Fran’s reply to my query caught me off guard. The fact that she was interested in Dimension Magic wasn’t something I’d been aware of.
That said, I could easily see why she felt the way she did, as I shared her interest in it.
『You sure you don’t want to pump a few points into Divine Sword Techniques first?』
「More curious about Dimension Magic.」
「Door used by Beast Lord’s guard.」
『Oh nice. Looks like we’re on the same page then.』
Royce’s skill, Dimensional Gate, sounded like something one would probably learn if they pumped a few levels into Dimension Magic. It looked super convenient to use, and it seemed that having it could potentially make visiting Rumina a hell of a lot easier.
Long Jump was nice and all, but it was too limited in its use.
The number of things that bothered us about it numbered two, with the first being its carrying capacity and the second being its ease of use, or rather, its lack thereof. It’s carrying capacity was limited by mass, and was actually so lacking that it couldn’t even allow us to warp Urushi unless he shrank himself down. Even then, the distance that could be teleported was inversely proportional with the mass, so we weren’t really able to go all that far. The furthest we could go, even without Urushi, was like five or six floors worth of distance at best; we weren’t able to instantly warp ourselves over to Rumina’s place of residence. The ease of use part pertained to the fact the only objects that could get warped were ones the caster was in direct contact with.
Dimension Gate looked like the type of skill that didn’t really care about the mass of whatever it transported so long as you plopped a pair of doors down. It didn’t look like the type of skill that really had much use in battle, but, man did it make getting around a helluva lot easier. The convenience factor alone made it look like something that was honestly well worth investing in.
『Alright. I guess I’ll try feeding Dimension Magic a bit and seeing what happens.』
I only had 20 self evolution points remaining, so I decided to give the skill one level at a time.
「That’s level 2… Looks like I learned how to do two new things?」
Pointing the skill once had allowed me to obtain a skill by the name of Turn Shield. It allowed one to block long ranged attacks and disrupt enemies by twisting space itself. The amount of magical energy the skill consumed scaled with the size of the spatial distortion created. Unleashing something on a scale large enough to completely engulf my surroundings seemed like it would end up eating somewhere in the neighborhood of 2k mana. The skill seemed pretty decent, and appeared to have a whole slew of different use cases.
The other spell I learned was named Beacon. It allowed me to sense the areas in which and objects on which I cast it, even from a fair distance away. It was pretty convenient, but I didn’t immediately see why it was something I got from leveling up Dimension Magic of all things. I only came to realize why it was classified as it was after giving its parent skill another level.
Getting Dimension Magic to level 3 unlocked a skill by the name of Apport. Apport allowed me to pull anything within sight towards me. It didn’t seem all that special at first glance, but thinking about it made me to realize that moving an object towards oneself was actually a step up on moving oneself over to an object.
Combining it with Beacon only made it even more impressive; Apport became able grab anything I wanted so long as it happened to have a beacon placed on it ahead of time. This use case immediately caused me to realized that Beacon was capable of working with more than just Apport. It also enhanced Long Jump, and allowed me to teleport even greater distances with it. Beacon had seemed rather plain at first, but it turned out to be something hella useful.
Apport wasn’t all I got from level 3 Dimension Magic. I also managed to learn Over Haste, which was basically just the same thing as regular Haste, save for the fact that it had a bit of an AOE to it.
Only after pointing Dimension Magic all the way to level 4 did we finally get the skill we’d been gunning for.
『Sweet, looks like I finally learned how to use Dimension Gate.』
Dimension Gate’s ability was to create a pair of doors. The first would always appear at the caster’s present location. The second, on the other hand, was up to the caster’s discresion, but could only be placed in an areas that lay within the caster’s memory. Anything could pass through the gate, so long as it fit, which was just perfect seeing as how the gate’s size would grow based on the amount of magical energy used. I was capable of creating one big enough to fit Urushi at his largest if I didn’t mind throwing in all my mana.
Our skill, Dimension Gate, was actually slightly different from the Dimensional Gate skill that we’d seen on Royce. Though their names were similar, the two actually functioned completely differently, as ours basically just ripped a hole in space, whereas Royce’s seemed to operate based on a different sort of mechanism altogether.
Dimension Gate was like every other spell derived from the Dimension Magic family; its performance could be improved upon through the use of Beacon.
Specifically, Dimension Gate was capable of opening doors to places I’d never been before so long as there happened to be a beacon present — we’d confirmed this functionality by casting Beacon on a random rock and having Urushi carry it off somewhere.
The spell seemed like it could be really handy so long as we were careful and placed a few beacons at a few critical junctions ahead of time.
Under normal circumstances, Beacons would expire after a few days. The caster could extend this preset duration by increasing the amount of mana used in the spell’s initial casting. It seemed like I’d be able to leave a beacon somewhere for about a year so long as I put every single last drop of mana I had into crafting it.
I figured it’d be a pretty good idea for us to just casually dump a beacon somewhere in Rumina’s living quarters in order to make it easier for us to visit her whenever. The gate’s size would decrease as distance to its target location increased, but it didn’t seem like it’d be too hard for us to somehow fit ourselves through it regardless.
The other spell I was granted for leveling Dimension Magic to level 4 was called Slow Mine, and more or less allowed us to deploy triggerable debuff zones. They were hard to detect, and could be placed both on the ground and in the air. Our ability to deploy multiple at once seemed pretty useful for allowing us to catch someone off guard.
『Looks like we managed to get the skill we wanted. Did you happen to have anything else in mind?』
Each level in Dimension magic ate up 3 self evolution points, so getting the skill all the way to level 4 left us with only 11 remaining.
I mean, we could’ve just kept pumping points into Dimension Magic regardless, but we did always have the option of just doing something else instead. It wasn’t like we were locked into it or anything.
『Why that one in particular?』
「Beast Lord had. Might have connection with evolution.」
Looking at the Beast Lord’s stat sheet had more or less convinced us that Vigour Mastery was basically an upgraded version of Vigour Manipulation. The reason she wanted it was pretty clear as well. She wanted get all the skills the Beast Lord had that we didn’t, as it was possible that evolution was something linked to a skill.
『Sure. Let’s give it a shot then.』
I spent 5 points on Vigour Manipulation, which in turn unlocked Vigour Mastery as expected.
『So? How do you feel?』
It turned out that Vigour Mastery didn’t have anything to do with evolution. However, it had a clear, immediate effect nonetheless. The manner in which my mana flowed through my body seemed to change. It became much smoother, and I could feel my detection-based skills growing much more sensitive as a result.
But that wasn’t all.
『I feel like my body just got easier to control.』
I activated Shape Shift and transformed a part of my body into a series of threads. The threads seemed quite easy to manipulate; I’d managed to use them to form a number of different geometrical patterns with ease. I then split my blade into ten smaller pieces, and moved them all around simultaneously. I was able to do what the System Announcer did to the Legendary Skeletons did back when we fought a whole bunch of them at once. That is, I was able to form each into a thin but solid thread and thrust them in different directions.
My blade deformed and moved exactly how I wanted it to; I became capable of manipulating it to much finer a degree, and at a much lower mana cost to boot.
Vigour Mastery hadn’t seemed like anything too fancy, but it turned out to be useful as hell.
『Want to just hold onto the last few points for now?』
「Nn. Sounds good.」