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I really took my time here since I was occupied with other things.  But anyway, here is the final chapter of Nick of Time.  Just a warning though, do not read if you don't want to hurt your brain.

Chapter 5: Shooter of Magic Bullets

  The interior of the underground institution being influenced by the expansion of enemy soldiers, Sousuke headed to the deepest part.
  If Kaname safely evaded the enemy, she would be heading to the deepest part and emerge from the opposite exit.  It would be the same for Tessa.  Heading into the same direction as himself, the probability of the two of meeting is not low.
  It is difficult to proceed in this underground maze without a map.  All he can depend on was his compass and intuition.  And his enemies are not stupid, they would eventually discover Kaname and Tessa.  No, they might already be captured.
  He has to hurry.
  Also having the danger of being discovered by the enemy, Sousuke made double time and proceeded on the complex passage and stairs.  The footsteps and light of the Maglight no longer mattered.  He has to push it and look for the girls.
  Proceeding in such manner, having not bumped into the enemy in a place like that was really good luck.
  Then he came into what seems to be a hall in the deepest part of the underground institution.  A wide space.
  While walking a few meters, he discovered a man leaning on the wall.
"Lemon....?"
  Without taking notice of the surrounding he rushed over to Lemon.  Shaking his shoulders, he made a groan on his face.
"Sousuke...."
"Lemon.  Why are you in a place like this?"
"I should also ask that.  Well....a lot of things happened.  Kaname-san and Testarossa-san are together.  Aah...my head hurts.  I want to throw up"
  An indistinct voice.  He looks like he was suffering a hangover.
"Together?  Those two are also safe?"
"Aah.  They're right over there---"
  In the stretch of the center of the hall is a giant dome type installation.
"----They're in there.  I don't know why.  I was also with them, but the inside of my head went crazy.... and wasn't able to go forward.  How shameful."

"Wait.  Look"
  Kaname will soon be beside him.  With only those thoughts he stared.  But when he tried to rush to the dome, Lemon was grabbing his arm restraining him.
"Don't Sousuke."
  Another deja vu came.  How many times was it this time?  Sousuke feeling irritated shook off his arm, but Lemon was grabbing his arm firmly and won't let go.
"Over there is.... strange.  If you go near your head would go become strange."
"What was that?"
"I don't understand the full details, but only those girls can.  Probably, if you're not a whispered"
"If not a whispered....?"
  Sousuke felt a chill, looking at the dome the two went into.  The arrangement of the block unit's form, has the feeling of supernatural drifting.
  It was a godsend that no allies were present, but it is unknown up to when such luck should be depended upon.
  This giant hall might eventually come upon by the enemy.  They can't be slow.
"Chidori! Are you there!?"
  Sousuke called at the dome.
"Did you hear me!?  This place is dangerous!  Come out!"
  Even then there was no reply.  Because this was a silent place, there is no way that it was not heard.  Of course there is worry that the enemy might have heard this voice----
  No, there was movement.
  Sousuke grew impatient and rushed off to the dome, from the entrance are shadows of two persons can be seen.  It's Kaname and Tessa.  Getting closely together, and was heading his way.
  Thank goodness, they are alright---- and let out a sigh of relief.
  Its roughly around 9 months since he saw Kaname, and there seems to be no change.  A tight jeans and a turtle neck sweater.  An impressive long black hair.  Although she was a little skinny, there is no mistake.  It was her.
  They finally meet.  Finally made it this far.
  There are many things he wants to say.  All of those restrained feelings, are exploding without limits.  What would be his first words when they re-unite, he was angry at himself in not thinking of it.  He would say everything that he couldn't say.  No, more than those words, first he would run swiftly and embrace her.  He strongly thinks of this.
  He put his foot forward.
  Being very dangerous to get near the dome, up to where should he jump to.  It would be alright if only a little.  He can't wait any longer----
"Chidori...."
  Muttered, running off to.  But at that time, Chidori pointed the gun in her hand at him, a fired without a piece of hesitation.
"Wha...."
  What is happening right now, Sousuke could not fully understand.
  He was not hit himself.  The bullet fired by Kaname hit right in front of Sousuke's foot, sharp echo and sparks remained and disappeared.
  Even then, it was the truth that she fired on him.
"Chidori.  It's me, look carefully!"
  Standing to a halt, he called on her with bewilderment.  This place is gloomy.  Did she misunderstand something and fired?  That must be it.
"Put down that gun.  It's already alright----"
  Interupting his words, Kaname fired again.  This time the bullet landed much closer to his foot.
"Don't move"
  Kaname said.  With a gentle voice.
".....?"
  He finally noticed.  Kaname and Tessa were not cuddled together.  She was threatening Tessa with a gun, taking her hand behind.  Handling like a prisoner or a hostage.
"What are you doing, Chidori?  What exactly----"
"I told you not to move.  If you get any closer, I would kill Tessa first.  That's why I want you not to come close."
"Sorry, Sagara-san...."
A hazy Tessa muttered.  The tip of her lips were swelling and bleeding.  Was she hit?  Impossible, Kaname did?

"I too don't understand much....but, Kaname-san is probably...."
"Don't, Tessa.  Don't speak indiscretely"
"Ah....!"
  Twisting the wrist Tessa made a small shriek.
"What's the meaning of this?  It’s me, Chidori.  Don't you know?"
"Of course I know.  It's been a long time Sousuke"
  It's not another person after all.  There is no mistake it’s Chidori.
"I wanted to meet you.  Even now, I have full of feelings to jump into your breast"
"...then, why are you in such a behaviour?"
"I have something I have to do, I have an important work.  An important work requested by Sophia.  That's why I have to go.  I love you, but if you get in my way I will have to kill you"
  Sophia?  Work?  What are those?
"Chidori, stop joking.  This is not the place for it."
"Yeah, I know.  It would be good if it was a joke---- such emotions, right now you're desperately clinging right?  I don't think it's unreasonable to be bewildered.  But show some courage, I want you to accept this.  Because, I'm going to take the power to make this world good"
  With Kaname's violent way of doing it, pointed the muzzle at the temple of Tessa, with moist eyes begging Sousuke.
"Please, Sousuke.  Believe me.  Let me go.  If you don't, Tessa is going to be killed and you're going to be killed.  I, don't want that....!"
"Don't say something you don't understand.  Put the gun down and let her go!"
"Why don't you understand!?"
  Kaname suddenly hit the side of Tessa's head with the butt of the gun.  Staggering, and seemingly fainting she brought her up grabbing on her braids, then she said.
"No!  I will decide what I will do!  I won't let anyone control me!  Even if it’s Sousuke, only that is unforgivable!"
"Chidori....!?"
  It's inconsistent.
  She has been feeling it the other day, something hot inside her chest disappearing.  What captured her in its place, was a chill that she has never felt before---- an ominous feeling that is no imagination.  That voice, that vocabulary, that manner of speaking.
  Even though if it is indeed said to be Kaname, the behaviour is really contradicting.  It feels like it was some sort of machine imitating her.  Hitting a non-resisting Tessa, why disgorge such language?
  Dragging along Tessa, Kaname walked towards the exit.  There is no way to shoot her to stop her in her tracks.
"Wait, where are you going"
"You like me right?  Then don't come after"
"Could you at least explain!  Do you know what you're doing!?"
"Of course!  So don't come nearer!"
"Return to your sanity, Chidori----"
  Sousuke made a long straddle heading towards her.
  This is no joke.  Coming this far, will he see her off just like this.  Will she shoot Tessa?  Will she shoot me?  It's a bluff.  She can't possibly do those things.  Jumping off towards her like that, he should seize her.  It may be a little violent, but it's a situation in a situation like this.  It can't be helped.  If he does that they can escape immediately, then talk about the circumstance slowly later----
"Sousuke....!!"
  Gunshot.
  Kaname shot Tessa in the head.
  The 9mm bullet opened a big hole in her temples, scattering her brains on the other side of the head.  Tessa's body in an instant, made a short cramping shot and collapsed.
  Large blood spreading on the floor.  Not even the sound of a death agony.  It was an instant death.
"Te....."
  Tessa.  Impossible.
  Aiming at a frozen Sousuke, again she aimed the muzzle.
"I told you!  You can't come!?  That much---- I told you that much not to come!  You killed her!  Why did it turn like this!!"
  How can this be.  Do you understand.  You have to make her....!
  No more thinking.  Inside the head is completely white.  At any rate in capturing Kaname, Sousuke rushed full force towards her.
"It's your fault!"
  Kaname shoots.  Not even a hesitation.
  A heavy impact on his chest.  Shortness of breath.  Again she shoots.  2 shots, 3 shots, one after another.  The bullet proof function of the AS pilot suits barely managed to defend against the bullets.
"Chidori...."
  Unbelievable.
  Staggering on a halt, she firmly held the pistol with her two hands, and aimed at his defenseless head.
"Sto----"
"Good bye, Sousuke"
  Smile.  Discharge.
  The flame of the muzzle was the last thing he saw.  The bullet hitting immediately above his forehead, part of his brain blown off, Sousuke instantly died in that place.  Not even having the time for despairing abusive language.
  The long silence of the darkness and nothingness.  Aside from that an empty world arrived.

  No----
  A voice from somewhere.
  Don't worry.  But, don't be reckless.
  I'll definitely wait for you, so don't worry.

  He can see a small light in the darkness.
"U...Uaaaah!"
  From one point the narrow field of vision suddenly expanded, he let out a scream and raised his body.  A terrible growling sound leaked out from his throat.  Angry, sand and miserable, and his heart being gripped by a fear like an eagles claw, all his muscles experienced a violent mental strain.
"Sousuke!?"
  Lemon looking into him.  With an expression mixed with dread and weariness.
  This place is the hall.  When did he collapsed.  Lemon was squatting by his side, 5 meters away Tessa lied down.  No wounds can be seen in her head.
  She was not shot...?  Did she only faint?
  In that place there was no trace of Kaname.
"Not....dead?"
  He touched his forehead.  No injury.
  He patted his chest and stomach that was supposedly shot.  There were no traces of being shot.
"What happened....?  Also....where's Kaname?"
"She....went away.  When you rushed over to her, you suddenly lost consciousness and fainted"
"Me...?"
"She thrust away Testarossa-san and ran away.  With this foot I couldn't chase after her, I couldn't do anything....probably"
  Why the pathetic confidence in his voice.  He also seems to be in disorder.  Sousuke took a breath and stood up, and rushed over to the collapsed Tessa.
  Aside from being knocked out there are no other injuries.  Of course it is the same for traces of being shot.  Although it's a blessing that she was safe-----
"Just now you said [Probably].  What do you mean?"
"I saw you being shot to death.  Testarossa-san and you.... by her.  But it was a hallucination.  Possibly....damn, that deja vu.  Thinking of what we have talked about so far, that may have been the [possible future].  Kaname-san happening to be violent, that was what we saw.  Even though the deja vu has been quickly disappearing as of late.  Why is that?"
  He's right.  Sometime ago, that deja vu was gone.  Just before, when he entered the hall, which should be attacking them like raging waves breaking into the shore.
"Chidori...."
  In the exit of the hall where Kaname supposedly disappeared to, Sousuke unsteadily walked toward it.  He has to chase her right away.
  Something is wrong with her.  If not, she would not have shot me.
"Wait, Sousuke.  It'a already been 3 minutes.  It's useless to chase after her."
"Let go....!"
  Lemon restraining his single leg with his hands, Sousuke shook it off.
"Be calm!  We have to control the scattered pieces here."
"S...she's sick.  She must have lost her sanity----"
"Look out!"
  Lemon jumped at Sousuke.  The two of them tangled and fell, at the same time bullets burst open from their surrounding.
".....!!"
  Violent bullets echoed into the hall.  From the exit at the south side enemy soldiers were firing.  Their distance roughly around 100 meters.  Their numbers are clearly unknown.
"They finally found us"
  Being upset, their vigilance were sluggish to the lowest level.  Sousuke smacked his lips with his own foolishness, returned fire with the carbine gun.  Not difficult.  From this position, it's dark and distance.  A state where the enemy could not define in their position.
"Let's run away"
  Firing with one hand made a covering fire, releasing an incendiary grenade.  Flash and explosion.  Obstructing their space, created a strong wall of flame and smoke.  With this the night vision apparatus and infrared would be useless.
  Going through with an uncomfortable foot, Lemon helped raised Tessa.  Sousuke rushed to the two of them, carrying Tessa on the shoulders, and headed to the nearest exit of the hall.
"Hurry!"
  There came shots from another direction.  This hall is encircled.
"Lemon, do you know the direction?"
"Here"
  Getting out from the hall Lemon guided them into a passage.  Reaching a T junction Lemon hurried into the north direction.  Standing to a halt, he called into a hesitating Sousuke.
"What are you doing!? The enemy's coming!"
  Sousuke was looking into the opposite side of Lemons direction.  Illuminating with the maglight, there are new footprints in the newly dust covered floor.  Kaname's footprints.  If he goes immediately alone, he might be able to chase after her with full speed.
"Sousuke!?"
  Leaving Tessa and Lemon, and chase after Kaname?  In the direction that she disappeared, there is no mistake that there would be enemy deployed.  Chasing after her from here would be reckless.  From the way that Leonard spoke, at least he would not kill Kaname.  Then only for Tessa and Lemon, it might be impossible for them to escape.  For Tessa who is useful for information, there is no mistake that Lemon would be killed.
  However, Kaname.  Finally meeting her----
"Damn!"
  Reason having a narrow victory over emotions.
  Sousuke shook off his strong lingering affection, turned his heel and ran towards Lemon.

  Going on like this, unreasonable chasing would only result in dying in vain.  Right now he has to think about the escape of the three of them as a priority.  There will be another chance to rescue Kaname, it will definitely come---- he keeps telling himself.
"Would it be alright here?"
"Probably.  Above the stars at the north, looks like we will exit on the other side of the plant."
  From the corner of the passage he scattered bullets aiming on the enemy whose face appeared.  As much as possible he tried to restrict them from going forward, Sousuke and the others headed to the [backdoor] of the underground institution.

  Whatever she did, Kaname intends to know what it is.
  Sousuke was killed.  Tessa was also killed.
  Surely she shot them herself---- as what she thought.
  Poor Sousuke and Tessa.  Thinking about them, her chest hurts.
  That itself is a hard sadness, but there is no longer the need for those two.  A very thin friendship, and a fated lover, what would come about in its continuation?  After all, this world, in the not so distant future will be restarted.
  What happened, or who ever died no longer needs to be worried about.  Ultimately, it would be fine as long as she herself lives.
  First she has to know the situation.
  <Amalgam's> Leonard Testarossa.  That man would surely accept.  He would definitely made preparations to proceed.  If it was her previous self---- or merely 10 percent of her former self, she would outright refused with all strength any request for that man's collaboration.
  However, right now it is different.
  She finally understood.  A really simple method of solution.  And errand entrusted to her by Sophia.  Being the only person to save this world, she finally comprehends.  Thinking only of the mission's supremity and magnificence, fills her chest with hotness.
  Walking alone in the wide passage, a man was waiting.
  It's Leonard.  In an old pipe chair left behind in the middle of the passage, he sits with both his legs together.
"Did you wait?"
"No, not really"
  Leonard made a complacent smile.
"You're finally awake."
"Un.  Sorry to have kept you waiting"
  She returned the smile, stepping forward with an elegant behaviour, she stood and grabbed his nape with both her hands.
"Did you make the preparations?"
"Just a little more.  It was proceeding for half a year"
"Then lets go"
"Where to.  My Lady"
"I'm a little cold"
  Leonard took of his red coat, and hanged in on Kaname's shoulders.
"Thank you.  You're kind.  you won't be violent anymore?"
"Since there is no longer the need.  Isn't that right?"
"Yes.  I won't say anything selfish anymore."
  There is no need for quarrel.
  The two of them walked towards the passage where the subordinate soldiers were waiting.

  Due to the rough carrying, Tessa regained consciousness earlier than expected.  At first it she looks uncertain to be on her feet, but she completely rethink and insisted on walking on her own.
"Are you alright?"
  Lemon pushed his concern.
"Yes.  Your injuries are much worse than mine.  Anyway, kaname-san...."

"She went away.  She left us behind."
  Sousuke said being hasty towards the exit.
"I don't know the reason but she's not of the right mind.  Exactly what happened?"

"About that..."
  Tessa hesitated.
"Explain!  What happened to her!?"
  A strong irritation.  Raising his voice on her while holding her thin shoulders, Tessa was suddenly surprised, looking in with an expression mixed with regret and resentment.
"....I'm sorry, Captain.  That.... I'm confused"
"It's alright.  I'm also the same"
"Before coming here I met Leonard.  It seems that he knows something.  Even if he gives his hand, Chidori naturally went to that deepest part---- and then met with the ghost."
"That's right.  ....he has that conviction."
"About what"
"Her doing such things.  I did not expect it.  Besides, even now I still can't explain well.  Inside the center of that institution, was the [Shadow] of the test subject of TAROS that was involved in an accident 18 years ago.  The psychic wave that travels from the future and the past, created a crystal that passes the consciousness of the Omni Sphere.  That crystal is the true form of the [Whispering].  The existing relay antenna that relays information to us.  In order for me to destroy that Antenna, I came to this ruins.  If it were not for the [Whispering], at this rate, there would be stoppage of the influx of Black Technology from the future that should exist."
"Leonard called Chidori as the [Whispering]"
"That is so at the moment.  I don't know what kind of method, or what kind of work---- I really don't know.  Even as to why her..."
  Listening to this harsh reality, Sousuke already understood the meaning in her words.  Although he doesn't know the detailed theory, whatever happened, he imagined what she would be doing.
"Was her mind possessed?  By that [Whispering]?"
  Tessa did not affirm or negate.  She only walked forward, shaking her shoulders, and a voice trying to squeeze out of her throat.
"I'm sorry..."
  Regret and shame, and then a deep feeling of guilt.  Those seems to be tormenting her at the same time.
"I didn't take notice.  If I know this would happen, I would not have get her near at any means.... all of it, is all my fault"
  There was no words of comfort.
  Even then, what can happen?
  If you didn't follow, she wouldn't.
  Right now Sousuke is trying his best to suppress the impulse to blame Tessa.  That was already known.  Tessa no longer said anything.  Coming like this, she already know that excuses or apology would be useless.
  Unable to bear the akward silence, Lemon comforted her.
"You're mistaken, Testarossa-san.  Not noticing and being useless would be me.  Besides, it was inevitable that nobody can expect."
"Thank you.  But, we can't put it together."
  Tessa answered with a hollow voice.
  I'm the worst, Sousuke thought.  Why did he not encourage her.  Why did he say [it's not your fault] like Lemon.  Even though he committed countless mistakes, he could not stop his anger.
  I know.
  It was all about her.
  Understanding that much, he couldn't cut off his attachment.
  Proceeding in the dark passage, Sousuke muttered in a small voice that nobody heard.
"Chidori...."
  Just a little more.
  The next time we meet, at that time what shall I do?

  Wireless communication entered into the ears of Kalinin.
[This is Alpha Leader.  3 enemy spotted at limits F3.  2 male, one female.  We lost visual upon combat.  No dead.  One injured.  Currently in pursuit.]
  From the subordinates who finally reached the deepest area, it was a report about failing to catch Sousuke and the others.  The [One female], it is most likely Teletha Testarossa.
"Continue pursuing.  Don't suppress them unreasonably.  You can go slowly.  If possible do not kill the girl.  She is information."
[Alpha roger]
  The wireless communication mixed with the sound of gunfire was cut.
  Even with the use of a relay device the communications was bad.  Moving 10 odd men squad under this underground maze, was an operation that could break bones.  Additionally for a while now, mix with it the difficulty of the soldiers when they get nearer the deepest area.
  There is no other, it was because of that unknown deja vu.
  Aside from the soldiers losing their mind there were no injuries, and the hindrance of the communication and cooperation of every units are enough problems.  Once an order is issued they would continue on, and those who were not able to understand their place and situation were always at the back.  Such confusion, the more they proceed to the inside of the institution the more frequency it occurs.  In the end there are teams that almost nearly killed each other, there was one act that they were on the verge if not for Kalinin's warning.
  That deja vu has disappeared a while ago.
  In the deepest part of the institution, was there something that occurred---- this is what was conjectured on the corner of Kalinin's thought.  Most probably, something that he heard from Leonard happenend.  Chidori was safe from that helicopter crash after all, with such fate being led into the deepest area by her own effort, and then was there with the [Whispering] to----
(No, don't think too deeply....)
  Whatever happened, because of that the mutual understanding of each and every team became smooth.  Although it is forgivable for the preceding team to let Sousuke and the others escape, the neighboring exit of the of the underground are already controlled by another team.  No matter what kind of skill he excels in, there is no means for Sousuke to escape alone.
  The subordinates will shoot him to death without hesitation.  And if Teletha Testarossa resist will meet the same fate.
  Will you be alright dying?
  No matter how many times he repeatedly asks himself this it's like raising a gooseneck.
  It doesn't matter.  If he dies here, that's the end of it.  There is no hesitation in his heart, this would be more convenient.
  During the raid on Melidia island, his previous characteristics to prepare the location data of emergency supplies in the event of the [worst situation], he was not able to delete this from the data bank of the <De Daanan>.  Leonard's prediction---- having knowledge of using the Solar Flare to execute the attack, he was still half in doubt.
  The result, that hesitation gave the <De Daanan> the necessary resupply materials, letting them live on this far.
  However, now is different.  There is not one ounce of mercy.
  Approving the objective of Leonard himself, he decided to work for him.  Simultaneously erasing those physical unease.
  This world shouldn't be like this, this is what he felt.
  Andrei Kalinin strongly feels this.
  That is why from here on, what ever happened, he will execute anyone who tries to interfere with their objectives.  Even if they were his former allies.
  And then Sousuke---- you are of no exception.  If you die here then that is your fate.  But if that is not so---- if you want to stop me on top of that, you would need a resolution.  Any humans that make confrontations, with ultimate resolution and sacrifices.
"Stop!"
  One of the subordinates beside shouted with gun in hand.
  From the hanging dust and direction of the darkness, a pair of man and woman appeared.  It was Leonard Testarossa and Chidori Kaname.
"Don't shoot"
  There was no strong inhibition.  When the form of the two can clearly be distinguished, the subordinate immediately put down his gun.  Leonard in AS pilot suit, Kaname with a red coat on, slowly walking forward.  It seems the confluence was successful.
  However----
  What was it, the unnatural composure of Chidori.  Was it not like a walk of a monarch that controls the world.  For a mere 17 year old girl.
  No, it is the truth.  She is the monarch.
  Fowler and himself, taking charge of the leftovers of their power like a servant.
"It's is good that you are safe"
"Aah. You guys too"
  Leonard cramped his shoulders.
"It seems that Sagara and the others intend to escape to the emergency path in the north side.  They will be immediately encircled."
"Sagara?"

<image=369.jpg>

  Chidori Kaname raised her brow.
"Kalinin-san, You're mistaken.  Sousuke and Tessa was killed by me"
"What was that?"
"It's true.  Right before my eyes, precisely shooting them in the head."
  This is entirely different from the reports of his subordinates, he is perplexed as to how calmly she would say Sousuke and the other's death.
"But, my subordinates just now----"
  Kalinin beginning to say, Leonard brought up his single hand.
"No matter, whatever that is"
"But----"
"It's alright.  Mister K (Kalium)"
  Keeping silent, he abides.  Kalinin did not object further.
"....the three unknown enemy are currently being pursued.  They will be suppressed soon."
"Is that so.  Then.... do what you wish"
"Yes"
"In this irritating ruins, there is no longer anything we need.  prepare to withdraw immediately"
"Roger"
"See you, Kalinin-san"
  Walking calmly from that place he escorted them from behind, Kalinin can feel an unknown omen.
  No, not only that.  But also a feeling of forfeit.
  Kalinin contacted Casper who was standing by above ground.
"Mister Sn (Tin).  Situation"
[Still in control.  Weber still hasn't been seen]
"They will eventually come to rescue Sagara and the others.  Next time you see them, remove them"
[Of course----]
  Casper laughed from the communications device.
[----this will be fun]

<Gunshots of small arms detected.  11 0 clock.  Recognized in E4 (Echo 4)>
  Receiving the report of the AI, Kruz muttered in the cockpit.
"There's activity"
  Now, his M9 is concealed in a site 3 kilometers north east of <Yamsk 11>.  For more than 2 hours, they have not been detected by the enemy, slowly creeping forward getting closer.  Using the ECS and usual camouflage, and suppressing the Data link to the lowest range, they are deeply careful to the utmost limits.
  Barely getting near the site, Kruz stopped the unit, fixing both arms of the M9 in the exposed rock, measuring the noise from the radius with the Super Sensitive vibration sensors.
  There was a reaction.
  There was intermittent gunshots in the underground plant.  Although footsteps were not detected, there was no mistake that there are hostilities with difference in power.
  A specific firing sound---- drawing from the mark E4, amplifying the playback.
  It was not clear because of the echo, but this is the sound of the Carbine gun that Sousuke has.  And this firing rhythm.  Although this is unknown to most people, Kurz knows it.  This is Sousuke's Rhythm.
"That bastard, he's alive after all."
  Snickering, Kruz turned on the voice input.
"Details and distance of E4, estimate the vector"
<Roger.  ...complete.  Estimating, direction 261.  Distance 1800.  Vector 73-10>
  The data is projected in the digital map in the screen, magnified.
  The depth is unknown, but Sousuke is moving towards here.  Running double time firing at the enemy.  If he was alone then he would be running faster, it was natural to think that he is with an injured or a girl.  It would be good to think that he was with Tessa.
  They are coming out from the opposite side of the Plant.
  But this is bad.  From the underground institution of <Yamsk 11> to the neighboring exits in the mountain ridges, one squad of enemy already surrounds it.  If there is no support from here, it is impossible to escape.  The enemy also predicts this, it was natural---- Casper was moving somewhere on his own waiting.
  He captures the weak electromagnetic wave of his allies.
[Ur...to..z6.  ....rz7 to.....6]
  Because of the bad electromagnetic wave digital noise are coming in, but there is no mistake that voice belongs to Sousuke.
[...this is Urz 7.  Can you hear me]
"This is Urz 6.  Situation"
  Dispensing the frivolous talk he responded concisely.  There were no Passcode and concealment of the transmission source, then again the electromagnetic wave coming from here is in the lowest range.
[Escaping from the under.... of the plant.  Curre.....passageway in 32a-71a.  Engaging....enemy heading to West Northwest.  With Tessa (Ansuz) and Lemon.....  Lemon is injured.  What's the situation above ground.]
  He must be talking while moving.  The next electromagnetic wave was stronger.
"Expect enemy at the perimeter 33c-70a.  Roughly around one squadron"
[Can support be made]
  Sousuke asked immediately.  If he can observed, he judged that he can attack.
"Possible, but the Lambda Driver equipped AS is hiding somewhere.  A sniper.  There is a need to take care of it first."
  To start the support of Sousuke and the other's escape, Kruz would compromise his position and fall prey to Casper.  In other words, if Kruz does not take care of Casper, Sousuke and the others could not escape.

[Not only the sniper.  There is the possibility of Leonard’s unit coming out]
  The <Arbalest> receiving serious damage in Tokyo, that strongest unit is here.  Somehow Tessa's brother is alive.  No matter how you look at it this is a harsh situation.
"I understand.  But the first threat is that sniper.  If we can at least destroy him, we can somehow send the <Laevatein> to you"

  This would put Gebo 6 into danger.  First to stop Casper's AS, then completely remove the enemy that lie in ambush of Sousuke.  At the same time the Gebo 6 in invisible mode of the ECS drops the <Laevatein> in front of Sousuke.  Just before Leonard reacts.
  It is unknown whether Leonard's unit can be defeated or not, but as long as the <Laevatein> moves an escape path might open up.
[Roger.  We will hold in the exits as much as possible.  Good luck]
"Aah.  Just wait"
  After replying, Kruz can feel his heartbeat palpitating.
  Me?  That Casper?
  Can this be done?
  But, if he did not Sousuke and the others might end up in the other world....

  In this one day, it can't be guessed as to how many stairs they went up and down.
  Adding fire to the enemy that were chasing them, lending a shoulder to a suffering Lemon, climbing up the stairs and firing.  And repeating this.
"Kruz and the others seems to be safe.  For the mean time"
"Eeh"
  Opening the digital map from the handheld computer terminal, Tessa nodded.

"There are data coming from his unit right now.  It's the situation of the enemy soldiers waiting above.  What can be discovered is one squadron."
  Tessa looks at the optimum magnification in the digital map.  As far as he can confirm there are 11.  At any rate it revealed the enemy soldiers captured by Kruz' passive sensor.
  Sousuke objectively judged.
  If they go up the stairs like this, they would eventually reach the emergency exit constructed at the slope of the hill.  Outside that emergency exit are numerous residence constructed, and those soldiers are scattered to such residences.
  They are in a fan formation enveloping the emergency exit where Sousuke and the others are supposedly coming out.

  With the weight of their own injury, if possible they would capture them alive.  if not, the enemy from the outside would simultaneously come in and make a pincer attack.
  In any case, it is certain that if they went upside there would be concentrated firing from 10 persons.  At the moment that they show their heads.
  Additionally their opponent is Kalinin's subordinates.  Their aim is accurate, and there is no mistake that it is controlled.
"It's impossible to break through"
  Tessa and Lemon are no amateur.  They were not distracted from Sousuke informing them of the situation.
  As long as there is support from the M9 standing by above escape is possible.  Kruz would drive bullets into the surrounding residences, more then half of the enemy would be powerless.  And then smoke and dust would restrict their field of vision.  Riding on that confusion the <Paib Mare> would close in at full speed, dropping the <Laevatein>.  It would not take more than 20 seconds for Sosuke to get on.  With the <Laevatein's> current power, he can at least gain a few moments from Leonard being an opponent----possibly.

  There is only one method for an ordinary AS like the M9 to defeat a Lambda Driver equipped unit, to abruptly attack the enemy.  To stop him in the first shot, then it would be over.  In a manner of speaking, the Lambda Driver equipped unit is rather strong.
"How long will the ammunition last?"
  Tessa asked.  Even her voice was tired.
"In economy mode about 5 minutes."
  Sousuke answered, switching the selector of the Carbine gun from Rapid fire to single shots.  Then taking the out pistol from the holster, turned it and handed it over to Lemon.  Even though he is exhausted, his shot is better than Tessa's.
"It's pistol I've used for a long time.  Be careful using it"
"I know"
"Captain you observe the communications"
"....eeh"
  Tessa didn't even give a single sound of discontent.
  Continuing on the narrow and long ascending tunnel.  There is no more stairs ahead.  The three of them stagger, proceeding in the passage supporting in the darkness.  Sousuke sometimes would look behind and fire, at that moment Tessa lends her shoulder to Lemon and hurriedly proceeded forward.
  They reached a dead end.  Confirming that there are no traps, kicked open the rotten iron doors, ahead was a humid small quarter.  It was a room filled with air conditioning devices and cleaning materials locker.  Meeting them was a bulky door, beyond that was above ground.
"Let's hold here.  Lemon behind"
"Aah"
  The door outside can easily be opened.  From the crack fresh open air leaks in.  Time has passed from sunset, the outside is completely dark.
"!"
  Suddenly there was an impact.  The enemy in battle formation outside the emergency exit shoots.  Just a little more blinding sparks scatters, attacks fiercely buzzing in their ears.  The shooters are shooting from about 50 meters in the houses.
  They returned fire preserving ammunition.  The enemies are not trying to kill them.
"They're coming from the rear too!"
  Lemon sharply shouted pushing through the passage where they came from.
"Stall some time!  As long as possible----"
  Lemon jumped from the bullets flying from the passage, jumping into a small room.
"Damn!"
  Lemon fires.  Sousuke shoots.  Tessa crouching in the corner of the small room.  Fierce gunshots and roaring sounds, the tearing sound of metal enveloping the three of them.
  The succession of enemy is high.  They could see that they are stalling for time.  At this rate, they'll run out of patience and their ammunitions would run out then suppressed.
"Were being pincer attacked!  Kruz, you done yet!?"

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