Part 21: MEgalomania
Superbia came by Ancora after the blond girl had left the corner in which she'd previously been exploring.
Ancora wasn't ready to go do the vote just yet. Deciding to extend the time towards when it would happen, she shook her head, despite having found a ME-card.
No... this area was as empty as before. There's gotta be more, right? I bet there are a lot of ME-cards we just aren't seeing, because... You know how we need 39 ME-cards to finish this? If you calculate it like this, you get... Nine, eight, seven, six, five, and four. Together, they add up to 39. This accounts for six hours of votes...
You're right. That means... we should've found eight this time around. Our total should be 17, but the rooms only gave us ME-cards until we reached 15...
And I'd be fine with 15, since we're six left, but Vidi had one, and now he's gone.
She took the lead, and Ancora followed behind. The duo made their way back through Wing A, with the goal of regrouping with the others in the Crossroads.
You know... Ah, forget it.
What was that all about?
I don't know. I feel strange inside. Like I'm missing something...
The girl paused, stopping her movements near the puzzle door.
Maybe you're missing Ira. You two were dating, right? And for all you keep saying, I think you needed him more than he needed you.
No, please, stop. You're deceiving yourself. Look, just... figure out what it really meant to you- your companionship with him. Because if you don't figure that out for yourself, I think... you won't get a chance to. It's now or never.
Superbia remained silent, and the two of them walked again. Soon, they arrived at the Crossroads proper.
The group had been in a heated debate over who would be next on the chopping block. Luxuria apparently was making known her idea for the others to vote for her. Gula was supporting her choice, but Tristitia wasn't in agreement with it. Avaritia was staying on the sidelines. As Ancora and Superbia approached the survivors, the horse-masked boy's tone turned harsher.
You're one of the few I still trust, so it can't be you. You're also the lowest threat of the group. I refuse to vote for you, because there are better targets!
What's going on? Why does Lux want to be voted out?
She says she wants to be voted out because she's fine with it. She's trying to win cute points, and I don't agree with it. You can't be everyone's martyr, Lux.
Well, I agree with her. To be honest, I don't actually care who gets voted for next, if it's not me...
If they agree with it, then there's nothing to do about it...
Indeed. My choice has already been made.
Luxuria managed to gather three votes out of them all. Superbia, Gula, and herself together almost had majority already. All Ancora had to do was agree with it, and they would have four, giving them majority regardless of what the others would vote.
But first, I want to know, Ancora, did you get a ME-card? You should've found one by now. We need to have everyone ready for the vote as soon as possible. Yes, I know we have another hour, shut up!
Superbia was going to talk, but Tristitia cut her off as soon as she moved, which startled her enough to shut her up before she'd even said anything.
Where did that come from, you fat lardass?
I know what you've done, so if you don't want me to tell everyone else, you better shut up.
Superbia was quick to retreat to her rabbit hole. Without any more interruptions, Tristitia resumed his questioning.
So, did you get a ME-card yet?
Why are they even voting for Luxuria, anyway? Did she have some change of heart, or was this her plan from the beginning? She can't bring herself to vote for anyone else...?
Avaritia stepped forward to say something, against all odds. But before she talked, Ancora nodded.
Sorry, Bia. I lied because I didn't feel ready to vote. Not again.
We can't keep bickering like this. We need a plan, and we need 39 ME-cards, or everyone dies!
Reminding everyone of that fact, Tristitia caused a ripple of panic to spread across the group. Ancora found it a nice way to remind everyone of their current predicament.
Ahh, you're right... we're going to die... Even bigger of a reason to begin at once.
That's why we should get the vote over quickly! Just vote for me...
Yeah, just, let's just vote, get this over with.
You don't have to feel sorry for me. It was my choice. I'd much rather go that way.
Even though Ancora couldn't see past Luxuria's helmet, she felt as though the girl was smiling. She wasn't going to die while panicking, she was picking her future.
This might be a waste of a vote. I guess I still didn't figure out who was the traitor. I need to make that a priority for the next round.
The group walked forward. There was no need to talk about it, there was no need to debate or argue. They would put in their vote for Luxuria, and then move onto the next set of doors as soon as possible.
The final set of doors. Past that puzzle door... there are only 3 rooms left, and then all the ME-cards are accessible. I'm slightly worried, though... I wonder why we only found so few of them. We should have found at least 30 by now... Why do we only have around half that? This isn't how everything was placed. Someone's gone through the school in the minutes before this started...
It was a little refreshing for things to be this simple. Ancora wished she could live in simplicity like that. The barrel of the shotgun in front of her brought her back to reality.
Are we all ready?
Yeah. By the way, thanks for your sacrifice. We'll figure out the traitor, kill them, and then get out of here.
You better, for my sake.
Okay, let's stop the waterworks. We have this vote to put in.
No comments came from anyone else, and soon, everything was in place. Superbia pushed her vote in without hesitation, next came Luxuria's, Gula's, Tristitia's, and Avaritia's. Last was Ancora's vote.
I have a bad feeling about this. For some reason, something's just... off. I can't get rid of the feeling that this time, the discussion was cut short. No. It didn't get cut short. It's almost like... Like it didn't happen at all. Everyone just... agreed.
BGM: Mercedis Mellitus
The screens above the voting consoles settled onto Avaritia's symbol. It was clear what was to follow: it was her execution. Every shotgun but the victim's released their hold, leaving the participants to witness the macabre outcome.
Time slowed down. Eventually, everything froze.
Lock #2 obtained.
This is not looking good.
Much like before, the helmet the voted one wore exploded. The group took great care in not stepping too close to her, since none of them wanted to be caught in the blast. All it did was to char the neck some, leaving behind a splatter of disgusting head matter all over the floor. The sight alone was nauseating.
We voted for Lux.
Finally, Tristitia spoke. He stared at the small girl from the side, watching her like a hawk. Now that the reality of the situation was settling in, he seemed quite angry.
Y-yes... I don't know what happened... this must be a trick... Pandora's trick...
No, that's, not possible. When we voted for Ira, he was the one who got busted. Now we vote for you when you want to sacrifice yourself, and we kill Ava instead?
Wait, maybe there's something wrong with the voting panels...
A small flashback came upon Ancora. She did remember putting the ME-cards inside of the presumed bomb case alongside Luxuria. The girl had also been investigating the consoles at that point in time. Could it be...? Was it then that she modified them?
I sure didn't see that one coming. Things will get bad now.
No, I didn't! I didn't change the portraits or rig the machines!
Some of you are far more dangerous than meets the eye. I'm not going to be had by you twice in a row. Ava was a solid ally, and she might even have had the way to escape this hellhole.
I'm not sure what he means by that. Probably just human mistake.
Out of nowhere, Tristitia pulled out a revolver. With two gunshots, Luxuria fell to the ground. The horse-themed boy had gotten her straight through the helmet. That one also suddenly exploded as well, adding to the corpses in the room. The small girl was no more.
Trist! Why did...
She's a threat. I'll remove every threat. First, it's Lux. Then, it's the murderer. And finally, I'll kill the mastermind.
Didn't he just say he thought Ava had the way out? If he's saying he's going to kill the mastermind, though, this may not be good news. Just gotta be ready to react appropriately if he knows, somehow.
So then, the murderer. Bia, do you have anything to say for yourself?
Murderer? What do you even mean?!
Don't play coy. Ever since Ira mentioned being an accomplice, how you both wandered around together like that... I'd been suspecting it. You're a cold woman, Bia. But this is where your killings end.
Tristitia waited for a moment. Superbia was slowly gathering herself for what she had to explain. Just as it seemed like she was going to talk, she instead lunged at him. Everything happened very quickly. As soon as she landed over him, he shot her square in the heart; the bullet went so fast it pierced through her entire body and came out of the back to lodge itself into one of the metallic plates on the far wall. Then he shoved her off his own body. The entire fight would've been comical, if it didn't have drastic outcomes.
After Tristitia stood back up, he executed her with a shot through the helmet. Once again, it exploded, leaving yet another splotch of red carnage onto the ground. Superbia, just like Luxuria, lay dead right next to the consoles.
She's the reason why we're all here. We're here to expiate our sins. It's the entire ideology behind naming us these things.
She was a murderer. Do you know who she killed? She killed that kid.
Gula remained silent at those words. Instead, she brought her stare down to Superbia's dead body, watching it from afar. While she was thinking, Tristitia's attention was brought to Ancora.
This is it, then, we're finished. We're three survivors, and six have been executed. Now open the way out, or you will die.
Huh? So he does suspect something. That's very bad news.
The way out...? I don't know what you mean. I'm...
She swallowed, frightened by the circumstances. None of this had been possible to see coming before.
I'm not the mastermind. I don't want to die.
He began walking around while talking. While he was doing so, Ancora was speed thinking of a way out of this predicament, but nothing was coming to her.
No one fits the bill! Not a single one of us could be the mastermind! But we all have sins! We all have an involvement in this larger picture. Superbia is the murderer, but that was just the catalyst. Everyone has an involvement- except you. I have no idea what your crime is. I don't know your name, and I don't even know what you look like, little girl. I don't even think you could organize all this, but I'm out of leads.
Gula remained silent on the sidelines. She had the forethought of not saying a word to aggravate the situation for herself.
That's cool and all, but there's gotta be a way out of this situation!
I'm... not... the mastermind...
Only you could be the mastermind! I don't know how, but you are! Now open the goddamn doors, or you're next!
Ancora's hands balled up in fists. She couldn't hold it back anymore; her own rage was growing too fiercely.
I'm no goddamn mastermind! I'm just a girl stuck like everyone else here! Are you going to kill me for that?
Suddenly, Tristitia fell down, and a loud metallic noise rang out as a result of the collision from his body and the helmet onto the floor.
What the hell?! Ula, stop!
Ancora took the chance; she booked it. She ran down the stairs while a gunshot fired. That was his fifth one; he only had one more bullet in that six-chamber revolver.
If he could only shoot Gula... or waste his shot...
And that was where he shot her.
I really thought we were going somewhere with this. I guess it was inevitable when all heck breaks loose like this. Still, I can't go yet. I think there's more to do, but do I have a choice? I suppose I don't, unless a miracle happens.