Chapter 11: Problems (3)

T/L: Sial Joans   E/D: larkspur

Lin Zhao Xi stood in front of the sofa. There was no light in the room and the walls were dark and obscure.

Dreams, what were her dreams?

Old Lin’s persistent chicken soup was so fragrant that she couldn’t help recalling Pei Zhi’s question and her annoyance. She wanted to try solving it but had to give up out of a lack of ability.

It must be chagrin…

She looked at Old Lin and said, “There was a question.”

10 minutes later.

Old man Lin put down his pencil and asked: “Did Pei Zhi come up with this?”


Old Lin sighed, “You went on a blind date when there is obviously such an outstanding boy for you to chase after?”

Lin Zhao Xi: “I like Michael Fassbender. Can I chase after him?”

Old Lin: “Who’s that?”

Lin Zhao Xi: “King Magneto.”

Old man Lin: “What a coincidence, I like him too.”


“That is to say, Pei Zhi agreed to be your boyfriend if you solved the problem?”

“Can you not think of anything other than love, this is the admission to join the modeling competition team.”

“I’m afraid not.” Old man Lin was confident.

“I don’t understand.”

“This is testing the water,” Old Lin took off his glasses, deep in thought. “It’s not about the modeling contest, it’s about P/NP.”

Lin Zhao Xi looked at the question again and finally understood where the feeling of grasping at straws had come from.

The P/NP problem, one of the Millennium Prize Problems, 1 million USD prize, juxtaposed with the Riemann hypothesis and the Poincaré conjecture.

Pei Zhi was really…

“Ambitious,” Old man Lin said, very pleased. “Let me correct myself, Pei Zhi wasn’t the one who came up with the question, it was his mentor’s idea. The professor who studies Hamilton circuits in your school happens to be Pei Zhi’s instructor, Professor Shen or Zeng?”

Lin Zhao Xi: “You know too much about this.”

“Not much. I know that although this problem is still an extremely long way from actually solving P/NP. But solving it, rewriting human history… this courage is worthy of respect.”

“Well, yes.” Lin Zhao Xi thought, courage, ah, how enviable.

“Would you like to take a Master of Science in Mathematics?” Old Lin asked.

Lin Zhao Xi dumbfoundedly looked at him, not knowing how the topic came to this.

“Proving P = NP could greatly increase the speed of calculations, and countless diseases, including Alzheimer’s, are bound to take a much shorter time to conquer…” Old man Lin continued to sigh, “Why don’t you consider changing your major for your father?”

Lin Zhao Xi pointed to herself, and then pointed to the question on the table, “Sir, I can’t even understand it, okay? There are an entire 4 years of studying between me and the math postgraduate entrance examination!”

Old man Lin smiled and earnestly said, “You don’t think you can catch up with Pei Zhi, but is the distance between you and him farther than between him and P/NP?”

It was irrefutable.

Lin Zhao Xi turned around and walked to her door.

Old man Lin was still smiling; his low and hoarse laugh sounded behind her.

“Miss Lin Zhao Xi, in this long and beautiful life, if you really find what you want to do, then it’s never too late for you to start again.”

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