The Star of Annihilation
Chapter 2 – Roy (2)
Written by : eleven
* * *
A rare breed.
That was what he was called among his magic infantry corps during the war. Most nobility were the ones to have the opportunity to learn magic from a young age and learn under the tutelage of the Empire’s Wizards. Either nobility, or the direct descendants of the Magic Families.
Regardless, while Roy’s mom did know the basics of runes, the magical language, she did not have an in-depth understanding of magic.
By the Empire’s standards, she was at most a 2-star mage.
Magic was by no means simple to learn though.
What made Roy stand out amongst his peers, was the way his body could react with mana.
Among many things, Roy was excellent at tracking the movements of mana and recognizing opponent’s spells.
The way he had learned and reached 4-stars as a mage in his past life, which was just one star away from becoming a certified Wizard under the Empire, was by himself and books.
It was that simple. Yet, it was also astounding he had gotten so close without any proper knowledge of how to break through to 4-stars at the young age of twenty-two. Roy had also realized and got a glimpse of how to break through to 5-stars through witnessing the Dragon’s magic first-hand. Such skill would be praised by even the 7-star archmages of the continent if they knew Roy had been self taught. Enough to be called a monster amongst talents.
What Roy was trying to do right now was awaken his core. However, although it was called a mana core, that was only the more well-known term for it.
The less-known name was nebula, which was referred to as such by certified mages and wizards.
What was unique about this ‘nebula’ of sorts, was that when one was trying to awaken the latent mana within themselves, they had to set the foundation.
Even a young boy like Roy currently, could use simple chore magic. Like lightning a candle with his finger with just the mana around him.
However, awakening a nebula was what separated the common-folk from magicians and swordsmen.
Swordsmen also used nebulas, but did not use spells. Once a swordsman could break through to the 7-star level, there was a fundamental change within their nebulas that allowed them to create their own power source called aura. It was the materialization of pure mana. But what made aura different from regular mana emitted from 7-star Archmages, was that it had its own unique attribute. Those swordsmen that could use aura, were known as swordmasters.
For the average person who awakened their nebula, it allowed them to circulate mana within one’s own body and would establish one’s inner circuitry. The inner circuitry was the pathways in which the mana would flow within one’s body.
However, everyone had different internal circuitry depending on one thing.
Why was a mana core called a nebula? Why were tiers of magicians separated by stars?
It was because the basic and first star one chose would always be different from another, that was unless it was a suggested star that one knew of beforehand.
Astrology and mana were deeply intertwined, and many magician families passed down the coordinates of their constellations and powerful stars to their descendants.
Roy was breathing in and out trying to circulate his mana and awaken his core. It was naturally very painful for him, as he was someone who didn’t know of any constellations other than the one passed down from his mother in his previous life. At least that was until… now.
Roy had gained inspiration from the very bastards who killed him.
When he took the paper from his mom earlier that day, Roy wrote quickly and gathered his thoughts.
What was determined, was that this was most definitely a new life. He didn’t know what caused the regression, however he had hints which seemed to be linked to the pendant that had disappeared, and his ancestry.
Roy knew exactly what he would do this life, and he had no intention of taking it easy.
He was not some kind of martyr, he would not play the hero. He could care less for humanity and it’s ridiculous standards and morals.
So his plan was simple.
Artifacts, knowledge, dungeons. Anything ‘undiscovered’ right now, would be his fortune. And unlike the lucky individuals who had gained these several treasures he was aiming for in his previous life, all those treasures would have one owner and one owner only.
That person would naturally be him.
Roy knew exactly what he needed to do, which was first save his mother and the village from getting turned into ashes 3 years from now when the Dragons re-appeared.
The Dragons were magical beings of utter might and sadistic by nature.
They could emanate something that would only allow the strong-willed to even challenge them. Dragon Fear. Then, there was their inherent body made of magic-resistant scales, and large bodies of mass destruction.
What had made the difference in when the first Dragon had been hunted successfully after over two hundred thousands troops of the allied union had died, was the presence of one person. Well not exactly a person, but rather the position they held.
A swordsman who dealt with aura. Something fundamentally different from mana.
Only those who had completely perfected all the techniques humanly possible with their weapons could possibly manipulate aura.
And in this life Roy intended on trying to achieve both of them. Others would probably call him a damned fool if he dared mention this to them. It had been achieved before by only rare individuals within the Empire’s standards. The thing that was so difficult about combining them was the incredible computational power and processing speed of one’s brain to cast spells while maintaining aura.
Mana and Aura.
Roy had never used a designated weapon in his previous life other than throwing knives which he would use as a magician since he couldn’t have close-ranged combatants come near him without falling into danger without a form of defense.
Therefore there were many loopholes in how he would attain these certain things, but Roy did have leads. And he had the will and determination to not let history repeat itself once again with damnation.
Roy wasn’t sure if everything would go as planned, or what would happen if he made it to the war once again in this life, but he would worry about all of that when he got there.
Breathing in and out, Roy circulated his mana in one of the basic patterns explained in many books from the empire that anybody could attempt.
Though… not everyone could gain the talent to feel mana like an inborn magician could.
However Roy had indeed gained some insight from those bastards who had killed him.
How he got this inspiration was something so ridiculously simple yet heaven-defyingly difficult. But if anything, he wanted to give it a shot.
The reason it hadn’t been attempted before in earnest with many other wizards, was rather quite simple now that he realized it upon his death. Even he, himself, was fooled for so long.
But when the Dragon’s magic circles had manifested behind the several meteors, much like any other spell, Roy couldn’t forget the patterns and intrinsic flow of mana within those patterns.
Others obviously had eyes as well and tried to pass on the breathing technique patterns they had seen in the unique magic circles of the dragons.
It was one of the most basic breathing methods possible. Yet, what Roy had realized before and why so many of humanity had failed before, was due to the actual flow of the mana. Yes, the distinct flow.
Roy had noticed it right before he died when he was blankly staring at the sky in a daze.
‘Though just knowing this, doesn’t make it any easier..’
He thought to himself.
It was something that he was attempting for the very first time, and yet his insides were burning as if they were melting from the stomach acid inside his intestines.
He was simply reversing the flow of the mana patterns he had seen in the Dragon’s Magic Circles.
It was common knowledge to never reveal the formulae of your nebula and the breathing patterns required for it, yet the arrogant dragons had painted them practically on their own magic circles as if to taunt the humans to try and replicate it.
Grating his teeth at the bitter memories and pain Roy was feeling, he recalled what those arrogant bastards had done. They had it fundamentally different from humanity, and Roy had no clue what this would even do to his own body.
In short Roy was taking a complete gamble in trying to reverse the flow of his mana. It had been attempted by humans in the past, and all of them had died. It was because the breathing techniques for reversing one’s mana flow had to correspond to an actual star in their nebula, and there were no stars known to have a reverse mana flow to humanity.
Roy had normal eyes like the rest of humanity, but he could feel mana like no other, and due to this he had focused on the Dragon’s breathing and their mana structure within their bodies before death. He had made several theories on how it was possible, but even the Dragons weren’t stupid enough to give humans their techniques to kill them later.
Roy had never seen the star of another individual other than his mother and heard of some of the stars that were stored in relics of dungeons were incredibly powerful for whichever individual found them. But, if someone tried to reverse their mana flow without having the proper constellation in place…
‘They’d just go boom.’
Yep, just like a star exploding, that would happen within one’s core and kill them on the spot. Hence why reverse flow mana was deemed impossible for humans. But, Roy had an alternative method to this. He modeled the circuitry and was forcing the mana to flow in a new pattern he had seen the Dragon’s pull off and was trying to reconstruct his nebula in a reverse method and like a puzzle, he would learn the shape of the last puzzle piece if he filled all the other pieces of the puzzle. The last piece of the puzzle for him would be the star.
“But if they could do it, why can’t humans? There’s no reason we could fail if we just had the proper constellation.”
Roy muttered to himself under his breath.
He wasn’t a dragon, let’s be real. But he thought, this might be the chance to gain the foundation that could propel him much farther than a simple 4 stars or even 5 stars. He was hoping to reach the realms of the 7 and 8 star Archmages at the very least, with this kind of foundation.
Archmages weren’t anything special against the Dragons, but they were powerful in their own right and could decimate thousands of humans with a simple fireball spell.
He needed to aim above and beyond an Archmage, Roy needed to at least attain the unknown 9 stars that nobody had even reached, even in myths if he wanted a chance at defeating the Dragons.
That and somehow become able to manipulate aura while spellcasting.
There was a lot to learn, but he would certainly try his best for sure. However, he had to first succeed here and live if he wanted to even try such a thing like revenge. Not only that, he would have to learn how to use a sword or spear if he wanted to manipulate aura, and he had never done that in his past life.
The mana within Roy’s body churned and protested at the change of natural direction. It was excruciatingly painful. He couldn’t bear it, yet he needed to if he wanted a chance at revenge.
Squeezing his eyes shut tightly, Roy regretted not bringing a lemon to bite on since he was grating his teeth to no end.
The mana protested but slowly started to flow after minutes of unbearable pain in the reverse direction.
He needed only one more step after a bit more work.
The mana within his body started to rotate back into his core and started to compress itself.
Like a tightly bound ball of rubber, Roy squeezed every ounce of his mana and started to engrave the constellation pattern of that last ‘puzzle piece’, the star.
Roy didn’t truly realize just how risky this was and how much he was gambling, until just now. His life would be over with one incorrect movement of his mana here.
Slowly the ball of mana within his core started to swirl and pulsate.
The last bit of the mana was being engraved onto his core in the pattern of the star he had never seen before.
Roy’s heart started to race, as his palms and neck broke out into a cold sweat.
‘What…. What kind of-’
As his core finished putting the last and final touches of the star, his mana exploded outwards of his body’s pores with a bang.
The last thing Roy saw before he fell unconscious, was the bright red star shining within his mana core stored inside his body.
Chapter 2 – Fin
Author Note : The first few chapters will be a lot of in-depth building as a base, as I don’t really like how some webnovels skip over the character building and solid starts. I want to be able to explain in depth how the powers work while also leaving some mystery for the readers to discuss about.
The Star of Annihilation