smile.
I turn my head to face my mother. “Mom, where do I sleep?”
“Oh yes! I almost forgot! You’ll have your room next to Eleanor’s in the left wing. Come on, let’s all go up now, it’s getting late.”
Sylvie was already sleeping on my head and my baby sister was nodding in and out of dream world while we were discussing my future.
Today was a long day.
Mother and Father lead me to the room I’ll be living in from today onwards. It was a lot larger than my room in Ashber but still minimally decorated. This sat fine with me. I needed some s.p.a.ce to train anyway.
As I settled Sylvie down on the bed, Mother and Father sat down next to me.
“We’ll go shopping together tomorrow. We need to get you some clothes.” My mother pets my head.
My father squats down in front of me and grabs my arm. “Arthur, whether you’re a genius or not, you’re still my son and I’ll be proud of you and love you regardless of circ.u.mstances.” His face was serious.
I quietly nod. I think telling them that about the extent of my abilities can be put off until next time.
Before he gets up, he pats me cheek and gives me an evil smile. “Besides, you only caught me by surprise with your lightning magic today. Don’t think you’ll be able to win so easily next time!”
My mother just chortles at this, “I swear. All you guys think about is fighting.”
She looks at me with a comforting smile in her eyes, “Your father is right though. No matter what kind of genius you are, you’ll still be my baby boy.”
“Haha. Can’t I be your adolescent boy now? I’m eight and a half now Mom!” I just grin at her.
“Nope! You can’t!” She just retorts before the both of them leave my room.
“Get some rest now. Let’s go shopping with your sister tomorrow. It’ll be a great chance for you guys to bond.” My mother says before closing the door to my room.
I don’t even have the energy to wash up. I just plop into bed, bouncing the slumbering Sylvie, who whines at me before nodding off to sleep.
Today was a long day. It was a good, long day.
With a smile plastered on my face, I follow Sylvie into dreamland.
I woke up from my baby dragon licking my face.
“Haha I’m up Sylv, I’m up!”
“Kyu~!” She was hopping up and down on top of me, a feeling of excitement radiating from her.
I thought of Tess. I never thought I would miss being woken up by her Spartan methods. I wonder how she’s doing?
Tess has become my closest friend growing up, and while she has turned a bit fierce, she was still the same kindhearted Tess that worried about me and took care of me while I was in Elenoir.
I took a quick shower, dragging the smelly dragon with me. She cried in distress at the warm water drenching her but I didn’t relent and soon after, we were both sparkling clean.
“…kyu” Sylvie moaned, laying down on my bed, exhausted from struggling.
“Don’t complain! Both of us were filthy and we didn’t wash yesterday either.”
“Coming!” I say, while my shirt was still over my head.
Opening the door, I look down to spot a shy Eleanor, looking down, with her foot rubbing something on the ground.
“Well h.e.l.lo there, Ellie.” I squat down so I’m eye level with her, giving her a smile.
“G-g’morning Brother. Mama told me to w-wake you up.” She mutters, her head still down.
“Haha I see! Thank you very much little sister.” I say while patting her head. This seemed to get a good response out of her and she started giggling.
“Can you take me down to the kitchen?” I ask, holding out my hand.
“En!” She nods excitedly and while she hesitates for a second, she grabs my hand pulls me along.
Sylvie follows behind us, trotting while taking a look around her surroundings.
I’m met with a pleasant smell of something similar to bacon as we enter the kitchen. Inside, I spot Tabitha and Alice cooking something while they were chatting. Lilia was sitting down at the table already, her legs swinging, obviously waiting for breakfast.
“Good morning Mom, Ma’am, Lilia!” I announce.
“G’morning!” “Kyu!” Both Ellie and Sylvie echo.
“Ah! Ellie managed to wake you up! I remember having the hardest time waking you up Art. I swear you sleep like a log.” My mother chuckles as she places the eggs she was cooking into a big plate.
“Did you sleep well?” Smiles Tabitha as she mixes the bowl of greens she had in her hands.
I nod, “I slept great Ma’am.”
“Hi Ellie! G-good morning Arthur.” I see Lilia softly speak as she shies away from my gaze.
I smile and return the greeting.
Breakfast was great! Mother mentioned that usually the maids are the ones to cook but she wanted to cook today for me. It’s been a while since I tried mother’s cooking and I dearly missed it. I made sure to give some of the meat to Sylvie who didn’t hesitate to gobble whatever entered her mouth, including my finger. Eventually, Ellie and Lilia both wanted to try feeding her so I told them to go ahead. Needless to say, Sylvie warmed up to both of them a bit more after being fed by them.
“The carriage is waiting out front so just leave the dishes in the sink and let’s head out!” Announces Tabitha.
Xyrus was an amazing city. I couldn’t help but gawk at the different sights as we travelled down the main road. I could see magic shops, armories, spell books, and even beast core shops! There was everything mages could ask for. Adults all dressed extravagantly while luxurious carriages drove on by. Some buildings were several stories making this city seem a lot bigger than Ashber. I could also see children a couple years older than me all wearing similar uniforms, some black while some grey and red. I a.s.sume that they’re students at Xyrus. Uniforms seemed to be a tradition even at the n.o.ble geniuses’ academy, so that there were no discrimination based on how rich and affluent your family was.
We eventually reached a section of the city where they sold clothes.
I have to say, shopping for clothes with females takes a harder toll on my body than training with Grandpa Virion, and even at the thought of his training regimen left me in cold sweat.
I was used as a mannequin for each of the girl’s own preferences in style. My mother wanted to dress me in simple clothes, while Tabitha wanted to transform me into some sort of prince. Even Lilia and Ellie made me try on some clothes.
“You need to look good since you’re my brother!” She announces, her hands on her hips.
Sylvie feels the exhaustion from me and coos comfortingly while perched on my head.
I ended up with 10 different sets of clothes, half from Mother and the other half from Tabitha. Both Mother and I tried to stop Tabitha from buying me anything but she scolded us, playfully saying, “It’s an investment. Besides, I’ve always wanted a son.” while winking.
We looked around more after towing the bags of clothes into the carriage. I was excited to see the armory. I really wanted a decent sword to start practicing swordsmanship again; I was really getting rusty. The girls didn’t want that though and I was forced to go into different jewelry and gem stores instead. I guess I’ll have to visit the armory with Father next time.
Eventually, we got back home, my physical and mental strength depleted and father came in soon after.
“How was your day son?” He chuckled, noticing my exhausted face.
“I never thought shopping could be so utterly tiring.” I reply.
Vincent and Tabitha arrive to the kitchen table at this time with Lilia following behind.
“HAHA! I heard you got beat up by a bunch of women today Arthur!” Vincent exclaims.
I just feebly nod while Tabitha just smirks at looks at Mother, “The little prodigy of yours isn’t as big of a deal as I though he was.” Lilia and Ellie giggle at this.
“I swear. A woman’s endurance can’t be matched when they’re out shopping.” I just wryly refute.
My father and Vincent laugh harder at this and nod their head in agreement.
I hear a bell followed by a couple of knocks.
“Ah! Looks like she’s here!” Vincent perks up.
The look on everyone else’s face notified me that only Vincent knew what was going on.
Vincent comes back, leading an elderly woman into the table we were at.
“Rey, Alice, Arthur, I know you guys said that you want to put off school for later but I just couldn’t hold it in. Everyone. Meet Cynthia Goodsky! She’s the Director of Xyrus Academy.”
Noticing the slight twinge of annoyance on my face, Vincent immediately says, “Don’t worry, I didn’t bring her here to make you go to school right away. I just wanted her to meet you.”
The Director gives me a smile that I can’t quite comprehend and holds out her hand. “Nice to finally meet you Arthur.”