After the long wait, chapter 13 has been released 😀 !
Chapter 13: The real battle begins!
Sir Ryuuto then took out a controller from his side pocket, an pressed a tiny yellow button. Instantly, like a rubix cube, the room transformed into a whole different platform.
“What’s going on?” Cintare asked as the area she was standing on suddenly elevated above everyone else.
“The room is changing into our basketball court. But, what kind of court is this-” Jellal paused and dodged as a flying axe which nearly sliced him into halves.
The room rotated and those who had motion sickness were holding on to their stomachs tightly as the room shook. Water gushed into the room and raised to a level of 1.5m. In addition, with every 5 minutes of the game, the water level would be raised by 0.1m. “That’s insane! Some of us cannot even play basketball well yet, not to mention swim!” some of the other students lamented. Sir Ryuuto then gestured to them to move to their respective starting points.
“The rules are simple. To win, you have to score into the other 3 opposing teams’ hoop before they can score into yours. Obviously, your opponents will be doing likewise, so basically this test is to see which team is the best at making strategies, the most agile, flexible and able to go with any challenges that arrive in the course of this game. Secondly, you may not touch the ground at any point in time with your feet. The rule is that you can only swim from one place to another, but you may take few steps to shoot into the hoop. The water level will keep rising, so do hurry up, or be drowned. Let the games begin!”
He blew a horn and that marked the start of the games.
Hyusune’s team was completely scattered and they had to gather back to discuss their strategies first. But with all the pillars and rocks blocking their path, it was almost impossible to pinpoint the location of their teamates. However, Hyusune remembered that they still had their equip from what they made at the sea just now and she smelt the seaweed and rocks. The smell of the seawater which was not identical to the water that was in the court. She submerged her face underwater and begin to pick up the smell of the rocks they had used on their armour. As each team had used different materials in the crafting of their armours, each armour had a distinct smell. Hyusune moved under the water and found Rima first. Rima then used her nullification to send their teammates signals as to where they were. The nullification sent a pattern of ripples under the water which helped the rest of the team to identify where Rima and Hyusune were.
Soon enough, the team was reunited.
“Now all we have to do is to find the basketball, but this room keeps moving!” Cintare said as she grabbed onto her stomach. She was one of those unfortunate ones who had motion sickness.
“Since this court is just a regular court that’s messed up, it should be more or less shaped like a regular rectangular court. But since it’s a 4 way game, it would be shaped more like a cross. That just complicates everything.” Leandra explained.
“But then again, if this court is a messed up cross, as long as we can see the transverse lines, we should be able to differentiate which goals we have to score into. Our objective of this game is just to score one goal in each of the opponent’s goals right?”
“That’s true. I get it now! Follow me!” Makoto signalled everyone to follow him. Just then, the water level rose by 0.1m.
“Crap. It’s starting. 5 mins have already passed.” Hyusune said as their heads kept afloat.
They swam around the moving pillars until they finally reached an opening.
“There’s a hoop there, and it’s ours. It’s the same colour as the band Ryuuto got us to wear on our hands. So, would anyone like to stay here and defend the post while the others take the ball and shoot?” Jellal asked.
“We’ll stay here.” Reina and Celestine said together.
The rest of them shrugged their shoulders.
“I-I’ll join them! ” Rima raised her hand.
“Alright. 3 should be enough. Cintare, Mako, Leandra and Hyuu, let’s go!”
They swam through the water, careful not to touch the ground with their feet so that they would not be disqualified. They headed in the opposite direction of their goalpost which Reina and the others were guarding. Reina, Celestine and Rima were all struggling to keep afloat, because the movements in the obstacles on court created strong waves of water which brushed hard against them.
“We must press on! Hang in there guys!” Rima said as she held on to their hands. Together, they stood their ground, defending the goalpost from the other teams. However, there was no team in sight at the moment.
As for Makoto, Jellal, Hyusune, Leandra and Cintare, they had headed for Keira’s team’s goalpost. Just as they passed mid court, the water level rose another 0.1m and taken by shock, Cintare nearly drowned.
Hyusune was alarmed and quickly swam to her rescue. She pulled Cintare out, just in time before she could touch the ground.
“Are you okay?” Hyusune asked worriedly.
Panting heavily, Cintare replied, “I’m ok… *cough cough*… Let’s go…” They swam upwards and towards the surface of the water so that they could breathe more easily.
As they got closer to the hoop, 2 of Keira’s team members, Eli and Zed guarded them tightly, marking off Leandra and Cintare. While Zed and Eli were unfortunately distracted by the main action that was going on, Hyusune, Makoto and Jellal zipped past them successfully. Makoto threw the ball to Hyusune, who diverted the pass to Jellal. Jellal, with Makoto’s help, jumped out of the water and delivered a smashing slam dunk.
“Attaboy! 1 down, 2 to go!” Leandra exclaimed as she and Cintare got pass Zed and Eli, who totally fell for their trick.
“We’ve got no time to waste! Hurry up! We need to get to Shiroyan’s goalpost next! It’s on the east side! C’mon—” Makoto signaled for them to follow him, but just as they took a turn, the courts shifted around and the ground was elevating again. “Whoooooa—” Hyusune was losing her balance and Cintare and Leandra grabbed on tightly to her.
“Guys! Grab on to each other! Don’t let go!” Cintare yelled.
They held on to each other’s hands and managed to reach an elevated part of the court where the water was shallower, of about 0.9m. “Let’s seize the opportunity to locate Shiroyan’s hoop as soon as possible!” Hyusune declared as they looked around to where the parts of the court had shifted. They made use of the chance that while those defenders were suffering from motion sickness, Hyusune acted as a decoy to distract them, while Leandra and Cintare worked together to pass the ball around underwater until Makoto and Jellal were close enough to the hoop to shoot.
Meanwhile, Reina, Rima and Celestine were doing a good job defending all the balls that came, smashing them out of court and disqualifying the team whose ball had been smashed out. Keira’s team, unfortunately, had been totally disqualified, as Rima had successfully destroyed their ball with her strong chop to hit it out of court. “Nice one Rima!” Celestine high-fived her.
Now the only teams left were Shiroyan’s team, Hyusune’s team, and Fran’s team.
But only 1 team would emerge as victorious.
And which team would it be?
The games intensified as the water level continued to rise. Fran’s team had successfully scored a point in Keira’s goal, while Shiroyan’s team was still missing in action. Hyusune’s team had scored yet another point in Shiroyan’s team’s goal, making their total points 2, and Fran’s team had 1 point. Fran’s team was heading straight for Hyusune’s team’s goalpost at full speed.
“No way do I plan to lose this!” Fran grinned at Kurosuke, who smiled back at her.
Just then, the unexpected happened.
Over the annoucement system, one of the mentors cried out, “Oh my! What is this? Shiroyan’s team has unbelievably scored 2 points at once!”
Fran and Hyusune’s team immediately looked up.
“What on earth just happened?!”
“Two goals simultaneously?!”
“Guys! We have no time for this, the water level will be rising to 2m in the next 1 minute! We must hurry!” Leandra said which a hint of urgency in her voice. They swam with authoritative strokes towards Fran’s team’s goalpost, just around the same time Fran’s team reached Hyusune’s team’s goalpost.
“Oh my, what rivalry! Fran and Hyusune’s teams are having a head-on battle with each other!” Lilian, the mentor for Shiroyan’s team, was giving some pretty exaggerated commentary, and Hyusune and Fran tried to hype it up.
On both frontlines, Fran and Hyusune uttered the same words, “Rivalry? Who are you kidding? This means war!” And at once both teams charged forward, both on the offensive and defensive end.