*Continuing from the previous episode … *

They overturned every dustbin in the neighbourhood.

They harassed the MRT station staff, shopkeepers and students in the area.

They searched and scoured every corner of the district. (or so they thought)

But, despite sweeping through Novena like a Korean typhoon, Smiling 哥 and his ‘band of brothers’ were still none the wiser as to the location of the elusive Temple.

He was dead sure, though, it was in the vicinity – after he realized that his favourite Udders Ice Cream (and subsequently all shops in the area) possessed the same first three digits of that bogus postal code.

As fate would have it, a passing student was spotted holding a copy of Miss Loi’s exam papers (latest 2010 edition). And to cut the story short, a single scoop of Udders’ Rum Rum Raisin ice cream was intoxicating enough to quash what’s left of the student’s loyalty to The Maths Tutor 😕

Thus before long, they arrived at the start of the 38 Steps, situated in the deepest and most *ulu* recess of the area, where a great sense of foreboding implored the party not to proceed further.

But there was no turning back now, and with great trepidation they took their first steps up the stairs, having no idea then of the horrors that were in store for them …

.

Ha ha ha ha ha …

A disembodied voice echoed chillingly through the stairway.

Suddenly one of the men let out shriek, before slumping to the ground muttering “log 0 … log 0 … ln 0 …”.

Mua ha ha ha ha ha …

Another one screamed hysterically, and stood frozen like a statue while crying “tan 90° … tan π/2 … tan 270° …”

Horrifying scenes reminiscent of Medusa’s Temple in Clash of the Titans ensued, as one by one his brave men fell, their weak PSLE-trained minds corrupted by sudden visions of mathematical expressions that would’ve induced “Math Error” messages in most MOE-approved calculators.

In the end, Smiling 哥 was the only man left standing before the Temple Gates, where he found himself firmly locked out.

You are not my student. You do not belong here at my Temple! Leave now before I turn you permanently into a

Mathematical Constant!

Loi Loi! Let me in! I mean you no harm. My brothers need your help and salvation!

pleaded Smiling 哥 desperately.

LOI LOI IS FOR YOU TO CALL ONE MEH?!!!

thundered the voice *brief tremor*

But something about the 凄凉 way he pleaded moved her, and after a moment’s hesitation, the voice continued

The secret pin to unlock the Temple Gates is a very special four-digit number. If you subtract the five-digit number formed from adding a ‘3’

afterit, from another five-digit number formed from adding a ‘3’beforeit, you’ll get 3843.Find this number and tell me why is it so special, and I *may* consider helping you.

Upon seeing his hapless look, the disembodied voice continued hauntingly

You look lost. Even my Sec One students will have no problem finding this number. Who ask you last time always skip math lessons? Huh? HUH?!

Seriously, you don’t really have much time left to tell me why is this number so special. Prepare to choose the symbol to represent yourself as a Mathematical Constant!

Mua ha ha ha ha ha ha …