Monster Soul Online Chapter 139
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Chapter 139: The Stone and the Wind - First Part
"'Don't attack. Don't dodge. Violation of these rules will result in death.' Funny, right?" asked Vata. "If you don't dodge the attacks, the slimes kill you anyway. How does that make a difference?"
"Did anyone manage to pa.s.s through without attacking or dodging?"
"Yes, too many to count. They ran past the slimes without attacking or dodging..."
"...They still died. It seems that if you pa.s.s through the slimes and enter Stone Forest, there is be a boss-level monster waiting inside."
Sila was positive that the one inside must be Master Viola and drank a Fountain of Life.
"Sila, what are you doing? Why did you drink the potion for no reason?"
"I have a reason. I used up most of my magic power during the journey and want to play it safe. It's likely that danger awaits me up ahead."
Sila circulated qi throughout his body. The rules banned him from attacking and dodging, but didn't ban him from using qi. Even though Master Viola's trial would focus on his mastery over Orbiting Cosmos, Sila intended to use qi to support his actions.
"Let's go. There is only a kilometer left until we reach Stone Forest."
"That's not it, Sila. Don't you remember what I said last night? The territory of Stone Forest has expanded. We only have five hundred meters left."
"I see. Anyway, I will take the lead. Please follow me slowly."
"Why do we have to go slowly? If we hurry up, we can arrive at Stone Forest within just a minute."
Sila sighed, "I'm afraid a certain someone might regard walking in a hurry as dodging. Trust me on this one, walking slowly will be safer for us."
Vata didn't ask him who the 'certain someone' was and listened to what he said. She followed Sila from a short distance away because Sila had told her that he didn't want her to be hit by stray bullets. More importantly, he said, she was banned from lending him a hand no matter what happened.
Both people slowly took stepped forward. As his foot was about to step past the border, Sila activated Galaxy Eclipse to enhance his detection ability.
"There are a lot of slimes in this place and a tremendous magic power waiting for us in Stone Forest, our destination," said Sila.
A red slime hopped out from a bush to attack him, but he had detected it beforehand so it wasn't surprising. Looking closely, he could tell that its red color didn't come from its body but rather a thin layer of aura around it.
"As I thought," muttered Sila. He was one hundred percent certain at this moment that he was partic.i.p.ating in a trial Viola especially designed for him. The first clue was that this slime attacked him even though he was also a slime. The other clue was that this slime was channeling fire through Orbiting Cosmos.
Sila gently swung his right hand and used the back of his hand to push the slime away. The Parry technique of Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws caused the small slime to miss its target and landed on the ground next to him. It looked at Sila with its doe eyes.
"Parrying is one type of receiving an attack, so it's neither attacking nor dodging," Sila explained.
"Huhu. Sila, are you having a conversation with it?" Vata mildly laughed.
In fact, it actually understood Sila's words with his Way of Slime skill that had developed from Heart of Slime. The little slime canceled its...o...b..ting Cosmos, nodded at Sila once to salute him, and no longer attacked.
Vata looked at it and gaped. "Really? Are you able to converse with it?"
"It's more accurate to say that we can understand each other without words. We are both fighters, no words are necessary between us. Just one exchange can tell a thousand words, right, little slime?"
And the slime nodded again.
Sila continued walking without minding Vata's shocked expression. Well, she was shocked at first, but when the same thing happened five times, she lost her interest. Every slime had acted the same toward Sila. They attacked him, paused, saluted him, stood still and let them go. In the end, she opened her system window and visited the game community out of boredom.
The first phase of attacks was quite easy. At most, the slimes would just attack difficult places to defend such as his back, ankles, shoulders, or head. However, as long as they came at him one at a time, Sila wouldn't even need to use Orbiting Cosmos. Just Tiger Dragon Qi and Formless Soldier were all he had used to receive the attacks.
The level of difficulty rose once he had advanced two hundred meters from the border. The frequency of the attacks increased and they were fiercer. In the end, just qi was no longer enough. Sila had to resort to Orbiting Cosmos to block the attacks.
Still, the slimes' attacks were meant to be educational rather than dangerous. Three slimes jumped toward Sila's head, left flank, and right ankle simultaneously. Usually, he would choose to move his head away to evade the attack, but he was currently banned from doing so.
There were three different elements imbued in his body. He blocked the attack at his flank with his right hand while slightly moving his head, not to evade but to manipulate the timing of the attack so it happened at the same time as the one against his ankle.
Sila exhaled to relax his body while it was rotating in midair. What he was doing was relying on the Spin and Migrate techniques to lessen the power behind both attacks without directly resisting the impact.
His body did an aerial somersault once before landing on the same spot. He still felt a bit dizzy from the attacks though.
'The power behind the attacks were still there. It seems Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws is really hard for me to learn. If it was Kawin instead, he wouldn't have received any damage at all,' thought Sila. Though, if Kawin really were to take his place, he wouldn't perform such acrobatic actions like Sila, since the Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws book clearly stated that both feet must be firmly placed on the ground.
Well, Sila didn't care. He intended to develop his own version of Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws. The main teaching of his Flaming Cloud dojo was to not stick to the form. Teacher Mora always told him that arts are unchanging while humans are living.
Vata s.h.i.+fted her gaze from her system window to Sila for a brief moment before s.h.i.+fting it back and continued surfing as she predicted that there would be a lot of instances like this.
And she couldn't be more correct. Afterward, the attacks continued to come at shorter intervals and they were gradually becoming more powerful. Sometimes Sila turned his body and sometimes he did a somersault. Sometimes he lifted his knee to block and sometimes he stepped forward to receive the attack. Both his hands and his feet were moving non-stop and showing different martial moves.
Sila's body continued flas.h.i.+ng from the clashes of magic power upon contact with the slime and a lot of bruises could be spotted.
Vata was very close to lending her hand to help him, but she stopped when she saw Sila's eyes, full of determination.
Four hundred meters was a short distance for both of them, but they had spent almost two hours to travel that far. The attacks stopped for a while, so Vata insisted Sila take a short break.
"Based on my observation, if we don't move forward, the slimes will not attack us. How about we rest here for the time being?"
Sila didn't even have the strength left to reply as he collapsed and sat on the ground, his body completely soaked in sweat. Constantly receiving attacks was a new experience for him as he usually chose to dodge and would only defend when he had no other choice.
Sila sat cross-legged and circulated Tiger Dragon Qi to alleviate fatigue. The benefit of him taking the actual trial - mark II was him being able to have a chance to further learn and adapt Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws, the art that he had used the least, in actual combat.
Orbiting Cosmos was another skill that he had become better at using. Training it himself and using it while exchanging blows gave him a different level of mastery. Sila was the type to learn faster in a crisis than in a peaceful moment of self-training. Now, he was able to hold up to five elements simultaneously. Just one more to go and he would be able to use Divine Raiment.
Thirty minutes had pa.s.sed and while his magic power still hadn't fully regenerated, he no longer felt fatigue. Sila drank another Fountain of Life and told Vata that he was ready to continue.
"Hold on, Sila. What is this?" Vata pointed her finger at her system window.
"Um... I don't know? That's Miss Vata's system window."
Vata just realized her mistake and summarized what she had read. "There is breaking news that a man in dark green wuxia clothing broke the slime rock in Beginning Town yesterday and many players are hunting him down at the moment."
Sila was aware that he couldn't keep this a secret from Vata. She had seen him in this clothing so it was a matter of time before she found about about it. Nevertheless, there was something that bothered him.
"Why are they hunting me?"
"Um... there was an anonymous merchant who claimed that he was a witness and saw you take something out from the giant slime rock. He said he didn't know what it was but he believed that it ought to be something very valuable. With his statement, many players are grouping together to take back the quest reward that you stole from everyone."
"Stole? This thing?" Sila took the tiny slime rock out of his pocket. "This is not the quest reward. And even if it is, I'm the one who broke the giant slime rock so it should belong to me, right?"
"Um... What you said is true. But, in the community, it was theorised that Sila just got lucky because the condition to break the slime rock was. .h.i.tting it a million times. So, the reward should be shared with everyone."
"There was no such condition. I really destroyed it... um... by myself." Sila decided not to tell Vata about Bow.
"I know. I believe you. But, honestly, no one cares. This nonsense condition must be the work of someone hostile to you aiming to turn the public against you. Sila, do you have enemies?"
Sila let out a sigh. "A lot. Well, let's ignore it. I'll deal with this problem later."
"And, since they are thinking that the reward you got is the special item that will enable you to break through Stone Forest, they formed a raid party and are heading to this place as we speak."
"I'll care about them later. For now, I'm more concerned about whatever is in front of us. Let's get going."
Sila decided to stop thinking about the problem Vata mentioned. Proceeding with carelessness in Viola's trial could easily lead him to his death so he needed to concentrate.
In the last hundred meters, Sila couldn't detect any presences and there was no ambush during their journey. Vata let out a sigh of relief as she could finally see Stone Forest from this spot.
However, suddenly, Sila could sense seven energy sources from up ahead.
"Watch out," Sila said to stop Vata from running ahead. "Please wait here until I reach that spot." He pointed to one of the petrified trees.
Stepping forward slowly, Sila spotted seven slimes ahead of him. Each of them was the size of a bowling ball and looked profoundly powerful.
Sila bowed his head to show respect, which they returned. Six of them hopped and circled around him while continuously unleas.h.i.+ng the different elements of magic power; earth, water, wind, fire, lightning, and ice. As for the last one, it just stood there without moving an inch.
All of the six slimes seemed to excel in the element they displayed. The magic power that Sila sensed from them was incomparable to the previous slimes he had encountered. All six of them hopped around Sila back and forth to confuse him.
Sila decreased the radius of Galaxy Eclipse to less than ten meters to focus his concentration on their movements.
Holding magic power within his body, at long last, the number of elements in Sila's body reached five, which was the maximum he could do.
All six slimes simultaneously shot their bodies at him, each aiming for a different area; his head, back, chest, underbelly, knee, and ankle. With this, even if Sila was allowed to dodge, he wouldn't know how.
Tiger Dragon Qi was circulated to its limit and his internal organs were softened with Formless Soldier. Sila recalled the last part of the Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws book which mentioned the martial moves the user could perform when they had built up their inner force.
Sila didn't have inner force built up by practicing Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws over time. Instead, he used Tiger Dragon Qi as a subst.i.tute for that. The power of extreme softness silently flew within his body.
At this crucial moment, he had no specific thoughts. His well-trained body moved by instinct. Sila's innate talent, which was his adaptive thinking, showed its brilliance in a crisis yet again.
The first attack came from the wind-element slime and it hit his back. Sila used his qi to block it and migrate the impact. He and his qi acted like a big boulder in a fierce river; in the midst of water currents, they were unmoving. Tiger Dragon Qi led the wind-element magic power toward his ankle, which was about to be hit by the earth-element slime.
It was Sila's first time utilizing the Combine technique of Six Moon-Grabbing-Claws; using an opponent's power to work against them. Even though his body was in pain from having the power of someone else flowing in his veins, once said power clashed against the earth-element attack, his pain was gone.
The remaining earth-element magic power was strengthened by Sila's magic power and moved according to his will, using his body as a bridge, to block against the lightning-element attack at his underbelly. Afterward, the lightning-element power was guided to block the water-element slime at his knee and the water-element power was later led to defend against the fire attack at his head. At long last, the rest of the power was guided to block the ice attack at his chest.
All of these attacks occurred in the blink of an eye. Once the six slimes bounced off him, the last, seventh slime suddenly charged at his chest which was left defenseless by the last attack. Its body was covered in Divine Raiment.
Nevertheless, Sila had finally comprehended Divine Raiment and came to an understanding of why his best attempt to do it only ended up with five elements at most.
He started by infusing wind within his body and began holding it while simultaneously changing it. Rather than changing the current element forward to the element that it was strong against, he moved in reverse. With this, instead of overpowering the weaker element, the power within the previous element supported the next element.
Wind added to ice. Ice added to fire. Fire added to water. Water added to lightning. Lightning added to earth. And earth added to wind. They all enhanced each other in the reverse cycle and ultimately his body was covered in a white, sparkling aura; as if he was wearing an elegant raiment made from heaven's will.
The last slime's body hit against Sila's and bounced off. It hopped backward and all seven slimes bowed their heads before opening a path between them.
Sila opened his palms and looked at his own body, feeling surreal.
"That last attack... I didn't feel anything," He muttered.
"And that is the ability of Divine Raiment. Everything in the world has something that opposes and something that is enhanced by them. You are not alone in the world and stubbornly trying to become stronger by yourself is not the correct answer. Sila, congratulations for pa.s.sing the actual trial mark II."
A feminine voice could be heard from the top of a tree and Sila and Vata simultaneously looked in that direction. Up above, there was a woman in a light pink magician robe sitting on a branch of the tree. Her eyes were as red as fire.
"Welcome to the Slime Kingdom."T/N: Like chapter 19-20, 24-25 and 99-100, this time, the name 'Vata' literally mean 'Wind' . Thus, this chapter's name 'The Stone and the Wind' basically refers to the protagonist Sila (=stone) being together with Vata (=wind.)
Monster Soul Online Chapter 139
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Monster Soul Online Chapter 139 summary
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