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Chapter 19: Something’s Strange About That Guy
The items sold in these small stalls were not bad, but they were not really that practical either. As a matter of fact, those who were looking to buy highly practical items would not have come here in the first place. Those who came here were purely after the novelty, and if the seniors could sell them some new toys that they had never seen before then there were still many people who were willing to buy them at a high price.
Continuing forward, a plant stall caught Cillin’s attention. Thanks to Genya’s education, Cillin would always acquire some greeneries at the places he stayed in.
The amount of flowers on this stall veered on the high side. Some were especially grown by floral enthusiasts, and some were seeds and branches collected when they went out of the planet for training and fieldwork. Cillin had seen in books all of the plants on display before, but the seeds were a different matter.
After a brief observation, Cillin took a fancy to a green vine sealed inside an ecological film and nutrient solution. The name on the label was ‘Bigfoot Parthenocissus Tricuspidata’ (T/N: From here on it will be short-formed to BPT). In comparison to a normal Parthenocissus, BPT had stronger climbing ability. Moreover, its radiation and drought resistance were more than ten times a normal Parthenocissus.
Cillin took a look at the price tag; 8000 galactic credits. Pretty expensive.
The stallholder was a third grade student. Seeing Cillin’s frown, he explained, “Junior, the price may be high, but it is definitely a real bargain. This BPT is unlike the species that you’ve seen before. We found this vine by accident when we were receiving a training course outside of the planet; we didn’t manage to get too many because we were pressed for time. It’s rare not only in Planet Seven Lights, but in the entire galaxy.”
The stallholder said mysteriously and passed Cillin an infrared optometer. He then placed the vine right in front of himself.
When Cillin saw the picture on the optometer, he was surprised. The image around the vine was incredibly blurry; it was almost impossible to see the stallholder’s face behind the vine!
“Get it now?” The stallholder looked very pleased, “This thing is definitely a bargain. If you can grow this vine and make it cover the walls around your living quarters, it will be difficult for the people outside to peep into your home. Its masking effect against night vision telescope or the like is super awesome!”
Before Cillin could express his opinion, a voice interrupted into the conversation.
“Hey, I saw this at the Institute of Botany in Seven Lights’ Research Zone yesterday. I heard that it can only live for ten days at most after leaving its main body. Counting back, shouldn’t it be the eighth day already?”
Seeing that it was this guy, Cillin did not say anything further. He simply looked at the stallholder with pity in his eyes.
“Ahem, that’s not entirely true. If it’s sealed inside and eco film and a nutrient solution it can still be preserved for ten days or more.” The stallholder was a little embarrassed about being pointed out by Lung. He didn’t expect to meet someone who actually knew the Institute of Botany; how fucking unfortunate.
Long did not even lift up his head as he stared at the vine he picked up, “I heard that the fifty plus research samples at the institute had all died. There are still tens of samples that they weren’t willing to use and were preserved through this method. A few lecturers had gone out to look for the mother plant; they may be able to acquire a huge number of samples in a few days…”
Five minutes later.
With a look of tearless grief, the stallholder accepted 80 galactic credits from Cillin. His eyes on Lung was one that could not wait to flee as far away as possible.
Truly a member of the family ‘so poor all that’s left is money’, Cillin thought to himself.
“So? Do I get a reward for slashing such a hefty price for ya?” While waving his tree leaf fan Lung looked cheerfully at Cillin.
Cillin did not waste his breath either, “Tell me your request.”
The people of Andrea Family were definitely not some goody-goody fellows. They would not do useless work, and they would not make bad bargains. That was why Cillin had asked Lung to propose to him directly. As long as it was within an acceptable range, then anything was possible.
“Good; an honest man. As for the reward… if you can grow this vine, then you will sell the plantation technique to me before anyone else.”
“And you are sure that I can grow it? Even the researchers of the institute had failed; on what basis do you think that I can do it? Besides, it is as the stallholder says; you buy this purely as a souvenir or for fun’s sake.”
“My reason? Well… let’s just say it’s the intuition of an Andrea.” Lung said very cockily.
“Alright.” Cillin replied with a smile, waved and left the market street.
Cillin wanted to buy a hoverboard so it would be easier to move around in the future; the school zone was quite large after all. A hoverboard was much cheaper than a flying car. It looked like a skateboard, but a manual rudder could be installed to it. It could even be used to train one’s body – if you want to save energy, then you would have to push the ground yourself.
Before he went to buy a hoverboard, Cillin passed by a bookstore. The shop-front was huge, and had a quaint feel to it. It was pretty old.
The bookstore was having an event – their seventh centenary.
There was nothing Cillin could do with the member exclusive incentives, but he could participate in the open quiz. The sources of the questions were publicly known; they all originated from those few books. Those who got everything would be rewarded ten thousand galactic credits, be free to choose any ten books from the bookstore without charge, and awarded a VIP membership card. There was rewards for those who scored between fifty percent to ninety percent correct as well. It was not as if the people who couldn’t score even fifty percent were entirely neglected too; at the very least they could get the store’s discount coupon.
He didn’t have to pay for it anyway, so why not participate in the event? Plus Cillin had read those books before. They were all very basic.
There were many participants. After swiping his Seven Lights card for verification, the store clerk then arranged Cillin an answering panel.
Almost all of the questions were objective, but about twenty percent of the questions were very minute. For example, from which book and which volume and which chapter did a specific sentence come from; on which year did that specific war happened; there was even a question that asked about a certain medicine’s molecular formula…
Thankfully, Cillin’s memory was extraordinary. In no time at all, he had answered all one hundred questions, and after he submitted it the system began evaluating immediately.
“100 marks! Congratulations on getting the first prize of the quiz!”
In accordance to the instructions provided on the panel, after Cillin had submitted the results and answering panel to the relevant person in charge, someone led him to the prize area. At the same time, a line that stated, ‘Congratulations to Cillin Douance for acquiring first prize in the quiz.’ appeared on the winner and award received list on the store’s big display.
When the people saw this they couldn’t help but exclaim, “Someone scored full marks even with such unusual questions? What a boss.”
“Douance? A member of the Douance family?”
“This is the second full marks prize of the day, isn’t it?”
“Speaking of which, who was the first person who scored full marks again?”
“Seems to be a ‘Ci’ (T/N: Not to be confused with Cillin) or something…”
Cillin didn’t know how the people outside were talking about him; he was busy receiving his prize. When ten thousand galactic credits were swiped onto his Seven Lights card, Cillin then went up to the display area to pick his books. Some limited edition books could not be easily found.
The premium display area weren’t open to the public today, but those who acquired a certain prize were an exception. When he arrived at the display area, Cillin noticed that there was one other person who had come to receive the full marks prize and choose his books.
He looked about the same age as Cillin, with a bit of a cultured scholarly air to him. He stood in front of a bookshelf and flipped his book quietly.
“Jincheng, look, there’s actually someone other than you who had scored full marks.” The person who brought Cillin over to choose his books smiled and greeted the person.
“Oh?” The person’s attention was shifted away from the book on his hands to Cillin. He wore a refined and cultured smile, “That’s hard to come by.” He did not look like he wanted to go over.
Cillin returned a courtesy politely before he began reading a book on the bookshelf.
“Hey, Jincheng, don’t you think something’s strange about that guy?” The person who brought Cillin over went beside Jing Cheng and whispered.
Ci Jincheng shifted his gaze away from the book once more and looked towards Cillin not too far away. The more he watched the deeper his frown became.
Too quickly, he was flipping through the pages way too quickly! The next page had followed almost the instant his gaze fell on the current page.
This was not an e-book. They could not ignore the speed at which he flipped through the pages.
“Jincheng, tell me, do you think he really read them? Or is he just putting on a show? He had flipped through the pages like this over a few books already.”
“Who is he?”
“The information displayed on the card during the transfer was ‘Cillin Douance’. He is a new student of this term just like you. Self-sufficient; not specially recruited.”
“The Douance Family?” Ci Jincheng was sure that he remembered everyone with even a little reputation in the Douance Family. But he had never heard of a Cillin.