FATE, HANGGANG kailan mo ba ako paglalaruan?
Kung kailan dadalawa lang kami sa tea shop, doon mo naisipang hamunin kami. Hindi ba pwedeng hintayin mo munang makabalik si Sigmund o si Nikolai?
Don't get me wrong. May tiwala ako kay Landice. Sigmund wouldn't speak so highly of him if his deduction prowess wasn't the best. Ang tanging concern ko ay baka mahirapan akong makipag-coordinate sa kanya lalo na't hindi niya ako pinapansin.
I swiped the iPad screen to the right and unlocked it. The "challenge" greeting faded and another message flashed.
LET'S PLAY A GAME.
"Not worth my time," bulong ni Landice bago siya muling bumalik sa favorite corner niya. Was reading his favorite book more important than this challenge?
"I don't think so." Ipinakita ko sa kanya ang mga sumunod na salitang nag-flash sa screen.
If you ignore this message, some of your customers will die.
If you accept my challenge, you can save their lives.
Landice might have realized the possible danger brought by the ominous iPad. I may not see his eyes directly, but I could tell that he was staring at the screen.
Accept or ignore? 'Yan ang dalawang choices na sunod na lumitaw. Dahil senior ko si Landice, I let him choose for us. He clicked the "accept" button and once again, the text on the screeen changed.
LET'S PLAY DEDUCTIONS!
I will give a murder case scenario. You need to find out who's the killer and how he killed the victim. If you get it right, I will tell you how I plan to murder some of your customers. If you get it wrong, you know what will happen to them.
Do you wish to continue?
It said na gusto niyang makipaglaro sa amin. But how could he or she play with human lives na parang piyesa sa chess na pwede niyang itapon o isakripisyo for the sake of a game?
Landice answered yes. Nag-fade into black ang screen at sunod na lumabas ang picture ng isang cafe.
"Is it now worth your time?" tanong ko, but he refused to answer or even give me a glance.
Thanks to this so-called challenge, may ideya na ako kung paano makukuha ang atensyon ng malamig kong workmate. It might come in handy in the future.
At the moment, we had to focus on the game. Isa-isang ipinakita sa amin ang mga tauhan. Was this a scene from an actual movie? Or did the challenger film it somewhere?
Unang ipinakilala ang babaeng nakasuot ng pabilog na salamin at pasulyap-sulyap sa kanyang relo. Her hair was tied to a bun with only a few loose strands dangling. Her name, according to the character box that flashed on the screen, was Angela the secretary.
Sunod na lumitaw ang lalaking parang bunot ang buhok na kakalabas lang ng men's comfort room. Napatingin din siya sa kanyang relo at nagkomento kung gaano katagal ang kanilang boss. His name's Benedict the executive assistant.
Isang babaeng may kulot na buhok ang sunod na ipinakilala. Maingat niyang iniangat ang chocolate cake mula sa box at inilapag sa table. Inilagay din niya ang isang kutsilyo sa mesa. She was introduced as Carla the assistant manager.
Sa labas naman ng coffee shop ipinakita ang panghuling tauhan na kakababa mula sa isang taxi. He was a short and plump man. He had a habit of rubbing his finger near his nostrils and sniffing from time to time. He is Victor the boss.