Embers Ad Infinitum - Chapter 352: Drafting

Chapter 352: Drafting

Green Olive Zone, Iron Medallion Street.

When Jiang Baimian mentioned Terrence and the Church of Spiritual Transcendence, Long Yuehong said in surprise, “We happened to bump into Christina today.”

On the other hand, their team leader had actually encountered people and matters related to the Church of Paragon Desire.

“As expected of you,” Shang Jianyao concluded.

Long Yuehong replied aggrievedly, “But nothing happened...”

It was purely a chance encounter.

Shang Jianyao pressed his palms together and solemnly explained, “It’s fate to meet someone. Namo Annutara-Samyak-Subhuti.”

Jiang Baimian raised her hand to stop their ‘debate’ and said in a comforting tone, “This only means that First City has many religions and many Awakened. Their relationships are complicated.”

Clap! Clap! Clap!

Shang Jianyao clapped before Jiang Baimian glared at him.

Jiang Baimian then talked about the explosion at the Citizen Conclave. The Old Task Force members discussed it briefly.

When they talked about the mother whose son had contracted the Heartless disease, everyone sighed.

After nearly a minute, Shang Jianyao looked at Genava and asked curiously, “You can sigh over such matters?”

Genava raised his silver-black palm and touched the military cap on his head. As he analyzed his data, he slowly said, “I still can’t relate such matters to the correct reaction, but I feel that this should be similar to witnessing the change in Susanna and Rides. Therefore, I categorized the two similarly. This has a certain level of effect.”

Jiang Baimian praised Genava in a tone that she usually reserved for encouraging Long Yuehong. “Being able to infer the thoughts of others using yourself as an example proves that you’ve taken another step forward in humanization.”

Bai Chen unconsciously smiled. After Shang Jianyao looked at her, she hastily asked, “Should we read the documents now?”

There had been cases of the Heartless disease happening in the Green Olive Zone’s streets recently.

Jiang Baimian tersely acknowledged her words and picked up the folder on the table. She took out the papers inside and handed them to Genava. “Old Ge, project them so that everyone can read it together.”

This was much more convenient than taking turns reading.

Soon, only a few pages of information were projected onto the cramped rented room’s wall. The five Old Task Force members read it carefully from beginning to end.

During this process, they learned that the mother’s name was Mary. It was a very simple name, and her son’s name was Phillip.

After reading the case notes repeatedly, Long Yuehong frowned and voiced his thoughts. “None of these cases have anything in common. The only common point of intersection is that they all live in that area.”

“That’s right, that’s right.” Shang Jianyao seemed to be deliberately imitating Long Yuehong.

Jiang Baimian nodded slightly and said, “Indeed, there’s something in common between every two cases. But normally speaking, there will be similarities between any two people. When a few cases are put together, there won’t be much intersection. Yes, apart from the outbreak location.”

“My analysis results are the same,” Genava echoed.

Bai Chen thought for a moment and said in a surmising tone, “I remember a sentence in the Old World’s entertainment. It’s probably like this: When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth. Since the only thing in common is the location, does that mean that the problem lies in the area? Is the source of the Heartless disease’s infection hidden somewhere in that area?”

Long Yuehong subconsciously retorted, “Then, how do you explain that the Heartless disease epidemic will subside after a batch of cases erupts? Then, some time later, there might be another outbreak far away?”

“Maybe the source of the infection has feet.” Shang Jianyao sincerely helped in coming up with a reason.

Jiang Baimian laughed and looked at Long Yuehong. “What if the source of the infection is a living creature, such as humans? He stays in an area for a period of time before going elsewhere. This results in the phenomena we see.”

“This...” Long Yuehong suddenly felt terrified and desperately thought of the details that allowed him to refute. “But didn’t they say that the Heartless disease erupts in many places in the Ashlands from time to time? These places are all over the world. Can the source of the infection travel to all these places?”

Jiang Baimian didn’t look away and smiled. “What if the infection’s source isn’t a person but a group of people?”

Long Yuehong fell silent, finding the room terrifyingly quiet.

Jiang Baimian sighed and said, “After preliminarily confirming that the Clam Dragon Church’s Dream Protector was infected with the Heartless disease after entering Jiang Xiaoyue’s mind room, I’ve wondered if there were many people like Jiang Xiaoyue back then. Could some of the experimental subjects still be alive and walking the Ashlands? They unconsciously cause the people around them to contract the Heartless disease?

“There are two problems with this guess that can’t be explained. The first is that the company’s employees have undergone strict review and everything about them is known. However, the Heartless disease still erupts at least once a year. The second is that when the Old World was destroyed, countless people in the major cities became Heartless at the same time. This doesn’t seem like a change that can be brought about by a walking group of people.”

“Indeed.” Long Yuehong heaved a sigh of relief for some reason.

Jiang Baimian looked at Shang Jianyao and thoughtfully said, “Could this be related to the Mind Corridor that connects everyone’s consciousness world? Since Jiang Xiaoyue can have a room there, those people most likely have a corresponding room. Did their actions cause the Heartless disease to infiltrate the surrounding rooms?”

“I’ll investigate when I enter the Mind Corridor.” Shang Jianyao looked very confident.

Jiang Baimian touched her cochlear implant and sighed with a bitter smile. “It’s times like this that I especially hope that I’m an Awakened as well.”

As there were no experts at the Mind Corridor level in the Old Task Force for the time being, this meant that their subsequent discussion would be hypothetical. Therefore, Jiang Baimian quickly stopped this discussion and exhaled. “Let’s not go out in the afternoon. We still have things to do, and we might have to burn the midnight oil.”

“What is it?” Long Yuehong subconsciously asked.

Jiang Baimian sighed. “Didn’t I promise Su Na and the others to get them an introductory textbook for the Red River language? Shang Jianyao and I previously window-shopped the city and realized that there’s no such thing. Even if they exist, they are prepared for Red River children. It doesn’t correspond to the Ashlandic language, so we can only draft it up ourselves. We can then assign missions to the guild and find a temporary teacher who’s bilingual.”

“Draft a textbook? There definitely won’t be enough time in such a short period of time.” Long Yuehong recalled his Red River language introductory textbooks and felt that it couldn’t be completed in an afternoon and a single night.

“Normally speaking, we won’t be able to finish it.” Jiang Baimian smiled at Genava. “But we have Old Ge.”

“What do you need me to do?” Genava immediately asked.

Jiang Baimian smiled and asked, “Are there Ashlandic dictionaries, Red River dictionaries, and grammar libraries in the information you’ve stored?”

“Yes. Otherwise, how am I able to speak the Red River language and Ashlandic?” Genava moved his metal neck up and down.

Jiang Baimian nodded in satisfaction. “Select out the day-to-day words and the simpler ones then. Find a place to print them out. Heh heh, I was wrong. We still need to go out.”

After understanding what was happening, Long Yuehong couldn’t help but praise inwardly. Having a robot companion really saved us a lot of trouble!

Jiang Baimian continued, “When we have the draft, we can combine the company’s textbooks and translator machine to make some modifications and adjustments to the data. Although there’s still a lot of work, I think we should be able to get it out before tomorrow morning.

“Besides...” At this point, Jiang Baimian revealed a smile that inexplicably terrified Long Yuehong. “Besides, I didn’t say that I’m the only one in charge. Everyone has a part in this!”

As she spoke, she took off the rubber band on the back of her head and tied her ponytail a little higher, looking like she was in a combat state.

“Okay.” Bai Chen was the first to agree.

“Alright.” Shang Jianyao was half a second slower.

“Alright.”

“No problem.”

Long Yuehong and Genava answered last.

...

Early the next morning, Jiang Baimian—who had switched the team’s sleeping spot to the three-bedroom apartment in Red Wolf Zone—stretched and looked at the manuscript in front of her. “Done!”

A simplified version of the introductory textbook to the Red River language for Ashlandics was born.

Shang Jianyao, Long Yuehong, Bai Chen, and the others were also delighted.

Jiang Baimian flipped her wrist to look at the time and made the call for breakfast. At the same time, she switched on the radio transceiver to see if there was a telegram from the Zhao family.

Just after 8 a.m., a telegram came in.

After Jiang Baimian translated the code, she briskly read the corresponding content. “Please visit General Phocas in the next few days. We’ve already contacted him and agreed on a secret code to prove your identity, Book...

“His manor is at 18 Citizen Street in Golden Apple Zone...”

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