Chapter 66: Bottom Line
Halcyon Wing Streak and Moonless Face were still talking with each other in the jail.
At that moment, one of the Zhu Clan’s wardens descended with two subordinates.
The warden’s appearance was quite tyrannical. His face was quite fat, and he wielded a thick baton in his right hand. He opened the door to the cell and said brusquely, “You, out!”
He was referring to Halcyon Wing Streak.
“What is it?” Halcyon Wing Streak coldly glared at the warden.
Even though he was a prisoner, Halcyon Wing Streak maintained his elegant and lofty demeanor.
The warden chuckled. “If I tell you to come out, then you come out obediently. Do you want me to ask you out on a date?”
As he spoke, he and his subordinates charged in, beating Halcyon Wing Streak with their batons.
Halcyon Wing Streak had been imprinted with a seal preventing him from using Origin Energy. His physical body was obviously much weaker, and in the blink of an eye he had been beaten black and blue.
Moonless Face could only shut his eyes tightly, not daring to even say a single word.
He was quite savvy when teaching his disciple, but when faced with this kind of a situation, he could only tactfully remain silent. Otherwise, all that would happen was that he would be beaten along with his disciple.
“Do you know to be obedient now?” the warden chuckled after finishing his beating. “Next time, be a bit smarter. Otherwise, we’ll beat you again!”
Halcyon Wing Streak forcefully repressed the flames of rage in his heart and lowered his head as he said, “Yes, sir.”
“That’s more like it! Follow me.” The warden shoved Halcyon Wing Streak out of the cell.
Halcyon Wing Streak was brought out of the jail cell into a different room, after which the warden left.
Halcyon Wing Streak saw a young man sitting inside the room. Upon seeing him, the young man smiled and said, “Have a seat.”
Halcyon Wing Streak glanced around, only sitting after he determined that there was no one else around
This young man was naturally Su Chen.
As soon as Halcyon Wing Streak sat down, Su Chen’s expression suddenly sank as he said, “You are not Halcyon Wing Streak. Tell me, who are you? Why are you trying to imitate him? Are you trying to get yourself killed?”
Halcyon Wing Streak was badly startled. He instinctively replied, “What are you saying?”
Su Chen squinted. “Are you trying to pretend like you are deaf and dumb? Did you not hear what I said?”
Halcyon Wing Streak was stunned. After some time, he finally recovered from his shock. “I heard you, but I don’t understand why you would say that.”
Why Su Chen would say that?
Of course it was to determine what his opponent’s reactions would be.
He wanted to see what kind of reaction a person would have if someone suddenly came up to them and randomly accused them of not being themselves.
Now, it seemed that Halcyon Wing Streak’s response would be to wonder if he had heard the question correctly.
If his ears were working properly, then his second reaction was to wonder if the person asking him had a mental illness. Why would they ask something like that?
Most people who assumed another person’s identity would try to justify themselves if they were exposed: why are you calling me fake? I am the real person.
This was their instinctive reaction because they knew they were fake and were afraid of being exposed by someone else.
However, the response of the actual person when asked this kind of question would be: are you crazy? Where did that question even come from?
There was no attempt to justify or vindicate himself at all.
This was because he was the real one, and there was no need for him to vindicate himself.
If anything did need to be proved, it would be on the accuser to prove that he was fake, not on him to prove that he was real.
His interrogation of Halcyon Wing Streak made this extremely obvious.
This was exactly why Su Chen needed to study and pay attention.
Su Chen chuckled when he heard Halcyon Wing Streak’s response. “Nothing, really. I just feel like you don’t really look like you’re from the Halcyon Wing Clan. You don’t seem like a noble to me.”
Upon hearing these words, Halcyon Wing Streak said disdainfully, “What would you know about nobility? And what would you understand about my clan?”
From beginning to end, Halcyon Wing Streak never tried to justify himself, instead disdainfully answering Su Chen’s question. Once again, he demonstrated the attitude that the genuine person should have.
“Is that so? Then tell me some more about your clan,” Su Chen said calmly.
“Why do you want to know that?” Halcyon Wing Streak asked.
“I want to understand better understand my opponents to better open a price tag,” Su Chen replied.
“All the more reason I cannot say anything.”
“So you aren’t going to cooperate?” Su Chen didn’t seem to mind and stood. “Then forget about it.”
Halcyon Wing Streak was taken aback.
Forget about it?
What did that mean?
Su Chen walked out of the room.
As he walked out, a group of four brawny men walked in behind him.
They leered at Halcyon Wing Streak.
[insert warning here]:
“You guys…… what are you planning on doing?” Halcyon Wing Streak said, beginning to panic.
The four men laughed coldly as they walked forwards, forcing Halcyon Wing Streak into a corner before beginning to pull off his clothes.
“Hey! What are you guys doing?” Halcyon Wing Streak was stunned. He originally thought that he was going to be beaten up, but why were they taking off his clothes?
The possibility of what was about to happen scared him even more than the possibility of being beaten up.
Their answer caused him to feel despair.
One of the large men chuckled. “Of course we’re going to be doing you!”
“But I’m male!” Halcyon Wing Streak yelled loudly.
“That’s right, we like men in the first place……” The four men began to laugh together.
Halcyon Wing Streak was like a little white rabbit facing against four large wolves. The four men took advantage of the opportunity and pounced…...
“Only you could think of something like that.”
Zhu Chenhuan sighed helplessly as he observed what was happening inside the room with the monitoring crystal.
A person was incredibly hard to understand and emulate. If Su Chen wanted to assume his position, he would first need to gain a deeper understanding of his target.
This involved the target’s education, background, way of thinking, personality, habits, etc.
No one could fully mimic a person completely, only to get as close to the reference individual as possible and avoid the likelihood of being exposed. The same had gone for while Su Chen had been in Ravager territory. When he wasn’t being suspected, everything was easy to smooth over, but once he was suspected, everything would become a problem for him.
Unlike his journey through Ravager territory, however, pretending to be a Harpy was going to be much more difficult.
One reason was because he was now going to assume the identity of someone with real status, and the other reason was because the people he was trying to deceive were much smarter.
This was where having a team came in handy.
The Zhu Clan’s elite investigators had already begun to gather information on the background of these sixty captives.
By interrogating, threatening, and bribing the captives, combined with cross-examination and careful investigation of their own, they were able to produce a thick book of material for each Harpy. Cloud Leopard, Iron Cliff, and the twelve Sword Servants would never have been able to complete this mission, and they might have actually done more damage than benefit. They were good at fighting, but completely inept when it came to matters like this.
Gathering information was only the beginning. There was still a lot to do when it came to coming up with a plan.
Even though Su Chen was smart, two heads were always better than one, even if one of them had a consciousness crystal in his head. The consciousness crystal was good at making calculations, not so much predictive analysis. Su Chen could use the consciousness crystal to memorize the vast sea of information and material presented, but it was much more efficient to come up with a plan as a group.
Of course, the secret still needed to be kept. Zhu Chenhuan and Su Chen had purposefully proposed a bunch of hypothetical scenarios to the underlings for them to solve, including how to best assume another person's identity. Lots of good ideas were provided to accomplish this.
One of the ideas in particular caught Su Chen's eye.
One of the Zhu Clan's stewards was the one to propose the idea. In his view, it was impossible to fully assume a person's identity.
Different people grew up in different environments, which would shape how their personality developed. Their intrinsic nature was hard to fake for more than a short period of time without being exposed. Even if your intrinsic nature was close to that of the target, there would still be gaps in lifestyle, habits, and knowledge.
The allowable discrepancy in these matters was inversely proportional to the intelligence of the people you were trying to trick. The dumber the people being deceived were, the greater the allowable discrepancy. Unfortunately, Su Chen's task was to trick the Harpies, which was incredibly difficult, so it was safe to assume that tricking the Harpies was at the maximum difficulty level. In other words, the allowable discrepancy was very, very small.
Under these kinds of circumstances, the steward believed that trying to assume another person's identity was basically impossible. Short-term deception was doable, but it was not going to be possible to trick the opponent for long.
Since it was impossible to completely assume another person's identity, then what if that person was changed? If they went through some traumatic experience, then their personality would change as well.
Su Chen felt that this was not a bad choice.
That was how the plan against Halcyon Wing Streak had been put into motion.
There was nothing more traumatic than rape. That would definitely deal a serious blow to his consciousness.
At that moment, Halcyon Wing Streak had been completely stripped, and it was impossible for him to move against their restriction.
When he saw this, Su Chen said, "That's about enough."
As he spoke, he shoved the door open, appearing in front of Halcyon Wing Streak and staring intently at him. "Look at me!"
Halcyon Wing Streak immediately slipped into an unconscious state when he met Su Chen's gaze.
Everything that would happen next would take place in an illusion realm. The four brawny men took their leave.
After a long time, Su Chen withdrew the illusion realm. Halcyon Wing Streak lay on the ground, devoid of all strength.
Su Chen glanced at him, then took some white liquid and scattered it carelessly on the ground before leaving the room.
Zhu Chenhuan was waiting for him outside.
He said, "I don't understand why you didn't just let them loose on him. Why did you insist on using an illusion realm? It won't make a difference to him anyways. After all, a majority of the wounds inflicted because of rape are due to the consciousness. The body's wounds are not nearly as serious."
“It might not make a difference to him, but it does to me. No matter what, I do not want to break my bottom line,” Su Chen replied.
“Bottom line? I didn’t know those words were part of your vocabulary,” Zhu Chenhuan chuckled.
“Even if my bottom line is very low, I still have one,” Su Chen calmly replied.
His reply was quite modest.
Perhaps Su Chen would have used any method to reach his goals in the past, but as he had grown and matured, his horizons had been broadened and he began to see things from a different perspective. Naturally, it followed that his thought process would change as well.
He no longer only considered the results when doing things now. If possible, he would rather do things more ethically.
As his microscopic eye's ability had improved, he no longer needed to dissect his targets. If possible, he would still do his best to preserve them physically.
This was a kind of maturity that had automatically developed as Su Chen grew older.
His inventions were meant to create a better future, not to destroy everything.
Su Chen's actions began to change when he realized this. He no longer insisted on tormenting his research subjects if he could still achieve results without it.
As a person grew stronger, their emotional maturity would need to grow as well, which would allow them to better control their strength. This was a lesson that Su Chen had learned throughout the years.
This was why he did not allow Halcyon Wing Streak to actually suffer this calamity. However, it was quite apparent that it wouldn't make much of a difference to Halcyon Wing Streak.
After being sent back to the jail, his entire consciousness seemed to have collapsed.