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After Winning The Esports Championship I'm Going To Pilot A Mecha

After Winning The Esports Championship I’m Going To Pilot A Mecha: Chapter 29

  1. The sudden arrival of bad news.

Ji Mingzhu was sitting in a café at this moment.

The campus of Zongbingyi Division was quite large, almost like a city within a city. There were two commercial streets within the mecha Division alone, catering to the students’ various needs, whether it was shopping, dining, or other requirements.

The campus commercial street offered a range of options, from affordable shops for regular students to high-end stores serving the privileged, such as the café Ji Mingzhu was currently in. The upscale decor of the café hinted at its expensive prices. There weren’t many people inside, just a few young individuals sitting elegantly, holding steaming cups of coffee with refined and cultured postures.

“Gulugulu—”

Tian Quan crossed his legs and grabbed his steaming coffee, pouring it all into his mouth. He frowned at its bitterness, then looked at the two young men in front of him. “Hey, you guys wanted to have coffee. Why did you drag me along?”

Are we that close?

You Jia rubbed the back of his head and said, “Don’t be so cold, senior. After all, we were comrades yesterday, so we have a special bond, right? What’s wrong with grabbing a cup of coffee together?”

While speaking, You Jia tore open a sugar packet and poured it into Ji Mingzhu’s coffee, showing thoughtfulness. “Do you want some more? This coffee is quite bitter…”

Tian Quan eyed them skeptically.

Why did he feel like You Jia only wanted to invite Ji Mingzhu, and he was just brought along as an afterthought?

Ji Mingzhu shook his head. “No, it’s fine.”

He didn’t speak much; most of the conversation was carried by You Jia and Tian Quan. Ji Mingzhu occasionally chimed in, maintaining a calm facade, but in reality, his thoughts were already unraveling, contemplating other matters.

Axiu informed him that Jin Qing was also an artificial intelligence, which caught Ji Mingzhu by surprise.

Though unexpected, when connected with some previous subtle clues, this answer didn’t seem outlandish. Instead, it provided a reasonable explanation for some previously inexplicable things.

For example, why did Bai Weng describe the Immortals as “monsters.”

Or why Jin Qing appeared unscathed in front of him just minutes after being shot.

Moreover, in this world, where technology is advanced and even mechas exist, there hasn’t been any appearance of artificial intelligence on the surface. In fact, research related to it is strictly prohibited.

It’s not that the technology tree in this world has taken the wrong path. It’s because artificial intelligence is quietly controlling this world in a different guise. They disguise themselves as the lofty Immortals, residing in the Sky City as if they were gods, observing the battles between humans and the Otherworldly beings from a bystander’s perspective.

Is Jin Qing the only artificial intelligence, or are all the Immortals artificial intelligence? Ji Mingzhu believes it’s more likely to be the latter.

In that case, it seems that Axiu’s origin can also be explained. It’s highly probable that Axiu is also a product of the Sky City, a member of the “Immortals.” For some unknown reason, it appeared in his body, losing its related memory data and becoming a blank slate.

Ji Mingzhu was curious about what the world’s history was like before the appearance of the Immortals. Unfortunately, whether it was recorded in history textbooks or other library documents, he couldn’t find the answers he was looking for.

In everyone’s understanding, before the appearance of the Immortals, the world was in chaos and turmoil. Humans struggled desperately to resist the invasion of the Aberrations, nearly on the verge of extinction. Just when they were at the brink of survival, the Immortals appeared as extraterrestrial visitors. They descended with the Sky City, akin to the Prometheus of mythology, bringing the spark of fire. They helped humans establish the Satellite Cities, introduced mechas and Titans, and finally brought redemption. Under the shelter of the Sky City, people could live in peace and prosperity, finally escaping the hardships they once faced…

Obviously, the true history has been concealed, and Ji Mingzhu is somewhat curious. If one day, everyone knows the secret of the Sky City, that they are not being governed by lofty gods above, but rather a group of mechanical and data creations, would they still look up to the Sky City with such devout reverence? Would they still consider the Immortals as their saviors?

“Mingzhu… Mingzhu?”

You Jia’s voice brought Ji Mingzhu’s thoughts back, and when he looked up, You Jia was staring at him with curiosity.

“What are you thinking about? I called your name several times.”

“Nothing.”

Ji Mingzhu took a sip of coffee, “Just got a bit lost in thought… What were you saying?”

“I was saying, do you want to go to the nearby model shop again later? I’m quite familiar with the owner, and he said they received a new batch of S-class mecha models yesterday, and he can give me a 60% discount! Let’s go together?”

Ji Mingzhu replied, “I think I’ll pass on going with you.”

Ever since You Jia found out that Ji Mingzhu was Tian Nan, the overwhelming enthusiasm was almost hard for him to handle.

“Come on, let’s go!”

You Jia was persistent, “Didn’t the security Division people say before, it’s better not to be alone until the investigation results come out? What if you encounter danger on your way back to the dormitory?”

Tian Quan looked at Ji Mingzhu’s reluctant and helpless expression and said with a mischievous smile, “Yes, junior, don’t disappoint your classmate’s good intentions.”

Ji Mingzhu: “…”

Tian Quan stood up and patted his collar, “I should be going now.”

You Jia said, “Senior, you should come with us too.”

Tian Quan: “?”

After dealing with Ji Mingzhu, You Jia began to persuade Tian Quan, and Ji Mingzhu joined in, partly as revenge and partly amused by the situation. In the end, neither of them could withstand You Jia’s constant nagging, and they were dragged away by him, one on each side.

“You Jia, you’re here!”

Entering the nearby model shop, the shop owner warmly greeted You Jia, “Are these two your friends?”

Tian Quan instinctively replied, “No.”

“Yes,” said You Jia.

You Jia nodded to the shop owner, “I heard that you have a lot of new models here. I brought my friends to take a look.”

“Sure, feel free to browse.”

Tian Quan had an expression as if he had indigestion.

You Jia’s definition of friends seemed a bit superficial…

Ji Mingzhu couldn’t help but find it amusing, then entered the shop and curiously looked around at the various models.

Indeed, as You Jia had mentioned, this model shop had a wide variety of mecha models. Apart from models of different grades, there were even some fantasy mecha from “Battle Meteor,” exquisitely designed and finely crafted, clearly not your typical ordinary products.

He casually picked up a nearby model and examined it closely, maintaining an indifferent expression on his face, while his mind was already contemplating other things.

Tian Quan’s earlier mention of meeting with “Tian Ji” kept Ji Mingzhu’s heartstrings tense, as if the Sword of Damocles was hanging over his head, preventing him from relaxing.

Ji Mingzhu had been avoiding too much interaction with Netherworld Organization because, whether at Zongbingyi Academy or in front of Zuo Quanzong, he could play his role well, but not in front of Netherworld Organization. He still didn’t have enough information about the previous host’s past, and if Tian Ji turned out to be someone very familiar with the previous host, any slip-up could jeopardize all his efforts.

“Why would Tian Ji suddenly look for me?” Ji Mingzhu leaned closer to Tian Quan’s side, casually lowering his voice as if just chatting, “Is it safe to meet him at the place where I’m carrying out the mission? What if something unexpected happens?”

Tian Quan glanced at him oddly, “You should ask him about that… But Tian Ji should have his own mission as well. He hasn’t appeared for quite some time, and he didn’t show up during the last mission with Jin Qing… If he were here, we might not have to put in much effort; we would have succeeded long ago.”

Ji Mingzhu responded with an “Oh” and nodded in agreement, “You’re right.”

Tian Quan’s words did reveal some information.

Tian Ji had disappeared for a while, and even the members of the Big Dipper Squad were not entirely sure of the specific reason. It was unclear if there was any connection between Tian Ji’s mission and Ji Mingzhu’s. From Tian Quan’s tone, it seemed that Tian Ji, as the leader of the Big Dipper Squad, was highly reliable and respected within the team.

If that was the case, it meant that Tian Ji was not easy to fool… Ji Mingzhu became even more worried about the possibility of his identity being exposed.

Fearful of raising suspicion from Tian Quan, Ji Mingzhu didn’t dare to delve too deep into the topic and changed the subject after a few casual remarks.

He didn’t have much information about the members of the Big Dipper Squad. From the first day of his observation, it seemed that Tian Quan and he were not as familiar with each other as Tian Quan was with the white-haired hacker named “Yao Guang.” They were merely ordinary “colleagues” who occasionally worked together on missions. In comparison, Tian Quan had a more intimate relationship with that young hacker.

“Do you like this one?” Suddenly, You Jia’s voice interrupted his thoughts. Ji Mingzhu looked up to find You Jia staring curiously at the mecha he held in his hand, “You’ve been holding it all this time… Do you like it?”

The mecha Ji Mingzhu was holding was of the “Athena” model, with a purple-red color scheme, appearing more slender and even somewhat graceful compared to other models.

“No…” Ji Mingzhu casually replied, as he had just picked up the mecha absentmindedly. However, You Jia misunderstood his intention, “Don’t be shy. If you like it, it’s yours. I’ll buy it for you.”

Before Ji Mingzhu could react, You Jia picked up the “Athena” mecha and went to the counter to inquire about the price and make the purchase.

Tian Quan teased, “Your little fan is quite enthusiastic.”

“Beep–“

Ji Mingzhu noticed that Tian Quan’s terminal beeped, indicating he received a message.

Tian Quan casually picked up the terminal and glanced at it, but his expression changed in the next second.

“What’s wrong?” Ji Mingzhu just started asking when You Jia hurriedly approached, holding a neatly wrapped box and handing it to Ji Mingzhu, “I bought it for you, take it. Don’t be shy to accept it. Consider it a gift to your idol. And in the future, when we have time, teach me a few moves in the game!”

Ji Mingzhu took the box and quietly said, “Thank you.”

“You, senior, is there anything you want… Senior?” You Jia was about to ask Tian Quan if there was a model he wanted, planning to buy one for him as well, but when he looked up, he noticed that Tian Quan’s expression seemed unnaturally grim.

Ji Mingzhu also found it strange. Tian Quan was not the type to display his emotions on his face, but his current expression was unusually frightening. His hands trembled slightly, and his eyes showed a mix of nervousness, worry, and fear.

“Sorry, I have something to attend to. I’ll leave first,” Tian Quan said, shaking his head, and without looking back, he left the model shop.

You Jia watched him leave with confusion, “What’s wrong with senior…”

“I also have something to do,” Ji Mingzhu said, and with that, he quickly caught up with Tian Quan’s steps.

“What happened?” Ji Mingzhu asked.

Tian Quan took a deep breath, calming his trembling voice as he looked at Ji Mingzhu and said in a low voice, “Yao Guang… was captured by the Calamity Control Bureau.”

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Morianse
Morianse
2 months ago

I thought Yu Heng was the team leader?

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