QZ Chapter 23
First Published on Ainushi.
A student from Team C was cautiously proceeding alone in the forest. He had been holding his arms before his chest all this time — a posture to prepare for a fight and also to protect his score indicator at the same time.
Strange chirps of birds sounded above him. He tilted his head to glance upwards, and a person immediately dashed out from a hiding bush in front of him, coming right at his chest. The student’s reaction speed was quite impressive. He quickly jumped backwards to defend. Just as he was focusing on the enemy ahead of him, a second person suddenly jumped out behind him. They pincer attacked the student from both sides and caught him by surprise, and his stop button was also pressed mercilessly by one of them.
“Got it!” The two students from Team D who just successfully sneak attacked him gave each other a celebratory high five.
The student from Team C who was besieged by them felt a little indignant, “You won by numbers! It was pure bullying!”
The other student laughed mischievously, “All’s fair in war!”
Before he could finish the word “war”, with a clashing sound, another black shadow dropped down abruptly from the tree above and pressed the stop buttons of both Team D students’ chests. He did it so quickly that they didn’t even have time to react. The two of them were still immersed in the happiness of obtaining the point and hadn’t been on guard at all. They stared blankly for a long time before finally realizing they were already out.
“Haha, I’ll accept this offering.” Ling Xiao succeeded with one hit, and it was a double shot, three points in almost an instant.
The two students couldn’t take it lying down and rolled up their sleeves, expressing their desire to beat him up, “Ling Xiao! You bastard!”
But Ling Xiao was already a few meters away. His voice came across from afar, “All’s fair in war!”
Ying Feng was also reaping as many points as he could. Within half an hour, he had already obtained 4 points including the one from Zhu Yue. Rather than letting other teams take it, it would be better to keep it in his pocket. At least in terms of keeping this point, he was a much more reliable person than Zhu Yue.
He was dashing in the forest, when suddenly, his sixth sense told him there were enemies around. He made a sharp turn and kicked backwards at once, and the kick was just in time to send the person who was attempting a sneak attack on him flying.
That person was certain he could succeed, but Ying Feng’s reaction speed was much faster than he had expected. Seeing that the other person intended for an counterattack after successfully blocking his sneak attack, he jumped to his feet at once and blew a finger whistle.
Team D was probably the best in terms of team coordination. The four students all kept a certain distance with each other. This way, they could scout different directions at the same time, and also, no matter which side enemies came from, the other three could quickly provide assistance.
The other three members of Team D turned back as soon as they heard the alarm from their teammate. Seeing that it was Ying Feng, someone let out a “Wow!” at once.
“You caught a big one.”
It almost drove his teammate crazy. He was retreating step by step under Ying Feng’s attacks and was about to lose his points in no time, while the other three were still having fun watching on the side. “Come and help! This guy has 5 points!”
Members of Team D and Team A were not from the same class. But since all of them lived on the same campus ever since they woke up, they were all quite familiar with each other. Knowing Ying Feng’s outstanding ability, no one lowered their guard in spite of the fact that they were fighting four to one. All of them went all-out in this fight.
Tianxiu people had high combat ability on average. Even someone like Ying Feng who was particularly outstanding among the Nestlings could not take down four enemies at once. He had to retreat with the help of surrounding environment as he fought, focusing his attacks on one of them in the hopes of creating an a breakthrough point by taking down one person first.
However, these four people were extremely well coordinated. Whenever anyone was in danger, the other three would immediately help him out. They simply didn’t leave Ying Feng any opportunity to seize. The five of them went into a dogfight. It was a very unfavorable situation for Ying Feng.
Right at this moment, a sixth person suddenly charged in. Ling Xiao only wanted to join the fight after hearing from afar that someone was fighting over here, and was surprised to find out it was four students from Team D jointly attacking Ying Feng. Seeing that one of them was about to succeed in the next second, Ling Xiao rushed over and blocked him off.
The fact that a new person joined the battle distracted the rest of them for a second. At first they thought someone from Team A was here to help, but when they looked closely, the person causing the disturbance was actually Ling Xiao from Team B. All of them were left speechless.
“Ling Xiao, what’s this strategy of yours?” They paused the fight for a second and started a quarrel instead.
Actually, Ling Xiao didn’t know what strategy he had either. He just didn’t want to see Ying Feng lose to these people, so he came out almost on a reflex. He didn’t think that much.
“You’re not in Team A. Ying Feng should be your toughest enemy. You help us knock him out, and you can have his 5 points.” The team leader of this 4-person squad was simply an expert at negotiating.
“After you take away my 5 points, these four people will attack you. You still have a chance of winning if you fight alone against me but 1vs4 is just impossible.” Ying Feng also started talking, “Those four are worth more than 5 points in total. You should think carefully about it.”
It shocked everyone that even Ying Feng, who had always been a loner, started to convince others to join him. It seemed like everybody was going all-out in order to win this battle.
Ling Xiao thought for a moment and decided that what Ying Feng said made more sense. He prepared himself for the fight, “I can temporarily join hands with you, but don’t you try to run away later.”
Ying Feng had already chosen his next target to attack. “That’s what I’m about to say.”
Ling Xiao’s appearance completely turned around the battle situation. 1vs4 was very difficult, but 1vs2 was just a piece of cake. Not to mention, after a week of concentrated training, they developed some sort of mutual understandings. They knew where the other person was about to attack just by a move or a simple glance.
Under their perfect coordination, the four students were soon wiped out one after another, and the points they got previously were also divided evenly between Ling Xiao and Ying Feng. Thus, this four-person squad which was very likely to last long came to a premature end under the alliance of the two strongest students in their grade — a misfortune they had no one to complain to.
Even though those four were already out, they didn’t leave. They all waited on the side and watched.
“What are you still looking at?” Ling Xiao was confused.
“To see who will win between you two.” Both of their scores were high. Ying Feng had 8 points, while Ling Xiao had 7. If any of them could obtain the other person’s points, their team would basically come out as the winner in the end. This was like the deciding game.
However, Ying Feng spoke again, “We still have got two hours left before the end of the competition. If we start a fight right here right now, it’s probably going to last for a long time. Even if one of us wins, he can get a limited number of points. Not just that, if we fight here, other people will definitely watch for their chances on the side. They’ll wait for us to exhaust our strengths and reap all the profits.”
On a tree not far away from them, someone from Team C who was peeping felt like he had taken an arrow in the knee after hearing what Ying Feng said.
Ling Xiao once again found Ying Feng’s words reasonable. “Then, what do you propose we should do?”
“I’ll save the last 30 minutes for you. I’m sure I’ll be more attractive to you since I’ll have more points by then. 90 minutes later, I’ll wait for you at the starting point, and I hope your score won’t look too pathetic too. Of course, the premise is that you can survive till then.”
“That goes without saying.” Ling Xiao was very confident of himself, “When we meet again, if my score is one point less than yours, I’ll let you start with three extra moves. If mine is two points less than yours, six moves. I guarantee I won’t lose to you in term of harvesting points.”
The two of them quickly disappeared after they came to an agreement, one to the east and one to the west, leaving the remaining four eliminated students staring at each other at where they were. What the heck? Those two could do something like this? Wasn’t it supposed to be a survival game after all?
As time elapsed, fewer and fewer students remained on the fields, and battles became increasingly intense since one could also get more points from each fight.
Ling Xiao defeated another 5 people during this time and gained 9 points. In addition to the 7 points from before, he now had 16 points in total. This was already a fairly high score. He had no doubt that Ying Feng couldn’t have surpassed him.
Soon, it was nearing the appointed time. Under the active advertisement of the four-person squad, all students who were knocked out came to the gathering place, waiting to see the final battle between them.
Just as expected, Ying Feng didn’t break his promise and showed up at the appointed place on time. He had one more point than Ling Xiao when they parted, and now as they met again, he was still one point ahead. Even though he didn’t take down as many enemies as Ling Xiao did, but he finished a strong opponent from Team C and got all of their 5 points.
“Like what I said, I’ll let you start with three moves.” Ling Xiao got into a defensive posture. “You can start. I won’t retaliate.”
“You don’t need to yield to me.” Ying Feng put up a fighting posture as well. “This extra point was from Zhu Yue. We’re even.”
Ling Xiao thought for a moment and realized that Ying Feng had taken down his own teammate. How heartless! But for some reason, after hearing it, he was rather happy inside.
“Come on then!” Ling Xiao stopped being courteous and dashed towards him first. Ying Feng attacked back quickly. This was the second time that these two people fought in front of everyone. Without the restriction of the training room, this totally free combat seemed especially intense.
Next to the gathering point was a vast expanse of woods. Using all kinds of trees as bunkers, Ling Xiao was able to bring out his agility to its max. He hopped gracefully between the treetops, rapidly moving from place to place with the help of the vines. He moved so fast that it almost seemed like he had a number of clones, making it impossible for his opponent to guess his real position.
It took Ying Feng a while before he realized that it really wasn’t a good idea for him to fight Ling Xiao here. Ling Xiao’s combat style just fit too well with this jungle. He jumped up and down like a monkey, blending perfectly into the wooded surroundings — he simply couldn’t fight any more relaxedly.
By comparison, Ying Feng’s fighting style was more simple and straightforward. Places with too many obstacles didn’t suit him very well. After analyzing the pros and cons for both of them, Ying Feng intentionally led Ling Xiao to the clearing on the side.
Thus, the two of them fought all the way from the forest to the empty ground. It was the first time for the surrounding crowd — especially students from other classes — to see such a marvelous competition. They all held their breaths and gazed at the scene unblinkingly in the fear that they would miss a brilliant attack if they blinked.
Masked by the haze of sand brought up by the fight, their figures became even harder to distinguish. The previous trainings made them very familiar with each other’s every move and tactic, that they could even predict the path of the other person’s next attack with their eyes closed. Their punches and kicks landed everywhere on each other’s bodies, but they just couldn’t hit the most critical spot on the chests.
Even the students who were still in the game paused their fights and rushed over to watch, as the instructor nodded and commended incessantly on the side. They were the two students having the greatest potential in tenth grade, the ones who were most likely to be admitted to Yutian Military Academy. That military academy belonging directly to the Military Ministry was extremely hard to get in, but once students were able to make it, they could enter the Military Ministry right after they graduated, which could be considered as a quick success.
Because of that, despite the exceptionally hard entrance examination and the super strict training program after admission, countless Nestlings still looked forward to it. If they could be admitted into there, not only the students themselves, even their military instructors would feel particularly honored.
Time ticked by, but one still couldn’t tell who was going to win the game. Three hours of intense battle consumed a great amount of their stamina, and Ling Xiao who had been living on bread recently started to reveal a lack of momentum.
Ying Feng realized that Ling Xiao’s speed was not as fast as in the beginning, and he used the opportunity to strengthen his offensive. Thus, Ling Xiao started to find it difficult to hold on, so he had to continue giving play to his strong points. He began to run around, fighting as a guerrilla, and take a rest whenever Ying Feng was unable to keep up with him, until he was able to recover a little strength.
The fight had been dragged on continuously, and it was getting closer to the time limit, but there was still no winner between the two. The instructor already had the whistle in his mouth and was going to blow it as soon as the time was up.
They had only three minutes left. Ling Xiao stopped dodging and used all of his strength to fight hand to hand with Ying Feng. The only goal for both of them was to stop their opponent’s score keeper.
Five, four, three, two, one — the sound of the instructor’s whistle pierced through the sky. Almost at the same time, the two people who had been flying all over the place suddenly froze on the spot, both of them had their fingers simultaneously pressed on the other person’s stop button.
Not a single voice could be heard from the crowd. This was the moment when their destiny would be decided. The person who pressed the button first would get all of the other person’s points, and this would also set the victory or defeat for their teams — the one who won would become the champion, while the loser would came out as the last place. Who was going to be the winner in the end?
The instructor pulled up the result of the competition from his personal terminal. “They pressed the stop buttons at the same time. There was only a few milliseconds difference in time. I’m very sorry that there was no winner in this fight.”
“Ah?” Everyone was surprised. “What about the final result then?”
“Their fight ended 0.3 second after the assigned time, therefore the results will be determined based on the score before that.”
The students finally understood why the numbers on their indicators didn’t change even though they simultaneously pressed down each other’s stop button. The scores remained the same as before.
According to the final results, the members left in Team A and the members left in Team B tied in their total scores. Therefore, the extra point Ying Feng had became the deciding point, and this point was actually from their own team.
All of the students in Team A were happy that they were able to secure the victory on the first day. They even commended on Zhu Yue who practically was eliminated in less than a minute after the battle started, “Good job. You actually contributed to the team.”
Zhu Yue was holding his resentment in. He had been telling himself that the purpose of his coming here was not for the field trainings, and that his plan could be carried out soon.
Using the extract Shen He gave him, he could make the suppressant in Ying Feng’s body lose its effectiveness and raise the level of his sex hormones. In that case, there was a great chance that the Adult Ceremony could be triggered automatically.
Despite the previous case of Ping Zong and Lan Sheng, Zhu Yue still believed that with his level of strength, he wouldn’t pose any threat to Ying Feng, so Ying Feng wouldn’t deal him such a fatal blow. There was still a certain degree of risks, but Zhu Yue felt it was all worth it.
Once the blood contract was made, the result would be lifelong. No one could ever separate them.
Zhu Yue had the whole thing planned out. He grabbed tightly onto the medicine bottle he prepared, nervous, yet excited at the same time.
However, when he came back to the tent, he unexpected ran into Ying Feng coming out of it while carrying his luggage in his hand.
Zhu Yue was stunned by the sight, “Wh-where are you going?”
“I’m sleeping outside.” Ying Feng’s one sentence crushed all of Zhu Yue’s plan.
“Why?” Zhu Yue became so anxious that he recklessly grabbed onto Ying Feng’s sleeve as he was about to leave, but the other person simply shook him off with disdain.
“I’ve said it before. Keep a distance from me. I’m not going to live with someone who hasn’t had a suppressant injection. You either stay away from me, or pack up and leave.”
He didn’t leave any room for compromise, so Zhu Yue could only watch helplessly as he left. There wasn’t any chance at all for him to use the item in his pocket which he had prepared with meticulous efforts.
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