"Little Four, mecha B’s attack trajectories," requested Ling Lan calmly, "and raise the second hover car." The more dangerous the situation, the more she needed to stay calm — Chamberlain Ling Qin’s life depended on her.
Ling Lan was endlessly grateful that she had the help of such a useful companion like Little Four. After Little Four had taken control of the threatening hover car, he had also notified Ling Lan that he had assumed control of the other two hover cars as well. This information was like a ray of light to the perturbed Ling Lan, giving her the precious inklings of an idea which might help Ling Qin and her hold on till backup arrived.
Yet along with her relief, she also felt quite glum. For the first time ever, she truly recognised how weak she was still. Currently, she could only watch as a loved one she cared for fought for his life — if it weren’t for Little Four, Grandpa Ling Qin would probably be bleeding all over the scene by now.
As of this moment, Ling Lan did not notice that an intense need to grow stronger had taken seed and sprouted within her heart, and had started to grow secure roots. In the future, when she encountered difficulties and felt tired or lost, it would give her the will to carry on …
Little Four’s actions were impeccable — not only did he manage to calculate and present all of mecha B’s attack trajectories, he had also automatically shifted the second hover car to block off those trajectories.
Little Four was a studious child — Ling Lan only had to order him once for him to remember her instructions. Thus, without needing to be told twice, he had already taken the initiative to do what Ling Lan wanted.
"Little Four, well done." Even though she had never raised a child before, Ling Lan still knew that children loved to be praised. So, she was unstinting with her praise, causing Little Four to blush bright red, smiling so much till his eyes were all scrunched up into a line.
When the hover cars once again interfered with the attack trajectories, even a dumber person would have noticed that something wasn’t right.
"Not good! Something must have gone wrong." Mecha B lowered his rifle, expression serious.
"Head, I remember that the people in those hover cars are all out. There’s no one in those cars." Mecha A had also figured out the truth, remembering that the people who had initially been in those cars were now embroiled in battle with the opponent.
"Not good, we’ve been discovered." Thinking about how their attacks were being thwarted, mecha B felt cold sweat start pouring out from his pores. His every move was most likely already being monitored by the opponent.
"Ah … H-Head, what should we do?" Mecha A began panicking. If their identities had truly been exposed, then they would not be allowed to live. Although he didn’t know who their direct superior was, from the little that he had gleaned from Head’s explanations, he knew that it was someone who had the power to move mountains and part oceans. Eliminating them would be like squishing ants to someone like that.
"Shoot down those two hover cars," bit out mecha B ruthlessly. If they pulled back now, they still wouldn’t be welcomed back; they might as well take a gamble, and perhaps achieve something that might work in their favour.
"Alright, Head." Mecha A was too afraid not to listen. He once again lifted his sniper rifle to aim at one of the hover cars.
"Little Four, come back quick." Ling Lan saw the opponent raise his rifle and just knew that they weren’t about to just roll over. She was worried for Little Four’s safety, and so quickly urged him to come back.
Of course, Ling Lan felt a little regretful — she had actually intended to send a warning to the opponent with the hover cars, letting them know that they were being monitored, and hope that they’d choose to retreat out of wariness. Unexpectedly, the plan didn’t work; looks like the opponent was a relentless character, who would fight till the very end.
In that case, come on then! Ling Lan clenched her fists, determination writ all over her face. "Little Four, move the last hover car into a position which can block the attacks of both mechas."
Before Ling Lan’s words had faded, two loud collisions could be heard:
The two sounds were almost simultaneous. As expected, the opponent had pressed on their triggers, hitting the two hover cars at the front. However, these hover cars had been modified and were extremely solid — although there was a huge gouge in the car’s body as a result from the rifle shot, where one side had even bent inwards, the internal circuitry was still intact, so the hover car was still able to stay airborne.
"That’s great, these modified cars are really pretty solid." Ling Lan looked at the hover cars still holding on in the air, protecting Ling Qin, and her heart rejoiced. At first, she had still been worried that the hover cars would not be strong enough, that they would be destroyed in one hit, but now it looked like they would still be able to buy them some time.
Considering the time when Chamberlain Ling Qin had released the signal flare, Ling Lan knew that if they could just hold on for another three to four minutes, assistance might make it here.
Hover cars, you need to stay strong and hold on … Ling Lan couldn’t help but pray.
"F*ck, who made these hover cars to be so solid?" mecha B couldn’t resist swearing. He turned his head and continued to order, "Don’t slack off, continue to shoot. We must bring down those cars as soon as possible."
"Yes, Head!" replied mecha A as he pressed down on his trigger furiously.
Boom! Boom! Boom! The sniper rifles shot round after round, and on one particular round, a crack finally appeared on one of the hover cars, and continued to spread until the car was a broken mess …
BOOM! One of the hover cars was hit once more, and this time, it finally gave up the ghost and became a flaming fireball, blazing brightly as it fell to the ground.
In swift succession, the other hover car took another couple of hits and exploded as well, joining its partner in a fiery death on the ground below.
"Hells, why is there another car? When did it move there?" Mecha B finally managed to eliminate the hover cars blocking his line of sight, but just as he was about to relax and start aiming for Ling Qin, he found that he could no longer see Ling Qin once more. And the reason was another hover car that had appeared near Ling Qin.
And unlike the first two which were empty, this car had people in it. The people inside looked at the other two hover cars which had been shot down in flames, and understood what their fate would be as well. In panic, they beat at the doors and windows of the car, but unfortunately, the doors and windows of the hover car had already been sealed up tight by Little Four. There was no way they could get them to open.
Naturally, they had thought about smashing the windows open, but unfortunately the cars had been too thoroughly modified — even the enhanced sniper rifles on the mechas could only destroy the cars after over ten hits, what could they do with only their fists?
Meanwhile, as this was happening, Ling Qin had killed off another two men, leaving only one squad member and the team leader hiding right at the back.
Ling Lan was very nervous. She hoped that this final hover car would be able to withstand the remaining attacks until Chamberlain Ling Qin managed to get rid of the final two men. At that time, even if there was nothing else to block the mechas’ trajectory, Ling Qin should be able to utilise the geographical features of the land to find somewhere else to hide, such as another group of shrubs.
Suddenly, the hover car reversed, and its two laser cannons fired, and the missiles rose swiftly through the air.
Ling Lan was greatly startled by this. "Little Four, what’s going on?!"
Little Four replied instantly, "Hehe, I didn’t waste any time just now, and finally figured out the artificial intelligence systems of this world. I had not expected you humans to have managed to use this sort of mathematical means to create artificial intelligences which resemble us — of course, this resemblance is minor though, since those A.I.s are still worlds apart from us …" Little Four was very smug, a proud smirk on his face as he praised his own individuality.
A vein popped out on Ling Lan’s forehead, and she raged, "Get to the point!" Hells, does this brat know what kind of situation they were in? Wasting time blabbering on …
"I’ve designed two small artificial systems, and have already implanted them onto the navigation system of the laser cannons." Little Four pouted, throwing out these words sulkily before turning to face away from Ling Lan. Fine, looks like this rascal child had gotten into another of his moods again.