The spectators on High School 13’s side of the audience fell into a forlorn silence. They stopped all the cheering, the posters and signs dropped. In their eyes, Lin Feng’s death was the beginning of the end. When his Wukong rampaged across the Rift at the start of the game, hope burned bright. They started to believe they had a chance at winning the Shanghai 16 School Tournament! They started to believe they could beat Shanghai High School! But it was just a flash. When Shanghai High School attacked and killed Wukong, all that hope went up in a puff of smoke.
They looked around at each other, embarrassed and sheepish. It was stupid of them to believe they had a shot at taking the trophy home to their school. Everyone from High School 13 knew this was it. Their esports team had lost the advantage they had in the early game, and it wouldn’t be long before they lost the game. Wouldn’t be long until they lost the series. Then all of them would go home together and life would go back to normal. They’d go back to being on the bottom. Back to being a terrible school. The energy from the audience died out, the substitutes for the team looked a little deflated, and even the players on the team felt their confidence waver. But the man at the center of it all wasn’t even slightly bothered.
Lin Feng scratched the back of his head and laughed, “Oh man! That was embarrassing!” He looked over to his teammates and continued, “I got outplayed HARD! Big oof!”
Tang Bingyao and Wei Dong sat to Lin Feng’s right. They stared at him, completely forgetting that they were in the middle of the most important game they’d ever played. Both of them thinking the same exact thought. Lin Feng is hopeless! He’s beyond help. Truly a lost cause. He doesn’t even care that he made such a big mistake! Liu Yue and Chen Ze, sitting on Lin Feng’s left, were in the same boat. They stared at their screens, stunned and speechless. Chen Ze finally broke the silence, “I guess it wasn’t completely his fault. If the Thresh hadn’t shown up… I mean… th—”
“No, no! Listen! I died and that’s that!” Lin Feng interjected. “Don’t need to make excuses.” He looked back at his screen and nodded, ignoring the stares digging into him. “Alright! Won’t let that happen again! We still got this! Let’s move on!”
After the initial burst of cheering from the takedown on the Wukong died out, Westwind and Silent Reed pulled up a replay on the large screen to analyze what had just happened.
“There you see the Thresh pathing through his Jungle to place wards.”
“And right here, we see the Wukong roaming towards the mid lane!”
“The Thresh was recalling back to base near the mid lane when Orianna got ganked.”
“He really was just in time to help the Orianna. That was so close. He wouldn’t have made it without that Flash.”
“Wukong didn’t stand a chance from that point onward.”
“That was all skill, right?”
“Yes. Pure skill. Zeng Rui is one of the best players in China. He has phenomenal mechanics and map awareness! You don’t see this kind of skill everyday!”
“He’s a Challenger, a real life Challenger. That was such a good play by Zeng Rui.”
“There you have it! Our analysis proves that that was pure skill by Zeng Rui! What a brilliant… PHENOMENAL play!”
Zeng Rui frowned. He ignored his teammates cheering him on over the team’s voice chat. I got lucky… I got lucky. He was having trouble accepting the reality of what just happened. The outplay didn’t matter. Things like Flaying an opponent out of a dash and hooking them under a tower were second nature. It took him no effort or even thought to do it. That timing… If I hadn’t been near mid… He just didn’t want to accept that the entire play came down to luck. Pure luck. I didn’t anticipate that gank! I failed at predicting what Lin Feng was going to do. That dumbass got one over on me, and that’s what’s pissing me off! The only reason I got that kill was luck! That’s fucking disgusting! It’s absolutely shameful that all of that came down to luck!
Zeng Rui was a man of few words. He was stoic, controlled, and believed in himself and his teammates. He hated the word ‘luck’. The entire concept disgusted him! Only people who were bad at the game needed to rely on luck! He held himself and his team to a much higher standard. He could win a game on his own with skill and strategy. The only thing he relied on was careful planning! But in this particular instance, where he was being celebrated, he’d failed himself. He failed to plan and predict. The only reason things had worked out was because he got lucky. He just happened to be in the right place at the right time. If he hadn’t been, Orianna would’ve died and the Wukong would’ve been even stronger. But he was there, and he saved Orianna and took Lin Feng’s Wukong down. What haunted him was just how easily it could’ve all gone in the other direction. That’s why he found luck disgusting. How did I miss that?
Su Xue wrapped up her meeting with Huya TV as quickly as she could. Then she started streaming the Shanghai 16 School Tournament Finals. Thousands of viewers quickly jumped in to watch the game with her. As far as she could tell, the game was relatively even between the two teams. Even after Lin Feng’s Wukong got killed. But when that happened, Su Xue gasped and asked her viewers how it even happened. They jumped in with many different theories, all of which boiled down to the fact that the Thresh had gotten lucky. But all of them believed in their Li’l Bro and repeated that giving away one kill was no big deal at all. Especially since another Dragon would spawn in two minutes. There was going to be another massive teamfight at the Dragon Pit, and that’s where Lin Feng would have his vengeance!
According to the consensus of the viewers on Sue Xue’s stream, Lin Feng was a God at teamfights. He always had a way of somehow going 1v5 and winning. Some of them added that they didn’t remember watching a single teamfight with Lin Feng where he didn’t come out on top. When this next teamfight rolled around, that’s when Lin Feng was going to punish Shanghai High School and the Thresh for killing him in a play that was pure luck.
“Shhhh!” Su Xue suddenly said, shutting the viewers up. Lin Feng had just run into Shanghai High School’s Jungler.
Wukong ran into Xin Zhao while he strolled around alone in the Blue team’s Jungle. The Xin Zhao was running low on health after clearing Jungle camps. Lin Feng noticed and smiled. Xin Zhao had not yet realized that Wukong was nearby. Lin Feng activated Warrior Trickster, and his Wukong turned invisible.
Wukong crept up on the poor, unsuspecting Xin Zhao. The Jungler was blissfully unaware that something was out of place and still casually wandering about. Once Wukong got close enough to the Xin Zhao’s back to pick the lice out of Xin Zhao’s top-knot, he raised his enchanted staff high into the air. Then brought it down on Xin Zhao’s head–Crushing Blow! Wukong immediately followed up with a wild spin with his staff held out, which knocked the Xin Zhao airborne. This was Wukong’s ultimate skill, Cyclone!
Xin Zhao had figured out that his life was in danger while he was up in the air. He tried to retaliate the moment his feet touched the ground again. He swept his spear out in a wide arc and knocked the Wukong away–Crescent Sweep!
But Lin Feng knew the knockback from Crescent Sweep was coming. He’d saved Nimbus Strike precisely for this moment, and it was here. Lin Feng pushed down on his E Key. Wukong dashed right back on top of the Xin Zhao, and then bashed his skull apart with a final Crushing Blow!
《You have slain an enemy!》
“Oh yeah! Sweet!” Su Xue exclaimed when Lin Feng got the kill. “It looks so easy when he does it! He’s the best! Who was saying something about him feeding? Ha! What a joke.”
「No joke no joke. He really gave away a kill earlier!」
「Lil bro is the best!!!1! He’s just having fun! Hahahahhaha」
「HE”S THE REALLL CHALLENGEER!!!!!!1!」
「lawl, that xin zhao is stupid…..」
「GRATS!!!!! WOOOOOO lil bro for the win BABBBEEHHHH!!!」
「sooooo easy… pffttt. this a finals? lawl」
The second Dragon spawned when the game timer hit the 12-minute mark. Solo kills, like the one Lin Feng had gotten two minutes ago from the Xin Zhao, didn’t make a grand difference in the flow of the game. Teamfights had far more of an impact, and determined how the balance between both teams tipped. Both Shanghai High School and High School 13 had gathered near the Dragon Pit. Both teams were placing wards to maximize vision while searching for that perfect opening to engage a teamfight. There were a few skirmishes as both teams pushed their luck trying to place a deep ward on the opposing side of the map. The actual usefulness of these deep wards was up for debate though, since everyone knew where they were placed.
Shanghai High School had also bought four vision wards. These were specifically meant to deal with Wukong, since they could reveal invisible Champions. They placed two of them on their side of the map. If Wukong tried to flank them, they would see him and know. They placed the other two wards as close as possible to High School 13’s side of the map. But those two were quickly destroyed.
While all of this warding and planning was going on, both teams were constantly throwing skillshots at each other to get some poke damage in. Beyond that though, Shanghai High School and High School 13 were deadlocked. Neither side was willing to force an engage. Both teams poked and danced around each other, hoping to bait someone on the other team into stepping over the line. But it hadn’t happened so far, and both teams continued to look for an opportunity.
Until Chen Ze’s Twisted Fate took a single step too far in the wrong direction. A sickle shot out from the fog of war and hooked him.
“There’s the engage!” Westwind shouted into his microphone. “Thresh landed the… DEATH SENTENCE! This is it. The first. Big! TEAMFIGHT!” The audience fed on his energy, cheering and shouting for Zeng Rui.
Thresh’s Death Sentence had a second activation. After hooking a target, he could dash to them. Which is exactly what Thresh did. While flying towards Twisted Fate, he threw out a lantern behind him to Irelia. She clicked it and dashed after him. The two Champions appeared on top of Twisted Fate and started attacking him. Xin Zhao followed a step behind them.
Chen Ze slammed down on the D key–Flash! His Twisted Fate blinked away from Thresh, Irelia, and Xin Zhao. The rest of High School 13’s team rushed to his aid, charging towards the three champions from Shanghai High School.
Xin Zhao wasn’t about to let High School 13 save their Twisted Fate though. He activated his ultimate and swept his spear in a wide arc that knocked the Champions from High School 13 back before they could get to their Twisted Fate. Then he charged at the Twisted Fate with Audacious Charge! The Twisted Fate’s health was low after the initial engagement by Thresh and Irelia. When Xin Zhao’s Audacious Charge hit Twisted Fate, it blew through the last of his health and killed him.
Wei Dong pressed down on his Q key–Dark Binding! His Morgana locked Xin Zhao down with her dark magic before he could escape. Liu Yue followed up with his Rek’Sai, Un-burrowing underneath the Xin Zhao and knocking him up. But the crowd control was again not perfectly layered. The skill effects overlapped with each other, instead of flowing sequentially. This allowed Xin Zhao to break free early and rush back to his team with way more health than he should have had. Morgana and Rek’Sai chased after him, but Orianna intercepted and stopped them. She launched her Ball towards them and unleashed a powerful electromagnetic wave of energy with Command: Shockwave.
Morgana Flashed away before the skill could hit. But Liu Yue couldn’t get his Rek’Sai out in time. He was pulled in towards the Ball, and separated from the rest of Highschool 13’s team. He was a wounded and lone gazelle on the wilds of the Rift, and the Jinx and Irelia wasted no time pouncing on him. They hacked away at his health. The smell of blood also enticed Xin Zhao, who stopped fleeing despite his dwindling health and turned back to the fight.
Everything was looking lost for High School 13. This teamfight was going disastrously. Shanghai High School got the kill on Twisted Fate and they couldn’t even kill the Xin Zhao in return. But then, just as it started to look like the fires of Mordor were swallowing High School 13 up whole, a piercing ray of white light shone from a brush. “A wizard is never late, nor is he early, he arrives precisely when he means to.” A figure riding the clouds and clad in heavenly battle armour charged into the battle with his enchanted staff! The Wukong dashed into the Xin Zhao and swung a staff down on his head–Crushing Blow! Killing blow!
The audience was already up on their feet. Everyone in the venue was going crazy. Both teams had a chance in this teamfight! Westwind knew this too. He was out of breath from all the shouting, but still clutched the microphone tightly in his grasp and moved it so close to his mouth that he could almost taste it. Then he shouted in his loudest voice yet, “WUKONG! WUKONG HAS ARRIVED!”
Zeng Rui smiled when he saw the Wukong. This was the moment he had been waiting for. He used the Summoner Spell Exhaust, causing a crippling aura to wrap around the Wukong, while shouting over his team’s voice chat, “Kill the Wukong! He’s exhausted! Kill him! Kill him!”
Shanks Thought: Last night, Devs and I got into a conversation with some readers about siscon. Then one way or another, it turned degen real fast. All of a sudden we were talking about porn and porn kinks. Being the prude I am and not actually wanting to become the focus of attention, I employed the tactic of shooting first before I get shot.
Dev Interjection: So Shanks shoots first and fast, eh? Quick-Draw Shanks!
It worked for a while. Everyone else started answering the questions and describing their favourite kinks. But then Devshard noticed my scheme and fired the question back at me.
I knew this moment was an inevitability, but I was still caught off guard. I answered truthfully and told everyone I basically had no kinks or preferences. I always just click on whatever is on the popular page or recommended list on PornHub. Devshard then proceeded to call me a shell of a human being and left the voice call in disgust.
But fret not! I promptly received plenty of different porn kink videos in my DMs, which I investigated from underneath my blanket right before bed. Gonna be real with you guys. Some of this shit was really weird, and I wasn’t feeling most of these kinks. Like the one with the Japanese girls on the public bus. It was just cricket noises and high pitched moaning on an empty bus. But I have to admit, I got weirdly deep into the ATK Girlfriend videos after Devshard mentioned their obsession with feet. I’m not sure if that’s something that was awakened by the shenanigans in the Rise server, or if it was there already.
Sietse Thought: Shanks was so excited about his ATK Girlfriend videos that he started talking about it again today on voice chat. I was listening to him and Dev going back and forth about something that sounded suspiciously much like “attack girlfriend” this and that. Now, I know the crazy shit these two get up to. But let’s face it, neither could ever realistically get a girlfriend, so I figured it was harmless. But these guys kept talking about their attacking girlfriends thing. Not gonna lie, got me a little worried. I grabbed my good friend Google, quietly listening exactly how they were pronouncing everything, and started searching. When you look for attacking girlfriends on Google, you find news reports, justice reports, and a very disturbing subset of kink videos… It took me a good 30 minutes to figure out that they weren’t into that kind of kink videos, but a far more wholesome variant.
Now, they’ve had their fun with porn kinks. Figured I’d share one of my personal favourites too. Japanese porn videos are a phenomenal source for entertainment. I still remember the first time I stumbled upon the timestop one. It started in this beach tent. Some ugly guy walks in with this massive watch I think it was (?) and an evil grin on his face. There’s like 10 beautiful girls in summer wear minding their own business. And then this dude pushes the button and they stopped moving! It sounds so stupid, but I loved it from the moment I first saw it. You could see them “freeze” in increasingly difficult positions to hold, and almost fall a couple of times. I still haven’t seen one actually fall on the ground, unfortunately.
P.S. If you wanna annoy Devs, delete a paragraph of text and just hold it back. Act stupid. Forget to revert it. After working/studying for 16 hours straight, that shit becomes hilarious. What makes it even better is Shanks laughing in the background.
Sbanks Addendum: I was actually so excited to tell Sietse about my porn discoveries today! Then his response was just so muted. All I got was just silence. Honestly, I could feel him judging me from all the way in Holland. And I thought the Europeans were supposed to be sexually liberal! He also acted like he had no idea what we were talking about. Like this dude barely watched any porn at all. Listen here, buddy. Some of us can’t get girlfriends at the snap of a finger and have to look to other avenues to vent!
Dev Thought: Alright. ALL of… this. It started because I recently found out that Irregular at Magic Highschool had a Season 2. It’s on Hulu, btdubs. Anyways, it’s been a very long time since I watched Season 1. So I decided to rewatch all of Season 1 and then move onto Season 2. Watching Tatsuya and Miyuki’s odd relationship got me thinking about Sis-Con. See, I found it weird and unwholesome in the first couple of episodes of that anime. Then as I kept watching, I started to think it was okay. Both Tatsuya and Miyuki are attractive and they’re both really into each other. In a wholesome way. Which got me thinking that the Siscon isn’t too bad. I started becoming more and more understanding of the weird incest, and even making excuses for Tatsuya having an unhealthy obsession with his Sister. I even started making excuses for Miyuki lusting after her Brother. Then I caught myself.
It got me wondering… is incest okay if both parties involved are attractive enough that we all understand why they’re into each other? Is that the only thing that serves as the foundation of our moral objection of incest? I’ve thought about this for some time now, and I guarantee that all of us would’ve been talking about how fucked up it was if Tatsuya and Miyuki were both ugly. But we accept it because they’re attractive and into each other. But it’s not just that they’re attractive. It comes in more that they’re both SO attractive that it would be difficult for either of them to find a romantic partner within the same league. Which is what I believe makes it okay for them to be into each other.
When you think about what that means in terms of the moral fabric that binds this experiment we call civilization… God. Two rules:
- Be attractive
- Don’t be unattractive.
These two rules are absolute truth. Everything else is a lie.
Sietse Interjection: Coincidentally, those are also the rules of the Tinder subreddit.