286 Federal Bureau of Mystery

    Two days passed and no more news came from London and New York, the anomalous phenomenon that horrible day appeared to be nothing more than a phase. Order at the two metropolises was affected to a certain degree but the worst was the global terror it evoked. What was the origin of the black fog? Terrorist attack? Various analyses and speculations appeared online but one thing was for sure, the incidents happened for real, they were not CGI special effects. For the past 2 days, Chen Jiahwa spent his life in front of the computer.

    It was relatively quiet within the country but in America, people went on the streets, and the hashtag 'we demand an explanation' trended on twitter.

    "Could it be something unnatural?" Father Chen offered but Mother Chen retorted, "What era is it already?! Believe in science." Chen Jiahwa though frowned silently, 'Can current scientific knowledge really explain everything?'

    He laid in bed and tossed and turned thinking about his increasingly blurry future. His eyes were about to close when suddenly the phone on his bedside table rang.

    "Who is it..." He grabbed the phone to check the caller Id. It was his friend, Xiao Lin. 'What the hell is he up to now? Does he not know it's already 1 am?!'"Hey, what's up?"

    "Jiahwa, now is not the time to sleep! Big news, big news!" Based on the excitement and disbelief in Xiao Lin's voice, it did not sound like bad news. "The American President is giving a speech. He's admitting to the presence of supernatural energy!"

    'What?!' Chen Jiahwa bounced up from the bed. His drowsiness disappeared immediately.


    Over the past 2 days, Phecda were waiting. The higher-ups were still deciding whether to make any announcement and if yes, how much should they reveal? Due to many reasons, specifically the Chinese national culture, the Chinese government did not want to make this announcement and they had been persuading the White House to keep the supernatural a secret and instead use another method to calm the citizens. If not for the negotiating chip in Phecda's possession of Drug No. 1, the White House would have come out with the announcement a long time ago. For this kind of international negotiation, every party had their own corner to protect.

    In any case, the superior's intention was clear. China would not be the first country to make the announcement but once the White House did, they would immediately follow up. Therefore, various departments had been working overtime, and a celebrity unit within Phecda was ready for their spotlight. Once this mysterious veil was removed, many things would be different.


    "No way, supernatural forces?!"

    "I am definitely going to join the FBM."

    When Chen Jiahwa climbed out of bed, his friend group was already busy with activity. Messages popped up on screen. People were excited. The announcement of the existence of supernatural force was like the admittance of superheroes in the real world. He rushed to his computer to get online. The national media was relatively quiet but the international netizens were already abuzz with comments. He used the software to bypass the internet restriction. Due to differences in time zones, it was around noon in America. The American President was giving a speech at the White House.

    Chen Jiahwa knew a bit of English but thankfully there was a translated subtitle. "Supernatural forces" was defined as forces that current human scientific knowledge could not understand, naturally this was relative to the era it was in. For example, prehistoric men would not understand the use of phones, so for them that too would be a supernatural force, not everything had to do with ghosts and gods. Every era had its own definition of the supernatural.

    The new strain of legionella pneumonia as well as the strange events that happened at New York and London spoke of the supernatural. The more Chen Jiahwa watched, the more excited he became. Despite increased questions, at least the anxiety he had earlier disappeared, since now there was an explanation. The American President said that the world was in danger, "But we have the strongest shield and the sharpest weapon to deal with this threat!" This was the announcement that excited Chen Jiahwa and his friends the most.

    The White House revealed the existence of a secret national department, Federal Bureau of Mystery, FBM for short. It was similar to the more well-known FBI but this department focused only on supernatural events.

    Mystery, according to the dictionary, means something that is difficult or impossible to understand or explain. It originated from the Greek term, mysterion, which meant secret religious ritual.

    Accompanying the announcement of this mysterious bureau was the introduction of its elite members, there were both African Americans and Caucasians. The men were tall and handsome, and the women sexy and attractive. They did not have uniforms but dressed fashionably, looking perfectly like superheroes.

    "We thank FBM for their contribution for dealing with the danger that would have destroyed the world." The President ended with, "May God bless us."

    The whole internet exploded. Sometimes even the truth was not that easily handled. Chen Jiahwa returned to his friend group. 8 of 10 messages were about FBM. Even though the White House did not state explicitly that it was FBM who had dealt with the latest epidemic, it was heavily implied. It was FBM who had saved the world from ruination.

    "I wonder if our country has a similar department." Wei Mingxuan asked.

    Ren Yu, "I believe so, every country should have one, but they have been kept secret."

    Lee Jiaqu, "Yes, but I don't think ours will be that impressive..."

    Wang Zirui, "They probably spend their days working on paperwork and stuff."

    'Where is your sense of patriotism?' Chen Jiahwa's mood was dampened slightly reading these mockeries. He typed, "Perhaps our counterpart is better than FBM? How else are you going to explain why we're spared from the black fog?" He was about to press send but he stopped himself... perhaps internally he did not believe what he typed either.

    "Aiz." Chen Jiahwa sighed. He was suddenly reminded of the group of disease control members in the cotton outfits who had caused unnecessary fear several days ago... With no comparison, there was no damage. Look at them and then look at the FBM. With another sigh, he deleted his typed message and sent a different one, "Ours should be just as fine. After all, we're quite a strong military country."

    The chat group eventually petered into sharing of emoticons. They knew where to stop or else they might get into trouble. The censorship in China was notorious. With regards to what Chen Jiahwa said, no one agreed or even responded.


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