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Chapter 2505: The Strange s.p.a.ce
That night, Li Yao and his friends had a little farewell dinner at the Blue Sky Market that was made of various kinds of cans. It was not just for Li Yao, but also for each other.
Because of the changing situation in the frontline, the command center of the coalition army of the four Kurfürst families issued the latest order, asking the “National Protection Army” to move out in advance and block an important sailing route of the Business Alliance of Ten Thousand Sectors.
Therefore, Li Yao and Boss Bai’s Fleet would both set off tomorrow to their respective battlefield.
Although the food was only a myriad of cans, they still had quite a good time. Also, halfway through the dinner, the Fist King was here too, with a whole vacuum bottle of noodles with potatoes and eggs.
In the end, against his inhuman, cold, heartless eyes, the vacuum bottle of noodles was seized and divided by Li Yao and Boss Bai.
The Fist King was so angry that he seemed to be breaking down again.
The minor episode did not affect the farewell atmosphere. None of them slept that night and simply discussed the upcoming battle and the drastic changes that were to happen at the center of the cosmos in the near future.
It was not until the east of the artificial sky was dyed red that Li Yao finally enjoyed himself. He boarded on a super tiny stars.h.i.+p commonly known as the shuttle with Li Jialing and slowly departed from the port.
When they left, the “Coalition Fleet of Pyromaniacs”, under the disguise of “National Protection Army”, was also ready to go. The super stars.h.i.+ps modified and strengthened by Li Yao, Boss Bai, the Fist King, Xiaoming, and Wenwen took off, leaving colorful exhaust flames behind them that congregated into brilliant torrents.
Right now, the name of the fleet was only known to the few people in the Blue Sky Market and probably a few other people in the Star Glory Federation at the edge of the cosmos.
However, it was without a question that the fleet would rise unstoppably at the center of the cosmos in the near future and set the entire Pangu universe on the glamorous flames.
Li Yao, on the other hand, would also announce his grand entrance on a different battlefield in another ident.i.ty that would astound the world!
“Good luck to you.”
When the shuttle was about to depart, Boss Bai’s blessing came from the communication channel. “Li Yao, you are short of nothing except for luck sometimes. I hope that everything will go well this time.”
Li Yao grinned and replied, “We are the people who will break out of the Pangu universe and rage against billions of stars. Is the Imperium anything worth mentioning at all?”
Half a month later, in a desolate s.p.a.ce zone not far away from the “Seven Seas Grand Market”, the headquarters of the Business Alliance of Ten Thousand Sectors, countless remnants of stars.h.i.+ps had congregated into an overwhelming torrent of garbage, like a universal highway made of broken stones.
It was an invisible sailing route in s.p.a.ce—the shortest distance from one perfect jump point to the next.
Although a super-remote s.p.a.ce jump could theoretically bring a stars.h.i.+p from any point of the universe to another one, such s.p.a.ce jumps had a high demand on the precision of the s.p.a.ce jump units on the stars.h.i.+ps and the physical and mental fitness of the pa.s.sengers. They also needed to consume astronomical fuel.
Sometimes, it was not even a problem of the cost of the fuel, but certain high-purity, extremely-precious special hybrid fuel that had to be injected into the s.p.a.ce jump devices in order to activate a super-remote s.p.a.ce jump across hundreds of Sectors.
Such special fuel, as well as the ingredients it was made of, namely the rarely-seen marrow crystals and Heavenly Materials and Earthly Treasures, was mostly monopolized by the n.o.bles and the military. Only the advanced wars.h.i.+ps were qualified to use it.
For the general business stars.h.i.+ps and carriers, they could not afford such expensive fuel, and the weak bodies of the pa.s.sengers often could not bear the damage when they were dissected into the four-dimensional state for too long.
Therefore, they could only jump from one Sector to a neighboring Sector and gradually reach their destination in the way of “leap-frogging”.
When they performed the short-distance jumps, in order to preserve the fuel, they had to find the places that were least stable in the three-dimensional world and easiest to create wormholes in the Sector. Such places were exactly the jump points marked on the s.p.a.ce map.
The shortest route between two jump points was not necessarily a straight line.
Making use of the gravitational force of the planets or even stars so that the vehicles would be thrown out again and again as if it were on a slingshot, would significantly boost its speed.
In the meantime, there were a lot of terrifying areas among the jump points that were savaged by s.p.a.ce storms and broken meteoroids. The garbage and remnants caused by wars and other activities of human beings might deal a fatal blow on the business stars.h.i.+ps too.
To make use of the gravitational force of the stars and the planets and to avoid the dangerous areas, the sailing routes among the jump points turned into zigzagging curves. Only the most experienced captains could stick to the sailing route accurately, reaching a perfect compromise among time, safety, and fuel consumption.
The campaigns between the four families and the Business Alliance of Ten Thousand Sectors, on the other hand, were often fought around the sailing routes too.
In the past three months, the branch fleets of the two parties already had a thousand brief yet cruel conflicts on various sailing routes. Countless stars.h.i.+ps had been destroyed, the ordinary people and the Immortal Cultivators on them buried in the cold vacuum alike. The precious cargoes had also been reduced into garbage, scattered on the sailing route as lackl.u.s.ter road signs, exactly like the debris floating on the sailing route ahead.
After three months of fierce battles, the sailing routes around the Seven Seas Grand Market were almost half blocked.
But on the remaining half sailing routes, the number of business teams had been more than doubled, showing abnormal prosperity.
It couldn’t be helped. However fierce the battle was, life had to go on. As the headquarters of the Business Alliance of Ten Thousand Sectors, the “Seven Seas s.p.a.ce Zone” where the Seven Seas Grand Market was located was originally one of the most convenient business and logistics centers with the most abundant and stable wormholes at the edge of the Imperium. It shared a lot of similar features with the capital of the Imperium.
The goods from countless Sectors and resource planets had to be transferred in the Seven Seas s.p.a.ce Zone in order to be sent to the worlds that were in dire need of them.
Such goods were either the fertilizers that were demanded in farming, or the central filtering units in the water or air cleaning system, or a certain special medicine to kill some type of plague… All in all, they were the indispensable items for many worlds, resource planets, and s.p.a.ce towns.
Without those goods, the whole town, planet, or world would be caught in a crisis. Therefore, no matter how fierce the battle was going on, people had to risk pa.s.sing through the battle area and making purchases in the Seven Seas Grand Market.
At this moment, there was exactly such a fleet made of more than ten ragged, half-armed business stars.h.i.+ps that were sailing on the sailing route, which was full of debris, carefully.
A lot of the debris still had an extremely high temperature. Some of the units deep inside the debris were even having intense reactions. Now and then, colorful light b.a.l.l.s were bursting out, staring at the small fleet like an abnormal skull.
The debris was a result of a fierce battle not a long time ago.
It suggested that the sailing route was very likely to be a perilous battlefield. The fleets of the four families, the fleets of the Business Alliance of Ten Thousand Sectors, or the ferocious s.p.a.ce pirates… All kinds of tigers and wolves were lurking in the dark s.p.a.ce, ready to lunge out and bite the prey.
Many thoughtful eyes were even watching the tiny business team closely right now. It was only because they appeared too shabby that the predators were reluctant to waste fuel and ammunitions to rob them.
Such an understanding made the business team even more panicked and cautious.
At the end of the business team, there was a stars.h.i.+p that was fat, dumb, and rusted, leaving the impression that it had a history of hundreds of years. The head of the stars.h.i.+p was carved with a silly black bear, and below it was the name of the stars.h.i.+p—Little Bear.
It was not a stars.h.i.+p suitable for long voyages but only apt for the commutation between neighboring Sectors.
In order to adapt it to the “leap-frogging voyages”, the master of Little Bear gritted his teeth and modified the stars.h.i.+p at a great cost. Too many patches had been added to the sh.e.l.l of the stars.h.i.+p, making it look even more obese and clumsy, exactly like the ten or so stars.h.i.+ps ahead of them.
Although they looked alike, those stars.h.i.+ps never knew each other before. They were from different Sectors and belonged to certain lone small merchants. They simply ran into each other in the last supply port and decided to sail together to add to each other’s confidence.
Although more than ten of the business stars.h.i.+ps had been gathered, they would be killed altogether should they encounter looting wars.h.i.+ps. But at the very least, it was a psychological comfort, however illusory it was.
Huo Dongling did not like the strange s.p.a.ce outside at all.
Her father was the owner and captain of Little Bear, and she had grown up on Little Bear. She sailed with her father so often that she thought that she was a real “child of s.p.a.ce”.
However, they had always been cruising in a peaceful familiar s.p.a.ce near their hometown. There were his father’s old friends and brothers who would greet them after they reached every port and who would offer her all kinds of weird fruits and toys. She would be returning home after every ten to fifteen days. That was the travel that Huo Dongling was used to.
But the travel this time was simply too different.
Huo Dongling and Little Bear had never sailed this far before. She had crossed too many strange s.p.a.ce zones and saw the twisted remnants too many times. She had even heard earsplitting alarms several times as the stars.h.i.+p burnt the fuel crazily and tried to escape. Little Bear was never more vulnerable before, and her father had never looked more gloomy.
Huo Dongling had even heard her father’s panicked moans when he was half asleep. That was her father who was as strong as a tower and who was fearless even in front of a s.p.a.ce storm!
The familiar s.p.a.ce in the past became so strange, depressing, cold, and perilous, making Huo Dong have an illusion—were they sailing in s.p.a.ce, or had they crawled into the mouth of a giant beast without them knowing it, and they were about to be completely corrupted by the infinite darkness?