I slowly opened my eyes. The bright lights made my head-splitting headache worse. I tried to cover my face with my right hand but the mere intention sent bolts of pain all over my body. I began remembering what had happened. The pain, the blood, everything that made my current situation happen. I was laying in a soft bed. A wooden roof was all I could see since turning my neck was just as painful as any other movement. A groan escaped me as breathing was difficult.
"You shouldn't move, it's a miracle you are still alive"
a man with a somewhat charming voice had spoken from not too far away. A tiny smile scaped since I couldn't move even if I wanted to.
"broken bones, severed muscle tissue, profuse internal and external bleeding"
his words made me realize how bad my situation had been, and it perfectly explained this horrible pain.
"five healers had to be constantly using medium grade healing spells to stabilize you for five hours"
His voice became rougher and it was clear how annoyed he was.
"I don't know why Diana was so stubborn about saving you but that doesn't matter"
So Dianna had been the one to convince them to use so many resources on me, I will have to thank her later.
"Either way, you shouldn't move so just go back to sleep"
He finished as I heard a door closing in the background.
It took a week for my full recovery and to tell the truth I was dumbfounded by it. No human being should be able to heal this quickly, even with healing magic it was absurd. I had fractures all over my body not to mention my muscles were mush and one week later I was as good as new albeit a few scars here and there. Even the healers were surprised by my quick recovery and asked me if that was my soul's ability. I was confused, and then they were. After a while, they explained what a soul ability is while being unable to believe I lacked this crucial piece of common sense. In summary, soul abilities are skills that are unique to one's soul. They even showed me their own so I would understand.
After I had healed completely they brought me into Dianna's office and left. The large woman was sitting in her chair while looking at some papers. Her large frame was as scary as always, but knowing she was a good person made me relax.
"Please take a seat, it has come to my attention you lack some extremely important knowledge, but that's for later right now I want you to give me a report on what happened in the forest"
Her tone was serious and her expression only helped to reinforce it.
I gave her the report to the best of my abilities, and as I finished she sighed deeply. Putting her hands on her head as to imply I had just given her a headache she sat there in silence. Perhaps it was only five minutes but for me, it felt like an hour. Then she spoke
she made a pause to imply how important those words were
"from what you have told me, I can deduce you suffered mana deficiency when you unknowingly used your soul ability, causing your already injured body to suffer collateral damage"
her words were heavy and her eyes wouldn't move away from my own.
A chill ran down my spine as her gaze studied my body language in search of any reaction, then she continued.
"I don't even know how you are still alive. The pool of blood, you were laying in when we found you, was already dry. With that kind of injury no human, no, no living being should survive for more than a few minutes without treatment. Yet you managed to stay alive for at least an hour"
She shook her head while dismissing the topic. From her expression, I understood the meaning of this conversation was to iterate how stupidly lucky I had been, even though I thought otherwise.
The next conversation was far more relaxed. She explained how the soul is an extremely important thing in this world and how one becomes stronger through it. Killing strengthens the soul, and the soul improves one's mind and body. When you kill, a piece of the creature's soul or aura is absorbed by your own, causing it to grow. The growth of the soul can be seen through the acquisition of new skills or the improvement of the physical constitution.
She also told me about the other races which were: Elves, BeastKin and Dwarfs as our allies and Demons, Hobgoblins, Giants and Dragon newts as our enemies. truth be told, the alliances weren't something permanent. As soon as the quote on quote enemies were defeated they would be broken and the war would spark between the previous members. Dianna's face was grim as she explained this, I think I had the same expression. This meant that at some point friends would become enemies and have to kill each other for no good reason, it was too cruel.
We kept silent for a while, and the conversation continued. Next topic was magic. It's a little complex but simple at the same time. Anyone can use it, however, you need to be compatible with it. For example, someone whose soul is compatible with fire element can still use water but it will be far too inefficient to do so. Then there is special magic, which requires a lot of mana, control and knowledge of the field to use like healing magic. There are also different ways to invoke magic. For example, chantles magic which only needs the will and mana of the user to work. Its output is smaller than chanted magic, however, its quick casting time makes it extremely useful in close-quarter combat. Chanted magic, on the other hand, has its output increased by the length and wording of the chant making it appropriate for large scale or high power attacks.
Dianna kept on briefing me on the common sense of this world as I kept asking. At some point, she asked me if I had been living under a rock since all of this information should be known to anyone, even kids. After explaining my circumstances she understood. Of course, I kept the part I was reincarnated a secret. I just used the -I have amnesia- excuse alongside the story Dan and Lizz had fabricated for me. I don't think Dianna believed me but seeing as I was unwilling to disclose that information she decided to let it go. After that our conversation continued for another hour or so. In the end, she told me to go and ask a man named George Powell for training, she explained to me he is a retired soldier and now works as an instructor for the guild. With that in mind, I set out to meet him.
It didn't take to long for me to find the place since it was just a block away. Entering the building my eyes were met by the sight of a neat reception with two doors at either side of the room. As I walked inside the receptionist gently asked what my business was, so I explained I was here as recommended by Diana to find George. The receptionist understood immediately and explaining a few things. This is a training facility for both magic and martial arts. The east wing, door on the left, is highly focused on magic while the west wing, the one on the right, is for martial arts training. She also told me about the daily fee or membership options. While one day of training was a silver coin, one could also get a membership which is paid monthly but overall is half the price of the daily payments.
Understanding this, I decided to buy a day to get an idea of what it was like. I will choose what to do from there. While paying I got instructed which path to take before setting off to the quote on quote classroom, I feel at school all over again. Entering the door there was a large man instructing a guy and a girl on a few things. Looking closer I realized who they were. I happily called to them as I came closer. The large man, who I can only guess is George, made a dissatisfied expression. I quickly apologised for the intrusion and explained my situation after which he seemed to relax. Dan's and Lizz's breathing was a little heavy because of the training, and taking my appearance as an excuse to rest they shoved the training onto me.
George was strict, however, his way of teaching was rather effective. It consisted of simply beating the crap out of his students while making their flaws obvious for them to see. It was painful, and some may call it a little cruel but effective nonetheless. After a while of simple sword training, he began instructing me on how to use my soul's ability. I failed miserably. I didn't know what my ability was and it frustrated me. He kept on going on and on about how I need to feel the magical power running through my body but it was useless. At some point, he began calling me useless too! I mean he was merciless during his training but going as far as insulting his students was a little too much. I began to slowly lose my cool as I could feel my anger building up. The stress of failure and pressure was already hard to deal with but the anger of being insulted for something that wasn't my fault was the last nail in the coffin.
I exploded in a rage and sent a punch with all my strength towards George. His face contorted a little as the impact sent a shock wave through his head and body before sending him flying. I wouldn't have expected my blow to land, ever. He was skilled to the point I was completely unable to even touch a single strand of his hair. I refuse to believe he had his guard down, there is no way a guy like him would let such a thing happen. Those thoughts and many others ran through my head as I saw his body slamming the wall. Then pain. A horrible sharp pain that ran through my entire body. It was just like before but less this time.
I felt dizzy as I fell down. my sight was blurry and my hearing was a mess too. It took a few seconds before I began to go back to normal. As I stood up I felt a chill running down my spine. George was standing not too far away from me with a serious face and a small strand of blood coming from his mouth. Dan and Lizz which were idly chatting in the corner stood up with their mouth open as wide as they could go. Silence filled the room, I could feel cold sweat forming on my forehead. Finally, George said
"You are an impressive young lady, that speed of yours is something to be afraid off, perhaps your soul ability is a body-related speed-enhancing one"
as he finishes a grin escaped his lips. I still felt dizzy and my body was sore but I felt glad he wasn't mad at me.