Criminale! 5 – Nero
CV: Hirakawa Daisuke
Thank you themadpuppy85 for your commission!
3:00PM. On the outskirts of Rome.
Hey. Are you going home now?
I haven’t seen you for a while. It’s been three days, right?
How are you?
I guess I’m doing okay.
Let’s go home together! Our houses are in the same direction anyway.
Did anything happen in the past few days?
Ah… I was just worried when I thought something might have happened to you. It’s because it’s been ten years since I moved into your neighbourhood, and I usually see you everyday. Although I was busy at work, I was still worried.
Hmm… I’m a little busy at the moment. I suddenly got assigned to a job. I’m looking for someone.
I wouldn’t say it’s tough, but it gets difficult when I think that I won’t be able to see you so often. I wonder if I can bear not being able to see you.
I’m not joking. I’m being serious. The truth is… I don’t want to be away from you for even a second.
Hmm? That presence just now…
Sorry. Let’s go the long way home. I don’t have time to explain why. Please… Okay?
Keep up with me. You haven’t been on this street before, have you? Don’t get separated from me. Everything will be over if you do.
No. Don’t look back.
I know that there’s someone following us, but just pretend you haven’t noticed.
Don’t worry. There’s nothing to be afraid of. Stay close to me.
Come on. We’re going to turn at that corner.
You stay here.
Here they come.
There’s one more!
There’s no way you’ll hit me!
Someone like you shouldn’t be trying to attack me. Go home and eat your mother’s cherry pie!
Are you okay? You can come out now.
Hmm? Why do you look so surprised?
Ah… That was the first time you’ve seen me doing that.
I’m sorry. I didn’t want you to get dragged into this, but I would’ve felt sorry for you walking home with someone following you. I’ll take you home as soon as I find out who they are. Wait a minute.
This tattoo… I knew it.
Hello. This is Nero. I’ve captured one of them. I found a family insignia on him when I checked. There’s no doubt that he’s one of them. I don’t know why they’re targeting me now. If they had time to be dealing with me, then they would be looking for Father’s daughter.
Ah… It can’t be. I’ll report to you again later.
Hey. I want to ask you something. Have you got something important to you that you’ve had since you were a child?
Can I look at that bracelet?
There’s a crest on it. Then you’re… Those guys were after you, not me.
I see… So it was you.
Ah… I can’t believe you were this close by. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to go home now.
Hmm? It’s okay. They’re just handcuffs. It won’t hurt, so don’t move. Now I’m going to put the other cuff on me.
Okay. Now we won’t get separated, will we?
What’s the matter? Are you trembling? You don’t have to be afraid. Now I’m going to take you somewhere safe. Because you’re Father’s daughter, the person I’ve been looking for…
4:00PM. On the outskirts of Rome. One hour has passed.
Even though this isn’t the first time I’ve walked around town with you in the afternoon, I feel kind of excited.
Hey… Is there something bothering you? You look pretty pale.
Ah… Hey! You shouldn’t leave my side.
Come on. Come here. Stay closer to me.
You can’t go far because of the handcuffs.
Was there a shop you wanted to see?
Shall we go to the ice-cream shop you always visit?
Well… I know everything about you. Your favourite flavour of ice-cream, your favourite movie and your favourite music too.
I even know that last weekend, at 8:45PM, you were lying on the living room couch and eating a Neapolitan pizza  watching a Serie A  match.
Hey… Do you want to have some ice-cream? I’ll go anywhere with you.
Strange…? What do you mean? I’m acting the same as usual.
Well, I’m feeling a little better than usual.
You see… I’m finally able to stop hiding things from you. I was always just a friendly neighbour to you, but it wasn’t just a coincidence that I moved into your neighbourhood. It was because of my work.
I’m a member of the mafia. I’m Nero, a cleaner from Amphisbaena.  I belong to a large mafia family known as Amphisbaena.
That’s right. I do all kinds of jobs connected with the dark side of society, like murders and smuggling. As a part of my job, there was one mission that was given to me alone.
That mission was to observe you. I was entrusted with the task of watching over you all this time and reporting to our boss. I wasn’t told the reason why, but now I finally understand. It was because you’re Father’s only daughter.
That’s right. Your father was a mafia boss. It’s only natural that you’d be surprised, but it’s true.
I know that you live together with your mother. I know that you lost your father when you were a young girl. Your father was actually our boss. He didn’t really die.
You still don’t believe me?
Well, I suppose that’s understandable. I didn’t know until I saw the seal on your bracelet either. I can’t believe that the girl I’ve been watching over all this time was our precious young lady.
I really am surprised. But thanks to that, your identity has been revealed. I don’t have to keep my distance from you any longer.
I’ve been watching you for almost ten years, but this is the first time I’ve been able to observe you this closely.
Your ears are a beautiful shape… The curves that I’m running my hands over now are so smooth.
Your earlobes feel soft too. You’re cute.
What’s the matter? You can’t go any further away from me. You’ve got handcuffs on, you see.
Come on. You’re a good girl, so stay by my side.
No. You can’t take off the handcuffs. That’s because I’m taking you to Amphisbaena’s hideout now.
But I don’t want to knock you out and carry you. I’d feel sorry for you if I tied you up with a rope. Using handcuffs is the most gentle way for me to escort you, isn’t it?
And when I think that I’ve been joined to you with this cold metal, it makes me feel happy. Come on, let’s go back to the hideout together. I’ll keep staying by your side, even after we arrive. Okay?
Shh! Be quiet.
They were hiding in the shadows just now, but I’m sure there’s someone following us. There are three of them this time.
They’ll follow us, even if we run away. We’ve got to deal with them here. Come with me.
5:00PM. On the outskirts of Rome. In a maze of streets. Two hours have passed.
Take cover in the shadows of the buildings for a while.
It’s alright. The streets around here are like a maze. They won’t find us easily. I’m used to this place because of my work.
But I can’t believe they’re shooting in the middle of town… They’re breaking the rules, like they always do.
Those men are from a rival mafia family. They’re trying to kill you.
I don’t really want you to know the reason why though.
Father… Your father passed away the other day. At that time, I understood that your existence… his daughter was a precious existence. You have the right to choose the next Father. You’ll be killed if they catch you. Even if they don’t kill you, you’ll end up being used. Father probably knew that this day would eventually come. For that reason, I’ve been by your side since you were a child.
They’re here. It seems like they’re trying to drive us out by shooting. We’d be in trouble if you got hit. I’m going to carry you, so hold on tight.
It’s alright. You’re a good girl, so put your arms around me to make sure you don’t fall.
You’re cute when you’re trembling too.
Ah… Don’t worry. I’ll make sure to protect you.
The first. Then the second.
There’s no way guns would be any good in this narrow street… That’s because there are plenty of places to hide.
It’s alright. We’re going to go around this way.
What are you looking at? I’m over here.
All of them are unconscious. It’s alright now.
Okay, I’m going to let you down.
Ah! Were your legs trembling?
I’m happy that you were the one clinging to me. When you’re close to me, I can feel your warmth and the sound of your heartbeat. Your cheeks are getting warm. Your neck too…
Hey. You don’t have to worry about falling anymore. I’ll catch you every time.
What’s the matter? You don’t have to run away. Come on. Stay in my arms.
I defeated those frightening men. Why are you still scared?
You’re a good girl, so…
You… I thought you were unconscious.
Are you alright? Hey!
You only got a scratch on your arm? I see. Thank goodness…
No, that’s not right. You’re bleeding. Your beautiful skin is…
I won’t forgive you. Definitely not. I definitely won’t…
How dare you hurt my young lady. Breaking your bones won’t be enough to satisfy me. I’m going to hurt you until your face is no longer recognisable, your insides burst and all your blood flows out.
I won’t forgive you! I won’t forgive you! I won’t forgive you! I’m going to kill anyone that hurts her!
What is it? What’s the matter? You started clinging to me all of a sudden…
That’s no good. He’s only unconscious. This isn’t enough.
He hurt my precious young lady, you see.
What’s wrong? Does it hurt where you got shot?
I’m sorry. I should have treated your injuries first before dealing with him. It’s okay. I’ll make it better right away.
Come on. Come here.
There’s no need to worry about those men. I’ll call my allies later and make them into dog food.
Come on. Let’s hurry up and go.
 A pizza made with mozzarella cheese and tomatoes.
 A professional league competition for football clubs in Italy.
 The amphisbaena is a mythological ant-eating snake, which has heads at both ends of its body.
6:00PM. On the outskirts of Rome. In an underground safe-house. Three hours have passed.
Can you sit on that couch there? I’m sorry it’s so dusty.
This is one of Amphisbaena’s safe-houses. But it’s an old building and part of it is in ruins, so it isn’t being used much anymore.
Come on, show me your arm.
I’m going to rip your sleeve.
I know it’s just a scratch, but it hurts to think that it’s on your arm.
I’ve got to do something about it quickly. It’s bleeding!
Ah… No! Just stay still.
This building is old and the water isn’t running anymore. There’s no other way. So…
Yes, it’s clean now. Your pale skin is back to normal. I’m going to wrap a bandage round it. I don’t think it’ll leave a scar.
Alright, that’s done.
I’m sorry. I won’t let you get hurt again.
Even if they attack us again, I’ll get rid of them all. If anyone tries to destroy you, I’ll crush them to pieces with a mixer and throw the pieces into the Trevi Fountain.  I won’t let anyone touch you. No one except me.
What’s the matter? You’re as white as a sheet.
Your hands are really trembling too. You must have been scared after suddenly getting shot, right?
That’s not it? So what is it?
No way. There’s nothing strange about me. I’m the same as usual, aren’t I?
I’m more worried that your smile hasn’t returned. Come on, smile like you usually do.
Your mother comforted you like that when you cried as a child, didn’t she?
I know because I’ve been watching you all this time. You look cute when you’re crying too, but I want you to smile.
Your cheeks are so soft.
It’s just as I thought. You’re as sweet as ice-cream and I’m sure you’ll melt away if I taste you. Your lips are trembling too.
Poor you. I’ll make it stop now.
I suppose that wasn’t enough.
No, you shouldn’t struggle! Your wound is going to open up. Hey!
Keep lying down like this and be a good girl. If you move, the handcuffs will rub against your skin and you’ll get unnecessary injuries.
Hmm? I can’t take off the handcuffs. We’ll get separated from each other if I do, you see.
We’re connected to each other now.
I’m definitely not going to let go.
Hey. Don’t move.
I suppose I don’t have a choice. It’d be troublesome if you got hurt, so maybe I should stop your other arm from moving too.
Maybe it’d be good if I wound the chain around both our arms?
Okay, that’s done.
One of my arms is right next to yours. Shall we hold hands too? Entwining our fingers, like this… It’s nice when we’re touching each other this closely.
When our bodies are closer, I can also see your face up close.
When we talk at this distance, our breaths meet. I can also tell that you’re breathing faster. Your heart is beating quite fast too.
See. When I touch your neck here, I can feel your pulse clearly.
Your neck seems like it could break at any moment, so I should stroke it gently.
There’s a small scratch. I hadn’t noticed.
You can’t move? I’m glad I tied you up with these chains.
Are you hurt anywhere else? I’ll lick you if it hurts.
I’d glad if you weren’t hurt though. Your face is still pale. You haven’t stopped trembling either.
Your right hand feels cold. I’ve got to warm it up.
Hmm? That tickled?
Just bear with it until all your fingers are warm.
Your cheeks are cold.
Your ears too…
Even though I’m warming you up, you’re still pale.
Maybe I need to touch you all over?
You shouldn’t move until you get back to your usual gentle and cheerful self.
You’re everything to me, so I won’t let anyone else defile you.
Your body is finally warm again. I think you’re alright now.
You feel warm when I hold you.
Hmm? What’s the matter? You don’t seem to have any strength left.
Ah… Are you tired from all that running?
It’s dangerous to go around in the dark, so shall we rest here for tonight?
I’ll hold onto you to keep you warm, so you don’t have to worry.
I think I’ll have a good dream if I fall asleep right next to you.
It’s alright. I’ll be by your side, even while I’m sleeping.
Hello? This is Nero.
Yes, I’m fine. Sorry I couldn’t get into contact with you.
It’s alright. I’m taking care of Father’s daughter. I’ll come back to the base once it’s light.
Huh? Is there something the matter?
No way. It can’t be.
Alright. I’ll leave Rome immediately and take her with me.
I’ll leave the rest to you.
Ah. Good morning. It’s not light yet though.
But now we have to leave. I’ll undo the chain, so will you be able to walk?
One of my allies contacted me. Unfortunately, it wasn’t good news.
Ah, it’s okay. It’s not the worst news. Well, I suppose it’s not that bad.
There’s a bomb somewhere in Rome.
 A fountain in the Trevi district of Rome, which was completed in 1762.
5:00PM. On the outskirts of Rome. 14 hours have passed.
Are you still tired?
I’m sorry. I wanted to let you rest a little longer, but it seems that they thought they had no chance, even if they challenged us head on.
They’ve planted a bomb somewhere in Rome. The bomb is set to go off at 3:00PM tomorrow. In 35 hours’ time. Ordinary citizens will get caught up in this if you aren’t handed over to them before that. Getting ordinary people involved is crazy.
Of course I’m not going to hand you over. It’s okay. One of my allies knows a lot about bombs. They’ll be able to defuse it as soon as they find it. Even if we can’t find it, if we catch one of those guys, we’ll make them tell us where it is.
But Rome is in turmoil right now. So we’re going to get away from here. I’m taking you somewhere safe, just in case the worst might happen. So it’ll be just the two of us for a while.
What’s the matter? You can’t stop here. We’ve got to get moving before they notice us.
Why? Are you going to run away from me? You’re a good girl, so come with me.
You don’t have to be scared. It’s okay.
I’ll stay by your side, no matter what happens.
Miss… Could it be that you’re afraid of me?
How insensitive of those guys…
We’ve been surrounded. I guess we left a little late. Come close to me. I’ll carry you again. Hold onto me when I give you the sign.
I’m surprised you’re pointing guns at us when we’re completely unarmed.
You want me to hand her over? What if I say no?
Was that supposed to be a threat?
I’m going to protect her, even if I end up full of bullets. I’ll make sure to tear you to pieces.
Shoot if you want to. It’s easier than opening a tin of beans, isn’t it?
Why are you afraid?
This way, Miss! Let’s go.
Just one more!
I’m sorry. My shoulder got hit. I guess dodging everything like they do in the movies is impossible.
I’m fine. It’s bleeding, but it’s only a slight injury.
Anyway… You’re alright, aren’t you?
I’m glad. I didn’t know what I’d do if you got hurt again.
Hmm? Your face is completely pale.
What’s the matter?
Huh? That’s your handkerchief! Using it as a bandage is a waste!
No! You’ll get blood on you if you touch it!
I don’t need any treatment. Not if you’re going to end up getting dirty…
Don’t worry, I’m fine. I don’t even mind dying, as long as I can protect you.
Ah… Why are you angry?
I’m not joking! I’m serious.
I don’t want anyone to defile you, not even me. That’s more important to me than my life. It’s because I admire you.
I’ve always been watching you, ever since I was a child. All I ever did was come into contact with corpses every day and you were the only thing that was brilliantly beautiful.
You don’t know what my job is? I’m a cleaner. A job that involves picking up dead bodies and dealing with traitors. The other people in the organisation call me a hyena. Everyone despises that job, even the members of the organisation themselves. No one looks at me normally. But you smiled at me gently, even when I had just moved into the neighbourhood. I was happy.
From then on, I began to see you every day. You always smiled at me. No matter how dirty my hands became, it was only you who didn’t change and always remained beautiful. Of course I was observing you as part of my mission, but that wasn’t all…
I wanted to protect your happy life, which was something that I could never have. I’m going to destroy anyone who tries to kill you.
I’m going to keep watch, to make sure that you never come to any harm. That’s my duty. My life. You’re… You’re everything to me.
Why have you got that expression on your face?
That’s right. I’m going to stay by your side and protect you. I’ve always said that, haven’t I? Could it be that you don’t believe me?
That’s why you were afraid of me?
There’s a car coming! It’s their allies. They’re even more bothersome than flies! Even when you chase them away, they just keep coming!
Where did all those people come from? So I don’t have any choice but to kill them, do I?
What’s the matter, Miss?
You may not want me to do that, but we’ll just get discovered if we stay here.
Huh? We’ll steal a car and escape? The car they just arrived in? You’re going to come with me?
Is that okay? You see…
I guess now isn’t the time to be saying that. Alright, let’s go. We can’t just stay here.
Alright! Let’s get going!
Here you go. You wanted a cappuccino, didn’t you? You should try and drink a little. You’ll calm down.
So we were able to get out of Rome somehow.
Well, we can’t take our time looking around this town though. We’ll have to get going again in a little while. Let’s make our way to Florence for now. They can still catch up to us while we’re here.
I think they’re going to chase us as far as they can.
Now that a bomb has been set, my allies can’t leave Rome. The further away we get from Rome, the more distant we will be from my allies. But for now, the only thing we can do is run. The bomb will go off in 33 hours. Let’s trust the others to deal with the bomb before that. I’ll be with you, so don’t worry.
Are you sure that you’re not worried?
Well… It’s because you were reluctant to come with me when we left Rome.
Why did you decide to come with me?
I don’t think hearing about my life would be very interesting. But if it’ll help you trust me, then I’ll tell you everything you want to know. I won’t hide anything from you. Let’s go back to the car. I’ll tell you while we’re driving.
I’ve got a younger brother. We were orphans who were found and brought up by Amphisbaena.
Do you know the word “machina”? It means a spy that will follow any order, just like a machine. As an experiment, the two of us were educated to become machina, so that we would become excellent spies.
However, that experiment ended in failure. The leader in charge of the facility was a terrible person, and both of us had a hard time. By the time that Father had realised, it was too late. There was something strange about us as humans. Even I don’t understand it myself. You could say that we’re just useless junk.
The leaders were worried about how they should deal with us. The only thing left was to kill us. At that time, Father called out to us. He asked us whether we would join the family as cleaners. If it wasn’t for those words, I wouldn’t be here right now. Father found a place for someone useless like me. I’m truly grateful. That’s my life story.
As I said before, I became the one who observed you and grew up watching you. I can’t believe I never realised you were Father’s daughter. But your existence was the only thing that kept me going. Of course, that hasn’t changed at all and I don’t think it ever will. That really wasn’t an interesting story, was it?
I see. I’m glad then. It’s a little late for me to be saying this, but you and Father are similar. Especially when you have a serious look on your face.
I see. So you’ve never met your father. You were told that he died when you were young.
Don’t look so sad. You shouldn’t feel as if you were abandoned by your father. I think Father didn’t want you to get involved in the conflicts of the dark side of society. That’s why he stopped having contact with you.
I know! Otherwise I wouldn’t be protecting you. He was a Father who brought together hundreds of mafia members. He went as far as giving an order just for the sake of one girl. Your father is a kind person who cares about his daughter.
Hmm? Ah… Well… I didn’t think that you’d thank me.
That was close.
I’m sorry… I wasn’t looking while I was driving. It was just a little surprising.
Huh… I should be happy, but I feel strange.
Let’s leave the car here. The longer we ride it, the more likely we’ll be discovered. For now, we’ll wait for my allies to contact me.
I wonder what has happened in Rome?
There are 30 hours left. I hope they find the bomb soon.
Are you worried?
I’m impressed. But you don’t have to push yourself too hard if you’re scared. That’s why I’m by your side, you see.
Ah… No… Well… I’m glad you’re grateful. I just can’t stay calm though.
I wonder why that is?
Ah… I see. I’ve always seen your smile from a distance, but this is the first time I’ve seen you smiling at me.
Huh? What’s the matter?
I let my guard down…
Stop it… Don’t lay a hand on her…
Time unknown. In a small, dark space. An unknown amount of hours has passed.
Are you awake?
Thank goodness. I didn’t know what I’d do if you didn’t wake up.
Don’t move about too much.
Well… I don’t think you’ll be able to move anyway. I was even having trouble turning, you see. It’s too dark to see anything, but I think we’re in the trunk of a car. I’m sure we were locked in here after we were knocked out. It looks like all our things were taken away too.
I don’t have my phone either, so I can’t even find out where we are now. I wonder where they’re taking us. Are they taking us to their hideout? Or perhaps they’ll throw us into the sea?
Are you scared?
You don’t seem to be okay. When we’re this close, I can tell you’re trembling. I’ll hold onto you, so don’t worry.
I’m sorry. You were surprised because I touched you all of a sudden, weren’t you? I won’t touch you if you don’t want me to. I won’t do anything.
I’m sorry… Can you talk about something? It doesn’t matter what. I can hear the sound of the engine, but I can’t feel calm when there’s no one speaking.
What’s the matter?
You found out. That’s right. I’ve been trembling for a while too. Being here made me remember something from the past. When I made a mistake during training, I was locked up in a small room without a window, just like this. It was small, dark and I couldn’t hear anything. I don’t like quiet places because of that. I always play music when I go to sleep, but they’ve taken away my mp3 player too.
Now… I think might be scared…
Umm… Why did you hug me?
I don’t hate it. I’m really happy. I’ve calmed down a little.
Hmm? Yes… I was scared the whole time you were asleep.
No… I couldn’t have forced you to wake up. You would have been in a cold and small place after waking up. I’m sure you would have been afraid. So wouldn’t it have been better for you to sleep?
What’s the matter? I can’t see your face, so I won’t understand if you don’t say anything.
Eh? No… I don’t think I’ve done anything for you to thank me.
Weren’t you scared of me? Are you okay now?
I wonder what’s the matter. Up until a few hours ago, just touching you was enough to make me happy. But it’s different now. It’s strange, isn’t it?
Hey… Can I hold you too?
Your body is small and warm. I feel calm. Do you feel a little less scared like this?
Hmm? I see.
The car slowed down. It might be stopping.
This is our chance! I’m sure they’ll open the trunk. We’ll jump out immediately when they do.
It’s alright. I’m sure I’ll be able to figure it out. Trust me.
Really? You’re really going to trust me?
It’s alright. I’m definitely going to protect you.
They’re coming closer. Well then… Let’s get them!
One more! Alright!
No! There was one more!
Miss… That was a surprise. Where’d you get that umbrella?
It was a good weapon. You looked cool when you hit him with all your strength. He probably didn’t think you would’ve used the umbrella he left in the trunk.
You were able to defeat a man suddenly like that… You really are Father’s daughter.
Alright! They probably won’t be able to follow us if we tie them up like this. It’s a good thing they had some rope with them too. Now all we have to do is get everything that was taken away from us…
My phone and mp3 player are here, but not the key to the handcuffs… Maybe they threw it away somewhere, thinking it was useless?
Don’t look so hopeless. We’ll be able to get them off once we find someone with the right skills. We’ll take them off once things get sorted out.
Yes. Good girl.
Right… We should find out where we are now.
Ah… It looks like we’re near Pisa. I suppose they really did plan on throwing us into the sea.
Sorry. Just wait a moment. I’ll contact my allies. I’m sure they must be worried.
This is Nero. I’m sorry I couldn’t report to you sooner.
Hmm? What’s the matter? The reception isn’t good. Your voice sounds fuzzy too. Did something happen?
Eh? Milan? Sorry, I can’t hear you very well.
Ah… It got cut off.
It’s nothing… It just seems that the reception wasn’t very good. That shouldn’t be possible though. I set it up so it couldn’t be hacked.
Yes… I’m a little worried, but I don’t think anything strange will happen to them. Let’s do what we can.
They told us to go to Milan. We don’t have any other choice for now.
It’s alright. I’m sure they’ll find the bomb planted in Rome right away.
Hey, we’re going all the way to Milan, so let’s think of something fun to do. Is there anywhere you’d like to see?
La Scala?  Even though you’re not that familiar with opera?
No… I do know that! Everything else about you too.
So why do you want to go there?
Eh? The place where he proposed?
Your father… So you mean Father?
It’s the place where Father told the person he loved how he felt. What a wonderful story. I didn’t know that was an important place to your parents.
Alright. Shall we go there once we’ve dealt with a few things? I’ll definitely take you there. Come on, let’s keep moving.
 Also known as Teatro alla Scala, it is considered one of the leading theatres of ballet and opera.
5:00PM. Outside of Milan. 26 hours have passed.
It’s been a long time since I’ve been Milan. It took us a long time, but I’m glad we arrived safely. It’s a surprise there was nothing set up on the road though.
Ah, I’m sorry! It’s my phone.
Hello. This is Nero.
Ah. It seems like the reception is bad again, but are you okay? A lot has happened, but we’ve reached Milan.
She’s safe too. What about Rome?
I’m so glad! That’s just what I expected. I’m relieved.
Yes. Okay, got it. We’ll take our time coming back. See you later.
Alright. The bomb in Rome was safely dealt with. We don’t need to worry anymore.
Hey, Miss! Are you okay?!
You were so relieved that you felt exhausted?
You did your best.
It seems like they still have some things to sort out. So they want us to stay in Milan overnight. Shall we get a hotel and stay here for now?
Why don’t we walk around Milan a little while we look for a hotel?
We’ve been running for a long time. It’d be better to relax here.
Okay. Let’s go then.
This accessory looks cute. You like this colour, don’t you?
Of course I know what you like.
Ah. I think you’d like this hair clip too.
I thought so.
Hey. I’ll put it on for you.
It’s okay! It’s got a sharp end, so it’d be no good if you hurt yourself by mistake. Stay still.
Yes. It’s cute. It suits you. Shall I buy it for you?
It’s alright. Let me give it to you as a gift. I’ve always wanted to do something like this.
Hey… Shall we watch a movie after this? Then we’ll go to La Scala, where you wanted to go.
Ah… I wonder if we can get tickets for La Scala. Shall we just go to see if there are any free seats? If we’re lucky, we’ll be able to watch an opera.
Yes. Let’s go then.
This feels like a date.
8:00PM. On the outskirts of Milan. 29 hours have passed.
Ah. Hey, look. There’s a bar  over there. I was just feeling hungry. Let’s have some tea.
This is a nice place. Because the terrace is open, you can see the cathedral over there.
The movie we just saw was interesting, wasn’t it? We watched it without knowing it was an action movie involving a bomb, so I couldn’t help smiling bitterly.
You see, there was that one scene. The main character tried to defuse the bomb with his girlfriend. The last things remaining were a red wire and a blue wire. It would have blown up immediately if they cut the wrong one. They cut the blue one, because they didn’t want to cut their red thread. 
I think I understand. I wouldn’t be able to cut the thread that was connecting me. Just like these handcuffs.
Hmm? No, it was nothing.
Anyway, it’s good that we got tickets to go to La Scala tomorrow afternoon, isn’t it?
It’s okay. We can just go back to Rome after watching the opera. I want to go to La Scala with you too.
Right, how about we order something? What would you like?
Ah, they have ice-cream too. Shall we order pistachio flavour?
Ah… I know everything you like. That’s because I’ve been watching you for a long time.
Why do you have a strange look on your face?
Is that so? Is there something strange about the way I do things? I think it’s normal to know what the girl you like is interested in.
So it’s normally something you’d understand by spending time together?
In my case, I wasn’t able to get any closer to you than was necessary. But now I’ll be able to ask you directly about what you like.
Ah… No… We won’t have to be together after this mission is over, so I might not be able to do that either.
I’m sorry. I made things weird. Let’s hurry up and order, okay?
I think I’ll have this. Fruits of the Forest.
I like fruits. Have you decided on something too?
Huh? You’re okay with having the same thing as me?
Ah.. No… Of course it’s okay. I was just a little embarrassed.
You’re right. It’s good that we’re talking like this and getting to know what we both like.
We’ll have two Fruits of the Forest and two teas.
This really is like a date.
Hey. If we really were on a date, what else would we do? Would we do things like kissing?
I see. Shall we try then?
Hmm? Just kidding.
It was a joke. I’m sorry.
Hmm? Why are you staring at me so intently?
That’s right. Even I was surprised just now. So this is what it’s like when I laugh.
Being with you is fun. I naturally end up smiling. I don’t know the right way to say this, but the warped and twisted things inside of me feel as if they’re returning to normal.
I thought that eating at restaurants and going round museums was just something that only happened in the movies. At the very least, they had nothing to do with me. So it feels like I’m dreaming now. My date with you is over now, isn’t it?
Shall we go back to the hotel once we’ve finished eating? Let’s rest well tonight.
You’re right. We’ve got handcuffs on, so we’ll be in the same room. I suppose we’ll have to use the bed and shower together too.
Don’t worry. I won’t do anything strange. I might hold you or kiss you, but I won’t do anything more than that.
Oh? That look on your face… Did I say something strange again?
 Some bars in Italy are more similar to cafes, as aside from alcoholic drinks, they also serve coffee, tea and a variety of foods such as sandwiches and ice-cream.
 There is a legend in Japan that two people who are destined to be together are connected by a red thread.
11:00AM. On the outskirts of Milan. 44 hours have passed.
The weather is great! The white cathedral looks wonderful against the blue sky!
What’s the matter? Are you still angry about last night?
Just like I promised, all I did was hold you and kiss you.
Come on, smile. I’ll end up wanting to kiss you if you pout too much.
Shall we go after we’ve eaten? We’re going to La Scala, of course. Just as I promised we would.
2:40PM. La Scala. 47 hours and 40 minutes have passed.
Hmm… Our seats are… There they are.
There are 20 minutes until the performance starts, hmm? We’re right on time. This is my first time going to La Scala, and it’s amazing. I wonder how many seats there are. This place feels even more special when I think that Father proposed to the woman he loved here.
Your father met your mother and they got to know each other, then they fell in love.
I think I’m a little envious of that. Just having a connection with someone else is a fortunate thing.
Ah. It’s my phone. Jeez. The performance is going to start soon though…
Hello, this is Nero. I’m sorry. If it’s not something urgent, I’ll call you back.
No. It’s alright. I want to keep talking.
Who is this? How do you know this number?
Unfortunately, the bomb in Rome has been dealt with by my allies.
Your plan has been ruined. Go and run back to your doghouse.
What does that mean? How did you know we were in Milan?
Well done for coming all the way to La Scala. I’m not planning on putting up a fight. I don’t want to get shot. I can tell what you’re pointing at me, even from underneath your coat. If I make a wrong move, you’ll probably shoot innocent people too.
What a disgusting way of doing things. This young lady hates that kind of thing. Let’s do this peacefully.
I understand. We’re going to leave obediently.
I’m sorry, Miss. We’ll do as they say for now.
It was a trap. There never was a bomb in Rome. They knew that we would run away to somewhere safe if they threatened us with that. Then all they had to do was chase us and lead us somewhere.
They were pretending to be our allies. They did something to my smart phone when we were locked inside the trunk of the car.
The phone call about the bomb being dealt with wasn’t real. Now that I think about it, it’s really strange that they told us to have fun in Milan. They lured us out to Milan. They were kind enough to tell me the reason why on the phone earlier. The bomb wasn’t in Rome, it was here, at La Scala in Milan.
2:50PM. Backstage at La Scala. Ten minutes until the bomb explodes.
Those terrible guys tied us up and left us here…!
It doesn’t look like we’ll be able to escape… Are you okay, Miss?
You don’t have to push yourself too hard. You’re trembling.
This is a warning to Amphisbaena. The damage will be greater if they say we were alive and crying out until the last second before being killed by a timed bomb, rather than being shot.
That’s why they tied us up here in front of this bomb. They want Father’s daughter to die a heroic death. This is a stage for that purpose.
I’m sorry. I got carried away because I was with you. I wouldn’t normally make a mistake like this.
It’s not like that! It’s not your fault. It’s not! I… I lost my cool.
For some reason, I just can’t stay calm when I’m with you. I get carried away because of insignificant things. But I didn’t think that was a bad thing. I never felt like this before in my life. I’m really happy to feel this way. So I don’t want to lose this feeling.
There are 8 minutes left, hmm?
Hey. I love you. I love you.
That’s not it. I’m not saying that because I’m prepared to die. It’s because I want to protect you and stay beside you from now on. That’s why I told you. It’s a promise that I’ll definitely protect you.
I wouldn’t break a promise and make a girl cry. I wouldn’t do anything that would be a disgrace to Italian men.
So can you give me your reply to my feelings? I love you.
Thank you. Those words… My connection with you… are enough to make me think I can do anything.
Now that I’ve made you a promise, I’ve got to survive.
Miss! Let me borrow your hairpin. It might get a little dirty, so I’ll buy you a new one. If I do this right, the end could be used like a knife. I’m going to use it to cut the rope.
It’s alright. If I tear it like this…
Okay. I’ve cut it.
My ribs hurt a little, but I’m fine. I had to put all my effort into it. Otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to cut anything.
I’m fine. Deal with the bomb quickly. We don’t have time to run away. We’ll have to defuse it.
2.55PM. Five minutes before the bomb explodes.
The lid is screwed on! Damn it!
Stage tools? Right! There might be a screwdriver! Let’s try and find one!
2.57PM. Three minutes before the bomb explodes.
Alright, the screws are off now. I’m going to open the lid. Then if I cut the wires on the inside…
2.58PM. Two minutes before the bomb explodes.
In the movie we saw before, the two wires were red and blue. Leaving the red one uncut because they didn’t want to break their bond was the right answer. But now they’re all red…
There aren’t just one or two. Why are there so many? What should I do?
I’m good at dealing with people, but I’ve never dealt with a bomb before. Which one should I cut? What should I do?
Thank you for encouraging me. Your hands are trembling though.
I feel the same way. I’m scared. But you’re by my side. There’s no way that I can give up. I can’t look pathetic in front of the person I love.
Hey. Can you entrust your life to me?
I understand. In that case… I won’t hesitate anymore. If all these lines are connected to you, just like in that movie, then this is my answer…
I’m going to cut all these red wires!
It stopped… Thank goodness!
Hmm? No, I didn’t know the right answer. I just thought that if those really were the lines that connected you and me, then cutting them all wouldn’t matter.
Even if we weren’t connected by those things, as long as our feelings were connected, then we’d be okay. That’s what I thought. Being with you…
Is it okay for you to be the one embracing me? I’m not going to let go of you again.
I see… I won’t let go again then. Never again, okay?
We can’t keep our hands like this, can we? They’ll definitely come here once they figure out the bomb hasn’t gone off.
It would have bothered me if we’d run away now. I made this happen to you. I won’t be satisfied if I don’t make up for that a little. We weren’t even able to watch the opera we came to see. I’ve got to make up for that too.
I’m sure that there were mannequins backstage, weren’t there?
Oh? So you’re finally here?
It’s too bad that we’ve defused the bomb. As you can see, me and the young lady are alive.
But just look. You can tell she’s exhausted by the near death experience she had.
I feel sorry for her. She’s become so weak that she can’t stand up without my help.
Are you going to fire your guns here? Shall I tell you something useful instead? Watch your head when you’re backstage.
Miss! It’s okay! Push them down!
Haha. Those things were on top of the beams. It’s pretty painful when something hits you directly, isn’t it? It seems that you’re still able to move, so perhaps I’ll tie you up with some rope.
You probably didn’t think she’d be up there. I was holding a mannequin. I suppose you didn’t realise because it was wrapped up in a blanket.
Why do you look so surprised? Ah… You’re surprised that we got the handcuffs off?
Hmm… I wonder how we were able to remove them?
3:00PM. On the outskirts of Milan. Going back to when 48 hours had passed.
I’m sure that there were mannequins backstage, weren’t there? How about I handcuff one of them to me and pretend it’s you? Then you’ll go up there while I act as distraction.
Just push anything from on top of those beams onto those guys. I want you to knock the enemy out.
Hmm? We can take these handcuffs off.
Umm… Where did I drop that hairpin?
Ah, there it is. Because it has a narrow tip…
I’m good at picking locks. I practised doing it at the orphanage because I kept wanting to run away.
Hmm? Your mouth is wide open. What’s the matter?
Oh no… Losing the key doesn’t mean you can’t take off the handcuffs.
I just didn’t want to be separated from you.
Ah… Don’t sit down like that.
My goodness… I understand. I’m sorry I forced you to be handcuffed to me. But it’s okay now. I’m not worried when we’re apart. I can finally feel that way.
Hey, Miss. Will you stay beside me, even without the handcuffs?
You’re a cheerful, kind and beautiful person who lives in a different world to me. I’ve always admired you.
But now I think of you as someone I’m close to, who is important to me. No… I’ve become able to consider you as an important person. Now that I can be beside you and face you directly, I don’t need the handcuffs anymore.
I suppose it’s no good saying that to these guys.
Stay here for a little while. Some members of Amphisbaena will come and find you soon enough. There’ll be plenty of gratitude for you. Make sure you accept it.
Miss! I’ll come and get you, so just stay on top of the beams!
Come on, let’s go home!
4:00PM. A hotel on the outskirts of Milan.
My allies contacted me. They had no trouble capturing those guys. A train back to Rome has been arranged for you. It’ll leave at night. You’ll choose who the next Father will be when you get back to Amphisbaena. This trouble will come to an end if you do. It’s finally over, isn’t it?
I had quite a good time with you, so I’m a little sad. Would you be angry if I said that?
Ah. Thank you.
Hey. Are you saying that as a friend?
When the bomb was in front of us, it was my intention to confess to you. Do you really love me?
Then can I continue to stay by your side from now on? We’ll go on dates, watch movies and eat together… Is it okay for me to be with you?
Thank you! I was satisfied with just watching you from afar. I didn’t mind it being one-sided. I thought that was how my love was.
But now I can’t help wanting to touch you. Is it okay for me to feel you a little closer to me?
No. One more time.
What should I do? I’m about to cry.
Even though I’m happy to be able to touch you…
For some reason, there was a lump in my throat and I felt sad.
Hey. Don’t look away. Make sure you look at me. Otherwise this is what I’m going to do…
Your ears are really soft.
I wonder whether your ears or your lips are softer. I won’t know unless I check it out a little more.
Your ears are completely red. So this is where you’re sensitive?
I’ll make sure to remember that.
You’ve gradually begun to relax.
Why? If you can’t answer, then shall I answer for you?
My kiss feels good. You want to keep going. That’s why you’re not resisting, isn’t it?
I won’t accept any excuses. I’m going to ask your response directly from here, you see. If you don’t hate it, then I’ll be even more affectionate to you.
Not just your ears and lips, the whole of your body too…
You’re all mine. Make sure you’re ready.
That’s no good. I won’t let you escape.
Didn’t you promise you’d stay by my side?
I’m not going to let go of you. Well… I’m trying to get you to say that you don’t want us to be apart.
I’m going to work hard at making my feelings known until you obediently ask me for that.
Hmm? There’s still time before the train. But wouldn’t it be alright to miss it? Then we’d stay for another night and enjoy Milan. Right?
Several months later. 3:00PM. On the outskirts of Milan.
Here you go. This is your ice-cream. Shall we eat while we walk?
I’m finally having a date with you in Milan! I wish I could have come earlier, but I’ve been busy for the past few months.
Ah… You don’t need to worry. Everything is going fine. Because you chose the next Father, things have calmed down in Amphisbaena. I’ve got to work even harder than before now. I can’t do anything pathetic while you’re looking.
I didn’t think we would ever become lovers. I thought that it was something unattainable, but things are different now. I feel as if I’ve finally left that small and dark room.
Thanks to you I was finally able to come out into the light. It might take a little longer for my eyes to get used to it, but I’m not scared of anything when you’re with me. I honestly feel that way.
Ah! Your ice-cream is melting! There! There! Hey, come over here!
Just kidding. Caught you.
You’re blushing again. We’ve kissed plenty of times, haven’t we? Why do you always react like that?
Your lips are sweeter than usual. They’ve got the sweet flavour of chocolate and strawberry. I think that I might even melt.
Don’t be embarrassed. You’re always so cute.
Hey. Shall we go to La Scala after this? We didn’t get to see it properly before.
Okay. Let’s watch an opera together. There’s something I want to tell you after that.
Hmm? Just look forward to finding out later. Perhaps you probably already know what it is though.
I’ll never let go of you again. It’s not because I want to control you.
I want to do it so I can make you happy by myself.
But if you ever do something like cheat on me, I’ll do more than just handcuff you. Remember that.
I love you. I always will.
No matter what trouble I face, or whatever awaits me in the future, I definitely won’t let go of you. I’ll love you forever.