Mother of Learning

by nobody103

Original COMPLETED Adventure Fantasy Mystery Magic

Zorian is a teenage mage of humble birth and slightly above-average skill, attending his third year of education at Cyoria's magical academy. He is a driven and irritable young man, consumed by a desire to ensure his own future and free himself of the influence of his family, whom he resents for favoring his brothers over him. Consequently, he has no time for pointless distractions or paying attention to other people's problems. As it happens, time is something he is about to get plenty of. On the eve of the Cyoria's annual summer festival, he is killed and brought back to the beginning of the month, just before he was about to take a train to Cyoria. Suddenly trapped in a time loop with no clear end or exit, Zorian will have to look both within and without to unravel the mystery before him. And he does have to unravel it, for the time loop hadn't been made for his sake and dangers lurk everywhere... Repetition is the mother of learning, but Zorian will have to first make sure he survives to try again - in a world of magic, even a time traveler isn't safe from those who wish him ill.


If anyone is interested, I have a story-related worldbuilding site that can be found here. I don't update it as often as I should, but there is a fair amount of content there already. It also contains a page with all the fanart, fan translations, audio books and the like - you can reach it directly by clicking this link.

I have a patreon account for those kind people that want to give me money. It also contains info for those who want to donate via paypal.

The story was originally posted on fictionpress, back in 2011. When I reached chapter 91, I started uploading the story to RoyalRoad, one chapter per day. The story will continue to be updated on fictionpress as well as here, and can be reached by clicking on this link if somebody is interested, though at this point there is nothing there that isn't also on RoyalRoad.


The cover you see on the side has been made by a fellow RoyalRoad user Sydorow. Thank you for your time and art skills.

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Word Count (16)
2nd Anniversary
Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
1. Good Morning Brother ago
2. Life’s Little Problems ago
3. The Bitter Truth ago
4. Stars Fell ago
5. Start Over ago
6. Concentrate and Try Again ago
7. Of Gaps And Pretending ago
8. Perspective ago
9. Cheaters ago
10. Overlooked Details ago
11. Limiters ago
12. Soul Web ago
13. Any Second Now ago
14. The Sister Effect ago
15. Busy Friday ago
16. We Need To Talk ago
17. Sympathy for the Spider ago
18. The Pact is Sealed ago
19. Tangled Webs ago
20. A Matter of Faith ago
21. Wheel of Fortune ago
22. Complications ago
23. Lighting the Fuse ago
24. Smoke and Mirrors ago
25. The Unexpected ago
26. Soulkill ago
27. Cast Adrift ago
28. Cauldron ago
29. The Hunters and the Hunted ago
30. A Game of Shops ago
31. Marked ago
32. Alternatives ago
33. Gateways ago
34. Unreasonable Things ago
35. Mistakes Have Been Made ago
36. A Battle of Minds ago
37. Slow Burn ago
38. Return to Cyoria ago
39. Suspicious Coincidences ago
40. Shifting Tracks ago
41. Myriad Clashing Motives ago
42. Sum of its Parts ago
43. Overwhelmed ago
44. A Show of Trust ago
45. Fine Structures ago
46. The Other Side ago
47. Politics ago
48. Well of Souls ago
49. Substitution ago
50. Containment ago
51. Out of Control ago
52. Things Fall Apart ago
53. Phantoms ago
54. The Gate Is Barred ago
55. Threshold ago
56. Obscure ago
57. Unwanted ago
58. Questions and Answers ago
59. One Step Forward ago
60. Into the Abyss ago
61. Anthills ago
62. Improperly Used ago
63. The March of Days ago
64. Distance ago
65. Dangerous Ground ago
66. Marred Perfection ago
67. Convergence ago
68. Green Hell ago
69. Ruin ago
70. Carried Away ago
71. Shadows of the Past ago
72. Crossroads ago
73. Plodding Ahead ago
74. The Return ago
75. Soul Stealer ago
76. Critical Blunder ago
77. Testing ago
78. Grinding Stone ago
79. Crime and Evading Punishment ago
80. Enemies ago
81. A Civil Conversation ago
82. Ancient Circles ago
83. Scorpion ago
84. Powerless ago
85. Critical Mass ago
86. A New World ago
87. Agents of the Crown ago
88. Mysterious Ways ago
89. Victory ago
90. Change of Plans ago
91. A Path Paid in Blood ago
92. The Scramble ago
93. Shelter in the Storm ago
94. Ghosts ago
95. Betrayer ago
96. Contract ago
97. Illusory ago
98. Beneath the Surface ago
99. Powderkeg ago
100. Sacrifice ago
101. The Switch ago
102. Giants ago
103. Window of Opportunity ago
104. I Win (I) ago
105. I Win (II) ago
106. I Win (III) ago
Epilogue ago
Afterword ago

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John Marcus

Original and Well Written

You don't find a lot of time travel stories here on RR. Here, this work is fairly unique. New. It's also well written. Every chapter delivers consistently. Easy 5.


The characters are just so damn good. Every character is unique and you always understand why they do certain things. It's not just random and no character is black or white, every one of them has bad traits but also good traits, even the "bad" persons.

You can also see, that the author planned out the whole story :)

The only possible downside of this story: no romance. But it's not needed. Because this story is just too damn good.


I don't really see how anyone could give this anything other than 5 stars.  This has some of the most well developed characters and story on the site, the world building is AMAZING, the pacing is a good balance between description, character development, and story developement.


My favourite story on Royal Roadl. The characters are well thought through, and each seems genuinely unique and complex. the author manages to avoid the classical tropes that many authors of webnovel fall into and which annoy me.

In line with the well thought through characters the magic system is likewise thought through and the depth of it only adds to the story!!!


thanks for writing this


Love the story, the pacing is brilliantly done and really pulls the reader in. I was hooked after just a few chapters and went on to Fictionpress to read the rest because I couldn't wait for it to come out on here.

Couldn't recommend a story more, I wouldn't have been surprised if I picked this up in a shop somewhere.


I read it before it was published here and was surprised to see it listed. I get that the author wants to reach a larger audience, but the novel is honestly too good for this website. It seems sorely out of place with how high quality it is. 10/10


Fantastic story.  Well developed, funny,       With mystery and with a list of characters that is wide and interesting .


One of the best book i ever read

Enjoy more than many official/professional work

Magic system complex, the best I ever read about

I like the style

Arguably the best story:

No exposition, just a slow reveal of the world as the story progress

Never seen a fault on the grammar

Even in a time loop, there is more character progression than 99% of the others story

In each itteration we have a bit revelated to us and by acting differantly we learn different thing


Read upto ch 92, its really good. basically groundhog-day but a month long, multiple loopers, and magic. It also has great worldbuilding.


Finally on Royal Road!

MoL is one of my Top 3 favorites of all time, God knows how many times I have reread it from start to latest chapter released at the time.

Sometimes, when I have a coupIe hours free in a busy week I commit the mistake to read the first chapters and can't stop until there is no Next Chapter button!!