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Backstory

        Einstein and Galileo left the room. The corridor outside led them to a door. Looking at each other, Galileo singalled Einstein to go after her. She leaned against the door, opening it slowly. They found nothing except the light from inside through a narrow slit.

        Einstein pushed the door open——

        “Woohoo! Great! Some accompanies finally. I’m almost bored to death. Oh you’re the people from Lomond Manor. Right! Do you wanna play riddles?” The words came from a teen girl who was way too enthusiastic for her current situation——binding on a cross that was fixed on the centre of the room.

        “You are...Nicole-Reine Lepaute.” Galileo squinted her eyes and identified the girl very soon.

        “She’s also a new joiner like me,” Einstein thought as he searched through the memory. A deafening noise interrupted his thinking. Several huge blades lowered from the ceiling and then started swinging, blocking their way from rescuing Nicole.

        “Oh wow. What a simple but dangerous trap,” Nicole complimented the swinging blades delightfully.

        Einstein was amused by the sincere compliment she made to the trap. “How can you not stressed out for everything which just happened? Never expected that there’ll be someone crazier than me,” Einstein said.

        “Haha, thanks for your compliment.” Nicole winked at Einstein, but Galileo’s long face frightened her.

        “Stop messing around, you two. We’re now under the threat of unknown enemy. Get yourself together,” Galileo lectured them coldly. When she was about to move, Einstein grabbed her wrist.

        “Maybe you should stay here. A pretty girl like you is better not having any scars,” Einstein tried to make her stay.

        “Are you looking down on me? Don’t be hideous,” Galileo said. She got rid of Einstein and left, leaving the awkward Einstein behind.

        Two of them passed through the blades within the snap of a finger. Looking closely, there were metal shackles on Nicole’s neck, wrists and ankles. Before Galileo could chop them off, Einstein pulled her off.

        “Wait!” Einstein said.

        “Are you gonna stop me with your ridiculous excuses again?”

        “No. These shackles are element-secured. They will explode if you crack them by force, blowing Nicole’s head off,” Einstein explained.

        “What? I don’t wanna lose my head! It’ll be ugly! NO NO NO NO——”

        “Shut up!”

        Nicole shouted like a child when she heard about the shackles, driving Galileo to yell at her. It did make Nicole quiet, yet she pouted and stared at Galileo instead.

        “It’s okay. All we need is time to get rid of them,” Einstein said, trying to solve the tense situation.

        Yet his plan failed when there were some red dots popping up suddenly. The walls started moving, revealing numerous holes. Next second, horrible gun barrels extended from inside.

        “Counting down to shooting. 59, 58…” a robotic voice announced.

        “What kind of sick joke is this!” Galileo said. She scanned around, coming up with a conclusion, “with these amount of weapons, we have no choice but leave!”

        “But Nicole——”

        “We can’t save her. It’ll kill us too!”

        “Although it’s sad to die alone, I still don’t want hotties like you two to die young. It’ll be such a waste.” Nicole kept her optimism even when it was a life-or- death moment.

        “40, 39…” the countdown was still going on.

        “There’s no time!” Galileo dragged Einstein towards the exit, but he couldn’t take his eyes off Nicole. And he saw that—— the shivering Nicole clenched her fist.

        “I’m sorry!” Einstein broke free from Galileo and ran back to Nicole. Shocked for a moment, the hesitated Galileo returned to her way towards the exit.

        Seeing the return of Einstein, the optimism that Nicole had been keeping finally wrecked. “Why did you come back? You’re gonna get yourself killed!” Nicole said anxiously.

        “I can’t bail on someone who’s helpless,” Einstein said with a smiled, “and I won’t get myself killed.”

        Examining Nicole’s shackles closely, Einstein found a keyhole at the top. Then he tapped few times to listen to its echos.Meanwhile water element was conjured on his palm, consolidating into an ice key.

        Click! A shackle was unlocked, dropping onto the floor. Repeating the steps for few times, the rest of the shackles were removed too.

        “I’m free! Thank——”

        “Not right now. Run!” Einstein interrupted Nicole and grabbed her to escape, yet it was too late already.

        “...3, 2, 1. Shooting begins.”

        A round of shooting began; The deafening noise sounded like a horrible symphony of death. Countless bullets shot at Einstein and Nicole, enough to turn their bodies into beehives.

        “Teacher, I might lose the life you had been through a lot to give me…” Einstein had a thought while he was running. Yet he was more relieved than ever, as he had chosen the path that was right to him.

        “Einstein, don’t give up so soon. Feel the pattern of elements and make use of the power.”

        A soft voice sounded in Einstein’s head. With the guidance of the voice, Einstein let the surrounding energy flood into his body.

        “This is element...Is it talking?” Einstein relaxed his mind instinctively. For a moment, he felt like he had no solid body but blended into the environment. His consciousness drifted to a space with numbers everywhere.

        “So this is the sequence of elements…” Einstein returned to the reality. Raising his arms, he conjured water element in his palm. Then it formed swirls, shooting outward.

        The bullets touched by element were floating in the mid air, as if time was paused.

        “No. Time didn’t stop. The bullets are still moving, just moving extremely slow...That guy changed the time with element...This is unprecedented…” Galileo who dodged the crisis observed at the exit. Being an outsider let her see the whole picture clearly.

        “Huhh...we made it…”

        “I’ve never run this fast…”

        Both Einstein and Nicole fell on the floor gasping once they got out. Meanwhile, flares were sparkling inside the room, following an irritating smoke of gunpowder.

        The smoke cleared later on, leaving the room covered with bullet holes. Even the bold Einstein was frightened to see that.

        “If we stayed in the room, we’d have been dead already...Buy why? What does the kidnapper want? This person could have killed us when we were drugged. Then it won’t be necessary for all these dramas...Teacher, I still haven’t found the answer yet…”

        “WHOA!” Einstein’s thought was interrupted by someone suddenly climbing on him. He looked at Nicole who climbed on his body like a monkey.

        “What, what are you doing?”

        “I found you! The father of my children!” Nicole shouted excitedly and ignored Einstein’s question. She tightened up her legs on his waist to keep him from leaving, and continued, “make babies with me!”

        Einstein’s eyes almost popped out of his head.

        “Teacher, women are even more unpredictable than geniuses.”

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