The King's Avatar Chapter 1672
Chapter 1672 : Top Rookie
When did it start?
Jiang Botao was also asking the same question. He had been leading Tang Rou around, controlling the pace of the match. He had always felt like his strategy had been successful. Everything was in his grasp. He could read every mix-up that came at him. Not once did any of Tang Rou’s actions fall outside of his predictions.
He had planned in advance, waiting patiently for an opportunity. He hoped to finish the match decisively with an overwhelming counterattack. This sort of finish would be more reliable, and it would improve the team’s morale. Two birds with one stone.
However, the opportunity never came. Jiang Botao couldn’t help but admire Tang Rou. On this grand stage, in the decisive game three of the finals, she was attacking and attacking but with no success, yet she didn’t become impatient and persevered. Let alone a rookie, even an experienced player might not have such strong mental toughness.
She persevered. Jiang Botao didn’t back down either. Keeping this same pace would be favorable for him in the long-run. The flow and tempo of the match was completely within his grasp. All he needed was one reliable opportunity, whether that was a mistake on her part or a slight lapse in concentration, just one was enough.
But there was none…
The previous Dragon Tooth, Circle Swing, and then Sky Strike, Jiang Botao predicted them all. After the Dragon Tooth, many people felt like he could counterattack, but Jiang Botao hadn’t.
It hadn’t been because he felt like the opportunity wasn’t good enough, but rather in his eyes, he hadn’t seen an opportunity.
At that moment, he felt a shock go through his heart.
Dragon Tooth into Circle Swing, it had been a quick follow-up. If he had counterattacked after the Dragon Tooth, he would have been caught by the Circle Swing. As a result, he couldn’t counterattack, and could only dodge.
Dragon Tooth and Circle Swing had been both easily evaded by Jiang Botao. Then, Sky Strike…
Jiang Botao’s Empty Waves hadn’t stopped to take a rest. After rolling away from the Circle Swing, he had jumped to avoid the following Sky Strike.
If he didn’t need to parry, he wouldn’t. This sort of common Battle Mage knowledge wasn’t something he would overlook.
But at that moment, Soft Mist’s spear had suddenly extended forward.
Had he seen that wrong?
Jiang Botao didn’t know if he had seen it wrong but he wasn’t going to take the risk. He had parried, giving Tang Rou a Light Chaser. But compared to getting knocked into the air by Sky Strike, he definitely preferred the former.
Thus, he had put up his sword Divine Chains.
His question was answered.
Soft Mist’s Dancing Fire Flowing Flames struck Empty Waves’ Divine Chains. The Light Chaser shot out. Even if Jiang Botao had wanted to dodge, Chasers had auto-targeting!
The Chaser hit, and Soft Mist’s attack speed increased. Her offense continued.
The single Chaser hitting hadn’t been enough to give Tang Rou much of an opportunity to injure his opponent. The normal players didn’t think too much of it. After all, she had been on the offensive the entire time. It wasn’t possible for Jiang Botao’s Empty Waves to take absolutely zero damage. Even though he had dodged most of the attacks, he had still lost 7% over the course of the battle so far.
However, the pro players knew that this time was different.
Because this time, Jiang Botao had lost his calm. He didn’t have the same foresight as before. The parry had been in haste, meaning it had been outside of his expectations.
The tempo was no longer in his control. The flow of the battle was no longer completely dictated by him.
Not long after the Chaser hit, Jiang Botao’s Empty Waves was suddenly hit again. Even though it was just a normal attack with low damage, the pro players were no longer looking at the numbers. Jiang Botao’s control over the fight was slipping.
Had Jiang Botao not been able to think of this normal stab?
The attack had been obvious. Even a normal player understood that this follow-up would be next.
He knew, but he couldn’t avoid it.
It wasn’t just a slight shock through Jiang Botao’s heart, but rather a deep sense of danger.
It wasn’t any sort of crazy mix-up, nor was it anything new. This was a change done through force by relying on one’s reaction speed and technique. This was what it meant to have talent. And right now, Tang Rou was putting her talent on display. She wasn’t just recklessly erupting with hand speed, but meticulously manipulating the details to create changes.
No one knew who said it.
No one responded, but everyone knew that this praise wasn’t towards Jiang Botao, but Tang Rou.
At this moment, everyone realized that Happy’s rookie could no longer be seen as a rookie. This rookie had probably already established herself among the top players of Glory.
Compared to the top rookies each season: Season 2’s Blossoms and Blood, Season 3’s Wang Jiexi, Season 4’s Golden Generation, Season 5’s Zhou Zekai… during their debut season, all of them had already reached the level of Gods. However, as the competition got fiercer, and the Alliance grew, the luster of the top rookies seemed to decline with each season. After Season 6, only Sun Xiang had been given the title as one of the Gods after his rookie debut in Season 7. As for the ones after?
Season 8’s Best Rookie, Zhao Yuzhe? He wasn’t even an All-Star!
Season 9’s Best Rookie, Lu Hanwen? He had attracted a lot of attention because of his age. The mental fortitude and maturity at his age won much praise. Everyone was certain that he would have a glorious future, but no one thought that he was at the level of the Gods yet.
As for Tang Rou?
When comparing these rookies, everyone suddenly realized that Tang Rou’s situation was similar to Lu Hanwen’s, but also different.
Lu Hanwen had been given some lenience because of his age. Everyone’s expectations for him were naturally lower.
As for Tang Rou? Because of the 1v3 fiasco, a whole bunch of people cursed her the entire season. Everyone’s expectations for her were very harsh. If she didn’t do a 1v3, then all sorts of criticism and ridicule were thrown at her.
But 1v3… what sort of criteria was that? Using a 1v3 as a criteria wasn’t just harsh but deliberately making things difficult for her.
If people had looked at her performance over the entire season without bias, then the Alliance giving her the title of Best Rookie should have been indisputable.
High ambitions, strong mental fortitude, frightening talent, and constantly improving in Glory knowledge and technique…
Of the many traits that Tang Rou possessed, the only flaw that she had was her age.
Tang Rou wasn’t too young of a player at 23 years old. In the early years of the pro scene, many players this age would choose to retire. In the current scene, her age was where her skill and experience should be at its peak. As for how long this peak period lasted, it depended on the person. On average, there would usually be a decline after one or two years.
But for Tang Rou, this was her first season. Her skill was still increasing, but her age wouldn’t be able to carry her to the peak…
Truly a pity.
Everyone thought to themselves.
But a part from pity, there was also a bit of… joy.
After all, she was an enemy. Even though it wasn’t the manliest of thoughts, who cared if you were born at the wrong time? Those retired top players during Ye Qiu’s reign probably all had thoughts of “if only there was no Ye Qiu”.
At this moment, Tang Rou had unexpectedly given them thoughts of running away.
Everyone wanted to run, but Jiang Botao couldn’t.
He can’t hold on!
When everyone’s focus went back to the match, they saw Jiang Botao’s Empty Waves continuing to retreat in defeat. His previous retreat had been out of free will. He had been guiding Tang Rou along. But his current retreat was out of helplessness. He didn’t have a second choice.
I can’t keep retreating any longer!
Jiang Botao was clear about this point. If this continued, Empty Waves would lose too much health. An explosive counterattack might not be enough to win. Right now, he needed to be unyielding. He needed to fight against Tang Rou blow for blow.
There should be an opportunity to do so, no?
Jiang Botao observed and thought.
He had been giving in to her offense the entire time. Tang Rou should have formed a certain mindset by now. If he suddenly rushed forward, even if he couldn’t make it an explosive counterattack, it should at least mess up her rhythm.
Soft Mist’s Dancing Fire Flowing Flames swept outwards again. Jiang Botao had also finished formulating his plan.
He had to do it now. Too much thinking and too much preparation would actually make it easier for Tang Rou to be on guard. He needed to move suddenly and unexpectedly. He needed to create an opportunity when it wasn’t one.
Empty Waves jumped forward as if he were planning on crashing straight into Tyrant’s Destruction, but when he jumped, Empty Waves curled up his legs so that Soft Mist’s spear would be beneath him.
Just this isn’t enough!
Jiang Botao knew it clearly. He had experienced Tang Rou’s speed from a close distance. Although it looked like he had already dodged Tyrant’s Destruction, Tang Rou could definitely adjust in time.
But he wasn’t afraid because Empty Waves had made his move. Jiang Botao wasn’t looking for a breakthrough with this attack. He just wanted to shake things up, make a trade. For him, the trade would be favorable for him.
Jiang Boyao showed that he could be unyielding too.
Tang Rou didn’t retreat. She obviously wouldn’t. As long as she was still fighting, there was no such thing as retreat.
Sword light flashed, magic waves jumped, Empty Waves’ Wave Wheel Slasher arrived.
As for Tyrant’s Destruction?
Tyrant’s Destruction seemed to have stopped, but there was no change. Soft Mist raised her other hand. Magic quickly began to flow around her.
Jiang Botao realized what it was. His heart burned with worry. He just hoped that his attack would reach in time. But in the end, the magic waves surged, locking in place an afterimage…
The bonus skill on her weapon.
A Battle Mage choosing Teleport wasn’t anything surprising. Sung Xiang often chose this skill. Jiang Botao hadn’t overlooked this possibility, but he just didn’t think she could Teleport at this distance. The attack was already upon her, and she actually used Teleport?
This confidence and bravery exceeded his imagination. It seemed more likely that the Teleport wouldn’t go through in time, but Tang Rou wasn’t afraid of the outcome. What she showed was her determination to win even if the Wave Wheel Slasher had hit!
Only by having this determination would she be so decisive during these moments, and it was only by being decisive was she able to successfully dodge the Wave Wheel Slasher with Teleport.
Soft Mist instantly vanished from Jiang Botao’s sight.
Jiang Botao immediately guessed. However, Empty Waves was in the air. He immediately cancelled the skill and used Falling Light Blade to try alter his fall, but he was too late…
Dancing Fire Flowing Flames struck his waist, Circle Swing!
Empty Waves was thrown back, but he didn’t slam into the ground. Tang Rou had thrown aside the Circle Swing’s damage, using it just to get Empty Waves closer.
The skill was cancelled, and Empty Waves regained his mobility. Jiang Botao reacted quickly, using Falling Light Blade again.
But what welcomed was him… Hundred Dragon Meteor Strike!
Afterimages of Dancing Fire Flowing Flame appeared all around him. Tang Rou didn’t think about where he would dodge to. She used this skill to block all of Jiang Botao’s options.
Falling Light Blade immediately collapsed in front of Hundred Dragon Meteor Strike. Empty Waves was instantly skewered countless times.
Empty Waves was knocked back, and Soft Mist chased after him, attacking as she moved to deal as much damage as possible with Hundred Dragon Meteor Strike.
She wasn’t done yet…
After the Hundred Dragon Meteor Strike, she followed with a Dragon Tooth.
Hit, stun, there was no need to ask whether the next attack would hit.
Dragon Breaks the Ranks!
Tang Rou followed with a high-level skill. Soft Mist wielded Dancing Fire Flowing Flames, pressing against Empty Waves. Forward, forward, forward, there was only forward!
With unstoppable momentum, Empty Waves was pushed far back.
Jiang Botao was waiting, waiting for the instant the skill ended…
Dragon Breaks the Ranks reached its end, the condensed magic burst apart in the air, creating an explosion.
Empty Waves flew back from the shockwave, but he didn’t miss this opportunity to attack.
Light Wave Slash!
The fastest wave slash instantly formed, slicing towards Soft Mist.
Jiang Botao reacted extremely fast, his timing was on point.
But Tang Rou didn’t lose out. After Dragon Breaks the Ranks ended, Soft Mist jumped back and pointed with her spear.
Furious Dragon Strikes the Heart!
Dancing Fire Flowing Flames passed through the Light Wave Slash. One was physical, while the other magic. The two skills collided, neither interfering with each other.
Soft Mist was hit by the Light Wave Slash, leaving a sword mark on her leather armor.
Empty Waves wasn’t able to dodge the pursuit of Furious Dragon Strikes the Heart. The magic pierced through his back.
Soft Mist stumbled, but quickly steadied herself.
Empty Waves had been hit by the Furious Dragon Strikes the Heart while in the air, and was sent flying back.
Land, roll, he immediately steadied himself, but the scene to his left and right made Jiang Botao feel a little strange.
In front of Empty Waves was a wooden sign.
He was looking at the back of the wooden sign. It was very rough, and there was nothing there.
What he couldn’t see was the front of the wooden sign, the three words: Death to Intruders!
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