238 Technical Difficulty

    Chapter 238: Technical Difficulty

    Wang Ruoxiang's cleansing reaction was the most intense of all 530 members in the Spell Department. Just one touch on the stone caused the girl to scream in pain, her forehead broke out in cold sweat and they had not even begun the cleansing yet. This reaction startled even Peacock and Malachite. Gu Jun only allowed her to be in contact with the stone for five more seconds before he pulled her back. No matter how strong one's determination was, there was only so much one's physical body could take.

    To look on the bright side, Wang Ruoxiang did not show any fatal signs like brain haemorrhage or cardiac arrest nor did she scream out incoherent words like the King in Yellow or Carcosa. This proved that she was more or less herself, and hopefully that would not put her in too much trouble when the members from the Review Department went over the recording of her first cleansing.

    "Gu Jun..." Wang Ruoxiang said between jagged breath, her tone as firm as ever. "Just give it your best shot, I am not afraid of the pain..."

    "I know but some things cannot be hurried." Gu Jun comforted her. "Monitor, you're a unique case, we have to take it especially slow." That was evidenced by the latter cleansings. Gao Yi and Zhang Zuodong, who had also reached the fifth chapter, did not react as intensely as Wang Ruoxiang did and they showed clear signs of mental acuity after the cleansing. Wang Ruoxiang would need more cleansing.

    3 days after the first cleansing came the second. This time, people like Elder Tong, Cai Zixuan and Wu Siyu, who only finished the earlier chapters of the book, did not show any response when they interacted with the stone. While their hands were pressing against the stone, Peacock pressed hers against it as well. This apparently was an assessment method, if the stone did not light up, it meant that their mind was 'cleansed'. After the second round of cleansing, the members who had reached the third chapter like Xue Ba had been officially 'cleansed'.


    Gu Jun did not follow up on Uncle Dan's promise to go to the club because he had other things to busy himself with. He had multiple meetings with the Angell's Order to exchange information about the Dreamlands and R'yleh Cult. He also participated in the autopsy of Zheng Jialiang and Mr. Wang Erde. To enter the morgue after so long, the pungent smell of Formalin on his nose and the firm grasp of the scalpel in his hand... felt somewhat like a homecoming.

    The autopsy result showed that Mr. Wang Erde was indeed a human. His disfigurements were all within medical explanation: the small stature was due to dwarfism, his ugly face was due to multiple scarrings. He had not shown any inexplicable mutation. Zheng Jialiang's body was even more common. In a way, this highlighted how inconspicuous mental corruption could be on the surface.

    The new S Value would be made up of 3 different components:

    The first was an overall grading of individual aptitude.

    The second was the individual's mental corruption threshold for madness when influenced by supernatural forces.

    The third was a quantifiable mental corruption rate, a real time status that could be accessed and monitored as per individual.

    For example, Wang Ruoxiang would be grade A and Gao Yi grade B. They were both corrupted by the power of the King in Yellow but her threshold was at 30 percent but his was at 10 percent. Based on the new system, even if Wang Ruoxiang's corruption rate was at 10 percent, her new S value would not be too high; but when the corruption rate for Gao Yi reached 7 percent, his S value would be in the danger zone already.

    "This is the only way to come up with a holistic assessment system." Prof Shen's hair whitened over a week. His face was lined with worry. Aptitude Grading, Madness Threshold, Realtime Corruption Rate, how was one supposed to determine these three particulars? And how would one define them?

    Prof Shen and his people were stumped. Perhaps a super technology like the Ancient Stone would be able to do it but that was beyond their current comprehension. To derive science from the supernatural was to set down a foundation in unknown knowledge territory, it was impossible.

    Gu Jun asked the land's travellers for opinion but they had not faced this problem before. First of all, they did not train from any power sources other than the Seven Cryptical Book of Hsan and only those who had the highest mental power would be chosen to become Phecda Warriors, this enabled a uniformity among the Phecda Warriors' aptitude grading and madness threshold. Even their assessment of corruption rate came from experience, either the warriors suffered death before mental collapse or they relied on the stone cleansing. This was in itself not a bad idea but Gu Jun knew it was not suitable for Phecda and this world. If only Grade A individuals were selected, the Spell Department would be seriously understaffed, and wasn't that the reason why the land's travellers failed to expand and grow? Because the solution was too inflexible.

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    Super technology... Gu Jun believed the answer lay within the Pnakotic Manuscripts.
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