"T-this is not happening," Riye muttered as she approached the body. "Is it also poison?"
"Yes," Ken confirmed. "It was injected right here."
Nanlumo ako bigla. Parang wala na akong maramdaman dahil sa nakikita ko ngayon. Gusto kong umiwas ng tingin pero hindi ko magawa. Nakatingin lang ako sa leeg ng lalaki at hindi makapaniwalang may gagawa nang ganito kalalang bagay.
"I'll call Sir Ryuu."
Kinuha ni Reiji ang phone sa bulsa niya at nag-dial doon habang kinuhanan naman ni Akane ang bangkay at crime scene. Napatingin naman ako kay Hiro dahil naglakad siya pabas ng eskinita.
"The killer should still be here," he said while looking around. Gusto kong sabihin ang mga nakita ko kanina pero natatakot ako. "Did you see them?"
Kahit nakatalikod siya sa akin ay alam kong ako ang kausap niya. And somehow, alam ko rin ang tinutukoy niya.
"Mmm. Tatlo sila."
Pagkasabi ko no'n ay bigla siyang lumingon at napaatras ako dahil sa nakita ko. He was smiling.
"That means we have a lead."
Naglakad ulit siya papunta doon sa lalaki sa likod namin, habang ako ay naiwang nakatayo rito. Totoo ba ang nakita ko? He actually smiled? That cold and expressionless face could actually smile? Whoa.
Nagsagawa naman ng autopsy sina Riye at Reiji, habang sina Ken at Akane ay naghahanap ng evidence sa katawan at sa crime scene. After a minute or two ay dumating sina sir Ryuu at dinala na nila bangkay. Bumalik rin agad kami kay Miyu pagkatapos no'n at nagsabi kami ng insights namin tungkol sa murder case.
"You mean they were there? Sa second crime?" tanong sa akin ni Akane.
"Yeah. Nung sinundan ko si Ms. Reynalyn noong hapon ay nakasabay ko silang tatlo sa loob ng elevator. Tapos noong pumunta tayo ro'n kinagabihan, Ms. Reynalyn was already dead. Then I saw them around here a while ago."
"Ibig sabihin, posible na sila ang primary suspects sa serial killing na 'to," dagdag ni Ken.
"We should find out who they are, as well as their relationships with the victims," sabi naman ni Riye habang nakatingin sa mga litrato.
"Shall we get to work?" sabay tayo ni Hiro at sinundan naman siya ng apat.
Somehow, I felt a bit intimidated. They already knew what to do and they complement each other as well.
"Riye and Reiji, stay here with Miyu and find out their identities using any method available. Akane and Akemi, go to the building and see if those three live there or if they checked in as guests. Ken, you'll go with me. Let's find them," Hiro ordered and I was surprised to hear him speak a lot. The guy who was quiet all the time and preferred to use his inner voice was suddenly giving orders to us.
"Got it!" sagot ni Akane at hinatak niya ako palabas ng sasakyan. Tumakbo naman siya kaya napatakbo rin ako at pagtingin ko ay nakangiti siya sa akin.
"Confused?" she asked. "Don't worry, he's always like that!"
"I mean, si Hiro. He's a natural leader. 'Yang expression mo kasi ay gulat na gulat."
"Ah. Uhm, hindi lang kasi ako sanay na gano'n siya. Ang weird."
"He is usually composed but his eagerness to solve a case increases as the case becomes more challenging. He's too competitive for his own good. And during those moments, his natural leadership just comes out."
I see. Gano'n pala ang personality niya. Pero nakakamangha. Kahit na pare-pareho silang nasa Atama ay sinusunod lang nila ang sinasabi ni Hiro without any complains.
Pagkarating namin sa building ay napahinto naman ako dahil bigla akong may na-realize.
"Wait, Akane. Paano natin malalaman kung sino sila kung hindi natin alam ang mga pangalan nila?"
She just smiled at me. "I told you, Hiro is a natural leader. Before he gives order, he already calculated everything in his head."
"Anong ibig mong sabihin?"
"Miyu is a specialized and programmed vehicle. If the suspects were seen by Miyu's feeds, then getting their information would just be a piece of cake. And since you described their appearance to Reiji and Riye, that would make their work easier."
"Wow. For real? Ang galing pala ni Miyu," I blurted out.
"Of course! Miyu was designed to help the Atama family so the programs and devices in her were installed to suit the members' skills and capabilities. One more thing, she was made by Sir Aiwa."
Napakunot naman ang noo ko. That name seemed familiar. Nakalimutan ko nga lang kung saan ko nakita o nabasa.
"Uhm, sino nga ulit si Sir Aiwa?"
"Natatandaan mo pa ba si Sir Hiroshi?"
"Oo naman. Bakit?"
"Sir Hiroshi is the head of the Technology department and he's the grandson of Sir Aiwa, the Legendary Mechanic."
Doon ko naalala na nabasa ko ang pangalan niya sa isang libro about sa history ng Tantei High. He was called the Legendary Mechanic because of his contributions to Senshin's welfare. He was also the one who developed the notepad, mirror camera, and ID device among many other inventions.
Bigla namang tumunog ang phone ni Akane kaya pareho kaming napatingin doon.
"Oh. Looks like they already found the identity of the suspects."
Riye summarized the data they got from Miyu and we studied their personal information.
Roberto Garcia, 38 years old. He was the big and bulky guy in the elevator and I was surprised to learn that he was Ms. Reynalyn's ex-boyfriend.
Sarah Angeles, 27 years old. That businesswoman who was staring at me a while ago. I really have a weird feeling about her. Sabir in ni Reiji ay wala silang makuhang masyadong information tungkol sa kanya pero they were still trying.
Ace Francisco, 26 years old. The handsome guy and he attended the same university with Mr. Victor.
"Roberto, Sarah and Ace, huh? Now let's see kung isa nga sa kanila ang killer."
Naglakad kami ni Akane papunta sa lobby pero bigla akong may naramdamang kakaiba. It was the same suffocating feeling I felt when I saw those green eyes in the alley.
'That's right, dear. Solve this crime and prove yourself. Then I shall decide whether to take you or not.'
Nanindig ang mga balahibo ko nang marinig ko 'yon at lilingon pa lang sana ako pero hinatak naman ako ni Akane.
Who in the world was that?