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Chapter 27

Posted by PURPLEYHAN STORIES on Thursday, September 21, 2017

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“Any lead about her?” a worried voice asked.

The other one heaved a sigh. “None,” he said.

“Now we have one more problem.”

“But if this reaches him, all hell will break loose.”

I felt guilty after hearing that from their conversation. It has been three days since I ‘died’ and as expected, my team and other agents tried to track me. It seemed like Ulysses had already anticipated it so he got rid of all my devices and gave me new ones. Like this one.

Three days ago, when he told me to read his journals, he also gave me a listening device that would serve as one of my senses after my fake death. He went to Von and Dale since they wanted to consult him regarding that woman who looked like my mother and after some time, I could hear their voices.

“We got this recording from the Technology Department and while we were assessing our agents, a woman was caught on the camera—a woman who looks exactly the same as Lace,” said by a voice who sounded like Dale’s.

“Hmm . . . She definitely looks like her,” sabi naman ni Ulysses, “but it feels like she’s a different person.”

“Right?” Sigurado akong si Von ang isang ‘yon. “Something isn’t right. It’s as if she turned into a completely different person. Maybe she’s not really Lace?”

A completely different person, huh? Just like Ansel Choi. Ayaw kong isipin ang bagay na ‘yon pero habang tumatagal ay ‘yon lang ang posibleng paraan. Natatakot ako na maging totoo ang hinala ko.

They talked about their missions and several cases so I chose not to listen to them. Mas gusto ko pang malaman kung ano na ang nangyari kay Jett matapos ko siyang iwan sa building na ‘yon. A zweite was hiding on that place and along with Raven, they predicted our movements. Excluding the murderer who was caught by that Senshin, one of the remaining four must be a Nox member.

I grabbed a blank paper from the file holder and wrote down the members I know, as well as their classes.



So far, these were the Blacks I have encountered and those with x-marks were either killed or brought to Shima. Ink managed to escape when we lured him and Dim using Spider. Jade was injured by Cliff when I was captured while we ran into Pitch in Nightfall. On the other hand, Raven and Coal were included in the chatbox that Cliff sneaked into before and a while ago, I searched for Ben Santos’ wife. It turned out Raven is known as Cara Villega, a successful businesswoman. Lastly, Ansel Choi, the zuert who was captured by Live and my mother’s team specialist. Just like Kiyoko, who was turned into a modified Erityian because of circumstances, he possessed different shades of red eyes with his memories erased.

I was staring hard at their aliases and pondering over the incidents until I fell asleep.


***


Ni hindi ko alam kung ilang oras na ang lumipas nang magising ako. Walang kahit anong orasan dito pero dahil maliwanag na, siguro ay tanghali o hapon na. My stomach growled and as if on cue, Ulysses came out of the kitchen with two bowls of noodles.

“Eat,” sabi niya saka niya inabot sa akin ang isa.

“Thanks.”

Tahimik naman kaming kumain at ramdam ko ang sakit ng katawan ko dahil sa posisyon ko nang makatulog. Ni hindi ko man lang siya naramdamang umuwi pero mukhang ‘di pa siya nakakatulog.

We ate in silence but my thoughts were too loud and as expected, he heard some of them.

“Did you read my journals?” tanong niya at doon ko lang naalala ang mga ‘yon.

“Not yet. I’ll read them later.”

“Okay,” sabay tayo niya.

“Hey,” tawag ko at tumingin naman agad siya. “Does Dad know about this?”

“Of course.”

Nakahinga naman ako nang maluwag pagkatapos kong malaman ‘yon. He already lost Mom and losing me would definitely have a negative impact on him.

“I already put listening devices to your team members,” sabi naman niya kaya nagulat ako.

“How did you do that?”

“Jett was in the same building as you so it was easy. When I visited Von and Dale, Cliff and Naia were also there to ask about your whereabouts since you disappeared from the radar.”

“Oh.”

Hindi ko naman alam ang ire-react ko dahil involved ang tatlong ‘yon. I made this plan with Ulysses without consulting them. Naia must be really distressed at the moment since I suddenly disappeared. As a Keeper, it is her duty to keep us safe yet I vanished without saying anything.

Pagkatapos niyang kumain ay umalis ulit siya kaya naiwan na naman ako ro’n. Naligo naman muna ako para ma-refresh ang utak ko dahil medyo wala pa rin ako sa sarili ko matapos ang lahat ng nangyari. Pero mas mabuti na rin siguro ‘to dahil ngayong wala na ako sa radar ng Nox ay mas mapagtutuunan ko sila ng pansin.

Napunta naman ang paningin ko sa journals na nasa desk at kinuha ko ang mga ‘yon. I did what he told me and read his entries during his missions but I had to stop every few minutes to breathe and let his words sink in because I couldn’t believe what he has been through, as well as the information he has gotten.

Mission Ater (Class S)

03-14-****
I had to critically injure some agents to prove my loyalty.

04-29-****
I was given a codename—Crow. Now I’m part of the inner circle.

05-07-****
The zweites shouldn't be underestimated. They may be humdrums but they can 'sense' an Erityian's presence.

05-31-****
I was given a mission by Midnight through Ebony. So that's the codename of the head.

07-02-****
S1H1

07-23-****
C3

08-13-****
I met Raven and Coal. They are dangerous.

09-01-****
Code Red

Hininto ko ang pagbabasa at napaisip ako sa mga nakalagay ro’n. There were several codenames that I didn’t know before and my heart pounded heavily when I saw their boss’ alias.

Midnight.

There was no indication of that person’s gender and besides his alias, nothing else was known about the head of that organization. We managed to infiltrate them before but we only reached the middle circle, dritte. Unlike the viertes and quintes, Blacks on that level were already quite formidable. We had apprehended Spider and Dim and they were brought to Shima by Kiyoko but we didn’t have the time to sneak into the inner circles because of the war between Senshins and Shinigamis.

Mukhang nagawa naman ‘yon ni Ulysses at napunta pa siya sa innermost circle—the zuerts. Ilang beses ko ring pinag-isipan ang ilang vague entries niya pero hindi ko maintindihan ang mga ‘yon kaya naman ipinagpatuloy ko na lang ang pagbabasa hanggang sa makarating ako sa page na ‘yon.

Team Magnus
- All members went missing
- They were assumed dead after finding their belongings
- Nigel Grand was sighted in the Philippines
- Remaining members are suspected to be zuerts
- Order to kill the three

Nabitiwan ko ang journal nang mabasa ko ‘yon at hindi ko alam ang dapat kong maramdaman. I already expected this but I still couldn’t believe it. Yes, I saw Ansel Choi with my own eyes and how he turned into a hollow, but to assume that Mom and Zeno to be in the same situation . . . I couldn’t accept that.

“Mom,” I muttered, remembering her smiling face but it was followed by an unforgiving expression, as if she became someone different.

My focus shifted to the monitor in front of me when I heard some static from the bugs that Ulysses secretly placed on both our allies and enemies.

“Did you see Eerie?” a familiar voice asked. It was Raven’s.

“Did he reveal himself?” tanong ng isa pa.

“According to my source, he was there during the war,” sagot ni Raven.

“Huh. So the zuerts are really making their moves. I guess Midnight is getting impatient,” sagot ng isa pang boses na hindi ko rin kilala.

“Do you know that person, Raven?” the other guy asked, a hint of interest in his voice.

“No. I haven’t seen him yet. I just heard that he’s trying to uncover the secrets of the Chromes.”

“Secrets?”

“The roots of their abilities.”

Pagkatapos no’n ay naging tahimik silang tatlo at wala na akong marinig na kahit ano. It seemed like the bug couldn’t transmit any signal anymore because they were moving. 

Napatigil naman ako nang may marinig akong kaluskos mula sa labas. Ang akala ko nga ay bumalik na ulit si Ulysses pero parang ibang tao ang nando’n. I slowly approached the window with a dagger on one hand and peeked at the small hole. But before I could even see the trespasser, the door was already opened forcefully and a familiar face met my eyes.

“Found you, Red,” he said and he lunged at me.



***