Max reeled, nearly dropping the egg in his surprise. He looked back down at the egg and back at the copper patch. He hadn’t moved that egg from that spot other than to take it to the wall earlier on in a vain attempt to threaten the content onslaught of biters.
He probed the copper patch with his suit, it was dense. Very dense, despite being only one small node. Still, with his technology and maxed out productivity methods, he would be able to stretch this small copper patch a long way, tripling or quadrupling it’s usefulness.
It might even be enough to supply his ammo and other needs for a couple days.
He wanted to kiss the egg, it might just be his salvation. Carefully, he moved it over a few feet and planted it down in the garden again.
Before he turned away he noticed a slight discoloration of the tip of the egg sac. It was more brown than it had been, normally a light purple with tinges of gold, but this seemed like it had gotten some mud on it. He frowned and tried to rub it off with his fingers, but nothing happened. It seemed to be part of the egg itself.
Maybe it’s maturing.
Max wondered how much longer this thing would incubate. At some point it had to hatch, right? Then he would be dealing with a baby worm in his own base.
For the second time in as many minutes, he frowned. If this egg would continue to build up copper in the ground, he might be able to survive off it’s production. But his golden goose would eventually hatch and begin attacking him, would it not?
He turned around. This was for future Max to figure out. Still, he initiated a subroutine in his suit to pay particular attention to the changing makeup of the egg, it’s color, and to try and analyze why, and more importantly how, it was able to create copper out of thin air.
After kicking off the programs, he got to work setting up a small mining operation right next to his domicile. Something he hoped he wouldn’t have to do.
His suit filtered out all the pollution, but the smoke pouring out from the mining operation was unsightly and tended to work it’s way into his home. He would have to dedicate time each night to keeping his place clean.
Tirelessly, he worked, setting up production level after production level. He was glad he had the bots, they made setting up parts the factory much easier.
And oh the copper he was able to mine! His previous calculations were incorrect, after carefully designing the most productive setup possible, and with productivity increases every step of the way down the line, Max figured he had nearly a week’s worth of copper to survive.
He sat in his chair, looking out over his base through the expansive window. He sipped his hot coffee and gave a smile to the small egg just outside the window. He should have gone to bed already, after the arduous day he had, but just as he was climbing into his bunk the computer had picked up something. Max wanted to be front and center, even if it meant an all-nighter, in order to see the creation of another patch of copper, this time with a little iron mixed in for good measure.
He could sleep when he was dead. This was better than an action movie.