97 Chapter 97: "The Path of the Knight"

The day after discovering Godric Gryffindor's treasure, Harry set out to learn more about knights, delving into the depths of the library's numerous books. The concept of Knights that Godric Gryffindor had left in his inheritance seemed to be a forgotten path, lost to the sands of time.

Long before the rise of wizards in the world, a mystery that remains unsolved to the Britsh wizarding world, knights were beings of immense strength. Revered for their strength and held high positions in their kingdom. They were so powerful that a single knight could face an entire army alone and come back victorious.

The ranks of knighthood included Apprentice Knights, who were just starting their journey, followed by Knights, Great Knights, Earth Knights, and the esteemed Sky Knights. There is said to be a Holy knight about Sky Knughts, but no knight has ever reached that height in their cultivation in known history.

The hierarchy of Knights represented a form of human evolution accessible to all, not limited by the presence of a magical core. Furthermore, through rigorous training, knights could significantly extend their lifespan, with Sky Knights living beyond 150 years.

Harry learned that the emergence of wizards diminished the knights' prominence. Training to become a formidable knight took decades, while wizards were born with magic and could achieve comparable power in just a few years of training. Additionally, knights found themselves vulnerable to wizard spells. When a knight tries to get close enough to a wizard to fight in close combat and kill them, they'd likely be stopped by a dangerous spell before they could even reach their target.

The key to becoming a knight lay in mastering a unique breathing technique that unlocked "Life Energy" within a person's body. Through the practice of breathing method over time, not only does a person's body become stronger, but they increase the chance of awakening a "Seed of Life" in their body. Only the people who have a seed of life can be called knights. But the qualification of awakening the seed of life is rare and requires many years of training to awaken, thus most people who practice to become a knight fail to become one in their lifetime.

When a knight reaches the level of a Great Knight, they gain the ability to create shields out of their own life energy. These shields could protect them from certain spells cast by wizards. As knights grew stronger and their life energy increased, they became even better at resisting spells. But becoming a Great Knight takes a lot of time, about 30 years for a Knight with average talent. By the time Knights reach that level, most wizards are already at their strongest. This gap between the training periods of wizards and Great Knights was vast, leading to the gradual dominance of wizards and the decline of knights.

The decline of knights was also hastened by the personalized nature of the Knight breathing exercises, many of which were tailored to specific family bloodlines. For example, the breathing method that Godric Gryffindor left behind was meant just for his family line, which meant not just anyone could learn it.

The people who designed these special breathing techniques for top families were very respected individuals at that time. But during fights between wizards and knights, these creators were often targeted first. This led to the knowledge and practice of Knights dwindling and eventually fading into obscurity.

Today, it's not very clear if there are any knights around. But Harry found the idea of the Knight Breathing Technique really interesting, especially because it could make him much stronger physically.

Here's how the strength of knights works: a regular knight is about five times stronger than an average person. A Great Knight is ten times stronger, an Earth Knight twenty times stronger, and a Sky Knight can be up to fifty times stronger. Harry wasn't sure if he had what it takes to be really good at this knight training, but even just becoming a regular knight and being five times stronger seemed pretty good to him. Having that kind of strength along with his magic would make him very powerful.

Since Harry was already doing well with his magic studies and was curious about the benefits he could get from Knight training, he decided to spend some of his time learning this forgotten practice.

After finishing his research and making up his mind, Harry began to delve into the Knight Breathing Technique passed down by the Gryffindor family.

Harry turned to the first page of the book, ready to begin his training.

The text began, "Everyone knows how to breathe from the moment they're born. But the Knight Breathing Technique? It's special. It teaches you a way to breathe that fills your body with a type of energy called 'life energy.' This energy follows a specific path through your body, gradually making your muscles and bones stronger..."

This technique wasn't simple; it demanded precise coordination. The movements, each paired with a unique pattern of breaths, were challenging for a beginner. Mastering the rhythm and motions was the first hurdle.

Harry, committed to learning, started practicing the twenty distinct movements described in the technique, each associated with a particular breathing pattern.

"For the first step, I need to hold my breath for 35 seconds, lift my arms as high as they can go, then breathe in deeply three times and once shortly, followed by changing the position of my hands..."

Despite being in good physical shape, Harry found the sequence tough to execute. The exercises appeared straightforward, but the mix of specific movements and controlled breathing quickly drained his stamina. Completing the routine left him breathless and a bit shaky.

Finishing the routine, Harry wasn't immediately sure if it made any difference. There might've been a slight improvement, but it was so minor that he couldn't really feel it. Perhaps after repeating the exercises many times, the benefits would become more noticeable.

Right after, Harry felt a strong wave of hunger. It seemed the exercise not only consumed a lot of stamina but also increased his need for food.

After eating well, Harry began to plan out his schedule. Considering his current energy levels and daily routine, he figured he could fit the breathing exercises in twice a day. He was cautious, though, not wanting to overdo it before confirming there weren't any adverse effects on his body from this new training.

Harry planned to start slowly, seeking advice from Arcturus and Cordelia on the potential risks and rewards of continuing the exercises.

In theory, becoming a knight seemed impressive, but Harry wanted to be sure of the actual benefits before fully committing to the path.

Additionally, there was the matter of learning swordsmanship. Until he found Gryffindor's letter, Harry believed he could face the basilisk with the spells he knew. However, the letter made him reconsider. If, in three years, his magic proved ineffective against the basilisk, he'd be in real danger. Heeding Gryffindor's advice, Harry decided to also learn how to wield a sword from the books left in the inheritance.

With his future path clearer, Harry returned to his daily life. The days flew by as he juggled his studies, knight training, and the anticipation of learning swordplay. Hogwarts life continued, bustling and full as the academic year marched towards its close.

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