Chapter 1389: Everyone’s Preparations
Translator: Nomyummi Editor: Nomyummi
After uttering this pensive sentence, Wei Chen actually didn’t say anything else. Everyone thought for a moment, and realized that he had already spoken of the details, and this was just the concluding sentence. They’d been watching the match for over an hour now, and hadn’t seen Wei Chen or Steamed Bun during that whole time. Perhaps the two of them had just been sitting here beside the road, with Wei Chen describing the shining days of his youth?
“Soul, what soul? It was just two years!” Ye Xiu came up and mercilessly exposed him.
“Bullshit!” Wei Chen spun around, but when he saw it was Ye Xiu, he was actually quite calm. “Without me, would there even be a Blue Rain?”
Wei Chen wasn’t exaggerating here. He, like Ye Xiu, entered the Glory circle when the professional Glory Alliance still hadn’t existed yet! In the beginning, they were all simply ordinary gamers. The only way to make a living through gaming was through some transactions in-game. At the time, Ye Xiu’s guild was Excellent Dynasty, but he hadn’t been the one to create that guild. The person who’d created the guild at the time probably had no idea that it would lay the foundation for Club Excellent Era to establish a dynasty.
At the start, Guild Excellent Dynasty was like any other in-game guild, created by an ordinary player who’d pulled together some in-game friends to make a fun group that would allow them to play together. As they played, some groups became larger and larger, and after the Glory Alliance was first established, a few of these guilds became the in-game foundation for clubs and teams. Excellent Dynasty was like this, Blue Brook Guild was like this too. What was different was that the founder of the guild Excellent Dynasty, Tao Xuan, went on to become the boss of the club it formed the basis of. For Blue Rain, there were other investors, but the foundational guild had truly been established by their first captain Wei Chen, when he still played in-game. Without him, there would be no Blue Rain – this statement wasn’t an exaggeration.
“Tomorrow, if you guys can’t even beat my juniors, that would be too embarrassing,” Wei Chen said, glaring at the Happy players.
To leave behind his old team and then have to fight them – for most people, this was a rather sad thing. But Wei Chen had taken eight whole years to complete this process!
Eight years. What feelings did he still have toward Blue Rain?
Even though most of his talk about his glorious days in Blue Rain was nothing more than shameless boasting, everyone could tell from the old guy’s voice how he missed the past.
Did he miss his youth? Or did he miss Blue Rain?
No one asked further, because everyone knew, no matter what attitude Wei Chen had toward the past, he was now a member of Happy, and he stood clearly on Happy’s side.
“Tomorrow, let’s play well,” Ye Xiu said.
“Let’s go!” Together at the side of the road, the youths cheered and hollered.
“Where’s Fang Rui?” After everyone calmed down a bit, Ye Xiu casually asked.
“Haven’t seen that guy,” Wei Chen said.
Everyone had their own ways of preparing for the match, so what was this master of playing dirty doing? Everyone was curious, but no one would bother him simply out of curiosity.
Upper Forest Park neighborhood.
It was already somewhat late, but there were still a number of people out and about, walking dogs or simply enjoying the night air. Su Mucheng and Tang Rou sat together on a stone bench beside the road, tilting their heads to look at the sky.
“The weather today was really nice, how come there aren’t any stars at night?” Su Mucheng said.
“The stars are always there, but sadly, there’s just too much air pollution. It’s not that there aren’t any, it’s just that we can’t see them. Or it might be because the starlight is too faint, and the lights from the cities are hiding their light!” Tang Rou said.
“Yeah, it’s really a shame!” Su Mucheng sighed.
“By the way,” Tang Rou suddenly said, “the first time you played in the playoffs, how did you feel?”
“The first time? I was very nervous, very worried. Worried that I couldn’t do well enough, worried that I couldn’t help him,” said Su Mucheng.
“Then what about later?” Tang Rou didn’t ask who the “him” was, it was very obvious.
“Later… It was true, I didn’t do well. If I’d done better, then that year Excellent Era probably would’ve been champions again… Han Wenqing lost to Ye Xiu three times in three playoffs. But that time he won, because he gained a good helper at his side. And Ye Xiu didn’t…” Su Mucheng’s expression became somewhat saddened.
Tang Rou suddenly regretted her words; she’d forgotten that Su Mucheng had won second place the first time she’d participated in the playoffs. This seemed to be a very good result, so close to the championship, but in reality it was extremely painful. That feeling of missing success by just one step, it was enough to make anyone collapse. Regret, self-blame, no result could provoke these feelings as much as a second-place, almost-success could.
“I’m sorry,” said Tang Rou.
“Don’t worry, it’s a long time ago now,” said Su Mucheng.
Was it a long time… Tang Rou couldn’t help but wonder. That time, the championship had just barely slipped out of Excellent Era’s grasp in the finals, and after that, Excellent Era had never entered the finals again. Wouldn’t Su Mucheng’s sense of guilt only intensify through the years? Had she always felt that she hadn’t helped Ye Xiu enough?
“This time we’ll win for sure!” Tang Rou said.
“Aren’t you nervous?” Su Mucheng asked her with a smile.
“I thought that I wouldn’t get nervous, but now, I’m realizing that’s not the case,” Tang Rou said. Nervousness? What was that? Up until now, the things that made most people nervous would only make Tang Rou more excited, more determined. But this time? Excitement, determination, these were all there, but they weren’t enough to completely dispel the nervousness. Tang Rou discovered that her heart still held a sense of fear, and she admitted this.
“Really?” Su Mucheng continued to smile. “Then that might be a good thing! You know, I always thought that you were too lacking in nervousness. Of course, it’s not good to be too nervous, but to not feel nervous at all, that doesn’t seem very good either!”
“Even Ye Xiu gets nervous?” Tang Rou said.
“Of course he’s nervous. In fact, he’s been extremely nervous this whole season. If not, then how could he work so hard and put his full effort into everything?” Su Mucheng said.
“I sure couldn’t tell,” Tang Rou murmured.
“Nervousness can be turned into action! As for you, you should enjoy this rare feeling of nervousness. For you, this isn’t an obstacle at all, this is nourishment,” said Su Mucheng.
“This is the method of reducing the stress of playoffs? Change your nervousness into medicine, and eat it?” Tang Rou said.
“Is this not a good method?” Su Mucheng said.
“It looks like that’s the only way,” Tang Rou said. She essentially understood Su Mucheng’s meaning.
“Oh, you two were here this whole time!” At that moment, Ye Xiu with the group of old and youth had also returned to the neighborhood. As they walked along the road, they saw the two people sitting on the stone bench.
“Yup!” Su Mucheng and Tang Rou stood up, also prepared to return home.
Now, almost all of Happy had gathered here. They were just missing Mo Fan, who was still watching videos in the training room, and Fang Rui, who they still hadn’t seen around.
“Where in the world did that Fang Rui run off to?” Ye Xiu once again wondered.
“Him? He went to sleep!” Su Mucheng said.
“He came back a bit after eight, and then went to sleep,” said Su Mucheng.
“He slept at eight?” Everyone exchanged glances.
At eight, Ye Xiu, Qiao Yifan, An Wenyi, and Luo Ji had been watching tonight’s match; Wei Chen and Steamed Bun had been sitting beside the road and exchanging bragging stories; Su Mucheng and Tang Rou had been strolling through this neighborhood and chatting. And Fang Rui at that time had apparently already gone to bed.
“Sleeping at eight, how long is that guy planning to sleep?” Wei Chen exclaimed.
“Is this how he’s dealing with the pressure?” everyone wondered.
“Or maybe he’s scared that he’ll be too nervous to sleep, so that’s why he went to bed so early, to have more time to grow tired,” they continued to discuss.
However, no one was so curious that they would check on whether Fang Rui was actually sleeping. This was the pattern of this night before the competition, everyone dispersing before coming back together in the end.
The next morning, when Ye Xiu awoke and came downstairs, he saw none other than Fang Rui. As expected of someone who’d gone to bed at eight, he was full of energy in the living room as he read the newspaper.
“301 lost pretty badly!” Seeing Ye Xiu come downstairs, Fang Rui greeted him and then made this comment. In his hands was today’s edition of Esports Weekly, which he had already gone out to buy this morning. Now that it was playoffs season, the amount of available copies of this newspaper was rather tight, especially since they were near the area of the old Club Excellent Era. If you didn’t go extremely early, you might not even be able to buy a copy.
“Yeah, I saw the match,” Ye Xiu said.
“Those old guys from Tyranny are still working hard?” Fang Rui said.
“Well, of course, how could they not?” said Ye Xiu.
“But the report said that they played kind of defensively,” Fang Rui said.
“Their strategy has a few changes. It’s no longer the fiercely fighting and charging Tyranny of before,” said Ye Xiu.
“They’re going slower?” Fang Rui said.
Ye Xiu nodded.
“They might be our next opponents. It’ll be a hard fight,” Fang Rui said.
Two top-level players didn’t need to say much. A few simple sentences was enough to understand the situation.
Because Tyranny had many old veterans, from an outsider’s perspective it would seem that they weren’t suited for a fast tempo. Old veterans were more suited for a steady fight to maximize usage of their experience and patience as they dealt with their opponent. But Tyranny had never used such a style before. They had fiercely fought and charged for ten years. Yet in the playoffs of this season, they slowed their pace as a whole.
Tyranny hadn’t just been rotating its old veterans to let them preserve their strength! They’d adjusted their strategies from the very foundation, building a new path that suited them better instead of relying on the rhythm they’d always had.
“Those old guys aren’t the only ones becoming more fearsome,” said Ye Xiu.
“There’s also Zhang Xinjie,” said Ye Xiu.
“His style always suited this sort of slow rhythm better. Just looking at playstyle, he and Tyranny don’t fit at all, but because of his personality, he could force himself to adapt to tactics that didn’t suit him. But now, Tyranny’s style is developing in the direction of his true strength!”