The tip for the second assessment was 'Weed'. Many of them rushed to the areas with weeds after they headed out of the Hunter Association. After all, they were only given 48 hours and based on their numbers, slots in the next round of the assessment were limited to whoever found a black crystal. The mission was simple, whichever candidate managed to find a crystal they would pass the assessment.
For the past couple of hours, many residents saw peculiar scenes of people looking for stuff in the weeds. Many young people were engrossed in the hunt for the crystals in the weeds. They did not only look for it in public areas, but many invaded private properties too. Usually, digging up the weeds would be a good thing but once they found out that the black crystal was not where they were looking, they would leave a mess behind. Many of the government cleaning staff were angered by their behavior.
Some people took videos and uploaded them to the network with the rumors that there were treasures in Beixuan City and some unknown organization was looking for the treasures. Many saw and believed in the rumor and joined the treasure hunt as well. The city was suddenly crowded with people. However, some of the participants did not dig out the weeds around them.
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Once the mission was out, Lin Huang knew that it would not be that simple. The tip, 'Weed' was definitely the weeds growing on the land around them but if that was the case, there would be no meaning to the assessment. There were 5,000 pieces of black crystals around, as long as they head out and searched the area, the probability of finding it was quite high. However, such digging did not require any detective skills.
As he watched the rest running around the place, Lin Huang browsed through the Heart Network searching for any information with the keyword ‘Weed’. He wanted to know if there was another meaning to this word. However, he did not find any unique definition of the word after browsing through a couple of pages. He frowned and entered the keywords ‘Beixuan City’ and ‘Weed’ as he wanted to see if there was any relation between the two keywords. To his dismay, all he saw were rumors about treasure in the city that were uploaded by the people.
Lin Huang shook his head. As he proceeded to browse through the network, one bit of news caught his attention.
"Weed Technology in Beixuan City, a company specializing in the development of cleaning utensils…"
"Weed Technology?" Lin Huang raised an eyebrow as he looked up the company. He did not find much information about the company after doing some searching. It was a small company with less than 20 people. It developed a variety of cleaning agents and tools, and they did not even have their own factory. That was all that he managed to find on the network.
"Seems like I’ll have to do a site inspection," Lin Huang smirked. It was 9:40 a.m. when Lin Huang appeared at the entrance of the Weed Technology site with his features hidden so he would not raise any suspicions. He now looked like a middle-aged man in his 40s, and he looked serious with an 80% similarity to Xu Jinpeng, the head examiner of the preliminary assessment. With his clean black suit, he looked intimidating.
The security guard of the company was an old uncle, and he did not hesitate when he saw Lin Huang. The old man got up and said, "May I know who you are?"
"I’m from the Reviews Board, and I would like to see your boss."
The Reviews Board in this world was similar to Audit Board on Earth. However, the jurisdiction of the Reviews Board was wider. Aside from accounts, they also looked into product safety, waste pollution and so on. Most of the companies were very respectful to people like the staff of the Review Board.
"Hold on please," the security guard said as he dialed a number to the reception. After the call was hung up, the door opened. Lin Huang walked in with confidence. Since he was on the Review Board, the security guard did not dare to check his ID as he did not want to offend Lin Huang. Just when he stepped into a door, he was welcomed by a lady in his 30s.
"Hi, I am Bai. I am the boss’ secretary. May I know how I should address you?"
"By my surname, Xu," Lin Huang used the head examiner’s surname as well.
"Mr. Xu, our company has undergone a review two months ago. Since you are here, was there a problem with the first review?" Secretary Bai asked doubtfully.
"It’s the end of the year and we do spot checks. We randomly decided to review your company. Don’t worry, just bring me to your boss," Lin Huang replied firmly with a short answer, as a Review Board member would.
"As our company hasn’t been busy these past few days, my boss is usually late to the office. Please take a seat in the meeting room, I will get him here as soon as possible." Secretary Bai escorted Lin Huang to the meeting room and left after serving him some tea.
While he relaxed in the meeting room with the tea, Lin Huang thought about what he would do when the boss was here. 10 minutes later, a plump middle-aged man opened the door to the meeting room, sweating profusely.
"I’m sorry to keep you waiting, please follow me to my office."
Lin Huang nodded and followed the man to his office on the second floor. He sat on the couch before the man, without so much as a request.
Secretary Bai placed a cup of tea on the table and left, closing the door behind her.
"Erm, Mr. Xu, may I know what this review is about?" The plump boss looked at Lin Huang while wiping away his sweat.
Lin Huang smirked as a mask was being made on his hand with
Mask - Control
. He then placed the mask on his face, and he now had the boss’ face over his own. The man was in shock.
"Tell me your name," Lin Huang asked his first question.
"Zhang Peng," The boss answered without hesitating.
"What’s your family like?" Lin Huang asked.
"I’m divorced with two kids. My son is 11 and my daughter is eight," Zhang Peng did not stutter or put up a fight.
"What’s your relationship with Mrs. Bai, your secretary?"
"We are secretly a couple, and she has a husband," Zhang Peng answered honestly.
After asking two personal questions, Lin Huang confirmed that he had full control of Zhang Peng. He then asked what he really wanted to ask.
"Where can I find the black crystal in your company?" Lin Huang showed him the image that he took of the crystal earlier.
Zhang Peng looked at the image and shook his head, "I’ve never seen such thing."
Lin Huang frowned as he heard Zhang Peng’s answer.
"He’s the boss but he doesn’t know about it, maybe he's not related to the 'Weed' that the head examiner was talking about?" Lin Huang thought.
He then proceeded to ask a couple of questions that were related to the crystal but Zhang Peng could not answer him. It seemed like he completely had no idea what that black crystal was.
"If he has no idea, could it be related to his staff?" Lin Huang questioned himself but he refused to give in. After some thinking, he summoned the Demonic Dandelion Vine. The shrunken Demonic Dandelion Vine looked like a bloody baby snake wrapped around Lin Huang’s left arm.
"lnfect all the staff in this company with parasites and get them to bring me the black crystal," Lin Huang instructed the Demonic Dandelion Vine.
Soon, a purple flower grew out of the vine and more than 10 leech pods were spread onto the targets’ bodies. Lin Huang then noticed that all of them standing up from their seats and wandered around aimlessly. The hosts had lost their purpose. If any of them knew about the black crystal, they would not look like that.
"Alright, release the hosts." After observing the scene, Lin Huang was sure that this company had nothing to do with his assessment. The word ‘Weed’ in the company name could have just been a coincidence. He walked to the window, and while he was considering whether he should remove the mask before leaving, Secretary Bai knocked on the door.
"Boss, there’s somebody here for you. He said he’s from the Review Board as well…" As she said the words, she looked at Lin Huang curiously. All she could see was the back of his head.
Through the window, Lin Huang could see the person who was stopped by the security guard. It was a familiar face.
"Bai Yan?" Didn't he become a Copper Hunter straightaway with his special pass? Why did he join the assessment again?" Lin Huang raised his eyebrow with his lips slightly parted.
Meanwhile, Zhang Peng who was sitting at the table spoke, "Tell him that I’m busy today, I don’t have the time to see him. Ask him to come some other day."
Secretary Bai was stunned but she left anyway. Soon, Bai Yan left unwillingly after the security guard told him to.
Lin Huang then walked to Zhang Peng and said, "You'll feel sleepy now and you'll want to fall asleep. You'll fall into a deep sleep in 10 seconds. When you wake up, you'll only remember that the people from the Review Board had completed the review and you will forget the rest…"
Awhile later, Zhang Peng fell asleep on the table. It was the first time Lin Huang found out how powerful the mask was. Not only could it control one’s behavior, it could even alter one’s memory and the alteration was non-reversible even if the user lost control. After removing the mask, Lin Huang left Zhang Peng’s office.
When he got to the first floor, Secretary Bai approached him immediately, "How was it, Mr. Xu?"
"The review has been done. There’s no issue, I shall be making a move now," Lin Huang nodded.
"The man earlier said he was from the Review Board as well, is he your colleague?" Secretary Bai could not help but ask.
"How is it possible that a Reviews Board staff member is less than 20 years old? It’s obvious, didn’t you notice?" Lin Huang asked her back, "Next time if you see anyone who says they are from the Review Board, don’t forget to check their ID. If it’s fake, call us and report it."
Lin Huang left as soon as he finished speaking. Secretary Bai was confused. She then recalled that she did not check Lin Huang’s ID…
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