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Chapter 285: Strange Rules

    Chapter 285: Strange Rules

    Translator: Novel Saga  Editor: Novel Saga

    Whether it was the middle stage of the Star Realm or the Xian Tian realm... it was considered a splendid attainment in the Dark Moon Cult. In fact, many of the deacons that held various positions in the sub-altars were at this rank...

    Therefore, there were only a small number of people who walked out of the arena... roughly five or six hundred people.

    The strength of these people was formidable. Therefore, the rest of the people in the arena didn't say anything in objection. On the contrary, some people secretly heaved a sigh of relief.

    Yu Yi was only at the primary stage of the Star realm. Therefore, he was in the same boat as Hou Sai Lei. So, both of them also stayed back in the arena.

    "Well, the remaining people will start with the second round of the competition. I would request everyone to receive the magic helmets from the managing disciples, and put them on. I will announce the concrete rules of the competition later on," Liu An noticed that the flow of the disciples that were walking out of the crowd had stopped. So, he continued with his announcement.

    His voice had barely faded when dozens of Dark Moon Cult's disciples who stood in the vicinity of the arena walked out. They carried baskets that contained silver-grey helmets.

    The helmets were made of metal. They stood erect, and had an appearance of a triangular barrel. They were awfully ugly. In fact, they looked like a clown's hat.

    Shi Mu and the others looked at each other in blank dismay. But then, they walked over and collected their hats.

    Shi Mu examined the hat for a moment, and the corners of his mouth curled into a grin. Then, he put it on his head.

    The next moment, a ray of light flowed on the surface of that hat, and a number emerged therein - "1052". He didn't notice any other peculiarity apart from this. Not even a trace of his magic power fluctuated in response. Perhaps, it was no better than an ordinary hat.

    However, an idea crossed his mind, and he instilled his spirit sense into the hat to explore it.

    Buzz!

    It seemed that his spirit sense had stimulated some kind of mechanism as the hat slightly vibrated in response. Then, the number on the hat lit up, and radiated a burst of red light.

    Another number also emerged in Shi Mu's mind for some inexplicable reason.

    Four-hundred-and-thirty!

    Most of the people in his surrounding had also worn their hats by this time. And, their hats had similarly started to brighten up one by one. Soon, the entire arena had been pervaded by an intense red radiance.

    "The rules of this round of competition are very simple. All of you have already illuminated your hats. You must have also sensed the target number that your hat contains with the help of your spirit sense by now. You have to snatch away the hat that contains your target number in this round of the competition. However, you will be disqualified in case your own hat is shot off by your opponent before you seize hold of his hat. And, the person who is wearing the hat with your target number will be promoted to the next round. Basically, you will be promoted to the next round if you either snatch away your target's hat... or shoot off the hat of the person who is trying to snatch your hat. In addition, it is strictly prohibited to use a heavy hand in the battle. You aren't allowed to hit others or inflict severe injuries on them in this round. You will be disqualified from this competition if you break this rule, and the person who is wearing the hat with your target number will be promoted to the next round instead!" Liu An's voice resounded in the arena.

    Liu An's voice had barely faded when it sparked off an uproar in the arena.

    Such a tumultuous situation hadn't erupted only because of the bizarre rules of the competition. The strict prohibition to hurt each other in this round had also contributed to the situation.

    The Dark Moon Cult had held competitions in the past in order to determine the distribution of the Cult's resources. However, there hadn't been such odd rules in those competitions.

    The rules that prohibited killing in the competition had often been seen at various places. However, a competition that prohibited participants from inflicting physical injuries on their opponents couldn't be seen anywhere in the world...

    Liu An swept his gaze over the crowd under the stage, and waited for a moment... He wanted to give the people enough time to mentally process the rules that he had announced.

    "It seems that everyone has understood the rules of this round. The second round of competition begins now!" Liu An made an announcement in a loud voice.

    The people in the arena tensed-up and confronted each other as soon as this statement was made. They also started to distance themselves from the people around them...

    Bang!

    Some of the people in the arena had already moved into action. They had apparently caught sight of their target hats.

    Shi Mu and the four people near him exchanged looks with each other as a trace of caution floated in their eyes.

    Shi Mu distanced himself from Yu Yi and his two friends, and retreated toward Hou Sai Lei's side.

    "What's your target number?" Shi Mu's lips moved to ask Hou Sai Lei.

    "It's two-thousand-and-sixty-seven. Senior Mu can take away my hat if it has Senior's target number." Hou Sai Lei replied.

    "No, you're not my target number."

    Shi Mu nodded since he had realized that there was no chance that an unwanted circumstance would emerge between the two men. He then told Hou Sai Lei his own target number.

    "Brother Shi, Brother Hou, you don't have to be so alert. There are thousands of people in the arena at this moment. So, it's highly unlikely to have a place of coincidence in our small group of four-or-five people. My target is three-thousand-six-hundred-and-five," Yu Yi promptly said while looking at the red-faced man and the young woman beside him.

    The two people understood his implied meaning, and reported their own target numbers.

    They exchanged a few words, and soon found that there was indeed no such coincidence in their group. Each person had received a different goal.

    "We know that the rules of this round are rather unusual. So, we'll most likely fail to attain our respective goals single-handedly. The one-man-action approach will definitely lead to a very disadvantageous situation. So, wouldn't it be better if the five of us were to join forces to deal with the current situation?" Yu Yi put forth a proposal.

    Hou Sai Lei didn't speak anything, but he looked at Shi Mu in a manner that made it seem that he had blind trust in Shi Mu.

    "Alright. The five of us will work together since Brother Yu has come up with this invitation," Shi Mu considered for a moment. Then, he nodded in agreement.

    "That's wonderful!" Yu Yi was overjoyed.

    The five people reached an agreement soon after. They agreed that they must wait until everyone has obtained their respective target-hat. After that, they would leave together.

    "First of all, let's move to the periphery of the arena so as to avoid being attacked by the enemy," Shi Mu said.

    The other people got his point, and the five people immediately made a formation. Then, they moved towards the edge of the arena while watching each others' back.

    The five people were advancing towards the edge of the arena. Simultaneously, they were sweeping their gaze around in order to look for their own goals.

    There were a large number of people in the arena. In fact, there were over ten-thousand people present on the scene. Therefore, the scene appeared awfully chaotic... so much so that it could almost dazzle a person's eyes. So, it was practically impossible for them to find their targets in this chaos.

    But, it could be clearly seen that many people had started to stick together like Shi Mu and his friends.

    Suddenly, a multicolored-parrot flew over near the arena at this time. It couldn't be said from where it had arrived. It had stopped near the periphery; it was Cai!

    Cai had a panoramic view of the whole venue from his angle.

    A trace of white light glinted in Cai's eyes as he directed his gaze toward the arena.

    A moment later...

    "I found him!"

    Shi Mu's eyes brightened up since he had found his goal in a matter of seconds with the help of Cai's shared vision ability.

    That person was a young magician who appeared to be in his early twenties. However, he was considerably far from Shi Mu at the moment.

    In addition, Shi Mu also found Hou Sai Lei's goal after a few moments. Hou Sai Lei's target was close to his own target. He was a martial artist who held a scarlet machete. He was seemingly a Xian Tian primary stage warrior from the looks of it...

    "I've found my as well as Brother Hou's goal. Brother Yu, what about you?" Shi Mu asked.

    Shi Mu's words left Yu Yi and his two friends profoundly shocked. However, Hou Sai Lei beamed with happiness on hearing his words.

    "Not yet. However, the location of Brother Mu's goal has already been determined. So, we will postpone this step, and lend a hand to Brother Mu to take hold of his target-hat first," Yu Yi said.

    "There's no hurry. I'll help you three to find the location of your respective target first," Shi Mu shook his head as he replied.

    Shi Mu glanced at Liu An who was still on the stage. Then, he lowered the brim of his hat, and raised his collar to cover half of his face.

    Afterwards, he sucked in a long and deep breath, and a gleam of golden radiance emerged in his eyes. The golden gleam looked miraculous as he swept his gaze into the surrounding.

    "Brother Mu possesses awe-inspiring eyesight. It's truly commendable!" Yu Yi's complexion changed as he saw Shi Mu's eye. He then said.

    Shi Mu smiled and didn't deny it. He then started to move his eyes once again.

    "I found one. He isn't far from here. He is Dear Friend Luo's goal." Shi Mu's brows furrowed, and he said while pointing his finger in a particular direction after a few breaths.

    The red-faced man got overwhelmed with exultation as he heard this. He cast a glance at Shi Mu with deep gratitude.

    "Let's go and capture this one first," Shi Mu said. The other people naturally didn't have any objection to this.

    They rushed and approached the red-faced man's target very quickly. This person was a 30-year-old man with a dragon-like mustache. He held a wooden stick in his hand; it was made of red-rattan.

    This man didn't seem to have joined hands with anyone. He had stuck close to the edge of the arena, and was walking forward in a very cautious manner while sweeping his vision around. It seemed as if he was also trying to look for his own goal.

    Suddenly, the mustached-man turned around, and saw that Shi Mu and his companions had swooped towards him. Consequently, his complexion changed terribly.

    The man couldn't think of a plan, and hence broke into a run in desperation. Two virtual star-shadows emerged behind his head with a flash of light as this happened. Then, he waved the red-rattan wooden stick, and a red light glinted in the air. After that, a few seven or eight five-feet-long fiery snakes emerged in the air, and dashed towards Shi Mu and his companions while issuing whistling sounds.

    These fiery snakes intertwined in midair, and transformed into an expansive scalding fiery wave the next moment. The fiery wave surged up in a violent manner, and swept towards these people in order to engulf them. It almost seemed that these people would be devoured by the fervent wave in a couple of seconds.

    Shi Mu's eyes flashed... as if he was about to make a move.

    But then, the ground issued a loud thundering sound, and started to quiver. After that, a few feet thick and a few feet tall earthen-wall emerged in front of these five people to block the fiery waves.

    It was Yu Yi who had casted this spell. His hands were pressed against the ground, and a layer of yellow luminescence had emerged on the surface of his body.

    Bang!

    The billowing fiery waves bombarded the earthen wall, and sent out a series of loud rumbling sounds. And, the fiery waves turned into a scorching mist which proliferated in all directions. The earthen wall vibrated for a few moments... as if it was on the brink of collapse. But, it had succeeded in warding off the fiery snake technique.

    The people in the vicinity drew back to the side in order to avoid getting affected by the scorching fiery mist.

    Suddenly, Shi Mu's silhouette flashed past the side of the earthen wall, and passed through the fervent mist. Simultaneously, he read an incantation and waved his hand.

    A streak of white light darted from his hand, and caught up with the mustached-man as he was trying to flee. Then, it turned into a white Qi chain, and bundled him on the spot.

    The mustached-man shouted at the top of his voice. Then, he turned around and tumbled to the ground.

    He was trying to struggle to his feet when he saw that an ice-cold blade edge had been placed on his neck.

    The mustached-man looked at the young man in front of him. This young man held a black blade in his hand. However, the mustached-man let out a sigh, and chose to quit the fight.

    Then, the red-faced man rushed over, and snatched away the hat from the grey-robed man's head. His red face brimmed with overwhelming excitement.

    "Brother Yu and Brother Mu, thank you so much!" The red-faced young man looked at Shi Mu and Yu Yi and said with gratitude.

    "Let's go." Shi Mu waved his hand, and lowered his hat's brim a bit. He then quickly walked to the other side since he wanted to leave this place as quickly as possible.

    The fact was that he had just felt that he was being stared at by someone on the stage.

    Yu Yi and the other people couldn't understand the reason why Shi Mu was in hurry to leave this place. But, they still followed him at a quick pace.

    On the stage... Liu An looked toward a certain place in the arena under the stage, and a strange gleam flashed across his eyes.

    "What's wrong?" The red-dressed girl beside him noticed the sudden change in Liu An's expressions, and asked.

    "Nothing," Liu An replied. But, a faint smile was gleaming across Liu An's face at the moment.

    The red-dressed girl felt a little surprised as she noticed this. The fact was that she hadn't seen him smile since they had returned.

    Her gaze followed Liu An's line of sight, but she didn't find anything strange.

    "Brother Di, I'm giving you the charge of this place. Sister Zhen, let's go." Liu An said to Di Feng. After that, he walked towards the dome-shaped building at the back along with the red-dressed girl.
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