The Reincarnator's Tavern

Many of the best Adventures start at a Tavern. This Tavern is a bit more special. Star Wars, Hunter X Hunter, One Piece, Dragon Ball, Harry Potter, Naruto, and Marvel Cinematic Universe Crossover. Gaming without the levels, training according the Power System of the World. Contains elements of Jumpchains and DnD. Try three Chapters, and don't ask what I was smoking when I thought of this.

GnomeBob · Movies
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75 Chs

Chapter 71 Swords and Haki

*Author's Note*

I have good news and bad news. The good news is that my definition of Haki takes into account 100% of the phenomenon displayed in One Piece (Including Devil Fruits!). This is a thorough explanation that agrees with every single usage, and the usages not explained in this chapter will be explained in later chapters.

The bad news? If you don't like the idea of Haki ending up like a cultivation LN, I can only apologize. It's not my fault that this is the only explanation that fits all usages!

Chapter 71 Swords and Haki

Rayleigh sat next to a small bonfire on a riverside clearing with a stick skewering two large fish being slowly roasted along the outer edge of the fire. His eyes were still closed and his Wills continued to process his expanded senses. Although it felt like a new language, the world did not speak to him. It was more like the world simply added adjectives to everything and he was trying to figure out what those adjectives meant.

It was also only after these two weeks that Rayleigh realized that the new information he was perceiving through his newly expanded senses was a lot more than just a single language. The new adjectives he was discovering that were attached to everything were different depending on what they were attached to, though some similar things had similar adjectives and many things had different groups of adjectives attached.

Continuing to analyze them without learning about the physical aspect of Haki kept giving him a headache, so he often kept his Wills occupied thinking of other things.

At first, Rayleigh did not quite understand what Mihawk meant when he said that Observation, Armament, and Conqueror's Haki were not separate, but after spending two weeks thinking about it, he realized what he meant.

The Force was the Force, but its skills were divided into three categories: Control, Sense, and Alter. Control was about controlling the inner workings of the body, Sense was about sensing the world around you, and Alter was about altering the world around you.

Rayleigh realized that this was almost exactly how Haki worked. Observation Haki was too similar to Sense, Armament Haki sounded very much like Control, and Conqueror's Haki, something that required being able to use Observation and Armament at the same time, was almost identical to Alter, something that required being able to use Control and Sense at the same time.

Although Force techniques were cataloged using these three terms, all Force techniques were still Force techniques. In the same way, all Haki techniques were Haki techniques, even if they could be cataloged into different groups.

This led to an interesting revelation. Someone using the Force could access a myriad of powers, but the number of things that Rayleigh was aware that Haki could do seemed more limited. Then again, few knew what the Force could really do because the Jedi were boring and limited themselves to only using it 'safely.' While analyzing this paradox, he arrived at a question. Did Haki have a Dark Side?

If the well-known powers of Haki were the ones that the world allowed its users to wield, then what powers did the world frown on its users taking from it? And what consequences were there to using those powers? The answer to this question actually came quite naturally and in the form of another question. Why were they called Devil Fruits?

If Haki was the power of the world and contained all things the world contained, then you should be able to use the power of the world to do all things that existed in the world. Wasn't that exactly what Devil Fruits granted? Didn't Devil Fruits contain a part of the world and grant the person who ate it some measure of access to that part?

This brought up two more questions. Could the power granted by a Devil Fruit User be gained through Haki without the Devil Fruit? If it could, would doing it that way bypass the curse since you would not be 'stealing' from the world, but using it naturally?

Unfortunately, figuring that one out would have to wait until he learned how to apply Haki to his body.

Once the pair of fish finished cooking on the stick, Rayleigh picked up the finely roasted breakfast just in time for him to jump out of the way of a building-sized sword cutting through where he had been sitting. A swimming pool-sized crater formed from the impact but the Humandrill Monkey King was already mid-swing to cleave the air-born Rayleigh in half.

With his eyes still closed, Rayleigh used Moon Walk to dodge the titanous monkey's rapid swings while he blew on the fish in hand to cool them down before he slowly started nibbling on them.

The Humandrill King roared in protest and swung even more wildly, not caring about the trees and earth around him that had been destroyed by his rampage. When it stopped, he looked around and saw neither Rayleigh nor his mutilated corpse. His giant ears had no problem locating Rayleigh's location from the sound of chewing, but he heard it from above and then noticed the pressure on his scalp from where Rayleigh had been sitting, eating his breakfast.

Without thinking, the monkey king smashed his empty hand at Rayleigh, only to knock himself out when Rayleigh jumped away.

Rayleigh landed safely on the ground as the Humandrill King collapsed. The area was surrounded by the majority of the humandrill clan but each was disappointed. Humandrills had Photographic Reflexes. They get stronger from watching skilled fighters, but Rayleigh rarely attacked and even when he did, it was really basic stuff like palm thrusts or straight kicks. Humandrills could even imitate weapon intent and use low-level Haki, but only if they saw it used somewhat recently. The Humandrill King's sword was gifted to it by Mihawk so that he could have a decent sparring partner who became more skilled as he improved himself, but that was over two decades ago and Mihawk had long since outgrown the Humandrill King.

The Humandrill King recovered as Rayleigh finished his breakfast, but instead of raging again, he started making disgruntled monkey noises.

Rayleigh replied, "I know, I'm sorry. I'm only training to dodge right now. But really though, I am very grateful for your help. Thanks to your constant attacks and ambushes, I've gotten to the level of predicting your attacks ahead of time, so I think I've finally finished this stage of training and can move on to the next one."

From a human's perspective, it might have sounded like Rayleigh was taunting the monkey, but he was being completely sincere. Even without access to the Force, these guys were smart enough to understand Rayleigh's intentions and understood that Rayleigh was there to practice. They also understood that once Rayleigh was done practicing dodging, he would start practicing fighting, so they had been willing to play with this new arrival who never killed them or stole their stuff.

The Humandrill King excitedly got up and made all kinds of energetic noises while Rayleigh nodded with a smile, just as excited as the giant monkey king to start his next lesson.

The humandrills returned to the forest and Rayleigh walked into the pond that formed from the crater of the monkey king's attack next to the river. This pond was an excellent place to wash up after a few weeks in the wilds.

Once clean and dry, Rayleigh returned to Mihawk's castle and found where he left his clothes and shoes. They had been left untouched and were fine to put back on before Rayleigh knocked on the door three more times.

The castle door opened once more and Mihawk motioned for Rayleigh to follow him inside. But rather than enter any room, Mihawk walked to the other end of the castle out the back door to a training area that had been set up. Mihawk drew Yoru and stated, "The quickest way to feel the flow of the world within your body is to experience the flow of the world through the attacks of others. You are not to dodge, only block. That sword of yours seems capable of doing so."

Without a word, Mihawk split the air between them with a slash that Rayleigh would have been unable to react against if not for his expanded senses warning him about the attack in time.

Rayleigh blocked the strike with his sword, but Mihawk's blade moved like it weighed tens of tons. The impact of his cutlass against Rayleigh's sword knocked Rayleigh back against the castle walls. Even then, it was obvious how easy Mihawk was going in his strike. He didn't use his own Haki, that was all from the sword itself, yet that was still a few levels above the Haki pressure he felt from Wonder Woman. If Rayleigh used his Nen and Force to augment and amplify his body, he would be able to take such a strike with ease, but without access to those, a multi-ton strike would have the appropriate effect of a multi-ton strike.

As Rayleigh got up, Mihawk explained, "Everything is a part of the world, including the body. The flow of the world moves by the will of the world. But we, as people of this world, are also a part of that will. Our will is a part of the will of the world, therefore our will is also capable of moving the flow of the world as we desire."

A heavy horizontal slash came before Rayleigh could see it but he could still block it in time. This one swatted him to the side into an already collapsed wall that might have been a building here long ago.

Mihawk did not have to tell Rayleigh to get up, and each time he did, Mihawk whacked him back, down, or to the side. With each blow, Rayleigh felt his entire body shake. He felt the pressure of Mihawk's sword pour through his body.

As an enhancer getting beaten up, his body felt innately rebellious at the treatment. He felt every cell protest at the pressure being poured in. He felt a pressure within his body well up in defiance and as Mihawk's giant cutlass came down, Rayleigh instinctively directed that pressure to flow into his strike as he blocked with an upward motion.

The clang of metal echoed triumphantly through the forest as Rayleigh's guard barely remained unbroken. Mihawk, not looking surprised at all, said, "Continue," and started actually using a small amount of his own Haki for the next attacks.

In this way, Rayleigh got beaten up until lunchtime. Mihawk then went to make food for himself and Rayleigh entered the Tavern to eat his own lunch before returning to get beaten up by Mihawk until the sun went down.

Due to his experience with the Force, Rayleigh's progress with Haki was very much like a Professional Gamer who finished a completionist run of a game and started playing the game's sequel for the first time. It was also what would happen if a Player with sufficient Haki mastery died and made a new character. Even if he was starting from scratch, his comprehensive foundation was enough to jump-start the training.

Still, this was only possible because Rayleigh had completely cut off his connection to the Force and the Empty Sword's ability to enhance the effects of training also shined through. Rayleigh had tested his new senses when out of his Second Stage Zetsu and he confirmed that the presence of the Force really muffled out the sensory input from Haki. It was the difference between pouring tea into an empty glass versus pouring tea into a glass containing coffee and needing to keep pouring until 99% of the coffee had overflowed out of the glass. It was possible, but it was a lot more wasteful and not nearly as simple, and even then, the tea would still have a slight taste of coffee that would probably ruin the taste of the tea.

Once Rayleigh's Haki mastery was high enough, there would be no problem using it with the Force, but for now, he would remain in his Second Stage Zetsu state to enhance his training speed.

The process of using the flow of the world through his body somewhat reminded him of Enbu, the Monkey Martial technique from the Toriko series.

According to Enbu, every cell had its own individual personality, likes, and dislikes, and would rarely act together as a collective due to the differences. Enbu used Willpower to control the actions of the cells to allow them to move as a unified whole. One of the more ridiculous uses of this was that a master of Enbu could have all his cells bypass the flow of gravity by turning the body from a bowl that could contain gravity to a strainer that allowed gravity to pass through mostly unimpeded.

In the example used, gravity was represented as a flow and the body's cells either resisted that flow or allowed it to pass unimpeded, with a majority doing the former unless Enbu was used.

Rayleigh visualized the flow of the world through his body in the same way, as a flow that was either resisted or unimpeded through his body's cells. Controlling the flow meant arranging a path through his body that did not impede the flow to where he needed it to be. Arranging this path was not always easy and some motions of the physical body made it easier. It was not the same path or method he used with the Force, but it was similar enough in concept.

After Mihawk had his dinner, he did not continue attacking Rayleigh again. Instead, he pointed out an area filled with rocks and tree branches that had been piled there previously. Mihawk placed a few branches in front of the rocks and swung his sword, sending a flying slash. The flying slash perfectly severed the tree branches, but when they fell, the stone behind them was left unmarked, despite the fact that the sword slash should have easily cut through the entirety of the rock.

Mihawk stated, "The main difference between a Great Swordsman and a Swordmaster is that a Swordmaster only ever cuts what he wishes to cut and never cuts what he does not wish to cut. This is your next lesson. I will be gone for the next few months and when I return, I will no longer be holding back with my strikes. If you lack the confidence to receive them, do not be here."

Mihawk did not give any further words or instructions before returning to his castle and Rayleigh started practicing his sword swings. Once he got the hang of it, sending a flying slash wasn't too hard. It was kinda like standing in the rain with a sword, moving your body so that the water that fell on you would drip to your arm, hand, and then sword, and when there was enough water dripping along the sword, slashing it out in a motion smooth enough to send the line of water on the sword forward without breaking it.

Although doing it was possible once one could freely control the flow of the world through their body, the key was being able to do it quickly with a powerful effect. This required some trial and error. Rayleigh went through every stance of every sword art he knew, one at a time, to feel how the flow of the world could be affected by each.

This is usually where a teacher would point out the flaws, strengths, downsides, and benefits of each form and movement, but Mihawk did not feel that Rayleigh required his advice. Why? Because Rayleigh had achieved Heart of the Sword. In that state, his body would naturally figure out the most efficient way to use the flow of the world.

Still, Mihawk did not intend to leave until the sun was up, so he decided to spend the night with a glass of wine in hand, staring out the window at his strange disciple and the unfamiliar forms he displayed.

Rayleigh was a bit too excited to sleep so he had in fact spent the entire night practicing, going through every motion to feel out which worked the best with the flow of the world, much to Mihawk's benefit. To Mihawk, Rayleigh was the one with the strange style. Rayleigh's swordsmanship was created entirely from the limits of the human body, not the flow of the world, so it was something Mihawk had never seen before and gave him a few hints of inspiration.

After the sun rose and he saw Mihawk off, Rayleigh started analyzing the data from his experiments and the results did not add up. Every unique style and sword Rayleigh practiced could somewhat use the flow of the world, but the flow of each did not feel the same in the strength it granted according to his newly expanded senses. Having not reached a satisfying conclusion, Rayleigh kept practicing, kept swinging his sword, and kept experimenting.

Using those expanded senses, brute force calculations, and two full weeks of practice, Rayleigh arrived at a somewhat comprehensive hypothesis on the nature of the flow of the world and the different ways to use it.

The first and most important discovery was that the flow of the world was not a pure, singular thing. In fact, it was the opposite. The adjectives he sensed from the flow of the world changed depending on the form he used, with some adjectives displaying themselves more prominently in certain forms and styles than others.

This led to the conclusion that the flow of the world contained an individual flow for every unique aspect of the world. It also meant that each adjective that Rayleigh sensed was likely attributed to a different flow. This realization led to multiple breakthroughs and an understanding on three different ways to use the flow of the world.

The first was the most general method. Use the whole thing. This was the equivalent of pulling the fire alarm in a mall, closing all the exits but one, and arranging your target to be at the one entrance you left available so that he could be trampled to death. It required a strong willpower or they would not move as you wanted and required a strong body or they would break out through the other exits or just trample you to death. Rayleigh only picked it up so easily since his body and willpower were Over-Qualified. Once this method was practiced to a high level, he could grant his attack and defense the conceptual weight of the entire world. This was also what others called Armament Haki. It was also very inefficient. Using the crowd of people analogy, each person would take an 'Every Man for Himself' mentality and get in each other's way.

The second method was actually the easiest method that almost every skilled fighter in the world used naturally. Identify and use only a single flow. This was like knowing a specific person in the crowd, knowing his name, specialties, and desires, and saying, "Hey Doug, we've known each other for years. I know you are a professional boxer and I've been to all your matches. I'll pay you five grand if you go to my enemy and punch his lights out."

This was essentially tailoring the movement, mindset, and name of the technique to the individual flow that you wanted to use to grant the properties of that flow to your attack. Using it this way did not require a formidable willpower or powerful body, though they did help.

As an example, T-Bone's Right-Angled Slash technique had such a frivolous sword-swinging motion because T-Bone tailored that motion to allow the flow of the world's concept of a right-angle to flow into his sword and be sent out in a flying slash that abruptly changed orientation in mid-air.

Rayleigh guessed that a majority of the fancy, physics-defying special techniques used by the residents of this world likely used a specific, named flow of the world to operate.

This also nicely answered Rayleigh's question of whether or not he could use the powers of Devil Fruit users without a Devil Fruit. As long as Rayleigh identified a specific adjective in his expanded senses, he could use the flow associated with that adjective to add the properties of that world's flow to his sword. Or just about anything else.

Rayleigh suspected this was how Fishman Karate worked. Martial moves using the specific flow of Water. Of course, Water contained many flows, so each Fishman Karate technique likely used one of the flows within the flow of water.

And since users of Fishman Karate were not cursed by the world, then this method of using its power was fine. The world only cursed you if you stole the flow using a Devil Fruit instead of taking it the proper way.

All of this led to the third and final method to use the flow of the world. It was essentially a combination of the first two and was also the method that Mihawk used. Identify an individual flow and have that flow guide the rest of the flow of the world. In the crowded mall-turned-stampede analogy, this was like getting an inside man in the crowd to get everyone's attention as a leader and direct them in a more uniform manner toward the desired exit.

This granted the conceptual weight of the world to the attack while also amplifying that conceptual weight with the attribute of the individual flow used to command the rest of the world's flow.

One would think that Mihawk used the strongest flow for such a thing, but that would only be half correct. Rayleigh spent the entire day with a dozen Wills analyzing Mihawk's strikes, forms, and the pressure of each attack and came to an interesting conclusion. Mihawk used two flows to command the conceptual weight of the world instead of one

The first flow was of course the flow of the concept of Strong. The second flow however was actually from the concept of Gentle. The strong flow could make Mihawk's attacks fierce, harsh, and forceful while the gentle flow could make his attacks graceful, precise, and fluid. It was this duality that gave the flexibility and versatility that granted Mihawk the title of Number One Swordsman.

After finishing his analysis, Rayleigh also figured out the two different ways of succeeding in the Homework that Mihawk gave him. Sending a flying slash that only cut the sticks without cutting the rock behind it required a perfect level of control and sense. He had to perfectly sense the durability of the sticks and send out a flying slash that would use up its force completely after cutting the sticks. This level of mastery should be at the peak of Great Swordsman, reaching the level of Swordmaster.

The second method was something else entirely, something that went right to the level of Swordmaster. If Rayleigh focused his senses entirely on something, he would get a feel for the flow of that something. If he successfully channeled the flow of that something into his sword and swung it out at the target, it would have an interesting effect.

If red light was shined on a blue piece of paper, the light would be absorbed. Only when red light was shined on a red sheet of paper would it reflect.

In the same way, a slash containing the pure, 100% filtered flow of one specific thing could be used to target and damage just that one specific thing. It would be like the attack would exist in a different dimension, only capable of interacting with that one specific thing.

This was how Mihawk did it and it was also how Bogard sliced through Rayleigh's Nensaber and Ren defenses like they weren't there.

Such an attack was of course only useful in very, very specific circumstances, but the capability to perform it demonstrated a level of mastery that only Swordmasters could achieve.

Rayleigh being Rayleigh would of course practice both methods.

What Rayleigh thought of as a precise feeling of a specific target was what Mihawk called the Breath of the World. The feeling was not a constant but a shifting set of variables that flowed along a specific pattern, so Rayleigh understood why Mihawk called it Breath.

At this point, most swordsman would innately figure out a specific concept that resonated with them and practice until they figured out a form that could channel the flow of that concept through their attack. They would then practice that flow and other, similar, related flows until they had a flexible style. Finally, they would try to use their flow to command the flow of the world and become a Swordmaster.

Rayleigh was not like most swordsmen.

The idea of choosing a specific concept and mastering just that never occurred to Rayleigh. No. From the moment he figured out that the flow of the world was composed of individual flows that could each be mastered, Rayleigh knew exactly what his sword style would entail. Only children make choices. Adults want it all.

Rather than using some flows he mastered to command the flow of the world, he would rather master every flow of the world at the same time.

A wild mob would stand no chance against a controlled, directed mob. This was the difference between normal Haki and what Mihawk used. Rayleigh on the other hand would command each and every member, turning a mob of unknown people into a regiment of soldiers that would each flawlessly adhere to his commands. It didn't need to be said what would happen if a directed mob faced a regiment of soldiers.

After figuring out his desired path, Rayleigh took out the Enhancement Nen Inscribed training weights and put them on before walking into the forest.

The excited Humandrills noticed this and energetically raised their weapons and charged at their long-awaited opponent.

At the moment, Rayleigh intended to familiarize himself with the easiest-to-access flows, the concepts that were obvious. It didn't take much to pick a specific sense, an adjective from his awareness, deduce what flow it originated from, and allow his body and sword to move in a manner that allowed that flow to be channeled. His vast experience with the Force made such matters trivial, especially with a mind like his that was forged and strengthened to do far more than what was originally his biological limit.

The first attempt would not be perfect, but he'd keep practicing while shifting from one flow to another. A strike like lightning, a sweep like that of a winding river, a slash like that of a falling tree, a parry like that of a blooming flower.

The Humandrills were ecstatic. Their Photographic Reflexes captured his tests and used them against him, letting him analyze the move's flaws and benefits, allowing him to refine them and use them on the next wave where the cycle would be repeated.

The attacks themselves were not remarkable. Rayleigh was not using the entire flow of the world, just a single flow to grant his attack some attributes and feel them out. His wind sword generated a tiny breeze, his fire sword produced a lone cinder, his lightning sword produced a single spark, and his water sword produced a tiny drop of moisture.

Two more days passed in this manner and the degree of attribute the use of each flow produced did increase, but not by much. That being said, it wasn't Rayleigh's intention to master them all together. Instead, Rayleigh wanted to make a foundation of fused flows that he could merge into other flows. Then he could use that foundation to command the flow of the world as he slowly merged the wild flow of the world into his controlled combination of flows. He would go full Borg and ASSIMILATE!

Rayleigh's only problem was that even at this level of proficiency, it wasn't easy to merge flows. Mihawk's swordsmanship only contained Strong and Gentle for a reason. When Rayleigh tried to use a form and technique that seemed to allow the flow of wind and the flow of lightning at the same time, his sword exploded.

Thankfully, he never made a restriction that would cause him harm if the sword broke, so he could make it again through another round of recitation of his Force Code.

Deliberately mixing different identified flows into the same techniques was not a simple matter of addition. Thankfully, Rayleigh could use his insight from other hobbies to assist. Using his experience with cooking, Rayleigh could feel out the proportions of which flows could be added to others. It wasn't always a 1:1 ratio. Using his experience with calligraphy, he could figure out how to form a technique that could use the combination flow without his sword exploding.

While playing with the laws of reality for several more weeks, one of Rayleigh's Wills noticed something in the Pirate Chat Room.

[Immortal Beauty: I found the Pirate World MC.]

[Invisible Man: Took you long enough. I found him ages ago and am standing right next to him. Don't you see me?]

[Justice: Don't tell me, let me guess. Is he a... Pirate?]

[Captain Jack: How do you know it's him? Besides the fact that he's seventeen now.]

[Wonder Woman: Are you gonna join his crew?]

[Immortal Beauty: He has main character plot armor. He just broke into a Marine Base, stole some stuff, freed a prisoner, beat up the Marine Captain, and when he left, the Marines stationed here saluted him.]

[Dragon Chef: ... Yeah, that would do it.]

[Titan: I'm convinced. So who is he?]

[Justice: I'm guessing he's not in the Grand Line yet.]

[Immortal Beauty: From the name he gave, I'm also pretty sure he is related to some very impressive people. I've also decided not to join his crew. He'll probably catch up sooner or later, but he is really weak right now and I don't want to wait and watch while he fights weakling after weakling.]

[Swordsman: Ummm... He's not in the East Blue, is he?]

[Immortal Beauty: Why'd you ask?]

[Swordsman: Cause Mihawk went in that direction a few weeks ago.]

[Dragon Chef: Did Mihawk train you?]

[Swordsman: Yeah, I learned the horrible truth about Haki from him.]

[Titan: What, is it powered by devils?]

[Swordsman: Worse than devils. It seems to be a lazy rip-off of a Law Cultivation System that gets nerfed if the person using it is boring.]

[Captain Jack: Eh?]

[Titan: ?]

[Wonder Woman: ?]

[Dragon Chef: ?! What?!]

[Justice: Yeah, we're gonna need more details.]

[Swordsman: Summary, Haki is the Law of the World. Observation Haki is understanding the Law of the World. Armament Haki is applying the Law of the World to your defense and offense. And Conqueror Haki is basically commanding the Law of the World.]

[Swordsman: Oh, and Devil Fruits are minor Laws that make up the world, stolen from the world. The curse is just the world punishing a thief.]

[Goddess of Ice: ...]

[Captain Jack: I'm gonna sit down.]

[Dragon Chef: Are you being for real here? Like for real for real?]

[Swordsman: Yep. Also, you can use Haki to mimic the effects of Devil Fruits. You can apply fire to your punches, ice to your sword strikes, lightning to your kicks, etc by feeling out the related law and applying it into a technique.]

[Mimic: I think I know what he is talking about. According to some of the secret reports I've read, if a Devil Fruit user reaches a certain level of mastery, they awaken their Devil Fruit. I did not understand the context of this, but if Swordsman is accurate, that means if you can master the law associated with your Devil Fruit using Haki, you will attain far greater power.]

[Titan: Oh? It seems I will have to increase my training load.]

[Gravity King: How can I train more? I'm already using islands as barbells.]

[Fire Queen: Maybe by not making them weightless before lifting them Gravity boy?]

Rayleigh smiled and went back to his training. If the other Players cannot keep up with him, he might lose motivation in the future. He shared what he needed to share so it wasn't his fault if they didn't listen or ignored his advice. As for the world's MC, Rayleigh wondered how the will of the world thought of him. Since Haki had similarities to the Force, then this world's MC was likely beloved by the Will of this world.

It didn't matter too much though. Rayleigh felt that he would see him eventually.