Last chapter recap: Lin explores the forest and one of its hunters is captured.
Chapter 15 Bombardier Beetle
Lin named the place where the captured hunter was located the second layer of the twisted forest. The bottom layer of the forest was a vast ground of light moss, soil and remains of plants. The second layer was a new world.
This layer could be reached by flying along the twisted tree trunk. This environment here were criss-crossing thick examine twisted tree trunks. Like dancing tentacles, they had no rhyme or reason to speak of. This place was completely covered in darkness at night, and no light could reach this position.
In this dark and complex environment, the abdomen of the flyer lit up. It flew deeper towards the target.
There were twisted tree trunks all over here, the thinnest with a meter wide. This was enough to have the hunters climb up. But Leviathan would have no way.
The hunter who had been captured had been eaten 30%. The predator seemed to be gnawing with sharp teeth, and did not seem to have any kind of dissolving fluid.
What kind of organism was this? Maybe this was one that Lin knew of, like the cockroaches. There were some small scavenger types among the come roaches, but the biggest Lin saw were the strongest predators Lin had seen in the forest up until now.
Lin would only know if it saw. The flyer moved up rapidly against the trunk. The destination was where Lin felt pain. In the dark environment, one or two flying insects would get close, shake a bit and then disappear without a trace.
Lin had not seen any big organisms. At this time, Lin was already near that organism.
Hm? The pain of being eaten stopped?
Lin could sense the captured hunter was half-eaten already but it was not being eaten any longer, rather, thrown to the side.
Such a waste. However, other organisms, if they had too many fat cells, would be affected in their movement. Lin, even if full of energy, could form the food into a ball and store it. Because Lin would kill all the bacteria which ate dead matter, its food would never rot.
However, this was a chance. Lin might be able to use this leftover hunter to defeat the organism.
Lin immediately had the hunter’s wounds solidify to stop the bleeding and from other bacteria from entering. At the same time, its body started to change dramatically.
First, the cells and organ structures dissolved. The basic cells in the body absorbed the nutrients that were released and started to reproduce. Then the basic cells start to form countless new organisms.
The hunter had been eaten until only its abdomen was left but the abdomen was coincidentally the largest part of the hunter. There was enough space and nutrients for Lin to reorganize it.
The basic cells, through changing and recombination, quickly form a new group of organisms. Lin based the design on a relatively vicious flying insect commonly seen around, so Lin named them “mad wasp.”
Now, the flyer outside found the location of the hunter. There was a tree hole a meter wide on a thick trunk. The hole was very shallow. Lin only saw the half-eaten hunter and no other organisms present.
Had it left? From the size of the hole, the organism was not large and might be a cockroach.
The sound was…
The flyer heard the sound of climbing from nearby. Not far away, a shelled organism was climbing the tree trunk. It was more than a meter long, and under the flyer’s light, its armor shone silver.
What? So it was a beetle type. But the color…Lin had never seen this type before. Lin would call it the “silver beetle.”
The silver beetle climbed up the twisted trunk to the tree hole. The tentacles on its head waved. It seemed to be searching for something. In the end, it locked onto the remains of the hunter, and went over to eat. From this, it did not seem to be the original owner of the hole, and had come over because of the smell.
Never mind, Lin would get rid of this one first.
The silver beetle chewed a big hole in the remaining abdomen of the hunter. Usually, large amounts of blood would flow out, but it did not get a thing. As the beetle waved its antennae, countless organisms suddenly surged out of the hole it had chewed!
The mad wasps were about two centimeters, but there were so many. They relied on their blade-like mandibles to attack. Like the flying type of the Aztec insects, they sprayed acid from their abdomens.
The silver beetle seemed to be encountering something like this for the first time. It seemed slightly dazed. Before it reacted, the mad wasp climbed all over it.
The mandibles of the mad wasp were to deal with soft-armored targets. Against heavy-armored targets like this, one must use the dissolving fluid. All arthropods had some air holes, the result of gills that had degenerated.
The mad wasp found some holes on the side of the silver beetle. As Lin prepared to have them spray acid, the abdomen of the silver beetle suddenly bulged, and it sprayed a large volume of fluid before Lin did.
Bam! As the silver beetle sprayed, there was a loud sound. Lin instantly felt the mad wasps over the holes get hit with a burst of warm fluid and rushed out with the impact.
Lin had the mad wasps hurry away and sent some to search for those who had been sent away. Lin quickly found the corpses around the tree hole. The bodies of the wasps seemed to have melted. There was a layer of black fluid on their remains that was smoking.
This was…a bombardment?
Lin found this incomprehensible. The silver beetle used a similar bombing method as Leviathan, compressing and shooting from its body. And the insect did not shoot exploding bombs, but a kind of height temperature dissolving fluid.
How had these organisms evolved to such a step? It was hard to imagine. First, how did it store the high temperature fluid in its body? Lin had not seen any other organisms have the bombing method and the impact was so powerful, much greater than other pressure shooting method.
Lin could not spare it. It had to capture this organism and dissect it. Lin could make its own troops, but it still relied on copying from other organisms.
Bam! The silver beetle shot out large volumes of fluid from its side towards the swarm of mad wasps in the tree hole. Dozens of mad wasps fell. The hot dissolving fluid instantly destroyed their body structures and dissolved them into pieces of debris.
Facing such great firepower, the mad wasp swarm did not retreat. They attacked again, spraying dissolving fluid onto the silver beetle. At the same time, they were searching for any part they could bite. Lin tried to keep this insect at any cost.
The armor of the silver beetle was unusually strong, as though it was used to spraying high temperature acid. Its ability to resist acid was great. The attacks of the mad wasps were useless. Under its successive attacks, there were less than a hundred mad wasps left from the original thousand.
The remaining mad wasps could not pose a threat. The silver beetle could not easily hit them so it ignored the rest of the mad wasps and ate the remains of the fallen mad wasps.
What to do? If the mad wasps were useless, there was likely no time for other troops or Leviathan to act.
The silver beetle ate quickly, and climbed out of the tree hole after finishing the remains.
Lin had the mad wasps and the shining flyer follow. The silver beetle climbed for a while on the twisting trunk before suddenly stopping and lying motionless.
Lin’s mad wasps fly around its head, but the silver beetle did not react.
Was it resting? So it had no nest and slept like this?
However…this was good because the position where the silver beetle was sleeping was right above Leviathan’s cave. While Leviathan could not climb up because it was too heavy. But…as long as the beetle came down, it was fine.
Leviathan came out of the cave. Lin stretched out its eyeball tentacles and could faintly make out the light of the flyer on the twisted tree trunk.
About thirty meters away…
Leviathan created a narrow, long, and flexible cell thread in its body. There was a barbed spike at the end. It was long enough to reach the silver beetle above.
Leviathan aimed and using the pressure of air, Leviathan shot the barb out!
Leviathan could not shoot the barb so high. Also, this thin barb could not penetrate the armor of the silver beetle so Lin made something special.
There were small wings on the barb. Even when it lost momentum, it could fly for a long distance. The winged barb flew in front of the silver beetle on the tree trunk, next to its mouth, and poked its closed mandibles.
After Lin poked several dozen times, the silver beetle finally woke up. It bit the barb and swallowed it without thinking.
It took the bait!
After confirming the barb had hooked onto a soft part inside the silver beetle’s mouth, Leviathan pulled hard, and pulled the beetle off the tree!
- 4.6 Billion Year Symphony of Evolution Volume 3 Chapter 15 “Bombardier Beetle”
- 4.6 Billion Year Symphony of Evolution Volume 3 Chapter 14 “Forest Hunter”
- 4.6 Billion Year Symphony of Evolution Volume 3 Chapter 13 “The Twisted Forest”
- 4.6 Billion Year Symphony of Evolution Volume 3 Chapter 12 “The Green Terminal”
- 4.6 Billion Year Symphony of Evolution Volume 3 Chapter 11 “Devour”