The Harvester

Rakna was not normal. No, unmistakably not. Whether it was his appearance, his personality, his abilities, his identity, nothing about him had ever been banal. Was it his choice? No. He was merely but a tormented soul doing its utmost to live the life it had learned to never enjoy. Would being picked by a glorified universal abductor calling itself a system bring something out of him? Would he finally learn to breathe in the pool of blood that suffocated him? --- Volume 1 - Seed: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0B5KXGPD8 --- Update Schedule: I don't even know anymore (Nothing on Sunday). Patreon for the usual stuff: https://www.patreon.com/AhraManyu (Advanced chapters, unreleased and in-development work, etc...) Discord : https://discord.gg/yBQDvwb

AhraManyu · Fantasy
Not enough ratings
419 Chs

Origin Flux

"What in the--!" Natsu shouted after recovering from the shock of sensing literal divine mana from the woman summoned by a very clearly non-celestial being. "What is going on?!"

"Ara?" Astraea turned to the fire pup and crouched in front of him. She smiled and put her hands under his front legs to lift him. The Celestial Blaze could only react blankly. "How cute. You're a creature with a spark of divinity and you're overflowing with the smell of nature."

Rakna scowled as she hugged Natsu against her chest and patted his head. His Appraisal Vision was currently scanning every single detail about her. Information windows popped up from her wings, her dress, her hair pins… He read all of it within a blink and frowned.

With one glance, on top of what he had just read in the description, he knew everything about what she could do. He could tell that she was actually a divinity; she struck a far too similar feeling to Aquila for her not to be a Divine Avatar, at the very least. She also had a very discernable soul that naturally didn't escape his perception.

"What are you?" He finally asked and she looked back at him.

Astraea smiled pacifyingly. "How idiosyncratic of you, Lord Monarch. For you to doubt the product of your own craft," she teased. "To answer your question… I am a Soul of Akasha given a temporary incarnation by the bridge formed between you and me by my constellation."

"Akasha?" Rakna's eyes widened. "The Indian term for the basis of the world?"

"Close. Akasha is what would be most common," she said with a nod. "But, as I am sure you want more clarification, Lord Monarch, you could say that Akasha is better defined by what you humans call the 'collective unconscious'. Or, what I prefer to call it, Egregore."

"…and you're telling me that I somehow came in contact with such a thing?" Rakna inquired.

"Correct. I have heard your call from Egregore and answered it. I am the fragmented incarnation of Astraea, the Goddess of Innocence, and wholly at your service, Lord Monarch."

"…" Rakna's eyes twitched. For some reason, he felt like this situation was far more scandalous than how this woman was making it out to be. As far as he knew, bidding divine creatures from a supposedly mythical realm on par to the famed 'Akashic Records' was far from a typical ability.

"{No, are you sure?}" Fray suddenly intruded his thoughts with a satiric tone. "{Aah… even when you're supposedly doing something as innocuous as building yourself a house, you still manage to do things like this…}"

'Don't blame me,' Rakna grumbled back.

"Is something wrong, Lord Monarch?" Astraea tilted her head as Natsu was stuck in her arms, his eyes staring at the artificial sky above, pondering on what his life had come to be.

The therian rubbed his temples. "Let me get this straight; by drawing on the power of Virgo, I have created a bridge connecting me to Egregore, the literal collective hive mind of the entire universe's living beings, and then summoned you, an actual Goddess, as an Avatar, most likely because of the strong tie between my Star Magic, the meaning of your name, and possibly your father, the one known as the Father of Stars. Is that right?"

"Yes, Lord Monarch. I cannot help but applaud your intellect," the angel said with a smile. "This is exactly the reason why you succeeded in piercing the shelter of Egregore. But your unique soul and strength also played a crucial role."

"I see…" Rakna furrowed his eyebrows. "Also, why do you keep calling me like that?"

"Hm? Lord Monarch? That is merely the recognition you deserve as a pioneer of Egregore."

"What do you--?"

[Rakna,] Ceres interrupted him and showed him a certain system prompt. [I believe it would be easier if you read this.]

❮ ◈ ❯

Sovereign Monarch of Firmament

A mysterious existence living in the limbo of the realm between the collective unconscious and the living world. Also called Egregore Monarchs or Sovereigns of Akasha, they are defined as such by succeeding in connecting to Egregore once in their life.

No matter how succinct their attempt, or how grueling, as long as a being manages to find one of the infinite paths to Egregore, they will be forever connected to it as a Pioneer, a Firmament Monarch.

The holders of this title are capable of calling upon their connection to temporarily have access to every information contained inside Egregore. However, of course, it is naught but a pipe dream to be able to stay linked to Egregore for too long. Some Monarchs have died trying to decipher its inner workings without even being able to make out if nothing but a simple word from the endless stream of consciousness.

As such, one of the two abilities possessed by Firmament Monarchs is separated into three progressive stages. As for the second ability, it passively affects the holder's abilities when the conditions match.

First Title Skill: Origin Flux

- First Stage: Founding Intuition. When used at this layer of intensity, the Origin Flux connecting the user and Egregore only allows for unwitting thoughts to emerge. While in this state, one can come to the correct conclusions without needing context or explanations. It is said to be impossible for even Gods to lie in front of a Firmament Monarch.

- Second Stage: Clairvoyance. The ability to look into the past, present, and on some rare occasions, the future, within delimited ranges defined by the target. For instance, it is common to use Clairvoyance by touching an object and reading into its past. In another case, if the user possesses something in relation with their target, living or not, through Egregore, they would be able to look into them from even the other side of the World.

- Third Stage: Solon Intent. By becoming one with Egregore, you gain every possible ability capable of being achieved by a human mind. Entering this state is the same as being a God of Talents. There is nothing they cannot do and this reflects on many possible areas; fighting, critical thinking, strategic thinking, scientific thinking, etc… The user also becomes aware of everything happening concurrently across the entire universe.

This is said to be the peak of Firmament Monarchs. But it is also considered their end. For it is known that a soul that becomes one with Egregore cannot survive more than a few seconds, or more exactly; hours, years, centuries, millennia spent in Egregore condensed in a few seconds, sometimes milliseconds, of real time.

Cost: Soul Power.

Duration: As long as the user can last. The outcome depends either on how much soul power the user has or how powerful as a whole it is.

Effect: The results of these skills depend heavily on the user's capability to handle the connection to Egregore. Some will only see, hear, or feel 'white noise' and never extract anything useful from it.

Second Title Skill: Memoire Sovereign

This ability passively affects the way some skills are manifested depending on their influence on the collective unconscious. Generally, it is under the form of magical objects or servants summoned from within Egregore according to their legends.

Currently Affected Abilities:

- Star Monarch / Virgo

Potentially Compatible Abilities:

- Star Hearth

- The Mask of Phobos

- Dead Men Tell

- Appraisal Vision

Note: Memoire Sovereign does not necessarily impact the abilities' uses on every occasion unless the circumstances call for it in one way or another.

❮ ◈ ❯

"Would you look at that…" Rakna muttered with a hand holding his chin. 'Dead Men Tell, as well, huh?' He thought as he read the last list. 'This title… sounds interesting. And while I am confident in my soul, it seems that the requirements for this specific power are far beyond that.'

"{Firmament Monarchs… I feel like I've heard it somewhere before… Yes, I remember. I read some old records about it but they were described under another name; the Olden Sages,}" Fray commented. "{They were apparently beings of such wisdom a single word of power could create or destroy worlds.}"

'Olden Sage, huh? Do you think this is an ability shared by the Crystal Sage?'

"{Perhaps. Who knows? It would explain it but we cannot know for sure.}"

Rakna hummed and looked at Astraea who was rubbing the spot between Natsu's ears. There was nothing to fear about her. His instincts weren't warning him and his nose was picking up the scent of what he had come to call 'repose'.

Most people, if they were not in an unusual emotional state, would smell like this; with no emotion winning over another. Even if he tried to dig deeper than that, he could just sense a very faint curiosity that the angel woman was directing at him.

The therian squinted and muttered two words, "Founding Intuition…" Immediately, it was as if his soul was yanked out of his body, but not in the same way his Astral Projection would do. To him, it was like he was dumped into a sort of liquid.

That only lasted a fraction of a second before he found himself in his body again. Markings spread around his eyes like veins, with a color slightly darker than his skin tone. Astraea seemed to be quite startled by the change as her eyes opened wide in shock.

Rakna, on the other hand, had never felt so calm in his life. It was as if he was meditating without the need to focus at all. He looked at his hands and slightly pulled his glove to see his wrist. He saw the same markings that were around his eyes. How did he know this about his face? He just knew.

He observed his condition and slowly blinked. 'My soul is carving its own circuits but the more my soul power circulates, the more it erodes the source. If my body wasn't Alkahest, these circuits would have already turned into scars,' he thought and blinked again. His eyes went from one side to the other in an instant. 'Eye of Symphony cannot process Egregore's information. My soul receives it first and my mind only collects the decoded parts. Can still be used to reduce the toll and memorize without needing to comprehend the information.'

Rakna was reaching conclusions one after another, about what was happening and what he could do. Fray, who could hear his thoughts, was dumbfounded. For the simple reason that he couldn't understand anything. Rakna's thinking speed was literally imperceptible. It was like demanding a normal human to read a hundred words a second.

'I have 3 minutes and 22 seconds before I run out of soul power,' Rakna suddenly alleged and slowed down his thoughts. 'Eye, run a program,' he ordered his mechanical mind. 'Define an integer for my soul power reserves. Set it at 1000. Categorize Founding Intuition as a skill that takes 4.9 points per second. You know what to do.'

[| Acknowledged. Soul Power Count, SP, Has Been Defined. Current SP: 985.3. Decreasing. |]

When Rakna focused back on Astraea, only four seconds had passed and the markings had nearly covered the entirety of his body but it didn't seem haphazard. In fact, they were symmetrical.

The therian took in the angel's surprised expression and three conclusions came up to his head in an instant, 'Star Entity possesses memories and knowledge of their own. She knows of the state that I'm in. Star Entity will return to Egregore as a scattered soul. Memories will be scattered as well but reformed upon the next evocation. Star Entity has free will. Loyalty matters. Legend's influence on the personality to be taken into account. Note not to summon potential betrayers. Virgo; Innocence; Odds of betrayal: 0.3%--' Rakna's train of thought suddenly stopped and his eyes twitched.

'Losing control. Five seconds have passed; lack of experience. Soul is not habituated to supply power this way. It will dismantle itself. Disengaging Founding Intuition…'

"Kh--!" Rakna abruptly hunched forward and released a long breath. Red-blue smoke then gushed out from the markings on his body. Within a short moment, the smoke stopped emerging and the markings receded into the skin; healed and erased by the Eion.

"That's…?" Natsu blinked in stupor at the weird smoke gradually dispersing.

"Crystallized Soul Power…" Astraea said with an impressed tone. "It is correct to call it smoke in a way, as it is the result of 'combusting' soul power in order to turn it into energy. To think someone is capable of using Founding Intuition to this extent right after receiving their link…" She smiled to herself. 'I know who he is now… What an honor to meet him in his youth,' she said internally; her exact thoughts unfortunately unknown to Rakna, and for a long time to come as well.

I have to say, this is like putting you in front of a cliff of which you can hardly see the other side.


Sorry 'bout that... sort of.

AhraManyucreators' thoughts