Chapter 156: Death Bridge
The first thing Sila did after parting from Bluebird was claiming his three skills in the Lost Android Kingdom . Then he visited Julia and found that she was still in a slumber . Although he was concerned about the fact that it took a longer time than Orpheus first anticipated, there was nothing he could do, so he left .
Next, he appeared in front of the Bamboo Hut . He planned to meet Divine and ask to hold on to the Dragon Sealing Stone . From now on, he intended to fully focus on training, so he didn’t want Divine to pointlessly wait for him for too long .
Shortly after arriving at the Bamboo Hut, Sila spotted Divine sitting on the terrace . The man waved his hand at Sila with a smile on his face .
“Hello, Sila . Long time no see . How are you?”
“Excuse me, Mister Divine . My hands were full, so I didn’t come to visit you . The reason I’m here today is to ask you to give me the Dragon Sealing Stone, sir . ” Afterward, Sila told Divine that he intended to seclude himself to complete his new profound art .
“Sure, you can have it, Sila . I have no problem with that . By the way, am I correct to assume that you know how to use it?” Divine handed Sila the Dragon Sealing Stone, which he stored in the system window .
“I know, sir . Break it, and the dragon will come out . ”
“Correct . Well, I have heard from Wu Ming that Sila has accomplished the quest at the Valley of Immortals . Since you mentioned training in seclusion, is that to train your psychic power?”
“Eh? No, sir . I only intend to invent my style of martial moves . ”
“Umm… that’s quite regretful, I’d say . Based on my opinion as an expert regarding psychic power, I noticed your talent the first time we met . I believe that you have greater potential for psychic power rather than qi . ”
“That shouldn’t be the case . I think psychic power is very complicated . I tried to use it once but it harmed me instead . ”
Opening his palm, Divine materialized a ball of psychic power, and it playfully rolled around as if it was alive .
“Psychic power is not as difficult to use as you think, Sila . Qi is something you need to build up by tempering your body and mind . On the other hand, psychic power is something you’re born with . You just need to understand it to be able to utilize it . The more you understand your mind, the more you can make use of psychic power . ”
Sila sighed . “You make it sound easy, Mister Divine . ”
“It really is . Psychic power is the easiest energy to utilize . You don’t need to train your body as hard as a qi type nor memorize many spells like a magic type . The more you use it, the more you understand . And as your understanding of it grows, the more versatile your usage of it becomes . ”
Sila couldn’t bring himself to agree to that . “If what Mister Divine said is true, everyone would all choose to become a psychic type, wouldn’t they?”
“The reason why that didn’t happen is because it takes time for psychic power to show a visible result, Sila . Be it qi or magic, the former certainly relies on training and the latter depends on memorization . However, there is no fixed way to polish psychic power . The only way to master it is to understand its nature, and most players don’t like such uncertainty . Anyway, I’ll still encourage you to practice your psychic power first . Once your understanding reaches a certain point, it will develop on its own without needing your effort . The sooner you practice it, the better . ”
Sila gave it some thought as he asked, “Mister Divine, what do you mean by understanding its nature?”
Divine smiled . The fact that Sila asked meant he was interested .
“For qi, you need to cultivate in order to build up the amount of inner force . However, for psychic power, it was born with you, so you just need to unlock it . Psychic power heavily relates to your mind and character, so it varies from person to person; like how each person has a different personality . Therefore, the first step to learning how to use psychic power is to understand the nature of your psychic power; your true self . ”
“And how can we know the nature of our psychic powers, sir?”
“In real world, you will need to meditate for a very long time; searching for your true self from within . However, it’s a lot easier in Monster Soul . When you got your primary psychic-type skill, its nature will show up in the description, so you can just read it . ”
‘Is it that easy?’ Sila wondered as he opened his system window . It was exactly like Mora had warned him . Monster Soul helped people learn at a terrifyingly fast rate . People could become stronger by getting an answer prepared for them without properly training their mind through meditation . As a result, their minds that should have been trained to become mature were neglected .
Dark Psychic Corrosion, Level 100 (Maximum)
The nature of your psychic power is to corrode and consume . The more it swallows, the stronger its corrosive ability will become . It is a dangerous psychic power to have . Please use with caution .
Sila read it out loud for Divine to listen, to which he nodded and replied, “Usually, for a psychic power that focuses on destroying, you need to be gentle with it . Only use it when your mind is calm . Unlike qi, emotion greatly affects your psychic power, so you need to be careful . Anyway, remember that it’s a part of yourself, so don’t deny it nor think of it as dangerous . That should have concluded what I wanted to tell you . As for the rest, you will have to figure that out on your own . When it comes to psychic power, the learning method varies for everyone, and you should be the one to understand it the most . ”
“Thank you, sir . I’ll train it together with my martial moves . ”
“In that case, I guess it’s finally the time for me to go back to the Slime Kingdom . I have bothered Wu Ming for long enough . ”
“Oh, speaking of which, where is my teacher, sir?”
“He told me he had something to do regarding the association . Ever since he came back from the Valley of Immortals, he only came back here once . I have been here alone for quite a while . ”
While both of them walked along the pathway, Sila had a sudden urge to ask, “Mister Divine, what is your personal profound art, sir?”
“Are you interested? I just know that asking about someone else’s personal profound art is a norm in this era . ”
Sila felt ashamed . Personal profound arts were supposed to be the secrets of each practitioner . What he did just now was indeed rather rude .
“I’m so sorry, sir . It was a slip of a tongue . You don’t have to answer . ”
“Haha . I was just kidding . Seeing your serious expression made me want to tease you a little . . . By the way, the name of my personal art is Death Bridge . ”
Hearing the name, Sila frowned . The name of Divine’s personal art sounded unexpectedly cruel . Poluk’s Formless Soldier originated from Genesis Punch and Viola’s Orbiting Cosmos originated from Divine Raiment . So, why did Moon Reflecting Mirror, which sounded the nicest among the three, originate from an art with a name like Death Bridge?
“The name of the art doesn’t suit my character, does it?” Sila flinched and was about to deny, but Divine interrupted . “No need to deny it, Sila . You are not the first one to think that this name doesn’t suit me . ”
Divine continued . “Despite the fact that you might think of me as a gentle person, in the past, I had a rather negative reputation . It’s just that I reformed myself in the later part of my life and started to train my mind . ”
“Eh? Did Mister Divine practice psychic power later?” Sila was genuinely surprised . To him, Divine looked like a person who had trained his mind for a very long time .
“Yes . Maybe it’s not obvious, but among us four, including His Majesty, only Poluk focused on training a qi art . The rest of us focused on training martial arts . Death Bridge is also the martial art I used in the past, but I no longer use it . ”
“Why not, sir?”
Divine’s voice turned colder . “Because it’s a killing art designed for assassination, Sila . It’s not an art designed for combat . ”
In no time, a smile emerged on Divine’s face and his voice returned to normal .
“Well, honestly speaking, the current me can use it without killing . I have been able to do that since I learned to control my mind . It took me a long time to control my bloodlust though . ”
Sila was in a trance . Martial skills and profound ethics are indeed both important . Divine was a good example, though he could turn over a new leaf in the end . What about someone who couldn’t?
The more he thought about it, the more Sila understood the weight of the secret that his teacher put onto him . He would never allow himself to let someone know about the existence of the capsule he was using .
“What are you thinking? Do you want to learn it?”
Sila shook his head . “No, sir . I’m not . . . ”
“At first, I thought that it was a dangerous art so I planned to bury it with me . However, I think I can teach you if you want . ”
“Since it’s a dangerous art and I have never learned any killing arts, I think it’s best if I don’t learn it . ”
Sila had a bias against the name ‘killing art . ’ His teacher once told him that they were vicious .
“Although it’s true that killing art means the art was designed to kill people, the name of the art doesn’t imply that it’s a killing art; it’s more about the intention of the user . Be it Death Bridge or other arts, if the practitioner uses them with the intent to kill, they are all killing arts . ”
“What you said is true, sir, but I’m coming up with my own moves, I don’t think I will have time . ”
“That’s just another reason why you should learn it . There is a saying that goes like this: “You should learn a bunch of things, but know only a handful of things . ” It means that you should learn various things, but only remember what you consider the important parts . When used by me, Death Bridge is just a killing art . But with Sila, maybe it can become one of the foundations of your personal profound art . Furthermore, Sila’s psychic power is the most compatible with killing arts . ”
“Even if that’s the case, I still feel . . . ”
Divine raised his hand to stop Sila . “In that case, how about I teach you for only three days? No more, no less . Please pardon my stubbornness . I’m just really curious about what Sila will do with my Death Bridge . ”
Having heard about killing arts from Mora, Sila never witnessed them even once . So, it would be a lie if he said he wasn’t interested .
Even though other profound arts could also kill, they were not considered killing arts . The genuine killing arts were the arts that focused on murdering and destruction . It contradicted the proper way of martial artist, who should be righteous and hold lives dearly . In an ancient time, this kind of art was considered a dark art . As years passed, however, not many of them remained .
‘Three days? I might not be able to learn much, but it’s worth giving a try . I also want to know more about killing arts . ’
“That should be fine, sir . How about we learn it right now?”
“Haha . You’re impatient when it comes to learning, I see . But no can do, Sila . This place is not suitable . Let’s go to the Slime Kingdom first . ”
“Is that so?”
Leaving a note about his departure for the owner of the hut, Divine teleported from the dimension, followed by Sila .
The first thing Sila realised was that the Slime Kingdom was brighter than the last time he had visited . He looked up into the sky and found that the previous darkness covering the kingdom was, in fact, a giant dome blocking the sun . Now, the dome had many cracks and holes, so the ray of lights could penetrate through the kingdom . The slimes were finally able to have a proper day and night cycle .
Both of them left the central square . During their walk, many slimes came to greet, salute, and give Sila their thanks . Some cheered him on, saying ‘only three dragons are left, keep it up,’ which Sila thanked them for . He was looking for Bow but couldn’t see her . He hoped that she was safe and healthy .
“Where is His Majesty?” Sila asked one of the slimes .
“His Majesty is training in seclusion~” An orange slime replied before hopping to continue playing with its friends .
Following Divine, Sila noticed that they were going to the Cliff of Heroes .
“His Majesty seems to train a lot, doesn’t he, sir?”
“His Majesty isn't training . He’s outside of the game . It’s just that, when we log out, we have to do it in a secluded room in the castle . The system prevents other slimes from entering the room, as well as making them think that we are training in seclusion . ”
Sila began to understand . If Bow had a chance to wake up, it was natural that the Slime King would log out to wait for her return . At the very least, Sila was relieved that there was a high probability that Bow would be out of a coma .
The two of them descended to the bottom of the Cliff of Heroes . It was a spacious place that prevented any creatures within from dying by teleporting them to the top of the cliff instead . In Sila’s mind, this place was the best place to spar .
Divine slowly turned his back to him . “This art of mine has no book for you to study . I invented it on my own and gradually polished it using my experience . The best learning method should be experiencing it first hand, so I will not hold back . Sila should do your best to read my movements, okay?”
“Yes, sir . You can start any ti--”
It was the sound of Sila’s butt hitting the ground . Confused, Sila couldn’t tell what had happened to him . Looking around, he noticed that he was on the edge of the cliff .
“Eh?! Did I just die?” Sila wasn’t even aware of how he died . He descended to the bottom of the cliff again .
Waiting for him in the exact same location was Divine, who was gently smiling . “First lesson: a fight can occur anywhere and anytime . Be on guard at all times, or you can die without even knowing how . It seems Sila has some skill that strengthens your bones . Unfortunately, the joints aren’t strengthened with them . ”
“You told me to read your movements, but I didn’t see a thing . . . ”
“That’s Death Bridge . Facing against the user of this art, your life will always be on the border between life and death . If you’re not careful, you might cross the bridge to the underworld without realizing it . ”
“Ah . I finally get its meaning . ”
“Many people say that killing arts are evil and dark . However, personally, I think that they are very gentle . With the difference in the ability, the opponent would instantly die without feeling pain and suffering . If we put it this way, aren’t traditional profound arts crueler than killing arts?”
“Um . . . You make a good point . My thought is--”
Finding himself on the edge of the cliff again, Sila scratched his head . It seemed there wasn’t much point in replenishing his qi . Divine could always attack a vital spot and kill him instantly .
“That makes a second time . A minute hasn’t even passed . Despite his smiling face, he is even more heartless than the Slime King . Did I make a good decision by agreeing to learn it?”
Muttering to himself, Sila jumped down the cliff yet again .