Cheating Craft 24

Translated by: Taffy

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Quiz 24: Practice Exam Questions

It turned out that “Ravine Apparition” was the name of a diamond ring. ──It was the sole carving tool that Duan He had mentioned Carron used.

It was said that this ring had been given to Carron by his third wife. He had given it to his daughter with the third wife to keep. This daughter was Carron’s ninth one. What Meng Ming needed to do was to retrieve the “Ravine Apparition” from this daughter’s home and bring it back to Carron. 

──“It’s just stealing a ring, isn’t that too easy?!” Meng Ming had said.

──“If you haven’t done anything yet, don’t just go calling it easy. Here, this is their address,” Carron had replied with a serious expression on his face. “The difficult point is that you don’t know the Ravine Apparition’s exact location.”

──“Then where did you place this Ravine Apparition? In which drawer or under which pillow?”

──“Sorry, I forgot.”

This had been their conversation yesterday.  

There was another related issue. The Ravine Apparition was made from diamond, and was actually a diamond carving edge. Such a valuable item was bound to have been hidden in a secret location──this issue was something that Duan He had already pointed out to Meng Ming.

The drizzling had long since stopped. The next afternoon, Meng Ming and Huang Qiao Yi arrived in front of the door at the address Carron had told them about.

It was the 9th floor, and the door number was 909. The iron door had been newly renovated, and the inner wooden door seemed to have been changed recently too.  

Meng Ming still didn’t see anything difficult about it, since he knew Carron’s daughter lived by herself. The difficulty would at most be finding the ring’s hidden location. 

“He’s really underestimating me…ha!” Meng Ming laughed, “I won’t just dumbly sneak in and search! I’ll just knock the door and tell the daughter that her father wants the ring, and get her to give it to me directly. If she doesn’t believe me, I’ll just give her a down payment first, and everything will be fine!”

Huang Qiao Yi had remained silent the whole time. Ever since she had first heard the address at which Carron’s daughter lived, she had felt that something was off about the situation.

“Brother Meng Ming…”

“Mm?”

The two of them were standing at the front door, and hadn’t yet knocked. Huang Qiao Yi said with a somewhat stiff expression, “Brother Meng Ming…this time, the matter is your own business, so I think that you should work hard to complete it yourself.” She patted Meng Ming’s shoulder and said, “I’ll go home and await your news.” She then smiled and flew down the stairs to go home….

“Oi…Little Qiao?” Meng Ming hadn’t even gotten a chance to stop her before Huang Qiao Yi had managed to run off! “This is the ninth floor…”  

They’d just painstakingly climbed up to the ninth floor, but she had suddenly left.  

Meng Ming found it strange, but he could only turn back around to stare at the door in front of him.

As he faced the door, he began to think: Forget Little Qiao for now. This ninth daughter should be quite young in age, so she should be easy to trick! I’ll first tell her that her father asked me to come, then coax the location of the ring out from her. If all goes smoothly, she may even take the ring out to show me! Then, I’ll take advantage of when she pours out tea for me or something….

  ……

Meng Ming pressed the doorbell. 

The person behind the door seemed to have heard the bell, and some loud sounds immediately ensued from inside the apartment──“Boom! Bang…kwang!” ….After a long while, the front door finally began to move.  

Meng Ming stood at the entrance, prepared to immediately greet the ninth daughter.

The wooden door was slowly opened, extremely cautiously, as if afraid the one that had knocked on the door was a monster.

The door finally opened wide. Meng Ming was just about to speak, but the two people’s gazes met. It was actually…!

……

“Bang!” Suddenly, the wooden door was slammed shut.

Bai Jiu….

There were two people, one on either side of the door, both completely shocked out of their wits.

How…that old baldie’s ninth daughter is actually…! Meng Ming was momentarily unable to recollect his senses.

Why did Meng Ming suddenly come to my home… The girl inside was also extremely shocked by her classmate’s sudden appearance outside.

Already 20 minutes had passed since Meng Ming had first rung the doorbell. During this period, Bai Jiu had changed her clothes at lightning speed, cleaned the place, and then completely re-checked for any places that gave off a “messy” feeling. Only then did she re-open the main door.

The two of them sat in the living room, neither of them saying a single word. Because Bai Jiu had never really had guests come here before, she’d originally thought that some salesperson had come. She hadn’t imagined that it would actually be Meng Ming!

Although this was the first time he’d ever visited Bai Jiu’s home, Meng Ming was still extremely focused: I have to stay calm, or else I’ll fall right into that old baldie’s trap! I need to stay clear-headed: I came to retrieve something. Since it’s classmate Bai Jiu, the task should be easier! He thought that since it was just a ring, he might as well ask Bai Jiu about it directly.  

“Classmate Bai Jiu!” Meng Ming had prepared himself, and began to speak.

“Yes?”

“Do you know Ravine Apparition?!”

──Meng Ming went straight to the point.

“I, I know it of course. I was just studying that text.” Bai Jiu was a bit shocked. How did classmate Meng Ming know what I was currently struggling with? Could it be….  

Text? Meng Ming was a bit astonished, “No, not a text…” He was just about to deny this, but Bai Jiu was immersed in her own thoughts, and didn’t pay attention to Meng Ming’s response at all. Instead, she confidently declared her own conclusion, “Classmate Meng Ming, you came to my house today to study with me, right!”

Meng Ming was stunned.

“So it was like that! That’s right, we had agreed that we’d study together last time!” Bai Jiu stood up, so excited that she forgot to prepare tea. Instead, she immediately went to her room to rummage out the notebook and learning materials she had been using just now. She placed these in a pile on the table with some pens and paper. “Alright, let’s work hard together today!”

“Work hard…?” Meng Ming didn’t recall ever arranging anything like that. In the end, he looked at the text on the table, and found that it was actually called <Ravine Apparition>.

That name….how, how could it be so coincidental!! Meng Ming felt extreme regret. He believed that he had definitely been tricked by Carron! How could a ring have that kind of name! …Carron had definitely know that Bai Jiu was currently studying, and had thus come up with that name to trick Meng Ming… That old baldie, he knew all along that I was planning on directly knocking the front door to get in! <Ravine Apparition> is the text’s name, and Little Qiao didn’t even bring it up to me…  

“That, ring, is a carving knife…” Meng Ming wanted to explain, but he was afraid that he’d end up encountering another situation like that “text” one, and end up further and further trapped.

“Hm?” But Bai Jiu only looked at Meng Ming innocently.

“….” Meng Ming didn’t know what to say, as it would be wrong no matter what. Now, he could only first play along with Bai Jiu’s intentions and study with her for a bit. He’d deal with the matter later when the situation about the ring was properly sorted out.

That damn baldie… The more Meng Ming thought about it, the worse his mood became. To think that he’d drop into such a pit.

“Thanks, classmate Meng Ming.” Bai Jiu gratefully said to Meng Ming as they sat across each other at a table. She picked up some reference materials and said, “I had just reached a part I didn’t understand, and wanted to ask you! These two reference materials don’t say the same thing──this one, in the ninth sentence of the ninth paragraph, says….”

Meng Ming was rubbing his forehead in distress, thinking: Classmate Bai Jiu actually fell into her academic persona so quickly….

In only half a minute, Bai Jiu had already completely returned to her studying state again! Meng Ming had absolutely no clue what the question she had asked meant, and only roughly understood her words.

“That sentence just now…” Bai Jiu earnestly passed the book over for him to look at.

“Eh, oh….”

Meng Ming was still pondering how to ask her about where the ring had been hidden under such circumstances. However, this situation was definitely not as simple as just finding the ring──Bai Jiu was currently asking him a question! Meng Ming didn’t know the answer at all. Although it would be ok if Meng Ming didn’t know how to respond 1-2 questions, if Bai Jiu asked any more than that…it wasn’t like Meng Ming could say he didn’t know any of them!

Crap…. Meng Ming finally realized this really wasn’t a simple task. I need to cheat…? Then I’ll try this….

“Excuse me,” Meng Ming suddenly came up with an idea and said to Bai Jiu, “My phone went off.”

Meng Ming took out his cellphone from his pocket──actually, nobody had contacted him. However, he still pretended to answer it, “Hello, hello?”

As he spoke, he walked towards Bai Jiu’s balcony…  

Not long afterwards, Meng Ming returned from the balcony with a smile on his face.  

He picked up Bai Jiu’s reference materials, and pretended to glance over them once. Then, he slowly began to explain them to her.

“….In short, I don’t think the books are saying it correctly.” Meng Ming confidently said as he closed the reference materials shut.

“Wa…” Bai Jiu was very shocked. She had never considered that the two reference books would be wrong! This was the first time she had ever seen a student state that all of the content in the reference materials were wrong, and yet have such justified reason! “So it was actually like that…!” She thought back and reflected over the matter, and affirmed Meng Ming’s explanation.

Heh…. Meng Ming sniggered to himself, his hand still holding his phone. Now I won’t be afraid of any questions she asks!  

Actually, Meng Ming had secretly called Huang Qiao Yi to beg for help just now on the balcony…so Huang Qiao Yi had agreed.  

Zhuge Style Cheating Technique──Brilliant Blossom! Meng Ming hid the cellphone in his palm, and secretly pressed buttons to send texts. Using such a simple method was really too appropriate in this situation!  

Well, I’ll just keep going like this for now. When she’s tired of studying, I’ll take that opportunity to ask!…. After Meng Ming finished explaining, he picked up a notebook and held up his pen, pretending to flip through the book. With Huang Qiao Yi’s help, he wasn’t afraid of any question Bai Jiu could possibly ask!  

“Meng Ming, this part…” She pointed out another place to ask Meng Ming.

  ……

“Ah, I understand, thank you very much.” Bai Jiu immersed herself into studying once more. She hadn’t discovered any mistakes in his theory at all, and even thought to herself: Studying together with Meng Ming is really too efficient.   

Afterwards, Bai Jiu brought up many more questions, and Meng Ming explained all of them to her.

Like this, the two of them continued to study in the living room.

Time continued to flow. Bai Jiu didn’t seem to mind that there was an extra boy next to her side, and was just as concentrated in studying as she had been before. While she was studying, she seemed to have forgotten the time and her surroundings.  

Meng Ming had already secretly searched through every part of the apartment. The table and chairs, the coffee table, the tea cabinet, the carpet, the electric fan, etc. There was no TV, and the clock hanging on the wall indicated that it was 5 o’ clock.

It’s already 5, and she still isn’t resting… Meng Ming was constantly hoping for Bai Jiu to stop writing. He felt that Bai Jiu’s studying willpower was even stronger than a gambler’s willpower.  

With a whoosh, Bai Jiu finally cleaned up her books!

The end?!

But then Bai Jiu took out another large set of white booklets and said, “Now let’s do these problem sets!”

It hadn’t ended! Meng Ming gloomily asked, “What…what problem sets are those?” 

“They’re just practice tests. Meng Ming has definitely done them before.” Bai Jiu said, flipping through one of the papers. She thought to herself: Good thing Meng Ming came, my studying tasks will be completed much faster.  

I’ve actually never done a practice test before… [Meng Ming]

“I have multiple copies of this practice test, does Meng Ming want to do it together with me?” [Bai Jiu]  

“Ah? I….” Meng Ming thought: Maybe I should just pass…  

“You don’t want to? Do you think these questions are too easy?”  

“No, that’s not it…” Meng Ming was momentarily at a loss on how to respond.  

Taking practice tests…is something that Little Qiao can’t help me with, so I should just reject…

But then Meng Ming suddenly thought of something: Hm? That’s right! This is actually…a chance! Meng Ming hadn’t forgotten his original intention. He had come here to retrieve the ring! That meant he could use this practice exam chance…

Bai Jiu and I can compete in taking this practice test. If I win…yea, I’ll do that!  

“Alright!” Meng Ming was suddenly motivated, “Classmate Bai Jiu, I’ll do the same exam as you!”  

“Hm? Ok.” Bai Jiu pulled out an identical test paper and handed it to Meng Ming.  

“Since we’re doing the same test, let’s do a competition!” Meng Ming said excitedly.  

“Comp—competition?”  

“Yea. This problem set has answers, right?” Meng Ming asked.  

“Yes.” Bai Jiu flipped through the practice exam and said that this kind of problem set did have the answers as well.   

Meng Ming immediately replied, “In that case, we can compare and correct our exams after we finish. Let’s see whose score is higher!”

Although Bai Jiu understood Meng Ming’s intention, she didn’t actually have any experience with these kind of competitions. “Although I’ve seen a lot of people that like competing these kinds of things, I’ve never participated in such an activity. Meng Ming’s grades are so good, you must have quite a bit of experience…if I go against you, I definitely won’t be able to win….”

I’m the one that actually has no experience…. Meng Ming saw that Bai Jiu seemed reluctant, and said, “But, there’s nothing wrong with just trying…”

“Yea! Either way, it won’t matter if we lose, right?” Bai Jiu asked.

“Eh…” Meng Ming choked a bit. Just now, what he had wanted was for Bai Jiu to give him the ring if she lost. Now that Bai Jiu had brought up the point, Meng Ming was instead in a situation where it was difficult to make such a proposal.

“Mm? Does Meng Ming still think that we must bet something…?” Bai Jiu asked from her impression; she remembered that her classmates seemed to always make bets for these things.

“That…” Meng Ming rubbed his head. He felt that saying such things out loud was really too embarrassing.

Seeing Meng Ming’s reaction, Bai Jiu agreed, “Then that’s fine, let’s make a bet. Just don’t bet anything too significant.”  

“Ok!” Meng Ming hadn’t thought that Bai Jiu would actually agree, and he immediately said, “Then how about this——the loser won’t be studying anymore tonight; the winner can request something from the loser!”

He thought that as long as beat Bai Jiu, this would prevent Bai Jiu from immersing herself into studying again, and she’d be able to help him find the ring.

  ……

  ……

Meng Ming gradually began to feel that the room’s atmosphere was a bit off.   

Crap…I seemed to have said something wrong…

        ……

Bai Jiu’s mind had been thrown into disarray by Meng Ming’s words.  

Meng Ming was just about to try explaining something…but then Bai Jiu said with a blush, “Request something…what kind of request is Meng Ming referring to?”  

Meng Ming found it difficult to explain, and struggled for a while.  

“Then fine.”  

Huh? Meng Ming hadn’t even explained anything yet, but Bai Jiu had already simply agreed, “It’s a bit nerve-wracking, huh. Let’s just bet that then!”


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