Villavostok, Novaya Zemlya, Russia.

After a quite long ride from Alvedatov, we arrived at a village that suggested by Leonora as a happy little village. I didn see any resemblance of why this village refered as a happy village despite the fact it looked depressingly gloomy.

She pulled over her car at a rusty looking bus stop. My luggage seemed awful, it frayed on the edge. My clothes, first aid kits and personal documents scattered in the back seat because of those morons abruptly forced it to open. Leonora helped me to packed them back into my luggage.

”At least you have a spare underwear because youll have to stay here for a while. ”

”D, did you find my ID Card? ” i fumbled my hand between seats trying to feel anything unusual.

”Нет, i think this is all i got here. ”

”No, no, no, ” i gutted the luggage, ”it was here in this small pocket. ”

I made a mess. If i didn find my ID Card like right now, i would not stop made a fuss about it all day.

”It just an ID Card, Mrs. Hope. Here, your passport is right here, ” she waved my passport.

I pressed three fingers on my left temple and moaned, ”Noouuaa, i mean my Lab ID Card. ”

Its almost dark. Leonora packed my scattered luggage back for the second time. She took me to an inn that quite far from the bus stop. We walked through an unpaved pass to the base of a hill where the inn was dwelling.

There were quite a lot of people as we passed through the village. I couldn stop thinking about my missing ID Card, so it seemed i ignored those good people. Somehow i felt bad for it. I decided to greet the villagers if encountered one on our path.

”Do not smile. ”

”H, huh? What do you mean? ”

”Russian doesn like if a stranger smile at them. ”

”Why? Smiling represent kindness and humility. Its customary around the world. Why would Russian felt offended by it? ”

”It is what it is, Mrs. Hope. It is what it is. ”

”Alright then. ”

I believed we walked almost two miles before we reached the front gate of the inn. Its a tiresome walk because the path gradually sloped at the point we were close to the inn.

At first i thought this place would be a depressing and a gloomy hell, but what ive just witnessed along the path was magnificent. There were flowers on this tundra land and they
e beautiful. I couldn believe my eyes. I thought Novaya Zemlya would be packed of ice and snow all the way around. Turned out Novaya Zemlya consist of two islands despite it looked seamless on the map. Theres a little strait that separated these islands called Matochkin Strait. The dreary, the freezing and the lifeless side was on the other side of the island i stood on.

”Mrs. Hope, enjoy your stay. Don think too much about the bad situation weve had today. Everything is gonna be fine. Apex will take care of them. ”

Leonora talked with an old lady before received a room key from her. The old lady smiled at me, i didn know what to do. Leonora said the Russian easily offended by a smiling especially from a stranger like me. So i replied with a nod.

”Ill come to take you tomorrow, please have some rest. I have something else to do. Heres your room key, Mrs. Hope. ”

”Thank you so much, Leonora. Be careful. ”

She left. What surprised me was this inn looked like a haunted film set. Resembling emptiness and void. Nobody else stayed here except me. After took a bath, all i wanted just a good deep sleep, but i couldn . My head keep wondered if something was off. Probably its just my feeling, but it didn seemed right. How did they know i brought Phalleo-4 with me? There were only a few people that knew whats exactly inside my luggage. Josh, Linda, lead researcher from Pandoras branch in Massachusetts Professor Isaac Levy who gave me the admission to carry this confidential package, Professor Ivan Aivazowsky the one who asked for it, and Leonora as his assistant. Its not possible for an outsider knew this piece of information unless someone has talked. However, who and what for? Not to mention my Lab ID Card.

Its already noon outside, still, no sign of Leonoras presence I waited until the sun dissapeared between the horizon in my room. Instead of her, i heard buzzed of people from the outside of the inn. Who
e they? Guests?

I was kinda worried why Leonora hadn come, yet. Did something happened to her? I wanted to called her phone, however i didn have her number. It concerned me. I kept wringing my hand while prowled in my room.

Couple minutes later i leaved the room to consoled this uneasy feeling. I walked around the corridor and ended up in the kitchen. Something i witnessed there delighted my heart.

Those young couple! I believe his name was Lennon and his wife seemed they were helping the inn keeper made the dinner. I couldn believe this. She looked like a real chef. I mean, she ordered everyone on the kitchen included his husband or maybe boyfriend. I wasn sure. They were really into their work even my presence unnoticeable like Drax from Guardian Of The Galaxy.

Last night i had a dinner alone, but tonight the dinning room were packed. Looked like ten or twenty people dinning here. The food were different. This one was way terrific. Its almost like a micheline star quality on the table. Whos this girl?

After the dinner i stopped her before she went to her room on the second floor.

”Hey, uhmm, i just wanna say, the food was amazing. Youll be an awesome housewife one day. ”

She smiled, ”Thank you very much. Thats very nice of you. ”

”I don mean to be rude, whats your name? ”

”Its all right. Im Evelyn. ”

”Im Hope. And also, you
e so beautiful. Oh my, your boyfriend must be the luckiest man on this planet. She got an angel who can make a food taste like a celestial level dishes. ”

”Thanks. Hes my husband. We are newlyweed. For some reason he picked this island for our honey moon. I was like, i want Paris, but he said its a mediocre place for mediocre couple. ”

”Hahaha. Anyway, i saw you in the bus. I assume you have some kind of difficulty like experiencing motion sick. I have something for you. ”

I took a pack of special pills that hasn been produced by Pandora. Its experimental pills created by me, but ive tried it my self. Its safe and effective.

”What is this? ” she asked.

”A motion sick pills. Its better than one you have on the store. ”

”Thank you so much. ”

The anxiety i had before just puffed away after the dinner. Some mysteries has solved. The couple was married and her name was Evelyn. What a lovely couple. I was pretty sure ill had a good sleep until someone knocked my door in the middle of the night.

When i opened the door a body just felt on me.

”Oh my God! Leonora what happened to you? ”

I panicked. She was covered in blood and carried a pistol. I dragged her to my bed. Shes writhing in pain.

”Leonora, can you hear me? ”

She gasped. She looked pale and her forhead sweat heavily. I noticed theres some kind of wound under her torn shirt on her left arm. Looked like a wound caused by claws or a bite.

”Mrs. Hope, haah, haah, haah, we have to leave, haah, haah, now! ”

”No! You stay right there. Don move. I don like whats on your arm. ”

I took the first aid kit from my luggage. I cleaned her wound and performed a simple suturing on it. Shes panting pretty heavy.

”Tell me whats going on? ”

Leonora shook her head, ”Theres no time to explain. We have to leave now, Mrs. Hope. Something terrible just happened. ”

”S, something terrible? Like what? ”

”A purge. ”

Out of nowhere a man entered our room. Hes really massive. Spontaneously i took a scissors and pointed at him.

”S, stay a, away from her. ”

I was so scared. I didn know why did i do this. It just, spontaneous. A punch of adrenaline poured into my blood out of nowhere. In my head i was sure this big man was one of those masked armed bad guy who intercepted us on the road couple days ago.

”So, it has started, huh? ” he talked with a heavy Russian accent.

”Nicolai? Is that you? ” asked Leonora. She tried lay her back on the bed.

”Да, you look awful, Kira. ”

”Kira? Whos Kira? Did you two know each other? ”

Leonora stood up and dragged me, ”Mrs. Hope, lets go. It doesn matter. ”

”Leonora, stop! Look at yourself. You need some rest. ”

”No! Mrs. Hope, we have to leave, now! ”

I looked at her eyes, ”I understand. ”

We left the big guy behind, left the inn and walked through the darkness outside. I left all my stuff behind so i could help Leonora walk.

”Where do we go, Leonora? ”

”Haah, haah, haah, north east. Haah, we are heading to Professor Ivans facility. My car parked down there at the bus top. Haah, haah. ”

”Okay, ” i replied shortly.

”Mrs. Hope, take this pistol. If suddenly i acted weird or misbehavior. Please, shot my head. Do not hesitate. ”

”What? Have you lost your mind? I will not doing that! ”

”Mrs. Hope– ”

”Shut up! Youll be fine. Once we got there. Ill take care of you. Youll be fine, haah, youll be fine. ”

After a long strode, we got to the bus stop. Leonora gave her key. At her condition right now i doubted she could drive properly. She locked a GPS at professors lab before she passed out.

”Leonora! Leonora! Are you okay? Hey! Leonora! ”

I drove the car to the north east guided by the GPS. Whats actually going on? Who was that big man in my room? Why did he call Leonora as Kira? What happened to Leonora? What caused the wound on her arm? Oh my God i had so many questions.

What did she mean by a purge?

I speeded up the car. All i want right now just, answers!

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