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Blue Moon Festival Part 1

The whole situation confused Shingi. So he checked his System and found that Spectator mode was available to him as an option but was currently OFFLINE.

He stood up and went towards the window to get some free air to clear his mind, and then he noticed something as he passed from the mirror—a specific tattoo over his neck.

Right away, he opened his status window, and he noticed some changes.



NAME: Shingi Maki


PROFESSION: Scholar Master

RACE: Half-Human Half ????

HP: 50/50

SP: 20/20

STR: 10

AGI: 10

END: 10

INT: 16

CHA: 4




BLESSINGS: Blessing of ??????, Blessing of Dlog


His PERCEPTION skill was available, and not only that, but it was already at the Master Rank.

He got the Blessing of Dlog. Dlog was the God Of Wealth, and that was the Blessing he used when he was with Varic to store the coins given to him. He then focused on it, and on his hand appeared a familiar fist-size pouch full of coins.

He then stored them back and raised his collar to hide the tattoo. Fortunately, not that hard to hide.

At that point, he kept repeating in his mind everything that happened, and he came to some conclusions.

There was a connection between his Player account and NPC. The skills he used in his player account during spectator mode seemed to get unlocked to his NPC self, but with some limitations. For example, his PERCEPTION was now at Master Rank but didn't have access to Eagle Eyes. Also, he didn't seem to have unlocked all the skills he used as he had used his STEALTH skill while reaching the two girls he met, but not too much. So it seemed he had to use the Skill to some extent to unlock them, and since he used his Eagle Eyes, which was using his Perception at 100%, it made sense.

That connection wasn't limited to skills since even a thing like a Blessing was transferable like that.

But he wasn't sure what allowed him to access the SPECTATOR MODE and what was changing it from OFFLINE to ONLINE, but he thought of one possibility.

'It could have to do with one of those two girls.' [Shingi]

His spawning right at them and his SPECTATOR MODE changing to OFFLINE when they logged out wasn't something he could ignore, but he couldn't think what the connection could be.

But that was something he could work with. Now he had a way to get himself stronger, even faster. If he could go back to being his player character even for a limited time, it could help him gather the workforce he needed for his future plans and unlock some valuable skills way faster.

Now that everything made some sense, he started back to his training. After discussing with Varic, he remembered a type of training, which helped increase the Skill at its early levels.

He started meditating once more. Then, finally, he was back in the inner space himself, where he was preparing his Mana Pool foundation. Still, he focused on a place not too far from, where there were four buildings, one being a big manor and the other three being small huts.

Each of those buildings represented one of his skills. But, of course, the hut ones were his VISUALIZATION, MANA MANIPULATION, and MANA SENSE, while the big Manor was his PERCEPTION.

As he focused on one hut, he noticed a sign at its entrance written on it: MANA MANIPULATION. Next, he focused on the door, and it opened. Finally, he saw a blue figure created by a mist sitting in the middle of the room in a stance similar to his meditation one.

This figure was his inner self, using the Skill representing by the building. A similar figure was doing different actions at each of the buildings depending on the Skill represented by the building.

There were some critical differences between how the figures were using the Skill and him using those skills. Noticing those differences was a way to learn the core of the skills and Rank them up faster. But this was mainly usable on the earlier levels of the Skills. Later, the differences would get even harder to notice. After a while, there wouldn't be any as it left the user on his own. In most cases, the inner self of someone they were proficient up to Base Rank, but there were exceptions.

For example, a professional Martial Artist in real life using that way could notice differences for the first 70 levels for his MARTIAL ART Combat Skill. But, an average person would be lucky if he noticed differences of up to 30.

And so Shingi focused on those differences, and after some unknown time, he moved to his MANA SENSE hut. Then, after being happy with finding what he was looking for, he stopped his focus. He wasn't very interested in raising this VISUALIZATION because he thought his Mana Skills were more important for now.

He looked around, and even if he was in there for hours, outside his inner space, it was just a few minutes that passed; one benefit of it. But just noticing these differences didn't automatically increase his proficiency or the Rank of the Skill, as he had to put them into practice.

And so he changed his stance and started focusing on raising his MANA MANIPULATION Skill.

Fortunately, his 'trip' had taken care of the mental strain we had, and he didn't have to be afraid of affecting his future progress.

And so, after almost an hour, the System showed him a notification.



The skill MANA MANIPULATION ranked up to Base Rank


After reading this, a smile appeared on the face of Shingi. His way of manipulating mana after it reached Base Rank was way faster, and he could work with even more simultaneously. Still, there was also something new that he noticed he could do now.

Before, he could feel the mana around him and manipulate it to get closer to him, but he couldn't pick what type of mana he could manipulate, as some sources had multiple mana on them. But now, not only could he make that choice, but he could also slightly feel those various types of mana at one source, slightly clearer.

Some mana sources contained mana from other sources mixed in theirs. So, for example, when he used his Skill to the nearby river's mana, he couldn't feel that part of some of the fishes' mana was part of it, as it was at a way small amount.

That could affect him in the future, especially now that he wanted to create his Mana Pool, as the mana he had to use should be as pure of one source or as much as pure as possible.

But now, with his Ranked up MANA MANIPULATION, he could separate the different mana. Even if they were of the same Element, there were slight differences between them, as some seemed to be more beneficial and purer.

But noticing those differences was taking too much focus, and that was because his MANA SENSE was still at Low Rank. So that was one reason he focused on Ranking it up next.

While looking at his inner self using the MANA SENSE, he found that instead of drawing the mana towards him and examining it, he should let out part of his mana, almost like sonar. The interaction with the surrounding mana would give him the information he needed.

And trying that way was truly less mentally heavy but not that easy at the start, but he was slowly getting used to it. So then he made it work using the only significant mana source in the room, his sister, as a target. The System responded to it.



The skill MANA SENSE ranked up to Base Rank


When the notification appeared, his senses of the surrounding mana increased, and the task was easier to handle.

After doing some experiments with both his Mana skills, he was confident that he had what he needed for now to create his Mana Pool. He could feel the different mana he drew towards him, even separated them, and could manipulate only specific types fast enough for now.

He relaxed for the rest of the night and went back to his bed next to his sister.

He still couldn't sleep, but he could relax his mind and plan the tasks for tomorrow.

Shingi wasn't someone who could relax by staying still, as he constantly needed a task at hand. Even his dreams in real life were about him working on one project he was currently part of or the different scenarios, a quest he was ready to take, and more things like that.

And so the hours passed until it was finally morning and came the time that Annoue woke up.

As they went their way back to the kitchen, Shingi noticed he was in a deep sleep as they passed their father's room. With his new Perception, he could hear his snoring, which was heavier than the ones when they found him sleeping at the shop.

Annoue asked if Shingi wanted to continue their training after having breakfast, but Shingi had another idea.

"Why don't we go around the town today. On our way back yesterday, I noticed they seem to prepare for something." [Shingi]

Hearing that, Annoue seemed to remember something like it had completely slipped her mind.

"Oh yeah. Today is the first day of the festival. No wonder Father is still sleeping. He never opens the store during these kinds of events." [Annoue]

After giving it some thought, Annoue continued speaking.

"Well, then we should make our way to check things out, but we should be back before he wakes up, or we will get into trouble." [Annoue]

And that was more than enough for Shingi. Even if he had planned on traveling to their hideout for his Mana Pool creation, it was quite some distance away. So he had to make sure that there wasn't any place nearby suitable for what he needed.

So they made their way out and towards the market area, which wasn't too far from their house.

A big river separated the town, and one part was High Town, where the nobles of the town were living, and the fancy shops were also the Old Castle of the king. And the other part was Low Town, where most of the town's population lived, and the market area was.

Two bridges connected the two parts, one at the South of the High Town and the other at the East. Surrounding High Town was a tall stone wall that seemed older than the one surrounding the Low Town.

And as they reached the Low Town center, which was also the center of the market area, they noticed quite a few of the townspeople working around preparing stands and the different event areas.

Shingi noticed something else that he considered strange as they reached the market area. There was a group of children between his and Annoue's age. The moment one of them noticed them, he said something to the rest, and after the rest looked towards them, they stopped what they were doing and moved away.

After seeing that, he focused his senses, and he noticed something hidden in the face of the NPCs when they noticed him and Annoue.

A sign of fear and pity in the way they looked towards them.

It confused Shingi, and he started thinking of the reason behind it but didn't want to ask Annoue, who didn't seem to notice anything as she looked left and right with amazement in her eyes.

'Could the reason behind it be part of the reason our Mother disappeared?' [Shingi]

After he heard about their Mother's disappearance, he was sure that this was the reason behind their father's drinking problem.

Him having a shop wasn't something that anyone could do and most likely wasn't always as it was currently. He couldn't remember in the past visits noticing the shop, but he had visited many over the years and couldn't remember them all.

But her disappearance shouldn't be something that happened too long ago; otherwise, no matter who he was, their father wouldn't be able to keep his store open unless he was a Master blacksmith or better, for which Shingi was unsure of it being the case.

But he didn't pay further attention to this as he couldn't do anything and had more things on his mind. And so as they looked around and as he dragged Annoue around. Or tried to as he wasn't strong enough to succeed on that endeavor, but she followed his requests none the less he found what he looked for.

An old storehouse seemed to be abandoned at a place just a little outside of the market area. It also seemed to be damaged, as it had a big hole in its ceiling, perfect for the moonlight to pass through it.

It wasn't too far from their house, like a twenty-minute walk, and it was far away from the festival area, so he shouldn't draw any unnecessary attention.

After checking this place, they made their way back, and to their luck, their father was still sleeping.

So they went back to their room, and Shingi shared with Annoue the improvements he had used in his meditation stance.

"Should we continue on that kind of training? Seeing the Lights makes me sleepy." [Annoue]

Shingi wanted to slap Annoue since everything seemed to go so smoothly for her, but he kept himself from doing that.

"Well, we can't work on anything else yet. You should increase your proficiency on the skills we learned yesterday as far as you can, and I promise you that after the festival, we are going to change the type of training." [Shingi]

Annoue didn't seem to like the answer to her brother but said nothing. Even if, in reality, they didn't know each other for long, but since he was born, she was always taking care of him, and she always dreaded the day he would wake up, and they spent time together. Even if she had to do these dull things, she was happy to do them since it was something that she was doing with her little brother.

Not too much time passed, and Shingi noticed Annoue was in her trance state again.

'I am guessing this is what she was referring to as making her sleepy.' [Shingi]

And so Shingi went to do his own thing. First, since he already took care of his Mana Skills Rank to be high enough, he started making sure that all parts of the plan were ready. Then he started mentally preparing his path toward the storehouse and training his body for it.

He didn't have any problem moving around, but that didn't mean that he could quickly move around stealthily, and this was something that he needed.

He also kept checking his Spectator Mode option to change to ONLINE, but it didn't.

And after quite some hours of training, he had unlocked the STEALTH skill and had even reached it to Base Rank.

At that point, it was close to dinnertime, and it wasn't too long from when the moon would change to Blue.

Fortunately, his sister seemed to get tired from her training and had ended her trance not too much time after he finished his training, and she went on her way to prepare some dinner. This time, her progress wasn't as crazy as last time. She got her MANA MANIPULATION at Base Rank, and her MANA SENSE was still at Base Rank.

At his point, it wouldn't surprise him if she told him he reached Master Rank at one of her skills, but fortunately, that didn't happen.

After having another type of soup, but this type not as tasteful as they had yesterday, they went to bed.

What surprised Shingi was that their father didn't seem to have left his room during the entire day.

And so, after they made their way to their bed and after waiting some time and made sure that Annoue was sleeping, Shingi, with the help of his STEALTH skill, started making his way toward the old storehouse.

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6 Νοε 2021

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