Chapter 1921: A Crazy Efficiency

These people had never heard of the Goldbiter Kingrats before. They didn't know what this species meant in the heavenly planes. However, the addendum that even the four sacred beasts’ kindred didn't like crossing them gave them an inkling of what these rats were like.

In the world of martial dao, the bloodline of rats in general was grossly discounted by the vast majority. The fact that these rats could be so strong surprised Imperial Prince Huo and the others.

“I can summon a million of these rats, gentlemen. Moreover, I can guarantee their cooperation in the mining effort. Can the timespan be shortened to three months now?” Jiang Chen asked the craftsmen probingly.

His audience was rapt with astonishment and awe. They’d heard of many absurd plans before, but using rats to dig up spirit stones was surely a first in its class.

A million was a lot of rats.

But now, here was another question.

After some consideration, one of the craftsmen spoke up furtively. “Young lord Jiang Chen, we do not doubt your ability. However, these rats aren’t exactly human. Are they reliable? What if they snack on your spirit stones?”

“I will be supervising them.” Jiang Chen laughed. “Plus, I can all but guarantee that they won’t do what you said. They wouldn’t dare!”

“If you can ensure that’s the case, then I see no problem with it. Will they listen to what we tell them to do?”

“Don’t worry about that either. Goldbiter Rats are very clever. They understand the human language. Moreover, since I’ll be overseeing them the entire time, they’ll follow orders to the letter.”

All the craftsmen nodded in understanding. The young lord had said more than enough, and they weren’t exactly about to oppose him.

It would be incredibly unwise of them to do so. After all, the young lord had come up with all the solutions already. If they refused to execute, that was on them.

“As long as these rats are obedient and diligent, I think we can manage three months,” one of the craftsmen affirmed. “Provided, of course, that they’re orderly enough not to make a mess.”

The rats’ advantages were clear as well. Their incredible biting ability was very good at getting rid of the waste ore around the spirit stones. The product didn’t need much more processing before it was ready to use.

They were also small rodents, which meant they didn’t occupy nearly as much space as human miners would.

The king of the Goldbiter Rats summoned up a swarm of his descendants immediately. 

Everyone who saw the teeming sea of rats felt their scalps tingle. Even the advanced empyrean experts’ hairs stood on end when they saw the density of the furry creatures.

The rats were almost too terrifying to behold. If a large enough group rushed at them, even they could do little more than flee.

The rat king began to his speech. "Without young master Chen, we Goldbiter Rats wouldn't be where we are today. Only by following in his footsteps will we have a brighter future, and a hope of a world of our own. Young master Chen's business is our business. We must obey his orders to the letter. I have only called descendants here today whom I deem trustworthy. Tell me, will you sneak a bite of the spirit stones?"

The Goldbiter Rats in attendance were generally of the more awakened variety. They squeaked in unison in a show of loyalty, solidly affirming that no, they would not misbehave by eating the spirit stones.

The rat king became more serious still. "The young lord may be kind enough not to do much to you, but I'm making this very clear right now: if I discover that one of you have infringed, I won't show the same mercy!"

Having received much from the young master, he wanted to put his own devotion on display, hence the enthusiastic performance. 

Jiang Chen clapped. "You've a lot of work ahead of you, my friends," he said in ancient beast language. "Know that I am watching. When the opportunity arises to do so in the future, I will surely compensate you in other ways. These spirit stones are vitally important to me. Even eating a single one is measurably detrimental to my work."

The rats squeaked again to insist their resolution.

Smiling, Jiang Chen waved a hand to the craftsmen. "You can get to work now."

The rats were surprisingly docile and organized. They worked with an efficiency far exceeding that of human cultivators.

Since rats were social animals, they communicated among each other with relative ease. It was actually easier to direct them than humans. Humans could only offer basic limited assistance where they were able and couldn’t keep up with the actual mining.

The work of many rats was accompanied with incredible chatter. The Goldbiter Rats dug out and carried away the spirit stones with shocking speed.

Even Jiang Chen thought the sight was rather impressive, not to mention Imperial Prince Huo and the rest. He’d merely wanted to make a bold experiment at first. He hadn’t anticipated at all that his foray would produce results far beyond expectations.

Those from Heavenlight were utterly convinced.

They had to admit that this heir of a sacred land lived up to his name. They had never heard of the preposterous things he was doing, much less seen them before.

Still, they were pleased to find that they didn't need to do any hard labor. They’d already resigned themselves to that fate, given Jiang Chen’s demotion of them to their current status, but there wasn’t much room for them to do anything. The frenzied rats were taking care of practically everything.

The rats’ incredible productivity was simply astounding. Many places that would have required a miner’s trained hand, such as drilling, chipping, and smashing, were reduced to trivial operations by the Goldbiter Rats’ sharp teeth.

These rats were certainly natural-born experts in this field.

All this was an eye-opening experience for Imperial Prince Huo. “Young lord Jiang Chen,” he joked, “with these rats helping you, you could very well be considered one of the very best prospectors in Myriad Abyss. These Goldbiter Rats will make practically everything easy!”

This gave Jiang Chen an idea. He remembered Mount Cloud Camel back in Eternal Divine Nation. His buddy the Astral White Tiger had discovered a vein of ore there a while ago.

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etvolare's Thoughts

By now I'm picturing the rat king as a mega shiny Raticate... XD