Last Embryo Volume 4 Chapter 3 Part 6
「Of course not, and interrogating her when she is like that would be the height of cruelty. What about the other person you mentioned?」
『It was a woman claiming to the Avatar of Parashurama, but before I could squeeze anything even remotely useful out of her she was hijacked by 『Avatara』 and her current whereabouts are unknown. . .』
*THUD!!!* While cursing in his head, Homura kicked the table next to which he was standing, drawing the attention of all the other passengers around them, because he was not exactly subtle about it. It was totally unlike him to be doing something so reckless out in the open and in front of others, but that was the only way for him to deal with a maelstrom of emotions that was raging inside of him right now. And the situation was all the more complicated because Homura has spent the last few days in the company of a youth who was also one of 『Avatara’s』 members, deepening his friendship with him.
「Those 『Avatara』 guys. . . you think they are responsible for abusing the power of Star Particle Bodies and the incident with 『The Bull of Heaven』?」
『That would explain all of the recent happenings quite nicely, but unfortunately it is too soon to be jumping to conclusions, especially since we are lacking any concrete evidence to back that claim up. As much as I hate to admit it, we will have to decide that later. For the time being, can you tell me when are you supposed to be arriving at Atlantis?』
He could sense that Izayoi was also doing his best to remain as calm and composed as possible. It was more than enough to tell him how serious the situation on his side has become. Trying to calm himself down, Homura looked over the horizon through the giant panoramic window. Even though they went through the presentation of the rules for the first Gift Game of the 2nd War for the Sun’s Authority, the actual Lost Continent of Atlantis was nowhere to be seen just yet, so it does not look like they will be arriving at their destination soon.
Kasukabe You, who was listening to their entire conversation from the sidelines answered for him immediately.
「If you want to know when we will be arriving at Atlantis, then I think it is going to take around three more hours until The Giant Spirit train arrives on the continent. However, that information does not give you all that much, since your team cannot choose where you are going to be getting off, and on top of that, you will be leaving the train as the very last group.」
「W-What the hell?! Why is that?!」
「It is all written in the game’s rules, remember? ※ Rules regarding the landing order upon arrival on the Lost Continent: ① Person or party that won the most Exhibition Gift Games conducted onboard of the Giant Spirit Train 『Sun Thousand』 while on the way to the Lost Continent of Atlantis can freely choose where they wish to embark from the Giant Spirit Train. So as you can see, the only instance where you could specify where you would like to be dropped off is if you won the Exhibition Gift Games, and the rest of the Players will then disembark in order based upon the number of Exhibition Gift Games they managed to triumph in. And correct me if I am wrong, but you guys were totally defeated in any Exhibition Gift Game you took part in, correct?」
When You mentioned their losing streak, everyone averted their eyes in shame, especially Arjuna, who would not be able to find any excuse for his own loss during 「Celestial Beast Poker」 today. All in all, none of them ever imagined that them not scoring a single win to their name will prove to be such a shackle so soon.
「So, which Communities have the right to decide where they want to be dropped off?」
「Those would be 『Yggdrasil』 and 『Avatara』 since they both won the same number of Exhibition Gift Games, with 『Yggdrasil』 being in the first place and 『Avatara』 in second.」
「T-That so? Sorry, Iza-nii, but it looks like we will not be able to help you today. . . and tomorrow is probably also out of the question.」
『It is okay, I understand. It is more or less the same for us. While we would love to join with you as soon as possible, it appears that he have been dropped at some kind of ruins on the eastern part of the continent.』
「Okay. Instead of wasting time and energy thinking about what could have been, let us focus on what we can actually do. Once we disembark from the train we will try to reach you as soon as possible, so you just focus on keeping that Black Albino girl safe, alright?」
『Roger that. If the worst comes to pass and shit hits the fan, be sure to rely on You for help. You, consider this a favor for me, you hear me?!』
Even though Izayoi could not see You’s face, se could clearly see that she nodded in agreement. With nothing else left to say, the call has been cut on Izayoi’s side. Homura held his head, thinking hard on what their next move when they get off the Giant Spirit Train should be. According to Izayoi’s story, at least four days have passed since they have secured the Black Albino girl and were protecting her. Even if they were to move as fast as possible, getting to Izayoi and Pritt’s current location would probably take them two more days at best, and considering the girl’s condition, those two days might actually be two days too late to help her.
Still filled with worries but determined not to let the worst possible outcome happen, Homura vigorously stood up and grabbed Arjuna by the neck.
「Okay, come with me, Arjuna! I have something to talk about with all of your buddies!」
「H-Hey, what is that about all of a sudden?! What buddies are you. . . no, you’re not going to. . .!!!」
Arjuna voiced his protests while being pulled by Homura. Even if Arjuna himself know nothing about the Star Particle Bodies, but his companion, Jin Russel, was another story entirely. He might not know everything that Homura hoped to learn from him, but he is bound to know something.
If 『Avatara』 really was the organization responsible for abusing the power of Star Particle Bodies, then the last few days that Homura spend hanging out with both Arjuna and Jin could be said to have been his method of intelligence gathering. With Arjuna still firmly in his tow, Homura broke through the increasing crowds of people and run all the way to the lower levels of the Giant Spirit Train. He knew that Jin Russel had reserved a private room for all of the 『Avatara』 members personal usage in the 「Purple Smoke」 Lounge, so that place was his best bet of finding him. Reaching that place in a matter of few minutes and with his breathing rough from the amount of running, Homura kicked the door open and busted inside without asking anyone for permission first.
「Jin Russel! I’m looking for Jin Russel! Is he here?! Bring him to me or else…!」
The eyes of everyone inside converged on Homura since he barged inside like he owned the place. They were very clearly hostile gazes, but Homura was not registering any of their intimidating auras, perhaps because he was riding on an adrenaline high caused by doing something that he normally would not even think of doing. He was now on the “enemy” territory in a private room in the back of the 「Purple Smoke」 Lounge, stuck in there with a total of seven members of 『Avatara』, all of them claiming to be the almighty Sun Kings.
They were all sitting in their chairs, which were arranged in a circular pattern in the middle of the room. They all have imposing appearances and threatening auras, as expected of Players and Sponsors who were said to be on par with the Demon Lords. And sure enough, Jin Russel was among them, taking the highest seat in the room. When he saw Homura making his grand entrance, he simply smiled at him and said:
「Why hello there, Homura. I thought it was about time for you to show up.」
「Huh? And what is that supposed to mean?」
「Exactly what I said, nothing more, nothing less. You just got in touch with Izayoi-kun, right? Then it was natural to conclude that you will end up coming here.」
Jin Russel laughed quietly while leaning back in his chair. Cutting right to the case, he took out a map of the Lost Continent of Atlantis and placed it on the table in front of him.
「We still have some time before we arrive at our destination, so we might as well have a little talk, especially since I am sure there are a lot of things that you want to hear from me about. Which one should we start with. . . oh, I know! First of all, why don’t I fill you in on the information about the case that you do not yet know of? About the experiments with Star Particle Bodies conducted on the Black Albinos?」
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