chapter 391 – Communal Will

I revel in my triumphant bite for a fraction of a second too long. Even the tingle of my antennae and a lightning quick response isn’t enough to completely save me from the retaliatory sweep of Garralosh’s mid leg. It’s hard to twist an ant body. Hard in the sense that you can’t do it. So she clips me on the way through and all of a sudden I find myself airborne.

Ouch! That stings!

How much HP did I even lose just then? Thirty?! She barely touched me!


Only allowed on

I land in a heap and quickly scramble to get back on my legs and running. I don’t want to stand still with this massive Croc on my case! With Vibrant nearby, all my movements are that tiny bit sharper and that makes all the difference when Garralosh dashed toward me.

Let me tell you. Watching something large move fast, is kinda weird. Tiny with his fancy feet, which he uses to move with a lightness and delicacy that an over three metre tall gorilla has no business moving with. Even that sight pales in comparison to seeing Garralosh dash.

The Croc must weigh as much as a truck, if not more. Even lying down she’s absurdly taller than I am, and the sheer mass of her is ridiculous. But clearly she’s been working on her skills over her long life, since she essentially teleports in front of me, her jaws flashing before my eyes.




My legs explode with energy and I throw my body to one side so hard I can’t even land and instead roll end over end before I can get my feet underneath me. So scary! She’s so damn quick!


Without pause, Garralosh uses her dash once more to appear directly in front of my face!


I swear to Gandalf, if I check the menu later and realise there’s a dodge skill I never bought I’m gonna kick myself right in the abdomen!

I scramble my legs beneath me again and push with all my strength and I nearly make it. One leg gets caught in those cavernous jaws and pain rockets up my front left leg as half of it is simply gone. Even as the pain rocks my head I can’t sit still. I smash together a mental illusion with my sub-brains and slam it across the mental bridge and I blindly dodge once more.

I know she’s coming for me, I can feel it!

It works! In the mind of the giant Croc, she gets an image of my dodging to the left but instead I fling myself to the right and she takes the bait, her indescribable jaws slam shut where I’m not and I take a moment to accelerate away to get some distance.

Gravity bolts!

Mentally I inspect the damage as my sub-brains try to slow down that stupidly fast monster with a few gravity bolts to help weight her down. My poor leg! It hurts like fire! Holy heck! Not to mention I’m already feeling tired from the constant dashing and the one use of my all new, all powerful bite skill. The effect was great but the stamina cost was real!

Actually… I’m not as tired as I should be?

Without the benefit of three sixty degree vision, it takes Garralosh a precious second to locate my new position and she rumbles with anger once she spots me.

[Had enough yet?!]


[Calm down! Sheesh!]

Her mind still boils with red rage. I can’t get any sense of the human who was once inside, only a cruel beast of anger and hate. Only one thing for me to do… turn and run! Dash! I need to buy myself a little more time in order to figure this out.

Why am I not tired!?

In fact, my HP is also increasing?! What’s going on?! Deep inside me, an outpouring of energy is happening. A continuous flow that seems to pour into both my stamina  and my health, filling up my depleted stocks even as they start to drain. What’s the source?

I can feel it. The whispers, the hooks, the tugging, the energy. It’s all coming from the Collective Will Vestibule! The faith of the ants is being transformed into regenerative energy! It’s flooding into me!  It’s still not enough  to regenerate my leg in time…

Activate the regeneration gland!

As the gland empties itself and its healing fluids flood my system, my limb begins to regrow at a visible pace. Not to mention the cracks I collected in my carapace after getting hit start to close over. Then, to my shock, I feel the energy flooding from my Collective Will Vestibule and into my regeneration gland, refilling it at an insane speed!

Holy Moly! This is powerful stuff!


My trusty sub-brains have been pumping out the Gravity Bolts and I manage to smack the big Croc with two more. Hopefully that can help slow down her insane speed!

The remarkable effects of the Vestibule are shocking to me. If it can replenish my stamina, refresh my organs and heal me, then can’t I fight for… almost indefinitely?! And if the amount of energy I get scales with the number of ants… this could get out of control, real fast.

Have… Have I finally become awesome?! Well, defeating the giant Croc would be one way to find out… Let’s have at it!

[Ready to surrender yet?!]

What comes back across the mind bridge couldn’t really be described as words, but rather a psychic blast of a boundless hunger for violence. Garralosh doesn’t seem to have had any chill time in the last hundred years. Her mind is a complete mess. I can sense that she is being dragged in many directions, pulled this way and that by the System, by her own mad desires and by the struggle to survive. It’d be nice if I could help her, but she feels way too far gone for that.

With me having put a little range between the two of us, Garralosh’s throat bulges as she once again brings up magma from wherever the heck she is storing it inside her body. I only need ten more seconds for my leg to come back, I’ll just have to hang on until then.

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In order to facilitate my dodging, I start to weave together more mental distractions to torment my foe. I decide to take a slightly different tack this time, and I weave an illusion with elements from earth in it. Let’s see how she reacts to this!

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