chapter 102: practice makes perfection

Chakra is form and formless. Direct and indirect. As magic summons a flame, so too can it. As ki drives men to greater strength, so too does chakra. But it is so much more. Chakra is the mind and body as one. To master chakra, one must not simply combine ki and mana, they must master themselves.

This is the basic mantra of Thousand Arms, Ten Thousand Threads. If mind and body become one, then man has no equal. This art has two forms, the Thousand Arms, which focuses body over mind, and the Ten Thousand Threads, which focuses mind over body. When both forms are trained to the pinnacle, one can be considered a true master.

Searching through, I was able to briefly summarize the information about both forms. With Thousand Arms, you can maximize the ability to control objects remotely. A master of the Thousand Arms form can control one thousand weapons as if he was holding them himself, and become a one man army.

As for Ten Thousand Threads, it is more mystical. With this form, you spread your chakra to your surroundings in the form of thin threads, which you utilize for various abilities. You can use instantaneous movement through a thread, or with the proper practice materialize that thread into a weaker clone of yourself. A master of Ten Thousand Threads can walk unhindered through any battlefield.

When one reaches the realm of Thousand Arms, Ten Thousand Threads, both forms evolve. The weaker clones become more powerful, and you can move between them with a simple thought. They become your eyes and your ears. You do not simply move your body with your thoughts, but you can turn your body into thought itself, stepping into the mind of another.

Going through this, it was easy to classify the information. Thousand Arms was the offensive branch, while Ten Thousand Threads was the defensive one. In order to become a true master, one must practice both, yet even just one was enough to qualify as its own art. That was why it was priced so expensively.

Surprisingly, there was even a set of weapons within the information that were suggested for people practicing the art. For those pursing the Thousand Arms, there was a circular, bladed weapon that looked much like a chakram. As they required simpler motions to control with chakra as opposed to swords or daggers, they were a favored weapon.

The favored weapon of Ten Thousand Threads was a thin metal needle. Its length should be roughly ten inches long, with as little width as possible. While a single such needle might seem to have little power on its own, this also means it is weakened less when cloned, and each clone will be able to utilize their own as powerful throwing weapons.

To begin with, I decided to practice the Thousand Arms. Right now, I could only be considered to be at the most basic Two Arm rank, where all practitioners begin. I can wield two weapons at a distance of roughly one meter from my body. The Three Arm rank is where one truly begins walking this path, at which point they will be able to control three weapons, each within three meters of the body. At the highest rank, all one thousand weapons will be able to be controlled within a kilometer.

Only allowed on

In order to practice, I began to focus, creating a very basic chakram on the floor in front of me. Once more of the world hits the Metal Age, I’ll have Tubrock mass produce some of these for me to take down with me. Until then, I can just rely on whatever is available.

With the chakram fully formed, I reached down and put my hand on it. In the Admin Room, I found that it was very easy for me to combine the energies, as long as I knew the right mixture. As such, I sent a steady flow of chakra from my hand into the weapon.

Once my chakra filled the weapon, I stood up and took a single step back. Placing both hands behind my back, I focused purely on the thread of chakra connecting me to the chakram. Attempting to lift it felt as though I was flexing a muscle I had never used, and by the time it really had lifted up I could not be entirely sure whether I was doing so through my own power, or through the effects of the Admin Room. Still, I had the chakram floating unsteadily one step in front of me.

In truth, training in the Admin Room could only go so far when training energies. Seeing as I had limitless energy to work with here, it was never a question of whether or not I had the power to do something, only whether I had the skill. Given enough time, I could probably train myself all the way to the Thousand Arm, Ten Thousand Thread level in the Admin Room, but have made almost no progress when I actually descend, because my chakra won’t be strong enough to do all of that.

Still, this did let me practice the skill aspect, which I would further refine when I descend later. As such, I focused on the chakram, and began slowly moving it from side to side. I thinned the energy I was pouring into it as much as I possibly could, knowing that I wouldn’t have such reserves available to me when I practice this for real.

The first problem arose when I thinned the energy too much, causing the connection to snap and the weapon to fall harmlessly to the floor. According to what I knew from the manual, I knew what was wrong. I had still been supplying enough energy, but my control was lacking. Thankfully, this was just a simple test to see whether or not I was good enough to be considered a Three Arm rank. And the answer was no.

Instead, I moved on to the Ten Thousand Threads, and began to do its training method. The best way to train these skills were together, after all. In order to fully master control of one weapon and be considered the Three Arm rank, it was suggested to wait until you had reached the Ten Thread rank, with each following Arm rank being another ten Thread ranks.

To train this technique was actually fairly simple. Much like I created a connection to the chakram, I now had to create an ‘empty’ connection from my finger. As such, I followed the training method and gathered my chakra to the tip of my finger. Gradually, I could see a blue dot of energy forming at the point where it gathered.

Focusing on that point, I slowly pulled it upwards, creating a single thin line of blue energy. These were the threads that the form was named after, though they were typically meant to be invisible. I was probably only able to see them now because of where I was.

Pointing that finger out, I watched as it slowly crawled its way through the air, before dipping down and pressing the tip against the ground on the opposite side of the room. This was far from usable in real combat at this speed, but the point was to make it faster… after all…

With a slight step, I disappeared from my previous position, and immediately appeared where the thread had landed. This was the most basic technique of the Ten Thousand Threads, the Woven Step. A practitioner could instantly transport themselves to any place that their chakra threads can reach.

Back to training. I thought to myself, before once again creating that same thread. This time, I did not stop with one. Holding both my hands out, with my fingers pointing down, I focused to create multiple threads, one at a time from each finger. The first one formed fairly easily as it did earlier. The second offered some resistance, but still moved to hang right beside the first.

When I formed the third thread, I noticed that the other two began to shake, slowly pulling back towards my fingers. I was getting harder to divide my focus, which was the main requirement for this technique to work.

Giving up on the third thread for now, I went back to the other two, stretching them back out. When I sent them out, I did my best to keep my focus properly divided. The speed they moved at was even slower than the first time, but eventually they both connected to two different points of the room.

Okay, so I can be considered at the Two Thread rank for now. I nodded to myself in satisfaction, glad that I wasn’t the most basic and pitiful ‘Threadless’ rank that was just starting like I was in the other form. Alright… my goal is Twenty Threads and Four Arms!

Down in the world below, the festival of D’ka had come to an end in the city of Hel’dar. For most, it was a normal event like any other week. However, there was one man that was feeling different. A white haired kitsune named Fenric. He gnashed his teeth in anger as he thought back to the man that had injured him, and stolen what should have been his.

In the D’ka Sha, he had not simply been thrown back by that palm strike. It was something far more dangerous than that. He could still feel that man’s energy in his body, blocking his access to his own ki. In truth, his injuries from the fight had been pretty light, since he had landed on a bundle of dried grass used to feed the bajin.

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The true terror came when he tried to muster his strength to further soften his fall. When he attempted to summon his ki, he felt it fighting back against the residual energy from that palm strike. A sharp pain rose up in his chest, and he coughed up a mouthful of blood after he landed. After that, each time he tried to use his ki, he found himself hurting more and more.

Without his ki, he had no hope of holding the title of Sharay, even with that damnable man refusing the title. He could not enjoy the luxuries that he had grown accustomed to, the authority his position brought with it. As soon as he lost a challenge, he would fall further than he had ever fallen before.

“I’ll just have to fake it.” He said with a silent nod, speaking to himself as there was nobody else present. “No one knows, and nobody has to… As long as nobody challenges me, I’ll be fine.” He continued nodding to himself, as if that was his only path to salvation.

However, as soon as the words had left his mouth, he felt a chill running down his spine. “Is that all you are?” A cold voice asked from behind him. “A coward who is afraid to lose his power?” He recognized the voice, how could he not? As he turned back to face the speaker, he saw a black-haired lycan. A woman he had been pursuing for months.

“R-Rinn… What are you doing here?” He asked, knowing from her words that she had heard his plan. He knew that he had to kill her to keep his secret safe, and immediately began thinking of ways he could do that, or intimidate her into keeping her mouth shut.

Never had he even thought to ask himself how she managed to enter his home undetected, or how even know he could not smell her fragrance, or hear her stepping closer. If he could not see her standing in front of him, he would have no way to know that she was even here. Wait… in front of me?

As soon as the thought crossed his mind, he looked sharply upwards. Originally, Rinn had been at the far wall, where the moonlight would just barely illuminate her features. However, when he looked again, his nose was almost pressed against her own. She had covered the distance in a moment, with him never even seeing her move. Even without his ki, that should not have been possible. At least, not by his understanding.

“You should have learned when to take no for an answer.” She said, slowly raising her hand to place it against his chest. A hand he had dreamed about capturing for so long. And right now, he felt the power draining from his body as she touched him. “And when to keep your nose out of another’s business.”

Saying that, Rinn turned and began walking away. Fenric watched, the light slowly slipping from his eyes as his knees grew weak. The moment she vanished into the shadows once again, he fell forward, slamming against the ground. In the morning, a physician came in to check on him, only to discover his dead body. There were no wounds, no marks of poisoning or disease. As such, it was declared that his injuries from the D’ka Sha had acted up in the night, silently claiming his life. And nobody even suspected the black-haired girl who was happily dancing with her sister.

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