Volume 4: Chapter 12 – Encouraging with Threats
Hong, hong, hong! One mech after another walked into the stadium, eliciting many excited cheers from the audience.
The mech design used for this meet was the Ascending Cloud Training Mecha WE. It was the standard for all military academies.
Today's scheduled events were the integrated mech obstacle course, mecha shooting test, and the ever so popular, solo mech combat.
The Apollo Military College was first to take the stage this time. Perhaps it was to preserve what little dignity the host college had left and give face to Principal Gu Te.
The first event, the mech obstacle course, tested the responsiveness and flexibility of a pilot. After passing the obstacle course, one had to target and attack preassigned targets within three seconds.
Having suffered a loss yesterday, Campana felt rather embarrassed. Desiring to display his strengths in a segment that he was distinguished in, he was the first to go up.
As someone familiar with the Ascending Cloud Training WE, Campana was confident he would excel in the obstacle course.
As Campana entered the stage, all the students of Apollo Military College stood up and cheered. At the sound of the gun, his WE shot out. The mech's movement caused the earth to tremble. Campana used rolls, jumps, dashes and short-length maneuvers, effectively showcasing his superb mech operating skills. This was nothing like the video games, as every movement would exert stress on the pilot's body. If one was unable to handle the pressure, the movements would become distorted.
There were soldiers positioned at both sides of the course. They would shoot lasers at the mech which would effectively incapacitate the mech on hit. Campana’s WE directly dashed ahead and executed a mid-air somersault to avoid the laser fire, eliciting a round of cheers from the audience. Faced with such an impressive performance, even the students of Ares College couldn't be stingy with their applause.
Campana's mech landed with a skid, and planted a knee into the ground. Laser guns appeared in both of his hands and rumbling sounds were issued…
His aim stayed locked on his targets.
The targets were hit and loudly crashed to the ground
If one had to describe it in a word, the performance would have been called perfect.
Campana exited the cockpit and waved his hands. A sheen of perspiration could be seen on his forehead, but it could be heard from his voice that he was at his optimum level.The audience continued to cheer him on.
Attack completed in 2 Minutes 10 Seconds!
The rest of the participants from Apollo Military College finished with results ranging around three minutes, which showed there was still a gap between them and Campana. Still, everyone managed to complete the segment.
Apollo Military College's overall result was 14 minutes 23 seconds.
Only the two colleges with the best results would have the qualifications to compete in the final round of solo mech battles.
The one with the worst result would be relegated to watch on the sidelines.
As if the two were in direct competition, Lear Cronus was also the first to take the stage on the side of Zeus Military College.
Everyone In the audience paid close attention to the superb talent who had previously astounded everyone. The only thing they did not know was how good he was as a mech pilot.
"I'm really looking forward to watching this brat trip up, since freshmen are often less proficient at piloting mecha, compared to their seniors,"
Ma Xiao mused. Time and practice were required to operate a mech. There was a limit to what freshmen could achieve, given the limited time they had to practice with a mech.
"This is his strongest area though," Meng Tian suddenly said, attracting the looks of the surrounding audience.
"Cronus PJ Corporation, Earth's largest military arms merchant."
Everyone stared foolishly at the cold and callous teenager. They abruptly realized that they were not of the same world. No wonder the surname 'Cronus' felt a little familiar.
Lear jumped into the cockpit. An old mecha like this WE, had been mastered by him long ago.
At the sound of the gunshot, Lear's mech shot forward. The audience immediately silenced itself.
They saw the mech advance like a bolt of lightning, at an almost straight trajectory, dodging the lasers with frequency conversion movements. It was as if to Lear, this course was nothing but child's play.
The action was almost missed by everyone when Lear drew his laser gun and fired a series of three shots superimposed into one.
It was 1 Minute 45 Seconds!
The cockpit door opened.Lear directly jumped out and lightly landed on the ground. He was completely unfazed, not even a single drop of sweat could be seen on his body.
Ma Xiao and the rest swallowed their saliva back down, and thought, this fucker is too good! There's no way an ordinary person can do that!
At this point, no one even felt discouraged. This performance showed them that people of their level simply could not contend against him.
Campana's expression didn't change, though the fluctuations of his heart could only be known by himself. Such a person must have a familiarity with mecha beyond other people's comprehension, to stay calm even after executing such a difficult series of movements.
Masasi wasn't surprised, after all, Lear was the objective of his trip to Earth. Every single person who could enter that list was a legendary existence.
Lear Cronus's performance was like a master performing an apprentice's task.
Lear's shocking performance had boosted the morale of Zeus Military College. However, sometimes getting too excited wasn't a good thing. For the fatty who could fly, though his initial results were good, he failed in the later end. He might have spent too much time showing off which led to him being penalized an additional two minutes, causing him to fail in completing the segment within the allotted time and resulting in Zeus Military College finishing with a time of 15 minutes.
Having initially lagged behind with a huge gap, Apollo Military College took the opportunity to fiercely wave their fists. Although they had lost in the battle between their aces, they still won in terms of overall timing.
All that was left now was the final battle. Campana versus Lear, a battle for the new to replace the old.
Although Campana had his eyes set on Lear, Lear actually did not have any interest in his coming match.
Walking past Ares College's contestants, Lear lightly looked at Masasi and said, "Tell Victor, Earth is my territory. Let him manage his side first."
Masasi smiled faintly, "My senior hopes that you will one day travel to the Moon to play with him."
"Defeating him is only a matter of time," Lear's speech hinted it as a bygone conclusion.
Masasi didn't bother to argue, since the issue wasn't going to be resolved with words anyways.
Having said his piece, Lear looked at Meng Tian and told her, "If you've played enough, you should return. Don't cause trouble."
"Excuse me, I don't seem to be related to you." Meng Tian coldly responded.
"This sort of place will only lower your standard." Lear indifferently left behind that last remark. This left the students of Ares College half-dead with anger and annoyance, unable to rebut as Lear's skill was at a completely different level.
Returning to his seat, Lear glared coldly at Luo Fei. This stupid fatty almost screwed up the entire team's effort. Luo Fei was so scared that his neck shrank.
"Lear, you need to be colder to girls.. Even if you treat her well, it's not like she'll appreciate it."
Yue Jing gently said, giving Lear a towel.
Lear didn't take accept the towel, instead he looked at Yue Jing, "I hope your method works."
"Relax, no one is better at understanding how girls think than another girl!"
Yue Jing had a lovely smile without a hint of arrogance. This time, she was incomparably 'kind and gentle'.
Ares College entered the stage for the last round.
The students present in the stadium still cheered for their home team. People may lose, but morale must never waver. Regardless of the result, they still had to perform with all their heart, being the last team to perform in the event.
The first to go was Ma Xiao, finishing at 3 minutes 10 seconds which was a middle to below average result.
Masasi trailed behind at 2 minutes 30 seconds. To be fair, Masasi still hadn't acclimated to earth's gravity. This was not an excuse though. Lear had always been an expert, and Campana was yet another outstanding person in the Earth Federation. Hence, it wouldn't be fair to completely dismiss Earth Federation's skill level.
The third person in the lineup was Meng Tian. Ye Zisu and the other female students grouped together to form a line of beautiful scenery to cheer for her.
Meng Tian really did not disappoint everyone. With a result of 2 minutes 50 seconds, it was enough to make the other teammates blush with shame. Meng Tian was clearly very skillful at operating Mecha, moreover female elites were better able to raise the flexibility of their Mecha, which was an aspect in which males just couldn't compare to.
The originally doomed Ares Military College thus had a tiny spark of hope due to the mistake that Luo Fei from Zeus Military College made. It was hopeless to chase after Apollo Military College. However, catching up to Zeus College was still possible.
The eyes of the audience gathered on Zhang Shan, this stressed him to no end. Sometimes, the burden of hope weighed more than that of despair.
The dormmates of 007 had already begun to pray with bated breath. Yao Ailun drew the sign of the cross, "Heavenly Buddha, Allah, God, bless this competition. As long as it's not the last place, it's already a victory!"
Zhang Shan's mech began to move forward. However, before he could advance even 10 metres, he failed to dodge an attack. His mech staggered from the hit, slowing his advance. Zhang Shan frantically rushed forward in a bid to make up for lost time and was subsequently hit by a fatal shot. Although he finally completed the assault phase, his result was still 6 minutes. The audience could only sigh in woe.
Zhang San was beating himself up in vexation as he stepped out of the cockpit.
"Ha ha. It's normal for young people to learn from experiencing life."
Adonis faintly chuckled. Truthfully speaking, the three people before Zhang Shan had given him a fright. As long as Zeus Military College entered the finals, Lear's strength would guarantee an easy victory. Losing now because of a mistake would be too terrible a loss.
Currently, Ares Military College's result was 13 minutes 30 seconds. Unless the last person could complete the course in 1 minute 30 seconds…
But this would be an impossible feat.
Having returned to his seat, Zhang Shan lowered his head in depression. Failing at the crucial moment, no one could possibly bear the devastation, let alone the typically arrogant Zhang Shan.
"Ha ha, will the last one still be competing?" Jamal smiled, after all, at this point, it didn't really matter if the last person competed or not.
"It seems to be the substitute. If he doesn't wish to compete, we will be fine either way." Adonis said smilingly, as it would be a relief.
Even restrained people carried a small flame of anger within them, and though Gu Te was demoralized, he still flared up, "You had best pay attention, the last person is precisely that Wang Zheng that you two were interested in."
"Huh, You mean that Physics Department kid?"
"Ha ha, he's into mech piloting too?"
The two principal's interests were sparked.
Meanwhile, Zhuo Mu patted Wang Zheng on the back, telling him, "You can still choose not to participate."
To lose face before so many people definitely wouldn't be good for one's future. Besides, Wang Zheng hadn't participated in the special training.
"Teacher, let me try."
Zhuo Mu nodded, "Go then, as long as you do your best it's enough!"
In the reserved seats, the spectators gossiped amongst each other, they thought that it truly was a pity, what was destined to come, had come, and Gu Te would have to resign this year.
It was at this moment that a crisp voice suddenly arose from the stands, "Wang Zheng, go for it!"
Stunned, students looked to the stands, and some reporters even snapped a picture with a caption in mind, "Courage in the Face of Despair". After all, it was still a beauty, ah.
But…Why even put in the effort?
Who wouldn't feel awkward with a substitute who had just arrived?
But in the reserved seats, yet another person stood up, "Wang Zheng, a kid like you better fight to succeed, otherwise, you can give up on going to the mech department classes in the future."
Student Wang rubbed his nose… what kind of encouragement is that?
Jumping into the mech didn't feel all that different from the practice machines, but Wang Zheng still felt excited. He carefully linked the equipment, and attempted to lift his arms and move his legs.
He took in a deep breath.
Wow, this is so cool. This is what mech is really like. This is what life’s all about!