Chapter 2:

Thinkers in Pink and Crimson

Amaryllis of Crimson Gables

The case locked in the airport was the absence of people.Bookmark here

Easily imagining what an airport could be like would be its traffic, passengers and staff alike filling space. It could be congested or not depending on the situation, but for there to not exist aside from Yotsuba and Miss Wannai from the outside─everything just turned more and more eerie. From the term "criminals", what could they possibly be expecting?Bookmark here

First, I could surmise there wouldn't be anyone left of individuals unrelated to the airport's works. Even if there was an explosion, one which would scare the people off their boots, the staff wouldn't have readily ran and tended to the damage as fast and possible. In regards if they were trained not to panic, or otherwise naturally calm as people.Bookmark here

And yet, the terminal was too clear.Bookmark here

"Now, how do we reconstruct this chaos?" Yotsuba murmured to herself─quick to her wits to crack a pop culture reference.Bookmark here

She just had to turn back, the fire orb to ascend towards the ceiling from her hand.Bookmark here

Just as the light gradually expanded to the whole room, the view of everything came into sight. She would have garnered top in the vision scores placement if this were a game─but it was a serious plight for answers. Though still, to be honest, for them, it might as well be something only to be played with.Bookmark here

The same sane moment, Yotsuba closed her eyes for a brief moment.Bookmark here

From her senses, tension filled the air but I'd say it was only her attempt at exaggeration.Bookmark here

Now, what rolls downhill is the breakage of a supposed problem she imposed was rather difficult. As in the snap second she opened her eyes, she went for an announcement I didn't expect to be presented there fast:Bookmark here

"Alright! You may come out now!"Bookmark here

"Huh?" Miss Wannai hung her head─to no avail of literal hanging, if you chose to laugh or cringe on your end.Bookmark here

Yotsuba turned for her handmaid, reactive as it looked painful. "Wait! You actually didn't notice someone in here?"Bookmark here

"Oh! I did, but did you even have to announce it like that?" Then Miss Wannai gave her statement a follow up, "You sounded weird there, quite."Bookmark here

"Huh?" Now, Yotsuba hung her head─or for better word, tilted.Bookmark here

These two quite like the idea of blanking my face out. Although now, such sentiment was out of the picture.Bookmark here

If there was one thing questionable here─was how they knew someone was out there watching them. They were treating the atmosphere cozy, these two, and I vaguely have any recollection of any of my experiences not consumed by tension.Bookmark here

And also, how the onlooker had no hesitations on hiding any further as opposed to my impression of them being hostile:Bookmark here

"Wow! You two sound easygoing!" A manly voice from somewhere resonated, in English words, but familiarly sounding Filipino in speech. "Welcome down the third world, Cosmic Horror!"Bookmark here

And so they were identified.Bookmark here

Cosmic Horror, the secret evil-fighting organization(?) hailed all the way from the neighborhood of Kichijoji.Bookmark here

Cosmic Horror─which inside information wasn't extended to me formally─as it sounds, would be derived from the literary genre. I presume it has to offer an existential secret, but they were mum that I couldn't be sure about it.Bookmark here

At any rate, Yotsuba and Miss Wannai's expressions on not getting surprised appreciated the impression. As expected, they were tilt-proof─even though one of their countrymen was playing for the contending controller.Bookmark here

They only looked at the coordinated direction, unfazed.Bookmark here

Then, thud─! It was the sound of leather shoes stomping from high up, definitive from the rubber sole. From thereon, numbers of footsteps started closing in─and of course, the ascension of volume in their steps was intolerable.Bookmark here

For one, Yotsuba eagerly waited for the person to appear.Bookmark here

And so, who approached them was an infamous syndicate within the unfamiliar metropolis─for whom would be an existence more frightful than a vampire.Bookmark here

"Now we've got unusual visitors in, storming at the show like they'd already fit in the scenario. Tell me, what is the purpose of your visit?"Bookmark here

A swooning voice resonated in the bizarrely emptied aerodrome. He was quick in his jokes─and I have to commend it wasn't a bad one. It was ignored, but like how it had been moving so far with the girls he also did not budge.Bookmark here

"My name is Samuel Moreno of Dramaturgy. I was born and raised in Aomori. It's nice to meet you!"Bookmark here

Clad in the standard mafia outfit, he bowed to the two. Such was the etiquette fitting for a red-haired swanky pretty boy, coming in dignified and unpretentious of his villainous core. Six floating javelins rotated around him─and in his irises, violent violet glows signifying the use of high level telekinesis.Bookmark here

As a side note, from a detail I forgot to spare, Yotsuba also had her eyes glowing crimson as from the fire orb's chroma.Bookmark here

"Uh... I see you're, uh... Never mind." She shrugged her shoulders after a failed attempt to make fun of the person. "Although it is nice you'd respond and show yourself. Yes, pretty good conduct you have there! I think it's commendable for you to speak politely despite us knowingly being foes. And also, what was the point in you having been born and raised in Aomori?"Bookmark here

"Should you really be asking that question?" Miss Wannai demanded from behind─which I agree with in its thinnest line.Bookmark here

"You are all too quirky, sheesh, give me a break," ...And yet, I wasn't there to throw in my disappointments─which leads to the frustration I did not deserve.Bookmark here

"Oh! Okay then..." Yotsuba took it into her thoughts, discarding her dreadful thoughts.Bookmark here

If Miss Wannai wasn't there to keep her in check, by that time, the confrontation would have already gone haywire.Bookmark here

"Could you be the one behind the scheme, Mister Haijima?" she asked, the polite way like how it was supposed to be inquired. "If your goal was to lure us in, I'll give you full scores for being effective but zero scores for the gimmick! You could have not put ten million teakettles in there, now you've absorbed all the airport's electricity."Bookmark here

...And Miss Wannai's effort was futile.Bookmark here

Depressing was it for her and it was also depressing for me.Bookmark here

But fine, it was only Yotsuba trolling her way in.Bookmark here

We were familiar with the aforementioned book─I've fruitful knowledge gained from it─and an attempt like that could potentially kill all the power of Kansas.Bookmark here

Then for another, the blackout wasn't natural. Obviously and utterly now, the tween was going places she didn't venture. If this had been a podcast, you would have heard my palm hitting hard on my forehead.Bookmark here

"I beg your pardon, but there were no teakettles used in our intricate plans. It wasn't a lure put from idiocy." Mister Moreno stuck onto his character, smirking from confidence. "I would have to call it chaotic."Bookmark here

I can tell, and it was laughable.Bookmark here

There were a lot of cranky variables─first of which was the explosion but none the destruction, giant mushroom cloud yet nothing special of an explosive was dropped, people panicking from outside yet none the rush from the inside, and darkness at the terminal yet electricity still courses outside.Bookmark here

The provocation rooted from chaos, as nothing connected from one another.Bookmark here

For thinkers like Yotsuba Yazawa and Nagisa Wannai, it wasn't a trifle to lure them in. No matter how many conjectures they could make, confirmation would still be sought.Bookmark here

The mastermind behind knew well how their minds operated.Bookmark here

Come to think of it, has Mister Haijima directly announced he was the mastermind?Bookmark here

Alright, there wasn't any context telling they mutually knew each other.Bookmark here

More likely, it was only a pretty boy circled by javelins who identified them. All the while they didn't identify him. It was one information I think now would be reckoned with, but the nonchalance brought by the storytellers kept it masked.Bookmark here

Boy oh boy, am I being kept secrets?Bookmark here

I'll quit bringing the problems on my behalf and instead share Mister Haijima's succeeding words, "However, you wouldn't walk into danger if you weren't confident in your strengths."Bookmark here

"Of course!" Yotsuba didn't waste a second to reply, even raising her hand for an out-of-place noise breaker. Although she retracted the form for a conniving detective stance as she said, "Almost everyone expects we are so it's no longer new and surprising. Although even if it was new, I don't think I would be surprised..."Bookmark here

"In any case, what was the point of having us tempted?" Relaxed as always, Miss Wannai seconded.Bookmark here

Question: What would be his answer?Bookmark here

It would be the moment Samuel Moreno, the red-haired swanky pretty boy, accelerated the motion of his rotating javelins. "Honestly, I was only assigned to take you on," he mused as he cracked both his hands.Bookmark here

If by romantic description, determination took over his eyes─prompting both girls to activate their shielding devices stealth from anyone's sight.Bookmark here

"While I don't like how they trusted me for it, I have to do my best." And fiercely from a pivotal jump he roared, "En garde!"Bookmark here

He threw a javelin towards the firmly standing tween in a pink parka. Then following the simple sequence, another pivot in midair launched another javelin. Swift they were to swoosh in─and the time difference to hit were crisp seconds in between.Bookmark here

Mister Haijima has seen through their protection, which were liquid formula creating lattice frameworks. They were unable to break from pierce attacks. As it was unclear whether it was a coincidence or conspired, spearheads belong in the category.Bookmark here

The first would break the framework, and the second would penetrate the body.Bookmark here

There was death at the impetus.Bookmark here

One which told Yotsuba Yazawa should be killed in one shot, but it definitely wouldn't happen. Contingency plan was needed─and thus, the swift striker has been assigned the task.Bookmark here

In the sequence, the obvious approach would have Miss Wannai defending Yotsuba from the strike.Bookmark here

Turning out true wherein the serene handmaid blocked the roaring javelin. With her body at the shift, it showed loyalty about, like before any other the mistress must be out from harm. But wait, would she file her life on the line here?Bookmark here

Well, good news, because the tactical thing about the notion was how she didn't catch the second.Bookmark here

The first broke her membrane and the other, moving at sonic speed and nearly unavoidable, she managed to dodge by a hair's breadth. What would follow was obvious, as effectively, Yotsuba's framework was penetrated afterwards.Bookmark here

Both components wrung like shattered mirrors.Bookmark here

They sustained the impact well, enough to kill momentum at the last second.Bookmark here

And what was good in that move, two javelins out of six were relieved from commission, and living by the rules of trained assassins, everything in reach is a weapon.Bookmark here

The parts here were tedious, but short as it was where the assault briefly ended.Bookmark here

How both of those decommissioned spears lied in manner calculated, Miss Wannai took them onto her hands─fast she grabbed them by billowing yet another round by the standing Yotsuba Yazawa's hind.Bookmark here

All the while, the pretty boy who spun in midair lightly put his feet down the floor.Bookmark here

Only to trip by his own trick.Bookmark here

The sound of his body smashing the floor was heard, along with four other metallic poles. The "oomph" of course was present, and the series of groans told them definitively that he was rendered unconscious.Bookmark here

"That went fast," Yotsuba commented as she turned to look.Bookmark here

"Sure did," Miss Wannai reciprocated as she stood up.Bookmark here

Yotsuba put her hands in her parka's pocket, closing her eyes, enticed for relaxation after the win. "Those calculations numbed my mind, I couldn't have done the plan without my muscle in tow."Bookmark here

"Please don't treat me like the bodyguard," Miss Wannai mused, her smile to the surface as if she thought of a nice punchline, "I get paid for making you breakfast in the morning, Yocchan."Bookmark here

Then, the first sequence could officially be closed.Bookmark here

It was time to wake Samuel Moreno up and conduct an interview, or sweep the place altogether without minding any premise there was to explore.Bookmark here

For a story, it seemed fitting for the junkyard.Bookmark here

However, someone sought for a twist to happen─now they would be forced to follow through.Bookmark here

"That was one hell of a show there, I almost freaked out!"Bookmark here

Yotsuba and Miss Wannai, abruptly and audaciously, turned their bodies around. "...Who are you?"Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.