The greatest feeling of all the world is when something you’ve planted for the first time sprouts. It feels like you are worth something, that you are needed and loved, because each man knows that plants are the only thing in this world that love unconditionally. They will care for you just as much as you care for them.

– Therian herbalist


You know, when they’re not attacking you, sliver fish are pretty to look at. I’m not scared of them anymore. Scratch that. I was never scared of them. It was more like… just a nervous feeling, you know? ‘Cause I don’t get scared. Nope, have never once been scared in my whole life. Ahem. Back to the pretty fish.

It doesn’t take me long to notice that after bonded with them, their scales took on a slight green tint. Adding to the green lighting from my ice berries, the fish almost seem to disappear if they’re not moving. Once they move, a bit of light catches on them and their scales flash silver. It almost makes it feel like my room is underwater now. Huh, I think I can use this. They’ll be great little guards for my hole. If anything scary tries to climb up the hole while the fish are in it, it’ll be like trying to climb through a garbage disposal while it’s on. They’ll be shredded! Muwahahaha!

As I’m thinking this, one sliver fish comes up to me and nudges me with a feeling. Hungry. 

“You’re hungry?”

Hungry. Suddenly, all the sliver fish turn towards me and stare at me with their wide eyes. Hungry, They all nudge at once, HungryHungryHungry. 

Crap! I’m an idiot! I totally forgot! I already knew they would be constant eating machines when I bonded with them. Why’d I go and do that? It’s like I have a bunch of babies now.

Hungry. Calm down! I have to think right now! I have nothing to feed you with, so let me think! Okay, when in doubt, look at my status. It’s helped me out before, so it can’t hurt. That reminds me. What the heck are path points. I get them when I level up and stuff. I’m assuming I put them into paths, but what do paths even do? I try mentally clicking on the {beginner I (0/5)} path. It looks helpful, and besides, it’s the cheapest.

{Beginner I (0/5)}:  |« (±1) »|

What? No description? That’s not helpful at all. Come on, blue screens, you’re lacking! Should I just put points in? I think that’s what those weird symbols mean. What the heck. I’m just going to go for it. I focus on it, trying to bring it up to 5.

{Beginner I (5/5)}:  |« (±5) »|

Everything must learn through slow and simple steps. A caterpillar must learn first to spin silk before it can fly. – Sage of the Wild  

Congratulations! {Beginner I (5/5)} Path: Complete. (+3 health; +3 mana; +5 health regeneration; + 5 mana regeneration; +1 random starter seed)

I swung my sword a thousand times, and he said I passed the test, but he still won’t let me out of the garden. – Guardsman’s son 

Congratulations! It is through the simple paths in life that one is led to greatness.

Level [7]!: You have completed your first path. (+1 health; +1 mana; +4 path points; {Beginner II (0/8)} path;  full restore}

When the famine of 803 ended, we cried at the sprouting of the first crops in years. – Juvio Hudson

Congratulations! A nation depends upon its crops.

Level [8]!: You have spawned your first seed. (+2 health, +1 mana, +2 path points; full restore}

We'd often go hunting in the woods for edible mushrooms, and sometimes even down to the lakes near the village for algae to make vests out of. Mom would always scold us for playing in the mud. – The Memoirs of David Hallowy

Congratulations! You have received +1 winter lichen sprout (fungus and algae mix, must have soil/rock, can photosynthesize through ambient heat source)

Hallelujah! This is perfect! My luck has pulled me through! Crap, I think I just jinxed myself. I hope nothing bad happens… Whatever, I’ll deal with it then. But I finally figured out how to increase my regeneration!!!! And I got a seed out of it, too! This is the best day of my life! I wish I had done this so much sooner.

I can plant a farm! I can do something finally with my stupid skills! I’m green for goodness sake. I’m pretty sure that has something to do with nature. I have a [green thumb]! And [plant growth]! Aren’t I more suited to planting things than moving ice around? But soil, I need soil. Where can I get soil when all there is around me is ice. Wait, there’s an ocean below me right? There’s soil at the bottom of oceans. Really good soil.

Quickly, I make some pots of really condensed ice. I’m hoping I can tie some |ice silk| rope to them so that my fishies can carry them down below. Ah, now that I think about it, my fishies, are the purely carnivores? Or can they eat plants. I don’t think the description description said. I can only hope they’re omnivores. If not, I’ll have to send them out on feeding missions down below. That’s my best bet. I can’t believe I didn’t think of that before. Well, I got my first plant out of it, so it’s all good.

“Okay, you fishies, come here. Come hold this rope very carefully. Make sure not to accidentally cut it. Go down to the bottom of the ocean and put dirt in the pots and bring it back. Okay?” My fishies looked at me blankly. I don’t think they understood any of that. I sigh, exasperated. Okay, let’s try a different approach.

Hold. Go. Bottom. Fill. Back. With each word I emphasized a mental picture. The fishes look at me for a few seconds, and then I see it register in their minds. A few swim over, grab the ropes carefully in their mouths, and swoop down the hole. I send a few more after them to be bodyguards. I hold my breath the whole time they are gone. Please let nothing bad happen to them. Let’s gnaw on some snow to keep down the nerves. I’m really hoping this won’t be a something can go wrong, will go wrong moments. Ug! The suspense is killing me!

They’re back! I can feel it! Right at the edge of my domain. I wait a few seconds longer and then see them pop out of the hole. Oh, thank goodness! They’re safe. They come over and deposit the full pots of soil in front of me and give me a status report through a series of mental images. Nothing much seemed to have happened. Swimming with the pots seemed difficult. They had some trouble figuring out how to swim when the pots kept floating up, and the ice ropes started to melt a little as they got lower in the water. They lost one of the pots because the ropes melted all the way through. Getting the pots back up was a process in and of itself. They were heavier because of all the silt and stuff.

But my fishies had done it! Oh, my wonderful fishies! You deserve a break. Go find some food down the hole. I think it should be safe enough. Take turns going, though. Don’t all go at once, and watch out for each other while you eat. Be careful looking for food. Don’t pick on something you can’t fight. I’m going to play with my soil now.

I reach out towards the silt and pull on it like I do with my ice. I had forgotten how difficult it was the first time I tried with ice. It was like I was repeating the whole ordeal all over again. I’m just glad that this time it’s in more favorable circumstances.

Every man lives by the soil. Every man dies by the soil. – Duende adage

Congratulations! Earth is ageless. You grow wise as you seek to understand.

[Earth Manipulation II]: You now have slightly more control over any earth around you for a slight cost of mana. (1.5 cmR/ 5 mana)

Easier, but I guess it will take some practice to get it to the level of my [ice manipulation]. I start to make another room branching off my twisting hallway. I make the floor a bit wider and the ceiling a bit shorter than my other rooms and fill the ceiling with looping vine engravings full of fat, ice berries three times the size of my previous ones. They cover the ceiling. I fill them with |aura of warmth| and get two notifications when I’m done.

 I din’t dare breathe as that Eira dance’n jus’ ten feet from me. It’s beauty like other, I say, that spirit o’ snow. But if it’d found me, I knew it’d kilt me inna heartbeat. – Pao Gramm’s tavern tale

Congratulations! Domains of Ice and Snow are seldom known. You are one of the few.

[Ice Manipulation V]: You now have greater control over any ice around you for a slight cost of mana. (2 cmR/ 3 mana)

 The Temple of Light is a holy place. Within it’s walls anything above a whisper is seldom heard. – Acolyte Adams 

Congratulations! You aura spreads. Your domain basks under its glow.

[Ambient Aura VI]: Your aura has grown. Aura’s you own now gain an additional effect. (|Aura of Light|, |Aura of Warmth|; +2% chance of evolution under |Aura of Light|; +10% plant growth speed under |Aura of Warmth|)

I want to see it with my own eyes, my new room. I could teleport, but instead of inflicting a negative status, I weave myself a rug with four tassels on each corner right out of the ice below me just so I’m already on it when it’s completed. I ask some of my fishies that are waiting for their turn to go below to pick up the tassels and fly me to my new room. They drop me off and go back for the pots while I stand back to admire my workmanship.

It reminds me of the sun, shining down softly and so full of warmth. Not a bad job. I compress my domain’s ice, further strengthening the walls and floors as I wait for the fishes to come back. It’s become a habit of mine, slowly trying to compress the ice even more than it is. It’s hard work, but it’s worth it.

Alright, my fishies are back with the pots, and now I can start working on my farm. I dump the ice pots. Silt and stones spill onto the floor. One of the rocks barely slipped out of the opening. I’m not even sure how my fishies fit it into the pot. It’s pretty big. A bit smaller than my pillows I created. It even had a little dip on the top of it like a shallow dish.

Okay, I can’t just do this willy-nilly. I’m going to make it pretty. I’m a girl, and I like pretty things. Or cool things. More cool things, I think. I don’t like pink. Or frilly bows. Hmph. Bows are for wimps.

I begin by making another indent in my floor like in my fire pit room, except bigger, with sloping sides instead of sheer ones. I place a very swirly ‘s’ shaped walkway straight through the middle of the pit at a height slightly lower than the edges of the room and carve stone shapes into into it like on my fire pit. The ‘s’ of the walkway almost reminds me of a drawing of a whirlpool with how curved it is, so I raise up a little circular platform right in the center of the pit to complement it. I make an even smaller ring like my fire pit on the center of the platform and place my big stone in the center of that, filling the rest in with soil so it looks like a planter box.

Thinking a bit, I line the ice of my planter box with |aura of warmth| to hopefully keep my soil from freezing. I put a bit more soil in the little dish of the rock and take out my winter lichen from my stomach space thing where all my ice goes after eating it. The lichen popped up there after I completed the beginner path. It was a weird feeling. Carefully, I plant the lichen in the dish of the rock. I hope I’m doing this right.

The rest of the soil, I put in one half of the pit, lining the bottom with |aura of warmth|. I’ll plant any other plants I get by chance or grow from the lichen. I have a feeling that completing the beginner paths will get me more plants. I’m excited! I’m like a real farmer!

 Status Menu 
Name: [Locked] Race: Dungeon Level: 8*  Attribute: Green
Health: 52/52* (10/hr)* Mana: 51/51* (10/hr)* State: Normal
 Rooms: 4* Floors: 1 Named Monsters: 0
 Monsters: 38 Animals: 0 Plants: 1*
Path Points: 29*
Paths: {Beginner II (0/8)}* {Ingenuity I (0/50)} {Valiant I (1/100)}
Skills: [Influence III] [Incorporation III] [Ambient Aura VI]* [Earth Manipulation II]* [Plant Growth I] [Green Thumb I] [Tamer I] [Karma I] [Ice Manipulation V]* [Natural Projectile II] [Core Teleportation]
Achievements: |Ingenuity!| |Powerful!| |Dauntless!| |Against the Odds!| |Crack Shot!|


A note from koallary

AN- Her decor design may not make a whole lot of sense… But, hey, who doesn’t get carried away when creating? Or getting their first plant. I think she ended up making a shrine for it.


About the author


Bio: I'd rather live in Katsgat.

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