It had been a few months since Joshua had gotten his job title as an aura user and it had almost been three years since the end of the first phase. Now that he was officially an aura user Joshua was able to spend the time waiting for his soul beast to awaken on figuring out all the ends and outs of his new abilities. One of the first things he noticed about his aura was the fact that even if it did glow around his body as though it were an actual substance if he took a hit it would still contact his body. Of course the vitality boost made his body much stronger and able to take blows to a higher degree. Whenever he used the aura hardening abilities his skin and muscles felt like they were made of stone even though they were still just as flexible. All in all it was extremely useful, but for now he couldn't exactly rely on it as an armor against blades and guns.
He also tested out how much of his aura was used when using his aura blast ability and found that with each blast he drained about a minute off the time he could hold up the aura buff. Of course if he turned off his aura after using it for about a minute he would replenish all the aura he had lost. It would be a bit of a balancing act to keep himself in top combat form, but he didn't expect to spend hours upon hours in constant battle anytime soon. Most of his fights would probably be on the quicker side when he was alone and against normal opponents. All in all Joshua figured his job gave him quite a few things that would allow him to play different roles in a fight, but with the aura hardening ability he was starting to get the feeling that he would play a more up front role than anything else.
Joshua continued to train as he swung his heavy training sword while entering a meditative state. With the aura strengthening he had to up the weight on the bands he used for training. Even the training sword seemed a little too light and he had to get a new one from the shop. This one weighed two tons and was twice as heavy as his previous one. Now he had to struggle once again to get use to using the new training sword, but he was sure that he could handle using a sword like it in battle as long as he wasn't wearing weighted training bands the whole time.
As he fell in to a deep meditative state as he swung away at the air he could feel his aura cycling through his body. The aura was like a surge of relief that strengthened his body after each swing. It was a great feeling that proved that his connection with his aura grew stronger with each practice session. As Joshua calmly trained he suddenly felt an odd feeling in his chest that grew stronger with each swing. He started to concentrate on that feeling and soon he could hear a light breathing that wasn't his own, that seemed to get faster the more he focused on it. Then when his aura cycled through his body one more time that light breathing changed into what sounded like a yawn that surprised Joshua before his mind was pulled into something.
Joshua opened his eyes and found that he was no longer in the nice forest surroundings that he had been training in, but was instead somewhere he found familiar. It was an old farm that was quite well taken care of with a wide open space filled with fields of crops and an open range for some cows that Joshua remembered seeing often when he was younger. 'This is my grandparent's farm isn't it?' Joshua thought as he looked around a bit. He remembered coming here quite often when he was little and his grandparents were still alive. He would still visit the place every once in a while with his mother, but now they had paid workers to take care of the place for the most part sense outside of Amy everyone else in the family had obligations in the city to take care of. He still loved this place sense it always calmed him down as a child so he smiled as he looked around.
It didn't take long for Joshua to spot something unusual in the tall grass near one of the open ranges that was used for the cows and horses that they had kept on the farm. There were several large bells of hay that were spread out around the field and one of them grabbed Joshua's attention as he took notice of a small animal run behind it to hide itself. Joshua looked over curiously and calmly walked over before squatting down a little ways away. He didn't want to scare the creature off sense he had an odd feeling about it. He felt a connection to the little guy even while being so far away from it and decided to try to get it to be comfortable enough to come out. "Hey little guy, there's no need to hide. I'm not going to hurt you." He said in the friendliest way he could muster.
He waited for a little while until a tiny silver head popped up from around the bell of hay. Two silver eyes stared at Joshua curiously for a moment before the little figure seemed to calm down and walk from out of its hiding spot. Joshua smiled as he saw the little wolf like figure come out and notice how cute it looked. It was a bit bigger than your average puppy, well a bit might be an understatement. The thing was already the size of a small dog even though it had just came into the world. It had nice long silver fur that seemed to gleam as the sun light reflected off of it and its four front legs gave it a mythical feeling. It had a pair of horns on the top of its heads that were golden in color with black tips that looked rather dangerous even though the creature itself had one of the dopiest tongue hanging smiles he had ever seen.
It didn't take long for the little guy to determine Joshua wasn't a threat. The moment it did it came running over to him and jumped into his lap as Joshua sat down so he could play with the little guy. The moment he had pet its head he could feel a direct connection with the creature that sent a surge of information into his mind and power into his body. It felt similar to when he got his job as an aura user, but even more overwhelming. Joshua had to calm himself down a bit after the connection had finally finished establishing itself before he could pay more attention to the wolf pup that was sitting in his lap.
"Well I guess you're my soul beast right little guy?" Joshua asked as he started to ruffle the long fur of the puppy. It looked like it was thinking for a moment before it nodded its head happily. Clearly the little guy was able to understand Joshua based off of his reaction so he asked another question. "Well I guess we need to give you a name then huh. I can't just keep calling you little guy forever, but first are you a boy or a girl."
The little pup looked at him with an odd look before letting out a small bark. Joshua chuckled a bit before lifting him up so he could figure it out himself. Based off the little package he had between his legs he was sure that the little guy was a guy after all. "Well then how about the name buster? With how friendly you act I can't imagine giving you some vicious name or anything so let's keep it simple." Joshua smiled as he watched Buster jump around excitedly for a few moments before he let out a yawn and curled up in his lap. Joshua slowly combed Busters hair as he watched him fall asleep. When the soul beast started to snore once more Joshua found himself back in the forest he had been training in with his weighted sword fallen on to the ground in front of him.
"I guess that must have been some sort of soul realm for me to meet my soul beast. I can already fill a new strength flowing through me so I guess I finally have reached all the requirements to go out and explore the world." Joshua said with a bit of excitement. "Well first let's see what abilities I gained from Buster." Joshua pulled up his system window and went straight to his status page. When he saw Fenrir under soul beast he immediately clicked on it.
[Soul Beast: Fenrir (child) – A young version of the legendary Fenrir that roamed the universe and challenged all odds. A creature that is naturally the master of aura in its purest form. It will grow and mature as the host gets stronger.
Abilities gained from Fenrir (child):
Natural Aura User (Passive): Fenrir being a natural master of aura has full control over aura and can use it beyond the realms of normal aura users. All Aura based abilities are doubled in strength at all times.
Aura Tank (Passive): As a master of Aura Fenrir's always generate far more of it than any other being. Thus they were often considered aura tanks that could battle for long stretches without growing tired. This ability doubles the size of the user's aura while also doubling the regeneration speed of said aura. (Ability changes upon stage growth of soul beast)
Prodigy (passive): As a quick learner and intelligent species the Fenrir is one of the fastest creatures at fulfilling its potential. This ability makes it easier to gain stats from training and fighting in between levels.
Aura Shroud (Always active when using aura): A shroud made from the aura of the user that protects the body from harm. It is a form of armor that all Fenrir learn to use, even the children. Aura Shroud nullifies half of all damage taken before it can reach the users body. Damage can be completely nullified if the attack is not strong enough to break through the user's aura. This is dependent on the user's vitality stat and will stat.
Aura Regeneration (Always active when using aura): One of the strongest properties of the Fenrir was its extraordinary regenerative abilities when using aura. Even as a child Fenrir learn how to use this ability. While using aura the body will slowly heal all wounds at a faster pace depending on a combination of vitality and will.
Aura Shield (Active): An ability that uses twenty five percent of the user's aura to shield against any attack for five seconds. Has a cooldown time of thirty minutes.]
Joshua's smile grew bigger and bigger as he looked through all of the new skills he gained from his soul beast. One thing he realized as he looked over the skills was the fact that his soul beast and his job were both clearly guiding him in the direction of becoming a tank for the most part. Sure he had a balanced build, but for now he could clearly take far more punishment than any other Job he could think of. The soul beast also greatly increased his endurance sense it prolonged how long he could use his aura at a time while also shortening the amount of time he needed to rest.
The only active ability he gained was pretty much a lifesaving ability that had a decently long cool down. It would probably only be used once in a normal fight, but in a long drawn out battle could be used several times in more dangerous situations. The regenerative ability was also interesting, but one thing he noticed from the aura user job's stats allocation was the fact that will played a major part in how strong someone's aura was. He knew that will was what decided a person's resistance against status detrimental abilities such as poisons or hypnotic effects. He would have to test out whether his aura worked well against those type of situations before he went out to explore the world.
Joshua stood up and stretched his body before he pulled on his aura and watched in amazement as what use to be simple light blue glow surrounding his body had changed into an ethereal figure surrounding him. It matched the shape of his body for the most part except for with his head where it seemed to create two large wolf like ears on the top of his head along with a pair of horns. The aura seemed to have a heavy feeling to it even though Joshua couldn't feel any weight to it as it looked as if the blue shroud was made of long hairs that were similar to the ones Buster had on his body. Of course when he tried to touch it his hand went right through it, but when he punched at a nearby tree it was obvious the aura connected with the tree as it drilled into it a bit before his fist made contact.
"Well this is interesting, I guess I'll have to check how it works in actual combat going forward." Joshua said with a smile as he enjoyed the feeling of the Aura shroud covering him. He turned to look up at the sky as he stretched out a bit. "Looks like it's finally time to start my adventure."