“Isn’t it a coincidence that a LENCO laboratory’s actually in this town?” Yasome patted Makov’s back, in the attempt to cheer him up a bit.
“Yeah…” Makov smiled. “At least from here, we can take a few hours rest before we head to the capital, and at the same time, find out more on Vesia’s remains.”
When they reached the lab, a LENCO scientist approached them.
“Yo, it’s our heroes!”
“No, not really…” Makov scratched his head. “But we do need your help…”
“You see, we want to get some valuable information from the remains of an android.” Yasome then hands out Vesia’s internal processing unit to the scientist.
“In addition,” Nieg interrupted. “These two, Maggie and Norr, said they’re good at examining androids! Can they help out?”
“Sure!” The scientist smiled. “I’ve seen their skills before – they can help me with this.”
And so, only Maggie and Norr were taken to the innermost lab. Nieg took care of Chiaki who was so tired that she fell asleep on the lab’s couch.
Yasome and Makov then went to a special Weizan training room (which surprisingly, the lab actually has).
“Amazing! It’s the same as the one in the main branch!” Yasome was filled with awe.
“True that…” Makov looked around. “At least here, we can train each other for our big event at the capital!”
After hours of analyzing the piece of the android, the scientist, along with Maggie and Norr, went out of the lab with a bunch of papers filled with data that’s almost impossible for ordinary people to understand.
Chiaki then went to the training room to call out the boys.
Makov took a glance on the papers.
“Geez…I don’t understand any of this…”
“Me neither,” Yasome scratched his head. “
Maggie then explains the content to them:
“You see, from what we found out from Vesia’s internal processing unit, the android used a mind-link piece attached onto her main board. Fortunately, the mind-link piece is still in one piece and wasn’t completely destroyed, but it’s capability for networking is no longer functional.”
Norr then adds some more details:
“A mind-link piece is something that lets a user control an android from a distance, let’s say, from another side of the world. This could signify that Vesia might be controlled by an actual person, either Weizan, human or a Doll.”
“R-really?” Makov’s eyes widened. “Y-you mean Vesia’s not really gone?”
“True,” said the scientist. “We’ve traced the IP address of the last communication log to a 10-year-old girl living in the former Tokyo, Japan, which is currently also devastated by the influence of the Dictator’s soldier troops. The user’s name is…”
Makov suddenly froze as if something hit him.
“What’s wrong Makov?” Yasome looked at his cold, shocked eyes. “You know that girl?”
“…my next-door-neighbor…my childhood friend…”
“…but…my parents were killed and I was taken to an orphanage. Even so, I still get to visit her through the help of the orphanage staff…”
“…she was a sickly girl but good in android communications technology…it makes sense that she would build her own android and control it…”
Yasome patted the downhearted Weizan’s back.
“Hey hey…I thought you didn’t need an emotion barrier…”
Maggie then interrupted the two. “So, do you wanna search for your friend? Note, however, that Japan is too far from where we are right now, especially that there are no aircrafts we can use…”
Makov thought hard once again, and then came to a firm decision.
“You’re right…Sachiko’s last words to me…‘white world to black’…I still don’t know what that means, but I feel like we haven’t accomplished that yet. I think…she’s trying to tell us that we should stop the dictator first…so it will be easier for me to save her…”
“You’re a brave kid…” Norr smiled. “Alright then, we’ll go to the capital and end this!”
“I’ll keep in touch, don’t worry,” said the scientist as the group headed towards the exit. “If I confirm that Makov’s friend is safe and sound, I’ll let you know…”
Meanwhile, as they went outside, Chiaki started shedding tears yet again.
“Chiaki, what’s wrong?” Maggie comforted her. “Did you remember something again?”
“…child…hood…friend…” Chiaki wiped her own tears. “…I…wish I could…find him too…”
“Yeah,” Maggie understood the Doll. “Can you tell us about him? What does he look like? Can you remember his name? His location?”
Chiaki thought deeply. “Well…his name was…Cri—”
Suddenly, there was an onslaught of Dictator troops, surrounding them with laser canons. They had no choice but to cut the conversation and fight them all.
“Well, we’re near the capital, it figures…” Maggie exclaimed.
“There’s too much, we’d better zoom out of here and head for the capital.” Norr decided to change plans. “There’s no more time!”
And so, the group forced their way out of the crowd and towards the road that leads to the very place where the Dictator’s fortress is established.
When they reached the borderline of the capital, they decided to take cover in an abandoned building, just to escape the field of vision of the troops.
However, something was wrong, which they’ve just noticed on that moment.
“Where’s Chiaki?” Maggie inquisted.
“I-I thought she was with you…?” Nieg looked around the building spot.
“She was with us a couple of minutes ago, even within the building…” Yasome was confused as well.