Chapter 27:

Damage Control and Recruitment Notice


“So… Are you going to attack me if I unbound you, Lily? Or have you decided to comply with the request Boss made?”

The detective on the bed was glaring with such intensity that Amy could get her answer without even letting Lilianna talk, which wasn’t good.

If she were willing to talk at least, then it would be a solvable problem.

A few words from the idol back when she woke up in the pub were enough to get her ballistic before though.

It was partly the girl’s fault for forgetting about the very important core of the police officer in front of her.

The current situation would likely force her to leave the law enforcers though.

“Is there absolutely no way for you to forget about this whole incident? No need to work with us, but it was decided that making all that public would upset the balance of powers too much, you see? Even NorCo would go under with everything that happened today…”

Something like a whole megacorp breaking apart due to the events of a single day was unheard of, but this case was special.

In a single day, the president that ran a good deal of the company died, the headquarters was destroyed, many investors and managers were killed or brainwashed and a good cop could have the day of her life with the amount of proof lying around.

All these together were too much no matter how big a company was and a big company like this one going under meant a lot of pain.

It also meant that all competitors and factions around the city would get free space to expand without interference, even if just for a while.

These many variables were unacceptable for the ones who strived to keep Miskaria away from the many dystopias possible.

The woman who woke up less than half an hour earlier didn’t care about any of it at all though.

Lily was the most cop a cop could be, so leaving a cover-up operation and who knows how many crimes go unpunished wasn’t an option to her.

And this much was obvious just by looking at her eyes right now.

“Sigh… Could you not glare at me like this, please…” Amy pleaded while removing the gag from her friend’s mouth.

“I’ll stop when I get you arrested for imprisonment, Amy!”

“It was either waiting for you to calm down or letting Boss deal with you, and I am unwilling to let this second one happen.” The pink girl explained with a troubled expression.

“Should I thank you for that?”

“Of course not. Helping you is my way of repaying some debts…”

The rare melancholic expression that showed itself too much this day was once more on Amy’s face as she was saying so.

Lilianna didn’t seem to care about it this much, mostly because she was bound and angry.

“I’ll repeat my answer from before, I don’t care what your reasons are! What is right is right and leaving those crimes unanswered is unacceptable.”

“Even if you say so, your current options are either do as you are told or wait until someone manages to understand how brainwashing works.”

“Brainwashing…” She pondered without giving a final answer.

She had received a small explanation before already and most of it was figured out by herself, so it wasn’t hard to understand the situation now.

It was still a very unusual situation.

There was an important question Lilianna hadn’t received an answer to yet that, and this one could easily change how she viewed the pink girl.

“Before I answer that, can I ask something?”

“Whatever you wish.”

“What happened to Richard and the other victims? You didn’t ‘silence’ them, did you?”

There was a hint in this last question that made Amy feel as if her unwilling roommate was ready to end her life if she answered wrong.

Luckily for her, that wasn’t a problem at all.

“They are safe. It was a hard sell, but I managed to convince my organization that learning how to undo the process was more important than destroying all machines." She revealed with a proud expression. "Richard is quarantined at the moment due to obvious reasons while they try to recover his mind. I can assure you that most of it should be doable, but…”

“But it doesn’t mean he was himself during the party or that he will remember today, right?”

“Yes... But I... I could maybe...” Amy was having a hard time ending her phrase since saying so was as risky as possible, but she still wanted to help her friend even in this situation. “If you wish to, I could possibly solve this much after the process was cracked, you see?”

“Heh… You’re likely the cutest monster in the world, you know? Telling someone that you could casually recover memories a person shouldn’t have as long as someone told you how it was done...” Lily commented with a faint smile as she looked at the ropes around her body. “There’s no need for that though. It’s not as if I would have any use to that…”

“I do not agree with that. As long as you both are alive…”

“I’m at you people's mercy here, you know?”

It wasn’t hard to see that Lily was under the mercy of the idol and of the weird organization backing her.

Lilianna could fight back and go crazy all she wanted and the best she would get was a shot on the back where Amy couldn’t interfere.

Even if she could see this much, the detective wouldn’t simply accept such.

“I won’t back down though. I’m sorry for that, but if the choices are pretending to forget or being forced to forget, then I’ll fight back even without hope of winning...” The dark-haired girl gave an ultimatum.

“Is that so…”

With a darkened expression, Amy approached her bound friend as Lilianna got ready for whatever was going to happen…

And then she heard the ropes snapping as she opened her eyes to see the butt of a small revolver.

“It has to be point-plank on the head and you must retrieve my hat right after just in case. Delaying its arrival to me for a few hours should be enough to assure you have enough time and that I will not receive any requests.” Amy said in a somber tone.

“What in the hells…?!” The unbound and confused woman asked.

“There are no operatives of my type in a good distance from here. Most of this city is my area, you see? Hazel can fight, but he is not that strong. Everyone else is just paid to overlook and avoid interference.”

“This doesn’t answer…”

“I modified most of your proofs and convinced the people in the area that it was all an accident already. You can solve it with the computer hidden inside the desk though, you see?”

“I don’t think I’m following…”

“You will not comply with the orders and I am bound to not let you be harmed, so this is the only remaining option. Take me down and leave.”

“I’m not killing you!” Shouted Lilianna with an outraged expression.

“But you asked me to do the same, did you not?” The smug smiling idol answered while still trying to give Lily the gun.

“That’s cheap…”

“I can tell you the same. Is your justice not perfect and absolute so it can never look aside? I am a criminal you cannot arrest and you have the chance to deal with it, so why you do not?”

She threw the revolver on the bed and moved back to her earlier position, leaving the detective with a bothered expression.

“You’re just being mean now, you know that?”

“Hehehe… Yes, I know. It was the best way to show my point.” Amy laughed while returning to her usual carefree ways.

“Very manipulative of you… I can see your point now though.” Conceded the detective, finally.

“Sorry about that, but an idol can only do so much by herself, you see?"

Amy got up and gave shoulders to the woman on her bed as she got up and started to fiddle around the drawers of her desk.

“I will be erasing all records of this event, ok?” The idol said while connecting directly to her hidden machine. “What you are going to do now, Lily?”

Every piece of data linking the idol’s capabilities and existence to the events on NorCo was erased in the next second.

At the same time, everything else was saved in a certain safe folder.

One always needs a backup plan, and this one was Amy’s.

“I’m not so sure, even more now that I can’t be a cop anymore…”

“Well, being a cop and the heir to NorCo will not be any good for sure. Both sides would not accept such.”

“And I’ll retire right after becoming a corrupt cop just like everyone else…”

“Ignoring one single event still maintains you with the top 100 most incorruptible cops, you see? And it is considering that being threatened to keep something under wraps is considered corruption, to begin with.”

What she was saying was nothing more than the sad and cold facts about the ‘justice’ forces of the city.

“It’s an honor thing, you know? If you are the single clean person around, you feel as if you can change everything..." Lily argued while looking to the ceiling. "It’s hard to believe this much when you couldn’t even manage to keep your own values...”

“This is not a problem!” The idol’s energetic voice broke the coming doom on her friend’s face. “Honor is no absolute too. If you tarnish yours, then all you have to do is strive to clear it.”

“I don’t think there’s something you can do…”

“That is for you to decide! Honor is just a concept, and concepts are relative. If you think it can be cleaned, then it can be so, and if you do not believe in such, all you have to do is believe me.”

Amy was stuffing her chest while proudly declaring her beliefs to the woman on her bed, and her smile was almost contagious.

“Trust you, eh? Why do I somehow think it would work?”

“Easy…” She started while approaching Lily as much as humanly possible. “That is because I am awesome, you see?”

Amy’s claims just sent the room into silence as the idol put all her enthusiasm on one cheesy phrase and was now starting to blush under it.


Before she had to disengage and give up though, the expression on the detective’s face suddenly changed and she showed something Amy hadn't seen yet.

“Hahahaha! You’re way too much, Amy. The absolute best for sure…” The detective then pulled her friend into a hug before giving her the next words. “Thank you, pink thing.”

Lilianna left the stunned girl where she was and took some deep breaths after recovering her mood due to the helpful idol.

She then headed to the door as it was time to return to her home and, later, to her new job, even if she was unsure of what she would have to do now.

Before finally leaving though, her steps stopped in place for she thought there was maybe a better option.

“Hey, Amy, how’s the worker benefits from this organization of yours?” Lilianna asked the back of the frilly girl.

“Worker… Benefits?” Amy answered in confusion as she rebooted her confused mind. “Well… Hmmm… They pay well and give access to many services… Yes… Quite good for sure…”

“I see, I see…” Lily decided that maybe her new idea was a good one. “Would you be against having a new magnate in your ranks? I’m also better at stealth than you probably are…”

“Do you mean…?!” Amy turned suddenly to her friend with a renewed glow in her eyes.

“How do I join this little spy organization of yours? I’m pretty sure it’ll do more good than being a rich person with no sense for finances…” She said just before changing her tone to a more serious one. “And I can keep you all in check too.”

“That is perfect! We should force… I mean. We should convince Boss right now!”

Amy’s excitement was half about having her best, and possibly only, friend join her workplace and a half due to her not needing to harm her if she did so.

In reality, even if Lily was trustworthy, she got to know a little too much lately and would need some ‘convincing’ later.

Either way, all that was irrelevant and, in an unexpected way, the idol’s plan went many steps forward without her even needing to do something.

“Good. You’ll be explaining everything to me now, right?”

“Boss will do the hard work. I shall instead get some equipment for you.”

“Like the things you have? A hat like this one would be handy for sure…” The black-haired woman said while eyeing Amy’s top hat.

“Cannot do! My tools are an exception to the rule, you see? They give my sway on the group, but cannot be replicated.”

“I don’t get you then…”

“You do not need to,” Amy said so to avoid the question. “Everything you need to know, Boss will explain, and everything else, you can work to find out by yourself.”

She then rushed forward and smiled while opening the door of her room.

“Either way, you are now welcome to the oldest group in recent history. One of the few that saw the dawn of the vertical cities and survived the chaos that came before it. The one group on which this little idol has actual power…”

All her words were a build-up and these theatrics were just the expected from the girl that dressed only in pink.

It was also very effective to force Lily’s curiosity to dangerous levels.

And just as the ex-detective was close to forcing an answer out of her friend, lights coming from who knows where shone around the pink girl and she exclaimed while taking a pose.

“Welcome to Idolatry, Lily!”

Dalion Alteri
Steward McOy
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