Chapter 23: The Great Figure Shi Xiaobai
The muscular man slowly lifted his fist, and midair it suddenly stretched out into a palm, as the joint in his arm folded backwards. Surprisingly, his palm touched the back of his head, and his five stretched out fingers began to bend, slightly scratching his scalp a few times.
And the “ferociousness” in his eyes immediately melted away. Replacing it was a nearly honest, good, down-to-earth glow.
The muscular man was actually scratching his head, as he asked Shi Xiaobai in wonder, “You… Eh, you are one of the seven Dukes of China?”
Shi Xiaobai was slightly surprised, as he failed to react in time to the muscular man’s actions. However, when he heard the muscular man’s question, Shi Xiaobai denied without any thought. “No!”
Seven Dukes of China? Shi Xiaobai expressed that he had never ever heard of it before. Out of habit, he waved his hand, and then with a spin, lifted it to his forehead, covering half his face. He coldly smiled, “This King is the King of all, the King of Gods, the King of the Worlds, King amongst kings—Arceus . Jade Emperor of the Nine Heavens . Alexander I!”
The muscular man was stunned momentarily after hearing this. After pondering for a moment, his face turned distressed as he scratched his head, saying, “About that… Me have not heard before…”
A body as strong as a beast contrasted greatly with the honest expression of distress, it highlighted the muscular man’s silly temperament even more.
Shi Xiaobai immediately gave a look of disappointment, as he shook his head and said with a sigh, “Steel Ox, you are still young after all, that is why you are ignorant and ill-informed.”
Due to his disappointment, what should have been the title, “Steel Wall Shaking Powerful Ox” was shortened by Shi Xiaobai to “Steel Ox”.
“Ah? Me name isn’t Steel Ox. Me name is Ye Jiaquan! 1”
Ye Jiaquan awkwardly waved his hand, then he lowered his head to say in an honest manner, “Me doesn’t know anything. Lingcun always says Me is dumb.”
Upon saying the name “Lingcun”, Ye Jiaquan’s eyes seemed to flash with a beam of cordiality. It looked like that was a person he trusted greatly.
Shi Xiaobai nodded and acknowledged Ye Jiaquan’s dumbness. Recalling that he came here to ask for directions, he immediately decide to no longer continue explaining his identity. He changed topics and asked, “This King has something to ask you.”
This was the third time Shi Xiaobai said those words. Ye Jiaquan’s expression turned extremely serious as he nodded, as he said seriously, “Please ask!”
Shi Xiaobai said in all seriousness, “This King was struck by a ninja’s Sharingan magic, and accidentally fell into a samsara maze. I have been unable to find my way out. Steel Ox, do you know how to get to the rookie training grounds?”
Upon hearing this, Ye Jiaquan was stunned. He felt that the tiny youth in front of him spoke in an erudite and profound manner. From the beginning, he had failed to understand anything that he had said. However, he actually understood his final question. Furthermore, he happened to know the answer!
Ye Jiaquan immediately said with excitement, “Me know! Me know! Actually, Me is one of the rookies of the current batch of [Annihilation] rookies, so Me know where the rookie training ground is!”
Shi Xiaobai was slightly stunned hearing this. He sized up Ye Jiaquan’s massive body and that “ferocious” but mature-looking face, and then thinking of that terrifying punch from before, he was unable to make the connection between this person and the word “rookie”.
Ye Jiaquan seemed to notice Shi Xiaobai’s doubts, as he scratched his head with a smile and said, “Actually Me is 16 years old!”
Shi Xiaobai was immediately dumbfounded, and was momentarily at a loss as to how to answer him.
Ye Jiaquan was clearly used to others appearing shocked after knowing his age. He did not proceed to make any more explanations, but naturally changed the subject by saying, “Why do you want to go to the rookie training grounds?”
Shi Xiaobai restored his calmness and thought through his words, before speaking solemnly, “This King was sealed by the Evil Gods of various worlds, causing This King’s strength to fall to the first level of the Psionic Mortal Realm. Now to remove the seal, This King is temporarily joining [Gaia]. Like you, This King is a rookie of the current batch of [Annihilation] rookies! However, as This King was busy administering his own world, that time could only be spared today, as such there were few days of accidentally playing truant.”
Ye Jiaquan was confused hearing this. He could not make any sense out of Shi Xiaobai’s words, and after trying to understand Shi Xiaobai’s words for some time, his eyes lit up. “So, you are actually an [Annihilation] rookie? And you are joining the training today?”
Although he now knew that the youth in front of him was a rookie like him, Ye Jiaquan still spoke politely. In his understanding of the world, as long as it was someone intelligent, he was worthy of being respected. For example, a person like Chen Lingcun or a person like this youth in front of him that he could not even remember the name of. He couldn’t understand most of the youth’s words, clearly indicating how this youth’s intelligence was far better than his.
Shi Xiaobai did not pay attention to these details. He only calmly nodded his head.
Seeing Shi Xiaobai nod his head, Ye Jiaquan’s somewhat dazed eyes revealed an unconcealable look of anticipation. To prevent himself from losing decorum because of his excitement, he cramped up as he watched Shi Xiaobai’s eyes and pleaded, “If that is the case, can Me… Can Me request for you to join Team Red?”
“Team Red?” Shi Xiaobai asked in wonder.
Ye Jiaquan smacked himself in the forehead, as he suddenly recalled that the youth in front of him had just arrived today. He hurriedly used clumsy and ambiguous words to explain, “About that… The instructor split the rookies into two teams, Team Red and Team Blue. During every assessment, the two teams will take part in a competition. The failing team would have one person eliminated. Me is from Team Red, so Me hopes that you will join Team Red!”
Shi Xiaobai was slightly surprised hearing this. He remembered Riko mentioning in her note that the instructor would frequently have assessments, and the person with the worst results would be eliminated every time. According to Ye Jiaquan’s explanation, this batch’s instructor had clearly changed the rules. And it seemed like the instructor felt that the importance of a team’s strength took precedence over individual strength?
“This King cannot be eliminated regardless of anything. It looks like This King has to seriously consider which team to choose.”
With this in mind, Shi Xiaobai said, “Which team is stronger?”
There was no doubt about the answer if one asked a member of Team Red which team was stronger. However, Ye Jiaquan did not give the answer Shi Xiaobai expected. Instead he lowered his head and said with an indignant tone, “Team Blue… is stronger.”
Shi Xiaobai was slightly surprised, but he quickly understood that this monster-shaped honest youth with a simpleton heart did not know how to lie.
“Honest Steel Ox, This King wasn’t wrong about you!”
Shi Xiaobai even felt touched as he already made up his mind. However, he carried on asking, “How many times have the two teams competed? How many victories and defeats were there?”
Ye Jiaquan maintained his lowered head as he clenched his fists somewhat tightly, whispering, “Twice. Team Blue won both times.”
Shi Xiaobai carried on asking, “This King heard that this batch has a rookie at the fourth level of the Psionic Mortal Realm. Which team is he in?”
Ye Jiaquan lowered his head even more. “Team Blue…”
Shi Xiaobai sighed. It seemed like the disparity in strength between Team Red and Team Blue was not trivial, however, this did not affect his decision.
“This King hates how the strong bullies the weak, but likes beating the strong with the weak!”
With this thought in mind, Shi Xiaobai was just about to tell Ye Jiaquan that he was willing to join Team Red.
Suddenly, Ye Jiaquan lifted his lowered head suddenly.
“Although Team Blue is temporarily stronger than Team Red, but Me believes that it is a matter of time before it will surpass Team Blue!”
Ye Jiaquan raised his clenched fist to his chest as he lifted his head towards the distant sky. His voice exuded confidence. His confidence did not seem spurious, but came from a realistic source that he could rely on.
What suddenly gave this honest youth such fiery hot confidence?
Ye Jiaquan gently lowered his head and looked at Shi Xiaobai as he said loudly, “Please, you have to join Team Red! The captain of Me’s Team Red is Shi Xiaobai!”
Shi Xiaobai was surprised, thinking that he had misheard him.
Ye Jiaquan’s fiery voice sounded once again. “Captain Shi Xiaobai will definitely lead Team Red to defeat Team Blue. Me believes in him!”
When Ye Jiaquan said the three words, “Shi Xiaobai”, his eyes glowed with a look of adoration, as if he was talking about a great figure!
Author’s Note: This is the setting up of the new arc. It’s the show before the climax, and any climax needs building up. But I will try to write this building up in a more interesting manner, so that everyone wouldn’t find it too boring.
- Ye Jiaquan (叶家拳) translates to Ye Family Fist. ↩