Supreme Magus Chapter 259: Learning Part 2
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"Despite Linjos's best intentions, the academy is still a 'survival of the fittest' environment. If you go in there with a weak mentality, you will not last even a month. Chore magic is your sword and shield against humans, since it's quick and effective. Practice it until you get as good as I am."
Lith had expected for Tista to be shocked and to need some time before making her decision. He was only half right. She immediately asked Lith's guidance, to the point of requesting homework to improve her control over the elements.
After a month passed, her magic foundations had improved by leaps and bounds. Because of the harsh weather, she could spend most of time indoor practicing. Lith's training course focused more on finesse and surgical precision rather than use magic for bashing stuff.
It allowed them to safely perform sparring sessions inside the house by fighting for the control of the color of candles, changing the temperature of a glass of water, or use earth magic to juggle with an increasing number of pebbles.
When the weather was good, Lith's family would use Warp Steps to visit their neighbors or the village. Elina was the only one with a communicator amulet, so she could always call Lith to have them Warped back home anytime they wanted.
Lith used those days to go back in the forest and conduct experiments with Forgemastering. It had taken a while, but the package from Linjos had finally arrived. After learning of his ranking, Lith had spent almost all his points immediately.
He had purchased a Skinwalker armor and several magic crystals of different purity. The Skinwalker armor was similar to his uniform, but better in every way. The elemental and physical protections were stronger. Also, by injecting mana into it, Lith could boost its self-repair speed.
The armor's best trait was its adaptability. It could shapeshift into different forms, the only requirement was for Lith to provide the enchantment a sample of the clothing he wanted it to reproduce.
Thanks to the Skinwalker armor, Lith now had a whole wardrobe of enchanted clothes. They would all offer him a great degree of protection and he wouldn't remain naked for a second like it happened when he switched between clothes via the dimensional pocket.
Lith stored inside the gemstone his farmer clothes, the hunting suit, the academy's uniform and the expensive noble clothes that Lark had bought him.
"Now this is the only suit I'll ever need!"
Lith had chosen the Skinwalker armor not only because it greatly improved his defensive abilities, but also because it made possible to easily blend in with any crowd and provided him a sample of magic crystal imbued clothes.
He had now an enchanted item he could study with Invigoration, which properties he could attempt to replicate and improve by using true magic.
Lith had spent the rest of his points to buy mana crystals. There were too many unanswered questions about them. He was eager to perform experiments with the mana blade away from prying eyes.
Realizing a mana blade like the one he used during the Magic Crystal class had been an easy feat. It was just a handle made of solid silver enchanted to have mana pathways but no pseudo core.
The only issue was the price. Lith had to pay for both the material and the craftsmanship since he was no blacksmith. Lith managed to cut his losses by exchanging his forgemastering works with Zekell's.
The blacksmith was eager to acquire dimensional rings to safely store his possession and enchanted tools to make his life easier, just like Lith was eager to get his hands on free materials.
Thanks to his experiments, Lith discovered that if instead of cutting along a magic crystal's lines he used the mana blade on the cracks that Invigoration revealed, he could recharge the low quality ones or increase their purity by one tier by providing them enough mana.
The crystals' cracks were capable of absorbing and store his mana, but only up to a degree. As soon as the crystal couldn't contain more energy, the cracks disappeared. All the attempts of further refining the gemstones ended up in failure.
'It seems that the cracks are the spots from which the crystal was still absorbing the surrounding world energy when it was mined. It means that it had yet room to develop further and that's exactly what happens when I inject mana into it.Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.
'I wonder if the so called crystal scraps are actually what I need to refine better quality gemstones. If they work like my mana core, the mana crystals need to grow up to a certain size before shrinking to compress and boost their energy and then they need to grow again, repeating the process.
'If I'm right, it means that high quality crystals require not only an abundant mana source, but also a lot of time to properly develop. Since my core took years to turn from red to cyan and its max size is that of marble, I can't imagine how many decades it takes for a mana crystal as big as those I saw down in the mine to form.
'Unless I find a way to artificially grow them at a faster rate, buying and charging low quality crystals is the best I can do. Refining them would take too much time, my mana core takes precedence since I can't buy a better one with money.'
Soon only one month of winter was left and Lith's birthday was closing in. The prolonged rest made Lith recover most of his strength, while teaching Tista turned out to be a great way for him to further improve his foundations about magic.
Everything he taught her about chore magic also applied to true magic. Tista asked him a lot of questions about silent magic and multicasting, some so peculiar that he had never thought about such niche cases.
Unlike him that was used to think big since he was little, trying to improve the effects or the range of his spells, Tista thought small by following his teachings, focusing more on micromanaging the mana.
To answer her, Lith had to revise and deepen his understanding of the flow of mana. After many trials, experimenting together with her, Lith was able to improve the way he waved spells and to further simplify multicasting.
The only times Tista had the opportunity to put into practice her new skills was when Nana had to leave the village either for personal reasons or because of house calls. Lith would spend those days locked up in the tower, trying to incorporate magic crystals into his creations.
Lith's aim was to reproduce an Earth's house facilities, providing his family with running water, lighting, and most importantly, a real bathroom.
After getting used to the academy's lifestyle, not having a bathtub and being forced to use a chamber pot again was quite traumatic for him. His elemental stones could provide the first two, but to make them last until his return, he had to mass produce them.
Elemental stones were just a poor imitation of magic crystals that he had invented before even knowing the crystals existed. They could store a single spell, needing to be recharged after every use.
Even the weakest red magic crystal held much more mana than dozens of elemental stones. Also, it could be turned on and off like a switch, making it last much longer. For any other young mage, using red mana crystals would be too expensive.
Low quality crystals didn't recharge by themselves, and once they ran out of power they had to be changed. Lith could simply pretend to replace them with new ones, since he was able to power them up at will.
Even with the experience gained developing the elemental stones on his own and having studied the academy's tools for a whole year, the task turned out to be harder than he expected.
At first, he used only the lowest quality stones. Lith expected them to be lost or even worse, to explode. Lith had no idea how to link a pseudo core to a crystal since it was a subject of the fifth year, which he had yet to begin.
He used the Skinwalker armor as a template, searching for a way to reproduce its schematics using true magic only. After over two months Lith had yet to find a way to make the process safe.
There were only two weeks left before his birthday when he received a call from Marchioness Distar.
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