The mix of traits in his second spiritual product gave Ves the impression of a solemn guardian.
Even with an innocent mind that swelled with life, it already expressed a strong inclination to do its duty and fight the sandmen without asking too many questions.
Yet even if it was willing to do its duty, Ves somehow felt that it was always watching and thinking in silence.
It was too intelligent to remain ignorant.
Just like a Kinner.
He knew that the Solemn Guardian still had some growing to do.
Its birth merely set the starting point for its personality and the traits.
Ves needed to be very deliberate in raising his new spiritual product and make sure it expressed its spiritual attributes in the way he envisioned.
It\'s like raising a child.
If I raise it wrong and bring out the worst in it, I will have created a monster!
Ves cradled the spiritual product with his Spirituality and brought it into his mind.
He already partitioned a section that isolated the Solemn Guardian from the rest of his mind.
He did not wish to corrupt the Solemn Guardian with his own thoughts! He was anything but a good role model!
Be a good kid while I indoctrinate you in your calling in life!
Ves lacked a structural way of raising newborn spiritual products.
The only means he could resort to was exposing them to himself or other hosts.
He could also opt to keep them in his P-stone if he wanted them to remain innocent, but that was not a good choice when it came to design spirits reserved for mass market mechs.
For now, he decided to exert manual control over the Solemn Guardian\'s upbringing.
He diverted a sliver of his mind to lecture endlessly about doing one\'s duty to the young and curious Solemn Guardian.
With the strength of his mind, multitasking like this required very little effort.
It\'s not a great solution, but it\'s better than nothing.
A personality could not be shaped by telling them what to do.
Ves merely wanted to lay the groundwork and influence the Solemn Guardian\'s inclinations even further towards his desired outcome.
Ves expected it would only begin to mature and settle its personality when exposed to the minds of the first mech pilots of the Desolate Soldier model!
Ves already witnessed how swiftly Vescas grew when it continually connected to Lady Miralix when she piloted her Kinslayer.
The direct and intimate connection between mech and mech pilot allowed Vescas to peer into the deepest parts of a human\'s mind.
Such a deep and honest exchange, unhindered by any barriers or miscommunication, was incredibly powerful to a naive and undeveloped spiritual product!
Of course, the same applied to him as well.
If Ves did not partition off his mind by building an isolated cage with his spiritual energy, the Solemn Guardian would probably be contaminated by his impure thoughts!
I\'m not suitable at all. He sighed, and unconsciously glanced to Nitaa.
His dutiful bodyguard hadn\'t managed to observe his spiritual manipulation, but his physical interactions and his habit of talking to himself revealed plenty of hints.
Even though Ves appeared to be half-mad when he created his second spiritual product, Nitaa did not display any judgement.
The means of the Holy Son were mysterious and unfathomable.
Hosting the Solemn Guardian in her mind would have been ideal.
Unfortunately, as someone with spiritual potential, Ves believed she wouldn\'t be capable of hosting a spiritually-strong entity like the Solemn Guardian.
I\'m not really sure what will happen.
Ves did not wish to break her mind by forcing the Solemn Guardian in her head.
Despite their excellent match, the container was too weak!
The other Kinner on his staff, Crindon, did not possess spiritual potential.
Hosting the Solemn Guardian in his mind probably wouldn\'t lead to any damage.
However, this was not a good option, as the mind of a spiritually-weak person existed in a slightly different phase.
His mind would not be able to serve as an effective container because its boundaries were permeable!
He could only rely on himself for now.
Perhaps in the future he might develop a better solution or rely on an expert pilot in his retinue to educate his spiritual products.
Ves smiled as he leaned back and considered his current situation.
With the creation and birth of the Solemn Guardian, he secured the most essential component to his mech design.
He increasingly drifted away from centering his perspective on the X-Factor.
The X-Factor was not an independent phenomenon, but represented an expression of the spiritual components of a mech.
The design spirit and the mech pilot of the mech both shaped the X-Factor, but the former posed a much greater influence.
Unless a mech pilot became spiritually strong enough to match the strength of a design spirit, their influence would always be negligible on the aura of the mech.
Ves made a small realization all of a sudden.
Expert mechs are probably the most similar to my mechs!
When piloted by powerful expert pilots, the expert mechs which might not have possessed any X-Factor must have gained auras upon becoming active! It was just that without the corresponding support from the mech, the potential of these auras hadn\'t been reached.
Still, it\'s enough to make expert mechs appear more impressive and intimidating in battle!
This was likely one of the many reasons why the introduction of an expert mech onto a battlefield led to disproportional swings in morale.
Allies became emboldened while enemies quaked in fear!
His hunger to design an expert mech only increased upon making this realization.
If his standard mechs already projected a formidable aura, what if it overlapped and synergized with the force of will of an expert pilot
Ves could scarcely estimate the degree of amplification that might occur!
There\'s no use pining for expert mechs right now.
I still have a project to finish.
The Desolate Soldier design was not an impressive mech.
Performance wise, it merely performed on par with the other mechs in its class and price range.
However, the reason why Ves possessed the confidence his mech design might do well was because of it came with a spiritual component!
Instilling his mech designs with design spirits was like adding an exclusive component to them.
As long as Ves maintained a monopoly on adding spiritual components to mechs, no other mech designer could match his efforts!
It was as if every mech on the market consisted of landbound mechs.
Every mech designer focused solely on optimizing mechs for combat on solid ground.
As a newcomer in the market, Ves did not believe he could adequately compete against the market leaders with more than a century of experience.
However, it was a different case if he introduced a component that no one could replicate! If he was the only mech designer in the market to add a flight system to his mechs, then his products immediately distinguished themselves! The flight capability that only his own mechs possessed made them stand out in the market because of the unique value they could provide to their customers!
This simplistic analogy described his current situation as a mech designer with a unique design philosophy.
So long as his competitors remained in the dark, Ves effectively maintained a monopoly on spiritual components!
Perhaps there might be some oddball mech designers out there who come close, but the galaxy is far too expansive.
The chance of bumping into one is miniscule!
Of course, the problem with maintaining a monopoly on something valuable was that it could easily engender greed.
Ves did not completely rely on the rules set by the MTA to protect him once his value became more obvious.
This is why forging ties and cultivating support is important.
He already planned to rely on two particular connections to cover him against most threats.
His relationship with Gloriana and by extension the Wodin Dynasty of the Hexadric Hegemony protected him against local threats.
As long as Ves and Gloriana remained an item, his local rivals and enemies were restricted from acting overtly!
The most his enemies could do was to act in secret and use dark mercenaries or other patsies to mess with him and damage his interests.
As long as Gloriana remains protective of me, the local powers will not dare to provoke her ire!
Though her protection was likely effective against weaker threats, she could not do a thing against greater threats.
What if a Coalition partner or a matriarchal dynasty became his enemy Against threats that matched or surpassed the strength of the Wodin Dynasty, Ves could not completely lean on Gloriana to save his hide.
This was why Ves believed that he needed to cultivate his relationship with the Rim Guardians.
While the mech pilot fraternity might not have much say within the MTA, its strength and influence in the galactic rim were undeniable!
The only problem was that gaining their favor required an immense amount of effort! The Rim Guardians were so large and powerful that a single mech designer barely registered in their sensors.
Even if Ves worked hard to earn their recognition and favor, he had no illusion that he would be regarded as an incidental friend by them.
The relationship between them would always be transactional, which meant the only way to earn their protection was to pay them with something.
That reminds me, I still have to help William Urbesh.
The Rim Guardians gave him three years to help him advance to expert candidate.
With one year already gone by, the exiled clansman had made no progress at all under the tutelage of the Larkinsons!
From the occasional status reports he received from Melkor, he and the other Larkinsons on Cloudy Curtain did their best to kick him into shape.
Yet no matter how much effort they put into retraining Urbesh, the damned coward never got rid of his fears when piloting a mech!
Fortunately, Ves had a much better idea on how to remedy Urbesh\'s situation now that he almost finished his tour.
The lessons he learned, the techniques he invented and the insights he gained on spirituality gave him enough confidence to come up with a solution!
As long as he successfully elevated William Urbesh to expert candidate, he would become eligible to earn merits which he could exchange for a variety of goods and services from the Rim Guardians!
As long as I can earn their backing, I can deter many threats, especially in relation to my business activities!
Ves did not expect the Rim Guardians to pay too much attention to his personal safety.
That was where Gloriana came in.
What Ves valued most out of the fraternity was their willingness to act as a guarantor to his business interests.
As an arm of the MTA, earning their protection also entailed earning the MTA\'s approval.
At the very least, no matter how controversial his products became or how much other mech designers coveted his monopoly, they had to go through the Rim Guardians first if they wanted to attack his business interests!
In more ideal circumstances, Ves vastly preferred to rely on his own strength.
Yet that wasn\'t possible now, so the only way he could tide himself over until he grew strong enough to stand on his own was to lean on others.
I\'ll be meeting Gloriana soon. He recalled.
I should make sure to impress her when we meet.
I can\'t afford to lose her protection at this stage!
Though Ves harbored ulterior motives, he truly wanted to see whether they could form a genuine relationship with each other.
It would be best for the both of them if their love coincided with their interests.
He was willing to stomach Gloriana\'s many eccentricities to see if they were compatible.
If there was one benefit to entering into a relationship with someone crazy, it was that Ves could easily pretend to be crazy as well!
This is my third form of protection!
Who would ever covet the design philosophy of a nutjob Just like he did at Centerpoint, Ves planned to cultivate an eccentric or even crazy persona to confuse everyone who wanted to learn his secrets!
So long as he could rely on these three pillars for support, Ves became a lot more confident he could maintain his spiritual component monopoly!
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