She had no money right now. The phone and cards had been left at Gio's home. She was still wearing the loose hospital gown, which meant she currently looked like a freak as she was also wearing a pair of dark shades stolen from someone in the hospital.
It was afternoon and there were many people on the sidewalk. Everyone who saw the weird girl walking barefooted at the side stared at her with puzzlement. Some even laughed and pointed at her but there were also a few that warned others from going near her. They said she looked very suspicious, the type that might have been a mental patient who sneaked out.
Coupled with her fear of being seen with nothing but empty holes on where her eyes should be, the girl lowered her head and walked as fast as she could. At times, she could be seen suddenly sprinting. However, her body was still not in good shape so she had no choice but went back to walking whenever her body and lungs felt like collapsing. She dared not rest as she was racing against time.
Fortunately, despite the several screams and cry of alarm along the way, none really obstructed her and after walking for twenty or so minutes, she arrived at the Golden Residences. The guards there also recognized her so even though they did throw her cautious stares, they didn't say a thing and let her successfully enter the elevator. Without caring for the people behind requesting her to wait for them, she pressed the close button.
'Deduct another 50 to extend the 4D real-time view time duration,' she hatefully said to the system in between her ragged breathing when she 'saw' everything blacking out again.
<System: Gladly! I'll be your eyes again for another thirty minutes. Hehe. How's the experience? It's not bad, no?>
Sofony bit her lips. She was faintly trembling, seemingly on the verge of crying due to her current state. The question almost drove her mad as it greatly challenged her little remaining sanity and clarity of mind.
Last night, everything happened so fast that it caught her off-guard. From the system's issuance of the first level 3 official mission to her receiving the punishment, barely thirty minutes had passed. And now, here she was. Blind. Literally eyeless.
It was very hard to accept that her whole world suddenly turned totally dark. There was also the extreme torture she had gone through. Right now, she could not even find the exact words to name what she was currently feeling.
Sofony couldn't stop the tears that flowed down so she just let them be. After all, she felt that she would go crazy if she bottles everything up. She could not think straight and all that played in her mind was to escape from here and leave everything behind.
Shortly, the door opened to their unit's floor. She wiped the tears away without removing the dark shades and hastily stormed out. She then entered the condo unit, headed straight to the bedroom and swiftly packed a few sets of clothing into the biggest bag she found there. While at it, she changed her hospital gown into a shirt and pair of jeans. Then after putting on a pair of white rubber shoes, she grabbed her phone and wallet and ran out of the place with the huge bag strapped on her back.
<System: Uh-oh? Hey! Don't tell me you're planning to flee from this city or country? Hello, host? Hello, stupid host? Do you still have your brain with you?>
Sofony refused to answer the system as she was very angry at it. In fact, she was finding it hard to calm herself whenever she hear its voice and right now, she could barely control herself from madly roaring at it.
<System: Oh my main system! Don't tell me you're really going to flee? Hahahaha! Sofony Mendez, that sounds like a good idea... if you are truly planning to leave your sugar daddy, fake sister and cute best friend behind! It means you finally grew enough courage to start elsewhere from scratch! Hehe, should I be proud of you? Or laugh at your stupidity?>
Her balled fist trembled in anger and remorse at being reminded of the people she would be abandoning. Sofony didn't stop walking but she started sobbing soundlessly again.
If possible, she didn't want to part with them because it was like she's also leaving her remaining sanity and heart behind.
But how could she stay?
After she woke up, the pieces of memories revolving around the first announcement played in her mind with full clarity, reminding her of how Floyd got killed by the system. She saw and heard every detail because unlike the other hosts who only got a soundless video, the one showed to her was an unadulterated version. The system explained it was due to her mission being related to it.
There she beheld how Floyd ended up limbless and dickless.
She also heard the words he shouted before the system had taken his life away.
Then after she remembered that Gio was never average nor stupid, aside from fearing that he wouldn't be able to accept a blind girl like her, she also began to fear what he would do once he found the many abnormalities surrounding her life.
She honestly didn't want to leave Gio. Despite their weird setup, she had already grown attached to him and was willing to turn a blind eye to his past and his murderous tendency. Anyway, she's not clean and spotless anymore. Also, for the past couple of months, he had been her home. He not only provided her physical satisfaction, but also security and peace of mind.
However, she was now very scared of how he would react once he learned that she was no longer pure-hearted and simple, that she had now dipped her whole body into darkness.
She had been too used to his gentle and caring side that the thought of him directing a pair of cold eyes at her frightened her very much.
She tearfully said to herself, 'I'll probably turn really crazy once I hear personally from him that he can't accept me anymore.'
A boisterous laugh echoed in her mind.
<System: Wow, so you can now judge your mental state? And you don't want to separate from him? It's just that since you're thinking he's only keeping you because he thinks you're pure as heck, you don't want to be personally rejected now that he's having suspicions of your grayness? Hehe, you're a masterpiece. What the fuck?>
Of course, she didn't answer and silently hopped into the first bus that passed by. She didn't bother checking where it's headed and only took a seat at the back.
<System: You know what. I would have applauded already because usually, abandoning a decent lover is immoral. The problem is, he's the pillar of support I painstakingly selected for you!!! Ms. Stupidity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!>
She ignored it and quietly paid the fare to the ticket collector. Then, she forked her phone out of her jean's pocket and unlocked it. Her fingers slid into the screen and opened her mobile banking app. The app's main page showed her how much money she had on her account and without pausing whatsoever, she transferred 90 percent of it to Steffy's account. The amount was only good for five or six months of thrifty spending, but she reckoned they would they still be okay because by then, she would have already found a way to make money.
<System: Fine. You don't want to talk to me. And you're really abandoning your Gio. I like it. That's right, be heartless because only heartless hosts can reach the apex of immorality. Hehehe. By the way, should I give the side-task now? If so, then I at least would like to see a heartbreaking separation with you playing the bad cop~>
As she sat next to the open window with her head lower so that her hair would block her face from the other passengers' sight, she was soundlessly crying. It took her a long time before she had made up her mind.
Then she began filling up the blank screen presented to her with words that didn't come from the heart.
A laugh that seemingly came out of hell ensued and everyone inside the private room, even those innocently passing by on the corridor outside, felt a chill all over their body that made them scared shitless.
"Are you telling me a blind person went missing just because you lot look away for a little more than five minutes?"
The nurses and doctors Gio summoned couldn't speak up due to the unnatural redness they were seeing from the man's eyes which emanates an equally terrifying madness. They could only huddle together on one side while focusing their gazes everywhere. Only George managed to move, and that was actually to escape from there by throwing the excuse that he would check the CCTV in the hospital.
Gio's cold voice rang again as he gave everyone a stare that seemingly wished to freeze them to death, "A blind girl could even escape your notice. If you're all this useless, then why the hell are we keeping you? Does no one want to answer? Which means even basic conversation is hard for you all? Everyone is this useless?"
The face of the nurse who phoned him earlier turned pale and repeatedly said her apologies. The rest followed because they knew that even the least bit guilty of them was a criminal in this man's eyes.
Gio gave them one more icy glare before heading out to see the security's footage.
After that, all of them scrambled everywhere to look for the missing patient again.
"She really left the hospital without informing anyone," said George after reviewing the records which thankfully had captured her fleeing figure. In reality, if Sofony had been in the right state of mind, she wouldn't have left a trace of her. Right now, it was unknown whether it was a good thing that Gio found this.
Both of them were raising their eyebrows though at the sight of her walking out of the place. In the footage, she was walking like she knew the way perfectly, and she was oddly not extending her hand against the wall to support herself. It was like aside from her weird getup, nothing else was wrong about her, and that she was not suffering from loss of vision.
"Keep your mouth shut about this," Gio said after deleting the video.
He was already walking towards the exit when one of the doctors he had scolded a while ago blocked his way. Then, he watched as five or so other people surrounded him.
"I-I'm sorry. W-we just found a letter addressed to you and we thought you must see this."
It was his assistant that replied for him. "You suddenly found a letter? Are you saying the patient left it for my young master?"
The doctor answered in a flustered manner, "Y-yes! It says from Sofony Mendez to Mr. Gio Albarez."
The angry assistant restrained himself from raising his voice as there were many people around, but he still sharply remarked, "Are you fucking telling me a blind person left that letter? I thought doctors have high IQs?"
Gio was also staring daggers at the baldie wearing a white coat. He was also skeptical about this whatever letter because it was hard to believe that a disoriented blind person would be able to write it. It was just pure stupidity. A blind girl writing? The first problem they would have to consider was how she managed to fork out a pen and a piece of paper when her condition was like that. Even if she was truly a magician, it would still be impossible to accomplish, right?
However, when he thought of her mysteriousness, perhaps there was really a chance she could. As this idea crossed his mind, his face darkened, and after a few seconds, he extended his right hand forward.
The bald doctor acted dumbly for a few seconds before realizing that the other was urging him to pass the letter to him. He flusteredly searched for the white envelope then put it in Gio's hand.
The man furrowed his brows and inspected the handwriting at the back. To be honest, he was not that familiar with her handwriting. But even so, he did not throw it away and was planning to read it once he's inside the car.
He pocketed the envelope and said to his assistant. "Come on, George."
His capable assistant nodded and followed, all the while phoning several people to monitor the city closely for the girl's whereabouts.