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RSSGSS - Chapter 5 - Frantic Testing Hall

Outside of the testing hall…

As soon as Shi Feng gave his approval to take the test, the 20 students before him couldn't help but look at him with skeptical and dumbfounded expressions.

"That's all, Instructor Shi?"

When Wu Lingling saw the satisfied look on Shi Feng's face, she couldn't help but feel that Shi Feng was challenging her intellect.

She had already humiliated herself by earnestly doing aerobics that only grade-schoolers would do. Although she could indeed sense her body becoming more flexible after the exercise session, that was it. She couldn't sense any improvements to her combat standard and combat techniques at all. In other words, nothing would change even if she challenged the Trial Tower now.

Initially, she had thought that Shi Feng would more or less give them some pointers on their combat techniques once they were done with the aerobics. Either that or provide some useful tips to tackle the Trial Tower.

Yet… Yet… Shi Feng had concluded the training session, just like that.

Shi Feng was charging them 100,000 Credits, for heaven's sake!

Yet, all he did was have them exercise their bodies for several hours.

"Mhm, that's enough," Shi Feng said, smiling when he saw the dumbfounded look on Wu Lingling's face. "It'll cost you more if you want to receive more guidance. Of course, I can give you a 40% discount if you become my apprentice."

Shi Feng's words instantly flabbergasted Wu Lingling and the 19 other students present.

When other students sought apprenticeship under other instructors in the Academy, the instructors would eagerly shower them with resources and provide them with personalized instructions. After all, it was in the instructors' best interest to help their apprentices improve as quickly as possible.

Yet, when it came to Shi Feng, not only did he not offer any resources to his apprentices, but even the lessons he provided came with a price tag. Moreover, he was only offering a pitiful discount of 40% to students who became his apprentices…

At this time, even Luo Tiancheng, who had been spectating from the side all this time, couldn't help but give Shi Feng a look of admiration.

Shi Feng was definitely the first instructor in the God's Domain Academy to ever charge their students money for lessons!

It would be an absolute miracle if he still managed to gain any apprentices under such a situation!

However, Shi Feng didn't bother explaining himself. While ignoring the looks of contempt his students were giving him, he pointed at the testing hall and said, "There's not much time left. You might not make it if you don't go test yourselves now."

Hearing Shi Feng's words, the 20 students turned to look at the large digital clock set up inside the testing hall and found that they were indeed running out of time. Immediately, they ran into the hall and joined the queue to take part in the test, leaving behind Shi Feng and Luo Tiancheng.

It's finally time! Let's see how long you can keep pretending to be calm! Luo Tiancheng inwardly laughed as he glanced at Shi Feng's calm expression.

Originally, Luo Tiancheng thought that Shi Feng had an ace hidden under his sleeve. After all, Shi Feng used to be Shadow's Guild Leader. It wouldn't be strange for him to know some secrets that others did not. However, looking at things now, Luo Tiancheng felt that he had been worried for nothing.

A measly set of aerobics wouldn't be of any help to a fight even in the real world, let alone the virtual world. All Shi Feng was doing was spouting nonsense to grab attention.

Time passed by quickly. After 20 minutes had gone by, one of the students Shi Feng taught finally got his turn to test himself.

The student's name was Meng Ziyou, and he was one of the freshmen who had already taken part in the test once before. Meng Ziyou had previously reached the fourth floor's late stage, but he wasn't satisfied with this result. After all, he could only receive a B-rank evaluation with this result, which would net him only 12 bottles of A-rank Nutrient Fluid per year and a 30% discount to all school resources.

However, if he could reach the Trial Tower's fifth floor, even if it was only the early stage, he would receive an A-rank evaluation. In that case, he would receive 24 bottles of A-rank Nutrient Fluid per year, which was equivalent to 240,000 Credits or a high-ranking white-collar worker's annual salary. Most importantly, he would also enjoy a 40% discount for all school resources and free access to the school's basic training facilities.

The difference in benefits might not be significant for wealthy students, but Meng Ziyou came from an average family. He would be able to afford more resources for himself with the additional discount. After all, God's Domain was unlike any other virtual reality game. It placed heavy importance on a person's physical fitness. Only by having a strong physique in the real world could one let their brain better exhibit its potential in God's Domain.

As to why Meng Ziyou decided to try Shi Feng's course, it was simply because Luo Tiancheng had offered to pay the 100,000-Credit fee for him. Since the course was free, he naturally had to try it. He didn't have anything to lose even if he tried it. However, if the course worked, then he would've struck the jackpot.

After taking a deep breath, Meng Ziyou anxiously stepped into one of the virtual gaming cabins prepared in the testing hall.

That Meng Ziyou looks like a good seedling. Once he comes out, I should think of a way to get him to become my apprentice, Luo Tiancheng thought as he watched Meng Ziyou entering the gaming cabin.

Despite being only 17 years old and having received no prior training, Meng Ziyou had managed to reach the fourth floor's late stage. It was an incredible achievement. After all, the boy was only two steps away from reaching the recognized expert standard in God's Domain, which was the fifth floor's middle stage.

Even after God's Domain had been in operation for ten years, it still wasn't an easy task for players to reach the recognized standard for ordinary experts in God's Domain. This was especially true for someone as young as Meng Ziyou. One would need to have great talent to do so.

Based on Meng Ziyou's current performance, if the boy received systematic training, he could become a first-rate expert in no time. He might even have a chance at becoming a Refinement Realm expert in the future. After all, the various powers of God's Domain had been enhancing and refining their training processes throughout the years. New players joining God's Domain now enjoyed much better training conditions than players who started playing God's Domain ten years ago.

If Luo Tiancheng didn't have his physique and brain activity regress along with age, he could also become a Refinement Realm expert.

At this time, Luo Tiancheng wasn't the only one to have his eyes on Meng Ziyou. The other instructors present were also figuring out how they could win over Meng Ziyou. After all, they would receive significant rewards if they could help their respective Guilds welcome a young genius. Not to mention, they could also form a connection with a potential expert, which would ensure them a better future.

However, even though many of the basic instructors present were looking to rope Meng Ziyou to their side, none thought about laying their hands on Wu Lingling. After all, Wu Lingling was a genius that first-rate Guilds and even super-first-rate Guilds had set their sights on. The resources she could receive from these existences were leaps and bounds better than what she could receive from second- and third-rate Guilds. Wu Lingling would be an utter fool to seek apprenticeship under the basic instructors present.

After the instructors outside the testing hall waited for some time, Meng Ziyou suddenly left his gaming cabin, joy and surprise coloring his face.

What's going on? Did he make an improvement?

The many instructors shared the same thought when they saw Meng Ziyou's expression. However, they also couldn't help but doubt their guesses. After all, they had also been present when Shi Feng made his students do aerobics. There was no way such simple exercises could help the students make substantial improvements in the Trial Tower.

Just when a few instructors thought to approach Meng Ziyou and ask the boy about his test result, the screen displaying test scores inside the hall released Meng Ziyou's result.

Meng Ziyou, 17, Trial Tower: Fifth Floor's Early Stage (Previous best result was Fourth Floor's Late Stage), Evaluation: A

Silence immediately enveloped the area outside the testing hall. Apart from Shi Feng, every basic instructor present looked at Meng Ziyou as if they had just seen a ghost.

"Impossible!"

Luo Tiancheng rubbed his eyes and took a look at the screen again, his mind unable to accept what his eyes were seeing.

After all, who could believe that Meng Ziyou had improved his performance in the Trial Tower by a stage after doing a few hours of aerobics?

However, Meng Ziyou had no reason to hide his strength and help Shi Feng. Most importantly, Luo Tiancheng had personally recruited Meng Ziyou for Shi Feng's lesson.

"Are you kidding me?! How is that possible?!"

"Could this be an act?"

The instructors weren't the only ones dumbfounded at this time. Even the other students present couldn't help but doubt the situation before them and suspect that Shi Feng and Meng Ziyou were in cahoots with each other.

"Luck! This is just luck!" Luo Tiancheng said in denial. "Meng Ziyou probably only failed to reach it before because he wasn't in peak condition! He must have already had the strength to reach the fifth floor before!"

Everyone hurriedly nodded in agreement when they heard Luo Tiancheng's words, finding his words to be reasonable. After all, not everyone could maintain themselves in peak condition at all times. Small problems such as anxiety could easily affect one's performance.

However, shortly after the crowd agreed with Luo Tiancheng's opinion, another person exited their gaming cabin. This person was a girl with an innocent look, and she was also one of the students Shi Feng instructed. And just like Meng Ziyou, the girl wore a look of joy and excitement on her face.

"I did it! I did it! I finally broke through to B-rank!"

Along with the girl's excited shouts, her score appeared on the central screen. The crowd outside the testing hall instantly fell silent upon seeing the girl's result. Even Luo Tiancheng became thoroughly dumbfounded.

Subsequently, as more and more of Shi Feng's students completed their test, the crowd outside the testing hall also grew more and more silent. Finally, when all of Shi Feng's students completed their tests, the crowd immediately exploded into an uproar.

The reason for the uproar was because Wu Lingling, the last of Shi Feng's students to complete their test, had surpassed her previous record and reached the fifth floor's middle stage, becoming an officially recognized expert in God's Domain! Simultaneously, Wu Lingling had also become the second student after Wu Xiaoxiao, her elder sister, to achieve such a result on the day she enrolled into the God's Domain Academy!

Luo Tiancheng's eyes nearly fell out of their sockets when he saw Wu Lingling's score. He couldn't help but feel as if he was dreaming.

At this time, let alone the spectating crowd, even Wu Lingling herself was still in shock over her achievement. Her mind failed to process how she had made such an improvement. After all, she previously had failed to break through the fifth floor's early stage no matter what she tried. She didn't even have a clue as to what she needed to do to make further progress. Yet, when she challenged the Trial Tower this time, she had cleared the fifth floor's early stage with surprising ease.

Among those present, only Shi Feng wasn't surprised by this outcome.

The aerobic exercise he formulated wasn't any ordinary aerobics. Instead, it was created based on God's Domain's combat techniques and the Refinement Realm's principles. If one earnestly practiced these movements, not only could one experience the Realms of Refinement much more easily, but one would also start to notice subtle movements that one normally wouldn't notice.

Although one couldn't reach the Refinement Realm just by practicing this aerobic exercise, once one became familiar with the management of these subtle movements, one could reduce the unnecessary movements in one's actions. In turn, one's movements would flow much more smoothly.

Moreover, the effects of these changes would become even more prominent in the virtual world of God's Domain. After all, players controlled their virtual bodies with their minds, and their virtual bodies had much fewer physical limitations than their physical bodies. Hence, certain actions and reactions would be amplified, and one could execute movements that one normally couldn't execute. Naturally, this would lead to significant improvements in one's combat standard.

In reality, the exercise's real benefits would only start to show themselves if one practiced it over a long period. To be precise, one needed to practice the exercise to the point where one could instinctively reduce their unnecessary movements. The benefits one could gain from practicing the exercise for a few hours were hardly anything noteworthy. Of course, helping someone stuck beneath the Trial Tower's sixth floor improve their performance by a stage was still entirely possible.

"Instructor Luo, thank you for your two million Credits," Shi Feng calmly said as he glanced at the dumbfounded Luo Tiancheng. "Now that I've already recruited 20 apprentices, I'll be taking my leave."

Wu Lingling's shocking performance had worked as a great advertisement. Shi Feng had managed to recruit 30 students as his apprentice in less than five minutes. Of them, 20 were the students he had taught. Even Wu Lingling had sought apprenticeship under him after hesitating for some time. As a result, Shi Feng had met the minimum requirement to remain as one of the God's Domain Academy's basic instructors.

"Shi Feng, don't get too delighted!"

Luo Tiancheng's complexion was pitch-black right now. However, when he looked at Shi Feng's departing back, he sneered and said, "So what if you become a basic instructor at the Academy? Do you think you can return to your peak?"

After saying so, Luo Tiancheng left the area as well, his eyes full of resentment.

Two million Credits! He had spent years saving that money!

However, when Luo Tiancheng recalled that Shi Feng had been kicked out of Shadow like a loser, his mood brightened up a lot. The God's Domain Academy might have access to many real-world resources, it was a different story when it came to God's Domain's resources. Now that Shi Feng had no Guild backing him, there was no way he could achieve anything in the Academy.

At night, Wanhao Villa District:

Inside the top-floor training room of a three-story villa, Lin Yaoyue wiped the sweat on her forehead and grabbed a bottle of S-rank Nutrient Fluid from the nearby refrigerator. The way she gulped down the liquid paired with the tight sportswear she wore that outlined her charming figure created a sight that would make any men drool with desire.

However, there were no men present in this room. Instead, the only other occupant of this room was a gorgeous woman wearing a short lace dress. Even so, when this woman looked at Lin Yaoyue's attractive figure, she couldn't help but lick the corners of her mouth.

"Yaoyue, it seems your combat standard isn't the only thing that has improved a lot in the time we haven't met. That place of yours has developed a lot as well. If Young Master Li and the others find out about this, they'll probably become even crazier than before!" the woman in the dress said, smiling as she looked at Lin Yaoyue.

"Stop teasing me, Yalin," Lin Yaoyue said as she looked at her best friend, Zuo Yalin. Then, she curiously asked, "I've been busy with the Academy recently. How's the situation in the Guild?"

"What else could be going on? Everyone's preparing for the War of Worlds expansion pack that's going live tonight," Zhuo Yalin said with a slightly tired look. "I've been busy running around looking for information on this expansion pack recently as well."

"Is the Miniature Ancient World described in that new expansion pack that amazing?" Lin Yaoyue asked.

The new War of Worlds expansion pack was something announced over a month ago. Once the expansion pack went live, not only would their God's Domain have to fight against another God's Domain, but a Miniature Ancient World would also come into existence. Meanwhile, according to rumors, this Miniature Ancient World possessed an environment comparable to that of the ancient God's Domain. Such an environment would be of significant help to the development of players. Hence, many of God's Domain's various powers were thinking of competing for this Miniature Ancient World."

"That place is much more amazing than you think. Rumors say that it is the creation of an Ancient God and that it is a small part of our God's Domain that was separated during ancient times. If that's the case, there should be plenty of Legacies and resources that are only available during ancient times," Zhuo Yalin said, a hint of excitement appearing in her eyes. "But according to the information provided on the expansion pack, the rules of this ancient world are a little unique. Only players who have reached Level 100, Tier 3 and above are allowed to enter. Moreover, once players enter that world, they will have their progress reset to Level 100, Tier 3.

"Even so, because of the environment and Legacies available in there, many Tier 3 and Tier 4 experts are thinking of taking a gamble on that Miniature Ancient World to try and rectify their lacking foundations. Hasn't the Tier 5 promotion been troubling you? You can consider giving that place a try."

"I'll consider it." Lin Yaoyue nodded. Her friend's words had piqued her interest.

The difficulty of God's Domain's tier promotion increased exponentially with each subsequent tier. Meanwhile, the Tier 5 promotion was akin to a nightmare for Lin Yaoyue. If she could lay herself a better foundation in the Miniature Ancient World, she would undoubtedly have a much better chance at reaching Tier 5.

"By the way, I heard that Shadow's ex-Guild Leader joined your place. What do you think of him?" Zhuo Linya suddenly asked. "Most of our Guild's experts are stuck having to defend against the Outerworld forces, so we still need many more experts to secure a foothold in the ancient world. Since he is Shadow's ex-Guild Leader, he should be quite strong. If we can recruit him, it should significantly increase our combat power in the Miniature Ancient World.

"That man is indeed capable. He managed to recruit 30 apprentices in the Academy within a day," Lin Yaoyue said as she forwarded Shi Feng's personal information to Zhuo Yalin. Then, she shook her head and continued, "But he is, in the end, only a Tier 3 expert. He is also growing in age. It'll be difficult for him to make any further improvements. Moreover, Shadow is still keeping an eye on him even now. There is also World Domination standing behind Shadow. It's best if we give up on him."

"Is that so?" Zhuo Yalin muttered as she read Shi Feng's information. Then, after pondering for a moment, she sighed and said, "What a pity. With his standards, if he wasn't Shadow's ex-Guild Leader, he could easily join the middle management of any first-rate Guild."

...

Meanwhile, when Lin Yaoyue and Zhuo Yalin were chatting with each other, Shi Feng, who was living in a villa located in the distant Blue Bamboo Villa District, laid into his virtual gaming cabin and entered God's Domain once more.

TL Notes:

Made an edit to Chapter 4:

Realms of Refinement -> Refinement Realm

The aerobic exercise Shi Feng developed is based on the Refinement Realm's principles only. Principles of the Flowing Water Realm and Void Realm aren't included.

Hellscythe's Notes:

Other novels I translate on Hosted Novel:
Pantsu Hero Alice (PHA)
After Being Bent By Reader (ABBR) (GL/yuri) 
Miss Cousin is Always Busy (MCAB)(Yuri, Quick Transmigration)
Written by Lucky Old Cat (天运老猫). Translated by Hellscythe. Edited by Grammerly.