William was alone, thinking. Except, as alone as he ever got, Chris was around. William was grumbling to himself, with a frustrated look on his face, when Chris tapped him to get his attention. “Hmm? What is it Chris?”
Writing letters in the dirt had been one of their traditional methods of communication, but that had been too specific to use everywhere. On the other hand, glowing colors had its limits, and even with a more comprehensive code developed, it could take a long time to communicate words. Writing with magic was generally more effort than it was worth, but eventually they had come up with several methods. One method for indoor communication they had developed was that Chris would dip one end of himself in water, and use that as a sort of temporary ink. William wasn’t sure exactly how, but Chris could somewhat control how much dripped off of him, which meant he could actually write things instead of just sloshing water all over the floor. Of course, this required something like a stone floor, but that was still better than having to go outside, in most cases. Now, Chris indicated he wanted to talk. “You’ve been very upset lately.”
William found it hard to tell what tone Chris intended. After all, there were no facial expressions to read. In this case, it was probably just as it appeared. A statement of fact. “That’s right.” William didn’t know how else to respond to that. He could say he wasn’t, but that would only be because he was.
“I think that it’s because you don’t understand how prophecy works.”
William almost read that as taunting. He wanted to say, “That’s stupid!” or “You’re stupid!”. He almost did, except Chris didn’t bother putting in the effort to communicate unless he felt it was important. Thus, William thought about the statement. Was that the problem? William’s immediate response was rejection. He understood it just fine. It was all about seeing various probabilities of things that might happen. Except, unlike creating a fireball, he didn’t understand the mechanincs behind it. There weren’t any atoms being manipulated, there wasn’t any energy that he knew of involved. It didn’t strengthen the structure of an item, or influence thoughts, or cause any physical effects. William also couldn’t experience it, because he couldn’t use magic. William sighed. “Is that it?” He thought about it more. That was probably most of what was upsetting him. Now that it was pointed out, he was able to choose not to be upset about it. He accepted that he couldn’t understand it… at least not with the information available to him.
Of course, William didn’t instantly feel better, nor did he actually accept the truth instantly, but he couldn’t ignore how silly it was after it was pointed out. It didn’t really matter if he understood it… but he knew he liked to know everything that was going on. It made him feel good, and thus not being able to understand everything upset him. Over the next few days, William grew less irritable, but he wasn’t exactly calm and collected either, and he couldn’t figure out why. He was just unhappy about something. William took the opportunity to talk to Chris about it. Though Chris wasn’t exactly a good therapist, he wouldn’t tell anyone else what William told him… partly because he never felt like communicating with other people. Sometimes, though, Chris had actual insights into things. Sometimes Chris just asking for deeper explanations of things he didn’t understand actually sparked understand in William, even though Chris didn’t actually intend anything of the sort.
William tried to review everything. The Ostana wizard’s guild was run by idiots. That upset him, but it wasn’t causing him current distress. He’d taken out a large amount of frustrations by kicking the Archmage out of his window, and William felt that he could let the situation in Ostana be resolved by the people there, such as the Knights. He didn’t feel responsible for that. Liaoyang had an annoying obsession with keeping cultivation methods secret, but generally that didn’t matter. In the current situation, people who cultivated ki were necessary because that was part of the plan to destroy the Demon King. That was somewhat frustrating, but wasn’t a problem that William was concerned with at this very moment… though perhaps he would need to worry about that soon. In Eclea… William was actually pretty content with everything there. Everything had gone… relatively smoothly.
That brought him to where he was now, in Ustil. Certainly, it bugged him to not be able to understand the details behind prophecy, and therefore how much it could be trusted. On the other hand, he also recognized that it didn’t matter, because what he actually did was important. More importantly, the only prophecy he knew basically just said that he needed to kill the Demon King, and he was already working on that. That actually caused him some distress. He felt under pressure to succeed… but on the other hand he knew that he wasn’t solely responsible for the situation. Other people were learning Shattering the Soul, and the Order of the Watchful sentry now had contacts in all the nations, and they would begin organizing people to fight against the Demon King. William felt good about that. However, William would be lying if he said the end result didn’t bother him a little bit. More specifically, if the plan succeeded… Well, William knew he would almost certainly be there. He wouldn’t necessarily strike the killing blow, and he might die before that. However, if he was around when Shattering the Soul actually succeeded… or perhaps even his body, there was an unfortunate situation to deal with. He would die. That was expected, though. It was a battle. Even outside of battle… everyone died eventually. William had died twice. That wasn’t what bothered him. More specifically, William knew that destroying the Demon King’s soul would create a massive explosion… one that affected other souls around him. William didn’t think there would be a chain reaction or anything of that sort, but William would almost certainly be around. Then, if his soul was destroyed, he would die. For real. He wouldn’t reincarnate again. Although William thought he wasn’t really afraid of death, that still actually scared him. The first time, on Earth, he had pretty much accepted his death, but now that it didn’t seem to need to be the case, he kind of wanted to live. However, he also understood that he wouldn’t want to live if he didn’t do his very best to remove the Demon King. Yet, with all of this… William found that he hadn’t actually discovered what was causing him to be unhappy and upset at this very moment. That was where Chris managed to provide a useful piece of insight.