Wizard! Chapter 134
William captured another bee. He hoped that bees didn’t have the same kind of souls as sapient creatures such as humans or demons. He had the feeling they were different, but feelings weren’t always right. Feelings certainly didn’t indicate morality. William informed some of the members of the Cyril household what he was going to doing. First, he didn’t want them to be startled by an explosion, and he needed to leave their grounds because he didn’t want to damage them. In the end, it was decided that Zachary Cyril, as well as Daniel and Ivy and a few guards would come to watch. After all, this was related to the plan to kill the Demon King, so it was better if some people had some idea of how it worked, and what to expect.
Looking down at a stunned bee, William thought the whole scene would rather silly. Hopefully, the same thing as last time would happen, otherwise it would be rather embarrassing. On the other hand, it wasn’t exactly a safe thing. Still, this time William was prepared if the results were of the same magnitude. William concentrated, gathering his ki for several functions. First, he gathered a layer of ki around his body, activating Iron Mountain Defense. It was much more effective than just applying ki without the standardization of the techniques. Then, he activated Soul Armor. After all, the resulting explosion was going to be dangerous to both his body and soul. Last time he had been fine, but that didn’t mean an accident couldn’t happen, or that he hadn’t been lucky before. He didn’t want to risk it. Finally, William activated Shattering the Soul. It was rather easy to perform this time, and William found it to involve little effort. He extended his hand and a single finger at the stunned body of the bee.
The resulting shockwave carried William back over a dozen feet. However, that was because he let it. It was much safer and easier to just go with it than to resist it. This time, there was a larger crater in the center… that was to be expected, because there was only dirt around and not a flagstone floor. William shook his head, glad that his ears had also been protected from the sound. Then he turned to look at those watching.
All of them looked surprised. The guards were attempting to be stoic, but their eyes were quite wide. Zachary looked quite shocked as well. Daniel’s mouth was hanging open, and Ivy looked like she couldn’t believe what had happened. However, the most shocked one was Lorelei. She wasn’t the type to be extremely expressive, and still wasn’t. However, her face was a blank look of shock, instead of neutrality. There was also one other factor that William considered to count her as the most surprised. Her illusion had faltered, revealing her horns and red skin. Fortunately the guards who were brought were some of the most loyal, and thus already knew about her status.
Lorelei looked down at her hands in front of her, and started making gestures as if she were trying to grab something. Her expression turned to one of both concentration and confusion. Then, William waved his hand in front of her face. “Hello… are you in there?”
Her eyes looked up at him, and her hands ceased. “Mana.” Her head tilted back and her eyes looked up as well. “It’s everywhere.”
Daniel concentrated for a moment, furrowing his brown. Then, his eyes sort of lost focus, like Lorelei’s. “Yes… well… not… exactly?”
Lorelei nodded slightly, then started chanting. “Oh, pyromancy, grant me the power to create a mighty conflagration, fireball!” Of course, she knew that the particular chant didn’t matter, but there was no reason to obscure it either. However, instead of a fireball- or a lightning bolt, which William might have expected, based on previous actions, there was only a small puff of flame. “It’s… not controllable.”
William closed his eyes, feeling around him. William sensed something, and he might have called it something like a mist. If it had a color, which it most certainly did not, he would have called it red… or black. Perhaps both. It didn’t feel good at all. “It’s definitely not mana.”
Lorelei looked at William, “Oh, how do you know?”
William shrugged. “I can sense it, even as its density is slipping away. Therefore, it’s not mana.”
“Ah… good point. What does that make it then?”
“Some kind of… spiritual mist? It’s not mana. It’s not ki. Yet, it looks something like both.” William reached out with his hand, making a grabbing motion. Then, he went over behind a tree and threw up. When he came out, he spoke in a shaky manner. “Yeah, I’m never doing this again.”
Later, Lorelei was sitting next to William who was just staring off into the distance. “So, what was that stuff?”
“That’s not a very good name. Besides, it was a strange energy thing like mana and ki.”
William continued to look in front of himself instead of turning his head toward Lorelei. “Nope. Soul chunks.”
“Isn’t it like ki though? I saw when you reached out that you… grabbed some of it.”
William sighed. “It’s not.”
“But if you can manipulate it doesn’t that make it something like ki?”
“Care to elaborate on how you did it?”
“Well…” he sighed again. “I just did. I mean, I have a soul, so I just did that with my soul. Then I threw up.”
“Is the vomiting related?”
“Intimately.” William finally turned to look at Lorelei finally. “Have you ever… I don’t know… ever felt someone’s guts… or brains?”
“Umm… brains. Just once. Have you?”
“Eh. Not technically. However, this is like that, except it’s also your brain and you can feel it having hands run through it even though brains don’t feel anything and also you regret everything you’ve ever done in your life and perhaps even existing.”
“Wow. You don’t look as bad as all that though.”
“Well, it’s maybe only one lifetime of regret, and existential angst isn’t anything new. I’m never exploding another soul if I can help it, and definitely not… touching one. Except the Demon King, and I won’t be around to touch the bits after that.”
“Wow. The Demon King gets entirely different effects with his method. Though he wouldn’t care about those feelings and he’d probably just try to eat the soul chunks.”
“To try to gain power or something?”
“Yeah, he’s an idiot. A very, very strong idiot.”