Seized by the System
Translators: J_Squared, Zenobys, EndlessFantasy Translation
Editors: J_Squared, Zenobys, EndlessFantasy Translation
Chapter 6: The Need to Increase Efficiency
"Brother Hai Cheng, this matter requires the Truth Department, so take a look," spoke a thin young man, possibly the leader, among the group of people. He pushed up his glasses slightly, seemingly speaking to another young man with an arrogant air about him.
"Hmph, Mo Xing, look at you being all gracious. At least your Special Affairs Department knows their limits," spat Hai Cheng. He walked to the front of the group and faced the man in the freezer.
The expressions of the rest were ones of slight disapproval, but they could only swallow what they felt as they noticed Mo Xing's indifference.
After a brief moment, the middle of Hai Cheng's forehead split to reveal a ghastly, blood red eyeball.
Right after the eyeball appeared, it moved around in its socket before emitting a blue ray, like a spotlight, which shined down on the corpse. The blue light moved from the top to the bottom of the corpse, scanning it thoroughly.
As if done with its job, the blue light disappeared as suddenly as it appeared.
Looking at Hai Cheng again, his third eye had disappeared, and his forehead had returned to normal, as if it had never split in the first place.
It wasn't something that would have happened amongst normal humans, but none of the expressions of the people present had shifted in the slightest.
They looked on at Hai Cheng, awaiting his answer.
"It's just a crude execution done using Skip Punch. There aren't any fingerprints or palm prints, and the wielder had honed their vital energy to the extent where they should be able to release their internal energy externally. It isn't perfected or anything, though. I think it was just some lucky fellow that got their ancestor's martial arts prowess after the Flame Meteor yesterday and decided to be a vigilante.
"How naïve, even if their vital energy has been honed to its peak, they had a bad start and has limited potential. All they could hope for is probably to not hit a wall. Although it seems that they had good intentions. If you guys are interested in looking for them, you can maybe consider taking him in as a grade-F janitor, but we're not interested."
Hai Cheng stopped speaking then, disinterested tone all but gone. He wasn't looking at the corpse anymore, either, for there wasn't anything else interesting to look at.
Hearing his words, the rest of the party found it difficult to hide their disappointment.
"Heh, the Truth Department really lives up to its name. That uncanny ability to trace the root of a matter really is something to look up too, seeing as how you were able to find out everything about the perpetrator in a matter of seconds. Alright, you lot should do as Hai Cheng says. Build this perpetrator's profile and give them the nickname of "Vigilante A", Power Level F, Threat Level low, Confidentiality Level classified. It's not someone we should waste our time on," ordered Mo Xing at the rest, shaking his head in disappointment while doing so.
"Yes, Director Mo," answered someone that stood forward.
"Alright, everybody is dismissed. Go back to your jobs, remember to take note of new power types and to report any that you find immediately. As usual, calculate performance points according to the power types…" continued Mo Xing.
Hai Cheng, on the other hand, had already left the basement without a care for the goings-on happening within it. He had thought that he would finally be able to meet a new power type to test out his true powers after the beginning of the new era, but instead all he got was a measly ant.
He would need a lot more time to meet somebody that would truly be on par with him.
He turned his head, gaze landing on the door to the basement. The plaque on the door read, "Special Affairs Liaison Office".
The Special Affairs Department are a proactive bunch, wanting to get their hands on their own supernatural ability. But no matter how many newbies they accept, they would never be able to compete with Hai Cheng, who had done his preparations since the beginning.
After Fang Ning's 30-minute Relief Time, the System activated its "serve justice" mode once again
Under Fang Ning's surveillance, the System had already caught three thieves and two snatch-thieves. It had traversed an uncountable number of alleys and lanes and had walked more in a day than Fang Ning did in a month.
Although the System's speed wasn't slow, the range of things that it could actually do were limited, and being able to achieve that number in a day was not bad at all. Besides, it couldn't be helped that the city that Fang Ning stayed in – Qi City, was a provincial city with a lot of minor security issues, but only a few criminal cases.
Fang Ning's brain had been churning non-stop after looking at the System's notifications for half a day. He had finally understood why the System didn't choose a job like being a chef.
Although Fang Ning was lazy, that didn't mean that his brain was. On the other hand, he thought too much but did too little.
Seeing his chance pop up while the System was taking a break, Fang Ning suggested, "Hey System, don't you think that your efficiency's just a tad bit too low? You go everywhere serving justice for two things, the first being experience points and the second being to accumulate money. You also seem to have a map as your goals are always clear, but just like playing a game, you need a professional to help you increase your efficiency. Logistics is logistics, fighting is fighting."
[What do you mean?] A string of words appeared in Fang Ning's brain, and he knew he had hit the jackpot.
"It's simple, you need to separate the tasks for earning money and earning experience points. To earn money, we can go into the culinary business like what I said earlier, you'll be earning money way faster that way. As for earning experience points, I have a question for you; do you only earn experience points after defeating criminals? What about other people?"
The System was quiet, as if it were thinking about something. After a while, right before Fang Ning lost his patience, it answered.
[The System is limited by chivalrous virtue, it cannot attack the innocent or the righteous, and it also cannot rob the innocent of their belongings.]
Hearing the System's words, Fang Ning smiled. He had about guessed that it was so, because along the course of the day he had seen multiple instances where the System could actually take even more money and items, but hadn't.
"I'll show you a possible scenario so you can witness true intelligence." After confirming the System's limitations, Fang Ning's confidence shot up drastically. Though he was bad at actually executing things, he had faith in his ability to simulate, and his imagination was a lot better than most.
[Tell me quickly!] The System started to pester Fang Ning for the first time, and thus went to show just how desperate the System was to increase its power, unlike its lethargic host.
"We can create a treasure of sorts to donate to a certain institution, then we leak the news of the donation on a global scale. I'm sure that numerous criminals would be interested in having it for themselves. Then, all we have to do is wait for our turn to strike. As for how many criminals would turn up, that depends on how valuable our treasure is. If it's only of average value, a few would turn up, but if it possessed some special characteristic, say the ability to return one to their youth or to increase one's strength drastically, then waves of people would come for it.
"Know that the greed of man is immeasurable. The amount of people that have died because of greed is innumerable. Even if they were originally innocent, once they've made the decision to steal something and have appeared before us to commit that act, you can strike."
Fang Ning calmly explained his simplest plan. He had plenty more up his sleeve, more elaborate schemes, but the risks of those were too high, and he was afraid he won't be able to save himself and the System.
[The System is processing…]
The notification was sudden, but Fang Ning wasn't worried in the slightest.
A while later, another notification popped up.
[You have a good plan, but based on the System's current level and power, it is unable to create a treasure of that sort.]
Fang Ning scorn was well hidden as he said, "You should have something like a System Marketplace right? As a System yourself, shouldn't you be able to take something from it for free?"
[There is no such thing.]
"What about something like a New Player Goodie Bag?"
[There is no such thing as well.]
"What about a Lucky Draw?"
[It is not possible for gold to drop from the sky.]
"Then what do you have?"
The System could only show Fang Ning the results from its actions of serving justice which were the money, the rings, the watches…
Fang Ning was speechless after seeing the System's items. He then asked, "What abilities do you need, and what level do you have to be to be able to craft a treasure?"
[Once I've reached 10 points in Strength and Level 5. Then I have to activate my crafting ability until level 3, where I will gain the Separation Ability - Celestial Weapons Creation. A few of the Celestial Knights should fit your plan. As long as some experience points and a few materials are used, the crafting of Celestial Knights with special abilities would be possible.]
Fang Ning then did some calculations. The System had managed to rise to level 2 after doing a night and a day's worth of work, so it wouldn't take too long to reach level 5. The System's Strength has also been added with one point as Fang Ning distinctly remembered the notification he had seen: "One point added to Strength, current strength level: six points."
To reach ten points, they would need four more points, meaning they would need to rise four more levels to level 6 instead. They also had to activate the System's crafting ability until level 3. What would that need?
Fang Ning immediately questioned the System.
The System's answer was immediate, "To level up the crafting ability means to activate it, which consumes time and materials. The activation venue is in the System Space, which is also the space that you called the Inventory. That place isn't called the System Inventory, but the System Space."
"I didn't see any activation space to increase your crafting ability, though."
"I felt that letting you see it didn't make a difference, so I hid it," answered the System truthfully.
"Then can I see it now?" Fang Ning scorned at the System's utilitarianism, but also felt a sense of resignation at the System.
In an instant, a new System Space appeared in Fang Ning's mind. Other than the looted items, he also saw a blacksmith's forge with its fire burning brightly.
Under further inspection, Fang Ning noticed that despite its simplicity, the forge was equipped completely with fire bellows, iron hammers of varying sizes, an iron clamp and iron anvil, a water tank, a sink, etc. It only lacked iron materials and coal, but it was the perfect blacksmith's forge.
However, how such a crude forge would be able to craft a celestial weapon, Fang Ning could only assume that the System could bend modern science to do it.
After inspecting the forge, Fang Ning suddenly asked, "System, since this forge is yours and the System is you yourself, why don't you just raise your crafting ability, your level, and your power to the maximum? Why are you training for it? This isn't a game, you're not exactly human, I doubt that you actually enjoy training and leveling up, right?"