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Seeing their companion run into an invisible wall, the duo chasing after the young girl promptly halted in their tracks. The burliest among them then whirled around, eyes bloodshot as he shouted, "Whose the asshole gettin' in our way!?"
Much to the duo's surprise, Vahn had already appeared right behind them. Thus, the moment they turned around, he grabbed both of their faces before promptly planting them into the ground. An invisible force attempted to protect their bodies from harm, but, thanks to his Source Energy, both ended up being knocked out with their heads buried in the cobbled street.
After taking a moment to confirm the men weren't dead, Vahn dusted off his hands before looking towards the stunned Sarina and asking, "Shall we catch up to our little friend…?"
Startling back to awareness, Sarina quickly ran over to Vahn's side, grabbing his hand as if it was the most natural thing in the world to do.
Smiling wryly in response to the young girl's brazenness, Vahn attempted to teleport only to sense that the surrounding space solidified the moment he tried. This caused his brows to furrow slightly, but, rather than trying to force his way through the void, he just used an advanced form of Shundo to instantaneously cover the distance the girl had run.
With her thoughts revolving around escape, the auburn-haired girl had yet to take notice of the fact that her would-be assailants had already been dealt with. Instead, she continued to push through the crowd, each step leaving behind a bloody footprint that caused intense, biting pain to shoot up her legs.
Unable to hold them back any longer, a tremendous volume of tears and sweat marred the girl's face as an irresistible urge to just stop and rest began to consume her. The only thing that kept her moving forward was fear. Fear that should she stop, her life would no longer be her own. She would either have to spend the rest of her days as someone else's slave or they would forcibly appropriate her Gift. Either way, her life would be over.
"I just need…to find some sand…"
As the pained utterance had merely been intended to compel herself forward, the auburn-haired girl never expected someone to suddenly appear in front of her, gently arresting her momentum as a deep yet velvety smooth voice answered, "You need to calm down…"
Since it was usually painful to run headlong into another person, the auburn-haired girl was more than a little confused by how soft the collision had been. Even more confusing was the comfortable energy that had suffused through her body, instantaneously erasing her fatigue. At the same time, an itchy feeling transmitted from the soles of her feet, scabs quickly forming across several wounds before flaking away to reveal tender yet undamaged skin.
"You're safe now…"
Without stepping away from the owner of the voice, the auburn-haired girl tentatively looked up, her heart skipping a beat as she found a tall and handsome man looking down at her with a smile. The sun was also shining high in the sky, so, from her perspective, a literal halo had formed around his head as his glowing green eyes cut through the shadows cast over his face…
Noticing the girl's eyes roll back, Vahn smoothly scooped her into a Princess Carry before she could faint and collapse to the ground. This caused Sarina to puff out her cheeks slightly, but, by the time he had looked back, she had regained her smile, suggesting, "We should find a bench in the shade."
Nodding in affirmation, Vahn surprised Sarina quite a bit by extending an invisible 'hand' to caress the top of her head. Then, before she could make sense of what had happened, he used the same hand to grasp hers, gently pulling her along with a wry yet amused smile on his face…
Since it would have been a little too troublesome to allow the girl to use his lap as a pillow, Vahn produced a memory foam pillow from thin air before further surprising Sarina as he pulled a cold compress and several other items from his Inventory. He even earned a few curious glances from various passersby, as, even in the Divine Realm, Gifts related to Spatial or Interdimensional Storage were remarkably rare.
Unable to contain her curiosity, Sarina, sitting immediately to Vahn's left, decided to ask, "Just what is your Gift? Could it be…you have more than one…?"
Though it wasn't unheard of, quite the contrary, it was uncommon for people who had just arrived in the Divine Realm to possess numerous Gifts. Summoning someone with just a single Gift took an unreasonable amount of resources. Thus, unless Vahn had 'strayed' into the Divine Realm, the only way he could possess numerous Gifts was if someone unreasonably powerful had both summoned and abandoned him…
After folding the cold compress and placing it on the sleeping girl's forehead, Vahn elected to tease Sarina a bit by musing, "You would have a harder time ascertaining what I can't do than discovering what I can…"
Punctuating his words, Vahn created a spherical pill in his left hand, its surface covered in a peculiar rainbow hue that obscured countless runic symbols. Had this been a lower realm, its presence alone would have been enough to cause the flow of time in their surroundings to stagnate. Instead, it just shimmered with a hazy light that caused it to appear as though it was moving in slow motion as he extended it towards Sarina and said, "Eat this. It will unlock the potential hidden within your body. I don't mind helping you grow stronger, but it will be your own efforts that allow you to stand at the peak…"
Since she had already decided to follow someone who was basically a stranger, Sarina saw no harm in accepting 'candy' from them. Thus, without any real hesitation, she picked up the rainbow-hued pill and scrutinizing it like a piece of vibrant opal before tossing it to the back of her throat. To her surprise, she didn't actually have to swallow anything, as, the moment the pill entered her mouth, it 'melted' into a liquid form of light that instantaneously spread through her mouth before suffusing throughout the rest of her body.
Alleviating some of the girl's confusion, Vahn explained, "It's my own version of a Heaven-Grade Pill known as the Innate Awakening Pill. Innates are essentially the framework of the abilities referred to as Gifts in the Divine Realm. Contrary to what others would have you believe, these can't actually be taken away. In the absolute worst-case scenario, they can be sealed away or weakened. To that end, the Gifts in this world are basically just pale imitations of a person's Innate, not the ability itself…"
As he was saying these things, Vahn was also looking over Sarina's Status to confirm whether or not the pill had worked. It only had a 10% chance of success, but, even if it failed, it would still awaken a unique ability related to the Innate's awakening. This would drastically increase Sarina's power, and, so long as he guided her properly, it was only a matter of time before her Innates awakened…
Race: High Human
Parameters: [Transcendental Path to Heaven]
Innate(s): [Descendant of Hermes: F], [Talaria: (sealed)]
Gift(s): [Don't Shoot the Messenger: D]
Talent(s): [Language Comprehesion: F], [Reading: F], [Writing: F], [Cooking: F], [Cleaning: F], [Farming: F], [Sewing: F], [Arithmetic: F]…
[Don't Shoot the Messenger]
Function: Causes non-homing projectile attacks to curve around the user.
Though Vahn wasn't entirely sure how each of the parameters broke down into quantifiable values, it was easy to understand from Sarina's Status that she was, basically, just a normal girl. Sure, being a descendant of Hermes was rather impressive in the lower realms, but, here in the Little Garden, it wasn't an exaggeration to say that the majority of citizens were the descendent of some wayward Hero, God, Divine Spirit, or something similar…
Name: Vahn Aldrnari Mason
Age: 0, Ageless
Race: True Dragon, (sealed)
Parameters: [Transcendental Path to Heaven]
Divinity: Creation(B), Destruction(C), Space(C), Time(C), Forging(B), Sword(B), Spear(D), Archery(E), Life(B), Death(D), Nature(A), Wisdom(S), Sun(D), Moon(D), Sky(C), Sex(A)
Soul Tier: 5
Innate(s): [Will of the Emperor: SSS], [Rakshasa Body: SS->A], [Keeper of the Akashic Tome: B->C], [Eyes of Truth: A->C], [Universal Mind: B], [Actualization: (-)]
Gift(s): [Authority: ???], [Hands of Nirvana: S], [Breath of Life: B], [Touch of Death: D], [Enkidu: C], [Lævateinn: S], [Alpha: A], [Beta: B], [Gamma: B], [Delta: B]…(Note: This list would literally be longer than several chapters combined…)
Talent(s): (Note: There is very little that Vahn is unable to do and nothing he can't do…so…yeah…)
Despite feeling suffocatingly weak right now, Vahn's Status showed that he was anything but. His Wisdom, in particular, was a phenomenal value that seemed to defy common sense. Then again, he was technically an amalgamation of the knowledge and experiences of various Templates, several of which were derived from Sis. He had also 'downloaded' hundreds of thousands of grimoires to his mind, and, thanks to the Law of Identity, he had even memorized some of the contents contained within the Sacred Tome…
("I never even considered myself a God of Wisdom, yet it is apparently my most comprehensive Divinity…you learn something new every day…")
Smiling in response to Sis's witty retort, Vahn was about to issue his own when Sarina suddenly pulled out a pale green tarot card, smiling as she exclaimed, "It actually worked…!"
Noticing the curious and greedy gazes of several pedestrians the moment Sarina pulled out the card, Vahn created an illusory barrier with a wave of his hand, effectively erasing their presence in the eyes of others as he said, "You shouldn't take that out in public. They might not be able to take it from you, but that won't stop people from challenging you to a Gift Game…"
Though Vahn didn't actually know what the card was, it didn't take long for the Loi-chan, appearing as Shiroyasha, to explain things. It was apparently known as a Fragment of Laplace, and, as could be expected, it was basically the manifestation of a person's Gift.
Having learned this, Vahn imagined his own Gifts manifesting, and, as a result, he ended up with a veritable mountain of cards erupting from his chest like a broken faucet. This caused the previously excited Sarina to adopt a flawless deadpan, as, even after a full minute had passed, cards continued to fly out of him without end.
With his enhanced senses, Vahn was able to see that the vast majority of these Gift Cards were the manifestation of knowledge, skills, and abilities possessed by his Templates. This included hundreds of thousands of individual grimoires, Zanpakuto, legendary weapons, powerful armors, and a whole host of other abilities. If he hadn't turned it off, the entire plaza might have been filled with cards by the time the flow began to reduce. As for when it would end, well, even he didn't know the answer to that question…
Seeing the veritable mountain of cards that had 'leaked' from Vahn's body, Sarina vaguely recalled his previous remark about it being harder to ascertain what he couldn't do. She had thought he was bragging at the time, but, now that she saw this absolutely ludicrous sight, the realization that she might have fallen in love with someone completely ridiculous had cemented itself within her mind…
(A/N: Alternate Titles: 'Happy birthday to the ground…!','Bruh…that Luck parameter…','I imagined Shiroyasha performing a spit take when she saw this taking place xD…')
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