Published at 6th of October 2018 07:01:46 PM

Chapter 316
Chapter 316: Magnetic Storm!

Translator: ryuxenji Editor: H2dH2mr

The process of deorbiting from the planet went smoothly . When the JMC notification came over the official comms telling them they had officially entered starspace again, all of the mecha operators breathed a sigh of relief . Honestly speaking, they had also been afraid that the energy turbulence of X192 would occur prematurely and turn them into one of the scrap heaps on the planet . Even if they did not profit from this trip, being able to return with their lives was still good .

However, they had not been happy for long when they felt the transport ship's system begin to display signs of scrambling . The initially brightly lit illumination system of the transport ship actually began to flicker nonstop .

"What the hell is going on? Why are we unable to control the illumination system anymore?" The operations staff in charge of this facility in the transport ship shouted .

But before he could report this to the captain, another staff member responsible for a different system also cried out in shock, "Dead-ahead radar has stopped working . Not good, the port side has also stopped responding . . . "

"The surveillance system is unstable . We've got some white noise . . . "

Bad news rang out one after another in the control room . The captain broke out in cold sweat; without daring to delay, he quickly made emergency contact with the fleet's command ship . Only then did he find out that theirs was not the only transport ship to have these issues — all of the starships were experiencing these issues .

However, they could not find the reason for it right then . Just when everyone was at a loss, someone noticed that the star map of planet X193 not too far from them was different from usual . A ring of violet haze had actually appeared around the typically dull and grey planet .

This strange phenomenon made everyone take serious notice . After some specialists studied it, they discovered that that ring of violet haze was actually a magnetic storm, the very mention of which caused the expressions of the people to change, and this magnetic storm was currently spreading out at an extremely rapid pace .

A magnetic storm was an extremely terrifying phenomenon . Anywhere it descends upon, everything there would be pulverized into dust, not a trace of it left behind . But even more frightening was the fact that this magnetic storm was unstable, liable to explode at any moment . When that happened, the magnetic storm would become a magnetic tsunami, sweeping out in an instant to consume everything in the surrounding space completely .

Knowing a magnetic storm had formed over X193, the command ship ordered all the starships to ignore the disturbance to their peripheral systems and just drive forward at full speed to escape from the danger zone of the magnetic storm . Here and now, at this critical moment, the dual-system navigation of the starships showed their true value . With the malfunction of the auto-piloting system, at this time, the starships' captains true navigational ability was put to the test .

This change in the starship was instantly sensed by Ling Lan within the transport hold . A strong sense of danger rose in her heart . Without even thinking about it, Ling Lan instantly let Little Four connect to the starship's mainframe and thus found out about the magnetic storm brewing not too far from them at planet X193 .

Although the transport ships drove forwards with all its power, trying to leave the range of the magnetic storm, the speed of the transport ships was obviously slower than the patrol ships escorting them, not to mention that of the command mainship in the lead .

Little Four's knowledge of magnetic storms was obviously much deeper than those of the specialists here . He anxiously told Ling Lan that if his calculations were not wrong, the magnetic storm would erupt half an hour later . This half an hour was not at all enough for the transport ships to escape the danger zone of the resulting magnetic tsunami . In other words, if Ling Lan and the others waited patiently here in the transport ship, death would be inevitable .

According to Little Four's analysis, only the command mainship in the lead had any chance of escaping; even the patrol ships which were faster than the transport ships would not be spared . . . of course, this all still depended on whether the command mainship would begin flying at full speed from this point on .

In the command mainship, the commanding officer received a new command from the mainframe . His expression turned ugly, and there were signs of rage on his brow .

Seeing this, his adjutant asked, "General, what has happened?"

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"The mainframe is asking us to go full speed ahead and ignore the other starships behind us," said the commander in a deep voice after taking in a deep breath .

"Why?" The adjutant asked in shock .

"Because the magnetic storm will erupt completely after half an hour . Other than our mainship, the other starships have no chance of escaping," said the commander grimly .

"Then let us follow orders . Perhaps this is the best outcome the mainframe can see . " A gleam flashed through the adjutant's eyes but quickly vanished .

"But there are several hundred thousand mecha operators in the transport ships . That's several hundred thousand lives there!" As a commander, he could not abandon his own troops .

"General, this is Mecha World, and we have a mission to complete . Even if this sacrifice were necessary in reality, we must still harden our hearts and do it," reminded the adjutant .

"Ah . . . look at me . I had completely forgotten," The commander slapped his forehead, smiling wryly . Mecha World was truly too realistic, causing him to forget that he was only in a virtual world .

Divested of his concerns, the commander decisively gave the command to move forward at full speed . It was just as the adjutant had said . No matter what, he had to complete his mission — even if there were some sacrifices in the process, he could not falter . His only consolation was that this was the virtual world, so he would not carry this regret with him for life .

"Boss, terrible news! The command mainship is already moving forwards at full speed . It looks like they have discovered the eruption time of the magnetic storm . " Little Four, who had infiltrated the mainship's computers, sensed the change in the mainship's movements and immediately alerted Ling Lan .

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Ling Lan frowned at his words . She felt that they might have fallen into a scheme of the mainframe . Enraged, she raised the right arm of her mecha and broke the secured seat bindings holding it down . At the same time, she connected to the team's comms and said coldly, "We've been had . How despicable . "

"Boss, what's going on?" Ling Lan's words sent a jolt running through the hearts of all her team members, who quickly began asking her to explain .

"This reclamation event was a lure . On the command ship, there are probably some people who have been officially dispatched to investigate the base camp of the Swift Dragons . Meanwhile, the rest of us are just sacrifices to give them a legitimate reason to get close to the base camp . " Smiling coldly, Ling Lan laid out her hypothesis . Everyone's face could not help but change after hearing what she had to say .

"Our mission . . . " As if thinking of something, Han Jijyun's expression became extremely pained .

"It's like First-String said, that is likely also just an excuse . The mainframe had never put any hopes on us to succeed from the very beginning," Li Lanfeng chimed in with a cold chuckle . "We're just cannon fodder . The mainframe is obviously playing a grand game of chess, and we are all just pawns in its game . The question is whether those people on the command ship are in the same boat . "

"Who shall be whose pawns is still uncertain . " That said, Ling Lan flicked her left arm and broke the bindings on her left arm as well .

This sort of unexplained vandalism caused all the mecha operators in the same hold to glance askance at her . However, the gazes of some of the extremely bored mecha operators lit up in response . They too followed Ling Lan's lead and used force to break free from their secured seats . Having been secured in the hold for several days already, they were actually full of resentment inside . Since someone had started it, they were happy to follow suit . Being able to just move around a bit in the transport hold was still pretty good .

"A path to survival must be created by one's own hands . We need to rush over to the command ship before the magnetic storm blows up completely," Ling Lan stated her plans . Only by making their way there would they have any chance of survival . Fortunately, a mecha's short-distance speed exceeded that of the mainship's . As long as they did not drag it out too long, they would still have a chance of catching up .

As for how they would enter the mainship, Ling Lan was not worried about that . Little Four, who had already gained control rights of the mainship, would surreptitiously open the launch ports for mecha for them to slip into the mecha hold . . . of course, once they entered, they would certainly be discovered, but Ling Lan had no time to spare to worry about that right now .

At Ling Lan's order, her team members wrenched free of their secured seats without hesitation . Li Shiyu cast a pitying look at the other mecha operators in the hold and sighed, "These people . . . dying here is such a shame . Should we alert them?"

"If we delay at all, we too might become one of their numbers . When we can't even save ourselves, don't bother with useless mercy," Ling Lan chided coldly . She did not have the heart of such a saintly matron; let her first secure the lives of her companions before anything else was said .

Li Shiyu was still rather tender-hearted — Ling Lan had great admiration for Li Shiyu, truly, because a doctor needed to have this sort of tender heart . However, a dutiful military doctor not only needed to have this compassion, they also needed to be rational and cold-blooded if the situation called for it . They needed to react to the circumstance and be decisive, not hesitant in making their decisions . Ling Lan felt that on this point, Li Shiyu was still not quite there yet .

Ling Lan's words shocked Li Shiyu — he said nothing more, only quietly sticking to Ling Lan's side . He had recalled something his instructors had once said to him . A military doctor was not only a doctor, he was also a soldier . His instructor had once criticised him — on being a doctor, he was doing extremely perfectly, but on being a soldier, he was greatly lacking . On the day he finally understood what it meant to be a soldier, then he would truly become a perfect military doctor . At first, he had been extremely perplexed, but Ling Lan's words just now had triggered some vague insight in him . . .

"What are you all doing? Breaking the secured seats . . . do you not want your lives anymore? The unexpected turbulence from the high-speed flight will cause you all to be injured!" The JMC of the transport ship saw what was happening in the hold and could not help but shout in the public comms .

Some of the other mecha who were just planning to forcefully break out of their secured seats as well instantly stopped their struggling at these words . Indeed, so what if they temporarily obtained their freedom? If they hit any turbulence, without the secured seats holding them, they were very likely to be thrown into the air and ricochet around the walls of the hold violently . Even with the protection of their cockpits, that could not guarantee they would be unharmed . They might as well meekly stay in their secured seats to ensure their safety .

Thus, those mecha operators still in their secured seats no longer envied those mecha operators moving around freely . Meanwhile, those mecha operators who had already broken free were starting to regret their decision . If they truly encountered some violent turbulence after this, they who had already broken free might really receive heavy concussive damage . If that happened, their loss would outweigh the gains .

Only Ling Lan's group of nine was unrattled . They pushed aside the mecha blocking them to reach the doors of the mecha hold and began thinking how they could swiftly break apart these doors .