2 Neural Link Fabric & Automated Cultivation

[ Proceed with the automated cultivation? ]

Aksai Alden Everwood opened his eyes and saw a Spectral Prompt floating in front of him.

He smiled lightly and hit pause on his Tantra practice, taking this time to indulge in his memories.

No, Aksai wasn't seeing things. He had tested it himself by conducting some experiments.

Of course, this prompt, or the supposed mysterious ability he possessed, didn't belong to this world. It shouldn't.

This was a neural link fabric that had been transplanted into his body and attached to his cerebral cortex in his previous world when he was living his life as Arman Arlott.

In his previous life, Arman was suffering from a chronic illness. He was dying slowly and with excruciating pain.

So he decided to fast-track his death by voluntarily participating in a radical experiment that was still in its trial phase.

The neural link fabric was successfully attached to Arman's cerebral cortex, but he didn't get to use it for long and died within a few days due to his body reacting with an extreme adverse reaction to the foreign object transplanted into his body.

Despite dying in his youth, Arman had a smile on his face. At least he found respite from his chronic illness.

He thought that his thoughts would be blown into oblivion after he stopped breathing. And that did happen for some time.

But then, as if undergoing a reboot, Arman opened his eyes once again.

He had been reborn with his previous memories and experiences intact in a new body, in a new world. This time, he carried the name of Aksai Alden Everwood.

Arman or more correctly Aksai didn't take long to assimilate with his new reality. 

However, because his personality and memories were retained by the neural link matrix, he found it a bit difficult to act like a child.

'A small problem,' he thought. He thought he solved it with his superb acting skills. However, if one were to ask his dead father, he would have different opinions.

Nevertheless, Aksai had a loving father.

His mother from his second life had already passed away by the time he started understanding himself and the new world he was in, so he didn't miss her as much. 

After all, you only miss things you had previous memories of.


"Let's take a small break, shall we?"

With countless thoughts swirling inside his mind, Aksai decided to take some rest before activating automated cultivation.

He lay back flat on a rattan mattress, used his folded arms as a pillow, and took a deep breath.

There was a reason Aksai wasn't practicing his Tantra on the bed. That's because he didn't have any. He had decided to scrap the old bed after his father died in it. He couldn't bring himself to sleep without having nightmares.

In fact, his farmhouse was basically empty except for a few necessities.

A Spirit farmer dedicated to the path of cultivation didn't need distractions. At least that's what he told himself when he decided not to splurge on new furniture.

Of course, Aksai could have shifted to a mortal city and lived like a prince. Although he wasn't much in the immortal cultivation world, he was still a 6th-stage Spirit Refining Expert.

With such qualifications, he could easily get employed under a rich mortal clan and enjoy all the niceties life had to offer him. And Aksai would have indeed liked that.

However, a promise was a promise. Aksai was a lot of things. But he wasn't an oathbreaker.

"Pull up my report card," Aksai mumbled to himself. And in the next moment, some information about him was displayed on an updated Spectral Screen.

[ Name: Aksai Alden Everwood (Previously Arman Arlott)

Age: 16 years

Estimated lifespan remaining: 78 years

Spirit Cultivation: 6th Stage Spirit Refining Realm

Spirit Sense coverage: Nascent (limited to host anatomy)

Cultivation Technique: Basic Greenwood Tantra (optimization possible. Virtual sandboxing of the revised Tantra is recommended)

Spirit Root: Wood, Earth, and Water Triple Affinity Spirit Root

Spirit Root Aptitude: Low

Talisman Creation Expertise: 1st Order (Low level. Needs more data to rank up to the mid-level. Current estimated progress 12%)

Array Formation Expertise: 1st Order (Low level. Needs more data to rank up to the mid-level. Current estimated progress 3%)

Alchemy Concoction Expertise: 1st Order (Low level. Needs more data to rank up to the mid-level. Current estimated progress 1%)

Artifact Creation Expertise: 1st Order (Low level. Needs more data to rank up to the mid-level. Current estimated progress 0.7%) ]

"Hmm. Considering I have low aptitude Spirit Root, I have come very far in just a few years," Aksai thought to himself and immediately sighed.

"On the other hand, I have been stuck in the 6th stage for quite some time now. I wanted my progress to not be eye-catching. But I didn't expect that it would stagnate this way.

This low-aptitude Spirit Root is going to cause me more trouble the further my cultivation increases," Aksai shook his head in dejection. After all, one's Spirit Root aptitude was fixed and couldn't be changed. He was helpless.

He then chided himself before assigning a task to the neural link fabric.

"Use Basic Greenwood Tantra and Advanced Greenwood Tantra stored in core memory as reference points. Start sandboxing the revised Tantra. Check for any potential Spirit deviation and debug the same.

Monitor the execution in real time. Targeted optimization: 3-10%," Aksai said without giving much thought.

If Aksai's next-door neighbor, Aunt Reta, were to hear him at this point, she would surely take him to the nearest alchemy expert to treat his head injuries.

Aksai also wanted to avoid such accidents. Thus, he often practiced the Basic Greenwood Tantra at night, when everyone around him went to sleep and did not come by his door to bother him.

[ The virtual sandboxing of the revised Tantra has been started ]

A Spectral Screen displayed a void human shape sitting in a meditative pose in front of Aksai. The Spirit network inside his body was visible to him.

As the void human shape started performing Mudras AKA hand-signs and chanting Mantras AKA chants given in the Basic Greenwood Tantra, the Spirit pathways were getting lit one after another.

It was like watching a bunch of LED strips getting lit in a certain rhythm as the sandboxing progressed.

It took a while for the neural link fabric to run tests and debug all the potential problems in the revision.

Thankfully, Aksai had learned from his past mistakes and gave the neural link fabric plenty of buffer by setting the optimization requirement low and feasible.

[ Virtual sandboxing successful. Optimization achieved: 5.7%

The host doesn't need to perform Mudras anymore. Deep slumber is possible.

Proceed with automated cultivation?]

Aksai's lips curled into a smile as he read the prompt.

While others cultivated day and night, he didn't need to do so because he had the neural link fabric. It could allow him to cultivate in his sleep, thanks to the automated cultivation.

"I spent a total of five spirit stones to rent that Advanced Greenwood Tantra for five minutes. Totally worth it. So it's fine if that mongoose thinks that he has basically robbed me."

Aksai thought to himself and chuckled before giving a command to the neural link fabric.

"Initiate automated cultivation," he said to nobody in particular and closed his eyes. 

As his body engaged in the cultivation process, Aksai indulged in a well-deserved rest. 

The subtle touch of handsomeness about him had to have its origins. Some might argue that it was the result of the beauty sleep he frequently enjoyed.

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