"It can't be ... aren't legacy missions the type that can only be stumbled upon by luck? Why would they have an open test this time?" Ling Lan's first reflex was to think that this was a joke, but then, considering Qi Long's straightforward personality, he would never joke about something as major as this. So, she started asking for more information.
"I'm not sure about that myself. Maybe the one who set the legacy mission just likes to use this kind of wide-scale elimination method to choose a disciple. Still, I like it," said Qi Long, grinning happily. He felt that he would have very little luck with those legacies which depended on chance, so he was ecstatic to see this type of publicly accessible legacy mission. Plus, he felt that this sort of legacy was fairer.
Qi Long would think this way due to his personality — being someone who favoured the direct approach, just looking at the convoluted twists and turns of some things gave him a headache.
"So it's a sea-selection 1 !" Ling Lan exclaimed in realisation. Of course, Ling Lan's words made Qi Long on the other end of the communicator gasp out in repeated admiration once more, for he felt that this descriptor was truly perfect for the situation.
The skin on Ling Lan's face had gotten exceptionally thick by now, having gotten used to taking credit for all those net-terminology or modern slang so popular in her previous world. Thus, she just calmly took it in stride and told Qi Long that she would hurry over immediately.
Although Ling Lan wasn't particularly keen about this public legacy mission, this was still Ling Lan's first encounter with a so-called legacy mission after all. She was very curious, and so decided to hold off on her current mission and go take a look at Qi Long's area first.
Little Four fully supported this plan; he was very annoyed at himself for overlooking this legacy mission, and so decided that he would analyse this sort of legacy mission closely to avoid missing them in the future. He would make sure to find all the legacy missions and present them to his boss ... It had to be said that Little Four was really very greedy, actually planning to round up all the legacy missions within the virtual network. Luckily Ling Lan didn't notice what Little Four was thinking right now, otherwise she would certainly be rendered speechless — legacies weren't like the Chinese cabbages they could eat every day!
As its name implied, Mecha Street was a street filled with mecha shops. However, in the newbie village, er ... no, the enclosed city of the scout academy, what the shops sold were all kinds of mecha figurines of different sizes, readily available for the students to peruse to better understand this world's strongest solo weaponry. Whether they were male or female, as long as they had money, they would definitely buy one of the mecha models they liked.
The mecha models were very realistic — the materials used to make them were actually of the same alloy type as real mecha. That said, real mecha were made with the highest grade materials, while the models were made with secondary level materials, along with some miscellaneous junk materials. Still, every part of the mecha was made perfectly, just like on a real mecha. All movable and removable parts worked exactly like a real mecha, and even the controls and operational instruments within the mecha's cockpit were all present and accounted for. This made them perfect for letting the children learn about the internal structure of mecha and some of its basic operations.
The moment Ling Lan arrived at Mecha Street, she could see countless students surging in a particular direction. So, without even having to ask Qi Long for directions, Ling Lan knew exactly where she should go. It was very likely that these students had all rushed over after hearing the news.
Moving with the crowd, Ling Lan finally arrived at her destination. Seeing the human blockade spanning 100 metres long, Ling Lan couldn't help but frown deeply. Just at a glance, there were probably about almost ten thousand students gathered here.
Ling Lan could only contact Qi Long once again to find out where they were. Because they had arrived early, they were now stuck about 60 to 70 metres to the front. They had never expected that within a few short minutes, over ten thousand students would have rushed over. Now, they were stuck with no way to move forward or backward, and so could only stay put and wait for their turn to take the test.
Seeing this, Ling Lan decisively turned around, prepared to go back to her earlier mission. So many people ... who knows when it'll be before it's her turn? Ling Lan didn't have that much time to waste; in fact, her time had been tight to start with.
But Little Four stopped her, asking her to wait a while, before disappearing in a hurry.
Ling Lan thought of Little Four's abilities and so decided to be patient and wait. However, she didn't like to be surrounded by people, so Ling Lan looked around to her left and right ...
The shops on mecha street were basically all three-storey buildings, with the lowest level being taller than the floors of a regular building by about a half-storey because the model mecha on the first floor were all very big and tall, some even reaching a height of up to three metres high. These models could allow a person to sit in the mecha's cockpit to experience first-hand how it really felt to operate one, but of course, the price of this type of mecha wasn't cheap. Without external financial support, relying solely on the students' own efforts to gather money, it would be impossible to purchase these mecha without investing up to seven or eight years of time. Of course, if Ling Lan wanted, with Little Four's assistance, she would be able to purchase it after two years at max.
The second storey of the shops were where the well-crafted miniature model mecha were displayed, available for perusal and purchase by students who liked collecting them. Meanwhile, the third storey was where the cashier was located, and where one could go to pre-order some model mecha. After all, some mecha were extremely expensive, so the shops didn't want to tie up too much of their cash flow in stock.
Every mecha seller's shopfront was decorated uniquely and with personal flair — there were those which drew inspiration from sci-fi and fantasy, while others were simple, some traditional, and even more in line with modern trends ... Ling Lan's attention had been drawn by a shop roughly three metres in front of her. A canvas sign full of vintage flavour hung from its walls, and a string of small red lanterns trailed down from the roof of the third storey.
Ling Lan's eyes flashed; perhaps she could make use of this.
Before she could be surrounded by people, Ling Lan took advantage of the little space she had around her to take two small quick steps, and then, with a spring of her toes, she leapt off the ground.
"Owie, who stepped on my head?!" A small student whose attention had been absorbed by the front suddenly felt someone stepping on his head. He quickly looked up and saw a small nimble figure flying by.
"Someone is jumping on top!" Quite a few other people had also noticed Ling Lan's actions, and they all began making a racket.
Ling Lan could be seen flying to land on the side of the wall of the shop, where she tugged on the string of lanterns with one hand to send herself flying upwards once again. Ling Lan's body was extremely agile; she managed to flip up onto the roof in an instant like a nimble monkey.
"F*ck, so that's also a way of doing things." Those observing abruptly realised that it wasn't absolutely necessary to walk on the ground to move to the front. Those with fast reflexes immediately copied Ling Lan and began climbing up the shop. However, it wasn't long before everyone else gathered their wits and leapt towards that string of lanterns. The result was tragic but predictable — how could this small string of lanterns bear the weight of so many people? — it snapped from the middle, causing many of the students on the lower half to fall down.
It would have been fine if things ended there, but at that moment, everyone was still rushing towards that shop, thus resulting in a disastrous stampede. It was said later that countless students had been evicted right out of the virtual world because of this stampede incident. When those students tried logging in once more, they were warned that their virtual bodies had been destroyed by unbearable pressure, and that they would have to wait till three days later before they could log in again.
This caused the students to beat their chests in frustration, full of bitter regret. If they had known this would be the outcome ... why did they have to try and follow that despicable person's shortcut? If they had just obediently kept their place in line, they were likely to have gotten their turn after just a full day and night of waiting.
Ling Lan had no idea that her spontaneous movements had actually sparked such a tragedy within the virtual world. She sped over the rooftops, and it wasn't long before she saw Qi Long and the others hemmed in on all sides by people. One, two, three, four, five ... nine — yup, every one of them was there, all stuck within the crowd.
Making a direct call to Qi Long's communicator, Ling Lan said smugly, "Lil' boy Qi Long, I see you ~" It was rare that she had the urge to tease them. Ling Lan sat on the edge of a rooftop and looked down at her friends peering around trying to find her when they heard the news.
"Boss, where are you? Why can't I see you?" Qi Long was very surprised. He was barricaded on all sides, stuck, so how in the world had Boss come to find them from over 100 metres away?
Han Jijyun lowered his head in thought, when suddenly an idea popped into his head. He looked up and immediately saw Ling Lan grinning and waving at them.
What an intelligent child, being able to find the key point so quickly. Ling Lan confirmed once more that Han Jijyun was very smart; as long as he was given a tiny hint, he could immediately hone in on the most important points.
Under Han Jijyun's prompting, Qi Long and the others also looked up to see Ling Lan smirking at them. With some frustration, Qi Long said, "Now why didn't I think of that?" Since this virtual world was known to be almost 100% realistic, of course it would be possible to also travel over the rooftops. Unfortunately, it was already too late now. They were squeezed within the crowd, unable to find any space to sprint towards a shop wall.
In the end, they could only regretfully let Ling Lan help them to go ahead and find out about the contents of the mission. Ling Lan naturally did not object. She waved a casual farewell to them and then disappeared.
Han Jijyun sighed and said, "Boss Ling Lan is truly the boss, always able to think of things we'd never think of. Compared to him, we're just too weak." Rather than martial prowess, Han Jijyun was more admiring of Ling Lan's intellect — this was a natural focal point for intelligent people.
Qi Long nodded in agreement, and said somewhat dejectedly, "Yeah, we all learned combat arts together, but in the end, while we can still only use them as sparring stances, Boss can apply them as killing tools already."
Qi Long would still pester Ling Lan to spar with him every once in a while, and Ling Lan would accept if she was in a good mood. Both of them would only use those common combat arts taught by the school during those spars. However, for the exact same move, while Qi Long was still just replicating it as taught, Ling Lan was already simplifying it and absorbing it, making it truly part of her own personal combat arts.
Those observing from the side-lines may not have been able to see the situation clearly, but Qi Long who was in the thick of it knew very well that Ling Lan was truly very scary. His combat ability had already surpassed them by too much. At times, he would even get the illusion that the pressure Ling Lan exerted was as formidable as his father's.
Because every time they crossed moves, Ling Lan would always pull back right before he would hit his fatal spots. To an outsider, it would seem as if they were fighting evenly, but in fact, Ling Lan was just holding back. Sometimes, his moves even had a trace of mentoring embedded within them, pushing Qi Long's understanding of how to fight better.
However, even though Ling Lan was already holding back that much, Qi Long could still feel the force of the wind behind Ling Lan's fists. It scraped over his body so sharply that it felt as if it could split his skin — this force was a terrifying one, and he knew he would have no chance of surviving even just one hit. It would be a total GAME OVER.
This truly displayed the resilience of Qi Long's personality. He did not become sullen and depressed in the face of Ling Lan's fearsome strength, but instead respected Ling Lan even more. At the same time, he also pushed himself to train harder, refusing to allow himself to be too much weaker than the boss he had acknowledged. This, was his pride as a follower.i.e. audition. Choosing from a sea of participants.