Chapter 626: Prying

    Chapter 626: Prying

    Jue Di shook his head. "We're on different levels, it has limited use for me. I would need crystals from something as strong as I. It's the same for you. Those Paragons in the Realm of Protogenia, or who are Reflections of Heaven and Earth, they can use them. But for those like you and me, we've already surpassed natural restrictions and are connected to the universe at large. Only creatures with a similar connection can supplement our energies."

    A faint, bloodthirsty light shone in Luo Xianni's eyes. "Then we'll search until we find that alien, something that'll work for us!"

    Jue Di nodded. "This is also one reason I wanted to come along. If such a chance exists, I'm not going to let it slip."

    When she heard his affirmation, her mood improved. "You will definitely succeed," she said through a smile. "You're invincible."

    Zeus-1 took a distant, circuitous route from the scene of their last battle before continuing toward the galaxy's center. The last encounter had left them flush, so much in fact that the Wine Master was having trouble keeping calm.

    Altogether they'd gathered one thousand seven hundred vital crystals. Among them was the ten-meter long one from the Basilisk. If they managed to bring all of these back to human worlds intact, the response would be overwhelming. The cost to create their teleport base paled in comparison. They would be the cornerstone of the Eastern Alliance's future dominance!

    After preliminary calculations by the Accountant they estimated more than ten thousand people could use these to extend their lives, if the energy they released was any indication. This was on the conservative side, even before considering the Basilisk crystal.

    The asteroid belts were beginning to look familiar. More and more aliens were appearing on their radar. However, now that they were closer to the planets he didn't engage. Scouting was the main priority at the moment, seek and destroy only if they had time.

    They relied on Lin Guoguo's psychic pulses to keep them hidden when an alien came too close. She'd become quite adroit at mimicking alien consciousness after so many days of practice.

    "We'll nearly be there once we cross the asteroid field." Su Xiaosu's somewhat nervous voice called to Lan Jue.

    He walked over to her side and looked over her shoulder at the radar. Sadly its scanning range was soiled by the chaotic energies and magnetic disturbances of the Shattered Starfields. They couldn't see much beyond the tips of their noses.

    "Wine Master, prepare to evacuate us at a moment's notice." Lan Jue said.

    The Wine Master nodded. His dimensional scepter was already in his hand. The Epochrion and the Taming Dragon Arhat were in their respective cabins, preparing for a fight.

    "Guoguo, how long can you keep this up?" He looked her way.

    "At least an hour with no problems," she answered.

    He nodded. "Full speed ahead. Accountant, make sure all our scanning equipment is ready to go."

    "Aye aye!"

    Zeus-1 leapt forward, barreling over a large asteroid on its way to clear space - and its target, the three alien planets.

    At top speed it didn't take them long to traverse the belt. As the last space rock rolled past, the rest of the galaxy was revealed. At last, they'd reached their destination.

    Except, everything was not what they expected. When they arrived at where the three primary planets had been, only one planet remained, hovering in the spot Moonfiend had once occupied. The other two were gone, with no trace left behind.

    Xiaosu gasped. "They've already teleported away?"

    Lan Jue placed a hand on her shoulder. "Not necessarily, don't panic. Move in closer and scan the area. Remember that these planets can move. Maybe the planets split up to cover more area. After all, out here even one of these planets are invincible. Let's move in and take a look. Mika, call my parents here to look. Assuming only one of the planets are here, maybe we can cause a little chaos."

    Jue Di's apocalyptic punch had stunned everyone, and was a font of courage for Lan Jue. If his father could put down one of these three fatal worlds, it could mean the difference in humanity's coming crisis.

    Mika rushed to fetch them, while Zeus-1 slowly crept closer. The Psychic Tide continued to put her full effort into maintaining their camouflage.

    From afar the planet almost looked like a human Bastion Ship, floating quietly by itself. A hive would be a more apt description, though. Scores of alien creatures could be spied leaving and returning from its surface. It swallowed them up and spat out others, keeping the flow steady.

    Undoubtedly the creatures were being dispatched to gather more life energy. When they returned, they delivered that energy to the planet itself.

    It was the first time Lan Jue was close enough to see the process clearly.

    The surface of the planet was entirely purple. Its surface was pockmarked with craters, mountains, and strange fold-like valleys. A pale purple haze surrounded it, like an atmosphere. That was all he could tell with his eyes alone. He couldn't see or sense much beyond that.

    Jue Di and Luo Xianni arrived at the bridge and walked to his side. They looked out at the scene.

    "Just one?" Jue Di's brows wrinkled in thought.

    Lan Jue nodded. "We can only see one. The other two most likely moved on. Now we know they can move and fight separately."

    Jue Di's eyes narrowed. He was thinking of something, but there was no telling what.

    Lan Jue continued. "From our previous encounter we can determine that these planets are living creatures. They're like brood mothers, and can spawn aliens for their needs. They use life energy pilfered from elsewhere to empower themselves. The one we found on Taihua, the one we called a progenitor, was essentially a scaled-down version of this thing. It also spawned aliens and sent them out to drain the planet. It was using that energy to get bigger. We suspect that's how these things develop."

    Jue Di nodded, expressing his agreement.

    "Father, we have no way of telling how strong this planet is. If you were to fight it, do you think you could cause some damage?" Lan Jue asked.

    "Absolutely not!" Luo Xianni answered for him.

    Lan Jue paused. Everyone's eyes turned her way.

    Jue Di stared at her for a moment before answering. "I can't tell. The planet's atmosphere is hiding its energies from me. I'd need to get in there."
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