The hunting party eventually crossed over into prairie terrain. The terrain became a little harder to navigate, and if the Vandals made use of wheeled or tracked vehicles, then they would have slowed down to a crawl.
Fortunately, the legged transports which derived some of their shape from insects possessed enough maneuverability to walk over most irregularities in the terrain. They didn't even slow down that much when they had to climb uphill.
To speed up their progress, every mech and transport maintained their own antigrav fields. Though costly in terms of energy, sustaining it for a day or two wouldn't break their energy budget.
Still, if they kept the antigrav modules running at all times, then eventually they would run out of energy after a month or two. That was way too fast and would put them at a huge disadvantage.
How could they compete for the treasures of the Starlight Megalodon if their mechs moved like snails and their melee mechs couldn't even lift up their weapons without taking seconds to do so?
Besides the occasional supply shipments sent down from the fleet that had begun mining operations on one of the moons, the only other way to supplement their energy was to find a local source.
This was why they put so much emphasis on their entreaties with the ancient city of Mulak. If the natives traded the means of siphoning some of the higher-dimensional energies for their own uses in exchange for something like a water purifier or a basic power reactor, then the Vandals wouldn't have to worry about this issue so much.
They didn't even know if it was possible to convert the higher-dimensional energies into electricity or some other form that the Vandals were capable of harnessing. For all they knew, only through the medium of a sacred god would they be able to secure an endless power source.
In any case, one of the reasons why the Flagrant Swordmaidens wanted to dissect a wild god was because they may be able to figure out this energy conversion process on their own. If they manage to obtain the god crystals from somewhere, then they could use the insights they gained to invent a makeshift renewable energy source that would last them for as long as the astral winds dominated the skies!
The hunting party took some time to navigate towards the site of the wild god. Vandals and Swordmaidens positioned scouts at a distance, making sure they remained downwind so that the creature wouldn't be able to smell their distinctive metallic scents and spook them off.
"Is that it?" Ketis remarked as the fast transports and mechs halted at least ten kilometers away from the big beast. "For a supposed god, it doesn't look as large as the sacred gods from the footage."
"These creatures grow extremely slow. According to Dr. Tillman, it takes a century or more for them to reach adulthood."
The wild god in question looked smaller and leaner than the fat and bulky sacred gods of Mulak. If Dr. Tillman was right, then this may be a younger adult specimen of its species. Perhaps the reason why it drifted off into the prairie was because it lacked the strength to claim a better territory.
During the time it remained under observation, the wild god mostly slept in the open. Occasionally it woke up to dig a small hole with its formidable rear limbs, only to use it as a makeshift toilet before covering it up with soil.
Other times, it hunted down the herd of animals by moving towards them in an agonizingly slow pace.
Though the wild god appeared to move as fast as a slow turtle, the bison-like creatures didn't move any faster either!
Looking at the footage of the wild god hunting down its prey was like watching a turtle trying to catch up to a snail. Both were slow creatures in their size category, but the wild god possessed an absolute speed advantage because its body and limbs were bigger!
In fact, the wild god didn't particularly exert itself too much whenever it wanted to snack. It merely sniffed the air and homed in on the strong smells of the large herds of animals.
The wild god didn't go too far either. It only nabbed half-a-dozen prey at a time at most, thereby preventing it from driving the animal herds to extinction.
Behavior like this increased everyone's impression that this animal had been engineered somehow.
Ves and the other expert huddled together with Captain Byrd to go over the final plans. They already formed one with the cooperation of the Swordmaidens but they wanted to look over it to see if they made any oversights.
"Have we detected the presence of a second wild god?" Chief Dakkon wondered. "I don't want to find out it has a mate that has stumbled upon us attempting to dissect its deceased partner."
"We're fairly certain the beast is on its own." Dr. Tillman replied. "We've analyzed the terrain extensively and the only traces of a giant beast belongs to this yellow wild god."
The creature in question resembled a feathered dinosaur covered with rich yellow feather interspersed with other patterns. It weighed significantly more than a heavy mech, but not as much as one of the sacred gods.
It never showed any signs of sentience or interaction with the elusive wildlings. The Flagrant Swordmaidens kept their eyes and ears peeled out for the dwarves, but so far they hadn't encountered any. They didn't adhere to the stereotype of miners who loved to claim mineral-rich deposits.
Mining ores didn't fill up their stomachs!
"Has the creature shown any sign of extraordinary abilities?"
"None so far, though that doesn't mean it doesn't have any trump cards." Dr. Tillman cautioned them all. "Our scanners and sensors can't penetrate past its feathery scales. Just like a sacred god, the wild god is emitting a natural interference field that also has a spacetime distortion component. This alone tells us that they may not be called gods in vain."
In short, they hadn't figured out more than what they already knew a few days ago. Though Captain Byrd wanted to treat the wild god as a potential opponent on par with a sacred god like Naeduvis, they couldn't afford to dither all day. Delaying the hunt by a few days wouldn't improve their chances of success.
They just needed to get on with the hunt.
The fast transports remained at the rear while the mechs stepped forward. The Vandals and Swordmaidens both brought two mech companies again. The Vandals brought more ranged mechs this time as they didn't anticipate their melee mechs to play any role.Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.
Even if the wild god moved as slow as a snail, none of them underestimated the creature's burst capabilities! It could perform a quick snap if it wanted to! Taking them out at a distance so far that the mechs would barely be able to remain in visual range sounded like a much safer prospect.
"The Swordmaiden mechs are in position. Our own mechs are in position as well. The wild god is currently asleep and has not shown any indications of detecting our presence. We can commence the attack any any time, captain."
"Begin! Open fire!"
Around sixty laser beams impacted the obliviously slumbering wild god! The attack instantly struck its feathered limbs, causing its scales to start vaporizing from the combined firepower of several laser beams pinpointing their targeting on the exact same spot!
Unlike enemy mechs, these wild gods didn't possess any ECM or a form of mobility that allowed them to mess with the targeting of the rifleman mechs. Even the creature's natural interference field wasn't enough to divert most of the laser beams away from their target spots.
The wild god released a painful roar immediately upon waking. It turned its head towards the limbs and saw that it had acquired a new sete of shallow holes on its limbs!
A second salvo of lasers struck the previously-hit areas. The wild god roared in agony as most of the scales on those spots succumbed to blindingly bright beams of light that came from the blue!
The wild god swiveled its huge eyes towards the forms in the distance and began to lumber forward in a fury-crazed charge!
Of course, the creature's charge didn't look impressive to the hunters at all. The mechs easily took a few steps backwards in order to maintain a consistent distance between their frail mechs and the wild god's brute strength.
Ves stared at the footage and the sensor readings in rapt attention. He was waiting for something to happen. Was the wild god a simple creature, or did it possess any powers that was worthy of the mantle of a god?
"Energy levels within the beast is spiking!" Chief Dakkon called in alarm. "Spacetime distortion is strengthening as well!"
"Is it siphoning energy from the astral winds?!"
"Nothing of the sort. The wild god is drawing upon an inner reservoir of energy that we haven't detected before!"
"What is it doing?!"
"I don't know, but the emissions it is generating is spreading out over the terrain! It's similar to the ability shown off by Naeduvis, except it doesn't involve the ground water!"
Then what was this wild god up to?
"Our seismic sensors are reading an increasing level of tremors around the wild god! It's calling down an earthquake!"
The prairie soil in a wide area around the wild god trembled and shook! Some of the soil even cracked and split, causing the animals nearby to fall into the chasms that emerged beneath their limbs!
"Are our mechs and transports under threat?" Captain Byrd asked in concern.
"No ma'am! Our assets remain well outside the area of effect. We should only be experiencing some minor shakes at most."
The earthquake lasted around forty seconds before Chief Dakkon reported that the wild god's energy reservoir ran out of juice. Despite the wild god's incredible ferocity, it couldn't do anything to a distant opponent!
The wild god visibly looked exhausted. Unlike the sacred gods, these untamed exobeasts didn't appear to be optimised for war, though that might also be a function of its age.
"I think that's it." Dakkon remarked. "Without any way to supplement its energy quickly, I don't think it can pull off any more tricks."
Ves nodded in agreement as he watched the rifleman mechs disabling its limbs with their focused lasers before turning their firepower onto other sections of its body. Since they didn't expect the wild god to be able to pose a threat to their mechs, the hunters took their time by aiming to immobilize and kill the exobeast while leaving as many parts intact as possible.
"It's interesting that it is able to perform such a trick on its own." Ves observed. "This proves that the godly abilities they showed off doesn't have to involve a beast rider."
The feathered wild god's ability proved that the beast riders didn't bring as much to the table compared to expert pilots.
An expert mech without an expert pilot would never be able to muster up their resonance abilities.
This likely strengthened the impression of the giant exobeasts in the native population.
Speaking of experts, Ves diverted some attention to the performance of the pale dancer. Though it had been built as a customized ballistic rifleman mech, it could still wield laser rifles as long as it forewent some resonance abilities and specialized systems that only worked well with physical rounds.
The Pale Dancer wouldn't be able to employ any devastating tricks like infusing its rounds with penetrating or exploding energy, but Venerable Xie still had his excellent marksmanship to go on. Each of his lasers hit their assigned target without any deviation, even compensating for the minute amount of spacetime distortion that threw everyone's aim slightly off course!
The customized laser rifle in the Pale Dancer's hands barked out laser beams that were at least four times as powerful as the lasers released by normal rifles. No expense had been spared for the weapon which originally served as yet another backup weapon for the overgeared Parallax Star.
"The beast is starting to succumb!"
After more than five minutes of surgical bombardment, the wild god finally showed signs of croaking.
It was a rather ignoble end for such a majestic creature. For some reason, Ves didn't look very impressed at their successful act of deicide.
"They're not really gods, after all." He shook his head in disappointment. "They're merely mistaken as such."