While talking about eating Nola’s kin, the Demon Fire Worms, in front of her face was a little… There really was no choice was there? Without a source of food, establishing a faction was basically impossible.
Thankfully, she wasn’t one to mind such matters. After all, she ate them too…
As worms without any offensive attack whatsoever, they relied on their ability to split themselves into half and leave behind some meat in order to escape, similar to how a lizard severed its tail. Sometimes I wondered, how frustrating it must’ve been for them to be so fat and juicy while being so defenseless at the same time.
As long as one managed to catch these worms, they could have the worm split itself in half, leaving behind a piece of meat while the other ran away to the nearest lava lake. Just by sticking to that, I could ensure the survival of the worms and also guarantee a stable food source for my army.
The only problem with that perfect plan would be that my lower tiered Devils weren’t able to enter the lava lake. Thus, my first objective was to fashion a tool for my Imps to go fishing for worms. For example, a net of some sort. Like those the fishermen used or a dipping net.
First off, a dipping net…what should it be made of? The materials weren’t actually hard to come by. I could have simply fashioned one out of Flame Devouring Fish bones and Demon Fire Wormhide. All that required was some combining via Dark Alchemy…
The hardness of the fishbones were honestly quite high; issues like an overly long rod wouldn’t trouble it at all. If you added in the pliable and sturdy nature of the wormhides, one had a topnotch dipping net just like that. One just had to be careful of it getting torn apart by Flame Devouring Fishes…speaking of which, what then?
I clearly couldn’t use fishbones in the construction of the netting as well…that would make it frightfully heavy, given that I had a trawl that was over half a meter in length in mind, one that was to be wielded by only one Devil too…
Not only that, there was still the matter of the biting strength of those fishes to worry about…even if I used fishbones to construct the netting, there was a chance it would get broken anyway.
And now for the fishing net…that I had no intention of using at all. After all, it would just get torn apart by those fishes, even if it was made out of fishbones. Without trying it out, I could picture the outcome already.
In light of all that, it had to be the trawl then.
Speaking of which, the fact that a countless number of Devils stayed in the city meant that it should, at the very least, possess a number of trawls, or so it would seem. Because my underlings weren’t that many to start with, this whole issue of food wasn’t my main worry prior. Before reaching this lava lake, my focus on searching for weaponry, in other words for those weapon storages and not food. From the looks of things, a second search was needed and soon…hopefully the capital still held something of use.
My need for food could only be described as dire and nothing less. These newcomers which I had just captured were my future source of soldiers and as the saying went, to have a horse gallop, one had to feed it first. I needed to be able to sustain them, not just because they required it, but also because it was important for them to see that I was able to provide for them. Without that assurance, would they even be willing to serve me wholeheartedly?
‘Hmmm, it’s not like I can feed them to each other either…at the end of the day, no matter who it was that gets assigned to ‘ration’ duty, it would be my underling pool that takes the hit…’
While I was busy mulling over the issue of rations, the world around me continued to revolve at breakneck speed. It was only the sounds of heavy and disorderly footsteps that finally disrupted my brooding. Turning to the source, I found that No.3 had just returned.
Standing at the forefront, he was leading a pack of listless Devils that was of a decent size, one that was neither too large nor too small. Stationed around them were my Elite Abyssal Golems who towered over them like giant sentinels that seemed to scare the living daylights out of them. None of them even dared to move an inch out of line let alone think of escaping; perhaps they themselves knew that it was futile.
I gave the dispirited bunch a quick glance and it was then that I realized something was wrong —their number was more than I had expected!
“Master!” Having just spotted me, No.3 immediately flew towards me as if he hadn’t seen me for over a decade. His blurred figure finally came to a stop mere meters away from me after which he stared at me, eyes sparkling and face excited as he said: “Master, I just found something strange over in that direction there…”
I nodded at No.3 before giving the back of him a glance. Before he could even finish talking, I cut him off with this question: “Where’s Sasani and Sinmosa?”
“Master, the two of them have decided to stay behind for now…it’s like this…”
No.3 immediately flew into an animated explanation of what had happened while we were separated from each other. His words were rushed with excitement while his hands seemed to fly about as he embarked on what promised to be an exciting tale, at least it was so in his mind.
It turned out that, not long after we split up, the area which he was in charge of started spawning new Devils…more accurately, these Devil seemed to appear out of nowhere…only to bump into a waiting No.3…
No.3 tried to subjugate these newcomers but, being the ignorant country bumpkins that they were, they started going off about how they would never bow down or how they would take him out in an instant. Naturally, all that was taken care of by a simple dispatch of one of the Elite Abyssal Golems…
With a direct confrontation out of the question, the next thought they had was to run away. Which they did. In every conceivable direction, no less.
No.3 originally wanted to send out the rest of the Abyssal Golems to chase after these Devil but after giving it a second thought he decided not to. The prisoners he had subjugated recently weren’t all that settled in yet and doing so might just risk them escaping. Thus he had no choice but to settle for what he had and gather up those who were too scared to run or were too injured to escape. As for those severely injured Devils…
However, it wasn’t long after he settled the first batch of captives that another couple batches of Devil newcomers appeared. Even though the location of their arrival wasn’t the same as the first, one could immediately tell that they were all centered within a certain radius. Simply put, the teleportation gates of the Prison of the Dead led to where I had stationed No.3. In fact, that area was probably a fixed arrival destination!
So what did that all mean for me? It meant that I needed to have a guard stationed there since it would intermittently spit out newcomers!
That was fantastic! Like an overpowered hero crushing all his opposition even! After all, that was an unlimited source of troops we were talking about, Not only that…it was an unlimited spawn point for mobs to practise on!
‘Hmmm, so that’s a fixed teleportation coordinate. Looks like we have to erect a sort of wall around that area…no, that isn’t right either. Perhaps a structure of sorts would be better…that way, all those newcomers would immediately get what to do. Once they approach that building, the staff would tell them that this is the newbie vill—I mean, tell them that this is the Immigration Bureau of Sable Radiance…those without permits had better be ready to become my slave…’
‘Ahem, well that’s the main idea anyway.’
“So you’re saying that the two of them stayed behind to watch over that region?”
“That’s right. That was what they had in mind. However…they still had no authority over the golems so I had the golems brought over since they can’t control them anyway…I’m afraid they might run into some trouble watching over the Devils…”
“I got it. I don’t need them to do too much for now, I just need them to confirm that that is the area in which new Devils will appear in.”
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.