Astra and the rest breathed a sigh of relief when they saw the teachers taking everyone away.
Officials from the Academy combed through the entire planet once again and handed over the half-dead pirate to the military.
This time around, the team could finally let everything go. Once they relaxed, they became aware of exactly how hungry and tired they were.
They didn’t have any strength left to hunt, so they just found a safe spot to stay for the night and ate their nutrition packs. Afterwards, the five youths laid down on the grass, looking up at the stars.
Jiyu sighed. “Did you guys see the teachers’ faces? I almost thought that they were going to deal with that scum right then and there, in front of all of us.”
“I saw one of the teachers giving the pirate a giant kick in the ass when he thought no one was looking,” Astra spoke lazily. “He kicked really hard too, almost sent the pirate flying.”
They began to roar with laughter. The sound startled the flying insects in the nearby bush, sending them fluttering angrily into the air.
“The Academy took full responsibility for the incident, they want to end our entrance test early, so they’re conducting meetings right now to make the final decision,” Linus glanced at his computer device before informing his teammates.
All of them sighed. “Why didn’t the school send us to a more normal testing site? Why do we have to be out here playing hooky in a forest while all the other military schools get to conduct their normal entrance tests indoors?”
“Probably thought it’d help build character.”
They chatted randomly for a while, after praising one another for everything they had managed to accomplish in a single day. As they chatted, the topic of conversation naturally gravitated back to the pirate they had encountered.
“I’ve collected data on the pirates before,” Linus spoke up suddenly. “There’s a lot of powerful people amongst the pirates, and their home bases are scattered all over the Empire. The leaders of every group are typically infamous among their home planets, but there’s one pirate that’s very peculiar.”
Astra was very interested. He propped himself up and turned to the side to look at Linus. The Solaris Academy uniform made Astra seem even more handsome under the starlight. “Who?
Linus, “The Masked Pirate Roux.”
Wen’s closed eyes suddenly opened. He repeated the name slowly, “Roux?”
“It’s a nickname,” Linus responded. “No one knows his real name.”
“What kind of person is he, that no one knows his real name?” Astra was even more intrigued. “Is he really that powerful?”
Linus shook his head. “Even more powerful than you think. He’s widely known to be a lone wolf. No one knows his exact spiritual energy score, but it’s a well known fact that it is the highest in the universe, even higher than the leaders of well known pirate groups. He’s more than capable enough to defeat an entire army by himself, making him very hard to deal with.”
“Other than his brute strength and raw power, he’s also infamous for his cruelty.”
It was rare to hear Linus use so many words to describe a person. All of them suddenly became very interested in the Masked Pirate. “Did he ever get caught?”
“Never. No one could,” Linus replied. “No one even knows what he looks like under that mask.”
Even though this was a wanted criminal hunted by the Empire, Roux’s solitary style and the boys’ respect for power made the brave youths whistle in admiration and excitement. “Well, he won’t be running free for long. Our team of badasses will show him who’s the real boss!”
“He’s really famous, right? Brothers, let’s make capturing Roux the crowning jewel to our fame on the starnet!”
Astra jostled with the rest of them, shouting out a daring phrase or two as he tousled with his buddies, completely unaware of the way Wen stared at them all with a secretive smile on his face, as if he were a cat that had caught the canary while everyone else remained oblivious.
Linus rolled his eyes, the rest of his face as expressionless as ever. “He’s already disappeared for an entire month.”
“What?” Jiyu was shocked. “Disappeared?”
“There’s been no news of him since last month.” Linus stared up at the vast sky that stretched above them. “I’ve managed to conclude, from what little evidence that was available, that Roux is already dead.”
Just a moment ago, they were joking about capturing this person as the first thing they were going to do once they entered the military. But now, just a second later, they found out that this person had actually died. Simon heaved a giant sigh. “…Then we’ve got no crowning jewel, no chance at starnet fame.”
Astra felt that something was a little off. He laid back down on the grass, tracing back in his memory for any recollection of this character in the original book.
The details were blurry, but Astra was certain that he’s never heard of this character before. But if what Linus said was true, then it was impossible that such an important character went completely unnoticed in the book. At the very least, this character could’ve become just another of the male lead’s followers, or Roux could’ve taken on the role of a final boss in the storyline.
In the end, Astra could only admit that Linus was right, this famous pirate Roux really did die a month ago.
But this time of death was really special. If Astra recalled correctly, the book’s main plotline started a month ago.
Wen stayed beside them, and didn’t say anything. A cheshire smile hung on his handsome features, and it was hard to determine if he was very interested or if he didn’t care one bit about the topic of their conversation.
Before they could continue on to the next topic, all their alarm devices lit up at the same time.
The school had reached a decision. In the hour-long meeting, the Academy officials decided to end this entrance exam early. The giant spaceship returned to the empty lot on Vagor, and the three supervisors began gathering the students on board, announcing the end of this year’s entrance test.
The majority of the students were still in the dark about the reason behind this sudden turn of events. The three supervisors didn’t attempt to hide the Academy’s mistake, and told the students the whole story without leaving anything out, “This incident is our mistake, the Academy will take full responsibility for this mishap.”
The teacher smiled bitterly. “Of course, if you guys feel that you want to drop out of the Academy due to our unprofessional conduct, you are welcome to contact any of the supervisors tonight. The Academy will prepare all the necessary paperwork, and help you contact your choice school to conduct the appropriate entrance exams for the school you wish to attend.”
No one wanted to drop out. This was an obvious choice, since Solaris was so hard to get into. Besides, even though it really wasn’t the school’s fault, the Academy still apologized so sincerely and treated this situation in such an efficient manner. Which idiot would choose to turn away from this?
——plus, anyone who chose to enter a military school already knew of the dangers they would face for choosing to go down this path.
Instead of being angry, they were actually curious, very curious about one thing in particular. “Can you tell us who saved the students?”
Which badass did something so awesome? They needed to find out so they could worship this hero!
The teacher’s eyes lit up in excitement. Maybe if he brought it up in this context, the rest of the students could gain an appreciation for bravery. The teacher began chattering away enthusiastically, spittle flying as he recounted the story with embellishments and praises for Astra and his team.
The team that was standing in the crowd with the rest of the students: “…”
Being spoken of as ‘the best and brightest of the year’ and ‘possessing excellent and hard to find qualities’ made the team very embarrassed, to the point that each was more uncomfortable than the last as they stood there listening to the teacher’s tirade.
Astra even saw a hint of awkwardness in Wen’s expression.
The shy expression was even more eye-catching than his translucent skin and beautiful eyes.
Who would’ve guessed that this guy over here was actually turning thirty eight this year.
The supervisor for recruits from Sirius walked up to them. Without any delay or small talk, the supervisor got straight to the point. “Do you guys have a team name?”
The five of them looked at each other, then shook their heads in unison. “Nope.”
The supervisor sighed in exasperation. “Then think of one right now and come tell me later. There’s an award for the five of you when we get back to the school. It’ll be your first formal appearance in front of your peers, I hope all of you can take this seriously.”
They replied a ‘yes sir’, every one of them looked quite calm and serious. The supervisor walked away, satisfied by what he saw.
After he left, Simon began to giggle. “We’re gonna be famous at Solaris.”
“What are you thinking about?” Astra flicked him on the forehead. “We have to think of a name for our team right now.”
“Death Defying Team?”
“??? Do you want to curse us or do you want to jinx us?”
“Hey, that’s not bad.”
“Give it a rest, it’s too arrogant, it’s just asking to be hated.”
“Then let’s go with Soaring Eagle, eagles are cool; cool and cute at the same time.”
Wen absolutely couldn’t imagine what he would do if he had to walk around sporting such a middle school style team name. He interrupted their brain storm, “Reverie.”
Astra’s eyes crinkled in a smile. “That’s a good name.”
The others joined in, “Even though it’s simple, it’s still better than the other ones we thought of. The only problem is how girly it sounds.”
They decided on a team name just like this. When Astra came back from telling the supervisor their new team name, he saw a girl standing beside his teammates and talking to them.
The group of people heard the sound of footsteps as he approached. The girl turned to look at him, the smile on her face grew when she recognized him. She spoke gratefully and with open sincerity, “Thank you guys for saving me.”
She continued, “My name is Naia, I’m so thankful that you guys defeated that damned piece of trash.”
Naia, one of the female leads in the book, great personality, great body, very popular with the readers. Astra liked her a lot.
“Nice to meet you, my name is Astra.” Astra gave her a sunny smile, instantly dissolving the boundary of strangers between them. “No need to thank us, anyone would’ve done the same in that situation.”
Simon drew closer to Wen and whispered, “Look at Astra, he’s so different when he’s with a girl. What does he want to accomplish? Smiling so handsomely like that? He even said we’re his brothers, so why isn’t he that nice to me?”
Wen thought about it for a moment. What Simon said was true. “He doesn’t smile that brightly when he’s with me.”
Simon gave him an ‘I told you so’ look.
Wen propped his chin on his hand as he turned to look at the pair still chatting on the walkway. Astra was good looking, he also had a great figure. As a young man on the cusp of adulthood, his masculine hormones had begun to boldly release their charm. What was more was the girl next to him. Naia was above average in all regards, whether it was her looks or her composure, everything about her was excellent. The two of them looked quite picturesque standing together like that.
Wen stood up and buttoned up his blazer before walking up to the pair. “Naia, you’re from Planet Topia, right?”
Naia became nervous as Wen drew near. She blinked rapidly as she attempted to control her bashfulness. “Yeah, how did you know?”
“I heard about it when I was talking to one of the supervisors.” Wen’s lips curved into a smile. “When we reach Topia, we’ll have to ask Naia to be our guide and take us to the best sight-seeing spots there.”
“No problem,” Naia promised quickly. “All you guys have to do is tell me. If it’s something I can help with, I’ll definitely do everything I can to help you guys.”
Wen, “Well, we don’t need help exactly. Topia is famous for having a lot of auction sites. If there’s a chance, we really want to visit one of them.”
He signalled to Astra with his eyes as he spoke. Astra raised a brow and pressed a finger to his lips to shush Wen, expressing to him that he understood the message, and would not interrupt during Wen’s conversation with Naia.
Naia thought about it for a second. “I can get some tickets to the upcoming auction, but I can’t get enough for your whole team.”
“That’s fine.” Wen laughed and sincerely thanked her for agreeing to help, all the way until Naia left with a flushed face.
Wen sat down with Astra.
Before Astra could ask him, Wen took the initiative to explain his reason, “Topia’s famed auctions are known throughout the Empire. Don’t you want to see one, Astra?”
Faced with an invitation from such a beauty, who could refuse the top grade flower’s smiling gaze?
However, Wen’s explanation was too fake. No one would actually believe it.
But as the ‘male lead’s little brother’, Astra nodded without hesitation. “Alright.”
He smiled, his eyes glimmering under the light.
The author has something to say:
Astra the big idiot is having a lot of fun acting like a playboy. But after Wen managed to convert himself to BL, Astra began to take his playboy act very very seriously. Hhhhh
Coming next: scenes where the shou tries to take advantage of and seduce the ‘clueless’ gong. Wen still thinks Astra is straight and relentlessly tries to se~duce big idiot Astra. Relentlessly. hehehe.
T/N: gosh I love this author’s personality. Literally read the book again in one setting just to see all the author’s notes at the bottom of each chapter. Also, I chose the name Roux because it means ‘red’, just for fun. The pirate’s signature flower is a rose, so I thought it was fitting. There’s also a hidden reference to the famous pirates, the Barbarossa brothers (search them up, the story is pretty cool). So yeah, we’re going with Roux (pronounced like ‘rue’)