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Chrysalis

Anthony has been reborn! Placed into the remarkable game-like world of Pangera. However, something seems a little off. What's with these skills? Bite? Dig? Wait.... I've been reborn as a WHAT?! Follow Anthony as he attempts to adjust to his new life, to survive and grow in his new Dungeon home!

RinoZ · Fantasy
Not enough ratings
1261 Chs

Dawn of a New Era (1062)

What makes a mythic monster so powerful? There are numerous theories, some confirmed, others more nebulous, but the strength and dominance of this class of monster in the Dungeon is a long studied and generally well understood phenomenon.

At the risk of oversimplifying, we can apportion the bulk of that inordinate power to the core. After all, what classes a mythic monster as such, is its core.

At certain densities and sizes, the core of a monster undergoes a qualitative change. This is what drives the price and demand for larger and more potent cores. A basic monster core can hold less mana than a special, which holds less than a rare, which is inferior to a mythic. This is obvious, and only scratches the surface of a complex issue.

Cores also absorb mana more readily as they increase in class. The increase in intake rate is more than linear, meaning more powerful cores are ultimately more efficient and can support larger, hungrier enchantments.

But what this eventually boils down to, is the body of the monster. At the point a given monster becomes mythic, its body and mind have evolved far beyond what a normal, organic creature can sustain. Where does the energy necessary to fuel these behemoths come from? How do they sustain themselves?

Mana, mana, mana. A mythic monster is a walking mana vacuum, sucking in the energy around them at a tremendous rate in order to fuel their very existence. Crossing the threshold from rare to mythic is a qualitative leap that brings a monster's existence closer than ever to returning to their point of origin: a being of pure mana.

This is only one reason for their special existence, but a major one, as it plays into everything else that makes them so fearsome. The powerful evolutions, the special materials that form their bodies, the unique abilities that they gain, all are attributable to their capacity and affinity for the energy that underpins the Dungeon, and therefore the entire world.

- Excerpt from "Monsters and Mana" by Xinci.

Heh.

Gweheheh.

Hoo haha!

Hahahahaha!

MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!

A new age has dawned. The age of Anthony has arrived! I feel so powerful, so overwhelming, so potent! Did you see that, mother? Were you able to witness my coolness as I dispatched that idiot demon with one slick move? Your child has become amazing!

BEHOLD ME!

THWACK!

"Ouch!"

"Stop posing in the middle of the battlefield, child," the Queen scolds me. "We must ensure the family is able to retreat safely."

I rub at my head with one antenna. I might have a fancy new carapace, but somehow the Queen's thwacks still sting!

"Ah. You're right," I mumble, embarrassed, before I turn and begin to spin up my gravity mana construct. "I'll hold them back for a bit, you help the family disengage and then we can run back to the pillar. Things are going crazy up here, I hear."

I pump mana into the new spellform I learned, the only new spell I learned, when I finally unlocked the Skill I had yearned for.

Centred above the hole from which the demons are emerging, an invisible energy begins to pulse, growing stronger each passing moment. My antennae buzz as the new gravity source begins to take hold, dragging demons back as they try to rush forward, lifting those beneath it up into the air.

My other brains go to work, dozens of mind constructs spinning at once, and lances of condensed ice fly forward as if blasted from a machine gun. The front line of demons is annihilated in an instant, and with the reinforcements delayed, my siblings finally have the little separation they need to retreat.

Too easy! I barely have to draw on the Will of the Colony for these small fry, though I burned through quite a chunk to one-shot that massive demon. Not to worry, though, with so many ants within range of my Vestibule, the energy continues to flood into me along with their thoughts and impressions.

Inside my body, nestled close to my core, the completed trifecta of Vestibule, Nave and Altar are burning with light, flooding me with power that suffuses my being.

The feeling is incredible, as if a bottomless well of strength that will never run dry has been built inside of me.

"Let's get the heck out of here," I announce to the others. "You go first, I'll bring up the rear."

My orders are hardly necessary, and largely ignored, since that's exactly what they were doing already. Feeling a little redundant, I take up my position at the back of the column and prepare to blast the demons with magic if they get too close. May as well eat while I can as well.

Except I'm not needed there either. Without the protection of the big boy, ordinary demons stand little chance against the combined firepower of so many ants. Acid and magic rains down in a ceaseless torrent, leaving me with nothing to do.

Not for the first time, I'm left to feel useless by the incredible competence of my siblings. Unfortunately, that means I have nothing to distract me from the horrific pain in my guts.

Stupid Ancients and their stupid Call. As expected, my evolution has resulted in the terrible yanking sensation on my soul intensifying. Coming up to the third stratum was necessary, but holy moly it stings. I can't even imagine what it would have been like as a tier six monster in the first stratum.

"Eldest… are you well?" Advant asks me, scuttling along at my side.

"I've been better," I reply, grinding my mandibles in pain. "Once I get back to the fourth, I'll be much better."

"You won't be able to stay?" the soldier asks, somewhat alarmed. "There are tier eight demons possibly coming towards us."

I nod.

"I've heard as much. Unfortunately, sticking around here until they turn up isn't something I can do. As long as Brilliant can move me between strata, I should be able to wait below and pop in here if you need me."

Although the experience of being warped through dimensions was… harrowing, to say the least. I'd wish for eyelids so I didn't have to see it, but for some reason, I feel like even removing my eyes wouldn't improve the situation.

"Eldest… I'm not sure what you're capable of now, but the way you dealt with that other demon…. I'm not sure we'd be able to fight them without you present."

I wave an antenna as I keep an eye on the situation behind me. The bombardment has been more than enough to keep the demons occupied so we can create a good gap. All we have to do now is sprint across the plains and we'll be home free!

Until they reach the pillar and climb up after us anyway.

"Don't worry about it," I declare, flexing one leg as we run. "Tier eight demons? Hunk of Biomass. I'll smash 'em to bits."

[Right, Tiny?]

After a long moment with no reply, I twitch when I finally remember. Brilliant wasn't able to bring the crew along with me, I'm actually here without them. It's been so long since I was separated from them, it feels extremely weird. Being freed from my babysitters is a little liberating, but it's lonely without my friends. I hope Crinis is coping alright….