Bonus chapter for 3M views! (Yes, there is a bonus for both CCM and Cheating Craft for the milestone!) This marks the end of Volume 1 for Cheating Craft, as well as the ending of the prologue, now that he’s finally entered school. As most novels are, this first volume is just prologue, so expect much more in the future volumes. As the first volume has ended, and 3 main characters have been introduced, I’ve added a Character Illustrations page that I made from images provided in the novel raws. I will also update this page as the series progresses. Note that these illustrations may vary from the manhua, as the manhua is a different adaptation (I personally prefer the novel illustrations, what about you guys?) Enjoy!
Translated by: Taffy
Quiz 9: Basic Cheating Knowledge
The following afternoon. It was finally time for Lin Xian Central High to post the lists. These lists were of the students that had passed the Lin Xian Central High entrance exam!
The lists were posted at the end of a building corridor. They had just gone up, but a lot of students were already gathered to check their scores. The corridor was packed with a crowd of people craning their necks. Meng Ming’s and Huang Qiao Yi’s figures were also among the crowd.
The list contained the enrolled students, their scores, and their rankings─
|Rank||Exam #||Examinee Name||Score||Assigned Class|
|1||102||Zhuge Meng Ming||100||A|
|2||01||Zhang Mao Xiang||98||B|
|2||46||Jin Nai Nai||98||C|
|2||101||Huang Qiao Yi||98||A|
|6||12||Li Zhan Bei||97||B|
“Wa!” After seeing the list, Huang Qiao Yi cheered excitedly, although her voice was still extremely soft. “Brother Meng Ming, we’re in the same class; we were both assigned to Class A! …But…” She hesitated, and her expression changed, “I only got 98 points, so how did Brother Meng Ming get full points…?”
Full…points? Even Meng Ming felt that it was inconceivable. Why did I get 100 points?!
When Huang Qiao Yi asked again, Meng Ming told her everything that had happened that day─
“….That damn fatty actually moved all the answers down one to set me up! In the end, a brainwave struck me, and I managed to think of a solution in the last few seconds.”
Huang Qiao Yi immediately asked him what he did. Meng Ming said, “Because the questions were all off by one space, and I didn’t have time to change them all, I only erased my exam number. It was originally ‘102’, but I changed it to ‘213’. I then used the blade to cut off a chunk of the top part of the scantron so that the computer would read it as ‘102’. In addition, aside from a few of the questions, most of the answers were then in the correct place. Afterwards, I changed the topmost answer of every column─ I erased #1 and moved #36 and #71 accordingly, thus moving all of the answers back. There was only the last indeterminate multiple choice question that I didn’t know the answer to. But I just decided that it wouldn’t matter, and didn’t fix it. After all, it was only 2 points…” *
Within a few short seconds, he was able to think of a method that had turned the tables. Moreover, he was able to quickly complete the action. As expected of the Zhuge Style Cheating Technique!
“Um, where did that fatty go anyways…?” Meng Ming looked around, unable to spot the fatty’s figure.
Huang Qiao Yi found him instead. She pointed to a corner of the wall, where the fatty was bending over a spot on the ground and was dejectedly drawing circles on the dirt. He seemed to be muttering, “It seems that I filled in the wrong exam number…”
“Uwah?! A person that got 100 points appeared!” An ear-piercing, mature, female voice rang out from the other end of the corridor. Many examinees turned around towards the noise. It was a young, female teacher wearing beautiful clothes, glasses, and high heels flashily arrived at the scene.
When she appeared, the entire area suddenly fell silent.
The teacher elegantly neared the list, and looked at the writing on it, “Zhuge Meng Ming, what an adorable name. Ohoho…” She then turned around to say to the students, “I was the one that arranged the questions this time, for the sake of finding some self-confident students! Hoho, there are quite a few people that got 98 points, what a shame. Now let me tell you all a massive secret!” She raised her hands, displaying an authoritative pose at everyone. “The last question on the exam was an indeterminate question, and the correct answer was─to not choose anything!!”
The sounds of complaints arose from the crowd of people.
“Ohohohoho! You got scared, right? Everyone that chose an answer for the last question was wrong!” She brightly smiled in pride. Her meaning was, “indeterminate questions” meant that any choices can be chosen, so…one could also choose nohing!
Meng Ming and Huang Qiao Yi were covered in sweat.
Huang Qiao Yi whispered to Meng Ming, “Ai, I was wondering why no matter how much I thought about it, the answers to the last question hadn’t seemed right….” She had finally given up on it, and in accordance to typical habits, randomly chose an answer.
The female teacher continued to brag, “It looks like the one that got full points is definitely that type of obedient, studious student that we teachers like. There’s no mistake!”
Faced with the teacher’s misunderstanding, Meng Ming felt helpless.
The female teacher looked at the crowd, unintentionally seeing the boy with the helpless expression.
“You!” She abruptly cried out. “I remembered that in your materials I read just now, your picture was included!” As she said this, she walked towards Meng Ming with her gaze locked onto him.
“You’re Zhuge Meng Ming, right?” She loudly declared as she pointed at Meng Ming.
The entire crowd heated up once more. When the people heard the teacher’s words, they all began to look at Meng Ming with gazes of worship.
He’s Zhuge Meng Ming? So awesome!
I saw him at the exam site. He should be a C-type student, no? How…
He studies so well! He’s quite good-looking too!
All the students only knew how to study, so anyone with extremely good grades was always popular.
“Teacher really likes children that love to study diligently.” The female teacher leaned in, very, very closely, and lifted up Meng Ming’s chin. “My last name is Wang, and I will be the teacher in charge of Class A. From today onwards, we can exchange tons of advice!” Her eyes narrowed and she smiled for a brief second, “When school starts next week, you must work hard.” She said with a meaningful expression, then elegantly turned around and unrestrainedly walked away.
The commotion slowly passed. The name of Class A’s Zhuge Meng Ming had already left a mark in all of the examinees’ hearts.
The students dispersed. At that moment, the girl with light makeup, who had been standing nearby, called out to Meng Ming and Huang Qiao Yi.
“Hello.” She smiled and said calmly, “Zhuge Meng Ming, right? I saw you at the exam site. That Teacher Wang must’ve been mistaken. You’re really a C-type student, right?”
Meng Ming looked at her. He tried to recall the exam site, but he really couldn’t bring her to mind. He could only nod in shame.
“Hm? I’m sure your strength is quite amazing,” she said. “My name is Duan He, a C-type student. I’ve been placed in the neighboring Class B.”
It was said that because she had frequently used the hypnosis technique, the muscles around her eyes had become strained. The area around her eyes had colored, and the surrounding skin seemed to have aged. That’s why although she was young, she had to wear light makeup to cover herself.
Duan He continued, “Based on what I saw at yesterday’s exam, you two are an LC combination, right? That female classmate must have outstanding grades.” She pointed at Huang Qiao Yi.
“LC combination? What’s that?” Meng Ming asked.
Huang Qiao Yi was also puzzled about this.
“What?” Duan He felt incredulous, “You guys…don’t know? It’s a special method meant for multiple choice questions. It’s the cooperation of an L-type student and a C-type student!”
They shook their heads, indicating that they had never heard of the term before.
But, Duan He had clearly seen the two do it at the exam site! “You two…Zhuge Meng Ming, how long have you been part of the C-type student circle?”
Meng Ming thought about it, then replied, “Yesterday was probably the first time I’ve ever taken an exam…” His naivete and innocence made Duan He feel at loss.
“You, it’s your first time taking an exam, yet you’re so amazing! You aren’t tricking me, right?” Duang He said. She closely examined Meng Ming’s and Huang Qiao Yi’s expressions, and it didn’t seem like they were lying at all.
Huang Qiao Yi said to Duan He, “Brother Meng Ming only returned from overseas a few days ago. He doesn’t know the culture here at all…”
Are you belittling me… [Meng Ming]
Thus, Huang Qiao Yi said she could only make him enter the C-type students’ ring first.
Duan He sighed. For the time being, she believed their words. “Alright…then, you two probably don’t know the things that happen in the C-type student circle.”
Huang Qiao Yi had always been a clever L-type student, so she didn’t know anything about C-type students. Meng Ming obviously knew even less.
When she saw how they had been acting recklessly, Duan He felt exasperation. She cleared her throat and said, “Alright, time is short, so I’ll just tell you guys some stuff first! …First, you need to know the school’s attitude towards C-type students.”
Meng Ming and Huang Qiao Yi nodded.
“First of all, the school society in China unconditionally pursues exam scores. Students seek higher grades, and the school seeks a higher frequency of students advancing grade levels. These are absolute labels. Thus, both your scores and your rankings label a student’s strength. Teachers and students all praise students that have good grades, as it means they’re stronger. If your scores are bad, and you have a low ranking, you will be rejected by everyone.”
“I understand that…” Meng Ming clearly understood this. If he wanted to mingle here, he had to work hard to get outstanding scores.
But among the students, the C-types would typically enter school with hidden tricks. The school originally wouldn’t accept this type of students, but a single moment of carelessness was enough to allow those people get away! Duan He said, “Like you and me for example. There are also people who have poor cheating techniques that manage to get in by chance, such as…” She pointed at the big guy in the corner, “Oh, he seems to have written his exam number wrong, so he doesn’t count…” She turned to point at another male student not too far away. It was the pockets guy. “Him, for example.”
This meant that many C-type students weren’t discovered. The school naturally had no way of kicking out all the cheating students. In addition, as long as a C-type student was strong enough for their cheating to not be discovered, the school’s face and frequency of grade promotion would still be maintained. Thus, the school wouldn’t deliberately clear out C-type students. However, many schools would make the proctoring at each location very strict, and sometimes even be as harsh as the actual college entrance exam. If they caught a cheater, the student would immediately be urged to withdraw. This was because the school felt that C-type students who they could catch weren’t skilled enough, and keeping them wouldn’t be beneficial in any way. After all, if the students were caught during the college entrance exam, the school would lose face, and the cheating students would be heavily punished.
Meng Ming understood all this as well. Duan He said, “As for the teachers, majority of them don’t really dislike the C-type students or anything. As long as they do well on the exams and earn high points, their methods didn’t matter. But normally, a teacher wouldn’t help a C-type student cheat. That’s because helping wouldn’t be possible during the college entrance exam. The cooperation of a teacher and a C-type student wouldn’t help reach the objective of training the C-type student’s cheating techniques. In addition, the stricter the teacher’s proctoring, the better they can get rid of any of the C-student’s flaws and draw out their best.”
In other words, the school not only tested the L-type’s ability to study and obtain good grades, it also tested the C-type’s cheating techniques. C-types with good grades were just as formidable as L-types.
“Do you understand now? That’s why we C-types don’t have it any easier than L-types…” Duan He heavily sighed, then stressed, “You must watch out. C-type students will often try to harm each other.”
When the two heard this, they couldn’t help but shiver.
Duan He told them to be more careful since in senior high school, whenever the students took exams with those outside the school, the other school’s C-types would do this. No matter what kind of exam it was, they would definitely try to harm the opposing school’s students for the sake of raising their school’s average or their own grades. Sometimes, even C-types from the same school and class would battle each other to make themselves stronger, and purposely force the weaker ones out of the school. “You guys can’t be as transparent as you were during the entrance exam. That’s extremely dangerous!”
Meng Ming asked if there was anything else to watch out for. Duan He thought about it for a bit, then said that there were a few ironclad rules in the realm of C-type students— “Firstly, exam numbers are absolute secrets. Aside from the person you’re working with, you must never let anyone else know it. Otherwise, people can easily harm you with it. As long as they don’t know your exam number, they won’t be able to do anything to you in that respect.”
“─Secondly, the problem of your identities as L-type and C-type. Typically speaking, you and people you are close to will know what type you are. However, others are perhaps unsure of what your identity is, and so you should conceal it as well as possible. After all, the LC combination is a very simple and basic form of cheating. When most people see an LC combination, they directly assume the L-type has no defenses, and will attack them. That’s why you must protect the L-type from disturbances.”
The two thought of Huang Qiao Yi being harassed by mosquitoes during the entrance exam.
“─The third point would be cheating techniques. If you can conceal how strong or weak you are at cheating from others, you should do so. In addition, you have to prevent others from using you to cheat. In general, C-types that don’t have a certain level of cheating won’t be able to survive, like that person…” Duan He pointed at the big guy in the corner.
Somehow, the big guy heard this. He stood up and charged over with a murderous aura.
“Normally, C-types all have cheating abilities that they are experts in. For example…I,” Duan He quickly turned around and locked gazes with the big guy charging over. When the big guy met her eyes, his soul immediately flew out of his body and danced off to a side. “I know hypnosis techniques, and can use the power of suggestion on others to control their minds. However, I can only use it on one person at a time right now. In addition, I’m not completely proficient at it yet.” She pointed to the nearby pockets guy, “That person’s skills are actually below average. However, he most likely is a fellow that trains bugs. So disgusting…it’s a good thing I’m not in the same class as him…”
After talking so much, Duan He was slightly tired. She looked at the time and decided it was time to leave. “Zhuge Meng Ming, you should also start preparing your own cheating techniques. If I get the chance to in the future, I will watch you display your skills again.”
After they said their farewells, Duan He waved her hand, turned around, and left.
“Going by what she said, people should be staying away from each other…then why did she tell us so much, and even show us the special technique she uses?” Huang Qiao Yi asked.
“Perhaps she believes in us. Or maybe she just has a lot of confidence in her own strength.” Meng Ming replied. Based on what Duan He had said, there wasn’t really a need to harm each other if they were from the same school.
“It turns out that the C-type circle was actually so frightening…” Huang Qiao Yi was shocked, and now slightly regretted making Meng Ming enter it. However, she soon comforted herself─Brother Meng Ming knew the casino-shaking Zhuge Style Cheating Technique. He definitely wouldn’t have a problem.
From their conversation with Duan He, they were able to learn a lot of basic knowledge. Meng Ming and Huang Qiao Yi finally understood more about the existence of C-types.
“Brother Meng Ming, come look!” Huang Qiao Yi pointed at a sign on the corridor. “School uniforms. Newly admitted students have to pick up uniforms!”
Lin Xian Central High would start next week!
“Oh, ok.” Meng Ming replied.
My own cheating technique… Meng Ming lowered his head and stared at his palms.
*It personally took me ages to figure out what exactly he did, and I had to draw a diagram to understand. It’s possible that I’m just dumb, but if anyone else happens to be confused, click here for a simple diagram that Almer came up with (mine is handwritten and way too messy to understand >.>)