Chapter 57 – Room 106, Mission Room – ‘Hotel Land of Hope’ (5)
[User: Han Kain (Wisdom)
Date: Day 21
Current Location: Floor 1, Room 106 (Mission Room – Hotel Land of Hope)
Sage’s Advice: 0]
5. Roller Coaster from Space
While making our way to the roller coaster, we started thinking about one thing. Unlike normal roller coasters, the innumerable seats of this long roller coaster were grouped up into several segments. Did we have to go into the same carriage? Or were we supposed to separate?
“Maybe we should group together,” said Seungyub with a slightly frightened voice. It didn’t really sound like a logical judgement and he simply seemed scared to be alone.
“There might be dangerous and safe carriages. In which case we would need to separate to increase our chances of survival.”
Ahri raised a rebuttal, saying that it would be safer to separate.
“Even that might be a trap.”
On the other hand, Jinchul-hyung appeared to be seeing everything as a potential trap. Well, he wasn’t necessarily wrong though considering what this Hotel liked doing.
I raised a simpler argument based on what I could see.
“We don’t have a choice, and I’m pretty sure we need to separate. I can see there are oxygen tanks in the middle of each carriage.”
On top of that, the tanks only had one mask each. It seemed that we had no choice from the start.
In the end, everyone had to go to separate carriages. Unlike real carriages, however, there were no dividers in between and the carriages themselves weren’t that big so it looked like it would be possible for us to chat after pulling the mask out for a bit.
Gravity vanished as soon as we got on the roller coaster. To be fair, it was strange that we had gravity until now even though we were already in space.
There was gravity when we were on the platform but our bodies immediately started trying to float as soon as we got to our seats. Right when we were about to get used to our floating bodies, the driver suddenly appeared in the air and started rambling.
“Welcome, challengers, to our roller coaster! I am the driver of this roller coaster. From now, we will be driving through the mysterious outer space for several interesting experiences, so I hope you actively participate in our activities.
In 10 seconds, we will depart and that will immediately mark the start of the comet-dodging game.”
“What the fuck did you say? Comet-dodging? Explain yourself, you bastard!” shouted Jinchul-hyung.
“The comet-dodging game is about dodging comets.”
Hearing that response, I didn’t feel like asking any questions.
“Look at the sky.”
“Sky? We’re in space though?”
“I mean just look up.”
Raising my head up, I realised what Ahri was trying to talk about.
I could see an innumerable number of rocks waiting near the rails of the roller coaster.
Ah. This would be another pain.
As soon as the roller coaster departed, the ‘comets’ started to fall.
– Hwiiik! Kung!
Everyone started dancing frantically in their seats and the small carriage to dodge the falling pieces of rock. Instead of a ‘comet’, they were just simple pieces of rock but that didn’t mean we could afford to get hit by them.
Besides, we had to carry our oxygen tanks as well. Fortunately, there was no weight to the oxygen tank because of no gravity, but after the roller coaster started dancing around, it became even harder to avoid the incoming rocks.
One of the rocks grazed past my upper body and ripped my clothes. I probably wouldn’t die after getting hit by one, but they were still relatively powerful. One or two might be okay, but I definitely would not last after getting hit by several rocks.
Were other people okay? I was worried but I didn’t have the leisure to check their states. Jinchul-hyung was usually okay for things like this that required the body, but his legs weren’t in the right state right now. Would he be able to dodge these rocks forever with his current legs?
In the middle of that relentless dodge, the roller coaster flipped and the comets stopped.
Using that time to breathe, I thought a little and realised what just happened.
While going straight, the roller coaster suddenly turned upside down – the comets were now striking the bottom of the roller coaster but we were safe from them for now.
“Is everyone okay? Did anyone get hit by rocks?” I asked.
“I’m fine,” replied Jinchul-hyung. “I did get hit by one but it’s okay.”
“Somehow I managed to dodge them too.” Ahri said after Jinchul-hyung.
Seungyub wasn’t saying anything. I decided to stop lingering on that topic.
We had to focus on the present.
Even though the roller coaster had turned 180 degrees, it wasn’t that bad. If this was Earth, we would have felt our blood going down due to gravity as soon as we were made to sit upside down but right now, we were in space. Thanks to having no gravity, all we had to suffer was a little bit of nausea from the sudden turn.
But the problem was that it would have another turn before long. And when that happens, we will be busy dodging rocks again, and there will be no time for us to think.
“What should we do? Does anyone have an idea? Do we just continue dodging like this?”
“Umm, you see.” Jinchul-hyung opened his mouth. “There’s something I thought of when the roller coaster turned upside down. It might sound ridiculous but…”
“It doesn’t matter even if it’s ridiculous, so hurry up and tell us.”
“When this turns again, how about we head to the bottom of the roller coaster?”
“What do you mean, hyung?”
“This is space so there’s no gravity is there? The up and down doesn’t really matter. Even if we are underneath the roller coaster, we won’t be pulled down or anything. We just have to stay away from the path of the falling rocks, right?”
“That might actually work! Everything’s open anyway, so it’s not that hard to cross either.”
I understood what he was trying to say. We were in space so there was no reason for us to stay on the top part of the roller coaster. We could simply carry our oxygen tanks and go underneath.
“But the roller coaster sometimes dances right? What if we accidentally let go of our grip while changing sides?”
“That’s something for us to work on. Changing sides would still be much easier than avoiding these fast rocks forever.”
The roller coaster started to turn again. At this rate, we would have to dodge comets again.
Following Jinchul-hyung’s suggestion, we headed to the opposite side of the roller coaster while carrying our oxygen tanks and…
We noticed that this was the right choice.
As soon as I left through the door next to the seat, I found a ladder that I missed when first boarding this roller coaster. In doubt, I grabbed onto the ladder and headed down to the bottom and noticed that the same carriages were beneath the roller coaster.
That was the identity of this roller coaster which we couldn’t see before departing because of the platform.
Absurdly enough, this roller coaster was a double-sided one!
Thus, we travelled back and forth both sides to avoid the comets and after a fairly long time, the comets stopped falling.
“Haha! Everyone? Did you enjoy your ride? That will be the end of the comet-dodging game. Next and last game is holding on from the black hole!
There is no easy way around this game. Please show off your muscles that you have trained thus far!”
No easy way around. Show off your muscles.
Before long, what that meant became very clear.
Suddenly, the roller coaster started changing its structure. Designs that we might be able to make use of were all gone, and the door and ladder down to the other side of the roller coaster also vanished. There was nothing but a single handle to grab on per carriage.
At the same time, a large hole appeared in the space above us.
Was this it?
I instinctively held onto the handle as a powerful suction force appeared in the sky.
‘No easy way around. Show off your muscles.’
That was literally what it was.
This wasn’t about using our heads, and we had to hold on with sheer force!
Like, what was this unsophisticated mission all of a sudden?
I looked around wondering if there was anything we could make use of but I couldn’t see any options.
One thing I thought of was this.
There was probably no need to hold on with ‘arms’.
Wrapping my legs around the handle, I prayed I could last through this.
I felt like my legs were about to get ripped off.
How long was I holding on for? I had no idea. The actual time that went by might have been less than 10 minutes.
Each and every second was painful. A black tornado had suddenly appeared in the far outer space. I had no idea if that was the real black hole or something mimicking it, but the suction force of that black hole was threatening to shred my body.
From a distance, I finally started to see the platform again.
It would be the end if we could last until the platform, right?
Someone else saw the same thing as me.
“Guys. Hold on just a tiny bit more! We’re almost there!”
Unlike me who was having difficulty breathing, he seemed okay enough to shout.
Jinchul-hyung was probably holding onto the handle with his arms. His arms were in a better state than his legs and if it was him, even a single arm would probably be enough.
As soon as the roller coaster was about to enter the platform—
My ears picked up the sound of something slipping through metal and I saw Ahri bouncing out of the roller coaster!
All I could do was vacantly watch the disqualification of another teammate… I thought, but that was when Ahri pounced on the thin air and suddenly started flying to the platform.
It seemed that she still had enough power to fly. Somehow, the three of us passed the mission.
Right as the roller coaster entered the platform, the suction force of the black hole vanished and was replaced by normal gravity.
Blankly, I was sitting on the floor feeling absent-minded. When the roller coaster finally stopped moving, I walked out with a limp.
My legs were in a terrible state. Like Jinchul-hyung’s legs straight after the gyro-drop, there were bruises all over them.
I didn’t even have the power to stand so I rolled on the floor of the platform immediately after leaving the roller coaster.
After a while, I noticed Jinchul-hyung lay down next to me.
“…Are you alright, Kain?”
“Do I look okay?”
“You look shit. Just like me.”
“We still have two missions left. I feel like dying though.”
“There are both physically and mentally painful missions, and I just can’t. They don’t even give us time to breathe either. This is seriously horrible.”
Someone powerlessly walked towards us.
“Ahri. Looked like you still had enough power to fly at the end, but are you okay?”
“You two. Come here.”
She whispered with a voice resembling that of a mosquito.
Feeling the grave mood from her voice, we barely stood up and walked towards her. Her face was so pale that it looked as white as paper. She was giving off a chill, and her body was evidently turning colder.
“Ahri? Ahri! Are you okay?”
“I think… I have to go to rest first.”
I was lost for words. Was her flight at the end a last spurt before death?
Both hyung and I didn’t know what we were supposed to do.
I took out my syringe as I was told.
“Do we need to extract our blood and give it to you? Or should I bring it to your mouth?”
Even though she was half-dying, Ahri asked back with a dumbfounded look on her face.
“Blood? Do you think I’m a vampire? It’s not the time for nonsense.”
“I thought you were though? Because you used your blood every time you used your abilities.”
“Suck out my blood,” said Ahri.
“Wait. Aren’t you like this because of lack of blood–”
“I don’t have time. Hurry up.”
Closing my eyes, I extracted her blood with the syringe. Jinchul-hyung was trembling while watching from the side, but he didn’t stop me.
“You’ve had this before so you know this, right? This is an enhanced version of the one that gives you stamina. Send this directly to your wounds. Looks like this is it for me. See you outside.”
After breathing her last, her silky black hair fluttered as her fairy-like face fell to the side.
She had a peaceful look on her face, as if she was happy to finally take a rest.
Now, there were only two of us remaining.
/Congratulations on completing Mission 5: Roller Coaster from Space! Would you like to proceed to your next mission?/
/Mission 6. Real Deal! Haunted House.
3! 2! 1! Start!
At this point, I became used to the fluctuation of dimensions.
When I woke up from the nausea,
I found an old mansion in front of us, gleaming with its shabby appearance under the dim moonlight.