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Beruta, the Curious: Chapter Six

“Earned Status”

Beruta stood in front of Anki. They guarded their dummy, keeping their eyes trapped on Beruta. Beruta’s hand was ready to tense up so that the weapon would shoot. She had her eyes locked on Anki as well.

Beruta shoot 3 times at the dummy and Anki lifted it up and moved it out of the way in one smooth motion.

“You’re too far away for that to work.” Anki teased.

Anki kept Beruta away from direct sight with the dummy.

“Did this guy already go through this training, I can’t even get a good line of sight in.” Beruta thought to herself.

Anki then lunged at Beruta with their shield in front of the exit location of the Light Projectile Weapon.

They grabbed each of Beruta’s arms and pinned her to the ground. It all happened in an instant. Beruta was unable to move Anki off of her, Anki had much more weight than she did and was much more massive. Anki knows this, thus uses it to their advantage.

“Exercise Over!” Doctor Piles announced.

Beruta got up from the ground.

“I don’t think it’s fair that they get to be both big and fast.” Beruta thought to herself.

“That was too easy for you!” Rancol celebrated Anki’s victory.

“There was no doubt in my mind that I was going to do perfectly in that, I’m just gifted.” Anki gloated.

“Hano and Saigan take your positions.” Doctor Piles announced.

Saigan immediately ran towards the dummy with their Baton. Hano blocked the Strike with their shield knocking Saigan away. Saigan attacked again and Hano blocked after each one.

Hano looked extremely bored watching Saigan struggle to even land a single strike on the dummy. They continued to try and deceive Hano by also trying to punch with a few hands and strike with others.

Hano was unfazed, and eventually swept Siagon’s legs, knocking them to the ground. Hano then stepped on Saigan to keep them from moving.

“I don’t really feel like doing this, but it is part of the exercise.” Hano said before striking Saigan’s arms incapacitating them.

Saigan laid on the ground defeated.

Hano walked back in line.

“Glad I got to go up against Anki rather than Hano, at least Anki only pinned me.” Beruta thought to herself.

“Rancol and Hahur, take you places.” Doctor Piles commanded.

“This isn’t your lucky day at all.” Rancol taunted.

Hahur held their Light Projectile Weapon in their hand while Rancol had a shield.

Hahur focused on watching Rancol.

“I’m going to bash that dummy’s face in. I’m pretty much already there.” Rancol again taunted Hahur.

Rancol then dashed forward, slimming down their body nearly into a tube. “They’re fast!” Hahur said, being caught off guard with such speed.

Rancol was able to clear a direct line of sight on the dummy and pivoted their movement to head directly towards it. Hahur was in the process of getting between the dummy and Rancol but it was already too late.

Rancol had successfully gotten on top of the dummy and bashed its face in. Rancol got up and laughed.

“Told you, I was already there.” Rancol said walking away.

Beruta watched Rancol rejoin Anki. “I can see why Rancol would listen to Anki. Anki covers so much space that even with Rancol’s speed, Anki would be able to grab them and prevent them from moving, negating their advantage.” Beruta thought to herself.

“Now Okina and Yakra, get to your places.” Doctor Piles told the two.

They both walked forward. Okina was attacking but only had a baton with them.

Beruta watched closely to see what the Rank 1 individual could do.

Okina tossed the baton, and it completely missed the dummy.

“What was that?!” Yakra laughed, they were completely stunned by the lack of accuracy. “Do you actually expect to destroy the dummy with your hands? I have a Light Projectile Weapon, I could just shoot you.” Yakra gloated.

“Hey idiot! You already lost.” Anki yelled out.

Yakra was confused. They turned away and saw Okina’s baton had impacted deeply into the face of the dummy.

“How on Earth did you do that?” Yakra asked.

“At this moment Yakra probably thinks that Okina has an ability to telekinetically move their baton. But really all that happened was Okina bounced their baton at such an angle and force that it caused it to end up in the face of the dummy.” Beruta explained it to herself.

“Good, now everyone switches sides. If you were an attacker in the last round, then you are defending this round and vice versa.” Doctor Piles announced.

Urgio stepped forward with their Baton ready to attack the dummy. Yahu had their Light Projectile Weapon ready to fire.

“You got a lucky shot last round, let’s see what you do now that you are defending.” Urgio said to Yahu.

“Ah, I have a Light Projectile Weapon, you have a Baton. I don’t think I have anything to worry about.” Yahu responded.

Urgio then rushed in to take down Yahu. Yahu shot Urgio in the face, bringing them down. Yahu looked down at the unconscious opponent.

“Who did you think you were, Anki or something? You should have just given up outright.” Yahu said walking back in line.

Almuha was defending against Simura.

“I’m going to do the same thing to you again.” Simura said to Almuha.

Almuha gripped their weapon, and they immediately went to shoot. But as Simura warned. They had already landed their shots and Almuha once again fell.

Simura then shot the head off of the dummy.

“Great, it’s me against Anki again.” Beruta thought walking unmotivated to the dummy.

“Don’t be like that, even though I am going to win, I want to at least go against someone who is willing to fight.” Anki said to Beruta.

Beruta prepared her weapon.

“Okay, I already know that Anki is a fast grappler. They have a Shield which means they will likely protect their head when charging in. Only thing I can really do is make sure I keep myself and the dummy out of their range.” Beruta thought to herself.

She immediately began firing, Anki used their shield to protect their body parts as they slowly moved towards Beruta.

Beruta continued to fire. Until she had to recharge her weapon.

“Oh looks like you ran out, it’s too late!” Anki said charging in on Beruta.

Beruta immediately started shooting again.

One of the shots grazed their skin. Anki brought up their shield again and moved slowly with it.

“Thought for sure she ran out, how was she able to fire at me.” Anki thought.

“Looks like Beruta is experienced with reloading. I’ve never seen anyone recharge a weapon that fast.” Hano said impressed at Beruta’s ability.

“I probably won’t win, but at least I will be able to keep Anki away for a little longer.” Beruta thought to herself.

Anki eventually covered more ground between them and Beruta. Beruta fired another shot but by then Anki already grabbed her and pinned her arms to the ground.

“Dang it, I lost again.” Beruta said.

“If this was real-world you could have easily got your dummy out of the room in that amount of time.” Anki said, allowing Beruta to get up.

“I guess, but you are just way too big.” Beruta responded.

Anki laughed. “That’s what makes me incredible.” Anki gloated.

Beruta seemed unentertained. 

Saigan stepped up to defend against Hano. Hano dashed towards the dummy.

“Whoa! Hano is fast too!” Saigan was surprised at their speed.

Hano smacked Saigan out of the way with their shield. Saigan laid on the ground some distance away.

“I don’t think this is how you guard someone.” Hano said before crushing the dummy’s head with their shield.

Hano then walked back in line.

“Dang it, that was even more pathetic than the last round!” Saigan called out.

Hahur stepped into the attackers position and Rancol stepped in the defenders spot with their Shield.

“If you run towards me I am just going to shoot your dummy.” Hahur said to Rancol.

“Who said I was going to run towards you. You don’t have anywhere near enough skill to do anything.” Rancol taunted.

Hahur then started shooting at the dummy. Rancol used their shield to intercept the shots.

“Are you really reacting to the speed of these projectiles?” Hahur asked.

“I’m just looking at where your barrel is pointing, I don’t need to react to the projectile itself.” Rancol laughed. “Your shots are so easy to read.”

Hahur then began to reload.

Rancol took that opportunity to dash at Hahur. Hahur had not finished reloading and was taken down by Rancol.

“You should have just ran in once you ran out, it would have been a lot less embarrassing.” Rancol taunted.

Hahur laid on the ground. “Dammit!” Hahur yelled out.

“If I was against Rancol, I probably would have been able to take them out.” Beruta thought to herself, after seeing the results of both of their matches.

Okina and Yakra stepped up. Yakra watched Okina’s baton closely. When Okina didn’t make the first move Yakra went to shoot.

Okina tossed the baton and knocked the Light Projectile Weapon out of Yakra’s hand, then the baton returned to Okina.

Yakra looked at Okina, stunned at what just happened.

Okina gestured for Yakra to grab their weapon and try again. Yakra walked over and grabbed  the weapon and tried to quickly turn and fire.

Okina tossed the baton and it returned to their hand.

Yakra looked around. “Ah, I’m pretty sure I hit your dummy.” Yakra said to Okina.

Okina showed Yakra the baton. There was a small dent in it from intercepting the projectile.

Yakra then shot many times to try and hit Okina’s dummy. Okina moved their baton around to deflect the path of the projectile. None of the shots made it through. Yakra then had to reload.

“It’s over.” Beruta thought to herself.

Once Yakra began to reload, they saw Okina’s baton bounce off the ground in front of them. They were then knocked out from the impact.

Okina grabbed the Baton from the air and returned back to the line.

“They are scary good.” Beruta thought to herself.

“I have looked through all the prior matches and made notes. The results are pretty much what I expected, so don’t punish yourself too hard.” Doctor Piles said to the Candidates.

“I bet Doctor Piles assumed that the Big 5 were going to sweep through this. If I knew what they were capable of, I would have thought too. They must have all come from some sort of training school.” Beruta thought to herself.

“You all seem to be lacking in giving direction. So for today’s combat training I want you to give clear commands while in an engagement. We will have you being shot at and answering simple problems.” Doctor Piles instructed.

“Yes, Doctor.” The Candidates said.

“As you navigate the course, this dummy will follow you. As it follows you, you must answer the questions that are being asked. Answer all 24 questions before finishing the course, and do not get you nor the dummy shot.” Doctor Piles explained.

“Yes, Doctor.” The Candidates once again said.

“Line up.” Doctor Piles ordered.

Everyone ran to the entrance of the course. It was about 100 meters long and had several gaps for windows which were being shot into my machines. The dummy then rolled up behind the Candidates.

“Greetings. I am 7.4.1-11. May I ask what is the charge of a Neutron in terms of an Electron’s charge.” The dummy asked.

“None…” Saigan answered, unsure as to why it asked everyone that question.

“You are going first, please escort me to the end of this course.” The dummy said to Saigan.

“Dang it, it tricked me.” Saigan said, stepping up to the beginning of the course.

Beruta watched Saigan make their way through the course. “Oh, this looks like it is going to get annoying.” Beruta thought to herself.

Yomie arrived and undertook the task that she put off the day before.

As she was working another Communication came in to her from the Supervising Officer.

“Officer Yomie, we have more of those kinds of people for you.” The Supervisor said.

Yomie looked up towards them. “What do you mean, those kinds of people?” Yomie asked.

“They are asking to see a Follower of Vaneluresa, or Vaneluresa herself.” The Supervisor responded.

“How many of them are there?” Yomie asked, surprised. She couldn’t have guessed that more people would know of Vaneluresa.

“There are 4 of them, but it seems that they are also rather belligerent, so take caution when communicating.” The Supervisor noted to Yomie.

Yomie got up from her desk and headed over to the Border.

When she arrived she found 4 people standing up in front of the Border Officer.

Yomie walked to the Officer.

“So what’s the issue?” Yomie asked.

“Is Vaneluresa not the protector of this Country? We demand to see her immediately.” The person in front commanded.

The Border Officer handed Yomie their Identifications. Yomie took a quick glance at the information.

“So, you are Balna, a former employee of the Suminiatini Transportation Association?” Yomie asked the one who stood in front.

“Emphasis on ‘former’. Now I am the Head of the Disciples of Iota.” Balna responded to Yomie.

“Sure, so what business do you have with Vaneluresa?” Yomie asked.

“If you can’t get a hold of her directly, at least get one of her Disciples here.” Balna ordered.

“Why?” Yomie asked. She was interested in what this would develop into.

“It’s Disciple stuff, you wouldn’t understand.” Balna said to Yomie.

“Well I am a Follower of Ke’Lan, so that should make me a Disciple as well, right. So I would understand.” Yomie responded to them.

“Is Ke’Lan a Giver of Power and Protector of Nations?” Balna asked Yomie.

“Yes, the Goddess Ke’Lan is able to imbue her Followers with Power and Immortality.” Yomie responded to Balna. “Look at me sounding like an evangelist.” Yomie chuckled to herself.

“So this region is the Territory of Ke’Lan and not Vaneluresa?” Balna asked Yomie.

“I haven’t met Vaneluresa yet, but it sounds like you all aren’t interested in simply migrating or vacationing to Marian South. So I have to ask you all to leave.” Yomie said to them.

The others in Balna’s group stepped forward.

“We are the Followers of Iota, failure to spread her influence would be an affront to her Great Name.” They all spoke in unison.

Yomie backed away.

“Did they have weapons on them?” Yomie asked the Border Officer.

“No, they didn’t.” The Border Officer responded.

The group then moved forward trying to break down the wall that separated The Suminiatini Federation from Marian South. They were yelling out technique names but no change in their strength happened.

“What are they doing?” The Border Officer asked.

“Well the Demigods were said to give their Followers special abilities, they must think that they still have them and are trying to use it against us.” Yomie responded. “It’s pretty embarrassing actually…” 

The group continued to attack the walls. “We can’t let such an obstacle block us from spreading the Influence of Iota!” Balna said.

Then a group of Security Guards entered the back of Building.

“Finally.” Yomie said to herself.

They shot nets at the Followers of Iota and pinned them to the ground.

Yomie walked out of the Protected Employee rooms. She looked down at Balna and the other Followers.

“Take them all to the Questioning Building.” Yomie requested.

The Security Guards then dragged the Followers away.

Yomie seemed agitated. “That was embarrassing. Did these Demigods truly want people to spread their name?” Yomie thought to herself.

Some time passed, and Yomie went to speak with Balna.

Balna had their hands pinned to the seat and table. Yomie took a seat in front of them.

“Balna, Follower of Iota. I have a few questions to ask you.” Yomie said in a serious tone. Balna turned her head in a sign that they would not speak.

“What if I told you I know about Iota, would you speak to me then?” Yomie asked.

Balna turned back towards Yomie. They had suspicion in their eyes, but was willing to offer Yomie some time to converse.

“I know that Iota has Dark Hair, she is taller than most people, she looks young, someone who definitely has not reached maturity. She primarily used Ground Techniques, and spoke with a Clear Serious voice. She is resistant to take part in activities unless you compliment her first.” Yomie told Balna.

“How do you know this information?” Balna asked. “Did you not say that you were a Follower of Ke’Lan?” 

“I’m in secret. But I haven’t been able to speak with other Followers of Iota, so I would like to know what we are supposed to be doing.” Yomie asked. She was obviously lying, but information gathering is the only thing Yomie truly cared about.

“I don’t recall seeing you during the battles, but we all do know that Iota had one person she was training before us, so that must be you.” Balna falsely assumed.

“Correct. So let me help support Iota. What is it she wants?” Yomie asked.

“There’s a Great Battle between the Demigods coming up for Domination of the Planet. It will be fought by using their Followers. On the day of the Battle we will all receive their Power and Prove once and for all who should rule this World. That’s why we must spread the influence of Iota, so that she will come out Victorious.” Balna told Yomie.

“A Great Battle? When is that supposed to happen?” Yomie asked.

“When Iota returns. At that moment we will fight against all others.” Balna informed Yomie. “But we heard that Vaneluresa completely controlled the entire Country of Marian South, so our Mission is to remove that influence and replace it with Iota’s.” Balna said.

“That’s quite the noble mission, thank you for telling me.” Yomie responded. “What should we do if they don’t want to convert to the side of Iota?” 

“Well you can guess that. They would be just one more person we would have to fight against in the Great Battle.” Balna said to Yomie.

Yomie then got up from her seat.

“I can’t ask them how they performed their abilities or they might suspect that I am not Beruta. I’ll have to ask it in another way.” Yomie thought to herself. “My abilities seem to have vanished, do yours still work?” Yomie asked Balna.

“Of course mine still work. All I have to do is believe that Iota will give me Power and I can do it simply. Your belief must be waning.” Balna said to Yomie.

“Must be.” Yomie responded. “That told me nothing, it seems like the Disciples of Iota and the Followers of Ke’Lan don’t have their abilities anymore, and Beruta doesn’t either. So the only real person who likely has any power would be Yaooan and Vaneluresa.” Yomie thought to herself.

“We can allow you to handle all of Marian South, we can take our travels to the Jieruresi Republic and spread her influence there.” Balna said to Yomie.

“I’ll hold you to that. But if you all are not allowed to return to Marian South, since you reacted with violence. Luckily no one got hurt or I would have had to have you all removed permanently, disciple or not.” Yomie said to Balna.

“Understood.” Balna responded.

Yomie then left the room.

“A Great Battle? Beruta never mentioned anything like that. Neither did the Followers of Ke’Lan. They are probably making that up. But it could get rather dangerous if more people believed in that.” Yomie thought to herself.

Yomie made note of this.

Beruta was up next in the course. 7.4.1-11 Followed behind her.

“Greetings Candidate Beruta, please take care of me.” The dummy said to her.

“Of course, you can depend on me to get you there safely.” Beruta responded. “Okay, just follow me.” Beruta said.

After a few steps forward the dummy then asked Beruta a question.

“From what Species did the First Ren Xi evolve from, and what was the reason for the differentiation?” The dummy asked.

“What kind of question is that? That’s not related to this at all.” Beruta responded.

“Is that your answer?” The dummy asked.

“No, hold on.” Beruta thought to herself. Then projectiles were shot over head to interrupt her thinking, and to remind her to keep moving.

“Ah, Ren Xi Prime evolved from Cataran Zuiming. The defining difference was the conjoined bodies and having all reproductive parts.” Beruta answered.

“Thank you for that response, Candidate Beruta.” The dummy said.

Beruta slowly continued trying to keep out of the direct line of sight of the turrets.

“As the sides of a regular polygon increases, what value does the ratio between its Parameter and Total Width approach?” The dummy asked.

“Pi.” Beruta responded quickly. She did not let a simple question hinder her movement. “Okay, we are about to cross this gap, so one my count you jump forward. 3… 2…1. Jump!” Beruta said, as both her and the dummy cleared the gap.

“What event caused the mass extinction of the Family Dophaliladea.” The Dummy asked.

“Dang, I’m not even sure.” Beruta thought to herself. “It was probably the Oxygen Intoxication Event.” Beruta responded.

Questions like this continued to be asked to Beruta. The questions had nothing to do with Guarding or Combat. They were just questions that would cause you to pause momentarily.

“Who earned the nickname, ‘Inventor of the First Encrypted Ancient World’?” The dummy asked.

“Well this is just obvious for me, that’s Fandanner who lived nearly 100 thousand cycles ago.” Beruta responded. “And we are done!” Beruta said finally emerging from the course.

“Congratulations, Candidate Beruta, you answered 20 of the 24 questions correctly.” The dummy said before making its way back to the start of the course to be escorted by the next person.

“Yikes, I need to brush up on my common knowledge then.” Beruta thought to herself.

Beruta then joined the others. The next few Candidates went up to take part in the exercise.

“Hopefully, if I actually do get to guard someone, they can read the mood and know not to ask me trivia questions during the escort.” Beruta thought to herself.

Doctor Piles compiled all the data that they received from watching all the students go through.

“Not too far off of my predictions once more. By the time I am finished with training you all, exercises like this would be looked back on as fond memories.” Doctor Piles said to the Candidates.

They then left towards the exit.

“Farewell to Doctor Piles, the Combat Instructor of the National Guard Training at the Guardians of Science Institute!” An announcement was made.

“Farewell, Doctor.” The Candidates said.

They were then given a short time before their next bit of training.

Beruta walked around the room, seeing if she could find something entertaining. Hahur then walked up to Beruta.

“Candidate Beruta.” Hahur said to her.

“Yeah? What’s up?” Beruta responded.

“Why do you want to be a Guard?” They asked Beruta.

“Well that’s a question that came out of nowhere, we didn’t even have a normal conversation yet.” Beruta responded.

“I was just curious. You aren’t part of the Big 5, nor in our group. So that is why I asked.” Hahur added.

“I want to protect someone very close to a person that I want to meet in the future.” Beruta answered.

“So you aren’t in this to contribute to Society, nor try and defend those who would contribute to Society?” Hahur asked another question.

“I didn’t say all of that, what if the person I am trying to meet is one of the Greatest Contributors to Society, then you would have made an incorrect assumption.” Beruta quickly responded back.

“What’s the person’s name?” Hahur asked.

Beruta paused. She remembered that a Group called Ponicon attacked people within the Government, and she could make herself a target to them if she named Vaneluresa or Yaooan as the person she had interest in.

“It’s just some Professor, no one so important. You’re probably right, I’m not doing much for Society.” Beruta responded cautiously.

Hahur then gestured their hand to Beruta.

“Do you have any opinions about Multi-termed Politicians? Doesn’t it make you feel uneasy how close they seem to be to Royalty. Afterall, those associated with them could end up growing up in Government, then become a Politician themselves, causing a family to control an aspect of our Society.” Hahur attempted to appeal to Beruta to tilt her to their opinion.

Beruta paused for a second to answer the question.

“I haven’t really thought about it too much. I suppose in some ways your point could be true.” Beruta responded.

Hahur looked at Beruta with suspicion in their eyes. “Yahu, Almuha, Saigan and I are going out after training today, how about you come and join us.” Hahur invited Beruta out.

“Given the flow of the conversation, they are all likely in the same group. Is it safe for me to participate in this alone with them?” Beruta thought to herself.

Anki then walked over to the two.

“Two weaklings talking to each other, so what is the conversation about? Why do you look so nervous?”Anki asked Beruta.

“Nervous? I’m not nervous.” Beruta responded.

Rancol soon walked over as well. “Candidate Beruta is obviously nervous. It’s all over their face.” Rancol pointed out.

Beruta then pushed Anki off. “I’m not nervous about anything. I was just being invited out today by Hahur.” Beruta said.

Hahur seemed displeased that Beruta mentioned the event to Anki and Rancol.

“Oh, you were going out and didn’t think to invite us? I am very hurt by that.” Anki said, directed at Hahur.

“It’s not anything special, actually, we might not even do it after all.” Hahur responded to Anki.

“Don’t be like that. Come on, I can help you plan it, or I can sit silently and let you all act as if I wasn’t there.” Anki mentioned.

“No, really, we aren’t going to do anything.” Hahur tried to brush off the suggestion.

Anki then had a serious look on their face. “I suggest you decide to do something later or you won’t enjoy the rest of your day after training.” Anki threatened Hahur.

Yahu and Almuha came over to the group seeing that Anki was standing tall over Hahur.

“Hahur, is there an issue here?” Yahu asked.

Anki then turned their attention to Yahu. Yahu is confident in themselves and their abilities, but when faced with Anki a visible sense of intimidation could be felt.

“Yeah, is there an issue here, Hahur?” Anki asked.

Beruta looked at the two groups and tried to back away from them before things got dicey. 

“You can’t just try to disappear like that, it’ll be rude to the hosts who are inviting you out.” Anki said, grabbing Beruta.

“If we were inviting Candidate Beruta out, then you have no business in trying to invite yourself to it.” Yahu said to Anki.

Anki then let go of Beruta and stood up tall in front of Yahu.

“It’s only been a little while since the Combat Instruction, I didn’t get a chance to put you in your place, isn’t that regrettable, Yahu.” Anki said, directing their annoyance towards Yahu.

“Don’t think you can just grab me like everyone else.” Yahu said to Anki.

“Seems to me that you are everyone else, so there’s no reason not to.” Anki said, stepping closer to Yahu.

Yahu then stepped back.

“You watch your back outside.” Yahu said to Anki, as they walked back. Almuha and Hahur followed behind.

“No one is scared of you.” Anki said aloud so that Yahu could still hear.

Beruta looked up at Anki. She was confused about what all of that was about. Anki looked at Beruta.

“You probably shouldn’t get involved with them.” Anki warned Beruta.

“What? Because you think I would be one of their minions instead of yours?” Beruta said, trying to lighten the mood.

“You probably don’t know this, but they are a part of something dangerous. When you’ve been guarding for as long as the Big 5, you can recognize something shady.” Anki informed Beruta.

“Shady?” Beruta said. She wondered if Anki knew about Ponicon. But she couldn’t ask directly because that would raise Anki’s suspicions about Beruta.

“All present! Greetings to Doctor Yuman, the Strategic Analysis Instructor of the National Guard Training at Guardians of Science Institute!” An announcement was made.

The Candidates all got in Line and responded. “Greetings, Doctor.”

“I received the information from Doctor Piles about everyone’s performance earlier today. So I will assign you all into Teams and we will work on Escort Formations, and Evacuations.” Doctor Yuman said to the Candidates.

“Teams? Perfect, immediately after that little issue we all just had.” Beruta thought sarcastically in her head.

“Okina, Hahur, Rancol, and Simura are in the First Squad. Hano, Almuha, Urgio and Yakra are in the Second Squad. And Anki, Beruta, Yahu, and Saigan are in the Third Squad.” Doctor Yuman informed the Candidates.

“Really, out of any of the 12, I get paired up with those two.” Beruta thought that something in the Universe was targeting her to make her life miserable.

“We will watch how the movement is performed and then I want each team to perform them in a simulated event.” Doctor Yuman said.

The teams then all went to their places.

Saigan and Yahu went to take their seats and Anki pushed Yahu out of the way.

“Oops, looks like you got in my way.” Anki said to Yahu.

Beruta feels like all of this hostility that developed was due to a fault of her own. But likely the resentment existed before Beruta even knew them.

The Teams watched the demonstration of the formation.

“These look very similar to Military Formations, so this is of no issue for me.” Beruta thought to herself.

Saigan and Yahu leaned forward to study the formation. Anki seemed to have already known what the formations entailed.

The Teams didn’t do anything unusual. Though the Team that Beruta was on seemed unmotivated to actually work together, however they still completed the task they were given.

Soon their practice ended. And all the candidates lined back up.

“Now, the Teams that you are in, are the Teams you will be with for every session we have together.” Doctor Yuman said to the Candidates. “Understood?” Doctor Yuman asked.

“Understood, Doctor.” The Candidates said.

A Message was then sent out to all of the Candidates in the room.

“Looks like everyone got their next tasks. See you then.” Doctor Yuman said before departing the room.

“Farewell to Doctor Yuman, the Strategic Analysis Instructor of the National Guard Training at Guardians of Science Institute!” An announcement was made.

“Farewell, Doctor.” The candidates said.

Beruta then looked at the message she received.

“At 1800 you are to be present in Security Gear at the Young Leader’s Institute. We will be running a mock security event with live participants. You are to be in the Teams that Doctor Yuman assigned.” The Message read.

“Well, I guess that’s it for now.” Beruta said before heading towards the exit.

Yahu, Almuha, Hahur and Saigan all came together and began talking to one another.

“Pretty unfortunate isn’t it.” Anki said to Beruta, seeming like they were friends.

“Being paired up with you would be bad enough, but having you plus someone you are actively aggravating, it really couldn’t be a worse team.” Beruta responded.

“You are pretty funny.” Anki said to Beruta, hitting her back. “I’ll see you at the meet up point later.” Anki said to Beruta.

Beruta left and went back to her home.

Yomie was waiting for Beruta to arrive. “Welcome back!” Yomie said to Beruta with a smile on her face. “Don’t I have something to tell you today.” Yomie said, shaking her head. She eagerly wanted to share with Beruta the events at the Border.

“I have to head back out shortly, so sadly I won’t be able to share my news with you too.” Beruta responded to Beruta as they both walked in.

“So, today, there was a Group who called themselves the Followers of Iota, who came to the Border. They wanted to enter Marian South and spread the influence of iota through the Country.” Yomie said to Beruta.

“Followers of Iota? Like my Iota?” Beruta asked.

“Well I would assume so, the Iota they were following seemed to have similar attributes to the one you mentioned.” Yomie responded.

“Okay, so they were trying to spread Iota’s influence, did they say why?” Beruta asked. Beruta was getting ready to head back out.

“Apparently there is supposed to be a Great War between the Demigods that was to be fought by their Followers.” Yomie informed.

Beruta stopped. She then looked over at Yomie.

“You’re kidding right?” Beruta asked.

“No, they genuinely believed it. They were willing to even attack the building to get into Marian South.” Yomie said with a higher pitch as if it was truly unbelievable.

“That doesn’t sound like Iota would order them to do that at all. Iota told me that the place where she was from did not have any militaries, so if they were to have a war it would be between each other, not their followers.” Beruta informed Yomie.

“They don’t have any military? Then where could they be from? All Countries and Nations have Militaries, even if it is just a Peoples.” Yomie said.

“Not them. The reason was that no outside entity could even match a singular person, so having a Military seems unnecessary.” Beruta said.

“They have to have originated from the very South. Like the Most Southern Nation on the Continent.” Yomie responded.

“What is that Nation like?” Beruta asked.

“No idea, I was trying to research it earlier, but all I got were dead ends. It used to be called Usera and Arika, but I heard that those Nations don’t exist anymore. But the information as to why seems dubious at best.” Yomie said to Beruta.

“You think we could get transport there?” Beruta asked.

“Even if Marian South is more friendly to other Countries than the Suminiatini Federation, I doubt Ren Neo would allow us to travel that far Southward.” Yomi responded. She was trying to think of a Solution as well.

“Sheesh, why is it so hard to just go South.” Beruta said. “I think I might need to hurry and get in contact with Yaooan or Vaneluresa so that these followers don’t get more carried away.” 

“I agree with you. I will try to see if I can get into contact with people who might know more information on what happened to Usera.” Yomie said.

“You could try playing one of those World Games, I heard that people like to meet others through them.” Beruta said as she walked near the exit. “You can stay here and do it. This shouldn’t be long, it’s just one exercise.” Beruta said.

“Sure. I await your return then.” Yomie said, staying seated.

Beruta walked out and began to head towards the Young Leader’s Building.

“So Iota got an entire other group of people to complete her task. I figured as much but it hurts.” Beruta thought to herself.

As Beruta got close to the building there was an enormous pressure that pushed her back, Beruta was tossed against the shops nearby.

Then an explosive sound followed immediately afterward causing the ground to shake. Then air was being sucked back towards where the sound came from.

Everything happened so fast that Beruta was tossed into a frenzy.

All she could see at the location of the Young Leader’s Institute were flames and smoke.

“Wait, Anki, Saigan and Yahu are there!” Beruta thought as she began to run towards the destroyed building.

As Beruta got closer she could hear injured people yelling. The place she was supposed to meet was completely destroyed.

“Who could have done this?” Beruta thought to herself.

In the distance within the flame she could see a person pulling other people out of the fire. Beruta tried to make her way to them.

“Let me help you.” Beruta said. She then saw that it was Anki. Anki had a piece of the building shredded in their body and it looked as though 2 of their arms were broken with another badly injured.

“You’re hurt badly, Anki. You need to not strain yourself.” Beruta said.

Anki looked over at Beruta.

“Oh, good, you weren’t in the explosion.” Anki said before losing even more fluid. Anki had successfully pulled the people out of the flames. “I need to go back in.” Anki said, stumbling towards the fire.

“No, you need to rest. I’ll go in.” Beruta said.

Beruta then ran into the building and she looked for other people who could be trapped.

“Help, my leg. It’s underneath this thing!” Someone yelled out. Beruta ran over to them. 

“Keep calm. It doesn’t look so bad, so I’ll get you out.” Beruta said. She then began to push the hot structure, but it only gave her superficial burns. The Object was moved and Beruta helped lift the person up.

“Thank you.” The person said having an increasingly hard time breathing.

Beruta carried the person out, and saw Anki still trying to make sure the people they rescued were okay.

Beruta walked over to Anki after seating the person outside of the range of the smoke.

“Did you see anyone else in our class?” Beruta asked Anki.

Several Projectiles then went through Anki’s body. Anki then fell over. Beruta looked in the direction of where the shots came from.

The person who did it then ran away on the roof tops. Official personnel then came on the scene.

“Everyone back away, we need to secure the area.” The Officials said. The ones with fire protection entered the building.

Beruta backed away from the Fire, she looked back up at where that person was. She then decided that she needed to pursue them.

Beruta ran along the sidewalk keeping her eyes looking upward. As she ran she looked in every alley to see if she noticed if something was moving.

The people in the buildings nearby were looking out their windows to see what was happening.

Beruta continued to track the person. Until she no longer could tell where they might have gone.

“Dammit! I lost them.” Beruta thought. “I need to hurry back and check on Anki.” Beruta then ran back to the Fire.

The fire seemed to have been under complete control, and the Officials were collecting bodies.

Another message then rang out. Beruta went to read it. “Rest of today’s training is canceled. Do not approach the Young Leader’s Institute. Await further instructions” The message read.

Beruta looked around to see if she saw any of her other classmates but she didn’t even see Anki anymore.

The Officials then came over to Beruta and covered her in a blanket.

“Sorry, we can not have you leave just yet, we need to make sure you are healthy.” The Official said to Beruta.

“I understand,” Beruta said, sitting down to the side.

“I won’t be coming back tonight it seems.” Beruta messaged Yomie.

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