This was the first time in the last couple of years that a nemesis combat match was to be held in the Central Scout Academy. Lin Zhong-qing and Li Yingjie's wager on their futures created an uproar among the lower grades; this was also why there were so many people here in the combat hall today.
Li Yingjie had long taken up his position on the stage, waiting for Lin Zhong-qing to arrive. At this moment, he was very pleased with himself, thinking that Lin Zhong-qing was already a bird in his hand. All that remained was for the final result to be declared — Li Yingjie was extremely confident that he would be able to take down Lin Zhong-qing easily with his strength.
The more Li Yingjie thought about it, the more excited he was — he could almost see Lin Zhong-qing bowing down before him now ...
However, the following events did not unfold as he had pictured. In the final minute before the arena battle would officially start, the person that appeared across from him was not Lin Zhong-qing, but Qi Long. Right then, Li Yingjie knew that his plot had been countered by the opponent, and he screamed in anger, "Why is it you?!"
Qi Long laughed freely, saying, "Why can't it be me?" In Li Yingjie's eyes, Qi Long's hearty laughter was a taunt, mocking him for falling victim to his own cleverness.
"Who'd have thought that Lin Zhong-qing would be your team member ... I'd never expected you all to be willing to waste a member slot for that fellow." In Li Yingjie's plans, after he had defeated Lin Zhong-qing, the first thing he would do would be to forbid him from joining any teams. Since Lin Zhong-qing had been so unwilling to submit to him, then he would utterly destroy him and turn Lin Zhong-qing into a lowly dog for Li Yingjie to kick and scold as he pleased!
"You yourself were willing to let a regular class person join your team. At least Lin Zhong-qing is still a Special Class-A student. It's not at all shameful to have taken him in." Qi Long was rather perplexed by Li Yingjie's words. Right now, no matter how he looked at Li Yingjie, he just felt that there was something wrong with the other's brain. Really, what was he thinking? The members of a team were supposed to be the best partners to grow up with, and would be the most intimate companions who would fight right by one's side in the future.
Therefore, every team leader would be more careful than careful, weighing their options again and again, when deciding whether to accept someone into their team. Li Yingjie's act of adding a weak member who would obviously drag down the strength of a team, all for the sake of revenge against someone who didn't want to join him ... in Qi Long's opinion, this sort of behaviour was illogical. It was definitely the action of a retard.
Qi Long's words further ignited Li Yingjie's rage — there was only one notion in his mind now, and that was that he had fallen prey to Ling Lan's team's evil scheme. He believed that this was all a ploy set up by Ling Lan's group to eliminate their greatest rival (him) so that they could obtain the coveted status of kings of year 4738.
It had to be said that Li Yingjie was really full of himself. He had always thought of Ling Lan's group as his competition, so the moment he found that the situation wasn't looking good for him, his first conclusion was that he had been set up.
Dizzy with rage, Li Yingjie could no longer remain calm. The moment the referee teacher said start, he charged with bloodshot eyes towards Qi Long on the opposite end. Of course, this manner of approach was useless — already weaker than Qi Long in general, after losing his composure, the difference between Li Yingjie's and Qi Long's strength was even clearer. Within the span of a few moves, Li Yingjie was being dominated by Qi Long on every front.
A slight smile appeared on Ling Lan's lips; this match was already Qi Long's.
In a corner not too far from the arena stage, Wu Jiong, who had been observing the fight, sniffed coldly at this point and said, "Ye Xu, let's go."
"Yes!" replied Ye Xu, nodding. Even at their level, they could tell what the final outcome of the fight would be. Initially, they had been looking forward to seeing the fight between Li Yingjie and Qi Long, but who would've guessed that Li Yingjie would become mentally imbalanced and lose his calm? Hence, the fight had lost all meaning, making them lose interest in it as well.
Wu Jiong and Ye Xu had actually come to spectate for a specific purpose — they too had wanted to invite Lin Zhong-qing to join their team. Although Lin Zhong-qing was currently only ranked 15th in the class rankings, seemingly not too strong, the fact is that he had successfully moved up from the position of dead-last to the upper segment of Class-A in just short of 2 years. If Lin Zhong-qing continued to improve at this rate, he would certainly be able to make a true place for himself among those at the top one day. Wu Jiong and Ye Xu both thought highly of his future prospects, so they were willing to give one of their precious team member slots to Lin Zhong-qing.
Of course, Wu Jiong and Ye Xu also believed that as long as Lin Zhong-qing was willing to join them, if they negotiated politely with Li Yingjie based on their families' status in the military world, the other would probably give way.
However, Wu Jiong hadn't considered that Ling Lan would beat them to the punch ... Wu Jiong felt a twinge of regret in his heart, thinking that he had lost this chess match by a slim margin. He had wanted to wait till Lin Zhong-qing had utterly lost all hope before offering a helping hand — that way, he would have been able to gain Lin Zhong-qing's gratitude — but unexpectedly, Ling Lan's group had stepped in halfway and hijacked his target. If he had only known earlier, he would not have waited to try and maximise his advantages. He should have just contacted Lin Zhong-qing directly the moment he had found out about Li Yingjie's trap ...
"That punk Qi Long really moves too goddamn quickly. Actually beating us to the punch to get Lin Zhong-qing," complained Ye Xu, displeased, as he stared at Qi Long dominating the match.
"Qi Long? That punk is just a battle maniac, he wouldn't think that far. Without that person, Lin Zhong-qing would never have chosen to join them." Gaze serious, Wu Jiong directed Ye Xu's attention to Ling Lan who was standing in a corner.
"Ling Lan ..." Ye Xu's expression changed subtly. He still remembered when he had first been defeated by Ling Lan in one move — that one incident had almost destroyed his confidence. Luckily, Wu Jiong had found him, and they had bonded while commiserating together over their losses to Ling Lan. The two of them began working together, and finally managed to build a team of their own, becoming one of the only three teams in their grade at present. This also allowed their reputation to stay on par with Ling Lan's team, taking on the role as a sort of counterbalance.
As for Li Yingjie's team, in their eyes, it wasn't even a threat. It was really only Li Yingjie himself who blindly believed that his team was one of the strongest teams in the class ...
At the heart of it, Wu Jiong actually looked down a little on Li Yingjie. He was a direct descendant of a top elite family, but though his combat ability was not bad, that brain of his ... was really below Wu Jiong's notice. He just kept doing a bunch of nonsensical things that did neither himself nor anyone else any good.
Wu Jiong's group quietly disappeared from the combat hall. Meanwhile, on the stage, the results were quickly decided. Li Yingjie, who could fight against Qi Long for up to several 100 moves typically, did not display any of the strength a top 5 of Class-A should have this time. It hadn't taken even 100 moves before he was struck by one of Qi Long's fists and flew off the stage, sealing his loss.
After Li Yingjie lost, two options popped out on his communicator — one was to adhere to the wager and serve the other, while the other was to redeem himself by using battle points to trade for his freedom.
Based on Li Yingjie's personality, he would certainly choose to redeem himself, but before he could make his choice, he had fainted out of sheer anger.
Because Li Yingjie had lost the ability to choose, after 3 minutes, the academy's mainframe automatically transferred that right to Qi Long, allowing him to make the choice on behalf of Li Yingjie.
If Qi Long chose the first option, he would have to send out an invitation for his team, while the second option would require the loser to forfeit a set number of battle points to redeem himself.
Of course Qi Long was unwilling to take on this trash Li Yingjie; he hurriedly chose for Li Yingjie to redeem himself. And then, all he saw was the immense figure supplied by the A.I. — the countless number of zeroes made Qi Long's eyes cross. It turned out that Li Yingjie was worried that Lin Zhong-qing would choose to redeem himself, and so had set it so that the price for self-redemption was one million battle points. This was an absolutely astronomical number. For context, despite Qi Long's battle achievements, in these two years at the academy, he had only managed to earn slightly more than a thousand battle points.
In truth, Li Yingjie had already proposed this self-redemption price right from the beginning when he had challenged Lin Zhong-qing to a nemesis match. This way, no matter which option Lin Zhong-qing chose, he wouldn't be able to escape his palm. If Lin Zhong-qing chose the second option, he would use the debt of these battle points to force Lin Zhong-qing to give up his studies and work non-stop in the virtual world by taking on missions to repay his debt. (The scout academy's battle points can be traded using the credits earned within the virtual world.)
However, this malicious intent of Li Yingjie's had now smashed his own toes, benefitting Qi Long. This was also another reason why Li Yingjie had fainted — he knew what the price of self-redemption was, and even he could not bear the cost.
Very quickly, a message was sent to Qi Long's communicator, informing him that a batch of battle points under Li Yingjie's name had been transferred into his account. The mainframe also told Qi Long that the remaining deficiency would be automatically transferred to his account whenever Li Yingjie earned more battle points in the future. In other words, even without taking Li Yingjie in as a lackey, Li Yingjie would have to work for Qi Long until the day he graduated from the Central Scout Academy.
Just like that, Li Yingjie was forced to take a great loss. On the other hand, Lin Zhong-qing managed to get rid of a burden that had troubled him for close to 2 years. However, Qi Long very quickly received the remaining battle points from Li Yingjie, clearing the debt. Qi Long knew very well that this was most likely the doing of Li Yingjie's family. They must have applied pressure in the background to allow the direct transfer of credits into Li Yingjie's virtual account so that he could trade them for battle points to clear his debt.
Although the academy had announced to the public that it was impossible to obtain credits from the outside world, when real power and authority came into play, the academy would still give some face to the extremely resourceful large elite families. Qi Long was clear about the twists and turns involved in this, so he wasn't particularly surprised to receive the payment for Li Yingjie's debt so quickly. He merely told Ling Lan and Han Jijyun about the amount he of battle points he received. In the end, Ling Lan decided that she would leave 100,000 points for emergencies, while the rest would be left to Han Jijyun to handle. Hopefully, this large windfall would be able to give them a boost within the scout academy's virtual world. Of course, the greatest objective of Ling Lan's group was to free all the members of the team from the worry of purchasing developmental agents.
Battle points were very useful — you could use them in the academy to buy the highest-grade cultivation agents, which were extremely hard to find in the outside world, as well as high-grade gene agents. However, the price was extremely steep — 100,000 battle points for just one tube. Even if the children of the academy worked their butts off doing missions and pushed their hardest during the arena battles, they would still need at least 5 years before they would accumulate 100,000 battle points.
Qi Long's current amount of battle points could only purchase 10 tubes of high-grade gene agent, and this number was only enough to supply Qi Long for one year of absorption. Ling Lan felt that buying these agents now was rather not worth it — they might as well try to think of a way to gain some interest on these battle points and earn more. The more they earned, the more agents they would be able to get.
Han Jijyun felt the same way and so accepted the duty graciously. He was filled with vigour, thinking that this sort of purposeful life right now was what he really wanted. Everyone left to do their own things, leaving only Little Four to continue muttering by Ling Lan's ear. He was whining that he would have been a better candidate than Han Jijyun to handle those battle points.