Clark woke up very early the next day feeling refreshed and energized, the only inconvenience was the heavy smell of blood.
He wasn’t too irritated though, as part of their cadet training was a period when they get very close to blood and sleep in a vicinity covered with blood to get used to it.
This was to allow them to adapt to situations that proved dangerous, tedious, and intolerable to others. In the future, when they encounter a situation where they see themselves in bloody areas, this training can come in handy. He coped very well, as he didn’t puke because of the smell.
Even though he woke up energized, he was still resentful as he preferred dwelling in his dream than to be in this smelly place, under a huge tree, in the middle of nowhere.
“Shit man, life is not fair at all. It’s just like a transition from the palace to pit”, he grumbled.
As he cursed under his breath, he began noticing some changes in his body. He felt like he was always half-dead before, but now he was given life in abundance. He felt like he was blind before, but now he could see.
He noticed an increase in his perception. He could see sharper, concentrate harder, and he felt like he also increased in physique and strength.
“Wait, is this what I think it is? I can’t believe it, I broke my limits; I had a breakthrough,” he suddenly blurted out in joy.
As he relished in his joy, he suddenly felt wind blow by his ears as he felt something cold on his neck. He almost fainted in shock as he quickly yelled, “it’s me, Leo. Leo, it’s Clark.”
The dagger was slowly withdrawn, as Leo rubbed his eyes in astonishment. He awkwardly laughed and apologized, on seeing the situation that he placed his friend in.
“Sorry Clark, I didn’t know what came over me. It's just, I drew the dagger subconsciously”.
“I felt like drawing the dagger was the right thing to do, it’s just like instinct and I feel weird man. I keep having the feeling that I improved considerably overnight, I feel like I can knock you out with one punch. It feels stupid Clark, but that’s really how I feel.”
“Wow". Clark gaped at his friend incredulously as he blurted out, “we both had a breakthrough.”
“What!!? Clark you mean that…, yeah right. I think it’s a breakthrough, I feel stronger than ever before. No wonder".
Leo suddenly jumped in excitement, “we actually fulfilled the requirements, we broke our limits, Clark. I think it’s a result of the yesterday legendary battle between the great Leo and the exobeast.”
Clark rolled his eyes at his friend, “so you thought it’s because you slept like a plant?” He sarcastically replied with a question.
According to their knowledge from what they learned; a breakthrough is a phenomenon whereby an excellent soldier breaks his/her limits through battle, especially a fast-paced battle of high intensity.
The theory behind it is just like the way weight lifters continuously strain their muscles by carrying very heavyweights. The weak muscle fibers in their hands break, while new and stronger ones develop to replace the old ones.
A breakthrough is like they sapped their body of every single ounce of strength. Every single juice, as they fought with their life on the line.
As a result, or better still a reward for their hard work, they broke their limits as they stepped into a new phase of existence entirely. A cadet who already had his first breakthrough can fight and defeat 10 ordinary cadets.
A breakthrough brings a very huge leap in strength, and all sergeants are soldiers with one breakthrough already under their belt. In this age where strength is the most effective word, breaking through is what guarantees a soldier’s rise through the military ranks.
The 2 friends felt dizzy with joy, as this directly gave them a free pass to becoming sergeants straight after graduation.
After rejoicing for who knew how long, they finally realized that they were still smelling and were very much still bloodied all over.
They awkwardly stopped their rejoicing in tacit understanding; they went to a nearby water reservoir they encountered on the way and washed up.
Due to their increased strength, they were no longer under pressure like before. They leisurely stripped and had a bath in the forest, which they needed terribly. They washed their clothes with the water and spread them on the grass, to allow the sun to dry them up.
They relaxed on the grass leisurely as they talked about their already many experiences.
No exobeast nor augmented animal dared to get near them again, as they ate their stored food, slept, and enjoyed the whole day as a vacation from their rigorous journey and battles.
The next day, they dressed up with swag as they blatantly moved around the forest, searching for the other exobeasts.
Unlike the previous exobeast, the remaining exobeast avoided them like the plague despite how many augmented animals they killed. They were able to detect that there was more than 1 exobeast in the forest, from its size and some other calculations.
They searched for a whole week without results, as they later discovered that the forest was too big to house only two exobeasts. They found out that 2 exobeasts were remaining in the forest but they both kept on hiding.
After another 2 days of searching, they found the 2nd exobeast. They fought it, killing it without any suspense but it ground at their energy as it only thought of running and escaping.
They fought and pursued it for a long time, before finally killing it. They decided to turn in for the day, as they felt exhausted from the day-long pursuit.
[Thank you for reading this chapter I really appreciate it. Please if there is any problem with the translation quality or there is any wrong spelling or sentence, indicate I'll try to fix it immediately.]