|“||The force of that dimensional energy can be expelled with single, concentrated breath.||”|
Quickening is a respiratory-based fighting style that brings out a unique set of abilities depending on the practitioner. This discipline is prominently featured in Zero's Strange Misadventures and Spiritwalkers, although they have different means of doing so while adhering to the same breathing principles.
Quickenings are the hidden talents buried deep beneath of an individual, suddenly projected into reality by a tranquil mind and spirit, then through constant practice of precise breathing control. A person skilled in their own Quickening are gifted with a slew of powers that are supernatural in nature; some even twisting the laws of physics in ways akin to magic. In addition to new abilities, users initially have average resistance towards mental and spiritual attacks, which can be improved with further training.
Quickening abilities are quite diverse and unique from each other. When it comes down to a fight between different Quickening abilities, the user's creativity with their Quickening is often the factor of their victory, not on how much destructive capabilities such a style can produce by the practitioner. How a Quickening appears is based on several traits that make up their users, some give them an edge in physical offense because of their willpower alone and some can only be operated in complex and technical situations as a reflection of a user's defining quirk.
Zero's Strange Misadventures
In Zero's Strange Misadventures, the Quickening was once a martial art exclusive to three dimensions, all involving the synchronization of mind and spirit to perform various skills, with the breathing mechanic exclusive to one. When a dimensional anomaly triggered a series of distortions throughout the fabric of reality, the Quickening was among those that were greatly affected by it, its discipline soon being spread across a number of dimensions with a number of its denizens suddenly experiencing a surge of power by taking deep breaths. As time passed by after the distortions, the Quickening's essence gradually incorporated with the residue known as "Miasma", which would be artificially reproduced and spread across reality again by the Syndicate in hopes of boosting its Special Unit department with individuals suddenly developing their Quickenings.
In Spiritwalkers, it was originally developed by humans who were caught in the crosshairs of the War for the Surface Lands. Desperate for their survival and countermeasures against the Gumm-Gumm forces, the Quickening's progenitors sought to optimize their physiological capabilities into something that can give them the edge against the evil horde of trolls without solely relying on magic, the more benevolent trolls, and the wait for having the sun to rise up. It was then that Eastern philosophies involving the mind and spirit were then incorporated when one of the progenitors recently came back from Asia, immediately imparting what he had knew of his studies to his fellow brethren.
Years later, the progenitors were able to fend off a good number of Gumm-Gumm troops using complex techniques brought unto them with a clear mind and spirit, then forced out through precise breathing that the trolls that saw them mistook the earliest Quickening practices as some sort of "breathing magic." Some Quickening users decided to impart it to some trolls before both races made a Pact to live their lives separate from each other in peace.