Bai Xingjian and the Big Bai Fleet’s story made Li Yao have a lot of mixed feelings. He did not know that such an interesting person was creating such captivating legends in the federation while he was sleeping in the hibernation capsule. He looked forward to meeting him!
Thinking for a moment, Li Yao asked, “What’s the capability of the Big Bai Fleet? How far away is it from the Burning Prairie Fleet?”
Tang Dingyuan smiled and said, “The gap is too huge. After all, one of them is an ace troop founded over a hundred years, and the other is just a miscellaneous troop founded recently.
“We’re talking about the Deep Sky Fleets that highlight bloodline, lineage, and resources most. A ground troop can be called a seasoned elite troop after twenty to thirty years of bloody battles. However, a Deep Sky Fleet is not even considered to have ‘taken shape’ until after a hundred years of development.
“First of all, the Burning Prairie Fleet is the ‘central army’ in the armed forces of the federation. A large proportion of the military budget, as well as the most advanced starships and the experimental magical equipment, is dedicated to the Burning Prairie Fleet every year.
“The Big Bai Fleet, on the hand other, is only backed by Jin Xinyue. However wealthy Jin Xinyue and Skyfire are, their money is definitely not enough when it comes to the construction of a fleet that is essentially a bottomless hole.
“Besides, a lot of state-of-the-art technologies and magical equipment cannot be bought with money. They’re all highly classified!
“Therefore, while the scale and equipment of the Big Bai Fleet are much better than other miscellaneous troops, it is absolutely no match for the Burning Prairie Fleet.
“Secondly, the officers and sailors.
“The Burning Prairie Fleet has its own talents base, Burning Prairie Military School, which educates the most distinguished students in the seven Sectors. All of them are the elites of the elites and the most rarely-seen prodigies. The tradition has lasted a hundred years. It means that the best talents of the federation have all been harvested by the Burning Prairie Fleet!
“The best talents all join the Burning Prairie Fleet, and none of them are willing to go to the not-so-reputable Big Bai Fleet, whose commander happens to be a weirdo. What can he do then?
“Bai Xingjian has resorted to his old tricks. He works harder to search for the ‘former space pirates’ who have just been released from prison. Meanwhile, by Jin Xinyue’s mediation, he tries to free some of the captives of the Uranian Ring Sector whose performance was relatively distinguished in the war before. The more terribly they beat the Burning Prairie Fleet in the war, the more Bai Xingjian likes them!
“Right. Other than the Uranian Ring Sector, although the Nether World Sector, the Water Crystal Sector, and the Forest Ocean Sector joined the New Federation in peace, there was a lot of opposition in those worlds, too. Those opposing factions are reluctant to work for the federal government, or at least not for the Burning Prairie Fleet. There’s no telling how Bai Xingjian persuaded them, but he has got a whole bunch of them into the Big Bai Fleet!
“All in all, in contrast to their pure-white camouflage, which seems to imply their brightness and gravitas, the personnel of the Big Bai Fleet are, in short, crazy fiends!
“The equipment is lesser, and the crew is just a mob that was thrown together. How can the Big Bai Fleet’s combat ability reach one tenth the Burning Prairie Fleet’s?
“However, it is perfectly normal. The Burning Prairie Fleet is an ace troop of the federation. No other troop is qualified to challenge the Burning Prairie Fleet in the first place. It is already a miracle that Bai Xingjian led the Big Bai Fleet from a ragged ‘garbage fleet’ to what it is today. We can only say that he does not have enough luck. It is quite a shame!”
Li Yao’s interest was aroused. “How so? Hasn’t his performance been always good?”
“If he weren’t so arrogant and extreme and had stayed in the Burning Prairie Fleet to follow Bai Kaixin’s command, his achievements would’ve been much greater with Bai Kaixin on his side. It must be noted that Bai Kaixin is already the Chief of Staff of the Burning Prairie Fleet, only secondary to the General Commander. He also has a lot of shares in the Glorious Sunlight Group, and he is a close friend to the big shots who were with Li Yao before!
“Yes. It’s true that Bai Xingjian’s performance in the war against the Uranian Ring Sector can be summarized as creative and unpredictable. However, tricks and schemes do not always get their way in the military. You cannot expect to win every battle with unexpected tricks!
“Perhaps because he’s hung around with the ‘former space pirates’ for too long, Bai Xingjian’s command has gradually mixed with the distinctive features of the space pirates. He sells feints and moves agilely after every battle.
“Such a tactic is truly very effective in guerilla warfare and harassment battles when leading a small-scale fleet, but that is the best it can do!
“In a strategic battle between the real main-force fleets that will decide the destiny of two superpowers in the sea of stars, such a tactic, which is similar to the bite of a bug, matters little. It can only serve as a complementary, ancillary approach!
“The antecedent of the Burning Prairie Fleet is the coalition army of the main sects of the Flying Star Sector. As a civilization of starships, the Flying Star Sector’s legacy includes profound arts on commanding large fleets. The most distinguished person in that regard is doubtlessly Yan Xinjian, who is known as the best fleet commander in the thousand years of history of the Flying Star Sector!
“Although he was an ancient person who perished hundreds of years ago, and his entire life is not a good example for other people, his commanding arts were truly ‘terrifying’. I have read many books that he left on the command of starships and analyzed a lot of his battle cases. Both the battles in which he annihilated the space pirates as the vice-commander of the coalition fleet of the six sects of the Heavenly Saints City and the battles where he resisted the coalition fleet of the Cultivators as the ‘commander of the space pirates’ after he defected to Spider Den amazed me. I did not know that such an extraordinary person would have been born at the edge of the cosmos!
“It is a pity that Yan Xinjian was born at the wrong time and perished too young. He failed to witness the great era where Kunlun was developed, the seven Sectors were fully integrated, and super starships are cruising in the sea of stars like dumplings!
“The Burning Prairie Fleet has inherited the arts of command of the ‘Flying Star School’ represented by Yan Xinjian. That is the rightful military strategies to win a war in the universe. Even I felt greatly enlightened after reading a lot of textbooks of the Burning Prairie Military School!
“Instead of learning such marvelous military strategies, Bai Xingjian walks on the wrong path and learns from the space pirate’s tactics with his petty cleverness. Isn’t it penny wise and pound foolish?
“The space pirates’ tactics might work for a while in a lone world such as the Uranian Ring Sector, but the Black Wind Fleet is definitely not something that the fleets of the Uranian Ring Sector can be compared to!
“This is what I feel most sorry for. Bai Xinghe has already demonstrated such a brilliant performance in the war against the Uranian Ring Sector, leading a garbage fleet after his mental derangement and the plummet of his level. I couldn’t help but wonder—if he had contained himself more and listened to Bai Kaixin’s command obediently years ago, after he advanced into the Nascent Soul Stage smoothly and fully absorbed the military strategies epitomized by Yan Xinjian, how tough would he have been?
“What a great shame! Bai Xingjian could’ve become a notable general that raged in the universe during the counterattack against the Imperium. However, he chose the wrong path and walked deeper into it. His great gifts and potential were wasted just like that!
“Leading a random mob that is temporarily gathered to play tricks as the commander of the mediocre ‘Big Bai Fleet’. That’s probably where Bai Xingjian’s future ends!”
Firefly was a super amalgamation of hundreds of starships. Therefore, Tang Dingyuan was both the captain of Firefly and the commander of the ‘Firefly Fleet’. He earnestly felt pity for Bai Xingjian. Shaking his head in regret, he could not have been sadder.
Scratching his chin, Li Yao somewhat felt sorry for the young man Bai Xingjian, too, but had it not been for the guy’s misfortune, his little disciple Jin Xinyue would not have been able to recruit such a ‘weirdo’ in the first place. Pondering for a moment, he asked, “What level is this Bai Xingjian at right now?”
“Bai Xingjian’s Cultivation plunged once because of mental derangement,” Tang Dingyuan replied. “It is terribly difficult to come back. In the past thirty years, Jin Xinyue has provided tremendous resources to help him train himself because he is one of the few generals on her side that is familiar with the arts of commanding starships. With all the Heavenly Materials and Earthly Treasures, he finally managed to break into the Nascent Soul Stage. Right now, he should be at the beginning level of the Nascent Soul Stage.”
“Oh? A pure admin-type one?” Li Yao knew that the commander of a troop was often an admin-type Cultivator. If they were from a ground troop or an Exo Society, they might also have talents in combat, but the commander of a fleet might be different. “How is his personal combat ability? Can he fight?”
“He should be a pure admin-type Cultivator,” Tang Dingyuan said. “Bai Xingjian was an apprentice maintainer in the Burning Prairie Fleet. But he was soon transferred to the management in the bridge and has been working there since. He is the purest admin-type Cultivator! As for exactly whether or not he can fight, he does not seem to have fought in person before. Besides, it is unreasonable to ask a captain of a starship or a commander of a fleet to fight in person. I think that his combat ability… should be unattractive, shouldn’t it?”
“Alright!” Cui Lingfeng had listened to the two of them communicating with each other at a speed ten times higher than normal. After Tang Dingyuan basically explained Bai Xingjian’s background to them, he finally concluded, “Captain Tang, let’s pause the interrogation and deal with our ‘ally’ first. Tell the Big Bai Fleet that they are allowed to stop at the outermost docks of Firefly for maintenance, but they have to wait for one day, because we have some trouble to take care of after just dealing with a rebellion of the Immortal Cultivators that wasn’t serious.
“If they are short of anything, we can send a batch of supplies to their starships first.
“Captain Lin, you will take two members of ‘Team Red Lotus’ to Bai Xingjian and inform him of the latest updates on Firefly. Make it clear that the riot has been perfectly resolved under the timely reaction of Team Red Lotus. We do not need the help of an ‘ally’ who is best at sneaking and smuggling. They’d better stay outside in case of any ‘misunderstandings’. Any problems?”
Li Yao smiled. “None at all.”
He rubbed his fists and almost could not wait to meet the great general under his little disciple’s command.
Tang Dingyuan, however, was still sighing. “Why can’t allies never trust each other?”
“Captain Tang,” Cui Lingfeng said casually, “ever since human beings invented ‘war’, ‘allies’ have always been more troublesome than ‘enemies’. Are you still not used to that?”