2 weeks passed at the academy, but Damien hadn’t achieved anything special. Besides having to attend a single class once a week, his life wasn’t that different from when he was an adventurer.
Zenith City functioned based on normal currency rather than premium points, so Damien was able to get himself a quiet house to live and practice in.
Premium points were used for facilities and the treasury, basically for anything needed to increase power. This was to incentivize students without stressing them. If premium points were required for housing and the likes, there would be much more chaos in the academy. Especially because there wasn’t any monthly allowance system.
The history class Damien had enrolled in was extremely boring and reminded him of world history classes back in high school. So far, there had been no talk of the Great War and all the history focused on the human domain and it’s development since the induction of mana.
When he wasn’t in class, Damien was back in his routine of constant work. He’d find any beast slaying mission he could and complete it. Every once in a while, he’d go on collection missions as well. The reason he didn’t particularly like these was because they were incredibly easy for him, who could teleport, and didn’t help him improve.
Right now, his issue was how to spend his premium points. There were many interesting potions and treasures in the academy treasury that he could buy, but most of them wouldn’t really help him. His physical stats were too high for potions meant for 1st and 2nd classes and his mana capacity was even higher.
The only option left for him was to use the lightning training grounds. He was genuinely disappointed in the development of his lightning affinity, but he never really put time into improving it. With the rapid improvements of his spatial affinity there was no need to.
However, Damien had now reached a roadblock in developing his spatial affinity. He knew which path he should take to further his vector control, but he didn’t have anywhere to go after that. His 3rd class couldn’t stay as vector controller after all. So, he decided to switch his focus and hope that it would grant him new ideas.
He had long since given up on being creative in his uses of lightning. The only goal he had at this moment was to make it extremely destructive.
He had also realized that his vector control could be used to enhance his lightning. He decided to train this aspect within the training area as it was specifically meant for lightning affinity users. Plus, he was curious about what these training grounds really were.
The academy was structured similar to a University on earth, making it essentially its own small city within Zenith City. Damien had plenty of trouble navigating at first, but the pamphlet he was given had a map as well, so he just opted to use that to get around.
After walking for half an hour, Damien arrived in front of one of the largest buildings in the city. This building was shaped like a massive pyramid that pierced the clouds. It was the location of every training ground the academy possessed.
When he entered, however, he saw a hall the size of a normal 2 story building without any of the steam age characteristics of the pyramid. Although confused, he just continued forward and registered himself for the lightning training grounds.
There were 3 options available to him. First was the basic training ground, second was something called “Lightning Valley, and finally was “Thunder Mountain”. Their prices were 10. 100, and 500 premium points respectively.
Looking at his student ID card, he saw the number ‘644’ written next to the premium point section. Satisfied, he picked the highest option. He had no use for premium points beside using this facility, so he didn’t care about his expenditure.
The receptionist was surprised by his choice, but said nothing. He pushed a button on his station and led Damien to a door behind the desk. When the door was opened, Damien sensed slight spatial fluctuations, making him realize the truth behind the building.
It was composed of many subspaces that catered to various affinities. The unique shape of the building most likely related to how the subspaces were sectioned off and the button was most likely to choose which subspace the door would connect to.
Entering the door, Damien was immediately greeted by a thick bolt of lightning that tried to strike him down, but before it could, he had teleported away. Turning around, Damien noticed that the door had disappeared. He then felt a ping from his ID card.
Taking it out, he noticed that the words on its surface had changed.
[Time remaining: 71 hours 59 minutes 55 seconds]
[To exit early, inject mana into your Student ID card.]
It was plain and simple, but he understood the point. A verbal explanation for every new student would be a hassle, so this system was much more efficient. It could also be used for those who already knew the rules.
Now that he had taken care of that, Damien finally got a chance to look at his surroundings. The name Thunder Mountain wasn’t an exaggeration in the slightest.
The ground around him was already on a slope and in front of him stood one of the biggest mountains he had ever seen. It was larger than even Mt. Everest on earth, standing proud at 10,000 meters. It’s peak was shrouded in dark clouds just like the rest of the sky.
There was nothing besides this mountain within the subspace. The entire area was constantly being struck by lightning bolts, with even the smallest ones being thicker than an arm. It seemed that the father one climbed up the mountain, the stronger the lightning would get.
Just looking at this lightning gave Damien insights towards increasing his destructive power. Everywhere it landed there would be havoc, with some rocks even disintegrating on contact. However, Damien could see much deeper than the normal person.
He could see the rampaging lightning mana that ran through the ground like snakes, and he could see the highly compressed mana within the clouds. The purple colored mana even permeated the air in the surroundings, everything within this space was supercharged with electricity. Damien smiled as he looked towards the peak of the mountain.
“Let’s hope the lightning up there isn’t as painful as evolution.” Leaving these words, Damien began a rapid climb to the peak.
3 days later, Damien could be seen on the peak of Thunder mountain surrounded by volatile black lightning. Natural purple lightning as thick as a telephone pole constantly attempted to strike him down, but to no avail.
When it met the black lightning surrounding Damien, they’d go through huge clashes, leading to chunks of the mountain peak being dislodged and causing landslides.
However, he had only been training for 3 days. There was no way he would have advanced enough to ward off every bolt of lightning that was aimed at him.
Very often, tens of lightning bolts would breach his own lightning defense and charge towards his body. While half of these would be deflected by his vector field, the other half were allowed to directly strike his body.
This was because Damien had discovered something interesting. The lightning mana within this space could be devoured by his Void Physique to increase his comprehension.
This absorption was the only reason he was even able to contend in quality with the lightning at the peak.
The berserk natural lighting mana that entered his body rampaged, attempting to fry his organs and blood, but it was quickly tamed by the devouring force that emanated from his physique. The lightning filled essence was then purified and sent back into his body to nourish it rather than to destroy.
Suddenly, the Damien’s eyes snapped open. Still seated, he let out a bestial roar into this sky. And as expected, this roar was accompanied by a massive whirlpool like beam that escaped his mouth.
The difference between this breath and the usual, however, was that the lightning that usually just danced around the spatial storm was actually integrated inside it.
While the spatial storm tore through everything in its path and mutilated it’s targets, the lightning now followed its attack, incinerating everything that could’ve stayed intact after the initial damage.
After spending a few minutes roaring with abandon, Damien smiled and checked his status.
Male – Age 19
Level 75 – [Vector Controller], [Lightning Mage]
Experience value: 78,450/80,000
Title(s): [???????, Bearer of the Void Physique, Evolver]
Affinities: Space, Lightning
Physique: Void Physique
Magic Power: 3900
Skills: [Warp Level 5], [Spatial Control Level 7], [High-Level Regeneration Level Max], [Sword Mastery Level Max], [Mana Sense Level 8], [Devour Level 5], [Vector Control Level 6], [Lightning Magic Level Max], [Inventory]
Trait(s): [Shock Absorption], [All-Seeing Eyes Level 3], [Dragon’s Breath]
There weren’t many changes to his status since he had last checked it in Kurt’s subspace besides his long-forgotten subclass.
His physical stats and mana capacity had only increased by leveling, as he hadn’t found any particularly special beasts that granted him massive gains like he did in the dungeon. The time he spent slaying beasts on the surface truly accentuated how special the dungeon was.
Besides that, a few of his skills had leveled up a small amount and his spatial magic had evolved into vector control. The change that he was excited to see, however, was that his lightning magic, which had been stuck at level 6 for the longest time, had finally achieved max level.
According to the control stages he had recently learned of, he should still be in the Mage level, but he wasn’t far from reaching the Master level. All he needed to do was find more abstract applications for his lightning.
Checking his ID card, he noticed that his time within the training ground was over. The door had reappeared at the bottom of the mountain, and Damien directly teleported to it.
Thinking that he should use this facility more often, Damien exited the door with a smile on his face. Upon his return to the reception area, though, Damien was greeted with a taunting and familiar voice.
“Oh, look who we have here! What’s with that stunned face? Don’t tell me you missed me so much that you’re too stunned to speak!”