Somewhere on Planet Aquamarine was a land filled with extremely high concentrations of nuclear radiation. The environment was desolate and full of decay, with thick smog and dust filling every inch of the area. The blue sky was covered by the haze, and a thick layer of white ash covered the ground. Without a single patch of green as far as the eye could see, the place seemed utterly devoid of life.
At this time, there were over a dozen narrow, shuttle-type spaceships quietly parked in the area. A group of mixed-blood Godorans were fiddling with a bunch of strange looking machinery.
This group was an ordinary vanguard force from DarkStar, with only the leader having reached Grade B. Their main objective was to infiltrate and conceal themselves, without any need to fight. Even their spaceships were kept in stealth mode, shielding themselves from all sorts of detection equipment. Han Xiao’s fleet had already scanned the entire planet once, but they had ultimately been unable to discover this small force. DarkStar had invested most of their resources into various forms of stealth and anti-tracking technology, or else they would have been wiped out long ago.
DarkStar had placed an infiltration team on each of the planets that held the Mutation Source. Their mission was to monitor the disaster at a close range, using specialized machinery to observe the growth stage of the mutation source’s main body in order to determine its growth. This set of machinery was a gift from the same dealer of the mutation source, truly a kindhearted interstellar arms dealer.
However, the vanguard was not aware of the location of the Mutation Source, and they did not intend to search for it. This was the command given to them by the top brass.
In fact, a month ago, this vanguard from DarkStar had successfully infiltrated Planet Aquamarine. However, they had not shown their faces, instead relying on advanced Virtual Technology to link up with the satellites of the Six Nations. Through this ‘sharing of vision’, they were able to observe the mutation disaster and the destruction brought about to the planet. However, they were unconcerned about such intelligence. It was only after Black Star appeared that the vanguard team started to pay attention, transmitting the news to headquarters.
The top brass stationed at the headquarters of DarkStar were extremely concerned about the development of the plan, and with Black Star causing them to lose one of their veterans the last time, they had long treated him as an enemy. This news caused them to feel some surprise, but after a round of discussion, they discovered that the reason Black Star appeared back on Planet Aquamarine was not because of them.
“I’ve investigated it, and Planet Aquamarine is actually Black Star’s hometown. It’s merely a coincidence that we chose this planet, and Planet Aquamarine should have some means to communicate with Black Star. Now that the disaster has struck, they probably requested assistance from Black Star, thus bringing about such a situation. The appearance of Black Star has nothing to do with us.”
“In actual fact, this is the most plausible explanation. We’ve stayed in the darkness. Up till now, no one should know that this mutation disaster is our plan.”
“The disaster relief squad from Godora is about to arrive on the various planets. Just one more Black Star is merely another reinforcement, and Planet Aquamarine is just one of our many planets. It will not affect our plans.”
While they were hostile toward Han Xiao, their plan was more important. In order not to alert the enemy, DarkStar had rejected the idea of attacking Han Xiao. Furthermore, after investigation, they had discovered that he owned a BlackLight Stealth and could run anytime he wanted without them being able to obstruct him.
In their eyes, it was a coincidence that Han Xiao had appeared, and this would not affect the big picture. There was no need for them to be anxious and reveal themselves—the mission was still more important.
The Mutation Disaster was the core of DarkStar’s plan, and the crucial part lay in their next few steps. All they needed to do was wait for the opportunity.
In the following days, the regional problems within the Garton Star System grew more intense. While the other advanced civilizations watched from the sidelines, nobody wished to help. The unlucky planets were all situated around the administrative region of Godora, so according to diplomatic regulations, the problem ought to be handled by Godora.
The other advanced civilizations did not bother to stick their hands into this affair, but nobody reproached them. However, if Godora failed to handle the planets in their administrative region, that would be a stain on their name.
Sending disaster relief was optional, of course, but it would affect the civilization’s status and standing within the Shattered Star Ring. Their allies in the system would also start to re-evaluate their relationship with Godora. As a member of the Lawful Faction, they were a few rules to be observed. For Godora to reinforce its status as the dominant party in the Garton Star System, they had to quell the turmoil of public opinion. As such, they would not sit idly by and would send out disaster relief squads for humanitarian reasons.
Spaceships departed one after another from the space station in Godora, proceeding toward the different planets in each star zone. The Six Nations finally received the news that the Godoran spaceship was heading toward Planet Aquamarine.
The upper echelons of the Six Nations were so touched that they almost cried. After suffering for over a month, Godora had finally remembered that it was the parent of all these countries and was willing to pop by.
The technology of Planet Aquamarine was naturally unable to discover the source of the mutation disaster, but they believed that the Godoran technology could definitely do so. With the aid provided by Godora, the disaster would soon be solved.
Even though the Six Nations had deferred to Han Xiao to request for assistance, the long-established status of Godora to the Six Nations would not be weakened so easily. Black Star had promised them that the mutation disaster would be removed in the future, but currently, he had no way whatsoever to identify the source of the disaster. This could not solve their current urgent needs. Hence, toward the problem of the mutation disaster, the Six Nations would still put more trust in Godora than Black Star.
On the day of arrival for the Godoran spaceship, the Six Nations led a delegation of senior officials to wait at the agreed landing spot, the coordinates of which they had sent to Godora in advance.
“This is the first time that the Godoran Civilization has come on a large scale. We have to bring out the best etiquette in welcoming them.”
To be able to see the Godora fleet was a huge event for the whole civilization. Even if the Six Nations were currently placed in a difficult situation, they had managed to recover some semblance of law and order. To ensure that they would graciously receive their ‘savior’, the Six Nations did not dare mistreat them and actually prepared a grand ceremony.
However, the Six Nations were also at a loss. This was the first time that they would meet with a galactic civilization. They were unaware of the culture of Godorans, and they did not know what the situation in the galaxy was. They were afraid of causing any misunderstandings.
On this day, the Six Nations’ astrology centers kept their attention on the sky at all times. Their mission was to be the first to discover the traces of the Godoran spaceships.
In the afternoon, when the sun was at its most piercing, a fleet slowly entered the atmosphere of Planet Aquamarine. Golden spaceships emerged from the clouds, slowly flying over Planet Aquamarine. This satellite imagery was immediately passed on to the Six Nations.
The leaders perked up, preparing with anxious hearts to receive the Godorans at the landing point.
At this time, the observers suddenly sent out an urgent report. “That’s not right, the Godorans have suddenly changed their course. They are no longer approaching us!”
The officials that were stationed at the landing site were shocked and hurriedly referred to the satellite imagines. All they saw was the Godoran fleet not approaching their predetermined location but instead heading toward the Sanctuary.
The eyes of the leaders of the Six Nations instantly bulged in disbelief.
The exchanges between civilizations should technically be handled by the Six Nations, and besides, they were the ones who had requested assistance. Why had Godora thrown them to a corner and instead run over to Black Star?
They were the true rulers of the planet!
They had initially wanted to personally come into contact with the Godorans, displaying the etiquette of Planet Aquamarine. However, the reality proved different from their imaginations. Their painstakingly prepared welcome ceremony was wasted, and the upper echelons of the Six Nations wanted to cry, but no tears could come out. They only had one thought.
To Godora, could it be that the entire civilization of Planet Aquamarine cannot compare to one Black Star‽
The leaders of the Six Nations only felt a wave of humiliation rush up to their heads as they thought about the contents of their conversation with Han Xiao—If you wish to talk on equal terms, you have to first leave the planet.
The golden spaceships hovered outside the Sanctuary, and the players ran out in droves to surround them, exclaiming.
Bennett knew of the Six Nations requesting assistance from Godora, but he did not expect the fleet to come over. He also hurriedly ran out to welcome them.
The underside of all the spaceships opened, shooting out yellow gravitational beams. The Godorans appeared one by one, just like the ships were laying eggs.
The disaster relief squad slowly approached the ground, the head of command being Nagakin.
There was a number of new residential areas outside the Sanctuary walls to accommodate the refugees. When the soldiers and refugees saw this scene, their mouths opened wide, their faces sluggish. This was the first time that they had seen Godorans, and they were both curious and nervous, staring at the aliens without blinking.
Bennett had seen Han Xiao capture one of them in the past, so he managed to maintain a calm image as he walked up.
“Respected Godoran friends, I am Bennett, currently in charge of manning this Sanctuary. I represent Planet Aquamarine in welcoming all of you and thank you for your generosity in providing aid. Our planet is direly in need of your help.”
Nagakin did not speak but instead pointed up at the spaceships hovering above the Sanctuary. Using the translator, he said in a severe tone, “What is with the spaceships above here?”
Planet Aquamarine was a simple planet, and the Godoran troops naturally felt a sense of superiority. They did not place the natives in their eyes, but to actually see a fleet of interstellar ships there, they could not help but feel curious.
The reason for the Godorans changing course to the Sanctuary was not because they knew that Han Xiao was present, but rather, they had discovered the fleet under Han Xiao’s command. Thus, Nagakin had commanded the troops to change course, not landing at the agreed coordinates. This was to investigate the reason behind the fleet’s appearance.
Nagakin possessed the strength of a Calamity Grade Super, and even the aura that he unconsciously displayed was enough to cause Bennett’s heart to tighten. He could feel a dangerous aura from the person in front of him, causing him fright. For a moment, he forgot how to speak.
At this moment, Han Xiao appeared from the crowd and laughed. “Nagakin, we meet again.”
“It’s you!” Nagakin opened his eyes wide. His severe expression immediately dissipated like storm clouds after a rain, leaving an expression of joy. He boomed in laughter, taking large strides to give Han Xiao a passionate bear hug.
In the last battle when they worked side by side, Han Xiao had left Nagakin on a deep impression regarding his strength. He could not forget Han Xiao and immediately recognized him at a glance.
“Black Star‽ Hahaha, to think that you’re here too!”
Compared to the disdain Nagakin that had toward the people on Planet Aquamarine, he was jovial toward Han Xiao, literally a heaven and earth difference when compared with each other.
Hearing his exclamation, the people behind Nagakin let out a hubbub of chatter.
“It’s indeed Black Star!”
“The one who killed a Calamity Grade Super together with Commander Nagakin!”
The Godorans hid their arrogance, letting out expressions of surprise as they conversed.
Seeing the duo, Bennett let his surprise show, stammering in disbelief, “You… you two know each other‽”
Han Xiao let go of Nagakin, smiling, as he replied, “Didn’t I tell you before? I have many friends in the interstellar region.”
Bennett could only numbly nod. He did remember Han Xiao mentioning it before, but he did not know the exact circumstances. To suddenly see the Godoran commander calling Han Xiao ‘brother’, only then did he have a clearer picture of Han Xiao’s status within the interstellar region.
“You seem to have adapted better than I imagined.” Bennett sighed as he replied in a complicated tone.
In the past, Han Xiao had once invited Bennett to join him, but he had chosen to remain in Planet Aquamarine. Right now, the disparity between the two was already so far apart. He himself was almost frightened to death by the commander’s aura, but the other party seemed to be really friendly toward Han Xiao.
Bennett only experienced a moment of distress and quickly recovered his original attitude, secretly happy for Han Xiao.
From afar, the players were all whispering.
“To think that the Godorans have also come to our planet.”
“The commander opposite seems to be someone familiar to our head.”
“I remember that in the videos of Bun-Hit-Dog, the head had a good relationship with the Godorans. These should be the reinforcements that the head himself called over to help.”
“That’s insane, the head really has some status.”
“You really have no knowledge. Do you think the term ‘Black Star Network’ was coined for fun?”
Ever since Han Xiao began to recruit the players, the way that they addressed him had started to change. They no longer called him Black Star, rather changing to the term ‘Head’ instead. Even those players who had not joined the Mercenary Group also began to call him such, as this made the players feel closer to him. Before long, this title became popular in the forums, and it stuck as his new nickname.
Because the videos of Bun-Hit-Dog had recorded many stories of the Black Star Mercenary Group, the players were aware that Han Xiao not only had the backing of Floating Dragon but also alliances with many of the famed mercenary groups in the galaxy. In addition, they even had a good relationship with many of the lawful civilizations. Thus, someone had jokingly come up with the term Black Star Network. A lot of them felt that it really made sense. After seeing the videos, they resonated with the name, and it quickly became a trend.
The intelligence of the players was, however, limited, and they were still unaware that the Mutation Disaster was the scheme played between Godora and DarkStar, and they also were not aware that it was the Six Nations that had requested help from Godora… In short, they did not know anything, and thus, at this juncture, they still thought that the Godoran fleet had been summoned by Han Xiao.
Indeed, it is the Black Star Network!
Nagakin was jubilant for a while, but he suddenly recalled his own mission and raised a question. “That’s right, why are you here?”
Han Xiao’s expression did not change as he replied, “This planet is my hometown, and my objective is the same as yours. I’m here to also stop the disaster, and now is the time that I need the Godorans’ help. Let’s not dilly-dally. Let’s just go in and talk.”