The Mech Touch

 
 

The Mech Touch Chapter 803 Rank Disparity


The meeting with the wildlings went as violent as expected. The Swordmaidens and Vandals opted to greet the tribal dwarf nomads without mechs and on foot. They wore medium and heavy combat armor to balance speed and protection.

The armor also helped to distinguish them from the tall and lean forms of the blessed people without appearing too threatening. Nobody knew how the dwarves would react against mechs, so the ground forces kept them out of sight.

Of course, they might as well be ghosts or monsters from the reaction of the savages. The Dwarves all yelled at the first contact delegation before holding up their spears and clubs in a battle stance.

While their men urged their golding mounts to slowly charge forward, their women and children drove their smaller mounts away from the battle.

No matter what the Vandals and Swordmaidens tried to say, the dwarves completely ignored their entreaties.

They didn't even yell in standard language! It was obvious that their language had diverged into a completely new form!

Though the Vandals turned on their translator AIs, they wouldn't be able to decipher the new language completely without hours of recordings.

With no way to break the language barrier, the first contact delegation helplessly switched to plan B. They deployed gas grenades laced with sedatives and other non-lethal toxins.

"The sedatives aren't having any effect!" Dr. Tillman spoke over the command channel. "These high gravity variant humans are much more advanced than we suspected! Careful!"Find authorized novels in Webnovel´╝îfaster updates, better experience´╝îPlease click www.webnovel.com for visiting.

Captain Byrd cursed. "Commence plan C. If we can't gas them to sleep, we'll just have to knock them out the old-fashioned way! Kill their godling mounts but keep the dwarves alive unless your life is at risk!"

Throughout the galaxy, dwarves had taken on a negative connotation, with some humans even referring to them as subhumans rather than an equal to baseline humans.

This was because many dwarves emerged as cheap mining labor on mineral-rich Super Earths. These huge planets with a considerable amount of mass often possessed high concentrations of heavy ores and exotics.

It usually wasn't worthwhile and economic to devote these planets to anything else that required advanced skills and well-paid professionals. Therefore, the dwarves that toiled on these Super Earths often received a bad reputation for being dirty miners who weren't suitable for anything else.

The Flagrant Swordmaidens became affected by this bias as well, so when they saw the wildlings behaving like savages, they possessed no scruples to treat them roughly. Unlike the blessed people who by all accounts appeared to be the legitimate successors of the officers and crew of the Starlight Megalodon, the dwarves were kind of like the illegitimate bastard children.


The CFA would probably discard the primitive and repulsive dwarves once they saw them. The degenerated variants possessed no redeeming value.

"Kill the beasts and knock them out!"

The Vandals this time sent out a considerable amount of security officers. All of them trained their marksmanship to a considerable level, so when they whipped out their laser rifles and struck at the juvenile godlings, they never wavered in their aim.

A flurry of laser beams struck the heads and other vulnerable parts of the lizard-like beasts the dwarves used as their mounts and pack animals. Due to their heavy gravity adaptation, they moved as fast as a human walking forward in a sedate pate under a normal pace.

If a trained security officer missed their mark under these circumstances, they should be ashamed of themselves!

Their laser rifles heated up relatively quickly, but the straight beams made aiming them very simple. The 'charging' godlings might as well be stationary targets due to how slow they actually trod forward!

For all the damage these potentially future wild gods received, the creatures proved to be surprisingly resilient against infantry-grade laser weapons. Their thick mass and resilient scales made it a bit more challenging to get past their protective layer.

No matter. The Vandals enjoyed all the time in the world.

"Maintain distance!"

Each time the godling mounts plodded forward, the Vandals took a couple of steps backwards. Under the influence of their gravitic backpacks, they moved as easily as if they walked on a normal planet. They could even sprint and run if they had to with the help of their servos incorporated their combat armor!

Some of the savage dwarf warriors let out a frustrated cry as their trusty steeds succumbed to the lethal lasers. With smoking holes burned through their skulls, the creatures stood no chance at all!

As the dwarf warriors brandished their bone weapons and attempted to close the distance on their thick, stubby legs, it became obvious why they spent so much effort on taming a godling herd.

"They're so slow!"

As melee warriors, the Swordmaidens went into action at this time. Their antigrav-enhanced combat armor sprung into action, closing the distance with rapid speed. Though they unsheathed their greatswords, they refrained from using their edges to slice the dwarves.

Instead, the Swordmaidens smacked the savage dwarves with the flat end of the blade!

The clumsy dwarves, used to pounding at each other by raiding their weapons and chopping them down with considerable force with the help of gravity, simply couldn't cope with the nimble movements of the Swordmaidens.

The two forces played by different rules, and the Swordmaidens that possessed an absolute advantage in speed never got hit!

In fact, one of the more adventurous Swordmaidens even decided to stand still and let a dwarf smack her armor with a club. Though the force exerted by the dwarf was strong enough to cause it to dent, that was the entire extent of the damage.

Unless the dwarves managed to trip a Swordmaiden up and gang up on her, they had no chance at all at felling the women.

The dwarves possessed thick muscles and a very resilient head for their size. Their intelligence may have taken a slide backwards, but their physical strength and endurance more than made up for it. The Swordmaidens took a lot longer than they thought to knock the dwarf warriors senseless.

"Alright, that's enough." Captain Byrd spoke over the comm. "Restrain five of them and take them away. Oh, and secure a godling beast mount as well."

A while later, Ves, Captain Byrd, Chief Dakkon and a couple of other experts entered the biolab. The exobiologists descended upon the dwarves with considerable interest. They scanned and studied the unconscious dwarves, even cutting in a couple of them to study them down to the core.

"What are the results of your investigation, doc?"

Dr. Tillman achieved greater prominence ever since they made landfall. Since so many strange forms of life dominated this planet, it became essential to understand their traits.

The wildling tribe they encountered might not amount to anything, but the blessed people obviously dreaded them. Before the Flagrant Swordmaidens encountered the larger tribes that managed to tame an adult wild god, it became important for them to figure out the origin of the dwarves.

"Our studies have been fruitful." The doctor began. "The results are surprising. First, they are definitely descended from the crew of the CFA. However, before I go in on their attributes, I would first like to state that we've discovered an important difference when we compared the genes of the blessed people with the genes of the cursed people."

"Oh?" Captain Byrd raised one of her eyebrows. "Do tell."

"It's common knowledge that the Common Fleet Alliance provides standardized gene treatments to their own people. These gene treatments generally don't blend in alien genes, but are mostly meant to optimize the genes of baseline humans so that they are able to achieve their peak potential. Even then, there are different degrees of gene treatments, with the more advanced ones requiring more expensive reagents over multiple treatments."

Chief Dakkon nodded. "A lowly ship rating only qualifies for a basic gene treatment, while the officers enjoy increasingly generous ones. By the time a CFA officer is promoted to captain, they've practically become superhuman in almost every aspect!"

The MTA maintained their own regime of gene treatments. Though the Big Two discouraged unscrupulous genetic modification, they weren't above using it to their own advantage.

The biggest difference with other organizations was that they stressed human purity! Every gene treatment had to transform its recipient into a more perfect human!

After the horrors that happened at the Age of Conquest, the Big Two were determined not to repeat the mistakes of the past. The CFA in particular also wanted to disassociate themselves from the insane admirals who unscrupulously abused their power and engaged in genocide on a whim.

"Each genetic treatment leaves behind a characteric marking that is inheritable by their offspring." Dr. Tillman continued. "While we don't have the latest versions of these markers in our local database, we do have a fairly complete library of markers that used to be common three-hundred years ago. When we matched the genes of the blessed and cursed people with the markers, we've identified a clear class difference."

Ves smelled where this was going. "Let me guess. The blessed people are the descendants of the officers and experts of the Starlight Megalodon, while the cursed people are the descendants of the riff-raff."

"That is so." Dr. Tillman glowered a bit at Ves for ruining her big reveal. Served her right for building up too much to this revelation. "The genes of the wildlings have experienced much more radical changes compared to the genes of the blessed people. The exobiologists and geneticists have been much less restrained when it comes to the dwarves."

Nobody quite knew what to make of this revelation. Had the relations between the ranks broken down for some reason? Why turn the offspring of the enlisted personnel into squat, dumb and ugly dwarves? Why maintain the blessed people in their weak, mostly baseline human form?

The exobiologists in the employ of the Vandals touched upon the history of what had happened after the Starlight Megalodon crash-landed on Seven. Perhaps a desperate struggle for survival and continuity broke out at some point between the leaders and their subordinates.

It was difficult to imagine what had happened thousands of years ago under the influence of the spacetime distortion of the astral winds. The accelerated time on the surface of the planet only allowed the Flagrant Swordmaidens to touch upon the consequences of the events that happened in the past.

"What about the dwarves themselves?" Captain Byrd asked. "You mentioned during first contact that the dwarves aren't regular examples of a high gravity variant."

Dr. Tillman glanced at the dwarves beyond the observation window. A handful of exobiologists buzzed over an unconscious dwarf. "Much like there is diversity among mechs, there is diversity among gene templates ma'am. Even though the dwarves throughout the galaxy are mostly derived from a single dominant high gravity variant, there are in fact more comprehensive ones that touch upon certain taboos. Unfortunately, the wildlings are the product of an illegal template, the so-called dark dwarf template."

Nobody recognized the significance of that term. "Is that why their skin is uniformly darker?"

The dwarves all possessed skin and hair as black as gorillas.

"It's more than that. The dark dwarf template takes the idea of dwarfs as low-class labor to its logical extreme. The genes of this variant of humans is even further strengthened at the cost of their longevity. While their maturity is slightly stretched, they will never grow old and feeble because their genes will shut their bodies down as soon as the first onset of old age arrives. This prevents their employers from having to provide for their retirement."

The Vandals all began to look at the exobiologist in horror.

"That's barbaric! Dwarves are always treated badly, but at least they still share in the dignity of the human race. This change is literally geared towards treating them as slaves!"

Dr. Tillman sighed again. "It's worse than that. The dark dwarf template deliberately affects their brain chemistry and development. Their intelligence is permanently underdeveloped and stuck in a juvenile and impressionable stage. They simply aren't able to learn any advanced knowledge, so it's impossible for them to become managers, scientists, lawyers and the like. The best they can achieve with their underdeveloped brains is to become foremen of the mining operations their slave species are designed to work for the entirely of their lives!"

Ves picked out an important detail in her speech. "You say ordinarily. I take it the wildlings we kidnapped aren't the same?"

"That's very astute of you, Mr. Larkinson. In truth, the exobiologists have modified the dark dwarf template by adding alien genes. To be more precise, they've added the genes of god species into their DNA!"

God species genes! Everyone looked stunned at that revelation. Even Ves hadn't anticipated such a crazy thing. How could these savage wildlings share anything in common with the ferocious wild gods?

 
 


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