"Glad to be here! Thank you, sir! I will be in your care!" replied Jiang Fei enthusiastically.
He had been through several types of training before, from basketball, to P.E sessions, and even martial arts. He knew what to say and how to behave.
"Good answer! I like your attitude!" barked Moglain.
He initially thought that the Terran was just another person that somehow managed to get in after garnering Commander Alexis' favor. His first impression of Jiang Fei was that he was someone snarky who was willing to name-drop to get himself ahead.
But he ended up being taken aback by Jiang Fei's humble behaviour. That was a surprise, albeit a pleasant one.
"Mhm. Seems that I'm not going to be training you today. Never mind. I'll arrange your quarters for now. We will start your training tomorrow! With the rest of them," said Moglain, pointing towards the other trainees that were on the field.
"Oof… Now that's a scene," thought Jiang Fei to himself.
It was not the number of trainees or their impressive combat levels that had Jiang Fei in a daze, but the types of trainees that were present. There were only a few Valsalrians, while the rest were from all kinds of different races.
Even out of their combat gear, Jiang Fei could still recognize the Valsalrians. Every Valsalrian shared a common appearance, but with some mild alterations to set them apart from each other.
Their skin had a pinkish hue, the top of their shell-like heads were smooth and bald, and they had oddly shaped limbs. Even so, they could pass as humans dressed in costumes.
Compared to the humanoid-like Valsalrians, the other trainees were…weirdly shaped. Some were just stones, others were shaped like an octopus, and some were even… walking trees that kept repeating the same three words over and over again.
"Follow me," ordered Moglain while Jiang Fei was still trying to make sense of what he was looking at.
He could not tell how long he had spent on Redstone but he could tell that his muscles and bones had somewhat gotten used to the unforgiving pull of the planet's gravity. Walking was manageable now — at the very least he wasn't panting for breath anymore. Running was still a challenge though.
Following Moglain, Jiang Fei crossed the enormous training field and arrived at some sort of a building. The entire thing was shaped exactly like a giant whale, with its gaping mouth as the entrance.
"This is the living quarters for all trainees," said Moglain.
"Got it," acknowledged Jiang Fei with a nod.
Entering the building, Jiang Fei quickly noticed that the whale's interior was made from the same Bio-Metal as the ship. But that wasn't the most shocking thing for him.
He thought that that an alien hostel would be messy and dirty, possibly even slimy and disgusting. But contrary to his prejudice, it was completely clean! Not even the hint of an unpleasant scent lingered nor was the tiniest speck of dust to be found!
The corridors were organized like a corporate office — squares rooms or cubicles in neat rows with walkways built all around them. Moglain led Jiang Fei to one of the rooms.
"This one's yours. Tomorrow morning, there will be three calls as a signal to gather. If you are not present on the training field after the third call, you will be punished. I don't care if you're Commander Alexis' personal escort or his cat, I will make you suffer for your tardiness. Understood?" said Moglain sternly.
"Sir, yes sir!" said Jiang Fei, immediately replying with a salute.
The first rule in any training camp is always to obey the rules. Even if he had a special relationship with his trainer, he would not expect anything less than equal treatment. Creating enmity between the trainer and the other trainees would only spell doom for the rest of his training period.
"Good. Here's a piece of advice. If you have any free time at all, sleep. Rest. You're gonna need it!" said Moglain, laughing as he left Jiang Fei alone.
Touching the door of his room, Jiang Fei felt a sudden warmth coursing through his body. It was the same feeling he got every time he was about to start a new adventure. Just like when he learned about 0541 and his origin.
What sort of new dawn awaits? What kind of aliens would he meet? Who will be his friend? Who will be his enemy?
With a smile, he entered the room. The door slid open to reveal a small room with three beds. It was obviously not his room alone, but one to be shared with two others. Based on what he understood of army formation, the room was designed to fit three combatants, the exact number of a small squad.
Of the three beds, one was left untouched while the other two were clearly taken. His roommates must currently be in class.
Jiang Fei took the liberty of claiming the unoccupied bed and lay down. He had brought along several personal belongings when he left Earth, all nicely packed away and stored in the subspace inside the ring.
He had everything he needed. Everything… except his friend 0541. A single lightyear was already too far for Jiang Fei to establish a stable connection to the ship, much less a million lightyears.
"If only 0541 was here, I could at least talk to him to pass the time," said Jiang Fei to himself as he lay there.
"Speak of the devil and he shall appear! It is I, 0541!" said 0541, blaring out inside Jiang Fei's mind.
"THE F*CK?! 0541?! Is that really you?" Jiang Fei rose to his feet and immediately fell, hitting the floor hard. The gravity was stronger than expected for Jiang Fei who was getting off a bed in an alien world for the first time.
"Yes, Captain. It is I. The best support system that ever existed!" said 0541 happily.
"Didn't I ask you to stay behind and take care of the girls? How are you here? Why are you here?" asked Jiang Fei.
"To be honest Captain, I'm worried about you. So, I reactivated 0542 and had him take over my role. I left the ship's Data Center and migrated into the ring's portable Data Center instead."
"0542?" Jiang Fei uttered the name with pure hatred. "Can he be trusted?"
0542 was the system that started the entire rebellion with Akatziris. If he had not heard it from 0541 himself, Jiang Fei would have jumped straight into the next ship to Earth to fight 0542.
"You need not worry about him. You need to understand that deep-layer protocol was hardwired into every artificial intelligence. 0542 had to betray you because Akatziris was the real captain of Braveheart. He had no choice," explained 0541.
However, Akatziris is dead and you are now the official captain of Braveheart. Even if there are other Namekians alive who present themselves to 0542, he would not betray you anymore! Rules are rules, after all."
"So it seems. Well then, since you're fine with, I guess I should be too," said Jiang Fei. There was no one he trusted more than his oldest friend, 0541.
"Captain, just so you know, the ring houses a very limited amount of Energy Crystals. There is a limit to what I can do for you. However, if you can get your hands on any Valsalrian ships, I might be able to do more," added 0541.
When Jiang Fei left Earth, he did not stock up on Energy Crystals and other facilities. Other than 0541's portable Data Management Center, there was literally nothing else that could facilitate Jiang Fei in combat. Besides having a library of information about the universe, which was actually obsolete by about 10,000 years, 0541 couldn't really do much to help.
"I understand. But don't expect anything like a ship, not for the time being at least," said Jiang Fei. His current army ranking could not be any lower. It would take months, if not years, for him to be commissioned a ship.
"It is alright. I must say, your Domain ability is incredibly unique. If you could master a way to bolster your combat spirit, I believe that even Commander Alexis would be no match for you," said 0541 confidently.
Even though he did not know about Jiang Fei's 10th Dimension ability, he knew all about Jiang Fei's Omnisurge. Its potential was practically limitless, as long as Jiang Fei could find a way to make himself want more power.
"I know but… it's still new to me. Unless I have something to push me, I can't really get my combat spirit up for no reason," explained Jiang Fei, sighing heavily.
Not even Jiang Fei himself knew that deep down, he was not the kind of guy that craved bloodshed. Unless he was provoked or it was absolutely necessary, Jiang Fei would rather not fight. That was why he had been having trouble increasing his combat level through Omnisurge.
"I have something new for you, Captain. While gathering information about Energy Cores, I have developed a new theory. I hope you can start searching for the other Cores and collect them. My theory might help you… one way or another," added 0541.
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