Su Changfa brought Li Yao to an arced secret chamber. The silver white wall was so spectacular that he felt that he was in the middle of a shining giant egg.
As lights and shadows flashed, the wall slowly vanished and turned into a boundless sea of stars. The three thousand Sectors and the infinite space zones were floating in the dark universe like glittering lanterns.
All the stars were gradually stretched into thin lines. The two of them seemed to be diving deep into the sea of stars. The nebulas and the stars were zoomed in, and a brown planet was quickly enlarged in front of them.
This place was a large simulation room of the ‘Grand Illusionary Land’. It was more realistic than all the Grand Illusionary Lands that Li Yao had experienced. It was even more detailed than the real world.
He could vaguely sense that information streams as boundless as oceans were raging behind the light and shadow!
Li Yao found it rather peculiar. Every gram would be a heavy burden for a super long-distance space jump. Tremendous spiritual energy had to be consumed to teleport it over.
Therefore, every gram of weight would be calculated carefully for a starship that was about to perform a super long-distance space jump. Nothing useless would ever be brought.
But why was Su Changfa’s Flourishing Sun carrying a simulation room of the Grand Illusionary Land, which appeared to be useless?
Thinking quickly, Li Yao immediately realized what was going on.
This was a ‘brainwashing room’.
The three Immortal Cultivators came from far away. It was necessary for them develop their own kind in the new world and raise their loyal representatives so that the influence of the Imperium of True Human Beings could be expanded.
The traitors who were allured by power and benefits were all vile, undependable scumbags. They could be transformed back with higher power and more benefits at any time.
Only by brainwashing the ‘traitors’ could they become real Immortal Cultivators and work for the Imperium of True Human Beings dutifully and diligently. That would be the better approach!
Therefore, a ‘brainwashing chamber’ was definitely necessary for their starship in order to deeply brainwash the key persons such as Li Yao.
Li Yao estimated that they would decide the value and the possibility of betrayal of the targets first before they coerced the targets into join their side.
After the targets joined them, they would test the targets with the carefully-woven rhetoric. If the targets were not firm believers, it was very possible that their worldview would be shattered.
Then, they would bring the targets here and reestablish a world view that was completely different form the past for them through the more ‘vivid’ tales from history.
For Cultivators below the Nascent Soul Stage whose beliefs were not firm, after such a triple strike, it was indeed possible that they would believe in the new ideology in their dizziness and end up being Immortal Cultivators!
Li Yao sniffed in his heart.
Now that he had advanced into the Nascent Soul Stage, his belief and his soul had melded together. He was now one of the most stubborn diehards. It was impossible that he would be brainwashed by a few words.
Therefore, he simply watched what else the Immortal Cultivators could offer.
In front of Li Yao, the yellow and brown planet grew larger and larger still. He could tell that it was the fourth planet of a certain star, boasting an atmosphere and abundant ocean resources.
The picture slowly passed through the atmosphere and descended. Every detail of the planet was displayed.
It could be seen that this was a planet with a highly developed civilization. Honeycomb-like cities were everywhere on the vast continent. They were connected to each other via certain translucent tubes.
All the cities were brimming with coruscating skyscrapers. Many of the cities were even larger than the capital city of the Star Glory Federation!
However, all the cities were empty and lifeless. Even the most splendid buildings were full of rust and dust.
They were like countless monuments standing together and telling the glory of the past in silence.
What left the deepest impression on Li Yao was a statue almost a hundred meters tall at a city square. It was a young man with one hand on his hip and the other hand pointing at the sun.
From the vigorous face and the muscular body, it was not hard to envision the fearlessness of the civilization in its heyday!
It was a shame that the statue was now rusted and covered in bird feces. His smile was covered by dust and stains, and a lot of vines had also swallowed it inch by inch from the bottom.
The previously-shining gold statue had turned brown, red, and green, nothing more than a pile of mottled garbage.
Su Changfa’s deep voice echoed behind Li Yao. “Now, Fellow Cultivator Li, I will tell you the stories of three Sectors. After the collapse of the Star Ocean Imperium, they all absorbed part of the essence of the imperium and were the first to be revived. They were once at the glorious peak under the lead of the Cultivators!
“However, because of the Cultivators’ unrestrained pity, selfish hypocrisy, and their foolish ideology of protecting the ordinary people at all costs, the three worlds slowly embarked on the path of self-destruction, until they were ruined in the end.
“Their doom was not because of the invasion of the alien species, not because of natural disasters or apocalypses, and had nothing to with the Imperium of True Human Beings!
“In fact, one of the worlds of Cultivators had already self-destructed before the Imperium of True Human Beings was born! What they left for us was just a heap of dead bodies, a monument, and a profound lesson!
“This is the first world, the Curly Dragon Sector!”
The world around Li Yao slowly shivered before the map of the Curly Dragon Sector was fully displayed.
“Like the Flying Star Sector, the Curly Dragon Sector was a world spread over dozens of space zones but with a small population. It was not far away from the capital ring of the Star Ocean Imperium in the past. As a prosperous world not too seriously scourged by the war, it was slowly revived in the second millennium after the Star Ocean Imperium’s collapse!”
The picture flashed. It could be seen that many human beings in bizarre clothes were excavating relics, exploring the foreign planets, and reconstructing their civilization.
Although the environment was extremely hash, everybody’s face was glowing with hope and happiness, as if a torch was burning in their chest.
“However, the distribution of resources of the Curly Dragon Sector was quite special. Curly Dragon, the mother planet of the world and the sole naturally-habitable planet, had extremely limited crystals. Most of the resources were actually reserved in the harsh planets at the edge of the world that were far away from the mother planet!”
Li Yao nodded. The situation was rather familiar in the Flying Star Sector.
Maybe, it was a common feature of the Sectors with multiple space zones.
“At first,” Su Changfa continued, “the ignorant people of the Curly Dragon Sector didn’t realize it. Relying on the non-abundant resources of their mother planet, they still developed an advanced civilization!
“But the more advanced a civilization is, the more crystals it will consume. Very soon, as the population of the mother planet boomed, the crystals were running low!
“Right then, people of the Curly Dragon Sector discovered another few relics of the Star Ocean Imperium. Finally, they grew clearer of the world that they were living in!
“After learning that all the crystals of the mother planet were buried on the shallow surface and that they would find no more however deep they excavated when the resources were drained, all the people were shocked!
“Hehe. Fellow Cultivator Li, if you were leader of the Curly Dragon civilization, what would you have done?”
“It’s simple. Organize an exploration fleet and go to mine the resource planets at the remote area!” Li Yao blurted out without thinking.
“Exactly. That’s the most correct methodology. The resources of any planet will run dry. Every civilization is faced with a cruel race of death since its birth. They must figure out a way to leave their mother planet before the resources do run dry!
“If they grasp space cruising technologies that are advanced enough for them to leave the mother planet and march into the universe before the resources run out, the civilization will be preserved and enter the next round of the death race that is even crueler.
“But if they cannot leave the mother planet after the resources run out, they will be trapped in the cradle forever, unless a civilization of a higher level discovers them in time!”
Su Changfa sighed and said, “The problem of the Curly Dragon Sector was that their mother planet was too deceptive!
“Aside from crystals, the mother planet boasted abundant mother lodes of all the metals you could possibly imagine. The climate was stable, too. Destructive disasters were rare. Harassment of demons and extraterrestrial devils were never heard of. It was the best natural paradise for the reproduction of lives!
“The crystals, despite their insufficient volume, were mostly buried very shallowly and easy to develop. Some of the crystal mines were actually open-air. A pebble you kicked on the road might be a crystal. Every sign couldn’t help but give everybody the illusion that more abundant mother lodes were deeper under the ground!
“Therefore, for a long time, the people of the Curly Dragon Sector believed that their mother planet was resourceful enough to provide everything for them!
“They were not in a hurry to explore the sea of stars at all. Instead, they dedicated all the resources to the construction of their mother planet, building it into the most spectacular heaven. The living environment significantly improved. Not just the Cultivators, even the ordinary people could live extravagant lives!
“Everybody thought that such days would last forever. Everybody took six-hour workdays, paid vacations, three-year maternity and paternity leaves, a munificent pension, and other benefits for granted. Everybody wanted the easiest, most ‘creative’ jobs. The entertainment business, the lottery business, and other third industries thrived. Nobody was interested in the fundamental work that was in the slightest exhausting. The workers of such trades often went on strike for ‘violation of human rights’, demanding fewer work hours, better working conditions, and better wages and benefits!
“Such a carefree life lasted three hundred years with no problem whatsoever on the surface. The Curly Dragon Sector almost became the epitome of harmony between Cultivators and ordinary people and a paradise where human rights were absolutely ensured.
“However, good days came to an end eventually. All the crystals on the mother planet were running out!
“After parsing the map of resources of the Curly Dragon Sector from the Star Ocean Imperium, they got a good piece of news and a bad one.
“The good news was that the Curly Dragon Sector was not barren. There were still enough crystals for the coming thousands of years.
“The bad news was that all the reserves were in the most remote space zones of the Curly Dragons, which had harsh environments that were absolute unfavorable for human beings!
“With such a prosperous mother planet, the people of the Curly Dragon Sector had never thought it necessary to develop space cruising technologies in the past hundreds of years.
“Thankfully, their civilization was already rather developed, and a lot of relics of the Star Ocean Imperium were available. After excavation, analysis, and duplication, they finally boasted the preliminary abilities for space voyage and resource collection!
“After thorough analysis, the specialists of the Curly Dragon Sector reached the conclusion that, with their current technology, tremendous sacrifices were unavoidable to mine in the remote space zones!
“Countless miners were bound to be killed miserably in the dark, cold, foreign stars because of various factors!
“The death rate would be proportional to the yield of crystals. If they wanted resources, they had to trade lives for them!
“From their preliminary estimation, every ton of raw crystals meant the possible death of three to five miners!”