Frie Mountain. Orphan’s lodging. Training facility.
A day after the highly anticipated Day of Spirits and Spirit Awakening Ceremony. A young boy could be seen lying unmoving on the floorboards of the orphan’s training facility. The black-haired boy seemed dead as a purple-haired girl poked at him with her finger.
“Hey, Shin wake up! The Instructor is about to arrive!”
Emma tried to wake up Shin who was sound asleep in the middle of the training room. It was currently a few minutes before six, and the Instructor would be arriving at any moment. An hour ago, Junius managed to drag Shin out from his bed and brought him to the meeting area. However, ever since then, Shin had been in a coma.
“Ignore him, Emma, let the Instructor deal with him.”
Another purple-haired girl remarked while seated relaxed in a nearby corner. Her features were the exact duplicate of Emma’s.
“Ella! You know that if we let him be, the Instructor will hit him again!”
“Come on Emma, it’s not the first time anyway.”
“Just take a break. You’ve been trying to wake him up for the past few minutes to no avail. It’s useless.”
Emma had been trying to wake the slumbering Shin for a long time now, but he showed no signs of movement. Yesterday’s events had really taken a toll on him, and he was really knocked out now. It took Junius all he had to piggyback the hibernating boy before leaving to commence his morning routine.
A low groan came from the bottom of Emma as the twins were lost in their conversation.
“Shin! Are you awake now? Quickly get up! The Instructor will be arriving soon.”
“Arghhhhh… so… sleepy…”
Wiggling on the floor like a worm, Shin struggled to get up.
“Wow, I wish I could show your current state to everyone else.”
Ella gleefully sneered at Shin. Somehow managing to sit upright, Shin began to monologue.
“I hate this morning tradition so much… Why does everyone love mornings? The human body is supposed to sleep for twelve hours everyday… When I become an elder, the first policy I implement would be that no one is supposed to wake up before ten… Furthermore…”
“Oops, looked like we lost him. He should be fantasising right now…”
“Yeah, this seems bad.”
If Shin had one major weakness, it would be waking up. He hated the early mornings that the Frie Clan loved so much. Every single day, they had to wake up extremely early. Although their bedtime was not late, Shin was just not that much of a morning person.
As Shin was muttering gibberish to himself, a loud bang could be heard at the entrance. A towering man, over two meters tall, walked into the training room.
“Ahhh, there you are! Come, its time. Let’s go!”
Ella and Emma replied the gigantic man while Shin lay rested on his butt. Thankfully for the boy, the Instructor did not notice that and left the room.
“Come on Shin! It’s time to go!”
Pulling the lazy bum, Emma tried to drag him out of the room.
Wearily, Shin got to his feet and let the girl tow him out.
“Hey, do you think Emma is a cart-horse or something? Walk by yourself!”
Cutting the connected hands of the two with a chop, Ella separated Emma from Shin.
“I see that the three of you are getting along well.”
Grinning at their situation, the Instructor commented.
Ella and Shin were speechless while Emma was doing her signature giggle.
“But we can’t waste too much time. Move quickly, I want to avoid the rush hour. Many children awakened their Spirits yesterday so there will probably be a large number of people visiting the Athenaeum today.”
Slowly dragging his feet, Shin followed the enthusiastic Instructor towards the Main Hall.
Frie Mountain. Frie Clan Main Hall. The Clan Athenaeum.
At the edge of the Main Hall, lay a colossal building coated in a silvery white hue. Numerous tall pillars supported the roof that was over a hundred meters above ground. Although it lacked in lavishness compared to the other structures in the main hall, its simplicity made it stand out.
Numerous scholars walk in and out this building every day and it was one of the most valued places on Frie Mountain. The Clan Athenaeum. A haven for students and learners. Open to all, members of the Frie Clan are welcomed to browse through the plethora of knowledge stored within the compound.
The Clan Athenaeum contained everything. From cultivation techniques to historical records. All information that is required is stored in this very building. The Frie Clan even has a saying. ‘When facing a severe threat, the vault matters nought, saving the Athenaeum is paramount.’
The ancestors believed that even if the Frie Clan were down to its last member, it would survive if the Athenaeum was intact. Hence, the security here was quite tight. Firstly, no one, even the Clan Master, was allowed to use their spiritual abilities within the premise. Secondly, many defence arrays and tools were protecting the area. And finally, it is placed in the most secure, hard-to-reach part of Frie Mountain.
“Ha… Ha… Are we there yet?”
Panting heavily was Shin, who was in a coma a couple of minutes ago. Behind him were two adorable young girls who looked exactly alike. They too were panting like dogs.
“We’re here! Hey, you guys! Are you really getting tired of that bit of climbing? It looks like when we get back, I would have to double your stamina training.”
Shin and Ella exclaimed while Emma was still trying to catch her breath. The trio is by no means weak. Extensive training had caused them to develop to the point where their stamina could easily match the average adult. However, the Athenaeum was truly hard to reach. There were several crevices and bumps that they had to traverse. Simply put, it was terrain that no ordinary human would expect to encounter.
“Don’t give me that unwilling look! One day, when you become strong, you would thank me for my patience in training all of you!”
“This hateful Instructor…”
While they were cursing the muscular man within their heads, their attention was brought to the marvellous building beckoning them from afar.
Enthralled by the allure of the structure, the children stood by in awe.
“Hahaha! Pretty isn’t it? Don’t worry, you will get to come back here often.”
‘What?! Does that mean I must repeat that dreadful route?!’
Thinking of the road, or lack of roads, that led them here. Shin made a silent decision to avoid tasks that require him to come back here regularly.