Wuxiaworld > Tempest of the Battlefield > Chapter 40: Jesting

Chapter 40: Jesting

Chapter 40: Jesting

Translator: Oneshotwonder Editor: Tehrn
Wang Tong left DREAM-heaven as soon as he had finished the fight. On the way home, he lamented over Wang Ben's misfortune and felt content about his own life. The miraculous mind opening event on Norton was a stark contrast to the cruel joke that life had played on Wang Ben.

This fight, like all other fights, gave Wang Tong new insights about his mental and physical abilities. He had noticed that his body was exceptionally vigorous even when it was not under the influence of the EMF.

Ever since the discovery of the EMF, physical strength had become irrelevant, fighters had been putting the matter on the back burner and focused solely on strengthening their EMF. This practice was also backed by scientific researches that had concluded that the effect of physical conditioning on improving the METAL fighter's power was inappreciable.

However, ever since he returned to earth, Wang Tong had felt an undeniable sensation as if there was a force within his body that had fallen into slumber. Only today, when his body was under immense pressure from the relentless attack of Wraith III, did he felt the slumbered force had awakened to fill his body with vigor.

Wang Tong started to entertain the thoughts of connections between physical and mental strength and eventually pieced all evidence together. He remembered that on planet Norton, where constant battles and grueling gravity had toughened him up considerably, he had also felt the workings of this force facilitating him during his fights. Things hadn't changed until he had arrived on Earth, where his body was no longer under demanding conditions.

This insight had provided a clear direction in Wang Tong's future training, but first thing first, he wanted to celebrate this discovery. For a warrior like Wang Tong, there was no better celebration than filling his belly with food.

"Keep up the good work my dear princess warrior, we will be counting on you next month," Samantha interrupted Ma Xiaoru's physical exercises with a smile. She stood at the threshold; half leaned against the door.

The Tactics of the Enchantress focused entirely on the mental cultivation without any physical strengthening. The thorough advisers of House Li had addressed this shortcoming in the cultivation guide by emphasizing the importance of physical conditioning. Unlike a real fighter who would naturally gain physical strength as he or she undergone fights, an academy student rarely had the opportunity to do so. Therefore the need for a physical exercise was apparent to Ma Xiaoru.

Ma Xiaoru had noticed Samantha at the door. She paused to grab a towel and wiped the sweat off her face. Her gym shirt clad tightly against the skin, outlined elegant curves that were accentuated by her lively and beautiful face. The sight had caught Samantha off guard, as she gasped at Ma Xiaoru's beauty.

"Look at you, you are gorgeous! I wonder if any dude out there really deserves you, might as well spare him for me," Samantha poked fun at Ma Xiaoru.

"Sam! Don't make fun of me. You are turning into a real Enchantress!"

"Haha, I am just kidding. Anyhow, things at school seemed to be more complicated than I had initially thought. It had been draining me for days on end, look here, can you tell the wrinkles under my eyes?"

Samantha didn't wear the eyeglasses like she always did at work. The glasses made her look pragmatic and mature, a convenient façade when it came down to running school business, but there was no need for it when she was alone with Ma Xiaoru. Not only they were similar in age, but she also knew that Ma Xiaoru was a friend in whom she could confide.

"How so? I thought everything had been coming up roses. Would it be the tournament next month with the Bernaue?"

"What else could it be. They are not our friends, that's for sure, but I can feel that they are brewing something. They are too anxious about this fight to my liking.”

"Curious and curiouser. We are of a lower rank school compared to Bernaue, defeating us should be taken for granted, what are they anxious about? Anyways. Let's go grab some drink first, I'm thirsty!"

The air around the floating mansion was clear and crisp, thanks to meticulous filtration and cleansing. The central climate control system worked even outdoor to alleviate the discomfort of heat as Ma Xiaoru enjoyed the bathing of sunshine while savoring a cup of synthesized drink. Life might have seemed mundane to her, but she had lived a life that only a few could afford.

"They are anxious about you and Hu Yangxuan," Samantha continued, "you two combined with the funding I had brought to Ayrlarng had evidently stepped up our game, that was enough to disquiet them. They want to stop us before we gain any momentum."

"Let them try then, we will make sure they don't try again!" Ma Xiaoru hissed.

They lolled on the double-sized lawn chair with servants about them; the comfortable life had never dulled their keen mind. They remained steadfast in their pursuit; regardless if it was a pursuit in higher cultivation or in the career as a principal. It was this unfaltering spirit made both of them more attractive than most other girls.

"I gathered that they would let you win on your turn at the tournament, and then hedge their bets on our weaker teammates. To be honest, I don't have high hopes for your senior schoolmates, and it's too late now for me to do anything about it. I can only count on the freshmen in your year. But I also fear for your confidence, should any of you lose a battle."

"You are trying to tell me that we don't have much room for error?"

"What a smart girl! I wagered that we might have a bit more wiggle room if Wang Tong had joined us, but that sly little fish had refused my invitation. I thought of threatening him with his grades, but then I figured it was too risky. I could be shooting at my own feet if my gun scared him away to other schools."

It was often easier to be a student than a principal because the student managed only oneself, but a principal managed many. Every issue would quickly turn into a tangle of risks and options, and each thread in the entanglement seemed to lead to a different end. In a whim of nostalgia, Samantha missed her once carefree life as a student, but the satisfaction of overcoming a challenge quickly draw her back into reality. In this way, she was similar to Ma Xiaoru; they both seemed to have everything in their life, except for a stage to prove themselves.

"He refused?" Surprise was written all over Ma Xiaoru's face. She couldn't believe the quick-witted Wang Tong would have passed up the opportunity of winning the principal's favor.

"I was surprised as well. I'm still looking for other candidates, but it's been tough. I can't make bricks without straw."

"Do you need my help coaxing that Wang Tong?" Ma Xiaoru asked as she raised her cup and sipped the drink; her eyes dodged Samantha's gaze as the latter was scanning her like an open book.

"...Sis, why are you looking at me weirdly?" Ma Xiaoru broke the awkwardness.

"Xiaoru. Tell me that you are not thinking of—"

"Of course not!" Ma Xiaoru quickly cut her short. A noticeable tinged of rosy red had crept onto her cheeks. "I don't know him that well. He is an interesting person alright, but I am simply intrigued. I don't have much to do anyways."

Samantha faked a reluctant expression and jested: "Oh my... I think your cultivation had taken a toll on your conscience. You shall know better than me not to toy with the feelings of an innocent boy."

"Sis! I will NEVER talk to you again if you keep on acting like that!" Ma Xiaoru pouted her glistening lips.

"Haha. Fine, fine! Nothing is worse than your silent treatment. Haha!" Samantha burst out laughing.

The two drop-dead-gorges went on poking fun at each other. It was a beautiful sight hidden high up in the clouds.

"Have you heard about what happened to Wang Ben?" Samantha asked.

"Benny? No, what happened?" Ma Xiaoru seldom read the news.

Samantha briefly spoke about Wang Ben's failure of his operation, and she heaved a sigh. "What a pity, Wang Ben was a real talent, perhaps the gods themselves had felt jealous of him."

Unlike Samantha who had willingly given up the prospect of a METAL fighter, Wang Ben had been regarded by many, including himself, as the one who was destined to become a warrior. Samantha could only hope that this tragic turn off his life had not bent his mind beyond its breaking point.