After thanking myself for having recruited Chaos Moon back when she was still a newbie, I began plotting my next move. I was slowly but surely getting closer to my dream of training 10000 Dragonlight Cavalrymen before the WEL Internationals began. Training 5000 Dragonlight Archers was harder, but it wasn’t completely impossible to achieve. For one, Russia’s Cold Sword City apparently possessed three times the amount of resources of the entire China. Two, Russia wasn’t the only server we could buy resources from. Anything was possible as long as we found the right middleman.
There was another problem, however. We… already ran out of money...
A bit of thinking later, I decided not to force the issue. The only one I would be hurting was myself if I went overboard.
I received a message from Rose, our team manager in the Lenovo e-sports club: "Are you in Dark Moon City right now, Lu Chen?"
"Mn. What is it, Rose?"
"Grant me permission to enter the territory hall, will you? I need to talk to you about something."
A short while later, a beautiful archer entered the territory hall. It was Rose of course. She was only Level 172 even though she had been carried by Remains and other Lenovo members recently. There was a clear gap between her and the first-rate players.
"What is it, Rose?" I welcomed her.
She let out a small chuckle before starting, "It’s just a couple of small matters. First, I’ve gotten the visas we need to participate in the WEL internationals. We’ll be flying to Los Angeles in five days!"
"Hell yeah!" I chuckled. "Tremble in fear, world! The country bumpkins are coming to meet you all!"
"Not that joke again!"
Rose laughed a bit before continuing, "Second, the WEL organizer has decided to plug a friendly match in between the WEL matches. It’s a 5v5 competition between the eliminated experts all over the world. In other words, it’s a pre-international internationals! The five experts to participate in the competition have already been chosen. Although there won’t be a champions reward for this competition, the participation reward alone is 1 million EUR."
"God damn, Eternal Moon Corporation is rich as well!" I exclaimed in admiration before holding out a palm. "Wait, don’t tell me who the participants are yet. I’m going to venture a guess myself!"
"Sure, why not?" Rose waited expectantly.
I pondered for a moment before replying, "In my opinion, the strongest player out of all the players who were eliminated from the WEL… Li Chengfeng. Naturally, he must be in the team no matter what. The greatest assassin in China, Farewell Song, should be included as well. After that, it makes sense to have the two super mages, Luo River God of the Capital and Stranger of Three Lifetimes. Two mages, one assassin and one warrior is a pretty good team composition. I’m not sure about the last candidate though…"
Rose’s mouth fell open in surprise. "You actually got everyone right! That’s insane! Well, the last person in the team is Warsky!"
"Oh, that makes sense…" I nodded in realization. "He’s a Divine General, and thus has Great Earth Transformation. Just imagine Li Chengfeng and him keeping the enemy at bay while Great Earth Transformation is active, Luo River God of the Capital and Stranger of Three Lifetimes blasting away from the back, and Farewell Song slipping behind enemy lines and ambushing them from the back. Heavens, this team actually has an insanely high chance of beating our roster, and we were the champions of the WEL China nationals!"
Rose giggled behind her palm. "I know right? China already has an incredible amount of experts, but the elites of the losers’ group are powerful enough to beat the living daylights out of most opponents!"
A pause later, she added, "Oh right, the Lenovo e-sports club will be holding a celebratory party at Paragon Hotel at 7 pm sharp tonight. It’s to celebrate your team winning the WEL China nationals of course. Also, if I may be so bold to ask a favor…"
The way Rose squirmed caused a grin to break across my face. "What is it?"
"If possible, I would like you to invite two guests to join us..."
"Which two? I’m not that important…"
"Heehee, don’t worry, I’m sure you can do it! I’d like you to invite Beautiful Little Pepper Lin Yixin and Blazing Hot Lips’ guild leader, Stranger of Three Lifetimes to attend our party. Surely they’ll accept your invitation? I know Stranger of Three Lifetimes is playing a money match in Wuxi right now…"
"Fine, I’ll contact them later."
"Thanks. The reason I’m requesting this is because we invited a TV game channel’s host and cameramen to attend the party to do a special issue with us. It’ll look great if we show that we have the clout to invite two CGL Hall of Famers to join us, am I right?"
"I get it already. I’ll contact them right now!"
"Awesome! Do your best! If the special issue goes well I’ll get a raise, so seriously, I’m counting on you!"
After Rose left Dark Moon City to grind with Heart Like Water and Dark Fragrance, I brought up my friend list and contacted Lin Yixin—
"Little Cheat... What is this about?"
"I have a banquet to attend tonight. Do you want to join me?"
"Sure! Where is the venue? I want to eat all the good stuff!" The excitement in Lin Yixin’s voice was evident. What a cute and beautiful glutton she was...
I replied, "It’s at Paragon Hotel, 7 pm. It’s Lenovo’s celebratory party."
"OMG, really? I don’t know if I should involve myself with Lenovo…"
"C’mon, you’re a special guest! They’ll light me on fire if you don’t attend!"
"Oh really? That’d be a sight…"
"Fine, fine, I’ll go. I’ll drive myself there, so you don’t need to come fetch me."
After I was done pacifying my woman, I made a call to Stranger of Three Lifetimes next—
"Hey there, Third Wheel!"
"Lu Chen? What is it?"
"You’re at Wuxi right now, right? Do you want to come to Suzhou? I’ll treat you to dinner…"
"Sure! What are we eating exactly?"
"The good stuff, of course! The venue is Paragon Hotel, and the time is 7 pm. It’s Lenovo’s celebratory party."
Stranger of Three Lifetimes immediately figured out why I invited her. "Ho. You want me there as a special guest?"
"Yes? Is it okay with you?"
"Hee hee. Fine, it’s a free meal anyway. I’ll come."
"Alright. Remember, you need to be there before 7 pm, or I’ll be in serious trouble."
"I get it!"
After that intermission, I spent most of the day running around and buying Resource Bags. Somewhere in the middle, I helped Du Thirteen kill a Level 185 boss at Breeze Canyon, took revenge for Beauty Yu Tong at Silver Moon Forest, took out a party of Candle Dragon players, took out a Level 190 boss at Sky Forest, and helped Beauty Heaven’s Rain to get a Level 175 Immortal-grade shield. It was a very productive day to say the least. Thanks to all the bosses I helped to kill, I earned around the same amount of experience I would’ve earned if I had spent the day grinding on my own. Even so, my effort only amounted to around 40% experience or so. The amount of experience needed to level up at Level 187 or higher could scare the daylights out of weak-minded men.
When the clock ticked past 5 pm, I suddenly received a message from Li Chengfeng: "Lu Chen, did you hear that the ninth territory of Sky City has spawned? It’s in the forest just south of Silver Fir City!"
"Oh. Well, the system stopped making territory spawn announcements a while ago, so I couldn’t possibly know about that…"
Li Chengfeng replied, "Well, a number of guilds are fighting over it right now, but one guild has managed to occupy it for you. Can you guess who they are?"
"Who are they?" My heart suddenly skipped a beat. "Oh, fuck, it can’t be Soul Battle Robes, can it? Or… is it Pop Culture? Is Candle Dragon finally starting to put pressure on us?"
Li Chengfeng laughed. "Nah, you’re overthinking this. It’s Sword Lord of Jianghu. I’m mentioning this because Sword Lord of Jianghu had somehow gathered a million-strong army and taken the territory by storm. It’s not confirmed yet, but I can’t see it going to anyone else. The territory is quite close to Silver Fir City, but Beauty Lin doesn’t seem to want to attack them."
I replied, "Well, what can you do? We’re hardly the only guilds in Sky City, and we already have a territory of our own. If we let our greed overtake us and occupy a second territory, people are going to start criticizing us behind our backs. There is nothing more important than Reputation in a game. A good Reputation also ensures that a guild is united."
Li Chengfeng voiced his agreement, "Yes, that’s what I think as well. However, Sword Lord of Jianghu seemed very hostile toward us during the competition, and they’re directly attached to the China VR department, so we definitely need to watch out for them. What do you plan to do if they clash against us?"
I thought for a moment before declaring without hesitation, "We crush them. All who stand in our way must die!"
Li Chengfeng laughed. "Haha, I love that quote! Don’t worry, I’ll keep a close eye on Sword Lord of Jianghu and make sure that they don’t catch us off-guard."
"Mn. Sorry to trouble you, Chengfeng!"
"No need to apologize! We’re brothers, aren’t we?"
When it was past 6 pm, the entire Frost Cloud workshop squeezed into my X12 and drove toward Paragon Hotel. The main reason I brought everyone was because there was most likely going to be drinking during the banquet. Someone had to drive the drunkards home.
When we arrived at the hotel, Rose was already waiting at the entrance. Lin Yixin’s new car was already there. An attendant was driving it into the car park, while the woman herself was standing at the entrance and waiting for us. A few minutes after we stopped the car and called out to her, Stranger of Three Lifetimes drove into the carpark as well. Everyone was here now.
The banquet was held on the third floor, and after going up we saw that there were at least twenty people present at the scene already. More than half of these people were new pros Lenovo recruited into the e-sports club. The five of us were too important to be deployed in small competitions, but someone had to participate in those matches. Therefore, it made sense for Lenovo to recruit twenty or so players to fulfill that role. This reminded me that Lin Yixin’s e-sports club, Apple, had recruited at least 40 players besides Lin Yixin and Purple Marquis. Truly, they were some of the richest companies in the world. The unfortunate tournament staff who had to deal with them must feel like tearing their hair out!
After we entered the venue, a guy dressed in a suit walked up to us and extended his hand. "Hello, Lu Chen, everyone! I’m the club’s CEO, Dong Xiang!"
I grabbed his hand and shook it. "Good evening, sir!"
After the handshake, Dong Xiang turned around and pointed at a middle-aged man who looked to be 40 years old or so smiling. "Allow me to introduce you to one of our important guests today. This here is the vice chief of China VR department and association president of the China server, Mr. Tang Long. He’s responsible for handling the games Eternal Moon Corporation produces."
Oil seemingly leaking out of his pores, Tang Long walked up to me with a smile and said, "I know you, Lu Chen. Your future seems limitless, young man!"
My only response toward his impenetrable mask was a smile and a greeting. "Hello, Vice Chief Tang!"
I looked at He Yi and Lin Yixin only to find them staring at me as well. Well shit, it looks like we all share the same thoughts. What are the chances this big-bellied politician is one of the good guys?Previous Chapter Next Chapter