287 – Movie Viewing Party
Editor: Thor’s Stone
–The Next Day–
Not being able to go against the somewhat languid atmosphere drifting about inside the ship, I spent time relaxing on a sofa inside the break space. Mimi sat on the floor just below me, using my stomach as a backrest, while the mechanic sisters sandwiched me between the two of them. By the way, Mei was hugging my neck from behind the sofa. Hence, the soft sensation enveloping my head felt quite good.
“……Aren’t you guys feeling stuffy or something?”
Elma, who was already drinking beer even though it was still daytime, rolled her eyes as she sat a little ways away from the rest of us.
“Uh, not really.”
“It’s because I’m adjusting the temperature to be more comfortable for you, Master.”
Right. Mei’s body that was touching the back of my head and neck was refreshingly cool. It looks like her in-built cooling system was running at full capacity. As expected, she was the perfect maid. She constantly does things no ordinary maids are able to do.
By the way, we’re currently having a retro movie viewing party inside the break space using the data chips I’ve collected so far. It seems there were a lot of horror movies inside the data chip I tried out this time around. We were all lined up on the sofa normally as we watched at first, but before I knew it, they were all stuck to me like glue.
By the way, the movie that was currently playing was a suspense horror-thriller in which crew members of a starship were killed one after another as the ship was navigating the hyperlane. The remaining crew members ended up suspecting one another to be the murderer, and in the end, they resorted to holding a vote. Those who had the most votes were then chucked outside into the hyperlane. Of course, if you’re expelled within a hyperlane, you’d most likely die or be considered as missing, without anyone being sure of your ultimate fate.
“The culprit should be Blue. He’s just a tad bit too desperate to prove that he ain’t the murderer.”
“Hmm? Don’t you think it’s Green, Big Sis? Because Blue was always with Black at the time of the last murder, right?”
“But isn’t it suspicious that Black has been too aggressive in pushing for the reduction of the number of the crew after Purple got expelled?”
“It did feel like he was egging the others on to expel other crew members. He hid his mouth when Purple was expelled from the ship, but it seemed like he was hiding a smile instead of being sad about what happened.”
“You sure notice a lot of small details…… I didn’t notice anything at all.”
“Isn’t that because you’re already drunk from beer……?”
Blue, Green, and Black were the names of the characters. Or rather, they were their codenames or callsigns. It was actually quite easy to remember because they all wore uniforms that matched the color used as their codenames.
By the way, Mei hasn’t participated in our amateur detective roleplay as we tried to deduce who the real culprit was. After all, if Mei seriously analyzed this kind of thing, there’s a very high chance she’d solve the mystery in an instant.
By the way, when it appeared that they were finally able to get rid of the real culprit during the last act of the movie, it was revealed that there was another traitor lurking among them. The final scene depicted the remaining murderer killing the rest of the remaining crew one by one. The movie ended while the expressionless murderer was in the middle of heading off with weapon in hand in order to finish off the last surviving crew member.
“So there were actually two culprits.”
“Black really was a traitor, just like Hiro-sama said.”
“That was nice. They made Green seem like an obvious villain that the rest managed to defeat after a tense action sequence, only to give us that final twist in the end.”
“The scenes where the crew members were killed off one after another were scary, and the desperate pleas of the expelled people were amazingly acted as well.”
“Maybe they really were thrown out to the hyperlane during the filming of the movie you know. And that’s why it was so realistic.”
“Don’t say something so scary. It’s giving me goosebumps.”
It wasn’t a snuff film y’know…… Well, the filming equipment in this world had developed a lot, so it wasn’t too farfetched to think that what we watched wasn’t a movie but an edited version of real events. Anyway, judging from the credit roll, this was definitely a movie…… Oh, and I also like watching blooper scenes as the credits roll. Yep.
“What’s the next movie after this one?”
“Uh…… The title is ‘Terror! Space Spiders!’ apparently.”
“Judgin’ from the title, it sounds like a low-budget B-movie…… No, it kinda smells like a C-movie.”
“How could you tell without even checking it out first, Big Sis?”
“Mm. I’m not good with creepy creatures that have lots of legs crawling about, honestly……”
“Come to think of it, you screamed like heck when we saw a Gura back when we were stranded in the forest, didn’t you, Mimi?”
The Gura Elma mentioned was an insect endemic to Refill IV. It was as large as an average-sized grass snake and resembled a centipede. It moved very quickly using its many legs, unlike regular centipedes back on Earth. But it was apparently a beneficial creature that doesn’t bite humans or elves. Rather, it had a habit of hunting down toxic creatures within forests. But I wasn’t good with it either because it just looked really creepy.
By the way, the movie in question was actually a cross-species love story between a human main lead and a space spider disguised as a horror thriller. The scene where the main lead risked his life to protect the female space spider from the rest of the crew was really moving.
By the way, all the human characters other than the main lead died, and he even managed to have a ‘crystallization of love’ with the female space spider in the ending. Just what would come out when that egg finally hatches……?
“It feels like this would appear in my dreams for a while……”
“Err…… At least their love was pure, right?”
“……In a sense, I guess.”
“You say it’s love, but was the guy really okay after being strung around like that? It looked pretty tight you know.”
“Yeah, I was wondering about that too.”
“The content was truly interesting. I’d like to try it out if given the chance.”
Mei, it doesn’t sound like a joke when you’re the one saying it, so please spare me from that. I mean seriously.
“Master, the Refill System local administration has given us permission to land on Refill IV.”
“Really? That was faster than I expected. Shall we make our way down then?”
I originally planned to directly land in the Rose Clan’s starport with Krishna, but I changed tack and decided we’d land in the integrated port facility we used before with Black Lotus.
This is mostly due to Marie. I judged that it would be far too dangerous to split up. I don’t think they’d be able to easily make a move on us, but they might make use of some unexpected means. So, just in case, it was better to descend with Black Lotus instead of just Krishna.
After all, if we descended with Krishna alone, we’d have to leave Black Lotus in the Refill Prime colony. We’d just be giving them a great chance to invade the Lotus through some method or other. After all, no matter how much we’ve strengthened the security measures, there wasn’t a guarantee that there wouldn’t be holes they could exploit.
“I personally think you’re being a bit too careful.”
“It would better to be extra careful even if nothing really happens. And besides, the enemy might decide to back off after seeing just how vigilant we are.”
The problem with landing in the integrated general port facility is that we might be pestered by the Grado and Minfa Clans again…… Well, this time around, we came to return the Sacred Tree seed and to visit Elma’s relatives so I’m sure they’d let us off if we ask them nicely. Yeah. Perhaps. Maybe.