Translator: AtlasStudios Editor: AtlasStudios
While Azik muttered to himself, he subconsciously shot a glance at Quentin Cohen, seemingly hoping for hints to jolt his memories.
Cohen, with his deep set blue eyes, shook his head without any hesitation. “I do not have any impression of it.”
“…Alright then. Perhaps, it just shares a root word.” Azik lowered his left hand and gave a self-deprecating laugh.
Klein was rather disappointed with the outcome, and he could not help but add on. “Mentor, Mr. Azik, as the both of you know, I’m very interested in exploring and restoring the history of the Fourth Epoch. If you ever recall anything or obtain relevant information, could you please write to me?”
“No problem.” As a result of Klein’s actions today, the silver-haired Senior Associate Professor was rather pleased with him.
Azik also nodded and said, “Is your address still the same as before?”
“For now, but I’ll be moving soon. I’ll write a letter to inform you when the time comes,” replied Klein in a respectful manner.
Cohen shook his black cane and said, “It’s indeed about time you moved to a place with a better environment.”
At that moment, Klein caught a glance at the newspaper in Azik’s hand. He deliberated on his words before saying, “Mentor, Mr. Azik, what did the newspapers say regarding Welch and Naya? I only learned a little from the police who were in charge of the investigations.”
Azik was just about to answer when Cohen suddenly pulled out the pocket watch that was linked to his black tuxedo by a golden chain.
Click! He opened the pocket watch and tapped his cane.
“The meeting is about to begin. Azik, we can’t be delayed any further. Give the newspaper to Moretti.”
“Alright.” Azik handed over the newspaper he had read to Klein. “We will be going upstairs. Remember to write a letter. Our address has yet to change; it’s still the Khoy University History Department Office. Haha.”
He laughed as he turned around and left the room with Cohen.
Klein took off his hat and bowed. After watching the two gentlemen leave, he bade farewell to owner of the office, Harvin Stone. He proceeded across the corridor and slowly exited the gray three-story building.
With his back against the sun, he lifted up his cane and unfolded the newspaper and saw the title: “Tingen Morning Post.”
Tingen sure has all sorts of newspapers and magazines… There is the Morning Post, Evening Post, the Honest Paper, Backlund Daily Tribune, Tussock Times, family magazines and book reviews… Klein casually recalled the several names that surfaced in his mind. Of course, a number of them were not local. They were distributed via steam locomotives.
Now that the papermaking and printing industries were getting more advanced, the cost of a newspaper has already decreased to the price of a penny. The audience it reached also grew wider and wider.
Klein did not scrutinize the details of the newspaper, quickly flipping to the News section with the report “Armed Burglary Murder.”
“…According to the police department, the scene at Mr. Welch’s home was a horrible sight. There was missing gold, jewelry, and money, as well as anything valuable that could be easily taken away. Not even a penny was left behind. There is reason to believe that this was done by a merciless group of criminals that would not hesitate to kill the innocent, such as Mister Welch and Madam Naya, if sight of their faces are caught.”
“This is outright contempt for our kingdom’s laws! This is a challenge to public security! No one wishes to have such an encounter! Of course, one piece of good news is that the police have located the murderer and captured the main culprit. We will do our best to provide news on any follow-ups.”
“Reporter: John Browning.”
The matter has been handled and covered up… As Klein walked through the boulevard, he nodded in a hardly noticeable manner.
He flipped through the newspaper as he strolled down the path, reading the other news articles and serials in the process.
Suddenly, he felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand, as though needles were stabbing at him.
Someone is watching me? Observing me? Monitoring me? Various thoughts welled up in him as Klein had a faint realization.
Back on Earth, he had once felt an invisible gaze before ultimately discovering the source of the gaze. However, it had never felt as crystal clear as what he was experiencing now!
This was the same in the original Klein’s memory fragments!
Was it the transmigration or the mysterious luck enhancement ritual which enhanced my sixth sense? Klein fought back the urge to seek out the observer. Using his knowledge from reading novels and watching movies, he slowed his pace and put away the newspaper before looking toward Khoy River.
Following that, he acted as if he was admiring the scenery, slowly turning his head in different directions. He acted natural as he turned around, taking in everything with his eyes.
Other than the trees, grassy plains, and students passing by in the distance, there was no other person there.
But Klein was certain that someone was watching him!
This… Klein’s heart raced as his blood surged through his body with the intense thumping.
He unfolded the papers and covered half his face, afraid that anyone would discover anything wrong with his expression.
Meanwhile, he clenched his cane and readied himself to draw his gun.
One step. Two steps. Three steps. Klein proceeded forward slowly.
The feeling of being spied upon remained, but there was no sudden outburst of danger.
He walked through the boulevard in a somewhat stiff manner and arrived at the waiting point for public carriages when a carriage pulled up coincidentally.
“Iron… Zoute… No, Champagne Street.” Klein continually dismissed his thoughts.
He originally planned on heading home immediately, but he was afraid of leading an observer of unknown motives to his apartment. Following that, he thought of heading to Zouteland Street to seek help from the Nighthawks or his colleagues. However, he thought otherwise, afraid that he would end up alerting his enemy and expose the Nighthawks. Therefore, he casually chose somewhere else.
“Six pence,” the ticketing officer replied routinely.
Klein did not bring any gold pounds with him today. He had hidden the money in the usual spot and had only taken two soli notes with him. And before he came, he had spent the same amount of money, leaving him with one soli six pence. Therefore, he took out all his coins and handed to the ticketing officer.
He found a seat after boarding the carriage, and finally with the closing of the carriage doors, Klein felt that unease of being watched vanish!
He exhaled slowly as he felt his limbs tingle slightly.
What do I do?
What should I do next? Klein looked out the carriage as he racked his brains for a solution.
Until he was clear about the intentions of the person watching him, Klein had to assume that there was malicious intent!
Many thoughts sprang up in his mind, but he dismissed them. He had never experienced such an event, and had to use a few minutes to organize his ideas.
He had to notify the Nighthawks; only they could truly get rid of this threat!
But I can’t head there directly or I might expose them. Perhaps, that might be their goal…
Following this train of thought, Klein crudely surmised various possibilities as his thoughts turned clearer.
Ffffffff! He exhaled as he regained some semblance of composure. He looked seriously at the scenery outside flying past him.
There were no accidents along the way to Champagne Street, but when Klein opened the door and stepped out of the car, he immediately had the uneasy feeling of being watched again!
He acted as though he had not sensed anything. He took the newspaper and his cane, slowly making his way in the direction of Zouteland Street.
But he did not enter that street. Instead, he took another route to the Red Moonlight Street behind. There was a beautiful white plaza there, as well as a large cathedral with a pointy roof!
Saint Selena Cathedral!
The Tingen headquarters of the Church of the Evernight Goddess!
As a believer, there was nothing odd about him participating in Mass or pray on his day off.
The cathedral exhibited a design similar to Earth’s Gothic style. It also had a tall, black, and imposing clock tower, situated between blue and red checkered windows.
Klein stepped into the cathedral and followed an aisle into the prayer hall. Along the way, the stained windows were comprised of red and blue glass patterns that allowed colored light to shine into the hall. The blue was closer to black, the red the same color as the crimson moon. It made the surroundings seem unusually dark and mysterious.
The feeling of being watched vanished. Klein acted unfazed as he walked toward the open prayer hall.
There were no high windows here. The deep darkness was emphasized, but behind the arc-shaped holy altar, on the wall directly opposite the door, were about twenty circular fist-sized holes that allowed the radiant sunlight to enter the hall.
It was akin to pedestrians seeing the starry sky when suddenly looking up into the dark night to see the shimmering stars in all their nobility, purity, and holiness.
Even though Klein had always believed that gods could be analyzed and understood, he could not help but lower his head here.
The bishop was preaching in a gentle tone as Klein silently made his way down the aisle that split the pews into two columns. He searched for an empty area close to the passageway before slowly taking a seat.
Leaning his cane onto the back of the pew in front of him, Klein took off his hat and placed it onto his lap together with the newspaper. Then he clasped his hands together and lowered his head.
The entire process was done slowly and routinely as though he was really there to pray.
Klein closed his eyes as he silently listened to the bishop’s voice in the darkness.
“Lacking clothes and food, they have no covering in the cold.
“They are drenched by rains, and huddle around the rocks for lack of shelter.
“They are orphans snatched from the breast, hope lost on them; they are the poor that have been forced off the proper path.
“The Evernight did not forsake them, but bestowed them with love 1 .”
Echoes amplified as they entered his ear. Klein saw a swath of darkness in front of him as he felt his spirit and mind cleansed.
He calmly took it in until the bishop finished his preachings and ended Mass.
After which, the bishop opened a confessional door beside him. Men and women began lining up.
Klein opened his eyes and donned his hat once more. With his cane and newspaper, he stood up and found his place in line.
It was his turn after more than twenty minutes.
He stepped in and closed the door behind him. There was darkness in front of him.
“My child, what do you wish to say?” The bishop’s voice sounded from behind the wooden damper screen.
Klein took out the ‘Seventh Unit, Special Operations Department’ badge from his pocket and handed it over to the bishop through an opening.
“Someone is tailing me. I wish to find Dunn Smith.” As though he had been infected by the silent darkness, his tone turned softer as well.
The bishop took the badge and after a few seconds of silence, he said, “Turn right from the confession booth and walk to the end. There will be a secret door to the side. Someone will lead the way after you enter.”
As he spoke, he pulled a rope inside the room, causing a particular priest to hear a chime.
Klein retrieved his badge and took off his hat and pressed it to his chest. He gave a slight bow before turning around and exiting.
After confirming that the feeling of being watched was gone, he wore his halved top hat. Without any excessive emotions, he held his cane and turned right, until he arrived by an arched altar.
He found the secret door in the wall facing his side. He silently opened it before sneaking in quickly.
The secret door closed silently as a middle-aged, black-robed priest appeared under the illumination of gas lamps.
“What is it?” the priest asked tersely.
Klein showed his badged and repeated what he said to the bishop.
The middle-aged priest did not ask further questions. He turned around and proceeded forward in silence.
Klein nodded and took off his hat. With his black cane, he followed silently in tow.
Rozanne had once mentioned that heading left from the crossroads towards Chanis Gate would reach Saint Selena Cathedral.