chapter 308 – spending and patrol

I’ve managed to amass over two hundred Biomass since my last big spend, not a heap, not when compared to the last haul, but still healthy. With this I’ll be able to get three more mutations to +15, bringing me so close to the perfect full mutation form that I want before my next evolution. If I’d been more patient and chewed my way through more Biomass at the early evolutions, I wouldn’t have had to stuff my face so much during this one!

Lessons have been learned. I won’t be evolving until my mutations are complete!

As Morrelia sat down to keep watch over us, my pets and I settled in to spend our Biomass. Crinis was already close to the perfect +10 all around. She must be nearly ready to evolve as well. Still only tier two, she can get much stronger yet. Tiny is in the same boat as me, tier two and battling to get enough food into him to get his body fully upgraded.

Alright then. I still have to upgrade my eyes, my antennae, my regeneration gland, my Language gland and my carapace plating. So after this round of mutations I’ll still have two to go. So close!

Ok, so which should I go with?

Eyes for sure. Up here on the surface I find my eyesight still isn’t up to the task of seeing long distances. In the Dungeon, the wide open spaces are not quite this wide and open and I can get around much better, but up here the long distance vision is still a little weak.

[Would you like to upgrade Omni Focused eyes from +10 to +15? This will cost 65 Biomass?]

Let’s do it!

[At this level you may choose to combine your mutations, or emphasise one. Which will you select?]

Okay then! So far I have upgraded my eyes to have a long distance section of vision focused toward the front, then I upgraded them to have other, separate areas of focused vision pointing in most directions. The effect is that I have quite decent vision forward, above, behind and to the sides of me, but with fairly chunky gaps of poor, blurry eyesight between. I’m happy with both upgrades so I suppose the way forward is to fuse!

Nice. Let’s hold that one and focus on the next. I think carapace plating will be the solid play. If I’m going to keep fighting against monsters as far out of my league stats wise as the commanders, then I want all the defence I can get!

[Would you like to upgrade your Dispersive Regenerative Carapace Plating to +15? This will cost 65 Biomass.]


[At this level you may choose to combine your mutations, or emphasise one. Which will you select?]

Now this is a little interesting. The two upgrades I have on my inner carapace, Dispersive and Regenerative, are both very useful. The dispersive plating helps my carapace to spread out the damage of blunt attacks, making it harder to crack, whilst the regenerative aspect allows my plating to regenerate itself very quickly. This increases my survivability by a lot since my carapace is tough to penetrate, and heals damage that is done to it.

If both upgrades are equally good, we will fuse them!

One to go.

I think I’ll choose my regeneration gland on this one. If I’m going to be battling up against larger, more damaging monster, then being able to repair damage during the fight could be critical, just as it has been in the past. The thing that worries me the most is my legs. The carapace that covers my body is super tough, and getting tougher with every mutation and evolution. I’m excessively proud of it to be honest. So shiny, so strong.

But it doesn’t do a whole lot for my stick-like ant legs. Monstrous ant I may be, my legs are still skinny and oh so snap-able. To be honest, I didn’t think legs this size would be able to hold me up at my current girth, I suppose I have mana to thank for that. They are a defensive liability, so I desperately want to improve my ability to regrow them at a moment’s notice.

[Would you like to upgrade your Rapid Limb Regeneration Gland to +15? This will cost 65 Biomass.]

[At this level you may choose to combine your mutations, or emphasise one. Which will you select?]

The two upgrades I have assist in the growth of missing limbs, which thankfully includes my antennae, and speeds up the process. Both are valuable, so fusion is once again the path I choose!

Alright then! Those choices are all locked in, suppose I’d better confirm them then…


I nearly forgot about the itch again! Shifting my head slightly I can see Morrelia is leaning against the wall, almost appearing to be dozing but I can tell her senses are attuned to possible threats here in this small Dungeon chamber.

If she sees me wiggling and rolling around on the ground then all of dignity as the leader of the ants will be lost! In fact, one could almost say that my dignity is the dignity of the colony itself! That may be a little bit of a stretch, but still! I need to get her out of the room. Some sort of diversion is necessary.

[Hey, Morrelia. Any chance you could have a quick look up on the surface? I think I heard something moving around. Through vibrations you know, we ants are very sensitive to vibrations moving through the dirt. It’s the antennae, fantastic wiggly things they are. You know what they say, they aint this long for nothing! Ha! Ha! Haaaaaaa.]


Morrelia lifted one eyebrow at my persuasive diatribe before she nodded slightly.

[Sure, I’ll take a look.]

So saying she turned and quickly climbed her way up and out of our little chamber.

Quick as a flash I dove behind Tiny. Not content with this level of coverage I began to dig furiously, my mandibles sending dirt flying into the air, covering Tiny who groaned in irritation but thankfully didn’t move.

Aha! Now I have secured a small trough in the ground, am screened behind Tiny  and Morrelia has left the chamber. I must seize this moment!

Confirm those mutations!


So quickly?! Holy mackerel!


It doesn’t take long before I have assumed the now traditional position, on my back and flailing wildly at the air with my legs as the overpowering itch of mutation rips through me without mercy. I can only take some small measure of comfort in the knowledge that I have, for once, managed to not be observed.


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A few minutes later, Tiny, Crinis and I emerged from the chamber to find Morrelia resting on the surface. I take a moment to re-establish our mental communication that I’d let lapse during my … er … episode.

Only allowed on

[So where do you think we should go next?] I asked, keeping it cool.

[There are a few smaller settlements I know of in the area that I’d like to visit, there’s a chance we’ll find some survivors there. Other than that, I want to move toward the capital and get a good look at it.]

[Sounds reasonable] I agreed, [all of that is quite valuable for the colony as well. Let’s make a start.]

And so, we were off!

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