130 Public Execution
Lin Huang was adapting to the life in the training camp; it was similar to being held as a prisoner against his will. All communication and network signals were blocked, and they were completely disconnected from the outside world. There were surveillance cameras in every corner of the small foothold, and there were no blind spots at all. There was no privacy at all given; they were watched 24-hours a day, when they used the toilet, bathroom, and even while they slept.
Their daily routine was to wake up for breakfast from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m., and following that, they would be free to do as they please for the next hour. From 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., they would be killing monsters in the training tower for the entire length of eight hours. 5:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. was dinner time and again, they were free to do as they pleased. After that, it was back to killing monsters in the training tower for three hours, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. They only got to rest after 11 o’clock at night.
Soon, two days had passed. It was free and easy time after breakfast, and suddenly, a tune that sounded like a ringtone was played on the loudspeaker. Half a minute later, the music stopped and a man began to speak.
"Everyone gather round the execution point in 10 minutes!"
Lin Huang thought that was odd. "What’s going on?" he asked Xiao Mo.
"It’s public execution day today…" Xiao Mo explained softly. "Everyone has to be there to watch it."
"You mean executions for the three people who are ranked the lowest?" Lin Huang asked him again. He knew the rule himself but it was his first time he was going to witness an actual execution. "Are they really going to carry out the execution in front of everyone?!" He almost yelled.
Lin Huang had read about this rule in the beginning when the training camp made them take a ranking test. They could collect points by killing monsters in the training tower.
Rank-1 = 1 point
Rank-2 = 2 points
Rank-3 = 4 points
Rank-1 = 10 points
Rank-2 = 20 points
Rank-3 = 40 points
Rank-1 = 100 points,
Rank-2 = 200 points
Rank-3 = 400 points
Rank-1 = 1,000 points
Rank-2 = 2,000 points
Rank-3 = 4,000 points
By accumulating points, they could redeem things that they wanted which included combat skills, Life Skills, equipment, food and a lot more. The ranking was refreshed daily and was sent to everyone’s Emperor’s Heart Ring through the local network. It was mentioned that those who ranked top-3 for 100 consecutive trials or broke through to gold-level during these trainings would officially become a reserve member of the Purple Crow. Meanwhile, those who ranked the in on the lowest three for 10 consecutive days would be executed in public.
"The public execution serves as a reminder to all of us," Xiao Mo explained. Looking at everyone leaving, he urged Lin Huang, "Let’s leave now. There will be punishments for the latecomers."
Both of them followed the crowd to the other building in the small foothold, they arrived at an enormous ring-shaped arena. There was an empty space the size of a football field in the middle of the arena. It was surrounded by chairs, and within a glance, it could probably accommodate more than 10,000 people.
Lin Huang and Xiao Mo found themselves a seat. Soon the empty seats in the arena were almost full. It was only then that Lin Huang realized there were so many people in the training camp, more than he expected.
"So many people…"
"This isn’t considered many. There are 13 training camps in Division7. Ours is only the 11th when it comes to the number of participants," Xiao Mo explained immediately when he heard Lin Huang’s exclamation.
"There are 13 training camps?!" Lin Huang gasped. He had thought this was the only training camp in Division7. He had definitely underestimated the organization.
"Shh…" Suddenly, Xiao Mo gestured at Lin Huang to stop talking and said quietly, "The public execution is starting, we’re not allowed to talk."
Lin Huang nodded and kept quiet while looking at the people at the arena. The arena was completely silent. It seemed like everybody was aware of this rule.
Three young men in green uniforms were shoved in from the entrance of the arena. They looked like death row inmates with dead eyes and expressionless faces. There were three executioners in black behind them.
The three young men in green uniforms walked slowly to the middle of the area. One of the man in black who was wearing sunglasses walked towards them with a sealed box.
"What is happening?" Lin Huang asked quietly.
"They’re asking the young men to choose how they would die by drawing ballots," Xiao Mo explained.
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Lin Huang was solemn as he watched the events transpire.
The three young men extended shaking hands into the sealed box. They then pulled out a wooden piece each.
"Say your name, ranking and the style of execution," the man in sunglasses said into a loudspeaker receiver the size of a palm. He then passed the loudspeaker to the first man. The receiver was turned on and a long antenna came out from it and stopped by the man's mouth. As it turned out, it was the mouthpiece for the loudspeaker.
The young man stuttered, "My name is… Han Yang… I'm ranked… last in the point rankings... for the past… 10 days. My death… would be… by beheading…"
He cried as he said those words out loud. He was terrified!
Lin Huang could tell that this person was only iron-level rank-2, a rank which was considered to be the weakest in this training camp, so it was not out of the ordinary that he ranked last.
After the young man's report, the man in sunglasses took the loudspeaker receiver from him and nodded to the executioner who was standing behind him and he took a few steps back. The golden ring on the executioner’s hand transformed into a sword and he held the young man on the ground by force. Soon, the sword came down on the young man and a head shot up into the air as blood gushed everywhere.
Lin Huang frowned as he watched. Although he had killed people before, it was the first time he watched an actual execution happen. He thought it was gruesome and unethical. However, the man in sunglasses did not seem to be affected at all. He then walked across the pool of blood in his pair of black leather boots and handed the loudspeaker receiver to the second man with an expressionless face.
"My name is Lu Shen, I ranked second last in the past 10 days. My death will be execution by gunshot," the second young man said with a gloomy expression. The man in sunglasses nodded to the executioner again. The golden ring transformed into a pistol and he pointed it at the left side of Lu Shen’s head. The executioner pulled the trigger without a moment's notice. "Bang!" A bullet was shot, and the young man’s head exploded. It was Lin Huang’s first time witnessing the power of a gold-level gun.
The man in sunglasses then walked to the last person and handed him the loudspeaker receiver.
"My name is Zou He, I’m ranked the third last in the past 10 days. My death will be through... Dismemberment..." Suddenly, an uproar broke among the crowd as the young man mentioned how his execution would be carried out. Many were discussing the execution as it seemed like it had been awhile since the last time someone was executed by dismemberment. The man in sunglasses was stunned as well but his surprise slowly turned to anger as he frowned at the noisy crowd.
"Silence!" The man in sunglasses shouted into the loudspeaker receiver and the arena went silent. Once the man made sure that the people were calm, he took a few steps back and nodded to the executioner. The executioner then sealed Zou He’s movement from the back of his neck. His clothes were removed and he was tied with a metal rope before he was hung on a metal shelf. He looked like a beast waiting for slaughter.
Soon blades appeared in the executioner’s hands and he began performing his knife skills on Zou He. His skills were refined from years of experience as he slowly sliced the flesh off Zou He’s body. Once his clothes were completely removed, each of the wounds were clear before everybody’s eyes. Zou He was groaning in pain, and the sounds were transmitted, loud and clear through the loudspeaker. Lin Huang had heard of such executions before had never imagined it to be this gory and cruel.
It lasted for more than three hours. Zou He was finally dead with thousands of slices of his flesh were carved from his body. The execution was carved into everyone’s mind and they were in fearful awe of the executioner. Zou He’s groan echoed in Lin Huang’s head as he walked back to his room.
"It seems like the Purple Crow is a cult…" he thought. It was the first time he had seen something so gruesome since he joined the training camp.
Xiao Mo had been quiet ever since they got back to their room and he has not spoken a single word since the incident. Lin Huang soon noticed his odd behaviour and asked, "Xiao Mo, what’s wrong? Were you traumatised by the execution we saw earlier?"
"I will die 10 days from now…" Xiao Mo said after being quiet for awhile.
"What do you mean?" Lin Huang wondered as he thought what he said was ridiculous.
"I’m one of those who will be executed in the next batch," Xiao Mo mumbled as he did not want to explain any further.
Lin Huang then realized what Xiao Mo was trying to say. As he was only an iron-level rank-3 hunter and his combat strength was limited. He had ranked at the bottom for a while After the three young men were executed, Xiao Mo was the next one who was ranked last on the leaderboard.
"Don’t worry, there's still another 10 days to go. There must be a way." Lin Huang said as he tried to improve the morale between them. He did not know what else to say. "Try to stay longer in the training tower for the next few days."
Each room in the training tower could only accommodate one person and each mission had to be done alone. There was no way for Lin Huang to help Xiao Mo.
"Oh, yeah... How far are you from filling up your Life Power?" Lin Huang asked.
"My Life Power is full but I don’t dare to level-up because once I arrive at bronze-level, I won’t be able to enter the iron-level training room any further. I’d accumulate points at an even slower rate..."
Xiao Mo was in a vicious cycle. He could accumulate points by killing iron-level monsters but the points were much lower compared to bronze-level monsters. On the other hand, if he chose to level-up, his abilities were still insufficient to kill bronze-level monsters and this would slow him down even more. Lin Huang was at a loss as there was nothing he could do to help in this situation.