Chapter 437 Ancient Mentor
“Why murder everyone in a bunch of cities then?”
“Perhaps something was revealed to them that forced their hand. We do however not believe an oracle would want the death of so many humans for a reason disproportionate. It has been long since one of ours has visited them. A chance exists that their control is slipping or merely that many of their young have decided to strike at humanity on a whim of their own.”
Ilea didn’t doubt the Fae knew a lot about the Oracles and elves but she trusted Elfie more on the subject.
“Anything interesting you can tell me about the Azarinth Order? I found one of their temples when I arrived here. The Ascended suggested he hunted down some of the members. I assume many died in the war as well.”
“What interests us and what interests you may differ greatly. None of us who visited them have ever returned, which tells us some things about the order. They were one of the most powerful healing orders at the time, three and a half thousand years ago and up until the war. They were secretive and near religious in their dealings. Much of the human plains would have potentially fallen into their hands if their numbers hadn’t been culled in the war. Great risk is required to attain the class, as you surely know.”
“Hundreds of possible suspects existed back then that would have gladly rid them off this plane. Their teachings and believes led to few of them escaping in the end. Healing orders were disdained long after, forbidden from acquiring political influence. Funding and public opinion of healers was low. Some of the human healing orders that exist today were in their infancy during the war, most did not exist at all. Had you arrived here three thousand years ago, you might have found more animosity upon entering human settlements.”
“Now that is interesting… I’ve been wondering why healers seemed scarce.”
“Many other reasons exist of course. Humans like their individual power, few healer classes providing as much versatility as the Azarinth. Before reaching level two hundred, it would be rare to find a competent healer capable of fighting for themselves. Many need to be forced or paid well to even consider such a class, despite the demand.”
“Weird that none of the librarians I talked to remembered any of that,” Ilea said.
“Victors write history, as is well known. The Azarinth and their accomplishments were stripped from records far and wide. We remember only stories, bits and pieces from the time long past, weaving together bits of evidence to form the tapestry that may come close to truth.”
“What’s so special about my class anyway? I’ve had many people talk about my healing.”
“It is arcane in nature. Closer to true restoration than most healing abilities. Usually such power is not found in humans. Only few of you choose the path of the truly arcane, fewer still able to bend it to their will. The Bluemoon Grass is the pinnacle created from centuries of work, alchemy and magic. It changes the body of a weak and classless human to allow for arcane attuned healing to be used. You are beings of light, sun, water and emotion. Not of control and arcane. Outliers always exist however and you are one of them. Or perhaps you accidentally stumbled into becoming one.”
“You even know about the elixir,” Ilea said and laughed. “Are there some that might help me get a better third class? Do you have any details on that?”
“We strongly suggest you do not chose a class unlocked through an elixir. Though it would be highly unlikely for you to find one as powerful as would be required. Not any class can be chosen as one beyond one’s species usual limitations. Only those truly extraordinary are even an option. We simply thought it possible that you unlock one thanks to the experiences we shared in the Descent. Maneuvering a Trakorov to fight a Sand Elemental while you are amidst it all surely should quality for something extraordinary.”
“I guess it should. But why at level three fifty?” Ilea asked.
“Humans have two classes. You were awarded third tier skill points until now, were you not?”
“You mean I’ll get something else now that all my skills are in the third tier?”
“Precisely. There are ways to find other paths, to break through with achievements otherwise unrelated. Both for third and higher general skills or more classes and even levels but time is usually of essence. You are many things but old is not one of them.”
“True,” she said and smiled. “Does that mean there are forth and fifth tier skills as well? As well as fourth and fifth classes for me somewhere down the road?”
“Perhaps. The magic flowing through your body, mind and soul is part of you. Trust it and nurture it and you shall evolve and grow, as we all do.”
“Great. Well, guess I’ll find out myself. One step at a time.”
The Fae giggled in her mind.
“Thanks for all the information and advice by the way.”
“Of course, human. You have provided us with magnificent stories and knowledge that would have otherwise been lost.”
‘ding’ ‘Space Magic Resistance reaches 2nd lvl 18’
“Two more levels then I’m there. Maybe you can get me a couple levels in the third tier as well,” she said and smiled.
“You are welcome to stay for however long as you wish.”
“But once I leave I can’t return? Would be quite handy to have your knowledge available when I need it.”
“The one of us you met might visit from time to time but it is against our self imposed rules not to share this location with those not of the Fae. We merely invite from time to time. You are the first human in several centuries.”
“And here I thought myself special,” Ilea said with a smile.
The Fae giggled. “We meet many creatures. It is meant as a great honor to converse with you and to share knowledge.”
“Ah, I didn’t take it as less. Just thought I’d be able to see the little guy from time to time.”
“Perhaps there will be a way. We shall allow it should both you and it agree to cooperate. We will leave it to the two of you.”
“I see. So I can talk to him before I go?”
“Of course. This is not a prison. It is tired and requires sustenance only we can provide. Another three hours it should remain with us.”
“Can you tell me about class creation in the meantime? I want to start a healing order and we need a class.”
“Achievements can become requirements met to allow for powerful classes. You know that well already. Humanity as well as many others have found cruel and unforgiving ways to force the emergence of strong classes, both in their young as well as slaves and soldiers. The knowledge you gathered as well as the abundance of healers your order will have should provide good results.”
“But I can’t create something like the Azarinth Healer class?”
“Not without an elixir that would apply changes to the human physiology.”
“Ah, fuck. I thought I could make something cool.”
“Your ashen side however, might be able to be helpful here. Your ability to create and control the element could show and force a connection for those not yet initiated. Usual requirements of risks and near death experiences would prove hurdles in your goal. It is possible of course but certainly a challenge for you. If our assumption is correct that you would refrain from killing or torturing recruits.”
“Hmm… I mean if they don’t know I would kill them, would it still work? Or would the magic know the person wasn’t actually in danger?”
“If your deception is successful, so might be the emergence of a class. Should they know that death is not truly an option, they will not meet the requirements necessary. Should near death be a requirement at all.”
“This is going to be a headache. Ah well, we’ll figure something out that isn’t exactly traumatizing but should come close to all that. Is arcane healing always touch based by the way?”
“No. Of course not. For humans however, it should be. Outliers always exist however but we have not encountered one for this so far.”
“But we can still use destructive healing?”
“Healing usually used by humans is not easy to form into a destructive weapon. With you as a teacher and the Azarinth magic to observe, a chance exists.”
“Alright… I’ll try different stuff then. Wanted to focus on resistances, combat training and medicine anyway. Observing my magic and ash would have come up anyway. Thanks for the advice.”
“Of course, human. We hope that you are aware of the competition between healing orders among the human nations.”
“I know, I know. Do you really think any of them could stop me?”
“Potentially. You personally, certainly difficult. Your order however is not established yet. We suggest backing, moderate secrecy and political allies.”
“I should have most of that. Secrecy isn’t exactly my strong suit. Speaking of which… would you mind if I told people of this meeting? The Fae and all?”
“Your knowledge is yours. We cannot and will not influence what you share and what you do not. We share with you what we think appropriate.”
Ilea nodded. “Don’t really see a reason to share anything about you guys anyway. Maybe I could even find some more of you that were captured.”
“It would be most generous of you but it is not necessary. The risk is well known to us. Capture and death are only natural.”
“I won’t start to argue with you on this.”
“A wise choice.”
“A little, perhaps. We are old. Do allow us some indulgence.”
“As is some of us.”
‘ding’ ‘Space Magic Resistance reaches 2nd lvl 19’
“One more,” she said.
“Any piece of advice you could offer to a young human like me? Something that would help?”
“It depends heavily on what you seek. If it is power, you are on the right path and little we say or share would change this. If it is happiness, we do not know you well enough to offer advice. If it is gold, we suggest branching out into gold magic. Your species is weirdly obsessed with that metal.”
“Yeah. I don’t really know why either. Was the same in my original realm. Maybe it’s instinctual. It’s shiny and rare. We do all want to feel special, in a world where millions of us are competing.”
“Let’s say power… General skills. What would you suggest I pursue?” she asked, the sounds of breaking and twisting limbs fading to the background by now.
“With your peculiar ability to deactivate resistance skills, most certainly that. Anything else would require considerable effort. Do you have anything that helps you survive without air?”
“Harmony of the Drowned.”
“Hmm… it is only beneficial if one is submerged in liquids, is it not?”
“A human body has many limitations and weaknesses. You can survive with little sustenance and in areas near devoid of mana but it should be a priority to address those weaknesses. Sleep, food, air, light. All unnecessary and potentially deadly.”
“I’ve got most of them covered. Can you create a space without air? I guess I could get something if I suffocate long enough,” Ilea said. “Pretty annoying that I haven’t received anything for drowning so much.”
“We never suggested overcoming your weaknesses would be easy. Already you have surpassed most humans we have seen, met or heard of. You should be proud.”
“Why does that sound like you’re complimenting a child on its artistic ability, knowing full well that it does not even come close to reaching mastery?” she asked.
The Fae laughed. “Because in a sense, it is the truth. We do not feel it necessary to explain, knowing what you have faced, what you know exists in this realm. We can force out the air of a specific area, if you wish to train such as well.”
“I can communicate telepathically. Shouldn’t be a problem. My healing should counteract the lack of oxygen a little as well. I’ll let you know when I’m starting to die.”
“Your trust in us is dangerous. Be wary of creatures as old as we are. They are wicked and dangerous. Especially to someone as inexperienced as you are,” the Fae said and changed the space around her, pushing away the already thin air.
Ilea found herself not terribly affected by the change, breathing nothing out of sheer habit but not reacting in a way she would associate with suffocating. Should start up soon.
“You don’t seem very fond of your peers,” she said, through the mind this time around.
“It is simply a warning. As you have warned a part of us before.”
“It’s alright. Speaking of resistances, what schools of magic are there?”
“Many… we know of several hundred ourselves but many are not practiced by humans or even beings in this realm. Many are varieties as well but might provide resistances themselves. Similar to Heat Resistance and Lava Magic Resistance, both of which you surely have by now.”
“I do,” Ilea said and started to notice the lack of air. Her healing magic kept her working and fine but something told her the oxygen was missing and that it would have adverse effects should she continue without.
“I guess a list won’t make much sense then if I can’t find people practicing them anyway. I’ll talk to the people I know, about creatures and adventurers that might be willing to help,” she said.
“It is a part of the excitement as well, is it not? To discover and learn of new magic. We have decided that information is not needed by you.”
Ilea smiled. She agreed. Her goal was exploration and exciting battles, not becoming the most powerful indestructible human that ever lived. That was just a side product.
She was glad the Fae had made her feel excited again. The worry she had felt because of the Ascended had mostly washed away already. In the presence of a being such as this, the creature she had fought seemed irrelevant.
‘ding’ ‘Space Magic Resistance reaches 2nd lvl 20’
- Space Magic Resistance
Against all common sense you have not just faced an Ascended in battle, you have invited a Fae to travel and train with you. In the face of meeting the most powerful being your weak human self could not even comprehend, you remain mostly unfazed. To ask the true Fae to train you is not just an insult, it is lunacy. And yet it seems the creature somehow has come to like you. Truly, incomprehensible.
Yeah, I’ll take that one, thank youuu.
Space Magic Resistance – 3rd lvl 1
Most who try to chase this elusive school of magic will find and choose the Void instead. You have fought a being of truly peculiar making, have faced and survived its spells and may count yourself amongst the few to call this skill their own.
2nd stage: A true mystery, how you have sustained so much damage through Space Magic. You must have truly angered a being to summon such scorn. Your body and its parts become more difficult to displace.
3rd stage: Your being comprehends space magic in its arcane nature, able to ignore some of the aspects of it. You may still be slowed if your adversary is too powerful but it will be difficult to pin you down entirely.
Ilea read through it all and frowned. “That’s just the same fucking thing as the second tier.”
“Congratulations. You will find that barrier of space magic nature will not be able to stop you anymore. Nor will it be possible to hold you in place entirely. Not even for us.”
She smirked and squinted at the same time. “Being reduced to crawling through mud instead of being entirely stuck within isn’t exactly a massive benefit,” she said and opened her eyes.
To her surprise, she found that looking at the Fae didn’t give her a headache anymore. Its form was still changing and unclear but it wasn’t overwhelming anymore.
“You know that such a difference can be the difference between life and death.”
“Yeah, yeah. I know. Just a little underwhelming that one, compared to Heat Resistance or of course Meditation.”
“The main benefit of reaching the third tier in Resistance skills is the simple fact that they continue to level. Most creatures above level two hundred will attack you with skills in the third tier or higher. The additional bonus you receive for each level is most certainly worth it. Other general skills will have more impactful bonuses but in the end we do recommend gaining as many third tier resistances as possible.”
“Of course, of course. I know all that. I’m just holding on to some of the points in case I meet something where I really need it.”
“A wise precaution. You seem to be suffocating.”
Ilea nodded. “It’s a rapid drain on my health and stamina. The former is off set by my healing coupled with natural regeneration and the latter by Meditation. I guess I have conquered that weakness.”
“Not entirely. You should continue until you receive a skill of sorts. There should be some available for humans.”
“Abstaining from sleeping and eating is the next thing you should focus on.”
“Might as well just die at that point. I’d rather level Pain Tolerance to the third tier than abstaining from either of those. You wouldn’t understand, Fae. It is a grave insult but I shall let it fly considering our relationship,” she said and winked.