The La-Iin Series
“The Chronicles of Malicerie Students–Part 3”
As the students of Malicerie walked into the building, the atmosphere was noticably different than on the day of the dance. Most students picked up on this as they walked to their classrooms.
“Does it feel weird to you, Fer-Shi?”
“Does what feel weird?”
“The school’s atmosphere.”
“Well, some of the students do seem kind of sad…hey, is someone missing?”
“What do you mean? It’s not San-Kyung, is it?”
“No, I see him. But it feels like someone’s missing…one of the seats is empty. I thought all our seats were filled since the new students joined…”
Before La-Iin could respond, the history teacher walked into the room.
“Is this later than we normally start school? It feels later for some reason.” Fer-Shi asked. La-Iin shrugged.
“Students, I have something important to say. And please, when I say it, I don’t want you to panic, because that could make the situation worse.” He glanced around the classroom, then stared up at the ceiling, his eyes darting to each corner, before he turned back to the students. “It has been brought to our attention that Malicerie is currently under surveillance by an unknown group. Some of you may have noticed Mr. Elyshen isn’t here today…this group claims to be the cause, and says that he’s safe, but will not be coming to school. It’s not just Mr. Elyshen either. Other classes are probably making a speech similar to mine right now, and with the exception of Class A, every class is missing a student, and some of the Weekend class teachers are also missing. For instance, Mr. Elyshen’s Weekend teacher, Mr. Vurinen Xao-Bu, teaches classes outside of Malicerie, and it was reported that he did not arrive for his nightly class yesterday. People who attend his class state that he doesn’t miss a class without announcing he will be first, so we have reason to believe that whatever happened to Mr. Elyshen, has happened to Mr. Vurinen, some other Weekend Class teachers, and the students of those teachers. Normally I wouldn’t be telling any of you this given the risk, but we made sure to destroy the cameras in this classroom…that being said, we can’t guarantee how safe it is in Malicerie.”
“Why didn’t you tell us this before!?” Lirako yelled.
“So you’re telling us that we came to school for no reason? Or are you working with them?” San-Kyung asked.
“I’m not with them! I’m sorry, it took us until today to find out exactly what was going on, and we still don’t know the full details about the group that’s watching us. We really have no idea what’s going on….” He sucked in a breath. “The Principal has asked me to make my own judgment about what to tell you, so I will. I’m of the opinion that you all should get out of here. I don’t think it’s safe to stay. Some of our students are missing already. I think it would be stupid to let more disappear. Get home, explain the situation to your family, and we’ll do all we can to rescue the students that have gone missing. But as far as I’m concerned, we don’t need to lose more students to do that.”
“You want me to go home and pretend everything’s fine when you guys don’t even know where Deki-Tyunri is!?” Lirako yelled.
“I never said you had to pretend everything was fine, Miss Sanyaow! But I told you, we don’t know the severity of the situation–we basically know nothing! So we know that there’s someone or someones who have planted cameras over most of the school. We know that we destroyed some of those in specific rooms. We know that whoever it is knows something about the disappearance of students and Weekend teachers. But that’s about it. Who are these people? Why are they doing this? Are those people who went missing hostages, and if so, is there any guarantee they’ll be alright? I can’t just stand here and pretend it’ll be alright if you stay here. There’s a good chance we won’t even have classes today anyway, so it’s pretty much pointless. As I told you, the Principal told me to make my own judgments about what to say. So I’m saying you should all go home before something happens to you.”
“We’ll do all we can to find him, Miss Sanyaow. But I can’t really give you any official confirmation on that…I can say the same tired lines again and again and try to reassure you that we’ll find him and he’ll be all right. But even if we find him today and he’s not harmed physically, we don’t know if they did anything to him. The same goes for the others who went missing…”
“I think Mr. Chensu is right.” Rini-Futo said. “But…please stay safe too, okay? We don’t want you to go missing either.”
“I’ll try to stay out of trouble,” he said, though uncertainty was obvious in his tone.
“…” La-Iin glared.
“Is something wrong?” Fer-Shi whispered.
“….I don’t know how to explain it, Fer-Shi. I’m just torn.”
“Um….well, when you put it that way, I don’t really know what to say, except…maybe it’s better if we listen to the teacher and go home…after all….um….how to put this….you are gonna be a future “Maniac of Evil” or whatever…if someone thinks you might have been a hostage or something in the past, they might think lesser of you…”
“Teacher, I have a question.” Dosa-Mina said.
“Yes, Mr. Dslellullar?”
“You want us all to leave the school,right? I have no problems with that, but how are we supposed to do that? You said cameras are still in the school hallway, right? They would notice us leaving. If we all left at once, it would look suspicious, and if we left individually, it would still look suspicious, unless the people watching us are idiots. But is that a risk you want to take? Also…when I took off my clothes after the dance, I found something that looked like a microphone or something on it. So I think I might have been bugged. And either way, you said the cameras in this room were destroyed, right? They’d probably definitely see that as suspicious….this sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.”
The teacher blinked at Dosa-Mina, then glanced down.
“That being said….if all the cameras in this room are broken, then we could escape through the windows, right? We’d just have to do it fast enough so that whoever put the cameras here in the first place wouldn’t be able to take action for the broken ones.”
“….how did you think of that, Mr. Dslellullar!?”
“It popped in my head while you were talking…”
“He has a point,” Ai-Reia said. “Escaping out the window would be our best bet. But we’d have to check ourselves for bugs too if they’re really planting those on us, otherwise escaping is pointless…this whole situation sounds like it was ripped straight from a movie, but it seems like it’s working well enough for them.”
“All right. Thank you for telling us your plan, Mr. Dslellullar.”
“Not a problem. And also, as far as I’m concerned, everyone can leave ahead of me. I’ll go last. In the worst-case scenario that they end up catching me…well, I have a backup plan for that, just in case.”
“I’ll stay with you,” San-Kyung said. “Then you know you won’t get captured.”
“I had a feeling you’d say that.”
The teacher went over to the windows and opened one up. “Please don’t try and climb out the windows all at once. Single-file line, everyone.”
“O-Okay.” Shuera-Kaizima took a deep breath and walked over to the window. A few students stood up from their seats and followed after her. Her ears and tail twitched constantly as she put her paws on the windowsill and looked out.
Just as she was about to stick her leg out, the door to the classroom opened. The students and the teacher turned around.
“….what is goin’ on here?”
A man stood there, covered head-to-toe in grey clothing.
San-Kyung glared at the man.
‘Damn it, I have to go to the bathroom….’
“Is it just me, or have the cameras either been displaying nothing, or the palms of people’s hands? How annoying…”