Alice in the Massacre - Chapter 61
Arc 8 – Mock Turtle
Alice was surrounded by flames.
Flames that went on endlessly.
The whole area was filled with scorching smoke and an unpleasant, all-consuming smell.
Red, red, red.
It was agonizing.
Her lungs felt as if they had been punctured, and she couldn’t catch her breath.
Crying out, Alice struggled to advance through the smoke. She called for Jack’s name. Yet, regardless of how many times she called for help, he never showed up.
But Jack didn’t emerge.
She continued to flee in a frenzy. A while later, a figure was seen standing behind the flames. Trying to call for help, she jolted to a halt.
The person was holding a large bottle of kerosene in their hand, which seemed to have been containing kerosene. The “person” started waving the bottle around, laughing as though breaking into a fit of giggles. The contents of the bottle were seemingly empty.
The “person” shouted in a raspy tone.
“Burn it all! Die! Die! Die! Everybody die! Hahahaha!”
The child said happily and flung the bottle into the flames. Alice watched the scene in astonishment.
Before she realized it, she was in a room in an apartment somewhere, engulfed in a blaze of flames. It was pandemonium.
Outside, sirens that sounded like fire engines were blaring, and someone was shouting something over a loudspeaker continuously. All around her, she could hear the screams and cries of the people, like the rumbling of the earth.
On the bed, surrounded by flames, the “girl” was smirking and relentlessly swinging something in her hand down on the bed.
… What is it?
What are you doing…?
Alice couldn’t take her eyes off the scene.
This was something that she was not supposed to witness. But she could not look away, nor could she turn around and escape.
While her body was being burned by the flames, Alice opened her unharmed left eye and watched the “girl”. The girl’s clothes were scorched, cut in places and drenched in blood.
It was not solely the girl.
Whenever she swung down the “something” in her hand while yelling bizarrely, red droplets splashed like a fountain.
“Die! Die! Die! Die! Die!”
While screaming as if in a curse, the insane girl swung the “knife” in her hand down again and again.
Alice slumped down on the spot.
I don’t want to remember.
I don’t want to remember this…
Trembling, Alice called out to Jack in her mind.
I’m not supposed to be here.
I can’t move.
Jack, help me…
Eventually, the girl who had been half-madly plunging the knife into the bed rose unsteadily to her feet, clad in tattered clothes and bloodstained. She stood up like a crumpled marionette.
She was laughing in a dry voice with large tears streaming from both eyes. Only her mouth was open as if it were going to burst apart, and she was laughing.
When Alice caught sight of her face, she stiffened.
I know that girl.
No, it’s not that I know her.
I “understand” her.
That girl is, after all, none other than myself.
She is me.
Screaming, she jumped up. Like a spring-loaded puppet, she flipped off the blanket and raised her upper body.
She closed her eyes and shouted while holding her ears.
As if to dispel the nightmare.
As if to deny reality.
As if trying to forget the “thing” she had seen.
“Master Alice! Please be careful, Alice!”
Philrain shouted and rushed to Alice, who was in constant screaming, and hugged her from the front. Alice’s head was cradled tightly in her chest, and she shivered as she clung to Philrain’s clothes. Alice began to cry out like a child, and Philrain held her desperately with a face distorted by pain and suffering.
“… You seem to be awake.”
Then the door opened with a push, and a calm, slow-toned voice addressed her. There was the sound of footsteps, and then the quiet presence of several people entering the hospital-like room where Alice and Philrain were. As if in convulsions, Philrain opened her mouth softly, alternatively watching Alice, who was shaking uncontrollably in fear, and the people who had entered.
“Give her a sedative… If she continues like this, Master Alice’s heart will be destroyed…”
“It’s okay. She’s not that weak.”
The first to speak up was the quiet girl. As Alice shook her body, she shifted her face to look at the entrance with solely her left eye.
There were people, men and women, dressed in white, kneeling and bowing their heads. Surrounding them, a girl clad in a pure white dress smiled at Alice.
Her long golden hair hung down to the back of her knees and swayed. She was as beautiful as a doll. However, when Alice laid eyes on the girl, she was “horrified” from the bottom of her heart.
There she was again.
The same chills as when she first met Iberis.
This person is…
This is the doppelganger of “Alice”.
In the back of her mind, she instantaneously convinced herself of this, even though no one had mentioned it to her.
After a delay, her slightly calmer vision caught a glimpse of the room in which she was lying. It looked like a well-organized hospital room. The trembling in her body had yet to subside. Grasping desperately at the bosom of Philrain’s clothes, Alice gazed up into her face.
“Master Alice…! Are you okay…?”
Philrain smiled, narrowing her eyes as if she was truly relieved. Then Alice noticed that there were numerous scratches on her arms and face, as if she had scratched them with her fingernails. Some parts were soaked with blood. Philrain hugged Alice again and breathed.
“I was hoping… you’d come to your senses by now…”
“… Here is…?”
That was all she could think to ask. When Philrain was about to speak, the long-haired doppelganger delivered the words in a soothing tone.
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