Chapter 42: We Are Magic
After Poluk left, Sila was obediently waiting where he was. He waited for hours and couldn't see anybody coming. In the end, he carelessly fell asleep. Sila hadn't slept in the game for a long time. Usually, he would circulate qi to rest instead of sleeping. This time, however, he couldn't circulate qi and he didn't have a wink of sleep, so he easily gave in to drowsiness.
He slept for a while before waking up, sensing someone's presence.
"Are you awake now?" A female voice came from behind him.
Sila turned his body around. He saw a pink-colored slime that looked similar to him. Her pink was slightly lighter though. Surprisingly, this slime had a circular halo floating above her head.
Poluk had told Sila to wait for Viola. So, Sila guessed that this slime must be Viola, another Slime Guardian.
"Hello, Madam Viola?" greeted Sila.
"Are you the trial's challenger?" asked Viola.
"Yes. My name is Sila."
"Okay. Okay. Then, let's start without further ado. I'm Master Viola, a Slime Guardian who is in charge of the magic part in the Way of Slime's ordeal. Any questions?"
Finally, Sila could ask about what caused him a lot of confusion.
"Yes, I have one. I'm curious as to why slimes can't use magic. And since we cannot use magic, why is there a magic-type skill?"
"It's not that slimes cannot use magic, but rather that slimes are bonded with a single kind of magic. This type of magic negates us to use different kinds of magic, so that makes it looks like we slimes cannot use magic."
"Single kind of magic?" wondered Sila.
"Yes. Do you know that S-grade skills always come with downsides? This magic is an S-grade skill with a downside that prevents us from using different kinds of magic," replied Viola.
"Oh. I see. Anyway, do I have to take part in the magic part of the ordeal since I'm a qi-type player?" Sila still had this question as he knew that players can only use one type of energy, except for Zero who is the first one to be able to use two.
"What you are about to do isn't related to your choice of energy type selection. It's about racial skills," answered Viola.
"How is that different?"
"It's different. The energy type of a racial skill doesn't have to be the same as your own energy type. Haven't you noticed that your status window always shows qi points, magic points, and psychic points even though you have chosen qi-type?" asked Viola.
Sila opened his Status Window and found that she was correct.
Player Status: Sila
Race: Pink Slime
Health Points: 705,000 / 705,000
Qi Points: 835,000 / 840,000
Psychic Points: 450,000 / 450,000
Magic Points: 362,000 / 362,000
Title Status: Nameless Elder's Main Disciple, Varee's Lover
"For example, if you choose magic as your energy type but choose orc as your race which is a qi-type race, you will become a magic-type player who can also use qi-type racial skills in close combat. Players usually choose a race with an energy type that matches their own. But there are also some who choose the other way around. That's not wrong, apparently, as that will result in a unique playing style."
"Wow. So, the slime race is very good, isn't it? We have the skill of all three energy types," asked Sila.
Viola smiled, "Whether it's good or not, that depends on you."
"What do you mean?"
"Slime skills are too high-tier to be classified as normal racial skills. Therefore, prior to overcoming the ordeal, all skills will be sealed at F-grade just to be fair to other races. The Way of Slime's ordeal can only be participated in once. So, if you fail in any part of the ordeal, you will lose the skill of that energy type. On the other hand, if you pass all three trials, you will obtain the skills of each energy type," explained Viola.
Sila's mouth was wide open. Wasn't this explanation too important to not be mentioned by the Slime King? If he had been told about this, he would have trained his slime skills until he was confident enough to participate in the ordeal.
This was bad. He wasn't proficient in any skills except qi-related skills.
Slime skills are hard to obtain since the player needs to excel in them. It may look advantageous to have skills for all three energy types, but if he fails in every part, he would have no racial skills at all. Another downside of the slime racial skills is that there is only one skill for each energy type, while the other races would possess three skills for their specific energy type. It would be fatal for players with the slime race if they are not proficient enough.
"We have talked too long. The trial will start now," declared Viola.
"Please wait, Madam Viola," said Sila.
"Call me Master."
"Yes. Master Viola. I want to say that I'm not familiar with the Colorful Slime skill yet," Sila said slowly.
"Not familiar yet? That can't be helped," replied Viola.
Sila released a sigh of relief. He needed to extend the time to take part in this trial first. 'At least, I can get more time to practice the skill first.'
"So, you fail. Okay, you can go now," continued Viola.
Sila was dumbfounded. "Please wait!! Stop!! I mean, can master teach me first?"
"You want me to teach you?" wondered Viola.
"Yes. Normally, in trials like these, there should be a demonstration first, right? The examinee's ability to do it is tested afterward." Sila was talking about the time when Poluk had demonstrated the use of Fluffy Slime.
"Oh, I see. No wonder no one passed my trial except His Majesty," muttered Viola.
Sila could hear her, however, he thought, 'Slime King must be very exceptional to pass Master Viola's trial.'
"Okay. I get it. Look at me," said Viola.
Then, her body's color changed from the usual light pink to red for five seconds before changing again. This time, her color changed multiple times to cyan, green, brown, yellow, and blue, respectively. Lastly, her body color changed back to red and stopped at it.
"Okay, now it's your turn," said Viola.
Sila pulled a wry face. He didn't get it at all.
"Umm, master. Usually, you need to explain how to do it first. If I try to do it by myself, I might do it wrong. That would affect your reputation as my master. I surely wouldn't want that to happen." Sila tried to force his way out by talking.
Viola frowned. 'If this little kid uses this skill poorly in front of an outsider and people find out that it was me who taught him, that would indeed be bad.'
"I see. By the way, you are such a pain, you know? When His Majesty participated in this trial, I didn't need to say a word. His Majesty could show me the skill flawlessly." Viola said, "Watch again. This time I will slow it down."
Viola changed her body's color again. This time from cyan to green, brown, yellow, blue, and red, respectively. Her color returned and stopped at cyan this time.
Then, Viola drew a six-pointed star on the ground.
"This is the only magic that slimes can use - element manipulation. You may have seen some magic that can imbue an element into a weapon. But our magic is different as we are not imbuing an element into a weapon. Instead, we change our body into that element. We don't use magic but we become magic ourselves." Viola explained while Sila was glaring at the six-pointed star on the ground, trying his best to remember the elemental sequence written on it.
"There is a sequence that the elements follow. Red is fire, cyan is ice, green is wind, brown is earth, yellow is lighting, and blue is water. You can't possibly change yourself into an element that isn't next to your current element." Viola further explained.
Sila tried his best to understand its concept. It was very different from the concept behind qi-type skills that are simple yet flexible. While other players might think that qi-type skills are hard to practice, for Sila who isn't good at remembering, qi-type skills are easier to understand than this elemental sequence of magic-type skills.
There are various kinds of magic-type skills, so the complexity is incomparable to simple qi-type skills. For qi-types, there are only the hot element and the cold element, which are mutually exclusive. Meanwhile, for magic-types, there are eight elements and all of them have their own unique characteristics.
Therefore, Sila had to spend almost an hour trying to remember each element's characteristics and weaknesses.
'I won't be able to memorize all of this. I need to practice it to make my body remember,' Sila thought.
Sila is the type that prefers to use his body for memorizing, not his brain. Thus, he started changing his body color into red, cyan, green, brown, yellow, and blue respectively.
Nevertheless, his result was nowhere near what he had seen from Viola's. His color changing was too slow. Sila had to spend ten minutes to change into one color. It took him two hours to go through the whole sequence of elements twice.
"This seems like it will take a while. I'll come back tomorrow, then." Viola said before leaving.
Sila didn't hear what Viola said. Once he immerses himself into something, he would ignore others.
He felt too tired so he unconsciously fell asleep. Once he woke up, he would only eat and practice without doing anything else. He was practicing without knowing how much time had passed again.
Now, Sila had shortened the time he needed to change his color to five minutes. It currently took him half an hour to complete a full sequence. Although the time had been halved, it would still be too long for using it in actual combat.
"Magic-type skill is too hard. If it was a qi-type skill, I would be able to use it decently by now," Sila complained.
"Wait." Sila realized, "Mister Poluk said that every slime-race skill has more than one way to be used. Am I practicing it incorrectly?" He talked to himself, "if I perceive that Colorful Slime is a qi-type skill, can I use it well enough?"
Afterward, Sila tried using Formless Soldier. He changed his body to become harder, softer, heavier, and lighter respectively; like he was changing elements.
Although the speed wasn't instantaneous, it only took him one minute to complete the cycle. Compared to changing elements, it was a lot faster.
"Although these two skills are different in energy type aspect, their principles are very similar. If I understand why I can use Formless Soldier quicker than Colorful Slime, I may be able to change color faster."
Subsequently, except for eating and sleeping, Sila dedicated all his time to practicing Formless Soldier and Colorful Slime.
Once his qi ran out, he would train Colorful Slime. Once his magic ran out, he would train Formless Soldier. Due to the fact that these two skills consumed separate resources, Sila could train two skills without any breaks.
Time passed, and now Sila only had to spend three minutes to complete the cycle of Colorful Slime. As for Formless Soldier, he had already achieved the ability to use it almost at will. It might be due to his preference for qi-type skills. Anyway, he still couldn't use the separate ability of Formless Soldier simultaneously as Poluk had mentioned.
Viola who watched him from afar couldn't help but sigh.
"Poluk, you're too kind. Anyone can do it if you give that many hints away. It seems I need to increase the difficulty of my trial a little."