I Woke Up Piloting the Strongest Starship, so I Became a Space Mercenary-Chapter 458: There’s A Line I Won’t Let Others Cross

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Chapter 458: There’s A Line I Won’t Let Others Cross


I woke up to the sound of faint laughter. Someone was gently stroking my still-drowsy head. It was being handled quite delicately, as if in admiration of a long-cherished rare item that was finally obtained after much hardship. They had finally made it their own, and they also gave off a feeling of obsession that bordered on a grudge, but maybe I was just imagining things.

Good morning.

I opened my eyes and turned toward the woman stroking my head who was lying beside me. I was greeted with vividly crimson pupils staring back at me.

Good morning. Your sleeping face looks so innocent and cute.

Sorry if my wide awake face aint that cute. But I do think your face is always pretty, Captain.

Stop calling me Captain when its just the two of us, will you? That goes for sama as well.

After saying so, Serena admonishingly poked my cheek with her finger.

Sorry about that. Well then, shall we get up, Serena?

Alright, Hiro.

I got up and stretched my body before finally getting off the bed. Now then, I suppose itll be a straight shot for the imperial capital from here on out.

Serena was the beloved daughter of Marquis Holz, a naval captain serving in the Imperial Space Force, and the commander of the Independent Mobile Anti-pirate Fleet. After spending an enjoyable bath with her, we headed for the dining hall of my little mercenary outfits flagship cum mothership, the Black Lotus.

The design philosophy of our mothership, the Black Lotus, was to serve as a vicious foe to its enemies and a loving mother to its crew. At first glance, the Lotus resembled a regular cargo transport ship when all its weapons were concealed. But once they got deployed, it instantly transformed into a heavily armed gunship.

However, its living quarters offered the maximum level of space and comfort for a ship of its size, and the richness and luxury of its various facilities were comparable to those found in high-end passenger cruise ships. The dining hall was bright and spacious, and the auto-cooker installed within was the latest cutting-edge model. The synthetic dishes created by the auto-cooker Tetsujin V were capable of impressing even Captain Serena, who was a bona fide daughter of a marquis.

Good morning, Serena-sama. Hiro-sama.

Good morning to you too, Mimi-san.

Morning, Mimi. Are you the only one here?

Elma-san and the others are in the medical bay. It seems they drank a bit too much last night.

Mimi replied with a wry smile.

She serves as the main operator of my beloved partner machine, the Krishna. Shes also responsible for procuring our mercenary groups supplies, selling off loot, and gathering information. In terms of membership duration, shes actually the oldest crewmate among our mercenary group. But in terms of actual age, shes the youngest.

She was originally a regular young girl with no special skills, but now that shes earned plenty of experience, shes become an indispensable member of our group.

Also, she was actually the grand-niece of His Imperial Majesty, the Emperor of the Graccan Empirethe country we were currently active in. Apparently, she also looked a lot like the Crown Princes daughter. So, she might have seemed rather ordinary at first, but her lineage held a ridiculous bombshell of a secret However, for us, Mimi was simply Mimi. Nothing more and nothing less.

All of them? Kugi too?

Kugi-san woke up earlier than me, and she seems to have already gone to the training room.

I see. Kugi does tend to sleep and wake up early.

As we chatted, Captain Serena and I were about to take a seat next to Mimi after taking the trays of food that were ejected from Tetsujin V when Kugi suddenly entered the dining hall.

Good morning, My Lord. Good morning as well, Serena-sama.

Yeah, good morning. Are you done with your morning training already?

Good morning, Kugi-san.

I asked Kugi as I sat down opposite Mimi together with Captain Serena. Kugi answered yes, nodded, then sat down next to Mimi.

She was a priestess who traveled all the way from a distant foreign country called the Holy Vuelzarus Empire in order to serve me. She had pointy fox-like animal ears on her head, and three fluffy tails extended from below her waist. She was a bona fide fox girl with cute and fluffy tails.

In terms of her position within our mercenary group, she was serving as a consultant on everything related to psionic abilities and was also acting as my psionic ability master. She also acts as a trainee sub-pilot for my partner machine, the Krishna. It hadnt been long since she boarded my ship and became a member of our mercenary group, so she was still in the middle of figuring out her development direction as a crewmate.

Incidentally, she was also an extremely powerful telepathic ability user, which was apparently called the Secondary Psionic Powers in the Holy Empire.

Yes, My Lord. Though I merely performed morning meditation. I shall accompany you if you want to exercise your body.

Guess Ill take you up on that offer. Youre going too, right, Mimi? What about you, Captain?

Ill go back to my ship. Its about time for this dream-like period to end.

Captain Serena declared as she elegantly brought food to her mouth.

We were currently in a system with a gateway that was closest to the Creon system where we clashed with the Vereverem Federations forces. During the recent conflict, the gateway in this system was sabotaged by a group of damned nobles who were trying to defect from the Graccan Empire and join the Vereverem Federation. The saboteurs were already dealt with, and the gateways regular operations have been restored.

Once we pass through the gateway, well be right before the imperial capital, so I guess this marks the end of my and Captain Serenas romantic flirting. Once were in the capital, both I and Captain Serena would be quite busy. Moreover, the mansion of House Holz, Captain Serenas family, was also in the capital. Captain Serena probably wont have much free time due to her military duties and familial obligations.

Hiro, you understand, right?

Unless theres a matter that I absolutely cant afford to ignore, Ill make sure to prioritize your, or rather, House Holzs summons. If you want me to prioritize your summons over everything else, then I should assume House Holz will do something to smooth things out for me.

Thats fine then Youre willing to take responsibility, right?

I promise to make the maximum concessions I can afford. However, there are some things I wont compromise on either. I hope you understand that. freewebno vel.com

I replied sincerely to Captain Serena who displayed an unusually worried expression. I planned on accepting their conditions even if they were a bit or even a lot troublesome. However, its a different story when it comes to my life as a mercenary as well as Mimi and the others. I would never compromise when it comes to these two things. Absolutely never. This is a line I will never let others cross.

I know. I do have a fair understanding of how much youre willing to tolerate.

Captain Serena smiled as she responded.

Before long, well be reaching the capital.

So, Captain Serena already went back to her ship huh?

She wanted to say goodbye to you guys as well, Elma, but it seemed that there wasnt enough time.

Well, its our fault for drinkin too much and endin up in the med bay.

Thats true, Sis. freewebn ovel.c om

After seeing Captain Serena off, Mimi, Kugi, and I worked out a bit in the training room. After shedding some sweat, we relaxed in the break space, and then Elma, Tina, and Wiska finally appeared.

Well, well be in the imperial capital once we pass through this gateway after all, so she cant afford to hang out on this ship any longer. It cant be helped.

The one who said so in a slightly regretful tone was a beautiful woman with pointed ears akin to the shape of a bamboo leaf. Her name was Elma. She was a member of the race commonly known as elves, but unlike the elves I was familiar with thanks to various media, she was extremely strong physically. She was a veteran mercenary with a longer career than me, and was the big sis of our little mercenary group. She was relied upon not only by me but by the rest of the crew as well.

She serves as the pilot of the medium-class combat ship we recently acquired called the Antlion. While watching my back during combat, she uses the ships special equipment called Gravity Jammers in order to prevent our prey from escaping.

I already told ya guys that drinkin that booze was no good

Says the one who got the most excited and drank till the last drop.

The ones having a heated exchange while sitting on the floor and hugging both my legs were the dwarves Tina and Wiska.

Both of them had child-like physiques, but they were actually fully grown women. They were excellent mechanics and engineers, and they were in charge of maintaining my Krishna, the Black Lotus, and Elmas Antlion. Furthermore, they were also in charge of repairing and restoring the equipment and ships we looted from pirates and were indispensable for the smooth operations of our mercenary group in a different sense from Mimi.

By the way, like the stereotypical dwarf, they absolutely adored alcohol. The image of what appeared to be minors chugging down huge mugs filled with strong liquor gave off risky vibes, but I assure you that they were completely of legal age. After all, they were the same age as me.

By the way Boss, it looks like Albino-chan finally woke up.

Dr. Shouko and Mei are currently taking care of her in the med bay.

Albino-chan? You Well, alright. I suppose Ill go check things out.

It did seem a bit better compared to Nameless-chan, but Albino-chan still sounded rather crass. Granted that it was easy to understand though. Anyway, Ill go and visit the medical bay for now.

This content is taken from fr(e)ewebn(o)vel.𝓬𝓸𝓶

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