HK416 - 별에 감싸이다

At the Griffin command room.

416 Are you there, Commander?

Commander Yes, come in.

416 Greetings, Commander. Here is the report of the previous battle.

Commander Alright...
Hmm, the battle went well this time as well.

416 ...I did not participate in the battle. I'm just here to give you the report.
Now then, I will excuse myself, Commander.

Commander Ah... One second.

I pull out a letter from the drawer.

Commander Take this.

416 Griffin's logo... A new mission?

Commander This is an invitation to the company's anniversary banquet.
Strictly can say its an optional mission, but you don't have to think of it as a mission.

416 ...Understood.

Commander You're often out on missions and barely spend any time at the base...
As an employee of the company, why not take the chance to enjoy yourself?
By the way, do remember to wear an evening dress.

416 Understood.
If that is all then I'll be excusing myself, Commander.

416 calmly picks up the invitation letter and leaves.

Commander She didn't look very interested...

Commander What does she do in her spare time? I do hope she comes to the banquet.

Several days later.

In the Griffin base.

M1891 Ah, Commander!
I was looking for you!

Commander What is it, Mosin-Nagant?

M1891 Springfield asked me earlier to round up some people to help with preparations for the anniversary party.
I looked at the schedule and 416 seems to be free, so I wanted to ask her to help.

Commander That's fine.
You can just ask 416 directly.

M1891 Well... The problem is I've been looking for her for two days, and like usual, I haven't seen her around anywhere.
Do you know where she is, Commander?

Commander Is that so? She's been punctual in submitting her logistics reports for the past few days, though.
As for what she could be doing in her free time...the schedule doesn't cover that.

M1891 That's true...
If you see her, Commander, could you ask her to come and find me?

Commander Sure.

M1891 Thank you, Commander. I'll continue to look for her, then.

Mosin-Nagant leaves.

Commander Is 416 busy with something...?

Commander I'll ask when I see her.

The next day.

At the Griffin command room.

416 Commander, here is the report from last night's logistics mission.

Commander Alright. Thanks for the hard work.

416 I shall be going, then.

Commander Wait, 416.

416 is already at the doorway as I'm calling out to her.

416 Is there anything else, Commander?

Commander Well...

I tell 416 about Mosin-Nagant's request.

416 ...I see. I'll look for her so we can discuss it.
Will there be anything else, Commander?

Commander No, nothing.
Though, you seem to be quite busy lately...
The scheduling isn't too much for you, is it?

416 ...I like to make full use of my spare time.
Do I need to report what I do for leisure as well, Commander?

Commander Ah, there's no need...
I'm just asking out of curiosity.

416 I will take my leave, then.

416 leaves the room.

In the corridor.

416 ...How bothersome.

416 A party on top of the banquet...
Will this be... one and only chance to stand tall and proud beside the...?


Day of the anniversary.

A young lady, dressed in a gorgeous dress, captures everyone's gaze as she walks into the banquet hall.

416 seems to be oblivious to the fact that she is the center of attention. Looking straight ahead, she walks to a table at one of the corners and sits down.

416 Looks like putting effort into my preparations was effective. I suppose I can consider this mission a success.

416 quietly observes the people moving to-and-fro in the hall.
The ball then began after the banquet. Although several people tried to approach 416, they quickly left after meeting her gaze.

416 ...Humans are strange.

Commander What do you think of the banquet, 416?

416 Acceptable. The food is good.

Commander Ah... That's good...

416 Commander, is there something you'd like to ask?

Commander Nothing in particular...
I originally thought that you didn't like events like this and I didn't expect you to come.

416 It doesn't matter if I like it or not.
The reason I because you wanted me to come.
So, what do you think of my performance on this mission?

Commander If I have to evaluate this like a mission, then I would're doing very well so far.

416 ”So far”?

Commander Of course. the ball hasn't ended yet, after all.
Aren't you going to dance?
You can't say you've completed the mission if you don't dance at least once.

416 I'm not too interested. Besides, no one has asked me for a dance yet.

Commander Is that so...
(Probably because you're so intimidating...)

416 Even though I am wearing a beautiful dress, deep down, I am still a dangerous T-Doll.
I suppose humans would not be willing to dance with such a person.

Commander I don't think so, 416...
At least, I don't think you're dangerous.

416 You don't?
Then, to repay your trust in me... I shall devote myself to fully completing this mission.

416 rises and stands in front of me.
The soft glow from the hall spills onto her shoulders, enveloping her in a faint halo of light.
...As if she is a star in the night sky emitting a brilliant, yet cold, radiance.

416 Commander...

She extends her hand towards me.

416 Will you dance with me?

416 For the first time...
...and perhaps the last...
Will you accept just this once?