Li Yao put on the Rockman. After the maintenance and the upgrade through the advanced technologies of the Imperium of True Human Beings, the engineering crystal suit had been fully reborn.
Although the operation system was identical to the past, Li Yao discovered that all the specifications had soared during the self-check. It had now been upgraded into a battle suit from an engineering suit.
Also, three groups of buttons had been added to the operation menu that was projected to his retina, which were responsible for the superstring shield, the Erratic Light Cannon, and a control interface for the spiritual puppets.
Through the control interface, Li Yao was able to extend his telepathic thoughts to manipulate part of the spiritual puppets!
After he was connected to Su Changfa, Kou Ruhuo, and Tang Qianhe’s local area network, Li Yao familiarized himself with the fundamental operations of the superstring shield and the Erratic Light Cannon with their help.
Kou Ruhuo had poured a lot of tutelage telepathic thoughts into the mainframe crystal processor of the Rockman so that Li Yao could get the hang of it more quickly through the Half-Step Grand Illusionary Land.
After he was familiarized with the superstring shield and the shoulder cannons, Kou Ruhuo allocated ten spiritual puppets to him.
Considering that it was his first time, the spiritual puppets were all set to an automatic defense mode and did not require manual maneuvering. Their main responsibility was to protect him.
After examining the list of spiritual puppets, Li Yao noticed that the Immortal Cultivators had indeed spared no expense for the exploration into Kunlun. They had mobilized more than eight hundred spiritual puppets to go to the underground with them.
Li Yao was more than glad to see that.
After all, the fewer spiritual puppets left in the war base, the easier it would be for the Fire Ant King and Professor Mo Xuan to attack.
Chances were that Professor Mo Xuan could even find an opportunity to hack the mainframe crystal processor of the war base!
In that case, the faces of the three Immortal Cultivators would definitely be indescribable after they returned from the underground with full loads.
He did find one thing odd, though. “Why don’t we simply send the spiritual puppets for the exploration mission instead of placing ourselves in danger?”
“The spiritual and electromagnetic interference beneath the primeval battlefield are too strong,” Kou Ruhuo explained. “We sent a squad of spiritual puppets down there for investigation earlier, but they lost contact with the base after marching around ten kilometers! It is estimated that a certain anti-invasion rune array that can block telepathic thoughts has been installed somewhere in the primeval battlefield and is still functioning to some extent after hundreds of thousands of years!
“Therefore, we must go down in person and control the spiritual puppets at a short distance through our brainwaves that are magnified through the control unit in the crystal suit!”
“It explains a lot!” Li Yao nodded and, thinking for a moment, asked again, “We have eight hundred spiritual puppets. Aren’t they too many for us to control?”
“It doesn’t matter!” Kou Ruhuo smiled. “The spiritual puppets have been programed with almost ten thousand classic tactics in advance. As long as they remain connected to our brain, they will automatically choose the most suitable tactic after receiving a fuzzy order from us!
“For example, we only need to give orders such as ‘attack’ or ‘stay alert’ but don’t have to mind the specific operations of every spiritual puppet—they will choose the best plan themselves!”
Li Yao nodded and understood everything.
The spiritual puppets were the upgraded version of the Grand Illusionary Soldiers. They were somewhat similar to the modifications that the Heaven’s Origin Sector and the Flying Star Sector were performing on the Grand Illusionary Soldiers.
If I can steal the technology of spiritual puppets of the Imperium of True Human Beings, it will be a great help for the modification of the Grand Illusionary Soldiers on our side!
Li Yao looked forward to the trip into the planetary warship more and more.
He was eager to find out the true capabilities of the three Immortal Cultivators and what kind of delicate tactics they and their spiritual puppets could present.
Very soon, Su Changfa and Tang Qianhe were all set to go.
In order to manipulate the tremendous spiritual puppets, they had each installed a special brainwave enhancement unit on the back of their crystal suit. A few circuits that looked like magnifiers also protruded out of their helmets like awesome horns.
Kou Ruhuo waved his hands toward the giant pit at the center of the primeval battlefield.
Su Changfa was the leader of the exploration team, but after they entered the real battle, Kou Ruhuo, as the chief of arms, took over commander.
A hundred spiritual puppets were ahead of them as vanguard, three hundred were staying on alert behind them, ensuring their retreat at whatever cost when they were in peril, and the other four hundred were gathered around them.
All the spiritual puppets were within three kilometers from them, which was the maximum range for the manipulation of their brainwaves.
I didn’t expect that I would have Xiao Xuance’s privilege one day.
Li Yao felt like laughing. When he was confronting Xiao Xuance in the past, what he hated most were the hundreds of Grand Illusionary Soldiers that the guy summoned to help him.
He had never thought that he would be living a happy life where hundreds of meat shields would rush forward and slash his opponents into pieces at his cough.
If looked at from a hundred kilometers up in the sky, the center of the primeval battlefield was a dark, giant hole, dozens of kilometers in diameter.
However, when they did reach the edge of the hole, they seemed to have reached the end of a cliff, with a bottomless abyss in front of them.
Spiritual energy was surging out from underground like scorching steam.
When Li Yao scanned with the special crystal cameras that were mixed with the powder of the rare metals, he saw colorful geysers rushing up in a hurry into enormous pillars that stabbed into the sky, consuming the entire world!
Beep! Beep! Beep! Beep!
Many units on the crystal suit were sending out alarms.
Even the operation menu that was projected to the retina showed colorful streaks and ripples.
They were signs of serious interference.
As the saying went, water can lift a boat, but it can knock over a boat, too. Spiritual energy was naturally an indispensable resource for both Cultivators and Immortal Cultivators. However, when the intensity of the spiritual energy was too high, to the point that it was like a raging flood, they would not be able to bear it, either!
It was as simple as one could not eat too much food or drink too much water during a short while. If soaked in the spiritual energy whose density was too high, not only would the magical equipment be seriously affected, even the circulation of spiritual energy of the Cultivators themselves would also be vulnerable to the interference. They might even become mentally deranged!
Li Yao understood why they had to go down in person now.
In such a complicated environment, any remote-control magical equipment would malfunction.
Hundreds of spiritual puppets flew into the dark abyss as the first echelon.
Despite the serious inference, they managed to send back a lot of fuzzy pictures.
The channel leading to the core of the planet was perhaps an entrance for a certain middle-sized starship. It was more than a hundred kilometers long. Sophisticated traces of burning that looked like bizarre paintings could be found on the walls.
“Let’s go down!”
A minute later, when the spiritual puppets that had descended three kilometers reported no anomaly, the four of them drove their crystal suits to fly downward slowly, too.
Zhi! Zhi! Zhi! Zhi! Zhi!
In the middle of the tide of spiritual energy that was rushing from the core of the planet, Li Yao immediately heard the cries of ghosts, as if the darkness below their feet led to the gate of the deepest level of hell, where countless hungry apparitions and fiends were impatiently waiting for their arrival.
“There’s no need to fret!” Kou Ruhuo reassured them solemnly. “It’s not anything alive. Our surveillance rune arrays must’ve been affected by certain flames of spiritual energy whose frequency and nature are unclear!”
The four of them held their breath and continued descending. As it turned out, after flying down almost a hundred kilometers, except for the ghost cries that were becoming more and more miserable and devastating, they ran into nothing abnormal.
However, in the darkness in front of them, glittering floccules were gradually showing up. They looked like fluorescent jellyfish and translucent hairtails.
When the spiritual puppets at the front touched the floccules, they immediately entangled the hands and feet of the few spiritual puppets.
From the manifestation of the local area network, Li Yao could tell that the erosion of the few spiritual puppets was quickly soaring. They were apparently under the attack of the floccules.
“Those things are probably abnormal creatures that slowly came into being after the planetary warship was abandoned, but they are still in a very low-level phase.”
While observing the floccules to attack the spiritual puppets, Tang Qianhe said softly, “I think that they are somewhat similar to the ‘Spirit Devouring Insect Grass’, an ancient creature in the primeval era. However, the Spirit Devouring Insect Grass lived in the ocean, but those things are floating in the air.”
“Given the abundant spiritual energy in the place,” Su Changfa said, “perhaps, the creatures that feed on spiritual energy such as the ‘Spirit Devouring Insect Grass’ are provided with a force field the resembles buoyancy. This is a very unique mini ecological system!
“Be careful, everybody. The Spirit Devouring Insect Grass is already one level more advanced than the moss and bushes that we discovered on the ground. Although their attack is not fatal, it is quite a nuisance when then entangle the joints of the crystal suit.
“Their appearance suggests an intact ecological system down there. Perhaps, more ferocious ancient creatures, which have survived for generation after generation as ‘living fossils’, are lurking in the broken interior of the planetary warship!”
Eerie as the Spirit Devouring Insect Grass was, their speed was quite slow, and they were quite sparse. It was not difficult to pass through them.
After passing through the activity zone of the Spirit Devouring Insect Grass, they descended another thirty kilometers before they ran into the first branch.
It was an enormous hole that was apparently blown out by brute force in the smooth tube leading straight downward. A new pathway that was almost parallel to the ground had been dug out.
“According to my speculation…” Su Changfa pondered for a moment and said, “The tube we’ve flown in through was probably one of the ‘jet impetus tubes’ of the planetary warship. Through the power rune arrays deployed at the center of the planet, the spiritual energy can be blown out crazily through here so that the direction and the rotation speed of the planetary warship can be adjusted.
“It is obvious that the power rune array at the core is somewhat damaged, resulting in the significant leak of spiritual energy. That’s why the spiritual energy here is so dense!
“I tested it just now. The density of spiritual energy here is already two times higher than at the entrance. If we go any further, neither our crystal suits nor ourselves will be able to bear it. Also, if the spiritual energy is supersaturated, a great explosion might be triggered if we are careless for one second!
“The hole in the tube must’ve been made by the invaders during the primeval war.
“They certainly had their reason for breaking in here. Perhaps, the valuable items are along this branch!”
Su Changfa’s speculation made a lot of sense, and the other three nodded in agreement.
Right then, Tang Qianhe pointed at the depths of the branch and shouted, “I have detected a lot of signs of life!”