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Sovereign of the Karmic System - Chapter 631 Hope for a Better Future
631 Hope for a Better Future
“This is yours now.” Daniel said while handing the fist-sized planet to his companion, who looked at it with confusion.
Roley, unsure of whether this was some sort of test or not, did not take the planet right away. But when Daniel let go of it, leaving it to float in space by itself, he immediately reached for it. He knew how valuable the object was, despite Daniel seemingly having no interest in it.
As he held it in his hands, he could not help but feel an immense affinity with the object. He knew that it was a construct made by Daniel’s karmic system, but for some reason, he believed that he could merge with it, and that it was incredibly suited to whatever kind of being the elemental system had turned him into.
While the fist-sized planet rested on his hand, almost eager to become part of him, Roley turned to look at Daniel, whose interest was dedicated to the lone black castle that had separated from the planet the moment the latter had shrunk to its current size. “Mine? Wha-Why are you giving me your planet?” He asked, still dumbfounded.
Without bothering to look back, Daniel shook his head in disagreement before responding, “It’s not a planet. It’s just a treasure of my old system. And yes, I am giving it to you.” His tone was stable and detached, showing that he truly had no lingering attachment towards the item, nor towards the memories he shared with it.
“You didn’t answer my question. Why are you giving it to me?” Roley once again asked as his fingers unconsciously tightened their grip around the small orb. It almost felt as if the planet had become magnetic, and his fingers could not part from it anymore.
This time, Daniel turned towards Roley to answer. “Do you feel anything odd about it?” He inquired in a manner that made it abundantly clear that there was a correct answer he was hoping Roley could come up with.
Roley examined the miniature planet which, shrunk to the size of a fist, did not possess large mountains, deep crevices or bottomless oceans. It was, in fact, quite smooth, like a round stone with the occasional small bump and bit of water that, unbound by gravity, had started to hover above the planet’s crust, threatening to part from it and fly away at any moment.
For a few moments Roley began to ponder about the questions, reaching a conclusion soon after, “It’s a construct of perfect elemental essences which, borrowing time, sound and space from the surrounding universe, makes a perfect habitat for life.”
Daniel’s lips curved downwards and his brows rose, as he acknowledged the accuracy of Roley’s answer. Yet, he did not appear to be satisfied by it. “That is true. I remember needing a minimum comprehension of spatial essence to sustain that world, when it was yet to be a world. I also remember how, once it was fully formed, I realized that I could borrow those essences from the multiverse’s natural mana. It made things much easier..” He explained, as his eyes rested on the ball which did not feel his anymore.
As his gaze switched from the miniature planet to Roley’s confused face, however, he added, “But you are looking at it from the wrong perspective. What is it not?”
Roley once again turned to look down at the small planet he was holding, and suddenly, a shiver rushed down his spine. “It’s not primordial.” He muttered to himself in a ghastly tone that Daniel heard clearly, causing a faint smile of satisfaction to appear on his face. “You.. You think that by giving me this, I can turn it into a primordial habitat..”
Daniel nodded, then added with a matter-of-fact tone, “Provided that you don’t assimilate it, and take ownership of it.. It will change into your comprehension of the elements, and turn into a physical construct of primordial mana.”
Suddenly, the item Roley was holding felt incredibly more precious than it had before. Before he had been holding something extremely useful, and dear to the people he considered friends and family.. But now, he was holding the key to his people’s future. A solution to poverty, an end to wars, a promise of peace and a cure of famine and sickness all in one.. That was how valuable this item had become to him.
Yet, that was not all. After the initial shock, Roley’s expression deepened, as he realized the true potential of such an item. A realization that he could hardly put into words due to how life-changing it was.
The saddest reality of Roley’s path and purpose, was the fact that those whom he was fighting for, were the weakest of sentient life. They were conscious, and while their natural behavior had been hammered into a pacifist mold, they could be trained and conditioned into becoming as combative as any beast or cultivator. Their true problem was not their character, or even their numbers. It was the impurity of the mana which they were born into.
Many could righteously claim that elementals were much more similar to the aspects of existence than beasts or cultivators, for they too were born from the power they represented.
The difference between the two lay in what birthed their consciousnesses, which, in the case of the aspects of existence, was the sheer amount of existential power present within the multiverse. What birthed an elemental, on the other hand, was the comprehension of the element, which extended outwards from treasures of nature like the spores of a mushroom, deepening the comprehension of the surrounding objects, and eventually, allowing them to form a consciousness.
Most scholars, when asked to explain what this process entailed, would usually use the same example. A drop of water was nothing more than a drop of water as it fell from the sky, but that changed once it landed into an ocean, where that drop would assimilate the concepts of water’s interaction with salt and other minerals, currents, and heat.
A simple concept many had understood, but they had also realized, possessed a regressive form of evolution to it, for it gradually watered down the nature of mana from its purest form. After all, while an expert could teach one hundred percent of what they had learned, how much knowledge would their students retain? And how much of that would those students impart to their own students?
The Elementals weren’t weak because they were peaceful, they were weak because they were born from nothing, like humans and beasts.. But their path towards power was infinitely longer than theirs.
However, a primordial habitat could change that.
Not only would the living elementals be able to deepen their comprehension and evolve to the highest level, but their newborns too, not having to spawn from imperfect elements, could be born as primordial elementals. Young and naive, but holding a power that only a handful of their kind possessed across the multiverse.
As Roley looked at the sphere, he realized that this gift was not only for him, but for the whole kind he had vowed to protect. But while before this protection would have inevitably come to an end at the time of his death, this planet had given him hope for the future. A future where the elementals would be powerful enough to survive on their own.
At the thought of this, Roley’s body started to shake, as an indescribable feeling of excitement rushed through his body. He was extremely grateful.. More than he could express with simple words, so he did not speak. Instead, he stopped struggling against the desire to merge with this treasure, and suddenly, a window appeared in his mind.
This window posed a simple question to the wielder of the Elemental system, and that question, was whether he wished to absorb the relic into his system, and obtain one of its powers at random, or whether he wished to gain ownership over it.
Immediately Roley remembered Daniel’s words, and picked the option that would allow him to gain ownership over it.
As soon as the decision was made, the translucent window disappeared. Roley looked down on the fist-sized planet, and felt that his bond to it had deepened to an incredible degree. In fact, it almost felt as if the planet was an extension of his body, and he had full control over it. He could control its structure, its size, and the elements it possessed. A world of his creation that only he had the right to rule.
“So this is what it feels like..” he muttered to himself as he remembered how Daniel had controlled it before. Then, curious about the extent of his control, Roley injected a bit of his essence into it in an attempt to reshape its structure.
This bit of power, albeit small in quantity and not too powerful, merged into the planet like drizzle into dried up soil.. And then, the planet came to life. The mountains, the rivers, the woods and winds-The shade that gave contrast and light that gave color.. They had once looked artificial, like a planet-sized terrarium, but now, they felt real and true.. Just like any other planet.
The biggest difference, however, was the elemental power the planet emitted. A power that was now full and complete, and that relayed the primordial nature of the elements. A truly perfect world for his people to inhabit. A home.
Roley held the planet in his hand, and felt incredibly moved.. Yet somewhat sad.
Two thousand years. That was how long he had invested into the protection and development of the elemental army that followed him. A time in which he had lost many of them due to poor judgment and his own weakness.
And yet, Daniel, whom he knew cared very little for his people’s survival, had been able to do more for them than he had in so much time. He had saved them from Horror’s clutches, and gave them a hope that was far beyond what they could have even imagined.
As he thought of this, he could not help but feel a degree of shame.
For a long minute, he held his now most important possession, not daring to look back at Daniel, for he did not wish to meet his gaze. A faint dispirited smile appeared on his face, as he thought, “My efforts, in the end, amount to nothing.” As he started to wonder whether Daniel should be the one following his path, his eyes moved on his old friend, who had now entered the black castle, seemingly uninterested by his actions or state of mind.
This lack of interest did not escape Roley’s attention, causing the thought that Daniel could fulfill his goal better than he could, to be put to the back of his mind. He then pocketed the small planet, and followed Daniel into his exploration of the black castle.
As he caught up to the indifferent and aloof aspect of existence, moments later, Roley asked, “I will ask this again.. One last time. Why did you give it to me?” The question did not come from a place of suspicion, but one of genuine hope. A hope that maybe Daniel truly wanted to help him, and that something of their old connection was left under the many layers of indifference.
Of course, Daniel knew that the way Roley had posed this question was not to imply that he had to answer, or else. He knew that if he did not wish to answer, Roley could not force him to, so he was only given the chance to. One that Daniel did not take advantage of, choosing to remain quiet.
In reality, the reason why Daniel had gifted his former planet to Roley was not to aid him in his quest. In fact, he cared little for it. What he truly wanted was for Roley’s system to develop, and evolve, bringing him closer to becoming an aspect of existence.
But that, he believed Roley did not need to know.
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