Chapter 726 - 670: Cheating
"Mr Arthur, what seems to be the problem?"
Paul, still eerily smiling, nicely asked as he feigned confusion. John, on the other hand, was frowning as his black pupils were so intensely focused on the parasite.
"I would like to John for a second. I don’t suppose you mind, yes?"
"Of course not, Mr Arthur." As he said that, he turned to John and sternly warned him
"Be respectful and don’t cause any trouble."
When he finished, he softly pushed the youth toward Arthur, who did a simple gesture, causing both he and John to vanish.
When they were gone, Paul remained standing there, seemingly dazed. His eyes jumped to where Arthur was, wondering what’s going to happen. When he finally snapped out of it, he looked at the VIP box only, his gaze falling on the silver-haired woman.
His body instinctively trembled, feeling a wave of chilling frost momentarily cover him. Lucy was glaring at him, not even trying to mask her hostility.
’Maybe this was a bad idea, after all.’ Thought Paul, politely lowering his head to Lucy and smiling. When he felt his bow lasted long enough, he turned around and left.
"Mr Arthur, I apologize again for my rash actions. I didn’t mean to ambush your team, I just wanted to spar with Ho Qing."
Now that he was alone with Arthur and no one, including Paul, could hear them, John became excited rather than nervous. He was face to face with the notorious parasite, someone who shocked the whole world on more than one occasion. Whether it’s his attack on the White Specter Clan or his demonstration of power in the Red Tower.
Arthur was slowly pacing around, his eyes resting on the black-haired youth. There was a mysterious smile on his face as he continuously nodded his head, seemingly understanding something.
"Don’t worry about that. I didn’t bring you here to talk about that."
"Emm... then what?"
John couldn’t help but smile, his hands tingling and his heart beating fast. He wasn’t powerful enough to fight the parasite but he an unstoppable urge to try and attack. There were no ulterior motives, just a pure d.e.s.i.r.e to battle the strongest.
"You know, John, I really don’t understand people like you and them. Do they think I have no eyes or what? I mean, I’m a parasite and my eyes, you see... are very special."
The more he listened to Arthur, the more confused John became. The tingling he was experiencing seemed to have completely disappeared, replaced by an unimaginable dread. Before he could utter a sound, his surroundings changed. He heard unceasing and loud hissing from all around, the sky was crimson-red and his body was shaking.
He jumped into the air and, without any hesitation, swung his chains at dozens of snakes that jumped at him. He was able to pulverize them but couldn’t defend his back, which was bitten by a snake twice his size.
The snake, green in color and very slimy, dug its fangs deep into his back and flung him in the air. The youth let out a painful groan, bore through the pain, and summoned his Godspirit...
When he came back, John was injured and bleeding profusely. He felt a hand tightly hold his shoulder then, miraculously, his body was restored to normal. The blood, injuries, and ripped clothes were unscathed again.
"Are you satisfied now?"
This time, John didn’t dare look into the parasite’s eyes. His head was lowered and he was still shaking. He could’ve sworn he had died in that strange world, yet here he was, healthier than ever.
"Mr Arthur... I didn’t"
"Didn’t mean what?" Coldly retorted Arthur. He retracted his hand and continued pacing around.
"I knew from the beginning that you were breaking the rules but I still turned a blind eye, do you know why? It’s because you weren’t that much stronger than the other Participants. I wanted to see how they will fare.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I lied earlier. Part of why you’re here is because you attacked my team. A 6-star God Monarch who faked his age and repressed his cultivation. Isn’t it humiliating? Tricking the host and even cheating?"
Only when he heard the last words did John instinctively raise his head, his mouth half-open.
"What? think I won’t find out? Lucy and I saw everything. And I don’t doubt a few others saw you too."
"Mr Arthur, please forgive me!"
John attempted to kneel but couldn’t. An invisible force kept him standing against his will, wrapping around his whole body and rendering him unable to do naught but move his eyes.
"Funnily enough, John, I’ve dealt with a puppeteer not long ago. Though even if I had not, the situation would’ve been exactly the same, I reckon."
Now, only Arthur was talking, his smile getting wider as he paced around.
"The Ancient Federation, a strong and hidden power situated at the end of the world. I was a bit surprised to see them send a young participant. I had high expectations... alas, they turned out to be not that different from the Sects and Clan in the Divine Planet-"
The parasite stopped and faced the frightened youth.
"Actually, here’s what I don’t understand. Why cheat? It’s not like you don’t have capable and talented youngsters? Were the competition awards that lucrative? Probably not. Then why?"
"I asked you a question, John. Don’t think of leaving this place alive if you don’t talk."
After what seemed to be an eternity, John mustered some courage and responded.
"M..m-my teacher’s idea. He told me it..it-it’ll help me to join the competition."
"Did he tell you to cheat too? And hide your real age?"
"N-no. He didn’t know about the rules. I was excited too but the participants were too weak so I wanted to...."
"What did you want?"
"I wanted to fight you, Mr Arthur."
Hearing this, Arthur burst out in laughter. He laughed for a long time as if he heard the funniest joke.
"Did you even do research before having that thought? You can’t even beat Gutcha."
As much as he wanted to object to that statement, John just bit his lips and maintained silence.
"You may be slightly older than the rest of the participants but you’re not wiser, unfortunately."
He approached John and stopped right in front of him, gazed down at his pale face. Arthur was at least a head taller and, especially right now, he looked absolutely dreadful to the previously excited John.
"You’ll continue the competition, but if I see you cheating again then I assure you that you’ll meet a fate worse than death. If you know even a little bit of me then you must know that I always keep my words, right?"
Fearing that Arthur might change his mind, John frantically nodded his head. He felt his body ease done, no longer bound by the parasite’s Telekinesis.
"Sorry, Mr Arthur."
The talk between the two didn’t last long, only fifteen minutes. Arthur teleported back to the VIP box whereas John returned to the plateau, where the rest of the winning teams were currently at.
"How did it go?"
Lucy looked at Arthur and calmly asked, to which he winked at her and whispered.
"How did you think it went?"
She turned his gaze to John, who stood amongst the participants, his fists balled and his face as pale as earlier.
"You scared the boy shitless."
"He had it coming." He replied, chuckling to himself while remembering John’s fear-filled eyes.
"Ladies and Gentleman! The six Trippy Pumpkins have finally been captured. The Sixth Trial will begin an hour!"
Surprisingly, both the Elves and Mermaids were out of the competition. They were the teams that had the highest numbers of participants yet they came out empty-handed, quite literally.
1 The Imoogi Clan: 330 points (3)
2 The Ancient Federation : 320 Points (1)
3 The Demon Team : 300 Points (2)
4 The MoonStar team : 275 Points (4)
5 The Holy Church Team : 260 Points (2)
6 The Dark Blaze Team : 199 Points (1)
Thirteen participants remain, though the ranking didn’t change by a lot. The Dark Blaze Team, or rather, Holand, pulled it off yet again, shocking everyone. His perseverance and resilience were commendable, he managed to best both the Mermaids and Elves and caught the Trippy Pumpkin all by himself. Consequently, however, he was gruesomely injured by one of the Demon Girls, his whole left arm shredded and his shoulder bleeding profusely.
"I never imagined he’ll make it to the Sixth Trial!"
Even Isadore was shocked, tapping his seat with his index as he eyed the young man.
"What do you think, Arthur? Could he be cheating?"
"No. It’s sheer will."
"Will? It’s not like it could help you catch a Pumpkin or fight a monster."
"It could do many wondrous things, Your Majesty."
As Arthur said that, he glanced at the quiet Cristina. The girl was sitting next to Lucy and looking at her celebrating friends. She was sad that she couldn’t join them but nonetheless felt happy that they are winning.