It was at the beginning of the fifth day when Rax and some other kobolds started to walk to where Zatiel was resting. They carried shabby boxes full of all sorts of minerals and gems.
When they were about 20 meters from Zatiel, they left the boxes in the ground and all the kobolds came back to the mountain, leaving Rax alone.
The old kobold didn't become surprised at their action, because he was the one who commanded to leave the moment they left the boxes. The plan was in case the person in front of them became unsatisfied and planned to kill them, they would take their tribe and disperse in different directions, making the possibility of some of them escape higher.
As for Rax, he will use his life to buy some time and improve their chances. Although the idea of sacrificing yourself for others was something laughable according to the standards of the Magi World, the kobolds in this level have never been in touch with another of their kinds so to them this tribe was their entire species, and there are very few things some creatures don't do when the future of their kind is at stake.
Zatiel was watching them the entire time, and it didn't take him long to figure out their plan, but the actions of the kobolds did not make him angry, instead, the impression he had of these creatures improved, 'Not bad, they could be of use.'
"Mighty being, we have taken all the minerals and jewels that we could mine and bring them to you," Rax kneeled in front of Zatiel, nervous about the decision of the person in front of him.
Zatiel stands up and goes to see the boxes, assessing the contents.
"Relax, you did a decent job, although most of the minerals in here are not very valuable there are some that will become useful for my experimentation," Zatiel was satisfied with the result of the excavation, after all, he was not expecting something great out of this place.
Rax immediately relaxed after hearing that this was over.
"What you bring here ensures that I won't hurt your people, but it is not enough to be exchanged for something to help you become stronger," The only reason the kobolds worked for him was because he forced them to do it.
Zatiel knows that had he been not strong enough these creatures would have killed him, so he didn't feel like he owed something to them for these boxes.
Rax looked at Zatiel for a moment before speaking
"Please wait here for a moment, I will be back immediately," After bowing to Zatiel, he heads back to the mountains.
"Are you really gonna help them become stronger?" The one who asked that question was Sophia, who had seen the interaction with the kobolds but knowing it was not her place, she didn't meddle.
"If they bring me something valuable, why wouldn't I?" Zatiel believed in equal exchange, so as long the other party was willing to give something good, he didn't have a problem helping them.
"But most Magi say that working with non-human races is a degrading act," Sophia was concerned that Zatiel acts could bring him trouble in the future, if rumors begin that he was helping other races, it could bring him a lot of difficulty with the rest of the Magi.
"Humph, those are rumors spread by hypocrites so the rest don't meddle in their enterprises, Magi are pragmatic beings that have no problem doing business with anyone, besides, a great part of them have altered their body so much that calling them human is wrong."
Zatiel would not let himself be influenced by the propaganda of some groups and will do business with anyone who he sees fit, regardless of their race, after all, he wasn't human so how could he had a problem with non-human species.
After hearing the words of Zatiel, Sophia understood once again how wrong her way of thinking was, affected by what the rest of the world wants her to believe.
"Sorry," Sophia's head was low as she was ashamed for making that question and proving her naivety.
"Don't worry, as you become stronger, you will be able to see how the world truly works, just remember that common knowledge is not true knowledge, is just something that those with power let the weaker believe it is true," Zatiel knows that the woman was not the brightest, but as long she was willing to learn, he had no problem teaching her.
After they finished speaking, they saw how Rax was running at them to bring something covered with a cloth in his hands.
"Mighty one, I bring you this rock I once found in my explorations, although I don't know what it does, I am sure it is very valuable," Rax respectfully handed the rock to Zatiel.
Zatiel took the rocks and removed the clothes. Inside was a beautiful gem that was pulsating with energy with the rhythm of a heartbeat and constantly changing color.
"Is this something precious?" Sophia could not help but ask when she saw the beautiful gem.
Rax didn't stop seeing Zatiel's face for a single moment since he delivered the rock, and when he heard Sophia question, he became even more focused, hoping that this gem was something truly valuable, but the words that came next destroyed all his hopes.
"No, it isn't. This gem is called Rainbow Flash, its function is absorbing energy and then release it with such a frequency that can affect some magical equipment, as for the color is just an optical property of the mineral, nothing more," Zatiel was not lying to try to deceive the kobold, the gem has exactly the property that he said it has.
Rax sighed at the information. As for the possibility of him being tricked, he knew that the person in front of him could just kill him and take the gem. There was no need for lying.
"But you got lucky, although it is true that this gem is not very valuable it is exactly what I need right now," Without waiting for the old kobold to react, Zatiel put his hand on the head of Rax and commanded the chip.
"A.I. Chip, send him the first level of Burning Blood and put a backdoor in the technique." 𝘣𝘦𝘥𝘯𝘰𝑣𝘦𝘭.𝘰𝘳𝘨
Although Zatiel didn't have a problem helping them become stronger, that was on the basis that they will not become a threat to him so altering a little the technique was something logical.
When the transfer was finished, Rax started to go through the information of the technique, and the more he saw the more shocked he became.
"This... this... this technique is truly that wonderful?" The look that Rax gave to Zatiel was not anymore one with fear but full of reverence.
"Yes it is, but this is just the first level and will help you arrive at the peak of rank 0 but no more, I advise you to share this technique just with those you have absolute trust or else your entire tribe could be destroyed if the information is leaked."
Although the technique that Zatiel gave him was very useful, it was just the first level and not something truly valuable for him, but if the races that habit the Wasteland find out about it, they will slaughter the entire kobold tribe to get it.
"I will listen to the Mighty One, and great lord, about the next levels..." Rax had a pleading expression as he asked, although he was scared of offending Zatiel, the temptation of the technique was too great.
"I will come back, and when I do, if you have something valuable to exchange. I can trade with you the next level. I suggest you use the technique to become stronger first and then try to collect valuables, you will be able to get more precious things and your possibilities of surviving will be greater."
Zatiel's plan for those kobolds was simple. He will help them get stronger and they will use that power to get wealth for him, as for the possibility of the kobolds could betray him, that was the reason the backdoor existed.
"We will follow the instruction of the Mighty One, I will take my leave," Rax bowed to Zatiel before he left. But this bow was different from the others, it was one of respect and not of fear.
"What did you give him?" The moment the kobold leaves, Sophia almost jumps to Zatiel as she asks. By what she heard of their conversation, she already has an idea, but it was too preposterous to be true.
"I just gave him a Path Technique," Zatiel didn't find the necessity to lie, so he just told her the truth.