"Sir, by the most expensive optiondoes that mean the combat pets from the legendary class?" the salesgirl carefully inquired.
She had seen many customers ask about the pricier beasts in the store but when they saw the pricewell let's just say she did not receive any sale commissions.
The duke gave a small nod which caused the salesgirl heart to flutter with hope towards the father and daughter duo.
Good lord her commission was going to be great!
"Please follow me to the back of the store my esteemed customers," she softly spoke before leading the pair through the store.
Sophie's eyes sparkled as she took in the strange and wonderful beasts all around her. There was no unpleasant smell from the animals as the indoor filtration system and the cleaning robots maintained proper hygiene.
She looked at one of the cages and there was a purple coloured monkey who waved cheerfully before turning invisible!
What seemed to be a metallic sludge was shifting merrily around a small enclosure before violently banging against the door as they passed by.
The salesgirl led them past the recreational pet section and into the combat pet zone of the store.
Sophie noticed that the animals here seemed to be more aggressive and stared harshly at her figure as she walked by.
There was now an additional label under each one of the enclosures that showed what rank the combat pet was. Sophie saw that even the common ranked combat pets would sell for upwards of one million Enas.
What was the price of a legendary pet?
She dared not think too much!
She sneaked a small peak at her father who seemed pretty nonchalant at the prospect of his daughter's reckless spending and quietly made a vow in her heart to pay him back once she entered military service.
Sophie saw a rock-like golem with beady yellow eyes that made her slightly sleepy when she gazed into them. The duke gave her a gentle tap on the head and Sophie woke up with a startled expression.
The label under the creature showed that he was merely an ultra beast.
Sophie dared not casually look at the beasts inside the enclosures anymore and just quietly followed the guide until they reached a black door with two security drones hovering menacingly in the air.
"I'm sorry my dear customers but to gain access to this room will require a deposit of ten million Enas before I can allow you inside," the salesgirl carefully explained.
The duke said nothing but simply handed the girl a black credit card which she quickly tapped against a payment machine to process the amount.
Once the payment was complete, the salesgirl took out a metal plate from her pocket and pressed it against the sealed door.
A buzzing noise was heard from the security lock and the door swung open to reveal the hidden room within.
Legendary combat beasts were notoriously difficult to acquire and only high-end pet stores would be able to apply for a licence to breed and sell. Under the laws of the Federation, these beasts were treated as biological weapons, so every sale was heavily taxed.
Even the black market would only be able to sell very small quantities under the condition that the authorities would turn a blind eye once they received a cut.
The room was surprisingly bare and only contained a virtual hub that showed the projection of a book and what seemed to be a small transporter in the center of the room.
Sophie walked inside and was taken aback by the lack of animals.
"Where are the legendary beasts?" Sophie inquired in a puzzled tone.
"Our store only has a B-ranked pet licence to sell legendary combat beasts so we cannot offer any that have already been hatched. We are only allowed to sell eggs," the salesgirl explained.
Generally speaking, A- ranked and S- Ranked pet licences were only reserved for military contractors and special individuals with extremely high security clearances.
Having a B- ranked licence was the highest licence that a commercial business could obtain.
"But for those in the lower cultivation levels, it would be practically impossible for customers to tame an a.d.u.l.t or even an infant legendary beast."
"However, we also sell training manuals and methods to form a blood bond with the egg that the customer selects so you will be treated as a parent once it hatches which tends to make the creature easier to control."
Sophie turned to her father who gave her an encouraging nod, so she eagerly ran towards the virtual terminal to browse the available selections.
Sophie did not intend to go down the path of beast cultivation, but she figured that the extra strength would protect her in the future.
Plus, she really loved animals!
Sophie tapped the floating book and a search engine was generated which could filter all the available beasts. There was also a guide section for new users, so Sophie decided to give it a click before deciding to search.
Reading the introduction page, Sophie realised that the eggs were all cryogenically frozen and once a selection was made then they would be teleported from a hidden location to the transporter in the centre of the room.
"Let's find an adorable baby!" Sophie joyfully spoke.
The results could be filtered using a variety of options which Sophie carefully browsed before making a choice.
[Size: Small Medium Gigantic]
[Ability: None Singular Multiple]
[Trainability level: Beginner Intermediate Master]
[General Specialization: Power Strength Agility Stamina Lethality]
[Combat Role: Surveillance Fighter Tank Healer Control]
[Weight: Light (<25 kg) Medium (25- 100kg) Heavy ( >100kg) ]
She inputted a series of commands into the search engine to narrow down the results.
The first consideration was that the pet had to be small and in the lightweight class. Sophie did not want a bulky pet because travelling would become quite inconvenient.
And she wanted to hold and hug the pet in her arms!
For the special ability section, she clicked the singular and multiple options while briefly glancing at the master option on the trainability level before giving a sigh of resignation and clicking beginner.
There was no need to lie to herself...
The remaining options of general specialization were quite tricky as they would basically eliminate an enormous percentage of the available stock.
Sophie stood in silence for several minutes but could not seem to make up her mind.
"Dad could you help me decide what option to select for the combat role and specialization?" Sophie turned to her father for help.
"Young miss, the most popular types of combat beasts are those that have the fighter and tank class roles! They will make you near invincible among your peers," the salesgirl quickly spoke up.
The salesgirl was eager to recommend those two options as it would increase her commission quite significantly.
It was true, although each pet for sale was of the legendary status. there was great demand for the tank and fighter classes when compared to the rest, so they were naturally more expensive.
Sophie gave a small hum of acknowledgement before waiting for her father to reply. The duke stroked his chin for a moment before giving the opposite advice,
"I think you should select a combat beast that is useful for control, surveillance or healing,"
"Why?" Sophie asked in confusion.
"Because the other roles may give you an edge among your peers at the lower levels but once you reach the qi tide stage then your opponents will easily deal with them or go for you directly," he explained.
"And it is very easy to become over reliant on external sources of strength. I'm not going to mock beast cultivators but unless they have some type of defensive cultivation art. they are easy pickings on the battlefield."
Sophie took her father's advice to heart and selected the healer, surveillance and control classes but left the general specialization filter slot empty.
She pressed the enter button and a few small dots appeared on the screen as the AI searched the database to find all matches that included her criteria.
[Adjusting list of combat beasts based on filters selected.]
[ Searching for matches: Matches found!]
To her delight she found that exactly five pets had met her stringent requirements. The list of filters may have given the illusion that there was plenty of choices for customers, but each legendary beast was incomparably precious.
They had notoriously low breeding rates in captivity and their dangerous nature made fatalities commonplace in the industry.
The Options were:
- Special Abilities: Frozen domain, Supersonic blast
2) Eye demon
- Special Abilities: Temporal Foresight
- Surveillance/ Fighter
- Special Abilities: Hellfire
4) Void Jellyfish
- Special Abilities: Spatial Disruption
5) Elder forest pixie
- Healer/ Control
- Special Abilities: Flora Manipulation, Life Aura
[Click on each choice individually for more details]