Chapter 84: Charm Magic
Translator: Novel Saga Editor: Novel Saga
Shi Mu sat cross-legged on his stone bed; there was a trace of hesitation in his eyes.
He had realized that the fifty-thousand silvers that he had just received were like a drop in the bucket if the consumption rate for his current practice was to be considered. Moreover, the consumption rate would increase as he leveled-up in his corresponding art. Therefore, it was time for him to study the books of Charm and Formula Magic that he had received from the General Library.
Shi Mu flipped over his right hand, and took out a jade slip that contained the Charm Magic Art. He placed it against his forehead. Suddenly, numerous characters started to float inside his mind.
He exhaled a long breath as he put down the jade slip after a while. Then, he took out the silver-colored jade slip that contained the 'Comprehensive Introduction to Formula Arts', and started to study it through meditation.
He had finished studying both the arts after a while. He realized that Master Ju was right - the formula and the charm art were closely related to each other. It could be said that Charm Magic was a miniature form of Formula magic.
Moreover, Charm Magic was quite simple in comparison to Formula Magic. However, it wasn't as powerful as Formula magic. But, it still had two advantages - it was convenient to carry, and could be casted quickly. In addition, it needed only a little consumption of magic power, and could display a string of benefits.
The Formula Magic Art appeared simple in comparison to the process of drawing a paper charm. A magician had to go through incessant practice sessions to draw a preliminary level paper charm.
Drawing a paper charm was a profound path that a magician was supposed to walk-on.
Shi Mu held his chin and began to ponder as he realized that the Charm and Formula Magic Arts were closely related to each other.
Shi Mu decided to start his practice with the simpler one - the Charm Magic. He would move on to practice the Formula Art once he was proficient in the Charm Magic Art.
He was no more confused as he had finally reached a decision. So, he put away the silver-colored jade slip and started to study 'The Sacred Book of Charm Magic'. The first-half of the art consisted of the introduction to the Charm magic.
According to this ancient book, the charm language was a kind of heavenly language that contained the strength of Heaven and Earth. Each character of this language held the power of subtle principle within it. From a simple pattern to a complicated magic seal - everything was based on the basic foundation of charm language.
Therefore, one must be able to comprehend and draw a charm character by oneself in order to draw a paper charm. Interestingly, all charm characters had originated from the basic five elements. So, one could make complicated paper-charms by passing through different combinations - as long as one could grasp the charm characters of the basic five elements.
Shi Mu felt uneasy as he read that it was extremely difficult to comprehend the charm language. Therefore, there were only a handful of people who wished to be Charm magicians. A number of people failed to draw a single character of five elements even after practicing and learning the charm characters through painstaking meditation process for several years; all of them had eventually given up.
Shi Mu's complexion turned pale as this thought flashed through his mind.
However, he couldn't quit since he had chosen to be a magician practitioner and had spent a huge amount of resources to purchase the books related to this art.
A firm and resolute look flashed through his eyes. He sat down cross-legged. Then, he took a deep breath and adjusted his mind.
A cold feeling started to swirl in his mind as his breathing became slower. Then, he picked up the jade slip with a dignified look on his face; he seemed prepared to learn the charm characters of the first five basic elements from the ancient book.
Several hundred basic charm characters were recorded in the book of 'The Sacred Book of Magical Charms'. Shi Mu was a beginner. So, he chose the simplest character which consisted of a few strokes - a fire element charm character.
Three days passed in a blink of an eye.
Shi Mu still sat on his bed with crossed legs and closed eyes.
Suddenly, a group of fuzzy red light-balls appeared in his mind. They looked like a living creature as they went through elongated deformation; it seemed as if they wanted to transform into some characters.
The upper-half of the fuzzy red light-balls gradually took the shape of a strange mark; the lower half continued to go through the process of stretching and deforming.
"Ping" the group of red light-balls shook as they exploded.
Shi Mu issued a muffled groan, and opened his eyes. He was sweating profusely and breathing heavily; his face looked ghastly pale.
He lifted his hand and touched his face under the nose. He realized that blood was dripping down from his nostrils.
He was taken aback. He sighed and cleaned the blood. Then, he stood up and moved to the window to look outside. He got lost in thought as he stared at the dark sky.
The words written in the ancient book were correct; it was indeed difficult to understand these charm characters. He couldn't understand the essence of even the simplest character of the fire element even after three days of meditation.
"Could it be that I don't have the talent to become a Charm magician?" Shi Mu sighed as the thought crossed his mind.
To perceive these characters through meditation was only the first step. He would have to go through two more steps if he wished to make a paper charm.
He needed to portray each character on the paper-charm after comprehending them successfully. To draw the charm characters to make charm magic was considered to be the second step.
Every magic art of the five elements - even the simplest fireball technique - had its own corresponding formula. A simple paper charm could be made by using five or six charm characters. However, dozens or even hundreds of charm characters were required to constitute a complex paper charm.
Moreover, the process of drawing a charm character didn't allow even the slightest mistake. It needed utmost precision and years of practice to gain expertise in making a paper charm.
Once a symbol was drawn appropriately... then the next and the third steps were relatively easier.
The third step consisted of pouring the magic power in a properly drawn paper charm. It was similar to storing the magic power in the paper charm in advance; it would be needed to cast a magic spell in the future. So, the might of the paper charm could be unleashed - whenever needed - with a little guidance.
There were several limitations to this step even though it seemed quite simple.
A majority of Charm magicians possessed two or three element induction forces. And, one couldn't go beyond their elements while instilling the spirit power. So, Shi Mu would have to resort to corresponding spirit stones to supplement any other element that he couldn't sense; these spirit stones were sold at high prices.
Therefore, people had been getting confused by these three steps since the beginning.
"I've just started to practice the Charm magic. So, it's too early to talk about the first two steps." Shi Mu remained silent for a long while. He shook his head to push-out all the gloomy thoughts from his mind.
He had been lost in his thoughts while staring out of the window for almost half-an-hour.
A crescent moon started to sprinkle its silver radiance in all directions as it rose from the western horizon.
Shi Mu's face started to beam with happiness as he saw this. The weather hadn't been good since the last few days. Shi Mu hadn't been able to enter his dreamland because the moon had rarely appeared. Therefore, he hadn't been able to practice the Moon Swallowing Art.
He stopped thinking about the Charm magic and arranged his room. Then, he opened the door and walked out. He had arrived at the open lawn in the woods after a quarter-of-an-hour.
Then, he sat down cross-legged with a calm and empty mind. Soon, he entered into his dreamland.
He again reincarnated as a white ape under the bright radiance of the moon in his dreamland. Then, he started to exhibit the posture of the Moon Swallowing Art. Several luminous dots appeared in the sky and started to stream down into the ape's pupils - as always.
Shi Mu was exhilarated as he realized that the gathering speed of the luminous dots had increased in comparison to the previous dream. It seemed that his absorption-speed of the moonlight's essence had increased with the enhancement of his magic powers.
A cold feeling began to grow as more and more luminous dots streamed down into his mind. The anxiety and depression caused during the practice of the magic charms gradually faded away.
The dense luminous dots that were gathering in his mind started to transform into a white fog. Then, the white fog started to gather and took the form of a cluster of milky white clouds.
Suddenly, Shi Mu's heart skipped a beat. He realized that the cluster of white clouds in his mind seemed to be similar to the group of 'fuzzy' red light-balls which he had seen while he was trying to comprehend the charm language.