Editor: Thor’s Stone
“10 o’clock direction, angle 20 degrees, three enemy ships approaching!”
I followed Mimi’s pronouncement and adjusted the direction of the ship’s bow. They’re coming.
“Reversing heading after we pass by the enemies. I’ll take their behinds.”
I pointed the bow straight at the approaching enemy ships and accelerated; quickly passing them by. We were hit by a few shots of their lasers and multi-cannons, but the damage was minimal.
“Brace for Gs!”
Krishna’s auxiliary boosters activated and made the ship turn a full 180 degrees. We successfully got behind the enemy ships. Intense Gs will result from the sudden acceleration and turn, so we had to grit our teeth and bear it.
“Enemy out front!”
We completely took their sorry behinds. I blasted the two ships on the wings with the pulse laser cannons while the enemy ship directly in the middle of my sights was given the shotgun cannon treatment. They looked like they were desperately trying to escape, but there’s no way they would be able to outmaneuver and escape the Krishna.
“That’s three down!”
The cannon barrels on both sides of the cockpit spewed fire and countless submunitions rained down on the enemy ship from behind. The projectiles saturated their shield in an instant, successfully destroying their thrusters, as well as the main energy cables and power generator beyond. Another serving of swiss cheese was successfully made.
We left the wreckage of the three ships and headed out to hunt for more prey.
“Looks like your skills haven’t dulled after all, huh?”
“3 o’clock, elevation 20 degrees, multiple enemies detected. Six… no, seven ships incoming! Two medium sized ships are among them.”
“Shall we charge through?”
“Of course. I’ll leave the chaff and flare timing to you.”
I fired up the thrusters once more and aimed the bow at the direction of the enemy ships.
『Enemy approaching…… What the heck is that? A ship with arms?』
『Ship with arms……? Oi, show me the live feed– The heck! Ain’t this the monster from last time!? That one’s bad news man! Hurry up and get out of here!』
『Even if you say that, how are we supposed to run away!?』
『Let’s just get it before it gets us you guys!』
There really were seven ships. They also turned their bows towards us and accelerated. They were composed of two mid-sized ships, missile support ships and a modified transport ship.
“Let’s get those mid-sized ships first.”
『Fire, fire, fire! Give ’em hell!』
Several alarms rang out within the cockpit. They fire off heat seeking missiles. They have accurate heat guidance capabilities and have enough firepower to greatly damage both energy shields and physical armor. They were one of the nastiest pieces of weaponry the pirates possessed.
At Elma’s shout, multiple heat sources launched out from Krishna. The seeker missiles fired off by the two mid-sized pirate ships were successfully led away by the heat sources and lost their original bearings. Krishna managed to completely ward off the seeker missile barrage. Just like that.
『Activate the ship defenses!』
“Like I’d allow that.”
They were already well within weapon range. The modified mid-sized ships opened their missile bays again, but it’s too late. The two shotgun cannons roared out at the same time, peppering their shields with submunitions and successfully tearing through it. They then pierced the hull and the opened missile bays.
The two mid-sized ships exploded and were brought down. The rest of the pirate ships behind them looked at the sight in horror.
After witnessing such a spectacle…
『T-This is bad……』
“I’m sorry, but you can’t escape.”
“Course they won’t. Sorry, but we’re gonna have to destroy you all here.”
I shot the panicked escaping pirate ships with multiple laser cannon and shotgun cannon rounds. Is it fun to slaughter enemies who’ve lost the will to fight back, you ask? ’Course it is! I’ll be able to earn money while getting rid of the galaxy’s scum. There’s nothing more rewarding. Meting out justice and righteousness felt amazing as always.
“No can do.”
We can potentially be labeled as going overboard by doing this, but we’re talking about pirates after all. There’s no merit in letting them live.
“Area clear. The nearest targets are in the 1 o’clock direction.”
“Let’s head over.”
All three of us nodded at each other and turned Krishna to head to the next battlefield.
“What’s the current situation?”
“The surprise attack seems to have succeeded. There’s no threat of effective retaliation.”
“I see. Please tell the rest of the ships to continue calmly executing their mission orders.”
The battle is overwhelmingly in our favor. It was fortunate that we were able to destroy the pirate base’s hangar with the first attack. As long as you manage to crush them before managing to launch out, any ship, no matter how powerful, is as good as a wooden dummy.
Because we only managed to destroy the main hangar, the pirates still managed to launch out from some of the other ones…… But I guess the mercenaries have got it covered. The pirates who were trying to escape from this sector have been successfully confined.
Normally, only one Imperial Space Force division is assigned to each individual star system within the Empire’s territories. There were regular scheduled patrols, but they were only allowed to make a move on pirates they encountered along the way and weren’t allowed to actively pursue them. This was virtually the first time ever that a specialized independent mobile fleet formed to hunt down pirates was organized and deployed by the Empire.
It was long accepted common knowledge that the Imperial Space Fleet could not actively participate in the act of hunting down pirates. And the current situation is the result of turning that very concept on its head. Due to the fact that our fleet was not bound by traditional rules nor obligated to directly report our actions to the local garrison except if the circumstance calls for it, crucial information about our movements did not manage to reach the pirates before we sprang our attack, and thus we ended up completely blindsiding them.
“What about the current reward rankings……?”
I operated the data terminal I had on hand and checked out the current kill scores of the mercenaries participating in the operation. Ranked first was– Krishna. It was ‘his’ ship. After I confirmed that, a pleased smile couldn’t help but form on my lips. Oh, this just won’t do. I can’t have myself daydreaming in the middle of an operation. I quickly covered my mouth with a hand in order to hide my silly-looking smile and somehow managed to regain my calm after a while.
It’s not the time to be grinning like this. I have to be ready in case an unexpected accident occurs.
“With this, it’s over.”
“Area clear. There are no more enemy signatures on the radar.”
It seems there were still sporadic battles going on in other sectors, but there were no more enemies within the area we’re at anymore. I also tried to check out the radar and confirmed that there really were no more enemies nearby. The rest were in sectors far away from us.
“How many did we manage to get?”
“Our total kill count is 33 small ships and 3 medium-sized ones.”
“Doesn’t it seem a little on the low end compared to last time in the Termaine system?”
Yeah. The results we got from the Termaine system operation were much better compared to this time. Did my skills really get dull?
“I think this result is reasonable. The number of pirates this time was rather small after all. It’s a stellar result if we count that factor in.”
Hm. Yeah, I guess the number of enemies wasn’t that much this time. Did that first attack get a majority of them?
“I guess so. So let’s see… A small ship nets us 5,000 and a medium one is 20,000, right? So all in all, we earned about 225,000 Enels.”
“Add the participation reward of 50,000 to that as well. And we’ve yet to factor in the pirate bounties.”
“If I remember correctly, the individual bounty put up for the small ships is 10,000 and the medium ones go for 50,000. So, adding the participation pay, we’ll have another 500,000 plus Enels of earnings, right?”
“Something like that. So we’ll net roughly 700,000 Enels all in all, correct? There’s also the loot we’ve yet to recover from the ships we shot down.”
“We have to work hard on that front.”
Since there were no more enemies in the immediate vicinity, we’ll start looting the wreckage of the downed pirate ships now. We shouldn’t aim for quantity, but focus on nabbing high value targets such as rare metals, high tech products and luxury items such as alcohol and newly developed drugs. Most of the drugs are illegal goods of course, but in a sanctioned military operation like this one, the military is willing to buy things like those from off our hands, so everything’s good. I have no idea what they’re gonna use them for though.
The Imperial government may be thinking that it would be too troublesome to leave those kinds of illegal goods to float as space debris since they’ll have a more difficult time regulating them. Those containers filled with illegal drugs would continue to drift aimlessly in space if we don’t move in to retrieve them after all. That, in turn, will attract the eyes of greedy scavengers – illegal garbage collectors aiming specifically for those types of debris.
Those guys would appear after every large scale battle and would proceed to strip the former battlefield of everything they find even remotely valuable. The reason they’re called scavengers, or rather, carrion eaters, is simple: they simply aimed to make profits off the battlefield where countless soldiers and mercenaries spilled their blood without risking their own lives.
I don’t have any particular opinion about them. Though I do think what they’re doing was a bit troublesome. But I’m sure that line of work doesn’t make one much profit. But some mercenaries and soldiers hate those types as much as the space pirates. There were plenty of scavengers who didn’t think twice about selling off illegal goods on the black market after all. But something like that is to be expected, I guess. Everybody has to fill their own bellies one way or another.
“I’ll stay on guard, so can you please teach Mimi how to operate the recovery drones, Elma?”
“Aye aye, sir. Let’s do our best, Mimi.”
Elma started using the for suitable spoils using the specialized sensors. I then drove the ship according to her directions.
Thx 4 the chapter.
Thanks for the treat.
I love how the Krishna is now recognizable as a monster.
Thanks for the chapter.
Was there a POV change to Serena in the middle? Without a visual line break or something, I had a hard time telling when the POV change started and ended.
Yeah it’s annoying when they flip flop between POV’s like that.
I think it wouldnt have been as annoying of there was some form of annotation. The two POVs have no indicator where the second starts or where it ends. Even looking back knowing it’s there is hard to differentiate.
I saw it too. One paragraph didn’t fit the main crew, but obsessive enough for Serena.
Thanks for the chapter.
Thanks for the chappu~
Thanks for the chapter!!
Thanks for the chapter. Slowly catching up… that said… a proofreader could select slightly better wording. Ie, piloted instead of “drove” etc.
A separator line of some sort would’ve really been appreciated between POV changes, luls