Seeing Edmond confidently walk up to the ring, Aaron finally understood what's going on. Shooting a glance at Woof to make sure that it hadn't moved positions, Aaron focused his sight on the ring, while still keeping an eye on the surroundings which was something he was doing more out of habit than necessity.
The Bewitching Fox that he and Woof had stolen was a very young, and they could tell that it hadn't been born for more than a few weeks. Still, a few Teras were always born with more intelligence and capability than others, and they knew certain things that could allow them to take care of themselves even if a very short while had passed after being born. Aaron had used to think that this was random, but now he understood that this must be linked with the Potential that he had seen listed in the booklet regarding Teras.
Indeed, that red leather booklet also contained more information about Teras, such as a list of what common terms meant.
For example, there were 10 levels of Potential for Teras, with only the first three listed in the booklet – they were Ordinary, Rare and Elite.
Along with that, the power level gauge that was used to judge all beings on the Path to Power, whether it be a Tera or human, had also been written.
Apparently, for simplicity's sake, the same terms were used both for Potential of Teras and this power level.
Hence, the Bewitching Fox that was now in the possession of Edmond was an Ordinary-Grade Ordinary-level one.
The idea here was that it would be difficult and confusing for one to memorize 20 different terms which would always be used to describe a human or a Tera. So, it was simplest to use the same. Also, it fit because Potential was also the highest level until which a Tera could go.
All in all, Aaron had been quite impressed by how well thought out this was, and how simple it was to follow. Even someone who was simple-minded would definitely be able to understand this and adapt quickly.
Jenny didn't have that smirk that had been on her face when she faced off against Aaron, and she looked much more subdued, as if she had learned a lot from being defeated even though she had assumed that that fight would definitely go her way.
With a calm expression, she was standing on the other side of the ring, while Edmond reached it and started the same process that he had used the last time when he had gotten so embarrassed.
Raising one leg, he brought it down forcefully while bending back and then moved his whole body forward as he punched into the air, almost as if he was hitting an imaginary enemy.
"Go get them, Alee!"
Apparently, that was what Edmond had named his Tera, and as the Core which had appeared between his knuckles flashed right at the moment when his punch stopped, the Bewitching Fox appeared in the air with a flash before gracefully landing on the ground.
Seeing it, Aaron couldn't help but widen his eyes.
There was already a change even though it had barely been a day since he last saw it. He and Woof knew quite a lot about Bewitching Foxes, as they were one of their most common nemeses in the forest. Hence, he knew that the sign of growth of a Fox lay in both its size and the luster of its fur and skin.
A Bewitching Fox released its signature attack through its skin, and more luster meant that there were more pheromones to release, which, in turn, meant that there would be that much more area and intensity of effect.
After an attack, the red skin and fur would dim, which was actually a giveaway that they often used to judge whether they should attack a Fox or not.
As soon as the Bewitching Fox reached the ground, it looked around lazily before yawning and promptly lying down.
At the same time, Jenny also released the Pink-Winged Butterfly which actually got scared as it spied on Woof which was sleeping on the ground just a few meters away from the ring.
Only after it checked and made sure that the Tera was fast asleep, did it regain some of its confidence and start to fly around in the air right above the Fox, which couldn't care less about it.
"Alee, that's your target! Use your ability on it!"
With his face slowly starting to turn red, Edmond shouted this, while Aaron started to wonder why this guy was always the target of embarrassment whenever he acted confidently.
Indeed, the image of Edmond was a far cry from how he had been just a few seconds before, when he had declared that he would show everyone what he was worth.
The former Chief looked like he was trying hard not to laugh – in fact, he had a hand over his mouth, while the rest of the Hamlet folk who had come to set up the ring were openly pointing at the Fox and chuckling among themselves.
Jenny was the only one who spoke kindly to Edmond.
"Don't worry, and don't get flustered. This is common in Hamlet-level battles. Different Tera Masters use different methods to entice their Teras to fight for them. At this level, it is seldom that the Tera Masters can accurately and effectively control their own Tera. To make it fight, I guess you have to reiterate what you promised it, or whatever you used before when you convinced it."
Hearing this made Aaron understand. Of course, Ascenders at this level must be like the cubs of certain Teras which were actually quite harmless and silly when young and had to be protected and trained. He guessed the same applied to those other humans during the orientation, too.
Edmond's reply was strange.
"Do I really have to?", he asked weirdly, with hesitation on his face, which puzzled Jenny, too.
What exactly had this guy promised his Tera that he was acting so hesitant when he heard that he had to repeat it?
The answer was soon made known to the world, as Edmond sighed and started to speak.
"Alee, you have to remember that you promised to fight after I promised you three conditions: one, I'll find as many materials and techniques that I can to make you grow strong enough so that you can one day go back to your father and show him that you aren't weak, at all. Two, no matter how many Teras as I Bond with, you'll always be the one which gets the most attention. And three…"
As Edmond paused, the Hamletfolk and even Aaron sharpened their ears, waiting to see what the last condition was.
In fact, even the Fox had gotten up at this point and was facing Edmond, as if waiting for him to repeat that third condition so that it could get down to business.
This made Edmond blush fiercely and look down at his feet, before he finally said, "Three, I'll personally search for and find you a great and handsome male Fox with a long tail so that you won't be bored."
Aaron couldn't believe his ears. Edmond had actually… Promised something like this to this little baby Tera?
He only fell surprised, but the others actually burst out laughing while pointing at Edmond, which made him bend his neck even further while he looked down.
The former Chief was actually laughing the loudest – in fact, he even said, "Damn, it's been a long time since I heard that one. Even we don't use it these days, 'cos having a male and female is disastrous! Imagine you're in a settlement and your Teras start doing their business! I heard someone was kicked out of a nearby Town cos his Teras did that even though he tried to stop them!"
Even though he said this and caused even more laughter to resound around the ring, it seemed to have been enough for the Fox, which turned toward the butterfly and focused its eyes on it.
The next moment, it looked as if nothing was happening, but its skin and fur slowly started to lose their luster and shine until they turned back to normal.
After that, after a few seconds, the Pink-Ringed Butterfly which had been flying around merrily slowed down, more and more, until it finally fell to the ground and started to sleep while taking tiny breaths.
This sight finally made the Chief stop laughing. Shaking his head, he said with a smile, "But maybe it was worth it. A Rare-grade Tera really is a Rare-grade Tera, after all."
Hearing the laughter stop, Edmond also looked up and finally broke into a smile on seeing that his Tera had performed, after all.
Running forward, he made an attempt to hug it, but it only raised one palm to stop him before strutting towards his hand.
Understanding it, Edmond summoned the Core and pulled it inside, resulting in it disappearing in a flash to continue to absorb Energy while he stood up and turned around before waving to Aaron.
He had done it! And at this moment, nothing else mattered.
That feeling of jealousy washed away, while Ernst walked to him and patted him on his shoulder, saying, "Nicely done. Second time's the charm. Even though your method is kind of unorthodox, it is not a simple feat to tame a Rare-grade Tera and make it fight for you in just a day. You aren't that bad, either. Come on. Let's go get your rewards, and then you two can be on your way."
Seeing the former Chief say this and then lead Edmond away, Aaron turned his eyes towards Woof, who was sleeping peacefully.
He was definitely awed by the incredible effects of the Core in just a single day, so, at this moment, he started to consider whether he should form a Bond and pull Woof inside, too.
Only, he hated that idea of hanging a noose over a Tera's head, by which it a Tera Master could kill it if he wished.
So, he decided that he would leave it up to his friend, and as he made that decision, for some reason, a smile spread across his face, as this really felt like the right thing to do.
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I'm an aspiring author who fell in love with writing the moment I wrote my first story.
Most Notable Work: World Domination System, an 800,000 word ongoing fantasy novel which can be found at https://www.webnovel.com/book/11413811606356705/World-Domination-System