Chapter 118: The Three Couplets of the Finals!
On the podium.
The female host said, "We now invite the contestants onstage."
The male host read the names, "Last year's first runner-up, Teacher Big Thunder!"
The applause from the audience was sparse and not too warm. This was because many people were still focused on the problem of Zhang Ye's cheating. Even though the judges and the organizers from the Couplet Organization had said the report was invalid due to a lack of proof, it was natural for people to be absorbed by conspiracy theories. They felt that the result was untrue, and that Zhang Ye had cheated.
"Member of the Couplet Organization, Teacher Lu Fang."
"Peking University Associate Professor, Teacher Zhou Yan."
"Famous romance author, Teacher Zheng Anbang."
The contestants appeared onstage one by one as they sat in one of the 50 contestant gallery seats.
As he had the least experience and was the youngest, Zhang Ye was last on the list. When the female host saw the last name on the list, she read, "Please welcome the last contestant, famous poet, famous best-selling author, renowned radio host, Teacher Zhang Ye!" Zhang Ye's title was the longest amongst everyone.
However, the moment Zhang Ye's name was mentioned, people from offstage booed.
"Go back down!"
"There's no way to cheat during the final round! Don't embarrass yourself!"
The attitudes of many were unfriendly.
Big Thunder and Zheng Anbang glanced at Zhang Ye, who was sitting in the audience. They smiled at each other. In the audience stands? They were still wondering why they did not see Zhang Ye backstage. So he had decided to not participate and abstain? At least you knew your place! Big Thunder felt that the championship was in the bag!
But no one expected to see Zhang Ye suddenly stand up.
"Little Zhang! You..." Big Sis Zhou said in surprise.
Hou Ge and Xiao Lu also chimed in, "You are competing?"
Hu Fei said with worry, "Didn't you say that you did not have much hope for the finals?"
Zhao Guozhou also gave a suggestion, "Little Zhang, you must think it through carefully. If you really lack the confidence, then you might as well not go. At least you can retain some of your fame. The moment you go and do not get a placing, then the cheating scandal will explode. Everyone will accuse you of cheating, and it will become the truth."
Zhang Ye said lightly, "I'm not sure and have no confidence."
"Then why are you going?" Hu Fei was unsupportive of him going forward.
Zhang Ye only said, "The result is binary. Either you win or you lose. But someone has to win, and why not me?" This was said by famous basketball star Kobe Bryant from Zhang Ye's world. He remembered this line very clearly.
Why not me?
That's right, why won't I win!?
Xiao Lu clenched her fists and stood up, "Well-said, Teacher Zhang! Go all the way!"
Teacher Zhang also cheered him on, "Teacher Zhang, let all those who doubt you see your talent! Use real actions to shut them up!"
Zhang Ye laughed, "I will!"
Onstage, the female host repeated, "Let's welcome Teacher Zhang Ye."
Zhang Ye squeezed out from the row of seats and walked to the 50th seat. His name was written there. He narrowed his eyes as he sat down. Confident? Yes, Zhang Ye was now confident after suppressing his tremendous wrath. Why did he suddenly have such a sudden change? This was because just a while ago, under the tremendous stress and voice of doubts, and the pressure of a stain that could destroy Zhang Ye's life as a celebrity, he suddenly had a bright idea. He suddenly thought of a way out! This method was actually something he was not 100% sure. He was not even 50% sure about it, but now.. he had no choice but to risk it! He was betting everything on this!
Win or lose?
Success or failure?
Zhang Ye had no idea, but he definitely was unwilling to admit defeat. Beijing Writers' Association, do you think that by doing this, you can defeat me, Zhang Ye? Do you think your despicable means can make me forever be beyond redemption? And allow you to achieve your despicable goals?
I'll play with you!
Let's see who is more skilled today!
At this moment, Zhang Ye's fighting spirit was lifted from his anger!
Seeing that Zhang Ye did not abstain from the competition, even in the face of the audiences' mockery and laughter, Big Thunder had a look of discontent. But from another perspective, wasn't this a chance for them to gain back their pride after the last Mid-Autumn Poetry Meet? The champion would definitely be Big Thunder. This way, not only would they recover from their loss of face and let everyone know that the Beijing Writers' Association was not a farce, Zhang Ye not being able to get a placing would also verify that he cheated in the preliminaries. Performing so well in the preliminaries, but not even getting placed in the finals? If you didn't cheat, then what could it be!
Two birds with one stone!
Big Thunder glanced at Zhang Ye.
But Zhang Ye did not look at him; he just closed his eyes and gathered his thoughts.
The female host holding the microphone said: "I will now announce the time limitations. After a judge or a contestant has submitted their question, the other contestants have ten minutes to prepare an answer. If no one has an answer within ten minutes, the submitter will gain victory and also ten points."
The male host asked, "Does anyone have any questions?"
Zhang Ye snapped his fingers, "How do we signal our intent to answer?"
The female host patiently answered, "The microphone in front of each contestant has been switched on. The contestants can just directly answer into it. Whoever can match the most perfect answer will gain one point. To emphasize this, it has to be a perfect answer; if it is slightly mismatched or off in meaning, it will be considered wrong. This will be decided by our three judges. If there are any words that the judges are not sure about, the contestant can write out the second verse and it will be displayed out in front for them to verify. But the basic medium will still be by speaking."
Zhang Ye laughed, "Thank you; I understand." It was his first time participating, so he wanted to be sure of the rules.
The male host looked over to the judges, "Teachers, can we begin?"
"Yes, please begin." The third judge said, "I will be giving out the first question. Everyone, please get ready."
At the same time, everyone eagerly looked forward. Some stared towards the old man and felt their emotions tense up as they prepared to match the couplet.
But at this time, just as the third judge was about to speak, Zhang Ye very quickly opened up the game ring's inventory and grabbed one of his two Lucky Breads. He had gained them earlier and stored them away. Now it could finally be put to use. This was the only idea Zhang Ye had in mind. He wanted to switch the situation to his advantage with this Lucky Bread. With its luck, he wanted to let these bunch of people not say any couplet that he had never heard of before! Was this possible? Of course it was possible. The Lucky Bread's effect was already known to Zhang Ye. It would increase his luck stats!
Lucky Bread in Effect!
Countdown begins, 5:00...
As the third judge was about to give the first verse, the second judge beside him dropped the bottle cap of her water onto the table in front of him. Talala! The third judge gave a glance and was distracted. He suddenly forgot the first part of the couplet he wanted to use. But he still had many couplets in his mind that he had come up with, as well as couplets that no one had been able to match with. So, he immediately changed to another one, "Huà shàng hé huā hé shàng huà (A lotus and monk on a painting)!"
As all the contestants listened, they gave a wry smile.
Big Thunder had wanted to be the first to answer. But when he heard this, he felt helpless. He could only be practical and think it over. He knew that this first verse would be difficult to match in a short time. The upper half of the couplet looked normal, but when read backwards, it was no longer normal. It was the same, no matter if it was read from the front or the back!
The first couplet was already that difficult?
That can't be necessary, right? Why is it so complicated!
However, Big Thunder and many others believed that given enough time, they would definitely be able to come up with a match for it!
But somehow, someone did not allow them to have the time to think. When he heard this first verse, Zhang Ye smiled. He knew the Lucky Bread had taken effect. This was a couplet that he knew. It was a couplet by Tang Bohu, who had said that if any future generation could match this, then the person was definitely a genius.
Zhang Ye said without giving it any thought, "shū lín hàn mò hàn lín shū (The ink on the book writes Official Han Lin)!"
The third judge was stunned. Big Thunder and the other contestants were stunned, too. F**k! You are too fast!
Elder Qian laughed and nodded, "Pass!"
The second and third judges also said, "Pass!"
The female host immediately gave Zhang Ye 1 point.
Immediately following was a question from the second judge, "Chù chù hóng huā hóng chù chù (Everywhere, red flowers make it red everywhere!)!" It was again a palindromic couplet, and was one that was so difficult that it needed a lot of time to be solved!
Zhang Ye knew the time limits of the Lucky Bread. He had to answer every question fast. Otherwise, he would have to waste the second Lucky Bread. He answered quickly, "Chóng chóng lǜ shù lǜ chóng chóng (Green tree groves are lush green!)!"
Everyone was stunned!
It was time for Elder Qian to put forth his question. It was yet another palindromic couplet, "Xuě yìng méi huā méi yìng xuě (The snow reflects the blossoms as the blossoms project the snow)."
As soon as the last word ended, Zhang Ye matched, "Yīng yí liǔ xù liǔ yí yīng (The larks suit the willows as the willow suits the lark)!"
At this moment, Elder Qian could only wryly smile. He looked at the two judges, who were his old friends, beside him. He helplessly threw up his hands. The questions they had thought about for days had been answered by Zhang Ye in less than a second, like it was a conditional reflex. The second and third judges looked at each other and did not say a word. They were taken aback! They knew very well that these questions could be answered by a master, but they did not expect it to be matched so quickly. The verses were matched without thought? This is too f**king exaggerated! Moreover, the third judge who gave the first verse of "Huà shàng hé huā hé shàng huà (A lotus and monk on a painting)" didn't even have a second verse for it. Yet Zhang Ye matched it without skipping a beat!
Three questions in a row!
Three points in total!
Zhang Ye spent less than ten seconds in total!
Xiao Lu jumped up and screamed, "Teacher Zhang, well done!"
"Teacher Little Zhang! You are too cool!" Hou Ge also screamed!
Many of Zhang Ye's friends and former colleagues broke out into cheers. It was relieving! This was so f**king relieving! Who said Teacher Zhang Ye was cheating? Eh? Who said Teacher Zhang Ye relied on others to pass the preliminaries? Open up your eyes and take a look! Is this called cheating?
Some of the audience members were dumbfounded!
Many of the audience were still skeptical. They felt that it was a coincidence. Maybe Zhang Ye was very good at matching palindromic couplets, but he was not good at others!
Big Thunder, Zheng Anbang and all the other contestants thought the same. They could not think otherwise because then there would be no explanation for Zhang Ye's amazing matches!
No one can be so fast like you!