Chapter 49: Meeting a Worthy Opponent
Since he had promised Fatty and He Qingqing that he would go watch their matches, Su Hao wouldn’t break his word.
Early the next morning, Su Hao arrived at the martial arts arena.
The arena was already bustling with people, more lively than ever before.
Currently, there were about 1,200 students in the academy. The annual competition didn’t distinguish between grade levels; all students were randomly divided into 12 groups, with 9 groups for male students and 3 groups for female students, each containing 100 participants. From each group of 100, 7 would advance to the second day’s finals. Each group had two class teachers acting as judges and safety officers.
This annual competition not only tested the students’ abilities but also their endurance. To compete for the first place, excluding byes, they needed to participate in ten matches from start to finish.
This was not something an ordinary person could achieve.
However, all of this was irrelevant to Su Hao. He didn’t care about these things. To him, the annual competition was just an upgraded game for teenagers.
After Fatty and He Qingqing’s matches were over, he would return to his dormitory to continue his research on blood energy.
Using the radar, Su Hao quickly located Fatty and He Qingqing in the crowd. It wasn’t their turn to compete yet, so Su Hao showed his face in front of them and then began to wander around the arena.
As he roamed, he recorded blood energy information and entered it into the “Radar” database.
He focused on the class teachers with blood energy levels as high as the sun.
“This class teacher has such strong blood energy! It’s Teacher Mo from Class Four! Record it, blood energy characteristic: soft. Mo Fenghua, high-level master martial artist, yellow font. Tsk tsk, his blood energy level is almost catching up to mine…”
Thinking this, Su Hao suddenly froze.
He had just noticed something was off and furrowed his brows, analyzing silently, “Mo Fenghua, as the class teacher of Class Four, undoubtedly possesses the strength of a high-level master martial artist. But why doesn’t the intensity of his blood energy and my perception match?”
Su Hao initially suspected that his perception was flawed, perhaps due to his current strength, he couldn’t accurately sense the blood energy of high-level master martial artists. Or maybe high-level master martial artists had the ability to shield their presence?
Su Hao first found other class teachers and carefully sensed them using the “Radar.” He discovered that the blood energy intensity among these class teachers varied greatly and had noticeable fluctuations, showing no signs of being shielded or blocked.
“My perception is not the issue. My blood energy intensity is indeed much higher than that of the class teachers! In other words, based on blood energy intensity, I can already be considered a high-level master martial artist, not an intermediate-level one.”
Su Hao roughly understood that in this world, the distinction between novice, intermediate, and advanced martial artists was not very clear. The real distinction lay in the levels like ordinary versus elite, elite versus master.
Unable to figure out more, Su Hao decided not to dwell on it and focused on entering everyone’s information into the “Radar” database.
Soon, it was Fatty’s turn to compete. Su Hao came to watch from the sidelines.
Fatty looked extremely nervous, holding a training-grade sword and a small round shield. He appeared tense all over. After entering the arena, he took deep breaths to adjust his state.
Fatty’s opponent had long curly hair and was about half a head shorter than Fatty. He also held a training-grade sword and a small round shield.
Fatty’s height of 1.7 meters added an invisible pressure on his opponent, who seemed even more nervous than Fatty.
Both were entering the arena for the first time and didn’t want to be eliminated in the first round. Once on the stage, their tension eased, and they focused entirely on the match.
A gong rang out, and the match began.
Fatty and the curly-haired opponent moved simultaneously, with one delivering a powerful slash and the other raising the shield to block, diverting the blade’s path and seizing the opportunity to counterattack.
Back and forth, they went for about twenty rounds, neither able to gain the upper hand.
It was truly a case of meeting a worthy opponent.
Before long, both of them were panting heavily.
Since they couldn’t overpower each other, they had to rely on strategy. So, they began to use their techniques and employ feints.
Fatty swung his blade down, and the curly-haired opponent immediately raised his shield to block. Little did he know that Fatty’s attack was a feint, and the real strike was aimed at his legs.
Curly-haired opponent was greatly startled and instinctively dropped his shield, using his hand to block.
But this was still Fatty’s feint. Seeing the opponent drop his shield and expose himself, Fatty seized the opportunity. He thrust his round shield forward with force, slamming it onto the curly-haired opponent’s face.
The outcome was clear.
Su Hao immediately shouted loudly from the sidelines, “Fatty! Well done!”
Everyone turned to look and, upon seeing Su Hao, they were all frightened. This was the Furious Soaring Warrior, Wu Xiangwu.
People around Su Hao quickly distanced themselves by about three meters, creating a wide-open space.
“I’ll go check on Qingqing. Keep it up,” Su Hao said to Fatty, ignoring the people around him, and then left.
Because of Su Hao’s appearance, everyone’s perception of Fatty changed. They were already contemplating whether they should forfeit if they faced this tall and stout guy in the next round. Even if they won the match, being targeted by the Furious Soaring Warrior would lead to defeat.
Su Hao arrived at the arena of the eleventh group and watched for a while. Soon, it was He Qingqing’s turn.
The girls’ battles appeared more graceful. Armed with training-grade blunted swords and small round shields, He Qingqing displayed her confidence and vitality.
After fighting for four rounds, He Qingqing suddenly thrust forward, piercing the gap between her opponent’s round shield and long blade with her sword tip. With a quick twist of her wrist, she disarmed her opponent by knocking his long blade to the ground. Seizing the moment of confusion, she delivered a powerful kick, knocking her opponent down and securing her victory.
Having learned from Fatty’s experience, Su Hao refrained from cheering loudly and just waved to He Qingqing.
As soon as He Qingqing saw Su Hao, her stern face, with a touch of ferocity, broke into a smile.
In the second round, Fatty was tripped by his opponent and fell to the ground, unfortunately eliminated.
On the other hand, He Qingqing won the first three rounds, but in the fourth round, she faced a level-three student. Coupled with her exhaustion, she was overpowered by her opponent’s fierce attacks and was defeated.
With this, Su Hao’s mission of watching the matches came to an end.
The three of them found a shady spot to sit down casually.
Su Hao began by lavishly praising both of them. He praised Fatty’s cleverness for coming up with such a brilliant move to defeat his opponent. He also praised He Qingqing for her excellent performance in the first three rounds, with no one being her match. Unfortunately, she encountered a level-three student in the fourth round; otherwise, she would have surely advanced to the finals.
The two’s feelings of disappointment from their losses were quickly dispelled, and their spirits lifted.
Fatty asked, “Xiangwu, we have a two-month break now. I’m going back to Chasan Outpost to train with my dad. Do you have any plans?”
Su Hao replied, “I plan to buy some things for my father first, make a trip back home, and then return to the academy.”
Fatty was puzzled, “I heard that all the teachers are on vacation these two months, and there are very few students left at the academy. Why do you want to stay here?”
Su Hao explained, “It’s quiet here, and I can train on my own.”
He Qingqing added, “I’m also going back to Tea Mountain Outpost to train with my dad. Xiangwu, you’re going back there too, and there are people to train with you. Why stay in town?”
Su Hao shook his head, “I doubt they can help me improve much. Besides, I want to stay in town and visit the library. Who knows, I might find something valuable there.”
He was currently very interested in runes and wanted to collect more “beast patterns” for comparative research. He wanted to understand why these runes could produce such miraculous effects and if there was any room for expansion.
However, according to Old Liu, the lowest price for a beast pattern on the market was twenty gold yuan.
He was short on money, and the mere two gold coin he had wouldn’t even cover the cost of a single beast pattern’s small part. So, he needed to figure out how to earn money first, and the town offered more opportunities for that.