The White Nightmare resumes her travelling to the corners of the present time Gantz city. In one point, she sits on the top of a watch tower while overseeing a wide open ground that’s currently used as market.
But when she reminisces of that place five years ago... and it made her ghost white skin shape shifts into hardened spiky hide. She became wrathful when remembering it, but when she remembers Rodan’s words, she quickly calms down and lets her skin recover to normal.
After her breathing returns normal, she takes some time remembering those days, those... bleak days.
“I remember that horrible circus tent was built here long ago...
That’s where I met Roro and Nono for the first time...”
Back to five years ago...
In the next morning, Rodan and Nono were hanging out in the living room of the giant tree. The room looked wider than ever, thanks to Bartz’s mercenaries who helped polishing the house. But somehow, Rodan didn’t look too happy about the changes.
“Mmmrggh...” he grunted while lying down on the couch.
“What’s the matter now, Roro?” Nono asked while moving some crates.
“I’m not sure... either I’m too bored waiting for that apple girl to deliver more apples here or maybe I’m just waaay to unmotivated.”
“Wait, you’re buying more apples from her? Where’s the last box that you just ate?” Nono wondered while searching around the table.
“Oh... that box no longer existed. I gave them apples for Bartz and his boys on their journey.”
“Can you at least think of our limited funds, Roro?” Nono wrinkled his face, irritated by his lazy voice. “We’re nearing deficit, you know?”
“Ahh, don’t worry, don’t worry... in the meantime, we might get something to do that could boost our treasury. If not... well... yaaawn... just... go... and sell some unused stuffs. That could get us some money, right...?”
Before even replied, Rodan had gone asleep.
“Sheesh, Roro... you’re leaving the work to me again...” Nono said in a resigned voice. He sat down on the couch and proceeded to read novels.
The poorly-fixed door was knocked, which quickly caught Nono’s attention.
“Ah! Coming!” he replied. “Roro, is that Miss Ringo’s package? Sure is fast, huh...”
Rodan opened an eye and looked at him in reluctance. “Not a chance, Nono. Yaaawn... her apples will arrive roughly tomorrow or maybe the day after.”
“Then, who’s that on the door?” Nono asked curiously.
Once again, the door was knocked. Strange for Rodan that his favorite green apples were supposed to arrive later. But shortly, the person beyond the rotting door spoke:
“Good morning, Mister... um... Rodan... er... Rouge! I am Max from Maxwell Furniture. I’ve come at the request of ‘rebuilding the front door that was breaking apart lately.’ Are you available?”
Rodan and Nono went silent for a moment, before finally peeking out through the hole in the wall and looked who’s at the door.
“O-Oi, Nono...” said Rodan while sweating aggressively. “Y-You sure you didn’t get drunk and suddenly asked a millworker to get our door replaced?” he asked in a rapid tone.
“Hah-hah-hah, impossible, Roro... I know how bad our financial reserves are and I will never buy a service outside our range of money. Not only that, I’m underage to drink one...”
“Then who the hell ordered him?! Moreover, he’s from Maxwell Furniture! They’re the highest quality carpenters and millworkers in town!”
“...I d-don’t know... w-well! Why don’t we invite him in and let see what he has to say?”
Rodan then opened the door carefully, since the hinges weren’t properly rebuilt. The millworker was wearing a tricorn hat and as soon as Rodan opened the door, he put his hat down and reintroduced himself in a lavish manner. Rodan’s wallet was screeching in pain. Even the owner himself was screaming silently, dying inside.
The millworker, Max, was welcomed in and was greeted with a cup of tea by Nono.
“Well, you see... It’s quite a surprise that you demanded our services, Mr. Rodan,” said Max while holding the teacup.
“Ho-ho?” Rodan responded, trying to replicate the etiquette of a high class standard. “It is, apparently, quite shocking for us too!” he said while holding his teacup, not the handle, but the bottom of the glass.
“Uwah, what a forceful manner!” said Nono in his mind while cringing to his friend’s attitude.
“Oh, what is it that surprised you, Mr. Rodan?” the millworker asked kindly as he put down the teacup.
Rodan quickly retorted—
“Ahh... it’s beca—”
“Um, you see, Mr. Max, we’re quite shocked that you suddenly come.”
—only to be cut off shortly by Nono’s words.
Nono continued on, “I’m sorry, but we didn’t ask for our door to be replaced, since we don’t really have that much of money right now...”
“Ah, worry not, gentlemen. We have our own policy that we will not provide any service unless the client has paid in total,” Max stated gently.
Rodan lifted his right eyebrow, “That means...”
“Precisely, your order has been paid in total to us, Mr. Rodan. I didn’t know you have such a good servant in the house. I’m impressed by him.”
“...him?” Rodan quietly said.
“Yay, more free things!” said Nono in his mind while reflectively clenching his fists.
“Oh, and by the way, your servant also gave me a letter that he wanted me to read when I reach your house. It is as follows:
Sir Rodan Rouge, thank you for your kindness to let me and my boys stay at your place. This might not be much, but this is the only thing I can come up with.
Get your door fixed ASAP!
End of the message. It impresses me that you can treat your servant well, Mr. Rodan.”
“AND you concluded from the letter that he’s my servant?!” Rodan retorted.
Rodan stared out into the hole in the wall that served as a window. For a brief moment, he remembered the mercenary leader.
“That big guy... huh... well, then! If you guarantee that we do not need to pay any extra price in the near future, then I’ll take it!”
“Sure do, Mr. Rodan. You won’t have to pay anymore. Very well, then, I will get to work as soon as possible!” Max stated with excitement as he lifted his hammer.
Rodan and Nono were relaxing outside of the tree. The millworker stated that he’ll make the doors for the entire tree house. In the meantime, Rodan and Nono went outside and let him work.
“Hmm, what?” he said in a rising tone.
“Don’t you want to go to this place?” Nono showed the VIP tickets that Bartz gave the other day.
“Nah, I’ll pass. You can go by yourself if you want.”
“Sheesh, so quickly to deny, come on, it’s your chance to try and enjoy an event in the city, you know?”
“Like hell I would, Nono! I’d rather nap the entire day... or maybe read a book or two. Maybe another time... I’d like to rest down a bit and enjoy this beautiful day...”
He expected a leisure day. Indeed, that’s possible, IF he’s inside the giant tree house, where loud noises were blocked by a magical barrier around the massive tree. But when he’s outside...
He heard thousands of noises: Drilling, hammering, blacksmithing, and many more noises from those who lived in the Red Bean Debauchery community. Moreover, there was a millworker near him, who produced a dozen of loud noises from his work. Rodan couldn’t continue his nap nor could he lie down peacefully.
His morning nap was utterly destroyed.
“Ah, frick it, let’s get going, Nono!” he shouted as he jumped to stand back up. “To the circus we go! Quick, get your arse moving, Nono! Let’s go to Gantz now!”
Nono grinned at his friend’s attitude.
“Yes, yes, Roro, I’m coming now!” He slowly got back up and followed him to the stable.
And with that, they rode to Gantz city to attend the circus.
In the city, many eyes were pointed to them, specifically Rodan. As they rode their horses through the busy road, Rodan got a bit anxious of the situation he’s in.
He moved his horse closer to Nono and asked in a whispering. “Hey, Nono, why are they looking at me so... fiercely?”
“Huh, now that you mentioned it, you’re right,” said Nono while looking around him where people who recognized Rodan stared the man cynically.
“Well, maybe that’s because the baron’s death was somehow connected to you?”
“Ha-ha! Fools! I have an alibi. I’m not there in the time of accident!” he said eccentrically while pointing a finger up.
“Haha, yeah, you’re right, Roro. Maybe they were thinking of something else. But anyway, let’s not worry about that.”
“That’s right. Let’s get to the circus immediately. I wanted to know what this circus is all about.”
As they continue their ride for a couple minutes, Rodan realized how numerous amounts of people were staring at him as if he’s one of the most wanted that was posted on the front page of daily newspapers. Though Rodan was not entitled a criminal, he was rather disliked by the people of Gantz. But... Rodan found it odd.
“Their eyes were staring sharply, as if they were informed that I was the one who caused that fatso’s death. I could simply give an alibi and leave it as it is... but that’s not how the justice system works in the kingdom.
Nono might be right. The people here must’ve thought I was the one behind the incident. I think I might’ve missed something, a crucial thing that caused people to be more cautious towards me than before that baron died. What is it... eh...?
Let’s see I’ve put everything into place. I was not present in the city during the time of incident, which made up an alibi that I’m not the culprit. I’ve told the mercenaries to let him burn down with the mansion and all of those who were loyal to him. I didn’t expect they burnt down everything in that mansion, though. Even their leader’s choice to fake his death using the mannequin led to the daily article to believe that he was dead, trying to protect the baron. And not a single time my name was mentioned.
But why was I got suspected by these people?
Oh... I know.
I know what’s up.
It happened too quickly and too swiftly. I believe they were suspicious that the baron died because of me since it all happened right after my head was priced by him.
But, that would only lead to a conspiracy theory. They don’t have proof. But then again, that’s not how it works in this kingdom. Those of the upper class man, the nobles have the authority to pin me as the prime suspect and none will be allowed to refute it. That’s how it works in this kingdom.
I must do something before it turned bleak someday.”
Unfelt by Rodan, they had arrived near the circus tent.
“Whoa... that tent sure is huge,” said Rodan in awe.
“Yeah, I heard from the guild that Gloria Circus is one of the world greatest! We’re so lucky to have these VIP tickets, don’t we, Roro? I believe you’re itching to get in there and see what they have to offer to us, hoo-hoo...!” Nono stated in excitement.
“Yeah, well, now it felt like you’re the one who’s itching to go in there,” Rodan retorted.
Shortly, Rodan and Nono noticed a group of five adventurers passing by the road near them.
“Oh, the Pitbulls!” Nono stated as he recognized them.
“You know them, Nono?” Rodan asked as he got off his horse.
“Uh-huh, they just formed yesterday. They were pretty liked even though they’re still new. Their party leader is Raz. He’s pretty unique since he’s the first guy who takes the ‘Crusader’ class as an adventurer in the city.”
“Crusader, huh... don’t they realize that by becoming adventurers they’re literally signing up their death warrant in the near future?” Rodan asked softly to himself.
“Who knows...? Adventurers were quite many in the kingdom since they could become a prime source of income, but... it doesn’t really fit us, don’t you think, Roro?”
Rodan slightly nodded and turned his attention at the circus tent.
“Well then, let’s go inside, shall we?”
“Yeah, let’s go!”
And with that, the two entered the large tent. Little did they know what was waiting inside...