A man and a woman, tangled up together, fell on the deck. Although the landing was far worse than an average traffic accident, they didn't suffer from major injuries since they were both superhumans.
"Are you all right?"
"Ah, yes. What about you, Sunbae?"
"Thanks to you, I'm fine."
Although the system had already collapsed and they were on the deck of Great Sky, which was equivalent to being in the middle of nowhere in the universe, Dong-min and Bo-ram had no issues surviving in such circumstances as the latter had trapped a considerable amount of air in her barrier. In fact, she followed Dong-min because of her ability.
'Dong-min-sunbae can't survive in space.'
Dong-min was a powerful ability user who possessed a variety of skills, but did not have the kind of power that would allow him to survive in outer space. If Bo-ram had not followed him and activated her barrier, Dong-min would have died before reaching Great Sky. Unlike the transport ship which travelled at the highest speed, their movement depended on inertia and also required them to release a little bit of soul energy. Hence, they had to fly in space through darkness for at least 3 hours before they could arrive at Great Sky.
"By the way... Is that a Demon?"
"Yes. Not just that, he looks like a First-Tier Demon. The elders will be very pleased with it if they see him."
"My master will roll his eyes in joy if he sees him. He says that the bodies of these First-Tier Demons are extremely useful and no parts will go to waste."
Despite their chatter, they were still wary of their surroundings. Hell's Hand wasn't small in size and was rather extra large. So needless to say, it was impossible for them to take his body with them. Everything in Great Sky was destroyed, and it was like a ruins filled with silence. But even so, the fact remained unchanged that they were in the midst of the enemy's territory.
"But even so, we should at least take his Mana Heart with us, right?"
"I'd really like to say that it's a crazy idea to have when we're in the middle of the enemy's territory, but… I agree."
As soon as they nodded their heads to confirm each other's decision, Bo-ram and Dong-min divided their roles at a terrifying speed. Bo-ram began to guard the both of them by using her barrier to hide their presence, and Dong-min climbed on top of Hell's Hand, who was the size of a fairly large building.
Dong-min invoked the Finger Sword Art and concentrated his mind. The space surrounding his index and middle finger began to distort. Dong-min had spatial powers and spatial powers were known to be rare among superpowers. Besides the usual teleportation, he could also use his power in this way.
It was an ability akin to a kind of Space Sword. However, it required a really long activation time so he didn't use it normally. But then again, it couldn't be helped in this situation. Even after death, the bodies of First-Tier Demons were so sturdy that without putting in a tremendous amount of strength, it would be difficult to dismantle their corpses.
Slick sluck schlikkk!
Dong-min slowly cut from the bottom of the thorax of the Hell's Hand where the Mana Heart was sensed. But, it was then…
"Euackkk?! It's not dead?!!"
Bo-ram and Dong-min fell from Hell's Hand's body at almost the same time as if they were flicked off.
At the very least, Dae-ha, their companion to the Universe, didn't know anything about the Outside World, much less aliens or existences from a sci-fi story. However, it was a different story when it came to the Demon tribe. Another Plane, the parallel world that existed on Earth would experience regular fissures and therefore, it was possible for the Demons to invade occasionally. For this reason, Bo-ram and Dong-min had a few experiences fighting with the Demon tribe.
Of course, they had only heard about First-Tier Demons through word of mouth, and had the chance to have a glimpse of the demons through audio-visual materials. They had never seen First-Tier Demons in real life. So, with the training they had received thus far, it was extremely natural for them to be nervous in the face of its terrifying power.
"I'm not sure though. It looked like it was totally dead."
"I know right. If unlucky, he might've already transformed... Ehhh?"
The very nervous Bo-ram and Dong-min put on a blank expression at the same time. A black-haired girl showed up as she pushed away the skin of the stomach alongside the cut Dong-min had just made. Having participated in the defensive battle on Albatross, Bo-ram immediately realized who the girl was.
"Isn't that the Legion from the other time?"
"Yes, but it feels a little strange."
They gradually put some distance between themselves and the Legion girl. They felt a sense of alienation when the Legion girl walked out with a blank expression. Dong-min briefly closed his eyes to awaken his spiritual nature and soon, he could ascertain the Aura rising above her head. Bo-ram also looked back at Dong-min; she could feel it too.
"Don't you think she looks possessed?"
"It's also like she's linked to a superior being."
Dong-min released his soul energy to prepare for the worst case scenario, and he recalled the details he had read in the library about Legion.
If an artificial intelligence acquired self-consciousness, regardless which dimension or planet they are in, they would have a high probability of connecting with a massive network of integrated thoughts and become a part of Legion. However, even so, their newly-born soul could only receive extremely little information. At most, there would be a few lines of text, a few images, or something along those lines.
However, as they gradually grow up, their soul energy would get stronger and stronger… Then, the Legion would be able to download weapons, abilities, knowledge and many other things from the integrated network. At the same time, they could upload the information they had and share data with other Legions in real time.
Oh my God! It's his child!
Unbelievable. How is this possible?
Our God! A new God has been born!
Seppard Star System! Where's the nearest 'Named Ones'?
It's a miracle! Father's new child is born! We must bring it to our side!
Mobilize all warships and troops! We must move with all our might!
Bo-ram and Dong-min had no idea about the countless voices ringing in the Legion girl's head. They were voices that carried hundred, thousands, no, far beyond that, millions of conviction.
But at that moment…
A single sentence pressed down on the millions voices of conviction. The will behind the sentence was so strong and intense that despite Bo-ram and Dong-min being outside the Legion's system, they were still affected through the Legion girl.
"What... What is this?"
Bo-ram collapsed after coughing up blood. It was a shock that caused her hands and feet to tremble, and it broke her mind. It was just two words. A sentence, made of two words instilled pressure on everyone.
-He's not our God. He is not Father's child!
It was an outcry filled with anger. It was a voice mixed with madness and filled with grief and resentment. Even as a joke, it was unbelievably emotional coming out from a machine or a program.
-Only... Only I...
He shouted in a voice filled with hatred.
-I'm Father's last and final child.
That was the last thing Bo-ram and Dong-min heard before they lost consciousness.
"How's the situation? The Sixth Imperial Prince is now... Uwahh! Aren't we totally surrounded? Use Fenrir's Howl!"
"...Do you even know how many times I've used the Transcendence skill today?" Major General Chun Hyun-il shook his head pathetically. Even at first glance, anyone could see he was exhausted. It was only natural. Objectively, Great Sky had greater battle power than Albatross, and the enemy's Captain was Morne, the Arch-Sorcerer who attained the realm of transcendence, so Hyun-il had to give it his all in order to bring us to victory.
"At least let me rest for a bit before going at it again… This is making me crazy."
"When did you discover those bastards?"
"We didn't discover them. There was a message saying that the Warp Gate will be open for two hours in the vicinity, so they told us to make some space. Something didn't feel right, so we hid the coordinates, but they still came."
"You should have interfered with the warp! You should've at least twisted the dimensions around and sent them somewhere in the universe that's difficult to reach!"
Hyun-il looked baffled by Celestia's words.
"...Oyy, the Imperial Prince is coming to help us, so why would I stop him from doing so? Moreover, you want me to put the Imperial Prince's life at risk with my decision?"
"But that would have been better."
"Of course... I agree with you now."
The ground quaked along with the explosion. The situation was completely different from the battle with the demi-humans, which was basically a long, dragged-out war. However, it was the same then and now that our battle strength was pretty lacking in comparison. In addition, Rising Storm had approached within a thousand kilometers and Hyun-il, the captain of the Albatross, was extremely exhausted at this point.
And above all of that…
"These bastards...They're really thinking of killing all of us." Hyun-il clenched his teeth and strengthened the ship barrier like a turtle's shell to block the incoming artillery fire from the enemy. I stared at him for a while before looking through the battlefield information.
'Things aren't looking good.'
We were in a position where we were being attacked too one-sidedly. Even with me around, there'd be a limit to the things I could do in this situation. Also, I wasn't riding on a Gigas and drastically increasing its performance.
'Plus, it is impossible to deal with a battleship with just a Human-rank Gigas.'
Rather, it would be better if we were surrounded by countless weaklings. It would just take a long time, but dealing with them was more than possible. In the vast universe where long-range attacks were the main method of combat in flight battles, having more numbers didn't necessarily translate to absolute advantage.
But… The problem lied in the powerful barrier that covered the battleship. Considered as a Transcendence Weapon, the Albatross battleship's barrier couldn't be penetrated by a single Gigas' attack. What about the Penetration Ability, you say? It was only a wishful dream for a Gigas' artillery attack to be able to penetrate the barrier of a battleship.
"Captain-nim, how many fighter jets and Gigas can we deploy now?"
"You want to go out and fight?"
"We have to fight. We won't be able to hold out for long if we just stay on the defence."
We couldn't afford to waste a single minute. That crazy Sixth Imperial Prince spouted nonsense and disappeared. As soon as he appeared on the bridge deck of Rising Storm, more than thirty percent of Albatross' barrier was chipped off, and more than half of the left and right wings were destroyed. Under these circumstances, it would be impossible to get away from the enemy because Albatross' flight speed would have dropped significantly. We were at death's door after our fight against the demi-humans, while Rising Storm was in perfect condition.
"But even with you out there, things are still impossible. Unlike Albatross, the Battleship of Annihilation, Rising Storm is... built for the purpose of fighting."
Albatross was also a battleship. However...if you look into it closely, it had a number of other purposes besides combat. Yes, it was a multi-purpose battleship so to speak. It was a ship that could travel through space, probe into stars and planets, and collect coordinates or even perform terraforming if necessary. On the other hand, Rising Storm was built solely for combat; it stored more Gigas and fighter jets than Albatross, its speed was incomparably faster than that of Albatross, and it had all kinds of means of attack on its own. Its barrier was also much more powerful, and the defense system itself was much more sturdy, making it difficult to break through with a poorly-planned strategy.
'It wouldn't be easy even with a Star-rank Gigas, so of course a Human-rank Gigas wouldn't be able to do much.'
During the battle simulation in The Great War, I had a record of riding on Goldrian and driving away the entire Third Corps of the enemy Tekea Federation. I even captured their battleship, Punishment.
But back then, things were much better than they were now. For one thing or another, Leonhardt Empire and Tekea Federation's battle power in The Great War was pretty on-par. Though Leonhardt Empire was at a slight disadvantage, it wasn't absolute. So, it was possible to infiltrate the enemy ship without much difficulty just by commanding and using the units to penetrate the gaps that formed in the middle of the battle.
Things were looking gloomy now. We were ridiculously short of battle forces. The fighter jets and Gigas weren't even the problem. Albatross would recover and repair the fighter jets and Gigas every time they were destroyed. The problem was the pilots.
'Too many of them died.'
Countless pilots have died, including Colonel Tuck who used to control the only Human-rank Gigas on the Albatross ship. Hence, in the current circumstances, soldiers who lacked skills and experience had to ride on the fighter jets and the Gigas. Broken machines could be repaired, but dead soldiers couldn't be revived, so perhaps it was natural that this situation turned out this way. Even Bo-ram and Dong-min, who weren't soldiers, were being educated quickly on the Gigas piloting method, so there was no need to explain further.
"Hmm. I'm sorry, but can you locate Bo-ram and Dong-min's location?"
"Ahh, I can't connect with their communicators, but their location has been confirmed. Looks like they safely landed on Great Sky."
Something was tickling my mind. Something seemed to come to my mind.
"Yes? What's up?"
I looked up at Hyun-il who was controlling the ship again while exuding a blue Aura.
"Move away for a second."
"...What did you say?"Previous Chapter Next Chapter