Episode 220

The World Of Spirits And Humans: Arulia (3)
1 week ago
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“Ah. Of all things…”

Akien was incredibly unfortunate.

In this world, spirits were everything. When judging a person, it was common to first look at which spirit they had contracted with, rather than their lineage, focusing on how well one could handle a spirit rather than their physical talents or intelligence.

No matter how excellent one’s architectural skills were, how physically superior, or how high their intelligence, if they couldn’t properly handle spirit magic, they were considered half as worthy.

“Still, someone like Taesan should be fine.”

Taesan was strong. He possessed the power to summon lower spirits with his bare body.

With that level of power, even without any talent in spirit magic, he could be respected anywhere.

It was just that there was always talk behind his back about how he couldn’t handle spirits.

“Really?”

Taesan leaned against the wall of the carriage.

The carriage continued to move forward. Taesan quietly closed his eyes, while Akien glanced at him anxiously.

“Is it true that the color of the gem didn’t change?”

Perina whispered, coming closer. Akien hastily covered her mouth with her hand.

“Be quiet!”

“So what. He seems to be sleeping. It’s not like I’m teasing, just curious.”

Akien nodded slightly. Perina let out a small laugh.

“A person who doesn’t react to the gem… There really was such a person. It’s not even written in the history books.”

“I don’t know much about it either.”

Their world was one where spirits and humans lived together. Every being born inherently possessed a talent for spirits.

Perina murmured with a strange look on her face.

“Could he be someone from a completely different place?”

“A different place?”

“You know. The legend we heard when we were kids.”

Akien realized what she was talking about.

“That place called the labyrinth?”

“Yeah.”

“Ah. Impossible.”

Akien shook her head.

“That’s just a legend. There’s no way such a place actually exists.”

“That’s true.”

Perina agreed, not having been serious with her suggestion.

And Taesan heard all their whispers. He continued his thoughts, unconcerned.

He couldn’t use spirit magic. He had absolutely no talent for it.

Yet, Taesan felt no particular emotion about this fact.

It was the same with aura. This divine power was something only those permitted by the Sword God could learn.

He had known from the start that spirit magic was a power only beings blessed by a specific world could wield.

Just like how people from Earth received the blessings of Rakiratas and the Demon God, to gain power.

‘What could there be?’

Aura was obtained by defeating swordmasters and activating Soul Ascension to bring about divine blessings.

Now, that method was impossible. Soul Ascension does not activate if there is a significant power difference.

During his time on Vekveta, his power difference from the swordmasters wasn’t that significant.

But now, Taesan had become far too strong. Even if he were to defeat a human contracted with a higher spirit, Soul Ascension wouldn’t activate.

Taesan remained calm.

There had been countless times when learning something was deemed impossible.

Yet, through it all, Taesan had learned skills like Addition, Multiplication, and Copying.

Spirit magic would be no different.

‘I need to start with the basic conditions.’

The carriage stopped. They got off to have a meal and summoned spirits.

“Master…”

“It’s okay. It’s because of you that I’m in trouble!”

The spirits were wary of Taesan, unable to understand why.

“Could you boil some water?”

“…Understood.”

The spirit sighed and summoned its strength.

Taesan approached as he watched. The spirit reflexively spread a barrier.

“Stop doing that!”

“I have something to ask. Is that okay?”

Taesan asked Akien, who was scolding the spirit. Akien nodded vigorously.

“Yes, yes. Ask away.”

“This gem is supposed to show if someone can handle spirit magic, right?”

Taesan held up the gem. It still showed no color.

“Yes.”

“What exactly does it mean that I can’t make a contract because I lack an attribute?”

“It means exactly that. Hold this for me.”

Akien handed off the meal preparation to someone else and picked up a stick. He began to draw lines on the ground with it.

“Contracting with a spirit involves summoning a spirit from the spirit world through a specific method and synchronizing with it. That is, the one calling doesn’t actively do something; a spirit from the spirit world has to respond.”

The lines formed a magic circle. Akien placed his hand over it.

Woong.

The magic circle reacted. Taesan recognized the energy spreading from the magic circle as mana.

He read the pattern, approach, and strength of the force.

Then, energy flowed out from Akien, covering the magic circle.

Simultaneously, the magic circle began to glow green.

“I have the attribute of the forest. So when I call, a spirit of that attribute responds.”

“So, if a spirit doesn’t answer…”

“Yes. A contract is only possible if there’s a response from the other side, but without an attribute, there’s no spirit to respond.”

“That’s it, then.”

The fundamental thing that manifested a magic circle was mana, which Taesan also possessed.

The attribute that the summoner had dictates which spirit responded.

Taesan understood the whole process and smiled faintly.

“Good. That’s enough confirmation for me. Thank you.”

“No problem.”

Akien waved her hand, thinking Taesan had called her to check if there was any way for him to learn spirit magic.

‘He’ll give up after a little try.’

Without a responding spirit, learning was impossible. That was certain.

The meal preparation was finished.

They started eating.

After the meal, the carriage slowly moved on, and enemies that disturbed them appeared again.

“Here they come again!”

“Master!”

Darkened spirits unleashed their power, attacking them. Akien managed to fend off the attacks with his spirit magic, but they were gradually being overpowered.

Taesan walked toward the blackened spirit.

Upon recognizing Taesan, the darkened spirit swelled up. It charged at him with endless malice.
Snap.

Taesan caught the spirit.

Flames burst from the darkened spirit, engulfing Taesan in a blaze. Akien screamed.

“Taesan… sir?”

“My power has increased a bit.”

Within the flames, Taesan examined the condition of the spirit, his expression unchanged.

“Has its ego been devoured? Perhaps it can be considered corruption. Nothing special.”

He tightened his grip. The spirit was crushed and vanished.

His hand moved swiftly, and all the approaching dark spirits burst apart. Akien muttered in a daze.

“You’re really… strong.”

“Do you know what these are?”

“No. When the nucleus appeared, these darkened spirits came with it. These spirits don’t communicate or contract with other spirits. They only show hostility and attack us.”

“Is that so?”

Taesan had a rough understanding.

The gods were targeting this world in the absence of the Spirit King. And the Spirit God, Beatrice, was blocking those attacks.

But it was unlikely she could stop them all. Simply comparing power, it seemed the ancient gods were even above the current gods.

Especially since their power was infinite up to a certain point, giving them an advantage.

Even the God of Magic had to wait until they crossed a line, so it must be the same for the Spirit God. That seemed to have resulted in the spirits’ corruption.

“We’re supposed to have won, yet they’re still causing trouble.”

As always, the high gods would interfere when he aimed to achieve his goal.

Taesan was preparing for that.

The darkened spirits advanced again. The carriage moved slowly, and night fell before they reached their destination.

Taesan could easily move without sleep, but the others needed their rest, so they naturally went to bed.

Once everyone else was asleep, Taesan quietly left the carriage.

A spirit on guard immediately tensed and gathered its strength.

“You!”

“Don’t be overly cautious. I could end you with a mere flick of my finger if I wished. However, I have no intention of doing so.”

“What do you want?”

“Something that will benefit you.”

“I can’t trust that.”

“Then don’t.”

Taesan spoke indifferently and walked past the spirit.

He ventured deeper into the forest. Perhaps because it was a realm of spirits, the natural energy here was far more potent than on Earth.

He unsheathed his sword.

Drawing a line on the ground, he created a magic circle similar to the one Akien had crafted, then infused it with mana.

He replicated Akien’s actions perfectly, pouring mana into the circle, but the magic circle remained inert.

There was no spirit of the appropriate attribute to respond.

He was aware of this much. The real challenge was what to do next.

“Will this work?”

Taesan lifted his finger.

A pure white ring on his finger illuminated the darkness.

[Blended with elegance and mystery, dyed in pure white]
[The ring, with its inherent spirit, synchronizes with the user, offering assistance. It also stores various powers for use when needed.]
[A ring created from the fusion of the Origin's Light and the Apostle's Source. Immense forces merged into one. It possesses a unique identity and dignity, welcoming those beyond its twin. The one who fully masters it will unlock additional powers.]

The ring had two functionalities. It used its inherent spirit to synchronize with and aid the user.

And it could hold numerous powers for use as needed.

Taesan synchronized with the ring. The ring, endowed with its own consciousness, began to summon power in alignment with its master’s will.

Woooung.

Energy from the surroundings started to converge towards the ring.

However, the energy was faint.

The speed at which it was being drawn in was also slow. Taesan couldn’t summon the level of spirit he desired.

Taesan focused more deeply.

Time passed.

The grass scattered on the ground.

Leaves fluttered in the wind.

Dewdrops formed on the tips of leaves as dawn approached.

The power contained in each began to seep towards the ring.

The gathered power started to synchronize with the magic circle. The magic circle glowed with brilliant colors.

Kiiiing.

If one couldn’t contract with a spirit due to lacking an attribute, then the solution was to gather attributes and deceive the spirit.

The light spreading from the magic circle began to change into a rainbow of colors. Taesan drew more power into it.

Kwoong.

The concentrated power in the ring exploded and permeated the magic circle.

At the same time, nature began to converge. The surrounding energy gathered, starting to form a shape.

[I am Barkaza, a supreme spirit of diverse colors.]

It was a golem-like green spirit. The power emanating from it was not something Taesan could take lightly.

“Who has summoned me…”

“Hello?”

Taesan waved his hand. The spirit stopped speaking upon seeing Taesan.

“You.”

“I want to make a contract. I’d rather not hear a refusal.”

Taesan muttered as he drew his twin swords.

“Let’s keep it simple. Really simple.”

He moved.

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