Chapter 853 The Way Of Water
Eren closed his eyes.
Outskirts of the Moonlight Death Forest.
The morning sun was shining brightly in the sky. But the winter winds carried chilliness with them. The autumn leaves were falling off trees, covering the ground with reddish brown fall.
Kirin and Alephee were watching Eren from a distance as he was practicing his Rootless ranking technique. A technique that did not belong to any particular element, battle style, class, or any particular aspect of being a ranker. And in doing so, it belonged to every school, class, and style.
Eren was sitting on a stone platform in a meditative pose. The trees and foliage around him were getting rustled by the chilly winds. But even more chilling was the chilliness the spirit beast around him was radiating.
The blue-scaled fish was swimming in the air around him. Sometimes in circles. Other times, in weird patterns. The fish was free to swim away from him. And nobody stopped him from getting close to him.
Eren’s lightning, fire, water, and other elemental attainments were manifesting around him. But they couldn’t hurt the spirit beast or stop it from moving.
‘ɴᴇᴡ ɴᴏᴠᴇʟ ᴄʜᴀᴘᴛᴇʀs ᴀʀᴇ ᴘᴜʙʟɪsʜᴇᴅ ᴏɴ Novel B(i)n. ᴄᴏᴍ’,
The spirit beast would occasionally turn waves of fire into drops of firey water. Lightning streaks would be converted into a mass of liquid electricity before the beast swam in it.
The spirit beast is completely attuned to its surroundings. It swam peacefully around Eren as they both deepened their bonds between them.
Under Alephee’s guidance, Eren was able to form a connection with the spirit beast. He could have devoured the spirit beast whole using his Abilities. As the conscious fragment of the way of water, he could have gained everything the spirit beast held, but the homunculus advised against it.
She told him that keeping the spirit beast with him had more benefits for Eren. That’s because the spirit beast was constantly learning from its surroundings. Each moment would deepen its understanding of the element it was born from.
The connection Eren shared with the spirit beast was faint and almost superficial. The spirit beasts did not possess physical bodies, so there was no blood ritual involved. They were also not summoned creatures brought into existence by the summoner. So one couldn’t really control them the way they wanted to.
Because of the insights they offered, spirit beasts stayed with their alleged captors who attracted them with their elemental attainments. And they would share the insights they gained with their captors through a subtle mental connection.
Eren could feel that the blue-scaled fish had basic primary responses and a semblance of feelings that are born out of the need to deepen its understanding of the way of water. Apart from these, the beast was like a blank slate. Existence in its purest form, unadorned by anything or anyone. Only tainted a bit because of the mana signature Eren had imbued inside it.
The spirit beast saw that Eren’s water-element manifestation had become prominent in his technique’s cycle and its eyes sparkled. It swam toward Eren and immersed itself in the shapeless mass of water that was forming around him.
Eren felt like he was immersed in a huge mass of water that had no limitations. It had no dimensions, no entry, and no way to exit. A boundless form of water that contained a myriad of mysteries.
Eren felt like he was surrounded by the chill of tiny fish that swam around him in rhythmic patterns. It felt like they were moving according to the whims of water without making rational decisions. As a result, numerous fish moved at the same time in such synchronicity that they didn’t bump into each other despite being fast and extremely agile.
‘ᴛʜɪs ᴄʜᴀᴘᴛᴇʀ ɪs ᴜᴘᴅᴀᴛᴇ ʙʏ N ovelBi(n)’,
These tiny fish taught Eren the flexibility of the water element. How malleable it was and how inclusive it could be. It was through the school of fish that he learned that water is plural in nature, even though it appears to be one and united. It could also diversify itself because of changes introduced by external factors.
Eren felt like some giant sea creatures had come to meet him. He wanted to be intimidated by their size. And he thought he would after feeling so defenseless in the water. But for some reason, he kept his eyes closed and found the experience to be peaceful.
Eren felt that the giant sea creatures around him had not threatened him. They had come to teach him about the weight and heaviness of the water. It represented how terrifying water could get if its volume exceeded a certain limit.
Water can be very destructive, even though it is known as the source of life.
Eren felt like he was experiencing many things at once. The presence around him changed and the water around him rippled with many concepts. Some he knew by definition but didn’t fully understand. Some he was made to realize afresh.
In one moment, Eren felt like his blood was boiling. In the next moment, his blood was going to freeze in the chilliness that the water brought about. Even though the water’s temperature was bone-freezing, the water itself did not turn into ice. It was as if the element could let go of the restrictions placed on it by the world using its own means.
Eren felt like this was how he wanted to be. Being part of the system but not restricted by its limitations.
The immersive kaleidoscope of life was based on the way water kept on changing around Eren, making him more profound in the element. His water-element attainment was catching up with his other main attainments at unbelievable rates.
Eren gained two Aspects of water at the same time as his understanding of water reached a tipping point. One was the chill it brought forth. The other was its boiling point.
The butcher felt like even with these two Aspects, he could sum up everything the element of water represented in all worlds just fine. Some elements just contained universal truths that were bound to remain unchanged no matter which world tried to capture them in their hold.