Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
The time on the road wasn’t too difficult. Qi Jiamu was already a man of few words, piloting a mecha by himself, and with his brother’s business, conversations on the communicator was almost nil, only opened when necessary.
He YunTing only contacted Lu AnHe once during the official departure, after all, as long as they didn’t return safely to the Empire, it was useless to say anything. The two simply exchanged basic information, Lu AnHe gave an address, saying that if they could successfully reach the territory, they would make plans then.
Lu AnHe was careful, and considered Lin Han when arranging each batch of rescue mecha, bringing along a lot of nutrients, but due to that last struggle, only Qi Jiamu was left in the end. The mecha carrying supplies was targeted during the first encounter, and still couldn’t avoid being blown up.
Lin Han was still unable to recover his mental strength, and spent the next few days resting alone in the second cockpit with Grr in his arms. In addition to the special nutrition for Omega, Qi Jiamu’s mecha also had other prepared space food, which was better than eating those things that didn’t taste good.
The return trip took two or three days, and the group barely rested, but Lin Han was fine, as he couldn’t operate the mecha and could catch up on sleep during the trip. He YunTing didn’t seem to feel tired, and as long as he said he was going to leave, Qi Jiamu wouldn’t complain and would follow him.
The only one who didn’t feel so good was probably Grr. He was still sad, still upset, and lost almost all his energy on the first day of the return voyage, as if he was crying, or just dazed.
Even though He YunTing wasn’t going at full speed this time, Grr’s seasickness couldn’t be cured in such a short time, so Lin Han had to hold him in his hand, feed him water, stroke his fur, and talk to him.
At first, Lin Han blamed himself, even if Grr wanted to come with them voluntarily, he shouldn’t have brought him up here without considering him at all. He looked at the poor little furball trembling in his palm and apologized to it all the time.
Grr understood Lin Han’s sentiments after a while. In Lin Han’s gentle apologies, although it was still dizzy and uncomfortable, it still tried to hold up its tiny body and chose to rub itself to Lin Han’s palm again and again. It seemed to be telling him that no apology was needed and that he didn’t need to blame himself so much.
Grr was even afraid that Lin Han would be upset and tried to stick out his soft tongue and gently licked his palm. Lin Han didn’t know why Grr liked him so much, yet he eventually fell into the tenderness of this little creature.
Lin Han originally thought that his young self had taken a lot of love from his mother, and that this love would be able to support him to do many things he wanted to do and stay strong. And now this light and airy little blob seemed to be telling him that he was loved and that there was other love waiting for him that he could reach out for.
Thinking about it, he couldn’t help but look over at He YunTing who was close by. He was resting against the driver’s seat, his brow still furrowed, as if there were many things haunting him even in his dreams.
Lin Han took advantage of this time to boldly observe him. He YunTing lost weight, Lin Han thought. His brow bones were already high, making his gaze deep all the time, and this time of exertion had made his brow and eyes even more severe, almost making Lin Han doubt that one smile that existed at his fingertips.
If he still had his mind-reading skills, would he be able to know what he was struggling with right now?
Could he help him? Would he accept it? When would he be able to smile again?
Lin Han, filled with such concerns, was a bit lost in thought and didn’t notice that He YunTing’s body moved as he gradually woke up. When Lin Han reacted, He YunTing was also staring at him.
Neither of them said anything, and there was a strange, unspeakable awkwardness in the air. It was as if they both knew that their relationship was no longer as clear and simple as it was when they first boarded the ship, and that after the hug and mark, there was a touch of ambiguity that only flowed before them.
And this sentiment and embarrassment subconsciously made Lin Han’s hand tighten and touch Grr’s warm body. The little one was confused, raised his face with a pair of dark eyes full of doubts.
In a moment, Lin Han thought that the thoughts in his heart before were penetrated by He YunTing’s eyes. He YunTing’s eyes still had the same unadulterated sincerity, but Lin Han didn’t dare to look further, avoiding the blue color. He remembered that He YunTing had said that he had something to tell him after returning to the Empire.
Lin Han lowered his head and stroked Grr’s fur as if to hide it, while He YunTing also turned his eyes back to the display.
That answer may reveal itself before long.
They arrived at the Empire’s border three days later.
He YunTing first informed the base — as long as they entered the territory of the M-star, even though some people were thieves, it was impossible for them to make any more obvious big moves. Lu AnHe understood and immediately spread the news.
No matter who it was, this was at least dusty news.
A selection exercise that was supposed to symbolize the best pilots each year turned into a Zerg invasion, with the Supreme Commander stuck in the border zone for a long time, and the royal family narrowly missing out on a return, all waiting for an answer — whether the General had fallen in space, or taken a blood oath.
News of He YunTing’s return soon reached the ears of everyone in the Empire, and the people who had heard that he had fought off several Zerg alone finally put their minds at ease and rallied together to greet the mecha on their way to the Core.
Wen TianYao also came, and no matter how many unseemly thoughts and ideas he had had, he was still the one who had to show up. Before He YunTing even landed, Wen TianYao’s flying machine had already stopped, and he waved to the people who loved him while telling them how much he admired General’s courage.
Anyway, the people weren’t mind readers, they would only love Wen TianYao even more and admire He YunTing even more by his description. Not only Wen TianYao, after all, the impact of this matter was too big, but with the two factions that had been arguing all day long in the council in order to show the importance of General, there were still many other people present.
When Lin Han was about to reach the end of the line, he saw a dense crowd of people gathered there. He YunTing wasn’t surprised by the current scene, and the sound of the people cheering and embracing didn’t slow him down half a bit. But the people wouldn’t leave until they saw He YunTing, Lin Han understood this, and therefore didn’t refuse when He YunTing told him to wait in the mecha.
The people of the Empire needed a tangible hero, and He YunTing had that label.
They didn’t even need to know who Qi Jiamu was who came to the rescue, let alone the fact that He YunTing had an Omega with him when he decided to hold off the Zerg. They only needed a heroic faith like his, and that was enough.
Lu AnHe quickly and skillfully dispatched the people who came to greet He YunTing after he showed up, and only then did He YunTing continue to drive forward, eventually stopping at the base’s landing site. It was impossible for the general public to follow them here, and those dignitaries and royalty who had status were waiting for them here.
There was some confusion about why the rescue team ended up with only one mecha, but no questions were asked in the end.
Qi Jiamu didn’t park with M2742, and parked the mecha in the repair area first. It was a good thing that no one cared about an unknown pilot-to-be, their eyes were focused on one person. After all, back in the Empire, Lin Han couldn’t let He YunTing carry him on his back like he did in the border area, and even if his legs were still weak, he still had to walk alone.
The hatch opened and He YunTing was the first to step out.
“You’ve worked hard.”
Various voices, either sincere or fake, rang out in unison, all calling his name with different emotions.
He YunTing frowned with an icy expression, and didn’t even bother to extend his hand to greet these people who seemed to be very concerned about him. He only looked at these people in front of him. There was Wen TianYao with a smile on his face, his deputy Xi Yuan standing quietly by the side, polite and warm. Luo Qi, of the radical faction also came, his face didn’t change its expression in the slightest, as he warmly greeted He YunTing.
But this time the main peace faction of Jiang Lian wasn’t there, but a different person came. Looking at the person in front of him, He YunTing’s eyebrows showed more than a little surprise.
Even if Lu AnHe was calm, it was still hard to hold back the excitement when he saw He YunTing. He saluted and walked solemnly towards He YunTing.
Lin Han came out just at this time. Some people recognized him and expressed their praise and admiration for him. Lu AnHe just listened to He YunTing and intended to take Lin Han to the hospital of the base for examination first.
Lin Han saw the one that He YunTing was surprised by at this time. He didn’t care about Wen TianYao and Luo Qifor now, but the person in front of him, he couldn’t help but stop in his tracks.
It was the scientist that He YunTing had told him about before, Xu Zhiheng.
Professor Xu’s hair was already half white, but his mental outlook still looked good, and the entire person had a bookish aura from the inside out, which made him look unassuming and self-contained even when he stood among this group of powerful people of extraordinary status. He obviously also saw He YunTing.
He wore his glasses, gave a decent smile to He YunTing and said, “Good day, General.”
He YunTing didn’t say anything, just nodded slightly. Probably because he thought of what he had told Lin Han about the “Burning Blood” secret, He YunTing turned his head and looked at Lin Han.
Xu Zhiheng also followed his gaze and saw the Omega behind him.
“Hello.” Xu Zhiheng very naturally extended his hand towards Lin Han, and humbly and politely smiled at him as well, “Mr. Lin.”
Lin Han was somewhat flattered and shook hands with Xu Zhiheng, “You know me?”
Xu Zhiheng said, “Before the General came, I learned that Mr. Lin is a very good mecha master. It’s just that when I saw you today… I felt you were a little familiar.”
Lin Han returned his smile and said, “I’ve been to every one of Professor Xu’s lectures at the Imperial Military University.”
“That’s why you look familiar!” Xu Zhiheng released his hand and saw Lu AnHe still standing by Lin Han’s side, so he didn’t keep them for long and let Lin Han go to the hospital for a checkup first.
As he turned to leave, Lin Han saw Xu Zhiheng and felt some emotions. Professor Xu looked as modest and polite as ever, but because he found out about it, he ended up in a dilemma. Lin Han looked at Luo Qi’s face and couldn’t help but be concerned. Was he still being threatened by the radicals?