Dark Star Survivor
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224 Seeking Solutions
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Dark Star Survivor
Author :Enraged_Bear
© Webnovel

224 Seeking Solutions

{Dammit!}

Zoey slammed her fist against the cold, hard floor as yet another one of her spider drones stopped responding the instant it crawled into the energy-filled chamber behind the door. Her frustration was mounting, as nothing she had tried was working, and her drones kept getting fried regardless of the protection she tried to put on them. She had tried every combination of material to protect the drones from the deadly energy, but not even the densest matter she could fabricate with her Aether Engineer talent was enough to stop the drones from getting destroyed.

Not only that, she had also tried every single type of magical defence array she could create, and every single one had been worthless. Not even her Null Rune array had protected her drones. Sending anything biological in there was a death sentence, and none of her machines were working out. Whatever that superactive energy was, it completely destroyed everything she sent there, and she was running out of time.

"Praesidio, is there anything I missed? What else can I try?" she asked, still unwilling to give up.

Saigo and the others had been anxiously waiting while she worked, with Baiken and Lieutenant Azai keeping tabs on the situation back where the clan was currently defending against the machines. All of them knew they could not afford to waste time.

"One option would be to destroy both control nodes to shut the system down, although this would subsequently drop the city on the surface below," replied Praesidio, her artificial voice showing no worry for the dire situation.

"We can't do that!" Saigo exclaimed right away, "This place has no doubt been flying around this entire time! What if we are directly over a town or city? We have no way of knowing where we are, and the damage would be unthinkable!"

"I know," Zoey replied, rubbing her forehead in exasperation. "I don't want to do that either, but we need to shut it down somehow before it's too late. Was there anything else Praesidio? If we analyze the data the drones were able to send back before they died, maybe we can find a solution."

"There is one possibility." Praesidio said after a moment. "The cellular disentanglement caused by the energy is beyond any countermeasure that we currently possess. However, sufficient cellular regeneration activity would be able to counteract the effects of the energy temporarily."

Zoey's eyes suddenly lit up. {The Mittra Regen Rune! If I use that, I could just maybe…} Her hands suddenly started flying over her interface, and a moment later she had a new array designed and ready to fabricate.

"Praesidio, run a check with this array and my biometrics, and tell me if this would work," she ordered, her eyes bright and focused.

There was a minute of tense silence as they all waited for the verdict. They were all anxious to go back to the others. Their family and friends were in danger, and they were all depending on them to shut down the city.


Finally, after what seemed like forever, Praesidio spoke; "Using this array to counteract the cellular disentanglement effect caused by the energy is possible."

Zoey's eyes brightened when she heard this, and Saigo's team felt a flood of relief flow through them as well. There was a way!

"However, the energy requirements to use this method are beyond what you currently possess." Praesidio finished, instantly freezing all of them. Energy requirement?!

"You mean I don't have enough energy?" Zoey asked in confusion. She still had over 80% of her total magic essence available, and that wasn't enough?
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"Correct. In order for you to survive, the array must be provided with a constant supply of power while you are in contact with the energy. It must be actively counteracting the cellular disentanglement without interruption. A single moment without power will be fatal." Praesidio replied emotionlessly.

Zoey's mind whirled. "What if I link with Viridi and use both our magic energy to enhance the effect? That should be enough, right?" she asked as if bargaining for a valuable item. She was getting more and more anxious about this the longer it took!

"The power requirement is still insufficient," Praesidio said, then displayed a helpful progress bar for Zoey to see how much power would be needed.

When she saw it, Zoey felt a sinking feeling in her stomach. {Even with both me and Viridi, it still needs this much power? Its only at 20%! Wait… What if I channel power from the Arbiter's Mark into the array…}

"What about the Arbiter's Mark? Praesidio, can you check again?" she asked as she opened the link between her inner world and the gift she had received from Sethrii. She felt a jolt run through her inner world as the goddess's divine power started to flow into her like a river while Praesidio calculated the energy requirements.

Zoey watched the progress bar slowly fill to 100% with anxious eyes, breathing out a sigh of relief when Praesidio said, "This energy should be sufficient."

With this they finally had a chance! Only… there were two locations, both of which had to be deactivated simultaneously for this to work!

{Okay, I need some way to transmit the power over a long distance. If I can get the array to the other location and transmit the power, we can get this done!} Zoey thought as her mind raced and her hands flew over her interface.

However, Zoey's hands slowly became still. The more she tried to design and make a system that would work, the more she became certain that their current solution of channeling power from her, Viridi, and the Arbiter's Mark to power the array would only work for one location. The sheer distance of several kilometers, plus the interference from the city, and the immense concentration required to channel an amount of power that massive for that long ensured that her plan was completely useless for the two separate locations!

"Shit…" She spat out quietly. "Praesidio, we need another way. Doing this for both locations is impossible."

The next moment, Saigo's voice came through the connection, "Zoey, we are out of time. The machines are starting to climb the walls to get to the rest of the clan. If we don't get this done in fifteen minutes, it will be too late."

"I'm afraid I have no other solutions for this problem. With the limitations of our circumstances there is no other solution available to me," Praesidio followed up Saigo's warning with an emotionless ultimatum of their own.

Zoey felt helplessness welling up in her chest as she desperately tried to think of a solution, but she could not come up with anything! Her mind was coming up blank, and everything she was able to come up with she had already tried!

{What the fuck to I do now?! I can only stop one of these myself, and that means I can't stop any of them!} She thought angrily to herself. She was out of options, and out of ideas... She had failed to shut the city down! Athena was busy and not answering her calls, her ship was still locked up by a tractor beam, and her crew was being besieged by an endless horde of machines! What could she do now?!

Then, on Saigo's side of the connection, someone spoke up; "I'll do it. I'll go in there. I will go in there and shut it down."

Zoey was startled out of her spiraling thoughts when she heard those words. She could barely believe her ears! Who had just spoken?!

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