|Author: Carrot Sauce||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 3326 characters|
|Translator: Aoi||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 2281 words|
The progression of training within the mirror space was extremely fast, so Lily had managed to learn the esoteric Tsukuyomi Swordstyle to the sixth stage of the first segment in 3 days. As for the technique to enter and exit the mirror space, Lily had mastered it almost instantly1.
In fact, Lily was the master of the mirror, so only Lily could use the technique that Kagura had imparted to Lily. On the other hand, Kagura didn’t need to utilize such a technique at all. Thus, except for an inexplicable situation where the mirror could draw Lily and those in touch with his female body inside spontaneously, only Lily could enter and exit the mirror space freely and place the items that satisfy the conditions of the mirror into the Treasury Room.
As for living beings, Kagura explained to Lily that it was only possible to bring Lily’s shikigami inside the mirror space freely through Lily’s will. Except that, it’s only possible to bring in the real body of a woman whose physique is on par with a celestial maiden and that too only with their permission2.
It was also possible to bring in the souls of other women who held a certain level of strength with their permission, but if Lily wanted to bring their soul inside forcefully, it would require at least a tenfold gap in strength between them to have a chance at succeeding.
But this was only limited to women. It wasn’t possible for any male soul other than Lily’s to enter the mirror space. Naturally, this excluded those who had become Lily’s shikigami, which meant that it was possible to bring in any apparition, demon, or monster regardless of strength and gender as long as they were Lily’s shikigami.
The way to enter and exit the mirror was actually performed via the transmission of will. It required a special ancient art to transmit the will of the owner to the mirror. This art was neither an arcane art nor a martial art, but rather a no-thought meditation art. The no-thought here referred to attaining a state of no-thought where the mind was free of thoughts yet also filled with thoughts3.
Lily had actually tried it previously, but as he willed his mind to return to the mirror with heart and soul, it had become a direct thought, which got rejected by the mirror. In order to return, one mustn’t think of returning, yet they also mustn’t have any wild thoughts. It required one to remain lucid and thought-free at the same time, as if you weren’t having any thoughts at all4…
It was pretty abstruse and difficult to explain in words.
However, Lily was quite talented in this respect, so he had managed to master the first step of this abstruse state of no-thought that was an amalgamation of contradictions5 in just a few attempts.
Donned in Lady Shizuka’s long-sleeved kimono, Lily opened his eyes within the stone room of the outer world.
For some reason, feeling his female body in the flesh and the bothersome weight of a certain part of the body relieved Lily’s mind and placed him at ease.
This naturally wasn’t because Lily really liked to be a woman.
Perhaps because Lily had trained in both the Tsukuyomi Swordstyle and Lunar Blossom, it had gone further and harmonized Lily’s mind with the spiritual nature of a blade maiden and a woman’s body.
Lily cupped her breasts dazedly and fondled them once gently, “Indeed, this body really feels quite soothing. Anyways, it’s the body of a well-endowed woman brimming with femininity and I can even wear women’s clothing justifiably, with risqué underwear to boot. I also don’t need to feel distressed about my dignity while crossdressing.”
“Hmm?” Lily got up and discovered that she felt completely rejuvenated in mind and body. It seemed as if her body was in a very relaxed state right now, “W-What’s going on?”
Lily had a clear understanding of the state of her body and power at this moment.
“The innate base strength of my body had increased by onefold again and reached thrice that of an average samurai woman. How did this happen?”
“I feel that my body has also become more sensitive. If Uesugi Rei fondles me again with my current body…6”
“Kyah!” Lily blushed hard, “Now isn’t the time to have erotic thoughts. Have some shame, me!”
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Lily reproached herself.
“Seriously though, would my strength increase like this each time I enter and exit the mirror space?”
“If so, it’s really too incredible!”
Lily tried it out right away and attempted to return to the mirror space. In just two attempts, she had succeeded!
When Lily returned to the mirror space, she was back again in his male soul state that barely looked masculine anymore. Kagura was ruminating on some matters deeply while sitting in a seiza, so she just glanced at Lily when he returned and closed her eyes again. She knew Lily was practicing the art of entering and exiting the mirror space, so she didn’t mind it that much.
“It would be difficult to notice the effect if I return right away, so I might as well train here for a while longer,” Lily thought thus.
However, Lily felt it would be difficult for him to make further progress in the Tsukuyomi Swordstyle in a short time, so he questioned Kagura about the following, “Kagura, Lunar Blossom has so many books in its later sections. Can you explain to me what exactly is developed via them?”
Kagura arrived in front of the stele depicting Lunar Blossom situated within the crystal illuminated cave and explained, “Tsukuyomi Swordstyle is just a power augmentation esoterica while Lunar Blossom is the foundation to advance via a major pathway!”
“The path of advancement is divided into a few stages, namely the Awakened Stage, Spirit Jade Stage, Permanence Stage, Throne Stage, Big Dipper Stage and Celestial Stage.”
“One required a spirit power strengthening art to move up from the first stage to the last progressively, and the heterodox arts disseminated by sects in the mortal world naturally can’t compare to Lunar Blossom in this aspect. It is a true strengthening art that’s most suitable for women to practice and ascend to Heaven via a major pathway!”
“The first book of Lunar Blossom marks the beginning of everything and is an introduction to the Awakened Stage. In this stage, the focus is on building a spiritual foundation via the accumulation of spirit power. This is possible through absorption of the spirit power present in the world, through the soul controlling arts of blade maidens, and through absorption of spirit power present in treasures like magatamas.”
“Once you have accumulated spirit power to a certain degree and attained the 7th-Stage Awakened state, it is then time to prepare for the formation of a spirit jade. By the way, you are a 5th-Stage Awakened right now, Master. However, as you have already mastered the initial phase of the Tsukuyomi Swordstyle and are also a blade maiden on top of that, which has increased your innate strength to twice that of an average human, your current strength has already exceeded the 7th-Stage Awakened rank. You are still far from putting up a fight against a Spirit Jade Adept7 though,” Kagura stated.
The reason Kagura had stated that Lily’s strength was twice that of an average samurai was because she didn’t know Lily’s strength had been promoted once again just prior.
“I see…” Lily then recalled something suddenly, “I get that I’m a 5th-Stage Awakened, but I can sense a mystical space inside my body that seems to have a crimson magatama-like item…”
Kagura wasn’t astonished by this, “It’s because you are a blade maiden, Master. As such, you have a stronger physique than mortals. The blade maidens form a spirit jade within their body at the moment of their awakening, so they are innately superior to mortals. Naturally, it’s also possible for a woman to awaken as a blade maiden without forming a spirit jade.”
“W-Would I still be able to form a spirit jade then?” Lily asked worriedly.
“Tsk. How come you’re asking such a silly thing when you are much smarter, Master. For average samurai, it’s impossible to ascend through the Heavenly Gate via a major pathway unless they form a spirit jade. However, a blade maiden like you and a few powerful monsters with innate bloodlines aren’t restricted by this. You had already formed a spirit jade the moment you awakened! Thus, you needn’t form a spirit jade again. Furthermore, your crimson spirit jade is the sign of a spirit jade formed from the spirit power of a blade maiden, so the spirit power density is onefold higher than the spirit power density of samurai who have formed a spirit jade through assiduous training and luck! Hence, there’s no need to look up to those adepts who have formed a spirit jade normally.”
“Onefold Spirit Power Density…” Lily finally understood the reason the blade maiden spirit power refined through the crimson spirit jade was stronger than the blue spirit power he used initially.
Kagura continued with the explanation, “In the future, you will naturally overcome this first step required to break free from mortality and become an adept, Master. In order to reach the Spirit Jade Stage, you just need to accumulate the essence of spirit power and the quickest way to do it is to use treasures like magatamas.”
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A hopeful thought popped up in Lily’s mind at this moment, “This mirror is so magical, so it might have a trove of magatama fragments inside it.”
“You’re thinking too ideally, Master. Unfortunately, there’s nothing like that here. Although treasures like magatamas were nothing to my former master, this mirror wasn’t a treasure that my master used to store her items, and even I’m unaware where she obtained it from. At the very least, I couldn’t find any treasures like that within the mirror using my powers,” Kagura answered.
“Ugh…” Lily turned despondent.
“However, worry not, Master. With your current strength, it won’t be that difficult to obtain some low-grade magatamas once you go outside.”
“Are magatama also divided into grades?”
“Of course,” Kagura explained, “They aren’t just divided into grades but also into various colors, textures and functions. The magatama fragments that you have seen until now are from common ones that are translucent and close to white in color with a tinge of light cyan in it. In short, the color and texture are just a means to differentiate the intrinsic nature of the magatama. You can learn about it slowly later on, Master.”
“The magatama fragments that you used previously were spirit magatama and their function is to strengthen the physique via absorption of the spirit essence within them and increase the spirit power reserves. This spirit magatama doesn’t have any special function and is used most extensively, so it’s simply abbreviated to magatama generally. And the magatama fragments you used were from the worst ones among them, which, according to the grades determined by the Heian Empire, are classified as a grade 6 treasure.”
“Yes, magatamas are precious resources that were used by even the ancient powerhouses and were used as trade currency by the high-level powerhouses. After all, for existences like my former master, money had no use at all. Even then, the magatama fragments with the lowest concentration of spirit essence are classified as grade 6 treasures by the Heian Empire, while a complete magatama is classified as a grade 7 treasure.”
“There’s a complete magatama too?” Lily questioned astonishedly.
“You’re just fussing about nothing, Master. How would we have magatama fragments without a complete magatama?” Kagura countered rhetorically.
“Ugh. So, does that mean… the grade 9 Blood Spirit Magatama that I stole from Shuten Doji can also be refined?”
“Fortunately, you didn’t try that. It’s simply impossible to refine it with your current strength and even if you managed to absorb it, you would die instantly from the spirit power going berserk. That Blood Spirit Magatama contains an incredible concentration of spirit power, and also possesses a mystic power on top of that which can only be used by high-level lifeforms. Also, it would be too wasteful to absorb the spirit essence within it as its Blood Soul power is what enables me to unleash an attack containing my apex strength. Thus, it’s much more valuable than normal grade 9 magatamas! And you are actually treating it as a disposable item like common magatama? This is an item that even Shuten Doji treasured!”
“Uhm, well, I-I was just asking casually, that’s all…” Lily blushed.
“So, after forming a spirit jade, you just need to keep accumulating spirit power to reach the next stage?”
“It’s not just that. As you already have a spirit jade, you won’t face any obstructions in going from the Awakened Stage to the Spirit Jade Stage as long as you accumulate spirit essence and strengthen your body, Master. However, if you want to reach the next stage, you won’t be able to do it just by relying on magatamas.”
“A wide chasm exists between the Spirit Jade Stage and the Permanence Stage, and you need to rely on assiduous training, enlightenment and opportune encounters to climb the huge wall that separates them. In order to ascend between the major stages, you need to deepen your spirit power density instead of your spirit power quantity.”
“Deepen my spirit power density?”
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“Yes! When using the same amount of spirit power, the power unleashed by a Spirit Jade Adept is over ten times stronger than that of an Awakened!”
- Robinxen: We don’t do timeskips here! We just use cheat abilities!
- Robinxen: So basically only Nanako. Shiu, don’t give up!
- Silva: Wao, how complicated, how does one attain that state? I prolly can’t do it…
- Silva: Mhm… * pretends to understand *
- Silva: So you know it’s a contradiction
- Robinxen: I love how this is her first concern.
- Silva: oops, I forgot to change sage to adept in chapter 273, sorry.
Robinxen: Tut tut Silva, do your editing properly!
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