Two days later, two wyverns flew over the black rainforest. Athena who mounted on Kegu looked energetic as the devil fruit effect was completely absorbed by her.
This precious fruit that could wage war was indeed worthy of its reputation. Athena’s strength was originally at the early stage of Higher Demon, but she instantly promoted to the middle stage. That was merely a superficial effect. The invisible potential index was more important. In the future, the probability for her to break through the limit of Higher Demon to become Demon King was greatly increased. Even the further Great Demon King and Demon Emperor level were no longer an impossible fantasy.
With the example of Dodo and Chen Rui’s strong persistence, Athena ate another fruit. As a result, it only made her strength stabler. The tiny possibility of additional ability still didn’t appear. However, this special ability might not necessarily be immediate. It could very likely be obtained in the years of future practice.
As for Dodo’s changes, it might not only be the devil fruit’s effect, but it was most probably also related to the swallowing of dragon’s flesh.
Chen Rui secretly ate a demon fruit, but his power didn’t grow at all. He only increased some aura due to the toxicity, so it was really not worthy. However, with a magical thing like galaxy garden, he could harvest again in 2 months. In the future, it wasn’t impossible to eat them as snacks like Dodo did.
During these two days, Chen Rui didn’t waste his time. He spent all his time in the training ground. His 130,000 auras had only more than 90,000 left. Athena was informed by him to not interfere with his “sleep”. Together with Dodo’s protection, everything was smooth including when Athena consumed the devil fruit.
Like the straw that broke the camel’s back, 8-fold gravity was indeed incomparable to the limit represented by 4-fold gravity. Even after breaking through to Mizar state, it was still really difficult to move without the use of Star Power. The first 10 days, he didn’t know how much hardship did he suffer. When he finished training and saw Athena sleeping like a baby after eating the devil fruit, he felt that there was more energy in his body. After rushing to eat and rest, he once again immersed himself in the self-abusing training.
Chen Rui had taken two black potions, Eternal Power and Eternal Speed. At the time, the potion effect was actually not completely absorbed. Under the high-pressure training, the potion effect accumulated in the body finally came into play.
Dodo had always been obsessed with the devil fruit, but since he tasted the barbecue made by Chen Rui, he began to change his taste, and he was even more loyal to his master. Athena was initially worried about the evil fruit tree, but once Chen Rui told her that he managed to hide it, Athena was relieved.
Two wyverns left the black rainforest. They finally arrived at their destination, Xilang mountain range in 1 ½ day.
Among the rolling Xilang mountain range, there were many tall mountains and deep, dangerous valleys. The area was huge. It reached the Town Leia that bordered the Dark Shadow Empire all the way to the west. Mountain Xilang was the largest mountain in the Xilang mountain range. However, Mountain Xilang had been controlled by the bandits, so the current mining office was located under the remote Mountain Lugang.
When Chen Rui and Athena followed the mark on the magic map and landed with the two wyverns, the guards and miners at the entrance of mining office were all shocked.
As the original mining office was occupied by the bandits, the mining office now was actually a simple stone house that was temporary built. Being shocked by the wyverns, a centaur who looked like a leader came out of the stone house. There were several scars on his face. Hee was holding a walking stick. As soon as he saw Athena jumped off the wyvern’s back, his eyes gradually showed surprise. He approached and greeted, “You are… Ms. Athena!”
“Who are you?” Athena felt that this limping centaur was a bit familiar, but she couldn’t remember his name.
The centaur seemed to be moved, “I’m Gade. I once served General George at the Warlock Fortress. As I was injured in a conflict with the Bloody Empire, I was transferred here 4 years ago.”
Athena finally recalled and said with surprise, “I remembered! You’re Death Hammer, Gade! You even gifted me a sword!”
“Its a great pleasure that Miss still remembers me,” Gade waved his powerless arm and disabled left leg. He sighed, “Unfortunately, I’m no longer the Death Hammer. The general is compassionate toward his subordinates, so he let me come to the Dark Moon for an easy position to retire… Let’s not talk about that. I heard that Miss Athena came to the Dark Moon City 3 years ago. Unfortunately, I couldn’t excuse myself from here. What brings Miss to the mines today?”
“Didn’t you receive the magic communication from the Dark Moon City? Since the official appointment from Princess Royal, the magic communication should be issued already.” Athena looked suspicious.
Gade shook his head and replied, “The communication tower here has been destroyed by the bandits; it hasn’t been repaired.”
Magic communication was actually equivalent to a wireless communication using a communication symbol. In between, a special magic communication tower was needed to transmit messages which was equivalent to the “base station” in Chen Rui’s previous world. If the communication tower was destroyed, the magic communication symbol within the range would be unusable.
The magic communication tower of each line must be set up separately. There were private owned and public owned. For example, there was a dedicated magic communication tower from the capital city to every estate. The “base stations” along the way was also specifically protected.
“That’s why.” Athena pointed at Chen Rui, “This time I was ordered by Princess Shea to protect your new mining officer.”
That sentence made everyone’s sight fell on the human, who they thought it was Ms. Athena’s “servant”. Despite the lack of news, the news of Master Aldas defeating the genius from the capital in a challenge had spread throughout every corner of Dark Moon. Even the people in a secluded place like Mountain Xilang had heard of it. This should be the human apprentice of the master, but how did the apprentice become our boss suddenly?
Chen Rui was no longer the same as before. Under those eyes, he was calm and took out the magic letter of appointment signed by Shea personally. While everyone was paying attention at him, Chen Rui was also observing these “soldiers” under him. There were about a dozen guards, composed mainly by centaurs and dark elves. There weren’t many miners present, and they were all imps and dark elves. Most of the demons present shared the same characteristic, that was, they look dispirited.
Gade took the letter of appointment and his brows gradually frowned. With his eyesight, he could clearly distinguish between true and fake.
The centaur looked at Athena. He had no more doubts in his heart. He immediately bowed at Chen Rui and said,”The mining office guards’ captain, Gade reporting to mining officer.”
The guards and miners were all surprised as they saw Gade bowed. It seemed that Princess Royal truly appointed this weak human as a mining officer!
Like many people, Gade was rather disapproving against this appointment. How can a powerless human lead everyone. However, as Athena was there, he couldn’t say much. He made a welcoming gesture, “Sir and Miss, please come in to talk. Connor, get us some food! The rest of the people… do whatever you need to do!”
Chen Rui and Athena followed Gade into the stone house. The facilities in the stone house were very simple. They were just two stone tables with several chairs and a bed at the back.
“I’m sorry, Miss. The conditions here are very difficult, so I have nothing good to serve. Please simple eat something later.” Gade welcomed the two to sit and asked Athena, “Miss, when are you going back to Dark Moon City?”
Athena shook her head, “I was ordered by Princess Royal to always protect Chen Rui here until his work is over or transferred.”
Gade was slightly shocked, then he nodded with a complicated expression.
Chen Rui saw that and pondered. He asked, “Gade, we just arrived here. Can you briefly introduce the situation here?”
Gade hesitated for a moment and began to talk.
Mountain Xilang was extremely rich in minerals. It had a long history of mining. It had always been the largest and most important resource for Dark Moon. After the Beelzebub Royal Family incident in the Dark Moon 400 years ago, the bustling Dark Moon began to run down. The mines had undergone many changes as well. The underground creatures that had been sealed suddenly broke through the seal and occupied the lower layer of the pit, which was equivalent to controlling the largest mining area. That made mining’s difficulty increased greatly and life-threatening.
More than a year ago, a powerful Red Devil bandit gang appeared. They not only robbed and killed the caravan sent by Princess Royal, Shea, but they also harassed the mines from time to time. They also sent a small team to occupy the main pit and several newly-opened small mine sources. They even killed the miners who went there to mine.
Now, the miners could only mine some cheap open-air ores while defending the bandits’ attack under Gade’s lead. Although the danger was reduced, the income and output were extremely low. Princess Royal once sent Sheriff Alan to eliminate the bandits because of the caravan incident, but both attempts were defeated by the bandits.
Athena heard that the mine’s situation was so bad; it was much worse than what Shea knew. She frowned and said, “Why didn’t you report to the Dark Moon City?”
“We’ve reported it countless times.” Gade sighed, “However, even the army sent by the Dark Moon City has failed. What other way is there? If it wasn’t for miss’ arrival today, I thought that Princess Royal has already given up on us.”
Chen Rui knew that the direct supervisor of the mining industry was the financial officer, which was Joseph. Therefore, it was “reasonable” that only limited information was passed to Shea. At that moment, he asked a key question, “What happened to the previous mining officer?”
The previous mining officer was Tim of the Saiful Family. Gade’s evaluation of Tim was relatively high and within his words revealed a contempt toward Chen Rui. After Tim came to the mine, he made a series of rectification and was quite prestigious. At that time, the main problem of the mine was the underground creatures. When Tim led a group of people to investigate the situation in the main pit, everyone suddenly disappeared, even their bodies couldn’t be found. They were probably eaten by the demonic beasts.
Chen Rui calculated the time. When Tim was in power at the time, Shea hadn’t sent a caravan to the west. So, at most, there was just a sporadic of bandits. When a caravan was dispatched, a powerful bandit gang appeared accordingly which was obviously on purpose. After cutting off the trade route to the west, their controlling target transferred to the mine. It seemed that they wanted to choke the Dark Moon until it completely suffocated.
The reason why they left Gade and the others alive wasn’t because of the bandits’ kindness, but they didn’t want to attract more attention from Shea until the last moment. Once a certain time had come, Chen Rui could imagine that everywhere would have troubles at the same time. Even if Shea had extraordinary ability, she would be helpless as it was a relatively perfect and cruel plan.
“I came here this time is also for a task given by Master Aldas.” Chen Rui thought about it and said the most important purpose of the trip. “The master is now experimenting with a peculiar potion which requires the crystal powder on the waste ores. Can you bring me to them?”
“Waste ores? Crystal powder?” Gade frowned and thought. He finally realized, “You must be talking about the thing stuck on the ores. The crystal is very troublesome and difficult to get rid of it, let alone make it into powder. Also, this waste ores with crystals are only found in the main mining pit of Mountain Xilang. Now, it is under the bandits’ territory.”
Chen Rui didn’t give up and asked, “Where are the waste ores before this?”
Gade answered, “The waste ores are piled up in the waste ores room, which is located at a certain corner above the main pit. Currently, the mineral production is too low, so several people have stolen the waste ores and shipped them back to the city. After that, the bandits killed them all after they noticed it.”
Chen Rui’s brows frowned even more. Zach mentioned this before, but I didn’t expect the actual situation to be much worse. Every piece of waste ore that I converted at the blacksmith shop in Dark Moon City was stained with the blood of the miners!