Chapter 3: Sparkling Blue Tower
'It's the bodily maneuvers' Intermediate phase of the Intermediate phase, but it's more refined than mine... ' Zax attentively watched Raroen's movements.
'His strikes are flawless and every thrust releases the Kinetic Force with no difficulty whatsoever... ' The more he reviewed how Raroen moved his body, threw his punches and delivered his kicks, more illusionary manifestations of his own person appeared in his sea of consciousness. Each mimicked a punch, a kick, a movement Raroen executed.
'Eh?!' At first the illusionary manifestations were blurry, but the longer they played in his sea of consciousness, the clearer and more easy to comprehend they became.
'It's a Martial art! Big brother Raroen is using a Martial art like the school principal of Eden Formation!' The realization occurred when Zax compared his own way of fighting with the one of his illusionary manifestations copies.
Visually, there was not much of a difference between Zax's simple way of fighting and the one carried by the movements of the Martial art. The distinction was only seen when the two clashed and Zax's method lost miserably.
'The Martial art is a path!' It dawned on him. 'Like how the bodily movements are a sort of a path for learning to use the Kinetic Force, the Martial art big brother Raroen using is a path that direct to the proper outlets for the Kinetic Force in a combat. Between using and not using the Martial art, at first it looks all the same, but after examining and comparing, the result is that using the Martial art is far more useful!' Zax concluded as he kept spectating the one sided massacre on the ground.
'But', Zax's reaction was not free of doubts with respect to what Raroen was trying to impart on him. 'If comparing the Martial art to the bodily maneuvers, the bodily maneuvers, thought more demanding, have the potential to unleash more of the Kinetic Force. Will big brother Raroen's Martial be capable to channel a greater amount of Kinetic Force?' Zax pondered.
Yes, by using the Martial art while in the bodily maneuvers' Intermediate phase of the Intermediate phase, the Kinetic Force is put to better use. But what happens once getting to the Advanced phase of the Intermediate phase, or even more crucial, once breaking through the next phase?
Zax observed Raroen and studied the illusory manifestations and felt that somewhere in between there exist some sort of confinement that a gut feeling made him feel uncomfortable with, as if the Raroen's Martial art has a limit that once reached, he will be unable to surpass and all other paths would also be closed to him.
'Forget it'. Zax stopped paying attention to the fight and at the same time erased the illusory manifestations. He disregarded Raroen's way of using Kinetic Force.
However, the lesson was not in vain. Zax now realized that there are other ways to implement the Kinetic Force, much better ways than his own method of fighting, and a grain of the best way was imprinted in his mind.
'It's like the pieces of spiritual knowledge, the fragments of the entity ... From now on I should inspect the bodily maneuvers through the grain I gathered from big brother Raroen's teachings. Since the bodily maneuvers are the source of getting in touch with the kinetic energy and then how to convert it to Kinetic Force, I will let the perfect path unfold through it'.
Thus, Zax made up his mind, and as he did, a liberating sensation washed the previous sense of confinement from his sea of consciousness.
Though Zax renounced Raroen's Martial art, Raroen still continued to display it till the very last of the original fifty three pursuers was dead.
The azure dome crumbled and the restrictions on Zax faded. When his freedom returned, so was gravity and Zax began to fall to the bloody ground.
With a muffled "BOOM" Zax decelerated and like a feather, landed on the ground.
"Big brother Raroen, your Martial art-" Zax opened his mouth to thank for the lesson and express his thoughts on it, but Raroen raised a hand made him stop.
"In the past, Master showed me a similar Martial art in order to study and analysis. What I showed you, is not refined as Master's, but this is the product of my own hard work and I'm content with it. The rest is up to you". Raroen solemnly brought to a close the matter of his Martial art.
He jumped to the cave's sky and transformed to his animalistic form.
Not saying anything anymore, Zax assimilated to his mind the true meaning in Raroen's words and waited patiently for the hundred meter green scales, purple mane dragon to appear.
"Hop on". Raroen's voice resonated in Zax's head.
A streak of green light traversed the distance of just over one cave's length in the short span of time that it take to finish a cup of tea.
"Big Ra!" Zetsa waited outside of the tunnel that leads to her Master's cave.
Raroen returned to his humanoid form and together with Zax he descended.
"Little Zetsa, today was a good harvest for the Collector of Spirits and a cause for celebration to our Master". Raroen said, all smiling in his draconic way.
The "Collector of Spirits", Zetsa was more familiar with the name than Zax, was the entity beasts referred and believed to collect the spirits of dead humans of beasts, that of course if the spirit was not destroyed in a fight or an accident.
"That is great news, big Ra, and good timing". Zetsa said and turned to Zax. "Martial uncle will escort you to Master's place. Let Master know what happened to our fifty three pursuers. Big Ra, you don't mind letting little Zi deliver the good news to Master, do you?"
"Hahaha, if Master will know what method I used to kill them he would be dissatisfied with me..." Raroen shook his head. "Little brother Zax, don't worry about what I just said and omit details as a result". Raroen tapped Zax's head and with his incomprehensible speed, left the brother and sister duo at the entrance of the tunnel.
"Let's go". Zetsa told Zax and entered the tunnel first.
"Big sis, what about big brother Tularg?" Zax asked as they crossed the tunnel.
"Tularg left ahead of us to recover his strength. After you'll see Master, you can go visit Tularg and the other whom you did not see since Martial uncle accepted you as his apprentice".
The hardworking Krikitories were like a sight for sore eyes. Zax did not really extend his mind to them since he began his training three years ago. And on the way to the reputable expert he waited so long to meet, the owner of the cave and his big sister's Master, watching them through his Soul Sense eased the tension he felt the longer he followed his big sister to her Master's place inside the cave.
Why Zax was tense, other than recalling that three years ago the temperament of his big sister's Master was not good enough to meet him, he also remembered his own Master's words at that time ... In order to stay in the cave, that is to say, as a cultivator who practices the techniques his big sister's Master developed, he must receive his approval.