Titan’s Throne – Chapter 43: Iaido

 

In a courtyard within the mansion, Kenshin sat in the seiza position in front of a tree. The grass and most of the greenery were wet, for the night before it had been raining. Sparkling drops of water were drenched the place around Kenshin, from the grass below him to the leaves above him. Kenshin was physically blind, but he saw far more than others.

Two sheathed katanas were placed on each side as Kenshin sat. He had his eyes closed and was extremely serene. Barely a single cell in his body seemed to be moving if one looked from the side. Even Kenshin’s breathe was so restrained that nature would call his own very existence into question were it sentient.

After spending a while in this state, he moved. He was neither fast nor slow. He did not open his eyes either. He simply unsheathed both swords and held them both in his hands. He then used one to hit a tree, using the side of the blade. This seemingly subtle and soundless action caused the tree in front of Kenshin to shake vigorously.

In turn, many drops of water fell from the tree. At that point, Kenshin moved quickly. He moved in a speed that only a cultivator could register. All someome could tell was that, Kenshin seemed to be spinning around the tree.

Using the side of his swords, he would accept a drop of water, then move the sword in a perpendicular direction to the direction the drop was falling, causing the drop to become perfectly circular. Then once the drop of water reached the edge of his sword, he would flick the sword slightly, sending the drop back up, to the exact leaf it came from. And the drop of water would reach its target and land perfectly without fail, resting on the leaf as if nothing had ever happened.

Kenshin would do this with both swords toward every drop that was falling. This act not only required incredible speed and control, it also required an acute control of forces and and omnidirectional sense of vision, something that normal humans were not capable of.

Being a two sword user, Kenshin was already ambidextrous, but this exercise pushed his ability to compartmentalize his brain to its limits. It was an exercise Kenshin would do when he was younger, to train his swordsmanship. Now that he was sane again, he decided to start from the basics.

According to his calculations, Kenshin had been under the effects of the poison for a long time. His body had become very unfit according to his standards. His swordsmanship had dulled as a result. Resulting him in training his swordsmanship incessantly the moment he was able to.

After sending every water drop back to its origin, Kenshin would once more return to his original spot and reflect upon his movements. Checking to see what he did wrong and how to do to improve on it.

Kenshin was able to return every water drop to its original leaf, though his objective was to get the water drop to the exact same position it had been before and in the exact same shape as well. When it came to training, Kenshin was meticulous in nature and often, he would continue training until he reached his target.

 

After finishing his early morning routine, Kenshin would pay a visit to Bastian, who would undoubtedly be in the Library. Bastian had requested for a few weeks to allow him and Kenshin to train. Kenshin was using this time to train his swordsmanship while Bastian was reading

Bastian’s behavior baffled Shasha. Kenshin made more sense, because a few weeks was not enough time to cultivate so it would be better to focus on improving one’s techniques. Yet all Bastian did was read.

Kai explained to his Master that mages spent most of their time reading, so this was not strange. What Kai actually found strange was the fact that Bastian knew no spells!

Shasha’s library was full of information on cultivation. Including basic spells of every type that was accessible in public. Neither Kai nor his Master were mages, so they had not kept any middle ranked or advanced magic books. Shasha’s sister was also a warrior herself but her attendant was a mage in training. The attendant often carried the most important books with her all the time, resulting in there only being basic spells and theory in the library.

 

Bastian had by then discovered an interesting trick. By making his Soul Force into thousands of needles, he could probe a book and essentially process all the information inside. He didn’t need to open a book, just cover it in his now slightly tangible Soul Force. This was much faster than reading normally, and was also more mentally taxing. After a few days Bastian had gotten used to it.

Just like how qi enhanced the body, mana enhanced the mind. Mages were able to process lots of information, not to mention one with a soul as powerful as Bastian.

Shasha’s library was quite large, and had hundreds of books regarding cultivation. After a few days, Bastian had gone through all of the books regarding cultivation. Although Kenshin was not a mage, he was also quite knowledgeable, so any questions Bastian had, Bastian would ask Kenshin telepathically. Often Kenshin would be able to answer.

Even after learning everything there was to learn in the library, Bastian never left. The reason was simple. After processing all the information they had on cultivation, Bastian reasoned that this world’s cultivation theory was flawed, or rather too weak.

Bastian honestly believed that he could easily come up with spells that were more efficient and more powerful than the ones present.

 

Different spells were cast differently. Take a simple spell like fireball for example. Before one became a Scholar, one would need to chant for every spell. Also mana would have to be moved across the correct pathways to produce the necessary result. All fireball needed was a chant and a ball of fire would be launched in the direction intended.

 

The chant acted as a catalyst for making the spell work. Some spells required a rune and chanting to work. Others required hand seals. After spending hours researching Bastian came up with a conclusion. All those methods were not necessary.

He likened it to mathematics. What the people of the Sovereign Continent were doing, was similar to a person calculating manually when one of the two numbers was a hundred.

Take for example the calculation 300 x 100. Instead of calculating manually, all one had to do was to add two more zeros to 300 making it 30000. Yet the people of the Sovereign Continent were taking the long and unnecessary route.

In theory, Bastian already had an idea of what to do but he had spent a lot of time trying to come up with a solid new method of spell casting.

After practice, Kenshin was on his way to the library, when he heard an explosion coming from the library’s direction. Kenshin burst into the library, only to find nothing amiss.

There was only a few papers lying on the floor and a Bastian doing fist pumps like a maniac shouting, “I did it! I did it!”

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