We’re in Han Hee-joon’s car, driving down the road. Udjat’s vehicles follow us, loaded with the Distortions they’ve captured. The atmosphere in the car is comparable to that of a funeral. No one dares to speak first. Only Ezra is being fidgety, struggling to withstand this mood. She’s not one to break the silence, though.
“Where are we headed?”
It was Vespa; he opened his mouth and spoke in a raspy voice.
“You have been invited. You’ll be able to give your tired and injured bodies a much needed rest there.”
Han Hee-joon answered.
We’re headed to Dias’ place, I bet. This is awful. I can already picture what will happen once we arrive in my head. Right now, I have no choice but to play into her hands.
“So, have we passed her little test?”
“Yes. My personal impression is that your way of handling matters and the results it produces are excellent as I thought, Doctor Moses. I’m certain milady will think likewise.”
“Sure she will.”
Driving along curvy roads, we arrived at a mansion lit with fanciful lights. A Backstreets inhabitant couldn’t ever dream to earn a tiny room in a house like this, even if they worked their tail off for their entire life. To add insult to injury, this isn't a house where Dias permanently resides. It’s a vacation home, a place as significant to her as a pair of shoes stored in the corner of a closet that may or may not be worn someday. She probably owns at least one mansion like this in every Nest. After we step out of the car, Han Hee-joon leads the way for us. Before long, Dias came running to me with open arms and hugged me.
“…Moses, sweetheart! You must’ve taken great pains to get your job done! Good work, darling!”
“I see you’re still having fun playing with me like a puppet on a string.”
“Don’t be so cold about it! I knew you could do a wonderful job handling it. Right, Hee-joon?”
A sudden growl interrupts the conversation. Sigh… Ezra’s belly is such an honest alarm.
“Oh, Ezra! I knew you were starving, you poor baby girl!! I prepared a ton of rare dishes for you! Come on, let’s eat together~!”
“Can this sassy boy clad in yellow dine as well?”
I asked, pointing at Vespa.
Dias answered in a completely apathetic tone.
More than a hundred kinds of dishes are placed on the long dinner table. And only six people sit around this table. That means most of the food will go to waste. Each plate of food on this table probably costs as much as a house in a residential area of the Backstreets. In that sense, could this meal be considered extravagant? Such a description only applies to consumption beyond one’s means. Dias can easily afford this and more. To her, this meal would be the equivalent of purchasing a sandwich at your local HamHamPangPang.
“I’m sure you set up that scheme because there’s something you want me to do… Cut to the chase, will you?”
“Can you go to L Corp’s Nest?”
Dias says with a merry smile.
“Are you referring to Lobotomy Corporation, a Wing that recently fell?”
Vespa said impassively.
Dias replied to him without so much as giving a glance in his direction.
“You still haven’t done away with that dream, huh.”
“Of course not! I’m a girl with many dreams, you know? Isn’t that right, Ezra?”
Once again, I set out for a fallen Nest.
This is the first time I’m making a journey to such a place since the Smoke War.
It brings back several memories—
“The night is long, Moses… Let me tell you all about the favors I want to ask of you, taking all the time we need.”
Oh, for the Wings’ sake…
- Translation Notes:
No we are not sneaking HamHamPangPang product placements into the English text. Mister Jihoon has included them in the original dialogue.
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