Book 2 Chapter 5.1

Book 2 Chapter 5.1 - Dream

Even though he wasn’t able to discover Blue Scorpion’s forward operating base, they still recovered Pendulum City. A small portion of the city was ruined, and most of this region’s functions were paralyzed. Roxland’s branch headquarters had been burned down deliberately, and the most unfortunate part was the loss of the biochemistry laboratory equipment and specimens. What similarly made one regretful was the loss of hundreds of researchers, skilled workers, and trained soldiers. Fortunately, the city had taken war into consideration during its construction, so their strategic facilities were scattered about. Several of the important factories were still more or less intact, and the water purifying system only needed minor maintenance before it could be used again. 

Cleaning up the anti-infantry landmines and intelligent scouting units would still take quite a bit of time, but these tasks were given to the soldiers under Kane and Li. Together with a specialized sweeper, as long as the soldiers were careful enough, they could find the things left behind by Blue Scorpion from a safe distance. Meanwhile, the dragonriders’ electronics specialist was already researching new electronic waves that could detect all of the sensory landmines within a range of a hundred meters. 

Just like last time, Blue Scorpion’s corpses and all types of equipment could be offered up to dragonrider headquarters, but the price offered would clearly be less than before. They didn’t really find much infantry combat equipment either. However, the tank cannons and vehicle plating were all items of considerable value, and the caterpillar track mecha’s remains even sold for the high price of 150 thousand. The resulting profit Su obtained from this battle was quite great, totaling up to 240 thousand in revenue. 

Early the next morning, Black Dragonrider headquarters' transport vehicles arrived at the camps outside Pendulum City. Apart from the task of shipping the spoils of war, the five heavyweight transport vehicles that rushed over also brought a dark black coffin with golden patterns decorating its surface. This was a coffin every dragonrider would obtain upon death, and the same materials and appearance would be used from generals all the way down to privates; there was no difference. 

Su watched as Enzo’s corpse was placed inside of the coffin, and the lid slowly covering its surface. He then watched two robust men lift the coffin into the heavy trucks. A bald dragonrider private with a large beard walked over, and he stretched out a small and detailed information page to Su. “Second Lieutenant, no, soon, I will be calling you lieutenant. This is the information you have requested! All of transaction processes regarding the goods have been completed. If your respected self does not need me for anything else, I will head back first. I hope to return before the sky turns dark. Your respected self should know that the northern area isn’t too peaceful right now.”

Su brought out his own badge and after tapping it on the bearded private’s tactical tablet, it indicated the mission’s completion. It seemed like the northern area truly wasn’t too peaceful, and this could be seen just from the fact that headquarters actually sent out an official escort troop. It was rumored that there would be dragonriders transferred north, but it seemed like they hadn’t made much progress yet. However, Su still didn’t know who the enemy of the north was, because this piece of information exceeded the limits of his authority. In addition, right now, he didn’t have many friends in the Black Dragonriders who could send him some information in private. 

Persephone and Helen couldn’t help him either. Persephone seemed to be constantly at war, and Helen was only interested in his body. To be more accurate, the only thing Helen needed was Su’s masculine reaction. This made it so that as soon as Helen appeared in his field of view, Su’s first reaction would be to directly move out of the way. 

The promotion of a dragonrider’s military rank and and authority mainly followed two criterias: one was ability, and the other was accomplishments. Not only was the higher level of ability evaluated, the amount of evolution points used for these abilities was also considered. The decision regarding merit was both simple and complex. The standard was the amount of reward one received from headquarters’ missions. Every 100 yuan in reward would correspond a point of merit. For example, Su, even though his encounter wasn’t originally on headquarters’ list of missions, headquarters would still evaluate the information they received in response and offer a corresponding amount of reward. This was similarly considered as part of one’s merit. 

Even though Su became a second lieutenant as soon as he became an officer, his contributions upon obtaining the rank was zero, so he had the lowest level of authority. Generally speaking, all ranks under second lieutenant possessed the lowest level of authority. The corresponding level of authority for a second lieutenant was first level, which required 1000 points of merit. The lieutenant rank’s corresponding second level of authority needed 3000 points of merit. 

Su’s ability had long reached the level of lieutenant, it was just that his contributions had always been lacking, and that was the reason why he couldn’t increase his scope of authority and rank. However, there was another, slower way to earn military rank, and that was that after staying at the second lieutenant rank for a year, even if he didn’t have any merit points, Su would automatically be promoted to lieutenant rank. However, his level of authority wouldn’t have any increase. 

Within the Black Dragonriders, individuals with unmatching rank and authority could be found everywhere, especially the dragonriders that came from large families. There were some who rarely took on missions. Increasing one’s rank wasn’t a completely good thing, because Black Dragonrider officers needed to pay dues, and they were not given an allowance. For example, after being promoted to lieutenant, the amount he needed to pay every month jumped from 1000 to 3000. 

Su stood within the surging smoke and dust as he watched the heavyweight trucks disappear into the ruins’ horizon. Only then did he bring out the tactical board and pull up the information interface. Large amounts of information immediately appeared on the screen, and they were all related to lieutenant Enzo. 

As a forty-six year old male, Lieutenant Enzo could be considered extremely mediocre within the Black Dragonriders, to the extent where he could be considered close to the bottom. Five levels in complex weapon mastery was the limit of his potential, and in the other domains, his abilities were only second level. His potential in magic was even lower at zero. 

However, if one looked at this from the perspective of the era of turmoil, Lieutenant Enzo was a rather fortunate man. He earnestly carried out missions, and with the reward he received from the missions, he constructed a three floor villa that had its own water purifying system in the outskirts of Dragon City. This villa that covered an area of close to a thousand square meters housed the lieutenant’s three women and seven children. Meanwhile, Enzo’s oldest daughter was already fifteen years of age, and one of his sons was also about to turn fifteen. The youngest one was barely a year old. What made Enzo rather proud was that his oldest son already formed a level of ability in both simple and complex weapon proficiency in the Mental Domain, and his talents in the Combat Domain weren’t bad either, with the potential to reach the fourth level. His daughter also formed the ability of sight strengthening in the Perception Domain, and she was currently practicing simple weapon proficiency.

This was a previously happy and stable family, one that even began to form the outlines of a small family. When he saw a picture of the entire family within the materials, Su sighed inwardly. The lieutenant’s burden was undoubtedly heavy. The price of raising kids was extremely great, and it was no different in the new era. This was even more true when the lieutenant had to prepare the expenses to promote the abilities of seven kids. This was a truly great amount of money. 

This was why the lieutenant only had two formal subordinates. One of them was already sixty years of age and didn’t have his two legs, so he couldn’t go out to battle already. This subordinate was previously a second lieutenant of the Black Dragonriders and one of Enzo’s superiors. This man used to belong to a small family, but the family was later on defeated in a power struggle with other families. He had lost his legs in a battle while protecting Enzo, so he had no choice but to withdraw from active duty. From that point on, Enzo took his own superior on as a subordinate, because the amount of disabled compensation was related to one’s merit, and as such was extremely meager. If Enzo didn’t give him a stable income as a subordinate, then the amount of money the former second lieutenant received wouldn’t even be enough to provide himself with food and warm clothes. 

This was the reality of the Black Dragonriders, a cold-blooded and cruel organization. Power, status, money, resources, and abilities; everything had to be fought for by a dragonrider themselves or directly obtained from the family. The Black Dragonriders definitely wouldn’t provide these and would instead continuously demand more. What the dragonriders obtained in response to offering their service and resources to headquarters was only a key, a key that lead to another greater key. 

The enormous wealth the dragonrider headquarters accumulated was used to construct all types of comprehensive and cutting edge research facilities, large-scale modernized munitions factories, as well as to provide the energy needed to cover the area it controlled. Of course, the most important aspect was to develop various abilities, as well as the formulas and other aspects required to do so. This was not something that could be done with the resources of only one or two families. Their wealth could bring about both quantitative and qualitative improvements, as well as greatly speed up the military, biochemistry, and all other research aspects, allowing the Black Dragonriders to continuously stand within the Blood Parliament and even continuously expand its authority in recent years. 

Through endless struggles, dragonriders could obtain authority, the keys to touch upon these treasuries. Of course, dragonriders had to possess enough resources to obtain these treasures. 

This was the original aspiration of the Black Dragonriders’ founder, and because of it, the Black Dragonriders’ objectives did not include pity and forgiveness. 

Enzo’s other subordinate had two different fourth level abilities in the Combat Domain, a subordinate that exceeded the standard. Of course, he also had the price of a subordinate that exceeded the standard as well. Unless necessary, Enzo wouldn’t bring him onto the battlefield. On one hand, the lieutenant and him were actually friends, and on the other, many of the missions the lieutenant took on were trifling and small, and so the rewards for most dragonriders were rather meager, and not much could be split for a subordinate. 

Su pulled up the photograph of Enzo’s subordinate, revealing a tall and robust man. The muscles that swelled around his shoulders and neck clearly illustrated his power and valiance. Below the picture was the data regarding his various abilities: three levels in power, four in defense, three in dexterity, two in flexibility, and four in speed. He was also proficient in unarmed combat. 

If Enzo brought him along, perhaps he might not have died in battle; this was what Su silently thought. He discovered that not every dragonrider could use large numbers of subordinates. Perhaps the number of those that were like Lieutenant Enzo wasn’t small. 

Su brought up the image of the lieutenant’s entire family again, and after staring at it for several seconds, he opened up the account of the lieutenant’s family and transferred 50 thousand. With Enzo’s death, the amount of compensation they would receive wouldn’t exceed 30 thousand. Afterwards, Su then transferred 5000 yuan into Persephone’s account, so what remained in his own account was only 1300 yuan. This amount of money was just enough for him to pay the monthly dues of a lieutenant as well as the salaries for three subordinates. Kane prepared all of the equipment he needed himself, but each month, Su still had to send him his wage even though it was just like Li and Li Gaolei’s, being 100 yuan. This was a part of regulations.

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