Translated by: Taffy, Deceptioning, FatChinee
Edited by: Based Jessica, PMBL, buniquename
Chapter 29 – The Swamp Technique
With the things regarding their daily lives finally resolved, Suo Jia once again shifted his focus to his studies. He didn’t study for the sake of others, but rather because the instructor had finally begun to teach the mage apprentices the last of the foundations of water magic: the Swamp Technique!
Standing on the podium, the female lecturer explained in a serious manner, “Regarding the Swamp Technique, it is not as simple as mixing the water and earth elements together. Strictly speaking, the Swamp Technique is not actually a water control technique; rather, it falls under the magic control category. The reason that this technique is available for mage apprentices is because the Swamp Technique is cast through the formation of water.”
While speaking, the female lecturer pulled out her staff from behind her. The tip of her staff lit up with a faint blue light that bubbled outwards. She pointed it towards the magic target in front of the podium.
Under everyone’s watchful gazes, the podium remained undisturbed; absolutely nothing had happened. Seeing this, all of the students began to doubt their eyes. Could it be that the activation had failed?
Despite seeing the students’ puzzled expressions, the beautiful female lecturer did not explain any further. Instead, she directly pulled out a small stone from within the podium and casually threw it towards the target.
There was a ‘peng’ sound and the pebble did not bounce back up like one would expect it to, but instead got trapped within the table. Under everyone’s gaze, the pebble gradually sank, and eventually disappeared.
Seeing the dumbstruck students, the female lecturer slightly laughed: “If you only look at the surface of the light, then you will never be be able to predict this result at all. Unless you actually step on it, besides from water mages, there are no people that can predict exactly where the Swamp Technique was activated. In other words, the Swamp Technique is the best type of hidden trap!”
After a slight pause, the female lecturer continued: “The Swamp Technique has two main advantages: one, its covertness, and two, its high viscosity. Even though from the surface, it simply looks like normal ground, in reality beneath that piece of ground is a hidden water vortex that rotates at high speeds while carrying along the dirt!”
Everyone knows that mud by itself has a low viscosity; however once the mud is rotated in a clockwise direction, the viscosity of the mud is always increasing. In other words, the viscosity of the Swamp Technique is its second major characteristic! Once trapped within the vortex, no matter how powerful you are, escaping will be a difficult task!
Even though this is only an auxiliary water technique, it has many uses. It is definitely not any weaker than an attack-type technique. Once practiced to a high enough level, it can kill people without spilling a single drop of blood. Even enemies with great strength can be silently and stealthily killed.
The Swamp Technique is something that all water mages have to learn. Once learned, it becomes a lifelong advantage. Amateurs can use it in simple ways, while masters can use it in advanced ways.
The spell array for the Swamp Technique is more complicated than that of the Moisture Technique. It needs to be drawn with concentration for a long time for it to be activated. Even those that can temporarily store the magic diagram within their staffs cannot easily activate it.
Suo Jia calculated for a bit; previously, he needed around 3 seconds to activate the Moisture Technique. However… using the same drawing speed to draw the Swamp Technique spell diagram, he needed at least 9 seconds. Moreover… the Swamp Technique’s diagram was three times more complicated to accurately draw. To be able to complete it without the slightest deviation was too difficult!
Seeing the students drawing the Swamp Technique arrays over and over again by copying the diagram in the magic book, the female lecturer gave a stern look: “It has already been half a year since everyone has entered Holy Light. Learning the Swamp Technique within half a year is a pretty good improvement. It is obvious to anyone that everyone has been putting in great effort daily, and… Teacher is very happy about this.”
Hearing the teacher’s praise, the girls began to smile in delight. Seeing the children’s smiles, the female lecturer continued: “However, at this point, I must remind everyone: even though everyone’s improvement has been very fast, the apprentice period of a water mage is without question, when everyone is still at their weakest!”
All the girls’ smiles froze on their faces. Everyone understood that even though the words were difficult to accept, the teacher was right. Despite the fact that they had improved so quickly, the period of being only a water mage apprentice meant they were still inferior; their attack powers were still weak.
The female lecturer continued sternly: “After another half year, the annual Grand Holy Light Martial Arts Convention will be held. Before this, I hope that everyone continues to study diligently. Even if you don’t win, you must make sure you don’t lose too badly!”
“Ai… ” Hearing the female lecturer’s words, all the girls sighed. Historically, water mage apprentices had never gotten first place in the mage apprentices’ competition. Compared to the fire, wind, and earth mage apprentices, the water mage’s attacks were only light tickles.
Silently looking at the listless girls, Suo Jia did not agree with their thoughts. Although the water-style magics did not have much killing power, Suo Jia did not believe that water mages were naturally weak. As long as one was willing to put in effort, a solution always existed!
As he observed quietly, Suo Jia’s eyes lit up as he noticed two girls with a fighting nature amongst the hundreds of students. One of the two was the tempered Xue Er, and the other girl was someone that Suo Jia had never bothered to pay attention to before.
She didn’t have her head up high, but he could tell she was a slender girl with silverish blue hair. She had a very small face with just as thin lips, and just looking at her gave people the chills.
The reason Suo Jia had never really noticed her before was because she normally did not speak much. No matter what, she was always very cool and calm. In Suo Jia’s memories, he had never once seen the silver-haired girl laugh before.
Just as Suo Jia was silently observing this, Xue Er loudly said to the teacher: “Teacher, I don’t think that we will definitely lose. Before the competition starts, nobody can determine the outcome; this is something my father has always taught me!”
“Eh!” After hearing Xue Er, the female instructor opened her mouth as if she wanted to argue, but then changed her mind suddenly, “Yes, you are right, I spoke wrongly. Actually… one mustn’t give up until the final hour and continue to give it all they’ve got. As long as people persevere, then they can overcome any situation!”
Hearing the teacher’s words, all the girls immediately recovered their energy. They began to excitedly talk amongst each other again. Seeing that the girls that had recovered their spirits, the female lecturer secretly wiped the sweat off her brow. She had definitely not fulfilled her duty as a teacher; how could she teach ideas such as these to the children? Even though losing was an undeniable reality, if these children had gotten used to the habit of giving up before even trying, she would have completely ruined their futures!
While the teacher inwardly rejoiced at her own words, a gloomy but cold voice called out, “Teacher, I don’t agree with what you’re saying. Even at the very last moment, one absolutely shouldn’t give up their pursuit for victory. Victory isn’t something that can be easily attained, it has to be achieved and protected with one’s life!”
“Xi!” Due to the sound of a cold voice, the whole class immediately calmed down. All of the people stared at the silver-haired girl sitting in the corner in surprise.
Slightly narrowing his eyes, Suo Jia could detect a chilling ambience from the girl’s voice. Suo Jia knew that she had definitely experienced something before that caused her to have such a cool and direct demeanor! Even though he still did not know how powerful she was, it was without a question that such an opponent was someone no person would want to encounter!
“This….this….” Hearing the girl’s words, the female lecturer froze for a bit, then carefully said: “What you said definitely has a point as well. However, I will still stick to my words. Where there is yet life, there remains hope. Being able to win is good, however there are times when victory is hopeless.”
Confronted with the teacher’s words, the girl did not defend herself any further. She only sat coldly in her seat without any refutation, despite not expressing agreement either. Regardless, all the people could clearly tell that she would definitely continue to insist on her standpoint. For the sake of victory, she would even sacrifice her life!
Looking at both the female lecturer and the silver-haired girl, Suo Jia could not help but feel bewildered for a moment. Exactly what was he supposed to do when facing the prospect of a competition? Was he supposed to go all out to defend his victory, or as the teacher had said, learn how to compromise?