Chapter 10: Hangovers and Decisions
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
By the time Chen Chen was woken up by the administrator of the reading room, five hours had passed.
“Student, it’s getting dark, the library will be closing soon.”
“Ok Auntie, let me pack up a little then I’ll leave.”
By the time Chen Chen came to his senses, there were several books piled in front of him. From Essence of Reading to Cambridge IELTS, and Official Guide to Blue Delta, all piled on the table.
Chen Chen took the books and put them where they belonged. Then, he left the library.
It was rare for Chen Chen to see the nighttime scenery on the campus. He could see bulbs of orange streetlights on the quaint walkway, illuminating like stars in the night sky.
A gust of wind blew, causing the trees by the roadside to rustle.
Early winter was approaching and the campus in December was starting to get chilly.
Chen Chen had not eaten or drank anything for five to six hours and yet, he did not feel hungry or thirsty.
Not only that, he still felt energetic. He did not feel tired. It was like he had just woken up.
He knew that this was all the effect of NZT-48.
“From here on, the time to take NZT should be set around ten in the morning to noon. That way, it could synchronize with the time I rest.”
Chen Chen silently calculated. In the movie, the effects of NZT-48 could last twelve hours. If it was liquidized with glucose and injected into the veins, it could last up to thirteen hours.
However, Chen Chen decided not to bother with the injection method.
After all, there was too much movement. The process was too complex and it was difficult to conceal.
Between the purchasing and disposing of the syringes and the needle mark that would show on Chen Chen’s arm, it was too easy for people to get the wrong impression.
If somebody got the wrong impression and reported to the police, then NZT-48 would be exposed. What would follow would be the supervision of the Mainland China government. After that, even the secret of the USB drive would not be safe.
There was a period where Chen Chen was obsessed with reading on criminal psychology. He had long forgotten the contents of those books but under the effects of NZT, he was able to access his vault of memories.
There was a quote from one of the books that went like this:
“When a person is being interrogated, his willpower is like a tube of toothpaste. Once there’s an opening, everything else will pour out with a squeeze.”
Which was to say, Chen Chen had no interest in using his willpower to challenge the interrogation method of the officials.
When he pushed open the door to the dorm, the scent of alcohol jumped at him.
Inside the dorm, Zhou Jie was lying down on dorm leader Wang Wei’s bed. He was rolling around in bed while howling and crying. Wang Wei stood beside and was crying without tears.
“A bunch of amateurs got wasted?”
Chen Chen walked in and was speechless.
“Nostril hasn’t even gotten started yet.” Chen Chen’s upper bunk mate, Li Bo, had a sad look on his face. “He got dumped.”
Zhou Jie got the nickname Nostril because he had the same name as a certain celebrity who went viral off a meme. The celebrity’s nostril was very noticeable in the meme.
“Nostril was in a relationship?” Chen Chen was a little surprised. “Which unlucky girl was it?”
“Small wonder you don’t know. It ended before it even began,” dorm leader Wang Wei took off his glasses and said silently.
“Ooooo, Little Mei, Little Mei! I want more beer. Bring me a beer!”
Zhou Jie, who was lying on the bed, seemed to have heard Chen Chen. He demonstrated his ultimate death roll again, stomping a bunch of footprints on Wang Wei’s mattress.
“Oh well, I’ll let him sleep on my bed tonight. I’ll sleep above.”
Wang Wei was getting agitated. “Lil Chen, you sleep down there. Help take care of him later tonight.”
“I’ll consider myself lucky as long as he doesn’t throw up.”
Chen Chen stopped. He suddenly remembered he had not finished his buns. They might go bad by the next day.
On the principle that he should not waste, Chen Chen took the buns and started munching.
“What the hell? Lil Chen, you’re too frugal. No wonder Lil Bo said you didn’t want to eat together.”
Wang Wei was dumbfounded.
“I have no choice, I only have two hundred left for this month. I have to be frugal.”
Chen Chen continued eating and drank a large mouthful of cold water.
Possibly because he had only been drinking and not eating anything, Zhou Jie opened his eyes when he heard someone eating. He asked drowsily, “Lil Chen, what are you eating?”
“Cephalosporins1, want some?”
Chen Chen took a bun and passed it over.
Zhou Jie: “...”
“D*mn, get out of my bed if you’re sober. Stop hogging my bed!”
Wang Wei could tell that Zhou Jie was getting sober just by looking at the bloke’s face so he immediately chased him out.
The stubborn Zhou Jie did not want to get up. “My head still hurts. Let me lie down for a little longer, just a bit!”
“Hurry up! Hurry up!”
Wang Wei began shaking the railing of the bed. The entire floor was creaking loudly due to the movement.
While the two of them were messing around, the people downstairs were getting fed up. They heard someone shouting from the window, “Hey, be quiet upstairs. Are you guys fighting or something?”
Wang Wei did not hear it initially. He only realized it after the people downstairs were sounding angrier.
“Are you going to let me sleep? What are you shaking your *ss upstairs for?”
When he heard the constant cussing coming from downstairs, Wang Wei immediately stopped. He felt awkward.
However, Li Bo, who had been playing games the entire time, was fed up as well. He yanked open the curtains and shouted downstairs, “What are you shouting so d*mn loud for? Go to the dorm manager! Keep shouting!”
Wan Wei quickly pulled his sleeve. “Alright alright, keep yelling and you’re going to attract the dorm manager here.”
“Motherf**ker, I’m going to pay them a visit tomorrow. See how tough he really is.”
Li Bo scolded, “I’m a well-natured person. I don’t like swearing. But they were the one cussing us out first, classless...”
After this scuffle, Zhou Jie stopped causing trouble. He took the bun from Chen Chen and then silently climbed back to his bed to eat.
Since the three of them drank quite a lot of beer, Wang Wei and Zhou Jie fell asleep the moment their heads hit the pillow. Li Bo, on the other hand, went to bed after playing another round of the game.
Chen Chen was the last one to turn off the lights. He lied down on his bed for a while but could not fall asleep.
Chen Chen knew this was due to NZT-48.
NZT’s effects lasted twelve hours. He took the pill at two o’clock. If he wanted to sleep, he was going to have to wait till two o’clock in the midnight.
So, he got back up again and looked for his computer in the dark and logged on to Jacount.
Previously, Chen Chen had been so naïve in wanting to research the components of NZT. He wanted to find a way to counteract the side effects of the drug like the characters in the movie did.
However, after referencing the knowledge he had about the human brain, Chen Chen realized that he was getting ahead of himself.
With the current technological advancement, it was impossible to replicate NZT-48, moreover trying to remedy the side effects of NZT-48.
If Chen Chen wanted to start his research, he would need the support of a gigantic organization like Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson.
Given ten to twenty years and tens of billions of funds, perhaps they could figure out some clues about NZT-48.
By that time, Chen Chen would have long given up.
In conclusion, there was no need for Chen Chen to consider the realistic side of things. Currently, his only way out was to take advantage of NZT’s capability to make a lot of money.
After that, buy a factory. Then, he could use the infrastructure of AC380V to charge the USB drive and start a virtuous cycle.
Of course, Chen Chen had an alternative: stop taking the drug.
That would be the safest option. Currently, he had only taken one capsule of NZT. He still had time to quit cold turkey.
He could first earn enough to buy a factory and began charging the USB drive. He could then start taking the drug after he had successfully instantiated the permanent immunity shot.
Then, a new problem arose.
Without taking the drug, could he earn that much money?
Even if he could manage it, how many years would that take?
After taking the drug, Chen Chen was able to see things with extreme clarity.
It was due to this clarity that he was able to understand this. Based on his usual capability, he could probably make a decent living, but to get rich was out of the question.
On top of that, the drug was like the devil. It was one thing if he never tried it, but he had already tasted it and felt that fleeting sensation of having everything in control that came with the drug. When he woke up tomorrow morning, would he truly have what it took to never touch it again?
Not only did the addictive nature of the drug originated based on physiology but it also fed on the addictive nature of human psychology.
In addition, the options given were to live a life of mediocrity or achieving great things but with an above fifty percent chance of suddenly dropping dead after a year. Did you expect most people to be able to make a rational judgment?
Chen Chen was not sure about other people but he knew that he would not be able to make a rational judgment.
Therefore, there was no way he was going to stop taking the pills. He could not stop taking it in his lifetime.
As for some cheap tactics like “sell some NZT to make money” or “steal high voltage electricity to charge the USB drive”, they were out of the question. He would not try those even if he was desperate.