The Immortal Witch's Death Wish
“This is one of the most fundamental aspects of magic. You’ve managed to release your aura before. However, in this case, we’re going to utilize a sort of detection system.”
Rin nodded in affirmation. “The most basic form of detection is what’s known as Mana Pulse.”
“Before, you demonstrated the ability to exude your aura. This will be no less different. By externalizing your energy away from your body, you can then perceive any interferences within this the range.”
She didn’t quite get it. But at last, she attempted to follow what she was saying. She quickly recalled the feeling she experienced when she first released her aura in the previous session.
Calming down her body, she felt the rush of energy immediately begin to leave her body. Lusha interfered and slapped the back of her head harshly. “Not so much. It should merely be a small wave. Imagine opening a faucet for just one single drop, and immediately turning it back off. “
“The key is in the amount you expel, and how well you can maintain that small amount. This should not be like the previous fight. Unlike what had occurred before, this is no dream world. You’ll simply pass out again if you continue to try and exert too much for your own body to take.”
Rinn nervously nodded. Surprisingly, she was fairly calm during this training. Compared to when she was participating in combat with the odd creatures, this was a much more refreshing change of pace.
She tried once again to utilize the technique. However, this time, there was no noticeable difference. In fact, this concept of opening a faucet slowly, yet exerting your energy outwards did not make much sense to her. If she had attempted to exert her energy, it would simply come out in violent waves, and she would face the same exhausting collapse as before. Yet now, as she attempted to control that- there was no discernable change occurring.
Lusha shook her head. “This may take a while for you to fully learn. There’s a connection with your body and mana that you’re not quite getting.”
“I’ll permit you to remove your blindfold for the time being.”
Yet again, another illusion was conjured. It seems this was perhaps her favorite method of teaching. “Your gift naturally takes advantage of external stimuli, so utilizing it in this way should be a very natural thing to you. You’ve always been utilizing magic. Think of the stimuli you received then.”
It was a general rule of thumb that those who received divine gifts were capable of utilizing magic a lot easier than those without. But even this technique was a basic part of magic. So basic- that one can perhaps teach themselves to utilize it- without the need to learn at an accredited school.
“Think of mana and aura as a pool of water. The amount of mana is the pool of water.” She conjured up yet another image of a still pond. Twirling her finger within the epicenter of it, swirls and ripples began to disperse through the water. “Your aura is when you put this mana into application as you did before. Everyone has a different pattern and signature. As such, these ripples do not all look the same.”
“As such, I cannot explain to you the feeling required to release your aura, but you may perhaps be able to visualize and remember what it was you felt all those times you utilized magic without knowing.”
“Instead of releasing your aura like before. You should visualize something similar to this.” The ripples completely stopped and Lusha dipped just one finger into the pool. So lightly was the touch, that one single wave pulsed through the water.
Rinn thought back hard on the night that she was fighting with the vine. “What was I thinking of back then… the feeling of…”
Suddenly the thought occurred to her. Whenever her ability was utilized, there was always one condition. Even to this day she avoided touching people. Even in the case of people like Lusha, she always hated the ability. She always hated to touch people, and she always hated the sadness that encompassed her. Yet, that was the feeling most familiar whenever she had utilized magic.
She bit her lip and felt the blood draw from it. “Lusha... can you… grab my arm?”
The more she can perceptualize this impetus, the more she could truly get a grasp on her mana. “Hm?” This wasn’t quite what she was expecting the answer to be, but it should not have come as a surprise to her. Lusha nodded. Since she was still under the effects of her ability, there should be no harm done should they touch again.
There it was. This pool that she was to perceptualize. It was not voluminous at all, but Rinn could feel the familiar sensation that had always plagued her. Even deeper than before,she was very much aware of her ability to utilize her magic. However, if she were to truly want to fight on her own, she would need to learn this ability without the use of others. One cannot simply latch onto everyone else around them all of the time.
She released her aura, just very lightly dipping into her reserves. It was different in her mind. Perhaps like being surrounded by a wave of negativity in all directions. With everything around her, the only way to truly grasp onto her mana was to find her own emotions.- The ones that truly were hers and not influenced by anything else. Once you find that, you simply need to release it.
The sea of chaos that encompassed her internally, quickly got overtaken by her own true nature. Even if only for a second. A burst of energy left her body in a pulse, spreading throughout the entire forest without interruption.
It was an odd sensation. Every time the small wave expanded and went around any solid objects, she was then aware of its shape, size, and even mana- telling the difference between living and inorganic materials.
As the waves washed over everything within a couple hundred meters, she noticed the houses and villages, it fed her images of the trees and soon she could even see the people within their houses. Their sizes range from infants to adults, women to men. It felt almost as if she was spying. She could see exactly what they were doing, and more importantly…- she could see their… “Wait… what…”
Lusha placed a hand on her head. “So you’ve done it then. Good work, Rinn.”
“What… does this mean… those people… they’re all..”
“Inorganic?” Lusha interrupted. “I had thought that you’d say that. Though you should have a greater perception ability. It is even stranger that while non-living, they still possess emotion.”
“Though… even I wonder about that.”
“The other group of adventurers that arrived here, are they also dead?”
Rinn shook her head. “Though it’s strange…. They’re all acting… like they’re alive?”
“What was the other thing you noticed?” Lusha quizzed her. There should have been one more glaring detail about the whole ordeal. She was proud of Rinn for finding out the first part of it, but the easiest information, it seems she left out.
“How far were you able to stretch your mana before losing connection with it?”
“Erm…. maybe… just a couple- 100 meters?”
“That should be good enough. What else did you detect?”
She took the moment to think. “N-nothing?”
Lusha slapped the back of her head. “That should have been what you noticed first. Though still,I am intrigued by what you have discovered.”
“Hm? You mean… you didn’t know?”
“Not at all. This may be a basic move, but your proficiency in it is a lot higher than I can attain.”
“This detection ability, it usually cannot be used to locate and detect those who are not blaring their aura. Thus, it is utterly useless outside of combat. But I figured with your natural heightened perception, you should have a pretty good edge with it.”
“I actually cannot use this skill that well. I can only use it to detect motion or heightened aura. Nothing else. Those like you, who fall under the sensory branch, can do a lot more with it than I.” She shrugged and walked away from the dumbfounded Rinn. “Besides, I would have no use for such an ability.”
Lusha stopped to turn around and check on the still frozen Rinn.
“You mean… I can actually learn something from someone as great as you…- something you can’t even do?”
“Oi. Are you coming?”
She quickly snapped out of her train of thought. “Ah- yes! Where to?”
“Well, if even the forests are devoid of life. The ones responsible will be the only living beings in this town of course. You can point them out to me.”
Rinn hurriedly caught up to her as they headed back to the village.
There was certainly something very wrong with the whole situation. An entire forest devoid of lfe, and a town riddled with corpses. It wasn’t necromancy. It was more akin to puppetry. The odd part about it however, is that the bodies were capable of moving without any mana being supplemented.
“Who would expend so much trouble to create a village like this and why? What would be the reason for drawing in adventurers?”