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Mark of Time

Counter: 1

Integrity: 99.98%

Tier: Undefined

Jennifer blinked, her mind snapping out of the daze it had settled in. She looked around at her room, a stream of incoherent thoughts going through her mind. Her eyes were drawn to the enchanted quill in her hand. A gift from her father, back when he still worked as an enchanter.

Where am I? I thought I had—

The memories rushed in like a tide, cold green eyes staring into her own as life had slipped away from her grasp. The image pierced through the daze, memories now coming back one after the other, like a storm.

Her chest strained, tightening with pain and she felt suffocated. Jennifer abruptly stood up, panting. Her heart was thundering in her chest, an inexplicable sense of terror overwhelming her. She felt her stomach turn as bile began to rise up to her throat. She gagged, holding the nausea back. She stumbled to her bed, crawling onto it and closing her eyes as she fought against the images. The green eyes haunted her, chasing after her as she ran.

It’s alright. I’m alright. Breathe Jennifer, breathe. Calm down.

It took a few minutes before the terror loosened its grip. Her body was sweaty, her hands shaking. She got up in her bed, looking at her arm. The mark was still there, glowing very lightly with a dark blue sheen.

It was real. Am I dead then? Is this the afterlife?

Jennifer had never been that pious. The church tended to proclaim the afterlife was a paradise created by Sera to harbour her believers, but Jennifer had always been sceptical about how much of that was true.

Perhaps that is why Sera never took me in with her own. Either that or I am still alive and have just woken up from the most realistic nightmare of my life, while sitting on my desk.

She got up from her bed, and walked up to the desk.

What’s the date today?

She looked through the pile of books on her desk for the small calendar she kept nearby. 3rd of the 4th month.

I really am back in time. A whole month back in time. But how? Time magic should be impossible, the mana costs would be absurd.

She sat down at her desk, opening the book she had been taking notes from when she came back.

‘Intermediate Magical Theory II’ the book read on its cover. She had finished this book a few weeks ago, as preparation for her enrolment in the academy. She flipped through the pages, going through the spell theory briefly.

An idea struck her. She started to form her Agile wind spell, intentionally keeping the spell half done. When she focused on the spell, its components seemed to expand into various parts, and simpler components.

“[Lesser Arcane Analysis]” she could feel the skill there, breaking the spell components down for her.

I still have my skills, even the new ones. This is...strange. This mark, that man, the invasion, all of it is strange. Where did this thing come from? How can it send me back in time? Why give me this mark? Who was Irwys and what was a royal knight like him doing getting his sword repaired in a plain old enchanting store like or—

A sharp knock at the door interrupted her.

“Jen, it’s dinner time, come down” her mother’s voice called out from outside. Jennifer paused on her way to the door and rushed to take out the dusty little cosmetic box she had. A young girl’s toy more than anything a woman might use.

She quickly covered the mark on her hand. She took out a leather patch, used to hide scars and blemishes, and placed it over her skin. She pushed some mana through it and the patch blended in with her skin seamlessly.

She checked once again to make sure the patch wouldn’t come out before she walked out of the room.

She picked her way down the stairs, making her way to the dining hall. Things hadn’t suddenly started to make sense, and there was still a part of her mind that was screaming at her to run.

A shadow floated near the corner of her eye, and she turned in a panic, preparing a mana bolt on instinct. An empty window. That was all. Letting the spell fade away, she took a deep breath and continued on her way.

The incessant whispers in her mind echoed in her mind and she tried to push them all away. She walked into the dining room, they had a relatively small house. Her father had managed to be closer to the center of the city and outside the outer wall slums.

His position as a teacher does afford him some benefits I suppose, but then the pay is terrible.

She walked into the dining room. "Good evening Jen," her father said from across the table without looking up from his book.

"Evening," she replied lazily. She looked at the table, there was quite a bit more than usual present. The food was all stuff she liked as well.

"Is there something today?" She asked, trying to remember if it was her birthday.

No, that's still months from now.

"What? Don't tell me you forgot already?" Her mother exclaimed, walking in with a tray full of food.

"Uhh, Happy anniversary? No?"

Her mother put down the tray with a huff. "No, silly. We're celebrating you getting accepted into the academy as an enchanter! I don't believe this girl!” her mother huffed at her dad before turning to look at her “Did you forget that already?"

Ah right. That was today. The celebration. Then this is still before the summit was declared after the new branch in the dungeon was found. Delaying the academic schedule as the bi-annual competition between mages and selected warriors was moved up.

Is it related to the dungeon break somehow? Or the invasion? If the summit was the target then why not wait till the leaders were in the city? Oh, of course. The security would be infinitely higher then. Maybe this is to make Lienmont lose its authority, by showing that the city cannot safeguard its own walls? No, but then-

"You're spacing out, Jen," her mother called out.

"Nervous? Things will be alright dear, I know how hard you've worked for this.” she nodded quietly and sat down to have her dinner.

She spotted her mother looking at her, worry evident on her face.“Don’t worry so much dear, you look so pale! Are you alright?”

“Yes, I’m fine. Like you said, just a bit nervous”

“Don’t be my dear. Are you worried about the money? You thought you may be hiding that money, but we always knew. There's no need for you to worry about anything. Your father has talked to someone about things. Okay? Now, let's eat, and don't look so worried,"

Her mother patted her hand once, and she nodded absently. I am worrying too much. I don't even know what happened yet. And if everything was real or just a strangely realistic dream.

She looked at her hand, at the mark hidden there before she continued to have dinner.

The food didn't taste like anything to her. Her mind was still filled with explosions and screams.

"Hey hey Jen, you can do magic now right? Since you're going to that school? Can you show me?" Her nine year old brother, Keith asked excitedly.

"Keith, let her eat, not causing trouble during dinner okay?"

"It's fine," Jennifer said, summoning a simple light orb around him.

Then, noticing some new insights from her new skill, she had the orb divide into two, then four, then eight and so on. Soon a swarm of tiny light particles swirled around him as he watched on amused, his eyes shining with excitement. She had the light form a small whirlpool as she ended the spell.

"Whoa! That was so amazing! Can you do anything else?"

"Yes, but not now, some other time okay?" The boy nodded excitedly, going back to his food.

"You've improved considerably," her father said.

"A bit, yes," she replied.

I may have overdone it a bit.

"Good. That's good. Keep practicing, we're all proud of you." She nodded as her mother started to gush over how she would brag about it to everyone.

Jennifer looked at her father's hands. He had lost the use of magic in both of them, being unable to enchant again. One of the main reasons for joining the academy had been to find a way to heal her dad's arms. It wasn't too difficult. She knew there were potions and healers who could fix things like this, but it would cost them more than a teacher could ever earn. Especially while taking care of a family.

She looked out, ignoring the shadows her mind provided for her. The image of her family lying dead in that invasion, killed by monsters flashed in her mind.

She pushed the image down. "I think I'm done," she said getting up.

"Already? Do you feel alright?" Her mother asked.

"Yeah, I'm fine. Just feeling a bit sick," she said and put the dishes away, and walked back into her room.

Going in, she locked the door behind her and took a deep breath.

"I need a plan. And I need to ask about everything. That man, Irwys a royal knight.” She paused at the lack of strain in her mind at saying those words. “The oath...it's gone. Is it because I’m back in time? Another thing to ask him about, along with this mark. No, even before that. I need to get my family out of the city. Before the invasion can happen again."

She peeled away the patch on her hand, the mark visible once more. She sat down on her desk and took out a piece of parchment. Taking her quill, she began preparing.

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A note from KrazeKode

Apologies for vanishing. I had gotten sick, I still haven't recovered completely but things are better now. I have my grandfather in the hospital due to Covid, so things are a bit stressful as of now. I will try to keep posting every week, but this is just a pre-warning in case I disappear again.


Support "Truth Seeker: A LitRPG Timeloop"

About the author

KrazeKode

  • Far away from humans
  • Floofer

Bio: I decided to take up the keyboard.

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