Chapter 150 – Card Arrangements
Once Xiao Lou’s group of four returned to the villa, Old Mo’s group still hadn’t returned.
The time in the main city was Wednesday afternoon and the World Weekly had passed. Xiao Lou opened his laptop to log onto the challengers forum. This week was a Clubs secret room and all challengers were pulled into a huge casino to play cards.
The challengers didn’t need teamwork but fought individually. Every table had 10 people and every game gave points. According to the ‘last elimination system’, the lowest ranked table after 10 consecutive rounds would be eliminated. So the elimination rate was controlled at 10%.
This week didn’t sound difficult but since they couldn’t work in teams, some people who didn’t play cards would take time to understand the rules of the game. In case of bad luck, they might be eliminated. Xiao Lou thought it was fortunate that they avoided this week’s World Weekly. Otherwise, it wasn’t certain if the eight of them could collectively survive the Clubs room.
Seeing that it was still early, Ye Qi took Ye Qi and Liu Qiao to the kitchen to cook while Yu Hanjiang typed on the laptop to organize everyone’s cards.
At 6:30 p.m., Mo Xuemin’s group of four returned.
The four of them looked relaxed and apparently hadn’t encountered many difficulties in the Diamonds and Clubs rooms. Shao Qingge rubbed his temple. “I was dizzy in the maze but fortunately there was Old Mo to find the way. Otherwise, I definitely wouldn’t have come out.”
Qu Wanyue smiled. “You cleared Hearts and Spades so smoothly? You came back early.”
Ye Qi was excited. “It was very smooth! We also drew six good cards!”
Xiao Lou told them, “Everyone eat first. Once we finish the meal, we will organize the cards and also try out the functions of the new cards.
The group smelled the food and sat down at the table.
Xiao Lou had made a few simple dishes followed by summoning Su Shi.
The time between the second rooms and the main city world was different. They had drawn 7 of Spades on Tuesday and it was currently Wednesday in the main city. Su Shi’s skill was based on the day so at this time, all skills were reset. He could make another bowl of Dongpo Pork.
Old Mo saw the smiling man in ancient clothes and asked curiously, “Who is this?”
Xiao Lou explained, “Su Shi, his third skill is to create a bowl of Dongpo Pork. You should taste it.”
A bowl of steaming Dongpo Pork really appeared on the table. The colour was clear but the small bowl was only enough for each person to eat one piece. Everyone picked up chopsticks and placed the meat in their mouths.
Old Mo’s eyes immediately lit up. “it’s delicious!”
Long Sen was also excited. “This is the best meat I’ve ever eaten!”
Even Shao Qingge, who was used to eating expensive food, squinted with pleasure. “This is more delicious than Dongpo Port at a five-star hotel. Is this really made by Su Shi himself?”
Xiao Lou nodded. “Yes, he can only make one bowl a day.”
Everyone looked at Xiao Lou with a complicated expression. The cards drawn by Professor Xiao were becoming stranger and stranger. Bai Juyi could light a charcoal fire while Su Shi made Dongpo Pork. If he drew Li Bai then wouldn’t they be drinking alcohol?
After the meal, Xiao Lou called everyone to the pool. He summoned Li Qingzhao and Su Shi and introduced their skills and usage in detail. Then he asked, “Old Mo, how many cards did you draw?”
Mo Xuemin replied, “The three rooms of 5, 6 and 7 of Clubs gave material cards. We drew a total of six treasure chests from 5, 6 and 7 of Diamonds and since it was an S-grade clearance, all S-grade cards were drawn.”
Old Mo had already cleared these rooms and there was no reward for re-entry. This trip was equivalent to volunteer work and Old Mo had been envious when he watched his teammates draw S-grade cards. Xiao Lou knew his thoughts and smiled. “It doesn’t matter. We will get S-grade scores in the future and you will be given the priority to draw cards.”
Mo Xuemin touched his nose and smiled. “Cough, it doesn’t matter. Everyone is in the same team and whoever draws a good card is the same.’ He looked at the husband and wife, Long Sen and Qu Wanyue. “The two of you, take out your cards for everyone to see.”
Since Mo Xuemin couldn’t draw any cards, the other three people had drawn two cards each from the six treasure chests from the Diamonds room.
Long Sen worked as a sports teacher in the real world and all the cards he drew were about sports.
[Tool Card: Super Badminton]
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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Additional Skill 2: Assault Smash
Effect: Smash the shuttlecock down from a high place. If it hits the target’s vital parts such as the temple or heart, the target will enter a state of near-death shock. If they aren’t rescued within 10 metres, the target will die.
This skill has no cooldown time but it is very difficult to hit the vital parts. It is recommended to practice more.
Note: One bucket contains 50 shuttlecocks. The shuttlecocks can be picked up and used again but they might be damaged after playing. if it is damaged then it can’t be used. The number of shuttlecocks is fixed and the card will be invalidated if all 50 are used up. It will only be refreshed when entering the next secret room.
Xiao Lou saw this card and asked with interest, “Can you play badminton?”
Long Sen smiled and scratched his head. “I can play and the technique is okay. There are 50 shuttlecocks so no matter how I play, there are always a few that can hit people, right?”
Ye Qi suggested, “My flute can lock onto the target but it has a cooldown time. Brother Long’s card can’t lock onto the target but the advantage is the absence of a cooldown time. If you can aim quickly, you can quickly hit a dozen shuttlecocks and keep the other side stunned!”
Liu Qiao said, “The second skill is similar to my Poison Queen’s skill. However, the operation is very difficult.”
Xiao Lou looked at Long Sen and spoke objectively, “There is no skill cooldown and 50 shuttlecocks are given to you to play casually. The operation difficulty will naturally increase. It seems that you need to practice playing badminton more in the future.”
Long Sen nodded. “Yes… I also have to practice football.”
He took out the second card and handed it to Xiao Lou.
[Tool Card: Super Football]
Additional Skill 1: Shooting
Effect: Kick the football with one kick up to 500 metres. The football will fall from the sky and smash a pit in the ground. Targets within 10 metres of the pit will be shocked by your stinky feet and won’t want to launch an attack for 10 seconds. The cooldown time is 30 minutes.
Additional Skill 2: Dribbling the Ball
Effect: Players with the football at their feet can act like the wind. During the ‘dribbling the ball’ period, you can make yourself immune to any form of control or injury. Your acceleration will also increase 200%. If the football is intercepted, the buff states will be transferred to the person who intercepted the football. This buff state lasts 10 minutes and the cooldown time is 45 minutes.
Ye Qi saw Long Sen’s two new cards and thought of the previous Long Jump. He couldn’t help sighing emotionally, “Brother Long, you are worthy of being from a sports school. You are almighty in sports!”
Long Sen smiled bitterly. “However, I don’t play football very well. My guess is that I’ll only take a few steps before having the ball intercepted.”
Xiao Lou thought about it carefully. “In fact, this card has another usage, which is a relay. We can do a team relay and pass the football so that everyone gets short time acceleration and injury immunity.
During the Dribbling the Ball mode, the buffs gained would shift if the ball was intercepted. However, what if it was taken by a teammate? Wouldn’t they be able to enjoy the buffs?
Long Sen’s eyes lit up and he nodded excitedly. “Yes, I can take the ball for half a minute and then kick it to Professor Xiao. If we change in turn, everyone can get the injury immunity and speed increase buffs!”
Ye Qi exclaimed, “In the future, we can play football during a team battle?”
Shao Qingge smiled. “Whoever has the ball can’t be harmed. I can guess that the opponent will probably be annoyed to death by us.”
Ye Qi suggested, “I can play the Erhu to accompany them?”
This scene was so beautiful that it felt like their team was about to become a ‘comedic group.’
Liu Qiao looked curiously at Qu Wanyue. “What card did Teacher Qu draw? Is it all related to dance?”
Qu Wanyue took out her two cards.
One S-grade card was Swan Lake, which summoned a large number of ballerinas within a specific 500 metre range to perform the classic ballet ‘Swan Lake’ for 10 minutes. No one could bypass the stage and it was a very overbearing isolation technique. When escaping, they could place Swan Lake behind them and the chasing opponent would be forced to stop in place and wait for the ballet to finish.
The other card was ‘Latin Dance King.’ After activating the card, the user’s body was supple and flexible. It could bend to the extreme.
Liu Qiao was stunned. “Bend to the extremes? To what extent can you bend?”
Qu Wanyue used the dance king card and bend down, easily holding onto her toes with both hands. She could also split her legs, which was a basic skill for a dance teacher. However, after using the Latin Dance King card, her entire body was soft and boneless. Her fingers and arms could bend into an ‘S’ shape and her head could turn 180 degrees.
Suddenly her face turned behind her, Xiao Lou was also startled.
Qu Wanyue said, “This card can change the softness of my body. After using it, I can drill through a hole the size of a plate. It is much like the bone-shrinking skills in martial arts novels?”
Xiao Lou smiled and praised her. “Yes, with the chameleon card, there is almost no place you can’t get into.”
After looking at the cards that the couple drew, it was finally Shao Qingge’s turn.
Ye Qi joked, “You shouldn’t have drawn a bank?”
Shao Qingge raised an eyebrow. “This time, the cards are easier to use than the ATM machine but they are very expensive.”
Xiao Lou’s group of four didn’t understand. How could a card use money? Then Shao Qingge took two cards out and handed them to Xiao Lou.
[S-grade Special Effects Card: Stock Curve]
Description: The volatile stock market affects the mood of shareholders and will naturally affect everyone’s fighting power.
Effect: It costs one million gold coins to draw a stock market curve. When the stock rises, the range of all card skills of allies will increase by 50% and the hit rate will increase by 50%. When the stock falls, all enemy card skills will have the range reduced by 50% and the hit rate reduced by 50%. The stock curve exists for 10 minutes and fluctuations can be manipulated at will. The cooldown time is four hours.
Xiao Lou was stunned. The card drawn by Chief Shao was a team auxiliary card. According to the rise and fall of the stock curve, the range and hit rate of allies could increase or the range and hit rate of enemies could decrease. There might be only one skill but it could affect the whole group and the effect was actually very strong.
Especially for Yu Hanjiang’s weapons. Normally, he could only snipe targets within 1500 metres. If Chief Shao’s stocks rose and the range was increased by 50%, Group Leader Yu’s gun could snipe targets within 2200 metres.
In addition, Ye Qi’s musical instrument cards, Xiao Lou’s character field control cards, Long Sen’s badminton and football cards and even Old Mo’s Model Room, they would all get an increased range and hit bonus.
The second card drawn by Shao Qingge was a bit unspeakable…
[S-grade Special Effects Card: Rich and Willful]
Description: Do you think rich people aren’t happy? No, in fact, rich people are many times happier than you think?
Effect: Be rich and willful, buy whatever you want.
After using the special effect card, five million gold coins will be deducted from your account to let you copy any card you have seen within 24 hours.
Note: Can only be copied in the secret room world and the skill can’t be used in the main city. Can copy cards up to three times in a secret room. It is a so-called ‘three things’ but the rich can’t be too much. If the account balance is insufficient then the skill release will fail.
Chief Shao’s card could be called a ‘loser card’. It cost five million to be used once! It was just that the effect was really worth the cost.
Copy any cards seen within 24 hours. It wasn’t only teammates. Opponents could also be copied!
Three cards could be copied in one secret room. If they chose a strong S-grade card to copy then the combat effectiveness of the entire team would be greatly improved. Although Chief Shao’s two cards cost money, they were very powerful auxiliary cards.
Xiao Lou wondered, “In the past few days, we’ve spent a lot of money and bought a car. Is our money reserve enough?”
Shao Qingge rubbed his temple because he had a headache. “It isn’t enough. The Rich and Willfull card requires a large amount of financial support since one use costs five million. This could be 15 million in a secret room. I think it is time to see our chrysoberyl bracelets.”
Old Mo interjected, “You can leave this matter to me. I know a jewellery auction and can find an agent to help us.”
Yu Hanjiang had been making records on the laptop. After collecting all the new cards, he made an information form and sent it to their WeChat group. “This is our team’s current cards. Take a closer look and we will test them out later.”
Moments later, the group led by Group Leader Yu came to the pool. Qu Wanyue was very interested in Liu Qiao’s new card. “Daughter of the Sea collectively changes us to mermaids. Will we grow tails?”
Liu Qiao used the card to actually grow a beautiful mermaid tail, making everyone marvel.
Xiao Lou also summoned all his character cards and tried Su Shi’s second skill. He found that Su Shi’s skill only affected historical figures. Liu Qiao’s Little Red Riding Hood, Thumbelina, Poison Queen etc. were fictional characters of fairy tales and weren’t real people. Their skills wouldn’t be refreshed.
Ye Qi played the erhu and guzheng, trying out the control range and time of the new instruments.
Long Sen played badminton and football while Qu Wanyue danced ballet…
Everyone was excitedly testing out their new cards. Only Yu Hanjiang stood to the side, watching everyone play with a serious expression.
Xiao Lou walked up to him and smiled. “Group Leader Yu, why don’t you try it?”
Yu Hanjiang took out the newly drawn handgun and saw a shuttlecock falling toward the pool. His eyes narrowed as he aimed and pulled the trigger. There was a loud sound and a bullet directly shot through the shuttlecock!
Long Sen, who was playing badminton, couldn’t help sweating. “Group Leader Yu is too amazing. His marksmanship is really accurate!”
Other people’s cards were messy while Yu Hanjiang’s cards were simple and brutal. No matter how strong a card, it was like a child playing house in front of his gun.
Xiao Lou couldn’t help admiring it. “Group Leader Yu’s shooting ability is really strong.”
The praised Yu Hanjiang nodded earnestly. “I have touched a gun since I was 10 years old and don’t have to practice it. Moreover, I can’t use the silencer in the main city so it is easy to be noticed if I start shooting.”
The group gave a thumbs up when they heard it.
Xiao Lou believed that Group Leader Yu didn’t need to practice. In a critical life or death moment, if Yu Hanjiang was forced to shoot then he would definitely kill the target.
That night, the group in the village used all their cards and rested.
The next two days, Old Mo went to the auction to sell their chrysoberyl bracelets. Each bracelet was sold for a good price and their wallet was stuffed. Shao Qingge’s personal account held more than 80 million gold coins while Xiao Lou also had 80 million.
After all the preparation, everyone took a half-day of rest before opening the A-grade room at 23:55 on Friday night.
According to the words from Brother Jiu and Tang Ci, the A-grade secret rooms had random plots and there was no strategy. They could only rely on themselves.
Facing the four categories, Xiao Lou and Yu Hanjiang glanced at each other before tacitly pulling ‘8 of Hearts’ from the card wall. In the mystery room, they weren’t worried about the lives of their teammates and were confident about solving the A-grade secret room on their own.
A prompt appeared in front of everyone at the same time.
[The A-grade secret room is about to open.]
[The plot is being generated. Countdown 10, 9, 8, 7, 6…]
[The role assignment is completed.]
[Welcome to the world of 8 of Hearts: Beacon in Troubled Times.]