Counterfeit Hero - Chapter 20
Chapter 20: The Magic of Escape
Translator: Chaos Editor: Geoffrey
Rashid lit a cigarette and inhaled a deep breath from it. The flame produced a brilliant glow of light in the darkness before it dimmed once again. It continued to burn by itself and released some green smoke. He remained quiet for a moment before asking, ’’What do you plan to do?’’
Tian Xing Jian took out an electronic map before inputting a coordinate. Pointing towards the screen that was glowing in green, he said to Rashid, ’’20 kilometers southeast from here is a mountainous region. There are dense forests enveloping that region. If we are lucky, we will be able to enter this region before the enemies finds us. The Battle Mecha operators will not want to start a search within the mountainous region, and I believe there should be a way for us to hide through their search. If that doesn't work out, then these few hundreds of people can arm themselves before betting their lives to break through the net. Regardless, it's better than staying here and simply waiting for death.’’
Rashid looked carefully at the map. ’’Then, how are you going to return? Even if you manage to hide through the duration of their search, you can't possibly just stay in the mountainous region until the war ends, right? Furthermore, how are you going to find enough food for a few hundred people?’’
Tian Xing Jian laughed. ’’I'll consider that as I proceed further. Right now, the most important mission will be to bring them away. We can obtain enough food and weapons to last for quite some time in this base. For now, my plan will be to wait until they regain some battling strength before finding a way to attack the enemy's logistic supply base and grabbing a transport ship. Or maybe, I can contact the air force and see if they have a way to bring us out. The worst case scenario will be for me to bring them into the southern Loki City. Even though that location has been surrounded by enemies, it'll still be safer than staying here.’’
Rashid gave Tian Xing Jian a firm look before patting his shoulders as he said seriously, ’’Brother, regardless of what I say, this big brother truly admires you this time. Making this decision isn't easy at all. I'll leave a team behind for you as well as an [Antenna] and a [Fury Fire]. We'll go back and regroup with platoon three before continuing north. If there are any soldiers chasing after you, I'll help you delay them for a few hours. That's the most I can help you with. The rest will depend on you alone.’’
’’Impossible!’’ Tian Xing Jian resolutely rejected. ’’The first company has to do the missions assigned to them. I'm already dragging behind the entire company with my actions, so I can't allow the brothers to join me in risking their lives.’’
Rashid angrily replied, ’’Are you looking down on us? You are helping a few hundred people escape all by yourself, and yet I am the one that needed help even though the group I'm bringing with me comprises of fully-armed special forces? Our mission has no time limit. All we have to do is continue assaulting the rear forces of the enemy, so it doesn't matter much if you bring them away with you. Are you considering hitting a logistic base? Doing it without sufficient Battle Mechas and relying on these unarmed people instead? Stop joking! Let's not continue discussing this anymore. It's settled. I'll pass Thoriko to you. After all, he has been worshipping you for you are the first person he saw that was this good at playing with rifles.’’
As if he recalled the glowing eyes of the firearm madman Thoriko, Rashid laughed. ’’Alright, let's do our best and not die. We'll meet after the war. I'll postpone your welcome dinner to the future, and by then, if you aren't drunk, you can't go back.’’
Tian Xing Jian could no longer refuse him. At this point in time, any more words were unnecessary. Time waited for no man. Giving a serious salute to Rashid, he said, ’’It's decided then. By then, we will meet again and not go home until we get drunk.’’
’’That's right. Let's see each other again.’’
Under the yellow street lamps within the base, there were many nameless insects flying around. At times, they would knock into the unmovable light bulb, emitting sounds of ’’zi la zi la’’. These insects looked similar to the moths from Earth and had an instinctive nature to react to any heat or light sources. The Easterners from Earth had this saying: ’’the moth flies into the flame’’. Despite knowing how dangerous it was, these moths still continued, one after another, to fly towards the light and heat sources. They would not hesitate even if their actions led them to being burned to death.
Sometimes, humans were just like these moths. In the ancient era on Earth, there had once been this kind of Easterner who felt, deep in their heart, the spirit of heading into the mountains despite knowing that tigers were hiding within. At the moment they determined their goals, they would burst out with enormous strength. This strength was akin to fire, blood, and boiling lava it could destroy everything.
’’Who is the moth and who is the flame?’’ Rashid pondered in his heart as he looked towards the back of Tian Xing Jian, who was walking away.
’’Hurry up! What are you still dilly-dallying for? We must help delay the enemies by at least 3 hours. What we need now is time.’’
The distant sound from Fatty broke Rashid's line of thought. This wretched person adopted a position of ’’since you promised, then you should do it’’.
’’Your mother.’’ Rashid felt depressed as he brought his special scouts company away. In his heart, he had a desire to peel off this fatty's skin before hanging him for an exhibition. ’’This chap is truly fast at learning how to turn hostile on someone and is even better trained in this than I am.’’
Actually, he knew that this chap, who had turned hostile on him, did not hesitate to pass the mettle of protecting his back onto Rashid.
Entrusting him with this task required trust. It implied that they would truly become brothers who live and die together brothers who were even closer than blood-brothers. The soldiers of the first company knew of what their vice company commander, the fatty, had decided to do.
’’He is truly a genuine man, an authentic hero.’’ They would say.
Before they parted, one by one, the soldiers would walk towards Tian Xing Jian before giving this man, the hero in their heart, a respectful salute that represented their highest respect.
The hero was truly moved by this to the point that he was brimming with tears. His body could not help but tremble, and words were stuck in his mouth.
He continued trembling.
Fatty thought, ’’Your mother. I was rash for a moment in showing my merits. What is this 'thing' that man should do? Shouldn't it be staying alive that is more important for a man? If a man is dead, it will not be called a man nor a woman it would be called a corpse! Seeing how everyone is acting, it seems as if they are saying goodbye to a dead person.’’
After the counterfeit hero sent away those people who bid farewell to him, he started to think over his plans of escape.
Depending on their two legs was certainly not possible. A journey of 20 kilometers within a dense forest was not something these people could traverse. The eastern and western roads could not be used as well, as that was simply seeking death. They did not have enough mechas that could easily travel through the forest. Even if he decided to build them and had the help of a deity, it was still impossible to construct enough of these Battle Mechas within the short period of time. Furthermore, the Imperial Battle Mechas within this base were practically destroyed, and the remaining wreckage did not provide enough materials to make them.
[Logic] might be able to transform into a small transport ship, though it was still a single-operated Battle Mecha and could at most bring a dozen people with it. Wanting to send all these people away with [Logic] was not logical at all. Furthermore, if the cabin was filled with people as they encountered an enemy, he would have no way of transforming. [Logic] would be unable to attack if that was the case.
Travelling via the ground was not possible, and travelling via the air was also not possible. The best way would be to head underground.
If they went underground, they could successfully evade detection by radars. However, if the Empire decided to use their reconnaissance satellites, underground passages of any depth would be revealed. And the moment their route was revealed, everyone would just become trapped rats and would be killed easily by just pouring boiling water into the nest.
What should he do in order to prevent the enemy from using their satellites to scan the surroundings of the base? There had been Anti-Detection Interference System installed within the surroundings of this base, showing clearly that the Gyaca Woods Empire had been afraid of this base being revealed. The inhumane actions taken by Gyaca Woods would be heavily scrutinized and be met with condemnations and sanctions by the entire human civilization in the cosmos. Thus, Gyaca Woods would never ever allow these prisoners-of-war to escape. They would certainly chase after them without rest. Even if Fatty and his group wiped out a batch of the incoming soldiers, this was ultimately still enemy territory. This location was also the place where the enemy's fists knew no fatigue. Group after group of soldiers would be dispatched towards this area to chase and kill all the Federation prisoners-of-war.
Only when the soldiers chasing after them see the death of all prisoners-of-war would they dispel their worries.
Tian Xing Jian had thought of the route underground. It would be precisely under the roads by the side of the base! Following the roads, the high-grade materials used to make the roads would effectively isolate them from any radar detections. Additionally, the high-grade materials would not collapse nor form scars because of the underground tunnels.
Now, all they required was a magical performance and it would be done. Even the problem of having the entrance to the underground passage being easily discoverable by the enemies would disappear from the enemy's line of thought after this performance.
Having decided on that, Tian Xing Jian requested the soldiers of section one from the second platoon that remained for help. They would collect all the transport vehicles, weapons and ammunitions, and compressed energy pieces. After that, they would dismantle the Empire's destroyed Battle Mechas.
Several Imperial Battle Mechas remained untouched in their original locations. With their owners killed by Fatty, they had become targets for modification.
The mechanical arms and legs of the Battle Mechas were dismantled before being assembled into an enormous power drive system for the drill. The engines would then be gathered and placed together. As for the energy cannons, the inherent explosive unit had been taken out, and the remaining parts were used as an energy-powered drill. The other transport vehicles would then have some of their parts taken down before they were welded to form a few separate carriages. Food and weapons were stored within them. This would greatly reduce the burden the physically weak Federation prisoners-of-war had to carry. The carriages also had a modified groundwater absorbing device that was the modified version of the Empire's water purification system. There were also several air conditioners and negative-ion air purifiers, which were initially used as oxygen supply for those who within the biochemistry laboratory in the base, that were taken from the guard house on the base.
A centipede-like, underground drilling vehicle had soon been manufactured under the collective effort of everyone. One of the guard houses in the base had been turned into their underground entrance. After opening a wall, this centipede easily drilled its way into the ground. At its head, the modified energy cannons were installed there. Due to the removal of the explosive unit, these cannons could only provide a stable and continuous ray. Obviously, they could not be used for attacking. Instead, it was truly appropriate to be used as a drill. A circle of six meters in radius had been formed. The soil, which the head section of the centipede had dug out, was pushed towards the sides before the countless mechanical arms moved with a fast speed to pile the soil by the walls.
Other than the several dozen Federation prisoners-of-war who had to stay behind to provide cover, the others had followed Thoriko's scout team to enter the underground passage. Half an hour later, a passage had finally been dug to the location under the roads before it begun to turn in another direction along the road.
At this moment, the communications channel transmitted Tian Xing Jian's order to stop digging. Everyone knew that the performance above the surface was about to begin. The entire underground passage was a completely silent. Everyone started praying in their hearts.
However, Mei Duo and Ni Ya did not pray. Tian Xing Jian had long brought to them too much surprises. In their eyes, this fatty had practically nothing he did not know how to do. Since he has made this arrangement, then most assuredly, he must have a method of bringing everyone out of this predicament. In terms of escaping, within just the Federation and not the entire cosmos, if the fatty dared to say he was second, then who would dare to say he or she was first?