Chapter 262: What I Crave is Not a Warm Game
The “World Summoner All-Star Championship” is held every summer vacation. It consists of preliminary rounds, qualifying matches, round of sixteen, and the finals—each lasting ten days, spanning almost the entire summer break.
This is the world’s most fervent competitive event; when summer arrives, the wealthy and those with time to spare flock to Shengshi City. It’s a true sea of people. During this time, those who can stay in Shengshi City are genuinely affluent, either rich or noble.
Those unable to come will stay in front of the live television, cheering for their favored players. At this moment, whether or not someone is a summoner, whether they can participate in summoner competitions, everyone seems to be part of it. This is a nationwide celebration.
On the second day of summer vacation, Sister Bai convened a family meeting for “Morning Sun Family.” She announced that Bai Jingzhong had already obtained the title of “Advanced Summoner,” displayed the badge, and informed them that Bai Jingzhong would participate in this year’s Summoner All-Star Championship. The children were shocked.
Sister Bai laughed and declared that this summer, the “Morning Sun Family” would go on vacation together to Shengshi City, witnessing the entire summoner competition live and cheering for Bai Jingzhong.
Everyone got excited, celebrating by tossing their reachable books and notes into the air. The next day, just before departure, Sister Bai surprised everyone by bringing back a box of bright red clothes and hats, with “Morning Sun Family” and phrases like “Bai Jingzhong will win” written on them.
Then, she forced everyone, including Su Hao, to wear the clothes, put on the hats, and handed each person a small red flag. They looked like a tourist group.
Everyone was speechless. When she had the group in a photo queue, she unfurled a banner that read, “Wishing Bai Jingzhong the Championship of the World Summoner All-Star Competition.”
Taking pictures for commemoration. Just when Su Hao thought it was over, Sister Bai brought out another banner, “Wishing Bai Jingzhong the Runner-Up of the World Summoner All-Star Competition.”
More pictures. It didn’t end there; Sister Bai continued to bring out numerous banners for everyone to take pictures, such as “Wishing… to reach the top 16,” “Wishing… victory in the first match,” “Wishing… smooth participation.”
Su Hao’s eye twitched; he hadn’t been this speechless in a long time. Well, let her be happy! It doesn’t matter! Just feels like a bit of a waste of time.
Originally, Su Hao suggested taking a plane directly, but Sister Bai firmly disagreed, citing expense as the reason. But is Su Hao really short of money? Is the current Sister Bai lacking money?
This made Su Hao decide he needed to have an honest conversation with Sister Bai, or these pointless time-wasting incidents would continue to happen in the future.
All set, everyone boarded the bus.
This bus was “lavishly” hired by Sister Bai, a luxurious and comfortable air-conditioned bus with a grand appearance! However, unexpectedly…
The bus had only traveled twenty kilometers when the excited group of friends immediately encountered a harsh reality—motion sickness! The bus pulled over, and dozens of kids spilled out, each finding a place to vomit until they felt utterly miserable.
After vomiting, they all became listless, and what was initially planned as a flawless journey became tainted within half an hour of departure. Only a few kids, including Su Hao, Yashan, and the youngest siblings, Xing Feng and Xing Zhi, were unaffected.
With at least two more days of travel to Shengshi City, at this rate, these people were bound to be completely drained. Su Hao sighed, “No motion sickness on a plane! Looks like we’ll have to endure…”
On the third evening, Su Hao and the others finally arrived in Shengshi City. When the bus stopped, and the driver announced that the final destination, Shengshi City, had been reached, this seemingly luxurious bus disgorged a series of weary teenagers like a terrifying monster. These approximately ten-year-olds, the moment their feet touched the ground, were surrounded by an immense sense of security: finally! They had arrived!
Then their legs gave way, and dizzy, they fell in a heap. Motion sickness was unexpectedly terrifying! Most of these kids were taking such a long-distance bus for the first time. Previously, they had imagined someday riding a bus in a carefree, spontaneous trip, but reality gave them a harsh slap—they might be able to go wherever they wanted, but it wasn’t necessarily carefree.
Su Hao and the others entered Shengshi City, and their first impression of this vast city was luxury. Lights, colors, and intoxication filled the air! Before nightfall, the city lights already illuminated the sky, turning the clouds into a riot of colors. Towering buildings with unique characteristics stood, showcasing the work of the world’s top architects. For those pursuing a high-end lifestyle, this was paradise; just a glance at the city made even the humblest want to stay.
The second impression Shengshi City gave Su Hao and the others was heat, referring to things beyond temperature. Everywhere they looked, there were crowds, bustling streets and alleys with various specialty shops, and a constant stream of customers. Large public screens featured enthusiastic hosts, hyping up the “World Summoner All-Star Championship” and playing highlights from previous exciting battles with magnificent and fierce summoned creatures.
Young girls dressed in exceptionally hot attire were constantly thinking about showcasing their beauty and flawless figures. Waves of hot air rolled in the atmosphere, and everything imaginable mixed in the air, invigorating with every breath. This was the taste of a super metropolis, the taste of prosperity, the taste of money! Here, besides discussing summoners and summoned creatures, the other topic was money.
Fortunately, Sister Bai had earned quite a bit in the last two years, giving her some confidence. With a wave of her hand, she led the “Morning Sun Family Tour Group” into what seemed to be a very high-end hotel. After a while, she came out scolding, “Robbery! Is this how money should be spent?” Then, Sister Bai led everyone haphazardly, arriving at a slightly lower-class hotel. After inquiring, she found that the prices weren’t much cheaper and walked out angrily.
Su Hao deeply understood this feeling—it was like trying to find a hotel during a long holiday in a famous tourist destination. After three or four hours of wandering, nearing dawn and still unable to find a satisfactory hotel, Su Hao spoke quietly, “Sister Bai, don’t worry about this little money. Just find a place to stay! I’ll sponsor you a million!”
Sister Bai immediately refused, “No, your money didn’t come from a strong wind. It’s not spent like this. Besides, we’re going to stay for two months!”
Su Hao didn’t care much; it was mainly a waste of time. He wanted to check in early and enter the pinball space to learn about the world’s technological knowledge. Yashan felt the same way; he carried many books in his bag, and for him, this trip was just a change of place to read!
Su Hao said directly, “Sister Bai, let me tell you, hesitating like this wastes my time. You might not know, but my time is worth more than staying in a hotel for a year. It may seem like you’ve meticulously chosen a place with high cost performance, but the more wealth you can’t see, the more you lose as you compare them one by one!”
“You’re no longer the Sister Bai you used to be; now, you’re Sister Wan’er. Understand? Learn to calculate potential gains and losses, not just look at the surface.
The situation is clear now. Prices at major hotels have significantly increased, and it’s impossible to find a place with so-called cost-effectiveness. Hotel owners wait for this time every year to make a fortune! If you were a hotel owner, what would you think? If you keep searching, how much money can you actually save?” Sister Bai felt a bit helpless. She was being criticized by a child under ten, and she found it hard to refute. She sighed, “I understand the reasoning, but…”
Su Hao interrupted, “No ‘buts.’ I’ll sponsor one million. If you still disagree, then Jingyi and I will find a place to stay on our own! Two days on the bus is already a significant waste of time for me. I don’t want my time wasted in such meaningless places.
Sister Bai, speaking frankly, if it weren’t for the unity of Morning Sun Courtyard and the difficulty of leading the team, I wouldn’t have taken a two-day bus ride with you all. I can take a plane, spend a little more money, and save a day and a half. Plus, with the extra time, I can prepare adequately, win in the summoner competition, and earn more money than you spend on hotels.”
Su Hao continued in a softer tone, “Sister Bai, if you really want money, it’s straightforward. Before the competition starts, Shengshi City will definitely have many betting odds. You put all your money on me winning, and the next day, your assets will double.
Sister Bai, you want money, and I’ll find a way to earn it for you. What I want is time, and I hope you can cooperate with me. That’s it, Sister Bai. The next move is up to you!”
Sister Bai listened, feeling a bit stunned. This had somewhat shaken her perception of Bai Jingzhong, as if she was meeting this person for the first time. Was this still the person they knew?
Actually, Su Hao didn’t want to express himself too strongly, but for the good of everyone, some things needed to be clarified. Mutual compromise is indeed an expression of true love, but the future is long. How long can true love last?
When someone gives a little, the inner desire is for others to reciprocate; when someone steps back, the hope is for others to step back for oneself. However, such expectations often end in disappointment, only to realize in the end that it’s all one’s own inner drama, utterly meaningless.
It’s better to speak out loud about what one wants, tell others what one desires! Must have!
Su Hao can compromise and give way once or twice, but he won’t continuously compromise without any bottom line. Because he’s very clear about what he truly wants!
He wants the world’s most advanced knowledge, not to play some sentimental games.
Su Hao is grateful for the care he received at Morning Sun Courtyard and the help they provided. He’s gradually improving the living conditions of Morning Sun Courtyard as a form of repayment and feedback.
However, the condition is that it doesn’t interfere with his normal learning and research. If the two conflict, Su Hao will unhesitatingly choose his own path.
For Su Hao, everything is ephemeral, and only knowledge is eternally attainable.
For Sister Bai and the others, the topic of “life” is exceptionally heavy and tragic. In just a short hundred years, that’s their entirety. A hundred years later, they turn into nothingness. Exploring the meaning of life, the conclusions they can draw are “I existed,” “I experienced,” “I possessed.”
What matters more to them are the emotionally stirring elements of “friendship,” “family,” “love,” “achievements,” and “wealth.”
These things, Su Hao might have pursued initially, but not anymore.
Whether they exist or not doesn’t matter.
On the road to seeking knowledge, anything that happens, Su Hao can accept, having prepared himself psychologically.
Sister Bai quickly gathered her emotions, looked at Su Hao seriously, and said, “Jingzhong, I understand!”
Then she shouted loudly to everyone, “Let’s go, decision made, we’ll stay at this hotel!”
(End of this chapter)