In Love With An Idiot - novelonlinefull.com
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Inside the giant metal fortress, all of the machines hummed as they ran at their highest efficiency.
A thousand meters underground, deep in the mines, hundreds of construction machines were hard at work in the lightless tunnels; there were no humans here at all. As such, there was no need for any illumination. All the machines were working in pitch-black darkness, moving the ores they had excavated into the elevators.
These newly excavated ores were mostly iron ores with high metal content. They first needed to be broken into pieces at the ore crushing workshop before being sent to the smelting factory for preliminary metal smelting. They would then have to be thrown into the refining workshop to be forged into metal ingots that were easier to store and transport.
The various tightly-connected workshops rang with the hum of machines as the conveyor belts moved without stopping. It was only when the one-meter-squared metal ingots weighing one ton arrived at the warehouse that this entirely automated process of excavation, smelting, and forging was considered to be complete.
Ever since Brain Monster Gazlowe had started controlling the metal fortress and set down roots in Stonetalon Mountains, the excavation of resources and creation of magical machines had not stopped for a single moment. In just under five years, an extensive metal vein stretching for hundreds of kilometers had been exhausted. The foundations of the Stonetalon Mountains had been deprived, and severe sinkholes and earth collapses had happened in many areas.
On the other hand, Gazlowe had obtained as many as one hundred and ten thousand magical machine warrior prototypes.
Unfortunately, they were only prototypes and not combat units with activated intelligence modules. It wasn't that Gazlowe didn't want to activate all of them. Rather, the energy supply of the metal fortress couldn't keep up.
The everyday activity of a magical machine warrior would exhaust a minimum of four to six magical energy batteries. This consumption would even double during combat instances. However, Gazlowe's magic generator furnace could only generate a maximum of eight hundred magic energy batteries daily, even when running at full capacity.
Moreover, apart from the magic energy batteries, the metal fortress was also responsible for sustaining the functions of many other things. The creation of magical machines and the research workshops all demanded a large amount of energy. Given all these considerations, generating five hundred magic energy batteries was the limit of production for the magic generator furnace.
To ensure magic energy was conserved to the fullest extent, all magical machine warriors that walked off the conveyor belt were kept in their prototype state and remained unactivated. They were then moved into several emptied mountains and stored within. Meanwhile, the metal fortress could keep activated the bare minimum of one hundred and fifty magical machine warriors.
After all these years of acc.u.mulation, Gazlowe had finally managed to gather one million magic energy batteries. That meant Gazlowe, after so many years of hiding in silence, finally had the material foundation to erupt with an unstoppable force.
Just as Gazlowe was silently thinking about which nearby dragon lord to unleash his fury upon, a rare guest appeared at the metal fortress.
"O' respected Lady Alice, welcome to the metal fortress. How can I be of service?" Though Gazlowe was one entire grade above Alice, the brain monster knew his status and position very well. As such, he behaved extremely subservient and enthusiastic before this woman who was very likely to become the spouse of his master.
Alice, who had become pretty once again, was dressed in her purple starry robe and standing in the vast metal hall. There was nothing in sight aside from the platinum-white metal floor. Gazlowe's magic generator furnace had already become the magic energy source of the entire fortress, and it could not easily leave the power cabin. As such, Gazlowe could only communicate with Alice using mental messages.
In her hands, Alice held a mysterious staff that was significantly taller than herself. The lively magic fairy on her shoulder looked around and asked softly, "Sir Gazlowe, did you receive the warning alerts that came from Fire Throne a while ago?"
A short moment later, Gazlowe's unique mental flux radiated through the metal hall.
"I have received the alerts and responded to the call for help. Two hundred magical machine warriors and twenty thousand magic energy batteries have been sent over to the tower."
"These are not enough to resolve the predicament that Fire Throne is currently in!" Alice replied firmly.
"That is not my problem, my lady!" Gazlowe chuckled coldly and said, "Master's order before he left was for me to protect this metal fortress and provide the Crimson Clan with a stable and safe outpost. Everything else happening in the World of Adepts is not within my administrative authority!"
"Fire Throne is vital to your master. It should not be lost to the hands of the enemy in this manner!"
"The answer is still the same!" Gazlowe insisted, "This is not my problem. If you wish for me to further contribute, you will need orders from my master."
Greem might always maintain a weak connection with her, but he was in a dangerous place right now. They couldn't always communicate with each other. As such, Gazlowe's insistence was really only an excuse.
It was clear that Gazlowe was already treating the entire metal fortress and everything within it as his personal property. He was not willing to offer them up to 'others' apart from his master. Though he didn't mind cooperating with the other adepts and the Crimson Clan, trying to have him mobilize his forces and resources was no more than a delusion.
Alice had prepared for such a situation.
"Sir Gazlowe, you intend to go down the path of mental specialization, don't you?! I wonder, what are your thoughts on the direction of your future advancement?"
The hall suddenly turned silent.
A short moment later, Gazlowe's mental flux appeared once again.
"I have heard that you are a great Witch of Fate! May I know what suggestions and guidance you have for my current development?" Surprisingly, the somewhat arrogant Third Grade brain monster became exceedingly humble now.
"There's not much in the way of suggestions or guidance. I am just curious and interested in your current state. Someone as smart and arrogant as yourself must have planned far ahead for your own life. However, I must remind you. Never, ever underestimate the importance of the development of your origin!"
The hall fell silent once again.
"You mean to say that I have somewhat deviated from my origin now?"
Alice once again smiled casually.
"What do you think?"
"…I was originally a Duke of the Goblin Empire and found ways to transform myself into my current state to break free of the limitations of my lifespan. For this purpose, I have utterly given up on my ident.i.ty as a goblin, and I regard myself as a brain monster. As such, my soul origin should be…Spirit!"
"As long as you understand!" Alice lightly grabbed Helen, who was darting about in front of her and placed the fairy on her shoulder before saying, "Your soul origin walks the path of mental specialization. The trait manifested from that path is the ability to a.s.similate with metal that has been infested with your magical energy. This powerful ability is your greatest tool and has helped you create such a ma.s.sive metal fortress. If you had no energy or resource limitations, you could easily build an entire capital of steel on your own."
Gazlowe felt no pleasure from Alice's words of praise. He was wordlessly waiting for the turn in her voice.
As expected, Alice's tone changed, and she started speaking the words he least wanted to hear.
"Unfortunately, such a powerful ability has also misguided you, causing you to forget your soul origin. Your origin is Spirit and mental power, not the forging of magical machines. Creating so many magical machine warriors might give you the false illusion of becoming stronger, but I wish to ask you one more question. Has your power improved once since you chose to a.s.similate with the magic generator furnace?"
The metal hall was silent once again.
This time, it was truly silent. Even the rumbling in the distance and the faint trembling of the ground stopped all of a sudden. This city forged purely out of metal had suddenly fallen into actual silence.
After a long, long time…
Gazlowe's mental flux once again connected with Alice.
"It seems that I have wasted all these years in vain, exhausting all my energy on creating a meaningless magical machine army. If I can't find a development that truly suits me, my journey of advancement will probably halt here at the Third Grade forever. This…this is something I…absolutely cannot tolerate."
"Your train of thought doesn't always have to be this extreme. Your current actions aren't entirely wrong. At the very least, you can only have the chance to think about your future development if you can guarantee your safety at the moment. These last couple of years haven't been wasted. You have managed to create a magical machine army to protect your safety. It will become the foundation and body with which you will execute your will from now on. As long as you find the right direction, your progress forward will be much faster, especially with the help of these magical machines."
"But I am very confused. I really have no idea how a true brain monster is supposed to advance. Should I let my brain cells divide and increase in size, or should I find ways to devour the brains of other intelligent lifeforms? I am perplexed and very troubled."
"Perhaps I can provide you with a way to obtain knowledge on a suitable advancement method for brain monsters."
"It that's true…"
Gazlowe's mental flux suddenly intensified, and the entire metal fortress echoed with his mental 'message' that he had practically roared out loud. It was fortunate that Alice knew well enough to cut off their mental connection. Otherwise, she would most definitely have been stunned by the mental shockwave of a Third Grade brain monster.
"However, my information is never free. Let's see how much you are willing to pay now!"
The hall filled with the whispers of Alice and Gazlowe, their voices slowly turning softer as they spoke.
Finally, the hall reverted to its daily 'calm'! Report broken chapters