chapter 266: the queen’s request

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It was a few hours later when Leowynn had finally finished visiting with everyone. In her current state, Irena had said that it was difficult for her to properly examine Leowynn’s spirit. This was fairly normal, since in the Admin Room she was being fueled with energy a bit differently than normal. However, once we descended again Irena said that she would be watching to look out for any abnormalities.

Aside from that, it seemed that she had spent some time playing with Aurivy, and learning about what had happened on Fyor. Leowynn seemed quite interested in this dungeon world, as well as the changes that it brought to the others.

Only allowed on

Only once she was back did we descend once again. As for the location where we descended, it was the same dungeon in the middle of nowhere that I had used to create my Ki of Beginning. As the corners of the map were getting filled in by the residents, the middle of the ocean seemed to be the best place remaining to perform unrestrained testing.

After all, with the elven gates in place, few ships were willing to risk traveling the seas. Unless something happened that required them to go out and perform maintenance on a gate, or they were looking for a new island to inhabit just off the coast, people seemed to stick mostly to the mainlands.

And once we had descended, I called out Leowynn again. The easiest way for me to gauge her power would be for me to observe her information as the Keeper. So, as she appeared before me in a cloud of grey mist, I checked the information above her head, and was momentarily shocked.

Leowynn – Dale’s Bonded Spirit

That was it. No level, or anything. When she saw my confused expression, Leowynn tilted her head. “Is something wrong? Am I not strong enough after all?” She asked with concern, causing me to shake my head.

“No, no, I… don’t know? I can’t see your level anymore. Let’s try Aki Seppo, see if there are any new improvements.” When I suggested that, Leowynn nodded her head eagerly, once again rushing into my body.

It took her only a moment of meditation before she seemed to realize something had changed on her side. Father… this is different. I’m going to try something, okay?

I nodded my head, letting her do what she wanted. Soon, I felt her power rushing through my entire body, much like when we formed the initial level of Aki Seppo. Only this time, the power was not converging on my hand to form a pair of gauntlets. Rather, I saw a dark blue robe manifesting around my body, numerous shifting stars embroidered into it.

Become the Serpent’s Sky! Leowynn shouted, and the stars on the robe settled in a single pattern. Those stars began to glow, and the sky above me seemed to darken. Those stars from my robe seemed to lift up, moving to rest within the sky.

“The sky?” I looked up, shocked. Leowynn had only ever managed to wield a single constellation before, but now she had unleashed an entire section of the night’s sky. Moreover, as I looked at those constellations, I felt as though I had a connection with them as well.

Focusing on one that I recognized as the Tide, I saw it begin to glow more brightly. A familiar sensation arose within me, and I aimed my hand just off the small island where the dungeon rested. With a thought, the turbulent waters became still, and then began to swirl under my control.

Focusing on another one, the Dragon, the robe adorning my body shifted, becoming a suit of black armor, with wings sprouting from my back. “So this is what it means to manifest the sky… I can call on any of the constellations within that sky whenever I want.”

I… think so. Leowynn spoke inside my mind.

“Are you able to access the Goddess’s Sky? I remember you hadn’t been able to use those constellations before.”

When I suggested this, the armor around me vanished, as did the image of the starry sky above. Let’s try. Become the Goddess’s Sky! She shouted confidently, and the robe once again appeared on my body, though the starry sky above held different constellations now. This feels… so much easier than before…

I looked up at the constellations, asking Leowynn to explain them to me. I didn’t want to hastily invoke any of them, since I did not know their power. And, while Leowynn likely didn’t either, it would help to understand their names, and the story behind them. After all, those stories are where the powers came from.

First came the Great Circle, which surrounded the Goddess’s Sky. It was said to represent Ryone’s magic, and her ability to defend against all forces. When I channeled that constellation, the familiar pair of gauntlets appeared on my hands, but they felt… empty.

It was only when Leowynn explained what she herself was feeling that I realized what the gauntlets did. I could designate a single spell for each gauntlet, and that spell would trigger whenever I struck something with the gauntlet. A fairly powerful effect, in my mind, but that was just the beginning.

Next came the Temple, the home of the Goddess of Magic within the night sky. After invoking this one, I felt the mana within my body surging, strengthening to new heights. I had to quickly dismiss that constellation, for fear that my magic would run out of control.

Then there was the Palace, where mankind was sheltered within Ryone’s protection. Out of all of the constellations I had seen so far, this one left the deepest impression. After I focused on the Palace, Leowynn’s spiritual energy surged out from within my body, creating dozens of elven figures. Spiritual soldiers, each with a fixed level of three hundred. There were knights and warriors in the front, then archers, and finally mages in the back.

Holy s***, I have an army of spirits now? I asked myself in shock.

Let’s… try not to use this one when you aren’t in your Keeper mode, Father. Leowynn spoke, sounding slightly out of breath. It is… quite draining.

Nodding my head, I dismissed that constellation, and allowed the energy to return to Leowynn once again. There were still two constellations left, and I had high expectations for them. They were the Angel’s Wing, and the Goddess herself.

The Angel’s wing represented the Daeva, who at the time of Leowynn’s death were believed to server Ryone. When I activated it, an angelic wing of spiritual energy sprouted from my back. I could use it to fly, but… not much else. Which didn’t make sense, as it was also quite draining to Leowynn. Dismissing the constellation, I assumed that it had another hidden effect.

Finally, the Goddess. This one surprised me even more than the Palace, both with its effect and how much it drained Leowynn to activate. As soon as I focused on it, I felt a holy energy rising up from within my body. That’s right… the Goddess constellation allowed Leowynn to convert her own spiritual energy into the divine energy of her mother. But to do so drained her energy extremely rapidly, enough so that only ten seconds of it caused our Aki Seppo to shatter, Leowynn’s energy fully depleted.

Hastily, I checked my spiritual realm, discovering that she was still fine. Unconscious, but she was not harmed. Taking a deep breath, I nodded to myself. Irena, anything out of the ordinary with Leowynn? I asked urgently towards the goddess who had promised to watch over her.

Aside from the fact that she briefly channeled the power of a god… yes. Irena confirmed briefly. Her strength is astounding. Her soul is as strong as your own. If you were to assign it a level, then it would be the same level as you yourself. More importantly, her soul is not weakened by the expenditure of energy.

What do you mean? I asked, glancing up towards the sky.

Normally, a soul’s health is directly proportional to the amount of spiritual energy they had left. In all fairness, what Leowynn just did should have killed her. Irena’s words sent a sudden spike of fear through my body, before she hastily continued. Don’t worry, if I thought she was in danger I would have stopped the two of you myself.

I noticed that her existence was not weakening as she drained herself when she activated her other constellations. Her energy might have lowered, but her existence itself was as firm as ever. Even now, when she has completely drained herself, she has merely entered a dormant state, as opposed to shattering her very existence. This has led me to a rather… interesting conclusion.

Explain… I urged her on, hoping that nothing was wrong with Leowynn.

Quite simply, she is anchored to your soul, far more than she had been in the past. I cannot say what would happen if her energy was depleted while she was outside of you, but at the very least… While she is within your soul, she cannot die by normal methods.

A wave of relief washed over me, and I felt my body nearly collapse from the sudden loss of tension. Thanks, Irena. This helps a lot.

Of course, Dale. She replied softly, before the connection slowly severed.

Shaking my head, I realized that there was still something else that I had to take care of. “World spirit queen.” I called out, letting my voice echo in the natural energy to summon her. “You wanted to speak with me.”

“I did, my lord.” Her voice spoke back, her body materializing in front of me. “There are things that should be discussed, which only you can help me with.”

Seeing that I looked at her in confusion, she continued. “As I explained to the young man before, I am the Earth. I am all of its energy, and its will incarnate. That is the existence you bestowed me.” Okay, that was… a bit more literal than I thought she meant when she was talking before. “However, by that same rule, there can never be another of me within this world.”

“I have tried to make another, but every time have failed. I can divide my will to create lesser children, those stronger than the small ones, but I cannot create an equal to myself.”

“And… you want me to change that?” I asked curiously, causing her to shake her head.

“My words have not ended, my lord. You see, those children not born from me can explore the other worlds as they wish. However, I and those born of my will are unable to do so. We may live within the Earth, or within the realm of natural souls. However, we cannot visit the other worlds under your rule. Those worlds are home to different wills. Wills without form.”

I gave a small nod, understanding that. In short, since she was the will of Earth, she was thus bound to Earth, and Earth to her. I was admittedly worried about what would happen should she eventually be killed, but such a thing was likely harder than destroying the entire planet itself.

“My request is not to create another of myself within this world.” The queen spoke. “But rather, I would bid you to give the wills of the other worlds forms of their own. As it is, I can do nothing to govern a spirit of nature once they have traveled to a different world under your rule. At that point, they leave my control.”

“And you would rather there be four kingdoms of world spirits.” I said quietly. “That way, no matter where they go, there is not a risk that one will go out of control.”

“That is one benefit, indeed. However, being the embodiment of the world’s will has also granted me other gifts. Gifts which I was unable to use before being given a form. Before, while I had a will, I was subject to the whims of others. Those druids and shamans, and many a mage were able to access my power for their own gains.”

“Yet, since gaining a form, I have found the ability to restrict those who I would not allow to access my gifts. Those who would wield my power to harm nature. Although it requires me to take notice of them in this vast world, once I have chosen someone to ignore, they can never again call on my gifts. Unless, of course, they possess a power stronger than myself.”

“You tested this on me, didn’t you?” I asked in a slightly amused tone, smiling towards the queen, who smiled back.

“I had attempted to ignore you after our last meeting. As I knew you would soon call for me, I was able to put this theory into practice. If, after some weeks, I had felt no contact being made, I would have ended the attempt and tried myself to reach you to apologize. However, I still heard your voice beckon me here.” She explained, nodding slightly. “Your control over my power exceeds even myself. Perhaps, because of this, I and others like me will never be able to disobey your will.”

“I’ll have to take a note of that. But, what you’re saying is that if I make a ‘complete’ world spirit within the other worlds, they will be able to ensure that natural energy isn’t misused? How do you determine if someone is good or evil, to deny them your power?”

Hearing my question, she tilted her head slightly, as if confused. “I care not for good or evil. The two are as one, balanced. What may be evil in the eyes of one man can be righteous to another. I judge them not on their morality, but how they use this power. If a druid wishes to burn down a forest, I shall watch them. If I find that they use my power to destroy nature wantonly, I shall deny them that power. If, by chance, their reason for burning down the forest is to destroy some larger threat, say a beast which threatened them and their home, I shall overlook them.”

I gave a small nod at that. It wouldn’t be too hard to create three more complete world spirits like this one, so long as I had Irena helping me. And, if her power was as strong as she said, then having a complete world spirit on my side during the coming invasions would be almost as useful as having a functioning goddess.

Especially thanks to the inherent trait of world spirits, which caused them to be loyal to stronger beings like themselves. I had already seen what that was like when I punished the ‘evil’ world spirit, but to find out that the queen had the same restriction placed on her was quite surprising.

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