Crossing over in the storm lands marked the formal start of their isolation. For some reason, the terrain became a lot more rougher and uneven. Scars and impact craters marred the ground and vegetation grew unevenly or with more mutation. It made the environment resemble a primal playground that still needed a couple of hundred-million years to settle down.
Even the wildlife grew more feral. Fewer animal hordes roamed the lands, but each individual beast seemed larger and deadlier. The carnivores who preyed on them had a tough fight on their hands if they hunted a healthy herbivore!
No more ancient cities dwelled in the storm lands. No sacred gods held territory here.
Another difference in the storm lands was that the prevalence of godlings and wild gods increased by at least twice or thrice. As lizard-like carnivores, they competed against regular carnivores who almost always lost the struggle.
In turn, however, the godlings competed much more aggressively over territory. They fought and dueled against each other to hold large scraps of lands. Those who failed to claim a territory for themselves had to resort to scavenging or other ignoble means of existence. Their calorie intake couldn't keep up with their growth, and over time they starved to death before reaching the final prize.
Only very few godlings possessed the strength, cunning and luck to survive for a century. Once they finally bridged over the final gap, they became wild gods.
Yet these wild gods inhabiting a land devoid of any ancient cities and sacred gods did not laze about every day. The struggle for territory continued on even fiercer. While wild gods didn't need to go out and eat very often, they always ate an enormous amount during every feeding session.
Therefore, wild gods required an even greater intake of food, and that meant that they needed to claim far more territory than in their younger stage.
Since wild gods could easily live for thousands of years, Aeon Corona VII would eventually be flooded with wild gods if they kept popping up! Yet as massive as the planet stretched, it could only sustain so many hungry mouths.
This inevitably led to a lot of duels between wild gods. The feral, irascible creatures didn't possess any exceptional intelligence if they hadn't come in touch with any humans.
The normal instinct of a wild god pushed them to claim everything for themselves. Sharing territory or forming a pack was a step too far for these apex predators.
Since each wild god possessed strange powers, their battles often led to destructive effects. Some of the terrain still bore their marks to this day, which sometimes forced the ground expedition to take detours.
It was worse when the Flagrant Swordmaidens encountered battling wild gods on their way. They always took wider detours as it wasn't worth it to subdue the massive creatures with their mechs.
A detour cost much less energy than killing the dueling wild gods!
The declining reserves of energy over the past month prompted the brass to institute a widespread cutback on their energy usage.
Both mechs and transports dialed down to a lower power setting, but the gravitic backpacks and antigrav modules working to keep them light enough drained so many batteries and energy cells that their future prospects looked poor.
Some found the decision to turn away from the ancient cities and decline a chance to learn from some of their methods was a big mistake. The blessed people survived for millenia on a heavy gravity planet. While they seem poor and degenerated right now, that made their continued survival all the more exceptional!
"We could have progressed a lot further in our research in the god crystals if we traded some essential goods from the ancient cities." Chief Dakkon lamented. "Hopefully, this final trial will finally allow us to achieve what we should have accomplished a month ago."
"I hope so as well." Ves said.
Inside one of the mobile labs, both of them stood inside an observation room that overlooked an experimental chamber that held one of their pure god crystals. They possessed many more, but they had all been collecting dust in the vault all this while.
While the beast rider project had ended long ago and transferred its results to the beast rider support staff, the god crystal project still hadn't been able to make any substantial progress as of late.
Qilanxo hadn't been of much help, as much of her usage of the god crystals appeared to be instinctive. It was like she moved an extra limb. How could she describe what she did to people who didn't possess this extra limb?
Therefore, the god crystal project stalled as the engineers and researchers working on this project only achieved minor results.
Yet the holy grails of calling down an energy tornado to fill up its energy reservoirs and discharging the energy in a form that the Vandals could make use of still remained out of reach!
"Hasn't Qilanxo helped you out by demonstrating both of these capabilities?" Ves asked.
Chief Dakkon sighed. "She's done so several times, but taking sensor readings is one thing. Replicating the phenomenon is another thing entirely. We don't understand the underlying principles. The only thing we learned is that all of this stuff is extremely complicated and goes way over our heads. Therefore, we've been resorting to trial and error to rule out the wrong approaches. The upcoming test is the final approach left."
After Captain Orfan finally came out of the infirmary after a week of testing and examinations, their cooperation with Qilanxo kicked up a gear. Lieutenant Dise of the Swordmaidens underwent a ceremony as well with the sacred god, although her transformation seemed to be a bit less intense.
Qilanxo did say there was a reason they generally limited themselves to selecting only one chosen at a time. There wouldn't be any point of selecting a third chosen, as she didn't have any capacity to spare to bear the burden.
Her age and abundant amount of god crystals were the only reason she could handle the load of choosing two humans to be her representatives.
As the beast riders enabled Qilanxo to speak to the Flagrant Swordmaidens directly, they understood each other much better. Qilanxo was able to teach them much, but the problem was that she was an exobeast.
What would she know of the sciences? She didn't understand any of the mechanisms and theories behind her body structure, metaphysical powers or even the purpose of her own existence!
Therefore, it took one long month for the god crystal project to reach this point.
"Prepare the experiment!"
The god crystal resting in the center of the chamber was not alone this time. For one reason or another, an exobiologist grafted a bulbous piece of flesh onto its surface!
It looked like the god crystal became infected with some kind of horrible alien parasite!
"What's the deal with that mass of flesh?" Ves asked.
"It's the solution we finally came up with." Chief Dakkon grimaced. "We tried many ways of inciting the god crystals to activate and perform a function. It turned out for all our methods, we missed the most obvious one. The sacred gods are able to activate the god crystals by coming in touch with them and using their thoughts to direct their functions. So what the exobiologists did is to clone Qilanxo's tissue to create an artificial nerve structure."
"That doesn't sound like much."
"That's because there's more to the point. We believe strong thoughts are needed to activate the god crystals, so we've captured a dwarf chieftain and took out its brains and put them into that fleshy ball that's responsible for keeping it alive.
"What?! You're depending on dwarf brains?!" Ves was amazed at this crazy but ingenious solution.
"Sounds crazy, right?" The chief engineer grinned. "Yet according to our rudimentary theories, a single god crystal doesn't require much input to do its work. However, for some reason, only the natives are able to unlock them. There's no use in cloning brains from scratch or to use mouse brains or dog brains. Only an actual individual who grew up on this planet fits the right category."
All of this sounded extremely convoluted. If Ves asked someone like Dr. Tillman directly, she would likely spend half a day to lecture him about the greatness of using transplanted dwarf brains as a way to excite the god crystals.
In the storm lands, the wildlings roamed in lesser numbers. However, they were twice as ferocious as gathered together in large tribes more often.
Each large tribe also inevitably enjoyed the protection of at least one bonded wild god.
The Flagrant Swordmaidens generally chose to detour around them when the scouts detected a large tribe on their way to prevent any conflict.
Overall, the wildling tribes weren't afraid of competing directly against the wild gods for territory. Since a bonded wild god benefited from the intelligence from its dwarf rider, they usually obtained the upper hand.
"Chief, the preparations are done. We can start the experiment right away."
"Commence the experiment!"
Someone behind a control panel activated a command to the fleshy growth. The dwarf brains inside had been crudely reprogrammed into an organic computer of sorts. While it was impossible for the Flagrant Swordmaidens to wipe the mind, the exobiologists did their best which managed to impart them with the command to send out a specific thought pattern on command.
This time, the dwarf brains received the instructions of discharging a small amount of energy in the god crystal in the form of electricity.
The control panels displayed various parameters beginning to spike.
Something was happening!
Several experts and specialists reported various changes, but Ves didn't pay attention to them. Instead, he looked at the god crystal and the fleshy growth and faintly sensed a tingling in his sixth sense.
Ves understood what the Flagrant Swordmaidens missed for several months.
The god crystals could only interact with spirituality!
Since dead and non-living objects generally didn't possess any spirituality, it was no wonder the god crystals didn't react to any external stimuli. Pushing it, electrocuting it, heating it, blasting it with radiation and more had nothing to do with spirituality.
Only a living mind possessed this elusive trait!
Even though a wildling or any other normal human for that matter possessed a negligible amount of spirituality, they still possessed a tiny flame. Normally, this untouchable bit of spirituality had no meaningful interaction with the outside world, but the god crystals were very different from the norm.
The dwarf brains might only possess a feeble flame, but it was more than enough to turn some kind of switch in the god crystal.
A simple electronic apparatus connected to the other end of the god crystal. Shortly after the god crystal began glowing, the apparatus glowed as well as it absorbed an uneven amount of power.
"We've detected direct current! The god crystal is powering the testing apparatus!"
"The current is unstable! Power levels are rising! They're spiking!"
The god crystal suddenly discharged a lightning bolt's worth of energy to the apparatus at once, and the fuses blew immediately!
Nonetheless, none of the experts cared about this disaster.
"We did it! We generated electricity!"
"We have a new power source!"Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.
"It won't be long before we can turn the god crystals into power generators!"
Chief Dakkon smiled, though he didn't join the jubilation. "Why are you celebrating?! We're nowhere done right now! Our dwarf brains have friend and the fuses are blown! More than that, the god crystal is out of juice and we have no way to recharge it yet!"
The Flagrant Swordmaidens still hadn't figured out the method to excite the god crystal into siphoning higher-dimensional energy and matter from the astral winds.
Still, now that they proved that making use of dwarf brains as controllers worked, they were on the right track! The god crystal project expected to make brisk progress now that they no longer ran around like headless chickens.