Chapter 50: The Codes of an Refiners
Translator: Strivon / Ash Editor: Geoffrey / Lancent
The Puji Critter spoke, “After the three days of preliminaries, the 600 competitors with the highest ranking in points will then be able to enter the finals!”
“The rest of the competitors will be evacuated and brought back onto the Distant Expanse.”
“The biggest difference between the finals and the preliminaries is… the release of super powerful Demon Beasts locked in caves underground on Devil Flood Dragon Island. The strength of these Demon Beasts is not something that the typical high school student can deal with!”
“If you’re able to kill these Demon Beasts, you will receive far more points than from killing normal Demon Beasts!”
“In addition, the six hundred students will be separated into two teams, red and blue. The two teams can attack each other however much they want. When an opponent is eliminated — that is, when the opponent’s Puji Critter is forced to spout out their protective gel — all the points of the opponent will be given to you!”
“In other words, not only do you need to kill Demon Beasts, but you will also have to fight with competitors!”
Li Yao’s heart stirred as he suddenly felt an excitement indescribable.
Just being able to reach the finals means that these competitors will have accumulated a great number of points. Rather than go laboriously slay Demon Beasts, wouldn’t it be better to launch attacks on enemy competitors? As long as a competitor was eliminated, it would be the same as killing several dozens, or even over a hundred, Demon Beasts.
With these type of rules in place, the raging desire for battle will undoubtedly be satisfied in these youths. These competitors will be able to show off their complete potential!
Small Ji continued, “So, that’s pretty much all the rules. After two days of finals, the last remaining surviving students will have their points fixed and be ranked. The higher your ranking, the higher the likelihood of being chosen by a scout of the Nine Elites. The excellent ones won’t need to take the university entrance exams when they’re directly admitted. So Student Li Yao, work hard!”
Li Yao’s throat went somewhat dry. He licked his lips, asking, “Small Ji, how many students were chosen for direct admittance in the past few competitions?”
The white Puji Critter tilted its head to think as a buzzing sound came from deep within its body.
Li Yao could tell from hearing that this was the sound of a crystal processor running at high speeds. Small Ji was probably gathering the data right now.
A moment later, Small Ji answered, “In the past three annual Challenge Competition in Arena 571, each year on average had 51 students be directly admitted to the Nine Elites. There was also the possibility of getting on the Preferential Score admittance list should one not be directly admitted.”
“Preferential Score admittance list? What’s that?” Li Yao delved deeper, asking.
“I’ll give you an example. Say you possess some aspect of a gift for cultivation, that you’re extremely suited for a certain university. But, your overall actual strength isn’t strong enough such that your final points end up ranking you in the hundred or two-hundred range. Or even if you encountered an extremely strong Demon Beast at the start of the competition and were forced to retire!”
“All these things don’t matter. As long as you’re selected by a scout of the Nine Elites, he or she will sign a contract with you for a preferential score that reduces your score requirement on the exam by 5 points, 10 points, or even 20 points!
Li Yao became truly excited at this moment.
The entrance exams. The entrance exams! The competition is like an army of thousands trying to cross a single log bridge. “Scoring a point higher means to crush a thousand people!” This is no exaggeration!
If all of a sudden he was favored by a dozen or twenty points, then the odds of being admitted to Deep Sea University will increase greatly!
“Excellent! Even if I can’t beat 3000 people, enter into the top 50, and receive the qualifications for direct admittance… As long as I demonstrate my brilliance and manage to win 5 points or even 10 points of score-reducing preferential treatment, coming here won’t be a waste at all!”
Li Yao’s mouth was dry from talking so much. His excitement could not be described. He only felt a boundless energy coming from his body. He was heated up and could not wait until tomorrow morning to begin fighting at once.
“This won’t do. I need to calm down and go to sleep asap. I need to conserve my energy and stamina. Tomorrow morning is the time that will decide my fate!”
Li Yao was lying down on his bed, his pair of hands formed a pillow behind his head. He tried forcing himself to go to sleep, but no matter what he did, he couldn’t fall asleep.
The scene of Fiend Blade Peng Hai piloting the Mystic Bird Battle Shuttle through the skies filled his eyes.
That sort of freedom, that field crushing domineering aura was deeply branded in his mind. It would take a long time for him to forget that scene.
“I… Do I have the chance to become the second Peng Hai?”
Li Yao opened his eyes and saw the splatter of rust on the ceiling. He tossed and turned, causing his single bed to creak with pressure.
Right at the same time when Li Yao was tossing and turning on his bed, in another single room two floors above his, Si Jiaxue was in the middle of receiving a very special guest.
“Professor Xie, I’m truly indebted to you. I never thought you would come here personally.”
Si Jiaxue spoke extremely respectfully. She was welcoming the Artificing Expert of Deep Sea University, Professor Xie Tingxian.
“Calling me Grandpa Xie is fine, little girl. You don’t need to be so polite with me. After all, your grandfather and I are old friends of nearly a hundred years. I remember back in the year when you were born, I held you with my own hands. Hahahaha.”
Xie Tingxian chuckled as he spoke, then soon changed the subject. “Little girl, you’ve called Grandpa Xie here. Is something the matter? To clarify things, if it’s in regards to the competition, Grandpa Xie can’t just cut you some slack!”
Si Jiaxue giggled. “Grandpa Xie, my specialty lies in data calculations and analysis. I’m afraid that I will walk the path of being an admin-type cultivator in the future. The Deep Sea University is most known for their Artificing Department. I fear that it’s not suited for me… So don’t worry, I won’t cause you any difficulties.”
Xie Tingxian’s old face reddened. “Little girl, don’t blame Grandpa Xia for being petty. Being a scout causes all sorts of relationships to become complicated. Sometimes, I have to mention the dirty talk first.”
Si Jiaxue nodded her head and withdrew a crystal processor from her backpack, handing it over:
“I understand, Grandpa Xie. I called you over this time is mainly to ask for your help to inspect this crystal processor… This is an heirloom left behind by my grandma. It’s an antique of over a hundred years ago and it broke a few days earlier. I found someone to fix it and it’s working now; there are no major problems when I use it. But, I don’t know if there are some latent defects. So, I wish to ask you to inspect it. I don’t know if this is convenient for you?”
“Oh, so it was like this all along. It’s a piece of cake for me.”
Xie Tingxian let out a breath of relief and his expression became lively. His vision swept across the crystal processor and he went “huh”. His eyes radiated with light full of interest.
“It’s the Heavenly Zither Sect’s Vast Tomb 7 tube-type crystal processor. A product from 144 years ago. It’s an extremely rare antique. You’ve maintained it quite well. Not bad. Not bad. You said you’ve asked someone to fix it? Nowadays, people who are able to fix these sorts of antiques are far too few. I need to take a good look at this. If the internal components are damaged, it would be such a pity!”
Si Jiaxue did not see Xie Tingxian cast any spell, but with a wave of his right hand, the crystal processor flew into the palm of his hand, spinning and whirling around. It looked as if it was being controlled by an invisible hand as one component after another separated away from the artifact to float gracefully in the air, exposing the profound and complicated internal architecture of the tube-type processor.
He saw that the heat sink with clear traces of the cooling system used in modern CPUs that was integrated seamlessly with the classical style of the tube-style crystal processor. Xie Tingxian stared, distracted.
“How is it, Grandpa Xie? Is there any problems with it?” Si Jiaxue became nervous.
“Little girl, you’re wrong on this count~~~~” Xie Tingxian dragged out his tone.
“Me? What’s going on?”
Si Jiaxue was stupefied and was completely lost. A trace of suspicion emerged on her delicate cute face.
Xie Tingxian glanced at her and saw that she really was clueless. He frowned, saying, “Little girl, this processor of yours. You’ve clearly had it repaired by an expert.”
“This expert completely redesigned the heat sink structure. His reasoning is exceptionally exquisite, and his installation technique is perfectly skillful. He not only guaranteed the stability of its structure and heat dissipation efficiency but also left behind space for future upgrades such that another heat sink can be added using the same method, to form a heat sink system with higher efficiency. This way, the performance of your crystal processor can increase by over 10%!”
“To have such a deep understanding of antique processors and to have such brilliant techniques, it must have been a Refiner right?”
“You should know that each Refiner has their own code of honor. They have the utmost confidence in their works. You chose someone to fix this, but then you brought it to me for inspection. Your lack of confidence in him is the greatest insult to him!”
“Once he knows of this matter, not only will he have malice towards you, but he will even take some anger out on me! He might even come challenge me to a duel! To see if, in the end, I’m qualified to inspect and fix his work!”
“It’s this serious?” Si Jiaxue said in fright.
“You’re not a Refiner, so it’s natural that you don’t know codes of the circle. Each piece of work from a Refiner is his heart’s blood — it’s like their child. They absolutely won’t allow other people to mess with them! In a situation like this, you needed to at least notify the other person and receive his permission. Then, I can go ahead and exam it. Have you discussed it with the other person yet?”
Si Jiaxue was completely bewildered as she shook her head.
“Uh oh, I was also careless. I had assumed you just found a random person to repair this. I never thought it was actually an expert. This time, there’s going to be some trouble,” Xie Tingxian spoke somewhat frustrated.
“But… But I really did randomly find someone to fix it. I found a classmate,” stammered Si Jiaxue.
“What!? Your classmate… A highschool student?”