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Losses Build Personality

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Zhang Hongyi leaned back in his chair and balanced it on two legs, smiling. He pointed at the large LCD screen above the stage and said to his teammates, “They’ve got Goalie and Seo and… whatever the fuck that Thresh is. It honestly feels like an insult to Seo that he’s expected to play together in the bot lane with such a useless Support.” He then glanced at his ad-carry and added, “If I ever play like that, please kick me off the team.”

“I don’t know…” Yu Ping muttered. He stared at the large LCD through narrowed eyes. That Kalista… Lin Feng. He is so much better than everyone else I’ve seen in this tournament. He… He’s a challenge. He’ll make me try. He smiled and took a long, deep breath. “That Thresh engage wasn’t bad,” he said to his teammates. He shook his head and continued, “What that Kalista did was just really impressive. Dodging that Death Sentence? That requires incredibly quick reflexes and extremely sharp mechanics. Pay attention to him.”

The coach from Team Beijing looked at his team members and smiled, satisfied. I’ve been trying to make them see this since the start. I’ve been telling them to be careful about Team Shanghai! But they never respected my opinion. They kept saying that I worried too much and that they could win with their eyes closed… He chuckled. I feel like I should be mad or annoyed or something else than happy. But I’m just glad that Yu Ping makes them take Team Shanghai seriously now. Hmm, we’re really lucky we didn’t draw them this round. That would’ve been ugly.

There was such an intense burst of rage that exploded in Seo’s head when Lee Sin died that he couldn’t think anymore. Words spewed from his mouth in Korean, English and broken Chinese, but he hadn’t the faintest clue as to what they were. He’d completely lost control over his body, stuck within the darkness in his mind. Then that darkness blazed with light. He squinted his eyes in reflex and looked for the source. A single head. A fresh out of bed look. An angry grin. What followed were the words that kept haunting him. They echoed through his mind and with each repetition, another identical head appeared in his mind.

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

“No one will remember your face!”

Seo screamed in fear. There were a hundred Lin Feng’s in his mind, pointing at him with their illusory hands and repeating those same words over and over and over. “No one will remember your face!” “No one will remember your face!” Seo shouted in defiance, “YOU’RE LYING! THEY WILL REMEMBER ME! THEY WILL RECOGNIZE MY FACE!”

“Seo… Seo… Seo!” 

Seo faintly heard someone calling his name in the distance. He grabbed his head and shook it wildly. He then looked around at where he was, until he met Goalie’s worried stare. “Huh?” he mumbled.

“Seo,” Goalie said again over the team’s voice chat. He looked at his teammate and asked, “Are you okay?”

“Zeng Rui, wanna help me kill Goalie?” An Xin asked over the team’s voice chat.

Zeng Rui looked at the mid lane and replied, “Yeah. I’ll be there in a bit.”

An Xin smiled and waited for the expected push from Twisted Fate. Before players recalled back to base, they liked to kill as many minions as they could so as to minimize the number they’d miss out on while away from lane. And having just hit Level 6, this was also the optimal time for Twisted Fate to start disappearing from the mid lane, whether that be to recall back to base or to roam around the map and use his ultimate skill to teleport to the top or bot lane for a gank. All he had to do was mix it up a bit and force Team Shanghai to keep guessing at what he was doing.

At 6 minutes, Goalie’s Twisted Fate started pushing the minions. Zeng Rui’s Jarvan IV was sitting in the brush above the lane, waiting for the ‘go’-signal from An Xin. That came a few seconds later when An Xin flashed forward and cast her ultimate skill–Chains of Agony! Morgana fired dark crimson chains at Twisted Fate! They wrapped around him and slowed.

“Now!” An Xin ordered over the team’s voice chat.

Zeng Rui’s fingers started gliding over his keyboard. His Jarvan IV threw down his standard behind Twisted Fate and dashed at it with Dragon Strike! He barreled through Twisted Fate and knocked him up, which gave Morgana enough time to pull the chains tight and stun Twisted Fate!

An Xin’s Morgana called upon her Celestial power to torment the soil underneath Twisted Fate. She followed up with a barrage of auto attacks; wisps of dark magic that struck Twisted Fate. All the while she was holding onto her Dark Binding, waiting for the stun from Chains of Agony to wear off. Right before it did, she cast the Dark Binding and extended the crowd control. Combined with Jarvan IV’s auto attacks, she killed Twisted Fate before this root could wear off.

You have slain an enemy!

“WOOOOOOOO! SHE DID IT! SHE DID IT!” Su Xue exclaimed into her microphone. She turned her head to look at Zephyr and continued, “Did you see? Did you see? She did it! She killed him! What a beautiful engage! She flashed right into him and stunned him and there was nothing he could do about it! SHE KILLED HIM!”

Zephyr looked at Su Xue and chuckled. Man, I love her energy! He then reached for his microphone and shouted, “WOOOOOOO indeed! What a brilliant engage by Team Shanghai’s Jungler-turned-Midlaner! The ultimate into the Dark Binding was timed perfectly! And then there was the flag-toss combo from Jarvan… That was executed so perfectly!”

“She’s so cool!”

“She destroyed Goalie! Hahaha!”

“WOOOOO!”

“SIIIIIKE!”

“Holy cowerina! How is Team Shanghai this good!?”

Goalie looked around the soundproof booth at his teammates. Seo was grumbling and the three Chinese players were caught in an awkward silence. He stared at his screen and gritted his teeth. Seo and I are supposed to be the leaders. But he’s tilting off the face of the Earth and I’m… I’m struggling. We’re almost out! I have to do something. I’ve got my ultimate now, so I can do something. He panned his camera towards the bot lane. Seo needs to get back into this. If we can get a good gank there and get some kills… He nodded to himself and said over the team’s voice chat, “Gank bot. Irelia teleport with me behind tower. Lee Sin gank lane.”

At 9 minutes, Team Guangzhou was ready. Lee Sin had snuck into the third of three brushes along the bottom edge of the bot lane and Seo’s Tristana and his Support were pushing into Team Shanghai’s outer tower, forcing Lin Feng’s Kalista and Tang Bingyao’s Braum to defend. More importantly, Team Guangzhou’s Thresh had snuck a ward into Team Shanghai’s bottom side Jungle which gave Irelia a target to teleport to.

Goalie double checked to make sure everything was ready. When he saw Zeng Rui’s Jarvan run over a ward in the top side river, he made the call. “Gank!” He then activated his ultimate skill–Destiny! Eyes blazed to life above the five Champions from Team Shanghai, revealing them. They were all exactly where Goalie expected them to be. He followed up with the second part of his ultimate–Gate! Cards spread below his feet and opened a portal to the brush behind Team Shanghai’s outer tower in the bot lane.

“It’s a 5 man gank bot! A 5 man gank bot!” Zephyr shouted into his microphone. “Irelia is teleporting! Look! And Goalie is going in and Lee was already there waiting!”

Su Xue nodded, casting a worried glance into Team Shanghai’s soundproof booth. Come on, Lin Feng! Do something! Outplay them! She then leaned towards her microphone and said, “This looks bad for Team Shanghai. Looks like Team Guangzhou is going to pick up a double!”

There was no hesitation from Lin Feng when he saw what was happening. He pressed the R key to activate Fate’s Call. Tang Bingyao’s Braum transformed into soul form and flowed into Kalista’s body. Lin Feng then said over the team’s voice chat, “Tristana! Tang Tang, Tristana!”

“Mhm!” Tang Bingyao replied, nodding. She then launched her Braum towards Thresh and Tristana and barreled into them! The sheer force knocked the two Champions from Team Guangzhou up into the air! Tang Bingyao used this moment of crowd control to activate her ultimate skill–Glacial Fissure! Her Braum jumped into the air and raised his shield above his head, gathering all his strength, before slamming it down into the ground! A fissure tore open and freezing coldness spewed out, knocking Thresh and Tristana higher up into the air!

Lin Feng’s Kalista hurled an empowered spear at Seo’s Tristana with Pierce, using the lunge to close the distance. He followed up with an auto attack and then another. Tristana and Thresh landed back on the ground and Thresh threw a Death Sentence at him, but he saw it coming. Lunging back and forth he dodged it. But he couldn’t dodge the knock back from Tristana’s Buster Shot. The large cannonball sent him flying back towards his outer tower, from where Goalie’s Twisted Fate and Team Guangzhou’s Irelia were coming.

Goalie’s Twisted Fate wielded a Gold Card, which was a single target stun. When Lin Feng’s Kalista was finally in range he threw it at her and stunned her! He then shouted over the team’s voice chat, “Kalista! Kalista! Focus!”

Seo grinned. Spears were sticking out from his Tristana, but he was alive. I’ll make sure no one remembers your face! Stupid beggar ugly face! He activated Rocket Jump! His Tristana aimed her cannon towards the ground and fired, launching herself towards Lin Feng’s Kalista. Some splash damage and an Explosive Charge and you’re gonna be dead–

Each player could bring two Summoner Spells with them. Most ad-carries went with Flash and Heal, but in this game Lin Feng had opted for Flash and Cleanse. When the Gold Card stunned him and Tristana jumped at him, he grinned and activated Cleanse. Every bit of crowd control affecting him broke. He threw a spear at the flying Tristana and used the lunge to get away from Irelia and Twisted Fate.

Seo’s eyes grew wide and round. There was a large number of spears lodged into his Tristana, and that number was growing. Lin Feng’s Kalista wasn’t stunned, like she was a moment ago. His low risk Rocket Jump suddenly became high risk. He looked down at his skill bar but found Flash on cooldown, as well as Heal. FuckFuckFUCK! He shouted over the team’s voice chat, “Help! Something do! GOALIE!” But there wasn’t any time to do anything. Kalista clenched her fist and pulled on the telekinetic link she had to her spears. They tore out from Tristana’s body and dealt massive damage!

An ally has been slain!

Goalie pursed his lips tightly together and felt his heart leap. “Focus Kalista!” he repeated over the team’s voice chat again. He threw a volley of Wild Cards which struck both Braum and Kalista. His teammates followed up on him and used their skills to attack Lin Feng’s Kalista. But Goalie couldn’t get himself to focus. He knew the gank was over and he knew that Team Shanghai’s ad-carry knew as much. He went full for Seo. The one guy who needed the kills more than anyone. That dog went for Seo and got him! Dammit! This is bad! This is really bad! Seo needed this kill for his confidence! Now… He glanced at Seo who sat to his left. I hope he can keep his mind in it.

You have slain an enemy!

Double kill!

“Wooooo Team… Shanghai!” Zephyr shouted into his microphone. He shook his head and continued, “Team Guangzhou got the double kill there, and both kills went to Goalie. But in that 5 man gank, Team Shanghai’s ad-carry somehow picked up a kill. That alone means they won that gank in my books!”

“And look at mid and bot!” Su Xue chimed in. She pointed at her screen and said, “See when Team Guangzhou pushed bot? Well, Team Shanghai’s Jungler went top and helped the Rumble push and Morgana in the mid has also been pushing. They didn’t get a tower, but they got close to getting a tower!”

Zephyr nodded and said into his microphone, “Yeah, yeah! But if we look at that… Well, look at bot. Team Guangzhou just destroyed the outer tower and now it’s looking like they’re going to take the Dragon! That’s quite valuable…–”

“Ah, what’s a tower and Dragon? That’s nothing!” Su Xue countered. She then frowned and added, “But Team Guangzhou did get a lot from that gank, even if they lost their ad-carry in the process. Team Shanghai needs to do something back.”

“Wowie! Talk about overkill…” Lin Feng muttered. He turned his head to look at Tang Bingyao and asked over the team’s voice chat, “I wonder what we did to make them so angry. Do you know, Tang Tang?”

“Mnh-Mnh,” Tang Bingyao replied, shaking her head, smiling.

“What?” Zeng Rui blurted. He turned his head to look at Lin Feng and asked, “Really? You don’t know what you did? Maybe it’s because you pushed so hard on bot that you forced them to do something! And now we lost Dragon… If you hadn’t pushed them this hard, they would’ve focused somewhere else instead of trying to hard-force this in bot…”

An Xin shrugged and said over the team’s voice chat, “It’s just a little setback and we really didn’t lose all that much. Better yet, they played their hand. We now know what to look out for next time and, much more importantly, this combination of skills is on cooldown for the next 5 minutes! So let’s abuse that as much as we can!”

“On it!” Lin Feng replied, laughing. He then turned to look at Tang Bingyao and asked, “Ready to get some kills? Full aggro mode!”

Tang Bingyao smiled and said, “Mhm! Full aggro mode!”

Zeng Rui glanced at his teammates and slowly nodded. There isn’t much Lin Feng can do. He’s just a Kalista. He can’t roam like a Jungler can, nor can he track major skill and spell cooldowns like I can. I’ve trained all my life for this! For this moment! He focused on the portraits from Team Guangzhou’s Champions and wrote a list in his mind, denoting their skill and spell cooldowns and how he could abuse that the most. BunBun was right! I can apply the skills I learned from Supporting in the Jungle! I just have to do it!

At 11 minutes Zeng Rui had his Jarvan IV sneak into Blue team’s bottom side Jungle. He walked past the backside of the Dragon pit towards the bot lane, where Team Guangzhou’s Thresh and Tristana were fighting against Tang Bingyao’s Braum and Lin Feng’s Kalista in the middle of the lane. They spotted him when he walked into the tri-brush at the edge of the lane and started retreating, but he knew it was already too late. More specifically, Thresh didn’t have skills available to escape.

“Trist has Rocket Jump; focus Thresh!” Zeng Rui ordered over the team’s voice chat.

“Yes!” Tang Bingyao replied, having her Braum jump in front of Lin Feng’s Kalista with Stand Behind Me and then following up with Winter’s Bite! Braum propelled freezing ice from his shield and slowed Thresh!

Zeng Rui’s Jarvan IV ran into the lane and then dashed at Team Guangzhou’s Thresh with his flag-toss combo. He glanced at Seo’s Tristana and confirmed that she Rocket Jumped away right away, leaving Thresh behind to die. As expected. Now to let Lin Feng pick up the kill. But that won’t be hard…

Lin Feng’s Kalista flung spears at Team Guangzhou’s Thresh that remained lodged in his body. When his health bar fell down to dangerous levels and there were a dozen spears lodged in his body, she cast Rend! The spears were torn out by a swift pull on the telekinetic link she had with them and dealt massive damage!

You have slain an enemy!

“Wooooo! WIN FENG!” Su Xue exclaimed. She smiled and added, “That was such a great combination of skills again! Those three from Team Shanghai know exactly how to play together! It’s like they’ve been playing with each other for years!”

Zephyr nodded and said into his microphone, “Yeah, you’re right. They are great together! Also, want to know something else? While we were all looking at the fight in bot, Lee Sin tried to gank mid again! And he failed again too! How many fails is that now? He forced Morgana to blow her Flash, I guess that’s something. But this Lee Sin really, really, needs to step up his ganking game.”

Zhang Hongyi from Team Beijing sat in the player seating area, shaking his head in frustration. He muttered, “I can’t believe this… How stupid is Team Guangzhou? How can they get such a shitty Support and also such a terrible Jungler? This is such an easy win for them if their Support and Jungler were even half decent…”

Goalie bit on his lips and narrowed his eyes. This is insanity! How can I not find any openings? She’s playing this matchup so perfectly! It’s so… so much like back… He shook his head. I’m only going to waste my time worrying about her and her stupid perfect game. My ult is coming off cooldown in a few. I’ll just gank… He glanced around the map and spotted Zeng Rui’s Jarvan IV walking through a ward towards the top lane. Oh, ganking top? Let’s turn that around. He smiled and fell back just enough to drop away into the fog of war for Team Shanghai. He then ran up into the Jungle and stopped behind the Blue Buff Camp.

At 14 minutes, Zeng Rui ran into the top lane, which was pushed towards the Blue outer tower, and dashed at Team Guangzhou’s Irelia with his flag-toss combo! Zhang Hao’s Rumble followed right behind Zeng Rui, casting his ultimate skill in sync with Zeng Rui’s ultimate! The damage stacked up and killed Irelia before Goalie could respond.

You have slain an enemy!

Goalie smiled. They’ve used all their skills. Such overkill! But that’s perfect. He glanced at Lee Sin who ran into the lane and engaged the Jarvan IV and Rumble. And now they’re staying to fight. Brilliant! How did we ever lose a game to them…? He activated his ultimate skill–Destiny! The map was revealed to him, but he ignored that as he activated the second part of his ultimate–Gate! Cards spread beneath his feet and formed a portal that carried him into the top lane!

Goalie’s Twisted Fate was holding a Gold Card when he arrived in the top lane. He threw it at Rumble and stunned him! He followed up with a volley of Wild Cards that cut through Rumble and Jarvan IV! Lee Sin supported him, using his ultimate to roundhouse kick Rumble into Jarvan IV and knocking both of them up. That bought Goalie the few seconds he needed to cycle through his skills and deal damage. Enough damage to kill Rumble.

You have slain an enemy!

Zeng Rui’s Jarvan IV was caught in the middle of the top lane without any skills available. He’d used all of them to kill Team Guangzhou’s Irelia. He looked at the Lee Sin and Twisted Fate and grimaced. They were attacking him and he was trying to get away, but he knew there was no escaping this. “Sorry, guys,” he said over the team’s voice chat. “This one’s on me.”

Double kill!

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SHANK STILL DOES NOT GET IT

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