Chapter 4

Ætherglow #81



The next day, your focus is on numbers as you face an intense class in Linear Algebra, with Professor Miskunnlauss. Towering over all students in her dimly lit classroom, she stares down on your classmate in the front row with the piercing crimson glow of her cyborg eyes, surrounded by skin pale as death.

“An interesting answer...” she says, her voice as piercing as her gaze. “But are you not neglecting something?”

This boy in your year, his voice shaking, answers, “No, no, I think that’s correct.”

“And who can tell me why Arro here would surely die if he attempted math like this in the æther?” She scans the room and points directly at you. But you have no idea. Although any technopath candidate has an adept grasp on math and your pre-qualification training prepared you well for this class, the aura this professor gives off leaves your mind shaken.

Luckily you are not her victim. “7 Star,” she says.

In the row behind you, your classmate 7 answers without hesitation. “The equation resolves to closure under scalar multiplication. It therefore describes a vector subspace.”

“Good, 7, very good.” Her voice softens a bit. “Do not make this mistake again. Technopaths have died from such carelessness.”

7★ is a candidate far beyond your skill, in all areas you have witnessed. Her technopathy outmatches yours every time you face her in Cybersecurity class, and her intuitive grasp of equations makes most technopath students look like normies in comparison. But luckily you dodged Professor Miskunnlauss’s fury for today, as class is almost over.

“Practice,” she addresses her class. “Think of linear algebra in the back of your mind in your every waking hour, for next week will not be so straightforward. You are dismissed.”

The lights come on as she opens the door, and the anxious atmosphere of her classroom dissolves, like it was all a dream. Still, you can’t get out of here fast enough. Besides, you have plans this afternoon. After explaining your situation to your friend Zeta, it asked to meet with you today to discuss it further. But you never decided on a meeting spot.

Where should you tell Zeta to meet you?

1) up on the roof where you jumped across the glass panel before: 100 (100.0%)
2) on the top floor of the library where few students normally go: 0 (0.0%)
3) deep in the garden, far from the path: 0 (0.0%)
4) a student lounge in your residential building: 0 (0.0%)
5) invite it to meet in your room: 0 (0.0%)
Expired 1 years ago (2022-04-20 19:03:00)

NOTICE: this poll was conducted on Ætherglow's previous home site. After total loss of the server, we only had records of which results won, not exact vote totals.