Chapter 79: Sticking to His Dreams
Translator: Strivon / Ash Editor: Geoffrey / Lancent
The large mass of food that he whale-swallowed entirely transformed into pure energy, endlessly nourishing Li Yao’s body. The energy caused every single dried up cell in his body to be filled once more with strength and shine with thriving vitality.
“I will be cultivating like mad for this next month. I will strive in recovering to my peak state. I will absolutely attend this year’s entrance exams with all my effort!”
Li Yao punched his fist out hard. A sound of silk tearing rang suddenly in the air. A faint white ripple swept outward starting from his fist, slowly undulating across.
This white ripple caused Ding Lingdang’s eyes to flash. “You’re confident that you can test into the Nine Elites?”
Li Yao was silent for a moment and he squeezed his fist tighter. “My spirit root has been torn. Only 7% of my Actualization Quotient is left. If I had a year’s worth of time, I’m confident I can restore my AQ to 70%. I may even be able to charge into the most powerful realm, 90% AQ and above! But one month of time is really too short. Honestly, I don’t have the confidence for an absolute victory.”
“However, even if I only have a 1% chance, I will use 100% of all my strength to strive for it… It would be good if I win, but losing is fine too. I will only know after I go for it with all my effort. Not giving it my all is the same as giving up — it’s not my style!”
“Great! I knew it then that you were destined to be a member of our Grand Desolate War Institution!”
Ding Lingdang did not conceal the hungry glow in her eyes at all. It looked as if she wanted to swallow Li Yao whole with a single bite.
Li Yao was stunned… Deep Sea University had given up on him. Crimson Nimbus Second also pressured him to quit school. He never thought that Ding Lingdang would represent Grand Desolate War Institution and still offer him an invitation!
Li Yao didn’t understand. “I only have 7% left of my Actualization Quotient. I’ve turned into a cripple under the vast majority of people’s eyes. Your Grand Desolate War Institution still supports me?”
Ding Lingdang looked straight at him while she spoke seriously, “I told you this when I first met you. There is a total of Nine Elite Universities in the Federation. Eight of them educate cultivators, as for our Grand Desolate War Institution… We only breed true warriors! This wasn’t an exaggeration, but is the basis upon which the Grand Desolate War Institution was founded on!”
Ding Lingdang sat her buttocks down next to Li Yao. She faced Li Yao and narrated the origins of the Grand Desolate War Institution.
Li Yao only knew then the massive difference between the Grand Desolate War Institution and the other eight Elite Universities.
Aside from the Federation’s First Military College, the other Elite Universities were created when the nation was first founded. Each and every Cultivator Guild united together to create these universities. The goal of these schools was to educate cultivators for the sake of creating new blood for the various Cultivator Guilds.
They walked the path of eliteness from the start, counting as the typical academic institutions.
The Federation’s First Military College also, more or less, had the same goal when they were established; their goal was to foster military cultivators.
Therefore, the cultivation potential of students was of high consideration by these eight universities. They looked especially at the Actualization Quotient; it was unacceptable if the AQ was even the least bit lacking.
However, the Grand Desolate War Institution was different. The Grand Desolate War Institution was located in the Demon Beast Wasteland. It was spontaneously established by unaffiliated cultivators and the martial civilians. It was completely unorthodox.
… There were over ten million square kilometers of land in the northern region of the Federation. Even though the environment was of the poorest of qualities with a sky filled with yellow sand and desert land everywhere, there was actually a rich abundance of resources and crystal mines stored underground. Countless adventurers came here within the past several hundred years with hopes of making a fortune. They settled here and multiplied.
Yet, this place was actually the region where Demon Beasts had wreaked the most havoc in the Heaven’s Origin Sector. There were many Demon Beasts, comparable to the Far East Demon Kingdom back in the day.
According to the speculation of many experts and scholars in the cultivator world, countless cracks of space exist in the depths of the Grand Desolate Region located in the extreme north of the Federation. These cracks allow passage to a Greater Thousand World controlled by the Demon Race… The Blood Demon Sector!
The Grand Desolate Region was precisely the border between the Heaven’s Origin Sector and the Blood Demon Sector. The powerful Demon Beasts and Demon Race can come at any time through the cracks in space from the Blood Demon Sector, entering the Heaven’s Origin Sector in a steady stream.
The Grant Desolate Region became the Star Glory Federation’s front line for all eternity, engaging in the flames of war for several hundreds of years continually. It was known as The Demon Beast Wasteland!
Even though the Federal Army had stationed troops in the Grand Desolate Region, each of the major cultivator guilds also formed their own hunting squads to infiltrate the wasteland and purge evil. But the Grand Desolate Region spanned a distance of thousands of miles. In the end, there were several places that were unable to be covered by the army and the cultivator guilds.
The human race that lived in the Grand Desolate Region could encounter Demon Beasts at any given time. After several hundred years of cleansing, the remaining survivors were not lacking in bravery and had no fear of death! They were the strong who fought with bravery and fierceness!
Natural selection. Survival of the fittest. By slaying several Demon Beasts in close combat, these powerful also turned into absolutely strong existences with ferocity on the level of Demon Beasts. Even ordinary people, who originally did not possess good talent, were able to ascend to become cultivators through experiencing several hundred bloody battles and luckily escaping death.
The powerful amassed together automatically for the sake of survival. They took their own close-combat experience and passed it on to those like them.
At first, there simply were just some unfixed and casual activities such as Martial Arts Exchange Conventions, Hunting Experience Lectures, etc. Everyone sat around and compared notes on their martial arts while roasting Demon Beast meat, exchanging their experiences.
It wasn’t until later for the organization known as the Grand Desolate War Institution to be formed. A portion of the people who faced Demon Beasts in close combat had received critical injuries. No longer suited for fighting the enemy, these powerful stayed in this organization and passed on their martial arts and combat experiences to the youngsters.
The number of powerful humans in the Grand Desolate Region grew larger and larger with the passing of several hundred years of development within the hundred year bloody battle with the Demon Beasts. Even quite a few high stage cultivators were able to emerge forth from the mountain of corpses and the blood filled sea. The actual strength and teaching standards of the Grand Desolate War Institution kept increasing. Finally, they rose to become one of the Nine Elites!
Although they were one of the Nine Elites, Grand Desolate War Institution continued to maintain its crudeness, barbarism, and their tradition in emphasizing actual combat. Their standards of selecting students were not quite the same as the other Eight Elites.
To become a cultivator, one needs to have their Actualization Quotient reach 100%; their spirit root must be awakened.
But it wasn’t necessary for things to be that complicated when becoming a warrior. Even if there was only 1% of an Actualization Quotient remaining, as long as one’s fist can still be clenched tight, as long as one’s heated blood can still boil, as long as one can still charge and attack without being affected by the howls of the opposing powerful Demon Beasts…… it was enough!
The Grand Desolate War Institution did not breed cultivators — they only bred warriors!
Ding Lingdang’s glowing eyes shined as she stared at Li Yao. She spoke earnestly, “You’ve just awakened. I still don’t know to what degree you can recover your body to in the end, so right now I can’t give you any guarantees. However, please be convinced of Grand Desolate War Institution’s sincerity. Student Li Yao, if you are willing, I hope to be able to closely observe your cultivation for the following month, to move one step closer to confirming your recovery state. At the same time, I will fight for preferential treatment for you as much as possible. The time for Special Enrollment has already passed; it would be very hard to arrange, but a Preferential Score Treatment shouldn’t be a problem. I will do my best to fight for the best Preferential Score Treatment!”
Li Yao was finally moved.
The style revealed by the Grand Desolate War Institution was completely different than that of Deep Sea University.
Ding Lingdang held a unique charm that was different than that of Xie Tingxian. It was the kind that comes when one will persist until the very end once a target has been fixed. The charm that comes from absolutely completing something.
It caused one to unable to keep their blood from boiling, to wish to fight shoulder to shoulder with her, to fight until the bloody end!
“What do you think, Student Li Yao? I saw the blazing flame in your eyes. Your heart has already stirred. That’s right! Be a straightforward man! Let’s do our best together for this following month and blast out a never before seen miracle! Let’s make those people who look down on you feel regret! Then let’s enter the Grand Desolate War Institution’s Combat Department in a magnificent fashion! Become a heaven and earth defying warrior! What do you say!”
Ding Lingdang’s passion radiated all around. She was completely ignited!
Li Yao also was boiling. Suddenly, he smashed his fist down and growled, “No good!”
“Ah?” Ding Lingdang blinked her eyes. Her expression was sluggish. “Whaddya say?”
“No good. I won’t enter Grand Desolate War Institution’s Combat Department,” Li Yao repeated very seriously.
Ding Lingdang’s charming face broke down completely.
“Yo yo yo yo. Student Li Yao, we just ate that meal so happily just now. We chatted in our conversation so amiably. When I introduced the history of the Grand Desolate War Institution to you, the flame in your eyes was blazing and bursting! You were clearly super interested! That rejection you did in the end was way too snappy!”
“Amiableness is Amiableness. Happiness is happiness. Blazing flames are flames. But Dreams… aren’t something that can be sold!”
Li Yao looked straight at Ding Lingdang’s beautiful eyes. He spoke with complete seriousness, “Sister Ling, I am extremely thankful for everything you’ve invested for my sake in this month. When everyone else no longer supported me, when everyone else gave up on me, only your Grand Desolate War Institution continued to favor me and believe that I’m a manufacturable material… To the me at this very moment, this belief is the most precious of invaluable treasures!”
“The Grand Desolate War Institution’s founding history and traditional school of thought are really to my liking… You should have looked through my profile and know that I was born in the Artifact Graveyard. That I am a small garbage scavenger. I’ve struggled since young at the very bottom. I started 100% from the grassroots. It should be natural for someone like me to go to your Grand Desolate War Institution!”
“However, I’ve always wanted to become a Master Refiner from the very beginning. This is not only my dream but a promise was given to the deceased person closest to me!”
“The Combat Department of the Grand Desolate War Institution is the Federation’s strongest. I believe there are many youths who thirst to become the most powerful of warriors. They are like the me at this time, striving with all their strength to chase their dreams and break into the Combat Department of the Grand Desolate War Institution.”
“If I gave up my dream of becoming a Master Refiner for the sake of emotion, for the sake of trust, for our amiable chat and other causes, to enter into the Grand Desolate War Institution’s Combat Department unresigningly and unwillingly… This would be an insult to my dream. It would also be an insult to the Grand Desolate War Institution’s Combat Department. It would be even more of an insult to the thousands up thousands of students cultivating with their all, thirsting to test into the Grand Desolate War Institution!”
“So, I’m very sorry. I can’t choose the Combat Department of the Grand Desolate War Institution. My number one goal still remains to be the Refining Department of Deep Sea University!”
“As for the trust and assistance the Grand Desolate War Institution has given me, I will engrave it all in my heart. One day in the future when I become a Master Artificer and break through in my career, I will absolutely pay back everything you’ve done for me today.”
“A dream once made is a dream forever fixed. One absolutely has to persist down that road. There isn’t anyone who can change my path!”
Ding Lingdang remained quiet until he finished his speaking. Her expression was somewhat lonely. “You’re this determined? You won’t give even a 1% chance for our Grand Desolate War Institution?”
Li Yao hesitated for a moment.
For some unknown reason, the hesitating face of Xie Tingxian had suddenly flashed in his mind alongside with Ding Lingdang’s ravenous eating appearance just now.
Right when he was about to painfully nod his head, Ding Lingdang actually laughed crisply and brightly, revealing a mouth of white teeth. “You hesitated. That means I still have a 1% chance, right? I remember that someone told me just now that even if there’s only a 1% chance, he will bring out 100% of his strength and strive with all his might. After giving his all, it didn’t matter if he loses or wins, but if he didn’t give his all, it would be the same as giving up. It just wasn’t his style!”
“Excellent excellent. These words are my spoken feelings. Likewise, these are my thoughts!”
“It’s fine even if you haven’t promised me. I will stick to you like sticky candy for this following month. The Grand Desolate War Institution will also bring forth its most alluring preferential treatment, to make you understand completely our sincerity!”
“Unless I see with my own eyes you fill out the words Deep Sea University’s Refining Department on the College Entrance Exam Application Form a month later, I will, like you, persist until the very end. Before that happens, I absolutely won’t give up!”
Li Yao really didn’t understand. He wasn’t a narcissistic person; he really couldn’t see what was so special about him to be worthy of Ding Lingdang being attached like this, to not be discarded, to not be given up!
Ding Lingdang stood up on the flame wing and spread out her arms. Her beautiful feet tapped and she rocked swaying into to the front most portion of the Scarlet Flame Battle Shuttle. She relied on her big toe to stand on a condensed flame.
Underneath the blood-red illumination of the setting sun, she had the appearance of a devastatingly beautiful goddess.
She closed her eyes and bathed in the warmth of the setting sun. She was silent for a long time, long enough for Li Yao to believe that she wouldn’t answer this question. Then she slowly opened her mouth, “Because I see myself in you.”
“What do you mean?” Li Yao was completely confused.
But this time, Ding Lingdang only giggled lightly. She wouldn’t reply no matter how Li Yao asked.
She just stood like this quietly, looking at the beautiful view of the changing wind and clouds. Her eyes were somewhat blurred; it was as if she had sunk into distant memories.