Kai ignored Pearl. Instead, he began ridding the poison from Gregory and the elders with his immense spiritual sense. Not long after, Gregory and the others regained their clarity. However, they could not recall the verdict they had rendered.
The elderly judge filled Gregory and the others in, then produced the Focus Pills Kai and Roderick had synthesized and let them examine them again.
The group was stunned when they took a closer look. It was plain that Kai’s Focus Pill was a hundred times better than Roderick’s, but they did not know why they had chosen Roderick as the winner.
“How did this happen? I don’t even remember what I did!” Gregory exclaimed, looking abashed. As a judge of the contest, it was humiliating for him to have made such an unsound decision.
The other elders of Solaris Sect were also flushed with embarrassment for having made a choice even a child would not have made. “Perhaps you should ask your disciple, Pearl, Mr. Stark. She knows what happened,” Kai said to Gregory.
Gregory whipped around to regard Pearl. “Tell me, Pearl. What exactly is going on? I remember you standing behind us.” “I don’t know what happened, Master. You were the ones who decided on the verdict.”
Pearl was still feigning ignorance. In response, Roderick exclaimed loudly, “I won first place. Why aren’t you announcing it yet? Are you going to openly go back on your verdict?”
Roderick’s shouting also stoked the displeasure of many present. It was plain that his Focus Pill was the better one. After all, aside from the elderly judge, everybody had chosen him. Such a stark difference in opinions like this renders any further discussion pointless. They should announce the results!
Gazing at Roderick, who was still shouting, and the restless crowd, the elderly judge yelled, “Remain calm, everyone! As the elders of Solaris Sect are suddenly feeling unwell, the results of this round of the competition may be annulled.”
“Why? What does their well-being have to do with the results? I wasn’t the one who forced them to choose! I object to the annulment. You will declare me the winner. If you insist on annulling it, however, I would be forced to question the impartiality of Jipsdale!” Roderick hollered. Having the results become invalid was the last thing he wanted.
Suddenly, the situation was plunged into a stalemate. Though it was plain that Gregory and the others had been tricked into making the wrong decision, they found themselves in a dilemma at this point.
On the one hand, it would not be fair for Kai if they proclaimed Roderick the winner. On the other, it would be seen as a challenge to Jipsdale’s authority if they did not announce Roderick’s victory and for insisting on a rematch.
“How did we get set up?” Gregory could not figure it out. They had not left after entering the venue for the Alchemist Fair; it was for the sake of impartiality. Despite all their precautions, they had still been tricked. The ludicrous verdict was evidence of that.
“Try and recall, Mr. Stark. Perhaps there was something wrong with our coffee. I experienced symptoms like yours yesterday. It was only due to my powerful spiritual sense that I managed to neutralize the toxin, which is why I remain unharmed,” Kai told Gregory. Hearing those words, Gregory glared at Pearl.
“Did you put something in our coffee, Pearl?”
“What are you talking about, Master? I don’t understand!” Still feigning ignorance, Pearl shook her head. Kai gazed at Pearl, aware that she was incorrigible. She is still being stubborn.
“Forget the matter of the poisoning for now. How should we announce the results?” the elderly judge said with a frown. I don’t even know if I should announce the outcome right now!