Victor sensed through the black ocean network that the massive blob of undead soldiers on the upper floor of the Grand Dungeon had vanished and reappeared in the far distance at the southern and western borders of the cursed forest.
"Mhm... Hyveth teleported them further from the borders than I had hoped." Victor mused as he switched from his Demon Core back to his shadow form. He had decided to leave his Netherborne body on the surface with Alice as they would soon invade the Frostlands together.
Although he couldn't give the body his full focus, he could make it move like a puppet with his mind, just like any other undead in the black ocean network. So with his Netherborne body heading toward the Frostlands in the north alongside Alice, he could spend a short afternoon focusing on Necron.
Necron had become more than a simple side project he had invested time into out of absolute bordom. If he could create a utopia for the humans here and have them further their skills in more specialized fields, their cluster of expertise would be added to the ocean network hive mind over time.
Currently, the undead under Victor's control were already impressive due to his skill being maxed out, or perhaps for the Netherborne race's natural affinity with the undead—Victor wasn't entirely sure—but that was beside the point. Despite his undead being so exceptional, they were lacking far behind humans with classes.
He could tell his skeletons how to farm, and they could do it as farming was a more straightforward affair. Construction was another easy one, as his undead goblins had been capable of producing crappy houses when they were alive.
But crafting? Blacksmithing? Heck, even reading and writing. These were all skills far out of reach of the undead for now. But, with the humans resurrected and added to the hive mind, their expertise was now shared with all the other undead.
Soon he would have legions of highly intelligent and capable undead that were mass-producible—had the knowledge of everyone immediately upon creation—and could be deployed anywhere.
All he needed was for Necron to prosper... and for him to add more humans to his undead network somehow. Hopefully, a few humans would be stupid enough to fight his undead armies for contribution points, and then he could add them and their knowledge to the network.
If he was willing to invade all the kingdoms and slaughter their people, Necron wouldn't be necessary. But what was the point if he could achieve the same thing without needless slaughter? Victor could only hope not too many of the world's best Delvers lost their lives needlessly to his armies before he could stop this demon lord nonsense.
Having set his undead army on the warpath with the Mystic Realm in the south and Eshnar in the west, Victor returned his attention to Necron. Then, leaving the throne room in his shadow persona Vox, he stepped into the bustling town square outside Andrew's white stone palace.
He looked to the skies and saw a familiar golden chrome dragon shroud the square in a looming shadow by blocking out the artificial sunlight with his magnificent wings.
Everyone in the town square shot Vox questioning glances as he left the doorway of Andrew's palace. But after seeing his lack of panic about the incoming dragon, they all relaxed and began chatting with one another with childlike excitement.
Victor could hardly blame them. He was sure it was the first time many of them had even seen a dragon—he overhead a few children scolding their parents for telling them dragons were just bedtime myths.
The people scrambled out of the way to give the titanic dragon space—Genus almost didn't fit in the town square, and his mighty tail had to snake down a nearby street. His piercing liquid golden eyes—a result of the Royal Card he had soul bound with—swept across the people present.
Everyone went pin-drop silent.
Vox decided to use this opportunity to grab everyone's attention and explain Genus's role in Necron and what would be happening while he still had a spare moment to spend on Necron.
He was no fool and knew a war on four fronts was about to begin and would need his undivided attention, but his armies hadn't even reached the borders yet, so there was nothing else for him to do other than sort out his affairs here.
"Citizens of Necron!" Vox shouted as his shadowy body rose into the sky and paused mid-air beside Genus's head that lorded over all the people present.
"This is Genus Arcgold, a noble dragon that once lived on the Grand Dungeon's upper floors. After being cast away from what the dragons call the lower lands and having a run-in with me, we quickly became acquaintances. I trust Genus to run Necron in my absence, and a few may notice his golden eyes..."
Vox nodded to Genus, and the intelligent dragon understood his intentions. Genus rotated his paw, keeping it low for the short humans to still have a good view, and materialized a golden card between his claws.
There was a wave of oohs and ahhs as the people of Necron got their first look at the royal card.
"I have granted Genus Arcgold the Royal Card, the highest tier of nobility. Those with similar liquid golden eyes to his are also of a similar rank." Vox raised his arms, "Genus here will watch over you and sort out the more difficult issues that are likely to be raised, but for most problems, I would advise you continue to seek out Andrew, who will remain as Mayor of Necron."
The grey slime that snaked for over ten meters had half of his body exposed out of the white palace. He waved his stubby arm at the crowd, and a few returned nods or waves.
"As previously explained, those of you who wish to work jobs can seek out Andrew and be assigned to whatever you please." Vox floated back down to the floor and waved as he received applause and cheers.
In truth, he knew his idea of running a town was flawed if it was scaled up, but for now, with only a few hundred citizens, having Andrew manage everything should be manageable. Vox could only hope that in the future, his undead became capable enough for administration tasks, and then he could leave them to take over from Andrew.
Vox focused on his black ocean network and located the clump of undead goblins teleported down to his pocket dimension at the bottom of the Grand Dungeon alongside Necron and all its residents.
These goblins had little use in combat, so he planned to have them manage the fields and other menial tasks around Necron, such as construction, with some human guidance.
In all honesty, Victor was sure he could materialize food with just raw mana and even tie that ability to an artifact the citizens could use, like a glorified online shopping app, but he wanted his citizens to start trusting his undead more.
If they entrusted their food production to his undead and saw them toiling away in the fields to harvest food for them, their perception of his undead would improve drastically.
Swapping to his Demon Core, Victor looked over Necron and felt satisfied with its placement.
All the land surrounding Necron contained lush farmland dense in mana. The time between planting a crop and it growing would be hours, maybe even days. And with him able to control the weather, there was no way for crops to be destroyed or fail to grow.
A stream of mana-filled water flowed around Necron now. So that satisfied basic food and water for his citizens, a far better situation than what they were facing back on the surface when the merchants stopped coming due to the Demon Lord's announcement.
All Necron needed now was some native animals that roamed and maybe some more dangerous ones further out, so the Delvers living in Necron wouldn't get bored.
I may even set up a mini-dungeon nearby infested with monsters that provide abundant exp and succulent meat or excellent materials.
Victor had already concluded that producing things out of raw mana was terribly mana inefficient, but dungeons were designed to spawn monsters, animals, and even terrain. So it was far better if he provided the desired materials within one of these forms, like meat from a cow or iron ore within a mountain, rather than creating iron ingots out of raw mana.
And it also gave his citizens something to do and would fuel a mini economy.
It sounded like a good idea, so he got to work making it. First, he made the new mini-dungeon stand out by creating a sky-high obsidian obelisk. This would serve as the entrance—Victor then began carving out floors and populating them with monsters.
But then he ran into a problem.
What type of monsters should he use?
Should the dungeon have a theme? He could create multiple dungeons, each with a specialty if he wished.
"What would get people really excited." Victor wondered momentarily, and then a particular floor within the Grand Dungeon came to mind. The gem golems hadn't been that exciting to him as a void monster, but to the average human, seeing a golem encrusted with enough gems to set them for life would undoubtedly raise some hype.