Chapter 316: The First
Translated by Kollumceti of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
No matter whether Feng ChiYun accepted his fate or not, he was unable to escape.
To tell the truth, he had not planned to participate in the Mountain Trials. He had participated in the assessment just to test his own strength. How would he have expected this sudden and unexpected disaster? He would have followed Tong YueXu’s example if he knew this was going to happen.
Tong YueXu did not lack actual combat experience, so he had been going back and forth between the Cultivation Center and the Gravity Mountain to cultivate.
He was not in the top hundred ranking as he did not go for the assessment at all, thus he had nothing to do with the Trials. Not long after, the person-in-charge of the Trials came out. It was Vice Principal Yan Fa. Gao Yang had also come out with him. Gao Yang was ranked fifth on the top hundred rankings, and he was cooperating with was a mage he was familiar with.
After Gao Yang and the mage returned to their positions, Yan Fa began to explain the rules of the Trials.
The tasks announced by the academy for the Mountain Trials were ranked based off the difficulty of the tasks. There would definitely be many people receiving the same tasks as there were not many tasks.
After roughly going over the rules, Yan Fa got some helpers to carry a table up the stage. Paper and pens are put on the table.
Under the surprised gazes of the audience, Yan Fa announced, “The Trials this year will be different from the past years. To prevent some people from fishing in troubled waters, the academy will record the tasks that you’ve accepted. Starting from now, come out and report your names when the tasks are read out. In addition, every team may only take up one task.”
<strong>t/n: fishing in troubled waters means to take advantage of a crisis for personal gain.</strong>
Everyone burst into an uproar upon hearing these new rules.
If they could only receive one task, this meant that there were no other chances if they failed.
It was clearly much more stringent than the previous years. However, as Yan Fa had said, there were people who had used this loophole in the past. Therefore, they could still fall back on the other tasks even if they failed one task.
The benefits that could be gained from this were more apparent for the strong.
Since these rules were to be implemented this year, the odds for the other participants had greatly increased. Except for the minority who were unhappy, most were in agreement with the new rules.
However, after hearing the new rules, the unhappiest person was You XiaoMo.
The hopeful plan that they had just strategized yesterday had been ruthlessly shattered today.
You XiaoMo asked, “Ling Xiao, which task should we take?”
The teams which received the top five tasks were able to obtain entry into the thirty-first room in the Red card zone. Logically, they only needed to choose the fifth task to obtain their objective, but there would definitely be many who had also thought of the same.
Ling Xiao was strong. There would be no problem even if they took up the first task. But even if the task was harder, it did not mean that the rewards would be better as the academy had a rule whereby the items obtained in the Trials belonged to the individual students. So they still needed to carefully think over whether the objective of the task was useful or not.
The objective of the fifth task was a stalk of a level eight magic herb. Unfortunately, he did not happen to have that particular magic herb.
It was necessary to point out that the objectives of the tasks the academy listed all had a special trace on it. There may also be people who would tail them, so it was fruitless to try to use the same item to bluff one’s way through.
Ling Xiao knew what You XiaoMo was thinking about, and said, “Which one do you want to take?”
You XiaoMo mused over it for a moment. For the time being, he did not particularly need any tasks concerning demon beasts. Excluding that demon beast egg, his Qiu team already had five beasts. If he added in a pair of Hidden Dipper Stink Bugs, he would have seven beasts. Though he planned to get a football team or two basketball teams worth of demon beasts, he was not in a hurry to assemble them.
His current priority was focused on magic herbs. The magic herbs required by high grade magic pills were too many to count, and he did not have much stored away.
“The tasks involving magic herbs are only the first and the fifth task. The objective for the first task is a level nine magic herb. There should not be many taking this up, as the fifth task is easier.”
You XiaoMo did a little calculation and after taking everything in account, it appeared that they could only take the fifth task. It was a little difficult to complete the first task because of Ling Xiao’s ‘current’ strength.
Ling Xiao said, “Then we should… …”
The fifth task had been read out just as they had been talking.
The tasks were read out from the last to the first, and a team only needed to complete the task for them to receive the reward. Therefore, there were always more than three teams taking the same task regardless of which was taken.
The ones who took the fifth task were Teng Yu and Teng ZiYe. In addition to them, there were also two other teams whose strength was the top ten in the top hundred rankings. Their strength may be inferior to Teng Yu, but they were still strong competitors.
As the objective of the fourth task was pertaining to demon beasts, there were many fighting over it and one of the teams was Gao Yang’s.
The objective of the third task was also related to demon beasts. Contrary to all expectations, the first to accept this task was actually Yin Ge. Everyone had assumed that he would take the second task if he did not accept the first task. No one had predicted that he would take the third task, and there was a high probability that he would be able to complete the third task with the level of his strength.
In addition to this, An XinRui had also taken up this task. It seemed as if she wanted to shoulder the task together with Yin Ge.
The second task was rather strange. The content of the task was to obtain the life crystal of a Crimson Fire Azure Dragon.
The life crystal was valuable and the energy contained in a small fragment was extraordinarily huge. It was known as an iniquitous treasure for rapid advancement and there were no negative side effects.
The Crimson Fire Azure Dragon would produce a life crystal every hundred years and according to the news that the academy had attained, it only had one crystal left.
Despite the treasure being very valuable, the Crimson Fire Azure Dragon was not to be trifled with.
It was said that there was only one Crimson Fire Azure Dragon in the entire mountain. It was a demon beast that was half a step into the ninth realm and was very difficult to deal with. However, there were two teams who took this task – BaiLi TianYi’s and Zhan YuXuan’s team.
It was foreseeable that there would be a fierce battle between the giants!
“Eh? The people in the top ten rankings have all chosen their tasks. Doesn’t this mean that there will be no one taking up the first task?”
Some people finally discovered a problem when BaiLi TianYi and Zhan YuXuan took up the second task.
Never had there been an occurrence where a task had not been taken up. Taking the last year as an example, the one who accepted the first task was Yin Ge. However, he had chosen the third task this year and the rest also knew the limits of their own strength. They undeniably did not have any way to defeat the demon beast protecting that stalk of level nine magic herb as a result the task had been left vacant.
The others had also remembered this after one had raised this issue.
Yan Fa did not forgo the first task just because the top ten had already accepted a task. While everyone was commenting on this, he calmly and collectively addressed the crowd, “The last is the first task. State your name if you wish to accept this task.”
When he finished speaking, the crowd fell silent.
Three seconds later, a lazy voice drifted out from the crowd, “Ling Xiao.”
Everyone looked in the direction of the voice and could not help but be stunned, as they had discovered that this person was actually the man who had defeated Tang MengCheng. Although he was courageous enough to dare to take the first task, his strength as the fifteenth rank was simply not enough to complete it.
Many felt that Ling Xiao was overconfident, but since he wanted to accept this task, they would not speak further on this. Yan Fa asked, “Are you certain you wish to take this task?”
Under the eyes of the crowd, Ling Xiao nodded and smiled, “It won’t do if I’m not certain. The competition for the other tasks is too fierce. Only the first task does not have any takers.”
Everyone immediately looked at him as if they were looking at a fool.
To take up the task because no one took it, this person’s brain was surely broken ba!
Yan Fa immediately asked a helper to record Ling Xiao’s name down. To embark on such an action meant that there would be no turning back. Even if he wanted to turn back, he would be unable to as it would signify that he would be retiring from this year’s Trials.
Seeing this scene, those who were antagonistic with Ling Xiao and You XiaoMo broke into sneers. It appeared that they would not need to make any move as these two were going to dig their own graves.
Although there were more procedures to go through before departing, it did not affect everyone’s enthusiasm.
After Yan Fa announced the order to depart, everyone followed him to leave Ward A.
Ward A was big, but it was not large enough to encircle the mountains so they needed to walk out of the barrier for the Trials to begin.
The participants walked in a single file, following the road that they used when they first entered Ward A. After close to an hour of walking, they finally reached the outside of the barrier. Two hundred plus people were standing upon a wide plain.
Before the Trials began, Yan Fa said, “As the difficulty of the Trials this year has increased, the time limit has been extended to half a month and five days. No matter if the task has been completed or not, everyone much gather here within this limit. With that, I hereby declare that the Trials begin now!”
When he finished speaking, Yan Fa went back into the barrier with the Elders.
The atmosphere relaxed in an instant after their figures were swallowed by the barrier. Everyone was not in a hurry to get out of here. Instead, they broke up into twos and threes to converse with each other.
You XiaoMo tugged on Ling Xiao’s sleeves, “What’s going on?
Ling Xiao sharpened his hearing, “They’re looking for groups to work together with.”
There were some tasks with a high level of difficulty that was hard to complete with merely two people. Therefore, there would be a bunch of people looking for others to form a group with. They would distribute the benefits accordingly, and then reach a collaboration agreement.
Just as You XiaoMo wanted to say something, he caught sight of Zhan YuXuan heading towards Yin Ge. BaiLi TianYi was standing together with Gao Yang and they seemed to be discussing something. Looking at them, they may have been making arrangements to cooperate with each other.
He had been a little depressed, but when he saw An XinRui looking at Yin Ge with a conflicting expression on her face, he suddenly felt like he had been cured by her misfortune/suffering. Amitabha, one truly should not have such a twisted way of thinking.
A few minutes later, the participants successively left the plain.
You XiaoMo saw that after Gao Yang and BaiLi TianYi had finished talking and seemed to be walking towards him and Ling Xiao. Just as he was about to wave to them, Ling Xiao suddenly stopped him and dragged him away.
The figure of the two disappeared from sight a few seconds later.
Not far away, Gao Yang who had been about to call out to them had his mouth hanging open, unable to speak a word.
BaiLi TianYi stifled his laugh, and patted the shoulder of his old friend, “Forget about it, they looked like they have a plan of their own.”
Gao Yang helplessly shook his head.
He knew that Ling Xiao’s ‘strength’ was that of a one star Spiritual level. With their strength, they definitely would not be able to complete the task. He had planned to discuss the topic of cooperation with Ling Xiao, but who would have thought that he would run off. Perhaps they may really have some other plans.