Chapter 147: Old Road
Very quickly, a subtle dividing line appeared between the old and new invigilators.
They had different names, different clothes, different living habits and also different attitudes towards the system so it was difficult for them to get along.
At the beginning, this distinction basically became the main topic of discussion.
Qin Jiu would often hear his colleagues talk about this during their small talk and most of the time he would only listen on lazily without participating. It was only when they talked about Invigilator A that he would cast his gaze over.
Qin Jiu heard a lot about Invigilator A.
They say that he has a very close relationship with the system and is an invigilator with a special existence.
They say that he is someone who acts without emotions, like a piece of ice that would never melt.
They say that even his place of residence was less smokey than the others and there was even a confinement room placed there to punish examinees with special circumstances.
They say that he is a human representative of the system.
When he heard these descriptions, Qin Jiu was stunned for a moment.
They were clearly very normal descriptions but he felt a little displeased. He couldn’t tell why he felt this way.
One time, a colleague stopped talking halfway and everyone looked over at him. They asked: “What’s wrong?”
Qin Jiu’s hand that was holding a glass paused. He looked up and answered: “What, what’s wrong?”
“You have been frowning for a while. I thought I said something wrong.”
“I was frowning?”
If it wasn’t mentioned by his colleague, even he himself wouldn’t have noticed.
Please read this from kk translates
Everyone at the table waited for his next words. He gently rubbed the inner corners of his brows a few times before his complexion returned to normal.
He smiled and casually continued the conversation: “I just feel that the head invigilator doesn’t like me very much. I don’t know about the rest.”
The two actually followed up and said: “It is a little…….I think so too.”
When Qin Jiu heard this follow up, he wasn’t very happy. But it was indeed what everyone felt was the truth.
The old and new invigilators would rarely overlap when allocated examination centres, but they would often interact with each other, especially in the Invigilator’s District.
Qin Jiu has worked with many early invigilators, but with the exception of Invigilator A.
Once or twice was fine, but as it became more often and as time passed……It no longer seemed coincidental. It even made him think that Invigilator A could have been deliberately avoiding those occasions, avoiding any close contact or opportunities to work with him.
He really couldn’t find the reason for it and could only attribute it for Invigilator A not liking him.
Soon afterwards, the new invigilators gained a deeper understanding of the system and its out of control state. This consequently made the gap between them and the early invigilators grow wider and wider.
By they time they realised it, they had become two distinct factions.
The early invigilators advocated gradual and orderly revisions and adjustments to the system and were known as the Gentle Faction. The new invigilators on the other hand advocated throwing down the axe and scrapping the entire system if it didn’t work and were called the Forceful Faction.
Of course, the so-called factions weren’t mentioned on the surface. No one would clamour about how to deal with the system while being watched by it but everyone was clear about it in their hearts.
With different ideas, more and more problems grew between the two factions and meetings have become commonplace.
They needed a time and place for them to throw out their opposing thoughts and clash with one another.
The interactions between Qin Jiu and Invigilator A finally increased but, each time, it was accompanied with conflict and disputes.
The conference table was very long, and they sat on opposite ends. Around them were fierce arguing.
Strangely enough, the previous collaboration tasks were actually very interesting. If Qin Jiu and A got acquainted with each other in that environment, it should be rather pleasant, and they could even become friends.
But A had avoided them all.
And now in these meetings, the atmosphere was always fierce and chaotic. It wasn’t an exaggeration to say that it was the worst environment for one to form a friendly relationship, but it just happened to be the only time A came.
Often, Qin Jiu would suddenly feel that A was looking at him.
He looked over and would sometimes see Invigilator A looking down at the documents on the table or sometimes meet A’s eyes.
The other person’s gaze passed through the chaos and quarrels, quietly landing over on his end. Qin Jiu had difficulty understanding what it was in his eyes and what he was thinking……
The light was too dazzling, and the table was too long.
At some very occasional moments, Qin Jiu would suddenly have a strange thought. He would feel that this way of confronting each other on opposite ends felt a little familiar. He seemed to have also watched someone like this for a very long time, but he couldn’t remember. Perhaps it was in a dream.
Please read this from kk translates
At some unknown point, he saw Invigilator A more and more.
Sometimes they each led a group of people and would pass by in the corridor or outside the Twin Towers.
Sometimes he would see that black car. Through the window, he couldn’t see the other person’s face, and he also didn’t know why the other person was stopped by the road.
Once, when the sky was turning dark and the streetlights were lit, Qin Jiu and several colleagues came out of the Twin Towers. Just as they were about to enter the door to their residences, he sensed something and looked into the distance.
A familiar car was stopped in the corner of the street, casting a long shadow beside it.
His colleagues saw him suddenly stop in place and similarly stopped to ask him what happened.
He said: “It’s nothing. You can go back first, I have something to do.”
His colleagues were at loss for a while, but they didn’t suspect anything. They bid farewell and entered the residential area while chattering happily.
The voices grew distant and the surroundings became quiet again.
Qin Jiu looked at the silent black car in the corner of the street and suddenly had an impulsive urge.
He wanted to walk over and say something to that person in the car. Anything was fine.
They were in different factions and every time they spoke it would always carry a trace of gunpowder. Having small talk like this on the side of the road was something that has never happened before. In fact, they really had nothing to talk about.
But when Qin Jiu returned to his senses, he found himself already standing by the car door.
He leaned against the roof of the car and bent over to knock on the window.
Invigilator A was sitting in the driver’s seat and the outline of his profile could be vaguely seen. His hand seemed to move a little, as if he was going to lower the car window.
Suddenly, the white coloured streetlight let out two bouts of red lights. It was very small, like those indicators on equipment’s. Like an eye, it directly faced Qin Jiu.
He raised his head and glanced over. A strange sense of disgust suddenly rose inside him.
And when he looked back, Invigilator A seemed to have also just retracted his gaze from somewhere and the corners of his lips have been pursed into a straight line.
In the end, Invigilator A didn’t open the car window.
The horn went off. Qin Jiu straightened up and saw Invigilator A shake his phone. The car then drove away without looking back.
He dug out his phone. There was a new message on the screen.
The message came from an unfamiliar number and the contents were cold and unfeeling:
『If you need something, say it tomorrow at the meeting. 』
Qin Jiu leaned against the streetlight and looked up.
The light from above was a little dazzling.
He blinked a few times and looked over at the end of the long street with squinted eyes. That black car had already slipped into the night…..
He pondered over that strange feeling he was feeling, and suddenly realised that he may have fallen for someone.
He liked Invigilator A, but the other party was in the opposing faction, so they weren’t on friendly terms.
They would still sit on opposite ends of the long table, lead the two factions over to confront, argue and fight………
But he wanted to lure the leader of the other side over.
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