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Earth Fragment on the Horizon ch4

“One spicy beef noodle bowl comin’ right up!” A young and cheery voice belonging to a young girl reiterated the order given to her. She waved a cooking knife over head and smiled out to the customers sitting at the front.

“Lemme get some extra onions on it too, and leave the egg raw inside please.” Said the one who just ordered.

“Aye aye sir! Extra onions and raw egg.” The young girl enthusiastically diced away bits of green onion into a small mound on the cutting board and went on to do the same with a heap of other assorted vegetables at hand. Impeccably fluid she could probably do it blindfolded and not miss a beat. She left her spot, taking a large bowl in one hand while humming a tune, and walked over to a steamy stove where all the noodles were bathing in deep pots filled with boiling grease that had seen many a days of hard work in their lifetime.

The bowl in her right hand went from being empty to now near capacity with wheat flour noodles in thick broth as she poured them in with a ladle-like spoon. “Sorry guys, coming through.” She exclaimed making her way between two coworkers, balancing the bowl carefully to not spill.

Looking back at her squeezing out of the tight spot, one of the coworkers promptly warned, “Watch your step now. There’s a puddle of grease on the floor right in front of you.”

“Wha…”

Hearing this, the girl’s eyes shot down speedily to the floor where her left foot was but inches away from stepping on the slippery booby trap. The greasy puddle reflected the ceiling light above brightly straight into her eyes with a twinkle as if validating its intent to cause an accident.

“Ughh-rrh…” Baring teeth like a lion in a show of endeavor, she shifted the  left foot aside in due time, struggling deeply not to falter in balance, and landed it barely outside the puddle’s area to avoid any mishaps. “Phew…” She sighed out the mini heart attack of what could have been a disastrous outcome. “That was close.” On the other side of the kitchen was a pan grill with already prepared thin beef slices occupying the majority of the pan’s surface. The textured slices of meat were burning crisply from the heat below and their color transitioning from a raw pink in the center to a smoky brown around the edges. Using a pair of tongs, she picked up about three slices one by one and stocked them onto the bowl.

Back over to the chopping board, the vegetables were added to the bowl followed by the raw inside of an egg she split open by tapping it at the bowl’s ceramic edges. Smiling gleefully, the teenage girl shuffled to the open area where customers sat and stretched out her right arm containing the order.

“One spicy beef noodle bowl to the bulletproof vested gentleman. And since you’re a first timer here and all, I’ll send you a coupon via netvice for fifty percent off next time you decide to visit. How’s that sound?”

“Oh, uhh… well, I uh… that doesn’t sound so bad, I guess.” The bulletproof clad man said with a tinge of embarrassment in his voice as he was about to dig into his hot meal.

“Awesome! This smells like the birth of a new regular to our humble noodle shop. Wow-weee! I can’t wait to see you here again soon mister. Now, if you can just give me your address so I may send you the coupon…” About an hour or so had passed since then and things in the little noodle shop had settled down considerably and the last two patrons were already taking their leave.

“Thank you for your patronage!” A middle aged man and woman both bowed their heads down deeply to the last two customers as they saw them off. Both were dressed in white aprons stained in grease and other colorful food ingredients that had left their marks behind. The man put his right arm around the woman’s shoulder and held her close to his, both smiling in satisfaction to each other. In the kitchen was the cheery teenage girl along with her two other coworkers -a boy and another girl all the same age respectively- packing up stuff, cleaning counters, and doing the dishes before calling it a day. The sense of teamwork and dedication the three young employees showed while on the job brought proud smiles to their veteran faces, giving them more a reason to be grateful.

“Nice work today kids.” He hollered out to the kitchen. “We couldn’t be any happier with all the help we get from you younguns day in and day out.”

One of the employees, the only male besides the owner, replied back while keeping focus on the dishes he washed. “What are you talking about Mr. Haggard? You’re the one who's been the biggest help. Giving us bonuses every payday and the chance to work here. What more could we ask for?”

“He’s right”, one of the female employees who sweeped the floor added. “You took us off the streets and gave us an opportunity to become what we are today. Working members of society. If it wasn’t for your good will, who knows where we’d be today. Don’t you agree, Konomi?” Stopping short of entering the storage room whilst carrying two bottle crates, the girl who had served the bulletproof vested customer a bowl of spicy beef noodles looked over her shoulder to notice her coworker cueing her with a wink.

She gave a nod and said, “I can’t think of any other way to show my appreciation other than working here for Mr. and Mrs. Haggard. This place is more than just a little restaurant tucked away in a cramped shopping district. And the people I work with are more than coworkers or bosses. It feels more like I’m working along side the family I never had the privilege to have.” Hearing these honorable words coming from this young girl forced a smile painted with the brush of contentment on the faces of those working in the Haggard noodle shop.

Her words of gratitude continued. “That’s why… that’s why I want days like this to continue on forever. Everything is perfect the way it is right now and I wouldn’t give it up for anything in the world.” Again, a few seconds of warm silence trailed after she spoke, the meaning behind those thoughts vibrating nostalgically in everyone’s ears.

“O-hoo… is it because you wish to see that gentleman again? You know, the one who gave you his contact information so you could send him a complimentary coupon to come back. I’d say he took it as an invitation on your part.” Mrs. Haggard, the lady Mr. haggard had his arm around, jokingly teased her for the deluxe customer service she offered to a first time patron. Though the action itself of handing out coupons promising discounts and specials to consumers was no novelty -more like a part of the business culture to be frank- the urge to tease the youngest member of the team was always how families got along, blood related or not.

The place blew up in laughter, even Konomi, the one who the joke was directed towards. She laughed along with the others, ponytail skipping around with each escaping breath.

“You hear that Konomi? Things seem to be going pretty fast between you and your crush. Soon he’s gonna ask for your hand in marriage and take you away from here. Better tell him to take it down a notch before”

“Geez everyone. I was only doing my job back there. Nothing wrong with wanting more people to do business with us, am I right?”

 

The noodle shop was minutes away from closing time and the same went for the miniature shopping district it was so densely packed into. A number of store owners were pulling down their rolling steel doors, locking out gates for the night, and turning off the lights on storefront signs gleaming in neon colors. As they left one by one they would wave goodbye to each other or simply holler out a “Goodnight. See ya tomorrow”, or “Good work today” and stroll on out to the exit, keys dangling in hand.

“You sure you don’t want to stay the night here like you used to Konomi?”

“Eh?” She twisted her neck slightly to Mrs. Haggard who called out to her.

“Come on now. It’s really dangerous for a girl your age to be walking around the city this late at night. All alone and no one to protect you on your way home.”

“Wha- what are you talking about Mrs. Haggard? I’m perfectly fine walking the streets on my own at night.” She retorted in a comforting tone hoping it would convince the middle aged woman.

“I’m sorry my dear but you know how much of a worry wart I am when it comes staying safe, especially these days when people toss around the word trust like a hot potato straight out of the oven. Nothing is what it used to be, you know? And that goes for the public servants as well.”

Adjusting her black jacket over her body and zipping it up all the way to the top, the young teenage cook, Konomi, backed her earlier statement with a reassuring smile as her head tilted to the side. “There’s nothing to worry about this late in the game Mrs. Haggard. How do you think I’ve managed all these years after I decided to move out? Besides, Tomi needs the room upstairs more than I do right now.”

Tomi, the other female coworker the same age as Konomi, peeked out from a corner and gave her two cents on the matter.

“Hey now Konomin, don’t treat my room like a cheap hand-me-down that you feel like you’ve graduated from. It’s nice and cozy despite how old it is. And don’t make it sound like I’m a kid either. We might be the same age but I’m still ahead of you by five months.” She puffed out her cheeks in protest, pouting.

“Yeah yeah, we get it little miss four eyes Tomi. Just make sure you don’t fog up your glasses from all the heat spewing out of your pores.”

“Ehe-he-he-he-he… you don’t say hmmm? Well it looks like someone wants me to tell about their own embarrassing story concerning a straw, a cup of water, and a certain male customer who saw the whole thing.” Konomi felt a deathly shiver running down her spine. “... Who in fact became a regular all because of what he saw that day, tee-hee-hee.”

Konomi inhaled a sharp gasp at the oncoming threat that could potentially force her to snap in a frenzy of shame and beg Tomi to stop at all costs. She’d probably even get down on all fours and promise to be her slave for a week or however long it may take for that story to never see the light of day again. And judging by the intensity of redness sprouting on her face, that last scenario might be more plausible to happen than previously thought.

“Wha-wha-wha-wha-wha… what in the world are you going on about? Tomiiii!!” Mrs. Haggard giggled lightly at what played before her eyes.

“Nya-ha-ha-ha! Just keep that in mind my dear Konomin. We don’t want anything slipping out from my tongue do we?” Tomi pulled her head back and resumed whatever remaining duties were left to take care of, giggling out through her teeth in a cheeky manner. Nothing else Konomi could do but repeat that scene over and over in the back of her head even though she’d rather be dead one hundred times over than to have to call out that moment from the memory graveyard. Mrs. Haggard’s giggling died down and then she began to undo something tied from the back of her neck. She took it off completely and held it out with both hands towards Konomi: a copper necklace. It swayed slightly left to right and looked a bit more bluish than a light shiny brown due to the pale blue light bouncing off of it. Those were the standard lighting fixtures used throughout the shopping district, mainly because they were the cheapest to maintain and the ones that used less energy to operate.

The girl looked at the necklace. It wasn’t anything grandiose or extraordinary that made it stand out from your typical jewelry piece. You could say it was a more of a basic article, no, an essential article that every woman who collected jewelry needed when they first started their collection since time ago.

“Take this with you my dear, this necklace.”

“Huh? Wh-what for Mrs. Haggard? Isn’t that...”

The woman said nothing and walked two steps closer. She extended both ends behind Konomi’s neck and nudged the ends together for a few seconds before stepping back and smiling. “If you were going to ask if this necklace is mine then you’re correct. Though it was originally my younger sister’s property before she passed away, she gave it to me as a keepsake so we could always be together, or so she said.”

Looking down at the copper necklace adorning her neck, she picked it up at the middle where there was a tiny disk, the size of the fingernail on her thumb, and on it engraved a tree’s silhouette. Like previously mentioned, this article of jewelry was nothing special. Probably the most common, customary accessory available on the market.

“I’m going to lend it to you indefinitely so you can always have a part of me wherever you go. Think of it as a good luck charm or a talisman. You look beautiful in it by the way Konomi.” She giggled again at the end.

“I certainly can't if it's that important to you-”

“I insist. Carry it with you for the time being dear. You're by yourself most of the time and it makes me so sad that neither I nor Blake can watch over you like the old days when you lived here. I want to at least know that something of mine is with you at all times.”

Seeing how she wouldn't take no for an answer, Konomi had no other choice but to comply. She sighed as if saying “alright, I'll take it”.

“You win Mrs. Haggard. I'll wear your necklace for as long as you'd like me to.” She smiled kindly, tilting her head to one side and then pulled the jacket’s hood over her head. “I’ll be on my way now. Bye everyone.”

“See ya later Konomin!”

“Goodnight my dear. Stay safe on your way home.”

“I will Mrs. Haggard. And say goodnight to Mr. Haggard for me as well.”

She trotted out of the little noodle shop and headed for the exit, waving her left hand to the middle aged woman and her coworker.

“I’ll be sure to tell him, dear.” And with those final words she parted ways onto her separate path.

The blue haired girl was now on her way back to her own living quarters, somewhere far apart from the room she had stayed in in the noodle shop’s second floor which now belonged to her coworker Tomi. But something about this young girl was oddly familiar. Hair locks a deep blue that mimicked the ocean’s depths where only the most dangerous of creatures lurked. Eyes glowing in turquoise with a striking stare capable of freezing anyone in place, almost like Medusa, the mythical creature from Greek mythology. But what was most familiar, or better yet, terribly similar about her was the name. Konomi. True, there was a girl before baring the same name as her, but she was much smaller, much younger, and hair so short it could never fall further than the elbow. Much less be tied into a ponytail like she had. Yet these three features all pointed to that one person. That one little nine year old who single handedly took down an armed man…

So how was it that these two could have any sort of connection despite the age difference and the complete opposite personality type? This one was much more happy-go-lucky while the child was molded into a bonafide killing machine. Even though the shopping district she had just come from was done for the day, the city itself was still very much alive and awake. Lights no matter how big or small, bright or dim flashed from all directions and to every direction imaginable. Holographic advertisements, screens promoting the latest beauty products, and billboards promoting restaurants stuck out of almost every building in site, imitating a computer screen full of pesky pop-ups.

The towering buildings that almost formed walls of steel and concrete looked almost like children’s building blocks but with a dark futuristic twist to them. And naturally there were crowds of humans all over the place. Flocks of them. People walking almost neck and neck with each other even though their destinations differed. From a bird's eye view you couldn’t even see the concrete below their feet for how congested some of these streets and crosswalks were. Amongst them was the blue haired girl with the turquoise oculars, clad in dark hoodie, black tights, and black boots to go along with the whole anarchic look. She had her right hand tucked into one of her pockets as the left one fiddled around with the necklace while she looked at it.

You're by yourself most of the time and it makes me so sad that neither I nor Blake can watch over you like the old days when you lived here. I want to at least know that something of mine is with you at all times. What Mrs. Haggard said a while ago came back to Konomi’s ears, ringing crystal clear as if it were an audio file. The edge of the disk was outlined with a hazy pinkish purple reflection that came from the lights adorning the nearby red light district to the left. The gate that stood as the entrance to it shimmered brightly in rotating hues.

Though it was originally my younger sister’s property before she passed away, she gave it to me as a keepsake so we could always be together… The woman’s voice came again, uttering the emotional attachment she had with the accessory.

“So stupid.”

Stopping at an overpass above a river, she yanked the necklace off, held it in her left hand in a fist as she extended it over the railing, and let it drop into the river below. The current carried it away like all the other garbage it had. It didn’t care how important it was to Mrs. Haggard or the story behind the necklace. Once it was engulfed in its murky brown waters it became like any other piece of trash, equal like the rest, drifting away.

There was a dead look in the girl’s eyes. A corpse’s eyes had more life when compared. She didn’t react at all to what she had just done to someone else’s belonging. A precious item entrusted to her. She was like the river and the river was like her. Then, she just happened to turn around and the next thing she saw caught her attention completely.

Up on a mega screen that took up about one fifth of the building’s side it was on, was a brief newscast portraying the faces of three individuals against a background with measuring increments like the ones used in cop movies. One was a man, late forties and the face of a stereotypical convict, two front teeth missing. Name on his placard read “Stoney”. The next one displayed a younger person -possibly a teenager- with a super cocky smile as if mocking the camera and eyes blocked out with their right hand. Name on their placard read “Cap”. Third and final one was-

“Lilia.”

She whispered to herself as she gazed intently at the electronic image displaying the one individual who stuck out to her the most. This could only mean one thing, no ifs, ands, or buts about it. The girl standing there staring at the screen was none other than the nine year old who swore vengeance for her fallen father on the Genesis Project: Konomi Satou. Not only that, but she also vowed to find the one who was on that very screen looking back at her, the one who had saved her life and had greatly modified her body into that of a superhuman in the process.

The last time they had both seen each other was when Lilia stormed into the lab one day while Konomi was still recovering from her bullet wound. She had caught wind somewhere that the Genesis Project elites were onto her for housing an escaped experimental subject, Konomi, and were to send their special forces over to retrieve her at all costs.

Left with no other options, Lilia had to part ways with Konomi and hope that the body modifications could help the little girl slip through the Project’s fingers.

Years later and both Konomi and Lilia were still on the loose. Fortunately.

Sitting below the portraits was a sign in bold characters that said WANTED, and right above it under each one was a large number in the hundreds of thousands, followed by another funny character at the end. Possibly a symbol for currency. But it was more than obvious now because each one of them were labeled as criminals and were currently one of the most wanted on the list judging by those numbers alone. The blue haired girl, Konomi Satou, turned a right angle and continued her walk home as a male news anchor’s voice echoed in the background behind her.

“This is Nore Swanson here with the latest news. Planetary authorities have given an update on rewards concerning the three individuals you see on the screen here. Interplanetary terrorists Stoney and Cap are still on the run after they both escaped from a federal prison…”

The voice faded into a mumble for Konomi. She sensed a soft vibration in her pocket and pulled out a clunky device from it. The gadget was decked out in black, blocky hardware with the exception of a metal ring that acted like a hook or something of that fashion, and a bluish touch screen. An eighties fan would probably go wild if they laid on eyes on it for how closely it resembled the gadgets of that era. Sharp edges and anything but sleak. Konomi proceeded to tap on an icon which in turn opened up to a new window with various columns of text.

Another message from Whim3594? The hell do they want now?

Hesitating somewhat, she tapped once on the highlighted message to read its contents.

You up for another round? Read the message. She scrolled down a bit and saw an interactive button that said PLAY with a cute mascot character pointing at it whimsically. She pressed it reluctantly and the screen lit up in a myriad of colors with a catchy tune to match. It was a puzzle game and she was playing it against Whim3594 at the same time like an online game.

This continued until she arrived at her apartment complex. A slim building fifteen and twenty feet wide sandwiched between two larger ones. She walked up a flight of stairs, the interior being anything but tidy, stopped at the first door where the hall began, and opened it to go inside.

Konomi kept at it with the game until a sign that said WINNER flashed instantly to end the game, another catchy tune sounded an eight bit victory song.

Awww shucks, this is my fifth loss in a row playing this game with you. Not a second later and a small window popped up displaying an instant message from the other player admitting defeat. At the bottom of the messaging window right by their name you could see a tiny spinning ring indicating the person you were talking to was typing. A second message came in and Konomi read it out quietly.

“Sup Kei70116. How’ve ya been doin’ lately? Listen, I got something that might really interest you this time -no- I mean, you’re really gonna like what I got for ya.”

Konomi furrowed her brow hard at the vague sentence typed out by the person on the other side. She found it strange because, for starters, Whim3594 and her had only ever exchanged short texts before and after playing one on one games like the one they just did. It was mostly small talk as acquaintances or colleagues, comparable to two strangers conversing while waiting at a bus stop. Says I’m really gonna like what this person has for me… Must be a popular new game going around the cybernet or something. All this guy does is challenge me to play games...

Sticking her back against the wall and sliding down to the floor, she went on to read the rest of the message, whispering it to herself.

“If you wanna know what it is then you gotta text me for it… smiley face...” It didn’t exactly say “smiley face” at the end. More like a smiley face emoticon had been placed for a means of egging her on to continue the conversation.

Konomi stared blankly at the this group of words that formed a sentence on her devices screen, especially at the smiley face which not only smiled back at her sarcastically but something about it really got to her. That little round circle with its two dotted eyes and an upside down curve mimicking a smile. How could such an elementary design like this make her feel so insulted and patronized? A thought like that crossed her mind momentarily and the next thing she knew she found herself tossing it without a care in the world onto her bed, going into the closet for a change of clothes, to then being under the shower head getting pummeled by dozens upon dozens of hot water droplets.

Stepping out of the bathroom in underwear and a small T-shirt, steam seeping out behind, Konomi dried off the last sections of her hair, gloving one hand in the towel around her neck.

She stopped in the middle of the room.

It was dark and gloomy and soundly quiet, almost relaxing in a way. The only light on in the room was the atmospheric lighting effect above her bed which was really just a cylindrical hole in the wall that you had to basically crawl into. In the right corner was a desk and a three computer screens, a keyboard, a mouse, pill bottles, some hardware tools and bolts, bags of half-eaten chips and water bottles all over the place, papers, and last but not least, a slick combat knife. The ceiling was almost collapsing. Not literally but about a quarter of the ceiling tiles were gone and left exposing wires and pipes that ran inside the building, its organs if you will.

Then out of nowhere, a tear scurried down her left cheek. It twinkled with light from outside the window before free falling to the ground. The same then happened on the right and suddenly tears were cascading from both her eyes like a waterfall. Konomi bit her lip hard, trembling and breathing hard. It showed on her face as both cheeks were turning red. She became weak in the knees, chest expanding and contracting. Before she could collapse or pass out from whatever weird sensation had gotten a hold of her, she lunged at the desk savagely in one fell swoop, knocking down stuff in the process as she reached for a specific bottle among the many that were there. She had trouble opening the lid.

Konomi stumbled back a few steps and lost her balance while trying to remove the lid. Whimpering and crying, she hit her back against the wall and slid down to the floor, finally managing to pry open the bottle and grabbing a handful of white pills. Her body trembled furiously.

Some pills dropped onto the floor around her and traced out circular paths like dropped coins do until they finally settled. A crunching sound filled the room, and then a deep swallow followed by a sharp gasp. Konomi hugged at her knees tightly pushing them on her chest. The rate of her breathing was finally slowing down with each passing second until it subsided after a half minute. Tears were dried out. Her face turned back expressionless.

Vrrrrmm! Vrrrrmm!

It was her device that was making the vibration sound, the screen blinking. It vibrated a couple more times on the bed across the room before Konomi felt like getting up and checking what the fuss was about. Unread messages from Whim3594.

Not really giving it a second thought, Konomi tapped the screen to read her cybernet acquaintance’s messages. She thought about reading and responding back quickly with some sort of random but convincing excuse she could employ to get Whim to leave her alone. Maybe saying something along the lines of “LOL, that’s cool. But I really have to sleep now because it’s late and I have to wake up early for work tomorrow morning”, or, “Not now because my head hurts”. There was always the classic “Sorry but my phone died on me before I could text back” excuse she could use after she felt like replying. Surely she could use any of those basic pretexts that have withstood the test of time for generations to get Whim3594 off her back, at least until tomorrow. Yes, she could do that. But it wasn’t going to be that easy as Konomi had wished for. What she read in those texts sparked a flame of curiosity within her.

Hey, sorry about my text earlier, Kei. Wasn’t my intention to lead you on like that but you won’t understand until I can tell you properly.

“Then spit it out and just say it… idiot.” She murmured under her breath, scowling. “Wasting my time with all this nonsense.”

Anyway, basically, let’s just say I know a thing or two about you. What I mean is that I’m aware that you’re not from around here. “You’re an outsider…” Konomi read in her own voice now. Suddenly, she found herself shaking slightly again even showing it in her tone, eyes widening.

“An outsider... like the rest of us.”

A long pause ensued.

“Wha… what in the world are they-” The next text showed a small icon next to it indicating it came with a multimedia attachment, usually prerecorded video or a picture. She wasted no time in opening it and read the message left by Whim3594 at the top saying, Does this ring any bells? And scrolled down to find a picture of a buddha keychain strapped onto a belt fitted onto someone’s waist. The person, man or woman, sporting the keychain was almost completely cut out of the picture as it was a zoomed in shot aimed specifically at their waist where the accessory hung.

Left speechless with mouth agape, Konomi could only stare in disbelief at the all too familiar object on her screen. A rush of adrenaline mixed in with a drowning nostalgia fill her limbs by storm nearly letting the thing drop.

“But… th-that’s not supposed to… Something like that’s not supposed to even be here… in this kind of world. So why? Why am I seeing it. How did they, get it?...

It’s true. An item like what was currently displayed on her device had no place in this science fiction of a mega city who knows how far away from earth. But in contrast to her expectations, the silver keychain in the shape of the Buddha -Siddhartha Gautama the founder of Buddhism to be precise- was right there before her eyes betraying those expectations. Only one question remained in her thoughts now and that was if the person who sent this was a friend, or a foe. There was nothing else she could do but scroll further down to read.

If this doesn’t remind you of anything… then delete it. And cut all forms of communication with me. Whether it be destroying your netvice or whatever, but you’ll have to forget we ever had any contact. If not, then follow my instructions.

Not wasting a second to respond, Konomi’s hands moved automatically typing out a message saying she recognized the Buddha keychain. Soon after she got a reply with what to do next, reading it in her internal voice.

Glad we’re on the same page Kei. Now, in order for me to further gain your trust and vice versa, I’m going to have you cooperate with me in a little hunt to prove that I’m not just pulling your leg here for giggles. I’ll send you another text tomorrow an hour earlier from now. Be prepared until then…

Konomi did nothing after reading the message, and by nothing it meant that all she did was turn it off and let her hand with the device drop at her waistline. Half a dozen seconds of total stillness passed until she swiveled around to look outside her window. A dirty window with its dilapidated blinds letting in rays of artificial light from the city out yonder through thin dusty slits. Maybe this gut feeling she had pounding at her stomach walls with the sledgehammer of foreshadowing intended to guide her away from a certain danger looming around the corner. But it could also lead her to finding out more answers about how that keychain got here in the first place, and how Whim3594 apparently knew so much about her without even meeting face to face at least once. They had only been cybernet acquaintances for a few months. And it was Whim who had found her by chance one day and challenged her to play competitive puzzle games. Then again, saying their encounter was completely coincidental didn’t make any sense now.

At some point in the past there had to have been a time where she was being followed without her knowing. Not by the Genesis Project, but by someone or something different. Or else, what other way could she explain this perfectly timed situation?

Things weren’t falling into place so neatly, which is what gave her the sufficient motivation to decide once and for all to jump into this mystery, or better yet, this hunt as Whim coined it.

She tightened her grip around the clunky apparatus, steadily inhaling and exhaling air through her nose. Miss Lilia… I think I’ve finally found a clue that could lead me closer to my objective. So many years have passed since the day you saved my life and the only thing I’ve done is stay under the Genesis Project’s radar. But as of today, all of that is about to change and the Project’s days... are numbered.

With that last thought in mind, Konomi came to the final conclusion deciding that now was the best time to bring those old plans to fruition.