Chapter 3039: New Food
It took some time for the extensive discussion to end. Master Willix had to hold a lengthy lecture in order to make sure that Ves and the others knew how to handle resonating exotics.
In most cases, resonating exotics directly replaced some of standard materials in certain systems and components. This allowed the Journeyman to design the expert mechs in the same manner as standard mechs. The only difference was that Master Willix would swoop in and substitute some materials for resonating ones.
"This is not the most ideal approach to designing expert mechs, but the barrier is low enough to allow Journeymen like you to design the mechs you envisioned without too many issues." Master Willix stated. "The burden of trying to integrate the resonating exotics into the expert mech designs while ensuring that their performance does not grow worse falls squarely on my shoulders. You can trust me to give you as much space to display your design skills. I will not interfere unless your design choices result in excessive drawbacks or interference."
In other words, Master Willix affirmed that she was not going to hold their hands too much. This was supposed to be their work, not hers. The performance of the expert mechs would definitely be worse off, but Ves didn't mind this at all. As long as he was able to retain sufficient ownership of their designs, then he would still feel satisfaction when they succeeded in battle.
After asking a bunch of questions, Ves and the others needed no more clarification for the moment. They were all looking forward to Master Willix to add the resonating materials to the draft designs and move onto the more important phases of the design projects.
Only by knowing what they were working towards would they be able to put their full skills into play!
Ves eagerly sought to impart the expert mech designs with life.
Gloriana wanted to perfect every single element of the designs.
Juliet wanted to optimize the mobility of the designs as much as possible.
Ketis wanted to arm each expert mech with sharp and unfailing blades.
In short, each of them couldn't wait to express their unique strengths in the strongest mechs that they would ever have the privilege of designing in the current period of time.
Who knew when they would be able to design something better. Unless Ves was able to find a replacement for Master Willix and get his hands on high-quality resonating materials, it might take decades before he could top these works!
The Master keenly felt their eagerness and enthusiasm. To her, the young Journeymen of the Larkinson Clan all resembled little chicks. They were overflowing with so much youth that they didn't realize how difficult it was to design a successful expert mech.
Just because she was willing to solve the most difficult aspects of an expert mech didn't mean the rest was easy to cope with. Mechs that performed as extreme as this were never simple! The forces they had to withstand and the stresses they had to cope with all meant that there was much less tolerance for error and weakness!
A major, uncorrected flaw could easily doom an expert mech along with its accompanying expert pilot during a crucial battle. While Journeymen were quite competent in designing mechs, the ones under the employ of the Larkinson Clan were still too young and inexperienced.
Her eyes finally fell upon the ambitious face of Gloriana. The main reason why Master Willix was willing to take part in these unorthodox projects was because of the young lady who insisted on perfection.
With Gloriana, the Larkinsons actually stood a decent chance of succeeding without requiring Willix to bail them all out. While the MTA Master would not allow everyone to waste their time and fail the projects, it would be a pity if she had to override the design choices of these young and naive mech designers.
"Seeing that you understand all you need to know at this point, I will take my leave now." Master Willix declared.
Everyone stood up in respect.
"Ah, would you like us to show you around before you go?" Gloriana spontaneously offered. "We have quite a lot of curiosities for you to see. Ves has stashed a bunch of interesting organic statues in his personal workshop for example."
What?! Ves tried his best to refrain himself from storming over to his wife and press his palm against her mouth.
Though he didn't hide the existence of the Aspects of Lufa, two of them were more controversial than others.
Ves didn't know how Master Willix would react to the Aspect of Rationality, but he could definitely not afford to let her know about the Aspect of Transcendence!
Fortunately, Master Willix didn't look interested.
"I have already spent more than enough hours on this ship." She spoke without too much interest. "My path to promotion leaves me with little time for leisure or distractions. Do not be surprised if I am not able to contribute to your projects for several weeks at a time. You will have to rely on your own to solve most of the problems regarding your design projects. I have already commanded my crew to transfer the resonating exotics that I have brought to the cargo hold of this ship. Make sure to secure them all. Do not underestimate their difficulty and do not get complacent. Also, do not forget to increase your manpower."
When everyone nodded, Master Willix returned to the Ubiquitous Force in the most efficient manner possible. Her form grew fuzzy before fading away as she teleported straight back to her personal ship!
Everyone paused for a moment.
"I will head down to the hangar bay in order to sort out the new resonating materials." Juliet said and left the room.
"I'll go with her. I'd like to take a look at Bissonat and see what is so special about this resonating material." Ketis quickly followed suit.
That left Ves and Gloriana. Both of them remained in deep thought as the lessons they learned today deeply affected their views towards the design projects.
Gloriana eventually turned around and left as well. "I will start on adjusting our drafts and wait for Master Willix to show me how she plans to integrate the resonating exotics in the designs."
"Okay, have fun, I guess."
Once she left, Ves rubbed his smooth-shaven chin for a moment.
He had to adjust his perspective on each expert mech design project to a substantial degree. After all, the addition of so many resonating materials profoundly altered their performance profile and substantially increased their impact on the battlefield!
Though Ves had to take a lot more troublesome variables into account, he embraced the challenges. As long as he gained more power at the end, he was not afraid of dealing with a couple of complications!
Hours passed as Ves and the Larkinsons dealt with the aftermath of the brief visit of Master Willix. The Ubiquitious Force had already portal-jumped out of the star system shortly after her owner returned.
As the clan returned to normal business, Ves met with Calabast yet again.
"Meow." Lucky floated alongside Ves and looked up at the mech designer with cute, glowing green eyes.
"I said no! Your memory isn't that bad, so don't pretend you forgot. I will not allow you to take a single bite out of all of those resonating exotics. You're not an expert pilot, Lucky! You don't possess any extraordinary will like Ketis either. What do you think you'll be able to accomplish if you snack on a material like GT-535? It takes entire tons to form a decent gravity well, and that is only when you have enough resonance strength, which you do not have at all. Quit dreaming!"
The greedy gem cat wasn't satisfied with that answer. Lucky flew closer and pressed his front paws against Ves' chest.
"Meow meow meow!"
"Just because I have a surplus of resonating materials doesn't mean that the excess is for you to snack upon! We need to keep them in reserve for years if not decades in order to ensure we have enough to draw upon if we need to perform repairs."
Lucky angrily hissed and distanced himself from Ves.
Ves sneered. "Master Willix has given me a manifest that states exactly how much of each substance she transferred to us. Don't think you can sneak in and take a bite out of my resonating materials. I will prepare a special sensor that will detect whether you have been near the place where they are stored. I'll also make sure that my stash is measured on a daily basis. If even a single gram is missing from the stockpile, I know who to look for in order to cough up the missing material."
Seeing that Lucky still wasn't satisfied, Ves knew that he had to offer a compromise. If not, who knew if Lucky would disregard the warnings and eat some of the resonating materials anyway!
Ves knew his first cat quite well. Lucky was an intractable bastard who continually failed to keep his urges in check. The gluttonous metallic beast possessed a bottomless stomach for new and shiny objects and would not feel sorry if he broke the rules!
"I'll order Benny to procure a batch of cheaper and more abundant resonating materials." Ves said in a softer tone. "I hope you can get it out of your system after you have tasted these odd exotics. They're nothing different from normal exotics if you take their resonating properties out of the equation."
Lucky finally cheered up a bit after hearing that. At the very least, Ves was a bit more confident that his cat wouldn't sneak off and eat any forbidden food.
After settling his cat, Ves reached Calabast's familiar workspace and entered it. He sat down on the chair across the spymaster's desk without a word and only cast a brief glance towards Arnold.
The dimwitted exobeast wasn't hugging or licking Calabast's boots for once. Instead, he was lying comfortably on a pillow while dozing off. The woman working quietly behind her desk terminal occasionally reached out and brushed the plump animal's head.
Ves went straight to business. "Did you check out the details of the 20 MTA mech pilots that Master Willix has dumped into our lap?"
She chuckled. "That's an odd way to describe an opportunity to earn MTA merits. This should be an easy task for you. You managed to foster five expert pilots in just a brief moment of time."
"You know as well as I do that there were special circumstances behind that. It won't be as easy as this time. If I truly want to succeed, I might have to push our guests harder than I did my own clansmen. What I want to know is if there is anything I should watch out for. From my brief impression of the twenty men and women, none of them are average."
"That's a given. General Verle has already put them through some simple tests. Their skills are extremely good. So good in fact that they can even approximate the performance of expert candidates and expert pilots in some areas."
"From what I've been told, there is still a gap, but it is a lot smaller than with others." Calabast stated in a serious tone. "These mech pilots have already gone through excellent training. Our clan simply can't match that, and that will become a major problem over time. The disparity is so big that the mechers will quickly become dissatisfied with our primitive methods. You need to take that into account and find ways to retain their confidence in their new training programs."
She made a very good point, as always. Ves hadn't put sufficient thought on this angle. He simply assumed that the MTA mech pilots would be disciplined enough to endure the relatively low standards of the Larkinson Clan. Evidently, he was wrong.
"Maybe this was why so many of them chose to design their own training programs." Ves whispered.