Chapter 286: Feelings
Translated by Kollumceti of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
With Chai Zheng and Qing Qiu serving as a foil, the rest of the participants were unable to captivate and excite the audience, no matter how outstanding their performance was.
The people below were enthusiastically discussing the flow of the competition, attempting to predict which one of the three people in first place would come out on top. Of course, it could be possible that Teng ZiXin who had five points could catch up to the three, as there were still two remaining rounds and no one knew how the cards would fall.
Seeing You XiaoMo frown, BaiLi XiaoYu said, “I’ve heard that in order to beat you, Chai Zheng had been working very hard these days. You should be more careful in tomorrow’s competition.”
With regards to Chai Zheng, You XiaoMo was not too concerned about him, as compared to You XiaoMo, that person was only winning in the category of age. He was more curious about Qing Qiu who had, some time ago, been constantly looking for him for the purpose of purchasing magic pills.
You XiaoMo asked, “What backing does Qing Qiu have?”
BaiLi XiaoYu replied, “Her master is Master Ying Mo, a high level mage who is only second to your master. Qing Qiu is Master Ying Mo’s favorite disciple, and all the good stuff would be given to her.”
You XiaoMo remembered that this name had been in the jade drive given by Ning Jing-daoshi, and it was also the first name on the jade drive. No wonder Qing Qiu was so strong even though she was at such a young age. Sure enough, it was really important to have a good master.
The pressure was really greater than normal ah!
You XiaoMo, who originally had some confidence, now felt that his placement in the top three was in jeopardy.
In front were Chai Zheng and Qing Qiu, and behind was Teng ZiXin who was glaring at You XiaoMo like a tiger eyeing its prey. He was caught between the hammer and the anvil. If he did not put in his best effort, the gap between him and the first two would widen, or the ones behind would catch up.
You XiaoMo gritted his teeth, “He’s simply trying to force me ah!”
That shitty old geezer! Could it be possible that he had expected such a situation to develop so he deliberately said that? You XiaoMo did not want to suspect the old geezer, but this coincidence was just too suspicious.
Jiang XiaoFeng blankly asked, “Force you to what?”
You XiaoMo replied, “Force me to use to my ultimate skill.”
Ling Xiao mocked, “You have an ultimate skill?”
You XiaoMo, “… …No.”
Ling Xiao stood up, “Let’s go then. The competition has ended.”
Chai Zheng and Qing Qiu were tested several more times, but was nothing new to see. Not long later, the Fifth Elder announced the end of the first round, and that the second round would be held tomorrow morning.
You XiaoMo and Ling Xiao returned to the pavilion together when the competition ended. BaiLi XiaoYu and Jiang XiaoFeng were also going the same way, thus the group of four left together.
Ling Xiao had wanted to tell You XiaoMo something, but seeing that there were now two bum beetles walking with them, he decided not to say it, and only brought it up when they returned to the pavilion.
t/n: bum beetle: a person who follows someone everywhere they go or what they do, hanger-on
You XiaoMo froze for two seconds before reacting with astonishment, “You mean that the one who stole my magic bag was Teng ZiXin? Impossible!”
Ling Xiao sneered, “How can it be impossible? In DaoXin Academy, the ones who have influence, a grudge against you and the balls to steal your magic bag are only two people – Teng ZiXin and Chai Zheng.”
You XiaoMo mused over it, still he felt that there was something amiss, “But that person who stole my magic bag was a man. Shouldn’t we suspect Chai Zheng instead?”
Ling Xiao stared at him in disdain, “Do you think that Teng ZiXin would do these type things personally? With her current strength, she must have some degree of certainty of success to have taken on the challenge to refine a mid-grade level six magic pill. Was she not worried that she would fail midway, and all would be for naught?”
When it was put that way, it made some sense.
You XiaoMo could not help but recall Teng ZiXin’s bizarre behavior before she left on that day. Perhaps, she had already planned to steal his magic bag at that time. But what was the reason for her to be willing take such a risk?
Unfortunately, there were just too few clues. No matter how he thought about it You XiaoMo could not figure out the culprit’s motive. However, Ling Xiao should not be mistaken, and it was very possible that the culprit was Teng ZiXin.
You XiaoMo asked, “Then should we expose her?”
Ling Xiao gave a rhetorical answer, “Do you have evidence?”
You XiaoMo, “No… …”
The most valuable item in his magic bag was the half bottle of spiritual water. Teng ZiXin would probably turn her nose up at the rest of the things inside, and they had doubtlessly been destroyed. It was impossible even if he wanted to find evidence. He also had no evidence to prove that the bottle of spiritual water was his. If he really went to confront her, he may be the one who would be bitten instead.
You XiaoMo then said, “What should we do? Don’t tell me that we would have to let Teng ZiXin get away scot-free?”
For her to be able to abruptly raise the grade of a level six magic pill from low to mid-grade, she should have used five drops of spiritual water when refining the pill. Although there was not much left in the bottle, when he thought that Teng ZiXin had used his water to get a high score of five points, his mood soured, and he felt that he had been taken advantage of.
Ling Xiao replied, “Didn’t I tell you before to let me kill her? Who asked you to refuse?”
Black lines appeared on You XiaoMo’s face. He gritted his teeth and said, “This is DaoXin Academy, stop mentioning that you want to commit murder so frequently. Forget it, let her take the advantage, it’s not a big deal. I’ll continue to work hard in the competition tomorrow. Even if I cannot beat others, at the least I must crush her beneath my feet and let her know that my spiritual water cannot be used without consequences.”
Ling Xiao said, “… …Whatever you want.”
At this moment, PiQiu and CatQiu ran over and ran a few laps around You XiaoMo.
You XiaoMo did not even need to guess to know their aim. He rolled his eyes at them, “You just ate it yesterday, and now you want to eat it again today? It’s out of the question!”
When he finished speaking, he indignantly headed up the stairs with Ling Xiao following behind.
PiQiu and CatQiu squatted in situ, and sorrowfully looked at their Master’s back.
PiQiu turned his head and said to CatQiu, “Next time, we have to pick a time when Master’s in a good mood to act spoiled.”
CatQiu, “Meow~” Okay!
The glamorous and elegant XiaoHei, “You two idiots!”
The next day, You XiaoMo harbored apprehension in his heart as he went to participate in the second round of the competition.
The particulars of the second round were different from the academy’s entry assessment that You XiaoMo had participated in. It was not about refining pills or distilling magic herbs, instead it was related to the soul.
Everyone knew that for a mage, soul force was the most basic of the basics. As long as one’s soul was strong enough, their control of soul force and soul perception would also be stronger. Having a strong soul would also ensure that the mage’s road of cultivation would be smoother.
Thus, this round of competition was for the purpose of demonstrating a mage’s soul force.
The second round of the competition was not held outdoors, instead it was held in the largest hall in the academy. When You XiaoMo and Ling Xiao arrived, there were already a throng of people there. However, as it was held in a hall, there were fewer spectators as compared to yesterday’s crowd. You XiaoMo had just stepped inside when these people like Teng ZiXin and Chai Zheng had arrived one after another.
“My underclassman, you must try your best today. I won’t go easy on you.” Under the eyes of the crowd, Qing Qiu suddenly headed towards You XiaoMo and greeted him with a smile. Her tone did not make give the impression that she was here to provoke him.
You XiaoMo sneaked a glance at Ling Xiao, and seeing that he had no reaction, he replied, “I will do my best.”
As for whether people would go easy on him, did he look like he needed other people to go easy on him? Although his current level was not as high as Chai Zheng or Qing Qiu, no one knew what the outcome would be. Qing Qiu saw that he did not want to chat, so she said a few more words before she left.
You XiaoMo immediately sighed in relief. Ling Xiao had been clearly communicating the message that he did not like Qing Qiu.
Beside him, BaiLi XiaoYu did not understand what had happened and he asked in surprise, “XiaoMo, why did she come over to talk to you? Do you two know each other?”
You XiaoMo replied, “She only bought magic pills from me a few times. We are not familiar with each other.”
Jiang XiaoFeng continued asking, “But her tone implied that you were very familiar with each other.”
BaiLi XiaoYu immediately gave Jiang XiaoFeng a ‘thumbs-up’. Truthfully, he had also felt that way.
You XiaoMo himself was also puzzled; “You guys can go over and ask her then. Anyway, I’m not familiar with her. I also don’t know why every time she speaks with me, she would want to give the impression that we are familiar with each other. To tell the truth, I can count the number of times I’ve met her on a single hand.”
Jiang XiaoFeng looked pensive, then he abruptly said, “Don’t tell me that…she likes you?”
“Are you kidding me?! That’s impossible!” You XiaoMo cried out in fright and nervously looked at Ling Xiao. The latter’s lazy expression suddenly changed, causing him to tremble with fear. This cry of fright drew the attention of the spectators to You XiaoMo.
You XiaoMo’s reaction also caused Jiang XiaoFeng to jump in fright, and he stammered out, “I was only making a guess.”
You XiaoMo wiped away his cold sweat, “Next time, don’t say such horrifying things.”
Jiang XiaoFeng and BaiLi XiaoYu looked at each other, not knowing why he had such a big reaction. It shouldn’t be such a bad thing if Qing Qiu liked him ba. Though she was slightly older, she was pretty and her potential was high. However, since You XiaoMo said as such, they could only nod in acquiesce.
Despite his denial, as You XiaoMo thought about it, he felt that what Jiang XiaoFeng said was probably true.
He recalled Qing Qiu’s strange actions from before. They were clearly not familiar with each other, but she kept taking the initiative to chat with him, creating the perception that they were familiar with each other. Sometimes, she even gave a little impression of trying to cotton up to him when she spoke.
You XiaoMo could not refrain from asking Ling Xiao, “Could it be that you’ve long known about this?”
Ling Xiao gave a smile that was a smile and yet not, casting a sidelong glance at him, “So what if I knew?”
You XiaoMo, “…Nothing.”
What could he do even if Ling Xiao had known of this? Ha, at most he could laugh in his heart at Ling Xiao’s jealous behavior!
Although he was surprised that Qing Qiu liked him, when he thought about Ling Xiao feeling jealous over this, he felt that this was not a bad situation at all.
Ten minutes later, the time had come for the second round of the competition to begin, and the Fifth Elder walked out with his spirit trembling with excitement.