Chapter 72: Spatial Element Induction-Force
Translator: Novel Saga Editor: - -
The old man's complexion had returned to its normal 'serene' state by the time Shi Mu stepped down from the stone platform.
"May I ask the Senior whether I've passed the test or not? I can see that my element-induction ability has crossed the third degree..." Shi Mu had noticed the strange look that had appeared in the old man's eyes. Therefore, he asked in a probing tone.
"Ahm... it should be... you may be right." The old man's triangular eyes glanced at Shi Mu to size him up; his complexion had become a little queer.
"Senior, is there something inappropriate about this disciple's body?" Shi Mu was exhilarated as he heard the old man's answer. However, he started to feel restless as he saw the weird look on his face.
"There's a difference between a magician and a warrior. The strong and weak element induction-force of a person determines his or her potential. Several big Sects... including ours... have reached a consensus - the magicians whose element induction-force falls below three degrees would have little possibility of attaining the Star Grade level; their efforts would be futile even if they consume huge resources. So, several big Sects have set the benchmark of over three degrees element induction-force to determine whether one has the potential to get trained or not. Your element induction-force is over five degrees. This means that you have a slight chance of stepping into the Moon Grade level." The old man retracted his vision. Then, he explained after pondering for a moment.
Shi Mu became excited as he turned his head to look at the black column.
The old man shook his head as he saw his expression; he seemed to feel a little sorry for him. Then, he clicked his tongue and continued, "You would've become an invaluable treasure for our Sect if you had stimulated any other crystal column up to five checks; apart from the black and white columns. Unfortunately, you've stimulated the element induction-force which represents the 'illusionary space'. It's exceedingly rare. Moreover, no one has ever stimulated this element force in the history of our Sect. So, we barely have any practice-arts for this element. In addition, it's mostly related to the arts of Formula magicians and Soul magicians. So, you won't get too far; no matter what effort you exert to practice these two magic arts. The possibility of you climbing-up to the higher level is extremely low."
Shi Mu was disappointed as he heard this. However, he became calm and confident after he gave it a second thought.
Shi Mu hadn't had any hope of possessing a magic skill before he had set his foot in the hall. Therefore, even to become a 'practitioner level' magician was an incredible achievement for him.
Moreover, he remembered that several tasks available in the Hall of Wealth could only be taken up by a 'practitioner' magician.
He became a little impatient.
"Senior, do I have the ability to become an official 'practitioner' magician?" Shi Mu looked at the blue and red columns which were below three checks.
"Absolutely!" the old man answered without any hesitation.
"So, can I choose to become a magician?" His eyes sparkled with a trace of excitement. Then, he asked the question that concerned him the most.
"Considering your innate talent... would you have any other choice apart from becoming a 'Formula' or a 'Soul' magician?" The old man's triangular eyes rolled and revealed a puzzled look.
The old man's words sounded melodious to Shi Mu even though they were unkind. He became excited as he realized that he wouldn't have to worry about the practice-resources if he became a magician.
"This isn't the place where magic-arts-practitioners are really registered. Come with me!" Shi Mu was overwhelmed with exhilaration as he heard that he could become a magician. He started to gaze at the old man in a crazy manner.
However, the old man didn't pay any attention to him. Instead, he walked further into the room. Then, he gently touched an ordinary looking wall; twice. A doorway as tall as a man emerged out of thin air with a light sound.
Shi Mu followed him; he was amazed as he saw the intricacy of the hidden door's mechanism.
The passageway after crossing the secret door wasn't long. Therefore, they soon arrived in a secret room.
The secret room wasn't spacious; it was minimally decorated. However, the center of the floor was carved with a huge circular design with innumerable silver patterns and unknown mysterious writing. They seemed to be some sort of a chart of binding rules.
"What's holding you up? Come on in..." The old man stood at the center of the circular design. He gazed at Shi Mu, who seemed to be observing the room. Then, he spoke in an impatient manner.
Shi Mu didn't dare to speak anything in rebuttal; he stepped inside the circular pattern. The old man took out a yellow paper charm and flicked his wrist. Suddenly, the paper charm caught fire. Then, it left the old man's hand and turned into a yellow ball of light; it seemed to be wrapped in a strange energy. The light-ball moved to the floor and submerged into the circular design.
"Buzz!" a buzzing sound was heard.
The silver patterns and characters that were carved on the floor seemed to have come alive. They exuded a faint trace of white light as they swirled. Shi Mu and the old man disappeared from the room as the white light rolled-up in the air.
Shi Mu felt dizzy. Then, he found himself standing in an underground hall.
The hall was made of some strange green stone that he had never seen before. The floor space was small. However, it looked quite spacious since the hall was empty. The ceiling was decorated with several luminous fist-sized pearls. These pearls illuminated the entire hall; the hall seemed as bright as day.
A towering green-jade wall stood at the center of the hall. A huge bronze incense-burner was laid-out in front of it; the shape of the incense-burner resembled a beast's head. A purple candle - as thick as a baby's arm - was inserted in the burner. There were grey and black remnant marks on the candle. This meant that it had been used before.
Shi Mu's eyes fell on the huge jade wall as he surveyed the room.
The wall was filled with nearly hundred different marks; these marks had been printed from top-to-bottom. The top two marks were star-shaped, and light-red in color. The second row had eight green marks which were shaped like cloud-clusters. There were more than a hundred white luminous marks below them.
These marks were glowing; they seemed exceptionally mysterious.
These mystical marks reminded Shi Mu of what Huo Mao had told him in the Fragrant River Tavern. According to him, the Black Demon Sect had ten 'official' magicians. And, around a hundred 'unofficial' magicians at the 'practitioner' level. This information forced him to make a guess.
"You must keep your mouth shut. And don't look around!" The grey-robed old man spoke in a stern voice.
Shi Mu felt a chill in his heart. He lowered his eyes and stood beside the old man. The old man was satisfied as the atmosphere of the hall had become dignified. He nodded and walked-up to the burner. Then, he waved his hand above it.
"Zi!" A bright light sparked on top of the candle. Suddenly, the candle lit-up; a wisp of blue smoke could be seen curling-up.
The old man respectfully bowed to the smoke.
A star-shaped mark flashed on the top-left side of the green-jade wall; the mark exuded a red light beam. The light beam whirled above the incense-burner before it started to condense. Then, it turned into a fuzzy and virtual shadow.
Shi Mu stared at the vague silhouette with rapt attention; it turned out to be a middle-aged Confucian scholar with a long black beard.
"Master Xie!" the old man respectfully bowed in front of the fuzzy silhouette.
Any magician is an 'un-recognized' magician if they can't clear the third degree in the assessment test. They may still possess the innate talent to practice magic arts. But they aren't worthy of the Sect's recognition.
A magician is considered an official magician of the 'practitioner level' if they can cross three degrees in the assessment test conducted by the Sect. Such a person is 'officially recognized' for their talent by the Sect, but is still considered an 'un-official' magician since they are only 'practitioner level' magicians; not full-fledged magicians.
A magician that reaches the 'Spirit Grade' is considered an 'official magician' by the Sect. They are no longer considered as 'practitioner' level/ un-official.