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Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations

Editor: KarateChopMonkey

 

Lu Huai’s video message soon came in.

The background of his message was the peaceful sub-star berth, which had been less crowded and looked almost peaceful. He sounded a little puzzled, “General, the situation here is stable, according to the number of Zerg attacks, the forces are completely inadequate, and…”

Why strike five days later?

“Because five days is the time I control the battle.”

In his case, there were only two scenarios, either the Zerg would come to the fortress collectively wiped out, in order to let the other side of the remaining troops try and counterattack, but also just in case, destroy this leap point, and completely let the other side lose the hope of invasion; the other case was the failure of the defense of the fortress, since the most critical place was breached, then the rest of the Empire’s troops must be concentrated, then leaving the unguarded leap point would be almost impossible.

In short, this place would do more harm than good if kept, the only reason for not blowing it up right now was because they didn’t want to let the people panic unnecessarily. The people didn’t need to know too many details, they didn’t need to know what the classification of Zerg was, they didn’t need to understand the various classifications of mechs, they didn’t need to understand the existence of the leap point.

They just needed to understand that the army would protect them, and they knew that when this leap point existed, at least the threat was gone.

“Understood.” The other side, without further ado, simply responded.

Before sitting in the second cockpit and opening the touch screen, Lin Han didn’t expect it to be on this scale.

It was well known that the Zerg was a matriarch society, and the real nests of Zerg planets were located in abysses that were beyond the reach of humans, and there were different species that were bred from the most primitive and ancient Zerg Queen into the scale.

In other words, in the classification and race were based on the evolution of the Zerg Queen, the Zerg Queen at the bottom of the abyss was the root of everything. They didn’t reproduce themselves, in addition to a very small number of high-ranking Zerg, the rest of almost all the Zerg, were like copy-paste out of the template.

But the number of “templates” was also too… 

The image that everyone faced was so shocking that it reflected an illusion of doom in the gloomy sky. The steel beetles that invaded the mouth of the berth before were nothing, and it wasn’t an exaggeration to say that they were a drop in the bucket.

The black arrow ants were stacked together as high-speed hulls, and didn’t require highly sophisticated human technology, since they were born to meet the standard of leapfrogging. In the vast out in the light screen, the naked eye couldn’t count, only when they got closer could they rely on the detector to figure out the number.

This was only the giant Black Arrow Ant as a hull, how many Zerg were carried inside wasn’t yet known.

But according to the current scale… 

It wasn’t impossible to say that most of the nests of the Zerg star were empty.

The hulls of the Black Arrow Ants flew by in dense numbers, dotting the exterior of the otherwise magnificent and serene fortress in everyone’s view, announcing their intentions unobtrusively—

We want to break through the hardest line of defense, to cross the stargate.

Almost simultaneously, the Lord General’s orders rang out through the public comm. His voice was as low and calm as ever, as if he wouldn’t be affected by anything, “Everyone get ready. Final objective…”

“Clear the space ahead.”

There was still a short point of time between catching the attack signal with the light screen and the Zerg’s hull marching into the attackable range, the red scan on the light screen rotated in circles, and the not-so-dense signal sounded with regularity, He YunTing ordered methodically while activating the mech.

“CE-B79 defense mechs all out, combine with the fortress to form a joint defense formation. The bottom guided missile attack will fire at will, the pilots have full autonomy, pay attention to avoid interference, and always return the signal. The remaining sub-guns continue to charge. After the defensive formation is stable, the assault troops go out with me.”

…… 

The edge of the fortress was a low, dark condensation, the depths of the universe were dark, but this darkness wasn’t uniform, and at this moment, along with the loud “boom boom boom” sound, the overwhelming Zerg began to show up in the range of the naked eye.

——It wasn’t that they were too close, it was just that there were so many of them.

Such a horrible number, the entire space range was filled with the black of the giant black arrow ant shield. Since the opponent had deployed such a number of Zerg, they had come prepared.

The surface of the giant black arrow ant Zerg was unique, with their own kind of armor surrounded by the defensive shield. With the fierce fire constantly hitting it, each hit would illuminate a large dense almost fearful number of Zerg, and the giant black arrow ants in such a gun fire, regardless of casualties, were advancing.

No, not casualties.

The actual black arrow ants weren’t as good as the black beatles, but if you looked closely, the casualties were almost negligible.

——The actual black arrow ants weren’t like the human-made technological products that had various high-end systems and operating methods, but they were after all really alive, sometimes in some ways more flexible than cold machinery.

They didn’t accurately predict where the missiles were coming from, but they were always keen enough to dodge when they were about to be hit in order to keep the casualty rate low amidst the intense artillery fire.

The Zerg began to approach.

The signal from the detector gradually became more intense from the regular intervals at the beginning, while a cold mechanical voice reported the number of identifiable attacking Zerg. With the increasingly intensive “beep” sound, the number of reports from ten to a hundred, from a hundred to a thousand… losing count, when the number of Zerg on the display began to explode with an intimidating attitude!

Tens of thousands of black beings swept in from the depths of the universe with a kind of numbing momentum. The universe was never romantic, even if there was a little love, the depths of love also contained nightmares.

Vice Captain Ye Ling sat in command, he looked at the dense light on the light screen, his pupils slightly shrunk. Since He YunTing needed to operate his own mecha, after the development of the overall combat deployment, the overall random coordination and command of the situation fell on the head of the equally experienced deputy captain Ye Ling.

His experience was rich, looking at the whole Empire today, and who has passed such a scene today?

The Empire had really been peaceful for too long.

Ye Ling couldn’t help but grit his teeth and curse an expletive, “Are these damn Zergs fucking giving birth while attacking?!”

“Shut your ravenous mouth, Zerg births are through the Zerg Queen, if the Zerg Queen also arrived in the Empire, then the Empire would really not be far from destruction. But on the other hand, it may be a good thing, I’d like to know what level of weapons can directly destroy the nest.” Lu AnHe weaved in and out of the artillery fire, his mech flipped in mid-air in a gorgeous arc, his ten fingers flying over the control panel, constantly firing precise attacks, while communicating with Ye Ling through the comm, “At present, we know the number of three hundred and fifty-four downed, including two hundred giant black arrow ants alone, eighty A-class steel beetles shot down together in the hull, twenty-three compound-eyed sand worms, the rest of the category due to the destruction of strict not yet obtained this information.”

Ye Ling frowned, also followed to check the amount of reserves at the moment: “Really no half-hearted sense of companionship?”

“The death of the same kind will not let us turn back at all… these things seem to really want to crush us with their number, fuck.” The other vice captain on the starship only felt his scalp numb, “So many shells went down, the number of waves shot down topped the Empire’s past years of war effort, but do you think that there’s any change in their numbers?”

He was answered by silence.

What he said, the reality, was precisely the most terrible thing.

In the past interstellar era, mechs weren’t yet loaded with all kinds of weapons, when the war was conducted by joint games between vessels and ships, spaceships and aircrafts. Although each function worked, the work wasn’t comprehensive, so there was a kind of ship structure that was relatively simple, close combat firepower, and the ship itself was more fragile, once hit, it couldn’t be repaired.

Like the death squad, this kind of ship was once called the kamikaze ship, piloted by the people who had no way back, only forward, like a pawn in chess.

——Like the Zerg at the front of the line.

Only allowed to go forward, not allowed to go backward, and never retreat.

If they retreated, they would be swarmed by the Zerg and crushed into pieces.

Their task was clear, breakthrough and siege were behind the Zerg and they needed to find a relatively safe airspace in the gunfire as a temporary stationing point for the large forces, to facilitate the subsequent Zerg stay and confrontation.

“Tsk.” Ye Ling’s tone was full of hatred as he snorted, “so much nonsense for what? Even if there really was a Zerg Queen here, we would have to gun her down with a cannon, and make all these dead Zergs orphans.”

“Sub-cannon upgrade, store ready.” Starships also need to ensure the best state, so Ye Ling put away scolding the Zerg, “Continue to act according to the General’s deployment!”

Yet he didn’t wait for the neat response that followed each order.

“That… What’s that?!” Lu AnHe’s stunned voice rang out in the communication channel.

After experiencing so many things, this more and more mature adjutant would rarely speak with such emotions, and soon, Ye Ling let out the same shocked voice as Lu AnHe: “This… is…!”

“It seems that Captain Ye was actually right.” He YunTing’s voice sounded abruptly, “Immediately turn on the scan, divide the right formation into groups of three to try to burst in, maintain a safe distance, and immediately retreat after dropping 3-M487 signal detectors!”

After a pause, his condensed gaze fell on the distant shape darker than the night, the body was even more enormous beyond imagination, almost compared to the largest main ship of the Empire… no, it was more exaggerated than the largest model of the main ship of the Empire, “If I’m not mistaken, that should be the Zerg Queen. “

Ye Ling and someone simultaneously sucked in a cold breath.

No wonder this Zerg attack seemed to be more organized, and the forward and defensive style also seemed to be slightly different from the past. Originally they thought that this was just a thorough preparation for this landing, but actually… 

Even the Zerg Queen had arrived at the front line of the battlefield!

“Captain Ye, I didn’t think you could let Zerg become orphans so soon.” Lu AnHe muttered.

Almost at the same time he commented, the return result of 3-M487 signal detector exhibited on the screen.

It was really the Zerg Queen.

Ye Ling said “fuck” twice.

Due to the huge gap between the shape and the sense of oppression and fear in front of the absolute glory of being a soldier gradually faded, he slowly stood up from the command seat, his eyes flashed with a mixture of fear and excitement and color, “Come then, good, good.”

His voice went out along the all-army communication channel that hadn’t been closed. There were Imperial soldiers who felt this wonderful resonance of emotions at this moment. They would be afraid, their captain would be afraid, they were human, fear was an emotion that all humans had, there was no shame in it.

Rather, it was because of their fear that humans were stronger.

Good, come.

“If you’re here, don’t leave.” He YunTing’s calm voice then resounded throughout the army, and some people could hear the undisguised wariness and killing intent beneath the Imperial General’s voice.

M2742 cut through the universe, weaving through the overwhelming Zerg, the record numbers after the kill data belonging to this mech rose smoothly and coldly, and the Imperial General continued to speak in the midst of the killing, “Start storing for the ‘Eye of the Star River.’”

Ye Ling froze.

The “Eye of the Star River” was the largest main cannon of the fortress, and also the most central weapon the Empire placed in the fortress. Unlike a simple orbital cannon that needed to rely on starships or space stations to launch, it wasn’t a completely virtual particle beam cannon that only needed a gas pedal and high volume to start. It was somewhere in between, with a solid warhead, but could burst into maximum power with the energy supply of the gas pedal and the central ring of the fortress, and because it was inside the fortress, it came with its own propulsion and algorithm support, and could precisely hit the single or multiple targets that needed to be hit, avoiding injury to friendly troops. The only problem was that the launch itself was an extremely big order due to its power and level — so the key was in the hands of the Emperor.

Only with his approval and personal use of the key was this most formidable weapon launched.

“Apply for…” Ye Ling subconsciously spoke.

“Applied for.” M2742 plummeted in mid-air, then swooped out in a gorgeous arc — the kill count abruptly rose ten places, “His Majesty is with us. “

“His Majesty is with us—!”

Countless trained voices rang out, the imperial soldiers who originally exhibited fear because of the Zerg Queen’s appearance were now invigorated by these words and returned to the battlefield to kill. Meanwhile, on the double seat of the M2742 mech, Lin Han took a deep breath, intending to connect to the inner line of the imperial family.

He YunTing was watching the battle situation. Because of the urgency of the battle, Lu AnHe and his men would report the progress to He YunTing constantly, and Lin Han would sometimes receive the information for him and then tell He YunTing. He originally just listened to what He YunTing told him and connected him to the inner line of the royal family, since the General still had to apply personally.

But this time when he clicked on the connection, it returned with a video message. It looked like the other party took the initiative to open it.

After Lin Han saw the person on the screen, he was stunned for a moment and immediately bowed to the other side, “Your Majesty.” Lin Han didn’t expect to meet again in this way after the last council meeting with Wen Zhaoge, so Lin Han was a bit caught off guard and said quickly, “I’ll let the General come and communicate with you.” 

“No, no.” Wen Zhaoge leaned back on the soft couch, casually draped a thin blanket, his posture looked quite leisurely. He waved his hand at Lin Han across the screen, “The one who contacted me is M2742, since you’re connected, it means you also have the right to operate this mecha, so tell me.”

“…Oh.” Lin Han nodded his head.

The other side had a freshly finished chess match in front of him, his beloved Queen piece standing in the most prominent position on the board, signaling that he had just won a certain game.

Wen Zhaoge looked in a good mood, the angular outstanding appearance and mellow temperament through the light screen were transmitted, although the hands and feet were very casual, people still couldn’t ignore it. He looked very young, the whole person’s mentality and appearance reflected an eased and relaxed state, but the words spoken were closely related to the battle at hand, “‘The Eye of Star River’, right?”

Lin Han’s heart was shocked, but he truthfully replied, “Yes.”

“Then that’s fine, it will save me the trouble of giving orders.” Wen Zhaoge said indifferently, “I’m here to deliver the key. The Imperial General is still fighting in the fortress, and I, who am sitting here playing chess, don’t want to always drag my feet. After thinking about it for fear of forgetting, I might as well just solve this problem first, so as to avoid a long night.”

Realizing that Wen Zhaoge was going to transmit the key, Lin Han’s heart beat intensely, as he immediately straightened his back, “Just a moment, I’ll inform…”

“Hey, come back.” Lin Han didn’t expect his words to be interrupted by Wen Zhaoge. “Why make this little thing into such a big deal?” Wen Zhaoge lifted his index finger to wipe at the corner of his lips, smiling carelessly, “Whether I tell you or the General, it’s the same.”

How was it the same… 

Lin Han simply couldn’t believe that the “little thing” that Wen Zhaoge was talking about was actually the key to the Eye of the Star River.

Wen Zhaoge still seemed to have decided to be generous enough to give the youth in front of him some time to digest, and only after a minute did he continue to speak, “General He let you into his mech, doesn’t that explain everything? Don’t be afraid, the Emperor of the Empire hasn’t had the hobby of breaking up couples.” Wen Zhaoge even joked, adding, “To see the iron tree blossom after so many years is also quite uncomfortable. I decided,” Wen Zhaoge up, that innate sense of harshness was much less, displaying a wonderful harmony, “mainly because I have quite a good feeling about you.”

Lin Han was more and more confused about what kind of person the Emperor really was, only to respectfully thank him. But when he raised his head again, in addition to the man in the light screen leaning back on the couch now had a scepter in his hand. The Emperor’s scepter was a symbol of supreme power, but also represented the words he spoke, none of which could be disobeyed.

Lin Han intended to give the most standard imperial salute, but Wen Zhao made a gesture to interrupt, “Don’t care so much about the rules, just listen well.”

“I agree with General He YunTing using ‘the Eye of the Star River’ main gun firing rights, immediately, permission to start and fire granted, the key is being transmitted by me personally. “

Lin Han listened to the sound of his own heart beating faster, “Order received!”

The key after layers of encryption was transmitted through a special channel, and Wen Zhaoge actually quickly returned to his original careless appearance after announcing the order, picking up the chess pieces in front of him.

“The last time we met was too hasty, it was too late to invite Mr. Lin to play chess,” said Wen Zhaoge, “When Mr. Lin is back from the fortress, why don’t you come to the side hall? I haven’t played with anyone for a long time.”

Lin Han didn’t expect that Wen Zhaoge hadn’t forgotten about the last time he said he wanted to play chess, “Okay.”

“Tell the General to contact me directly if there’s anything, no matter what you want to ask.” Wen Zhaoge put the pieces back on the board, “Dang it, I wouldn’t mind if Mr. Lin contacted me on his behalf.”

Until the communication was cut off, Wen Zhaoge didn’t even mention a sentence about the Zerg situation.

Lin Han got curious. He thought, Wen Zhaoge, are you not worried about me after only meeting me twice but trust me so much? The key was handed over with ease, just as He YunTing was confident that he would use the Eye of the Star River.

— 

Meanwhile, the military’s morale was high, the artillery fire was intense and uninterrupted, the missile attacks at the bottom were replaced with more advanced magnetic rail guns, and the space stations on the left were almost at maximum use, from the bottom to the top, all fighting to defend the enemy. The Zerg Queen was surrounded by its “children” to protect her, while Zerg were constantly shot down, but soon there were new Zerg as cannon fodder for the Zerg Queen to resist the damage — after all, as long as the Zerg Queen was still there, Zerg would continue to be a source of life.

This bizarre standoff didn’t last long.

Although the volume of the fortress compared to other regions of the Empire was hundreds of times higher, but after all, not inexhaustible, if all used to destroy the cannon fodder, the volume of exhaustion wasn’t negligible. The dense Zerg wrapped up the Zerg Queen, and since they found that they couldn’t easily break through the stargate, they retreated a little and found a lower airspace as a temporary nest, with hardened steel beetles and black arrow ants as a barrier, forming a large, dense, and disgustingly fearful giant black mass in the sky.

After suppressing the first wave of black arrow ants in front of them, the space station finally stopped attacking for the time being, and waited for the energy to charge.

Lin Han got down from the second driver’s seat, pushed open the hatch, and walked up to He YunTing. The other side was still listening to Lu AnHe report, after a while he looked up from the console. He remembered that he had asked Lin Han to call the royal line, but with no straight response, he originally thought it wasn’t contacted, and was ready to call again, but was stopped by Lin Han.

“I just got in touch with His Majesty.” Lin Han told him about Wen Zhaoge and gave the key he received to He YunTing.

The other party wasn’t too surprised, “I see.” Probably guessing that Wen Zhaoge’s temperament would make Lin Han feel confused, He YunTing explained, “His Majesty the Emperor is like that, don’t worry.”

“But he passed the key directly into my hands…”

Even if he was casual, he shouldn’t be casual to this extent. After all, this was Wen Zhaoge who had made both the Federation and the Star Pirates tremble when he was young.

He YunTing was also a bit surprised by this, thought about it, but still gave the same conclusion as Wen Zhaoge, “He’s a man who measures and recognizes people accurately. I went to war with him, so he knows me, if the communication is connected to me, he won’t hesitate to hand over the key. Don’t worry.” He looked down at Lin Han, the youth still had some tension under his eyes, so he soothingly touched his neck and said, “He really doesn’t dislike you.”

“Okay.”

Time was the most precious thing in the world, so Lin Han wouldn’t dwell on it.

It didn’t take long to settle down, and soon the 3-M487 signal detector showed that there was another change in the huge black shadow. It was clear that the Zerg Queen was really expanding its power, and new Zerg kept breaking out of the black shadow, growing larger and larger like a snowball.

“How long until the charging is completed?”

The response from the space station came quickly: “Still need… a full day.”

A whole day.

After all, it was the weapon used to deal with the Zerg Queen, and the unobstructed energy storage alone would almost draw off a third of the central energy ring. At this point in time, no one could predict what exactly was the situation after a day, whether the Zerg Queen would desperately reproduce, and whether these cannon fodder Zerg would expand to what kind of point.

“Great.” Lu AnHe said in the comm, “The warhead of the Eye of the Star River is solid, and according to the calculations, is set to attack the Zerg Queen.”

“But it can also only eliminate the Zerg Queen.”

In other words, the Eye of the Star couldn’t be used immediately, so even if the Zerg Queen fell, cutting off the reproductive power of the Zerg at this time, they still needed to deal with the other Zerg birthed by the Queen. After all, the maintenance of mechs, starships and space stations also needed to consume energy.

There was also some energy on the supply ship, but it wasn’t worth mentioning at all compared to the fortress. Unless some way was found to net out the other side.

There was a period of silence on the comms, but a new order soon picked up.

“Don’t consider the issue of energy consumption until the Zerg Queen is eliminated. Cut to prioritize the elimination of the Zerg Queen. Have the formation return to position, mechas continue to cruise.”

“Yes!”

He YunTing finished his words and Lin Han also returned to the second cockpit, “Then let’s continue.”

At the fortress, no one had closed their eyes that day.

Qi Jiamu, as one of the most outstanding trainees in this practical training, was directly integrated into the most elite assault team. Ye Ling, as the captain of the starship, was responsible for coordinating the planning with the Lord General, while Lu AnHe integrated the space station’s defense system to ensure that no one would slip through the net.

The change began at night.

Seeing that the black shadow continued to expand, finally some disobedient “children” could not stand loneliness — that was another kind of Zerg, in the Empire’s science was known as Noe Zerg.

This type of Zerg were more special than the general Zerg, because at first look almost no one associated them with Zerg — Noe Zerg were ugly and grotesque, except for their sharp mouthparts, they didn’t have any other Zerg characteristics. In their non-attack form they looked milky white, dripping a fishy mucus substance, with only a long, nasty mouthpiece on their entire body.

When entering the battle form, the characteristics of the Zerg would slowly emerge.

The slime all over their body would turn into a thousand strands of long tentacles, and the tentacles could drag them forward, or soften at a quick speed. The enemy would be wrapped up in layers, and when it reached a certain number, they would take what they were holding explode—

It looked like a suicide attack, but as long as they weren’t reduced to pieces, they would grow and grow bigger, becoming the same as before. The detector kept reporting the situation, and finally late at night, the gelatinous milky substance appeared on the screen—

With a boom, the detector suddenly exploded!

This sound was like a new opening of the pages of the confrontation between the two sides. The shields were deployed almost immediately, and the assault troops reacted even faster, with the M2742-led mechs standing in front of the stargate.

“It’s the Noe Zerg!” Someone said over the communicator, “Be careful of what’s left from the explosion, make sure you pay attention to self-check and clean up!”

“You don’t have to go back after cleaning up.” He YunTing spoke, “How much longer until the Eye of the Star River charges up?”

“There are still about four hours left.”

“It doesn’t have to charge up completely.” He YunTing said, “The second formation will encircle from the right, the rest will attack with me from the front, starships are responsible for long range, defensive formation, and pay attention to cover. As for the space station…” he paused, “divide half of the particle accelerator’s energy into the main cannon, speed up the energy storage process, and prepare to fire within an hour, no matter how much energy has been charged.”

He YunTing discreetly embedded the key transmitted by WenZhao into the database of the Eye of the Star River, “Key input complete, this hour belongs to us.” He sat back in the first cockpit with a rare relaxation in his voice, “Mr. Lin, ready to go?”

M2742 rose into the air, and the Noe Zerg, which was looking for a target, instantly became excited and rushed towards to hunt with a speed that was impossible for the naked eye to see!

But the other party seemed to have anticipated their trajectory of action, thrusters accelerated and the mech propelled forward. When it was about to be touched by the milky white thing it instantly bounced away, and in the next second, the mechs on its right found a breakthrough, and immediately fired several particle cannons at it in succession—

Some of the Zergs were unable to dodge and were directly blown to pieces by these cannons, while the rest reacted by quickly splitting into tiny pieces and trying to climb onto the tallest and largest mech in the air once more.

That mech was holding a lightsaber in its right hand, and this was the perfect opportunity!

These smaller, milky white Noe Zerg quickly moved to the mech’s right arm, and now as soon as they fused together, they could again extend their thousands of tentacles to wrap this mech up and… 

BANG! Unfortunately, before these Noa bugs could even dot into pieces, the right arm was surprisingly equipped with touch bursts, and the moment they climbed onto the mech, they were re-blasted into unrecoverable ashes by the ejected bursts!

“Destroy.” Lin Han’s cheerful voice rang out in the communicator.

“Don’t let your guard down, the Zerg Queen will soon birth a new race.”

Under the night, the black shadow began to gradually spread out, layers and circles of Zerg surrounding their Zerg Queen, communicating with special frequencies and decibels that humans couldn’t perceive… 

“Don’t ever back off!” Ye Ling gritted his teeth and pushed the joystick in front of him to the bottom, “It’s now, vortex magnetic rail gun fire!”

Just as his words fell, the echoing space station began to activate its twin-linked particle accelerators, and as the dense insect population thought that the space station on the left was the source of the attack, and that the Black Arrow Ants had already re-erected their solid and thick shields, the starship on the right flashed a beam of red light that lit up the night sky—

“Be obedient and go to hell as an orphan!” Ye Ling was so excited, that he couldn’t help but curse again, the entire starship’s attack force all blasted at one place, knocking a hole in the seemingly impenetrable thick shield!

“Ready the ‘Eye of the Star River,'” Time was up, and He YunTing knew the space station would certainly obey the orders and have the main gun charge finished. Without hesitation, he ordered, “Countdown from five seconds.”

“5—”

The warriors located on the starship activated their laser cannons and responded loudly.

“4—”

The space station sergeants’ eyes were glued to the dial in front of them.

“3—”

Lu AnHe turned Aegis’ defensive shield and joint formation to the maximum to prevent any surprises in the last few seconds.

“2—”

Lin Han, who had never seen such a large main cannon before, gazed at the huge column of energy that glowed white and lit up the night sky not far away, and the warhead that was about to open at the top.

“1—” 

He YunTing moved his eyes, his face stoic as he gazed at the mass of evil in the black shadow.

BOOM— BOOM—

The stargate seemed to be cut open by this main cannon, the organic armor activated the counterforce stabilizer in the shortest time with the fastest speed, while the thrusters shot purple tail flame and bounced back to the safest position. Like the most brilliant stream of light, straight down to the black shadow, the explosion sounded like a final elegy for the Zerg Queen, who with its never-ending reproduction power, completely disappeared outside the stargate of the fortress.

The ultimate explosion was followed by the ultimate silence.

And in addition, there was a certain young captain who forgot to turn off his comm.

“Hahahahahaha! Go be an orphan, stinker!”

“……”

“……”

“……”

But this time no one told him to stop.

But defeating the Zerg Queen was only the first step in holding the fortress.

There would be no newly bred Zerg, but the war was much more than that—

In addition to the second wave of steel beetles, black arrow ants and giant sandworms that were wiped out, the Zerg didn’t seem to be giving up, and new fleets of Zerg were leaping in from the Zerg planet.

“You’re sick! They don’t have a queen anymore, how come they are still rushing over?!” On the third day, Ye Ling rejoined the ranks of cursing.

And no one responded to him, for no other reason than the fact that the soldiers had struggled for three days, but new Zergs kept coming. It was as if something was driving them, they had to come to the Empire, had to cross the stargate, even after paying the price of losing the Zerg Queen, but had to go to… without stopping.

Fortunately, this time the supply ships were well prepared, which avoided the embarrassing situation of lack of resources. But this wasn’t a solution after all.

After the main cannon was used up at the order of Wen Zhao, and the rest, it was up to the formation itself. But Lin Han still remembered the order about Wen Yu’s sub-star a few days ago.

Five days was the deadline, and after five days Wen Yu’s leap point would be blown up, which was the time He YunTing gave himself.

But now…

It was the fourth day.

What would the fifth day be like?

These days Lin Han’s life and rest was quite regular, he would ask the little one if it was dizzy being in the mecha. 

The energy of the central ring was still depleted, but the number of Zerg was still increasing. Like being caught in a dead loop, unable to find the direction of exit. That day He YunTing’s formation once again blasted away an unknown number of waves of leaping steel beetles, and finally found a respite after engaging with the three waves.

“How much of the central ring energy is left?”

“Not much. There’s still… a fifth left.”

A fifth was enough to support them on the final day.

But if these excited species weren’t resolved, even if they returned with starships and formations, it would still be a tricky problem. From the closely maintained communication, the situation of Wen Yu’s sub-star so far looked cut and normal, and Lu Huai also kept in mind the five-day deadline.

So there was only one day to go.

The newly arrived Zerg had a new species with them. In the view of both sides, this warp was an immortal duel, but today’s problem was that the side without the Zerg Queen couldn’t really break through the stargate, while the other side was still consuming energy, waiting for full depletion.

As if it was difficult to break the deadlock.

Although the fortress was currently the largest gathering of the Empire’s troops, and the central volume ring had used up most of its energy, the depleted volume would be restored over time.

But this ‘time’ was most likely several years.

From the current situation, the main cannon of the Eye of the Star River of the fortress has already been fired, so recharging it again was impossible. First of all, the Zerg were scattered, so even if you really got the key from Wen Zhaoge, the huge consumption and the effect wouldn’t be proportional; secondly, the current consumption of energy of the starships and space stations could be enough, and then afford such a large amount of recharge needed time and would take ages.

But the deadlock would eventually be broken.

On the fourth day of the night, both the mechas, space stations and starships were still holding on to the fortress. After all, the Zerg Queen had died, and there were too few Zerg with high intelligence.

So no one knew what had happened on that night.

Only a few inconspicuous supply ships passed through the sound of gunfire and the night.

The fifth day soon came.

“He YunTing,” Lin Han volunteered between breaks, feeling a noticeable dip in strength and mental power, calling out, “get me a nutrient. “

After all, it wasn’t hard to get rid of this stuff even if it was hard to drink,  and it also wasn’t the time to squirm.

Lin Han took off his goggles, walked out of his cockpit, and took the unscrewed nutrient from He YunTing’s hand.

“Thanks.” He curved his eyes toward He YunTing and only frowned slightly before swallowing the tube’s contents very dryly.

He YunTing confirmed the situation at this moment, inclined his head over to Lin Han and asked, “Would Mr. Lin like to take a nap?” 

Lin Han, still swallowing the mouthful of nutrients, shook his head, “I’m fine, I slept yesterday.”

Last night when He YunTing transferred the supply ship to the space station, he was so sleepy that he ended up hunkering down in his mecha for a long nap. Once he woke up the supply ship had been transferred under the cover of the sound of gunfire, and it seemed to the Zerg stationed out in the confrontation that nothing seemed to have changed.

Lin Han suddenly recalled that, in order to ensure that nothing was wrong, it seemed that yesterday He YunTing didn’t sleep.

His heart flooded with a fine pain, even the most powerful Alpha couldn’t withstand so much. From the beginning of the lead attack he didn’t close his eyes. He only closed his eyes for fifteen minutes, when Lin Han quietly touched his hand, He YunTing had a short shallow sleep. His heart was carved with nothing but battle. But even though he knew he was listening, He YunTing still didn’t say anything to him. 

He threw away the package of nutrients and just returned to his cockpit, before closing the door, he saw He YunTing tapped the screen twice and took out a syringe from the storage box.

A syringe?

Because of his one-track mindset, Lin Han didn’t think much about it, but then his hand holding the hatch froze, as he called out to He YunTing, “You need to take nutrients?”

“Hmm.”

“Do you need help?”

He YunTing looked back at him, then calmly unsealed the package, as if he was concerned abou Lin Han’s worry, and responded, “It’s okay.”

Lin Han nodded, “Alright then.”

He knew that some of the more concentrated nutrients were too slow to be absorbed directly, and in special cases, especially for Alpha-specific nutrients, in order to be more effective, they would be made into an injection model, with much higher concentration than Omega’s nutrients.

He watched He YunTing lean against the cockpit, folding his sleeve up to reveal the cold blue veins. When he saw the sharp needle, Lin Han subconsciously closed his eyes — he wondered if He YunTing was hurt, and felt that he was purely superfluous to say such a thing at such a time, and hesitated for a moment.

Lin Han wanted to return to his position, but when he glanced back, he actually saw He YunTing taking another injection out, and also inclined his head to look at him… 

He keenly caught He YunTing’s hesitation and weakness.

The nutrients were all injected, was it necessary to inject two or more of such high concentration? Why would He YunTing subconsciously look at him, was he afraid that he would notice something?

Lin Han’s heart was tightened when he thought of this, and he opened the hatch of his cockpit and quickly walked over to He YunTing. The other was surprised as he tried to hide the syringe behind his back… 

Without looking at the packaging, by his action, Lin Han could guess what it was.

It wasn’t a nutritional supplement at all.

He couldn’t believe he didn’t realize it.

Such high physical and mental energy consumption, as well as more than five days of sleeplessness, but also to command the troops, piloting the mecha… 

It would change anyone’s body and their brain would freeze.

No wonder.

Lin Han’s heart suddenly flushed with bitterness.

He realized there was never any god.

“It’s a muscle retardant, right?” Lin Han pursed his lips hard, but his voice was still shaking.

Lin Han had only seen this kind of thing in the news.

It wasn’t banned, but if it was not needed for medical treatment, few people used it anymore, except for the military. Because the drawbacks were too great.

The high concentration of muscle retardant allowed the user to briefly restore the body as well as muscle function in a very short period of time, with immediate results. The cost was also very obvious.

Despite the urgency of the situation, if injected without restraint, the body would build up too much of this agent, and with too much mental energy consumption, even the more powerful Alpha would suffer repercussions, such as light irreversible muscle atrophy, then fibrosis, and may even be directly invalidated.

He YunTing just finished injecting one, so it was too late to stop him, the blood oozing from the arm point didn’t stop in time. The embarrassment of being caught red handed made him care less about such details, and the blood then flowed down his arm.

Like something was grabbing Lin Han’s throat, he found it hard to breathe just by looking at it.

“You lied to me.” The bright red became blinding in Lin Han’s vision, his pupils dilated, and when he spoke again there was some aggravation in his voice, “You said it was nutrients.” 

“I can drive.” Lin Han reached out haphazardly to wipe the blood off He YunTing’s skin, “You go to the second cockpit, I’ll…”

Before he could finish his sentence, he was swept into the other party’s arms.

“I’m sorry.” He YunTing spoke first to apologize. His voice was low and hoarse with a weariness that couldn’t be concealed, “I’m fine.”

“You’re still fine even after using something like this!” Lin Han didn’t know how to describe his feelings, he was really angry because He YunTing didn’t want to tell him, but more than that, he was just more heartbroken for the other man.

It was because he knew what he had gone through in the past few days that Lin Han couldn’t even bear to blame him.

But…

His voice was louder, and his eyes were red from agitation, “If I hadn’t noticed it, how many more shots would you have taken? Three? Five?”

He YunTing couldn’t defend himself, and didn’t know how to appease the gentle youth, only stretched out his right hand to press Lin Han further into his embrace, and there was a rare guilt in his voice. The Lord General who didn’t change his expression even in the face of a thousand armies was now panicking and patting the youth’s fine, soft black hair, and kept apologizing, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry…”

【I’m sorry.】

【Sorry.】

【I’m sorry.】

【Did I do something wrong?】

【I can still hold on, but Mr. Lin needs to rest.】

The moment Lin Han heard it, he couldn’t say he was angry, but he was so full of emotions that he simply opened his mouth and bit the other man’s shoulder. Lin Han couldn’t spare the energy, he just wanted to use this meaningless action to dispel his turbulent emotions, he relaxed, before continuing, “I’m not tired. I’ve had enough rest for the past few days, so I can go to the first cockpit.”

“I’m fine, really.” He YunTing’s tone became softer and softer, but still he didn’t agree. It got to the point where he almost spoke in a coaxing manner, “Behave, baby.”

“You…” Lin Han was stunned, smelling a very light and faint ebony fragrance, with a soothing smell.

Although he knew that He YunTing was just comforting him and let out some of his pheromones without a reason, Lin Han still raised his head uneasily, “He YunTing. You, you… don’t you compel me with pheromones. If you dare to do so…”

It seems like I can’t do anything about it.

But the more Lin Han thought about it, the more anxious he was, and he had a sobbing tone in his voice when he let go of the other’s shoulder, “Do you want to do it again?”

He snatched the injection from He YunTing’s other hand and threw it away, hugging him back even more nervously than the other did, “We missed each other once, you’ve forgotten me for so many years, and it was hard for you to find me again, and you want to… want to throw me away! I’m not a flower in the greenhouse! I know you love me, and are willing to let me drive the mecha with you, so why, at a time like this, do you still want to carry everything by yourself…”

He understood that he shouldn’t lose his temper right now, but Lin Han just felt sad. While trying to forcibly hold back tears, the corners of his mouth kept skewing downward in aggravation, the tip of his nose and eyes were red, tears piled up at the tips of his eyes, but they were slow to fall.

“I don’t know why you didn’t try to come to me at that time, I understand your intentions and know that you were trying to protect me. But, He YunTing, I’m not the same as then, I’m not a student who knows nothing, I’m your lover. Is there anything we haven’t done? Then come on, mark me completely! As long as you bite me hard, you won’t push me away when you’re in danger, and your exhaustion, why did you not say anything?”

His aggravation grew, and so did his tears. He originally wanted to raise his head to talk to He YunTing again properly, but as he raised his head, the pooled up tears began to silently fall, his original white and delicate whole face instantly covered with tear marks. As He YunTing stared at him, it was so hard for him to take that his heart seized up.

“Have you thought about what to do in the future ah?” After crying out, Lin Han vented, “Have you thought about what I want to do? I know… I know you have to protect the lives of the Empire’s tens of millions of people… I know they need you…” Lin Han’s voice was getting smaller and smaller, to the end almost inaudible. “But, I need you too.”

“Please, don’t use the retardant, and don’t push me away.” Lin Han hazily lifted his face, his eyes blurred with tears, unable to see the person in front of him, “I can… clearly help.”

“I want you to know that an Omega’s spiritual power can also be… be very strong, and can help you share a very large part of the pressure.” Lin Han spoke a little difficult to the other through his tears, choking, but seriously and firmly said, “Then… then I’ll take a step back, the first cockpit is still yours, but we don’t need to connect mentally. I’ll be fine by myself.”

He YunTing still didn’t speak, so Lin Han eagerly grabbed his lapel with his hand. The Empire’s most outstanding mecha master was like a child, the earlier calmness and gentleness when facing outsiders was gone, replaced by the undisciplined action of rubbing his tears on the other’s clothes.

“You can also rely on… rely on me ah…” Lin Han while crying and talking, his whole face was wrinkled, and his upper lip was slightly red and swollen.

“…Okay.”

Less than a minute had passed.

Lin Han later thought that this was probably one of the longest minutes in He YunTing’s life.

He finally began to stop pushing people aside, finally willing to face danger alongside him, finally tried to get back in love, finally understood Lin Han, offering his heart to his lover without reservation.

But Lin Han couldn’t read that.

He only felt He YunTing embracing him tighter and tighter, reverently and tenderly kissing away all his tears, and then carrying him back to his cockpit.

He listened to He YunTing speak to him.

Okay, okay.

Don’t cry, I agree with everything you said.

We are unbeatable.

 

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hiyami
June 29, 2022 8:19 pm

Thanks for the chapter! C:

WangXian31
June 30, 2022 12:27 am

Wow! Thank you both so much for translating and editing this long, intense chapter.
Their relationship will certainly have evolved after this experience.
I just hope so much that they are unbeatable and He YunTing is not adversely affected by the muscle retardant.
This shows well why such a figure is in some ways weakened by love; having another who needs and depends on them. I feel it is worth it. He is a man not machine, after all.

Springek
July 4, 2022 9:10 pm

So intense!

Thanks for sharing this chapter with us!

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