The new evolution has certainly seen a massive rise in Vibrant's stats! And some of her organs look incredibly unique. The command organ? Did she get that from being a special ant from birth?
Gah! I should have investigated her core ages ago! That's what I get for not being curious enough!
"How do you feel Vibrant?"
"Great!" she cheers.
I have to say, she's not so little anymore, almost the same size as I am. The only reason I would be bigger is because I used the shortcut method of raising my Might stat quickly by packing on more size rather than condensing the muscle, which increases strength without increasing size. My guess is that Vibrant has taken a much more balanced approach and therefore has much more power squeezed into a smaller body.
Looking at her skills and upgrades, it's clear the direction that Vibrant has been taking. Physical strength, hearty defence, looks like she picked up an Aura gland during her most recent evolution, speed naturally, being Vibrant.
Looks like she'll be taking the path of pouring her mana into fuelling a range of Aura glands rather than using it to directly fuel magic. I should look at recommending that path to Tiny actually. The lightning mana he has is put to good use but the all the raw MP sitting in his core doesn't do anything whilst his lightning glands are topped off. He'd be more effective in a fight if he had somewhere to put that energy.
I'll have to think on it.
Due to his low intelligence I'm worried about Tiny's future evolution paths. Every time he's evolved he's lost Cunning. If it continues down that path he's going to wind up an extremely well-muscled, bat faced vegetable.
"Well you're probably strong enough stats wise to fight and front line" I muse.
"Yay! I can fight with Crinis!" the no longer little ant cheered with delight, her antennae wiggling in the air uncontrollably.
I could only be pleased for her pure enthusiasm. As exhausting as her seemingly infinite energy could be, she was as pure as a diamond compressed from snow made of glass.
"You'll need to be careful" I warn her, "nibble at the edges, don't go straight on. You're fast and reasonably tanky but you can't take the horde face on. If you get in trouble, pop your healing gland straight away, don't save it. We can get you to safety and let it recharge before you need to go it again."
"Yep-yep!" the still wiggling ant exclaimed.
She's doing her best to listen to my advice but her energy is just way too high right now. Sigh. I'll have to remind her again later, hopefully she won't do anything too stupid in her excitement.
[Tiny, Crinis, Vibrant will be joining you on the front lines for the attack. Try to keep an eye out and keep her safe. I want her on the edges of the fight and not in the middle. If she gets buried in the melee, try and get her out.]
[Hurr!] Tiny grunted affirmatively.
[Of course Master. No harm shall come to her] Crinis declared with confidence.
I'd be more assured if you could actually see her Crinis… Maybe she could keep a tentacle on Vibrant or something?
I'm sure it'll work out.
["Alright everyone, it's time to form up for the attack. Tiny in the front, Crinis with me and Vibrant on the flank. Our mission is complete subjugation. All Crocs must be handbags or tasteful jackets by the time we are done. Nothing too out there, I'm fashion conservative."]
The others look at me strangely.
[What is a jacket master? Explain it to me and I shall prepare a thousand for you this day!] Crinis cries.
I should give up on the jokes. My talent is wasted on this room.
["Just kill all Crocs. They are our primary target. If we remove them all I think the wave attacks on the colony will stop"]
"Okay!" Vibrant says, almost shivering out of her carapace with excitement.
Crinis wiggles her way onto my back before retracting her tentacles and entering her deceptive, innocent tennis ball mode. Tiny eagerly takes his place in the front, already sparking with anticipation and thumping his chest occasionally, trying to contain his energy.
I don't the marsh is going to be expecting what's coming.
The oppressive aura is still here, bearing down on us with full force. But we are stronger than before, motivated to protect the colony. I don't care what sort of monster sits in the middle of this Expanse, suffocating the area with its baleful aura and sucking in the monsters. I have a few tricks up my carapace that should fix it's little red wagon!
Full of motivation and gusto we depart our little hidey hole and advance into the marsh expanse. Before us the lush green of the vibrant plant life stretches as far as the eye can see, from one side of the expanse to the other. The hillocks of sodden earth that rise out of the dark waters look like moss encrusted tortoise shells, covered in vibrant flowers and the occasional tree.
Overhead the tall mangrove like trees, with their enormous webbed roots, spread a wide canopy. Half glimpsed shadows can be seen shifting about on the broad green leaves here and there. This right here. This will all belong to the family.