Book 11: The Continental Advanced Academy Soul Dueling Tournament
Chapter 78.3: A Genius Food-type Soul Master?
Xu Sanshi had a gloomy expression on his face as he said, "Teacher Wang, why didn't you put Jiang Nannan and me in a team together? The two of us know each other well, thus we'll definitely work well together as a team."
Jiang Nannan almond-shaped eyes widened. "Who's the one that's familiar with you? Stop trying to worm your way into being intimate with me."
Wang Yan interjected, "This is a competition, not the place for you two to murmur endearments to one another. The reason that I've placed you all together like I have is because your abilities are much more compatible with Caitou's; your focus is on defense, while his is on attack. As for Jiang Nannan, her quick-wittedness is better suited when combined with Bei Bei's strong attacks. If she were to team up with you, I'm afraid that she wouldn't even be able to exhibit thirty percent of her true strength."
Jiang Nannan, who usually didn't talk much, immediately nodded without a shred of hesitation and said, "Teacher Wang is wise."
Xu Sanshi's expression immediately sank at, but since this had to do with their arrangements in the competition, he didn't think that it would be appropriate to harp on about this matter.
Wang Yan said, "The basic arrangements will thus be like this. Now then, the most favorable styles of competition for us are actually the 1v1 and 2-2-3 fights. On the other hand, team battles will the easiest for us to reveal flaws to our opponents in. I have to emphasise this point once again: During the competition, all of you must pay attention to your opponent's soul tools, as competitors are allowed to utilise simple soul tools in battle. Yuhao definitely can't repeat his attack pattern after what happened in the first round, but the deterrent effect your team has is still present. Furthermore, Yuhao, you can't hold back with your spiritual detection either while the others are competing. We have to do everything in our power to emerge victorious and ensure that we uphold the academy's glory. When the time comes, I'll be commanding you guys on the field. I hope that you guys can carry out my commands at that time."
"Yes." The seven team members from the outer courtyard replied in uniform.
Wang Yan finally stood up and said, "Make sure to get some rest tonight everyone; you all need to ensure that you're in peak condition for tomorrow. None of you are allowed to leave tonight. Dismissed."
Once Wang Yan had finished speaking, everyone stood up and left the conference room. As Huo Yuhao and Wang Dong were walking towards Huo Yuhao's room together to cultivate, Huo Yuhao suddenly sensed something. His gaze instantly landed on the other end of the corridor afterwards.
A handsome youngster that appeared to be around fourteen or fifteen years old stood at the other end of the corridor, and was currently burning holes through Huo Yuhao as he stared at him.
Huo Yuhao's gaze immediately froze over. He was immediately able to tell, based on the white, skin-tight clothing that the other party was wearing, as well as from the direction that the other person had appeared from, that the other party was a student from the Sun Moon Imperial Soul Engineering Academy.
"You're known as Huo Yuhao, right? Remember my name: I'm Xiao Hongchen. I'll definitely defeat you!" The handsome youngster then made a thumbs down sign towards Huo Yuhao.
"You…!" A cold glint flashed through Wang Dong's eyes, but Huo Yuhao immediately stopped him from moving by placing his hand firmly on Wang Dong's shoulder.
Huo Yuhao raised his right hand, then hooked his thumb and middle finger together and flicked his own clothes. He frowned and said, "Where did this flea come from? It's so hateful! Whatever, I'll make sure to crush it to death sooner or later."
Once he'd finished, he opened the door to his room and entered with Wang Dong.
Huo Yuhao's voice had been very loud, while the acoustics in the Grand Imperial Star Hotel were also pretty decent. These two things caused Xiao Hongchen's face to twitch slightly as he squinted his eyes. However, he didn't seem angry; instead, a thoughtful look had appeared on his face. His strength wasn't the only reason that he'd been able to become the new commander of the Sun Moon Imperial Soul Engineering Academy's team. He also had a brain.
"Why did you stop me?" Wang Dong suddenly asked once they'd entered the room.
Huo Yuhao forcefully smiled and said, "What would you have done if I didn't stop you? Did you plan to suffer the consequences? I activated my spiritual detection the moment I saw that person, which he seemed to notice right away. Furthermore, the soul power fluctuations that his body was emanating far surpass ours. Based on his soul power fluctuations, I'm afraid that he has five soul rings."
"What?" Wang Dong was instantly taken aback. "No way! He doesn't even seem that much older than us. He ought to be a reserve member of the Sun Moon Imperial Soul Engineering Academy, but a Soul King at that? It can't be that he also disguised his soul power like you did, right?"
Huo Yuhao shook his head and said, "Is it really that easy for someone to mask the fluctuations of one's soul power? Anyways, he hadn't even released his martial soul yet."
Wang Dong frowned slightly, and a worried expression emerged in his large pinkish-blue eyes. "Just the reserve team is like that… It seems that the Sun Moon Imperial Soul Engineering Academy is much stronger than we could've imagined. Thankfully, we shouldn't meet them in the round-robin tournament, considering the fact that they were the runners-up last year."
Huo Yuhao's eyes twinkled. "Actually, the thing that we have to be more worried about is them being our opponents when we become official members of the team in five years and compete against them in the Elite Continental Soul Master Academy Tournament! He's a Soul King now, but what about in five years, considering his current cultivation speed?"
Wang Dong indignantly exclaimed, "But we're still young!"
"The tournament still gives all of us the same amount of time," Huo Yuhao retorted. "Come on, we have to work harder. Our true strength actually lies in our Haodong Power. As you know, my cultivation speed will most likely become slower once I get my third soul ring, due to the restrictions of my Ultimate martial soul."
Xiao Hongchen's appearance really did give them a sense of urgency. The duo immediately sat down on the bed, then placed their hands against each other's and began circulating their Haodong Power.
Wang Dong had become less and less mysophobic towards Huo Yuhao as they spent more time together.
The warm Mysterious Heaven Technique intertwined with Wang Dong's light-attributed soul power, then quickly gathered to form their torrential Haodong Power. Once it had, it began to circulate throughout their bodies.
Following Wang Dong's breakthrough to Rank 30, Huo Yuhao had also broken through to Rank 27. Currently, when they joined hands and circulated the Haodong Power in order to utilise a soul skill, the true might of their attack could compare to that of a Soul Ancestor. This was a massive amplification in terms of martial soul fusion.
Their cultivation was also close to each other's; the higher their cultivation level, the stronger the circulation of soul power, and in turn, the speed of their cultivation. Using their Haodong Power to cultivate was equivalent to them cultivating with the same speed as a Soul Ancestor; their cultivation was advancing by leaps and bounds.
Huo Yuhao had only broken through to Rank 27 around ten days ago, yet he already felt like his soul power was nearing the middle stage of Rank 27. If he continued at this cultivation speed, it wouldn't be a dream for him to break through at a speed of one rank per month until he reached Rank 30!
Wang Dong wasn't left in the dust by Huo Yuhao's speed, as his body seemed to be able to support more soul power than even Huo Yuhao's, who had twin martial souls. He felt no sense of blockage whenever he circulated his soul power, and he also felt as if he was growing stronger every day. In the few months since school had started, he'd already broken through to Rank 32, yet he was already charging straight ahead towards the Rank 33 bottleneck. With the help of their current Haodong Power, it was possible that he might break through to the Soul Ancestor stage within a year and half.
Currently, Dai Huabin was unquestionably the second year outer courtyard disciple with the strongest soul power, as he was currently at Rank 37. However, Wang Dong was beginning to feel more and more confident that he could surpass him in two years' time.
On the other hand, Xiao Xiao's cultivation was slightly slower than the theirs. Despite this, this was only because she was about to break through her Soul Elder bottleneck.
Once the first round of the knockout competitions finally ended, the spectators that had been watching the match in Star Luo City were all riding on an emotionally-driven high. Due to this, there would be people queueing up deep into the night every day of the tournament. Even though Star Luo Plaza had an extremely large surface area, there were still some limitations as to how many people it could contain; it couldn't satisfy the needs of the masses.
The government officials from the Star Luo Empire naturally increased the entrance fee in order to regulate the queue and to ensure that it wasn't too congested. Because of this, the empire made an enormous amount of profit, thus it was only natural for the Star Luo Empire to contribute to the rewards for the tournament. It was the same every year, however the rewards were never expressly stipulated. As no country would ever want to lose face, they'd always present very good things as rewards.
Why did the competition rules stipulate that the first cycle had to be a knockout competition? Besides the simple fact that it reduced the number of academies participating in the later matches, it was also in order to make the competition more exciting!
The Elite Continental Soul Master Academy Tournament had become the most important competition on the entire continent, and was thus conducted by the officials of every single country The reason that this competition was so popular every year was also due to these exciting matches. It was only natural to use various means in order to ensure that this grand occasion, which was only held every five years, would run better than the last each time.
The knockout tournament made the entire competition extremely exciting. Even though the tournament officials tried their best to prevent any injuries, close to two hundred students participating in the match would sustain various degrees of injuries each time around. There were even several tens of students who'd died due to excessive injuries. The battlefield was drenched in blood, thus it naturally drew in more viewership. Of course, it also meant that any school who's student unexpectedly died would also receive a bountiful compensation.
However, the knockout round was now over, and the second phase—the round-robin tournament—was next. Even though the round-robin tournament wasn't as intense as the knockout matches, the former still had its perks, which mainly lay in the variety of rules that the competition had. There were three ways that matches could be held, and whichever one the students would compete with was decided through drawing lots. One could say that every single match had its own exciting aspects.
Moreover, after the first elimination cycle, the remaining teams would be much stronger, and thus the matches would get both much more exciting and more varied. As such, it was extremely difficult to get ahold of a ticket to watch this match in Star Luo Plaza, despite it being capable of accommodating more than two hundred thousand people. The entire plaza would be packed to the brim every day, while those who weren't able to get in that day wouldn't leave. They would continue waiting in line all the way until the next day; it was impossible for those who'd queued up on the first day and watched the competition to also watch it the second day, be it civilians, or the rich and powerful. This actually ensured that everyone was treated fairly.
When faced with such a situation, the Imperial family of the Star Luo Empire naturally wasn't able to conceal their happiness. Not only did they deploy five thousand soldiers in order to maintain order throughout the city, they also began to sell official match reports despite having trouble dealing with so many people. They would release a new match report would appear every day, which would only cost a few copper coins. There would be also be a detailed report released after every match too, which served as another form of income.
However, the Star Luo Empire knew how to conduct themselves well. They would cover all travelling and lodging expenses for the academies that had been eliminated, and even gave them a set amount of subsidies. They also provided medical treatment for those that had been injured, and provided financial support to relatives of those who'd died in the matches. In addition to that, all of the participating academies were highly praised during the event. The way that the Star Luo Empire had dealt with the lively crowd in such an orderly manner just three days into the tournament… it could be said that they were earning a profit at the same time as increasing their reputation.
Today was the fourth day of the tournament, and screams from the spectators had been constantly reverberating throughout Star Luo Plaza since early in the morning. There was only one reason for this: and that was because the team representing Shrek Academy was finally going to appear on the field again. Furthermore, they would be appearing in the first match. Even the emperor of the Star Luo Empire, who would only occasionally grace the city with his presence to spectate, had mounted the lead position in the imperial city at first light, and was currently quietly waiting for the match to begin. For the emperor to do such a thing, he was giving Shrek Academy quite a lot of face.