Chapter 8: The Forest
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The tall trees blocked the sunlight, making it hard to see in the forest. As LisiA and Aumo were both androids, they didn't have to worry about that.

 

As they slowly made their way deeper into the forest, it slowly became harder and harder to traverse further. There were no paths to follow and the amount of trees got denser the deeper they went.

 

"Was it always this bad?" Aumo hadn't ever gone this deep into the forest before.

 

"No. A hundred years without any humans does make a forest grow," replied LisiA.

 

Although Furad was the capital city, there was really only one path to enter from. Other than that path, the city was surrounded by a forest that slowly receded as people expanded outwards. The city apparently started as a small town in the forest.

 

The reason why the two chose to go through the forest was because it would be faster to go through the forest instead of going around it. It doesn't mean that it would be easy.

 

As the two ventured deeper, they had to break some branches to go onwards.

 

"It is so quiet," said Aumo, as she broke a branch and stepped over some roots.

 

 "Stay on high alert. There may be some enemies in the trees," said LisiA as she ducked followed behind Aumo. The height difference made it so that Aumo had a bit of an easier time moving along.

 

As they slowly moved through the forest, and the forest slowly opened up to a clearing with a small lake. 

 

As they had made a lot of sound from breaking the branches, some monsters were alerted and tailed behind them.

 

"We got company," said LisiA, as she heard some sound behind them.

 

"We were a bit too loud weren't we," said Aumo, turning around to face the monsters.

 

Instead of goblins this time, there was instead a pack of 7 wolves. Some animals that were drinking at the small lake saw the wolves and quickly fled.

 

"Forest wolves? They're a lot stronger than goblins. A pack of them too," said LisiA.

 

"How much stronger?" asked Aumo.

 

"Strong enough to take more than one punch to take them out," said Ria suddenly, "I think this is a good time for you to test out some magic."

 

Although Aumo knew how to use Mana Manipulation, his parents had never taught him how to use magic. He was too young then, and people normally did not go to school until they were 12.

 

"I never used magic before," said Aumo.

 

"It's simple. Just as you use mana manipulation, imagine the spell you want to use. Since you can manipulate mana, you should be able to use all the elements," said Ria.

 

"All the elements? I heard that it was extremely rare among humans," said Aumo.

 

"Enough talking, the wolves are approaching," reminded LisiA.

 

The wolves slowly came closer, extremely cautious of the two. The two had invaded their territory, but at the same time they had a dangerous feeling to them.

 

"What spell should I use first?" Aumo didn't actually seem to care about the wolves, "Ah let me try a fireball."

 

Aumo held out a hand, and directed her palm at the pack of wolves that was approaching.

 

She imagined a ball of fire flying out of her hand.

 

You have learned Small Fireball! Mana Cost per use: 20.

 

A message pinged in her head, and a fireball that was around the size of an orange came flying out from her hand. It hit a wolf, and set it on fire.

 

The wolf yelped in pain and the other wolves near it backed away from it. 

 

"No explosion. I'm disappointed," said Aumo.

 

"No time for disappointments," said LisiA, "In this situation you should instead use something that can quickly finish them off like this."

 

LisiA gathered some water from the small lake, and threw it at the wolves. The water froze as it went through the air.

 

"It works without a water source, but uses more mana," said LisiA.

 

The ice impaled the poor wolf that was already on fire in the head and killed it instantly. The fire slowly died down after it died.

 

The other wolves paid no heed, and immediately charged at LisiA and Aumo. 

 

"I'll try that!" Aumo was more excited to try out the magic than care about the wolves.

 

Aumo imagined water gathering in the air from the lake, and freezing as it flies through the air.

 

You have learned Ice Throw! Mana Cost per use: 3-15.

 

The water froze into 3 shards of ice and went into two of the wolves that were running towards Aumo and LisiA. As it was Aumo's first attempt, the hits didn't kill but heavily injured the wolves.

 

LisiA quickly shot down a wolf that was getting extremely close with ice, and said, "Not bad for your first try." The wolf happened to also be the biggest one in the pack.

 

“Why didn’t you teach me magic before?” Aumo asked.

 

“You never asked,” replied LisiA, “You were always so busy researching that you didn’t look like you had time to learn anyway.”

 

There were still 5 wolves left, with two that were too injured to move. The 3 that could move didn’t know what to do as their leader was just killed.

 

“It seems that we killed their leader. Should we finish off the rest?” asked LisiA as she looked at the remaining wolves.

 

“Do they have monster cores? I need them.” said Aumo.

 

“They do. Let us finish them off,” replied LisiA, as she readied some more ice.

 

The remaining wolves knew that they were fighting a losing battle, but their pride didn’t allow them to run. They charged at the two and were quickly killed off.

 

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Some time passed, and the cores finished forming. LisiA and Aumo quickly extracted the cores from the bodies.

 

“These cores are a bit bigger than the ones found in goblins,” said Aumo as she picked one up.

 

“Core sizes vary based on the monster’s strength. The stronger the monster, the bigger the core,” said LisiA.

 

Aumo looked at the cores and saw that one was a bit bigger than the others.

“Then this would be from the pack’s leader?” said Aumo, as she held it in her hand. She looked at it and then quickly absorbed it.

 

You have gained 10 EXP!

 

“That gave as much as 5 goblin cores. Wow,” said Aumo, “Now for the remaining 6…”

 

“I think it is best if you leave a few. We need to sell some for money,” said LisiA.

 

“Ah okay,” said Aumo, and she picked out four of the six cores in front of her to absorb.

 

You have gained 15 EXP! You have leveled up!

 

“Now that I think about it, I haven’t looked at my status since yesterday. I wonder what it is now,” said Aumo.

 

Status:

 

-----------------------------

Name: Aumo

Core Level:3

XP: 10/50

Status: Normal

HP: 2081/2100

MP: 1040/1040 (+40)

MP Stored: 40

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Skills: Mana Manipulation, Mana Sight, Mana Sense, Levitation, Mana Vibration, Small Fireball, Ice Throw

Upgrades: None

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Note: I have an appointment soon so I decided that instead of being extremely late, it is better if it was early. I have no idea how I even got here, but I will soon have more time to plan things out. Maybe I should ask for ideas from some friends... 

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