266 – Burn Down the Red Flags



Translator: SFBaka

Editor: Thor’s Stone

The sound of the electronic alarm woke me up.

The room with the lights turned off should be dim, but the interior was illuminated by a pale mystical light.

“Yes, yes, good morning.”

A spiral spear-shaped object that was leaning on one side of my bed flickered in reaction to my words. Yep. It’s the Sacred Tree’s seed that’s been giving me a lot of stress lately. Dammit.

“Man…… It’s morning already huh.”

I covered my eyes with one arm and sighed. The fact that it’s already morning meant that I had to get up already, and once I do, I’d need to face what today brings. Today’s schedule has already been decided, and I was really reluctant to go through with it. If I could, I would have liked to simply sleep the entire day.

“I wonder if saying I’m not feeling well would work?”

Nah. She’d just tell me to get inside the medical pod to get myself fixed up. She’d go like ‘Five minutes should be enough, right?’ or something to that effect. Yeah. I can only hope to gain a measly five minutes of a reprieve even if I called in sick.

“Haa…… Guess I better get up now.”

The Sacred Tree seed, or rather, the special-grade cursed item was blinking gently as if comforting me. But it’s also one of the main causes of my stress level rising, okay! I ain’t gonna be fooled even if you create that kind of mood!

“Good morning.”

“Good morning, Hiro-sama.”

“Good morning, Big Brother.”

“Mornin’, Boss.”

“Good morning, guys.”

After taking a quick shower, I headed for the dining hall. My crew members were already assembled inside. Apparently, Mimi and the mechanic sisters just finished having their breakfast, and Elma was in the middle of eating a large morning steak. Man. She sure had one heck of an appetite.

“Good morning, Master.”

“Good morning, Mei.”

Mei brought me my breakfast the moment I took a seat at the table. Today’s breakfast menu seems to be something resembling a grilled salmon set meal. Except for being somewhat strangely colored, it was your typical grilled salmon breakfast set, so I wasn’t bothered too much and ate without hesitation. The meal made by Tetsujin V today was as delicious as always.

“You look really gloomy today, Boss.”

“Do you really hate going to see Commander Serena that much?”

Whisker cocked her head to the side as she inquired.

Serena Holz. A Commander serving in the Imperial Military. She was a very beautiful blonde young woman, and her dignified features matched her white Imperial Military uniform really well. She was a young officer who has been promoted from Lieutenant to Commander in a very short span of time and served as the commander of an independent Imperial Military Space Fleet.

“Of course, I do. Especially since her aims are pretty obvious this time around.”

I answered Whisker and let out another sigh.

We’ve been staying in the Refill system, the mother system of the elves, for more than a couple of days now. But before we even got here, the elves suffered a large-scale space pirate raid.

Although pirates were merely just pirates, in the end, some were part of large pirate organizations that even Star System Garrison Forces have a hard time dealing with. Unfortunately, the pirates that attacked the elves in the Refill system were members of one such organization; the Red Flag pirates.

They staged a planetary raid on Refill IV (the locals called it Theta) and abducted a large number of elves.

The local System Garrison didn’t twiddle their thumbs, of course. They managed to shoot down quite a large number of the assailants. We accidentally detected a large-class pirate ship that managed to slip through the cracks and captured it by performing a boarding action.

After that, the Red Flag pirates attacked Refill IV again, but this time, they were repelled by the System Garrison and Mei, who was piloting Black Lotus. And now, that brings us to the present situation.

Commander Serena appeared at this time for some reason and requested a meeting. I already had an inkling about what she wants when I pay her a visit later. It’s most likely gonna be related to subjugating the Red Flag pirates.

“Anyway, we really manage to meet up with her a lot huh. It’s a wide universe after all, and yet here we are.”

“Our area of operation is basically within the Imperial territory, and their fleet’s job is to hunt down pirates after all…… It’s not really that strange to meet up with her a lot, given the circumstances.”

“Yeah, I guess. But it’s not like we came here to hunt down pirates this time you know.”

The star system we visited for some sightseeing coincidentally suffered an attack from space pirates, and then we coincidentally meet up with Commander Serena as well. The coincidences were so uncanny that it almost seemed like somebody planned the whole thing. Nah. Maybe it’s just my bad luck attribute acting up again.

“Sure, it ain’t that strange, but it kinda feels like you guys are tied by some sort of bond or somethin’.”

“You do run into each other a lot ever since you first met her in the Termaine system, right, Big Brother?”

“Yeah, that’s true.”

Come to think of it, ever since I found myself in this dimension, you could say that Commander Serena was the person who had the deepest connection to me right after Mimi and Elma. But even so, I still had no intention of becoming her subordinate, or even more than that.

“It kind of seems like fate.”

“If you’re joking, then leave it at that, please. It’s too scary for a joke.”

I quivered in trepidation after hearing Whisker’s words. The thought that Commander Serena and I were somehow tied by destiny was absolutely terrifying to me. Since I’m now both a Platinum ranker and a Gold Star recipient, coupled with the Emperor’s recognition after I won that blasted tournament, it won’t be strange if Commander Serena has already locked her sights firmly toward me now.

“Why d’ya hate it so much though, Boss? I mean, ain’t Commander Serena pretty?”

“I won’t deny that. Commander Serena is certainly one heck of a beauty. She gets additional bonus points for being a ditz during her time in private and exposing lots of gaps whenever she gets drunk enough. It’s really cute. But Commander Serena is a daughter of an Imperial Marquis. And, different from Elma, she still has strong ties to her House. So getting along more than necessary with her can be quite risky. And above all……”

I scanned everyone’s faces before continuing.

“I really like the free-spirited life of a mercenary. I absolutely don’t want to become a military man who’s bound by lots of rules.”

“We really do meet up with each other often, don’t we? There seems to be an inseparable connection between you and me.”

“Hahaha, I wouldn’t dare to agree, milady. I’m just a plain and boring mercenary you know.”

I was currently inside the reception room of the Imperial Space Navy Independent Anti-Pirate Fleet flagship, the Restalias, and in the middle of exchanging pleasantries and fake-sounding laughter with my present companion. I wanna go back already.

By the way, Mei and I were the only ones who headed over to Restalias. The other crew members remained on Black Lotus to perform maintenance, procure supplies, and collect information.

“Oh, I wouldn’t say a Gold Star recipient and Platinum-ranked mercenary is plain and boring.”

Yes, I can’t deny that.

I was promoted to the highest mercenary rank, the Platinum rank, and got myself a Gold Star, or the First-class Golden Cross medal in formal terms, but it still hasn’t sunk in even after all this time. And is it just my imagination, but doesn’t it feel like gaining those two had more demerits than merits for me?

“It looks like you’re going wild in this place as well. Is it just me, or does trouble occur everywhere you go?”

“I think it’s just your imagination. Or rather, please say that it’s just your imagination. Or else, my sanity would give out…”

“Ah, yes, of course.”

Commander Serena flinched a bit but nodded in the end. It looks like my heartfelt appeal got through to her somehow.

“Let’s get the facts straight first. The first pirate attack already ended when we arrived at this star system, okay? We just coincidentally met and captured the ones who escaped the System Garrison’s pursuit.”

That’s why I insist that I wasn’t the one who brought over trouble.

“In other words, rather than you bringing trouble wherever you go, it’s more appropriate to say you have a strong tendency to unknowingly find yourself in the middle of something troublesome.”

“I’m sorry, but I really don’t wanna continue with this topic.”

I hate Commander Serena for reminding me of the harsh reality.

“Alright then. Let’s leave basking in the joy of our reunion for now and move on to the main topic of today’s business.”

Just how exactly did we ‘bask in the joy of our reunion’ earlier? You just toyed around with my feelings one-sided-ly y’know.

“I suppose you already have an idea about why I called you, right, Captain Hiro?”

“I dunno…”

“Stop it with that pretentious stupid face of yours right this instant. We’re having a serious discussion here.”

Tsk. I guess I really can’t play dumb any longer huh.

“Okay, okay. It’s about the Red Flag pirates, right? Since you’ve arrived here at this time, I suppose they already contacted you once they suffered the first attack.”

“That’s right. Allowing a planetary raid in Imperial territory would negatively affect the Empire’s honor after all.”

Speaking of which, Commander Serena’s fleet was also the first to respond when pirates attacked the resort planet we were staying at a while back as well. Well, I suppose that’s just the M.O. of Commander Serena’s fleet. It was a fleet that would immediately rush toward places with heightened pirate activity in order to put out the flames.

“By the way, is it just me, or has your fleet gotten bigger again?”

“It’s due to my promotion to Commander. Since my rank increased, the number of my ships and personnel also increased accordingly.”

“I see.”

I went to the Refill Prime colony in the Black Lotus to meet with Commander Serena and noticed that the number of ships in her fleet that were stationed in the colony had increased compared to before. The Restalias was still their sole battleship, but the number of their cruisers and destroyers had increased by a fair bit. The increase in the number of corvettes, however, was the most substantial. Maybe it’s to better implement the formation specialized in fighting within asteroid clusters that I taught them a while back. It’s rather difficult to fight within asteroid belts with ships larger than a destroyer, but corvettes would be able to make it work, albeit barely.

There’s no peskier opponent for space pirates than military corvettes. First, their shields were too tough for the pirate ship’s weapon systems to punch through, and conversely, the shields and armor plating of pirate ships stand no chance against military corvettes. Furthermore, corvettes were pretty damn fast and agile for their size, so it wouldn’t be easy for them to escape either. And if they carelessly charged out of the asteroid field, they’d just get sniped by the superior firepower and range of destroyers and higher-class ships.

“With this level of strength, you can even mount an attack on a fortified pirate base with just your fleet alone.”

“That’s right. Actually, we’ve already crushed a few small strongholds. However, this time, the opponent is a large-scale space pirate organization. That’s why I want to solicit outside help. In other words, I plan to hire mercenaries again. And after deciding so, I found out that you’re actually in the area as well. Perhaps it’s fate.”

“I see.”

“So, you’ll participate in the pirate subjugation mission, right?”

The good Commander flashed me a bright smile. Well, yeah, I guess I’ll participate.

“First, let’s talk about the price. It’s gonna be expensive y’know. I’m a Gold Star recipient and Platinum-ranker after all.”

After saying so, I formed a circle with my index finger and thumb and showed it to Commander Serena.

“……Um, can you give me a friend’s discount?”

“No way.”

I ain’t giving up a single Enel. Absolutely. It won’t work even if you look at me with cute upturned eyes, alright?



Novel Schedule

I Woke Up Piloting the Strongest Starship, so I Became a Space Mercenary

Schedule will be reduced when the goal is reached

Balance: 0

Comments (2)

  1. 88898

    Normally we start the new book with Hiro wake up on the bed with someone. We start this one with sacred tree seed, so is it gonna turn into fairy or dryads later?

  2. RPGsus

    Aha… yeah, I’ll give you a “friendly” discount. Since you are my friend, you’ll give me more money, right?

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