Serialized Science Fiction.

Strange Origins
Tom Haynes

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be equivalent to three times a normal adult, except for his right arm, it should be able to strike with four times the power.

It didn't seem like a huge improvement, but over time this increased power would build up - it was like compound interest on your 401k, the earlier you invested, the more savings you gathered.

He had stabilized his new Dantian, it had two pearls now, and filled it back up. Instead of working on a tunnel to his Yin Linking Meridian (he wanted to now balance the Yin and the Yang Meridians), he slowly pushed Spiritual Qi from his Dantian, through the Yang Linking Meridian, and finally into the Right Hand Meridian. And then he built it up.

Once it felt like that Meridian could hold no more, he let it diffuse slowly into his hand. As an effect, he had a glowing ball of Spiritual Qi. If this were with his Yin side, he could throw this at a target. But with the Yang side, it powered up his fist.

He released the pressure and practiced keeping the Right Hand Meridian full of Spiritual Qi. He then kept drilling himself with forming the golden glow. It wasn't instantaneous, but he did lower the readiness time.

He could keep on practicing, but he knew it was time to test himself. He had all of this preparation in various classes, in secluded cultivation, etc. But he needed practical experience - tactile feedback on striking someone or something. Fighting more than a wooden dummy, get the juices flowing.

It was early morning, time to go into the woods. He took a good look at the valley - he wasn't planning on coming back any time soon. Unless of course his tail was between his legs.

He strode into the woods, trying to tread with conviction and purpose. He really, really needed some woodcraft training!

Arthur knew from conversations with Tang Hung that this was actually the edge of the Beast Range. The ones he would encounter in the outer band were low level - mostly mortal. He then recalled the cultivating coyote, strike that, there would be some which had formed Beast Cores.

The woods were quiet - he had no clue what he was doing, he was a city boy, raised in South Detroit. Basically he was going to wander until a predator attacked him. What he didn't realize was that in these woods, man was not the apex predator. Many a cultivator would enter these woods to sharpen their skills and seek their fortunes. And many of them would die a horrible death. Man was considered a delicacy in these woods.

So he didn't have to expend a lot of effort to find a predator, they would do it for him. He heard a thudding from the right, something was charging at him. He couldn't see what it was, but it was heavy.

He charged up his right first, raising it up high. The mists parted, wait, when had there been mists, and a humongous boar charged out at him. The mists were sliced open by the tusks. It lowered those tusks down, preparing to strike.

Arthur wasn't ready yet, he jumped straight up, and surprised himself, he cleared the four foot tall boar by about eight inches. If he could have jumped like this in high school, he would have been playing for the Bulls.

He landed facing away from the boar. As he turned, all he saw was that gray mist. He couldn't even hear the beast. He kept sweeping his head back and forth.

The thudding came from the left this time, was the mist a Spiritual Effect? Was it a mortal beast or not. Based on its size and the effects,

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