Refining Divine Rules
“What a surprise. Who’d have expected this sort of welcome?” Long Zaitian stomped on his fallen foe’s face. “Since they jumped out at us, that means they arrived some time ahead of us. Hey, Bamboo Hat, explain.”
“Your arrival times and situations are determined randomly. Some arrive earlier than others,” clarified the escort.
“I knew you were plotting something. Fight me!”
“Wait.” Dugu threw aside his fallen opponent and, in a frigid tone, questioned, “Why didn’t you explain the rules to us if you’re our escort?”
“The rules state that we are only permitted to inform you of the rules upon arrival under the condition that you ask.”
Dugu sauntered up to the escort: “You lack respect for your guests, regardless of who they are, just as your patriarch does. You need to be humbled and schooled on respect, it seems.”
The escort had an urge to get away, but he felt winded and was unable to make a whimper before he could act on the impulse. He quickly recalibrated his breathing and warned, “If you do this, you will be disqualif-”
The escort’s knees snapped under him, flooring him. Dugu forced his immense pressure on the escort and fumed, “You people have expended all of my patience for this Refining Divine business. Ever since your patriarch decided to slight everyone, every rule lost its worth. I want every rule explicated right now.”
Pain was uncomfortable, but the escort would take pain over Dugu’s glare any day. “First… There is a challenge system on Dragonroot Island. Competitors can seek us out to challenge the closest team.”
“In other words, the chances of bumping into prey are as high as running into predators,” Tie Hanyi summarised.
“That’s one. Keep going,” demanded Dugu.
“Second, a team can depart early if they rack up eighteen wins to prepare for the final match.”
“What’s classified as one win?”
“Taking another team’s item, which is their sect’s prized weapon, and passing it to their escort constitutes as one win. The alternative option is to kill the entire enemy team.
“Third, every team can call time once to gain a six hour pass from any fighting. If another team attacks the team on break, they shall be penalised for breaking the rules. Needless to say… if those pausing fail to convey it to the assailant in time, then the attacker shall not be penalised.
“Fourth, so there is no point in explaining it now as it only applies if there are too many sects remaining.”
“How many sects are participating?” Dugu inquired.
“One hundred and eight.”
“And we have to reduce that to eight. On average, each team will need to win more fourteen times or more, then. In those fourteen battles, the teams we need to evade…”
Long Zaitian: “Wudang and Cold Mountain Temple.”
Tie Hanyi: “Wutong Jin Yuxuan and Mount Lu Sword Sanctuary.”
Dugu: “Mm… It’s hard to predict Beggars Sect’s forces, and they are an orthodox sect, so it’s best we avoid conflicts with them.”
Tie Hanyi: “There may also be elites among the unorthodox sects. We can only proceed carefully. In short, we need one of our two teams to pass.”
The injured escort regretted underestimating the three he didn’t recognise.
“Thank you, Captain Obvious,” jabbed Long Zaitian. “I wonder how Miss Shen is doing. We were on the waters for a long time. I wonder where they are.” Long Zaitian looked up and askance. “Also, we’re surrounded already. Looks like we won’t get many breathers.”
Dugu cascaded waves of qi down his sleeves: “Let’s starch them, then.”
Having retrieved Wugufengdeng, I ruminated how to explain myself to Boss without arousing suspicion and continue my investigations. Boss didn’t pester me since she didn’t have any means.
Because it was my first time being busted, I cast the same mental cultivation I used on Poison King to seal Boss’ accupoints before she could react. I hastily carried her on board and took off when I heard Su Xiao and Huofeng yell they’d search the shore since Boss was missing. Subsequently, I deliberated how to explain myself while having Wugudengfeng identify the islands, and… I still had no explanation to offer by the time we arrived at the island he came from.
I didn’t know how long it would take to find Second. Boss would figure out there was a blank window if I left her in that hypnotised-like state for too long. I couldn’t dawdle as the clock was ticking. Thus, I placed her on the shore and recreated the scene prior. I then assumed the same posture and cool expression before I undid her seal.
“What’s… with that grotesque look on your face?”
What do you mean it’s grotesque?! Isn’t this the same look I wore before?!