Chapter 27- The badge one has obtained through blood sacrifice
“Are you his successor?”
There was confusion in Kristen’s eyes as she asked: “Successor?”
This time it was General Doyle’s turn to be dumbfounded: “…Did he not tell you about the inheritance?”
Kristen turned her head and studied the stele before her: “If you are talking about the former leader of Scarlet Thorns, he didn’t say anything. He died too suddenly and even this leader position was not given to me by him but something I fought for myself.”
General Doyle lowered his head and looked at the detector in his hands that told him the signal was coming from somewhere nearby. He placed the detector in a pocket close to his heart.
“Well….” General Doyle slowly turned around and steadied himself into a fighting posture, “whether or not you are his successor….we’ll know after this.”
As soon as he finished, a fist as fast as the wind struck towards Kristen.
Kristen relied on her fast reaction speed to take a step back and avoid the fist. She didn’t show any weakness as she moved to grab General Doyle’s arm.
General Doyle seemed to have expected her movements and moved his arm to the side so Kristen grabbed nothing but air.
General Doyle’s skills were unexpectedly good. In Kristen’s memories, these commanders were only strong when it came to their unpredictable command capabilities but their fighting skills were usually far inferior to the mercenaries from the front lines.
General Doyle’s fighting style was similar to his temperament. Cold and strong, his every move was sharp and tough. If she let him successfully land a blow, she might have to stay in the medical immersion pod for a day or two.
Kristen relied on her reactions to avoid his attacks, her body bending flexibly as she slowly recalled whether or not Big Beard ever said anything to her about a successor.
Big Beard was a very good conversationalist except during training. When he brought her to Pulangke from her home planet, he began a sort of devil-like training right after he discovered she had awakened as a Sentinel.
For a long time afterward, Kristen would have a psychological shadow in her heart because of Big Beard.
Big Beard seemed to value Kristen very much as he dragged her around to go through a bunch of other training programs besides the basic training most members of the regiment received.
The devilish training programs he came up with that made Kristen’s teeth itch in hatred was what allowed Kristen to be the last person standing during the Scarlet Thorns fighting competition.
No one could have imagined that the scrawny little girl who was picked up from the battlefield would one day become the number one killer in the mercenary regiment.
Big Beard was very satisfied with the results.
Unfortunately, before Big Beard could impart any more of his wisdom, he suddenly died during one of the many ordinary missions.
When Kristen arrived with reinforcements, his body had already turned cold. He only held a rugged cross-shaped metal pendant tightly in his hand, the edges almost embedded in his palm from how tightly he held it. If it weren’t for Kristen’s stubborn insistence that he be moved into a normal lying position before he was cremated, no one would’ve found the little pendant in the first place.
Big Beard’s corpse was then cremated and brought back to Pulangke and buried under the Champion’s stele and Kristen saved that little pendant from being turned into ash like his body. In the Scarlet Thorns Mercenary Corps, there were a few older folks who used their seniority to throw their weight around. After the death of Big Beard, they were naturally unwilling to maintain the status quo.
With Big Beard’s attitude from before he died, one could tell he wanted to train Kristen into becoming the new leader of the mercenary groups but he had left this world so hurriedly that both Kristen and the older veterans were caught off guard.
Had it not been for Daniel and Eden’s wholehearted support, then the Scarlet Thorns might’ve been divided up by those veterans by now.
Kristen was starting to struggle.
General Doyle’s fighting techniques were different from anything Kristen had ever learned or seen. There were no useless movements in his simple and fast moves. His speed also forced Kristen into a passive state.
This cannot do.
Kristen dodged General Doyle’s fist and narrowed her perception range from the original five-meter radius.
Among the hundreds of Sentinels in the Scarlet Thorns, Kristen’s range of perception was undoubtedly the largest. Furthermore, Kristen could reduce her range of perception at will.
When the range of perception is reduced, her senses will become more sensitive.
And General Doyle’s quick and violent attack gradually seemed to slow down before her eyes.
She had found an opportunity to counterattack.
Kristen has always been like a quiet snow leopard, hiding behind the rugged rocks and only revealing a pair of gray-blue eyes as she silently monitors her prey.
Kristine broke through General Doyle’s attack for the first time, her palm turning into something akin to a sharp knife as it moved so fast that one could only see a dark blur. Her fingertips hovered firmly above General Doyle’s throat, one centimeter away from taking his life
The snow leopard had landed a fatal blow and sunk its teeth on the throat of its prey.
General Doyle’s fist stopped just before Kristen’s lower abdomen. He looked down at the hand just above his throat. His eyes seemed to soften as he retracted his fist.
Kristen’s improvement and her reaction was faster than he had expected
At the beginning of the fight, Kristen had clearly been unable to keep up with such a fast-paced. If it weren’t for the fact that Doyle was just testing the water at first, Kristen would’ve been defeated in just a few moves.
But…after only a few moves, Kristen seemed to enter some sort of trance. Even though she was passively defending, she no longer needed Doyle to take it easy on her as she flipped the table on him and made him feel a faint danger that warned him he had to go all out or die. Kristen had then reversed the outcome easily.
General Doyle’s fighting skills have always been undefeatable in the Third Legion. It was rare for him to encounter an opponent where he could go all out and he was naturally very happy.
There was a shadow of someone else’s guidance, someone he was familiar with, hidden in Kristen’s fighting skills. This was enough to confirm his suspicions.
But to his pleasant surprise, Kristen was like those warriors in the ancient earth era. In such an intense fight, not only did she not slow down due to fatigue, she had gained ‘enlightenment’ and even became faster.
The attacking behavior of a Sentinel is often similar to the characteristics of their spiritual beast and Kristen gave him the feeling of a big feline staring down at him from the top of the food chain.
This was not his imagination.
And Kristen’s strength had grown again after this fight.
General Doyle had trained countless soldiers but each of his men had grown into their extraordinary talents step by step. It has been a while since he has seen someone like Kristen who can achieve such a frightening transformation in such a short fight.
He took a step back and looked her up and down before reaching out a hand.
“You are indeed the person I was looking for, Kristen.”
“The former leader of the Scarlet Thorns was one of my old comrades-in-arms.” General Doyle showed no emotion on his face and turned to look at the stele above him, “When the war broke out, we didn’t have time to say goodbye. I never expected that we would never see each other again.”
General Doyle took out the detector from his pocket and walked up the steps leading to the stele.
Kristen still held some suspicions towards the man, but her instinct told her that what General Doyle was saying was the truth.
After all, Kristen was not one of those so-called, ‘military fans’ who adored the imperial military with all their heart and devoted their blind faith to them. Unlike Big Beard.
She followed Doyle and watched as he walked in front of the stele, bent down, and poked the soil around the stele.
He didn’t care if his hands got dirty and dug up the soil with his bare hands as if he was trying to find something.
General Doyle only felt something cold touch his fingertips as he finally found what he was looking for. He carefully brushed aside the soil above, and finally saw the thing that was constantly sending out the signals his detector had detected.
It was almost unrecognizable by now.
Compared to its originally exquisite and magnificent form, the ugly and rough cross was now covered in mud and cracks. The rust-proof metal had changed as well as there were dents and rusty stains now covering it.
General Doyle placed it in his palm and looked at it blankly. He straightened up, touched his heart with his other hand, and took off the badge pinned to his chest.
The badge of the Third Legion.
A spear and sword intersected to form a cross and the metal badge still looked brand new after so many decades.
【The Third Legion is the sharpest blade of the Empire, and this badge is proof of a soldier’s courage. 】
General Doyle’s fingers gently stroked the badge that had become a crude cross. His hands that have shot and killed so many, the hands that have decided the fate of countless lives….seemed unable to hold onto the small cross without trembling.
…..Although you were designated as a deserter, you were unable to throw away this badge, right? Was that why you had ruined such a good badge?
Soldiers of the Third Legion have a chip implanted in their badges. When the chip senses that its owner is no longer living, it will continuously send out signals for ten years to notify the owner’s comrade of his death so they could collect the owner’s corpse.
His friend had disappeared for so many years and yet when he finally received news of him, it was news of his death that indicated he was dozens of light-years away. He would never see his comrade again.
General Doyle squeezed the badge in his hand, it felt cool to the touch. His tight grip caused the edges to cut his hand but he didn’t want to let go despite the pain.
He slowly turned around and then pointed a gun that appeared from who knows where at Kristen standing behind him.
General Doyle’s gaze slid to the space beside Kristen and his eyes were somewhat tired as he said, “Who are you? Come out.”
Kristen looked out at General Doyle with a startled expression when she suddenly frowned and her eyes lost focus. She immediately was pulled behind someone. A figure stood in front of her, a pistol in their hand with its muzzle pointed at Doyle.
Lin Yan laughed, her tone as cold as ice: “General Doyle, long time no see.”