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As the entity descended from the skies, it circled like a vulture in long, lazy loops. Its outstretched wings cast a malevolent shadow onto the hill and caused the fighting on the right flank to cease. Until then, the forces of Astoria had managed to turn the battle in their favor. But now, like old friends, they watched the massive beast descend.

"They summoned Atmohim. This is the end for that Golem. Victory will be ours." The man who spoke those words wore resplendant armor and even his horse was decked out in steel plates and lavish colors.

"Yes, Marshall Thomas. Our diversion worked perfectly," a person mounted next to the Marshall said. "When Atmohim defeats that Golem, Astoria will surrender and become our subjects. All the soldiers we lost today will be replenished."

"Mm, that's right. The sacrifice of our men will be remem-"

[Audio feed interrupted.]

You know, Somnus, I thought you were bad, but what they did is probably even worse.

[Variable "bad" undefined.]

I guess, humanity created you and you are only executing their will.

[Manufacturer: Fubuki Heavy Industries.]

That is not what I meant. I am saying you shouldn't be considered evil if all the things you do is a result of your programming. You are not a vessel of sin. You are the sin itself.

[Variable "evil" undefined. Variable "sin" undefined.]

Forget it. Just kill that dragon and let's go home.

[Acknowledged.]

All the cannons and CIWS pointed at Atmohim. The vertical launch tubes all opened their hatches. Somnus bristled with violence like a sword brandished and ready to use.

[Threat Assessment: 0.]

Atmohim landed and the ground under him cracked. Each step created tremors as his massive form advanced towards Somnus. He had black, glossy scales and each one of his four arms ended with sharp claws. On his back, fin-like protrusions extended all the way to his tail. Antler-like horns sat like a crown on his head, as he released a piercing roar. Although the audio receptors were disabled, the loudness of the sound could be measured. When Atmohim roared, the sound became a shockwave and water vapor appeared in the air, dispersing shortly after.

[Sonic weapon detected. Threat level updated: 1]

Atmohim beat his wings and gale force winds blasted the area as he took another step forward. Light sparked between the tips of the antler horns, it was purple and gold.

[Heat source detected.]

A golden and purple sphere appeared in the middle of his horns and grew to a diameter of 20 meters within seconds. Violet electricity arced over the surface.

[Attack incoming.]

Somnus moved in a way that defied common logic. His massive, supposedly slow, form moved with the vigor of a lightweight sportscar. With two hops it cleared a distance of a hundred meters within two seconds. The G-force meter displayed 9 Gs at one point.

The sphere nestled in Atmohim's crown collapsed and a massive beam bombarded the area where Somnus stood moments ago. It swept towards him, carving layers off the hill until nothing but molten rock remained in its wake. The beam had a diameter of 30 meters and it struck Somnus, and a series of explosions cascaded over the armor.

[Critical damage to armor. ERA triggered. Temperature exceeding 1,000,000K. Purging armor.]
[Section A - J purged.]

A hiss accompanied the purging of the armor as the Theta Superalloy all but disintegrated under the beam.

[Video feed lost.]

[Armor analysis: Delta superalloy armor plates efficiency: 100%. Attack nullified.]

[Video feed restored.]

The image came back into existence just as the beam disappeared - the cause of visual interruption. The entire left side was a gleaming silver color. Gone were the ERA covered plates of Theta superalloy.

[Charge detected in Delta superalloy armor. Delta superalloy armor compromised.]
[Threat level updated. Threat possesses Ion Beam weapon. Threat level: 6.]

Coming to a swift halt, the war machine skidded several dozens of meters as it turned its body towards Atmohim. More importantly, its railgun.

[Theta superalloy penetrator loaded. Draining armor charge. Railgun ready to fire.]
[Delta superalloy armor restored.]
[Deploying anchors.]

An arc of lightning emitted from the tip of the railgun barrel as stabilizing anchors shot from its eight appendages and burrowed into the ground. The powerful magnets inside the barrel attracted the metallic objects on the ground, even the ferrous particles in the dirt.

A defeaning explosion blanketed the area as the railgun expelled a 45 kg slug at 12 km/s. In an instant, a massive hole appeared in Atmohim's chest.

[Railgun: Loading HE shell. Railgun ready.]
[Battery at 78%.]

A hiss heralded the release of thermal energy from the previous shot, as the thermal vents opened up.

Atmohim had not even realized what happened when the next railgun shot shrouded its upper torso in a massive fireball. The shockwave caused tremors on the ground as the fuel-air mixture ignited into a secondary explosion.

When the dust settled, only Atmohim's lower body was visible. It was blasted into a bloody mess and charred all the way through.

[Weather radar: Anomaly detected.]

Golden chains descended from the heavens and wrapped around Atmohim's lower body. They dragged the creature's corpse back into the swirling clouds.

[Audio feed restored.]

Cheering enveloped its sensors. It was far too loud.

[Audio feed normalizing.]

"Retreat!" a voice spoke through the waves of chants.

The camera focused on the enemy troops. Their ranks were in disarray and in full retreat.

[Powerplant: Turbine #1 output: 1 GW. Turbine #2 output: 1 GW.]
[Battery charging.]

[Laser supercharging...]
[Laser supercharged. Class upgrade: Ion Beam -> Uranium-Mercury Particle beam.]

The twin laser batteries began to glow with a dull red light and progressively shifted to a more luminous, purple light. A devastating hum cascaded of the two laser emitters, as deep underneath the armor the accelerators prepared the beam of deadly energy.

[Firing in 5... 4... 3...]

The enemy forces ran towards their tents in a semi-orderly fashion. They were in full panic, but at least they did not trample over each other to escape.

"Surrender denied," Somnus' mechanical voice boomed at decibels a jet fighter would produce.

Pulsed flashes of violet light vaporized the enemy troops. The superweapon dug trenches into the ground where they stood - tunnels hundreds of meters long within which the walls were turned to glass and molten slag.

Only a few enemy survivors would bring reports of the battle home.

The forces of Astoria ceased their cheering and instead of jubilation an atmosphere of gloom settled on them. Only now did they understand the kind of force they were allied with. They felt fear.

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That's it for today.

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playr543 ago

Absolute annihilation.

Thanks for the chapter!

kain01able ago

Designation: Nice

Report: Enemy Eliminated

Root ago

Loving this story so far. Did he just improve his laser or was that temporary? BTW, this is just a drone and not Tha actual main body of Somnus right?

If it's Somnus, why would he leave the safety of his base and potentially die to unknowns? If it's a drone, why is Noone confused on how the drone looks, or what the drone belongs to, or even why they call the drone Somnus without being introduced as Somnus?

I was thinking they'd think this was just a warrior for Somnus itself, which BTW should totally be a thing he should do (humans fighting ur battles for u gives u more time to observe them, and know where to improve urself and ur meat shields). Anyways, they just casually assumed that it's Somnus and not something under Somnus? They assume he's a lord..

Unless I missed some scene early on :/ which would make me sound like an idiot

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    MeanRobot ago

    It is Somnus. The laser is a permanent thing. It has two modes, but the normal Ion Beam uses less energy.

     

    He has a "castle", which they assume is his fief. He is not really recognized as a Lord by the Kingdom of Astoria but they call him one to appeal to him.

      Root ago

      He should still make combat oriented drones so he doesn't need to worry about getting so much armor destroyyed again

      The Walrus Transcendent ago

      That wouldn't actually make that much sense, unless Somnus were to build something in similar scale and destructive power to itself, which then runs the risk of being hijacked.

      Anything that could legitimately damage it would likely flash-vaporize something with as little as one order of magnitude less mass.
      Against anything legitimately powerful, it needs to directly deal with since it alone has the energy output and resiliance to engage it.

      However, two caveats:
      One: combat-oriented drones would greatly extend its strategic presence, allowing it to strike at lower value targets with unmatched speed and minimal effort.
      Second: it can, in principle, consider orbit-to-surface strategic weapons like RFG satellites to put the hurt on something without risking its integrity. However, the logistic requirements of a satellite network that can support killsats are colossal, and the FOB is backlogged to hell and back already.

      Root ago

      Well, something for the future then. BTW, it is a magic society. If someone can hijack an advanced AI that likely has alot of things that stop hackers (hence why it killed so many before most AMAs died, cuz they had to deal with it directly, while it can deal with them relatively remotely), then Somnus current body is also in danger and another body would be a nice back up.

      Not to mention all the functions they'd have to get used to if they did somehow hack it. There's alot of systems and functions that they wouldn't understand..

      Ninja010 ago

      You're telling me he is not officially a Lord? We need to fix that, don't we?

      dking ago

      Didn't somnus have spidertanks on board and somehow it would only be logical that he has atleast drones that are small in size and pack some power i mean what if an enemy hides deep underground i just kinda want him to make a drone that is for talking to people i mean in the talks untill now there where people yelling at a super struckture and it yelliong back with something that was once a weapon i mean i imagine somnus's voice as this really clicé robo voice you know boming but haling and kinda unclear

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      a_man_in_black ago

      ah, the eternal tug of war of deciding between using current manufacturing capability to produce things, or using that capability to expand your overall manufacturing capability. logistics is such a confusing balancing act...

      Root ago

      Let's just keep the big cool robot for now xD

Shy Giggling ago

Oh come on Somnus! You did an awful job! You left some survivors, I thought you eradicated planets of humans lives and here you let survivors escape? 8/10, Go do your homework Somnus.

    Aihnman ago

    Agreed. Like, the guy might be okay with 95% mortality rate, considering he probably wouldn't know that mortality rate for a battle like that would normally not make it over 10%.

    But the system would take the most efficient steps to ensure 100% annihilation of all enemy forces, yeah?

addamsruspipe ago

Unusual take on the genre. Enjoying it so far.

Mr Poh-tay-toe ago

Thanks fer the glorious series of chapters. This Potato has no idea what those fools were expecting when they approached an un-feeling "golem", surely actual golems wouldn't care about honour or mercy no? Let alone a machine forged for war/extermination...

SILVERIS ago

chapter too short.

why the machine wait unitl the dragon attack first?

Dantevivi ago

Ok, i was kind of wary reading this because of the title, but holy crap, so glad i did. Cant wait until it figures out how to make use of levels. What will stats do to this machine of destruction anyway? Keep up the good work, youve earned a follow and a rating!

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