Chapter 7: Breaking Relations?
TL’s note: One more chapter to go!
Feeling Ling Lan's actions, Lan Luofeng's originally angry mood calmed slightly. She knew that the federal government and military had sent representatives and she did not want to be impulsive and ruin Ling Lan's succession ceremony.
Lan Luofeng suppressed her anger and spoke coldly: "Uncle Ren, your meaning is?"
Ling Suren's eyes hardened, but still revealed his intention: "To choose the most qualified and best, as well as the highest potential child under the age of three in the Ling clan.
From just born to the age of three was the best training period. Exceeding this period, the effects of training will decrease with age, the effect becoming worse and worse.
Lan Luofeng spoke with ridicule: "Do you think the other Ling clan's children will be stronger than Ling Xiao's child? Ling Xiao was the pilot of a god-level mecha." In the Federation, genetics almost determined everything. Very few civilian status children were immediately born with fate defying bodies. Rather, it required generation after generation of careful accumulation.
"The Ling clan created a Ling Xiao, it can create another." Ling Suren stated matter of factly. For him to be so emboldened meant that there was already a child in their hands that had a physical quality very close to Ling Xiao's. This is why he was willing to pull off his face in order to obtain the military inheritance. The Ling clan must create another Ling Xiao to be eligible to stay in the Doha Star.
The current Federation, while certainly on the outside claims that all humans are equal, does in fact have obvious levels of status. This is reflected in which level planet you can live on.
The Doha Star is a superplanet and is also the Federation's capital. This meant, those who lived on the Doha Star were officials who had power and ability and the military top brass. It also contained ancient and powerful super clans with long histories.
The Ling clan was originally a small family and could only survive on a three-star planet. However, due to Ling Xiao's father, Ling Suzheng, they managed to successfully gain the right to live on planet Doha.
Although, regretfully, he did not become the ultimate weapon of the state – god-class mecha manipulator – Ling Suzheng was an ace-class mecha pilot. Despite this, his strength managed to reach a degree that was infinitely close to becoming an ultimate weapon1. On the battlefield, he repeatedly took down enemy ace pilots, gaining military exploits. Finally, the military awarded him the right to move his clan onto planet Doha, becoming a new war star for the military.
In order to let Ling Suzheng agree to bring the whole Ling clan to Doha, the elders and the current clan master at the time promised that the Ling clan would make Ling Suzheng and his future lineage the direct descendants. Not only would all of the clan's resources be utilized to cultivate his descendants, it would serve his future lineage.
Ling Suzheng believed, in order to gain a firm foothold in Doha, he needed his clansmen's support. Thus he nodded in agreement and allowed the entire family to move to Doha.
Because of this decision, Ling Xiao, and now, Ling Lan, suffered countless troubles; it even gave the entire clan the opportunity to meddle with the military inheritance. If somehow the late Ling Suzheng knew about this, most likely he would regret his action of releasing wolves amongst sheep.
In the recent decades since the Ling clan entered planet Doha, they tasted numerous benefits and never wanted to return to their previous existence. They were very clear; if in the next 20 years under the efforts of the government, Ling Xiao's inheritor could not meet the minimum requirements of the Federation, the Ling clan would lose everything they had now and return to their original state. That meant that the Ling clan would fall from a high-ranked clan, directly down to a middle-ranked clan – no, perhaps even to a low-ranked clan…This would affect the Ling clan's resources as well as the entire clan's children's future marriage prospects amongst others. They could never allow for this to happen.
Ling Suren did not give Lan Luofeng a chance to speak and motioned for a woman carrying a one year old child come forward. He pointed at the child and said: "This is the candidate elected by the Ling clan. If young master Lan's body quality exceeds his, then we will have no reason to oppose his inheritance."
He turned to look at the military representatives: "I believe the military also wants the material that they fully cultivate to be of quality, rather than a waste."
The military representative only smiled and did not speak, hiding their position in the matter.
Ling Suren originally did not have any need for the military representatives to support him. What he wanted was their ambiguous attitude. His eyes fell upon Lan Luofeng's body, his eyes flashing with a touch of pride.
Lan Luofeng's lips revealed a touch of a mocking smile. It seemed that her decision to seal Ling Lan's test results tempted a greed in the Ling clan that should never have been tempted. Fortunately, the steward Ling Qin caught these movements early on and had completed preparations.
"You dare wish to meddle with Ling Xiao's inheritance?" Lan Luofeng's gaze swept over the visitors. There was no end to those who were here to watch the drama, although there were people who were genuinely worried. Truthfully, this situation wasn't bad. It gave her a chance to see people's true faces. "Major General Ling Xiao may have died, but his orphan cannot be slighted by the clan. I believe the military should have some kind of arrangement."
The military representative pretended not to understand the meaning of Lan Luofeng's words. He laughed: "Ling madame, please be assured. Even without Major General's inheritance, the treatment received by Ling Lan will not be less. The military will not allow a hero's orphan to suffer."
Although the words spoken by the representative sounded good on the surface, deep in the bones held the interests of the strongest. Upon seeing the appearance of a better object, they defaulted to the choice that was more favorable to the military.
Lan Luofeng's eyes flashed to the government's representative. However, that person only smiled and seemed to have decided to stay on the sidelines.
Ling Xiao, ah. This was the military and government that you were completely loyal to the point of sacrificing your life to protect. Did you know, in the face of greater benefits, they mercilessly threw away your blood. If somehow you knew of this, would you, too, have regretted your decision at that time?
Lan Luofeng could no longer suppress the mockery in her heart, and said: "So this is what the government is, this is what the military is…I finally understand."
Perhaps her ridicule was too strong. The smiles of both the military and government representatives stiffened obviously.
"Since that's the case, I, Lan Luofeng, wishes the military and the government to give me a promise. My child, Ling Lan, whether or not he inherits his father's Major General inheritance, he will completely withdraw from the Ling clan and will have no connection with them."
The military and government representatives gave each other a glance before the military representative finally spoke, asking: "Your meaning is?"
Lan Luofeng sneered: "If Ling Lan inherits, then the rest of the Ling clan must immediately leave Doha. Where the came from, they will return to2…If Ling Lan does not inherit, I and Ling Lan will leave Doha. No matter what's the result, we will no longer be a part of the Ling clan."
Lan Luofeng had long wanted to solve the troublesome problem known as the Ling clan. If she could do it once and for all, it was well worth the painstaking effort to create this situation.
The color of Ling Suren's face changed to fury: "Lan Luofeng, you've gone crazy, haven't you?!"
"What? Uncle Ren, are you afraid? Afraid that your candidate can't beat Ling Lan?" Lan Luofeng smiled brightly as she looked at Ling Suren, gently squeezing Ling Lan's small pudgy hands. The strength of a mother must be pointing at now, for Lan Luofeng had never felt so determined.
Ling Suren was speechless. His original confidence began to waver with some hesitation. Lan Luofeng's current demeanor, made him not dare to throw all his chips in.
As if seeing Ling Suren's hesitation, a nearby Ling clan elder quietly reminded: "Guard against the opponent's schemes3."
Hearing this, Ling Suren thought; yes, for Lan Luofeng to say this, it must mean she wanted to risk one last play. Imagine, if Ling Lan's physical quality was truly very strong, why would Lan Luofeng wish to seal the results? In truth, the higher Ling Lan's physical quality, the better the resources from the inheritance he would receive. A smart person would never think of sealing the results; in fact, they would do their best to publically announce the results in order to suppress other people's greed.
Translated by somnious, unedited
1 Aiya~ This sounds pretty vague, no? It's mostly because the levels that the author mentions is really vague in the beginning. The term she uses is actually 'IN机甲' (I'm still clueless about the 'IN' part) to encompass the two major 'ultimate weapon' levels. When the author stated that Ling Suzheng was infinitely close to becoming an ultimate weapon, it meant that he was near the point of breaking into Imperial level.
The level/class system for mecha in the series is: Initiate/Novice -> Low -> Medium -> High -> Special -> Ace -> (Ultimate Weapon Zone: Imperial -> God -> ????)
2 从哪里来就到哪里去 (cóng nǎlǐ lái jiù dào nǎlǐ qù): Where one came from, one must return. The translation is pretty self explanatory but it kind of doesn't capture how Lan Luofeng is actually looking down on the rest of the clan. Generally saying this is actually really rude, but I'm not exactly clear on why.
3 "防对方的空手套白狼" (fáng duìfāng de kōng shǒutào bái láng): Defend against the other person's empty gloved white wolf. It's basically 'defend against scammers'.