Chapter 177: The Tournament Approaches

Lu Yin exerted more strength through his arm and forced Hui Daynight’s entire body to the ground. His voice was cold as he said, “Remember, don’t challenge me again. Otherwise, I’ll cripple you the next time.”

He unceremoniously tossed Hui Daynight aside, sending him crashing heavily into the wall.

Hui Daynight clutched his finger in pain as he stared at Lu Yin in shock. How was it that every time he faced Lu Yin, he wasn’t strong enough to even retaliate? He was a member of the Daynight clan. This was not how things should be!

Lu Yin calmly walked to the teleportation device, but stopped when he recalled something. He turned to Hui Daynight. “In your clan, is there a woman named Zhuo Daynight?”

Hui Daynight replied through his pain, “I don’t know.”

Lu Yin’s gaze turned cold. “I don’t like it when people lie to me.”

Hui Daynight snorted. “I can’t be bothered to lie about this.”

Lu Yin studied his face for a while, but didn’t say anything more before he stepped into the device and headed directly to the treasury to see Old Cai.

Old Cai beamed with joy as he fiddled with the Giant Emperor’s third eye. “Not bad. This emperor’s third eye is a great lockbreaking tool.” He then tossed it back to Lu Yin as he said, “Take it. It’s very suitable for you.”

Lu Yin caught it and stored it in his cosmic ring, but he was still puzzled. “Mentor, how did you know this thing is a lockbreaking tool? It appears that the Daynight clan and Buyou also knew, which is why they sent their underlings, though the people of the Butterfly Weave did not know. If they had, I doubt that they would have set the trial’s mission objective as the Giant Emperor’s death.”

Old Cai stroked his massive mustache. “There are many useful things in the universe, but they might not always be mature when we discover them, just like this Giant Emperor’s third eye. Do you think that it’s easy for this treasure to develop? This thing has been passed down for many generations of Giant Emperors, and it was immature when we first discovered it. Even if it was useful at that time, it hadn’t reached the level of being a lockbreaking tool. It worked out well for you that it matured this generation.”

“There was a Giant Emperor who became an Explorer and tried to break through the Butterfly Weave’s blockade but was killed. So how was this thing still passed down to the next Giant Emperor?” Lu Yin was curious.

Old Cai’s gaze turned serene. “Kid, make sure that you remember to never underestimate any lifeform. That space-exploring Giant Emperor was just cannon fodder that had reached the end of his natural life. He passed the third eye to the next Giant Emperor before he made that attempt in order to allow the successor to thoroughly understand their situation. In other words, he used himself to probe the Butterfly Weave’s response. The organization controlling the Weave didn’t fully understand the situation and assumed that everything would be fine as long as no Giant Emperor became an Explorer. The truth is, since that time, no other Giant Emperor has become an Explorer. It wasn’t because they couldn’t, but rather because they didn’t dare to.”

“No wonder the Giant Emperor was the first to escape when the trial takers descended,” Lu Yin murmured as he suddenly realized what had happened, causing a shiver to run down his spine. While the giant tribe wasn’t sapient, the intelligence of the Giant Emperor could not be underestimated.

Old Cai slowly said, “The meaning of life is simple, and its existence is logical. There is only ever one Giant Emperor in the giant tribe, and the third eye is pivotal to their understanding of the meaning of life. Keep it safe. It must not have been easy to snatch it from the Daynight clan and the Outerverse Youth Council.”

Lu Yin nodded obediently. “Old Cai, what should I do next?”

He looked at Lu Yin and burst into a weird laughter that lasted for so long that Lu Yin felt afraid. “Astral-10 has been quiet for too long. The mentors will give you a mission, so to go to the trial zones and snatch up a training ground.”

The look in Lu Yin’s eyes changed. “Snatch up a training ground?”

Old Cai’s lips quirked up. “That’s right. Go on and grab a training ground for yourself.”

Lu Yin was momentarily struck speechless. “Old Cai, do you really think that I can go against those Area Masters?”

He studied Lu Yin with a steady gaze. “I don’t know. But just try it since you won’t really die anyways.”

“They may have helpers.”

Old Cai rolled his eyes indifferently. “And you don’t? Kid, don’t you know the meaning of being the student leader of Astral-10? You’re the leader of all the students here, so you’re qualified to lead them.”

“They may not listen to me.”

“That’s your problem, but the academy will close an eye to your actions due to your status as the student leader.”

Lu Yin’s eyes lit up as the idea of the academy closing an eye sounded very appealing. He immediately thought of what had happened with Hui Daynight; if he didn’t listen, then Lu Yin would simply beat him into submission. As long as the mentors did not intervene, it was acceptable!

“Right, I also need to remind you to finish this mission quickly. The Astral Combat Tournament is quickly approaching. Those old fogies even got the Ten Arbiters to round up a bunch of sponsors, and they’ve pushed the date forward greatly to implement the universal network.”

Lu Yin frowned; just the knowledge of Liu Shaoqiu was already rather pressuring, but now, the timing of the tournament had been pushed forward as well. How troublesome. However, it didn’t seem logical to mobilize so many people and use so many precious resources to finish the universal network for a mere Astral Combat Tournament. He had already guessed this before, but perhaps things were even more complicated than he had initially assumed.

He was just about to leave the treasury when he suddenly thought of something. He looked back at Old Cai. “I remember that the list of missions had quite a few lockbreaking missions. Are those Sourceboxes in our academy?” 

“Clear those thoughts away and go to the training grounds first.”

Lu Yin thought Old Cai’s response was strange, but he still turned around to leave.

Old Cai rolled his eyes. “What a joke. If those Sourceboxes were still in our academy, then that trial zone fellow would have unlocked them long ago. You wouldn’t have had even a chance to look at them.”

Lu Yin left the treasury and headed to the trial zone entrance. There was no one under the teleportation stone, and he only saw Little Pao there, chewing a blade of grass, with a bored to death expression.

“Senior Little Pao, it’s been a while,” Lu Yin greeted.

Little Pao’s eyes gleamed. “Lu Yin, you’re back! I haven’t seen you for a few months. You’ve grown stronger.”

Lu Yin smiled. “Senior Little Pao, what are you doing here?”

“I’m bored,” Little Pao replied with a smile. “Right, did you come here to enter the trial zones?”

Lu Yin nodded. “Senior, Xia Luo should have gained access now.”

“Not just Xia Luo. Everyone has entered.”

Lu Yin was astonished by this news. “That fast?”

“Fast? Not really, it just takes a hundred victories to enter—not even a hundred consecutive victories. You guys have been in the academy for more than half a year, and even if you only meet one Sentinel a day in the teleportation battles, you would be able to obtain a hundred victories in around three months. Besides, they’ve been training under the mentors’ personal tutelage for several months. If they still couldn’t reach a hundred victories after that, they would be utter trash. Though their winrate is a little bad, they have still qualified to enter.”

Lu Yin agreed with what Little Pao said; although there were few Sentinels in the teleportation battles, it was still possible to meet one a day. But if a student relied on such luck to rack up a hundred victories, then that was quite pathetic.

“How’re they doing?” Lu Yin asked. He had been killed off quickly when he had first entered the trial zones, and he was even the student leader of Astral-10. The others should have fared even worse than him.

“Not bad. They’re making their way through pretty well.”

Lu Yin blinked in astonishment. “Not bad? How? Didn’t they get surrounded and attacked?”

“Well, that did happen, but only to Schutz and Meng Yue. Everyone else has their own backing: Ten Thousand Swords Peak, the Mavis clan, the Outerverse Youth Council, Windrift Hall, the Daynight clan, and so on and so forth. Most of them have at least an Area Master supporting them,” Little Pao explained with an envious tone.

Lu Yin hurriedly asked, “What about Xia Luo? And Silver?”

“Xia Luo? His brother is Xia Ye, a crazy character and the Area Master of the Dao of Heaven’s Machine Burial Mound. Silver has a sworn brother named Sha, who’s a freakishly strong character as well as the Dao of Slaughter’s Ice Domain Area Master,” Little Pao said as he patted Lu Yin’s shoulder and sympathized with him. “Out of the twelve new students, only the three of you have no backings, which is why each of you were surrounded and killed. Though, you have a backer now, too: the Dao of Purgatory’s Whitebones Gorge Area Master, Charon. He has announced that whoever touches you will die. Good for you.”

Lu Yin felt depressed. Each of those brats had a smoothly paved path in front of them, but their student leader had the roughest path of them all. If not for the twist of fate that had given him the opportunity to blackmail Charon, he still would not have a backer in the trial zones. Such was life.

“Senior, I’ll go in first.”

Little Pao grunted. “Go ahead.”

Lu Yin turned around, retrieved the Giant Emperor’s third eye, and poured star energy into it. He then turned back around towards Little Pao, but he was nowhere to be seen. Lu Yin was astonished. “He left pretty quickly.”

He had always suspected that Big Pao and Little Pao were not simple, and that they might be surprisingly powerful. He had wanted to observe them with the Giant Emperor’s third eye, but he had no such luck. He was about to store the third eye away when an elder suddenly appeared in front of him, startling him quite badly.

“Good day, Trialmaster,” Lu Yin immediately greeted when he recognized the mentor in front of him.

The mentor stared at the round, white, moon-shaped crystal in Lu Yin’s hand and exclaimed, “Not bad. Kid, did you retrieve this?”

Lu Yin nodded.

The mentor grunted before saying, “Use it well. It has many uses.” And with that, he returned to his normal position.

Lu Yin bowed again before stepping past the mentor and into the trial zone mountain.

This was his second time entering the mountain. Previously, the mountain had been empty, but this time, he met Schutz as soon as he entered. Schutz was on his way out and had an agonized expression on his face.

“Killed?”

Schutz nodded. “How’s the empire doing?”

“It’s stabilized, and it’s doing okay for now.”

“Most of the Yu Academy students should have left. The second prince scouted out many talents for Yu Academy, so all of them should have left with him.”

“Do you still think that Yu Academy has talents even after coming here?” 

Schutz fell silent. He had been the strongest back at Yu Academy, but he was the bottom student here. The rest of the students from Yu Academy did not even need to be mentioned as none of the five Hall Masters had entered the Astral Combat Academy. Those Yu Academy students couldn’t compete here as any random Sentinel in the teleportation battles would be able to sweep through them.

“There’s too big of a gap between the Innerverse and Outerverse,” Schutz said with a sigh before turning around to leave.

“Don’t be in such a rush to leave. The mentors gave me a mission to take over a training ground. Why don’t you team up with me?”

Schutz laughed sardonically. “Lu Yin, I thought that you were smart. When you last entered the trial zone, you were killed by the Spear Mountain Area Master. Don’t you know the difference between you and them? Do you really think that you can do something with just Charon’s backing?”

“It’s you who hasn’t noticed the difference.”

Schutz was shocked. What does that mean? Could he have grown strong enough to challenge an Area Master already? How is that even possible? It’s only been four months!

“You really want to try and snatch a training ground away? Those Area Masters are the top students of their various academies. You’ve personally witnessed the power of Spear Mountain’s Area Master. Furthermore, they don’t act alone and have assistants. Any student who trains in their area can be considered their underling.”

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Choco

Edited By: Neshi/Nyxnox

TLC'ed By: OMA