We followed Trix's lead through a maze of white corridors that would start and end at a set of double doors.
The run of doors eventually opened to a dead end that was a grilled metal platform and an intricately patterned bronze grilled closet.
The closet's closed double bronze doors had no handles on them.
Lita approached a set of symbols that ran a row down one side of the doors.
She held her palm over the symbol that resembled a bird. The symbol glowed.
The doors opened with a long-drawn-out hiss and sigh.
I followed everyone into the grilled closet, which turned out to be a small glass room of sorts that had architraves trimmed with double bands of bronze and the floor the color and texture of moonstone. I saw the same row of symbols were present on the inside of the doors.
Lita repeated the same process to close the doors. She then ran her hand all over the row to form a pattern from the bird, cat and fish symbols.
I gasped when the glass room jolted into movement and yelped when it shot upwards and sped from one side to another at a pace faster than sound. Something from my stomach was rammed up my food-pipe, and got stuck to the back of my throat when the room stopped and the doors opened.
I stumbled out behind the group with the urge to vomit and groaned when I saw everyone else had stepped out unaffected.
"Don't mind. Everyone's like this on their first trip." Lita consoled me with a gentle pat on my back.
I suddenly perked up by her show of concern and yelped when I felt a strong kick to my backside.
"Oops, my bad," said the blond ponytail woman who looked far from being apologetic.
"There goes Ryoko's bad habits." Wilfred sighed.
"You know not everyone is after your other half," he scolded the woman.
I stared at the women with my burning questions.
"They're dating." Leinard provided an answer.
Eh? Dating? As in doing the naked coupling exercises, I saw in Bulldog's secret picture books? The questions rushed to my mind. I rapidly blinked with surprise.
"But didn't you guys have a duel over Lita?" I blurted, moving my pointed finger between Leinard and Jensen. I instantly apologized for my rudeness.
Leinard's face blushed with a fierce red. Jensen burst with laughter.
"Aah yeah, you saw that. Well, that's ancient history." Jensen brushed off.
He sidled up close to me. "More importantly. What were these secret picture books?"
What?! I stumbled backwards with shock.
"H-how did you know I was thinking that?" I fumbled.
"Juxtapositioner's lair." Leinard provided another, nonchalant, answer. His awkward gaze told me he was also aware of my thought.
Jensen chuckled when he saw the penny had dropped.
I felt extremely self-conscious and didn't pay much attention to my surroundings afterwards as I was too focused on keeping chaste thoughts in my head.
Before I knew it, I was standing before a rice paper door—water painted with a red-black cherry blossom tree—glowing with soft light.
Wilfred pushed the door to one side and entered the room. I followed Trix and the other man in; they gently lowered War to the tatami mats at the center.
We had returned to the lantern room. I glanced up to the ceiling and noticed it had been repaired.
"This is actually a medical unit," said Leinard. "It's not the same room you were placed in but one similar."
"I like the sound of the Lantern Room. Gives it a better feel than the Medical Unit." Wilfred commented on the thought I had had in my head.
I groaned. I really had to do something about this whole nosy mind reading thing.