Jian Chen’s heart pounded after hearing that, “Eldest brother, aren’t Class 3 Monster Cores precious?” Even though Jian Chen knew about monster cores, he was still ignorant in regards to their prices.
“Of course. Class 3 Monster Cores can be sold for more than 100 Amethyst coins. I joined this academy 4 years ago, but I have never been able to use a Class 3 Monster Core; the highest I’ve used was a Class 2 core that cost me 50 Amethyst coins.” Changyang Hu’s face started to show signs of heartache after saying that.
Jian Chen began to plan it all out in his head. He quickly decided that he would try his best to win that Class 3 Monster Core from the martial arts competition. Despite never using a Class 3 Monster core before, he knew that absorbing the energy contained inside would allow him to increase his rate of cultivation. He didn’t know how fast he would be able to absorb World Essence after taking the Class 3 Core, but he knew that by using it, the peak of the 10th Saint Force Layer was within reach.
As the sky gradually grew darker, Changyang Hu led Jian Chen down to the student dining hall. After the dinner they split off and went their own ways, returning to their dormitories.
After returning to his room, Jian Chen closed the door and sat on his bed and to begin cultivating once more. However, he suddenly heard a knock on the door. Jian Chen looked at the door in confusion, before walking to the door and opening it.
Standing outside the door was a 30 year old woman wearing a light green dress. Although her beauty was not so much as to cause entire cities to war for her favor, she could still be considered beautiful. Her long, dark green hair went down to her shoulders, and gave off an impression as if it was floating.
“Is there something you needed?” Jian Chen asked with some confusion.
“You are one of the new students of Kargath Academy. Tomorrow will be the Kargath Academy’s annual Freshmen Competition.It is mandatory for all new students to participate. Do not forget to come.” She spoke with a tone that was as equally apathetic as her stare.
“Yes, I know. Is there anything else?” Jian Chen asked.
“No.” After dropping this word, the woman turned around to leave and walk to the next room. It seemed as if she had to notify every students one by one.
Closing the door, Jian Chen returned to his bed and sat down on it. Quickly, he returned to a silent state of cultivation.
The next morning, Jian Chen finished his night of cultivation, left his room and headed towards the dining hall alone. Since he left so early, there weren’t many people up yet so he was able to find himself an empty table to sit at due to the entire hall being almost empty.
After eating his breakfast, Jian Chen headed towards the center of the academy grounds where the sports field were. The martial arts competition would be taking place in the stadium here.
Along the way, Jian Chen noticed that he was surrounded by freshmen just like him, and they were also heading towards the sports field. Because the elder students all wore a school uniform, Jian Chen could clearly recognize which ones were freshmen. Although, there weren’t that many upperclassmen;perhaps they did not have much interest in the freshman competition.
When Jian Chen arrived at the sports field, he could see 5 circles, each 30 feet in diameter, on top of the sports grounds. There were already many people already surrounding it.
Jian Chen arrived at a tree a few meters away from the grounds. Quickly running towards the tree, he pushed off against the tree trunk to jump upwards towards the tree top. Settling down on the tree branch, Jian Chen started to rest in the shade, since it was still too early for the competition to start. He was in no rush to get there so early, and pointlessly suffer under the blazing sun.
Time quickly passed. Soon, it was the time for the competition to start. At this time, the competition arena was already packed with thousands of students. Only a few of them wore student uniforms, everyone else was a new student.
However, Jian Chen noticed that most of the freshmen students –students who had achieved the ninth layer or better– were most definitely from commoner families. He made this judgement based on the new student uniforms they all had to wear; these people were wearing crude and coarse versions. This made sense given that the Gesun Kingdom was predominantly comprised of commoners, and children from impoverished families were used to working hard. Thus, these kids worked hard to improve when cultivating Saint Force, and so were capable of reaching the 8th layer and joining Kargath Academy.
Aside from those students, the rest of the freshmen seemed to be around 16 to 17 years old. There were even some ** year olds. Jian Chen himself was 15 when he had reached the 8th layer, an achievement that could not be so easily replicated, and so it made Jian Chen the youngest student there. Despite that, Jian Chen’s physical growth far surpassed anyone else. Although he was really 15 years old, he was built as if he were a few years older.
After resting for a while, Jian Chen hopped to the ground nimbly and walked towards the competition area. Although a crowd was already forming, Jian Chen didn’t try to force his way through. Instead, he calmly stood on the outside. Regarding the freshman martial arts competition, Jian Chen had no interest in it at all; even watching it didn’t seem appealing to him. The only reason he would be participating today was because of the Class 3 Monster Core.
“Everyone, quiet down!”
Suddenly, a loud piercing sound rang out. The cry was so loud, it was heard by everyone in the sports field and everybody immediately became quiet. In an instant, the whole field became absolutely silent..
A white-robed, middle-aged man came walking up to the podium. The man looked like any other man his age, with no remarkable features. However, the light in his eyes was so bright, it looked as if he had a Saint Weapon hidden inside, making people afraid to stare straight into his eyes.
Looking at everyone, the man smiled kindly. Speaking loudly in a friendly voice, he said, “Dear students, I am the vice-principal of Kargath Academy Bai En. I will be the one in charge of today’s martial arts competition today as well as being the one who makes up the rules. I am going to presume everyone has already seen the rules on the post board at the school gates, so I won’t repeat it. The prize for this year is the same as always, the first place winner will win a Class 3 Monster Core, the runner up will win the Class 2 Monster Core, and the third place winner will get the Class 1 Monster Core. Other than that, the top 50 participants in this competition will receive a single Amethyst coin as a prize.
Hearing this, every single student wearing the uniform of the commoners began to cheer in excitement. They did not spend much from day to day and only had simple food as their meal every day. A single Gold Coin was enough to feed a family of three for a month, and an Amethyst Coin was worth 100 Gold coins. Although a Monster Core was a precious item, but none of them had any high hopes to win one since there were only 3 chances to earn one. But getting a single Amethyst coin had 50 chances to be earned.
At this moment, pretty much all the students from less privileged families could not help but become more excited. They all inwardly swore to themselves that for the sake of this Amethyst Coin, they would have to work hard to enter the top 50 spots.
Looking at the jubilant expressions on the faces of the commoners, some of the nobles looked on with disdain. A single Amethyst coin may not be such a small amount of money to a commoner, but to a noble, it was worth very little. Even Jian Chen had 50 Amethyst coins on himself to use as he wished.
The freshmen martial arts competition began not long after. The students personally drew individual lots to draw tags from within a large container. However, the tags were covered by a piece of paper, making it impossible to see the numbers on them.
The two pots had different labels. One of the pots were for students who had reached the 8th layer while the other pot was for those who had reached the 9th layer. This method made sure that no student would fight another student from a different layer and make the outcome of the battle completely predictable from the start.
Although Kargath Academy’s lowest entry requirement was having reached the eighth Saint Force level, there were always some new people amongst the freshmen every year that were geniuses who were not at all lacking in terms of cultivation. It could also be said that there were a few treasured geniuses that had been given up by the aristocratic families, so there were always freshmen that had already achieved the ninth Saint Force layer admitted to the school every year.
Drawing lots did not take long to accomplish, and soon enough it was Jian Chen’s turn. Looking at the pot, Jian Chen casually grabbed a single tag from within. Unsealing the tag, he read the words with a relieved look, “Third stage, number 64.”
Seeing the number on the tag, he inwardly understood clearly that his opponent would be number 136 on the third stage, because this time’s competition matched opponents based on finding the two numbers that would give a sum of 200.
After getting their tags, every student slowly walked towards their respective platforms while Jian Chen walked over to the third platform.
The competitions were progressing at a fast rate, as the first round of the competition only took half a day. Because Jian Chen’s own opponent was not at all knowledgeable about how to fight with martial arts, Jian Chen had easily won and made his way into round 2.
After eating lunch, the freshmen martial arts competition continued. However, the number of competitors had decreased by half. It seemed like there were only 500 people present by the end of that first round.
The second round was decided in the same way as the first round, with drawing lots. Because the amount of people that remained was far less than that of the first round, it had only took 4 hours to finish. By the end of the 2nd round, 256 students were left standing, Coincidentally, since it was an even number, then there would not be an awkward situation where there would be a student that was left out of the drawings.
Immediately heading into the third round, people began to draw lots to find their opponents. By night time, there were only 128 people that advanced onwards, with Jian Chen standing amongst them with a lazy expression.
Leaving the competition grounds, Jian Chen noticed that the sky had long since darkened. He rubbed at his protesting stomach and shook his head with slight disappointment. In his previous world, he could have gone several days and nights without eating and still not feel hungry. Now that he was used to three meals a day, he now felt hungry after skipping a single meal, leaving Jian Chen to feel slightly disappointed with himself.
Soon, Jian Chen arrived at the dining hall. After receiving his food, he found an empty seat and began to eat. Although the food was simple, completely incomparable to what he had in the Changyang household, Jian Chen still ate it with relish.
Since the current freshmen martial arts competition had just ended, the current number of people present in the dining hall was not any less than usual. In fact, there were so many people that not long after Jian Chen sat down, all of the seats in the dining hall had been filled. There were still many people who couldn’t find available spaces. Although Jian Chen was sitting alone at a table, not a single person dared to sit together with him, since all the other students there were peasants. How could they possibly dare to sit with Jian Chen, who was wearing luxurious clothing? It was obvious at first glance that he was from an aristocratic family.