Chapter 8 – Registration Crisis (III)
Black hair still concealed the left side of her face as she slowly walked up to Yin Zhu’s side. She threw a ruby coin onto the table and faced the teacher in charge of registration. “This is his tuition fee.” There were very few ruby coins that circulated the market. Only high-ranked nobles used them. One ruby coin was equivalent to a hundred gold coins.
“Hai Yang, it’s you. You are going against me again,” the female mage angrily said.
“Rolande, I am not going against you. I merely cannot watch you bully our Divine Music division’s new student.” Hai Yang’s voice sounded as glacial as before. Yin Zhu’s heart, however, warmed. Her pale face appeared to be even more noble.
Rolande pointed a finger at Yin Zhu and said, “Well, this means you’re accepted. If you’re a man, however, in three days we’ll compete at the Freshman Competition and see who’s better. Otherwise, whenever you see me, make a detour and fuck off.” After she said this, she paused, her eyes shining with a mocking light. She pretended to receive a flash of realization. “Oh, I forgot. You’re part of the Divine Music division. The Divine Music division never participates in the Freshman Competition. Do you even have any offensive power?”
“I’ll participate,” Yin Zhu accepted Rolande’s challenge. He blurted out his agreement without thinking.
Hai Yang wrinkled her brow and whispered, “Don’t be so impulsive…”
“I’m participating,” Yin Zhu repeated once more. With a resolute and dedicated gaze, he continued, “Although I don’t know what the Freshman Competition is, I accept your challenge.” At this very moment, he recalled his childhood. His grandfather said during his first Bamboo Dou Qi lesson, ‘A man cannot be arrogant, but he can be unyielding. As the successor to the Bamboo Sect, you need to possess a backbone as tall and straight as a bamboo.’
Rolande hummed, “Good! I’ll see you in the competition then – if you can meet me. I reckon you’ll be unable to pass the first round or will just want to lie down on your bed. Perhaps you won’t even qualify for the competition.” Finished speaking, she shot a glance at Hai Yang who was standing by Ye Yin Zhu, turned around, and left. She apparently didn’t want to confront Hai Yang face to face.
Looking at Rolande’s back, Yin Zhu’s eyes displayed a thoughtful light. At this moment, he seemed to have slightly grown up.
“You really want to participate in the Freshman Competition? Our Divine Music division never joins!” Xue Ling uneasily said.
Ye Yin Zhu nodded towards Xue Ling, “Yes. I want to participate. My grandfather told me, ‘A man cannot shrink from any challenge.’”
Xue Ling stared at Yin Zhu with amazement. Her beautiful pupils dilated as she smiled and said, “Good! I’m participating too.”
“Me too. I’ll also support you,” a shy voice resounded. Lan Xi, who Yin Zhu had just met not long ago, spoke up.
Hai Yang’s voice was still calm and flat. “The Freshman Competition is led by a senior of the division.”
Ye Yin Zhu suddenly recalled something and hastily said, “Thank you, but I cannot accept your money.” He turned his body towards the table and tried to find the ruby coin, but the teacher collected it already.
Hai Yang slowly walked away and said, “You’re just borrowing, that’s all. You can pay me back later.” She left, but regardless if it was her or her guzheng, she left a deep impression in Yin Zhu’s mind.
“This is your school uniform and your dormitory key. Your dormitory is located in the mixed district, room 623.” The teacher in charge of registration appeared unwilling to even glance at Yin Zhu as he placed the items in Yin Zhu’s hands.
“Mixed District, room 623? Where is that?” Yin Zhu was lost. By his side, Xue Ling and Lan Xi shook their heads, indicating they didn’t know either.
“I know where it is. I’ll take you there.” Fisichella took the initiative and opened his mouth to speak.
“Thank you.” Ye Yin Zhu’s heart was happy. Just a moment ago, when Rolande appeared, she had influenced and changed his mood completely. It seemed that within the institution, there were many good people.
“I’ll see you tomorrow then. Don’t be late for class!” Xue Ling enthusiastically waved at Yin Zhu. Lan Xi restrained herself, merely smiling and nodding at Yin Zhu.
With the registration crisis over, the new students methodically rearranged themselves to register. Fisichella patted Yin Zhu’s back and said, “Let’s go. We’ll run, so we can get there a little quicker.”
The two of them walked away from the crowd. Fisichella ran ahead of Yin Zhu. Although the running pace was not very fast, his strides were huge; as a result, his speed was not slow.
Yin Zhu followed closely by his side step by step and asked, “Fisichella, where is the mixed district? Is it very far?”
Fisichella laughed and replied, “I suppose the teacher in charge of registration saw that you had no money so he arranged for you to live in the mixed district. Of course, if you were a female student, you would have lived in the line of Divine Music division dormitories. It’s a pity that you are the first male student of the Divine Music division. They do not have female students living in mixed dormitories. The mixed district is also the work-study district. All of the students living there work part-time jobs. The environment is the worst. Although most of the students attending the Milan Institution for Magic and Martial Arts are nobles, there are some students with good potential that lack money. They can participate in a work-study program.”
Ye Yin Zhu’s eyes shined. “So, I am also eligible.”
Fisichella said, “Of course you can, but you would have to find the work yourself. Oh, by the way, do you really want to participate in the Freshman Competition?”
Yin Zhu nodded seriously and affirmed, “Yes! But, can you tell me what the Freshman Competition is?”
Fisichella staggered, nearly falling over. Greatly taken aback, he said, “No way. You don’t even know what the Freshman Competition is, yet you dared to accept that little witch Rolande’s challenge? You really deserve to be called my idol.” Even though he spoke these words, he looked at Yin Zhu as if he was an idiot.
Yin Zhu scratched his head and felt somewhat embarrassed as he said, “I just arrived from Arcadia, so I am not familiar with everything here.”
Fisichella said, “So it’s like this. Every year, the institution accepts new students. Afterwards, the city holds a big competition for new students in order to test the quality of the new students. The competition assigns rankings to the students so it is quite possible for the institution to focus on your cultivation more. Furthermore, the top three students receive reward money.”
“So good,” Yin Zhu exclaimed, pleasantly surprised. He was severely lacking in money, to say the least. He still had to pay Hai Yang back a hundred gold coins. Furthermore, he also had future living expenses to deal with.
Fisichella turned around and rolled his eyes. “Really? Do you think it is easy to hold a rank? Ah! The Freshman Competition is divided in accordance to your division specialization. Each division specialization sends their strongest team to participate. Therefore, the division will host a competition to select the best students during the first three days of school. After selecting the most outstanding four individuals, a senior will lead them to participate in Freshman Competition. The division specializations will compete amongst each other by means of drawn lots. Our warriors altogether have seventeen divisions. You mages have nine divisions. Your Divine Music division is not even considered to be a complete division. You are a small division affiliated with the Spirit division. After the internal competition rounds, the warrior and mage factions choose their two best performing divisions to enter the finals. After moving on from the knockout competition, they advance towards the finals. The true champion is then determined. Every student that enters the Milan Institution for Magic and Martial Arts are practically elites. It is extremely difficult to rise above all of the others. In the history of the Milan Institution for Magic and Martial Arts, the Divine Music division has never participated in the Freshman Competition. The Spirit division is more popular. For three consecutive years, their freshmen have entered the finals. That little witch Rolande from earlier is the granddaughter of the Violet Clan’s patriarch. A genius wind mage, she has reached the Intermediate Level Yellow Rank at the age of 16. She can be considered to be a well-known figure among the new students. Although you just announced that the Divine Music division is competing, I’m afraid it will be extremely difficult to find five individuals willing to join…”