Marvin finished his dinner and stepped outside. He wanted to take a small walk before going back to training in his Body Refining Technique.
Grassroot Suburb was a sparsely populated place, the roads weren't maintained. Marvin could often see a few trash littered here and there as he walked down the street. But it was peaceful, Marvin met very few people each time he walked down this street.
Closing his eyes, Marvin slowly stepped forward step by step in peace, he felt calm and relaxed. Every few days, Marvin would take a stroll around Grassroot Suburb after a long day of practice.
"Hahaha!" Marvin could hear several people laughing ahead, to the right corner.
Klang! Dong! Sounds like a bat hitting a person could be heard.
Marvin had thought some people were just having fun but heard the sounds of someone getting beaten up. He quickly ran forward and turned to the right corner.
A few hoodlums were kicking and hitting a beggar with a wood stick. Marvin's eyes widened in shock, the scene reminded him of his and his mother's life at home. Anger rose up in his heart, the helpless look on the beggar's face, one that had given up hope. The jeering looks on the hoodlums' faces overlapped with the faces of his family. The servants didn't dare to act out too physically, only the elders' families, branch families, and his own family would beat him up. Luckily, as his mother is a woman, they did not beat her up. At most, they would humiliate her, make her clean up non-existent dirt, scold and blame her for something they just made up. They would slap her and force her to kneel down and beg for forgiveness.
"Stop!!" Marvin shouted loudly and rushed up to the nearest hoodlum and kicked him away.
"Urgh!" The hoodlum was sent rolling, he held his left side in pain.
Marvin had successfully evolved his genes once and become an official practitioner apprentice.
As a 1st Grade Apprentice, his strength was above 100 kg, which was beyond a normal adult's strength. Marvin had hit the limit of his strength a year ago, his strength was now 180 kg. Almost twice that of a normal adult's strength.
Normally, a 1st Grade Apprentice's limit is a strength of 200 kg, but because people had varying physiques, some were stronger, some weaker. Some 1st Grade Apprentices' strength was 210 kg, some 230 kg, but there were also some with 190 kg and 170 kg. Because Marvin was still growing, it was possible that his strength limit would increase to somewhere closer to 200 kg once he grew up to an adult. But it was also possible that 180 kg was his limit due to his physique being inferior.
It's just like how Asian physiques is usually smaller, their strength less than Europeans, but they were more flexible and agile. In a real battle, pure strength didn't decide the victor, it was techniques, skills, and experience. To use raw strength to overpower an opponent was the way these unintelligent monsters roaming outside the cities usually do. If you met an opponent with greater strength than you, you would rather avoid head clashes and aim for his weak spots, or even slowly whittle him down.
"Damn! It's a practitioner apprentice!" The hoodlums saw Marvin's white dojo uniform. They fearfully ran away, they were just normal people, either born without talent or with so low talent, it was just a waste of time to try walking down the path of a practitioner.
"Mister, are you alright?" Marvin asked in concern.
"I'm okay, thank you, young man." The beggar smiled at Marvin. A few gaps between his teeth could be seen, it was unknown whether he lost a few teeth to bad hygiene or had them knocked out by hoodlums.
"I have to become stronger!" Marvin said inwardly. If he was so strong that the people in his family would run away, just from his appearance, as these hoodlums did. He and his mother would no longer have to suffer.
Marvin wasn't in the mood to continue strolling, he walked back to the dojo.
"Let's try the the punching machine again..." Marvin sighed, he tested his strength everyday, hoping he would break through his strength limit, which would mean he had evolved his genes again.
Bang! Marvin sent a punch at the puncing machine.
Di! Di! Di! Numbers appeared on the display, going from 0, and quickly climbing up. Soon it was over 100.
"Sigh... It's still 180 Kg..." Marvin looked at the number on the display depressedly.
3 Years ago, due to his low talent, he wasn't allowed to learn the high-grade Body Refining Techniques his elder brother and sister used. He only managed to get a low-grade Body Refining Technique after joining a branch dojo of Thunder Blade dojo. This low-grade Body Refining Technique was the one their dojo disseminated to all their dojo members.
But in case some with great talent appeared, they could join the elite group and then given better treatments, like higher grade Body Refining Techniques, better resources, they were basically the ones the dojo chose to nurture and bring in to their aristocrat family in the future. There were special elixirs that could help in evolving genes, it increased the chances for the consumer to evolve their genes when practicing their Body Refining Technique, healing elixirs for healing injuries, recovery elixirs, to quicken the body's recovery, which then allowed the consumer to train more often.
These elixirs were very expensive, even the elites in the dojo were given only a few. Normally, only the aristocrat families could splurge their children with these elixirs. But Marvin had never received even a single elixir, because he was ostracized in his family, he had never even received any allowances. Even his lunchboxes were given to him by his mother. She was a maid and could go in to the kitchen and cook meals for herself and Marvin. At most, the servants will jeer her, but they wouldn't dare to stop her from taking food. Because they knew she was cooking food for just herself and Marvin, and she only took the ingredients given for the servant's meals.
Marvin was quite intelligent, he managed to easily comprehend the low-grade Body Tempering Technique he received from the dojo in less than a month, he trained in the most efficient way and reached the limit of his strength in less than half a year. After 3 months, he managed to evolve his gene once and officially become a real practitioner apprentice, a 1st Grade Apprentice. In less than a year, he managed to become a 1st Grade Apprentice, but now, after more than 2 years, he had not managed to break through his limits and evolve his genes.
"If only I could get my hands on a Gene Aiding Elixir..." Marvin mumbled but quickly erased that thought. Even if he managed to evolve to a 2nd Grade Apprentice, his strength limit would be somewhere around 300 Kg.
The Apprentice level was graded from 1st grade to 9th grade. With the 9th grade having a limit of strength around 1,000 Kg! Only by taking the next step and evolving his gene once again, will an Apprentice truly become a real Practitioner!
There were many grades of elixirs, usually, a Gene Aiding Elixir which increased the consumer's chance to evolve their genes within a certain amount of time, could not be consumed more than 2-3 times. After the 3rd time, the effect would be zero, no matter how many more of the same elixir is consumed. The only way to continue relying on a Gene Aiding Elixir, is to consume a higher grade one. Of course, this was only applied to the special elixir category. Each special elixir of a certain grade could only be consumed a few times before they lost all effect. For normal elixirs, like healing elixir or recovery elixirs, their efficiency depended on the consumer's physique. If a high level practitioner consumed a low-grade healing elixir, the effect would be limited. But if an apprentice consumed a low-grade healing elixir, his wounds would heal at a speed visible to the naked eye.
A commoner could not afford even a normal low-grade elixir, not to mention the more expensive special elixirs. Marvin had no money and could not afford a normal elixir either, he could only dream about these special elixirs. Because his Gene Quality is just E+ Grade, he would possibly need 2-3 low-grade Gene Aiding Elixirs to just successfully evolve his gene. It was just a dream for Marvin to use Gene Aiding Elixirs to evolve into a real Practitioner. The price for a higher grade elixir would increase by maybe 100 fold, it was just a pipe-dream for Marvin to wish to rely on Gene Aiding Elixirs.
Even in Thunder Blade Dojo, a limited number of Gene Aiding Elixirs were given out only to a few elites. And their Gene Quality had to be at least D+ Grade.
Marvin has learned from school, that these elixirs were new invention the mankind made using special materials or certain monster parts found on Planet Genesis.
"I have to become a Practitioner!" Marvin's eyes shone with determination. Only by becoming a Practitioner, would he and his mother be treated much better. A practitioner's status was worlds apart from common people. Even if Marvin's family would still not accept him as part of their family, he and his mother would not need to suffer all these bullyings, once he becomes a practitioner. His elder brother and sister had both become Practitioner at a young age, aided with massive amounts cultivation resources, they were praised as geniuses. Especially Caitlin, Marvin's elder sister, she had a much higher talent than his eldest brother, Jay. It was likely that Caitlin would be greatly taken care of and nurtured as the future family head of their aristocrat family. Of course, it was possible for a black horse to rise from one of the elders' families or branch families that wished to fight for the seat of the family head.
But, as of now, the family head held an iron grip over the authority in their aristocrat family. The elders' families and branch families would only have a chance to contest for the seat of successor in the far future when it's time for Caitlin to success her father.
"The only way to become a practitioner for me is..." Marvin analyzed. As he had E+ Grade Gene Quality, he would need to rely on outside help to evolve his genes. Very few E Grade Gene Quality people had managed to become Practitioners, most of them were stuck in the Apprentice level.
Marvin listed down the possible methods for him to increase his chances at evolving his genes:
1. Higher grade Body Tempering Technique
2. Gene Aiding Elixir
3. Life and Death Battles.
"Life and death battles!" Marvin steeled his mind. He had neither the status nor money to get the first or second option. Marvin had learned a good deal of useful knowledge from school, the history of mankind, common monsters, basic knowledge about practitioners. These were all taught in every public school, whether the students were training to become a practitioner or live a normal life. The statistics had shown that a third of the human population had Gene Quality of F Grade, but a majority of the two thirds that had a Gene Quality over F Grade were still E Grade. Many people with E Grade Gene Quality would eventually give up their hopes in becoming a practitioner and live a normal life. Or maybe use their stronger strength to do heavy duty jobs, it could be jobs to move large monster carcasses, dismantle monster carcass into usable parts.
The school had taught the students the history of mankind, from 1,000 years ago, when Earth was destroyed, the 200 years mankind spent drifting in space, due to the fact that their spaceship was incomplete, they had no way to manouver, they had no choice but to drift in space, only when they saw Planet Genesis, which looked inhabitable, did they do their best to turn the spaceship toward the planet. It was during the 500 year long war against the monsters on Planet Genesis, that the humans managed to evolve their genes through the constant life and death battles. At that time, there weren't any any Gene Aiding Elixirs or Body Tempering Techniques. Yet many heroes emerged with heaven-shaking strength.
Marvin could only choose to engage in life and death battles to evolve his genes. If he continues to simply practice his low-grade Body Tempering Technique all his life, he might have a slight chance to become a Practitioner, this was, if he took in his increased lifespan from evolving his genes into his calculations. But that could be a 100 years later, Marvin could not imagine his mother, who was just a normal person, to live so long until he managed to become a Practitioner. A normal person had 80-100 years lifespan, while a 9th Grade Apprentice had around 150-180 years lifespan. Jay was 24, and Caitlin 20, yet the both of them were already Practitioners. This was the difference with having a massive amount of cultivation resources and good talent.
Very few E Grade Gene Quality people were able to become Practitioner, most of them relied on life and death battles, others spent over a hundred years training bitterly to become a Practitioner. No one would bother nurturing these people with limited futures.
Should I put the elders' families together as branch families?
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