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
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1263 Chs

The Final Touch (1024)

This evolution is going to make the Call worse, I can already tell. Stupid Ancients and their dumb… whatever it is they're all about. Do whatever you want, just leave me and my family out of it.

But taking this much power into myself is definitely going to make them more interested, rather than less. Although, I'll be much weaker when away from the Colony. Maybe they won't like that so much? Bah, who am I kidding, I'll be a beast once this evolution goes through. The stat gain alone is insane, everything else is just gravy.

Speaking of everything else, it's time to decide what I'm going to do with the rest of my evolutionary energy! You know what that means, resets baby!

Let me at 'em!

I've got them at a discounted price, which naturally means I'm going straight to the expensive stuff and poking my antennae where they don't belong. Don't hold back on me, Gandalf! I want to see your finest materials, straight from the top shelf.

If I'm going to reset my carapace and mandibles, then I want only the best. It'd be a ridiculous waste to reset them again, so whatever I pick will need to be good enough to carry me through the rest of my monstrous life. It has to be incredible! And shiny!

The first thing I do, naturally, is go and take a look at the Golden-Diamond Silk. From what the trio had to say, it's incredibly valuable, and rare. I need to check it out. I have to poke back and forth a bit before I find a version that will apply to my carapace, but I get there in the end.

[Golden-Diamond Silk Woven Carapace: A clear diamond Chitin threaded with a complex network of Golden-Diamond Silk thread. The lustre of this material is only matched by its tensile strength. Against physical damage, this material is nigh unbreakable.]

Holy moly! An almost unbreakable carapace that is shiny in the extreme?! This is going to be hard to pass up!

And it's expeeeeeeensive… sweet mackerel of malfeasance, that is pricey. Just how much evolutionary energy are you going to charge for one reset? This is larceny! Even paying half feels like I'd be carving out my own liver. If I even have a liver….

I kind of want to confirm it anyway. This is exactly the kind of upgrade I want. Even if I flick through and look at the other upgrades that Granin and I discussed, fourth stratum stuff like the 'Living Diamond' just doesn't measure up. They're good and all, but a self regenerating crystal carapace just doesn't sound as nice as being woven through with the toughest and most valuable material in the entire planet.

Come to think of it, do I really want to be a walking sack of cash money? Being a highly evolved monster is already painting a target on my back, goodness knows what a mythic core sells for, but I'm sure it's a lot. Do I really need to make my body parts even more marketable? That's worth contemplating….

Still, I better look more thoroughly through the options, just to be sure I don't miss something that would work for me.

I spend quite a bit of time looking at cheaper purchases. The Golden-Diamond Silk is eye-wateringly costly, so I naturally err on the less expensive side, but I don't find anything I want more. There's tons of nice stuff, all sorts of cool diamond variants that perform some powerful and bizarre functions. The Living Diamond is just the tip of the iceberg in that department. Resonating Diamond that oscillates at high speeds when activated is cool, as is the Liquid Diamond, which isn't actually a liquid, but sort of a thick gel formed of micro-diamonds that hardens when impacted. Interesting stuff, but not better than what I already have my eye on.

Not finding anything I like better, I decide to poke a leg over and gander at the options even more expensive than the Golden-Diamond Silk. I immediately regret it.

I mean, it's good that I found it, but my poor little heart can't take this level of cost. Why do you do this to me, Gandalf?

[Gravity Compressed Diamond. Compacted to its ultimate density, this Diamond has been forged in the most crushing environment imaginable. This material holds a natural affinity to the force of Gravity.]

Noooooo. I mean, yesssssss, but also, nooooooo!

No mention of shininess at all. What about my precious lustre?! This could be the key I need to push myself over the edge and get the Gravity Mana affinity, but the cosssssssst. It burnssssssss me!

No! Summon your damn guts, Anthony! You get it half-price this evolution, and judging by this extravagant price tag, this material is some deep-dungeon stuff. You won't get a chance like this again anytime soon! You wanted to be a Gravity Mage all the way back when you evolved to tier three! Commit, dammit!

I also have to hunt for a synergetic material for my plating. If something is going to work well with this incredibly expensive diamond, then it's likely also going to be expensive. I'm excited to look at the options, but nervous at the same time….

Alright, let's see what we have. There's all sorts of cool stuff in here, including some pretty neat looking options that would have tempted me were I not on a quest for synergy. The plating needs to work well with the carapace! If it doesn't enhance my Gravity Compressed Diamond in some way, I'm not interested!

After flipping down the list, watching the costs rise as I go, I eventually find something that I think is going to work.

Since my carapace will basically be made from an ultra condensed diamond with some affinity to gravity, I need an inner plating that will raise its toughness to even greater heights! It needs to cover the weaknesses and enhance the strengths!

The strength is of course the incredible hardness, the weakness is its lack of flexibility. I can't directly give the diamond more bend, it's diamond, it'll just crack, but what I can do is influence it through the power of… you guessed it, gravity!

[Boson Agitating Crystal Flesh. A material that generates manipulable gravity fields in a small radius around it. A mesh of tiny, hardened gems, this substance is flexible and durable.]

With this, I can generate small fields on the surface of my carapace that may even allow me to shape it, depending on just how strong the affinity turns out to be. I like the choice, the only problem is the mind-boggling expense.

With a reluctance that burns my soul, I lock in resets for my carapace and mandibles that will convert both to Gravity Compressed Diamond and the plating reset. My heart aches as such a large portion of my evolutionary energy is immediately lost. No time for regrets! We only move forward!

I still have a good amount of energy left to spend, this is tier seven after all, but after considering it for a moment, I decide on at least one more reset for this evolution…

The Gravity Mana Gland.

If I'm going all in on pushing for the speciality, then I can't overlook this little gem! Currently, it's my only source of the stuff, and if I don't get the Skill, then I better be in a good position, Mana wise.

If I do get the Skill, then I'll need to make sure the reset and mutations will enable the gland to have a purpose even after I can make gravity mana myself. It's a delicate balancing act, and if I don't find an option that works in both a Skill-less and Skilled scenario, I may have to give up on the whole idea.

Time to dive into the list. I really do spend way too much time reading these damned lists….

There's all sorts of interesting options that do plenty of generic things like gather the mana more quickly, compress it more readily or make it easier to use. I'm not overly worried about that, I have an absolutely stacked set of brains that are only getting stronger with this evolution, I don't need any help compressing or handling the mana, I need something that's going to do something that I can't do myself.

As I creep through the list, the options get more and more expensive and I (metaphorically) sweat more and more. Obviously, when I reset, I want to get the best… but I don't want to have to pay for the best! Don't be dissuaded, Anthony, you have to commit. What were you going to spend that energy on anyway? Precious, life-saving stats? BAH!

Finally, way past the point where I'm happy with the cost, I find what I'm looking for.

[Resonant Well Stone: This material harnesses rare properties of the singularity to harmonise and accentuate gravitational energy. It will convert a portion of that energy back into Gravity Mana.]

Awwwwwww snap!

If my Gravitational Mana Gland is made of this, then it'll literally feed a portion of what I spent from it back into the pool. Gweheheheh. Harmony will be achieved!

I'll have to test my new carapace and mandibles with their gravity reactive material to see how they respond to it as well. I might have created a nice feedback-loop with this.

Am I achieving Synergy? At last?! Granin would be proud.

In fact, I'm kind of excited. This evolution might be a big change for me, finally becoming the gravity-powered ant of doom I was always destined to become!

After confirming that purchase, my reserves of evolutionary energy are depressingly low. I mean, there's still a good chunk here, I had a level of wealth at the start of this process that I could scarcely believe even two evolutions ago. I'm tempted to consider another reset, but I desist. Too many at once is not a good idea according to Granin, so I'd best be patient. I don't think I can afford any big ticket items either, so it's time to spend the rest of my stats.

I sink my abundant strength into a 40:60 blend of size and density and then use the same ratio on my toughness, except the larger portion goes on external defence. With all my upgrades, I'm going to be a hell of a durable bug!

A cockroach will wish it could survive as well as me.

My mental stats go into powering up my brains fairly evenly, with a slightly larger portion going to the main mind. That brain is intended for gravity specialisation and I want it sufficiently beefed to handle the load. With the added power given to the smaller minds, they'll each be able to handle double the mind constructs they could before, vastly increasing my spellpower.

Any spare energy I have left I pump into my Might, maintaining the same ratio as before. I'll be a big ol' ant when this process is done!

Looking over my choices, I feel a sense of satisfaction. With this new form, I'll be stronger than ever and able to protect my new family against the things that threaten them. I can't wait!

Confirm it, Gandalf!

Time for a chat.