Translator: Silavin & Raikov
Translation Checker: PewPewLazerGun
Editor and Proofreader: Leo of Zion Mountain & Dhael Ligerkeys
He had imagined that Blue Sky Pass’ Squads would each fight on their own after exiting the Pass, but now it seemed that Inner Sanctum had already set up three forward camps on the frontlines, and their benefits were obvious. In the vast void of the battlefield, far away from Blue Sky Pass, forward bases provided a safe haven for the Human soldiers when they needed to resupply or recuperate.
And, there were also Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm Masters garrisoned at these camps. If anyone did end up bumping into a Territory Lord, then they could flee back to the forward base to seek refuge.
“These are all temporary forward camps that are used whenever the Black Ink Clan’s Army is forced back. Once the Black Ink Clan have finished recuperating, these forward bases will be abandoned and taken over by the Black Ink Clan instead,” Feng Ying explained.
Yang Kai nodded. It was not hard to understand what was going on. Once the Black Ink Clan’s Army was defeated and lost a lot of strength, the Humans would take the opportunity to occupy these forward bases. And, once the Black Ink Clan had recuperated, they would naturally come to attack again. Then, they would have no choice but to abandon these forward bases and return to Blue Sky Pass. If they were to stay behind, they would only be swallowed up by the Black Ink Clan’s Army.
“These three forward bases also correspond to the three resource harvesting areas. In fact, the Black Ink Battlefield does not lack cultivation resources. You have lived within the Black Ink Clan’s domain, so you should know about this. Only, we Humans will rarely have the opportunity to mine for resources, causing the short supply of materials in the Inner Sanctum.”
Yang Kai nodded at these words. After having lived in Black Ink Clan’s hinterland for two years, he naturally knew this better than anyone else.
The Black Ink Battlefield was rich in cultivation resources, not to mention strange Sealed Worlds with rare and precious treasures. Even the Dead Stars in the void, Universe Worlds and Spirit Provinces that had lost their vitality because their World Force had been swallowed up, all were hiding cultivation resources and rare minerals of various Orders.
However, the Human Race had no way of harvesting these resources freely. Only when the Black Ink Clan was forced back would they barely have some time to do such things. And, the time that they had for this activity varied each time. It all depended on how long it took for the Black Ink Clan to restore their strength. It could be as short as a decade, but also as long as several decades.
Once the Black Ink Clan recovered their foundation, the Human Race would be forced to retreat again.
And, for the Black Ink Clan, these resources were also of great use. The Black Ink Nest that Yang Kai had seen previously needed to devour a large number of resources in order to create new Black Ink Clansmen and provide others with the energy to break through to higher realms.
So, that was the reason why the Black Ink Clan would send their members to these resource-harvesting areas to collect materials when the Humans retreated.
Throughout history, this was how the Human Race and the Black Ink Clan had taken turns occupying the resource harvesting areas, going back and forth with each other innumerable times.
Many resource harvesting areas had already been abandoned as their resources had been exhausted. Right now, the closest resource harvesting area occupied by the Humans was some 6 billion kilometres away from Blue Sky Pass, with the farthest one being 10 billion kilometres away.
Feng Ying said, “Even though we Humans have taken over the resource harvesting area, the Black Ink Clan will not just sit still while we mine for materials. Even though there is no way for them to send armies to attack Blue Sky Pass when their foundations have been severely damaged, that doesn’t mean they can’t send smaller groups to harass these resource-harvesting areas. Firstly, they can use this opportunity to capture more Black Ink Disciples, and secondly, they can also interfere with the mining operations of our clansmen. So, no matter where we go, we must be ready to fight the Black Ink Clan at any moment as we mine and search for resources.”
Yang Kai nodded at her words. He was less knowledgeable about this than Feng Ying, so it was naturally better for him to listen to her suggestions. He thus asked, “Then, based on Martial Aunt’s thoughts, which location should we go to?”
Feng Ying looked at Yang Kai, “That will depend on whether you want to mine resources or fight with the Black Ink Clan.”
“What’s the difference?” Yang Kai asked.
Feng Ying explained, “These three locations are all basically occupied by us Humans right now. Even if there were Black Ink Clansmen around those places, their numbers wouldn’t be large. So, if we go to those three places, we will have a safer time mining, and the fights we encounter will also be less frequent. However, whether it be mining or fighting with the Black Ink Clan, there are still Military Merits to be gained. There is not much difference between them, they’re just different tasks.”
Yang Kai raised his brows, “From what Martial Aunt is saying, there seem to be other places we can go besides the three locations?”
Feng Ying smiled and pointed to another place on the Universe Chart, “Before our departure, I asked around and found out that Inner Sanctum has set up a fourth forward base here in order to take over this resource harvesting area. However, it has not been long since this campaign began, so they have not been able to fully occupy it yet. The Black Ink Clan is putting up a fierce fight over there. Half a month before we departed, the Inner Sanctum sent reinforcements over, including two Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm Masters!”
Yang Kai’s eyes lit up at that. He pointed to the last location, “Then let’s go here.”
With a look as if she had expected this response, Feng Ying nodded, “You are the Squad Leader, so we’ll follow your command.”
Yang Kai smiled, “Since we are a Special Operations Squad, I think Dawn should do things that other Squads can’t. Since other Squads do not have this ability, then we should naturally go and kill those Black Ink Clansmen and leave the resource collection to the others.”
Shen Ao and the others nodded, all showing eager expressions.
After the discussion, Dawning Light headed towards the fourth forward base. Other than those who were left in charge of steering and monitoring their surroundings, the rest of the Squad members went back into the cabin to meditate and prepare themselves.
The fourth forward base was the farthest one from Blue Sky Pass, so it would take at least a week for them to get to that location. What’s more, the Squad members were still in the process of familiarizing themselves with Dawning Light, so they weren’t travelling at full speed, which meant it would take them even more time to arrive.
The void was silent and filled with rubble, both large and small, drifting aimlessly about.
After about a week, Dawning Light was slowly approaching the fourth forward base. In two or three days, they would arrive.
Even though Yang Kai was in retreat, he would still come out every day to check on the situation; however, it had been uneventful all throughout their journey.
On this day, after he was done monitoring the Warship’s surroundings and was about to return to the cabin to cultivate, he suddenly felt a violent wave of power coming from the side, followed by the violent shaking of Dawning Light’s barrier, which sent an alarm all throughout the Warship.
“Enemy attack!” A loud cry resounded through the ship from one of the crew members in charge of monitoring the surrounding situation.
At the shout, the cultivator in charge of defence immediately activated the Warship’s shields. In the next instant, a milky white glow emerged, enveloping the entirety of Dawning Light.
However, since the enemy’s ambush had happened too suddenly, the barrier was a moment too slow and the first attack managed to impact the hull.
Under the violent shock, Dawn Squad’s members slid left and right, but Yang Kai stood firm without moving, his eyes immediately shooting towards the source of the attack.
There, behind the shattered fragments of destroyed Spirit Provinces, large ships in Black Ink Clan’s style emerged, each one a giant that dwarfed Dawning Light in terms of size.
There were three of these large ships in total, and on the decks stood many stalwart figures, obviously members of the Black Ink Clan.
The constant shaking continued, but before the Black Ink Clan’s next salvo hit, Dawning Light’s shields were fully raised. Ripples appeared on the surface of the white light barrier, blocking the attack.
However, no matter how strong the Defensive Arrays were, it was impossible for them to resist an incessant bombardment forever. What’s more, it took a lot of energy to maintain the shields.
The cabin door opened and one cultivator after another rushed in.
Feng Ying shouted, “What’s the situation?”
Yang Kai narrowed his eyes, “The Black Ink Clan is blocking our path!”
“Here?” Feng Ying was surprised. She looked over and sure enough, there were the three Black Ink Clan ships blocking the way. She knew that the Black Ink Clan must have travelled around the fourth forward base primarily to lie in wait for the Human Race’s reinforcements to arrive.
As the two were speaking, Dawning Light engaged in a fierce battle with the three large ships.
The large ships of the Black Ink Clan were ordinary flight-type artifacts, so the attacks were all coming from the Black Ink Clansmen aboard. On the other hand, Dawning Light was a Warship with its own offensive capabilities.
The Squad members in charge of attacking activated the Arrays, triggering the power of the artifacts installed within the Array Core. In an instant, a spear-shaped attack, an awe-inspiring sword wave, and a bolt of lightning shot out in three different directions towards the enemy vessels.
The Black Ink Clan clearly did not expect Dawning Light to have such a wide range of attacks, so they were at a loss for a moment.
One of the large ships was too slow to dodge the lightning bolt and was instantly torn apart. Many of the less powerful Black Ink Clansmen were reduced to charred corpses under the power of the scattered lightning bolts.
It was easy to see from this attack alone just how terrifying the power of Dawning Light was.
The two remaining Black Ink Clan large ships were able to dodge the attacks in time, but it obviously frightened them and caused them to back away, putting distance between them and their enemy in case they met the same fate as their companions.
However, Dawning Light chased after them closely, sending out another barrage of attacks.
The two ships could no longer evade the attacks and were both smashed to pieces.
The figures of Black Ink Clansmen could be seen fleeing in disarray, their faces covered in ash and debris. The attacks just now had also killed and injured many of them. Most of the ones who survived were High-Rank Black Ink Clansmen.
Rather than retreat though, most of the enemy swarmed towards Dawning Light instead. The only exceptions were three Black Ink Clansmen who had exceptionally rich Black Ink Strength. These three were clearly Feudal Lords.
“There’s no Territory Lord!” Feng Ying immediately calmed down. When the enemy ambushed them, her greatest fear was that a Territory Lord may be among them. However, it was unlikely for that to happen as the number of Territory Lords under Men Xie was limited, so they would not come all the way here to interrupt Human Masters.
However, it was still better to be on one’s guard. She could only breathe a sigh of relief once the three large ships were destroyed and all the Black Ink Clansmen showed themselves.
For Dawn Squad, as long as no Territory Lord appeared, the rest could easily be disregarded.