China has an examination.
If one doesn’t pass this examination, they’ll never be able to advance: this is the college entrance examination.
It is like an axiom or a faith, a problem deeply rooted in everyone’s hearts.
Everyone believes that if they don’t pass the examination and fail to get into a college, they will have no other path in life to take. Everyone has to take the college entrance examination, and pour their entire heart and mind into learning in school and taking tests. Parents always pressure their children, and schools give the students the burden of increasing their reputation. Oftentimes, this college entrance examination oriented system of education leads to issues in households and schools; suicide, homicide, and criminal offenses are all common occurrences. During the last 100 years this college entrance examination system has been in place, many people have lost everything because of this test.
Gradually, China’s students split into two types in order to adapt to the severe education and examination system:
The first type, is the majority of the population that possesses the traditional mentality. They choose to live 10 years of strenuous academics, studying assiduously and tirelessly to try their hardest in school. In order to gain exceptionally high grades, they attend regular and supplementary classes for tests, starting from primary school. All their time, youth, and energy is completely spent on learning subjects and taking tests.
The second type, slowly came into existence after constant examinations, and this development represents the minority of the population. In order to gain exceptionally high grades, they choose to practice skills to oppose monitoring, challenging the strictest proctor teachers and the first science of monitoring techniques. By using secret skills and brilliant tricks, they produce perfect cheating methods that are undetectable during examinations.
Quiz 0: Death Penalty
Manila, Philippines. In some casino.
A large gambling table in the center was currently surrounded by attendants and police. Two immaculately dressed, middle-aged men sat at the table, currently locked in a final showdown.
At the moment, the atmosphere was heavy and harsh.
Pretty much all the casino tokens were being held in question. Both sides tightly gripped their playing cards, their gazes trying to pressure each other as they attempted to see through each other’s minds.
“He used sleight of hand*!!”
A loud shout was suddenly heard, interrupting the faceoff.
An alarm suddenly rang, and the two policemen immediately sprung into action, arresting one of the gamblers at the table.
This uproar drew everyone’s attentions toward the center of the casino.
Everyone had seen that the cards the middle-aged gambler had had in his hands violated the rules! ─This person was Zhuge Dong Ming, arrested today for sleight of hand.
Sleight of hand was the act of cheating in a casino, and a type of cheating technique**! Anyone caught cheating in a casino would be given the death penalty in this age.
“Mr. Zhuge Dong Ming,” his opponent sneered, “I hadn’t imagined that you’d actually brave death and use sleight of hand!”
Hmph…Zhuge Dong Ming thought, You’re also using sleight of hand, I just haven’t seen through it. Yet you’re beside yourself with joy!
That’s right. The gamble was really just a competition of cheating techniques. The victor was the party with the more superior cheating technique; the loser would have to pay with their life if they were the slightest bit inattentive─this was the rule of the casino.
The instant the two policemen dragged Zhuge Dong Ming away from the table and forced him into a police car, everyone erupted.
Some of them secretly smirked, some were dejected, and others were completely indifferent. However, they all knew that today was probably the last time they’d ever see this regular customer again.
*The raws here say chu qian (出千), which is an exclusive term that refers to the act of cheating in casinos. As there is no direct translation, I decided to use the term ‘sleight of hand’ for this series because it was the closest term I could come up with to describe how one cheats at a casino. Think of it more as magic tricks rather than complicated schemes.
**Here, the raws say qian shu (千术). The ‘qian’ (千) in qian shu is the same ‘qian’ as the one in chu qian. Qian shu is simply the noun version of chu qian; in other words, the method of ‘chu qian’-ing is called Qian Shu. Once again, this has no English equivalent, so I left it as ‘cheating technique’. Please bear in mind that it is not actually referring to general cheating techniques, but is a specific method directly derived from the chu qian term described as ‘sleight of hand’ above; the relationship just cannot be shown in English.
Thank you Zen for your suggestions on the terms!