It had been a full day since team China entered the Lord of the Rings. Similar to all other movies, God gave them identities in this world. They were adventurers who met Gandalf before. So the hobbits welcomed them when they came to Hobbiton.
“So teams with different rating experience different numbers of movies and difficulties. But didn’t team Africa experienced the Lord of the Rings already?” Zheng asked with curiousity.
Neos said with a cold smile. “Yes, they experienced the Lord of the Rings, but it has nothing to do with me.” He stopped after this.
Zheng then asked Snow whom he was familiar with. She began explaining to him.
Team Africa’s strength lowered by a lot after Starship Troopers. God rated the team as weak. Fortunately, those who survived were the stronger members, especially Richard who had a self created ability. His ability wasn’t included in God’s calculation which made the team actually stronger than their rating. The first movie they entered afterward was The Perfect Storm. They got the newbies killed to reduce dead weights then started seeking bonus missions. They actually accumulated a fair amount of points and ranked rewards with two bonus missions.
“The second movie was The Mummy. We were still rated weak. So we entered the movie much earlier than the other team. We stole the two books then immediately revived Neos. Following his plan, we went to search for the Scorpion King’s treasure. The result was everyone aside from him died in the final battle against the Scorpion King and the other team.”
Aya took over from Snow. “Fortunately, his plan succeeded. The Scorpion King and the other team all died along with us. We completed this bonus mission in advance with a higher difficulty. He received three times the points and rewards. The points and rewards from the team battle allowed him to revive Richard, Snow and me in the movie. He also passed the test of the Guide among the newbies. So he’s now the true leader of the team.”
Zheng was confused to why they recounted their experience instead of answering his question.
Xuan suddenly said. “Is that so. Everyone who experienced the Lord of the Rings died and your leader was chosen again, which means your team can be considered a new team. Does that mean you can’t return to any of the previous worlds?”
Neos took a good look at Xuan. He took a piece of chocolate from a box and snapped it. “Correct. All the movies they and I experienced at gone. In other words, we can experience any movie again as long as God considers it to be appropriate difficulty.”
Team Africa was resurrected. Several of them had already experienced this world and were familiar with the missions and difficulties. This was the reason the weakest team could form an alliance with team Northern Ice Land.
“Our last time here, we entered from the land of the elves. Our mission was to escort the Fellowship through Caradhras, the Mines of Moria where Balrog resided. We saved Gandalf there and were rewarded with the charms that could avoid being killed with negative points. Our other mission was to survive ten days in Moria so we didn’t actually get to other areas of this world. We have to go to Barad-dûr this time, which means we will get through most of the plot from all three movies.” Aya said.
The door of a small house not far from them opened. An old man in his sixties walked out. He was dressed in a gray robe and wore a pointy wizard hat. A young hobbit followed behind him.
“But you just arrived, Gandalf.” The hobbit said.
Gandalf said something to the hobbit in a low voice then walked toward the players.
The players knew that Bilbo gave the One Ring to Frodo and Gandalf had noticed the particularity of thee ring. He was leaving Hobbiton to find the origin of the ring. He threw a bag toward Zheng before he approached them. Zheng caught the bag and heard a series of clinks. This bag was full of gold coins.
“These forty-three coins are your pay. Protect this child until I return tomorrow night. I will return as soon as possible with magic. However, it takes a lot of time to search the literatures. I will leave this place to you.” He got on a horse then left. His speed was faster than they had thought. In just several seconds, he went out of sight.
“Did you see that speed? It looked like it was out of a movie!” Some young people among the three teams cried. One person even brought out a camcorder. Though Gandalf was nowhere to be seen already.
“Magic, that’s magic. I can’t believe there’s real magic in this world!”
Aside from the few in team Africa who experienced this world, most other people showed surprised. The younger ones started discussing how to learn magic for free and even started dreaming about relics and forbidden magic. It was obvious these were the newbies.
The veterans smiled coldly. They wouldn’t feel surprised even if Gandalf used magic. Any team allowed to enter a team battle would be stronger than people from the original Lord of the Rings movie. An unlimited ammunition Gauss Gatling gun could destroy an army on the field. That was why God nullified the effect of technological weapons against natives of this world and increased the power of the natives. Gandalf was much stronger than depicted in the movie.
“What are we going to do now?” Gungnir asked the other two leaders.
Aya spoke before they replied. “The movie has started. We also received quest from the movie characters last time. They had us escort the Fellowship then God gave the notification shortly after. I wonder if God is going to do the same.”
A stern voice indeed appeared in their minds after her words. “Prior to arriving at Barad-dûr, for each character of Frodo, Gandalf, Aragorn and Gimli that lives, reward 1000 points to every member of the three teams. Deduct 1000 points for each character that died. For every victory the alliance wins over forces of Mordor, reward 3000 points to every member of the three teams. Deduct 3000 points for every loss. Scoring ends when all five teams arrive at Barad-dûr.”
Aya immediately said. “Right. It was the same. We only had to escort the characters through Moria last time. But now we have to protect people and what’s the matter with the war? There was no mission about the war last time.”
Neos ate a piece of chocolate and was about to speak when Xuan explained before he did. “It’s to scatter the strength of the teams. This is a test on a team. This realm is probably about to end.”
Everyone was shocked, including Neos. “Right. If my deduction is correct, someone in team Devil or team Celestial is about to reach the fifth stage.”
Almost everyone was confused. HaoTian was the only person that looked enlightened.
Zheng asked. “What do you mean? How did you deduce this from just a mission?”
Neos gave a cold smile. Xuan casually said. “The information isn’t just the mission but also the five way team battle. We just encountered a three way team battle in the previous movie and now there’s an even bigger team battle. What does this signify? It means God accelerated the collision between teams. I told you in a previous analysis that God’s goal is to make us evolve and not kill us. The only reason it accelerated the team battles is because someone is about to reach the fifth stage. God’s mission is about to be completed. Those of us who are still so far away from the Saints aren’t that important anymore. So it is increasing the difficulty, increasing our chance of death to push us to evolve.”
Neos bit his teeth and snapped another piece of chocolate. No one paid attention to Neos’s feeling.
Zheng asked. “I think I know what you mean. Are we going to return to the real world once someone reaches the fifth stage?”
Xuan smiled coldly. “Return to the real world? Stop dreaming. God’s goal isn’t to kill us nor is it for us to live. Evolution is its only goal. The missions regarding the war and protecting the movie characters are a way to make us scatter and learn to fight at multiple fronts in coordination. I told you intelligence is a part of evolution. Such teamwork is a key to forming a team. I am certain that once a person reaches the fifth stage…”
“God will put all the teams in a world. The team that lives in the end, whether it belongs to the team with the fifth stage person, will be the only team qualified to live!” Neos suddenly interjected.