Chapter 115 – The Top Ten
Translated by: bbkgs
Edited by: bbkgs
TLCed by: bbkgs
The name that appeared for rank 11 was unexpected; it was not Qi Jian from Li Shan Sword Sect, but was the pride of Heavenly Academy, Zhuang Huan Yu. In regards to Zhuang Huan Yu, the council did not offer any evaluation, this implied the council did not consider his strength to have changed much over the past half a year.
The one that replaced Zhuang Huan Yu in tenth position was Qi Jian, this switch in positions was perplexing for many people; Zhuang Huan Yu had triumphed over Qi Jian in the past and Qi Jian had only just recently lost to Tang Thirty-Six at the Ivy League gathering; with this result, not only did his ranking not slip, it actually advanced?
The evaluation that was transmitted from the Hall of Oration, those few short words, gave an exceedingly high appraisal for his performance at the Ivy League gathering. Students and teachers alike that were at the divine avenue, intently listened to the evaluation, but Chen Chang Sheng didn’t pay any attention, he turned his gaze towards the guesthouse, thinking to himself as to if it will continue to remain quiet.
The naming had entered its most important phase, reaching the Proclamation of Azure Cloud’s top ten, names that managed to appear here, were all the most talented geniuses on the continent.
Following Qi Jian’s name, unexpectedly, yet somehow reasonably, the next person listed was not Luo Luo; the ninth position belonged to a young genius from Scholartree Manor.
Chen Chang Sheng hadn’t heard of that young genius’ name before, and thought to himself that this individual should have been placed higher in the previous proclamation; his main concern was with Luo Luo’s final ranking and advancement.
What followed was completely out of everyone’s expectations.
The eighth rank was not Luo Luo, neither was seventh, that position belonged to Liang Ban Hu; this eminent disciple of Li Shan Sword Sect, the Divine State’s Fifth Law, had placed upon the sixth position for the past two years, it would seem he had followed the fate of the other geniuses that had been consecutively pushed down the rankings by Luo Luo’s rise.
Chen Chang Sheng lowered his head and intently listened, he would have been satisfied with Luo Luo placing within the top 6, but he couldn’t help feeling that she would continue to place higher; he knew of Luo Luo’s improvement at Orthodox Academy over these past few months and hoped the council also recognised this.
The divine avenue was surrounding by uncontrollable exclamations of shock. At this moment, a lot of people had already managed to have a faint inkling of the reason for today’s sudden update to the proclamation, the reason… the sixth rank still wasn’t Luo Luo.
Chen Chang Sheng didn’t pay attention to the name, he gently clasped his hands together within his sleeves in agitation; he hoped for Luo Luo’s continual advancement, but also knew of the difficulty.
Following the exclamations of shock came a blanket of silence; undoubtedly, a lot of locations in the Capital, such as Heavenly Academy or Star Seizer Academy were currently also silent, quietly waiting for Luo Luo’s name to appear.
The Hall of Oration’s sound projecting array was unaffected by the tension, and continued to methodically read out the fifth rank: Guan Fei Bai.
It was Guan Fei Bai… it was actually Guan Fei Bai… the Divine State’s Fourth Law Guan Fei Bai; he had fallen from the position he held onto for three years.
Countless gazes fell upon the Cedrus trees surrounding the campus at the right end of the divine avenue, but the guesthouse remained silent. The gazes then turned towards Chen Chang Sheng and the other students of Orthodox Academy on the divine avenue, the gazes felt exceedingly complicated.
Everyone was shocked and confused.
Judging from the rankings of the proclamation, the Council of Divine Ordinance had fully acknowledged the results of the battle between Orthodox Academy and Li Shan Sword Sect at the Ivy League gathering. But that battle was different from a regular duel, how could one judge who was better or worse?
If one were to follow established convention, even if the council was to acknowledge that battle’s result, it should have resulted in Guan Fei Bai falling to rank 9 and Luo Luo rising by one to two places, how could Guan Fei Bai only drop by one rank and Luo Luo rise to rank within the top 4?
It has to be known that anyone within the top 10 on the Proclamation of Azure Clouds was amongst the most talented young geniuses on the continent, the difference between these individuals is small, therefore the evaluations had to be rigorous; even a small advancement was considerably difficult.
With Guan Fei Bai falling to the fifth rank, the fourth rank should naturally be Luo Luo, upon everyone’s expectation settling on hearing her royal name’s proclamation, something unexpected once again occurred.
The divine avenue was suddenly in an uproar; the sounds of chatter from the gathered people suddenly exploded, disturbing countless migrating birds amongst the woods, akin to wanting to overturn and embroil the calm autumn skies.
The fourth name on the rankings, was not Her Highness, Luo Luo, but someone else.
Chen Chang Sheng was slightly befuddled, and asked: “What’s going on, who is this person?”
Tang Thirty-Six at this moment had a face full of shock, and took a couple of minutes to steady himself, before saying: “The Divine State’s Third Law; after Qiu Shan Jun and Gou Han Shi entered the Proclamation of Golden Distinction, he was Li Shan Sword Sect’s strongest member on the Proclamation of Azure Clouds.”
He sombrely added: “He was always ranked third upon the Azure Clouds.”
Chen Chang Sheng took a moment before he fully understood, or more accurately, he took a moment before he fully recovered his senses, the edge of his mouth twitched slightly; he wanted to suppress his smile, but he couldn’t control himself.
… Luo Luo was amongst the top three of the Azure Clouds.
As the tutor of Luo Luo, and having spent such a long time together at Orthodox Academy, though they were not romantically linked, they had a deep friendship and shared experiences; he currently felt more elated than if he were to be personally placed upon the proclamation.
Three, this number has always had a special meaning for people, perhaps it was because of its stability, or perhaps it was due to some sort of complicated psychological effect, but three was something special.
For example, the Grand Examination only had three grades and the First Banner only took three people.
Therefore, the Proclamation of Azure Cloud’s top ten gave one sort of feeling, while the top three gave another type of feeling.
Being listed within the top three amongst the Azure Clouds was indication of Luo Luo standing upon the peak of her generation.
From this moment onwards, she wouldn’t just possess a noble and powerful bloodline, she would also possess a noble and powerful position, what’s more, the latter was something she had earned through painstaking cultivation and was not something related to her descent.
This was an indescribable honour.
Chen Chang Sheng lifted his head towards the endless steps that lead to the Hall of Clear Virtue, wondering if Luo Luo had managed to receive this news from within the Pope’s Green Leaf World.
The shock did not end here however.
The third rank upon the Azure Clouds was still not Luo Luo.
The divine avenue was silent; everyone was already numb from shock.
Cries of shock arose from across the entire Li Palace complex.
Tang Thirty-Six’s face turned pale and he said in a bewildered voice: “How could this…”
Chen Chang Sheng was not familiar with the geniuses that ranked amongst the top 10, therefore his reaction was not as severe as Tang Thirty-Six’s, but upon remembering that night at Orthodox Academy, the scene of Luo Luo politely and cutely standing beside Chen Chang Sheng, he had a hard time accepting; that dainty looking girl, was actually able to triumph over that cold-blooded wolf-child, who lived within the blizzards of the North and relied upon solitarily hunting the demon race for survival.
The moment had finally arrived.
Everyone had waited for this name; no one could have guessed from the start that they would have waited for so long in order to hear it.
“Orthodox Academy, Bai Di Luo Heng, Number Two of the Azure Clouds.”
The silent divine avenue remained silent, the surrounding Li Palace complex that was already in an uproar, once again erupted in cries, even the quiet guesthouse that was housing the Southern envoys had faint hints of activity.
The entire Capital, the entire continent, at this moment in time, was in the midst of shock.
Bai Di Luo Heng, the yao race’s Royal Princess, was previously ranked at ninth on the Proclamation of Azure Clouds, within a few short months she had entered the top three and placed second.
Everyone understood that advancing on a ranking such as the Proclamation of Azure Clouds increased in difficulty the higher you moved; jumping from rank 9 to rank 2 was unimaginably more difficult than even jumping from last place to a spot within the top 10.
What kind of monstrous advancement speed was this?
Upon the entire history of the proclamation, this type of event was exceptionally scarce, within the last few decades, only the entry of Qiu Shan Jun and Xu You Rong were comparable.
Could it be, that within the eyes of the council, Luo Luo had already reached the level of Qiu Shan Jun and Xu You Rong?
A lot of people pondered upon this question, but upon thinking back to the Ivy League gathering, even though Luo Luo’s performance was strong, it couldn’t have been said to greatly exceed her peers, or at least, it wasn’t enough to satisfy everyone; on what basis did she surpass that wolf-child of the North?
Those seeking an answer would not have missed the evaluation from the council.
Elder Tian Ji’s evaluation for Luo Luo was as brief and simple as ever; direct and blunt, akin to the style of the White Emperor clan: it directly stated that she had overcome the difficulties that a member of the yao race would face when cultivating, and that through the talent granted by her tyrannical bloodline, apart from individuals like Qiu Shan Jun and Xu You Rong, no one could hope to match against her.
Such a domineering evaluation caused everyone to become bewildered, causing many to miss the final words from Elder Tian Ji, which pointed out she had met a brilliant teacher that was crucial to her breakthrough.
But some managed to hear these words, such as Su Mo Yu and Tang Thirty-Six.
Su Mo Yu looked towards Chen Chang Sheng, his emotions were extremely complicated and conflicted.
Tang Thirty-Six looked towards him, he could only feel admiration.
No matter how calm a personality Chen Chang Sheng had, at this moment, he couldn’t stop himself from feeling elated, from feeling proud.
Xuan Yuan Po’s injury will be cured by him, Luo Luo’s problem with cultivation was solved by him; today, three members of Orthodox Academy ascended upon the Proclamation of Azure Clouds, this was all something he should be proud of.
But at the next moment, he quickly returned to being calm, a genuine sense of calm… the message from the Hall of Oration was still ongoing, the Proclamation of Azure Clouds still had a single name to come.
The things before him that he could be proud of, were not strong enough in front of that name.
At this moment, everyone at the scene already knew that the reason for the sudden update was Her Highness, Luo Luo’s incredible improvement, therefore interest had begun to dwindle.
This wasn’t due to any disrespect for the remaining name, nor was it because the first ranking was unimportant, but from two years ago, for three times running, that name remained in first position; it already had no appeal.
No one could imagine any other name appearing in that position, unless she was the one to will it.
“Xu You Rong, the Nan Xi (Southern Creeks) Institute, First Amongst the Azure Clouds.”