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I am the Library of Echoing Souls

1

Chapter 1: The Awakening

18

 

Late in the night...

 

The city's heart pulsed quietly under a velvet sky, the only sounds the distant hum of the metropolis and the occasional rustle of leaves stirred by a gentle breeze.

 

Nestled within a quiet neighborhood, an old library stood. Its towering silhouette loomed against the dark, ivy creeping up its ancient walls.

 

Deep within the library, the darkness was nearly impenetrable.

 

Shelves upon shelves of books lined the walls. Dust motes floated lazily in the air, caught in the faint beams of moonlight that slipped through the cracks in the boarded-up windows.

 

And then, suddenly...

 

A soft, ethereal glow began to emanate from the center of the library. The light originated from an old, wooden desk that stood at the heart of the library, its surface worn and scarred from years of use.

 

Atop the desk sat a solitary, ornate book.

 

"I’m alive?"

 

A voice, faint and filled with wonder, echoed through the silent room.

 

The voice belonged to Li Wei, a young man who had lived a life of unremarkable mediocrity, only to meet an untimely end due to a bizarre accident—a choking fit on a morsel of food. Yet, as fate would have it, Li Wei found himself awakening not in the afterlife, but as the very essence of the old library.

 

Yes, he had been reborn as a library.

 

As he tried to comprehend his new form, Li Wei felt a peculiar sensation, like countless whispers filling his mind. He could feel every book, every shelf, every corner of the library as if it were an extension of himself.

 

The ancient tomes and manuscripts, each with their own secrets and stories, were now a part of him.

 

"This is... incredible."

 

His thoughts reverberated through the library, creating a faint echo that danced among the shelves.

 

The glow from the book on the desk intensified, and Li Wei felt a surge of energy course through him.

 

He concentrated, and a translucent screen materialized before his mind's eye, listing his new attributes.

 

Status

 

- Form: Library of Echoing Souls

- Life: 0.4/100 Years

- Knowledge Points**: 0.2 (Can be obtained by absorbing the essence of written knowledge, from rare tomes, scrolls, and other repositories of knowledge.)

- Unique Abilities:

- Whispering Pages: Allows communication through written words within the library.

- Echo of Memory: Access the stored memories within any book or manuscript.

 

"This is my cheat ability," he mused, the corners of his mind brimming with possibilities.

 

Li Wei's voice echoed softly through the silent corridors as he read the details from the translucent screen floating before him. The words seemed surreal, almost otherworldly, as he tried to grasp their full meaning.

 

His gaze shifted to a single bookshelf that now glowed faintly. These were no ordinary books; they were ancient, their leather bindings worn with age and inscribed with arcane symbols that shimmered and flickered in the dim light.

 

At that moment, Li Wei felt a peculiar sensation, as if he could extend his will toward the bookshelf.

 

It was a feeling of control, unlike anything he had ever experienced in his previous life. Before, as a human, he had felt the limitations of his mortal form. Now, as a library, he sensed a vast potential within him.

 

With a focused thought, Li Wei willed the bookshelf to move. Slowly, it began to shift, the wood creaking as it responded to his command. The sensation was akin to moving a limb after a long rest—awkward at first, but gradually becoming more fluid and natural.

 

"This... this is incredible."

 

His excitement grew as he experimented further. The books on the shelf began to rearrange themselves at his mental direction.

 

But this newfound control wasn't just limited to the movement of books. Li Wei felt a deeper connection, a bond with the knowledge contained within each tome. He could sense the stories and secrets that lay within their pages.

 

Curious, he focused on one of the glowing books. It was a thick, dusty volume with a cover adorned in ancient script. As he concentrated, the book slowly opened. Words in a language he had never seen before began to glow, lifting off the page in a soft, ethereal light.

 

"Echoes of Memory…" Li Wei murmured.

 

As he spoke, a rush of images and sounds filled his mind. He saw glimpses of scholars poring over texts, heard the murmur of voices in forgotten languages, and felt the presence of ancient wisdom enveloping him.

 

The sensation was overwhelming yet exhilarating. It was as if he could access the very essence of the knowledge within the books.

 

"So, I do have some might in this form," Li Wei mused, his voice a whisper that echoed through the silent halls.

 

Despite being confined to the library's boundaries, he realized he possessed abilities far beyond mere preservation of knowledge. He wasn't just a passive guardian but had the potential to wield the accumulated wisdom of centuries in ways he had never imagined.

 

Li Wei’s attention shifted to a towering bookshelf on the far side of the room. Books of all shapes and sizes lined its shelves, their spines bearing titles in languages both familiar and foreign. He concentrated, and the entire shelf began to vibrate gently.

 

One by one, the books started to float, forming a slow, swirling dance in the air.

This was his library, and he could command its contents at will.

 

"Let's see what I can really do," he thought.

 

With a focused thought, he directed one of the ancient tomes to open. The book complied, its pages flipping until it stopped at a section filled with arcane diagrams and esoteric symbols. Li Wei sensed a flow of knowledge pouring from the book into his consciousness, filling him with a deeper understanding of the mystic arts described within.

 

"This...this is amazing," he whispered, feeling the thrill of discovery.

 

As he continued to experiment, he felt a subtle shift in his awareness. It was as if he had gained a new perspective. Every nook and cranny of the library was now within his sight, each detail vivid and clear.

 

"This must be my 'library vision,'" he realized. It was an uncanny, almost omniscient ability to perceive everything within his domain.

 

With this newfound clarity, Li Wei noticed something peculiar.

 

The old tomes and manuscripts weren’t just repositories of knowledge; they were infused with a faint, golden aura. It was as if each book contained a living essence, a fragment of the library’s spirit.

 

He turned his attention to one particular book, its aura stronger than the others. This tome seemed to pulse with a rhythmic energy, drawing him towards it. As he concentrated, he felt a connection form, a link between his consciousness and the book's essence.

 

"Could this be the source of my power?" he wondered.

 

Testing his theory, Li Wei focused on the book and willed it to release its energy. Immediately, he felt a surge of warmth flow through him, invigorating and empowering him.

 

"I can grow stronger by absorbing knowledge,"

 

His excitement was interrupted by a faint, irritating buzz. Somewhere within the library, a swarm of insects had taken residence. They were small and numerous, flitting around the books and shelves, their incessant buzzing a grating noise in the otherwise serene environment.

 

"These pests…" Li Wei muttered.

 

In his previous life, he might have endured such nuisances with resignation. But now, as the library, he had the means to fight back. Channeling his energy, he focused on one of the floating books and directed it towards the source of the buzzing.

 

The book moved swiftly, its pages fluttering like the wings of a great bird. With a sharp flick, it swatted through the swarm, sending the insects scattering. Li Wei couldn’t help but laugh, a deep, satisfying sound that echoed through the library.

 

"How about that? Come near me now, and I’ll swat every single one of you!" he declared.

 

For the first time, he felt a sense of empowerment. He had the ability to defend his domain, to protect the knowledge he now embodied.

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