Chapter 49: Small Ji, the Crystal Beast
Translator: Strivon / Ash Editor: Geoffrey / Lancent
A facial recognition glyph array was drawn on the door of the cabin. A red light swept across Li Yao’s face, ringing twice with “Beep Beep” sounds. With a “*click”, the cabin door opened.
The room inside was very simple and plain; there was only a bed and a tiny bathroom. There wasn’t even a desk placed anywhere.
Li Yao actually knew that this was special treatment given to them.
On a crystal battleship, only officers can enjoy the benefits of having a personal room. The average enlisted sailor lived in four-people, six-people, or even eight-people rooms.
Li Yao grew up in the Artifact Graveyard. He was able to sleep perfectly fine even in a pile of garbage. The environment here was luxurious in his opinion. He walked in with large strides, tossed his luggage into the corner, and smashed himself ferociously onto the bed, letting out a sound of satisfaction.
“Puji puji. Puji puji. Student Li Yao, hello. I’m your personal Puji Critter, Puji Critter Number 2899. You can call me 2899, or you can call me Small Ji.”
A chubby, plump, and charmingly innocent Puji Critter had squeezed out from under the bed with great difficulty, giving Li Yao a scare.
The white Puji Critter laboriously flapped its wings to fly into the air, speaking, “Starting from now all the way until the end of the competition, Student Li Yao will always have Small Ji at his service. Small Ji will explain the rules of the competition to you, answer your questions, help you get in touch with scouts from the Nine Elites, and shoot pictures and videos of every action you do in the competition, which will be transmitted to our monitoring center. If you encounter some sort of mortal crisis, Small Ji will even yell for cultivators to come save you! So contrary to my dull-witted appearance, I’m actually Li Yao’s good assistant in this competition!”
Li Yao stared unwaveringly at the white Puji Critter for a long time before asking suspiciously, “Small Ji, are you speaking of your own accord? Or is there someone controlling you from behind the scenes?”
The white Puji Critter began flying, orbiting around his head. It spoke cheerfully, “Small Ji isn’t saying these words by himself, and there is no one controlling me from behind the scenes. It’s that Small Ji’s body has been installed with the latest CPU system. 100,000 telepathic functions were programmed in advance so that Small Ji can perform the proper response in real time towards certain sorts of situations. Small Ji is the product of a joint R&D collaboration between Deep Sea University and the Empyrean Capital School of Medicine. I’m not your ordinary Spirit Beast! I’m the most advanced ‘Crystal Beast’ — a Spirit Beast controlled by a Crystal Processor!”
“Oh, so it was like this all along! You’re quite advanced. So they increased the intelligence of Spirit Beasts in this fashion. This way, they don’t need to worry about losing control over Spirit Beasts like with Demon Beasts!”
Li Yao’s resolution to enter into Deep Sea University hardened even further. He continued asking, “Then Small Ji, please explain to me the rules of the Limit Challenge Competition.”
The hair on top of the Puji Critter’s head shook to and fro. A meaty pink antenna extended out, and on the tip of the antenna was a flickering and shiny synthetic crystal stone.
A beam of light shot out from the crystal, forming into a large 3d hologram right in front of Li Yao. With a flare of spiritual energy light, the holographic image of Devil Flood Dragon Island appeared in front of Li Yao’s eyes.
“The Limit Challenge Competition is a time-honored traditional competition of the Federation. Its purpose is to allow the Nine Elites to select young talent gifted in cultivation. At the same time, it also gives the opportunity for students whose expertise are more focused on practical use rather than theory to show off their talent.”
“The annual Limit Challenge Competition has always been held two months before the university entrance exams. The entire Federation is divided into nearly 1000 different exam regions with each area containing 3000 competitors.”
“Floating Spear City and its surrounding area are Cultivation Cities in the Federation. Quite a few cultivation geniuses have emerged from here. So, exam region 571 has an extremely vicious environment, gaining the nickname as an ‘Exam Region of Death’.”
“Three thousand competitors must do their best to find a way to survive for five days on Devil Flood Dragon Island along with the rampaging Demon Beasts… Student Li Yao, try not to underestimate Devil Flood Dragon Island. Back in the day, this was the location of the final battle between Star Glory Federation and the Far East Demon Kingdom. Countless corpses are buried in the depths of the ocean. Demonic aura permeates the air!”
“The Demon Beasts of Devil Flood Dragon Island absorbs this aura year round. The Demon Beasts here are far more vicious than those in other places.”
The white Puji Critter flew to face Li Yao. It shook its stubby wing, speaking completely cheerfully, “The five days of the Limit Challenge Competition are divided into two parts: the preliminaries and the finals. The first three days are the preliminaries, and the last two days are the finals.”
“Tomorrow morning at 9 AM, three thousand competitors will be tossed together into Devil Flood Dragon Island. You will be wearing the most plain of clothing: a sports tank top and shorts that contain no defensive capabilities whatsoever. You won’t have weapons. You won’t have food. You won’t have water. You won’t even have shoes! Each person will only have a single Puji Critter.”
“And what you must do is survive for three days under the attacks of countless Demon Beasts.”
“Of course, you won’t always be unarmed and defenseless. Several dozen ‘supply points’ are scattered all around Devil Flood Dragon Island. Large amounts of artifact parts and supplies are prepared there. If you have the ability, you can assemble the artifacts yourself to use to fight against the Demon Beasts.”
On the hologram, Devil Flood Dragon Island was being zoomed in without end. The hologram turned transparent, and concrete coordinates of several dozen supply points appeared.
The white Puji Critter continued speaking, “In the competition, the most important thing to keep in mind is your ‘total points’. Your final ranking is determined solely by your total points.”
“You can get points by killing Demon Beasts. The stronger the Demon Beast, the greater the number of points.”
“In order to test the competitor’s overall ability, many methods were incorporated for the competitor to earn points. For example, if you specialize in artifacts, you can repair and assemble artifacts as much as you want. If you’re gifted in synthesizing drugs, you can discover all sorts of herbs in the forest. To summarize, as long as you demonstrate a gift in an aspect of cultivation through an action you do on Devil Flood Dragon Island, you will receive points for it.”
“And another important thing to keep in mind is the ‘Trade System’. This is a rule that is set up for competitors who aren’t fighting specialists.”
“In this competition, you can use your accumulated points to perform trades. For example, say you are gifted in crafting artifacts. You assemble and craft a dozen flying swords at a supply point. You can trade these flying swords to a competitor who is a fighting specialist. As long as both parties make an oral agreement on the price, the Puji Critters will automatically conduct the point transfer. You don’t need to worry about being cheated by a competitor. This way, it’s fair for non-fighting specialists in this competition.”
Li Yao raised his right hand, putting out a question, “Let me interrupt you for a moment. I want to ask something… In regards to the non-fighting competitors who play a supportive role, when they gather resources on Devil Flood Dragon Island, will their lives be endangered?”
The white Puji Critter shook its small furry tail, “Student Li Yao, please do not worry. When the competition begins, there will be over twenty cultivators patrolling in the air above Devil Flood Dragon Island, and inside Small Ji’s body is a specially refined gel sack. As soon as a competitor is about to receive life-threatening injuries or the accumulation of his injuries reach critical status, Small Ji will automatically belch out the gel to envelope the competitor in a stasis, and Small Ji will notify the patrolling cultivators in the air.”
“This gel is a super amazing artifact. It can protect the competitor to completely guarantee his safety. It’s impossible for the level of the Demon Beasts on Devil Dragon Island to break through the gel. Just relax already!”
Li Yao nodded his head. The Limit Challenge Competition has been held over a hundred times. They had adopted perfect protective measures long ago. He was just overthinking things.
Thinking for a bit, he asked again, “You just talked about the preliminaries… What rules are there in the finals?”