Part 4

"Hey, Otaru! Ne, this is so fun! Come and play!"


Where is this place? Why am I here? Otaru finds himself walking on the sandy beaches. From afar, he sees the horizon where the blueness from the sea blends with the blueness of the sky. There are few clouds on the clear sky. Kirei… Otaru made himself a comfortable sandpit and rested himself on the beach.

"Ne! Otaru! Come and play with us!" Lime was playing with Cherry and Bloodberry in the water.

"Otaru sama!"

"Otaru! Come over!"

Otaru smiled to himself. "They always have a good time when they are together…" He said to himself.

"That's because their hearts are linked together…" Surprised at the new voice, Otaru turned and saw Marine looking at them too.

"Hi Marine! Hisashiburi da… "

Marine came closer and sat down together with Otaru. "Ne, Otaru, marionettes will be all right as long as their hearts are linked… as they have always been… therefore you must have faith in your marionettes." After finishing her words, Marine gave Otaru a smile before she faded into the air, her voice still ringing in Otaru's ears.

"Believe in your marionettes…"

"Trust them…

Trust them… …"


"MARINNEEEE!" Otaru shouted as he finds himself back in Japones castle, lying on the bed. He sat up, his mind full of the images that ran through his dreams. At this moment, Lorelei opened the door and came in, "Ano… Otaru, I need to tell you something."

Lorelei then tells Otaru all about Bloodberry's decision to become the bait for the kidnapper. "Uh… she told me to tell you that she has left a note on the table…"

"She did? Lets take a look at it." Otaru says as he reaches for the piece of paper. It read:

Otaru, Gomenasai. You belong to everyone. I cannot have you all for myself. Therefore, I must get Cherry back and that scum who did that to Lime. Trust me. I'll get everybody back to you. Me, Lime, Cherry cannot leave each other. We belong to one another. Bloodberry.

Otaru read the note and crushed the note up. His closed hands containing the crushed note gave the bedsheet a half-hearted punch.

"Sigh… she chose to do it anyway… I guess I have no choice now…" Otaru said, lying back on the bed and looking really relaxed. This puzzled Lorelei.

"Otaru? You're not angry anymore?"

"Angry? OF COURSE I'M GODDAMN ANGRY! She disobeyed me in the end… … but I suppose I have to believe in them now… …as long as the hearts of the Marionettes are linked together they'll be all right…" Otaru said, giving a sigh and looked out the window facing the sea. "Because Marine said so…"


In the woods, Bloodberry walked. She suddenly felt her otome kairo had released some emotions that had been weighing on her and had been making her feel terrible. Arigatou, Otaru… You finally understood…

She bent down and saw a small squirrel approaching her but later ran off in the opposite direction. You must have thought I was Lime… … Bloodberry smiled and walked on. This is the forest Lime came frequently. She was a very good friend of the animals here as she often came here to play. A few mice ran by and stopped in front of her. Bloodberry's face turned green and she tried her best not to scream. Fortunately, the mice made out who she was before she lost her senses and scampered away.

Finally deciding she would rest for a while, she found a comfortable tree with a big fan of leaves to provide excellent shade and she sat down, leaning against the trunk. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath of the forest air around her, "Aaaaahhhh… I have not been so relaxed like this for ages…"

As she rested for some time, she began to sense that that there was somebody lurking in the forest, watching her. Still she closed her eyes, pretending to take a nap so as not to arouse the suspicions of her lurker.

The lurker did not wait long to strike. Suddenly, Bloodberry felt a net drawn over her and she opened her eyes, struggling, shouting for help at the same time. Suddenly, she felt the impact of a stick against her neck and she passed out.


"Faust sama! He has begun to take action!" Tiger, who is on her round monitoring Bloodberry's tracking system responded after seeing the red "ALERT" signal on.

"He did? Quick, Luchs, Put the device on standby now. Panther, put Bloodberry's location on the big screen!"

Everybody in the Lab begun to get busy. The Saber dolls responded quickly to Faust's orders. Lorelei, on her side, is monitoring the condition of Bloodberry's otome kairo.

"Faust sama, the device is ready." Luchs reports to Faust.

"Good. Now Luchs, would you mind going over and bring Otaru here?" Faust said, his eyes never leaving the big screen.

"Eh… … Faust sama?" Luchs asked, slightly shocked.

"I want him to know his marionettes are in good hands…"


When Luchs has left, Lorelei asked, "Faust, what was the device you told Luchs to put on standby?"

"Something that should trap him…"


"Bloodberry! Bloodberry! You are here already?"

Surprised at the new voice, Bloodberry awoke and found herself in dark space. "So, I have been lifted from my shell, eh? But what was that voice calling me?"

"Bloodberry? Is that you?"

"Cherry! You are here too! But how come?"

"I guess our otome kairos are very close to each other now, plus the fact that we belong to the same set, so we would share the same space…" Cherry smiled, walking out from the darkness and facing Bloodberry.

"How wonderful! Now I have company." Bloodberry returned the smile to Cherry. "Sigh… I could have had Otaru all to myself you know… if not for the fact I wanted to come and save you?"

"What? how dare you…grrrrrr…"

"Just kidding. Gee, its getting boring. Lets check out what's going on now. Otaru is in Japone castle now."

With that, the black space opened to reveal light and the image of the Japones castle revealed before their eyes. Bloodberry peered and saw Otaru in the Marionette repair room, looking at Lime.

"Lime dear, you've slept for very long. You'll wake up soon, won't you? Bloodberry and Cherry are fighting right now, so don't disappoint them… you got to do your part too… you'll wake for their sake, won't you?" Otaru had lifted the cover of the compartment and reached forward to touch her face.

"Lime…"Cherry came forward. "Oh dear…I'm worried…"

"Daijoubu… Haven't you forgotten how strong Lime has always been? She'll be all right." Bloodberry said, continuing to look.

It was at this time Luchs came in. "You are indeed here, Mamiya Otaru."

"Oh, Luchs. You were looking for me?"

"Bloodberry has been caught by the kidnapper. Faust sama wants you to come and monitor her location as well." "Arigatou! I'll be right there!" Otaru quickly and ran out of the room. He turned back and stole a look at Lime. Gambatte! Minna…

Bloodberry and Cherry looked on. They then turned to each other and replied, "Hai!"


"Faust! How are things now?" the first question Otaru asked after being brought into the lab.

" Mamiya Otaru, come and look at this." Faust said, his eyes turning away from the screen for a split second and beckoned Otaru to stand with him. Otaru came closer and saw an electronic map of Japones showing all the paths in the country. On it, there is a red dot moving on the lines of the map.

"That dot…" Otaru pointed, breathless in anticipation.

"Yes. This is the dot denoting Bloodberry's tracing system. The path that the dot is moving is the route taken by the kidnapper."

"Faust sama, he seems to be heading for the outskirts of the country." Tiger who's monitoring the spot from the computer looked up.

"Faust sama, the red dot has stopped! He's in the forest that touches the outskirts!"

"Faust, hayaku, lets go!" Otaru cried, his voice already showing impatience.

"Matte. We must plot a plan to trap him first." Faust said, once again cross at Otaru's ignorance.

"If I'm not wrong, he's currently resided at this old hut in the forest. The forest might easy to find but similarly, there are many places which can serve as excellent hiding places. This was why you could not catch him the first time round.

Luchs, can you put on the plan of the forest?"

"Hai!" with that, the plan of the forest replaced the map with Bloodberry's location. Faust studied it carefully. Otaru tried to do the same thing, but just wasn't focusing. His mind is full of saving the marionettes.

" This is the entrance to the woods. He is very skilled in mechanics, so be careful of traps. Mamiya Otaru, please listen carefully as I talk. I do not want you to get trapped in any bear traps inside the forest."

"What?! me…" Otaru began, but realising that Faust has a point, stopped what he wanted to say and listened.

"Luchs, I want you to lead the group. Baikou, Tama, Panther, Tiger, you all have to follow Luchs.

"Nani? But Faust sama, aren't you going with us?" Puzzled Luchs.

"I still want to monitor the kidnapper and so I can inform you all of any changes if he decides to do something. For the sake of Bloodberry and Cherry, we mustn't fail.

It has caught my attention that there are a couple of locations in the forest that can serve as perfect hiding spots, namely that spot and this spot on the right, this spot near the entrance, and the other two spots at the bottom left location. Baikou, Tama, when the group disperses, go to the left locations and prevent him from taking refuge there. Tiger, Panther, you two go and guard the other two locations on the right. Luchs, with your detector you go with Otaru and protect him from the traps set up. This should only leave the spot near the entrance unguarded so if you guys can force him into that location I should be able to come in time and trap him." Faust said, his finger pointing towards the forest plan.

"Yoshi! Come on guys, let's not waste time! Hayaku!" Otaru rubbed his hands, ready to set off.

"Mamiya Otaru… be extremely careful." Faust said, walking towards the computer and processed the information generated from the tracking system.

"Arigatou!" with that, Otaru, the saber dolls, Baikou and Tamasaburou ran out of the Lab.

Meanwhile, Faust has not stopped processing information on the computer. After a while, he looked up. "Lorelei, I have something to ask you."

"Oh, what is it?" Lorelei asked, surprised.

"When you were kidnapped by him, did he say anything to you?"

Say something? How did he know? Does he know something about the identity of the kidnapper? She turned to Faust and asked, still hardly believing her ears, "How did you know?"

"I just happened to find it strange when I traced the path that Bloodberry's otome kairo took. Look: this is the forest that Bloodberry is kidnapped. Its very near if you passed the volcano and walked straight to the forest. But look at the route - he chose to walk through all the forests surrounding the volcano instead."

Lorelei looked at the route, not believing her eyes. Her mind ran through the voice that she had heard… thinking of what he had said.

Find me familiar, don't you?

I think you must have hidden my voice into the depths of your memory and never wanted to hear it again

After all, we're not strangers you know…

Ohisashiburi desu… Lorelei
Ohisashiburi desu…

As she thought, her mind ran through the events that occurred since day one when she boarded the Mesopotamia, all those she could remember. Then, somewhere in her memory, an incident that she had forgotten for a long time resurfaced on her memory. Her eyes widened.

"Oh! Could he be…"

*E*N*D* *O*F* *P*A*R*T* *4*

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