What made air trains so special was the fact that they levitated in the air, and produced almost no sound throughout the whole journey making them a convenient means of transportation.
Thanks to its smooth aerodynamic design, air trains produced low drag, which in turn allowed them to conserve energy and reach speeds of up to 600km/h.
As I looked at the interior of the train, I couldn't help but be impressed.
Maybe it was because I got special treatment, but the area I was designated to had a private desk and a snack bar for me to freely use.
Lazily stretching my back, I comfortably sat down in my designated seat and looked outside the window.
Perhaps it was because it was still summer but, even though it was almost 9.p.m the sunlight still brightly lit the surroundings.
The station which was moderately packed was a scene that you would've only been able to see if you were inside of a movie.
Rows of platforms stood next to each other, and every couple of minutes you could see air trains departing, and new ones taking over the empty spaces left by them. The air trains, which were levitating from the ground were connected to long metal wires that stretched all the way to the horizon and with their constantly producing magnetic field, allowed air trains to swiftly move unobstructed.
-We will be departing soon, please be seated
A beautiful voice entered my ears, and the doors automatically shut. Suddenly underneath me, I felt a strange pushing sensation, similar to when a plane was taking off, and gradually the air train floated in the air.
A couple of seconds after levitating in the air, the train gradually picked up its speed and left the station.
- Next stop, Station 15 Colington park
Staring at the constantly changing scenery before me, I sank into deep thought.
Right now I was on my way towards the Clayton ridge to collect the [Seed of limit], but if I want to remotely come close to the protagonist's level, then I must also get my hands on a sword art.
A sword art, or more specifically a martial manual, were manuals that were developed since the beginning of the second cataclysm and consisted of martial techniques that had existed since ancient times. With the addition of mana, ancient martial techniques which were long forgotten were restructured and remodeled to take into account the mana that lingered in the atmosphere, and shockingly enough the techniques that were once deemed as useless transformed into some of the most powerful moves that could be performed by a human.
Since the discovery of the adaptability that martial techniques had regarding the control and use of mana, martial manuals suddenly became extremely coveted and as a result, they slowly started disappearing from the public view due to government and powerful individuals intervention.
The government primarily did it to prevent the manuals from landing in the wrong hands, but with regards to the powerful individuals, it was more of a power move to monopolize the manuals to themselves.
Martial manuals were separated into five grades, 1 star, 2 stars, 3 stars, 4 stars, and finally 5 stars, with 1 star being the lowest grade and 5 stars being the highest grade possible.
Each grade was determined by how powerful the art became upon mastery, and the difference between each grade was fairly substantial, just like the difference between a person's rank.
When choosing a manual, the most important thing was not the grade but whether the manual was compatible with you.
If you had a talent for swordsmanship but practiced a spear-related manual, chances were that regardless of how high the grade of the manual was, you would never be able to fully unleash the full potential of the manual.
Looking at my status, I couldn't help but turn my attention towards my profession section [Swordsmanship lvl.1]
Name : Ren Dover
Rank : G
Strength : G
Agility : G
Stamina : G-
Intelligence : G
Mana Capacity : G
Luck : E
Charm : G-
--> Profession : [Swordsmanship lvl.1]
I don't know whether this was a coincidence or not, but the protagonist also has a talent for swordsmanship. Which in hindsight was advantageous for me as I know every cheat skill he gets for his swordsmanship profession.
In particular, a certain sword art catches my interest.
The [Keiki style] swords art.
When I was coming up with different sword arts to give to the protagonist, I came up with three different styles. The [Keiki style], the [Levisha style], and the [Gravar style], which were all 5-star manuals.
The [Keiki style], the one that interests me the most, was a sword's art that required an inhuman level of speed when drawing a sword.
In the setting I created, it was a sword art that Grandmaster Toshimoto Keiki created. He was a Japanese sword practitioner who later became famous for his unrivaled strength. He was also one of the first humans to awaken mana during the second phase of the cataclysm.
As Grandmaster Keiki was already a respected swordsman even before the second cataclysm, when mana made its way into the world, once he awakened, his human restraint was severed, resulting in the creation of the [Keiki style]. An incredibly powerful sword art where the user would draw the sword from the scabbard so quick that by the time the opponent feels danger he/she was already dead. It was a one-draw one kill type of style.
Because it was a one-draw one kill type of style, its flaw was fairly obvious. That was...you no longer hold the advantage over the opponent once they successfully defended the first attack.
The second style was the [Levisha style]. Grandmaster Levisha who also awakened at the same time as Grandmaster Keiki created his own unique sword art.
Unlike the [Keiki style], the [Levisha style] operated differently. That was...it was a much more beautiful sword art. When writing the novel I remembered describing it as a sword's art that would mesmerize anyone who caught sight of the art. Though it was an extremely beautiful sword art, you should by no means underestimate it, as it was just as deadly as it was beautiful.
Probably the most balanced swords art out of the three, but in terms of offense it was not as good as both the [Keiki style] and the [Gravar style] who specialized in offense
Lastly the [Gravar style]. The most infamous swords art of the two. To call it a sword art was, by all means, a compliment. No fancy swing, no fancy move, It relied just purely on raw physical strength that overwhelmed every opponent that came across it. It was a series of random swings with no foundation behind them, but at the same time because of the user's enormous strength, it allowed them to easily overwhelm the opponent.
Why was it infamous? simple, because anyone who practiced the swords art would find themselves suffering unbearable pain. In order for one to train the [Gravar style], the requirement was to reforge the human body by restructuring the flesh and bones within the human body to better suit the art style. It was a gruesome and painful procedure that could mentally break down anyone who tried practicing it.
Although there was a high chance of a mental breakdown, if you managed to practice the [Gravar style] successfully, you were basically guaranteed inhuman strength that would make anyone fear you.
Going back as to why I was interested in the [Keiki style] with respect to the other two arts. There were actually two main reasons.
One was that personally, my favorite art out of the three was the [Keiki style]. I mean why wouldn't it be? Imagine facing hundreds of opponents, when suddenly all their heads fall off with you looking like you hadn't done anything. Wasn't that totally badass?
Secondly, I couldn't possibly take the [Levisha style] as it belonged to the protagonist. I couldn't be changing the scenario too much, or else my dream of a peaceful life would go to waste. Also, the [Gravar style] was far too brutal for me to even bother learning it. I am by no means a masochist.
At first, when writing the novel I wanted the protagonist to practice the [Keiki style], but the more I wrote the more I figured it did not match his character, and thus I discarded the [Keiki style]
Fortunately, by some sort of twist of fate, I am now inside my own novel and could now wash away my regrets and practice the [Keiki style]. Moreover, I don't have to worry about the repercussions of learning the sword's art, as me learning it won't affect the plotline of the novel.
I decided to learn the [Keiki style] right after I collecting the [Seed of limit]. Thankfully, the location of where the sword art was located was not that far off from the Clayton ridge, and so by the end of the week, I should be able to have both the [seed of limit] and the [Keiki style].
- Next stop, Station 24 Clayton ridge
Waking me up from my deep thoughts, was a beautiful voice coming from the train speaker.
Taking a glimpse outside the window, I could see huge mountains in the distance.
As the tectonic plates shifted, it caused continents to clash against each other resulting in huge mountains and ridges suddenly appear across the world.
The current Clayton ridge was the result and aftermath of Japan hitting the east side of china causing the ground to be elevated and creating a chain of mountains.
Standing below the huge majestic mountains and admiring the sight, I couldn't help but sigh
"This really isn't a novel anymore....."
It all still feels unreal to me. As the creator of the novel, I always have this feeling of incredulity. It all feels fake. The buildings, the people, the map, everything was just as I had written in the novel. Nothing was out of the ordinary. Sometimes I wonder if this was all fruit of my imagination, and I was in a coma somewhere dreaming of this. But.....
Breathing the fresh air, and smelling the sharp, sweet, and refreshing smell coming from the pine trees before me, I could almost be certain that everything before me was real.
With renewed vigor, I start my climb up the mountain.
The terrain was rougher than I expected, making it hard for me to collect my breath as I move up the mountain. I have to stop a couple of times to check my bearing, as there was no path for me to directly follow.
Three hours had already passed since my journey up the mountains, and although my breathing was a bit rough, I wasn't that tired. Well...considering the fact that I had ready condensed mana inside of my body, It really shouldn't come as a surprise that I managed to last this long.
Keep in mind that if a normal human with no mana concentration in their body were to climb this mountain, they would by no means reach the same point as me. Then again, I really shouldn't compare myself with normal humans, since anyone in the academy would last much longer than me.
Right now I was making my way towards the third highest peak, where a small cave containing the [Seed of limit] resided.
Because I only spent a couple of sentences describing where to find the [seed of limit], I don't know the exact location of the cave. I only know that it's on the third highest peak of the Clayton ridge.
Knowing that looking for the cave was almost like looking for a needle in a haystack, I've already mentally prepared myself for a long arduous search. Hopefully, I won't waste too much time, else I might be spending days here, which I simply couldn't afford to do.
Just as I had arrived below the third highest peak I squinted my eyes. I could already see the sun trying to hide itself behind the mountains reducing my visibility considerably.
Clenching my fist I decided to do one last struggle and climb my way towards the third peak.
This was a really reckless decision on my part as I would be directly climbing the mountain, unlike before where I just hiked.
Moreover, because the sun was setting and my range of visibility was decreasing by the minute it made it even harder for me to climb up the mountain as a slight slip could cost me my life.
Climbing the mountain at this time was totally reckless, but it's not like the protagonist was waiting for me to catch up to him, and thus I steeled my mind and slowly climbed up the mountain.
Feeling the cold rock in between my hand, I increased the grip of my hands and carefully moved up the mountain. If I don't manage to find the cave soon, I would probably be forced to camp somewhere on top of the mountain, which wasn't exactly ideal.
Halfway up the mountain, and 2 hours into my climb, I could already feel my hands becoming numb from the constant climbing. The sun, which had set long ago only left endless darkness making it impossible for me to see more than a couple of meters ahead of me.
As the nights progressed the cold kicked in, further adding to the difficulty of the climb. It was already hard to climb before, but now things got even harder. Not to mention that my whole body started aching like crazy.
Gritting my teeth I endured the stinging pain coming from my arms and continued my way up.
Inserting my feet into a narrow gap, I pause and looked up.
Although it was dark I could still see a couple of meters ahead of me. Squinting my eyes, I saw a small protruding rock coming from the top left of my view. Remembering a similar description from my novel, my eyes lit up and I forced my body to climb up near the rock.
Placing my hand on top of the rock and applying some pressure, I was able to confirm that this was the right place as a small gap appeared behind the rock.
Applying a little bit more pressure, I move the rock further to the side allowing me to see what's right behind the rock.
Smiling widely, I used all my strength and pushed the rock outwards causing it to fall down, opening a small gap for which a single person could enter.
After 10 seconds of free fall, a large sound could be heard from below the mountain sending shivers down my spine.
"Had that been me, I would've likely turned into an omelet if anything else..."
Turning my attention back to the cave, I slowly pushed my body inside the small gap. As I entered the small hole, I crawled my way forward for a couple of meters until a wide opening appeared before me.
Increasing my pace, I enter the cave.
As soon as I entered the cave I felt all the energy drain out of my body, causing me to weakly slump on the ground. I was exhausted, both physically and mentally. From the moment I entered the Clayton ridge to the moment I reached the cave, all I did was non-stop physical work.
I hiked non-stop for 3-4 hours and then climbed three quarters up the third peak. If it wasn't for the fact that I had already awakened by the time I reincarnated into the novel, I would've already been exhausted halfway through the hike.
Let me be clear. I was also extremely lucky throughout the journey. That was, I did not encounter a single animal. Since most animals who were exposed to mana turned berserk, I expected some kind of encounter against one of such animals in the mountain, but fortunately for me, I had come prepared as I brought a low-grade beast repellant that warded away any beast below G-rank.
Thus thanks to the repellant I encountered zero beasts which in turn helped me preserve some of my energy, allowing me to find this place faster.
Leaning against the wall of the cave, I slowly regained some of my energy. Glancing around, all I could see was a huge cave that I couldn't see the end of.
Smiling to myself I got up and moved towards the depth of the cave
"It's about time I upgrade myself....."