Getting a Technology System in Modern Day

Chapter 479 The Inaugural Imperial Council Meeting (part 1)
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Chapter 479 The Inaugural Imperial Council Meeting (part 1)

VR Imperial Palace, emperor's council chamber.

After settling Youssef, Jeremy, and their families in their new quarters in the Cube and getting their initial round of genetic enhancements underway, Aron brought the two new ministers to a meeting in his council chamber.

The newcomers looked around, seeing a well-furnished, round room. Since they had entered from the imperial wing of the palace, where they would soon be taking up their own offices, they had entered on the side of the room behind the council's bench. It was a U-shaped table made of mahogany, with understated oak paneling on the front of it facing the middle of the room. There were seven seats at the bench-three to the left, one in the middle, and three to the right. The one in the middle was obviously the emperor's working throne, a comfortable, yet imposing wingback chair upholstered in royal purple velvet with gold accents and gilded legs. The chairs to the left and right were less ostentatious, yet equally inviting.

The wall of the room was marble with gray veining, and the floor was polished obsidian. A polished granite path split the obsidian from the door on the opposite side of the room, passed between rows of long oak benches, then branched out into a T in the direct center of the room. Two thick teak tables sat on opposite sides of the central walkway, each with two serviceable office chairs at them. In between them was a raised, circular podium with a wooden railing circling three quarters of it. And separating the benches from the tables in the middle of the room was a long oak bar.

The room was lit with warm, recessed lighting in the ceiling, and the general style of all the furniture had Corinthian roots, providing it a touch of elegance and class. The decor turned what would normally be considered austere and imposing into stately and timeless, and combined with the lighting, anyone spending any time in it would be subtly influenced to remain calm and steady.

Aron took his seat. To the left of him were John, Jeremy, and Youssef. To his right were Nyx, Gaia, and Athena. And, as always, Nova stood slightly behind and to his left.

"Now that everyone is here, let's begin the meeting," Aron said the moment everyone had taken their seats.

Gaia took over and summarized what had happened over the last almost two months, the first weeks of the empire's existence. The summary was fairly long, especially given that everything mentioned had all happened in such a short, compressed time frame. It was no wonder the past two months had felt like a decade; it was because the sheer number of significant events would make even ten years feel like they had been busy! Not only had they registered a little over seven billion imperial citizens, they had gone through riots, a wave of terrorist attacks, spent half of it under martial law on lockdown, and introduced the public to a time-dilated virtual version of reality.

Even if spread out over a decade or more, it would still count as a busy, tumultuous time. Those listening to the summary who had been unaware of the things going on in the background couldn't help but wonder if they'd jumped into a pot of boiling water.

"What's the progress on resolving our issues?" Aron asked once Gaia finished the summary of events so far.

[All imperial citizens have been registered and received their IDs. Currently, children are registered to their parents' IDs until they complete their compulsory education, and the imperial scholastica set the curriculums to allow students to learn at their own pace. All schooling is done in virtual classrooms, so we still have them in the Akashic Record, but they won't receive the privileges that come at the age of majority until their schooling is completed.

[The design phase of the fortress cities was nearing completion, but has mostly been scrapped. We were caught off guard by the awakening and now that people will be receiving blessings that grant them superpowers, it necessitated a complete redesign from the ground up to account for that. Internal finishing details, like decorations and so on, will be reserved, but we'll need to come up with a way of integrating anti-magic fields in the exterior designs and find a mana-resistant material to use in construction. The scientists in Lab City's Gold Labs are working on that now and estimate they should have an answer within thirty or forty years.]

"Thirty or forty years?" Jeremy, the new Minister of the Interior, interjected. "Can we afford to wait that long? From your summary, you mentioned that the initial round of awakening should be complete within the next week or two, and the entire world would be supersaturated with mana and everyone awakened within the next decade at the latest, so isn't three or four decades a bit long to wait on the geek squad?"

[That's thirty or forty years at one hundred times dilation, or even faster. Lab City currently runs at a dilation rate of a hundred and seventeen to one, and the rate is only increasing as I continue building quantum superclusters. Even if it stayed where it is now, that's only three or four months away,] Nova answered. [Please continue, Gaia.]

Though Nova had all of the same information at hand that Gaia did, as did Athena, they had already agreed to divide their responsibilities along the same line as the human council members. Gaia was the AI equivalent to the Minister of the Interior, Nyx was the AI equivalent to the Minister of the Exterior, and Athena was John's counterpart, serving the same government function as the Minister of War. Thus, it was Gaia's responsibility to keep track of issues internal to the empire, and assist Minister Rogers in dealing with them.

That said, the AIs were meant as partners to the human ministers, not subordinates. Humans and AIs each had their own pros and cons, and the empire Aron envisioned would take full advantage of each without making either subordinate to the other.

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