ABO Cadets - Chapter 110. The Nine-Tailed Fox
Chapter 110. The Nine-Tailed Fox
The news of the Nine-Tailed Fox being finished was passed down to Ling Yu from Berg. He hadn’t seen the live broadcast at that time and he wasn’t aware of General Auguste publicly announcing the abolition of the royal family at the Marshal’s funeral. When Berg gazed upon the TV screen in Ling Yu’s room, the news had already begun to report the establishment of a new government and that General Auguste had assumed office as the interim president.
Berg dazedly stared at the screen, his face blanched to a sickly white in a flash, he found himself unable to speak a single word for what felt like ages.
Ling Yu walked up to him with unease coating his every step and spoke in a soft, even tone: “Berg. Rosen and I are trying to connect to His Majesty’s personal communicator. Unfortunately, the communication signal on the Capital Star seems to be under complete and total surveillance, it’s impossible to get through…”
In fact, they contacted His Majesty as soon as they returned to Naomi Star, but the signal wasn’t able to connect. At that time, they thought it was the defensive network that was cutting communication from the interior to the outside world. It was now apparent that the communication signals on the Capital Star were being closely monitored by the military— obviously, Auguste and the rest had everything all prepped and tied off with a neat little bow.
Ling Yu lightly frowned and said: “Do you not know how the King and Queen are doing either?”
Berg took a deep breath, looked back at Ling Yu, and spoke in the most leveled tone he could muster: “Wang Xiong had asked me to leave the Capital Star along with the Nine-Tailed Fox, he had also seen Xiwei off ahead of time. He had obviously anticipated that the military would stage a coup. With his personality being as it is, he should have already arranged a set of countermeasures…”
Meanwhile, on the Capital Star.
Auguste’s face was weighed down by deep darkness, he slammed the file in his hand straight onto the table and ran his cold gaze over his subordinates: “What are you saying? You didn’t find His Majesty and the Queen? The Imperial Palace isn’t that large, Trent and Anna couldn’t have just disappeared into thin air, now could they?!”
His underling spoke, each word choked out between their trembles of fear: “General, we-we’ve already searched the Imperial Palace up and down, we also figured out a way to open the defensive wall set in His Majesty’s palace, but… inside that palace… there wasn’t a single soul in sight!”
Nobody was there?!
Auguste’s face became even more difficult to look at!
Prior to the funeral preparations, he had promptly sent troops to surround the Imperial Palace. At that time, His Majesty Trent had activated the Imperial Palace’s internal self-isolation system. When this highest level mechanism was put into play, a spherical defensive shell was erected around the Imperial Palace’s perimeter. The defensive shell was manufactured with special materials and was able to withstand extreme artillery barrage and any ensuing bombardments, preventing everything from falling to ruin. It could temporarily ensure the safety of those in the palace.
Auguste hadn’t cared much if it all about it at the time, as he saw it, His Majesty was hidden away in the palace, no matter what it was a pretty solid case of catching a turtle in a jar, intercepting him was inevitable.
Yet past all expectations, when the funeral came to its end, the Thunder Legion’s Defense Unit finally figured out a way to crack the code and open the defensive cover, but they were nevertheless welcomed to a deserted palace— His Majesty and the Queen had just up and vanished!
Auguste looked at the real-time projection of the palace sent by his subordinates, his frown deepened and he said nothing.
A man in a navy blue military uniform beside him suddenly made his way over right then, he raised his head and scanned his eyes over the monitor screen, lightly stroking his chin, he whimsically contemplated: “It seems that old fox Trent is much more cunning than you an I gave him credit for. He might have caught on to something ages ago, there must be a secret passageway in this palace.” After he finished speaking, he squinted his eyes and pointed to the magnificent palace, saying without a shred of emotion: “Search the whole palace, leave no stones unturned and take note of any mechanisms inside. If you can’t find anything, then blow up the entire palace and search the underground!”
The underling immediately saluted and replied: “Understood! General!”
After the subordinate withdrew, Auguste then turned around and looked over at the man with a smile stretched across his face, he spoke with a low hush: “Ivan, has the Star Legion not made any moves of their own?”
General Ivan Stork, the commander of the Phantom Legion, smiled slightly and said, “That old fellow Byron upon seeing that the Imperial Palace had been completely surrounded by us, received inspiration to keep his head down and look the other way. He holed himself up in his apartment like a turtle pulling its head into its shell.”
“It seems he doesn’t have the guts to stand against us.” Auguste paused before continuing on: “What about Udir and Drew? Have you heard anything back about them from those people you sent?”
The corners of Ivan’s lips pulled back and he spoke with a smile: “Drew is trapped in Naomi Star, there’s no way for him to escape. As for Udir, he has reportedly bought a few strange plants and has been placing his full attention in growing them on Po Military Star. Rest assured, all movements are under our surveillance.”
Auguste nodded and said: “Then everything is going well within the parameters.”
—They have been sowing the seeds for their plot for so long, discharging Ling Yu from the military registry, dissolving the great threat of that which the Dark Night Legion imposed upon them, then schemed to send Rosen to his death, transfer the Hydra Legion, cherry-picking each and every trustworthy force away from the throne… How could they not come out victorious?
The two looked at each other and smiled in synchronization to one another, seeming to see the golden dawn of a new era shining in each other’s eyes.
Although Ling Yu and Rosen were worried that something had happened to His Majesty, Berg had a deeper insight into his Wang Xiong’s character. Since it had been said that His Majesty had become aware of it to some extent, with a person such as himself, he definitely wouldn’t sit and just wait for death to befall him. He may have planned an escape route from the Imperial Palace well in advance.
His Majesty and the Queen may just be hidden away somewhere safe…
Thinking along with this reasoning, the two people were able to ease their worries a smidge.
Rosen looked back at Ling Yu and said: “I will go back to reinstate my control over the Honor Legion tonight! Those in the Honor Legion who swore loyalty to me dwarfs whatever the number of lackeys Kerriman has on the inside. Kerriman wants to be the head of Honor Legion, what a joke!”
Ling Yu said: “I will bring the Dark Night Legion to back you.”
Rosen light laid his arms on Ling Yu’s shoulders and whispered: “You’re fine just where you are.”
Ling Yu raised the corners of her lips. “Kerriman is essentially my ex-subordinate. And now he’s climbed to the rank of a commander of a legion. Naturally, I ought to give him a congratulatory gift.”
Every time Ling Yu thought of killing a man, he would ever so slightly raise the corners of his lips and stretch them into a chilling smile.
Rosen looked at his cold smile and couldn’t help drawing him towards himself, his mind a bit scrambled— He was pregnant and was still thinking of ways to kill someone at every turn in the road, would the little one inside him be affected?
Ling Yu was very confused by Rosen’s stare, he turned around and asked: “What’s wrong?”
Rosen gave a quick smile, “Nothing.”
He just felt that this pregnant general of his who was still actively leading his troops into battle was a bit too frightening.
Berg glanced at the two of them and said: “Kerriman will officially take over the position of the Glory Legion’s commander at 8 o’clock tonight. There are two hours to prepare. Wouldn’t it be better to take Xiao Yuan and Caesar over to the Nine-Tailed Fox to complete the compatibility matching? This mech will definitely come in handy moving forward.”
Ling Yu spoke quickly: “Okay, I was thinking along the same lines, I hope Xiao Yuan can handle the Nine-Tailed Fox.”
As soon as his voice fell, there was a burst of sudden knocks on the door. Rosen turned to open the door and was greeted with the sight of Lin Yuan and Caesar standing side by side outside the door.
Ling Yu went to the door, looked at his son, saying: “Xiao Yuan, what good timing, I’ll take the two of you to see the mech.”
Everyone under the guidance of Berg walked down together into the area designed to store the Nine-Tailed Fox.
It was a fairly expansive space, stretching on for more than fifty meters in both length and width. A gigantic mech was placed in the center of the room. The orange metal seemed to be gilded in a warm sheen of gold under the illumination of the light, reflecting the dazzling luster. The smooth contours of its body made out to be the remarkably realistic shape of a fox. The fox-type mech was crouched in place like it was itching for battle. The large nine tails loosely hung behind it, the gigantic mech in it of itself was like a work of art built with painstaking precision and care.
Lin Yuan was struck dumb!
This mech was the most beautiful one he’d ever seen…
Its warm orange color, its fox likeness, and its nine big tails hanging behind him shone a whole new light on what Lin Yuan thought he’d understood about mechs. This was the first he’d realized that mechs could really be crafted like this…
Because of the light-footed and nimble characteristics of foxes, many mech makers in the Empire have tried to make fox-type mechs, but Lin Yuan has only seen a fox-type mech with one singular tail before, there has never been a fox with nine tails before!
To make a Nine-Tailed Fox, you must have superlative technology for parts assembly and installation. The intelligence center must exercise control over the nine tails, with the neural circuit connection along with that, it would be hundreds of times more complicated than ordinary mechs. This mech evidently stands as the Empire’s peak level of achievement!
It is really a next-level mech equal to none!
Looking at his son’s excitement, Ling Yu couldn’t help reaching out and pat his head, asking: “Do you like it?”
Lin Yuan nodded like a pestle pounding into a mortar: “I like it! This mech is so cool!”
Ling Yu smiled and said: “If you like it, try to pilot it and it’ll be yours.”
Lin Yuan was stunned, he looked back at his dad in disbelief, “I… can?”
He is just an 18-year-old student, could it really be his?
Seeing his son’s puzzled look, Ling Yu couldn’t help but encourage him: “Believe in yourself, you can do it. Your mental threshold is not any lower than Dad’s.”
Lin Yuan, receiving his dad’s encouragement, immediately became excited. He walked up to the Nine-Tailed-Fox and greeted it: “Hello, my name is Lin Yuan.”
The receiving party paid him no mind, Lin Yuan was taken aback for a moment and turned to look back at his dad.
Ling Yu said: “The mech has not been matched yet, it has not been officially named either. It’ll ignore you if you talk to it now. If there isn’t anything else, you two can go to its control cabin to test your compatibility level first, and then after all of that you can name it as its masters.”
Lin Yuan’s expression went blank, “Us two?”
Dave, who had been scratching his head explained with a soft chuckle: “This is an SS-Class mech. It’d be better to pilot it with two people. Since the response time of the mech is very quick and there are a whole bunch of piloting commands. A person on their own would be hard-pressed to operate on their own. The mech was originally set up with the condition of two pilots individually controlling the left and right sides of the mech.”
Berg turned his head and looked at Caesar, saying: “Caesar, you and Xiao Yuan were the pilots chosen by His Majesty. You and Xiao Yuan are also the only ones that we have here fit to pilot this mech. However, for a two-person mech, when the compatibility matching is underway, your left and right brains will connect with each other, and exchanging a part of each other’s memories will be required… Is there a problem with that?”
Caesar thought it over for a bit and said: “No problems here.”
After speaking, he looked at Lin Yuan.
Lin Yuan was silent for a moment, then nodded and said, “No problems here either.”
—He and Caesar have done even the most intimate things with one another, trusting each other, there was no secret that Lin Yuan couldn’t tell Caesar. There naturally wasn’t any issue in regard to exchanging parts of the other’s memories.
The two of them shared a look, seeing the trust filling in each other’s eyes, and couldn’t help but smile at each other.
Seeing the smile his son yielded to Caesar, Ling Yu felt something awry stirring in his mind… Why didn’t Xiao Yuan hesitate to exchange memories? Does he really trust Caesar like that? Could it really be that this is just them being friends?
Ling Yu glanced at his son, his confusion growing discernable on his face. Lin Yuan didn’t notice his dad’s looks. He kept his gaze locked with Caesar’s: “Shall we give it a go now?”
Caesar nodded, “Sounds good to me.”
Berg started up the mech compatibility matching system, the control cabin was lowered, and Lin Yuan and Caesar walked in side by side.
Inside the control cabin, the orange nerve wire lightly wound around the two of them, with a beautiful orange glow, as if it were a fine string of silk, the nerve wires came together and connected them at their wrist, the screen in front of them began to initialize its systems……
Caesar and Lin Yuan closed their eyes in the same beat.
The pilot of an S-Class mech must maintain a level of complete focus during the compatibility match, most of all in the case of an SS-Class mech the thoughts and feelings of the other person require careful consideration. If they couldn’t keep a clear head, the matching would definitely fail.
The percent of compatibility on the screen began to rise rapidly from 1%, then started to taper off, before coming to a sudden stop at 90%.
Countless strange and bizarre images appeared in Lin Yuan’s mind—
In the scene of a gorgeous palace, a cute little boy was about to escape from the Imperial Palace, but slipped up along the way and tripped the alarm system at the Imperial Gates. He was caught and delivered before His Majesty. He hung his head aggrievedly, and whispered: “Father…”
His Majesty Trent said with a smile: “Caesar, you’ve got nothing to do, is that so? Then how about you transcribe the homework your teacher assigned a hundred times over. Oh, but of course, if you can say who was the one who instigated you, this Father of yours can lighten the punishment… and the child who speaks the truth will be rewarded.”
Little Caesar spoke honestly without a second thought: “It was Elder Brother.”
Xiwei turned the other way with the full intent of booking it, but Trent grabbed him by the collar and said: “To push your little brother into sneaking out of the palace, Xiwei, you are really getting more and more unmanageable by the day! Tonight, copy the royal etiquette manual a hundred times over and let me see it!”
That night, the Little Caesar, who sold his elder brother out, was given an ass-kicking by the raging elder prince and was then ordered by the eldest prince to help copy the manual.
A dour Little Caesar was laying down on a bed, helping his elder brother copy the manual, he made up his mind right there and then to never, ever listen to his brother’s words again.
Then, the scene changed to middle school. Caesar and Brian were taking a fighting training course together. The instructor’s demands were far too high. Caesar, who was already a strapping young lad, studied fighting skills earnestly, his face beaten bloody by his master.
The corners of Caesar’s mouth twitched: “Master, could you lighten your hits some…”
The master ruthlessly landed a strike on Caesar’s bruised arm, saying: “This boy still can’t handle this little taste of pain? As a prince, you must learn how to defend yourself, is that understood?”
Thus, in his teenage years, Caesar had developed an unparalleled level of fighting beaten into him by the master’s hand…
The images in Caesar’s memory made Lin Yuan’s lips spread into a smile, particularly the Little Caesar during his childhood. The young prince looked prim and proper as he was dressed in formal attire, attending a banquet. The chibi version of this young prince looked indescribably cute.
Of course, what appeared in Caesar’s mind was also the little Yuanyuan during his childhood. The greedy little cat who pestered his big sister for cake, and the little one who would senselessly flip around on the bed, he had a face that was just begging to be firmly pinched.
The two were immersed in each other’s memories, incapable of breaking out.
But the people waiting down below nevertheless looked at each other in dismay.
Dave, with his straightforward personality, ultimately couldn’t help but say: “Why did the compatibility matching stop at 90%? What’s keeping it from rising up?”
Berg looked deeply at the red digits reading 90% on the monitor screen, saying after a pause: “Perhaps it’s the memories belonging to the two that’s affecting it, there’s not a way for them to be perfectly harmonized.”
To operate a mech, there must be a complete harmonization. Although Lin Yuan and Caesar both trust each other and are willing to exchange each other’s memories, upon receiving another person’s memory in their mind, there would be an impact on their judgment with the degree of influence varying according to the content of said memory.
This is also the reason why Ling Yu refused to pilot with Rosen. Although their respective mental thresholds were both quite high, the higher the person’s mental threshold, the less they’d be able to accept another person’s invasion of their brain—
Piloting the Nine-Tailed Fox with Rosen, they may not even achieve an 80% compatibility rating.
The content of Lin Yuan and Caesar’s memories are relatively mild, but even when such memories are exchanged into the other’s mind, they will have a huge impact on each other’s mental power.
The compatibility rating had come to a complete halt, it became clear that the two of them had reached their limit.
After a long silence, Dave scratched his head and said at a loss: “It seems that dual piloting was only a concept in theory. We would have to find two people in this world who are completely unaffected by each other and have high mental thresholds. It’s pretty much impossible.”
Berg spoke suddenly: “Maybe only twins can do it, and only between twins would the rejection of each other be the weakest.”
Dave said: “And just where could we find a pair of twins with a mental threshold over 300%?”
Berg wordlessly frowned.
Originally, they both thought that Caesar and Lin Yuan could pilot the Nine-Tailed Fox together, but they overlooked the fact that even people who trust each other can’t share everything about themselves with one another no holds barred. Exchanging memories was just like having an entirely new person suddenly manifest in their brain, the feeling of their brain being overtaken was insufferable to many people.
No matter how high Lin Yuan and Caesar’s mental thresholds were, when they are matched together with the Nine-Tailed Fox the compatibility rating could only climb to 90%.
Berg finally opened his mouth to speak: “Forget it, it seems that it is a bit too far of a stretch to have them pilot the mech together… Moreover, Caesar already has White Feather, he and White Feather fully matched with one another a few years ago. A Master and an S-Class mech will be linked together, White Feather may also be playing a part in it.”
Ling Yu nodded and said: “That it is indeed. Caesar’s mental power will be affected by White Feather. Nine-Tailed Fox and White Feather’s intelligence systems are different. It’d be very difficult for Caesar to control two mechs at the same time…” Ling Yu paused, then looked back at Dave and said, “This mech doesn’t necessarily have to be piloted by two people, right? Have Xiao Yuan give a solo run, how about it?”
Dave said: “The inner workings of this mech are super complex. Of course, it can be piloted solo. However, it would be difficult for the pilot’s reaction ability to keep up with the reaction speed of the mech… It can be likened to activating the right and left side of the brain at the same time, one person would have to carry the weight of two people.”
This is like simultaneously drawing a complicated diagram with the left and right hand. To be able to utilize the separate hemispheres of the brain in tandem would present an extreme challenge.
Dave pondered for a moment, before ultimately opening the cockpit with a press of the control button, saying with a smile: “Let’s give it a shot! There have indeed been some geniuses in history who could fully coordinate the left and right sides of the brain together!”
The cockpit was released, Lin Yuan and Caesar were still immersed in each other’s memories, and the sudden severing of that connection left them momentarily lost in a memory fog.
Berg stepped forward and said: “The two of you can’t complete the matching with the mech at the same time. Let Xiao Yuan try it by himself.”
Although Lin Yuan was fairly startled, the encouraging gaze his two fathers placed on him gave him no choice but to pull the nerve wire over to his left hand, letting the mech’s nerve wire simultaneously connect his left and right hemisphere of his brain.
Caesar stood on the ground looking at the mech in front of him when White Feather’s aggrieved voice abruptly sounded in his mind: “Master, was that mech better than me? Am I dragging you down?”
Caesar frowned: “What kind of nonsense is that? You’re an S-Class mech too, how could you be dragging anyone down?”
White Feather was so down in the gutter, it’d cry if it could, “But they said it was an SS-Class mech, a double S is more than one S. It sounds like it’s better than me… Master, after you match with it you won’t want me… waaah…”
Caesar felt as if his head would explode, he normally wouldn’t be able to stand the peskiness this guy wrought, but at this moment, listening to it weep in such despair made his conscience act up a bit, he consoled it softly: “A complete compatibility match between a mech and master solidifies the bond of ownership, how could I not want you?”
“…really?” The morose voice immediately switched to a cheery one, “That’s good then! I just know that I am the only one in my Master’s heart, the best of the best, and second to none, which is% #%&……”
Caesar spoke exasperatedly: “Cut that out, don’t make a ruckus.”
White Feather then fell silent.
Right then, the eyes of the Nine-Tailed Fox suddenly emitted a silver light, the compatibility rating displayed on the monitor starting to shoot off the roof—
99%, 100%, 150%, 200%… 300%!
Everyone widened their eyes in shock, even the perpetually cool and calm Ling Yu looked at Rosen in awe. Dave, the maker of the mech himself had an open-mouthed expression plastered on his face and even that looked a bit laughable!
Everyone’s surprise stemmed from their ignorance of the Little Monster, Lin Yuan idly playing in the snow in his early years and already etching the same complicated patterns and forming identical snow sculptures with both his left and right hands…
300%, his first compatibility matching with an S-Class mech reached a compatibility rating of 300%, in the history of the whole Empire, the number of people who accomplished this couldn’t have exceeded ten!
What’s more, this was an SS-Class mech which was held up to an even higher standard from an S-Class mech.
Unexpectedly, Lin Yuan and the Nine-Tailed Fox could achieve an extremely high compatibility rating of 300%!
The moment when the digits stopped on 300%, the Nine-Tailed Fox immediately recognized its Master! The central intelligence system fully started up, the white light emanating from its pupils was blinding. The nine tails behind it unfurl with a swish, its gigantic orange tails presenting themselves loftily in the air, under the illumination of the light it was as if it were a roaring blaze.
Seated in the control cabin, Lin Yuan too, opened his eyes in joy.
A distinctive voice rang in his ears at the same time, saying in a low voice: “Hello, Master.”
The voice was pleasant to the ear, it carried the coziness and languidness of someone after they just had a full night’s rest.
Lin Yuan said elation: “Hello, my name is Lin Yuan, what’s your name?”
The mech’s words carried a smile: “Master, give me a name, call me whatever you want.”
Lin Yuan tilted his head deep in thought, saying: “Would calling you Kitsune be alright?”
Kitsune said: “That’s alright.”
Lin Yuan touched the control panel. Although there weren’t any buttons on the panel like there would be on a C-Class mech, his fondness for that metal feel still makes Lin Yuan unable to keep his hands to himself— this mech truly belongs to him. Although its voice sounds a bit lackadaisical, Lin Yuan believes that this mech will stay by his side from here on out. Just as Suzaku was to his dad, it’d become his closest, most intimate partner!