Chapter 18: Chapter 18: April Fools’ Appraisal
Translator: Dragon Boat Translation Editor: Dragon Boat Translation
“Through the days and nights, as I tear the heavens apart, glorious light will shine and cleanse even the specks of dust on earth ~”
While sleeping, Ren Suo heard his phone ring. He sighed under his breath as he reached out for his mobile phone. When he saw the name of the contact displayed on the screen, he tried to freshen himself up before answering the phone. “Hello, I am Ren Suo.”
“Ren Suo, you have to report to the Lianjiang Ministry of State Security by 2:30 p.m. tomorrow.” Director Ye’s voice was at the other end of the line. She continued, “Did you just wake up?”
“Sigh, young people these days are too much. All of you sleep so late, just like my son who’s in junior high now…” Director Ye lamented. “Anyway, remember to turn up on time, or else you’ll automatically lose the opportunity for an interview.”
“I will lose the interview opportunity?” Ren Suo questioned as he became more alert. “What interview opportunity?”
“No details have been given yet.” Director Ye lowered her voice and said, “But if you pass the interview, you’ll likely be transferred to the Ministry of State Security.”
“Ministry of State Security!” Ren Suo exclaimed. “Are there better benefits offered there?”
“I have no idea,” Director Ye replied. “All I know is that the basic pay is higher than what you will get from working at the street office. There are also more allowances given here and there.”
“I’ll definitely show up then!” a delighted Ren Suo exclaimed. Which fool would miss out on such a good opportunity to increase one’s standing in the workforce? He continued, “Is there anything I should take note of?”
“There isn’t much to take note, but on our end, both you and Li Qingxuan have received this opportunity. Both of you should take the chance to interact with each other and the interviewer,” Director Ye said in an oddly happy tone. “Li Qingxuan’s mobile number is 14…”
After ending the call with Director Ye, Ren Suo proceeded to freshen up. By the time he was done brushing his teeth, he realized that it was already 10 in the morning.
It was the 1st of April, 10 a.m.
Ren Suo had purchased the game [A Strong Warrior Ascends 10,000 Meters] on 28 March and started his challenging journey to the summit from the base camp at 5896 meters on 30 March. After staying up for 2 days and 1 night, he had finally brought the Seeker to the 10000-meter summit at 11 p.m. last night!
The journey to the summit was even more disheartening than it was tiring. After the base camp, the game difficulty increased greatly. Initially, the gap between the platforms just got wider and the platforms differed in width. He would also occasionally encounter grey platforms that would shatter the moment his avatar landed on it.
However, the difficulty just continued to increase…
The background changed into a scene of a snowstorm falling from the sky. Even though the Seeker was standing still, she could be blown off the platform, or even blown off track when she jumped.
There were also light blue-colored platforms where ice thorns would emerge from the moment the Seeker jumped onto it. The ice thorns would kill the Seeker immediately, and it would be ‘game over’. Furthermore, the safe platforms would be located amongst a sea of such platforms that had ice thorns. There would even be only one grey-colored shattering platform amidst the blue-colored platforms occasionally, and above it, there would be clouds obscuring the view. The Seeker had no choice but to jump twice to land onto the grey platform, after which Ren Suo had to quickly adjust the Seeker’s direction so as to land on a safe platform.
Besides those challenges, there were also storms that shrouded the entire screen in white clouds. Ren Suo would not be able to see the safe platforms, and the only option was to wait in the safe zone for the weather to clear out. In addition, even when the storm had subsided, there would still be obscured patches of white on the screen, and the Seeker could only see what was inside when she jumped into it.
Furthermore, there appeared to be day and night in the game. It was easy enough to handle before the base camp, but after passing the base camp, the time of day presented significant differences. For example, it became harder to distinguish the color of the platforms at night…
The difference in the difficulty of the journey between after crossing the base camp and that of when starting out at 0 meters, was comparable to reciting the value of pi backward instead…
The most troublesome situation was when Ren Suo met other stickman-like characters along the way. They naturally did not take such a dangerous route that consisted of jumping onto platforms like the Seeker did. Instead, they proceeded on a gently-sloping route at a relatively slow pace. Whenever they saw the Seeker, they would stop and ask if she needed help. The same two options were presented each time: “No, thank you” and “No, thanks”.
Ren Suo led the Seeker safely up to the Forward Base Camp checkpoint at 6690 meters, followed by the Campsite I checkpoint at 7900 meters, the Campsite II checkpoint at 7900 meters, the Campsite III checkpoint at 8400 meters, the Campsite IV checkpoint at 9000 meters, and lastly the Campsite V checkpoint at 9600 meters…
Finally, at 11:11 p.m. last night, he successfully led the Seeker onto the 10000-meter high summit for the first time, jumping onto the sparkling gold platform!
The next moment, Ren Suo fell asleep.
Ren Suo could finally release the tension in his muscles and relax his mind which had been put through intense concentration after reaching the goal. He fell into a deep sleep, and he finally woke up only 11 hours later, until…
“Ah, ah…” Ren Suo realized that he was so hungry that he could barely move. He picked up his mobile phone and called the food delivery service number. “Hello…Two large bowls of Yee-fu noodles with beef briskets in fried bean sauce… My address is Apartment 1506, No. 233 Tianlan Gardens…I live right above your stall.”
It was fortunate that Ren Suo still remembered the phone number of the Jianji stall downstairs, or he might as well starve to death in his house…
At that moment, he recalled that he had already completed the mission in the game. Hastily, he turned on the game console to look at his score.
[Completed basic mission objective – 60 points awarded]
[Total score is 60 points. Appraisal: Barely passed.]
[Current mission score: 60 points (barely passed). High score: 60 points (barely passed).]
[Do you wish to upload this score as the final result? You will receive merits based on the appraisal category of your current mission score. You will also receive special rewards.]
[You may only upload your score once.]
“Only 60 points?!” Ren Suo was dumbfounded. This game is simply impossible. How could there be such a great disparity from the maximum score?
The scoreboard in this game was slightly different from that in [The Hitman]. In [The Hitman], once a score had been uploaded, a prompt would pop up on the screen to inform the player that the game will be closed permanently. However, in [A Strong Warrior Ascends 10,000 Meters], there was no such prompt. This had to be the difference between a free game and a paid one, he thought.
[The player has received an appraisal of “barely passed” and thus fulfilled the hidden requirements. The player will now receive information regarding the chapter’s hidden side mission.]
“In [The Hitman], I needed an appraisal of “moderately good” in order to unlock the hidden mission, but now I only need a “barely passed”…This game must be extremely challenging, or perhaps, it really is just a badly designed game…”
[Side mission: A true strong warrior is known by many; a warrior whom no one knows about is a pitiful one! Get more people to witness the glorious moment of you reaching the 10000-meter summit! The more people there are to witness your achievement, the higher your score.]
Ren Suo wanted to vomit blood. What in the world, must the Seeker be so self-indulging and pretentious?!
In conventional novels with ostentatious characters, such as detectives who could miraculously figure out the cause behind a mysterious explosion, or intellectuals who knew the principles of electric circuits at the back of their hands, or otherwise, magicians who could guess the make and quality of the Emperor’s chamber pot, or even prophets who knew the news that was to come the following day, there would be, at the least, a narrator explaining the reasons behind the remarkable achievements of these characters.
Even television dramas and animation films had modest narrators speaking in low and attractive voices when they used computer graphics during scene transitions.
This game did not have a wide audience, and yet the Seeker acted pretentiously. Furthermore, it required the player to get more audience as witnesses…
“People, people…where do I find these people…” Ren Suo lamented. As soon as he did, the delivery man from Jianji stall arrived, and Ren Suo proceeded to collect his food at the door. When he came back, he found that the game had automatically restored the previous checkpoint and he was now back at Campsite V at 9600 meters.
At this moment, five matchstick-like characters appeared on the screen and began to set out from Campsite V with much difficulty…