"Unknown," Mu told Ye Chong who was the first morning bird among the folks thanks to his very best physique. Mu’s reply had always been that indifferent.
He took a look at the visuals. His drowsy eyes straightened themselves upon glance. Even an even-tempered person like Ye Chong became odd-tempered for a second because of the scene.
"What… are these?" whispered Ye Chong with his finger pointing at those layers of crimson fluttering in the projection, where the Coxcomb was currently sailing on. The layers were as thick as the bog, sometimes they were as thin as the fog. They could be dense, they could also be diluted as if a space rain had fallen. The nameless misty redness was giving the hologramic detection system a major interruption, where even Mu’s built-in detection system had to force its proximity reduced to almost nothing. What about Photon Mode? Ye Chong peeked at the outside through the window, the mode would be a hopeless attempt.
"Matches with the databank: Negative. Component: Unknown," that statement from Mu gave Ye Chong another moment of flinched silence.
"Then how do we know if we are sailing in the right direction?" asked Ye Chong. Unlike the sea, a spaceship must locate its coordination all the time. It was not a journey that could be led by a general direction or they could sail way off the planned course easily, to nowhere… And there were tiny asteroids hovering in the space, reminding the Coxcomb to not take a reckless sail on them.
"I would say, we would have to rely on RnG," said Mu helplessly.
Ye Chong was speechless…
The rest of the members woke up very soon after that. The tension, panic and screams Ye Chong was expecting could hardly be seen on them. Zhu Ling just got up and went back to her training room, while Lian Yue, after a nice stretch and a few rubs on his neck, sauntered back to the laboratory after muttering a few words. As for Little Rock… well, he stayed on the ground, as he looked upon the ceiling, dazing off in accordance with his routine.
Why none of them showed concern to our situation now? Wondered Ye Chong really peculiarly.
The Coxcomb travelled in the mystifying zone for the next three days, which he never made a breakthrough within. They were still in the red sea. The zone was rather quiet and nothing had happened just yet, while the supplies of living necessity as well as the batteries were more than sufficient.
The folks had once extracted the strange stream of scarlet to perform analysis, but their research resulted in nothing significant. Their outcome this far, was merely concluding that the scarlet had indeed a negative effect on transmitting signals while altering its viscosity periodically in the space. Whether it could be harmful to human body… they do not have a living subject to test it on, and none of them ever had the courage to experiment themselves.
As the exact coordination remained unknown for the whole time, Mu could not risk to perform a space-jump, so the Coxcomb remained on its unintelligible course.
After two days of tension facing the unknown, Ye Chong too regained his calmness as he withdrew his nervousness and locked back into his heart.
Qiu Man woke up on the third day, whom of course Lian Yue went extremely welcoming upon, although Ye Chong had taught this appeal-loving man that this very lady named Qiu Man was nothing he could lay his hands upon. He better not.
The first thing Qiu Man did was to take a look around. And she immediately understood her situation upon seeing Ye Chong.
"Who are you? What do you want from me? Where am I?" Qiu Man did not lose her grace, as she asked Ye Chong flatly, which was more than alluring to Lian Yue. She’s… She’s gorgeous! Moaned Lian Yue in his mind, finding Qiu Man to be someone fina
lly able to balance out the masculinity and femininity on the ship, since well… Zhu Ling, the only female among them, depicted hardly any ladylike feature. And Lian Yue felt his heart being struck by something the very first glance he had on the lady. He felt his brain had gone short-circuit.
"The location. We have no idea as well," replied Ye Chong, ignoring the first really silly question he thought. He did not intend to skip the second question though, he wanted something else first, "Your identity?" stated he.
Ye Chong’s tone always felt like the wind on a winter day, which was freezing to one’s core. Even Lian Yue began sinking into his shirt and scurried from the place.
Qiu Man’s heart tightened but being as witty as she was, she knew acting cooperative would be a far better choice, "I am the management of Research Center 79," she said.
Ye Chong’s eyes were expressing nothing but coldness, they were not blinking as the stare went on.
And Qiu Man, as feeling pressured, could not help but to spit, "My grandfather is the leader of the intelligence."
Ye Chong withdrew his stare and made a light nod. That explained a lot. No wonder they conducted such outrageous act. He was not sure what exactly the leader of the intelligence did, but obviously it was not some random folks on the street.
"Gao Shichang… Have you heard of Gao Shichang?" asked Ye Chong abruptly.
"Ah!" Qiu Man covered her mouth, as her eyes were inflated with surprise, never expecting this young man inquiring this person. The boy seemed to be just in his twenties, while it had been 20 years since the incident happened. This boy should have nothing to do with the case… or… maybe not, could he be a relative to Gao Shichang? But according to reports, Gao Shichang should have no relative…
Ye Chong’s pupils shrunk, his heart raced. There’s something wrong from this woman. She must know something!
But Qiu Man’s following reaction was not according to his preference, as no matter what he asked, how he asked, she remained in total silence. Sigh… it looks like I’m the wrong person to do the enquiry… I should hand it to the expert. Shang still did this like his bread and butter.
I’ll let the expert do the job then. Thought Ye Chong as he got up and walked away.
Lian Yue was very displeasing to Ye Chong, with his disgusting expression stuck upon Qiu Man’s gestures for some hours daily. He had to make the man forget about women, there was a way of course - mech-engine research and development, Ye Chong would make great use of those rich information he stole from Donald’s research unit.
It felt like an reincarnation of their past on the Coxcomb, where Zhu Ling would spend her days and nights training, Little Rock would be doing nothing as something kept running in his head, while Ye Chong, with his vain partner Lian Yue would be analyzing the information he obtained.
Lian Yue, despite his vanity, was still a genius in engine-development. It took him only three days to fully digest the concept of Donald’s designs. And as Ye Chong had predicted, Donald was indeed facing a stuck-up situation in his research.
And both of them spent the whole day figuring out that missing spot on the incomplete blueprint. Ye Chong might have been the layman in this, but he had seen way more advanced engines than Lian Yue, especially with his well educated on the fundamentals, Lian Yue was utterly surprised.
Under Lian Yue’s guidance, Ye Chong’s engine developing skills were rapidly improving. He had that well-founded primary expertise and vast exposure to actual engines, he just lacked a good teacher to refine what he saw and what he experienced. After a few pointers made by Lian Yue, Ye Chong’s understanding exploded as he realized everything was being connected in his head and making better sense.
Lian Yue was astonished as he had been assumed a genius himself and now he saw someone who was pretty much close to what he believed a genius was. And he was excited, certainly.
"Oh my gosh! You must see this darling! Now when we move this, yes, to that circuit, it would trigger this, yes namely the…" Lian Yue was very, very excited, which worn Ye Chong out quickly.
His thinking leapt from one spot to another speedily. Ye Chong the one with lacked advanced knowledge found it difficult to follow, "I mean, sometimes I really hate the choice of components in engine among the designers, you see…" Ye Chong was forced to activate his brain cells on full force in order to understand what the heck this being was trying to convey.
It could not be helped as Lian Yue had always been the lone wolf in the field and he had finally found someone who could join him in his research, how could he not be excited over this?
"How do you think the more densely structured circuits are compared to the light structures?"
"Hey, Ye, you should watch this visual I downloaded before. It’s about the history of engine components. Yeah we could have a brief seminar on it." Everyday Lian Yue would haunt Ye Chong to have a discussion on mech engines, which drove the poor indifferent man running away. Nonetheless, it was because of this haunting person, Ye Chong had gained tremendous improvement in this field, as he began being able to follow Lian Yue’s conversation after a week or so. With his immense exposure to the variety of engines in mechs he had encountered, sometimes he would make some really bold comments, which were a shocker to Lian Yue.
A month later they had finally produced a blueprint for a new engine, on the basis of Donald’s design, with the concepts of the engines Ye Chong had seen on mechs of the three forces incorporated. They were not really that great compared to Donald, they were just completing the giant circle the former had drawn over the years. Everyone could see that.
The new engine was known as "the Destiny", the name was given by Lian Yue. Well, Ye Chong would not mind as usual, he had lots more things to do, as his eyes were glued on the blueprint, wondering in his toasting head on how they were supposed to transform these dots and lines into an actual object.
Assuming they were truly producing this, based on their calculations, its potential efficiency would be 3 times greater than the Overwing’s maximum performance. Of course, that figure was just on paper. It would be rather far-fetched to achieve that since that would impose a ridiculous requirement on the materials.
Still, the capabilities of the Destiny were not something both Ye Chong and Lian Yue had expected, since they were just aiming to design a model which could perform with a similar efficiency as the Overwing but the result was jaw-dropping.
That was theoretically speaking though. What Ye Chong needed to do would be to actually craft it, only the actual object could do the speaking.
First-off, the materials… Like what the heck do we use to produce this? Thought Ye Chong, puzzled as he stood before that gigantic inventory of his, filled with numerous bones of great quality, a collection of uncommon mineralites and even some transmutated energy ores. He had a cabinet of the greatest things one could imagine from the galaxy.
The next fortnight Ye Chong spent on experiments, trying to select the materials to produce the Destiny. He had tested on countless formula and only a fortunate person like him could do experiments on these ultimate rare materials as if the beans and carrots from the supermarket. But Ye Chong picked skeletons in the end.
The bones of Blue Dragon Glider, had a texture of the jades, provided great physical properties while it retained a nimble structure, were one of the best skeletons in Ye Chong’s inventory. He had never seen Blue Dragon Glider in his life but Master Ge gave marvelous comments on it in the encyclopedia with high respects. And after evaluating its compatibility with the design, it might not be able to achieve the engine’s maximum potential efficiency, but it would be the one with highest compatibility among the other materials.
Nevertheless, Ye Chong included a few key components in alloys since the production of alloys was much more efficient than skeletons. 80% of skeletons and 20% of alloys. To get the very best of the performance, Ye Chong - holding his heart, bidding farewell - took the bucket containing the colorful transmutated energy ores, few splashes were heard and the ores were poured into the melting pot with the alloys. He had consumed half of the energy ores he collected from the planet.
He got to do it, for he was currently in the unknown, which gave him a strong sense of danger. If there was any method for Ye Chong to further increase his offensive forces, he would do it, by hook or by crook. The golden law of survival, the stronger you get, the more likely you will survive.
And there it is! He made it, the Destiny had been born!
He installed it into Han Jia. Okay, he got into the cabin and took a breath. Tapped the button. And the engine taught him what real speed was.
It was too fast!
The Destiny might be unable to achieve that whooping 3 times greater than the Overwing but it still surpassed the Overwing’s engine by 1.5 times. Moreover, Hanjia was way lighter than Overwing, so Han Jia’s maximum speed could be twice as fast as Overwing’s.
Wow, 2 times faster than Overwing’s. What kind of speed would that be? Everyone was astounded when Ye Chong was piloting Han Jia in the training room, except Mu. Ye Chong could not imagine, how amazing he would feel if he one day was ever able to make Mu dropped his mechanical jaw as well.
Now you see me.
Now you don’t.
A perfect description on Han Jia’s new velocity. Zhu Ling on Overwing tried fighting against Ye Chong and only lasted for a good 30 second. Such potent mech, Ye Chong was overconfident, as he imagined himself being fearless even against the ace pilots of the 3 forces.
Oh well. It was good while it lasted, when Mu taught Ye Chong a lesson. He only lasted for 20 minutes under Mu’s attack, and it was a hand to hand combat. Ye Chong knew his limits especially Mu was the best at ranged attacks with Recursion and not a hand-to-hand combat. If Mu ever had a duel with him with Recursion, Ye Chong probably could even face a hard time staying up for half a minute.
20 minute survival was still a great record for Ye Chong, since it was the longest in the record of him fighting against Mu.
Imagine if Mu Shang were completed, how powerful would they be? Frightened Ye Chong but he grew confused as well, as once he had asked Mu whether he was the greatest and the reply was Mu could be merely somewhere between the 500th and 600th greatest mechs in the galaxy. Ye Chong did not take Mu’s comment by heart, he simply found it fascinating since Mu was pretty much crippled yet he retained within the 600th.
But after their adventure, Ye Chong started to question that statement.
He had encountered the Strongs countless times coming from all kinds of field. The Nirvana pilot, the ace of the Sanctuary, Feng Su for example, and those two advanced mechs of the Freedom Alliance who drove them into this bizarre area in the first place… All of them, disregarding their experience and expertise, were technically not even competent to be Mu Shang’s opponents despite Mu Shang’s damaged system. If Mu Shang were currently within the 600th, that would mean there were at least 400 to 500 experts they would be encountering above.
But where are they? Those aces Ye Chong had encountered before were already considered as the greatest individuals in the 5 major galaxies.
Mu could not be lying. Ye Chong could confirm that, it was just that Ye Chong was curious of this. Well, screw that, who cares! Even if those Strongs do exist, they were none of my business!
"Greetings, Ye. I hereby present you the outcome of my progress. This lassie does know a lot. Such a memorable experience interrogating the beauty. Jajaja! Never once I would expect this Freedom Alliance having so many interesting stories to tell," stated Shang, with a mesmerized expression.