Translator:Atlas StudiosEditor:Atlas Studios
Dark clouds covered the sky, and the moon and the stars were nowhere to be seen.
The ground base was brightly lit, and columns of light tore through the surrounding darkness. The guards were searching everywhere for something, and armored vehicles rolled past one after another with their loud engines blaring through the still night. Helicopters lit up their searchlights and were searching as well, causing circles of light to cut through swaths of empty ground.
The large-scale search gave Han Xiao and Hila quite the headache. Thankfully, Hila was well acquainted with the local terrain, and they were able to avoid all the pursuing soldiers. Eventually, they hid themselves in the shadow of a metal building situated at the edge of the base as they observed the distant Germinal army formations toward the south.
The troops toward the south and the base were separated by an inclined area. Based on the duo’s observation, heading straight out would just make them easy targets for the search parties. At this moment, there seemed to be some commotion toward the south, as countless lights were suddenly turned on. It was as if a miniature sun had appeared in the dark scenery.
“This is bad. They have drastically increased the personnel on the ground, and it’s impossible to pass without drawing their attention. Once we’re found, they will kill us all,” Hila said with a heavy voice.
The organization’s forces seemed to be endless. Although they were being defeated at every turn by the Six Nations’ combined army, it was still a force to be reckoned with. On the other hand, they were but two people, and trying to force their way out would be possible. They should consider some other ways to stealthily sneak away.
Han Xiao gave the massive number of troops a few glances before speaking calmly. “Tanks, artilleries Heh. They’re basically prepared to fight a war. It’s quite a feat they have pulled just to deal with us.”
“More like to deal with you. We’re just addons.” Hila was expressionless, and she asked, “Do you not have any reinforcements?”
She felt like Han Xiao definitely had some help when infiltrating the Germinal headquarters. Since that was the case, he must have arranged the extraction.
Yet Han Xiao shook his head immediately, making her feel like her heart just dropped.
“No help” Hila could not hold it in and asked, “Then what’s your plan now? Germinal won’t stop looking for us. Even if we somehow break out of this encirclement, there will still be countless pursuers after us.”
“I’ll just see.” Han Xiao did not really care about it and went back to preparing his equipment.
Hila frowned. If help was not coming, then what was the point of following Han Xiao?
The one Germinal wanted was him, and her sister would be safer if they were to split up. She thought that since she had already helped him leave the headquarters, she had already returned the favor. So, it would not be immoral to suggest to split up.
For Aurora, Hila was willing to do anything.
Let’s just try to get out of here first
Hila calmed herself down, stopped paying attention to what Han Xiao was doing, and just focused on observing the troops ahead.
At the same time, toward the south, the large searchlights all shone on the inclined ground, and nothing could have escaped their observations. There were heavy turrets set up every fifty meters, ready to send out a wave of metal bullets on command.
Different scenes of the encirclement were all sent back to the control room back in headquarters so that the leader could control the situation in real time.
Among the troops stationed toward the south were the group of players who had been recruited by Germinal and formed into their own Inhuman squad. They were grouped up in their own camp, ready for orders. The mission to intercept Zero had not failed, and the players were astounded when they saw the large formations of Germinal troops deployed to catch Zero.
“We won’t be able to help much. Isn’t this basically just a free mission?”
“You’re right. Maybe this is sort of like a cutscene, where we can only watch,” said Electrolux, who had also been recently recruited. Foreign players were not uncommon on Planet Aquamarine, and none thought his presence was odd. No one knew that he was actually a European spy.
“Hey. Do any of you know anything about Zero’s origins?”
A player with the ID White Hunt said, “I do.”
The moment he spoke, the crowd was interested and started to throw in more questions.
White Hunt, a top player from Temple of God, had obtained information from the Guild of Gods, which was why he came to Germinal to trigger the Intercept Zero mission. As he described the process of how Zero single handedly manipulated events to hinder Germinal’s activities on the planet, the other players could not help but be shocked.
“Sounds like an amazing person.”
“Doesn’t he sound like a character from the main storyline? He escaped from the original Germinal base by himself and has now sent the organization to the brink of collapse. He must at least be a Legend on this planet to be able to manipulate massive wars like this!”
“Maybe he’s Planet Aquamarine’s protagonist Oh no! My reputation with him is -30,” someone screamed in distress.
White hunt laughed at that. “Although he may be a character in the main storyline, he shouldn’t be someone we will have to interact with in the future, or else we wouldn’t have lost so many reputation points just from being his enemy.”
The crowd nodded at that. Strong but unimportant NPCs were not unheard of in the game. Since they would not be interacting, having reputation points with him would not do much for them.
After some observation, Hila finally said, “This path is too dangerous. Let’s try another place.”
She heard noises behind her as she said that. Han Xiao seemed to be preparing some sort of equipment while he explained, “The search parties have already narrowed down all the possible escape routes. The longer we wait, the more dangerous it is, and it’s the same everywhere.
“Then do you have an idea?”
“We rush them.”
Frowning, Hila answered without looking back at him, “The enemies are too many; even if we take out several hundred, we will still eventually fall to their human wave tactic. Only death awaits us if we charge in like that. Let’s look for an opening.”
However, Han Xiao seemed to have already made up his mind and said confidently, “Make sure you keep up.”
Hila was going to question where that confidence came from when she heard some sort of machinery activating behind her. She turned around and was shocked by what she saw. Han Xiao’s appearance was completely different. She was now looking at a streamlined suit of jet-black mechanical armor with faint blue lights glowing through the gaps of the suit. This breathtaking scene brought about an abrupt realization.
This figure, this suit, there was no doubt It was way too famous. The whole Germinal, no, the whole world knew him.
Hila could no longer hold her calm and had a look of disbelief on her face.
At that moment, she realized what had happened. No wonder how Han Xiao could infiltrate the Germinal headquarters alone without any sort of backup. He was someone who stood at the top. A one-man army!
So, this is the truth!
Thinking back on the news that she had read about Black Phantom, Han Xiao’s life these past few years was far from that of a runaway fugitive. He was always right in front of everyone, including Germinal, showing off his powers and making a legend of himself, one step at a time.
Hila had witnessed Han Xiao at his weakest, and she never thought that he would one day stand at the top and far surpass her.
“You, you” Hila was lost for words.
Han Xiao gently patted the still shocked Hila and made large strides toward the troops in the south as he exuded a sort of confidence exclusive to the powerful.
The built-in tactical screen in his helmet gave him a quick analysis of the battlefield as he strode down the slope toward the enemy without a care. As he approached, dozens of powerful lights instantly shone onto him, making his figure as detailed as possible to the onlookers.
When everyone saw this figure, they took a while to react.
“Why is Black Phantom here?” Kedor was confused.
Once they looked past Han Xiao, they finally saw Hila.
This was when shock, realization, and fear suddenly went through the minds of all present.
“Zero is Black Phantom!”
When the truth finally revealed itself, everyone was stunned and could not do anything but stare.
Kedor, the field commander, had also lost his wits and forgot to order his men to attack.
All the executives on the field suddenly felt a gust of cold air blow up their spines and into their minds. All those who had opposed Black Phantom had ended up as corpses.
This name instilled fear in all those who heard it.
Han Xiao crouched lightly, brought his arms behind him, and got into a pre-jump position as the booster on his back let out bright red lights. The sound of a spinning turbine got more and more intense, and the faint blue light that filled the lining along his suit sent energy all over his body. The mechanic muscles grew in size as the suit entered the Strengthened state.
Boosters appeared on his waist, behind his arms, legs, and between the gaps in the suit. These boosters released an invisible force and bended the air behind Han Xiao. Back in the shelter, Han Xiao had made countless modifications to Viper and added a number of modules. It was now much stronger than before.
This was the advantage of being a mechanic. Even as other classes started to face bottlenecks, he could always continue to upgrade his equipment and steadily increase his strength.
“Attack! Attack, now!” Kedor finally reacted and roared his commands. His men were startled into action and started to lock the machine guns onto Han Xiao.
Yet, right before they could open fire, a huge boom sounded as Han Xiao exploded off the ground and sent dirt flying everywhere like an artillery shell had hit where he was standing.
Han Xiao launched away and flew right into the enemy formation. One after another, the Germinal soldiers were sent into the air.
At that moment, chaos fell upon the battlefield!