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Ultraplex: Assessment

"Max! Focus!" the voice shouted.

Max was flipping through the nineteen folders. He was confused; they were filled with looseleaf pages of handwritten notes and pieces of graph paper covered with hand-drawn maps.

"Okay, let's talk about another time when you did choose to intervene."

A file folder appeared on the table in front of Max with symbols on it that Max couldn't decipher.

He flipped open the folder and scanned the documents inside.

[Halogrhin Excerpt]

"The records on your actions in World: Halogrhin are, of course, spotty. Are you able to give us any insight into the process by which you and the Dragons became aware of the threat, the means by which you access the -"

Max interrupted. "Can I get a coffee? I need a coffee. How much longer is this going to take?"

A different voice (was that three now?) shouted: "Mr. Montgomery, you are in no position to -"

Max interrupted again. "It's math! It's just math alright. You identify the risks and you identify the protections. If there's more of the former than the latter we go. We help. That's all. No big secret, no complex magic formula. We're variables in an equation. We don't care where the monster came from, unless learning that helps us kill it. We don't care what the monster wants unless that helps us kill it. We show up, kill the monster, balance the equation, and then we're gone."

The Prefalta folder, the Halogrhin folder and the nineteen other folders were gone. There were five new folders on the table.

One of the voices said, "We understand that you want it to be that simple. That the 'equation model' allows you to compartmentalize the work you do in the Ultraplex and prevent yourself from becoming overwhelmed. But is it really so straightforward as 'balancing the math'? How does that explain these records?"