He forced his mind to wander, to focus on the mana around him. He forced himself to calm his to let the universe take it’s course. He would allow himself to get answers instead of trying to force them.
He ignored the occasional drifting image of the girl he’d previously seen. He would likely never see her again, if she was even real.
She may have simply been a mirage. A forest mirage…
That happens sometimes… I think.. Maybe…
No less realistic than a girl my age taking a stroll through a super large dangerous forest who can just disappear into thin air like a ghost.
So yeah… Forest mirage, why not?
He stayed in meditation for the rest of the night and most of the following day. He steadied his mind and focused on sensing the mana in general vicinity. He focused on gaining further sensitivity to the mana of the living things around him.
Opening his eyes as his stomach started growling. He touched his stomach with a look of realization.
Not only had be not eaten in almost a day, but he had lost his pack when he’d attacked the bull spawns.
Feeling regret over his rash actions, Daichi shook his head as the taller mare was still keeping watch at the mouth of the cave.
“I’m going to go out and get something to eat” Daichi mentioned about to leave as the mare stopped him by lifting up a rabbit carcass.
Daichi looked at her a bit surprised leaving the obvious question hanging in the air.
Understanding the look, the taller mare answered “When I am actively hiding my presence and that of others, animals that do not possess mana see me as part of nature. As such, they do not hesitate to come near me. I assumed you would need to eat something while you were in meditation so when this one got close, I snapped its neck for you.”
A little surprised and almost grateful, almost. Daichi gave her a nod as he realized how useful everything mare could do was. Every ability of theirs served more than one purpose. Serving as the perfect tools to both live as part of and excel in nature.
He couldn’t hide the look of envy that flashed past his eyes as he felt himself wanting to learn their mana sensing ability even sooner.
Then breaking out into a toothy grin, Daichi nabbed the rabbit from her and using one of the troll daggers he still had, began to skin it. Doing a poor job, he didn’t think too much of it as it was his first time skinning an animal himself.
Finishing up with a look of excitement, he skewered the torso with a nearby stick and then held the stick parallel to the ground with one hand as he grinned again at the mare who had been watching his odd behavior.
Holding his hand underneath the rabbit he began to use the mana in the air as he’d envisioned. Changing the temperature by vibrating the building blocks of the world and using the mana in the air as the fuel he ignited a red-orange flame just above his palm. His palm could feel the heat but wasn’t touching it as he was using an oval sheet of mana on top of his hand to protect his hand and serve as the ignition.
Moreover, this was the first time he tried using mana from the atmosphere, from all around him instead of his own mana pool.
Smiling in satisfaction he realized there was a lot more to what he had just done than he’d originally thought.
His thoughts wandering to some of his own other skills, like his analyze. The skill took up zero mana. Perhaps that was because it drew on mana from around him in a far more complicated manner… Daichi wondered whether, if he gained further understanding of this, he could upgrade his own current skills.
Feeling proud of his first usage of a mana based flame, Daichi smiled wide as the mare looked at him with a bit of shock on her face.
The mare were nature’s creatures, and with the slew of abilities they possessed along with a long longevity and high intelligence many creatures were naturally envious of them.
Still… From birth they were limited to what skills and abilities they could acquire in their lifetimes.
This didn’t stop them from learning new information whenever they could, and along they way this taller mare had picked up some pieces of information about humans.
She’d grown to learn that only mages that used incantations as a formula for manipulating the elements around them could use elemental mana. The only other way was having a fire type attribute. The entire time she’d known Daichi he had never once shown any proficiency of proof that he would have fire as an attribute…
More over if he did… He would have certainly used in in one of their many battles. After all fire was a particularly useful attribute for fighting and killing.
As his rabbit began to cook at a quick pace, Daichi was eating it’s meat and savoring like never before in no time.
Even though it wasn’t seasoned, even though it tasted bland. In Daichi’s eyes it was the most delicious rabbit he’d ever eaten (also the first) because he’d used a mana based fire for the first time, this rabbit - this meal was proof of his growing understanding of mana and it’s grand number of uses.
Almost finished with the entire meal Daichi feeling content suddenly stiffed as he heard a high pitched sound in his left ear.
His neck twitching, as he felt his ear to make sure everything was okay. Daichi’s jaw clenched as he began hearing a voice transmitting directly into his head.
“Hello hello! My name is Tael. Every creature small and large, within the range of my territory can hear this, but for those of you not named Daichi just go about your business.”
Daichi’s eyes widened in surprise as he glanced at the mare, feeling less confidence as he noticed the pallor of her expression.