Chapter 742: I’ll Decide What’s Permitted!

    Chapter 742: I'll Decide What's Permitted!

    "Increase artillery support to the ground teams, except for Monteux. Allow nearby ships to provide cover fire for our troops." Kang Hui ordered.

    "Admiral, that won't be permitted. There are..." His first officer timidly interjected.

    Kang Hui's response was cool and unyielding. "I'll decide what's permitted. 1 Are you saying our soldiers aren't people, too? If we keep this up, how many will die before we take the planets? Follow orders, soldier!"

    "Sir!" The officer had no choice, in battle the Admiral's orders were to be obeyed above all else unless directly contradicted by superiors. But in a battle this crucial, what was the likelihood of that? Nothing was more important than remove this threat to humanity. The military leaders would all stand behind Kang Hui's decision.

    They could see the cover fire increase from space. Things started going smoother on the three planets almost immediately.

    "Sir, railguns have been installed on Monteux. Four of them so far. So far the East has handled their mission well." Finally, some good news.

    "Have admiral Lan send over his data."

    "Aye, aye!"

    A few minutes later satellite images from the Eastern fleet started coming in. He looked upon the ground team's progress in silence.

    What power! What overwhelming power! With no more than ten people they were protecting the whole ground assault team. Of course, those ten people were Paragons!

    Inwardly Kang Hui sighed. He had been told in no uncertain terms that if this gambit was a success, to turn their weapons on the other Alliances. But Kang Hui was a smart man, and he had seen the power of these Paragons with his own eyes. Everyone one of them was capable of bringing Armageddon on their heads. That was even before they considered Jue Di. Provoking him would be begging for death.

    The leadership simply didn't understand. The East's rise wasn't something they could prevent. What they should be doing is working to maintain a good relationship with them.

    Strength has always been the way of the universe and the path to dominance. For the sake of humanity, Eastern prosperity wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Besides, Kang Hui had Eastern blood, and after this fight he would undoubtedly be one of the strongest voices in the military. He would work for cooperation rather than aggression.

    Kang Hui was honestly a little nervous ever since Admiral Lan brought his An Lun army. Middle Heaven was a staggering sight to behold, even larger than Terminator had been. As for how much carnage it could produce, they could only imagine.

    Whatever capabilities it had, the East's latest bastion was undoubtedly stronger than it looked. He didn't trust its cumbersome speed, either. Why keep the stony exterior that slowed it down so much? It wasn't like remodeling the planet's surface would have been difficult for modern technology.

    It was impressive enough as a feat of engineering - the first planet to be turned into a Bastion!

    He hoped there would be an opportunity for them to see what Middle Heaven could do. Militarily, the implications of a super-bastion frightened and excited him.

    "Tell the Admiral to take control of the planet as quickly as he can." Kang Hui said.


    Lan Qing was, of course, aboard the massive bastion that used to be his base planet. He was watching after the ground crew, but what Kang Hui didn't know was that Lan Qing had already ordered his fleet to prepare for attacks from 'friendly' forces. When Monteux was under their control, the ships would move in to defend their people.

    This was, however, only a defensive maneuver. He didn't anticipate much trouble, not least because of his father's presence. If Jue Di didn't have to watch his power consumption, he could destroy a planet by himself.

    He watched the screens as data continued to stream it. It looked like everything was still going well on the ground.

    "Have we found anyone alive?" He asked his brother.

    "So far, nothing," Lan Jue replied. "I think it was a ploy by the aliens. But why would they want to lure us to a fight on the planet's surface?"

    Lan Qing answered confidently. "Don't think too much about it. You need to focus on taking over your sector. Leave the rest to me."

    "Bro. Come on, do you need to be so harsh all the time?" Lan Jue joked.

    Lan Qing paused for a moment. "This is war. You should call me Admiral."

    Lan Jue chuckled. "You need to relax. When we finish this fight I'm gonna tell dad to find you a girlfriend. It's a'out time you started a family."

    Lan Qing's face turned hard and hostile. "Get back to the fight!"

    Lan Jue cut the connection, suddenly in a better mood. He'd been nervous before, so nervous he forgot something important. Who was his brother? Prometheus the Wise! If Lan Jue had foreseen a problem, of course his brother had!

    The situation still wasn't clear to him, but further consideration would have to wait until they finished taking the planet. The alien home worlds still had the opportunity to surprise them.

    So far, while the aliens were many they hadn't come across the stronger breeds. The truly powerful ones he feared to see were as strong as the Paragons. Lan Jue was sure the aliens weren't lacking in that class of powerhouse. But where were the Violet Prince and Princess, or others like them? What about Monarch?

    The fact they weren't on the field meant things were only getting started.

    "Boss, I sense something." Lin Guoguo announced.

    Lan Jue's eyes lit up. "Where?"

    "I'll take you," she said. Without wasting any more time she urged her mecha toward the horizon.

    Lan Jue followed close behind. The Driver and Pharmacist remained behind to look after Star Division.

    As Lin Guoguo led the way she ignored the aliens that charged for them, attempting to block their path. Bolt after bolt of All-Haven lightning turned them to ash before they got close. The vital crystals left behind were swept up as they flew passed.

    In the distance, the shell of a city came into view. Even from this distance, though, they could see signs of corrosion on its towering buildings. It looked like the whole thing had been devoured and digested. It'd been stained purple by the ordeal.

    Lin Guoguo gasped. "These absolute bastards!" How many people used to live in this city? How many of their compatriots had become fuel for these monsters?

    Guoguo's senses led them to a building that looked like it may once have been a church. "In there," she said. "I can sense about ten life forms... humans."

    Lan Jue was suddenly serious. "Wait here. I'll take a look."

    "Boss, be careful," she urged.

    Lan Jue, though, changed tack. "Never mind, come with me. Pack up your mecha." He didn't feel comfortable leaving her outside by herself. They were deep in enemy territory, and a powerful creature could appear from any corner. She was safest by his side. He left Thor's cockpit.

    "Alright!" She answered before appearing before her mecha in a flash of light. Both of them stored their suits.

    Lan Jue went down to ground level, but didn't place his feet on the poisoned earth. He remained hovering about a meter above it. Lin Guoguo was a step behind him.

    Lan Jue surveyed the building with a scowl. He spread his hands, and a gentle power emanated from him to push open the corroded doors. A rotten scent exuded from within the building. A pale blue light sprung up from within him to protect both he and Guoguo from the toxic cloud.

    "In there," she confirmed.

    Lan Jue entered.

    The interior of the building had fared better than its façade, but a carpet of poison purple blanketed the floor. The aliens' sickness would not be denied by walls.

    The interior was spacious and stretched far back. There, at the end of the room, was huddled a group of people. They looked at Lan Jue and Lin Guoguo.

    Could there really still be people alive in here? When the thought crossed his mind, suddenly Lan Jue felt an abiding unease. They did feel like humans, but their reactions were strange. That was to say, they were completely emotionless. Something definitely wasn't right.

    The destitute people scrambled to their feet and raced toward Lan Jue.

    "Save us. Save us!" They shouted the words as they raced forward. They moved quickly across the carpet of purple, seemingly unfazed by its corrosive properties.

    Lan Jue felt stricken. He didn't move.

    The light within the church dimmed. When they got close, Lan Jue could see that their eyes had turned deep violet. They felt like humans, but they were not themselves.

    Controlled? Could they be saved?

    He was still lost in thought when the closest one leapt up at him.

    "Boss, be careful!"

    BOOM! The victim erupted in a grotesque explosion of purple blood and flesh.

    1. They use a phrase which means, roughly, 'let the leadership deal with it when we're not in time of war.
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