Chapter 2:

Chapter 2 – Awakening Day

Crystal Evolution

Planet Ostrion, Year 20 998 of the Aegis calendar.

Ozryn Cultivator Academy, the largest academy in the city, accommodates over 100,000 students yearly.

Inside this academy, a professor activated a holographic display when a movie started playing on it.

Billions of years ago, an unprecedented energy appeared at the origin of the universe. The planet Ostrion, which was humanity's cradle, was hit by great waves of this energy which was then unknown to all living beings in the universe.

This unknown but extremely powerful energy drastically changed reality as humanity knew it. The animals and plants of the entire planet began to evolve in contact with this energy becoming stronger and more intelligent.

The energy had not only made animals and plants evolve. The humans too, could evolve thanks to this energy. Scientists called this energy crystal essence.

Any animals or plants that had managed to evolve through this energy were called crystal beasts, but this new energy did not only stop at the life that was found on the planet. The planet evolved, becoming larger and more robust day after day.

After the crystal essence came into contact with humans, some changes appeared in them, a space formed inside the body of some people, which scientists called a spiritual world. Inside this spiritual world was a crystal seed that could be awakened once a human had reached the age of 18.

Unlike crystal beasts, who could quickly absorb the crystal essence from the atmosphere inside their bodies, humans could not absorb it as easily as they did.

After much trial and error, scientists eventually found a method to attract the crystal essence into the spiritual world of humans to nurture their crystal seed. This method consists of extracting the crystal's core from crystal beasts and absorbing the crystal essence they contain.

Thus, the scientists managed to germinate the crystal seed inside the body of humans. Greatly improving their physique and caused their lifespan to increase, but that was only one of the benefits of nurturing a crystal seed.

The crystal seeds, once awakened, develop a special ability. Each person develops different abilities, some gaining abilities that help them control the elements, others abilities that allow them to fight crystal beasts with just the strength of their bodies.

The humans who managed to nurture their crystal seed were called evolvers. They represented the evolution of humanity.

From then on, a new era began for humanity. Developing many techniques to cultivate crystal seeds and finding ways to evolve them, thus the first era of cultivation was born.

But that was just the beginning for humanity.

About 25,000 years ago, the planet Ostrion experienced great calamities, earthquakes, cyclones, volcanic eruptions...

When humanity thought they were out of trouble, countless spatial rifts opened up around the planet, and hordes of crystal beasts invaded Ostrion through those spatial rifts.

It was the beginning of the dark age.

Humanity was constantly pushed back, losing many legacies and cultivation techniques. Unable to survive separately, all countries have ceased to exist to become the same entity, the Aegis Alliance.

Together they sent their best evolvers to meet the spatial rifts. They were able to hold back the hordes of crystal beasts, but they could not cause any damage to the spatial rifts that had appeared. When humanity had lost all hope of survival, scientists made a new discovery that would once again change the face of the world forever.

The crystal beasts that escaped from the rifts possessed soul crystals that had never been seen before, thanks to those soul crystals, new evolutionary paths were found, and thanks to them, the evolvers were able to breakthrough the old limit that held them.

From then on, humanity entered the second era of cultivation. Crystal beasts were repelled, human territories were reclaimed, and evolvers were sent on expeditions through the rifts to explore them, where another discovery awaited humanity.

These rifts were passages to other worlds. The crystal essence within these worlds was more concentrated than on the Ostrion planet, which increased the speed at which crystal beasts could attract crystal essence into their bodies, making them much stronger than those on Ostrion.

Countless new resources were hiding behind these rifts. All of them were within reach, leading to the rapid advance of humanity’s technology, as well as their paths to cultivation.

The movie stopped at this point. The teacher deactivated the holographic display before turning to his students. Half of them were asleep, not paying attention to the lesson.

He clapped his hands to get their attention before he began to speak.

"I know you have seen this movie many times now, but the Alliance Curriculum asks us to show you the story of the new era of humanity to you, who will soon be awakened. Today is the day of awakening. Now that most of you are 18, you can awaken your crystal seed within your spiritual world and begin your path of cultivation."

Hearing the teacher's speech, all the students in the class looked at him with bright eyes. The dream of most young people in the new era was to become a powerful cultivator and explore the rifts to discover new materials that could earn them thousands of nova credits which had become the only currency used within the Aegis Alliance.

Today was the day everything could begin. If they were lucky enough to awaken a powerful ability, they could be recruited by exploration teams or even guilds which would increase their cultivation speed greatly.

All the students started talking to each other.

"I hope I can awaken a good ability!"

"Me too. My family is poor. I hope I can change that."

"Same here!"

"Hey, you heard? Class 3-2's Allen Graham awaken a Grade B fire control ability."

"Woah, a B-grade ability. He could reach the transcendent realm with an ability of that grade."

"Ahh, I'm jealous. I also want to awaken an ability like that!"

The students keep chatting, hoping to gain an ability that could give them a bright future.

In the back of the classroom, Kieran sat quietly, holding his head and clenching his teeth. The student next to him looked at him and tried to call him.

"Hey Kieran, are you okay?"

He turned his head to face the other student while his face was pale, and sweat flowed along his forehead. The student had black hair and brown eyes. He was wearing a black and dark orange hoodie and black pants.

"I'm fine, Thomas. I just have headaches."

As he finished that sentence, another pain hit, forcing him to hold his head again.

"You should go to the infirmary. You don't look well."

Thomas started to worry. It had been at least twenty minutes since he had seen Kieran hold his head, and given the expression he had, it didn't look like a small headache.

"I'll go after awakening. It's almost our class's turn anyway."

He forced himself to stay calm. Today was an important day.

The day of awakening was important to everyone. When awakening, a crystal seed would possess an ability. If someone’s ability was the manifestation of an axe, then his ability to use an axe would far exceed that of others, learning more easily any technique related to it.

If, instead, they could transform into an animal, they might possess some of the said animal's abilities. For this reason, crystal seeds have long since become the most important factor in determining someone's life.

The abilities that a crystal seed could awaken were divided into two categories, combat crystal seeds, and utility crystal seeds. No matter what category the crystal seed belonged to, it could take one of the following five types, Manifestation, Transformation, Elemental, Reinforcement, and Mental. Each type had its own strengths and weaknesses.

While Thomas tried to convince him to go to the infirmary, their teacher called all the students in the class.

"It’s our class turn. Everyone goes to the main hall. Behave yourself in the awakening ceremony. From now on, you are adults, and you will be responsible for your actions!"

After his sermon, the teacher led the students into the main hall of the academy.

Upon arriving in the hall, all the students could see the Director of their academy accompanied by a group of people standing next to an altar with a blue stone on it. Below the altar had been engraved a circle filled with lines of inscription that shone with a light blue light. Seeing the students arrive, the Director waited for them all to stand in front of him before stepping forward to greet them.

"Welcome to the Awakening ceremony. Today is a decisive day for all of you. On this day, your journey on the cultivation path will begin. Some of you may be disappointed by the results of today but do not forget that every citizen of the Aegis Alliance who possesses a spiritual world must cultivate, not only for you but also for the alliance, even though humanity has become extremely powerful since the second era of cultivation, every day passing cities are attacked by hordes of beasts, spatial rifts can appear at any time, and enemies of the Aegis Alliance are constantly attacking our borders. Cultivating is not only for you to become stronger. It's also a way to ensure your survival if the worst happens to this city."

The Director's words had the effect of a bucket of cold water on everyone present in the hall who was eagerly waiting to awaken their crystal seed. Most had no idea what was going on in the other cities of the alliance. The closest city to Ozryn was more than 10,000km away, with hordes of crystal beasts between them. A large part of the citizens of Ozryn will never see another city in their entire lives.

"We are going to start. When you are called come inside the circle and put your hand on the crystal core, then you will feel the essence crystal flow through your body."

A man next to the Director walked close to the altar before starting to call the students one by one.

"Ewing Fehastur."

A student walked slowly toward the altar, his hand shaking as he moved closer to the crystal core. The inscription lines on the circle filled with bright light, moving towards the altar at the moment his hand entered into contact with the crystal core.

It was as if the crystal core had a strong, revitalizing energy and a life of its own. The lines continued to light up until they converged under the young man's feet.

He suddenly felt a flow of intense heat coming from the circle that entered inside his body, traversing every corner that formed his being before entering inside his spiritual world and reaching his crystal seed. Slowly an illusionary crystal seed appeared above his head. The seed began to change. An image of a hand covered with earth was forming on the seed, and a yellow hue emanated from it as a small, barely perceptible root began to grow on it.

At that moment, the man next to the altar raised his hand, holding a square-shaped black stone in his palm. He pointed it towards the student when a light came out, scanning his whole body.

"Analyzing the data... Student Ewing Fehastur Class 3-4 of Ozryn Academy. Awakened ability: Stone Skin Grade D"

Ewing was lost for a few seconds before a smile appeared on his face.

'I have a D grade ability!' immense joy could be seen on his face.

The Aegis Alliance had established a classification system for the crystal seeds. According to their power, their rate of absorption of the crystal essence, and their potential of evolution, a grade was granted to them.

An ability with a low rank didn't necessarily mean a person couldn't improve, just that the paths to do so were unknown to the general public. After the Dark Ages most of the legacies of humanity had been destroyed. The legacies that had been saved were kept secret among guilds or high officials of the Aegis Alliance, and those created over the past 25,000 years saw their prices increase exponentially, becoming coveted goods that only the richest could enjoy.

The ranking system of the Aegis alliance does not take these paths into account when evaluating them but only those within reach of any citizen, which frustrates many individuals. Some transcendents even propose the abolition of this classification system, believing that such a classification had no meaning and that it should be restructured.

"Next student. Britney Hillorb."

A student stepped forward before repeating the same process.

"Student Britney Hillorb Class 3-4 of Ozryn Academy. Awakened Ability: Enhanced Acrobatics Grade F"

"Student Thomas Dashon Class 3-4 of Ozryn Academy. Awakened Ability: Scale Generation Grade D"

"Student Salma Meilin Class 3-4 of Ozryn Academy. Awakened ability: Venom Invulnerability Grade F"

The students passed one after the other. Some were happy, while others shed tears. The awakening ceremony was decisive for all who possessed a spiritual world. Some will rise in the heavens while others could only hate their fate.

"Next student. Ryan Arvost."

As he heard the name of the next student, Kieran looked up.

Moving slowly towards the altar was a young man who looked like Kieran. Some minor differences could be found on their face, but the only feature that really differentiated them was the color of their hair and eyes, Ryan’s hair was a brown color with emerald green eyes.

It only took a moment before an illusionary seed with the image of a cube-shaped barrier appeared above his head.

"Student Ryan Arvost Class 3-4 of Ozryn Academy. Awakened ability: Barrier Grade E."

When Ryan heard the evaluation of his ability, he clenched his teeth tightly before turning back to return with the other students. As he returned he saw Kieran among the students staring at him, looking away and lowering his head, Ryan continued walking in silence towards the students.


Complex emotions invaded Kieran. Ryan was his younger twin brother. Seeing him in such a state after knowing the result of his awakening day shook him deep inside.

"Next student. Kieran Arvost."

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