Galliard glanced at the sky. The sun had set, and the moon was rising. A yellow light flashed in his eyes and disappeared.
The night was home to Dark Elves. Others might think it was cold, but to them, it was like being in your mother’s warm hug. Galliard felt himself becoming more powerful.
The moon was brighter than normal, so it was the perfect moment to show something.
Actually, even if it was dark, they wouldn’t be hindered, but Galliard felt like the moon was also cheering Yeon-woo on.
“You said Jeong-woo told you I was his first teacher, right?”
“And the second is probably Brahm. Then who’s the third?”
Yeon-woo just faintly smiled.
“I see. He’s not someone you can easily talk about.”
Galliard shook his head and looked at Yeon-woo.
“You know, that was hard for me. And it was scary as well. Being someone’s teacher…..it’s like what the Martial King is to you.”
“To Jeong-woo, you were someone like that.”
“That’s why it was hard. But he still thought of me like that, gosh.”
Galliard looked like he was reminiscing about the old days. In there, Cha Jeong-woo was laughing. He was always playful and bright. That face overlapped with Yeon-woo. Their expressions and impressions were different, but they felt the same.
“Since it already turned out like this—since I’m already a teacher, how about I do what I did for your younger brother? Sounds good?”
“I’ll leave it to you.”
Galliard nodded and stepped back. He had a relaxed attitude like he had come from a walk. But the aura that came from him couldn’t be compared to before.
Yeon-woo’s thoughts about Galliard instantly changed. He thought that there wasn’t anything that different about him since the Tutorial, but that wasn’t it. Galliard was different.
It wasn’t that his physical abilities were different. The energy concentration. The concentration of magic power and the threatening atmosphere he gave off were different. It meant that he had gained some newfound powers during this time.
Just what made him change this much?
Galliard spoke to Yeon-woo with deep eyes.
“Since you mastered Shunpo to some extent, you should know the basics. But there are things that a lot of people have mistaken about Shunpo. Shun(舜), they just think that it means fast. But—”
Galliard quickly dashed forward. An intense wind wrapped around Yeon-woo and disappeared. The grass shook and leaves fluttered up.
“It’s not just fast.”
Galliard appeared in front of Yeon-woo. Then, he floated up to the sky from the breeze that happened to pass by. He lightly stood on a branch like a feather.
“It can be light like this.”
Galliard jumped down from the branch and landed on the ground. Kung! The ground shook around him. It was like someone threw a large rock.
From there, Galliard took a step forward. As he did, other Galliards started to appear. Eight shadows moved around Yeon-woo.
This time, the shadows all disappeared one by one. When the last one disappeared, Galliard’s presence couldn’t be felt from anywhere. Nothingness(無). His existence was erased.
Yeon-woo whipped his head around looking for Galliard, who couldn’t even be found with the Draconic Eyes.
Only Galliard’s voice rang out in the air. Then, tens of lightning bolts landed on top of Yeon-woo’s head like an explosion. Yeon-woo jumped back in surprise.
Galliard reappeared with a grin like he didn’t know anything.
“And loud. Shunpo is a friend with many faces.”
Yeon-woo blankly nodded his head. He realized that he had been using Shunpo wrong all this time.
All this time, Yeon-woo had been focused only on speed. Destructive power and speed. These were prioritized over everything else, and he had benefited from this.
But now, he realized how closed his mind had been to think that he could climb higher with just speed.
The Shunpo that Galliard used was Galliard himself.
It was fast, light, heavy, fancy, quiet, and loud. That was Galliard. His Consciousness could be felt from it.
“And from now on, you’ll be facing this friend. It’s a friend who changes his mind a lot, so even if it’s hard, take good care of it.”
Yeon-woo heavily nodded his head.
“Before we meet our friend, we need to get ready. First, before we start, let me ask you this. Which section of your body is most necessary for movement?”
“Isn’t it the lower body?”
“Right. The lower body is the center of your body.”
Galliard nodded his head. The lower body had to be firm for the body to be healthy. Power could only be used when the lower body was sturdy. The lower body was the foundation of all martial arts.
“Then we should take care of the lower body first, hm?”
Galliard grinned. For some reason, Yeon-woo felt like he was filled with mischief.
“First, squat-walk around the village a thousand times.”
* * *
From that day, Yeon-woo’s brutal training began.
But everything was ridiculous.
Squat-walking, leapfrogging, running without rest…..
They were all things he couldn’t see the point of. The One-horned tribe couldn’t see what the goal of his training was because they were all things they finished when they were little children.
“I heard Cain started something again.”
“Yeah. It was some kind of weird jump. He looked like a frog, heehee.”
“What’s he doing?”
“Beats me. If the Snake Hunter ordered him to do it, there must be a reason. I wonder what it is.”
“I don’t know what it is, but Cain was dying.”
The tribe members began to guess why Yeon-woo was training.
No one looked down on him. Rather, there were more people who were intensely watching Yeon-woo’s training.
Even though they giggled when Yeon-woo walked by in squats, no one thought it was ridiculous.
Galliard was pretty famous within the tribe and everyone acknowledged him. It was more accurate to say that they were interested in him.
Even in the Tower, Dark Elves were rare. It was even rarer to find someone with a ‘Hunter’ nickname. The One-horned tribe considered them skilled warriors.
Instruction from the Hunter would include methods of how he trained himself.
The One-horned tribe drooled looking at the training because they went crazy for anything that was related to martial arts. It was a shame they didn’t know what it was for.
The same went for Phante and Edora.
“…..What is that?”
Edora looked at Yeon-woo with a blank face. She had taken a break from mastering her Yang Sword to see how Yeon-woo was doing, but Yeon-woo was really jumping around everywhere like a frog.
To be exact, Yeon-woo was jumping to catch a stone that Galliard was tossing in the air.
The problem was that the stone was thrown in any which direction, so Yeon-woo just followed after it.
He jumped up into the sky, crash-landed on the ground, and fell in the pond. He was in a horrible state.
He was happy after catching the stone, and after he failed, his shoulders would droop.
Yeon-woo looked like a puppy to Edora’s blind eyes.
On the other hand, Phante observed Yeon-woo with a stiff face. His eyes were hardened. Veins popped out of his clenched fists.
* * *
Yeon-woo tossed the stone he had into the ground and flew up into the sky. They were in opposite directions, but he quickly turned his body mid-air and grabbed the stone before it landed on the ground.
He looked like an acrobat. He was extremely careful in catching the stone. Actually, though it looked like a stone, it was actually a cluster of dirt.
The cluster of dirt would’ve fallen apart from the velocity at which it was tossed, but while Yeon-woo twisted his body in the air, the quality of the dirt turned to one of a light spring breeze.
It was Consciousness. He was still lacking, but every time he moved, Consciousness flowed out of his movements.
Actually, it wasn’t that hard to use Consciousness. The most important thing was to focus. Yeon-woo had an impressive concentration already, so he was able to get the gist of it.
Of course, that didn’t mean it was easy.
Focusing your Consciousness on your sword was actually on the easier side. A sword was firm. It was easy to set your Consciousness on something that had a sturdy form. It wouldn’t break apart no matter how hard you tossed it around, so it was easy to maintain as well.
However, his body was different.
Even though he projected his Consciousness, his body changed frequently.
The pulsing muscles, the movements in between tissue, the blood flowing in the veins, and the involuntary movements of the organs…..the body was made up of too many complex things, so it was never in a fixed position. Even if he projected his Consciousness on it, it was easy for it to crumble apart.
Also, Shunpo had caused more of these changes, so it was impossible to pour his Consciousness into every footstep and fist as he moved.
He wanted to know how Galliard had done it.
He had asked about it, but Galliard just laughed awkwardly and answered like the following:
-An Obsession beyond your Consciousness. That’ll do the trick.
It meant that he had to put all his consciousness on his body. It was easier said than done.
Galliard pushed Yeon-woo even harder.
He explained that if Yeon-woo moved his body without rest, there would be a moment when his separated mind and body would match up.
Like Galliard intended, Yeon-woo was able to feel that a unique part of his body was pulsing, albeit only for a moment.
No, to be precise, it became familiar to him. In his subconscious, the changes in his body had become normal. Cognizance had occurred.
Yeon-woo exclaimed to himself.
Cognizance. Why didn’t he think of that before?
Cognizance was the very basis of Mugong.
It was something that examined the changes in his body so he could move more smoothly.
If this continued, he could naturally mediate and experience mental growth as well.
That meant it was a way he could examine his body and mind. The important thing was that it fit perfectly with Galliard’s explanation on how to control his Consciousness with his body.
To Yeon-woo, this was easier than anything else.
The way he projected his Consciousness to read the change of the world was through Cognizance.
Yeon-woo was able to establish his ego on the 20th floor, and he was able to use this against the Demonism in the world of his subconscious.
It was the internalization of his Extrasensory Perception.
He could observe his body and pour Consciousness into where it was needed. He began to control his body.
[You have learned a new way to use Consciousness.]
[Consciousness is a path that holy power travels through. Find new ways to use it after more practice. The stronger your Consciousness, the freer your Holy Level.]
[The proficiency of ‘Extrasensory Perception’ has increased. 40.5%]
[Your understanding of your body has dramatically increased.]
[You have learned about the concept of synchronizing your Consciousness and body.]
[Your proficiency of ‘Shunpo’ has dramatically increased. 82.9%]
After he found a solution, the rest of his training went smoothly.
He would still need some time to get used to it, but practice was one of the easiest things for Yeon-woo.
Pushing himself to the limits, as he had in Africa, was the secret to Yeon-woo’s survival.
In the slowed-down world. Yeon-woo combined his body and Extrasensory Perception together to move with Consciousness. Here, he would practice endlessly.
Yeon-woo lightly landed on the ground. It was slightly crushed, but the cluster of dirt was still bound together in his hand.