1299 Underground Burrow

    "There, bombard the area before we land," said Domingo as he pointed out an area through the front window.

    "Roger that," the captain replied. A fleet of unmanned drones were released as the ship entered the atmosphere. To create a sand landing zone, the drones were dispatched to deploy a carpet bombing. After three series of bombing and making sure that there were no signs of life in the area, the Corvette class ship and four remaining Cruisers landed.

    All ships then quickly opened the rear hatch and deployed a small fleet of Valsalrian soldiers. Based on procedure, these soldiers were tasked to make sure that the area outside the landing zone was secured before the main party would be deployed; in this case, Jiang Fei and Lieutenant Domingo. There was a possibility of several bugs remaining having burrowed after the carpet bombing.

    The captain of all respective ships would only turn off the ships' engines when they had received a green light from the ground infantry.

    "Come, it is time for us to go," Domingo called. Even though Jiang Fei was there because of Ottogackt and possibly Commander Alexis, staying inside the ship for the entire duration of the mission would be unacceptable.

    At this point, because of Ottogackt's laziness to explain the situation to Domingo, Domingo had no idea about Jiang Fei's fighting capability. For all he knew, Jiang Fei was just a weak trainee at only 65,000 combat level. For someone at his strength, being on the unnamed planet was already a hazard itself. Anything could happen.

    When the rest of the ground infantry left the ships, Jiang Fei and Lieutenant Domingo proceeded to as well.

    "Huh... How familiar this is," thought Jiang Fei as he set foot on the unnamed planet. The condition of the planet was almost similar to that of the early prehistoric world of Earth. Be it the sky, the ground, or the air, it was suitable for lifeforms to thrive. Unfortunately, it was unsuitable for humans to live as the gravity of this unnamed planet was stronger than Redstone's.

    Jiang Fei had only needed to walk for a bit to adjust to this planet's immense gravity. He had already gotten used to Redstone's gravity that he did not need to activate Omnisurge to adjust to the unnamed planet.

    "Give me a sitrep!" Domingo ordered. Before landing, the ship's captain had already scanned the planet and gathered enough data to compile a report.

    "Lieutenant, all of the main combatants of this planet have been dealt with. However, we cannot rule out the possibility of hidden enemies," said the captain as he handed a piece of map that displayed a detailed 3D mapping of the planet. Domingo took the piece of map and examined it by scrolling deep underground.

    Jiang Fei came closer to peek at the map.

    The main habitants of this unnamed planet were bugs. As such, they were incapable of achieving technological advancement like the Namekians. Their habitats were not of houses of bricks and stones, but of underground networks of tunnels and burrows.

    "Prepare for infiltration!"

    Domingo made a copy of the map on his own portable digital assistant and sent it out to everyone. When everyone received the map, they then quickly deployed their weapons from their carry-ons.


    Some of the soldiers used a device that thumped on the ground to create a foundation before igniting an explosive device in it.

    "Listen closely. We are now standing on top of the underground network. Our primary objective is to seek out and extract the bug eggs! Capturing the Queen is the secondary mission! Destroy anyone who stands in our way!" Lieutenant Domingo ordered.

    "Stay close to me," he said to Jiang Fei.

    "Understood, Lieutenant," Jiang Fei said. He had no idea if Domingo was treating him with extra care or if it was a treatment that all new soldiers got.

    With speed, all the soldiers formed their own squads and proceeded with their designated routes that were marked by Domingo on the map. Domingo himself followed the elite squad, with Jiang Fei following close behind. The next thing he knew, he was already inside the bugs' underground network of tunnels. For humans, the tunnels were a perfect fit, perhaps a little tight for those who were 180cm or taller. For Valsalrians, since their average height already exceeded 200cm, the tunnels were just too narrow for them to freely move around.

    Not long after Jiang Fei entered the network of tunnels, gunshots and screaming could be heard. It seemed that the others had already encountered the enemy. Even so, Domingo did not slow down. With the same quick pace, he led Jiang Fei and his elite squad further down the tunnels.

    What Jiang Fei did not know was that Domingo was as nervous as a bride on her wedding day. Elite or not, every soldier that was currently on the unnamed planet were his own men. Losing one would be considered a major loss. Even so, to ensure that his precious "package" remained safe, he needed to sacrifice his other soldiers to open a path. To be fair, Domingo himself was a little scared, not of the enemy, but of Jiang Fei being too weak and of the chance that he might get himself killed.

    "Stop," said Domingo all of the sudden through his communicator. The entire squad stopped walking all of a sudden.

    "What's wrong?" Jiang Fei asked.

    "I have a bad feeling... like we are being led into a trap," Domingo said directly to Jiang Fei.

    "Attention. Proceed slowly and keep your eyes peeled. There might be an ambush," said Domingo into his communicator to the rest of the squad.

    "Roger. Sir, the path in front of us had been opened by the other squad. Wouldn't they inform us if there is a trap?" someone else's voice rang through the radio channel.

    "I don't care for that. Keep your eyes straight and report if you see anything at all!" Domingo barked. The ominous feeling grew stronger and stronger as they proceeded deeper. It was a sixth sense that all stronger beings had. Sometimes, they would rather trust their senses than to trust what they see with their own eyes.

    "Halt..." Domingo said as he held out his arms to stop Jiang Fei from proceeding further.

    "What now..." Jiang Fei thought.

    Just then, the ground beneath their feet cracked opened. A large hole was formed and everyone, including Domingo and Jiang Fei, started to fall. As they fell, depending on their position, each one of them fell into a tunnel that led to another. Everyone was getting separated.

    Jiang Fei remained calm and quickly activated Omnisurge to protect himself from any attacks. Even so, he was not as fast as Domingo. The second he fell, Domingo had controlled himself and flew upward and out of the tunnels. Unfortunately, the rest weren't as fast. Before they could stop themselves from falling, the ground above their heads collapsed, sending a heap of dirt to bury the tunnels close.


    Domingo managed to discern which tunnel Jiang Fei had entered but when he tried to follow him, the tunnel was sealed shut with dirt. It got chaotic for a second and now all tunnels were buried deep underground. To dig his way through would take too long!

    "Dammit! Dammit! Jiang Fei! You'd better be alive!" Domingo cried. At this point, the fear of having to answer to Ottogackt was so great that he did not care to protect himself. Instead, he quickly used a digging tool and started to find his way to the tunnel that Jiang Fei had fallen into.


    "F*ck me..." said Jiang Fei as he realized the kind of situation he was in. The fall had not been as painful as he had thought it would be as the soft dirt where he landed cushioned the fall damage. However, he quickly realized that he was lost. He was now standing in the middle of a crossroad. There were four tunnels leading to other places. From preliminary scans with the scope, Jiang Fei realized that he was deep underground, stuck and lost in something like a labyrinth of tunnels.

    He quickly checked the map data that Domingo had sent out to everyone. Even though he was able to read the map, he had another problem to figure out. Because he was deep underground, the scope had no connection to outside sources to determine his current position. Even with a detailed map of the underground tunnel, he had no idea where he was. That, and the fact that the network of tunnels was just too huge to comprehend!

    "Sh*t... where should I go?" Jiang Fei said as he examined the dark, hollow tunnels. He chose a tunnel at random and when he came out from it, he arrived at a similar looking crossroad, with similar four tunnels.

    "0541, do you have any suggestions?" Jiang Fei asked.

    "Due to insufficient data about the planet and its habitants, I am unable to formulate any strategy for you. If I were to give advice under these circumstances... I would say... good luck."

    "Good luck? Are you, an advanced artificial intelligence, telling me something as vague as good luck?" Jiang Fei scoffed. What sort of artificial intelligence would give such a lame "advice"?

    "Heh," 0541 scoffed as well before remaining quiet. To be fair, 0541 was now in a passive state due to lack of energy. In the last planet where Jiang Fei had fought the Evol. Poppy, 0541 had used up all of the Energy Crystals available to create a protective barrier to shield Jiang Fei from the blast. As such, with his current backup emergency power supply, 0541 had to remain passive with most of its main functionality shut off.
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