Aron, still giddy with excitement, ran to his seat at lightning speed. He couldn't wait any longer to test the computer and see if it met the standards outlined in the knowledge he had purchased from the system. He plugged it in and powered it on, allowing the computer to draw electricity from the wall through its power brick, which converted it to mana to power the components, thus completing the bootup processes.

The operating system he had written into it came to life, lighting up the screen with the GAIA Technologies logo, something he was careful to never leave out of his innovations.

“Let’s see how it holds up,” he said as he pulled up the benchmarking program he had written alongside the runic OS.

But after fiddling with the program for a while, he was left less than impressed by the runic computer’s speed of operations. It was fine for single operations, but didn’t even include the ability to hyperthread to at least emulate the ability to multitask. Perhaps starting with quantum computers had spoiled him somewhat.

“But can it run doom...” he muttered to himself as he pulled up the venerable computer game.


A week later.Aron was still sitting at his desk in his virtual lab, this time with a shining stainless steel cylinder in front of him. It stood six inches in diameter and another six inches tall, and had a clear window in it. A murky, light yellowish liquid with streams of bubbles was visible through the window, which stretched from the base of the cylinder to near the top. Anyone who guessed that the cylinder was a biological computer would have been right.


Aron had spent the past week of Earth time in his virtual lab, creating and testing iterations of the two technologies he’d bought from the system. Currently, he was rather satisfied with what he had already accomplished, though he knew there was much further to go.

“When it comes to RAM, qRAM is the fastest. As for single-threaded operations, runic processing is hands down superior to the others. But for multi-threaded operations, quantum processors take the cake. And I doubt I’ll find a better high-density storage media than a biological computer’s DNA storage,” he dictated to Nova, having finally come to his conclusion after his experiments with the new computing technologies.

“Nova, pass what I’ve got here on to the gold labs in Lab City. Tell them to begin integrating it all into a single computing system that takes advantage of the strengths of the three technologies while mitigating their weaknesses as much as possible. I don’t expect much out of tier 1 tech, but the new incorporated computer systems will be the flagship computers for the empire moving forward.

“Not only will integrating everything into a unique whole make it nearly impossible to hack, but I estimate that the original product will be right up at the tier 2 line, if not even higher. This project might be our first tier 2 technology, and we’ll have come up with it ourselves. But even if it isn’t, the three paths seem to be the main ones in use throughout the universe, so if we come into contact with an enemy that’s chosen one of the three paths, we’ll be able to use the other two to put up a fight against them.” Aron’s choice could perhaps save the empire from subjugation in the future.

[Right away, sir,] Nova replied, her figure flickering as she passed on his marching orders to the researchers.

“Next item on the agenda: creating a bridge that I can use to integrate the three programming languages.”


Aron returned to his work, this time focusing on creating a program that would allow three wholly unique languages to flawlessly blend together into a singular new language. It would be needed as soon as the researchers in Lab City came up with a way to integrate the hardware into a single computer.

Without a unified programming language that was capable of porting instructions from any of the three languages into any other language, the new hardware would be useless. After all, no matter how shiny and excellent a computer’s hardware was, it would still be useless without programs that ran on it.

But if that was his only reason, he would have left it to the researchers in Lab City to create alongside the new computer system. In fact, it would even be more efficient to do it that way. However, the programming language was important for another reason: he needed it to be able to communicate with all three systems in order for Project Protagonist to function.

With his understanding of the languages, it took him virtually no time at all before he had written a program that blended them together and created an entirely new language. The new language wasn’t quite as streamlined as any of the source languages—Aron alone couldn’t possibly be compared to a collection of generations of the greatest minds of alien civilizations—but it was an astounding act of creation nonetheless.

During testing, it was shown to only require an average of a femtosecond longer to operate a program when compared with running that same program on dedicated hardware with matching programming languages. And a femtosecond of lag time was an absolutely outstanding result, especially given that he was still working on version 0.1 of the new language.

“Now to finish the Project Protagonist code.”

Upon finishing his new programming language, he immediately moved to create the remaining two segments of code for his plan.

Waving his hand, he manifested a runic computer and began writing code for the runic integration in his project. Twelve hours later, he fed it into his compiler and switched to a biological computer and biological code. And fourteen hours after that, he began compiling that segment of code as well.

And with that, he stood and stretched, letting out a contented groan as he was no longer used to remaining physically inactive for long periods of time. But now all that was left was to recompile the three segments of code and run it through the converter he had created, turning it into a program capable of adapting any medium or biological body it found itself in.

“It should be about time for the show to start, right, Nova?” he asked, waving his hand and teleporting to just a few hundred kilometers away from the simulated Sun, where he would watch as the predicted Carrington event began.

[Just a few hours now,] Nova answered.

“Is that Earth time or simulation time?”

[Simulation time, sir. You have impeccable timing.]

Aron nodded and turned his attention to the raging surface of the Sun.