Chapter 91 - Aftermath

Chapter 91 of 318 chapters

Xu Jingming felt a little regretful that his master blocked the last strike, but he came to a realization after calming down. During the one-on-one battle, Master only used a single saber. For him to use a saber and shield in concert meant that it’s Master’s true strength. Even Shadowless Thrust can’t threaten Master now.

After leaving the combat space, Xu Jingming returned to China’s official livestream channel and came to the stands where his relatives and friends were.

“Captain!”

“Jingming!”

“Old Xu!”

“Son!”

Everyone greeted him with smiles. Nobody felt regretful; after all, they knew very well that Liu Hai was the world champion and was much stronger than Xu Jingming.

Yang Qingshuo smiled and said, “When we first formed the team, I didn’t dare think that we would make it into the finals. Second in the country at the Firestarter Cup National Tournament! As first runner-up, we’ve defeated so many powerful teams.”

“We won without doing anything.” Heng Fang placed his arm over Yang Qingshuo. “After being eliminated so many times, I knew it was all thanks to Old Xu and Sister Yi that we could win.”

“It was thanks to Captain,” Wang Yi said. “I only luckily broke through in the semi-finals. If it weren’t for Team Pearwood, I might’ve been eliminated earlier if I had joined the other weaker teams. My breakthrough might’ve happened much later.”

“We’re a team, so we can only be stronger by working together,” Xu Jingming said. “We reached the finals thanks to Sister Yi.”

“Dear experts, I’m the one who benefited the most from doing nothing.” Li Miaomiao bowed and thanked them. “Thank you, everyone. Thank you so much for bringing me popularity. Moreover, do you know how many downloads my single ‘Pearwood’ received during the Firestarter Cup?”

Wang Yi and the others were uncertain.

Heng Fang decided to check the song downloads.

“56 million downloads,” Li Miaomiao said happily. “It’s pay-to-download! It’s more than the number of downloads in the past few years. Moreover, it’s driving sales to my other songs. It’s wonderful.”

“The total download count for our team’s song still hasn’t reached 100 million.” Heng Fang looked at the song download figures and immediately said, “As a member of Team Pearwood, I think it’s necessary to help Sister-in-law promote it.”

“We have to promote Cat.” Wang Yi nodded. “I agree.”

“Brother Xu, we don’t have enough publicity.” Yang Qingshuo looked at Xu Jingming. “We still need you to do the publicity. Your popularity will definitely shoot through the roof after this competition. If you help publicize Sister-in-law, her songs will definitely become more and more popular. Pearwood is our team song, so we need to publicize it.”

“Of course, definitely,” Xu Jingming immediately said in a decisive manner when he noticed Li Miaomiao’s gaze.

At this moment, the stocky Liu Hai appeared with a smile and walked over.

“Captain.” Xu Hong and Dai Tongda immediately greeted him.

“Master.” Xu Jingming, Yang Qingshuo, and Heng Fang were surprised and immediately went to welcome him.

Liu Hai smiled at Xu Jingming. “This match wasn’t bad, and that final stab was even better. Did you break through with your spearmanship?”

“A small breakthrough.” Xu Jingming nodded. He had returned to his combat space after the competition and immediately checked his personal combat strength interface.

“It’s good to have a breakthrough.” Liu Hai nodded. “It’s just that there’s still a huge gap between you and me. All the best! I’m waiting for you… to defeat me. As a master, I hope that you as disciples can surpass me someday.”

Yang Qingshuo and Heng Fang looked at each other. Surpass?

They felt like the gap was getting wider and wider.

Xu Jingming walked forward and whispered, “Master, I want to ask: how much strength did you use in your battle with me?”

“Mm…” Liu Hai thought for a moment. “Fifty percent.”

“Fifty percent?” Xu Jingming barely had a rough understanding of his and his master’s strength.

“Continue working hard.” Liu Hai smiled with great expectations. Perhaps it was because he was old or because he had been a master for too long, but he loved teaching his disciples. He was happier to see his disciples succeed than him breaking through.

He thought of ways to distill and dissect the various combat techniques to bestow them to his disciples in the clearest possible way.

During the teaching process, his insights became much clearer, and his realm became higher and higher. When the virtual world arrived, he immediately became world champion. However, what he yearned for the most was for his disciples to catch up to him and surpass him.

“Captain, get ready. As the champion team, it’s time to receive the prize.” Xu Hong saw a notification and immediately informed the rest.

“We still have to go on stage to receive the prize? How troublesome.” Liu Hai immediately gathered Liu Hai’s Elderly Team.

As the champion of China’s first Firestarter Cup National Tournament, Liu Hai’s Elderly Team smiled happily as they went on stage and went through the process of receiving the prize.

Xu Jingming and the others watched enviously.

“500 million in prize money.” Liu Chongyuan was amazed and envious. They were now giving out the prize money.

“Our prize money has arrived.” Yang Qingshuo had been paying attention to his personal accounts. When he discovered the change in his accounts, he immediately informed everyone.

“Wow…”

“So much money! A killing! A killing! I’ve finally made a killing after all these years!”

Heng Fang and Liu Chongyuan were delighted. The latter even cried with joy; he had never earned much.

“A substitute like me received 9.6 million after tax?” Li Miaomiao was very happy. “The competition officials are really straightforward. They even withheld the tax for us.”

Xu Jingming and Wang Yi were calm as they watched with a smile.

Wang Yi earned a lot to begin with, while Xu Jingming received plenty of tips after participating in the Firestarter Cup. From the battle where he defeated Tie Lianyun, Xu Jingming received quite a lot of tips for each battle. The more popular he was, the more fans he had, and the more tips he received.

After a few matches, Xu Jingming was already known all over the country. After all, the number of viewers in those matches exceeded a billion.

In terms of martial arts contestants’ fame, Xu Jingming was definitely in the top few domestically. He was even better than Wang Yi, who was known across the country. No competition in the past had domestic influence that could compare to the virtual world’s Firestarter Cup.

******

The Earth Alliance’s envoy delegation began to leave after watching the awards ceremony.

“This battle has broadened our horizons,” the caucasian elder in the lead said with a smile. “China’s experts are indeed extraordinary. Be it world champion Liu Hai or the younger generation—that spearmanship expert and the female sharpshooter are all very outstanding. I believe that China will definitely contribute more to Earth’s civilization when it steps into the new era.”

Director Zhou smiled and said, “China is a part of Earth, so we will naturally work hard for all of Earth’s civilization.”

“With great power comes greater responsibility,” the EU envoy said. “China now has two of the world’s top five experts. It’s obvious how strong China is, but China hasn’t contributed enough on Mars.”

“In terms of experts, the United States of America accounts for two on the Cosmos Ranking,” Director Zhou said. “Moreover, the contributions from Mars were agreed upon before. China didn’t avoid its share of contributions. On the other hand, the funds provided by a particular country have only reached one-third of the promised amount.”

The envoy in question immediately said, “We are already working hard. Our burden…”

“We’ll discuss it at the next alliance meeting,” the caucasian elder said. “In short, China’s finals were a feast to the eye.”

“We welcome all of you to China again. China has always been a country of etiquette, and we welcome all our friends,” Director Zhou said.

The envoy delegation left quietly.

Director Zhou and the deputy directors disappeared and left the livestream.

China, Life Evolution Bureau.

Director Zhou and the three deputy directors gathered in the meeting room while Deputy Director Liang Qian appeared as a projection.

“The Firestarter Cup has come to an end.” Director Zhou looked at the few people present. “We have to confirm the second batch of people to be groomed with priority. According to the rules, the five of us will discuss it first. The results will be submitted to the highest authorities.”

“The ones groomed this time will be different from the first batch. The first batch received the same amount of grooming. Now that we’ve seen the strength and speed of improvement of the experts, we will focus on the top three. The remaining 17 will receive grooming equivalent to the previous batch.”

“Therefore, the name list of the first three is especially important. Who will be first on the new list?” Director Zhou asked.

“The number one person on the new list will definitely be selected between Fang Yu and Xu Jingming,” Deputy Director Liang Qian’s projection said.

“I agree with Fang Yu. He’s only 20 this year, and he didn’t have any professional experience in the past, yet he has grown to where he is today. Moreover, he’s the only expert in the country who has an evolutionary method compatibility score of more than 100%—a compatibility score of 103%… Everyone should know that it’s very normal for one to find it difficult to break through when they reach their limits in the later stages of cultivation,” Deputy Director Wang Shuqi said. “When everyone is stuck at their limits and can’t break through, Fang Yu—who has a compatibility score of 103%—will be the strongest because his body surpasses the other contestants in every aspect.”

“Such a genius definitely needs to be groomed,” Wang Shuqi said..