116 Improvemen

    Chapter 116: Improvement

    "Okay, we'll be starting now." Prof Shen's voice came from the speaker and temporarily shattered the silence inside the soundproof room. "Focus on the images, and try to suppress the feeling of the illusion."

    Inside the small room, Gu Jun was placed in the chair in the middle. He stared at the screen on the wall, and the surroundings became silent. He couldn't hear anything; all the soundwaves had been intercepted by the thick fiberglass and soundproof sponge. He trained all his focus on the picture on the screen.

    The lines were spinning, changing, and forming different shapes. Five minutes later, his breath was even. He did not feel anything out of place. Ten minutes later, the sound of breathing, a beating heart, and a stomach gurgling appeared in his mind, but he could still filter them out. Twenty minutes later, he still could steady his mind. The lines were just lines. They did not morph into anything else. Thirty minutes later, the phenomenon 'Reverse Hallucination' was deconstructing in his cerebral cortex. Reverse Hallucination referred to the situation where a person was assaulted by so many stimuli that the information overload made them impervious enough to not be able to feel any of them.

    Gu Jun could feel the touch of leather from the couch, the friction between his bare skin and clothes, even the weight of the hair on his scalp... This was information that his brain would naturally filter out because the brain normally did not have enough sensory storage space for such information. However, Gu Jun kept his mind clear enough that he could register these senses. He took a deep breath. He could feel his heart racing, and his brain was pulsing. But this was already a major improvement compared to one month ago because reverse hallucination had already happened in less than ten minutes during the previous assessment.

    According to Prof Shen, it was easier for those with high spirituality to lose reverse hallucination, like how those with high spirituality would suffer more often from insomnia while those with low spirituality could slump down and sleep easily. However, this did not apply to Wu Siyu. After all, there was always an exception.

    'Damn, more and more useless information is registering.' Gu Jun hurried to sharpen his mind, but the more he attempted to do so, the more befuddled he became. All the sensory reception over his body intensified, and he could even feel a sense of mysterious weight pressing down on his skin.

    Illusions had started to dance before his eyes. The lines turned into blood vessels, then fascia superficialis, aponeurotic fascia, bones...

    At the same time, in the other room, Prof Shen, Elder Tong, and other lab members were studying the data on the devices. From the start of assessment to the twenty-minute mark, Gu Jun's heart rate and brainwaves had been startlingly stable.

    "Elder Tong, where did you find a treasure like this?" Prof Shen sighed again. He had said something similar multiple times over this past month. Shen Yi had entered Phecda as a psychiatrist, and then he was recruited to join Phoenix. After that incident, he managed to stay in Phecda and climbed his way into the center of power at the headquarters. Prof Shen had been in many parapsychological assessments and experiments, both in the country and abroad. He had not encountered a person who could maintain such serenity for as long as twenty minutes, and this was just after one month of training!

    "With this mental power, it is more than enough for Ah Jun to carve a place for himself at Phecda," Prof Shen added.

    "Unfortunately, only I see him as treasure; others view him as trash." Elder Tong chuckled. "Pump up the difficulty! Otherwise, we might stay here for hours."

    Prof Shen moved to oblige. The speed at which the pictures changed increased to increase the sensory overload on Gu Jun. This passed for another ten minutes, and Gu Jun's data started to go awry. But enough time had passed. Prof Shen switched off all the pictures and spoke through the speaker. "Ah Jun, thank you. It's over now."

    The computer monitor showcased Gu Jun's mental power value from the assessment in a large number: 75.

    "Elder Tong, this is just wonderful." Prof Shen was overwhelmed like he was witnessing the birth of a miracle.

    The lab members cheered as well.

    "This number is absurdly high."

    "The young man has managed a ten-point increase in a month!"

    For those who studied parapsychology, this was truly a miracle. Even though a person's mental power, like physical power, could be trained, the difficulty of doing so was equally hard. For example, after setting a record of under ten seconds in a one-hundred-meter sprint, increasing the record by even 0.01 seconds was extremely difficult. In the field of mental power, the value of sixty-five that Gu Jun scored earlier was already very high, but now he scored seventy-five. That had overshot all the records at Phecda.

    "Impressive!" Prof Shen nodded. "No matter where you are in the world, the value of seventy-five will definitely place you first."

    "Haha, with a talent like this, we will have a chance to deal with those people." While he was excited, Elder Tong did not forget his goal. "But we still have to work harder. Those people can manage more than this... and they would do anything to achieve their goal, things like feeding LSD to children..."

    LSD or lysergic acid dimethylamine was the most powerful hallucinogenic that could be created by man. A common dosage had to be calculated in milligrams. But that dosage was enough for an adult to submerge in hallucinations lasting for as long as twelve hours. The user's senses, feelings, and memories... would feel like they had been thrown into the washer. Prof Shen pushed on his glasses silently. He knew what Elder Tong had gone through.

    In the 50s to 60s, LSD had a huge influence on psychology, psychiatry, and parapsychology. Many experiments and studies had been done with it, but to use them on a child... there was no official record of that. But in parapsychology, there was a theory that ESP was strongest in children, and people would lose that power as they aged. Prof Shen had no idea what had happened to Elder Tong during that case, but he did know that Elder Tong was not a drinker before that incident.

    "This shouldn't be the maximum of Gu Jun's potential," Prof Shen added consolingly. "He still has room to grow. We need to take this step by step."

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    Meanwhile, lab members helped bring Gu Jun out of the soundproof room and exchanged his place with Wu Siyu. Her assessment started then. Prof Shen and the rest fixed their eyes on the many devices. Wu Siyu had a different innate talent from Gu Jun. She had more affinity with making connections and was more sensitive to details. Simple stimuli would escape her notice, but she could latch onto complicated ones easily. In this way, she was more holistic and stable than Gu Jun. After another half an hour, the computer monitor showed the result: 70. Compared to before, this was yet another ten-point increase, but the difficulty of her improvement would not have been as challenging as Gu Jun's. After all, going from fourteen seconds to twelve seconds and going from twelve seconds to ten seconds for a one-hundred-meter sprint had a completely different difficulty curve, even though they both improved by two seconds.

    "Elder Tong, your eye for talent is still as sharp as ever," Prof Shen praised.

    "Are you just trying to show off how I picked you for Phoenix back then?" Elder Tong chided. The two elders walked out from the room in the laughter of reminiscence. They announced the results to Gu Jun, Wu Siyu, and the rest.

    "The two of you." Elder Tong looked at them with satisfaction. "I promise you that should you encounter what happened to you before, it will not influence you as much anymore."

    "I hope so," Gu Jun said with a smile. He was filled with joy. Indeed, after a month of special training, he could feel his mental power getting stronger. Combined with his constant intake of the brain tumor targeting drug, his brain tumor should have shrunk. His status now was a complete 180 from the state he was in when he just came back from the abnormal world. Now, he even knew how to operate firearms and how to hold himself in a fist fight. In fact, he was sure he could beat Wang Ruoxiang in a battle... but probably not Xue Ba.

    'With my mental power now,' Gu Jun thought, 'if I attempt the word of ruination again, I will probably not end up with heart failure, right?'

    "Does that mean our mission has been completed?" Wu Siyu's eyes were shining. "Elder Tong, can we have a day off?"

    "What are you talking about!" Elder Tong scolded laughingly. "Yes, you have completed your mission, but that is no surprise to me. The training continues tomorrow as usual! The people from the Review Department will be coming the day after tomorrow. They're here to make us look stupid. They will be bringing a Special Mobile Force team with them. Apparently, they want to prove that the team members will not perform weaker than you without going through our special training. So, it is on your shoulders whether Phecda will welcome a new chapter in its life."

    The people present knew that Elder Tong was not kidding. Gu Jun nodded seriously. He knew what kind of enemies they were facing, and he knew that Phecda needed to adapt to face them. "Understood."

    "So, in other words," Wu Siyu sighed, "no day off for me..."
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