Swallowed Star - Volume 1 - Chapter 5
Volume 1 Chapter 5: Different Choices
’’The stronger you get, the harder it is to improve’’ Luo Feng contemplated, ’’For me to raise my speed from 23.8 m/s to 25 m/s would probably take around one year. For my strength to improve from 809 kg to 900 kg would probably take even longer. I would probably have to wait until after I get into college to achieve the title of 'Fighter'.’’
’’If, if... I enter a coma again, my body fitness level might reach what a 'Fighter' requires’’
Of course, this kind of coma isn't one you enter when someone beats you unconscious, but when you enter one from an extremely painful headache.
Luo Feng has a headache disorder.
Every so often Luo Feng gets a headache. However, he is usually able to bear with the pain until it passes. Occasionally, it would hurt so much that he would enter a coma.
Luo Feng has entered a coma twice so far.
When Luo Feng was 8 years old and his brother's legs were crushed by a car, he was so sad that he got a headache. At the same time, his heartbeat started to rapidly rise and his blood circulation speed rose to an alarming rate. Soon after he felt like his heart was about to beat out of his chest, he entered a coma.
Another time was when Luo Feng was 12 years old and his mother was re-hospitalized. Afraid of losing his mother, Luo Feng panicked and got an extremely painful headache. Like before, his heartbeat rapidly rose and he entered a coma.
After two comas, Luo Feng's family frequently brought him to the hospital for check ups. However, no illness was identified. Even in this age, the brain is still a mystery to medicine.
’’However, the two comas have increased my body strength by many times’’ Luo Feng anticipated, ’’8 years old, 12 years old, after I woke up from the comas, my strength, speed, and reaction speed clearly improved. Because of this, I was able to skip right past the 'Intermediate' exam in the dojo and achieve the 'Intermediate' title. Thanks to my genes, I was able to achieve the 'Elite' title at the age of 17’’
’’If I enter a coma again, I bet my strength would increase even more!’’
A coma is actually a symptom caused by your body to protect itself, so it isn't entirely a bad thing.
’’My head would hurt until its limit and my heartbeat would speed up until its limit’’
Luo Feng lowered his head and looked at the watch on his wrist. This watch had a 'Pulse meter' function.
’’Even after sprinting like crazy, my heart beat wouldn't go above 120 times a minute’’ Luo Feng watched his watch, ’’If I can reach a rate of 200 times a minute, then that would be great’’ The premonitions of a coma is an extremely bad headache and a super high pulse.
No matter how hard he exercised, he couldn't get his heartbeat to the rate which a coma would require.
Within the dojo training hall, scar faced Yang Wu, stood in front of the 'Fist Strength Tester' machine. However, he didn't seem very serious;he simply punched the tester a few times with both hands. A repeated [PENG!] [PENG!] [PENG!] sounded as he punched the machine. Soon after that, a few numbers were displayed on the screen.──’’956kg, 912kg, 936kg, 981kg......’’
Yang Wu punched a couple dozen times in one breath before stopping.
Luo Feng, who was watching on the sidelines, couldn't help but admire. His full power could only amount to 809 kg, but Brother Yang could unleash a flurry of fists with such power. For all of them to just pass the 700 kg mark would already be plenty.
’’Brother Yang, if only one of my full-power punches could be as strong as one of your random ones, then that would be great’’ Luo Feng laughed.
’’You, ’’ Yang Wu walked towards Luo Feng and laughed as he hit him on the shoulder, ’’you're only 19 this year, or 18 right now. When I was your age, I was only an intermediate member. With the rate at which you're improving... you would achieve the body fitness level required for the rank of 'Fighter' within two years for sure. Heh, a 20 year old fighter, how envious.’’
Luo Feng laughed.
The dojo only recruited students from age 16 to 30 because this is the period where one grows the fastest. This means that a person could enter the rankings more quickly and lead to even greater strength in the future. Luo Feng became an elite member at the age of 17, which many admired.
’’Oh yea, Crazy, you got high school exams right? What're ya gonna do after them?’’ Yang Wu laughed.
’’I will have to prepare for military academy’’ Luo Feng let out a small laugh, ’’the average person becomes a basic level officer in the normal army. However, I should be able to get into the Special Forces after graduation without a problem.’’
Yang Wu listened and curled his lip, ’’Entering a military academy is good but... I feel like your freedom is limited there. After you graduate from the academy and enter the special forces, you'll have to follow all of the rules. I would never be able to handle that;better for me to become a free fighter.’’
’’A free fighter is great’’ Luo Feng nodded, ’’But I wouldn't want my parents to worry. It is much safer to enroll in an academy, graduate, and then join the army than to become a free fighter.’’
A fighter usually has four paths they can choose from.
The first path: Join the army and become a part of it. It's safer and the country wouldn't easily let the fighter take risks. The country would also give the fighter's family many benefits, so the fighter would have no regrets.
The second path: Join a dojo. The restrictions of a dojo are broader and the community is more loose. Since the 'Dojo of Limits' was created by the strongest man on earth ('Hong'), there are quite a few benefits in becoming a 'fighter' in that dojo. Since the administration isn't as strict, there is more freedom too.
The third path: Join a large business, some family, or some major political power, and become a thug.
The fourth path: Join the mercenary corps, which would endanger your life all the time. At the same time, it grants the most freedom out of all four paths.
TL note: A free fighter doesn't pertain to any of the above paths.
’’Entering the army is safe, but I wouldn't want to live my days without any freedom’’ Yang WU nodded, ’’This year, I think I can pass the 'Prospective Fighter' exam. After I pass, I'll immediately sign up for the 'Fighter Combat' exam and work hard to become a fighter.’’
Luo Feng's eyes flashed: ’’Brother Yang, you're confident that you can pass the prospective fighter exam?’’
’’Haha’’ Yang Wu laughed, ’’I have reached the requirements for strength and reaction speed a long time ago. My weak point is speed. However, if I do well, I can barely reach 25 m/s. I'll work hard these few days and I should be able to pass the exam by the time I take it.’’
’’Congratulations, Brother Yang.’’ Luo Feng was happy for Brother Yang, since he worked so hard to become a fighter for so many years. ’’Brother Yang, what will you do after you become a fighter?’’
’’Of course I'd join the Dojo of Limits’’ Brother Yang laughed, ’’The Dojo of Limits has a very loose system and is scattered all around the world. Many previous fighters improved themselves in these dojos. Also, when I feel like taking a break, I can go out and kill some monsters. Quite free if you ask me.’’
Luo Feng nodded.
’’Crazy’’ Yang Wu looked at Luo Feng, ’’You're quite crazy inside your bones. I'm pretty sure that you are very suited to walk the path of a free fighter. Join a dojo, how free is that? And the Dojo of Limits would help us out a lot.’’
’’I....’’ Luo Feng hesitated.
Yang Wu saw what was happening, shaked his head, and laughed, ’’Crazy, free fighters frequently fight for their lives and train on the border between life and death. It's a bit more dangerous! But at the same time, because you are constantly fighting for your life, it's the fastest way to increase your strength! You see, no matter where, most of the strongest fighters are all free fighters.’’
Night time, the streetlights shine.
As Luo Feng leaves the Dojo of Limits, he reflects on his conversation with Yang Wu as he walks alone.
’’There are actually only two paths that suit me’’ Luo Feng thought to himself, ’’One is to enroll in the military academy, graduate, and then join the special forces. Next is to become a famous fighter in the Dojo of Limits and then kill monsters freely.’’
’’The safest out of these two paths is to enter the army. It's safer and benefits my family. Even if I die, the country would take good care of my loved ones.’’
’’Becoming a free fighter and living on the border between life and death would increase my strength the fastest. I can exchange the monsters I kill for a huge sum of money. This path.... dangerous. Rapid increase in skill, quick money, free, but the only drawback is the danger.’’ Luo Feng contemplated. In fact, he has been thinking about this ever since he started his senior year of high school.
’’My parents have two sons in total and my younger brother is already handicapped. If I become a free fighter and die in battle, how will my parents survive?’’
Luo Hua needs someone to take care of him.
Mom and Dad are already quite old. If I die, what will happen to them?
’’Guess I'll enroll in a military academy.’’
’’After I join the special forces, I'll be able to learn 'Militaristic Martial Arts' which, combined with my 'Ultimate Martial Arts' from the Dojo of Limits, should increase my strength. In the army, I can also train myself! Even if I die, I'll die as a fighter, so my country would give my parents pension every month.’’ After thinking about his parents, Luo Feng decided to pick the military academy.
Not just anybody can enter a military academy. Your grades have to meet the standard, so everything depends on June's exams.