Thursday, October 31, 2013

Silent Hill - Chapter 1-3



Silent Hill : The Official Novel

By Sadamu Yamashita
Translated by
Emily Fitch

Chapter One -Fog- (Part 3)







Though he’d been forced to spend another four precious bullets on a dog on the way, Harry somehow managed to make it to Midwich Elementary in one piece. He burst open the front doors, inching into the lobby with a flashlight in one hand and a readied pistol in the other. He heard nothing in the darkened building but the soft shaking of his own hands. No signs of any monsters for now. Those heavy wooden doors seemed more than sturdy enough to keep the dogs from breaking in.

“Cheryl?” He yelled into the darkness. His echoed voice was the only reply. “Cheryl, where are you?”

He began a thorough search of the school building, starting from the first floor and the basement, all the way up to the second floor and the roof. He made note of each room as he checked it, the classrooms, staff rooms, chemistry lab, music room, nurse’s office, library, and the courtyard. Harry even went so far as to check the bathrooms and individual lockers. Maybe she was silently huddled in some dark corner, hiding from whoever might have brought her here. Or maybe she’d already been caught. She could be just beyond his reach, all of her frantic cries for her father silenced by a gag in her mouth. The mere thought of some criminal laying their filthy hands of his daughter was enough to make Harry’s stomach turn.

Each empty room, each silent hallway intensified these dismal visions until Harry found himself choking back tears of helpless frustration. Come on, pull yourself together! He scolded himself. Cheryl is alive. She is safe. And you’re going to find her. If his search had turned up nothing, he’d just start over again. He’d scour this desolate place as many times as it took if it meant finding even the smallest clue.

Harry was certain he had to have overlooked something. But nothing like this. He stood transfixed, back in the entrance lobby.

The reception desk was drenched in red. Warm, wet blood was splattered across the desk as well as the wall behind it. He had stood right here not ten minutes ago. He checked that office top to bottom. What sort of massacre could have happened in that time?

Head pounding, Harry burst into the reception office. He didn’t find the bloodied body of a young girl, or any other bodies for that matter. Just more vivid splashes of fresh blood. Sheer relief stole the air from Harry’s lungs and he slumped over the desk for support.

There were several documents spread across the desk, lists of visitors to the school and student emergency contact information. The papers were useless now, too soggy and blood-splattered to be read. Harry squinted leaning a little closer. Some of those splatters were not as random as he first thought. Smears of red overlapped the black ink on the pages, curving into words that spelled a cryptic poem.



It was nothing a seven year old child could have written but…at the same time, Harry could sense intent beneath those cryptic words. He knew they could have only been left for him by Cheryl. The idea was far beyond any logical thought. Then again, he’d experienced so many impossible things already. Believing this seemed almost easy.
Harry placed a hand onto the stained pages, scanning each word carefully. “Open time’s door…” He recalled seeing what looked to be a clock tower out in the courtyard in the center of the school. It was a tall structure of concrete blocks pushed right up against the walls of the school. While it wasn’t too large around, it seemed big enough to hide a person inside. Especially a small person. Harry had examined it before, but quickly gave up after finding no way inside. Now it seemed to be the best lead he had.
Harry stood before the imposing tower once more. The worn clock face sat at a motionless 5 o’clock. Maybe if he could get some power to it again, it hidden door would open. Let’s see…”Darkness that brings the choking heat…” There was a boiler room in the basement of the building. The boiler itself was quiet, but if he turned it back on, perhaps that could be the “flames” that would “render the silence.” That would make the boiler itself the “hungry beast” that could “open times door.”
Harry raced down the stairs, bursting into the boiler room with the guidance of his flashlight. A hulking metallic machine cast its shadow over the dark room, looming like a monster waiting to be fed. With the flip of a switch on a small control panel, the room was suddenly bathed in red light. The boiler gave a long groan before roaring to life in a near deafening rumble of burning gasoline. Harry didn’t even bother covering his ears; he was out the door the second it started moving.
He ran in a single-minded sprint through the building, pausing only when the floor beneath him rang from a deep and echoing chime. It sounded one, two, three, four more times. Five o’clock. Sure enough, a small door in the side of the clock tower was sitting wide open, almost congratulating him for discovering its secret. The entrance was just large enough for him to crouch inside. The interior was cold and about as roomy as a phone booth, with nothing but a ladder on the floor, leading down into stagnant darkness. Harry didn’t even have to think twice as he began his descent.
The ladder led down into a cramped corridor, which in turn let to another ladder leading up into an opening lit by hazy light.
“What the…?”
Harry emerged from passage to find himself…right back where he started: the same courtyard with the same buildings, the same clock tower looming behind him, and the same fog shrouding the darkened sky. Everything, down to the worn bricks under his feet, was identical to where he had stood just moments earlier. It was hard to tell in the darkness, but he must have traveled some distance underground, at least a couple yards. Either he’d found a secret passage leading to a suspiciously well-crafted replica of Midwich Elementary or he was going crazy.
The radio in his pocket crackled into a burst of static. Harry spun around, shining the weak beam of his flashlight through the fog.
Slap…slap…slap…
Uneven footsteps echoed through the courtyard. A dark figure emerged from the shadows, drawing closer by the second. Harry recognized nauseating stench immediately. It was the same creature that attacked him back in the alley. It was almost child-like in its stature and sluggish gait, but the closer it came, the less human it appeared.
Its head wasn’t much of a head at all, just a neckless protrusion jutting out of its torso. Thick arms spouted from its sides, ending in a set of vicious claws that scraped the pavement as it lumbered forward. There were no traces of a nose or eyes, only a thin mouth stretching vertically across its ‘face’ that harbored a set of uneven, pointed teeth.
It opened and closed its mouth as it walked, appearing almost as if it were mumbling something. Or perhaps it was so anxious to take a bite out of Harry that it was just gnashing its teeth in anticipation.
Harry’s hands were shaking as he reached for the pistol in his belt. He’d faced monsters before but…this thing was no half-rotted dog. This thing was a broken, shambling imitation of a human being, a child even.
A single gunshot rang out. The monster staggered backwards, a gaping hole spewing blood from its chest. It didn’t stop, too single minded in its feral hunting to feel pain. It continued advancing, saber-like claws rubbing together, itching to sink into their prey. The sight, the stench, the incessant grinding of teeth; it was too much for Harry to bear. This thing…this monster couldn’t possibly exist within his carefully constructed view of reality.
He didn’t realize he was screaming, not with his ears ringing with the sound of gunshots. His eyes were squeezed shut, blocking out everything but the kick of the gun in his hands. Finally, after an eternity of deafening noise, the magazine went empty and everything fell silent.
The thing was on the ground, convulsing in a pool of its own blood. The sight should have brought Harry some measure of relief, but it only sent more disgust welling within him. He reached up to wipe off his face, only for his jacket sleeve to return covered in the creature’s blood as well. This…thing’s existence was so wholly contrary to everything he’d ever heard about a kind and benevolent God. What kind of sick God could create something so unholy? Harry was hardly a religious man, but he couldn’t help but think that the wretched creature could have only come from the devil himself.
The place Harry now found himself both was and wasn’t the Midwich Elementary he’d been standing in just a few minutes earlier. The air was heavy, carrying a chill that that had him pulling his jacket on tighter. Hit flashlight, even with a fresh set of batteries, did little to cut through the pervasive gloom. It was like he’d wandered through a portal to another dimension…
What he found in the middle of the courtyard only seemed to confirm that idea. Beneath Harry’s feet was an intricately drawn magic circle of some kind. He’d heard of such things being used like a barrier to protect against evil…or perhaps as a door to summon demons and other dark spirits from the depths of hell. His eyes wandered over to the fallen creature. It had continued twitching for a while but had long since fell silent.
Could that thing have been summoned from here? Was it some sort of demon after all? What about the deformed birds and dogs roaming the town? Could Silent Hill really be cursed?
Harry felt dizzy. His head was pounding from its very core, far worse than anything he’d ever experienced. The truth was as real as the blood that stained his clothes, but it was simply too much for him to take. Harry wanted to throw everything away, to give up and run from this forsaken town as fast as his feet could carry him. He desperately willed himself to wake up from this nightmare, but he was as far from the comfort of his bed as he could possibly be.
There will be time rest once Cheryl’s safe…This thought was the only thing that willed his weary body forward.
-6-
The rest of the school was as unrecognizable as the courtyard. The classrooms were in complete disarray; desks had been flipped and scattered about the room as if there’d been a natural disaster. Just as Harry had finished searching the staff room and was about to leave, the sudden ringing of one of the office phones stopped him in his tracks. He couldn’t think of a single good reason not to, so he picked up the receiver.
“Daddy…” Harry froze at the sound of that beloved voice.
“Help me!”
“Cheryl!”
“Daddy…where are you…?”
“I’m here! I’m right here! Cheryl, where are you?”
In a second, her voice was cut off. The line was dead. Harry stood paralyzed, the receiver still clutched in his hand. His heart pounded as frenzied thoughts rushed through his mind. Chery was begging for help. She was in trouble. She sounded on the verge of tears…
These monsters…the magic circle…Could his daughter be a victim of some cult? Was she kidnapped as a sacrifice for some black ritual? His chest felt like it could burst. That call offered no clues to Cheryl’s whereabouts, but the fact that a phone rang here had to mean something. This school had to be connected to it all. There was no choice but to keep searching.
--
Leonard Rhine
The Monster Lurks

Those were the words on the wall in the men’s bathroom, hastily scrawled in dark red blood. Beside the inscription was a suspended corpse, crucified just like the body Harry found in the alley. The only thing that disturbed him more than the gruesome sight, was the inescapable feeling that he’d heard that name somewhere before.
Leonard Rhine was an old author, one who focused on the occult and other supernatural matters. Most people with any respect for reason and rationality turned their noses up at his work. Though he’d admittedly been one of those people, Harry had read one of his books in the past.  He couldn’t remember any of the specifics, it’d been so long ago, but it gave him an idea. Harry made his way to the library.
It might have been a stretch to expect to find any of Rhine’s books in a school library - his work was a bit obtuse for grade schoolers – but the clue was worth investigating. He had no doubt it was something Cheryl meant for him to see.
His nearly-empty gun clutched in his hands, Harry cautiously poked his head around the hallway corner. There were more clawed creatures wandering through the school He’d heard their slapping footsteps accompanied by a whisper of static more than once, but he always managed to slip by them unnoticed.
The school’s library was in surprisingly good shape considering the state of the other rooms in the building. Although there were many books scattered across the floor, the majority of them were still sitting untouched on the shelves. As his eyes scanned the floor, the cover of one book caught Harry’s eye. A wave of nostalgia compelled him to pick it up. He knew this book; it was full of stories and fairy tales he used to read at Cheryl’s bedside to lull her to sleep. He flipped the book open to a story titled “The Lizard and the Hunter.”



…Hearing this, the hunter, armed with bow
and arrow, said: 'I will kill the Lizard.'
But upon meeting his opponent, he held back,
taunting: 'Who's afraid of a reptile?'. At
this, the furious Lizard hissed: 'I'll
swallow you in a single bite!'. Then,
the huge creature attacked, jaws open
wide. This was what the man wanted.
Calmly drawing his bow, he shot into the
Lizard's gaping mouth. Effortlessly the
arrow flew, piercing the defenseless maw.
And the Lizard fell down dead.
Respectfully wiping some of the dust from the cover, Harry set the book back on one of the shelves. Only then did he notice that on that shelf full of brightly colored picture books, on book in particular stood out. It was thick, heavy, and dark colored with no words on the spine and no pictures on the cover. Harry flipped open the first page to see the words “The Monster Lurks, by Leonard Rhine” printed in bold letters. He began scanning through the pages.
Chapter 3: Manifestation of Delusions
…Poltergeists are among these. Negative
emotions like fear, worry or stress
manifest into external energy with
physical effects. Nightmares have, in
some cases, been shown to trigger them.
However, one such phenomenon doesn't
appear to happen to just anyone. Although
it's not clear why, adolescents, especially
girls, are prone to such occurrences.
Harry slammed the book shut. The words written on those pages brought unpleasant memories to his mind. Memories of Cheryl-
“Cheryl, can you please be quiet? Daddy’s trying to work.”
“Sorry Dad.”
“Who’s that you were playing with? Some of the neighbor kids?”
“It’s the boogeyman.”
“Oh my! So you’re telling me the ghost from under your bed crawled out in the middle of the day?”
“Can you please tell him not to come back?”
“Ah, you’re such a cute girl that you’re even popular with ghosts huh?”
“He wants to take me somewhere. He wants us to go together.”
“That sounds serious.”
“When I don’t listen to what he says, he scratches me with his claws.”
“Really now? Let me take a look…”
The welt he saw scraped across his daughter’s chest was still burned into his eyes. Thick, red lines cut through her delicate skin, looking almost like a sequence of letters. Since that day, accidents began occurring in their home. Sometimes Harry would hear a strange commotion in the kitchen, only to find that every cabinet had been flung open and the floor was littered with bowls and plates. Sometimes days or even weeks would pass by with no activity at all. Still, it was enough to turn Harry, a vehement non-believer in the supernatural, to researching occult literature.
Maybe that message wasn't just to get him to read Leonard Rhine’s book. There had to be a connection between what happened that day at their home and Cheryl’s disappearance now. It had to be…a curse. That was the first word that entered his mind, but Harry quickly shook it off. What could an innocent, seven-year-old girl do to earn such resentment from someone? Cheryl grew up blessed with undying love from Harry and his late wife Jodie. Though she had no blood tied to her parents, Cheryl still grew to become a honest and gentle girl, even sharing Jodie’s kind smile. But…
The reality of the world weighed heavily on Harry’s mind. The world was not as kind and just as he would have wished for his daughter. Children were tricked into believing that honest and good people are always rewarded and that evil people will be punished. The reality was that corruption was rampant and that evil people far outnumbered the good. Jodie, an innocent woman, was run down and had her life stolen from her, while the criminal driving that car got out without so much as a scratch and now spent his days idling away in prison. Adults corrupt the earth with their selfishness and insatiable desires, giving no care to the blameless children who must pay the price…
Wandering in this depressed mood, Harry found that he’d unknowingly made his way back to the basement. Perhaps this dark, decrepit place was where he expected lowlife criminals to hide. Or where they might hide their victims. Stepping into the boiler room again, Harry happened upon a door that he didn’t remember seeing before. It sat in the darkness like a gaping mouth, inviting him to step inside.
Mysterious flames flickered before Harry’s eyes, bringing to mind the tortuous fires of hell. If a deranged Satanist was to choose a place to make their hideout, this was as likely a place as any. Then again, it’d also be a delightful place to set a trap. And if it is, I guess I just waltzed right into it…But this is where he intended to turn the tables. He’d find the sick freaks responsible for all this, blow a hole in their heads, step over their corpses, and find Cheryl at any cost. A stiff smile rose to Harry’s face. Okay, he might be overdoing it just a bit. It was pretty hard to imagine himself, an out-of-shape author from the suburbs, as some kind of gun-toting tough guy out of an action movie.
In the center of the room was a hole which held a recessed altar. Fire licked at the surface, crackling and warping Harry’s vision until he could swear he saw a vision in the flames. Cheryl? He saw the figure of a girl tied to a chair. The cruel phantom flickered until it faded completely. The fear that rose in his heart was matched only by the blistering rage that grew hotter than the fire before him. His face twisted into an enraged scowl as he clutched the pistol tighter.
“Come out, you cowards! Give me back my daughter!”
In answer to his command, a black shape formed behind the flame. But it wasn’t his daughter’s kidnapper; it wasn’t even human. No doubt it’d been sent to finish Harry off. It was a lumbering creature, huge enough to put all the other monster’s he’d encountered to shame. All of his bravado and savior fantasies melted away in an instant, fear quickly extinguishing his anger. Harry inched backwards until his back it the cold metal of the door. It was shut tight. He was trapped.
The monster slowly made its way around the fire, the lights showing it’s true form: a reptile to dwarf all other reptiles. It looked as if it’d never seen a ray of light in its entire life; the creature’s skin was pale and translucent, glistening with a slimy layer of mucus. The place where its eyes should have been was merely an empty socket, a black, emotionless hole. It’s bulky, crocodile-like legs were barely large enough to support its massive body. Fortunately for Harry, it meant that the lizard’s progress was slow as it sluggishly dragged itself closer.


Harry ran from the door, circling around the flames to the other side of the room. Even though he felt like his feet might fail him at any moment, they still moved him faster than the lumbering creature. But he couldn’t keep this up forever. He could run and run all he wanted, but eventually his strength would give out and he’d find himself cornered…
“Get away!” Harry gathered what little courage he had left before turning to face the approaching monster. Fixing his aim on the lizard, he fired. Two gunshots rang through the cramped room. Though Harry was certain he must have hit it, the monstrous lizard shrugged off the bullets without so much as wince. In an instant, the space in front of him turned pitch black. Harry stared dumbfounded as he realized that he was staring directly into the lizard’s gaping maw.
His amazement temporarily outweighed his fear; the creature’s head had completely split vertically in two, all the way down to its neck. Its mouth was easily big enough to swallow him whole, lined with sharp, jagged teeth. Its breath was putrid, like rotting garbage, making Harry’s eyes sting. To die by being crushed between those jaws and smothered by that revolting scent was surely the worst death he could imagine.
Harry desperately scrambled backwards, putting distance between himself and the lizard’s gaping mouth. Killing this thing wouldn’t be easy; two bullets hardly did anything and he doubted that a hundred more could even injure it. Then again…he only had five rounds left. A feeling of hopelessness washed over him; Harry could almost feel the blood draining from his face. Calm down. I just have to calm down…Harry thought. It had to have some sort of weakness. How could one kill such a massive beast?
I will kill the lizard.
The words from the fairy tale surfaced in his mind. Of course, that would make him the hunter, armed with a pistol rather than a bow. Harry smiled, he almost could have cried.
But upon meeting his opponent, he held back,
taunting: 'Who's afraid of a reptile?'.
Well, Harry was. He was more afraid now than he’d ever been in his life.
The furious Lizard hissed: 'I'll
swallow you in a single bite!'.
Harry inched closer to monster’s open mouth, its rotten breath bringing hot, stinging tears to his eyes.
The huge creature attacked, jaws open
wide. This was what the man wanted.
Harry pulled the trigger again and again, sending all five bullets into the back of the lizard’s throat and straight though its body. It let out an ear-piercing cry, recoiling back before collapsing to the ground with a heavy thud. In an instant, Harry’s legs went weak and he too fell to the floor, still holding the gun stiffly in front of him. He was convinced that the lizard would get back to its feet at any moment and he’d be completely at its mercy. But it didn’t move.
As relief slowly replaced his adrenaline and Harry was able to focus on things other than his imminent death, he realized that someone else was in the room with him. The figure of a young girl stood over him, watching him intently. Harry stared at the girl; the girl stared back at Harry. She wasn’t Cheryl. So who could she be…?
---
Before he realized it, Harry had returned to the boiler room. There was no trace of the door that led to the burning room. The monster, the girl, everything was just gone. In fact, everything was just as it had been before he traveled through the mysterious clock tower. He was just standing in an ordinary boiler room in an ordinary school. Harry could hear a bell sounding in the distance.
The darkness that has so suddenly fallen was gone, even though hardly enough time had passed for it to be dawn already. Even with the thick fog, being out in the open again felt refreshing. Harry stood on the school’s front steps as he examined his map. The bells sounded like church bells, but he had no clue who could be ringing them. Perhaps it was someone trying to gather the survivors? Maybe such a person would know what was going on here. Scanning over the homes and businesses, Harry’s finger fell on a likely location: The Balkan Church.
Bradbury Street was collapsed, so Harry would have to take the long way around through Bachman Road. Remembering that his gun was empty, Harry kept an eye out for any place that looked like it sold guns or ammo. He moved quickly and carefully, keeping to the shadows as not to attract any attention from the monsters still roaming the streets.
Though it seemed to take forever, the church wasn’t as far as he first thought. Before long, the church’s gothic architecture emerged from the fog. If Harry recalled, about 25% of Maine’s population identified as Catholic. By the looks of it, many of Silent Hill’s residents seemed to belong to that number.
The first thing that caught his eye when he entered was a large crucifix hanging behind the altar, casting a somber atmosphere over the room. The pews were all empty; no believers came to worship today. Looks like Harry was the only one the bell had summoned. A woman stood before the altar. Harry approached her, his footsteps echoing across the vaulted ceiling.
She certainly wasn’t his young daughter; even from under her pure-white veil, he could see her hair was losing its luster. Her face was gnarled, like an aged tree, and her manner of dress was modest and plain. Despite her harmless appearance, something about her seemed off. Harry couldn’t help that wonder if she was actually much younger than she looked.
“Were you the one ringing the bell?” Harry asked.
“I have been waiting for you.” The woman gave him a smile that creased the wrinkles on her cheeks.
“I knew you would arrive; it was foretold by the Lord.”
“Who are you? What’s going on in this town; where did everyone go?”
“The hour of judgement is at hand. The battle between good and evil has already begun.” The wide smile never left her face as she spoke, as if she was intoxicated with mirth. She didn’t seem to be all there. Harry frowned. Maybe whatever had happened to this town was too much for her and she just snapped. Then again, maybe she was this way from the start. But…though her words seemed insane, the look in her eyes was perfectly lucid, shining with a hint of slyness.
“You are still searching for that girl, are you not?”
“Girl? You mean Cheryl!?” Harry raised his voice. It was as if there mere mention of Cheryl’s name was a spell that could erase his reason, driving everything from his mind but thoughts of saving her. Even if the one casting the spell was some fanatic, his desperation was too strong for him to resist.
“Where is she!?”
The woman shook her head sadly.
“Unfortunately, the child has been captured by those who wish evil upon us. I’m afraid she is to be a sacrifice.”
“What are you talking about!?” Harry stepped closer to the woman, reaching out to grab her, to demand answers.
“Do not touch me!” The woman cried out in a booming voice. She smiled again, but there was a shade of disgust hidden beneath it.
“My body has been sanctified as that of a true servant of God by a vow of chastity. This is how I receive His blessed revelations. Do you understand?”
“Uh…yes?” Harry nodded slowly.
“I am your ally. I desire the child’s safety as much as you do. Now listen well: There is nothing to be gained by floundering about at random. You must follow the path. The path of the Hermit, hidden within Flauros.”
“…Flauros?”
“It is the silence of purgatory. It can break through the walls of darkness and counteract the wrath of the underworld.” With that, the woman tossed something on the floor between them.
“It will help you save your daughter from those with ill-intent. Now, make haste to the hospital before it is too late.”
Harry crouched down to pick up the object on the floor. It looked a bit like a pyramid-shaped toy, but despite its size, it felt heavy in his hand. It made no sound when he shook it, but he couldn’t help but feel that there was something inside.
“What am I supposed to do with this?” He asked. But when he lifted his head, the woman was gone, vanished like a wisp of smoke.


----------------Notes----------------

Naturally, this book is based off the Japanese version of the game which features mumblers in the school rather than the grey children found in the North American release.

I can't remember if Leonard Rhine was the author of that book in the game or if any mention of him was made outside that writing on the bathroom wall? I'd have to play the game myself again to check but I don't think the connection was there originally.


I assume the scene where Cheryl complains about a ghost is in reference to the spell Dahlia used to summon her back to Silent Hill to reunite with Alessa. I don't know if the specifics of it were ever mentioned anywhere else, but it sounds like it got quite nasty for her and Harry both.


I think it's really important for everyone to know that the word used in the scene right before the split head fight where Harry laments how out of shape he is is タフガイ (tafu gai) which is literally just the words 'tough guy' written in katakana. 

Original - Sadamu Yamashita
Characters/story - Konami
Translation - Lady Ducky

Artwork by Masahiro Ito
Screenshots from the Silent Hill wiki
Darkness that brings choking heat puzzle image

You MAY NOT re-post this translation anywhere without my permission and I must be given credit as well as the original author.

15 comments:

  1. Wow, at last!
    Thank you very much!
    It's indeed a spookily short update, but if there's more updates more regularly I buy it!
    So I'm already waiting for the chapter 1 part 4... :D
    Best regards.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the update! Looking forward to more! :D

    ReplyDelete
  3. Really apreciate you doing this!

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  4. It has been four months.
    Is this ever going to be finished?
    Don't get me wrong, I am loving Silent Hill 2.
    But, now and then I check on this.
    And not a word has been added in four months.
    So I am getting worried.
    I trust no substitute-- not that there are any.
    So please let us know if you are getting back to this soon.

    ReplyDelete
  5. yes please, let us know with a modest update sometime!

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  6. Okay, now it's been a year.. Have you abandoned this altoghether?

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  7. Ahhh! So exciting that this part is finally normal-lengthed. Thanks for updating! :D

    ReplyDelete