As the cascading colors faded from my vision, I noticed the familiar ceiling of my home. Even without getting up, my hands started to roam my body, making sure I was still in one piece. There was light peeking through the windows already, had I fallen asleep…. was it all a dream?

I brought my hand up to my neck where there was a faint burning sensation. My stomach dropped as I realized where it was from.

Memories of a previous self had flooded my mind.

There was no thunderous awakening, the heavens didn't part to bestow this enlightenment upon me. There were no earth-shattering effects that came with my newfound wisdom.

I simply remembered a life before this one.

Last night, the high stress situation was more or less a catalyst. A lot of questions I had previously were now answered. Standing up and looking in the mirror, I couldn't help but run my hand through my hair. My red hair that I inherited from my father. I do truly look like him.

I touched my neck again, there was no scar but the phantom sensation was still there. Holy power, practically poison to my 'kind', I'll need to be careful in future.

Who even am I?

My feeling towards my father didn't change, even after knowing who he was now. These newfound memories, I could close my eyes and see the progression of this world-line, secrets became my domain, I now knew things I couldn't possibly have known previously.

I stretched my back slightly and felt something I hadn't in eighteen years of my life. Two bat-like wings exploded out behind me.

What a refreshing feeling.

Wings, how comical. They in no way allowed for the physical sensation of flight. They were almost frail-like in their aesthetic, but their power didn't come from their manifestation. They were more conceptual in nature than physical.

I have wings – therefore I can fly. It's the same with Angels and a lot of other races that have wings. Shifting through my memories, and there were quite a bit to look at, I was apparently a half devil. It explained why I was just now realizing I had wings in the first place, even though normal devils come into them as children. They were magical, and previously I had such a pitiable amount of 'magic' be it magical energy or the devil's equivalent of demonic energy, that they simply couldn't manifest.

Was it perhaps because of my Magic Circuits? No magical energy would leak out from my being because of the pseudo-magical organ so I was thought of as almost a cripple.

I sat down and hummed to myself for a moment. Half Devils in general were looked down on, they usually got the short end of the stick when compared to normal devils. Considering most Half Devils came from a human parent, they usually inherited the talent, or rather the lack there of, from them. No noticeable activation of my 'bloodline' nor magical energy on the surface.

I guess there was no surprise that I was tossed to the side.

Even as I rationalized my situation, it didn't abate my anger. Maybe if they dug any deeper, they would have discovered my Magic circuits? No, it didn't matter, they chose to not be a part of my life, so I don't care about that side of my family. I've been alone for a while now, I'll just keep trudging on as I am.

Though I was curious about my bloodline, even as I tried, I couldn't find anything but the tiniest speck of the exalted 'power of destruction' that my bloodline boasts about. I couldn't even bring it to the surface, what a shame, it would have been a wonderful boon.

It made my feel just ever so much weaker. I was almost killed by a psycho exorcist. Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

I was lucky I activated my Magic out of habit. I've lived in this house enough that I was able to overturn space and pop into my bedroom on pure instinct using the Kaleidoscope.

I feel so weak, and I hate it. It went beyond just almost being killed like that. I was pushing away my anxiety about almost dying but there was more to it. I didn't feel in control of my life. I hated it; I didn't want to be this 'me' anymore.

Takao Shimoda, that was my name. The name my mother gave to me, but I couldn't be this person anymore. Even as I thought my own name, it seems like the 'older memories' were taking precedence. Family names come first in Japanese society, and I was starting to think in western terms.

How strange, I didn't even notice until now. Not only that, if I recall correctly, Devils can speak and understand any language fluently, was that also having an impact on my mental state? Those racial abilities should be blooming now….

Small victories and all that.

I looked myself over in the mirror one more time, letting my wings disappear.

"Sorry mom, I can't be this anymore." I quietly apologized.

I wanted a new name, for a new beginning. I would take a page out of my previous self's book. Who was I now?

Wilhelm Henry Schweinorg.

As I name myself, my name defines me. This is who I would be for now on, the powerless boy I was previously is gone.

Looking at the morning sun, my thoughts drifted back from the more whimsical ideas. What was I going to do in the immediate time frame?

Hell, what even time was it right now?

I moved my hands around my pockets and couldn't even find my phone. Did I seriously leave my house last night without my phone? I don't know what I was thinking. Well, I wasn't in my right mind if I were to be honest. I think a lot of stuff just all came boiling to the surface and I had a small episode. Having more context to look at my life now, I wouldn't get so caught up in myself like previously.

Going downstairs, it was sitting on the table. Oof, school started an hour ago, whatever. I'm done with that nonsense anyways. My attitude didn't change much I still didn't care to go back under the thumb of people I don't like.

Sona Sitri, she was probably just following orders from her sister or my father. Still….fuck them.

What to do what to do. I need some things to get started, my Circuits weren't even properly open yet, only a few were forced to activate last night which allowed me to run away. I need….materials, hmm.

But right now, I am limited.

I don't possess my favored Mystic Code.

My jeweled sword, the beauty that went into its creation…..how dearly do I miss it right now. It helped me channel the neigh-infinite power that I could draw from parallel worlds, It was an amazing tool to overcome many of the limitation that Magic Circuits imposed. Not to mention It did a lot of the heavy lifting with calculations. Despite what people may think I can't just rip open a portal and jump from one world-line to the next. Last night was a fluke that I doubt I could do consciously without prior preparations.

Having to calculate the trajectory of the planet in relation to the stars to determine a fixed point in space while also considering both the 'Y' and 'Z' axis. That was barely even scratching the surface. My beautiful old sword could do that in moments.

Bleh.

Now though, I would have to rely on the meagre amount of mana I can channel myself and do all the calculations by hand, lest I overstep my own bodily means and accidently kill myself.

But I can manage until I find some materials to craft myself something capable of synergizing with my Magic.

I have no delusions about making something on the same level as my old sword, I would need to find my way back to my previous dimension to even begin that endeavor, no, I would just need something to propel me over the limitations of my current body.

I have some meagre funds available, an allowance provided by my caretakers. A good plan of action, but there was one important question that needed answering before I departed.

What exactly do I wear?

I seemed to inherit my previous-self's tastes in fashion, and I couldn't help but cringe at my current attire. I wasn't even sure I had any clothing that could meet my standards, and I lacked the funds to properly address my current grievances.

Regardless, I did my best to uplift my normal dress to something that passes as reasonable.

Now, where to go?

Someone my age may just dart right towards the nearest shopping center, but my current needs require something a bit more 'unique'.

Hmm.

Perhaps there is one boon for living this far east, the residents of this country place a bit more truth into the 'old ways'. That is to say, they have a healthy appreciation for legends, myths, and traditions. Even in a more modern town like this, there are places that sell the stranger variety of goods.

I could vaguely recall a district that had things like antique shops and traditional medicines.

That would be a good a place as any to begin.

On the eastern side of town, where more shops and stalls pop up, usually the 'stranger' side of commerce appears here. Not to say that I found some mystical treasure trove, the vast majority of things here are knick-knacks or scams. It was like a tourist trap, without the touristy part. I could see hawkers trying to sell their 'miracle cures' that came from various animal body parts. Or people shouted on the corners about warding away evil spirits with such and such charms.

Though there was one truth about this area that made me feel relaxed, I could feel some mystical elements in the air, perhaps not any blatant displays, but more the presence of thicker mana.

More…..Mystery.

If that is even an applicable term for this world-line. Though contextually speaking it should be about the same regardless.

Even with the high concentration of magical energy that permeates this world, such things were easy to sense when you were close.

My eyes darted around; a content smile plastered my face as I noticed many things I had to stop myself from impulse buying. A few gems hidden among the trash in the area, but nothing that would immediately help my circumstances.

I had a decent amount of pocket change readily available. An amount I had saved up over the course of a decade or so.

If my math was correct, it should be about 347 pounds, or roughly 37000 yen.

My mind still defaults to pounds, the years spent in London taking precedence. I wonder if that nifty little food cart is present in this world? I usually visited it every time I returned to the Clock Tower, only being a few minutes' walk from the entrance.

Thoughts for later.

My eye caught a nice little prize in the corner.

A woman selling various ginseng. I looked over a handful of them, admiring the health and age. Thankfully I had a couple circuits open, enough to cast a few minor cantrips such as Structural Analysis. While I couldn't immediately know all the information of what I was looking at, I could more or less estimate the age of these herbs within a couple decades. Most were less than twenty years old, but one stood out.

The woman didn't even bat an eye as I picked it out of the basket, she clearly didn't know it's worth. She probably thought I was a sucker, but I kept a straight face as I paid a decent price. A hundred years or so ginseng was worth its weight in gold or more.

Those years of learning eastern magics was paying off already. There were several concoctions I could brew that would help forge my body with readily available ingredients, an older Ginseng being the hardest to procure.

Even those old stuffy magi in the tower knew that a healthy mind resides in a healthy body. While my body wasn't exactly in bad condition, I was a bit of a shut-in teenager, I could stand to be in better physical shape.

A good find regardless, and something that probably made this trip worth it.

Wandering around a fair bit more, I stumbled upon an antique shop.

A creaky door met a small bell at the top to alert the owner that I entered, he only gave me an inquisitive eye as I nodded in his direction.

I suppose a young man would be a rare sight for his shop, especially this time of day. I'm glad I took the effort to alteast appear somewhat well-kept as opposed to a normal student.

In that small exchange, I didn't sense any magical capabilities from him something easy to discover with a little flaring of mana in the immediate vicinity. That being said, I could immediately sense several objects in the shop pulse with slight waves of magical energy as I did so.

My eyes drawn to an old revolver inside a case.

This thing was extremely out of place, besides being a gun in Japan, it had a very strange design and what looked like Aztec…..no, Mayan, sigils carved into it. There didn't appear to be a way to even dislodge the chamber to add bullets, no wonder he was able to put it on display.

My attempts to Structural Grasp it was met with resistance.

Some kind of anti-scrying spells attached on? The 'magic' of this world was much more ambiguous, attaching an 'anti scrying' concept probably fought against my spell as it did something similar.

I could probably brute force through the protections, but I had no idea what the outcome would be.

But, regardless, I want it..

If nothing else, my curiosity was piqued.

Unfortunately, the price tag was a bit too steep for me.

85,000 Yen.

Sad day when my funds were so miniscule.

There were some other, odd items.

A hairclip that protected against the weather, a goblet that would gradually duplicate mundane liquids over time if supplied with a steady stream of mana.

A...what?

Who would make something like this?

I stared at the strange object before remembering what world I lived in. The age and accessibility of magic had suddenly hit me, a bit of culture shock.

A butter knife that can't cut anything.

Just…..why?

Probably a learning instrument for Mystic Code craft, or even a gag gift.

I was leaning towards the latter after observing it's make up. It was a bit too expertly made to be an apprentice's work.

How wasteful, even if its outward design was beautifully done.

Something like this would never be created back home. I could only sigh in resignation at how easy the magic-users of this world had it.

Well, technically, I am now one of their number, if a bit constrained by my circuits.

I quickly pushed the knife out of my mind, lest I lament more than I already have.

My eyes finally landed on a new prize.

A hat and cane combo.

The price tag made me frown.

20,000 Yen for both.

I noticed their quality immediately, Victorian Era and made with sterner materials than what laid on the surface.

The price was worth it from what I gleamed from the items, not to mention they fit my tastes.

"See anything that caught your eye?"

I snapped out of my thoughts as the owner stood next to me. "Yes, I'm curious about this cane and hat."

The older man just nodded, picking them up to inspect them. "If I recall correctly, they were owned by an old stage magician who moonlit as a thief back in London England, roughly two hundred years ago."

I mentally nodded, that was about the timeframe I concluded. "Anything interesting about the original owner?"

"Hmmm." The man looked thoughtful for a moment. "Supposedly, the magician got caught after robbing a museum and stealing a rather priceless gem, but when the authorities caught him, the gem was nowhere to be found."

I reached my hand over and ran my finder along the cane, pulsing a little bit of mana and casting a minor alteration. "Unfortunately, it seems as though the cane as become rusted."

The old man raises and eyebrow and picks up the old item, desperately trying to pull the pieces apart.

I held back a small smile. It wasn't just a cane, it was a cane sword. I slightly altered the mechanism to stop It from pulling out.

"So, it seems." The shopkeep gave up and set it down.

"I don't mind getting it fixed later, so how about 18,000 yen for the pair?" I inquired.

"Very well, I'll ring you up at the counter."

Maybe I should feel bad about cheating the man out of a couple thousand yen? I still think I gave a reasonable price, all things considered, and I was taking a couple of magically imbued items off his hands. Truthfully, I'm doing him a favor in case anyone else discovered what was hidden in these little beauties.

My funds were drastically low at this point, the little bit I saved in my….'bartering' had allowed me to procure a few more necessities without becoming destitute.

The market from before had almost everything that skirted what was considered mundane, I only had to spend a couple hours to find everything else within my price range. I had to make a few alterations to my concoctions I was going to brew due to availability, but overall, it should turn out alright.

I was a bit giddy at my finds.

Arriving home and placing my items on the counter, I removed the ingredients first.

My lovely Ginseng, I set aside carefully, along with some other ingredients.

Strangely enough, what stood out the most was the small container of blueberries.

For some reason, the recipe called for something that the taker dislikes. Not the exact wording, but that's the gist of it and I never bothered to experiment enough with these things, they were rather finicky as it were.

Cutting everything up, throwing it into the blender.

I couldn't help but stop and appreciate modern conveniences. I left a little bit of the ginseng to the side, to use in another formula to help awaken the remainder of my circuits.

Lastly, I added a bit of my own blood to bring it all together and invoke the inherit mysteries within my little potion.

Yes, an old recipe from China, I believe.

If I recall correctly, it was rather common for cultivators back in the day, something to start them on their paths of cultivation. It clears the body of impurities and jump starts certain physical growths that help build muscles and such. The only reason it wasn't more widely used was because western and eastern 'magical arts' weren't compatible, at least in my old world and I had no time to research here. If I had already embarked on the path of Magecraft to a certain extent and tried this, it most likely wouldn't have worked.

Technically, this body was still 'immature' in the mystical side of the world even considering the couple circuits that opened the other day.

It tasted awful, as it was supposed to. Something philosophical about not liking the taste.

Well, regardless, I moved onto my next little project. The concoction would work its way through my body and I should see results when I wake up in the morning.

For now, though, I stare at the two items that cost me the majority of my funds.

I pick up the cane, undoing my slight alteration, and withdrawing the blade hidden within.

Marvelous.

The weapon was of much higher quality than what one could see on the surface. It looked like ordinary steel in its making, but a quick grasp of its structure showed quite a bit of silver went into its forging. Not only that, but it was also not a mundane weapon either, as there were a few runes carved at its base.

Nothing too fancy, I could easily deduce their purpose to strengthen the sword. Were they Celtic in origin?

Almost like a primitive reinforcement.

It would be perfect for my purposes in creating a temporary mystic code.

The hat though….the hat had surprised me when I first saw it.

It looked completely mundane at first glance, but that was far from the truth.

Who would ever suspect that this little accessory had a small pocket dimension attached to it?

Flaring my couple circuits, I reached inside as my arm disappeared into its depths to withdraw what was hidden within.

I couldn't help my eyes widening as I practically dumped the contents onto the table.

First off, there were several bundles of paper, old bills from the era that probably weren't worth much, especially this far east.

A few pieces of jewelry that I could easily find uses for.

And finally, a large gem that could fit into my palm and haphazardly fallen down with everything else.

It's ghastly green reflecting my wide smile.

Wonderful, but I will need some way to sell this thing off without attracting attention.