Following the discovery of the Dragonite crystals and the appearance of a dungeon, the mining station underwent a frenzy of changes. A company of Marines was dispatched to reinforce the mining station and provide security to the miners.

As Captain Blake's jeep rumbled to a stop at the parking lot, he noticed several large rocky figures pushing carts filled with soil along the tracks. The strong stench of waste assailed Blake's nose as a gentle breeze blew the smell over.

"Hey," Blake stopped one of the workers along and way and pointed to the weird rock figures working in the yard. "What are those?"

The worker looked at Blake and his dirt covered face gave a toothless grin, "New here? Why those are Mistress Irisval's akmekal!"

"Akemkal?" Blake scratched his head as he repeated the unfamiliar Common Tongue word. "Mistress Irisval?"

"You don't know who Mistress Irisval is?" The worker looked at Blake's confused face like he was some country bumpkin. "Well let me tell you then, Mistress Irisval is our mining community benefactor!"

The elf pointed to the animated rock figures and said, "With her help, those akmekal can do the work of three men, greatly helping us increase our output and work!" He said proudly.

"Hmmm," Blake rubbed his chin, watching the slow movements of the rock figures. He thanked the worker and walked up next to one of the working statue.

On closer view, the moving statue looks like a hunk of rock with very humanoid features chiseled out from its surface. A featureless lump served as the head, with a large broad chest and wide shoulders which two blocky arms dangled down to its stubby legs, ending at the knees area. Each hand had three digits that looked like a clamp.

One of the rock figures was unloading the carts of soil into a vat and Blake stood next to it, ignoring the stench and it towered over Blake, taller than the four meters tall vat, which a platform and stairs were constructed on the side for workers.

Blake rapped his knuckles against the stone legs and the akmekal paused its work, turning its featureless face to him. The akmekal appeared to examine Blake before returning back to work, carefully shaking the cart of saltpeter rich soil into the vat.

"Goddamn!" Blake whispered in wonder, these things appeared to be made out of rock or stone, yet it could move its arms and legs like it was not made out of solid matter. "What kind of magic is this?"

"Captain?" Someone called out from the processing plant and Blake turned and saw Petty Officer Letts dressed in work overalls, safety helmet on and in a face mask. "What are you doing here, Sir?"

"Oh, I'm just here to take a look around," Blake said and gestured to the stone figure working behind him. "New help?"

"Haha, so you met our automations?" Letts grinned as he led Blake towards the admin building. "The locals call them elementals, which translate to elementals or golems."

"Where did they come from?" Blake asked, "from the dungeon?"

"No no, it's that girl whom you all sent over, made them," Letts clarified. "Irisval von Aston, she made them."

Blake stopped in his tracks and stared at Letts, "I know she is an earth elementalist but she has the power to do that?"

"Actually no, she could make baby sized golems, and they will only have enough magic power to last about an hour before she has to transfer her magic to power it again," Letts explained, "At the start she wanted to use the baby golems to help out with the mining work, but it depleted her energy greatly."

"I see, than looking at this giant, I say there has been some kind of breakthrough?" Blake guessed.

"Oh yes," Letts grinned even wider, "Those Dragonite crystals? It seems they are chock full of magic power and goodies inside. Well, she placed one of those crystals into the baby golems and it ran like some energizer bunny, its operating time lasting a solid three days and it is still running."

"So we experimented with a larger version of the golems and it powers them well," Letts proudly said. "We managed to gauge that per 100 grams of Dragonite crystals is equaled to roughly five hours of battery life for these monsters."

Letts gestured to the giant golem diligently unloading the contents of the mining carts, just as a trio of baby-sized golems carrying a crate over their heads ran past Blake and disappeared around a corner.

"It has very basic intelligence, so you need l to tell it specifically on what you what it to do, seems to work well with programming style commands," Letts said. "I got a couple of IT eggheads to see if we can apply programming language onto their magic core to see if they can write some kind of basic AI for them."

"That is outstanding!" Blake praised, seriously impressed by Letts's mind and initiative. "How do they move their arms and legs if they are solid rock?"

"I don't have an answer for that," Letts shrugged, "Even if you ask Irisval she will just tell you its magic. Maybe Dr. Sharon or Chief Matt might explain it with science?"

"Hmm, interesting," Blake and Letts entered the main admin building were Letts started to strip off his work overalls and safety gear. "Keep me constantly updated on the golem AI development."

"Yes, Sir. Almost strangely we can't use concrete for the golems," Letts added as he led Blake towards the offices. "Irisval said something about living rock and concrete has no life or something along these lines."

Letts opened the door to his main office and a room with several desks against the wall with two other staff could be seen working, filling columns and ticking checklists in thick books.

"Welcome to Mining Incorporated!" Letts grinned, "That's my office, and this is where my staff handles the records of output and other expenses and accounts."

"That's Irisval's office on the right," Letts pointed out, "Looks like she's not in."

"Aetter?" Letts turned to a young female elf with blonde hair, who was busily punching numbers into a calculator amidst the messy pile of paperwork around her desk. "Where is Irisval?"

"Mistress Irisval?" The blonde elf paused her work with an irritated look, "She should be at her workshop." She returned to her work, ignoring the two of them.

"Sorry," Letts smiled in apology to Blake, "They are very hardworking and focused."

Blake grinned and followed Letts out of the admin building and back into the courtyard. "Why are they calling her Mistress?"

"I think its a form of respect, due to her powers," Letts shrugged, "Seriously I am also not too sure. Oh, here we are." A large two-story wooden shed with both its large swing doors opened painted in red stood by three other similar building in parallel. A large white '4' was painted on the side of the workshop and a pair of rail tracks led into the open doors.

As they entered the workshop, Blake noticed there were mini cranes and hoists all over the ceiling, their chains hanging overhead. At the center of the workshop, a large magic formation was drawn and carved into the floor, drawings of unknown symbols, signs, and runes were drawn all over the walls and floor, followed by cables snaking all over the flooring. If the lighting and atmosphere of the workshop weren't so bright and sunny, he would have thought he entered some sort of cultist den.

Work tables occupied both sides of the workshop, with several monitors, laptops, and tools of all kinds and scrolls, candles and jars of unidentifiable stuff laid haphazardly all over the tables while a radio was blasting some rock and roll. Stairs on the side led to side plankway on the second floor to a bridge suspended over the middle of the room.

A huge rock boulder over four meters tall and two meters wide with moss still present on its surfaces sat at the middle of the magic formation where the pair of tracks cut right through. They must use the tracks to travel the rocks over here using the carts and the cranes to hoist it over the formation, thought Blake.

As they neared the rock, a head full of thick silvery hair tied in a ponytail appeared on the other side, and he saw a girl dressed in a pair of dirty work overalls carrying a bowl of what he assumed to be liquid silver and brush, drawing some arcane symbols onto the rock surface.

Letts cleared his throat and coughed, and the girl who was humming along to the tune jerked up and noticed the two of them standing at the entrance. "Oh, Boss Letts!" She cheerfully called out and placed her work tools down on the side.

She removed her gloves and paused, recognizing Blake and pulled up straight, "Eh, my Lord!" she cried in surprise and quickly went down on her knees to kowtow, much to Letts and Blake's amusement.

"It's alright," Blake waved for her to get up. "You don't have to do that here or call me Lord, just Sir or Captain will do. Is this what do you call it, an akemkal?"

"Yes, my lo-Sir," Irisval blushed as she quickly got up. "Yes, this is an akemkal, or golem as you call it in Eng-ish."

"Amazing," Blake walked around the rock with his hands behind his back, looking at the arcane symbols and runes drawn here and there. "How does it works?" Thinking that Dr. Sharon would go apeshit crazy if she knew about these.

"Sir, I cast an enchantment spell onto the rock, making it come alive," Irisval explained as simple as possible. "My magic will grant it life and it follows my orders or anyone imprinted with my magical mark. It will continue to be able to move and do simple commands until its magical reserves run out or if I remove my magic."

"Can anyone just remove its magic?" Blake asked as he stopped next to the silver-haired elf.

"No, only by destroying its core and only me can stop it," Irisval replied. "Normally, my magic only allows a much much smaller version of the akemkal to be made, they normally work as simple servants, carrying objects for you and last an hour or two before I need to recharge them with my magic."

"But," She turned to the table at the side and picked up a blood red crystal quartz. "Dragonite crystals, this can increase the lifespan and strength of the akemkal, allowing me to increase the size of it."

"And Boss Letts has someone helping me to program the akemkal, allowing us to give them more complex instructions," Irisval added, gesturing to the computers on the tables.

"How do you program them?" Blake asked curiously.

"For me, the spells I draw on the akemkal are mixed with instructions like walking, running, lifting and other basic movements," Irisval explained, "The hooman Tae-joon Pak, is helping me analyze my enchantments with those devices." She points to the pillars of the workshop where cameras could be seen.

"Where is him now?" Blake asked again. "I would like to talk with him."

"I think he has gone to lunch," Irisval shrugged, "He should be back soon."

"Senior Spaceman Tae Joon Park," Letts said, "He's our IT support here, responsible for the robotic mining drones we have. But since we are not using them, and he saw what Irisval is doing here, I assigned him over to see if he can do anything to help out."

"Apparently, he thinks that he can crack the drawings she is drawing on the golems," Letts continued, "He thinks that as he long as he can crack it, he can work with it like some kind of programming code, and laser print out more complex enchantments onto the golems, you know like some basic AI stuff."

"Damn," Blake turned and looked at Letts in excitement, "If he succeeded, you know what?"

"We can have fucking heavy combat walkers!"

A note from neo Koh

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